August 2016

FlowersandFlowingBrookWelcome! I'm humbled to receive letters daily from those viewing the website, then asking for advice concerning their circumstances. For me, overcoming life’s struggles takes place by renewing the mind, creating emotional security through faith in the power of God's grace.

"Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths." 1

A Compassionate Response...

"First, I'm very excited to be writing you. What kind of things help you therapeutically to keep you sane? I found painting really soothes my mind and helps to suppress my two problem emotions, which are rage and sadness. I struggle with legal problems, and mental and physical health issues daily. I'm always looking for ways to positively help me to cope with those things.

I'm a recovering alcoholic, which played a huge part in the self-destruction of my life. I am sober and working very hard to stay that way. Did you ever have problems with any addictions or any words of encouragement for how things will get better? I've found that any positive words help me to get through the struggles and hardships I am going through. I think you are so brave going through everything you have in the prison system.

I've never been in prison, but I spent a month in county jail which was awful. Every day I woke up knowing I wasn't there for my two daughters. What hurts most is how my behavior affected their life. Currently, I am not allowed to see my children. What kind of emotional support system do you have? I believe the love and support of others affects our entire mood and well-being. Be well and God bless." Tiffany, AZ.

Trusting the Lord's Word...

It's impossible to find true encouragement in this life unless we turn to God's Word for Truth and comfort. The Holy Bible is simply God's love story, fulfilling our need for love and acceptance. His Word reveals the Lord rescuing his wayward children through faith in the Abrahamic and Davidic Covenants fulfilled by the promised seed, Jesus Christ. 2

Jesus is the Word made flesh, Who came as Prophet, Priest and King to give us His authority and stability. 3 The Word of grace empowers us as believers to solely depend upon his finished works, establishing his will, thoughts and covenant. We build our lives upon His absolute imputable Truth -- our Rock. 4 Jesus said,

"Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light." 5

Acknowledging the Lord's Attributes...

The Lord (Jehovah) is our Salvation. 6 Jesus "...is the Author and Finisher of our faith." 7 Knowing his inherent characteristics magnifies Him as Savior and Lord in our hearts, causing faith to arise in worship to the King of Righteousness.

Listen, as Christians, we are Spiritually connected to God -- our heavenly Father. As His children, He is to us: Eternal life, love, wisdom, righteousness, truth, peace, goodness, holiness, comfort and counsel. He is our Creator (Elohim), infinite, transcendent, sovereign (Adonai) and self-sufficient. He is merciful, but truthful, just, immutable, all-powerful, all-knowing, everywhere present and so much more.

Our God is El Shaddai -- God Almighty, all-sufficient, more than enough; the sole Source of all blessings. 8 "Can't you see that his kindness is intended to turn you from your sin?" 9

Acknowledging the Lord's Finished Works...

Our minds are to be renewed with the power of Christ's death, burial and resurrection, creating a Word-ruled mind, the mind of Christ, who spoke, saying, "It is finished!" All our sins were forgiven; past, present and future. There is no condemnation to them who are in Christ Jesus. 10

Unlike the Old Testament High Priests who offered sacrifices daily, "Jesus did this once for all... with his own blood, he entered the Most Holy Place once for all time and secured our redemption forever... for God's will was for us to be made holy by the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all time... he sat down in the place of honor at God's right hand." 11

“Jesus gave his life... to rescue us from this evil world." 12 "...he disarmed to the spiritual rulers and authorities. He shamed them publicly by his victory over them on the cross." 13 "...the Son of God came to destroy the works of the devil." 14

Confessing the Lord Jesus Christ...

As believers, we confessed with our mouths that Jesus is Lord and believed in our hearts that God raised Him from the dead and were saved. 15

Confession not only means "to acknowledge faith in", but "to say the same thing" that God says in His Word about us. We are not trying to get God to respond to us, but we are responding to what He did 2000 years ago by grace through faith in Christ's finished works. We trust solely in God's love.

Faith only appropriates what God has already provided by Grace. 16 We are to "... hold fast the confession of our faith without wavering (for he is faithful that promised)," 17 confessing who we are in Christ's works; our healing and abundant prosperity as Sons of God. The Apostle Paul exhorts, "...that the sharing of your faith may become effective by the acknowledgement of every good thing which is in you in Christ Jesus." 18 Won't you acknowledge His love today!

A Prayer for You...

Dear God, thank You that even right now, Your forgiveness and Your perfect love are raining all over me because of Your son's finished work in my life. Take away every lingering sense of ugliness, guilt and condemnation in me. I believe with all my heart that right now when You look at me, You see in me Christ Jesus. I am clothed in His Robes of righteousness, favor, and blessing. Thank You for Your abundance of Grace and Your gift of righteousness in my life. Through Jesus, I will reign in this life over every sin, addiction, and failure. Amen.

Scripture References (NLT):

  1. Pro. 3:5,6 NKJV
  2. Gen. 12; 15; 17; 2 Sam. 7; Gal. 3
  3. Matt. 28:18-20
  4. 1 Cor. 10:4
  5. Matt. 11:28-30
  6. Psa. 27:1
  7. Heb. 12:2
  8. Gen. 17:1
  9. Rom. 2:46
  10. Rom. 2:46
  11. Heb. 7:22; 9:12; 10:10,12
  12. Gal. 1:4
  13. Col. 2:15
  14. 1 Jn. 3:9
  15. Rom. 10:9,10
  16. Eph. 2:8,9
  17. Heb. 4:14; 10:23
  18. Phm. 6

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