God’s Promises Shape Our Lives, #2

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Only God is our Strength.

~ Lisa Blair

God wants us to experience His supernatural insight and wisdom. So often we awaken and find ourselves in the dark. Life has shifted and we are no longer in control. A question that will have to be answered another time, but one to be pondered, were we ever in control? I hope not, because if I am in control, then the Lord is not in control. I pray that I will always depend upon Him.

The most important thing in our life is the ability to pray. God is always with us, and prayer is a way to communicate with Him. As long and we are in communication, our lives are calm, even in the midst of the storm. Perhaps you will recall the story about the disciples in the storm, worried that they would drown. The sea was becoming more violent and the waves higher. Jesus was asleep in the boat. They woke Him and told them they were going to die. Jesus replied, ” ‘You of little faith, why are you so afraid?’ Then He got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.” (Matthew 8:26, NIV)

The disciples had the benefit of living with Jesus. We have the same benefit, but our relationship is supernatural. We cannot see Him in person, but when we pray, we can feel His presence. In the Book of Genesis, God referred several times to ‘we’ and ‘us.’ Jesus and the Holy Spirit were with God as they created the heavens, earth, plant and animal life, and us. They are always there, waiting for you to communicate with them.

This brings us to the God’s Promises for Strength.

Psalm 31:24

“Be of good courage, and He shall STRENGTHEN your heart, all you who HOPE in the Lord.

God exhorts us to be encouraged and feel assured that He will never leave us or forsake us. He wants us to have strength even in the greatest distress. C.H. Spurgeon penned – God strengths us in many ways,

“He may do so with a cheering promise. “He shall strengthen your heart.” God alone can do this.

1. Sometimes by gracious providences.

2. By the kindly fellowship of friends.

3. By a precious promise.

4. Beside all that, God the Holy Spirit has a secret way of strengthening the courage of God’s people, which none of us can explain. Have you never felt it? You may have gone to your bed, sick at heart, “weary, and worn, and sad,” and you wake in the morning ready for anything. Perhaps, in the middle of the night, you awake, and the visitations of God are manifested to you, and you feel as happy as if everything went the way you would like it to go. Nay, you shall be more happy that everything should cross you than that everything should please you, if it be God’s sweet will. You feel a sudden strengthening of your spirit, so that you are perfectly resigned, satisfied, prepared, and ready. (C. H. Spurgeon.)

So you see, God who is omnipresent, omnipotent, and omniscient is the n control. He works through the Holy Spirit to strengthen us and give us wisdom and directions. He also works through people we know and may not know but were encouraged to help. For example, I was driving home one evening from work, and was driving through a rotator and saw a woman on the side of the road with a sign asking for help. I was not in the lane close to her, nor could I stop, so I kept driving. As I was leaving the area, God requested that I go back and give her $20. Twenty dollars was a lot at that point in my life, so I tried to ignore Him. He would not stop, ten minutes later, I turned around and went back to the rotator, got in the right lane, stopped traffic, and gave her my last twenty dollars. Obedience is everything, my friend. When I got home, I opened the mail and received an unexpected check that allowed us to pay the rent on time and more. Now, you could say This could have been a coincidence, but God does not work that way, He works through divine providence. Why did I share this story, you may ask? Believing God’s promises provides the strength to follow His nudging. Sometimes He just wants you to be obedient when He calls despite your circumstances. Nudging is when He puts something on your heart. It is the atmosphere of peace that empowers you with the strength to forge forward and trust in the path He is laying before you. It is the fortitude to turn left when you planned to turn right, to accept a job you would never have taken because He is lining up a job you thought you were not qualified for, to accept a lesser home when you lost your home, to look at each day as the day He made and rejoice in it despite your current circumstances.

Psalm 41:1,3

“Blessed is he who considers the poor; the Lord will deliver him in time of trouble.” “The Lord will strengthen him on his bed of illness; you will sustain him on his sickbed.”

The story I shared was an example of being obedient to help the poor. In times like this, I recite, ‘but for the grace of God, there go I.’ This scripture is rich in identifying God’s strength and focuses on strength during times of illness. Charles Stanley wrote in his Life Lessons that, “In this fallen world, we all get sick at some point. Some struggle with it often, some not much as all. But whenever we fall ill, God invites us to trust in His strength and to pray for recovery.”

Psalm 50:15

“Call upon Me in the day of trouble. I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me.”

Matthew Poolenconveyed in his commentary that, ” In the day of trouble” ; when the day of trouble comes, do not avoid it by ‘sinful shifts’ relying on a quick but questionable means to find relief, rather give glory to God and rely on His promises for resolve. God will deliver you out of trouble. We in turn should praise God for our deliverance. Some say, and I believe, that we should praise Him before He answers our cry for strength and resolve of the troubles we are experiencing. Faith requires that we believe in our heart that God’s promises are the only truth that ascribes the glory of deliverance to God. He gives us strength in times of trouble.

Nahum 1:7

“The Lord is good. A stronghold in the day of trouble; and He knows those who trust Him.”

God is good to His children and will always provide a stronghold, refuge, and a way out of no way. You can put your trust in the Lord, acknowledging that His Promises never fail. His promises always provide the strength to see you through the worst of times. His strength protections us in times of uncertainty, feelings of hopelessness, and being defeated.

Mark 10:27

“But Jesus looked and them and said, With men it is impossible, but not with God; for with God all things are possible.”

Abbott, writes that although it transcends human power to change the fixed characteristics of avarice and selfishness to benevolence and piety, there is no limit to the control exercised over the heart by the Spirit of God. If God can convince a rich person to give up their riches, or in today’s terms, yield their wealth and denounce their dependence on their wealth to trust in Him, what more can He do for us? Image what He can do to and for those of us that are not part of the wealthy class. God seeks relationship, dependence, and allegiance to Him. He provides us with the strength to endure during difficulties and rest on His word as He works things out according to His plan.

Matthew 12:9

“My grace is sufficient to you, for My STRENGTH is made perfect in weakness.” “Therefore, most gladly, I will rather boast in my infirmities that the poser of Christ may rest upon m.””

Charles Stanley. Life Lessons, explains this scripture this way, ” The gospel is full of seeming contradictions. If you want to be first, you must be last. If you want to save your live, you must lose it. And, if you want to be strong, you must glory in your weakness.

You must glory in your weakness. You must never weaken and doubt, succumbing to your circumstances and lose hope. Your STRENGTH lies in your dependence on God’s promises.

Resources: Biblehub.com; dailyverse.knowing.jesus.com. Biblestudytools.com. Biblestudylight.org. Biblegateway.com. Charles Stanley Life Principles Bible. NKJV

Images: LAB PHOTOS

God’s Promises Shape Our Lives

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God’s promises give us HOPE in a cold world.

~ Lisa Blair
LAB PHOTOS


This is the first of a series of posts about God’s promises. His promises give us the STRENGTH to stand in the face of any and all attacks. He provides us with the ability to STAND in the face of all evil. Our FAITH in God always brings us through. There are times when we can see Him working in our lives and times when He is working to protect us against situations unbeknownst to us. Take time to examine your past, and you will see God at work in your life.

One of my friends added this to her daily prayers, “Teach me, Lord, to trust you.” It sounds easy and should be easy, especially for those who read and study the Bible and know God’s promises. But the fact is, most of us know something of His promises but think we can activate them on our own as needed. The truth is, God never promised us anything He will not deliver, but it is deliverable in His terms and time, not ours. Once we acquaint ourselves with His promises, we can rely on them in time of need, replacing our greed for faith in God to bring us through.

Friends, allow God to lead you and guide you in how to face your challenges. His promises will help you to see your challenges more clearly, as well as the opportunities that are presented. Reside in His peace. Go to God in prayer boldly standing upon His promises. Rest assured knowing that He hears you and will fulfill them in due time.

Isaiah 26:3

You will keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on you, because, he trusts in you.”

We receive peace with God in Christ, through the blood He shed on Calvary. Peace is the fruit of our faith. Peace is profound. It is expressed as peace with God and peace with men, peace outward and peace inward, peace here and peace in the hereafter, and denotes the abundant peace available to all believers. (Biblestudytools.com)

If you trust in the Lord, you will be steady, able to stand when under attack, knowing God is with you and provides perfect peace as you go through trials and temptations. You are not alone. God is your eternal rock. God’s peace anchors you so you will not thoughtlessly seek resolve in moments of anxiety, fear, and confusion. His peace allows you to spend time with Him in prayer, centered on Him and not the things happening around you. Once you are ina peaceful state, He can lead you in the direction He mapped out for you.

Jeremiah 29:11

“For I know the plans I think toward you, declares the Lord, plans of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

The prophet Jeremiah instructed the Israelites to stop believing in false visionaries. There are so many contending that they know what is happening in the world today, exhorting we are entering the End Times, and who is not a man of God. We look to these leaders to determine our direction, purpose, allegiance, and livelihood. The truth is – only God knows the plans He has for us. When we seek others, we create idols that slowly replace God. When this happens, we slowly fall into the hands of the evil one.

We can take comfort in Jeremiah 29:11, God’s promise of having a plan for us gives us peace in knowing that we are not floating aimlessly in the sea, but can see the light ahead confirming His presence in our lives. Believing God’s promises give us the courage to work through difficult times with hope.

Our hope is planted in God’s promises. As long as we can rest in his peace, the outside world becomes less daunting. When we reside in inner peace, we can view things more objectively and recognize God’s hints and directions for our lives. If we follow them, no matter what it looks like to the world, He will provide rest, restoration, replacement, and re-energize us giving, us the fortitude to move beyond the loss, devastation, and hopelessness we may feel.

Images: LAB PHOTOS, free google images

References: Biblegateway.org, Charles Stanley Life Principles Bible, NKJV, Biblestudytools.com, biblehub.com, Bibleletterbible.com

Comfort In Uncertainty

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When we are lost, we seek inward. When we are confused we seek God. Isn’t it amazing that we rely on Him and Him alone when things get tough.

~ Lisa Blair

Do you ever feel alone? Have you found yourself unable to figure things out? I have. We are in a time of uncertainty. We may have a job, roof our our head, and food on the table today, but uncertain about tomorrow, or you may have already been displaced as the result of the pandemic, loss of jobs, or storms, fires, or earthquakes. UNCERTAINTY IS THE TERM OF THE MOMENT. Absolutely nothing is as we understand it, but the WORD OF GOD. There is only one thing we can rely on and that’s His Word. It is our refuge, our safe haven, our tower against the storms of life.

The pandemic has ravaged the world as we know it. It has forced us to stop looking outward and begin looking inward at our relationship with God. I have met so many people who have been displaced from their pre-pandemic lives and have found freedom amongst the muck that has ravaged their lives.

Many are joining bible study Zooms, many are seeking introspection and their relationship with the Lord. Still others have decided to invest in themselves and not things, and are moving to less expensive cities and states. Many have regained connections with family members. And, many have found God and received Him as their Lord and Savior, hoping to come out of this in a strong relationship with our Father and a design for their futures that provide relationships outlined in the Bible as their basis for new life.

There is always a silver lining in every cloud. The timing for its appearance is governed by God. He knows the plans He has for us to prosper us and give us strength. He will provide for our basic needs as we travel through tough times, blessings will appear in many forms. Awareness of his blessings small and large were often overlooked and assumed to be something we made happen in the past. I think, for many, we are just beginning to recognize that our blessings come from God to meet all of our needs.

As we move forward, our lives may look different, we are shedding the past, those things that became idols and stole our time from the Lord. The new day will clearly focus on God and our relationship with Him. Our lives will experience His inner peace. We will find calm in the middle of storms, and we will be surrounded by His Grace and Mercies.

Images – Google Images

God’s Good Word, God’s Promises

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God’s Word is eternal. It is for all times and extends beyond our lifetime.

~ Lisa Blair

This is a guest post from a YouVersion devotional study – Good News: Encouragement for a World In Crisis. Created by YouVersion. Bible.com

God Has Good Plans, Day 1 of 7.

We’re living in an unprecedented time as we navigate the life-threatening and economy-shaking struggles we’re facing because of the COVID-19 pandemic. In the past, we’ve seen catastrophic diseases, disasters, and wars impact various countries, but this is different. At this time, the whole world has something in common: we’re trying to survive a deadly virus.

So, as followers of Jesus, how do we make sense of this? What do we do with our questions to God and our questions of God? How do we find good news in a continual stream of bad news? And how do we grasp how this fits into the all-familiar passage of Jeremiah 29:11? 

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope. (NLT)

This verse gives hope and is our spiritual security blanket in hard times. It’s printed on t-shirts, etched on coffee mugs, and stamped on greeting cards. While God is a hope giver, we have to understand the context of this cherished verse. 

Jeremiah prophesied to the Israelites in the southern kingdom of Judah before they were taken captive in 586 BC by King Nebuchadnezzer of Babylon. In Jeremiah 27, he prophesied that they would serve this king, his son, and his grandson, and that everything would be under their control (Jeremiah 27:6-7 NLT). 

In the next chapter, a false prophet named Hananiah told the people that God would free them and restore everything to them in two years. Jeremiah challenged Hananiah because of his lies. He also said Hananiah would die and in two months, he was dead.

In chapter 29, Jeremiah encourages the people to live their lives while they’re in exile—to work, marry, plant, eat, and multiply! He tells them they’ll be in Babylon for 70 years and then, they’ll be brought home again. 

God’s plans of a hope and a future for His chosen people probably didn’t match what their idea was. They wanted to go home, yet God said it would be 70 years. They wanted their own king, yet God said they would serve the Babylonian king. They wanted to flourish in their homeland, but God said to do that under a government that was holding them captive. Possibly the hardest part was that the older generation would never go back home. They would die in a foreign land serving a foreign king. 

We can’t insist on our idea of a bright and hopeful future. We tend to be short-sighted and earthly-minded. But God’s ways are so much higher than what our minds can grasp. His plan is better! And it will include forever with Him in heaven, not just a short portion of our lives on earth. 

If our hope is laced with doubt, fear and anxiety, we can change that today. We need to eliminate our“hope-so” attitude and replace it with a “know-so” mindset. Our hope should never be tethered to the conveniences and pleasures the world offers or the ease of a situation. Instead, we fasten our minds to the promises and truths in the Word of God and fix our sights on the day when our bright, glorious, and eternal future is made a reality. Instead of wishing away our days in the predicament we’re in, let’s have confidence that God will deposit hope into us no matter what we’re facing. 

Scriptures: Jeremiah 27, Jeremiah 28, Jeremiah 29:1-14

New Norm – Continual Prayer

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We are weaponless and vulnerable without prayer. Being in prayer mode throughout the day strengthens our resolve and our relationship with Our Lord.

~ Lisa Blair
Youversion/Bible.com

Prayer is needed at all times. It catalyzes, activates, everything that happens in life. It empowers us to persevere in difficulty, exude hope in all situations, and reside in a state of patience despite the prevailing circumstances.

It causes us to supplant blaming God, and reviling others for our current conditions with peace. It provides hope (in eternal life), enduring faith, and rest in knowing God is with us and will see us through this walk, called life.

It is crucial that we develop (our) practice of continual,  persistent prayer. This means throughout the day, in good moments and uncomfortable times. Prayer can be as simple as calling on Christ, a single sentence or a long(er) dialogue. You can do it standing, sitting, on your knees, or prone on the floor. Your eyes can be open or closed. Your hands can be 🙏🏽 pressed together, or open.

Our God is good and receives us as we are in the moment, pleased that we invited Him into our heart.

We are called to rejoice in the Lord.  And , have hope which is founded on faith, and faith on the Divinity of God.

LAB Photos

Image – Bible.com

Resources – BibleStudytools.com;Studylight.org