The hard heart matter

And I will give you a new heart, and I will put a new spirit in you. I will take out your stony, stubborn heart and give you a tender, responsive heart. And I will put my Spirit in you so that you will follow my decrees and be careful to obey my regulations. Ezekiel 36:26‭-‬27 NLT Today, as we begin the start of a new week, it's a great opportunity for us to allow God to give His diagnosis on our hearts. What type of heart do you possess? A stony stubborn heart is difficult for anything to grow in. There's no way for a seed to germinate on a stone or rock. Similarly, a stony heart cannot receive the life of the Word of God. When Jesus walked the earth, He was saddened by the hardness of the people's hearts and couldn't do many miracles because of their unbelief (Mark 3:5, Isaiah 6:10). In fact, He encountered this problem on more than one occasion, frequently remarking even about His disciples' heart condition as being d

Are you a praying person?

Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results. James 5:16 NLT One day Jesus told his disciples a story to show that they should always pray and never give up. I tell you, he will grant justice to them quickly! But when the Son of Man returns, how many will he find on the earth who have faith?” Luke 18:1‭, ‬8 NLT Then he said, “Now pick up the other arrows and strike them against the ground.” So the king picked them up and struck the ground three times. But the man of God was angry with him. “You should have struck the ground five or six times!” he exclaimed. “Then you would have beaten Aram until it was entirely destroyed. Now you will be victorious only three times.” 2 Kings 13:18‭-‬19 NLT Today, I'd like to share with you three ex

Stop. Drop. Run!

Yes, everything else is worthless when compared with the infinite value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord. For his sake I have discarded everything else, counting it all as garbage, so that I could gain Christ and become one with him. I no longer count on my own righteousness through obeying the law; rather, I become righteous through faith in Christ. For God’s way of making us right with himself depends on faith. Philippians 3:8‭-‬9 NLT Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a huge crowd of witnesses to the life of faith, let us strip off every weight that slows us down, especially the sin that so easily trips us up. And let us run with endurance the race God has set before us. Hebrews 12:1 NLT Stop. Drop. Run! These are three little words but with plenty of significance for us when we consider these few questions: What was your life like before you met Jesus? What happened when you met Jesus? And, la

How far will you go for the one?

In the same way, there is more joy in heaven over one lost sinner who repents and returns to God than over ninety-nine others who are righteous and haven’t strayed away! In the same way, there is joy in the presence of God’s angels when even one sinner repents.” “So he returned home to his father. And while he was still a long way off, his father saw him coming. Filled with love and compassion, he ran to his son, embraced him, and kissed him. Luke 15:7‭, ‬10‭, ‬20 NLT Today, I'd like us to focus on the verses above, which taken from 3 of Jesus' parables, the parable of the lost sheep, the lost coin and the lost son. I'd highly encourage you to read through the whole chapter to get the gist of what Jesus is saying here, but here are a few observations and lessons that I've come across while studying this passage. First, the value of what is being lost seems to increase. The final story is about a son who is lost, which is far m

What's the song of your heart?

I lie awake thinking of you, meditating on you through the night. Because you are my helper, I sing for joy in the shadow of your wings. I cling to you; your strong right hand holds me securely. Psalms 63:6‭-‬8 NLT What keeps you awake at night? What's disturbing your peace? As I write this post, I'm mindful of those among us who frustratingly deal with chronic insomnia for unknown reasons. And those of us who are feeling as though they're fighting a losing battle with depression. Maybe you're on the verge of giving up hope. You've prayed for deliverance and healing but nothing has changed your situation. Is there any help left for me? You wonder. How am I going to get through the night? Today, I'd like us to take a few minutes and reread those verses above. Let them sink deep into your soul and minister to your spirit. When David wrote these words, he was in the wilderness hiding from King Saul. He'd done nothing w

Where's your heart facing?

Instead, let us test and examine our ways. Let us turn back to the LORD. Let us lift our hearts and hands to God in heaven and say, “We have sinned and rebelled, and you have not forgiven us. Lamentations 3:40-42 NLT This is the final post in a three part series that I'm doing on Lamentations 3. What I love about reading the Bible is the genuineness of the people who were inspired to write it. As we have seen so far, Jeremiah was brutally honest with God about his feelings. He felt abandoned because it appeared as though God had shut out his prayers (Lam 3:8). He felt humilated by his own people who mocked him continuously (3:14). He was fearful because everything he'd hoped for from the Lord was lost (3:18). And yet, in spite of the chaos around him, he chose to depend completely on God's salvation (3:25-26). When was the last time you were honest with God about your feelings and brought them to Him? My brothers and sisters, we&#

What's your soul listening to?

I say to myself, “The LORD is my inheritance; therefore, I will hope in him!” The LORD is good to those who depend on him, to those who search for him. So it is good to wait quietly for salvation from the LORD. This post is part 2 of a three part series which seeks to draw out the valuable lessons that we as God's beloved children can gain from Lamentations 3. At the time when these words were written, the prophet Jeremiah and his people witnessed the heartbreaking destruction of Jerusalem. Jeremiah saw the afflictions that came as a result of God's judgement on his people's sin and wrote down his reflections, which really capture the raw emotion of what he was going through (Lam 3:1). In my previous post, I examined how we can still dare to hope in God's faithfulness even in the midst of dark circumstances. It's choosing to dwell on His unceasing mercies because His love for us is great. However, if you're a worry war