Sunday Devotional: Bringing Dead Dreams Back to Life

When we were younger, we had so many dreams. We believed we could do anything, become anything, accomplish anything. Walking, talking, reading, riding a bike--these all seemed like impossible tasks until we overcame them, so if we could do that, nothing was outside our grasp. Then reality hit and some dreams became dead to us because we found out they were too difficult for us to accomplish on our own especially when we didn't have the resources to overcome them.

No matter how much we try to push ourselves to overcome the thing, it was impossible to do on our own. Inspired initiative is when we hear God say, "Arise from the dead." (Ephesians 5:14). Only when the inspiration comes from God are we able to arise our dreams from the dead and do the impossible thing. Because God's words come with miraculous power and the resources we need to overcome any obstacle.

But there's a catch to it.

God doesn't give us life until we do as He says. In order to "arise from the dead," we have to get up. In order for the man with the withered hand to heal, he hand to "stretch forth" his hand (Mark 3:1-6). God gives the order, and we have to take Him at His word and move when He says to. If we believe Him and get up, we'll find that God gives us overcoming life immediately. We'll find strength where we had none, help where we didn't see it, and the power to overcome when we were overwhelmed.

So what is God asking you to do today that you think would be impossible? What dream did you think was dead, but God is telling "arise?" My prayer today is that we take God at His word and move forward, believing that He will give us the power to overcome any obstacle.

Remembering the Warrior in Me

For whatever is born of God overcomes the world; and this is the victory that has overcome the world--our faith. Who is the one who overcomes the world, but he who believes that Jesus is the Son of God? (1 John 5:4-5)


We are called to be warriors, to overcome the world, but so many of us (myself included) cannot even overcome our own flesh. My warrior is buried beneath many pounds of fat. If I needed to move quickly into battle, I'd be in big trouble. My warrior is being crushed under the weight that I have put upon her shoulders, and it's time to break free.

But I know that I cannot do this on my own. I've been trying to do that for years and the result has been an over 100 lb weight gain.

So today I'm remembering something:

For our struggle is not against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the powers of this dark world and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms. (Ephesians 6:12)

This struggle is not a physical one. Sure, it's about diet and exercise, but it's more about remembering who I am, what God has called me to be, and how Satan does not want me to be there. I have potential. And God would not call me to be something that he would not help me to become. I need to rely on Him and trust Him and allow Him to create in me the warrior that He sees in me.

And not sabotage His efforts by believing the lies that my personal demons tell me, the first of which is: "You can do this on your own."

It's obvious that I cannot. I've been trying for over 10 years to battle these demons on my own. And it's time instead to stop making this about food and start making it about nourishment.

I am the LORD your God, who brought you up out of Egypt. Open wide your mouth and I will fill it. (Psalm 81:10)

God will nourish me. He will fill me with that which I truly need. 

In prayer and diligent Bible Study, I know that I can fill the emptiness in me that food cannot fill. By God's grace, I will remember the Warrior in me...



Fruit of the Spirit: Love (Part 7)


But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
(Galatians 5:22-23)

To demonstrate love, we have to remember the 15 attributes of love as described in 1 Corinthians 13~

Love is patient.
Love is kind.
Love does not envy.
Love does not boast.
Love is not arrogant.
Love is not rude.
Love is not selfish.
Love is not provoked.
Love thinks no evil.
Love does rejoices in truth.
Love bears all things.
Love believes all things.
Love hopes all things.
Love endures all things.
Love never fails.

In the rest of this blog series on Fruit of the Spirit: Love, we'll go over a few of these attributes per post.

Love does boast:

Boasting about what I have or have done is all about taking credit. It is showing off. But not in a good way. Instead of allowing God to reward me for my accomplishments, I want to see everyone patting me on the back and telling me what a good person I am and how wonderful I have done. Or I boast because I want to feel better about myself, because often I don't feel good about myself unless I compare myself to someone else.

“Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and[b] prayed these things with reference to himself: ‘God, I give thanks to you that I am not like other people—swindlers, unrighteous people, adulterers, or even like this tax collector! I fast twice a week; I give a tenth of all that I get.’ But the tax collector, standing far away, did not want even to raise his eyes to heaven, but was beating his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me, a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than that one! For everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, but the one who humbles himself will be exalted.” (Luke 18:10-14)

God doesn't want us to compare ourselves to anyone but Jesus. Not because He wants us to be down on ourselves that we can never be good enough, but so that we keep striving toward a goal with the understanding that we can do nothing on our own without Him. Once we understand that each of us are striving toward the same goal, we can do the opposite of boasting, encouraging.

Encouraging others is the opposite of boasting. Instead of pointing out to someone else how great we are or how much better we are than them in an attempt to make ourselves feel better, we'll often feel the opposite, empty. But in encouraging people and lifting them up, we'll find the fulfillment we were striving for.

A person of blessing will be enriched, and he who gives water also will be refreshed. (Proverbs 11:25)

So today my prayer for you is that you will find a way to encourage others and lift them up and in doing so, find yourself lifted up, too.

Fruit of the Spirit: Love (Part 6)

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control. Against such things there is no law.
(Galatians 5:22-23)

To demonstrate love, we have to remember the 15 attributes of love as described in 1 Corinthians 13~

Love is patient.
Love is kind.
Love does not envy.
Love does not boast.
Love is not arrogant.
Love is not rude.
Love is not selfish.
Love is not provoked.
Love thinks no evil.
Love does rejoices in truth.
Love bears all things.
Love believes all things.
Love hopes all things.
Love endures all things.
Love never fails.

In the rest of this blog series on Fruit of the Spirit: Love, we'll go over a few of these attributes per post.

Love does not envy

A heart at peace gives life to the body, but envy rots the bones. Proverbs 14:30

The key to overcoming envy is to have a heart at peace. Contention is a part of life. As you walk through this world, whether at home or at work, there will be people who contend with you and try to take away your peace. But if you renew the peace within your heart by remaining in constant communion with the Lord, then you can keep away from the envy that rots the bones. 

Envy is described as jealousy, hatred, malice, resentment, and opposition.

Just like every temptation that we come across, we have to choose to envy. The temptation comes in as a whisper in the ear, or a piercing of the heart. If we are acutely aware of our natural inclination to give in to this temptation, we can immediately renew our focus. Look to God and ask for Help in overcoming the temptation to envy. Today I pray that your awareness will increase, and that you will look to Jesus for peace each time the temptation for envy comes into your heart.