Sweat dripped from my chin onto my white t-shirt. I was soaking wet, panting and wincing.
Groaning with every kick, I kept on pushing during a recent workout session with our teenage girls, Kyla and Kaiah.
It was my first time ever trying Zumba.
I had heard for many years that it was a fun workout, which I found to be true.
However, it is also rather challenging.
The high-intensity moves and numerous repetitions had me feeling the burn, especially in my legs.
Despite the difficulty and wanting to give up, I didn’t.
I looked over at the girls and they, like me, were sweating and periodically grunting. So I knew they were feeling the pain as well.
I didn’t want to abandon them, even though lifting my legs was becoming increasingly difficult with each passing second.
How long do we have left? I wondered.
When it was finally over, I was relieved and completely spent.
After we finished, I didn’t pretend it was easy. I admitted that some of those moves were excruciating.
“Good workout,” I said, wiping my head.
We each traded exhausted smiles.
Zumba was a big change for me. It pulled me out of my comfort zone, but I knew from the way I was sweating, I was getting a good workout. That changeup stretched me and also strengthened me.
Coming out of your comfort zone can be a good thing.
Spiritually speaking, when God pulls you out of your place of familiarity and comfort, and stretches you beyond the borders of what you have grown accustomed to, it’s a great thing.
That means He’s setting you up to bless you.
We know God challenged Abraham, the Father of Faith, to leave his native land and venture out into unknown territory.
In Genesis 13, we find him traveling with his wife and his nephew Lot, along with all the possessions he had.
This was before his name was actually changed to Abraham and prior to the covenant being established.
At the time, Abram was already materially rich. He possessed an abundance of silver, gold and livestock. But there was a divine calling on Abram’s life. He had been chosen for a special purpose.
Before knowing this, Abram and Lot settled down between Bethel and Ai, but it was too cramped, because they had too many livestock and other valuables to fit together in one place.
These guys couldn’t dwell comfortably or peacefully together in the same area.
In fact, the Bible says arguments broke out between the relatives’ herdsmen. It got so bad that Abram finally suggested to his nephew that they split up to make more room and avoid conflict.
Lot chose to move to the Jordan Valley in a place near Sodom.
Abram went his way and dwelt in a place called Canaan. At the time, he didn’t even know this was the Promised Land.
Hebrews 11:8 NLT says, “It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going.”
Abram was literally standing on the promise of God, but didn’t know it yet. The landscape was unfamiliar to Abram, but God knew all along exactly what He was doing.
I often say, the Lord knows the end from the beginning. If we follow His leading, we’ll get to the place we’re supposed to be.
Well, after Lot was out of the way and Abram had settled in, in Genesis 13:15, the Lord finally gave Abram some insight. He said, “Look as far as you can see in every direction—north and south, east and west. I am giving all this land, as far as you can see, to you and your descendants as a permanent possession.”
Before Abram even had an heir, God told him that his descendants would be blessed and as numerous as “the dust of the earth.”
You see, we're reading this in retrospect, meaning, we already know how this story ends, right? We are aware that Abraham and Sarah will give birth to the promised child Isaac and through him, the nation of Israel, God's chosen people, will multiply and flourish.
But Abram knew none of that. So God was speaking prophetically to a man who had no evidence that any of this would even come to pass.
And yet, he believed.
Then, in verse 18, the Lord said, “Go and walk through the land in every direction, for I am giving it to you.”
God gave Abram a walk-through and a preview of what was already his.
He had called Abram out of the familiar to show him the future. He pulled Abram away from his family to reveal his destiny. God called Abram out of the old so he could step into the new.
The separation was necessary for his elevation.
Today, if you feel stretched, pulled away from the familiar and uncertain about what the future holds, don't get worried. God is doing a new thing in you too. He’s just setting you up to bless you.
He is enlarging you.
It may feel bad, but it's working for your good.
Often, the process God uses to get us to our place of destiny isn't what we prefer. Like Abram, that may mean leaving some relationships behind, disconnecting from certain associations, relinquishing old roles and taking on new ones, and occupying a strange place.
I know it might feel painful. It’s hard to step out of what you know and step into what you don’t. Trust me, I understand. I promise I do.
But the same God who led Abram to his place of promise, will lead you to yours.
Your unknown place may be filled with controversy, adversity, heartache and hardship, but God is saying, Just be confident in Me. I will never fail you. I'm setting you up for greater. All My promises are true. Follow My lead.
To reassure you that God’s word is coming to pass, I’m stirring Hebrews 6:15 NLT into your cup of inspiration, which says, “Then Abraham waited patiently, and he received what God had promised.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, be assured that you, too, will receive what God has promised.
Greater things are on the horizon for you.
As you receive this word, I also ask that you come into agreement with me, not just for your season of greater, but also for the outpouring of favor over the lives of those who have asked to be included on our “Thoughtful Thursdays” intercessory prayer list.
While you read these requests and intercede for others, God will work in your life as well.
The inspirationals and prayers posted by you Dianna and your prayer team have truly been a blessing to me. A friend from my hometown (Chicago) shared your “Daily Cup” with me and now I can hardly wait to get up each morning and share with others; bless you! I was recently diagnosed with stage 1 breast cancer and solicit your prayers as I undergo surgery next Friday 6/19. I so look forward to my “SURVIVAL” status!! Thank you in advance for “covering” not only me but others who also are undergoing trials in their lives. God Bless you!
My son is a minister and secretly addicted to heroin. I have been praying for him. He had a few weeks clean and recently relapsed. It was heartbreaking for me to see him go through this battle with addiction. I also feel partially responsible as I was addicted to crack/cocaine for the first 13 years of his life. Please pray and ask God to break this stronghold of addiction off his life and free me from the weight of the guilt I have been carrying from my past mistakes. I know God forgives me. I just need to forgive myself.
I want you to pray that I am healed of this bipolar sickness that I they say I have - heal this body that I get out of this depression and make me a better person not to argue and get mad easily - trust the lord with all my heart and soul and give me the faith to face anything that comes my way
I need prayer for my marriage for the Lord to soften my spouse’s heart and for us to become stronger in communicating. He is so selfish and I'm ready to give up. I have been mistreated in so many ways and in August we will be married 13 years. Don't know if I should walk away and stand strong but a marriage takes two. I have been wounded verbally which affects my mental state.
Greetings. May all who read this prayer request be blessed with an abundance of God's favor. Your gift of intercessory prayer shall never be in vain. I am asking for anyone who reads this to pray for my Husband and I as we wait patiently on God to bless my Husband with work that can not only help him feel like the co-provider he once was but will help him thrive until the destiny that the Lord has for him. In Jesus Name, Amen!
I would greatly appreciate prayer for the healing of my precious dad from cancer as well as increased faith and strength for my sister and I as we fight this difficult battle alongside my father.
Hi I am requesting prayer for my family and I. I've been walking in a dry season for so long, I have been jobless since 2013 so I pray that God blesses me with a job that's full time and good benefits but a job where I can use my talents God has given me.
Also I pray for healing over my body, I've been dealing with multiple health issues. I am in need of prayer for strength, deliverance from depression/low-self-esteem, and prayer for trusting in the Lord, and hearing his voice and knowing my purpose. Also that I walk in the authority that God has given me and start speaking victory over my life.
Also I ask for prayer over my two brothers and the young ladies they are involved with, I pray that they receive salvation and turn away from the wrong lifestyles they are living and healing falls upon them mentally, physically, and spiritually.
Also my father is in need for prayer he recently found out he is suffering from congestive heart failure and has been in and out the hospital and now needs a heart transplant. The doctors don't know where this came from so I am trusting in the lord that my father is healed by his stripes, that God comforts him and gives him peace. Pray the lord has favor over my father, that God guides and directs the doctors hands and they find the right match and that his body receives the heart and not reject it in the name of Jesus and he shall not die, but live , and declare the works of the Lord (psalms 118:17). And that his blood pressure, diabetes and breathing is stabled. Thank you Mrs. Hobbs and my sisters in Christ for coming in agreement with me! God bless!
Prayer for my husband that he will not lose his job. We are a single income family and I am a stay at home mom.
Just found out I was pregnant, first baby at 29 & this is a blessing & a miracle because for a long time I tried to have a baby & could not conceive but here I am 7 weeks pregnant. I ask that you pray for me & my baby that I have a successful pregnancy & a healthy baby. Thank you & God bless!
I'm requesting a prayer for financial breakthroughs and much improved health & strength to become more physically fit and lose weight. And lastly more clarity, discernment & clearer guidance in my decision making ahead.
Now let’s pray.
God, I’m not sure of what You’re doing, but I’m sure that I trust You. I thank You that this path I’m on is leading to divine destiny. In times when I feel weary, please remind me that, just as You fulfilled Your promise to Abraham, You will fulfill Your promise to me. I thank You, by faith, for greater things. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
As always, thanks for reading and until next time... may today's cup of inspiration uplift, encourage, and empower you!
If you need prayer, don't hesitate to request it. I would be honored to stand in faith with you. I know that prayer works. CLICK HERE to learn how to submit your prayer request.