Godly Sorrow and Worldly Sorrow are Not the Same

Christians are born into sin, but not bound by sin. Sin produces either Worldly sorrow or Godly sorrow. The two are not the same. Godly sorrow brings repentance and eternal life, worldly sorrow brings self-forgiveness and death.

~ Lisa Blair

Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.” 2 Corinthians 7:10 NIV

What is this scripture saying to us?

The kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin. My concern is that most try to categorize sin as a minor act or a major act, making one easier to erase than the other. Many feel sinning is defined by weight, the truth is that sin is not defined by scale but by act. The act itself defines it as sin. Whenever we focus on self and not the Lord, our sin nature is in control, and we are acting in sin that leads to death. Sin is defined as either sin of omission or commission.

Types of Sin: Sins of Omission and Commission

Sin through omission is sinning without being aware, and therefore one cannot experience remorse or shame for having committed the sin. The other type is sinning through commission, meaning we are knowingly committing the sin, and thus consciously experience shame, not because we sinned, but because we have been caught or feel guilt, this produces worldly sorrow. When we sin against God, because He is God, we feel Godly Sorrow. It is important to understand that worldly sin (sin focused on self) begets worldly sorrow because we want forgiveness for selfish reasons; when we sin against God, we want forgiveness because we know we hurt Him.

Worldly Sorrow

Because we are human, we experience a contrite self-focused sorrow, a feeling of remorse or regret affected by a sense of guilt, a worldly sorrow. For example, when, as children, we fibbed to a parent or adult, we felt guilty and wanted to be absolved to remove the guilty, shameful feeling. Worldly sorrow focuses on regret and remorse and is focused on self, leading to death; conversely, Godly sorrow leads to salvation and life.

Godly Sorrow

Godly sorrow is the acute sense of sadness we experience when we knowingly sin against God. Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation. Godly sorrow results from the heartfelt conviction that we have offended God by our sin, it has nothing to do with our feelings. This sorrow is sorrow towards God because the sinful act is against His Holiness first. It is unselfish in its focus.

True Repentance

Regret involves the mind primarily, and remorse involves the emotions. But, repentance includes a change of mind, a hatred for sin, and a willingness to make things right. If the will is not touched, conviction has not gone deep enough.

Repentance is not to be taken lightly. It is not a ‘get out of jail’ card. When we repent for hurting God, we immediately become responsible for eliminating this act of sin from our being. While elimination may take time, each time we are confronted by the sin, we learn to stand fast and turn away until it is powerless over us. God looks at our intent as we grow into maturity, following His Will for our lives. There is no complete perfection in this life. He looks at our righteousness through Christ who mediates on our behalf. Like Paul wrote, “I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us.” Philippians 3:14 NLT. We must press on, relinquish our quest for self-gratification and focus on how we live a Godly life. As we mature, our lives should become less hurtful to God because our eye is on the prize and less on self. “Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation and leaves no regret, but worldly sorrow brings death.”

Note

Earlier in my Christian walk, I prayed that God would forgive me for my sins of omission and commission, not realizing the focus of the prayer was on self. I did not understand wanting forgiveness was not an act of Godly sorrow, but one of worldly contrition. Now I pray that He helps me to remove myself from the equation and focus wholeheartedly on Him. When the focus is on Him, I remove my self-interest.

Once we define which type of sorrow we are experiencing, we can remove ourselves from being the subject. We can then acknowledge that we have sinned against God because He is our focus. It is not until we understand that it is not about us that we can suffer Godly sorrow that leads to salvation and eternal life.

Resources — gotquestions.com; purelifeministries.org; Nelson’s Quick Reference. Bible Commentary, Warren Wiersbe; Authentic Ministry “What is Real Repentance” II Corinthians 7:2-16. Pastor John Miller

Images — YouVersion/Bible.com; Google Images

Freedom From Sin Requires Work

‭‭John‬ ‭8:36‬ ‭NKJV‬‬

Once we have been freed, we are not to return to the servitude of our sin nature, our carnal man framed in lust, ego, material gains, and all that aligns with the evil one’s motives to destroy us and separate us from a Godly life.

Maintaining freedom from sin is a daily struggle; it is easy to slip back into our old ways like Peter who later became Christ’s (primary)Apostle. The beauty is that Jesus has freed us and; we have been given the gift of sanctification and redemption.

Not to sound preachy, but we must remain alert and operate in clarity to overcome the old shackles of sin and continue to live by God’s Will and His Way.

When we find ourselves falling prey to temptation, we must immediately self-correct. It is easier to do if the act or thought requires significant input, but much more difficult if it is subtle.

The new decade allows us to walk down the path of obedience, especially during this time of global uncertainty. We must always stay alert. We are Gods’ children. We have been freed by the Son. We are free from our shackles of sin.

Only God Knows the Real You!

Christ renamed several of His disciples to give them a new identity, demonstrating their new creature in Christ. While our names may not have changed, we, like Peter, battle the old man-the natural man, while maturing into the new man. The process is worth examining.

Lisa Blair

Christians, as with the case of most people today, question who we are. We know we are new creatures in Christ, but that does not magically eliminate our carnal or natural being. This is only the beginning of our evolution. Before being saved, our values are variables that change depending upon conditions and circumstances. We are comparable to chameleons.

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This Post is a short study on the evolutionary growth of Peter, who was born Simon Peter, the natural man, and transformed into Peter, the new man. It highlights his struggles, weaknesses, strengths, as well as his growth. Examining Peter’s life should give any believer hope. Simon Peter evolved into Peter over time, it was not miraculous, or immediate, it was an expansive timeline. Our evolutionary process may take as long or longer than Peters took. The important things to note are: have hope, stay in prayer, and allow God to direct your path, always examining if it is the old man operating or the new man of God moving forward.

The Evolution of Simon Peter

Peter’s birth name was Simon Peter. He was outspoken, strong-willed, and impulsive. He was a husband, father of two, and a partner in a thriving fishery; he was a fisherman. It could be said, his life was full. He knew himself as Simon Peter, the man, was a practicing Jew and followed the Law of Moses. Was he content with his natural self? We do not know. Was he seeking his real self? Who knows. Did he innately know he would one day leave everything, to follow Christ, and become his real self, Simon Peter, probably not? Do we know who we really are in God’s eyes, or the plans He has for us, probably not?

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Simon Peter didn’t stand out. He was an uneducated Jew, Acts 3:13. He was a Hebrew, a follower of The Mosaic Law, like most. However, despite his failings and his strengths, the Lord chose to mold Simon Peter into whom He created him to become – Peter, a member of Christ’s inner circle of disciples. As time progressed and Peter accepted Christ as His Lord, Peter walked, learned, and loved Christ. He was a witness to miracles and wonders. But, despite his first-hand knowledge and witness to these events, Simon Peter continued to resurface. The transformed Peter, (Christ, gave him the new name indicating he was a follower and believer), became a new man but remained brash and impulsive. He was the person that stepped out of the boat and onto the surface of the sea to walk to Jesus.

~It was Simon Peter, not Peter, who looked down as he was walking on water (a sign and wonder), lost faith, and began to sink, Matthew 14:28-30.

~It was Simon Peter who calls us to serve but stayed seated and did not join Christ when he washed the disciples’ feet, 1 Peter 5:2.

~It was Simon Peter that told the believers to stay clear-minded and have self-control at all times to pray, 1 Peter 4:7.

~It was Simon Peter who rebuked Christ for speaking of his death, Matthew 16:22.

~It was Simon Peter who fell asleep while Jesus was praying and sweating blood, 1 Peter 2:13.

~It was Simon Peter who slipped back into the Law and suggested they erect three tabernacles, one for each—Moses, Elijah, and Jesus, clustering Jesus with the Old Testament prophets, Matthew 17:4.

~It was Simon Peter who grew angry drew his sword and cut off the ear of the high priest, John 18:10.

~It was Simon Peter who swore that he would never forsake the Lord, even if everyone else did, and you know the story, he denied Christ three times when he was arrested, Matthew 26:70-74.

~It was Simon Peter who fled when Christ was hung on the cross and hid in fear, 1 Peter 5:1.

How often do we capitulate under challenging times and employ our old values and behavior like Peter? Usually, the conversion is so indistinct we are there before we were aware of slipping. At that moment, we become blind to who we are in Christ, we regress to our old man. Thank God for redemption because we can repent and once again take on the behaviors of Christ who knows our true selves and is molding us to become more like Him.

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Despite Peter’s shortcomings, Jesus continued to affirm Peter as the “Rock,” Matthew 16:18-19 and promised him that he, Peter, would become instrumental in establishing Jesus’ Church. After Christs’  resurrection, he named Peter as the one who needed to hear the good news, Matthew 16:7. Jesus made a point of forgiving and restoring Simon Peter to accept and regain his new name, Peter, and recommissioned him as Christ’s’ Apostle, and high priest, John 21,6, 15-17; Hebrews 3:1.

Even after being restored, Peter, who preached on the day of Pentecost, Acts 2, was present when the Samaritans received the Holy Spirit, Acts 8, and was summoned to the home of Roman centurion Cornelius, Acts 10, initially resisted following the instructions to go to Cornelius’ home. Simon Peter struggled with the transformation of his old man to the new man – Peter. We are no different, there is a raging battle between our old man and new.

Peter, the new man, who was not wrought with doubt and fear, ultimately obeyed and went to Cornelius’ home. If Peter had not gone to his home, we might not have witnessed Cornelius receiving the Holy Spirit, Acts 10. Only God knows why he is directing our path. Seemingly at this point, the new man, Peter, should be steadfast. However, that is not the case.

When Peter, the new man, went to Antioch to fellowship with the Gentiles, all was good until the Jews appeared. However, when the legalistic Jews, of which he was as Simon Peter, arrived, he sought to appease them and separated himself from the believing Gentiles, Galatians 2:11-14. Paul admonished him for being a hypocrite. None of us can merge our old man and the new man. We are either one or the other. The battle will continue through this life, but when the old man surfaces, we must repent and pick up our cross in the new man.

Jesus forgives our unfaithfulness. He sees us as He intends us to be, not who we may currently be or were in our pre-redemptive life. Jesus knows our birth/carnal name and receives us as his own, the new man. In today’s times, He may not actually rename us, but he does give us a new life.

Jesus was patient with Peter through his disobedience, arrogance, fear, and denial. Peter was a fisherman and became a fisher of men, who matured into one of the Lord’s most dedicated apostles. He is known as one of the most well-known disciples and was instrumental in establishing the church in Samaria, Act 8. He brought the gospel to the Gentiles, Acts 10-11. He preached the sermon at Pentecost, where three thousand believers received the Holy Spirit, Acts 3.

The point is, God is patient and will wait until he can change you. If He does not give up on us, neither should we give up on ourselves. He created us to do His work. To paraphrase the scripture, God has plans for us that will prosper us and not destroy us. God, is patient and monitors us as we evolve into the person He envisioned. God knows our challenges, our setbacks, and our victories.

As we mature in the Word and obey God, our story will unfold just as Peters did. Was Peter perfect? No, absolutely not. Were there moments when the natural man won out? Yes. We were born into sin, we all fall short of the glory of God. None of us is perfect; only Jesus is perfect. God could have created us as automatons. He chose to create us in His likeness and instilled us with his own will and desires. Why, because God wants a relationship with us. He sacrificed His only Son to save us from sin. He knows we are a work in progress, He created us to desire His will and not our own, and that is all God requires that we surrender, depend on Him and be obedient to the Word. He wants us to evolve from our natural man to our new man.

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The Bible is replete with sinners who received salvation after leading destructive lives. I also find it interesting that these examples clearly exemplify God’s expectations for all believers. No excuses, God laid the foundation demonstrated in Peter’s character study. Now it is time to become who we really are; we are His workmanship, ever-changing in His likeness. This leads back to – only God knows the real you and through prayer and obedience we will learn who we are in Christ.

Images – Google Images. LAB Photos

Resources – Who is Peter in the Bible? GotQuestions.org; Bible.com; Peter: A Case Study in Character, KenBoa.org; Peter, studyandobey.com

Godly Sorrow, Worldly Sorrow- Not the Same

Godly sorrow precedes Repentance.

~ LISA BLAIR
2Corinthians7:10-11_JasonJake_YouTube

For many years I felt the Lord was a punishing God. Words such as sorrow suggested that we were a hurt people. The truth is we are a hurt people, we are a sinful people who must come to a place where our sins are no longer acceptable as our guiding truth. Satan uses sin to capture and control us, to lead us to a hellish death. When we become remorseful and recognize the sorrow we have weighed down upon ourselves, and the God who loves and protects us, we enter into a state of Godly sorrow.

Godly Sorrow is only Mentioned Once in the Bible

Godly sorrow is only mentioned once in the Bible, in 2 Corinthians 7:10-11. Paul uses this term to explain to the Corinthians that they once lived a sinful life that would lead to worldly death, hell, upon departing this earth but had successfully turned away in earnestness to overcome their sin and repent.

Godly Sorrow is an Acute Sense of Sadness

Godly sorrow is an acute sense of sadness we experience when we sin. We feel sadness because we know we have committed sins. We know we have saddened the Lord, just as the Corinthians knew after Paul taught them that God is the Way and the Light. Palm chastised the Corinthians for their dissentions against the church. He intended to cause them to think and having accomplished this task caused them to repent. Paul knew they were remorseful and regretful for their actions of falling back into disbelief, but he also knew that neither would lead to salvation without true repentance and restitution. Godly sorrow brings repentance that leads to salvation.

Godly Sorrow is a Kind of Wretchedness

“Godly sorrow is a kind of wretchedness that can bring the repentant sinner to tears of grief. Godly sorrow results from a heartfelt conviction that we have offended God by our sin.” Our spirit grieves, and when Godly sorrow has its way, we resolve to stop repeating the sins, turn away from our carnal nature and pick up the cross and do good. We cleanse ourselves through prayer.

Results of Godly Sorrow

Doing good, is the result of Godly sorrow. It is through Godly sorrow that we can release the guilt and shame for our sin nature and actions, and repent asking for forgiveness and vowing to never return to them. Repentance is not an emotion, it is our decision to change. We have to make the decision to turn around and change our lives to truly repent. We repent and believe through faith. Faith comes after repenting and surrendering our life to the Lord. It is through God’s grace that we are forgiven and given new life to move forward. It is through God’s grace that we receive salvation.

God Sorrow, Repentance, and Salvation are Ours

Not all of 1 Corinthians 7 is intended for us. Some of it is intended for the Corinthians. However, repentance and salvation are for everyone who calls out to God to save them from their sins and believes that Christ died on the cross and rose from the dead to join God in heaven. God restored the discipline of the church of Corinth and sin, and He restores us. We sin through our (own) actions and complicitous approval of those sinning in our scope of influence. The church was complicit by not addressing incestuous behavior. We are complicit when we do not speak out against sin and do not address the offender.

Sorrow Cannot Merely Be Guilt through Discovery

“We must be very careful that our sorrow for sin is not merely sorrow that has been found out, but sorrow which, seeing the evil of the sinful thing is determined never to do it again and has dedicated the rest of its life to atone, by God’s grace, for what was done.” (Barclay)

Godly Sorrow, Apology and the Holy Spirit, Intercession on Our Behalf

When we pray, the Holy Spirit intercedes and helps us apologize to God and repent. This is accomplished through confessing our sins, not by denying them or defending them because neither is true confession.

Godly Sorrow is the Lining of Our Repentance

While Godly sorrow is only mentioned once in scripture, it is the lining of our repentance. Repentance separates godly sorrow from worldly sorrow. Godly sorrow produces true repentance. Worldly sorrow is not really sorrow, it is the only resentment that has been found out (William Barclay). If we do not feel Godly sorrow for our sinful actions, we are not able to truly repent and turn away from them with God’s help. Without godly sorrow, we would repeat the offense, given a chance to do it again. Godly sorrow not only hates the act, but it also hates the nature of the act itself. Without godly sorrow, we are bound by our sin nature and remain in the camp of the evil one.

God Separates Us From Our Sin Through Our Decision to Change

Knowing Jesus.com

Like the Church at Corinth, we are growing (maturing) when we repent and turn away from sin. God can separate us from our sins and place them as far away as the east is from the west, but He is only able to do so when we are cleansed and convicted to the point of wholehearted confession and repentance. It is through God’s grace that we are saved.

Images – YouVersion/Bible.com; Google Images-Knowing Jesus.com

References – What is Godly sorrow? Gotquestions.org; Studylight.org: 2 Corinthians 7:10-11, Commentaries – Charles Barclay, Albert Barnes, Coffman, John Gill; Nelson’s Quick Reference by Warren Wiersbe; Vine’s Complete Expository Dictionary by W.E. Vine; KJV Word Study; Youtube:2Corinthians_BrettVarner; 2 Corinthians_JasonJack

Falling Short


Our primary goal in life should be acknowledgement that we fall short of the glory of God [our Savior and Father’s plans for us], but act to continue to strive forward. It’s our daily walk.


~ LISA BLAIR

We all fall short of the glory of God, yet we must strive every day to do better than the day before, reconciling our sins through repentance. Repentance sounds so indomitable, when in fact it only means to ask for forgiveness, which we can do after we assess our shortcomings/sins of the day.

Sin varies in intensity. They may be minor, such as avoiding a coworker, cussing, ranting and racing, or major, taking a life. The type of sin committed does not lessen the fact that you sinned. Don’t overlook the little things. Sin is a violation of God’s Glory and is identified in Galatians 5:19-22. Look to the Fruit if the Spirit to identify how we can overcome sin.

Our primary goal in life is to become more like Christ. The acknowledgment that we fall short of the Glory of God [our Savior and Father’s plans for us], is one of the fundamental steps we must take to change our behavior and continue to strive forward. It’s our daily walk.

Images – Google.com, YouVersion.Bible.com

Free Yourself From The Shackles

Jesus humbled himself to the point of death to give us life. We should be able and willing to humble ourselves and, honestly, repent for our sins (stating what they are or were) and start anew (fresh). It is never too late, God forgives us when we repent, allowing us to move-on shackle free. Christ gave us the opportunity to rise above who we (presently) are. It is time to change our home location,  we are in this world, but not of this world. 

Go to a quiet place and speak to God, ask Him to forgive you. You choose the place. It could be in the midst of a train station, bar, standing on the corner in busy traffic. Just still yourself and pray. He will receive you wherever you are at the moment.

We belong to Christ. New Beginnings.

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Remorse, Repentance, and Godly Sorrow

Godly sorrow

Remorse, repentance and Godly sorrow, are part of the process of maturing in our Christian walk.

How many of us have sinned, and the sin changed our trajectory in life? It may have been at school, work, or in a relationship. The Bible says, we all sin and fall short of the glory of God. Fortunately, we live in the New Testament dispensation, and Jesus died to free us from our sins. Does that mean, we no longer sin? No, it means we are no longer bound by our sins. We, in our humanity – can be remorseful about the event. We can repent for our sin. And, most importantly, we can have Godly sorrow about our sin.

A few days ago, I was listening to Beth Moore’s audiobook, Praying God’s Prayers, and one of the things that stood out was the distinction between remorse, repentance, and Godly sorrow.  My mind (focus) would not leave this topic, I needed to know more and continued to query, what is the difference between the three forms of admission of sin? This is what I learned.

Unpacking the distinction between remorse, repentance, and Godly sorrow

Remorse

Let us begin with remorse, which is defined as a deep and painful regret for wrongdoing. A compunction – a feeling of uneasiness or anxiety by regret for doing wrong or causing pain. Remorse is sadness that primarily focuses on us. We seek forgiveness for our sin, but little more. This type of regret is referred to as worldly sorrow. Worldly sorrow lacks repentance.

10 For the kind of sorrow God wants us to experience leads us away from sin and results in salvation. There’s no regret for that kind of sorrow. But worldly sorrow, which lacks repentance, results in spiritual death.11 Just see what this godly sorrow produced in you! Such earnestness, such concern to clear yourselves, such indignation, such alarm, such longing to see me, such zeal, and such a readiness to punish wrong. You showed that you have done everything necessary to make things right.
2 Corinthians 7:10-11 NLT

When we are remorseful for a sin, which is wrongdoing, we are acting in our carnal nature. It is a human response to our wrongdoing. We acknowledge it and seek forgiveness from the person/s that were affected. The focus is our desire for them to forgive us.

Repentance

When we repent, we ask God for forgiveness for the sin or wrongdoing. True repentance offers forgiveness and places the sin in the “sea of forgetfulness’. This refers to God’s forgiveness, and how when we are justified in Christ, God forgets our sins so completely that they may as well be buried at the bottom of the sea. The crux of repentance is that we ask God to forgive us, and He does, but then we revisit the offense meaning, we have not forgiven ourselves. We failed to turn it over to God. If we believe God, we must forgive ourselves and place the offense at the bottom of the sea, or as far as the east is from the west. In short, we can no longer revisit it.

Question – do we change our course when we repent and continue to replay the sin in our minds? No. We have not given up the thought of the sin, though we may have chosen not to repeat it physically, it stills lives deep within us.

We asked for God’s mercy but did not accept it. In other words, we turned away from the sin but did not turn to God. Our repentance is incomplete. Our sin nature is still active and has not relinquished the sin. Our remorse and regret remain selfish and self-centered. We cry out for justice to relieve our own pain, but not for the pain we have caused others. Worldly sorrow produces death because Satan maintains a hold on us through our selfish cries for redemption. This sorrow falls short of Godly sorrow, in fact, it does not exist in the same universe.

Godly Sorrow

Godly sorrow is when we grieve for those we hurt when we sinned. It is defined as having grief over the sin, rather than the consequences of the sin. Godly sorrow (deep sorrow) is another element of repentance. Godly sorrow is lying prone before God crying out for His forgiveness. Godly sorrow leads to salvation and leaves no room for regret. As the scripture says, it produces earnestness, indignation, alarm, concern, and an acute sense of sadness as the result of the sin. “Godly sorrow is a kind of wretchedness that can bring the repentant sinner to tears of grief.”  (gotQuestions.org). James wrote that “Godly sorrow is the experience of lamenting, grieving, mourning and wailing,” (James 4:8-9). Godly sorrow results from a heartfelt conviction that we have offended God by our sin. When we have Godly sorrow, we resolve within our hearts that we will ‘cease to do evil’ and learn to do good with God’s help.

16 Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil, 17 learn to do good.
Isaiah 1:16-17 ESV

One of the clearest examples of Godly sorrow can be seen in Luke 7:36-50. In summary, Godly sorrow:

*Draws us to Jesus
*Drives our faith
*Expresses itself externally
*Increases our love for Christ
*Produces assurance of forgiveness* (Five Signs of Godly Sorrow. Ryan Huguley.com)

As we mature as Christians, we move from being remorseful to of asking for repentance and moving into Godly sorrows. Our ultimate goal is to lay our sins before God and plead for his forgiveness and salvation, placing our focus away from the sin and to God. I hope this Post enlightens you, I know the study has provided a greater depth of understanding and has shown me where I have fallen short. I always questioned ‘why’ after repenting did I find myself reliving the sin over and over in my mind. The answer is clear – I did not release the worldly sorrow in exchange for Godly sorrow. The focus remained on me and not on those affected by my sin, or on offending God. I was still reliving the sin in my mind and feeling hurt by the result of the actions, failing to place the focus on others and crying out to God to help those who were hurt. Repentance does not focus on self. Remorse focuses on self. Repentance focuses on those we hurt, and Godly sorrow focuses on having offended God. Godly sorrow leads to salvation.

Godly sorrow is sorrow that is often misunderstood and therefore not executed as part of our repentance and turning away from our sin. Having read this, and pondering over replays of sin, can you now upgrade your repentance to Godly sorrow, turn away from the sin once and for all, place it in the sea of forgetfulness, and turn to God?

psalm51-12Re-Blog – https://wp.me/p98Coa-CH
Scripture – Bible.com, ESV
Images – Google Images
References – What is godly Sorrow,  gotQuestions.org; Five Signs of Godly Sorrow. Ryan Huguley.com; Vine’s Expository Dictionary; Guilt and Repentance, Dr. Nicolas Ellen, Slideshare.com (Google Images); Praying God’s Prayers, Beth Moore

Thank you for visiting my Young Christian Warriors site and dailyinspiration-lisasthoughts.com.