Tag Archives: Jesus

3 things that happen when you become a Jesus Freak…

I can remember when I first truly started on my path of what it looks like to live for God.  I begun carrying my bible everywhere, talking about God A LOT in general conversations and studying as much as I could.

Once, while talking to a friend about God and my new journey, she abruptly interrupted me and told me that, it was nice, ‘but just don’t become one of those Jesus Freaks’!  At the time I was slightly taken a back because unfortunately, I had grown into a woman that thoroughly enjoyed people pleasing and shied away from rocking any boats.  And if I were to look like a Jesus Freak that would be akin to capsizing the entire ship!  Besides, who wanted to be seen as an odd ball?  So, unless I encountered someone that had a passion for God, I stopped talking about Him as much with others in fact I usually didn’t even bring up my beliefs.

Fast forward to today when recently, for whatever reason I noticed that I have become increasingly bold in my expression for Jesus and my walk.  I think that unabashadness comes with age, maturity and growing in relationship with Him.  In His word we are called to speak of him boldly and without fear.  In fact in Revelations cowards are grouped in with murderers, idolators and sexually immoral people who will be thrown into hell.  Now, this girl loves hot weather, but spending an eternity swimming in a fiery lake of burning sulfur is in no way appealing to me.

In today’s society, it seems okay to be obsessed with fashion, fitness, and entertainers, but if you bring up God or Jesus too much you’re labeled a freak.  Fortunately for growth, I have learned to embrace the fact that I don’t look like the world and am resembling it less and less everyday!  There are life shifts and events that have occurred as I walk out this journey and these are three major ones that you may notice as well!

1. Success Shift: When we begin to dig into what God wants our lives to look like our entire view of successful living shifts.  Success becomes increasingly God focused and less goal focused.  God tells us that His followers are not to look like the world because friendship with the world is enmity with Him (James 4:4).  Nor are we to be conformed to (Romans 12:2) or love the world and if we do, the love of the Father is not in us and 1 John 5:19 tells us why!   If we are consistently consuming God’s word instead of things of this world (television, radio etc) we can begin to acquire a taste for the things God desires of our lives and less of what this world dangles in our faces as the carrot of success.  We have the desire to stop running the rat race and run towards the things of our Father, to stop living for the lies of ‘success’ in this world and the success of eternal life with God.

2. Loneliness:  As we grow closer to God we may find ourselves alone and slowly cut off from relationships that do not serve the purposes God has set forth for our lives.  Although it can be a lonely space, it is a great one!  As you begin to realize a couple of things and understand how fulfilling this space of solitude can be.  You learn that you are not alone and that God is calling you into deeper fellowship with Him.   In Psalm 4:3 we learn that The Lord sets apart the godly for himself and Deuteronomy 14:2 tells us that He set’s apart those that are Holy.  As much as we would like to hurriedly get out of the situation of being alone it is often best to sit and spend that time with God.  There is nothing wrong with asking Him for godly friendships or relationships at this time, but there is nothing like getting to know Him in this time of quiet and solitude.

3. Persecution:  We are all aware that there are people dying for their beliefs everyday, but many of us are fortunate enough to have the ability to enter churches and bible studies without the fear of death.  Our persecution may not inflict as much damage, but can come in the form of people criticizing you and your beliefs or ostracizing you because no one wants to hear about the God you serve.  And guess what this is okay,  Jesus was persecuted and tells us that all who desire to live a godly life in Christ Jesus will be persecuted (2 Timothy 3:12).  The bible tells us that the persecuted will be blessed and that we are to pray for our persecutors.

So, next time someone calls you a Jesus Freak simply say thank you and pray for them!  You never know it may be just the thing that will bring them a little closer to God.

God bless,

Court

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Love and parables: 12 Ways Jesus loved the church

shepherd

Most of us are aware of the fact that the bible teaches husbands to love their wives as Jesus loved the church, but I was really interested in delving into the deeper meaning.  Jesus made the ultimate sacrifice for us, he died so that we may have a closer relationship with God and bring us everlasting life.   So yes, husbands are supposed to die (both figuratively by dying to self daily and if need be literally) for their wives.  But there are other ways Jesus exhibited His love to people while here on earth below are a few ways I found throughout the bible.

1. Served: Jesus gave up everything to serve his sheep.  He performed miracles for them, healed the sick, literally gave life to the dead, washed feet and became the ultimate sacrifice so that we could have life through his death.

2. Cleaved:  Just as it states that a son will leave his mother and father and cleave to and become one with his wife we are the bride of Christ and we are to live in him and be one with him.  In the New Testament we see that he left the family he grew up with, his home town and went wherever he was needed for the church.

3. Pursued: Could you imagine if Jesus just sat idly by and waited for people to come to him before telling them the good news?  That was not at all Jesus’ style, He had a purpose and knew what he was here to do and waiting around for someone to come knocking on his door wasn’t in the plans.   He journeyed from land to land consistently spreading the good news to all that would listen.  In the book of Matthew, Jesus tells Simon and Peter to follow him, meaning they were to drop everything and go where he went.  Once it was time to be about his Fathers work, his ministry started he didn’t let look back and the pursuit started.

4. Taught: Jesus really did wash the church with the word.  He spoke in love and parables with the main goal of bringing them closer to God.  He showed them how to pray, reveled things to them through God’s words and left a road map for life just for us to live by.

5. Spoke with love: Even when Jesus was tired He wasn’t cruel or dismissive, he still took the time to explain things to His apostles and other members of his church.  He didn’t curse them out, spout of mean things and was never abusive to them.  There was no tit for tat played or retaliation planned. Can you even imagine if Jesus were the type to get even with people?!   We would all be in deep trouble!

6. Practiced patience: We see that Jesus had to teach the same things over and over, even using multiple parables to show the meaning of what He was trying to get across.  In Matthew 17:17 he asks how long must he stay with an unbelieving people, but even in exasperation he heals and patiently uses the opportunity as a teaching moment.

7. Prayed:  Even as he hung from the cross, Jesus prayed for the people who put him there.  There is no other way to put it than that is pure, undefiled, unconditional love!!!

8. Forgave: When everyone wanted to stone the woman who committed adultery Jesus was in the business of forgiving, he was quick to point out that none of us are without sin and that we shouldn’t condemn other’s because they sin differently.

9. Kept his word:  Although when Jesus was crucified the apostles and his followers were devastated to say the least and felt a little lost, he had told them that he would never leave them and that he was sending the Holy Spirit after he left earth.  He did just as he said he would.  Jesus was a man of his word, anything he promised we can rest assured that it will come to pass.

10.  Led by example:  Jesus didn’t just talk the talk, he walked the walk.  He showed the disciples how to pray and how to be godly men.  He was right there in the trenches leading the good fight.

11. Showed compassion: In Matthew 15:32 it states that Jesus had compassion for the people due to their hunger and in Luke 7 we see that he had compassion for a widow who wept over her only sons passing.  Jesus wasn’t an uncaring person who couldn’t empathize with others, he was a gentle leader that came to heal and enlighten those he loved.  He had feelings and showed it through his compassionate acts.

12. Put God first: Jesus knew when He needed quiet time away and to spend with His father solitarily and made it a point to retreat.  If he knew there were a bunch of people around he would wake up early to speak to God and avoid the crowds, although these were the people he was sent here to save he recognized the importance of keeping God first.  In Luke 5:16, it states that Jesus would withdraw often to be alone with God and pray.  He deliberately took time to connect with God and to seek His will and guidance so that ultimately, he could do what was righteous for the people he led.

Can you think of some other ways?  List them below

God bless, shine on and here’s to a purposeFULL life!

Court

Good Fruit: How do I produce good fruit?

Portrait Of Young Girl standing on yellow background.

During my study of fruits, one thing I wanted to learn was how I can purpose to produce good fruits in my life.  I wanted biblically sound principles that I could apply on a consistent basis because if God said it, then it must work!  I touch on 8 below.  (This is the second part of the Good Fruit series, if you would like part one or three the links are listed at the bottom of the page.)

1. Abide in God.  (John 15:4-5) This scripture says that we must abide in Christ because apart from him we can do nothing and bear no fruit.  The definition of abide is to remain, to rest or to stay.  For me, this looks like constantly praying to God, considering what He would want me to do and say and spending time with Him.  What does it mean to you to abide in God?  I would encourage reading John 15:1-17 (ESV)

2.  Cut down the things in your life that aren’t producing good fruit.  (Matthew 7:19) In Matthew it tells us that every tree not yielding good fruit is cut down and is cast to fire.  That to me is scary as heck!  In John 15 we saw that Jesus tells us that every branch that does not bear fruit is pruned. Pruning or trimming (a tree, shrub, or bush) is done by cutting away dead or overgrown branches or stems, especially to increase fruitfulness and growth.  The reason for trimming back branches is that if they aren’t trimmed they can actually compete with other branches or stems trying to grow!  If we look at it biblically what’s bad within our hearts is competing with the good to take root and develop in our lives, it is up to us to decide what wins.  Take an inventory of all the characteristics that you think may need to be trimmed from your life, sinning in anger, envy fornication, idolatry and write out scripture verses on these issues to study.

3. Hear the word, understand and retain it.  (Matthew 13:23)  For me hearing the word is not the issue, but always understanding and retaining what I’ve read is a feat.  Many times I’m like the tiny seed that landed in a bushel of thorns struggling to make my way to good soil.  We are blessed that we have the Holy Spirit that enlightens and a God that knows we will struggle to bloom and in doing so we may fail to produce good fruit.  But as we continue to try by studying and pursuing Him we will produce fruit in abundance!  One way I retain the word is through writing, sometimes I’ll rewrite a verse over and over and other times I write it on notecards to study.  I highly recommend reading the entire 13th chapter of Matthew.  How do we obtain hearing (Romans 10:17) 

4. Seek wisdom from above.  (James 3:17) But the wisdom that is from above is first pure, then peaceable, gentle, and easy to be entreated, full of mercy and good fruits, without partiality, and without hypocrisy.  This verse tells us that there is wisdom  that comes from God and it is full of good fruits amongst other desired qualities.  So how do you receive wisdom from above?  Through the word of God and by asking for it.  Through asking God gives us wisdom abundantly and without reproach James 1:5.   Where else can we receive wisdom (James 3:15-16)?

5.  Plant seeds in good ground.  (Luke 8:8)  In the early years of a tree’s life it’s important to a strong foundation so that it can grow and bear the weight of the fruit it will produce.  The same goes for us, whatever we decide to do it’s always best to be rooted in God, prior to starting a ministry, relationship, your day or any type of endeavor.  This verse tells us to make sure we have planted in a good strong foundation so that at the first sign of troubles our faith won’t simply wither away be trampled upon or devoured.  I would recommend reading the entire chapter of Luke 8.   It tells us that if we have no root we may believe for a while but in times of temptation we fall away or are consumed with worldly riches and pleasures, in doing so there is no fruit brought forth.  It may take months and many times years to build the foundation, but our foundation should be Jesus (1 Corinthians 3:10)  What is the foundation that has already been laid for us to build upon?  How will our foundations be tested?  Click here to learn how the word fire is often times used in the bible.

6. Have patience with your self  (Luke 8:15) You may find yourself learning the same lessons over and over.  Sometimes growth can be quite monotonous.  Don’t get frustrated if there are mistakes or character traits you have grown accustomed to exhibiting just know that the fact that you’re even aware of it and want to change is progress in itself!  In Luke 8:15 it tells us that the seeds planted on good ground bring forth fruit with patience.   In the YLT it states that those seeds sown on good ground bear fruit in continuance, meaning they are continually exhibiting good fruits in their lives.  It is something that’s continual, so you will get many opportunities to produce good fruit!  Don’t compare your growth journey to anyone else’s you are on your own track.  Relax, but keep pressing on and remember some fruit trees can take up to five years to grow!

7.  Be Honest.  (Luke 8:15)  There’s a lot that can be pulled out of this one scripture.  Having an honest and good heart is something else Luke tells us is necessary to producing good fruit in our lives.  Have you ever lied and then though to yourself, why did I just lie about that?  It was something so insignificant that you can’t even figure out why you didn’t just say what you felt or meant, but before you even have a chance to think about it, the lie just rolls off your tongue?  I have and even these little white lies should feel convicting because they are hindering our production of good fruit.  No one is perfect and I thank God for understanding that, mistakes will be made but so will progress when you decide to mature in your actions.  Can you remember the last lie you told, why did you feel the need to lie?  What do you think you can do to be more honest with yourself and others?

8. Have no fellowship with darkness (Ephesians 5:11 & Psalm 1:1-6)  As followers of Christ we are to reprove anothers dark ways or as the YLT states convict and bring to light their ways.  The definition of reprove is to correct or criticize in a gentle manner.  Ephesians 4:15 tells us that we are to speak the truth in love, so there’s no need to be harsh or abrasive when calling someone out.  We don’t have to indulge in darkness to try to pull someone out, because just through living our your walk with God others can see what it means to be a light in the world.

Part One: Out of the heart

Part Three: The evidence of good fruit

A Silent Savior

If you were on trial for a murder you didn’t commit, do you think you would speak up and proclaim your innocence?  I believe the majority of us would, but during a bible study of Mark (15:3-5) I saw an instance where Jesus did just the opposite. While people viciously hurled false accusations his way and deemed him worthy of a crime punishable by death, Jesus remained silent.  We see three times when Jesus was questioned and gave no reply.  The high priest Caiaphas – Matthew 26:62&63-And the high priest arose and said unto him, Answerest thou nothin  what is it which these witness against thee?  (63)  But Jesus held his peace.  When Herod questioned him in Luke 23:9 – Then he questioned with him in many words; but he answered him nothing.  As a result Herod and the other men mocked Jesus for what they thought to be stupidity or weakness.  But the instance that intrigued me the most was when Pilate asked if he had heard all of the things people were accusing him of doing, I believe in an attempt to get him to speak out on his incorruptibility.  Mattthew 27:14 – And he answered him to never a word; insomuch that the governor marveled greatly.

The fact that Pilate marveled greatly at Jesus’ response or lack there of was so perfectly human and Jesus’ silence was so utterly perfect.  To me it exhibits Jesus’ strength in connection with God and the spirit world in contrast with the carnal angst of fleshly death that was Pilates focus.  While Pilate only saw the mythical world in front of him, Jesus looked beyond this life, this flesh, his crucifixion and saw eternal life.

It brought to mind a few things, the first is that far too often I am a Pilate in this world, afraid to speak out on what I know is truth and wasting my time focused only on futile human carnalities.  The second is that there can be such awesome power in our use of silence, so much so that it can leave others speechless and in awe, I speak on that here.  The third is that it is necessary for my spiritual growth to embrace and regularly put into practice the qualities and confidences that Jesus must have held to be the type of man that could remain silent at a time like this.  These are five qualities that I hope to develop within myself.

Jesus knew who he was and his purpose for being here on earth:  Jesus was all ‘about his fathers business’ and since the start of His ministry he focused on his purpose, being a savior.  You may not know exactly what your gift(s) here on earth is just yet, but you do know your purpose.  We are laborers with God (1 Corinthians 3:9) and we are to teach all nations to observe all things whatsoever Jesus commanded of us and to baptize them in the name of the Father, Son and the Holy Ghost (Matthew 28:18-20).  Many times we make excuses for not doing what God called us to do even though it is clearly stated.  I will confess that I include myself in the realm of passive Christianity, going to church when I can, not being a servant, reading the bible when I remember and rarely speaking to others about God unless they introduce Him into the conversation. My main excuses are fear of going up and talking to people cold turkey and making time to serve.  I can’t afford to wait any longer to be about my father’s business and I ask that God gives me the opportunity to do so.  I pray that all excuses, barriers and road blocks for not doing God’s will are removed from our lives and that God reveals our gifts when the time is right.

Jesus already knew how the story would play out: The bible tells us that all things work together for the good of those that love him (Romans 8:28) and we also know that in the end God win’s!  Jesus knew his fathers plan and as children of God so should we.  Although, we may not always be secure in this fact as concerns of this earth boggle us down and disrupt our faith.  It is imperative that we keep in mind that everything is working together for our good.  I honestly wish I could be as assured as Jesus, but I worry and doubt about things all the time.  I’m challenging myself and you to recite Romans 8:28 whenever thoughts of doubt, fear or worry about a situation fill our heads to remind us that if we are on God’s team, we have already won.  I pray for knowledge and wisdom from above to remain focused on things eternal.

Jesus trusted his father:  How many times in your life have you questioned God?  Have you ever wondered if you were meant to be in the situation or place you are currently?  I find myself doing this, especially when things aren’t going right in my limited view.  But in the heat of the moment, before his death, Jesus trusted God because he knew that no matter what his father loved and would be there for him, just as he will for you.  Trust can be hard to maintain, especially when we often desire a tangible proof before totally giving it. But if I’m taking notes from Jesus he went along with God’s plan even in the most difficult of times, even when he thought God had forsaken him.  Having trust is paramount to growing as a child of God and I pray that we place our trust in God and surrender to his plan for our life.

Jesus did what God told him to do:  As stated before Jesus knew God’s plan and although it didn’t always seem like a pleasant journey he still walked the path God gave him, no questions asked.  When God tells us to do something it’s guraranteed to be for our good.  Oftentimes, I find myself being more of a Jonah than a Jesus in life.  If I have an urge to write, give up a relationship or do something that I feel like God may be directing me to do, I can’t always say that I do it right away.  Usually what happens when I don’t follow God’s plan is that I go the painful circuitous route, am swallowed up and spit out by the jaws of life and wind up having to do what I was trying to avoid initially.  I pray against the spirit of procrastination, confusion and wrong relationships and replace them with a spirit of love and willingness to move when God calls us to move.

Jesus wasn’t going to allow anyone to stop him from accomplishing his Goal:  When Peter was so over taken at the thought of Jesus’ death that he begins to rebuke the plan, Jesus knows it’s the devil attempting to stop him (Matthew 16:23).  Just as the jeering, criticizing and mocking of the people prior to and during his crucifiction is no match for the power of his desire to do God’s will.  Nothing and no one could stop him.  When we set out to accomplish something, be it completing a bible study or starting a business there will be distractions to be put at bay so we can do the work set before us.  Recognizing when the devil is trying to knock us off the path God has placed before us is critical to reaching God’s goal for our life.  I pray for freedom from people and discernment to know when the devil is a distraction in our lives and to rebuke any and all attempts to pull us away from our work and callings.

God bless & here’s to a purposeFULL life!
Court😉

Persecution and Privilege

During bible study at the church I attend we were reading from Hebrews 10:32-34, in which it states  You suffered along with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions’.  One of the ladies in our study group asked if we could even imagine going through something so awful as someone taking our property because we were followers of God.  Another woman, Cora, stated that realistically the time was probably near and that she believes it may come to this or worse.  But if you watch any type of news or read headlines at least you know that for some, the time has already come.  All over the world people are being persecuted for believing in God.  People die for evangelism, they are beaten for carrying bibles, they huddle in cramped quarters to read the word of God in secret because churches are illegal, they rejoice when they get a bible as if they’ve won a million dollars because they understand the value, the privilege.   When I hear stories about people literally risking their lives to get their hands on a copy of the bible that I casually toss in my purse I realize just how much I take for granted the many freedoms I have.  I can choose to go to one of the churches openly lining the streets in my neighborhood with little fear of persecution.  I am able to decide if I am going to read one of the many translations of the bible I have in my home or go to a small group bible study because it is not a crime to do so.  Yet often times I choose not to go to church or am late, I ditch bible study because I’ve had a long day and my bed is so inviting or it’s too cold to go back out of the house; or I decide to spend only a couple of minutes with God at the end of my day after all I’ve watched all of my shows, talked on the phone with friends, done some other reading and scrolled through Facebook.  Seriously, if I had a significant other and he treated me the way I do God we wouldn’t have much of a relationship, so I thank God that he isn’t human!  I often times treat God as a side order in life when I know He is to be my entrée; but even still with my lack of devotion I want Him dedicated to meeting my needs, I constantly want to hear from Him without consistently seeking His face and I want to see miracles produced in my life but don’t always want to do what it takes to have an intimate relationship with the miracle worker.   I am somewhat of a spiritual spoiled brat and living my life this way makes me privileged in my freedom’s and rich in choices but very spiritually bankrupt.

While listening to the radio today I heard that a terrorist group called for an attack on malls in Canada, the UK and US, the Mall of America specifically.  It brought to mind the conversation I had with the women in my bible study class, what if it became a crime to read the bible, to attend bible study or to praise God outwardly, what if you had to fear for you life every time you entered a church, what if someone gave you a choice to renounce God or die?   It is a scary concept but with the reality of abductions, murders, rapes and terrorist threats in the name of religion constantly occurring and the continued removal of God from our institutions one can’t be sure they will not have to make such a decision.  In 2 Timothy 3:12 it states, Yea, and all that will live godly in Christ Jesus shall suffer persecution.  The time that we have now is so precious because we can use it wisely to get to know God intimately without fearing persecution but if the time came where that is what we faced would we be prepared or would Jesus’ response to us be, verily I say unto you, I know you not.

Be blessed,
Court

Holy Shift

I have a beautiful wardrobe if I do say so myself and I collect shoes as if I’m gearing up to open a mini Macy’s.  But after taking inventory of my internal status I’ve noticed that over the years I’ve collected some pretty ugly qualities.  I’ve added some bad habits, stored a bunch of negativity, indulged in a little moodiness, picked up some double mindedness and threw in a bit of emotional instability just for good measure.  In other words my heart isn’t always so pretty.  Now, I’m always roughest on myself and I have taken tremendous strides in my walk with Christ but I still have a looooong way to go.  I can quickly throw the fruits of the spirit out the window and revert to my former ways of pessimism, not speaking in love or sinning in anger at the drop of a hat if things don’t go my way.

Today I had lunch with two girlfriends, one is recently engaged and the other has been married for years and they have just decided to enlarge their family.  As we updated each other on life events, marriage, babies, trips etc it came around to me.  I eagerly discussed some of the exciting things occurring in my life that I’m extremely grateful for including a new home.  I was genuinely happy for them but once I got home I began to reflect on where my life was headed and wondered if I would ever have something as monumental as an engagement to the man God had for me or the arrival of my first child to divulge.  Quickly God answered,  He asked me why I thought He should bring my husband right now when I’m a mess inside?  I realize no one is perfect and after marriage and motherhood some flaws remain, but I could work on preparing  myself a lot more than I have been.  Yes, I have a house, but my finances are shot because of poor credit card choices in the past, I’ve held on to soul ties from previous relationships, my emotions can be all over the place and in times of anger I allow them to lead me instead of the Holy Spirit.  I also get easily irritated by small things like slow drivers or my dog’s barking and I throw spiritual temper tantrums when I don’t get my way.  I’m still eating that mushy baby food and sometimes God has to revert to milk with me.  I wonder if the angels look down on me shaking their heads wondering if I’ll ever learn and just how many times do I want to make my way around this same old mountain!

If you are eager to have a significant other, a child or some other life altering event, have you checked yourself lately?  Would God ask you why He should oblige when you aren’t ready to receive the blessing?  I guess, if I look at it from Gods’ point of view I am a little happy that He hasn’t given me my way because I would definitely ruin a great thing.  One of the women in my small groups bible study was speaking on the talk she had with God about a month prior to meeting her husband.  She asked God for one of His son’s and God told her she had to be His daughter first.  Meaning, she would have to forgo focusing on a man and focus on The Man, Jesus! Shifting your entire focus isn’t easy to do when people around you are getting married or popping out babies like candy dispensers while you sit alone watching your biological clock speedily tick, tick, tick away.  It’s difficult, especially when the world, from your doctor to strangers on the street (yes this has happened to me) are constantly attempting to instill the fear of perpetual singleness into you.   I consistently pray for freedom from people bondage because honestly there are so many other things to focus on, the main one being God’s will.  I’ve given up trying to shift my focus on my own because it doesn’t work and have since started praying that God changes my thoughts and keeps my hand’s off the wheel.  After all, He is the one with the directions! Be blessed & live purposeFULLy Court

Wishy Washy Saints…

Do you ever get to the point in your life where you feel distant from God or that your zeal for studying and reading is waning and you don’t know why? I have and probably will in the future to be honest.

Ideally we are all consistently and progressively growing in the word of God daily. But none of us exist in a utopia and many times we find ourselves waxing and waning in our devotion to spending time with God. I don’t think this means that our love for Him decreases but sometimes our flesh becomes lazy in seeking Him or our world becomes so hectic that we just don’t set aside time to spend with Him. Days without seeking Him can easily turn into weeks and months into years until eventually He is no longer an intricate part of our lives.

I have lived this life of a wishy washy Christian and believe me, it’s painful to look back on your journey that started off so strong and wonder where the time went or why at this point in your life you’re still just a baby in Christ. I don’t pretend to have all the answers but besides remaining active in church or prayer groups, this is what I do in situations like this.

Don’t dwell on time wasted: we have a God that wants a relationship with us, so many times you can pick up where you left off. You’ll be surprised how much you remember even if years have gone by.

Read anyway: this is one of the best things you can do! Even if I don’t feel like reading the bible, I’ll still pick it up and get to studying. Many times I get so wrapped up in the reading that I don’t want to stop.

Don’t wait until it’s late: try to study when you’re still wide awake and not tired. Many people wake early to pray and study, I try but I identify with all the non-morning people out there & realize this can sometimes be difficult.

Turn on worship music: there’s something about music that sets the mood and puts me in a mindset of wanting to draw closer to God. Sometimes I’ll just sing to God on my own and although I can’t carry a note I’m sure He still likes it!

Use notecards or a devotional: If I don’t have a lot of time I use notecards that are a quick study until I can set aside more time.

Pray: talk to God tell Him how you are feeling and ask for the consistency, zeal & time to you wish to dedicate to Him.

Eliminate distractions: some distractions aren’t easily eliminated like kids or a partner, but turning off the television, getting off Facebook or turning off your phone are all thing you can easily control.

Practice self control: put yourself on a schedule and stick to it as much as possible, but don’t beat yourself up when you don’t.

In Isaiah 53:6 it says – “all we like sheep have gone astray; we have turned everyone to his own way; And The Lord hath laid on him the iniquity of us all.” He is speaking of Jesus taking on our sins even in the case of the people turning away from God. Even if you pull or turn away He is always there, waiting to usher you into His loving arms and for you to draw near so that He may draw near to you (James 4:8).

Here’s to a purposeFULL life!
Court

Psalm 119:105 your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path

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