Receiving Grace

brown book page
Photo by Wendy van Zyl on Pexels.com

BY LINDZEY YAROSH

Everyone sins. Even Christians. As Christians, we often struggle to accept this fact. We worry about what others will think if they find out about our sin. Will we be called a hypocrite? Will people doubt our salvation? When it comes to our sin, we are often our own worst critic; and we can struggle to receive the grace and forgiveness that God freely gives us through Christ Jesus. Sometimes we even convince ourselves that our sin is too much for God to forgive. For these reasons and more, we as Christians must always be reminded of certain truths.

First of all, God loves us a lot! Christians are very familiar with John 3:16 and know that God loves us so much that He sent His one and only Son to die for our sins so that we can have eternal life with Him. But do we always remember what this really means? Romans 5:8-9 explains it this way,

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since we have now been justified by his blood, how much more shall we be saved from God’s wrath through him!”

Even when we wanted absolutely nothing to do with God, Christ died for us. How amazing! The moment we believe this and choose to follow Jesus as King, God declares us righteous and adopts us into His family. Chuck Swindoll describes it like this, “Justification is the sovereign act of God whereby He declares righteous the believing sinner while he or she is still in a sinning state.”

Because Christ paid our sin debt and because God counts us as righteous when we follow Christ as Lord and Savior, we are no longer held responsible to receive the punishment of our sins and have no reason to be afraid.

“Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus” Romans 8:1

We can trust that this is true, even when we fail, and we will fail. Proverbs 24:16 confirms this.

“For though the righteous fall seven times, they rise again.”

Thankfully, God doesn’t leave us alone when we do fail; instead, He is there to guide us and to help us through. Psalm 37:23-24 says,

“The LORD makes firm the steps of the one who delights in Him; though he may stumble, he will not fall, for the LORD upholds him with His hand.”

So today, if you are struggling to receive God’s gift of forgiveness, remember the truth of 1 John 1:9.

“If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

Take a moment to confess your sin to Him today and confidently receive His gift of grace and mercy. Then continue to live the life Christ has called you to live.

Lindzey attends Immanuel Baptist Church in Lexington, KY with her husband, Billy, to whom she has been married for 5 years. She is currently working toward a Graduate Certificate at The Southern Baptist Theological Seminary. In her spare time she enjoys relaxing with her husband, cat, and Goldendoodle, hiking, crafting and watching Kentucky basketball.

 

If you need prayer, we have some Godly women at the ready to pray for you. Click here to leave a prayer request. If you are wondering what Christianity is all about and if it’s for you, click here.

Video Friday – Lean In

I have had the phrase, “Lean in” going off in my brain for a few days now. I was reminded of this because a friend of mine has been having some difficulty in her life  and it reminded me of times when I had difficulty. Our circumstances are a little different but the way we need to go about them is the same – Lean into Jesus!

This has been a difficult lesson for me to learn (and I’m still learning it) because I’m a runner. When things get bad and there isn’t anything I can do to fix it, I take off. After all my thought was, “if I can’t fix it, what is the use.” But God wants us to LEAN IN when these things happen. I’ve been practicing this along with WAITING on the Lord for an answer (whew is that a hard one!).

This video is short but it is EXACTLY what I discovered the hard way and I want to share with you in hopes you won’t go through the tough times I went through as a result of not leaning in. Enjoy!

For Your Good and God’s Glory

amar-yashlaha-122277-unsplash
Photo by Amar Yashlaha

Like myself, I’m sure all of you have had times when you are in a deep valley and you wonder if you are ever going to get out. I know that in the times I was there, it felt as if my prayers went nowhere; like I was in the valley of DRY bones. If you have found yourself at this moment – HANG ON – God is certainly in control.

I can not count on my fingers and toes how many times I’ve heard, “Satan is attacking.” And don’t get me wrong, it’s true. In those dark moments when it seems like nothing is going right and you are sitting with all this concern and worry in your head, Satan certainly is attacking. But here is an idea – God is allowing Satan to do what He is doing. God is allowing Him to only go so far with you (a Job-like experience).

Does this mean God doesn’t love you? NO of course not! Rather, God loves you enough to put you in situations where you can grow. While we are on the mountaintop and everything is going good, although it’s a reprieve from the wiles of the Devil, there isn’t much spiritual growth that happens there. The growth comes in the valley. It comes in those times when all we have is Jesus. Let’s look at what Jesus said to Peter:

And the Lord said, Simon, Simon, behold, Satan hath desired to have you, that he may sift you as wheat: But I have prayed for thee, that thy faith fail not: and when thou art converted, strengthen thy brethren.  Luke 22:31-32

He said, “…and when though art converted, strengthen the brethren.” We are to take these dark valley moments and turn them into a testimony and teachable moments for others. We are supposed to use them to strengthen others. EVERYTHING we are given is for OUR GOOD and for GODS GLORY! How can we ever help others when we have no idea what it is like to be in their shoes.

One of the sayings I try never to say (although it pops out of my mouth from time to time) is, “If it were me, I would do ______(fill in the blank).” The truth is, we never really know what we would do in any given situation unless we’ve been there.

Look at the times in your life – those dark valley moments and glean from it what you can and use that testimony to strengthen that brother or sister going through a hard time. Let them know you know how they feel and how you held on to the hand of Jesus throughout. Use it! Use your experiences to do what Jesus told Peter to do; strengthen the brethren.

If you have a prayer request, we would love for you to share it with us. We have a bunch of Godly women who would love the chance to pray for you. Click here to make your request. If you don’t know Jesus as your personal Lord and Savior but want to know how He can change your life, click here.

He Hath Shewed thee, O Man, what is Good…

priscilla-du-preez-753600-unsplash
Photo by Priscilla Du Preez

First, I want to apologize for not being here as frequently as I usually am. I started a new job this week and trying to get back in the swing of things after being on unemployment has been a little harder than expected. However, I decided the only way we have time is to make time for God. Our flesh will always find an excuse while our spirit is crying out for time with our God. So I prayed for direction, ignored the flesh to try and get one more thing done that can wait, and here I am and SO GLAD to be here with y’all again.

For the past week, on and off, I have been meditating on a passage of scripture I’m sure many of you are familiar with:

He hath shewed thee, O man, what is good; and what doth the Lord require of thee, but to do justly, and to love mercy, and to walk humbly with thy God?  Micah 6:8

I have been thinking about what this means and do I do this. Let’s break it down.

Do justly – The best way I know how to describe how justly is used in the scripture is to use other scriptures as a definition. Romans 13:7 says, “Render therefore to all their dues: tribute to whom tribute is due; custom to who custom; fear to whom fear; honour to whom honour.” Colossians 4:1 says, “Masters, give unto your servants that which is just and equal; knowing that ye also have a Master in heaven.”

Love mercy – Love in this scripture is the Hebrew word ahabah; its the affectionate love that God has for His people. Mercy means kindness, goodness, and faithfulness. We should love these things like God loves His children. When I think of the word ahabah, I think about the kind of love I have for my daughter. When I just want to grab her up and just squeeze her so tight and kiss her all over her face. That kind of love that always wants to hold on tight. We should hold tight to kindness, goodness, and faithfulness. We should always want to extend these to others even in those moments when it feels like they don’t deserve it – ESPECIALLY in those moments.

Walk humbly with thy God – I read scripture after scripture in regards to humility and the best explanation I found on what this means is from the Nelson KJV Commentary. It says, “…to walk humbly with thy God necessitates having a right attitude toward God and a determination to walk in continuous fellowship with Him. This verse once again puts things in proper perspective; for the external, outward dimension is inextricably tied to the internal.” In other words, what is in our heart is what will show on the outside. We need to remember He is God and we are not. The Israelites needed to be reminded of that even though they knew it in times past. We need to be reminded to allow God to lead our lives, to repent when needed, and to walk HUMBLY with our God.

I’m so glad I had a chance to spend some time with this verse and share it with you. It is chocked full of good stuff! To be honest, it can’t get any easier. Do right by others, treat others with kindness and be faithful to your word and more importantly to God, and allow God to lead you and keep a right attitude toward Him.

Love y’all. Please keep me in your prayers as I navigate my way through this new job and pray I will always make time for God and His word – and of course for y’all as well!

 

If you are wondering about Christ and how He can change your life, click here. If you need prayer, there are a bunch of Godly women who would love to pray for you – click here and leave your prayer request.

Who are you pleasing?

austin-chan-275638-unsplash
Photo by Austin Chan

After reading a great Christian novel (And the Shofar blew by Francine Rivers), having a very serious conversation with my daughter, and seeing a post on Facebook, it got me thinking – Who are we pleasing?

So many times I see women going out of their way to please others for different reasons. Maybe because they don’t want to be seen as mean or rude, maybe they are worried about how they look to other mothers/friends/coworkers/family, or it could be they think by not pleasing that person they will not be liked. The truth is, its all vanity. It’s sometimes selfish and it isn’t who we are supposed to be pleasing.

Now let’s get this straight pleasing does not equal giving. You can be a giver and not a pleaser. You can be a pleaser and it may look like giving but the agenda is something totally different. These things are not like each other. Also, pleasing is not loving someone (unless it lifts them higher in the Christian walk – more about that below). In fact, it can be totally the opposite of that and border on enabling depending on the situation.

My question to you is this – would you want someone to feel as if they have to please you to make you happy or would you rather they give out of love for you?

For do I now persuade men, or God? or do I seek to please men? for if I yet pleased men, I should not be the servant of Christ. Galatians 1:10

As I was reading for this post, I had the above scripture in mind. So I started looking at other areas in scripture where it talks about pleasing man and I found this one.

We then that are strong ought to bear the infirmities of the weak, and not to please ourselves. Let every one of us please his neighbour for his good to edification. Romans 15:1-2

So now I had to back up and think – should we sometimes please people? What is this verse meaning? As I went on in the chapter to get a better understanding of what is being talked about I read this:

For even Christ pleased not himself; but, as it is written, The reproaches of them that reproached thee fell on me. For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope. Now the God of patience and consolation grant you to be likeminded one toward another according to Christ Jesus: That ye may with one mind and one mouth glorify God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
Romans 15:3-6

The word pleased in this verse is talking more about doing something for the good; it is for the lifting up in their Christian growth. If you notice in verse 2 it says, “for his good to edification.” It doesn’t mean to please someone no matter what the cost, it means to please them so they grow in the Lord. Most of the time the pleasing I see from myself and others is NOT for the Christian growth of others.

Truth is sometimes I please so that I don’t have to deal with watching someone suffer. It is actually selfish. I see they have a need and instead of praying about whether I should meet that need or not I just jump in with both feet so that I can make them happy. Sometimes it doesn’t turn out so well. I wanted to please them so that I didn’t have to watch them go through a storm that God had intended them to go through for their good.

I have seen others be people pleasers to build up their self-esteem and worth. If they please everyone they meet by liking what they like and doing what they do, then they will have friends who speak highly of them. We should NEVER be looking to man for our self worth. People aren’t perfect – we are all broken – and we let each other down. Don’t look to people pleasing as a way to build up your self-esteem and worth. It is a recipe for disaster. Our worth comes from the Lord. He said we are fearfully and WONDERFULLY made. He died on the cross because He loved us. We don’t need people to tell us what we are worth and we shouldn’t be pleasing others for this reason.

Maybe you are one of these people that everyone comes to because you are the “fixer.” Consider this –  stop and pray about whether you should be the one doing this. People (and most not meaning to) will depend on you to take care of all the bumps in the road for them. I see this a lot with parents. I see this a lot in me. Before you fix, pray for guidance on how far you should go. Maybe you aren’t meant to do anything. Maybe you are. We can’t always make everyone happy (including our children). Sometimes watching someone go through a difficult time for us fixers is just as much for us as it is for them. It reminds us that we can’t fix everything and we need to go to our Father who can.

We can’t make every “boo boo” all better, but we can watch God do a fantastic work in the lives of our loved ones.

Look at the reason why you’re pleasin’.

 

If you need prayer, please click here. We have a group of Godly women who would love to join you in prayer. If you don’t know Jesus and would like to know how He can change your life, click here.

Video Friday – Lecrae

As I was looking for a video for today, I had one thing in mind that I was looking for – a talk about listening. This has been on my mind since a conversation I had with my husband about listening (yes ladies, I had that discussion with my husband and he actually listened!). Anyhow, this video really isn’t what I was looking for but it was something I needed to hear (thank you Lord!).

I am getting ready to start a new job. To be honest, since being off for a couple months I have enjoyed the extra time with the Lord and I don’t want that to end. I even asked the Lord if it were possible for me to be able to go part time instead of full time because I didn’t want to stop doing those things I had more time for – making video’s, blogging, spending time with Him, oh yeah, and cleaning my house!

Then I come across this video. Truth is, I don’t have to separate the sacred from the secular. I’m born again, I take Jesus where ever I go. Watch this video. Although it is geared toward college age students, I promise you will get something out of it. I sure did.

 

Lecrae is a Christian hip-hop artist. His music has reached so many people for Christ. In fact, you will find part of his testimony in the video I have on here to learn about who Christ is and what He can do in a broken life (Click here for that video). 

If you need prayer, please let us know by clicking here and contacting us. We would love to pray for you, your family, or your situation. 

Did they forget who Jesus is?

david-beale-168546-unsplash
Photo by David Beale

By humility and the fear of the Lord are riches, and honour, and life. Thorns and snares are in the way of the froward: he that doth keep his soul shall be far from them. Train up a child in the way he should go: and when he is old, he will not depart from it.  Proverbs 22:4-6

From as far back as I can remember, my mother taught me to pray at night. I can remember the prayer:

“Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. If I die before I wake, I pray the Lord my soul to take. God bless Mommy & Daddy & everybody. Amen”

My parents at this time in my life weren’t saved (at least I know my dad wasn’t). When my father received salvation, we went to church whenever it was open. From the time I was 14 till the time my parents split up when I was 17, I was either in church or I was going to a Christian School. I was being “trained up” in the ways of the Lord.

When I graduated, I left the church but sadder than leaving church, I left the hope I had attained in Jesus behind. Not that I “lost” my salvation – I knew Jesus. I just left all I THOUGHT He stood for.

In my twenties my parents had front row seats to watch me marry the wrong man, smoke marijuana, drink,  go from job to job, and struggle financially because of my decisions. They got to watch their little girl who had so much promise fail. Not just fail a little, as we all do, but fail in an epic way. After all, I’m not sure I ever did anything half way – well anything bad that is.

I guess I’m telling you all of this to give you hope. If you are the parent of a child who has grown up knowing who Jesus is, and he/she has left – DO NOT LOSE HOPE. Keep praying. I can remember during my days while I sat in my backslidden state, how I could feel the prayers of my father. In fact, there was one day when I called him up and asked him to stop praying for me. I couldn’t take it and I hadn’t been to church in ages, I hadn’t prayed for a long time, and my relationship with Jesus was non-existent. The spirit inside, was pleading with me to come back to my first love. The praying was working and not only that, it gave my father hope.

When God said in scripture, “When he is old, he will not depart from it,” I take that as a promise. If you taught your child the ways of the Lord and they have departed from them, keep praying and hanging on to this promise. They will come back and they do remember. Trust me, they feel your prayers.

 

Trust God.

 

 

If you need prayers, we have a team of Jesus lovin’ women who would love to pray for you, for your child, your husband, or whatever need you have. Contact us here.  If you don’t know Jesus but would like to know more about my Savior, watch this video.