Thursday, March 14, 2013

Just One Is Enough For Me

I don't know what it is about being a girl and struggling so much which confidence, security, and the future! It can be a daily battle that never seems to be fully lifted. Maybe it's just me that feels this way a whole lot... I mean the enemy will try to attack our weak spots and these just happen to be mine. He will do everything in his power to break us apart, shake us down, and squander the work God is doing in our lives.

The enemy is constantly at work. What I find helpful everyday is when having my morning prayer time, to declare God's goodness and His Holy Word over myself before the day really begins. Before I walk out of the door of my apartment, Christ renews my spirit through prayer. I know who I am in Christ. I know what He has called me to do. I know I am greatly loved by Him, He has a great, prosperous plan for my life, and just as His word says... Those who trust him will not be disappointed. The enemy can try and attack, but as I'm sure we've all heard (and it's so true), the battle is won in prayer! The best way to defeat the enemy and begin our day confident in God is to get alone with him before it even starts. We have to know who we are in Christ and our confidence must come from him before even facing a mountain. If not, when trials, struggles, and storms come, we will falter right from the start.

One verse that has been brining me comfort lately is the last few lines of Isaiah 49:23 "... Then you will know I am the Lord. Anyone who trusts in me will not be disappointed." The Message version claims, "No one who hopes in me ever regrets it." I can't ever recall a time in my life where I have trusted God and regretted it! I can say there's times I haven't trusted God completely and have regretted it.

One thing that makes it so hard to trust God sometimes is that I think I can just do better on my own. Not that I think I am better than God, but there's circumstances I look at and say to myself, "I can carry that load." It usually always ends up being too much for me; no matter how small or big. Last night at our church's prayer service, Pastor discussed how we tend to think we can be our own savior. We think we can do everything for ourselves. Then in our college Chapel earlier that day, one of our leaders talked about how Christ is enough. Getting the idea? We cannot be our own savior. We cannot be our own healer. We cannot be our own redeemer and meet our own every need. Even the needs of others are too great sometimes for us to meet on our own! Without God, there is never enough. He is all-suffient; he is enough. With him, there will be enough. Our strength, time, resources, capabilities, and much more all run out. And when there's nothing left of us, God will still be enough because he is enough.

The biggest lesson I am learning right now is that I don't know what the future holds. I don't like uncertainty. I have problems with my security and the future. My answer is to control whatever I can because trusting other people to do it might cause something to go wrong. And there's the fault. I think I can make it all happen on my own and that way it'll all go perfect. Reality: I am not enough.

Trusting man with my future is detrimental, as well as trusting myself. Only is Jesus Christ enough. A mountain to high or a storm to rough? He is enough. Can't see how to get out or don't know what's ahead? He is enough. We may not know the answer to everything, but if we truly put our trust in God we will not be disappointed. All his ways are good and he only desires to make our lives prosperous and fulfilling; that fulfillment only comes from him though. He will be enough for you and enough for me. Look at your circumstances, even if it seems impossible, and declare "He is enough."

Isaiah 49:15-16
The Lord answers, "Can a woman forget the baby she nurses?
Can she feel no kindness for the child to which she gave birth?
Even if she could forget her children,
I will not forget you.
See, I have written your name on my hand.
Jerusalem, I always think about your walls. 

Happy Thursday!
❤ Ariel Christine

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

If He Gave It, He'll Help You

Exodus 4:10-12
But Moses said to the Lord, "Please, Lord, I have never been a skilled speaker. 
Even now, after talking to you, I cannot speak well. I speak slowly and can't find the best words." 
Then the Lord said to him, "Who made a person's mouth? 
And who makes someone deaf or not able to speak? Or who gives a person sight or blindness? 
It is I, the Lord. Now go! I will help you speak, and I will teach you what to say."

Moses felt he was not able to carry out the task God had in store for him. Moses was to go before the king of Egypt asking for the Israelites' freedom. That is a huge mountain to face! I could only imagine how he felt. I too would feel speechless and timid before the king, especially asking for him to let all his slaves go! God, however, knew Moses was able and only with His help! The Lord would walk with Joseph and give him every tool necessary to accomplish this task. Exodus 4:12 even shows that the Lord tells Moses he would give him to words to say. 

Reading on into Exodus, Moses does every command the Lord gave him. There was always a battle between Moses and the king. One moment the king would say he would release the slaves and then change his mind. I constantly found through out the Scripture that God was the one making the king stubborn. Then God would say he would rescue the Israelites and they would see that he is God. All these circumstances God used to show the people he was God All-Poweful, and Moses was used as an instrument in the midst of it all.

This passage only reminds me to truly believe that God can use anybody! Moses didn't even feel equipped to be used by God for this task, but God still used him! God can do anything and through anyone. He just wants our willingness. Moses thought he couldn't do it, but God assured him he would give Moses the words, and so Moses went for it. He was obedient to God and look at what happened: all the Israelites were rescued out of Egypt and they all knew it was the Lord. 

I want God to use me as an instrument of his glory whether I feel equipped or not! Whatever it is he calls me to do, I want to believe with such faith that I can do it through Christ who is my help, strength, and rock. Our God is a God who makes all things possible. When I wake up each morning, I think myself, "Today is a new day and God can do anything. He can use anyone, including me! There is no challenge God can't face and no problem he doesn't already know of. He is all knowing, and he will fight for me. He is with me, enough for me, and gives me every tool I'll need." That's how awesome of a God he is. He can do anything and can do all things through his people. Today he has given each and every person the tools they need. They can be tools such as our mouths and hands or abilities and talents or our resources! He can even give us new ones and they will become developed in our lifetime. All things are able to point towards Christ and giving God glory if we would use them for him. 

We are creatively-fashioned instruments of the Lord and he is our orchestrator of music. Let us be willing to say the words, use the gifts, do anything the Lord has given to us and he will show us how to use it all. 
❤ Ariel Christine

Friday, March 1, 2013

Joseph the Dreamer

Joseph is known as the dreamer. He was a great guy and walked faithfully with God in relationship. He had dreams of his future and ruling over his family; he envisioned his brothers bowing down to him. Now Joseph was already hated because his father loved him more than the other brothers. It probably wash't the greatest idea for Joseph to then tell his brothers that he would rule over them... I can see where their anger comes from. From the situation, Joseph's brothers then proceeded to sell him into slavery. He was sold to an Egyptian named Potiphar.

Genesis 39:2-3
The Lord was with Joseph, and he became a successful man.
He lived in the house of his master, Potiphar the Egyptian.
Potiphar saw the Lord was with Joseph and that the 
Lord made Joseph successful in everything he did.

Joseph had favor with his master because the Lord was with him. Potiphar recognized the Lord's Spirit upon his slave. Potiphar trusted Joseph so much that Joseph was placed in charge of everything the master owned. Because the Lord was with Joseph, even all of Potiphar's family and workers were blessed. Unfortunately, Potiphar's wife lied saying Joseph tried to have sexual relations with her; this caused him to be thrown in jail. While in jail, the Lord was still with Joseph! He had such favor there that the prison warden let him be in charge of every other prisoner. Everything done to the other prisoners and whatever else happened in the jail Joseph was responsible for.  Part B of verse 39:23 states, "... because the Lord was with Joseph and made him successful in everything he did."

To think because Joseph walked with God, God was always with him and it was evident to others. This makes me recall Proverbs 3:6, "Remember the Lord in all you do, and he will give you success." Yes, Joseph went through some serious circumstances, but the Lord's favor upon his life is what brought him through. Even in the midst of slavery and prison, Joseph still succeed because God was with him.

Thinking of great heroes of faith in the Bible sometimes seems like they are just so holy and have come so far to be where they're at. The matter of fact is that what Joseph did... which was walk closely with God... is available for all of us to do. We can walk with God just as Joseph did. We can walk with God in such a way that it is evident to others around us. There is no one like our God; nobody beside him or even close in comparison. This great God of ours even redeems us to be his children. You can count on it that when you give God your life for his glory, he will be with you and his favor upon you. I would think to even be considered God's child is already favor enough. Then he goes above and beyond giving us more. What a great Father he is.

As you go about this weekend and into the following week, I suggest to read these following verses. Even say it outloud replacing Joseph's name with your own. You are a child of God who holds within you the everlasting truth; the well-spring of life is within you. The enemy may attack you, but your God makes you strong and gives you favor in any circumstance!

Genesis 49:22-24
Joseph is like a grapevine that produces much fruit,
        a healthy vine watered by a spring,
        whose branches grow over the wall.
Archers attack him violently
        and shoot at him angrily,
but he aims his bow well.
        His arms are made strong.
He gets his power from the Mighty God of Jacob
        and his strength from the Sheperd, the
        Rock of Israel.

Happy Friday!
❤ Ariel Christine