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When you lose what you love...WHEN THEY WALK THROUGH THE VALLEY OF WEEPING…THEY WILL CONTINUE TO GROW STRONGER. PSALM 84:6-7 NLT

When you lose what you love you go through 5 stages: (1) Denial – ‘No, it can’t be happening.’ (2) Anger – ‘God, why are You permitting this?’ (3) Bargaining – ‘Please make it go away.’ (4) Depression – Silence and withdrawal. (5) Acceptance – ‘Not my will but Thine be done.’ Whether it’s the loss of a child, a marriage, a job, your health, etc. when you turn to God He’ll give you the grace to embrace it, grieve it, express it, release it, and go on to become stronger. Sometimes we seek quick relief by releasing it before we’ve gone through these stages. That’s because we fear the process. We’ve been taught that any show of emotion is a show of weakness, so we stuff it. But we only stuff it into our emotional garbage can, then spend all our time and energy sitting on the lid, trying to keep the contents from spilling out. ‘You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free’ (John 8:32 NKJV). It’s knowing and embracing the truth, including its painful aspects, that sets you fr…

When you lose what you love...WHEN THEY WALK THROUGH THE VALLEY OF WEEPING…THEY WILL CONTINUE TO GROW STRONGER. PSALM 84:6-7 NLT

When you lose what you love you go through 5 stages: (1) Denial – ‘No, it can’t be happening.’ (2) Anger – ‘God, why are You permitting this?’ (3) Bargaining – ‘Please make it go away.’ (4) Depression – Silence and withdrawal. (5) Acceptance – ‘Not my will but Thine be done.’ Whether it’s the loss of a child, a marriage, a job, your health, etc. when you turn to God He’ll give you the grace to embrace it, grieve it, express it, release it, and go on to become stronger. Sometimes we seek quick relief by releasing it before we’ve gone through these stages. That’s because we fear the process. We’ve been taught that any show of emotion is a show of weakness, so we stuff it. But we only stuff it into our emotional garbage can, then spend all our time and energy sitting on the lid, trying to keep the contents from spilling out. ‘You shall know the truth, and the truth shall make you free’ (John 8:32 NKJV). It’s knowing and embracing the truth, including its painful aspects, that sets you fr…

A famous singer...‘ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER AND BUILD EACH OTHER UP.’ 1 THESSALONIANS 5:11 NIV

A famous singer was to perform at the Grand Opera House. The concert hall was packed. Suddenly the house manager announced, ‘Ladies and gentlemen I regret that due to illness our special guest will be unable to perform this evening. But we’ve found another singer, an equally great talent, so would you please give her a warm welcome.’ The crowd groaned so loudly that nobody even heard the singer’s name. You could feel the disappointment everywhere. The stand-in singer gave it everything she had but when it was over all she got was brief scattered applause followed by uncomfortable silence. Suddenly in the balcony a child stood up and shouted, ‘Mommy, I think you’re wonderful!’ Realising what had happened, the crowd jumped to their feet and gave her a standing ovation that lasted for several minutes. There are people in your life today who are bleeding emotionally, crumbling under the load they silently carry, who never hear the words, ‘I think you’re wonderful.’ Why?(a) Because we neve…

A famous singer...‘ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER AND BUILD EACH OTHER UP.’ 1 THESSALONIANS 5:11 NIV

A famous singer was to perform at the Grand Opera House. The concert hall was packed. Suddenly the house manager announced, ‘Ladies and gentlemen I regret that due to illness our special guest will be unable to perform this evening. But we’ve found another singer, an equally great talent, so would you please give her a warm welcome.’ The crowd groaned so loudly that nobody even heard the singer’s name. You could feel the disappointment everywhere. The stand-in singer gave it everything she had but when it was over all she got was brief scattered applause followed by uncomfortable silence. Suddenly in the balcony a child stood up and shouted, ‘Mommy, I think you’re wonderful!’ Realising what had happened, the crowd jumped to their feet and gave her a standing ovation that lasted for several minutes. There are people in your life today who are bleeding emotionally, crumbling under the load they silently carry, who never hear the words, ‘I think you’re wonderful.’ Why?(a) Because we neve…

Accepting yourself..‘Love others as much as you love yourself.’ Matthew 22:39 CEV ‘Love others as much as you love yourself.’ Matthew 22:39 CEV

Only by loving yourself in a healthy way, can you love others the way God intended. When you don’t love yourself you live with insecurity, and you keep looking to others for approval. When you don’t get it, your self-worth shrivels.

As a result, you live far beneath your potential. You are the only person you can’t get away from, so unless you learn to accept yourself, you’ll be miserable. Stop and think about the last time you were around somebody you didn’t enjoy being with; how did it feel? Whether good or bad, you project onto others the thoughts and feelings you have about yourself. So if you want people to think well of you, have a good opinion of yourself; one that’s based on God’s Word and nurtured by the right relationships. No question, the Bible cautions us about having an over inflated opinion of ourselves. But don’t go to the other extreme! Living with continual self-rejection is an open invitation to Satan, who is always ‘sneaking around to find someone to attack’ (1 Pete…

Accepting yourself..‘Love others as much as you love yourself.’ Matthew 22:39 CEV ‘Love others as much as you love yourself.’ Matthew 22:39 CEV

Only by loving yourself in a healthy way, can you love others the way God intended. When you don’t love yourself you live with insecurity, and you keep looking to others for approval. When you don’t get it, your self-worth shrivels.

As a result, you live far beneath your potential. You are the only person you can’t get away from, so unless you learn to accept yourself, you’ll be miserable. Stop and think about the last time you were around somebody you didn’t enjoy being with; how did it feel? Whether good or bad, you project onto others the thoughts and feelings you have about yourself. So if you want people to think well of you, have a good opinion of yourself; one that’s based on God’s Word and nurtured by the right relationships. No question, the Bible cautions us about having an over inflated opinion of ourselves. But don’t go to the other extreme! Living with continual self-rejection is an open invitation to Satan, who is always ‘sneaking around to find someone to attack’ (1 Pete…

In the Intensive Care waiting room...1 Corinthians 13:2 NI

‘If I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.’ 1 Corinthians 13:2 NIV

We keep saying that relationships are more important to us than anything else, but our actions don’t show it. We constantly short-change our friends and loved ones for the sake of money, or ‘getting ahead.’ Relationships are like flowers; if you don’t nurture and protect them, they die. That’s why Paul writes: ‘Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit…look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others’ (Philippians 2:3-4 NIV). Sometimes it takes heartache and crisis to remind us how irreplaceable the people in our lives are. One author writes: ‘I have spent long hours in the Intensive Care waiting room watching anguished people, listening to urgent questions: “Will my husband make it?” “Will my child walk again?” “How do you live without your companion of 30 years?” The Intensive Care waiting room is different from any other place in the world. And the pe…

In the Intensive Care waiting room...1 Corinthians 13:2 NI

‘If I have a faith that can move mountains, but have not love, I am nothing.’ 1 Corinthians 13:2 NIV

We keep saying that relationships are more important to us than anything else, but our actions don’t show it. We constantly short-change our friends and loved ones for the sake of money, or ‘getting ahead.’ Relationships are like flowers; if you don’t nurture and protect them, they die. That’s why Paul writes: ‘Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit…look not only to your own interests, but also to the interests of others’ (Philippians 2:3-4 NIV). Sometimes it takes heartache and crisis to remind us how irreplaceable the people in our lives are. One author writes: ‘I have spent long hours in the Intensive Care waiting room watching anguished people, listening to urgent questions: “Will my husband make it?” “Will my child walk again?” “How do you live without your companion of 30 years?” The Intensive Care waiting room is different from any other place in the world. And the pe…

A lot of us grew up believing there’s a Mr. Right...

‘LET HIM HAVE ALL YOUR WORRIES AND CARES.’ 1 PETER 5:7 TLB
A lot of us grew up believing there’s a Mr. Right out there who can ride in on a white horse with no troubles of his own and make everything wonderful for us. The truth is Mr. Right is probably looking for somebody to answer his own ‘help wanted’ ad. Do you really think someone is going to come looking for the kind of weight your problems would lay on them? Even if they are willing (and most are not), are they able? Men are not God. Only the Lord can restore what you’ve lost and make your life what it ought to be. So start talking to the right person – God! Things will begin to improve when you stop looking for Mr. Right to be the antibiotic to all of life’s infections and the answer to all of life’s questions. Only God can heal what you’ve been trying to cure, or demand emotionally from others. He alone can ride into your situation on the wings of hope and put things together. One touch of His hand can bring you peace, even i…

A lot of us grew up believing there’s a Mr. Right...

‘LET HIM HAVE ALL YOUR WORRIES AND CARES.’ 1 PETER 5:7 TLB
A lot of us grew up believing there’s a Mr. Right out there who can ride in on a white horse with no troubles of his own and make everything wonderful for us. The truth is Mr. Right is probably looking for somebody to answer his own ‘help wanted’ ad. Do you really think someone is going to come looking for the kind of weight your problems would lay on them? Even if they are willing (and most are not), are they able? Men are not God. Only the Lord can restore what you’ve lost and make your life what it ought to be. So start talking to the right person – God! Things will begin to improve when you stop looking for Mr. Right to be the antibiotic to all of life’s infections and the answer to all of life’s questions. Only God can heal what you’ve been trying to cure, or demand emotionally from others. He alone can ride into your situation on the wings of hope and put things together. One touch of His hand can bring you peace, even i…

Get more sleep...‘He gives His beloved sleep.’ Psalm 127:2 NKJV

Illness, stress, family problems, job demands, etc., rob us of sleep. And when we constantly run on low battery power it shows up in our attitudes, our relationships and our performance. The Bible says: 1) ‘It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows; for so He gives His beloved sleep.’ 2) ‘I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety’ (Psalm 4:8 NKJV). 3) ‘When you lie down, you will not be afraid; yes, you will lie down and your sleep will be sweet’ (Proverbs 3:24 NKJV). Sleep is an act of trust: when you go to sleep the world is in God’s hands, not yours. And it will get along very well, even if you’re not awake to control things. When you awaken tomorrow morning, just like God giving Israel fresh manna, He will give you the grace needed. Jeremiah said, ‘After this I awoke and looked around, and my sleep was sweet to me’ (Jeremiah 31:26 NKJV). Ever tried to pray when you were suffering from sleep defic…

Get more sleep...‘He gives His beloved sleep.’ Psalm 127:2 NKJV

Illness, stress, family problems, job demands, etc., rob us of sleep. And when we constantly run on low battery power it shows up in our attitudes, our relationships and our performance. The Bible says: 1) ‘It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late, to eat the bread of sorrows; for so He gives His beloved sleep.’ 2) ‘I will both lie down in peace, and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety’ (Psalm 4:8 NKJV). 3) ‘When you lie down, you will not be afraid; yes, you will lie down and your sleep will be sweet’ (Proverbs 3:24 NKJV). Sleep is an act of trust: when you go to sleep the world is in God’s hands, not yours. And it will get along very well, even if you’re not awake to control things. When you awaken tomorrow morning, just like God giving Israel fresh manna, He will give you the grace needed. Jeremiah said, ‘After this I awoke and looked around, and my sleep was sweet to me’ (Jeremiah 31:26 NKJV). Ever tried to pray when you were suffering from sleep defic…

The way up when life get you down...( 2 )..JAMES 5:17 NIV

'ELIJAH WAS…JUST LIKE US.' JAMES 5:17 NIV

What was God's prescription for getting Elijah back on his feet? A lecture on the prophet's faltering faith? No, just rest and nourishment! God recognises our limitations, even when we don't. 'A bruised reed he will not break, and a smouldering wick he will not snuff out' (Isaiah 42:3 NIV). When we neglect our own legitimate needs, it shows up in our attitude. God understands that being down is a 'perspective' problem, and getting back up requires adjustment in four crucial areas. So: 1) He adjusted Elijah's God-perspective. 'Get in the presence of God and he'll meet with you' (1 Kings 19:11 NIV). The One who gave Elijah victory on Mount Carmel, could also sustain him in the desert of Jezreel. But first Elijah had to spend time with Him; otherwise he was running on an empty tank. Hello! 2) He adjusted Elijah's world-perspective. Elijah said, 'God's covenant is broken, His altar des…

The way up when life get you down...( 2 )..JAMES 5:17 NIV

'ELIJAH WAS…JUST LIKE US.' JAMES 5:17 NIV

What was God's prescription for getting Elijah back on his feet? A lecture on the prophet's faltering faith? No, just rest and nourishment! God recognises our limitations, even when we don't. 'A bruised reed he will not break, and a smouldering wick he will not snuff out' (Isaiah 42:3 NIV). When we neglect our own legitimate needs, it shows up in our attitude. God understands that being down is a 'perspective' problem, and getting back up requires adjustment in four crucial areas. So: 1) He adjusted Elijah's God-perspective. 'Get in the presence of God and he'll meet with you' (1 Kings 19:11 NIV). The One who gave Elijah victory on Mount Carmel, could also sustain him in the desert of Jezreel. But first Elijah had to spend time with Him; otherwise he was running on an empty tank. Hello! 2) He adjusted Elijah's world-perspective. Elijah said, 'God's covenant is broken, His altar des…

The way up when life get you down...( 1 )..JAMES 5:17 NIV

There are times in life when we all feel down. But God's Word shows us the way to get back up. Look at Elijah, who 'was just like us.' How come he got so far down? 1) It happened on the heels of a great victory. He didn't start out in the doldrums, and he didn't fall into sin. No, he'd just called down fire from heaven and slain 450 false prophets (1 Kings 18:22-39). But that's hard work! So he went from exhilaration to exhaustion. Weary, defences down and vulnerability up, he fell into a natural depression because fatigue strips us of our courage. 2) Fear caused him to lose perspective. The man of God who'd just faced down an evil multitude, ended up running from one woman, Jezebel (1 Kings 19). Fear made him forget God's power; it skewed his perspective and left him feeling suicidal. Exhaustion coupled with fear is a dangerous combination. It invites hopeless, wrong thinking, and creates the illusion that your options are gone. 3) He became isolat…

The way up when life get you down...( 1 )..JAMES 5:17 NIV

There are times in life when we all feel down. But God's Word shows us the way to get back up. Look at Elijah, who 'was just like us.' How come he got so far down? 1) It happened on the heels of a great victory. He didn't start out in the doldrums, and he didn't fall into sin. No, he'd just called down fire from heaven and slain 450 false prophets (1 Kings 18:22-39). But that's hard work! So he went from exhilaration to exhaustion. Weary, defences down and vulnerability up, he fell into a natural depression because fatigue strips us of our courage. 2) Fear caused him to lose perspective. The man of God who'd just faced down an evil multitude, ended up running from one woman, Jezebel (1 Kings 19). Fear made him forget God's power; it skewed his perspective and left him feeling suicidal. Exhaustion coupled with fear is a dangerous combination. It invites hopeless, wrong thinking, and creates the illusion that your options are gone. 3) He became isolat…

When you are on Overload...( 3 )...‘Don’t get worked up.’ Matthew 6:34 TM

Everything that can go wrong has! Your teenager pierced his nose, the dog threw up on the carpet, the toilet's overflowing, and the car's leaking fluid. No wonder you're stressed! When life gets overwhelming remember: (1) God's still looking out for you. When things look bad, remind yourself that God's bigger than your problem: 'Don't get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.' (2) Don't think about quitting! Every time you reach the breaking point it's a test. You have before you a series of choices that will add up to either quitting or persevering through to victory. Paul was flogged, thrown in jail, shipwrecked and run out of town, but he refused to give in to circumstances and in the end he was able to say, 'I have fought the good fight…finished the race, and… remained faithful' (2 Timothy 4:7 NLT). (3) If it doesn't have your name on it,…

When you are on Overload...( 3 )...‘Don’t get worked up.’ Matthew 6:34 TM

Everything that can go wrong has! Your teenager pierced his nose, the dog threw up on the carpet, the toilet's overflowing, and the car's leaking fluid. No wonder you're stressed! When life gets overwhelming remember: (1) God's still looking out for you. When things look bad, remind yourself that God's bigger than your problem: 'Don't get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.' (2) Don't think about quitting! Every time you reach the breaking point it's a test. You have before you a series of choices that will add up to either quitting or persevering through to victory. Paul was flogged, thrown in jail, shipwrecked and run out of town, but he refused to give in to circumstances and in the end he was able to say, 'I have fought the good fight…finished the race, and… remained faithful' (2 Timothy 4:7 NLT). (3) If it doesn't have your name on it,…

When you are on Overload...( 2 )..‘‘I’m awake all night.’ Psalm 77:4 TM

You can't escape stress, but you can learn to cope with it by taking control of your life in small but important ways. Here are two: (1) Think about someone other than yourself. David was so frazzled that he was awake all night. Ever been there? That's when you need to 'Let…praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down' (Philippians 4:6 TM). Elijah was depressed and suicidal when God showed him how to help himself. How? By leaving the cave he was hiding in, and going out and ministering to others. Focusing on something other than yourself gives you perspective. Paul says, the 'God of all healing counsel…comes alongside…when we go through hard times…and…brings us alongside someone else…going through hard times so…we can be there for that person…as God was there for us' (2 Corinthians 1:3-4 TM). Do you need help? Reach …

When you are on Overload...( 2 )..‘‘I’m awake all night.’ Psalm 77:4 TM

You can't escape stress, but you can learn to cope with it by taking control of your life in small but important ways. Here are two: (1) Think about someone other than yourself. David was so frazzled that he was awake all night. Ever been there? That's when you need to 'Let…praises shape your worries into prayers, letting God know your concerns. Before you know it, a sense of God's wholeness, everything coming together for good, will come and settle you down' (Philippians 4:6 TM). Elijah was depressed and suicidal when God showed him how to help himself. How? By leaving the cave he was hiding in, and going out and ministering to others. Focusing on something other than yourself gives you perspective. Paul says, the 'God of all healing counsel…comes alongside…when we go through hard times…and…brings us alongside someone else…going through hard times so…we can be there for that person…as God was there for us' (2 Corinthians 1:3-4 TM). Do you need help? Reach …

When you are on Overload...( 1 )...‘When I was…beside myself, you calmed me down.’ Psalm 94:19 'When I was…beside myself, you calmed me down.' Psalm 94:19 TM

Before a violin can produce music, stress must be put on the strings. But pull them too tightly and they'll snap. The same is true of you. Enough stress gets the juices flowing and helps you do what needs to be done, but beyond that you snap. Someone quipped, 'You know you're on overload when you've no time to cook a TV dinner, the cat's on tranquilisers, and family reunions have to be mediated by law enforcement!' Seriously, before it gets to that point, do two things: (1) Ask for help: During Hurricane Katrina eight dolphins were swept out of their aquarium into the sea, but because they stuck together they were rescued. If one had tried to go it alone he'd have perished. When you're alone too much you lose perspective. If the enemy can isolate you, he can influence you. God designed His family to stay connected. Or as Paul says, 'So that all the members care for each other' (1 Corinthians 12:25 NLT). (2) Get real with God: Under stress the su…

When you are on Overload...( 1 )...‘When I was…beside myself, you calmed me down.’ Psalm 94:19 'When I was…beside myself, you calmed me down.' Psalm 94:19 TM

Before a violin can produce music, stress must be put on the strings. But pull them too tightly and they'll snap. The same is true of you. Enough stress gets the juices flowing and helps you do what needs to be done, but beyond that you snap. Someone quipped, 'You know you're on overload when you've no time to cook a TV dinner, the cat's on tranquilisers, and family reunions have to be mediated by law enforcement!' Seriously, before it gets to that point, do two things: (1) Ask for help: During Hurricane Katrina eight dolphins were swept out of their aquarium into the sea, but because they stuck together they were rescued. If one had tried to go it alone he'd have perished. When you're alone too much you lose perspective. If the enemy can isolate you, he can influence you. God designed His family to stay connected. Or as Paul says, 'So that all the members care for each other' (1 Corinthians 12:25 NLT). (2) Get real with God: Under stress the su…

How to handle temptation...'...SUBMIT TO GO. RESIST THE DEVIL...'JAMES 4:7 NKJV

When it comes to emptation, remember these seven things: 1) Never say 'never.' You never become so spiritual that you're immune. 'No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be abble to bear it' ( 1 corinthians 10:13 NKJV). 2) Realise you can stumble on the last lap. Because you haven't blown it yet, doesn't mean you can't. satan is a master of timing, and he's in no particular hurry. 3) Acknowledge your basic drives. St Augustine said, 'There is nothing more powerful in bringing down the spirit of a man the caresses of a woman. ' Your flesh is powerful; once indulged it will always want more. 4) Understand that you are responsible. Sin is a choice. When you chose to abuse God's grace you pay the price, either now or later. 'Do not be deceived...whatever a man …

How to handle temptation...'...SUBMIT TO GO. RESIST THE DEVIL...'JAMES 4:7 NKJV

When it comes to emptation, remember these seven things: 1) Never say 'never.' You never become so spiritual that you're immune. 'No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be abble to bear it' ( 1 corinthians 10:13 NKJV). 2) Realise you can stumble on the last lap. Because you haven't blown it yet, doesn't mean you can't. satan is a master of timing, and he's in no particular hurry. 3) Acknowledge your basic drives. St Augustine said, 'There is nothing more powerful in bringing down the spirit of a man the caresses of a woman. ' Your flesh is powerful; once indulged it will always want more. 4) Understand that you are responsible. Sin is a choice. When you chose to abuse God's grace you pay the price, either now or later. 'Do not be deceived...whatever a man …

‘REMEMBER YE NOT THE FORMER THINGS, NEITHER CONSIDER THE THINGS OF OLD. BEHOLD, I DO A NEW THING.’ ISAIAH 43:18-19

Realise that it’s not God who’s bringing up your past! His Word says, ‘I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions…and remembers your sins no more’ (Isaiah 43:25 NIV). If satan is dragging up your past – it’s because he has nothing new to attack you with. All he can do is resurrect old memories and rearrange old pictures in an attempt to discourage you. Don’t let him! Focusing on tomorrow will help you move away from today. God’s Word says: ‘Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way’ (NIV). God is going to make a way for you! As surely as Pharaoh and Herod tried to wipe out every baby boy in order to get at Moses and Jesus, so satan will do whatever it takes to keep you from reaching your destiny. The battle is always over your future! No matter what your past is like your future is worth fighting for – so rise up and fight! ‘Where do I begin?’ you ask. Talk to God: ask Him to sh…

‘REMEMBER YE NOT THE FORMER THINGS, NEITHER CONSIDER THE THINGS OF OLD. BEHOLD, I DO A NEW THING.’ ISAIAH 43:18-19

Realise that it’s not God who’s bringing up your past! His Word says, ‘I, even I, am he who blots out your transgressions…and remembers your sins no more’ (Isaiah 43:25 NIV). If satan is dragging up your past – it’s because he has nothing new to attack you with. All he can do is resurrect old memories and rearrange old pictures in an attempt to discourage you. Don’t let him! Focusing on tomorrow will help you move away from today. God’s Word says: ‘Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way’ (NIV). God is going to make a way for you! As surely as Pharaoh and Herod tried to wipe out every baby boy in order to get at Moses and Jesus, so satan will do whatever it takes to keep you from reaching your destiny. The battle is always over your future! No matter what your past is like your future is worth fighting for – so rise up and fight! ‘Where do I begin?’ you ask. Talk to God: ask Him to sh…

Double up. Bring in reinforcements!

‘If two of you…agree about anything.’ Matthew 18:19 NIV Sometimes you need somebody to agree with you in prayer; somebody who knows how to stand on God’s Word and intercede with Him for your finances, your children, your marriage, etc. James had just been executed and Herod was planning to kill Peter in the morning. Now, you’d think Peter would have been up all night praying, but he wasn’t. The Bible says he was sleeping (Acts 12:6). Where did he get that kind of faith? The Bible says: ‘The church was earnestly praying to God for him’ (Acts 12:5 NIV). Any time you can sleep in the face of danger and experience grace in the midst of chaos, it’s one of two things: 1) You know God well, you’re standing on His promises and you’ve handed the situation over to Him. 2) Somebody is praying for you, somebody with ‘clout’ in the heavenly realm. Notice, the church didn’t say, ‘If Peter was in God’s will, he wouldn’t be in this mess right now,’ or ‘Since Peter’s in jail, who’s going to preach for…

Double up. Bring in reinforcements!

‘If two of you…agree about anything.’ Matthew 18:19 NIV Sometimes you need somebody to agree with you in prayer; somebody who knows how to stand on God’s Word and intercede with Him for your finances, your children, your marriage, etc. James had just been executed and Herod was planning to kill Peter in the morning. Now, you’d think Peter would have been up all night praying, but he wasn’t. The Bible says he was sleeping (Acts 12:6). Where did he get that kind of faith? The Bible says: ‘The church was earnestly praying to God for him’ (Acts 12:5 NIV). Any time you can sleep in the face of danger and experience grace in the midst of chaos, it’s one of two things: 1) You know God well, you’re standing on His promises and you’ve handed the situation over to Him. 2) Somebody is praying for you, somebody with ‘clout’ in the heavenly realm. Notice, the church didn’t say, ‘If Peter was in God’s will, he wouldn’t be in this mess right now,’ or ‘Since Peter’s in jail, who’s going to preach for…

‘Don’t get worked up.’ Matthew 6:34 TM

Everything that can go wrong has! Your teenager pierced his nose, the dog threw up on the carpet, the toilet’s overflowing, and the car’s leaking fluid. No wonder you’re stressed! When life gets overwhelming remember: (1) God’s still looking out for you. When things look bad, remind yourself that God’s bigger than your problem: ‘Don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.’ (2) Don’t think about quitting! Every time you reach the breaking point it’s a test. You have before you a series of choices that will add up to either quitting or persevering through to victory. Paul was flogged, thrown in jail, shipwrecked and run out of town, but he refused to give in to circumstances and in the end he was able to say, ‘I have fought the good fight…finished the race, and… remained faithful’ (2 Timothy 4:7 NLT). (3) If it doesn’t have your name on it, don’t pick it up! Stress comes from micro-managing …

‘Don’t get worked up.’ Matthew 6:34 TM

Everything that can go wrong has! Your teenager pierced his nose, the dog threw up on the carpet, the toilet’s overflowing, and the car’s leaking fluid. No wonder you’re stressed! When life gets overwhelming remember: (1) God’s still looking out for you. When things look bad, remind yourself that God’s bigger than your problem: ‘Don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.’ (2) Don’t think about quitting! Every time you reach the breaking point it’s a test. You have before you a series of choices that will add up to either quitting or persevering through to victory. Paul was flogged, thrown in jail, shipwrecked and run out of town, but he refused to give in to circumstances and in the end he was able to say, ‘I have fought the good fight…finished the race, and… remained faithful’ (2 Timothy 4:7 NLT). (3) If it doesn’t have your name on it, don’t pick it up! Stress comes from micro-managing …