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Family Christian

  • God is Able

    Posted on May 20, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd

    And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 2 Corinthians 9:8

     

    God is able. He is able to abundantly bless in all things at all times.  God is able to provide what is needed for every good work. He is able when I am unable. He is able to soften my heart when I am unable to listen.  He is able to illumine my thoughts when I am unable to understand the truth. He is able to love me when I am unable to love myself. God is able. Yes! His Spirit is able to intercede on my behalf when I am unable to pray. My Lord Jesus is ready, willing and able.

     

    God is able to supply the needs of His people through His people. He is able to make us rich in every way so we can be generous on all occasions. Thus, we have emotional, physical, spiritual and financial capacity to give to others. Yes, margin (extra) gives us space in our brain to be creative, room in our heart to be compassionate, and surplus money with which to be generous. Indeed, we have more to give to others when we steward our resources for the sake of service.

     

    Spend yourselves in behalf of the hungry and satisfy the needs of the oppressed, then your light will rise in the darkness, and your night will become like the noonday. Isaiah 58:10

     

    So, what are we to do when God is able, but unwilling? What if His help seems delayed or unresponsive? First, we are reassured knowing the character of our Heavenly Father is 100% trustworthy. He is good and He desires what’s best for His children. Furthermore, our will does not always align with the Lord’s will. Free will is free to chose badly. Thus, we require the Spirit’s ‘will alignment’ by renewing our mind and purifying our heart. Clarity comes from cleansing and repentance. God is able, but we may not be ready, so we remain steady in prayer.

     

    Whatever you are facing, your Heavenly Father is able to face down. In your fear He will give you faith and courage to meet your challenge with grace and commitment. In your new opportunity He will teach you the skill of listening, so you can learn to go further, faster. In your conflict He will model for you the art of peacemaking, so you can bring harmony to a hurting home. In your success, He will keep you grateful and humble through your generous giving. God is able to bless you beyond measure, so you can be a trusted pass through for His ample supply!

     

    Therefore he [Jesus] is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them. Hebrews 7:25

     

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You that You are able to bless me to be a blessing to others.

     

    Related Readings: Daniel 3:17; Psalm 18:48; Jeremiah 1:8; Mark 1:40;  1 Corinthians 4:19

     

    Post/Tweet today: Whatever you are facing, your Heavenly Father is able to face down. In your fear He will give you faith. #faith

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.

    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry

    info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com

  • Andrew Peterson returns to Grand Ole Opry

    Posted on May 20, 2013 by Family Christian

    Late summer Peterson will join Sara Groves on Bebo Norman’s final tour

    After the enormous success of his debut Grand Ole Opry appearance, Andrew Peterson will once again return to the renowned stage at the Grand Ole Opry House on Friday, May 24th, 7:00 pm.  Joining him that evening will be Vince Gill, Eric Paslay, Steve Wariner, and more, along with Peterson’s long-time bandmates Andy Gullahorn and Ben Shive. For tickets and more information please visit online at www.orpy.com.

    “I love Nashville, and this grand institution is at the heart of the city, so I couldn’t be more honored to be invited back,” says Peterson. “Now if I can just manage to keep my cool around Steve Wariner, I might survive.”

    A few weeks after Peterson’s Opry appearance, he will embark on a European tour that will include stops in Sweden, Norway and the United Kingdom.  Back in the United States in late summer, Peterson will join Sara Groves for Bebo Norman’s final tour of 2013, In The Round.  Peterson and Norman have had a long friendship that started in 1998 when they both opened for Caedmon’s Call.  Since then, they have toured together numerous times with Norman being the special guest on Peterson’s highly popular Behold The Lamb Of God Christmas Tour in 2008 and 2009.

    “I can’t think of a better way to finish my touring career than performing in the round with the likes of Andrew Peterson and Sara Groves,” says Norman.  “Even though I will be sharing the stage with them, in spirit I will simply be another member of the audience hanging on every song they sing.”

    Rounding out 2013 for Peterson will be the 4rd Annual Hutchmoot, October 10-13, at Church of the Redeemer in Nashville, TN. This year’s event sold out in less than three minutes!  In December, Peterson will launch his 14th annual Behold The Lamb Of God Christmas Tour and the fifteen dates are online at www.andrew-peterson.com.

  • Why Did You ...?

    Posted on May 20, 2013 by ShauntiFeldhahn

    Shaunti

    "Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen." Ephesians 4:29 (NIV)

    Shelly pulled up in her wet driveway after a beach getaway with girlfriends. She smiled, thinking, it's a shame the rain chased us away early, but at least I know the house is still standing.

    She opened the door and tripped over a pile of schoolbooks. What on earth? Speechless, she stared at clutter everywhere. Cans of food and spaghetti sauce were stacked high on the island in the kitchen. Empty packets of Ramen noodles decorated the counter. The tool drawer had been emptied onto the kitchen table.

    An angry cry escaped her lips and a muffled exclamation came from the laundry room. Her husband stuck his head out the door, looking chagrined. "You're home early!"

    "Yes I'm home early!" Shelly waved around at the chaos. "I can't believe this! Why did you let it get this bad? And why were you feeding the kids instant noodles instead of something healthier?"

    Without a word, Marcus pushed the door to the laundry room wide open and stepped aside so she could enter.

    Furious, she stalked past him-and rocked to a stop. The back corner of the laundry room had been turned into a pantry. Fresh-cut wood shelves stacked up to the ceiling. Deep drawers were waiting to be slotted into a rolling rack. Dust sheets covered the washer and dryer, which were piled with food cans and packets, ready to be placed on the shelves of the pantry.

    The pantry she had longed for.

    Shelly closed her eyes. Mortified, all she could say was "I'm so sorry."

    Shelly told me this story a week after it happened. I was speaking at her church's women's conference, sharing my research on the inner thoughts, needs and fears of men. I shared that men want above all to please those who matter most to them-especially a wife or girlfriend-but privately doubt themselves and are deeply sensitive as to whether they are doing a good job. So when women start a sentence with "Why did you. . .?," men hear, "Why did you do that, you dodo?"

    Shelly's story is a perfect example of how easy it is to think, "You dodo." Not think, "There must be a good reason for this-even if I don't see it at this moment." Instead, like many of us, she was quick to assume there wasn't a good reason, that he didn't do a good job. And she verbalized those damaging thoughts.

    Ephesians 4:29 tells us to be careful to only say things that are useful for building others up. While this applies to everyone in our lives, if we are married, it's especially vital to practice with our husbands.

    Most situations with the men in our lives aren't as extreme as Shelly's experience. But versions of this scenario happen often. "Why did you give the kids juice instead of milk?" "Why did you take that road instead of this one?" "Why did you choose that strategy for the business deal?" We may protest that it is a harmless question, but all too often, it is code for "What were you thinking!?" Which itself is code for "You obviously weren't thinking."

    The reality is, the reverse is usually true. Eighty-two percent of men surveyed say they always think things through ... and purposefully consider the reaction of their wife or girlfriend before making a decision.

    The next time you are confounded by your husband, instead of a rash reaction, slow down and remind yourself: his heart is probably in the right place and his choices are likely made with that in mind. And if you need help ... just remember the pantry.

    Dear Jesus, forgive me for being quick to judge and assume the worst about the man in my life. Please teach me to slow down and listen to him, and [if married] to trust in his love. In Your Name, Amen.

    Related Resources:
    Revised and updated For Women Only book and DVD study by Shaunti Feldhahn.

    Family Christian's Facebook page offers encouragement and truth each day. Join our community by clicking here.

    Reflect and Respond:
    If you are married, take time to think through, pray and reflect on the fundamental assumptions and expectations you have in regards to your husband. Choose to honor and respect your husband in your thoughts and words.

    Whenever you think, "Why did you ...?" say instead, "Honey, I'm confused, could you help me understand what your reason was?" You might be surprised at how often he was thinking things through-including honoring you.

    Power Verses:
    Ephesians 5:33, "Nevertheless, each individual among you also is to love his own wife even as himself, and the wife must see to it that she respects her husband." (NASB)

    © 2013 by Shaunti Feldhahn. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    630 Team Rd., Suite 100
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org

  • Wedding Celebration

    Posted on May 19, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd

    On the third day a wedding took place at Cana in Galilee. Jesus’ mother was there, and Jesus and his disciples had also been invited to the wedding. John 2:1-2

     

    A wedding is a celebration of two people committed to Christ and committed to each other. This is cause for raucous laughter and tearful gratitude. The solemn vows of the bride and groom are accented by their smiles and kisses. The parents celebrate God’s goodness in all of its facets. It’s good to see your child embrace a spouse who will cherish and respect your “baby.” It’s good to see your child happy and content. And it’s good to see your child make wise choices and dance with joy. It is good to see your child obedient to his or her heavenly Father. Weddings where Jesus is invited are the best!

    A wedding is a preamble to the constitution of marriage. It is a declaration of independence from self-interests. It is interdependence on each other and dependence on God. A wedding is costly, but not nearly as expensive as the marriage. A wedding mirrors a marriage’s need for mentors, prayer support, and planning. A wedding done well is a template for marriage. You keep the fires of romance burning brightly. You plan together and communicate constantly. You spend budgeted money. You involve your family in ways that are appropriate and honoring. You keep God as the centerpiece of your life. A wedding is not a fleeting moment, but rather a memory to be relived over and over again. A wedding is a reminder of God’s beautiful work of grace in a world full of hurt. It reinvigorates stale marriages. It staves off the pending demise of others. It affirms those who, by God’s grace, have grown deeper and deeper in love since their own special day.

    Invite Jesus to your wedding. He is the ultimate wedding planner. He is interested in every detail of your public expression of faith in Him. Indeed, your public display of faith begins with your private devotion. Once you have developed a personal love relationship with Jesus, you can humbly exalt Him before friends, family, and the world. Private dedication precedes public declaration. An engaged couple who lacks their individual engagement of faith, is not ready for a wedding. A wedding requires much more than starry-eyed looks of love. Its prerequisite is a deep and abiding faith in God. Otherwise, the wedding becomes a big, expensive party lacking the teeth of commitment and follow through.

     

    A wedding without Jesus is like an orchestra without a conductor. There is a ton of potential represented by a lot of well-meaning individuals, but there is no defined direction. There is no overall harmony of the musical instruments of husband, wife, family, friends, and faith. Jesus integrates the lives of all these well-meaning players into a beautiful concert called marriage. The wedding is but a prelude of the marriage concert, but what a beautiful beginning it births. Jesus is a gracious guest always looking for ways to intercede on your behalf—as the new couple—and on the behalf of your guests. His role model of servant-hood will mark your marriage for a lifetime. Your faith in Christ is a marriage analogy, for He is the groom and you are the bride. Your wedding is a picture of the joy of your salvation. Your marriage is a lifelong consecration of that commitment.  Keep inviting Jesus, the initiator of your wedding and the sustainer of your marriage.

     

    Post/Tweet: A wedding is a preamble to the constitution of marriage. It is interdependence on each other and dependence on God. #wedding

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.

    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com

  • Thorough Work

    Posted on May 18, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd

    “The Israelites had done all the work just as the Lord had commanded Moses. Moses inspected the work and saw that they had done it just as the Lord had commanded. So Moses blessed them” (Exodus 39:42–43).

     

    We live in an instant society. We want relationships, money, and our dining experiences in an instant. In the process of making everything instantaneous, we have lost something. We have lost an appreciation for thoroughness in our work and in our relationships. We take shortcuts to finish on time, sacrificing quality, just to end up with an inferior outcome. Or even worse, we misrepresent the facts or lie outright to reach a goal because of the pressure we feel to produce. Thoroughness requires attention, trust, and tenacity.

     

    Whatever happened to thoroughness—the discipline to plan ahead, provide accountability, cover the details, create a beautiful result, and celebrate the success? Instead, we plow ahead without proper understanding and procedures. Everyone does what is right in his own eyes, and we miss the opportunity to learn and benefit from one another. Indeed, thoroughness begins with a good example from the leader. Like Moses, Nehemiah stayed focused on the work at hand.

     

    “So I sent messengers to them, saying, ‘I am doing a great work and I cannot come down. Why should the work stop while I leave it and come down to you?’ They sent messages to me four times in this manner, and I answered them in the same way” (Nehemiah 6:3–4 nasb).

     

    Moses was a thorough leader. He listened patiently to God and then delivered in detail to the team what was expected and required to accomplish the project. He understood and applied wise management of people. He understood each of their individual gifts and skills. People who take pride in their work are the most thorough when they are competent in their area of responsibility and clear on expectations. They understand what is needed and when it is to be complete. Details and deadlines are friends of thoroughness.

     

    Lastly, thoroughness is dependent on the resources and relationships needed to carry out the project. Do not be afraid to be resourceful. Seek out the people and information needed to carry out your job. Your thoroughness will speak volumes to your boss and to your peers. Your thorough and excellent work is the best testament to your trust in Christ. In the end you are blessed because of the quality product or service you created. God is glorified through thoroughness and the enduring influence of your work experiences.

     

    “I have brought you glory on earth by finishing the work you gave me to do. And now, Father, glorify me in your presence with the glory I had with you before the world began” (John 17:4–5).

     

    Prayer: What current project requires my thorough attention to detailed implementation?

     

    Related Readings: Genesis 7:5; Exodus 23:21–22; Matthew 28:20; 2 Timothy 2:15

     

    Post/Tweet: Details and deadlines are friends of thoroughness. #bethorough

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.

    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com

  • Work in Retirement

    Posted on May 17, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd

    At five o’clock he went back and found still others standing around. He said, ‘Why are you standing around all day doing nothing?’ “They said, ‘Because no one hired us.’ “He told them to go to work in his vineyard. Matthew 20:5-7, The Message

     

    The spiritual age of retirement is not the same as the secular age of retirement. Retirement from God’s work comes after death, not in this life. Followers of Jesus are not idle, caught up in their own issues, rather they look for ways to work for the Lord. Maybe they greet people with a smile at church, sing in the choir, serve on the board, teach preschoolers or manage the ministry’s finances. Freedom from the shackles of secular work is to serve others, not to pamper self.

     

    Culture claims that those over age 65 live for themselves in travel, ease and pleasure. It's all about indulging the flesh and starving the spirit, or maybe tipping a charity or two. But our Lord Jesus calls us to remain engaged in His eternal agenda: evangelism, discipleship, mentoring and giving our time, talents and treasures. The gospel of Jesus Christ allows an old soul to remain young at heart. You truly learn to live when you lean into the Lord in your golden years!

     

    They will still bear fruit in old age, they will stay fresh and green, proclaiming, “The Lord is upright; he is my Rock. Psalm 92:14-15

     

    Are you in the empty nest season with an available schedule? Perhaps you host young couples in your home for a meal and Bible study. Are you doing life with those you can invest in and with those who can invest in you? If your soul idles long enough in isolation it will dry up and die. However, as you engage your energy in others, you will come alive to live another day. Perhaps you foster children, adopt, or invite your parents, who selflessly cared for you, to live with you..

     

    Lastly, keep the vineyard of your heart and mind free from the kudzu of lazy living and empty thinking. Aggressively pray for your children and grandchildren to fall deeper in love with Jesus and with each other. Daily move your body outside into the Lord’s creation. Push through deadly inertia with a lively walk. Fresh air clears your mind and lifts your gaze upward to God. Let the warm caresses of the sun facilitate onto your face the warm caresses of your Father’s son. Work for the Lord until the day comes when you go to be with the Lord. He rewards work for Him!

     

    That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers. Psalm 1:3

     

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, may my work for You not cease and may it be pleasing to You.

     

    Related Readings: Proverbs 11:30; Ecclesiastes 7:10; Romans 9:12; 1 Timothy 5:1-2; Titus 2:2

     

    Post/Tweet today: The spiritual age of retirement is not the same as the secular age of retirement. #God’swork

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.

    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry

    info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com

  • Answer Envy

    Posted on May 17, 2013 by Karen Ehman

    Karen

    "Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know." Jeremiah 33:3 (NIV)

    Do you ever envy God's answers to someone else's prayers?

    I recall the twinges of pain that shot through my heart each time I would open my mailbox discovering yet another baby shower invitation. As a young bride longing to become a mother, the joy of my positive pregnancy test was shattered a few months later when I suffered a miscarriage. And, although I was genuinely thrilled for my friends who were pregnant, I was also heartbroken that it wasn't my name on those pale pink or baby blue invites.

    I call this answer envy. It is that "poor me" mentality that creeps into my heart when God answers someone else's prayers more quickly than mine. Or when His answer seems to be a "no," or at least a "not right now."

    I've had my fair share of answer envy outbreaks over the years, at all stages of life.

    As a child, I was envious of the kids who came from two-parent homes while I resided in a family torn apart by divorce. No matter how hard I folded my little hands and prayed to God, my daddy didn't come back to us.

    In high school, it was other girls' good looks, cute clothes or even cuter boyfriends that I longed for. Instead, I was granted average looks and wore hand-me-down fashions. And, as sports editor of our school paper, although I was every guy's pal, I was usually nobody's gal.

    In college, I envied those whose prayers for a knight in shining armor (complete with a diamond ring) were answered while I remained single.

    My heart was filled with questions. God, why did my daddy leave? Where's my knight? Why don't I have a baby to hold? When will it be my turn?

    Over the years I've discovered the cure for answer envy isn't always easy. Rather than stay stuck in disappointment, I must play an active role in my healing.

    What I need is a shift in perspective. When I call out to God with my questions as encouraged in Jeremiah 33:3, I must trust He will keep His word. He will tell me "great and unsearchable things" that I do not know. Sometimes those things He provides are the answers to my request. However, do you know what those great and unsearchable things more often are? They are the reasons He seems not to be answering my original request!

    While God is generous to answer my requests, I also need to ask myself some questions. Questions like, "What is my Creator trying to teach me that I might never learn if He were to suddenly pluck me out of this situation?" Or, "What character qualities is He trying to grow in me? Patience, trust, compassion, contentment?"

    Not available in quick microwave form, the cure for answer envy has to be cultivated moment by moment.

    We must believe that God will answer. He will clearly say "yes," "no," or "not right now." He is able, ready and willing to answer our prayers—here is the catch—as He sees fit and to grow us to be more like His Son in the process.

    Sometimes we'll have a long stay in God's waiting room. Having been there myself, I now know this to be true: I must not merely seek the answer to my prayer. Instead, I must seek a deeper relationship with the answer Giver.

    Dear Lord, thank You for Your perfect plans ... Your perfect timing ... and the perfect way Your development happens in my times of waiting. In Jesus' Name, Amen.

    Related Resources:

    If you have trouble trusting God's timing and try to "fix things" yourself instead, check out Karen's latest book LET. IT. GO. How to Stop Running the Show and Start Walking in Faith.

    Follow us on Facebook.

    Reflect and Respond:
    Think back on a prayer request or two from your past where God seemed not to be answering. What else did you learn about Him as you waited for His reply?

    List out personal prayer requests you currently have. As you continue walking through life in the next few months, next to your requests, chronicle all of the peripheral blessings that come from the waiting.

    Power Verses:
    Psalm 38:15, " But for you, O LORD, do I wait; it is you, O Lord my God, who will answer." (ESV)

    Romans 8:25, "But if we hope for what we do not yet have, we wait for it patiently." (NIV)

    © 2013 by Karen Ehman. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    630 Team Rd., Suite 100
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


  • Unacceptable Prayers

    Posted on May 16, 2013 by Boyd Bailey

    Boyd

    To some who were confident of their own righteousness and looked down on everyone else, Jesus told this parable... The Pharisee stood by himself and prayed: ‘God, I thank you that I am not like other people— Luke 18:9,11

     

    Unacceptable prayers come from a proud heart. The self-righteous look down on others different from themselves and find pleasure in publicly praying about their moral inferiority. Yes, those who use their prayers to “preach” at others are conceited in their own high mindedness. Prayer is not meant to flaunt a person’s faith, but to model the need for mercy from the Almighty! Proud prayers focus on mankind, not on Mankind’s Maker. However, humility qualifies quality prayers.

     

    We first prepare our hearts with humble submission to Almighty God. Our Heavenly Father looks for humility as an indicator of good and acceptable prayers. Time constraints push us to transactional prayers, while our Lord and Savior Jesus longs for relational prayers. Humble prayers engage in conversation with Christ, which listens most of the time if not the entire time. Our patient prayers enable us to remain in the presence of Jesus until we get to know Jesus.

     

    All of us have become like one who is unclean, and all our righteous acts are like filthy rags; we all shrivel up like a leaf, and like the wind our sins sweep us away. Isaiah 64:6

     

    The Righteous One reminds us that our righteous acts outside of Christ are like filthy rags. Only to the Cross do we cling, as we bring ourselves into the presence of Holy God. He is the object of our worship. He is who we bow to in awe and adoration. He is who we cry out to for mercy, grace and forgiveness. He is who we petition in our pain. He is who we sit with silently in sweet surrender and trust. He is who loves and comforts us, so we can love and comfort others.

     

    You may feel distant from God in your sorrow, but He invites you to come closer and feel His comforting presence. Moreover, sin doesn’t disqualify you for prayer, it qualifies you. It’s out of your weakness that He makes you strong. It is out of your despair that He repairs your mind, will and emotions. Bring your successes and failures to the feet of Jesus as an offering of praise. He takes what is dedicated to Him and multiplies it for His glory. Humility prays acceptable prayers!

     

    You also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood, offering spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2:5

     

    Prayer: Heavenly Father, may my prayers be humble and acceptable to you.

     

    Related Readings: Isaiah 66:2; Jermiah 31:19; Psalm 18:27; Luke 1:52; 1 Timothy 1:15

     

    Post/Tweet today: Sin does not disqualify us for prayer, it qualifies us. It is out of our weakness that He makes us strong. #prayer

    © 2013 by Boyd Bailey. All rights reserved.

    Wisdom Hunters Resources / A registered 501 c3 ministry

    info@mail.wisdomhuntersdevotional.com / www.wisdomhunters.com

  • Hillsong Set to Release New LIVE album Glorious Ruin

    Posted on May 16, 2013 by Family Christian


    Hillsong LIVE will release their 22nd live-recorded album, Glorious Ruins, on July 2. Recorded for the first time live in two locations - London, England and Sydney, Australia - Glorious Ruins is consistent with Hillsong’s passion to resource the church around the globe. The live album offers the church a new era of worship anthems that will cross multiple denominational and cultural boundaries.

    “Ruins can speak of crushing defeat or perhaps of something abandoned, but the good news today is that the ruins come to life,” explains Senior Pastor of Hillsong Church Brian Houston. “Through Jesus Christ what we look at is ruins that become glorious.”

    Let the ruins come to life, in the beauty of your name, rising up from the ashes, God forever you reign. And my heart will find refuge, in the shadow of your wings, I will love you forever, and forever I'll sing" – lyrics from "Glorious Ruins"

    “This declaration of the saving power of Christ reminds us that we can look to the cross throughout life, in times of success or failure He is there with us,” shares worship leader Reuben Morgan. “We’ve never been diverted from viewing worship as both personal and corporate, intimate and celebratory. We don’t seek to make each project ‘better’ as such, because how can one form of worship be better than another? Instead each project is a continuation of the journey, and we are thankful to God that so many people take the journey with us.”

    Glorious Ruins is an acknowledgment of humanity and a bridge to redemption. It includes 12 fresh new songs (14 songs on the Deluxe Edition) written by Hillsong team members including Joel Houston, Reuben Morgan, Ben Fielding and Matt Crocker. The album features the title track, “Man of Sorrows,” which is already being sung in churches internationally, and “Glorify Your Name,” a collaboration between Reuben Morgan and Chris Tomlin.

    Glorious Ruins follows the highly successful LIVE 2012 release Cornerstone, which debuted at No. 1 on Billboard’s Christian and Praise and Worship charts. The single “Cornerstone” recently had the highest debut on the CCLI chart and was sung in over 11,000 churches on Easter Sunday.

    Glorious Ruins Track List:
    1. Always Will
    2. You Never Fail
    3. Christ Is Enough
    4. Where The Spirit of the Lord Is
    5. Glorious Ruins
    6. Closer
    7. God Who Saves
    8. To Be Like You
    9. Man of Sorrows
    10. We Glorify Your Name
    11. You Crown The Year (Psalm 65:11)
    12. Anchor

  • Space to Exhale

    Posted on May 16, 2013 by Lysa TerKeurst

    Lysa

    "If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath and from doing as you please on my holy day, if you call the Sabbath a delight and the Lord's holy day honorable, and if you honor it by not going your own way and not doing as you please or speaking idle words, then you will find your joy in the Lord." Isaiah 58:13-14a (NIV)

    Rest.

    That sounds so good, but it's really difficult for a girl like me. Even when my physical body is at rest, my mind rarely is.

    I feel like I'm always juggling balls in my brain. Kids' needs. Home demands. Work projects. The to-do lists never stop.

    Yet the Bible makes it very clear that we are to honor the Sabbath day and pursue rest. Literally we are to hit the pause button on life once a week and guard our need to rest. Guard it fiercely. Guard it intentionally. Guard it even if our schedules beg us to do otherwise.

    But why?

    There are honest, personal reasons we need to observe the Sabbath that will be unique for each person. There are private conversations we need to have with God. We all need to pause, to sit with God, and ask Him to reveal some things to us.

    And when I consider our key verse Isaiah 58:13-14a, something occurs to me—it's not just a day for me to give to God. It's a day God established for me. He wants to give me something if only I'll slow down enough to receive it.

    "If you keep your feet from breaking the Sabbath and from doing as you please on my holy day, if you call the Sabbath a delight and the LORD's holy day honorable, and if you honor it by not going your own way and not doing as you please or speaking idle words, then you will find your joy in the LORD."

    The Sabbath isn't merely a time to be observed; it's a time to be preserved. It's a time to rediscover our joy in the Lord.

    I need this. I want to be a preserver of this day—one who is determined to protect this day of personal preservation and rediscover the delight of God.

    The observer remembers to rest.

    The preserver rests to remember—to remember that it's all about God.

    The observer remembers to rest and pause on the Sabbath day in order to follow a rule.

    The preserver does more than follow a rule. She follows God's desire and embraces His purpose in the rest. She spends one day a week letting the fresh wind of God's rest blow through her, cleaning out all she's been taking in during the week with a purifying soul exhale.

    It's all about pausing and connecting with God without the distracting chaos of our everyday routines. For one day a week, we step out of the fray and let God direct our day according to His rhythm, not ours.

    God's rhythm preserves a space in us to hear His voice, reveals the places we're off track, and prevents us from being filled with unnecessary clutter. Quiet rest allows us to see the places where we're going our own way, the areas where we're more self-pleasing than God-pleasing, the idle words that need to be reined in. During the down time, we can deal with the mental clutter and focus on the ways of God.

    The Sabbath makes this possible.

    Taking one day for rest gives my soul the freedom it so desperately needs. Freedom to breathe. Space to breathe. Inhaling and exhaling in a gentle rhythm set by God.

    Dear Lord, space to breathe, this is what I need today. Thank You for showing me how important it is to create a place for freedom and rest. In Jesus' Name. Amen.

    Related Resources:
    For more encouragement and practical advice on creating a place to exhale in the midst of raw emotions check out Lysa TerKeurst's book Unglued.

    The accompanying Unglued Bible study will help you understand what the Bible says about better ways to react. To order your copy, click here.

    Follow us on Facebook.

    Reflect and Respond:
    Take a moment to think about your own practices for rest and reflection on the Sabbath.

    What can you do to hit "pause" and spend some time with the Lord this week? It could be taking a break from your to-do list, committing to spend some time journaling, etc.

    Power Verses:
    Hebrews 4:9-10, "There remains, then, a Sabbath-rest for the people of God; for anyone who enters God's rest also rests from their works, just as God did from his." (NIV)

    Psalm 62:1, "Truly my soul finds rest in God; my salvation comes from him." (NIV)

    © 2013 by Lysa TerKeurst. All rights reserved.

    Proverbs 31 Ministries
    630 Team Rd., Suite 100
    Matthews, NC 28105
    www.Proverbs31.org


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