January 1, 2015

Ushering in the New Year with Prayer {w/ Giveaways}

Welcome to LIVING TRUTH! Oh, how I’ve prayed for each one of you who stops by today!! A special welcome if you’re visiting from my Proverbs 31 Encouragement for Today devotion where I share my New Year’s Prayer for 2015 (at the end of the post, you will find a link to download a copy of that prayer).

As we usher in this New Year together, I invite you to join me in remembering the One to whom we lift our prayers.

His Name is Jesus. HE IS…

…” the One who is, the One who was, and the One who is coming.” Revelation 1:4 (The Voice).

Did you hear? He is coming.

And on that day He will come…

“riding on the clouds in all His glory.” Revelation 1:7

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“eyes ablaze with fire and crowns adorning his head.”

“His name:… KING OF KINGS AND LORD OF LORDS.” Revelation 19:16.

On that day, Jesus will call our names, take our hands, and lead us into our heavenly home! I can only imagine how our hearts will swell as we pass through the gates and see what only Jesus’ beloved disciple John has seen.

Take a journey with me and let’s imagine…

I can hardly believe my eyes. All I’ve ever known is gone. Heaven and earth have passed away; the seas are gone. Everything is new! There, before me, is a holy city. It’s the New Jerusalem, descending from heaven.

The glory of the Lord shines all about. The city is made of pure gold, yet it is as clear as glass. The great wall around the city, adorned with the most precious of jewels, glimmers unlike anything I have ever seen.

I see no street lights or lamps. But there is no need because the Light of the World illumines every corner of the city, forbidding the darkness to enter.

The glory and grandeur of every nation is on display; people from around the world bringing glory and honor to the King of kings and Lord of lords.

Tears well up so thick. I can hardly take in what lies before me. A river of crystal clear living water, flows down from the throne of the Lamb. On each bank of the river stands the tree of life, firmly planted, bearing an abundance of plump, ripe fruit.

Surrounding me are worshipers, every race and every nation bowing before the throne of God and the Lamb of God. As I lift my eyes, I see my Creator and my Savior there before me. I’m in their presence. Awestruck wonder captivates my heart. I feel as if I can’t breathe. I had learned of God’s glory. I had prayed often for a touch of His glory. But now, I could do nothing but fall on my face before His Shekinah glory and join the throngs of worshipers bowing down before Him, casting their crowns at His feet.

I hear a great voice, coming from the throne::

“The home of God is now with His people. He will live among them; they will be His people, and God Himself will be among them. The prophecies are fulfilled: He has wiped every tear. No more death. No more mourning. No more crying. No more pain. The first things have gone away.”

And then I hear the One on the throne speak! A voice I have longed to hear announce to His creation:

“I am making ALL things new!”

Glory! Glory! It is all just as God said!

(Inspired by Revelation 21 and 22)

Hallelujah!

Glory! One day every knee will bow and tongue confess our JESUS IS LORD!

Let’s band together today as sisters and pray a New Year’s Prayer to our Jesus, inviting Him into our hearts, our families, our marriages, our friendships, our relationships, our jobs…our lives. Will you start today by sharing your prayer in the comments today…maybe a favorite verse you will pray; a word God has laid on your heart; a commitment you are making, or even your full prayer. And please know it will be my joy and delight to pray over each and every prayer, sweet friend.

Giveaway to Celebrate YOU!

To celebrate YOU and the precious time you have taken to stop by and share your thoughts and prayers, I will randomly choose 4 names to receive some fun New Year’s gifts, including a signed copy of my book, Living So That, a  signed copy of my book, Hidden Joy in a Dark Corner, a Target gift card, or a bracelet. Check back HERE Saturday (in the comments) for the names of the winners.

And if you would like a free downloadable copy of My New Year’s prayer, click here.

***Thank you to my dear friend, Fred, for this AMAZING photo taken on the North Shore of Oahu. If you are interested in learning more about Fred’s photography, e-mail him at fredsfoto2@aol.com. ***

Blessings,

 

December 29, 2014

Through YOU God can change a life!

Why did God choose YOU to live now…at this time…in this place?

When we first moved to Charlotte, North Carolina, I asked myself those same questions.

An overwhelmed mother of two small children living in a new city, I had just quit the practice of law to stay home with my kids. I had few friends and no family. And feeling isolated, I found past fears from having been the victim of a violent crime years before revisiting me and taking hold in a mighty way.

It was a hard time for this mama.

On top of that, having lost a significant chunk of our income, we needed extra money to pay our bills.

It was a hard time for this mama.

So when my oldest started school, God opened a door for me to work at Proverbs 31 Ministries. I worked for Renee Swope helping coordinate our speaking ministry…connecting churches with speakers, sending out packets, writing contracts.

It was the perfect part time job for this mama.

Over time, God moved mightily in my heart and my life.  Our Proverbs 31 She Speaks Conference awakened a giftedness in me to speak, most especially to teach God’s Word. I started a little Bible study in my little area of town. That Bible study led to a passion to write Bible study curriculum and teach God’s word on a consistent basis. Through that teaching and writing, God opened doors for me to publish a book entitled Living So That. And through that book, God connected me with the AMAZING women of our Proverbs 31 On-line Bible studies.

It was a blessed and fulfilling time for this mama.

This little ministry centered in a small town in North Carolina has connected my heart to women in ways that I never ever dreamed and has allowed me to be involved in something SO much bigger than myself. And if you are reading this, YOU are one of those women, I’m sure. And today I’m inviting YOU to join me and be involved in something so much bigger than yourself!

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Over the last five years, I’ve had the privilege of coming alongside thousands of women as they have surrendered their hearts, their homes, their marriages, their careers, and their families to Christ.

And in that surrendering, God’s love and His Word have

RESTORED seemingly hopeless marriages.

HEALED deep wounds.

UNITED broken families.

SAVED unborn children.

STOPPED  women from taking their lives.

And daily, I watch our little ministry

ENCOURAGE women to be in the Word.

WALK women through the Word.

EMPOWER women to pray the Word.

EQUIP women to write and teach the Word.

Proverbs 31 brings not only godly encouragement, wisdom, and knowledge, we also bring God’s love and God’s girls together in a way unmatched anywhere else!!

JOIN OUR FAMILY!! BE A PART OF THE AMAZING WORK GOD DOES HERE!

Will you partner with us to change the world by helping us reach women for Christ right from your home? If so, click here to change a life today with a year-end gift. Thank you for helping us go into all the world with the love of Jesus and the truth and hope found nowhere else but in God’s Word!

We celebrate every dollar given and stretch it as far as a dollar can be stretched. Thank you for the life-changing impact we are making together for women worldwide!

Blessings,

December 15, 2014

Meet My Friend Tracie Miles {with Giveaway}

God has a plan for your life and a purpose for your future.

“No matter what you’ve been through or what’s been done to you, if you’re still breathing God isn’t finished with you yet!  Sometimes we just need to be reminded. Other times we need to be persuaded to believe it’s true.”

Tracie Miles

Proverbs 31 Ministries brought Tracie and I together many years ago. We have served side by side for years. When she shared the topic of her new book, my heart filled with joy. Because I had been in that place…feeling like God could never use me because of something horrific that had been done to me. I knew her book would be a vessel of healing and hope. And I was so honored when she asked to include my story in her book.

Today, I invited her  to share a bit about her new book, Your Life Still Counts. In this book, Tracie Miles shares how she convinced herself that God couldn’t use her. There were too many things she had done wrong. But over time, as Tracie came to know Christ, she realized she was the perfect candidate for His transforming power. Through her brokenness, Jesus now displays His grace and goodness. The very things Tracie believed  “disqualified” her from ministry are now the most significant and powerful parts of her life’s mission and message.

Meet my friend Tracie…

 

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DON’T LIVE THE LIE

Tracie Miles, Your Life Still Counts

Because of the mistakes of my past, I spent a lot of years not liking the woman staring back in the mirror, and just maybe in your mirror, you too see a woman you feel like you don’t know, or don’t respect. In fact, maybe you’ve played the “wonder” game, like I did, for far too long.

Wondering who you really are. Wondering if you are forgivable. Wondering if you are worthy. Wondering if you are loved or lovable, by God or others. Wondering if you’re beyond repair. Wondering if what someone did to hurt you stole your value. Wondering if you are a good enough person, wife, mom, employee, boss, sister, daughter, friend, servant.  Wondering if you measure up at all, in any area of life.

Wondering if your life counts for something beyond your responsibilities and obligations, or if you are just meant to march through your daily routines with no real purpose or direction.

Wondering about all the lies that have kept you too blinded to see God’s love for you and that consistently remind you that you are a worthless sinner. The lie that has caused you to believe you could never be used for a meaningful purpose in God’s kingdom—and that not only does your life not matter to God, but you probably don’t matter either.

It’s possible you have felt that way too and lived in the shadow of the lies every day. Either because of your own mistakes or because of someone else’s choices to sin against you through no fault of your own. But whether we are the sinner or the victim of a sinner, shame still follows, and it ultimately shapes the way we see ourselves, allowing deceptive lies to weave deep into our hearts and minds.

I wasted so many years believing the enemy’s lies were absolute truths, until I finally discovered that I mattered to God, and that He had a special plan and purpose for my life. And He has one for you too.

If these false beliefs and lies have been keeping you too discouraged to trust in God’s promises, my prayer is that today becomes the day you begin seeing yourself in a new light with a new reflection looking back at you. I pray you would be proud of your reflection because of who you are in Christ.

One of the biggest dangers of going through periods of hurt, abuse, distress, heartache, and shame is that we begin to doubt God’s unconditional love, mercy, grace, and forgiveness. We lose sight of who we are in Christ. And that’s exactly what the devil wants us to do. His ultimate goal is get us to believe the lie, then live the lie. But it is up to us whether he reaches that goal or not. We can thwart his plans by claiming God’s sovereignty over our hearts today and embracing His call on our lives and it begins by knowing who we are in Christ, and whose we are.

John 1:12 reminds us that we are, without question, beloved children of God: “But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.” Beth Moore, well known Bible teacher and author, once said, “If you are not royalty, He is not King.” We are rightful heirs to God’s kingdom—and His love and acceptance. You are a royal and dearly loved daughter, and He is the King of all kings!

When we stop living the lie, and start living God’s truths, we can begin to discover a purpose we would have never imagined- not despite our past, but because of it.

What a beautiful message of hope and encouragement. Thank you, Tracie!!!

We are giving away a copy of  Your Life Still Countsand a downloadable study guide. To enter to win, simply share your thoughts about today’s post…maybe a lie you are believing or maybe how God has taken your past and transformed it into something beautiful. I will announce the winner on Friday.

***Winners of Target Gift Card and my book giveaway on my last post announced at the end of this post.****

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www.traciemiles.com

www.proverbs31.org

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****The winners of Living So That and the $25 Target Gift Cards are Angela who posted on 12/8 at 1:29 pm and Sabrina who posted on 2/8 at 9:54 am. Please e-mail me at deuteronomysix@aol.com with your full name and mailing address by Friday, 12/19.****

Blessings,