God knows your name.

There is a song on the radio by Matthew West called “Hello, My Name is…” He talks about people who are hindered by regret and defeat. I’m going to add to it guilt, depression, self-doubt, self-recrimination and criticism or any number of things that keeps you from fully committing yourself and your life fully to God. One of the things I post most about, speak on and am writing a book about is loving yourself as God loves you. But as humans, again and again we insist upon making ourselves and others feel bad about themselves. In the Bible God says His love is, “never ending, everlasting, forgiving, and forgetful (of our sins.) He is rich in mercy, shows no partiality or prejudice. God has plans for good in our lives, and keeps all the promises He has made to us in the Bible, of which there are too many to name here. Matthew’s choruses sing that we are “a child of the one true King.” He tells us we are saved, changed and set free by God and His love. If only it were possible for us to love ourselves as God loved us we would have no problems, right? But that would mean we were perfect and we wouldn’t need God! But we are human and imperfect and we need God more and more each day as the world become more selfish and chaotic.

Here are a few things that you can do to keep your focus on God and not regret, defeat and guilt, etc.

  1. Praise and thankfulness. Remember to praise God for His goodness and blessings in your life, even praise and thank Him for answers to prayer He may not have given you yet. But you know He will, right?
  2. Ask for forgiveness but then ask Him to help you forget those sins like He has. He tosses your sins in to the Sea of Forgetfulness, never to return. And Jesus didn’t come to condemn us either. So you shouldn’t condemn yourself for your sins over and over again either.
  3. Remember that God is on your side. If your are loving Him and obeying His Word, He wants to give you good gifts. So keep putting one step in front of the other and He will bring you joy!

Steph is available to speak to your western Washington or Oregon church or women’s group for encouragement, email Steph at stephwrites68@gmail.com. Topics I speak about include “Lukewarm or Hot: How Will You Serve God Today?” “How to Love Yourself,” and “How to Parent without Blowing Your Top.”

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God is our Rock

“My victory and honor come from God alone. He is my refuge, a rock where no one can reach me. Oh my people, trust in Him at all times.” Ps. 62:6,7

God is the only one that we can fully trust. God is the only one who we can lean against that isn’t going to fall over. He is a rock that isn’t going to break or move. He is the shelter that isn’t going to leak or fail. He will bring us victory over all our battles against people, illness, and demons.

We have all had friends, or family members even, that have hurt us or betrayed us. I can think of one time I have done it, not even intentionally. I told a friend of a friend something that I had no right to tell. But was unaware she did not know about it until afterward. So I was puzzled when the second friend was not talking to me. I was in the process of moving and didn’t have time to talk to her about it. A few years later, the Lord reminded me of the situation and I realized what had happened. I tried to contact the friend but had lost her information. I asked God for forgiveness and of course, He granted it. But once in awhile I still think of the friend and regret what happened. I still hate what happened and God has to remind me that I am forgiven. But we are human and we do things that we regret and hopefully we learn from them.

No matter what we say or do to God, He won’t abandon us. There are times in our lives when He feels far away, like He’s not answering ours prayers or our words are hitting a glass ceiling. But His answer may be “not now” or “I have something else in mind.” But that’s not what we want to hear so we ignore it and keep praying the same thing. Sometimes the best way to get your answer to prayer is sit still and be quiet and praise God for what He is going to do and has done for you in the past. And be quiet for awhile. Just picture Him on His throne or on a cloud or however you see Him at rest. Then wait. I’ve heard Him with an audible voice and I’ve heard a whisper in my heart. Or I’ve heard nothing and He’s said something through a friend or pastor. But trust in Him and He will give you all you need. God bless you friends.

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