Posts Tagged ‘hope’

Story of the day: Persevering to the end.

It was a fog-shrouded morning, July 4, 1952, when a young woman named Florence Chadwick waded into the water off Catalina Island. She intended to swim the channel from the island to the California coast. Long-distance swimming was not new to her; she had been the first woman to swim the English Channel in both directions.

The water was numbing cold that day. The fog was so thick she could hardly see the boats in her party. Several times sharks had to be driven away with rifle fire. She swam more than fifteen hours before she asked to be taken out of the water. Her trainer tried to encourage her to swim on since they were so close to land, but when Florence looked, all she saw was fog. So she quit…only one-half mile from her goal.

Later she said, “I’m not excusing myself, but if I could have seen the land, I might have made it.” It wasn’t the cold or fear or exhaustion that cause Florence Chadwick to fail. It was the fog.

Many times we too fail, not because we’re afraid or because of peer pressure or because anything other than the fact that we lose sight of the goal. Two months after her failure, Florence Chadwick walked off the same beach into the same channel and swam the distance, setting a new speed record, because she could see the land. [Larson, Craig. 750 Engaging Illustrations. Grand Rapids: Baker Books Publishing. 1996. pg.198-199]

Quote of the day: Author Unknown

“When the world says, ‘Give up,’ Hope whispers, ‘Try it one more time.'”

Bible verse of the day: Philippians 3:14 (NKJV)

“I press toward the goal for the prize of the upward call of God in Christ Jesus.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Whatever my fog may be in my life, I pray to continue on no matter if I can see the finish line with my eyes or not. My faith is placed solely in You even in the things that I can’t see, and because of this, I will press toward the goal that You have set before me. When I get tired and I am wanting to throw in towel, it is Your Strength that sees me through and helps me to complete the small tasks leading up to the greater prize of Your Calling through Your Son Jesus. Thank You for this blessed day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

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Story of the day:  Everyday Stresses

Stress can come in a variety of different forms.  It can range from money, finances, or even doubt. 

Doubts assail like gale-force winds, tossing us this way and that.  We wonder what to do, which way to turn, what direction to take.  We may even question our faith, doubting God’s goodness or even that He is there.  Like night storms, difficult circumstances terrify us, confuse us, and fill us with anxiety.  But God’s truth cuts through the darkness like the powerful beam from a lighthouse, providing warning, direction, security, and hope.

We aren’t abandoned to our doubts and uncertainties; God tells us to ask Him for wisdom, and He will answer…”gladly.”

Do you want to know what to do?  Do you desire to follow God’s way?  Do you need his wisdom for the decisions you face?

Just ask in faith.  He promises to give you His wisdom [Living Water:  for those who thirst, 2000.  Tyndale Publishing, pgs. 220-221]

Quote of the day:  Galileo

“I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forego their use.”

Bible verse of the day:  James 1:5 (NKVJ)

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

The day can sometimes be a little stressful.  I pray for wisdom in knowing the right way to handle the stresses that may come my way.  I pray to be prayed up at all times so that the manner in which I handle things is done through patience and even out of love.  I thank You for this blessed day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

Story of the day:  By Faith

     It’s not a coincidence that words are used more than one time in the Bible.  Are they placed there just because, or is there something more?  With me, I choose to  believe that there is so much more.  

    When God repeats things, we should take note, because the things He says are of great importance.  One phrase that is used many times in the Bible and can be found multiple times is in Hebrews 11:1-40.  When I read through these verses, I counted at least 28 times where the word faith was used. 

     Hebrews describes some of the most tried people, who by faith, set this word as their firm foundation under everything in their life.  They did this because they believed that their life was worth living.  The people that Hebrews speaks about had so much faith in something that couldn’t be seen and that set them apart from everyone else.  This same faith is ours today if we would just take hold of it and embrace it the way our ancestors did many years ago.  And yes, there will be times where your faith will be tested, but it is during these times that God will help you to overcome, protecting you from fire, swords, and any battles that you may encounter.  By faith, we can be made whole.

Quote of the day:  Nancy Guthrie

“Our faith keeps us from being swallowed in despair.”

Bible verse of the day:  Hebrews 11:3 (The Message Bible)

“By faith, we see the world called into existence by God’s Word, what we see created by what we don’t see.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

I pray that my faith increases daily.  Father, through trials and tribulations, I know that I will be tested.  My prayer is that I don’t get caught up in the things that will drive me bananas, but that my faith, hope, and trust lies wholly in You.  Thank You for Your loving, guiding, and strengthening me through things that I can’t handle on my own.  I thank You for this blessed day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

Quote of the day:  From Discouragement to Hope

There are so many words that come to mind when I think of the word discouragement.  Some that I thought of immediately were:  sadness, despair, melancholy, loss of confidence, the blues, and pessimism.  There are many reasons that people become discouraged.  I was reading an excerpt from Billy Graham, and I found some of the reasons that he lists to be important.  He writes:  

Perhaps you are discouraged because you think you aren’t making enough money (and you aren’t convinced God can supply your needs.) Or you are frustrated in your job (and refuse to believe God can help you be content.)  Or maybe you are worried about health problems (and you don’t even stop to consider that your life is in God’s hands).

Discouragement is a large cloud that, like all clouds, obscures the warmth and joy of the sun.  In the case of spiritual discouragement the Son of God, the Lord Jesus, is eclipsed in our lives.  Discouragement blinds our eyes to the mercy of God and makes us perceive only the unfavorable circumstances.

There is only one way to dispel discouragement, and it is not with our own strength or ingenuity.  It is to turn in faith to God, believing that He loves us and is in control of the future. 

When we turn to God in our time of discouragement, not only does He provide strength for our situation, but He also turns our times of discouragement into hope.  And, when I think of the word hope, I find far more words that are used to describe it and I find them more encouraging.  They are:  achievement, anticipation, aspiration, belief, confidence, desire, endurance, FAITH, hopefulness, optimism, promise, and reward.

Quote of the day:  Ben Patterson

 “Hope delivers us from the despair that nothing we do matters, and enables us to tackle even the most menial job with vigor.”

Bible verse of the day:  Psalm 27:14  

“Wait for the LORD; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the LORD!”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Although there are many words that describe the word discouraged, there are so many that cancel it out with hope.  I am thankful for hope, because it has given my faith a springboard to jump back from after I have been discouraged.  I am grateful to You for teaching me at the first signs of my discouragement how to come straight to You in prayer.  My prayer is for those that may be experiencing some discouragement in their life right now.  I ask that they too will stop where they are and come to You in prayer and that You will show them the greatness that comes from seeking You first.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

Story of the day:  Thankfulness

“Thankfulness sharpens us.  It reinforces our understanding of God’s goodness.  If there’s a situation that we don’t quite understand what God’s doing, then we thank Him for it.  Jesus often thanked His Heavenly Father.  As we follow in His steps, we too will walk in total thankfulness.” Nick Harrison

Quote of the day:  John Henry Jowett

“Life without thankfulness is devoid of love and passion.  Hope without thankfulness is lacking in fine perception.  Faith without thankfulness lacks strength and fortitude.  Every virute separated from thankfulness is maimed and limps along the spiritual road.”

 Bible verse of the day:  Colossians 2:7

“rooted and built up in Him and established in the faith, as you have been taught, abounding in it with thanksgiving.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

I come today in Your presence, with thanksgiving in my heart, and I give You praise.  I pray to be sharpened this day and everyday by my thankfulness.  I pray as I walk in Your steps, that I will walk in total thankfulness.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus name I pray,

Amen

Story of the day:  “Dead Men Walking”

     I love what Dr. Tony Evans had to say in a letter that he sends out as part of a ministry outreach.  He says, “One of the most powerful stories about Jesus comes to us by way of a dead man.

     Lazarus, a close friend of Jesus, had died.  Lazaurs’ sisters were grieving not only his death, but the fact that Jesus had not showed up earlier and healed him.

     That’s the way we are sometimes.  We have God on our side and His power to change the situation, but we’re complaining about what didn’t happen!

     Thankfully, that’s not the only lesson to take away from this story, nor is it just a great story about Jesus and His power.  It’s a life lesson for every believer…and about the power of God in us!

     In John 11:43-44, Jesus spoke to Lazarus directly, whom was dead and wrapped from head to toe, with a kerchief over his face, and said, “Lazarus, come forth!” 

     What happened to Lazarus is what God is asking of us still today.  Look around you.  There’s a world filled with “dead men walking.” People are bound by sin, trapped by religion, wrapped up in their circumstances, depressed by their lives, distressed by their families; many are thinking “it’s over.”  Their lives are in a rut just “grave” with both ends kicked out.

     But God can change their entire situation as we speak the Word and help set them free!  That’s the call on this ministry and the call on my life… and yours.  He has called us to carry out Kingdom plans and purposes on earth.

     Serving God is not about keeping religious practices to carry out some set of rules.  It’s about giving and living a life of spiritual freedom that reflects God’s glory, letting your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in Heaven (Matthew 5:16)

     Who is in a “grave” situation near you?  Who can you speak a word of life to today?  Or let me put it this way…if you feel You are in a tough situation, I’m here to speak a word of life, hope, and encouragement into You.  God can turn it around for you, and when He does, give Him the thanks and praise He deserves.”

Quote of the day:  Vonette Bright

“Through our service to others, God want to influence our world for Him.”

Bible verse of the day:  John 11:40

“Jesus said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

You have called my family into ministry and as I share Your Word with others, I pray that lives may be changed, and all for Your Glory.  Father, the time that we are living in right now, is rough, there are some that can’t make ends meet, some are losing their homes, and are distressed. Father, I pray for revival to sweep our nation, that You may be glorified and lives can be transformed.  I continue to pray for those that don’t know You, that they hear Your voice when You say to them, “come forward and ask me to be a part of your life.”  I thank You for Your faithfulness in my life, for this day, and the hope for tomorrow! 

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen

                                                                                                                 Story of the day:  God, I’m still here.

   “A young man, who was obviously worried, stepped into an elevator to go to the second floor of a hospital where his father was in the intensive care unit.  Although the button labeled “2” was already lighted, he pushed it again and again.  A doctor standing behind him said, “Pushing the button someone has already pushed is like reminding God you’re still there when he hasn’t answered your prayer immediately.”

   As the man thought of his father in the intensive care, it was comforting to know that God does encourage believers to continue to pray the same prayers until he answers.”

Quote of the day:  Eugene Peterson

“In prayer, we are aware that God is in action and that when the circumstances are ready, when others are in the right place, and when are hearts are prepared, he will call us into the action.  Waiting in prayer is a disciplined refusal to act before God acts.”

Bible verse of the day: Matthew 7:7

“Ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you.”

Prayer:

Dear Heavenly Father,

Thank You that You answer prayers.  Thank You for showing Yourself to us by answered prayers.  Father may the words that I pray to You be a sweet sound to Your ears and as I praise You for all that You do, may I be humbled by the way that You do things.  I stand amazed ever single day, because You are so Loving, forgiving, and full of so much Grace.  You bless me daily by the people that You have placed in my life.  As I continue on this life’s journey, may I be reminded daily of the great sacrifice that You made for me by allowing Your one and only Son Jesus to die on a cross.  It was because of Your great LOVE that I am now able to live.  I thank You for this day!

In Jesus Name I pray,

Amen