Get biblically-sound wisdom and encouragement to face life’s challenges with full confidence in God’s plan for your life with Dianna Hobbs’ Daily Cup of Inspiration podcast Monday-Friday. MORE
Thanks for visiting "Your Daily Cup of Inspiration," where there's always a fresh cup of biblical encouragement waiting for you. Get to know Dianna Hobbs, the one who inspires you daily HERE.
The Hobbs children love to reminisce.
Earlier today, they felt like strolling down memory lane and going over things that happened around eight years ago.
“Remember that time Kedar went flying off his bicycle through the air?” they asked.
I didn’t recall it right away. But when it finally came back to me, I suddenly remembered what happened, as well as how it made me feel.
My knees nearly buckled at the time.
One afternoon, our oldest son Kedar was in the early days of learning to ride his bike. Though his skills were limited, he had the courage of a warrior.
“Don’t go so fast,” Kenya and I warned repeatedly. “You could hurt yourself.”
But he went zooming forward, pedaling as rapidly as his short stubby legs would let him. Over and over again, he would just take off.
I went running behind him, trying to shield him from harm.
In this particular instance, he got away from me.
Kedar ran smack into a railing, ejecting his body from the bike. He went so high into the air, I knew if he hit the ground, he would be seriously injured.
I was literally paralyzed with fear. Only my eyes moved.
I felt helpless and nearly certain that this family outing was about to end with a trip to the ER.
But Kenya ran toward him, stretched out his arms and caught our little guy.
It was incredible.
I cannot explain the sense of relief I felt. I was too weak in the knees to move at first. But I was leaping for joy in my heart.
Kedar had flown through the air like a Hail Mary pass. It seemed almost miraculous that his father was there to catch him.
Thinking back on it, I can almost see Kenya, such a caring father, standing there with outstretched arms. He did whatever he could to make sure his son didn’t fall.
How much more, then, does God, our Heavenly Father, care about you and me, His children?
Sometimes in life we will run into challenges and it will look like we’re headed for a fall. But God, who is rich in mercy and faithful to deliver, will always be right there to catch us.
No matter what things look like today, God has a plan for your deliverance, breakthrough & sure victory!
Now, I cannot tell you the situation won’t ever look bleak, nor can I assure you that the outcome will be what you hoped it would in every case. On occasion, you will take some hard knocks, but God won’t abandon you.
During my Bible study time today, I was reading Judges 20. In that chapter, the Israelites fought the battle of Gibeah against the Benjamites.
Even though they had God’s blessing to fight, they sustained some losses in the battle.
The first day, the Benjamites killed 22,000 Israelite soldiers. The second day, there were 18,000 more casualties. It didn’t look good. They cried out to God and inquired about whether they should continue on.
The Lord told them to go back and fight—again—despite having already lost 40,000 men.
On the third day, after about 30 of their fighters were killed, it looked like déjà vu for the Israelites, but God wasn’t finished.
This time around, He gave them victory over the Benjamites.
God will give you the victory also.
Friend, you may have come against some of the toughest opposition of your life. You could be facing one of the greatest trials you’ve ever experienced. But don't be discouraged by the bumps in the road. Just know this path leads to victory.
Don't let turmoil make you forget who you serve. God is on your side. And when it seems like you’re surely going down for the last time, He will stretch out His hand, catch you and deliver you.
Jeremiah 32:21 talks about how God rescued Israel with a “mighty hand and an outstretched arm.” That same hand and arm is extended to you today.
Psalm 50:15 NASB, which is what I’m stirring into your cup of inspiration, says, “Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I shall rescue you, and you will honor Me."
As you drink down the contents of your cup, you will be encouraged by the realization that, this is not a hopeless case. The situation is not too far gone. Our mighty Savior has a great plan for your deliverance.
Don’t worry about the circumstances, because the One who controls them has already declared that you are victorious through Him.
Walk like it.
Now let’s pray together.
God, despite negative circumstances, help me trust You, my deliverer. I believe that You are for me and I know, according to Your word, You are a present help in my time of trouble. So I declare that I am victorious through You and I thank You in advance for my deliverance. 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.
"My teacher told me I'm doing better," Kaiah said with a smile after I picked her up from ballet class. She has been struggling with some of the more difficult and newer moves introduced at school. Though our 14-year-old is challenged by this demanding form of dance, she has been working hard to improve and apparently, her instructor noticed her progress.
"I'm proud of you," I responded as she beamed.
For Kaiah, learning and mastering intricate stretches, poses and positions hasn't been easy. But she is willing to do what it takes. This summer, when time comes for her recital, she'll be ready to perform on stage because of all the effort she has put forth off stage.
Our oldest daughter Kyla, who is a tap dancer, is equally as diligent. Many days, I hear our 17-year-old clicking, clacking and tap-tap-tapping away. Sometimes, her legs get sore, her feet turn red and she feels fatigued, but she keeps going.
Whether you're a dancer or not, if anyone expects to be strong, proficient and productive in any area, they must be disciplined, hard-working and willing to endure the pain and struggle of improving.
As I thought about our girls, it occurred to me that no matter how different their dances are, neither one gets to skip steps along their journeys to be excellent. They must put in the work and go through the stages and phases of developing and maturing if they really want to excel.
The same is true in our spiritual walk. That's why God takes us through a developmental process of refinement before placing us in situations that require us to perform particular roles in the Kingdom.
Let's look at Joseph, for example.
In Genesis 39, we see Joseph, to whom God revealed in dreams that he would one day be a powerful leader (Genesis 37). After this promising divine revelation, he was sold into slavery by his jealous brothers and became the servant of an influential Egyptian man.
His new Master, Potiphar, was “captain of the guard”—literally meaning a slaughterer—for Pharaoh, the Egyptian king. After Joseph began working for this chief executioner, Potiphar noticed what an excellent servant he was. The Bible tells us that, because of God’s favor, Joseph succeeded in everything he did and Potiphar’s house was blessed because of him. Potiphar knew that God was with Joseph.
So he promoted him…twice. First, he became Potiphar’s personal attendant and later, was elevated to administrator over everything Potiphar owned. Joseph ran it all. God knew that Joseph’s humble beginning as a slave wasn’t the end of the story. The Lord was just setting the foundation for Joseph’s future as the governor of Egypt.
Often, the most uncomfortable transitions place us in the best positions to be used by God. Always remember that. You see, had Joseph not learned to manage Potiphar’s affairs and eventually his entire household, he would not have had strong administrative skills. Joseph came straight out of his father Jacob’s house and didn’t have the experience to lead a nation. But God allowed Joseph to be placed in situations and environments that would develop the leader in him.
Although Potiphar’s wife began lusting after Joseph and falsely accused him of sexual misconduct (Genesis 39:7-20), which landed him in jail, the training didn’t stop. His time spent in lock-up was even purposeful. Joseph interpreted dreams behind bars. This exposed his gift to the king’s cupbearer, who, years later, would introduce Joseph to Pharaoh when he was in need of an interpreter. As you see in the text, the person God hand-selected to help usher Joseph into destiny was also in jail.
The very place that seemed to be the lowest of the low, reserved for criminals and castaways, was the breeding ground for destiny. Could it be that the situation you’re crying over, angry about, and resentful of, will turn out to be the very circumstance tied to your breakthrough?
This great affliction is preparing you for an even greater elevation. God's taking you higher!
Not only did Joseph interpret dreams in jail, but God gave him favor with the jailer. So Joseph stepped into administrative shoes and acted as the warden. He was over the other prisoners. That meant he was further able to develop and enhance his management skills, which were about to come in handy.
Friend, in this current season, you may feel imprisoned by your circumstances, but you’re not in prison. You’re in prep school. God is preparing you for what’s coming. Hold on.
By the time Joseph’s date with destiny arrived and he came face-to-face with Pharaoh (Genesis 41), he was polished, experienced and well able to manage the resources of Egypt in a time of famine. See how God caused all things to work together for Joseph’s good?
Well, He’s doing the same thing in your life.
So don’t get down in the dumps over the process. This isn’t the end of your story. I know where you are right now may not look like where God has said you will be. Some days, it may not seem fair. You might feel overlooked. You’re probably wondering when it will be your time and your turn. It’s coming.
In the meantime, God is sharpening your skills and refining you for your next dimension. He’s building you up, because He’s taking you up. Even in the midst of your affliction, know that God is up to something. He’s doing great things and working in your favor.
Here’s something I want to share with you.
After Joseph settled into his new role and got married, he had children. He named his second son Ephraim and I want to stir the words he said about the naming of his seed, found in Genesis 41:52 NASB, into your cup of inspiration. Joseph said, “God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know that your affliction is just preparing you for your promotion. Your affliction is just a blessing in disguise. Your affliction is leading you on the path to elevation and breakthrough.
As 2 Corinthians 4:17 NASB says, “For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison.”
Where you are at the moment is toughening up your skin, developing your discipline and empowering you to walk into your place of favor. You’re being transitioned, conditioned and positioned for greatness.
God’s plan for your life is so special and awesome, He’s just making sure you’re ready to handle the overflow that’s about to come pouring into your life.
David said in Psalm119 :71 ESV, "It is good for me that I was afflicted, that I might learn your statutes."
It is also good for you that you have been afflicted, that you might learn.
This affliction is just a learning experiencing. It’s teaching you, growing you, molding you and positioning you for what’s next. Greater things, bigger blessings, more awesome breakthroughs are coming your way.
Now let’s pray.
God, some days, I feel so frustrated, confused and discouraged because of these difficult situations I’m facing. But still, I believe that through this affliction, in the end, You will get the glory. In the meantime, please help me not to grow weary. Today, I declare by faith that I’m about to walk into a new season of promotion, blessing and favor, and I thank You! 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.
Whenever his birthday rolls around, I think back on the traumatic events surrounding his birth.
I was unprepared to deliver on the day he made his entrance into the world. But a terrible car accident caused a placental abruption where my placenta separated from my uterus. My contractions started coming one right after the other, forcing me into premature labor.
The year was 2006.
At the time, I lived in Delaware, but my collision happened in Philadelphia.
I was eight months pregnant with Kaleb when I accidentally drove through a red light into oncoming traffic. I was hit hard on the driver’s side of my vehicle at that busy intersection and ended up spinning in the middle of the road. Lord knows I thought I might lose all three of the Hobbs children and the one in my belly that day.
It was one of the most terrifying experiences of my life!
When my SUV tilted up on its two left wheels, I was sure I'd flip over. I literally could see the asphalt coming toward my face. Witnesses said there is no way we should not have flipped, but all of a sudden, inexplicably, the automobile seemingly snatched itself back up.
That was nobody but God.
Not only that, the SUV wound up perfectly parked next to a curb, completely out of the flow of traffic where our family could have been killed.
As you can imagine, I was quite shaken up when the truck came to a halt.
The impact of the hit totaled the vehicle, did major damage to my sciatic nerve in my lower back and had me in full-on labor almost immediately. But thank God for His grace. Though Kaleb was a bit premature, he arrived healthy and whole. I know things could have been worse had it not been for the Lord.
I love how God steps in and turns situations around. Sometimes, He lessens the impact of things that could be much worse were it not for His intervention.
He's done it my life and yours, too.
Not only does God protect us from day-to-day dangers that commonly occur, but He also shields us from attacks of the enemy when Satan tries to destroy and defeat us.
In every circumstance, it's good to know God truly has your back--both yours and mine--and I don’t mean that as a cliché’.
It was the power of God working from the back that made it possible for the Israelites to cross the Red Sea. In Exodus 14:19, the Bible says the angel of the Lord and that pillar of cloud God used to guide the Israelites through the wilderness, moved from in front to behind them.
This shift was important and served a dual role. I want you to pay attention to this.
By God’s supernatural power, once the cloud moved behind Israel, it cast extreme darkness over Pharaoh and his army, the enemy of Israel, thereby obscuring their path forward. Simultaneously, on the side of the cloud facing the direction of God’s chosen people, it emitted light, illuminating the way.
When Moses stretched his rod and parted the sea, Israel could see their path forward while walking across the Red Sea on dry land. The Egyptians, however, whose hearts were hardened against God’s people, were blinded by the supernatural darkness of the cloud.
So we can clearly see that, when God got behind Israel, He put a separation between them and the enemy. The Egyptians, who sought to attack them from behind, were neutralized. God blocked the attack.
Rest. The weapon may be formed, but it WON’T prosper, because God is fighting for you!
Moses’ rod took care of the obstacle in front of Israel, by dividing the seas and the angel of the Lord took care of the one behind them, by keeping Pharaoh and his army away. Israel was covered on both ends.
So are you!
Even when you’re walking through the darkest valley, there is a rod and staff to protect and comfort you (Psalm 23:4), as goodness and mercy follows you from behind (Psalm 23:6) all the days of your life.
Friend, I know the enemy is coming after you, trying to intimidate you, cause chaos in your life and ultimately destroy you, but don’t panic. Don’t worry. Don’t fear. God has you covered and has the enemy blocked.
He’s blocking the attack on your family.
He’s blocking the attack on your mind.
He’s blocking the attack on your ministry.
He’s blocking the attack on your health.
He’s blocking the attack in every area of your life where Satan has tried to stop you from possessing the promises of God.
In Isaiah 52:12 KJV, God told His people, “For ye shall not go out with haste, nor go by flight: for the LORD will go before you; and the God of Israel will be your rereward.”
That word “rereward” in Hebrew means “rear guard” like the rear guard of an army, which defends, protects and prevents attacks from the rear. So God was saying, you don’t have to run away from the enemy, be intimidated, or fearful, because God has your back. He is your defense.
He’s your rear guard, blocking the enemy’s weapons. That’s why what the devil tries won’t work! God's got your back.
To remind you that God is fighting the enemy on your behalf, I’m stirring Exodus 14:14 NIV into your cup of inspiration, which says, “The Lord will fight for you; you need only to be still.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, place your hope, confidence and trust in the Lord who defends you. Know that He is your present help in trouble.
And remember, the attack the enemy had planned will not succeed. God has already blocked it and surrounded you with favor to move forward.
God, the enemy is attacking me from every angle, but I know I am protected, blessed and favored. Despite what it looks like right now, I refuse to speak defeat, but I declare that no weapon formed against me shall prosper, for You are my help. Thank You Lord for the victory You have already won! 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.
When the day first began at around 4:30 am, I had a lot of things I planned to get done that I simply didn’t achieve.
I’m sure you have also had days when your checklist—whether physical or mental—was nowhere near completed at the end of the day. It happens to all of us.
Whether it’s our daily to-do list or bigger plans for our lives, things don’t always go our way. Spiritually speaking, when we live a life of submission to the Lord, He constantly changes our course. His will doesn’t align with our ideas. His ways aren't anything like ours, that's for sure.
When we follow His leading, God often surprises and stretches us, and snatches us right out of our comfort zone.
And you know what? Coming out of our comfort zone can be a good thing. When the Lord pulls us out of a place of familiarity and pushes us beyond the borders of what we have grown accustomed to, it’s a great thing. That means He’s developing, growing, changing and maturing us, which is required in order to reap all He has for us.
Stretching comes before the blessing.
You're headed toward greater! God's preparing you for something BIG.
We know God challenged and stretched Abraham, the Father of Faith, by commanding him to leave his native land and venture out into unknown territory.
In Genesis 13, we find him traveling with his wife and 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 higher calling on this anointed man's life. He had been chosen for a special purpose.
When Abram went to Canaan, he was literally standing on the promise of God, but didn’t know it yet. The landscape was unfamiliar to Abram, oh but God knew all along exactly what He was doing. I often say, the Lord knows the end from the beginning. If we follow Him, we’ll get to the place we’re supposed to be.
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.”
When I read this passage, I think about the fact that, we're looking at this true biblical account in retrospect. We already know how this story ends. 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. That means 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. Great things were on the way.
The same is true in your life.
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. Friend, if God has upset your plans and allowed you to go through a season of uncertainty, trust and know that what He has for you on the other side is so much better.
Often, the process God uses to get us to our place of destiny isn't what we prefer. During some seasons, it feels painful. But the same God who led Abram to his place of promise, will lead you to yours.
Even if you're dealing with controversy, adversity, heartache and hardship, 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.
Don't lose hope. Don't let your confidence be shaken. No matter how hard it gets, internalize Hebrews 10:35, which says, “So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded.”
In this passage, throw away is the Greek word “apoballó” which means to cast away from or throw aside.
When you're dealing with uncertainty, persecution, suffering, trials and all manner of tribulations, don't throw away your faith. Hold on. Hebrews 10:36 says, “You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised.”
Every blessing with your name on it, you’ll receive. Every obstacle that stands in the way of your destiny, you’ll overcome. Every enemy that rises up against you, you’ll defeat. Every word God has ever spoken over you, you will see manifest.
Hold on. Manifestation is coming. You're about to step into something greater.
To reassure you of the good things to come, 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.
Wait for it.
Now let's pray.
God, please help me to be fervent in hope, patient in affliction and faith-filled in the midst of adversity. I know You will do exactly what You said. I believe with all my heart that You are faithful to fulfill every promise You’ve ever spoken over me and I thank You for it! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
So… I’ve been hard at work on a new ministry project that I hope and pray will be a blessing to you.
Today, instead of writing a new online devotional, I’m sharing episodes of a brand new “Your Daily Cup of Inspiration” podcast for you to enjoy.
Podcast episodes are currently available on iTunes, Google Play and other online sites and will be published five days per week, Monday-Friday.
After praying and seeking God about how I could further encourage you in your walk of faith, He led me to record devotionals so you could not only read them, but hear them.
Through the podcast, I get to have a conversation with you daily and pour into you in a new way. My prayer is that the podcast will help empower you to walk in power, faith, wisdom and assurance of God’s good plan for your life daily.
Each podcast episode, which is between 6-10 minutes in length, features a personal story, corresponding Bible story, along with spiritual application to strengthen your faith.
You can easily share the podcasts on Facebook and Twitter, subscribe to the RSS feed and even download them to any device so you can listen as often as you need to.
See it as our time together, chatting and being blessed by a fresh cup of inspiration every day.
Here are some episodes to listen to below.
Our first son and third child, Kedar, was literally too heavy for me to carry. The pain I endured in my final weeks leading up to delivery was excruciating.
After safely and naturally giving birth to our baby who made his grand entrance into the world at 8 pounds, 7 ounces, I thought the worst was over. But then I learned our sweet and stout gift from the Lord had dislocated my pelvis, leaving one leg shorter than the other.
My body was out of alignment and I couldn’t walk straight. My hip kept popping. The nagging, stubborn, intense ache just would not go away.
When I complained to my doctor that there had been no improvement a few months after welcoming Kedar, he referred me to a physical therapist to help get me together.
It was my first time going through physical therapy, which, I wish someone had told me hurt so badly. Each time the specialist applied pressure to one of my legs and asked me to resist the force, a sharp sensation ripped through my pelvic area like a knife, nearly reducing me to tears. Week after week, I went back, dreading the process.
But eventually, I got back to normal, though I experienced unpleasant symptoms for more than a year. Despite all I went through, I know the pain was worth it. Kedar is a blessing from the Lord.
Friend, obtaining your blessing isn’t always easy.
Sometimes, you have to endure hardship; struggle; wrestle; cry; fight through fear; dig your heels in and refuse to quit in order to seize your destiny.
Great rewards come to those who refuse to give up. Hang in there! Your blessing is
In Genesis 32, we enter Jacob’s story during a time of fear and uncertainty. 20 years after tricking his twin brother Esau out of his inheritance (See Genesis 27), Jacob was about to come face-to-face with his duped sibling who had once been angry enough to kill him.
In Genesis 32:12, Jacob cried out to the Lord. He wanted protection from Esau and assurance that the promise God had made to his grandfather, Abraham, would be kept. Jacob told God, “For You said, ‘I will surely treat you well, and make your descendants as the sand of the sea, which cannot be numbered for multitude.’”
Even though Jacob had a word from the Lord and took time to put God in remembrance of that very word through prayer, fear still made him waver a bit. Since the controversy had never been resolved, when Jacob was informed that Esau was on his way, accompanied by 400 men, he wondered if hot revenge was still pumping through his relative’s veins.
After coming up with a strategy just in case the reunion turned violent, Jacob sent everyone—his servants, animals, wives and children—away and he was all by himself at the Jabbok River.
There, he wrestled with an angelic being, whom Jacob identified as God Himself. So intense was the struggle, that this Heavenly warrior, who told Jacob to let him go, knocked his stubborn opponent’s hip out of socket. Though the pain was likely close to unbearable, Jacob refused to release his grasp.
In verse 26, Jacob told the angel, “I will not let you go until you bless me.”
That altercation left Jacob with a limp, but guess what? He got his blessing.
Have you ever fought for your blessing? Perhaps you had to fight discouragement, fear, opposition, negative thoughts, disappointments and the temptation to walk away. If you know what it’s like to stay engaged in the battle, despite how hard it is, then you know what it takes to be blessed. Everybody wants to be blessed, but not everybody wants to fight for it.
Jacob was willing to stand his ground and do whatever it took to get all God had for him. Are you? Or will you let the trouble, pain and obstacles confronting you make you give up ground? If you hold on like Jacob did, you’ll get your blessing like Jacob did, too.
After fighting all night and having his hip dislocated, it was right around the break of dawn that something happened. In verse 32, this divine being told Jacob, “Your name will no longer be Jacob. From now on you will be called Israel, because you have fought with God and with men and have won.”
Did you see that? The Bible says, Jacob fought and won. He got his blessing around the breaking of day.
In your life, you have reached the breaking of day. It hasn’t been easy to press on, but you did. That’s why you’re about to see the blessings of the Lord flowing in your life.
When Jacob got his blessing, his name was changed from Jacob, which means trickster, to Israel, which is a combination of the Hebrew words for "wrestle" and "God." He went from a liar and deceiver to a wrestler and a winner.
As I mentioned before, Israel had a limp, but that’s alright, because he was still blessed. You, too, may have a “limp” in some areas. You have battle scars. You have gone through the fire and the flood. But you came out on the other side. You may be a bit bruised and battered, but you haven’t given up.
Just like my pelvis was dislocated and I walked with a limp for a little while, I wasn’t worried about it, because I held my blessing from the Lord in my arms.
Today, God wants you to stop worrying about what you have to fight through, but see where you’re headed to. Great things are on the horizon. Your season is changing. It is the breaking of day. I know the night has been long, but your turnaround is about to manifest.
To help you grab hold to this truth, I’m stirring the latter portion of Psalm 30:5 into your cup of inspiration, which says, “…weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, expect your breakthrough. Know that all the wrestling, pressing, fighting, persevering and struggling was not in vain.
Declare by faith, "It's daybreak!"
Not only did Jacob’s brother Esau lovingly receive him, but Israel went on to birth out the nation of Israel—God’s chosen people. And just as the Lord promised his grandfather Abraham, the Israelites became as numerous as the sands of the seashore.
God kept His word that He declared to Jacob, turned Israel. So, too, will He keep the word He has declared to you.
Stay in the fight. It’s worth the wrestle.
Now let’s pray.
God, my situation looks dark right now. It is a time of uncertainty where I can’t see my way clearly. Yet, I refuse to give up. I won’t let You go until You bless me. I believe You will do everything You said and I thank You for my breakthrough! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
This week, at the Orthodontist, our youngest son had the appliances that were inserted last summer to correct his cross bite removed. Suddenly, peanuts, popcorn and other goodies that were off limits during his treatment, were admissible again.
“I can eat whatever I want,” he grinned. “I’m so happy!”
Aside from disliking the pain and discomfort from the pressure being applied by the hardware in his mouth, for months, Kaleb sorely missed indulging in some of his favorite treats. The first few months, he was miserable.
Over time, he got used to the deprivation, though he wasn’t thrilled about the dietary adjustments.
So yesterday, he was literally jumping and dancing a jig as his older brother made some popcorn in the popcorn maker for the two comrades to enjoy. I was tickled watching him joyously celebrate.
During the unpleasant process, sometimes Kaleb strongly craved what was forbidden. He was unhappy. Sure, he knew what was being done was for his own good, but that didn’t make it any easier.
But now, it’s all over.
“My mouth feels weird. There’s so much room in there,” Kaleb told me and the rest of the Hobbs family yesterday. With the bulky appliances that made speech a challenge gone, Kaleb is no longer restricted.
His teeth have shifted into alignment and all is well in his world again.
In life, anytime we go through shifting and realigning, we experience discomfort. But things will change for the better if we do not give up.
What God has for you on the other side of this transition is far greater than you ever imagined!
In the word of God, we see that, when Ruth the Moabite’s life went through a major shift, it certainly wasn’t easy. The daughter-in-law of Naomi lost her husband Mahlon. Her once happy world was turned upside down. She was poor and doing her best to care for her mother-in-law.
But God had a plan.
When Ruth and Naomi moved back to Bethlehem, according to Ruth 1:22, it was late spring when they arrived, at the time of the barley harvest. Although there were plenty gleaners, also known as harvesters, who were employed to reap the harvest in the field, Ruth wasn’t one of them.
Yet, when she asked her mother-in-law for permission to work unauthorized in the field picking up the stalks of grain left behind by harvesters, Naomi said yes.
So Ruth went to work, making sure she and her mother-in-law had food to eat. Though they were living off of scraps and didn’t have everything they wanted, God provided.
But that wasn’t the conclusion of the story. They were absolutely grateful for provision, but God had more for them. He had positioned Ruth in a field owned by an influential rich man named Boaz, who was related to Naomi’s late husband Elimelech.
The Lord was up to something.
He put Ruth on Boaz’s radar. He treated her kindly, told his workers to deal warmly with her, fed her and made sure she had plenty of water.
She had been divinely shifted and positioned to reap an even greater harvest. Ruth wasn’t destined to live off leftovers. God was about to bless her even more.
Eventually, we know that Boaz and Ruth got married and had a son named Obed. This divine seed became the father of Jesse, who became the father of David, and the forefather of Jesus Christ.
Look at God’s divine plan come full circle. Isn’t it awesome?
Friend, the same God who cared for Ruth in Bible days, ordered her steps and showered her with a mightier harvest than she ever imagined, is working in your favor, too.
Today, things may not be going very well. Circumstances might not be ideal. Things could be going very wrong. But don’t give up hope. A shift is coming. God is restoring what you lost. He is going above and beyond all you could ask or think.
It’s about to get better.
In the book of Ruth, Boaz was Ruth’s “kinsman-redeemer,” who honored the Levirate law according to Deuteronomy 25:5-10, to act on behalf of a relative who fell on hard times and needed help.
How much more, then, will Jesus, our kinsman-redeemer, rush in to help us in our time of need? He already laid down His life to redeem us from sin. But that’s not where the story ends.
Every single day, He cares for us.
He is standing ready, willing and able to bless us.
You may be going through a lot of unpleasant circumstances in this season. But I’ve got a message for you: it’s about to get better. The Lord is on your side. He is for you, no matter what’s coming against you.
There is a harvest with your name on it. You don’t even know all the ways God has been setting you up for a breakthrough. Better days, better circumstances, better opportunities, better outcomes are about to manifest. Don’t faint. Don’t get weary. Don’t stop believing. Don’t quit declaring God’s promises. Don’t cease praying. Don’t lose confidence in God’s good plan.
There is a harvest coming for every seed you’ve sown; every sacrifice you’ve made; every tear you’ve cried; every test you’ve endured and every painful situation you’ve lived through.
You have kept on pressing, serving God and doing your best to live a life pleasing to Him in the midst of it all. Because of that, there’s a reward for you.
To remind you of this truth, I’m stirring the encouraging words Boaz said in Ruth 2:12 NLT into your cup of inspiration. “May the Lord, the God of Israel, under whose wings you have come to take refuge, reward you fully for what you have done.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know that your labor, faith, prayers, praises and endurance is not in vain. Anticipate your reward. Declare by faith and believe, “Things are about to get better!”
And it is so.
Today, as you rejoice over what’s coming, please also join me in praying for those who requested to be listed on our “Thoughtful Thursdays” prayer list.
As you intercede and believe God for them, I’m trusting the Lord for breakthrough in your life.
We’re touching and agreeing for a divine shift.
I'm going through a very emotionally, physically, financially trying time in my life. I seem to always attract the wrong men in my life due to the fact that I'm a friendly, kindhearted and loving person.
I married a narcissistic man less than a year ago. I have a restraining order on him right now but it hasn't been served. I've involved the police and my attorney but it goes on and he gets away with his criminal behavior. He has been in jail for assault. He's on probation now due to the charges. He hit me repeatedly in the face three days after I married him. He put glue in seven of my outside locks, cut a wire to my solar security light and grabbed the steering wheel of my brand new vehicle, while I was driving, causing me to wreck.
Also, because of this man, my daughter hasn't spoken to me and won't let my grandson, who's the love of my life, see me for eight months. I have cried and prayed daily for this curse and demonic spell to be broken on my life. I'm a born again Christian who believes in the power of God. I know He will move in my situation. I need prayer warriors to intercede on my behalf.
Also, along with the other circumstances, I've had three surgeries and have to have a mammogram repeated due to a suspicious area on the initial mammogram. Thank you all for standing in prayer in this time of trials that continue like a domino effect. I love The Lord with all my heart, soul and mind. I need deliverance. Thank you.
Please pray for my husband who has stage 4 cancer. I'm also trying to deal with other family and legal issues. God is my strength but sometimes I get tired. Thank you and God bless your ministry.
Hello and thank you in advance for prayers. I am completing the final (internship) semester of a 2-yr program meant to prepare me for a complete career change. Unfortunately, things are going very poorly- I have lost my internship placement and am feeling very discouraged and confused about the future and whether this was the right decision. Frankly, I'm scared. I'm reminding myself of God's involvement and provision throughout this time, but I feel this is a huge obstacle I can't overcome. Please pray for a new, better internship placement asap, and strength and energy to try again. Thank you so much,
Greetings saints. Please pray with me, for me that, come winter season, which is in June in South Africa, that I would have found a better paying job and a place of my own. It is my prayer to fully be a financial kingdom sower and also start a young women’s forum. In turn, to get to share the gospel of Jesus.
I need prayer for healing with the anxiety I have been experiencing in and out after the death of my mother. I pray for confidence again and hope, that I will trust what God is doing is will in my life. I pray for patience and a content spirit as I wait for God to provide the best husband he wants for me. Just strength overall and reclaiming my power through Christ.
Dear Dianna, your inspirational readings have been a blessing to my brother and I. I have a surgery coming up on the 23 of March. I really need your prayers on this matter. I also have an urgent request. Please pray for me as I meet with the principal of the school over a very delicate situation. Please help me pray that God will work on my behalf. Thank You.
I need healing in this old body, I have a clogged artery in my neck and I am having kidney problems.
This is a praise report! God is so Good! I had my hernia surgery on February 15, 2016 & I took pain medication for 2 days & after one week all my pain was gone. God used my surgeon to begin my healing & God has completely healed me. I had my appointment 1 week after surgery & the surgeon has cleared me to return back to my normal routine. What a mighty GOD we serve. Sometimes we have to go through the test & watch GOD bless. I am over 60 & this is my first surgery. God had protected & carried me for over 60 years. I can now say I can truly trust Him with all situations in my life. Thanks for all your prayers. You are an amazing & wonderful woman of GOD. I have one more surgery to have & my faith is in GOD to carry me through. Thank you for all the encouragement you give. GOD is using you in a mighty way. You & your family will forever be in my prayers. There is nothing too hard for our GOD, we only have to believe & trust Him.
I am praying for my husband to return back to me and our marriage to be restored. I pray that the walls of “no communication” be removed suddenly. I am praying that my husband’s heart be healed and a fresh anointing of Jesus love and forgiveness be poured over him in a mighty way. Also, praying for my son to be delivered and set free from any unholy alliances. I'm praying that the Lord will set him on a path to wholeness and righteousness. No weapon formed against my son shall prosper. In Jesus name, Amen.
Pray for my spiritual growth. I have a multiple allergy problem. I am allergic to Almost every basic food item, even some that I don't consciously use.
My husband Nicky & I need a financial miracle. Due to a defaulted student loan, wages are being garnished in addition to a decrease in hours & a $5 an hour cut in pay. We are believing for gainful employment & debt cancelation. I also need healing in my right shoulder. It's painful to take a shower & get dressed! We have been speaking the Word over our situation & body!
Please pray with me for breakthrough in the area of children. My husband and I have been married for 10 years and believe God for breakthrough in this area! Thank you.
Thank you Diana for allowing God to use you to share this awesome word. I ask for prayer for 2 friends—one with kidney problems and will need a kidney, and one with stage 3 breast cancer. I know God has power to heal and I ask that you stand in prayers with us.
Please pray with me that my husband and kids will not believe in false Gods and turn to Jesus Christ. I pray in secret as I believe in Jesus Christ and my heart aches, just want my husband to lead us in the direction of Christ. I believe we serve a God of the impossible so I believe for my family. I love my family because God loves them more than me and I don't want them to not know the love of Jesus. My husband loves me like how Christ loves the Church and I don't want him to leave this world not accepting Jesus.
Now let’s pray.
God, everything hasn’t yet fallen into place in my life. There are some broken areas, difficult circumstances and uncomfortable issues I’m facing today. Nevertheless, I believe that breakthrough is getting ready to show up. I trust Your word and declare by faith that “It’s about to get better!” Thank You for sustaining me during this process. I will not waver. I will continue to be confident and rejoice for what’s to come. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
My husband Kenya had some business to take care of that required a driver’s license. Unfortunately, he didn’t realize he had left it at home until after he had already arrived at his destination. He wasn’t too thrilled about wasting a trip.
I teased him good. My hearty laughter was payback for the other day when we were outdoors with our children enjoying the beautiful, sunny day as they rode their bikes. Buffalo’s weather can be extremely frigid this time of year, so when we get a taste of mild temperatures, it is a surprising treat indeed and we take advantage of the warmth.
Well, before heading indoors, I hopped onto our oldest daughter Kyla’s bike to take it for a quick spin. But something happened and my foot hit the pedal wrong. I got off to a lousy start and tripped. The purple bike fell to the ground. I tried to stabilize myself, but, in the end, was unsuccessful at regaining my equilibrium.
Down I went.
Kenya came over and gave me a helping hand. When I got off the pavement, my whole left side was full of dirt, small rocks and leaves. You should have seen him double over and laugh. I think everyone in our neighborhood heard him. Even though he tried to help dust off my all black ensemble, I was filthy and he could not stop cackling. He even had our daughter laughing at me.
I’ll admit, though. It was sort of funny when I toppled over in what seemed like slow motion.
So when I poked fun at my I.D.-less husband, I got a real kick out of that. I rubbed it in. But then, a couple hours later, when I made a grocery store run, I got a taste of what he felt. There I stood at the checkout counter when I realized I did not have any cash with me and had forgotten my bank card.
Are you kidding me? Guess who wasted a trip this time and had to go back home? I laughed at myself and thought of Kenya while cranking the car. Served me right for needling him, huh?
The point is, our memory is so important and when it fails us, it can cost us time and unnecessary frustration. Think about the last time you misplaced something as simple as your keys or cell phone. It was pretty annoying, right?
Not remembering sets you back and hinders your progress. This is especially true when it comes to our walk with God. Spiritually speaking, when we forget who we are, fail to remember what God has said about us and what benefits we are entitled to as heirs of God and joint-heirs with Jesus Christ (Romans 8:17), the results can be devastating.
We lose our joy, peace, hope and sense of direction.
Friend, you must never forget who you are, no matter what you may be facing. You are a King’s kid. You have been adopted into the royal family of God. You are chosen, beloved, favored and redeemed.
Never let life's storms make you forget who you are.
You belong to God who always causes you to triumph!
But life’s circumstances have a way of cluttering your mind, distracting you from the truth and causing you to lose focus on your true identity. That's why, every once in a while, you need a "come-to-yourself-moment" as the Prodigal Son had in Luke 15:11-32.
As he was out there in the pig's pen, contemplating eating their gross slop and living a desolate lifestyle, a light bulb went off in his head. He said (I’m paraphrasing), Wait a minute. Why am I all pitiful and living like I don’t know who I am? Because of who my father is, I can live better than this!
In verse 18, I love the first three words he uttered during his spiritual awakening: "I will arise…”
And that’s just what he did.
Today, God wants you to do the same thing. Stop wallowing in despair and say, "I will arise," because you will. This is not your final destination. This is not the conclusion. This is not the end of your story. In the meantime, as you believe for a shift in your circumstances, first arise in your mentality.
Get a revelation of who God has called you to be.
Consider how many times Jesus told those who were afflicted to arise by faith, take up their bed and walk. It was an expression of their belief to respond to the Lord's command, see beyond their circumstances and recognize their potential for breakthrough.
God is saying to you right now, arise!
Regardless of the length of time you have been in a lowly state (The Man Jesus healed at the Pool of Bethesda in John 5:1-15 had been in that condition for 38 long years!), the Lord has the power to raise you up and get glory out of your life.
Look past your past and present limitations, and hindrances, and hear God beckoning you to rise higher. If the Lord is bidding you to come, as He did Peter in Matthew 14, then He will empower you to do the impossible. Peter walked on water because He placed His confidence in the one who told Him to step out.
You, too, will make the transition from where you are to where He wants you to be if you arise and step out on faith. Get up in your mind and you'll get up in your life. Believe in your heart that God has better things for you and keep on moving ahead.
I know everything may not be perfect. You may be going through difficulties right now, but press on. If you cling to God's promises and refuse to give up, you will live out the amazing plan the Father already ordained for your life.
Arise and remember that you are blessed, anointed, beloved, special and set apart for God’s glory.
To help you do that, I’m stirring 1 Peter 2:9 into your cup of inspiration, which says, “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, God's special possession, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup today, you will be reminded of the glorious life you have been called to. You will be strengthened as you meditate on the truth of who you are in God. You are chosen. Jesus said in John 15:16, “You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit--fruit that will last--and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.”
Despite what you’re encountering or how tough things seem, be mindful of who your Daddy is. Romans 8:15 says, “The Spirit you received does not make you slaves, so that you live in fear again; rather, the Spirit you received brought about your adoption to sonship. And by him we cry, "Abba, Father."
You and I have been adopted into God's family.
In the midst of this storm, the enemy would love to make you forget that, but shake yourself out of that haze. Know that you belong to an all-wise, all-knowing, all-powerful God who is, at this very moment, causing everything to work together for your good.
You will arise.
Now let’s pray.
God, I thank You for choosing me, engrafting me into Your family and bestowing honor upon me. Despite what I go through, help me never forget that I am favored, blessed and beloved by You, my dear Father. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
At the time, I was hunched over, looking through a briefcase full of files, fully engaged in my reorganization project. I turned around to see what she was talking about when I noticed something familiar in her hand.
Over the weekend, I decided to free up some space. I wanted to rid the Hobbs home of unnecessary storage. It was a big project and the soreness in my body today tells me how many boxes I moved around.
In the middle of scanning filed-away data and making a firm determination about what was definitely going, and what was staying, Kyla’s voice broke my concentration.
What she had in her hand got my attention.
It was a large manila envelope with green trim.
I quickly recognized it.
“This is the letter from my doctor saying two lumps they found in my breast were benign,” I explained.
As I told you before, in 2011, months after my mother finished her chemotherapy and radiation treatment, and was given a clean bill of health, I discovered a hard, painless lump in my left breast.
Because of my family history, the doctor was extra cautious and set me up for a mammogram right away.
The radiologist’s films showed what appeared to be early stage Ductal Carcinoma—one of the most common forms of breast cancer.
I had not one, but two lumps.
I was sent to the best breast specialist in our city.
The day he told me with a smile, “You can relax. It’s not cancer,” I smiled back and felt thankful.
Before my good report came, though, I had to believe God and know that everything would be alright.
It was difficult, at moments, to remain optimistic when doctors weren’t even sure I should be.
Uncertainty is uncomfortable. It can be frightening and unsettling.
Whether the issue is health related or not, we all want to know everything will be okay. We long for clear insight into what God will do next. We desperately desire clarity and certainty about the outcomes of life.
We don’t like not knowing.
Nevertheless, in every Believer's life, there will be a meantime or between-time season. The answers won't come right away.
There will be some kind of uphill faith climb.
I like to compare it to traveling to the top of a hilly road. The incline makes it impossible to see over it. Nothing is visible ahead except the hill left to climb.
Are you there right now? If so, don’t let that worry you. Don't let uncertainty move you.
You might not have all the details of God’s plan, but there is something you can know for sure: whatever happens, the Lord will cause all things to work together for your good!
You may not know how things will TURN OUT, but know that it will all WORK OUT for your good.
So how do you handle your meantime?
Adopt the right mindset, like the Shunammite woman in 2 Kings 4:8-37. In dire circumstances, when her son became suddenly ill and died, she didn’t panic or lose hope.
Instead, she sought out Elisha, the prophet of God, with full assurance that the Lord was able to revive her son. In verse 23, even when her husband asked why she was looking for the man of God, she did not answer her spouse in a panic. She was not hysterical.
Her son was dead and she was calm?
This faith-filled woman said three words in the middle of a negative crisis: it is well.
She declared that it was already alright during a serious shakeup in her world.
She spoke victory while her only son, a child of promise, who had been prophesied by Elisha, lay lifeless.
It appears that she understood something fundamental: uncertain times call for certain faith. When you know the Lord is faithful to keep His word, you can face trials calmly.
This woman believed God, no matter what.
Her inspiring confidence in God was unwavering. So God used Elisha to perform the miracle of returning the boy back to his previously healthy state.
Our Heavenly Father responded to her faith.
Friend, He wants you to take cues from her reaction during whatever test you’re presently going through. You have to walk by faith, not by sight.
In order to help you remain calm in affliction and cling to faith and hope in God, I’m stirring the words of the Shunammite woman into your cup of inspiration taken from 2 Kings 4:23: “And she said, ‘It is well.’”
When you drink down the contents of your cup today, you will be reminded that, even before you see a turnaround, you can confidently declare it.
It is well.
It is done.
It is worked out.
It is turned around.
It is fixed.
It is so.
And so it is.
Open your mouth and speak the word.
Now let’s pray.
God, while I am awaiting manifestation of Your promises, I declare by faith that it is well. Just like the Shunammite woman trusted you in the midst of difficulty, I put all my faith in You and thank You in advance for my breakthrough. I believe it and receive it! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I was already winded from the intense strength training session I’d been through when Kedar reminded me of my vow to do push-ups. I despise pushups. They hurt.
They’re hard, but effective. And since I’m working hard to strengthen my wrist after breaking it in 2011, I can’t let what I don’t like stop me. Even though the workouts are challenging, I thank God that I’m making progress.
So last evening, with both our sons, Kedar and Kaleb, egging me on, I completed 20 push-ups. For someone else, that may not seem like a whole lot. But I remember just weeks ago celebrating the fact that I could do three push-ups without falling flat on my face. The process has been gradual and grueling, but with each new milestone—great or small—I realize my strength and capacity is increasing.
Now my left wrist bears up under the weight of my body, all because of the intense training it’s been through. The ability to do push-ups has taken me more than three years. With the metal plate and screws in my wrist, I thought I’d never see the day.
Building strength to handle weight takes time.
Just as with physical exercise, in life, we must be challenged in order to grow stronger. That’s why God is allowing you to go through such difficult tests and trials. He’s increasing your capacity to handle things—not just troubles, but also blessings.
You see, your harvest is weighty and God doesn’t want you to sink under the weight of your blessing.
Don’t you realize you can be overwhelmed by a good thing if you’re not ready for it? So then, He prepares you before releasing and unleashing all the favor stored up for you.
I’m reminded of a Bible story I love sharing, found in Luke 5:1-11.
Here we find Jesus. After He had finished using Simon’s boat to teach the crowd on the shore of Lake Gennesaret, the Lord told him to push the vessel out into deep waters and let his net down for a big catch. Before agreeing, Simon informed Jesus that he and the other disciples with him had been fishing all night and had caught nothing—not even a minnow, a small fish.
These guys were tired of all those hours of waiting patiently and receiving nothing in return. Quite honestly, Simon didn’t want to waste any more time anticipating productivity, only to be let down. Nevertheless, exasperated and all, Simon essentially said, "Well, alright Jesus. I don’t think this is a great idea, but if You say so, I’ll give this another shot.”
The Bible says, when he followed Jesus’ command, there were so many fish, that the net couldn’t even handle all they caught. They had to call to their partners over from another boat to help them. They received a blessing they didn’t have enough room to receive.
Those fish filled up both boats! It was so much, the Bible says they started sinking under the weight of the fish.
God knows that great harvests carry great weight. He also knows when you and I have the capacity to receive what we we’re asking. He’ll give you all the good things predestined for you when you’re ready, but not a moment sooner. If you attain a thing prematurely, you’ll squander, abuse and eventually lose it. If you’re not mature enough or strong enough to handle a good thing, it will overwhelm you and turn out to be a bad thing.
In God’s Kingdom, He does nothing before its time. He doesn’t hand out blessings too early, nor does He do anything too late. As the song says, "He’s an on time God... yes He is."
Right now, through your present circumstances, God is strengthening you for your future breakthrough. I know you’ve been praying for manifestation of the promise. Yet, God is saying, don’t rush the process. Every great harvest comes with great responsibilities. He’s getting you ready.
If God hasn’t yet opened the floodgates, it’s because He knows you’d drown. He has so many incredible things in store for you. In due season, they will be revealed and released into your life. When your set time comes, no one and nothing can stop the plan of God.
Trust His timing.
To remind you that God has awesome things waiting for you, I’m stirring Jeremiah 29:11 ESV into your cup of inspiration, which says, “For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know that God’s good plan will be unveiled in due time and when it is, you'll be ready to handle it.
Now let’s pray.
God, Your timing is so different from mine. Sometimes, I feel ready to receive the things I have been praying for and when they don’t come, disappointment washes over me. But today, I release discouragement, worry and frustration, and submit to Your will for my life. Thank You for loving me enough not to give me something I am not ready to handle. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I smiled and listened silently.
Our youngest son Kaleb’s sports commentator voice is adorable.
I overheard him giving the play-by-play of an imaginary football game and doing all the vocal inflections perfectly.
“He’s going, going, going… touch dooown!” he shouted.
I actually think it’s the funniest and cutest thing to catch any of the Hobbs children in an unguarded state. To get a glimpse inside their world and see a vividly colored moment unfiltered, is thrilling—and quite hilarious.
Typically, however, if they are aware that I’m watching, both the girls and boys get distracted by that and aren’t as uninhibited. They smile sheepishly and stop whatever silliness they were doing.
I think modifying our behaviors while being observed is pretty common for us all.
We’ll goof around, sing off key, laugh loudly, or dance poorly to our favorite song in private, right? But if we look up and notice someone observing that moment, a feeling of embarrassment usually washes over us and we palm our face in shame.
Whether we’re being silly or not, focusing on our surroundings tends to change our reactions.
This isn’t at all a big deal unless, of course, we allow what’s going on in our environment to fully move our attention away from God, and place it on our circumstances.
You see, if you want to make it through the ups and downs of life, you have to have focused, unrelenting faith, like the centurion had in Matthew 8:5-13.
A Centurion was a high-ranking soldier in the Roman army, skilled at killing and also, in command of other men.
The Bible says the centurion needed Jesus to heal his very sick servant. This official believed that, despite how things were going at home, Jesus had the power to turn things around.
When Jesus offered to come to the centurion's house, he felt unworthy to host the Savior under his roof. Nevertheless, he was fully convinced that Jesus did not need to be there in the physical. All the Anointed One had to do was send His word forth and breakthrough would manifest.
In verse 9 the centurion says to Jesus, "For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell this one, 'Go,' and he goes; and that one, 'Come,' and he comes. I say to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it.'"
Being a man in power, the centurion knew full well what it was like to speak a command and have it happen just the way he ordered it. He had no trouble believing in Christ’s power and authority to command a thing to be so.
Jesus, who possessed control over every seen, unseen, natural and supernatural element, was impressed with the centurion. So the One who has authority over disease, nature, sin, death, hell and the grave, granted the centurion’s request.
When the faith-filled man returned home, his prayer was answered. His servant was healed, because Jesus sent forth a word. Today, God is sending forth a word to remind you that He has power to shift your circumstances.
When God speaks, things change. He's speaking to your situation now. Expect a shift!
Trust in His sovereignty. Believe in His authority. Rest in His promises. Be assured that His power is at work in your life.
No matter how insurmountable the obstacle, with just one word, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords can make it alright.
Friend, I want you to internalize five of the words the centurion spoke to Jesus, found in Matthew 8:8 KJV, which I’m stirring into your cup of inspiration.
He said, “…but speak the word only.”
In this passage of scripture, the Greek word for “word” is “logos,” which, in this context, means something that is declared, also denoting a “decree,” “order,” or “mandate.”
The centurion told Jesus to command that things change.
Now, here's what's awesome.
According to John 1:1-4, Jesus is the “Logos” or the “Word”—God’s perfect revelation of Himself in the flesh. So then, the centurion told the Word to speak a word.
When Jesus did, what was once a problem was banished. Disease had to go because of Christ's mandate.
Still today, the Lord speaks and circumstances obey His command.
I'll leave you with Isaiah 55:11 (GOD'S WORD® Translation), which says, "'My word, which comes from my mouth, is like the rain and snow. It will not come back to me without results. It will accomplish whatever I want and achieve whatever I send it to do.'"
Now let’s pray.
God, I believe that when You speak, circumstances shift. Instead of focusing on my issues, I trust You, the One who has power over them. Today, I cling to every promise You've ever spoken over my life and believe with all my heart that manifestation is coming. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I didn’t know that a family friend, who has struggled with alcoholism for many years, almost relapsed the night before. When he heard that word, he knew it was from God and felt grateful.
“You’re not going to believe what I did yesterday,” he said to me.
He told me he had purchased a bottle of liquor and stashed it. “It was so hard for me not to drink it, but I didn’t open it,” he said.
Right then, I gave God praise, because I knew the encouragement was tailor-made for his situation. Our loving Heavenly Father sent a word to help him not to fall back into a destructive pattern that nearly destroyed his life. My friend was blessed, strengthened and empowered to continue doing the right thing.
I didn't know he was struggling, but God did.
Isn’t the Lord awesome?
When I spoke to him last, he let me know he had gotten rid of that liquor and had not had a drink.
I so love how God is gracious to us. He sees, knows and cares about every one of our struggles. He looks at us through eyes of compassion and lovingly guides us.
Friend, whether or not you struggle with alcoholism or some other form of addiction, there is some area in your life where you need God’s help.
We all do.
And you know what? Just as He did with my friend, God is stepping into your situation and giving you the assistance you need. Whether your difficulty is emotional, relational, financial, physical, mental or spiritual, His hand is outstretched.
God is intimately acquainted with your issues. He hears your cries. Sometimes, you may feel overlooked, especially when you run into delays and setbacks, but you are not forgotten.
The Lord sees what you’re going through. He’s working it out right now. Trust Him.
Imagine how Jairus, a ruler of the synagogue felt, whom I mentioned recently. His story is in Luke chapter 8:40-56.
Jairus’ 12-year-old daughter was lying at the point of death. Desperate for help, this distraught father threw himself down at Jesus’ feet, imploring the Savior to come to his house and heal her.
That’s when the woman with the issue of blood, who had been sick as long as his daughter was alive, came seeking healing. Remember? She interrupted Jairus’ moment, by touching the hem of Jesus’ garment and receiving her healing.
Meanwhile, the delay proved fatal for Jairus’ daughter. Someone from his house came and told him, “Your daughter is dead; do not trouble the Teacher anymore.”
What crushing news.
How overlooked must Jairus have felt? It seemed like someone else's needs were placed above his own, which led to the loss of his daughter. Things looked hopeless. Jairus had reached Jesus, told Him about the problem and yet, it appeared too late for him.
In response to the news of the girl's passing, Jesus told Jairus, “Do not fear; only believe, and she will be well.”
That was unimaginably hard to believe. How could a dead girl ever be well? Her life was over.
Oh, but it wasn’t.
It’s never over until God says it’s over!
When Jesus arrived at Jairus’ house, folks were mourning, wailing and bawling their eyes out over the tragic loss of an adolescent. When Jesus said she wasn’t dead, but only sleeping, they took a break from crying and started laughing. They were thinking, Is this guy out of his mind?
But Jesus took the girl by the hand and told her to arise. And at His command, life returned to her lifeless body. It was a miracle!
Jairus wasn't forgotten after all... and neither are you.
That day, God showed Jairus that He is sovereign, all-knowing, all-powerful and able to bring hope to a seemingly hopeless situation. He’s able to show you the same thing.
As I mentioned in a previous devotional, Jairus’ name is a Greek form of the Hebrew personal name Jair meaning, “Jehovah will enlighten.”
That day, God enlightened Jairus and demonstrated the words Jesus uttered in Matthew 19:26, which is what I’m stirring into your cup of inspiration. He said, "With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible."
As you drink down the contents of your cup, God is enlightening you. He is letting you know that you are not forgotten. Delay is not denial. This situation is not too big or too hard for Him. What you're waiting and believing for is not beyond God's power.
By man’s standards, this thing is impossible, but not so with God. No matter how long you've been waiting, you are not forgotten and your situation is not too far gone. God is able.
I don’t care what it is. There is no addiction or stronghold His power cannot break; no disease He cannot heal; no problem He is unable to solve.
Trust Him and you will see the impossible happen.
Now let’s pray.
God, thank You for helping me realize I am not forgotten. I will not give into doubt and unbelief, but will cling to the truth that what is impossible with man is possible with You. I believe that delay is not denial. I will patiently wait upon You and I rejoice in advance for my breakthrough. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
“It was good, wasn’t it?” I responded.
Kaiah had to admit that Mom’s green spinach tortilla—though it didn’t look or smell very appetizing to her when she first saw me eating it—was pretty tasty.
Just like me, she put rice in it and found it to be pleasing to her palate.
It really is very good.
Since last summer, my eating habits have changed drastically. The transition happened after my digestive issues got to be too much. I prayed about what was going on in my body and went to see my doctor. Long story short, we discovered that I needed to make some serious adjustments to my diet.
I found out that, since having my gall bladder removed after a massive attack more than 15 years ago, my system can’t break down certain foods. I didn’t realize that my digestive processes were virtually crippled, which is why I had been having some major problems.
Looking back on it all, I'm thankful for the discomfort I went through. It led me to the path I’m currently on. I eat whole, plant-based foods. That means I consume lots of veggies, fruits, legumes, starches and whole grains, while cutting out meat and dairy.
I get plenty protein and nutrients from fruits and vegetables.
Thankfully, the unpleasant symptoms I was struggling with before have disappeared—though my love and longing for meat yet lingers. I know that eating certain things hurts me, but it doesn't mean I don't still feel tempted by those things. I just have to remind myself that good health is more desirable than good-tasting food that is unhealthy for me.
This makes me think about how the children of Israel felt when God delivered them from Egypt and fed them Manna in the wilderness. Though being free was better than being enslaved, there were certain foods they enjoyed during their enslavement that they lost access to along their desert commute to their prophesied destination.
In Numbers 11: 5, when the Israelites were eating bread rained down from heaven, despite the miracle provision God was gracious enough to give them, they couldn’t stop reminiscing. They yearned for that good old, rich Egyptian cuisine.
They said, “We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost--also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic.”
They were stuck in yesterday, romanticizing the past, rather than rejoicing over their today and anticipating the future.
Can you relate?
In our walk with the Lord, like Israel, we sometimes get stuck reminiscing about an old thing, when God is trying to do a new thing.
But it's time to move forward so you can receive all the great things God has for you.
Forget what's behind you. God is doing something new & better in your life!
After suffering under cruel Egyptian slave masters for over 400 years, the Israelites were initially happy when God freed them through His servant Moses. But freedom mandated that they deal with the temporary discomfort of treading through the wilderness until they reached the “land flowing with milk and honey.” On their hungriest and thirstiest days, even Egypt, which was once appalling to them, looked appealing to them.
In Exodus 16:3, while feeling frustrated and disillusioned with their circumstances, the Bible says the Israelites complained to Moses and Aaron that they wished they had never left Egypt. "If only the LORD had killed us back in Egypt," they moaned. "There we sat around pots filled with meat and ate all the bread we wanted. But now you have brought us into this wilderness to starve us all to death."
Have you ever looked back at the lesser on your way to greater, because you didn’t know how to deal with the difficulty of the in-between? Have you ever romanticized and fantasized about bondage because freedom didn’t feel as good as you imagined it would? Have you ever been aggravated by the meantime experience to the point where your former circumstance, though imperfect, in hindsight, appeared to be the better option?
I’ve been there, but now I know, the journey is worth it. The sacrifices, tears and work it takes to step into your season of better are never in vain. So don’t give into discouragement. Walk through the transition, the trial, the test, knowing that, on the other side, God indeed has more for you.
As long as you walk in obedience to His will, even when He carries you through a dry, tough, dark place, you will come out victoriously. Don’t retreat. Keep moving forward by faith.
Don’t dare look back!
I know things often look better in the rear view mirror of life when what you see through the front window is uncertain or unpleasant. But remember, God brought you out of where you were then to the place where you are now for a reason. While you await clarity and manifestation, it isn't easy. Nevertheless, in the meantime, don’t settle for worse, because of the hard work and sacrifice it takes to have better. March on.
Cry if you must, but don’t go backward. Keep moving forward. Don't abandon the path God has laid out for you.
Be like the four figures Ezekiel saw in a divinely inspired prophetic vision in Ezekiel 1:12 NASB, which is what I’m stirring into your cup of inspiration. It says, “And each went straight forward; wherever the spirit was about to go, they would go, without turning as they went.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, you are being empowered to push ahead and follow the spirit of God, even in the face of hardship, adversity, hurt and pain.
Go straight forward and don’t turn back.
You will bear fruit in your life if you remain connected to God and walk the path of destiny He has laid out for you.
Apart from Him, you can do nothing, but through Him, all things are possible.
God, thank You for strengthening me to continue going despite the hardship and obstacles I face. I believe that, by Your power, I can combat and overcome every hindering force that comes to pull me backward. Today, I come against every negative cycle, thought and chain that comes to bind me. By faith, I am free and will stay that way through You, the One who strengthens me. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I stumbled across something I wrote a while ago that caused me to reflect on a season when I was battling prolonged illness. I was struggling with chronic pain and symptoms the doctors couldn’t properly diagnose.
After a while, it all began to feel overwhelming.
One day, I was so ill and despondent that I called my mother to get some encouragement. I needed to vent and be consoled. But when I got ready to tell her what was going on with me, I burst into tears.
I’m not talking about a few drops escaping my eyes and a bit of trembling in my voice.
It was like a dam in my soul broke and floods violently rushed out of me, taking my breath away. Loud sobs replaced my words as I laid on top of the receiver pressed against my face and the pillow.
Mom calmly ministered to me. She assured me that God wasn’t through with me. As I was despairing, she told me, "Dianna, no matter how you feel, I want you say, 'It's getting better every day.'"
Even though, for quite a while, it felt like it was getting worse every day, I heeded my mother’s divinely-inspired advice. When I was feeble, unable to eat, in too much pain to go to sleep, unable to get out of bed without help, I still whispered by faith (with tears soaking my pillowcase), “It’s getting better every day.”
Today, by the grace of God, I am living what I was speaking back then. The Lord raised me up. He truly wasn’t through with me.
He’s not through with you yet, either. I know you may be going through some rough times and dealing with ongoing struggles, but hang in there. The best is yet to come.
I’m reminded of 2 Samuel 15 when David was going through one of the most difficult times of his life. His son Absalom was trying to kill him. David’s rebellious seed, who had already murdered his brother Amnon (2 Samuel 13:23-38), was ruthless in his pursuit of power. He wanted to take David’s throne.
Absalom was crafty.
He had managed to corrupt the hearts of many who were once loyal to David. A great multitude had switched their allegiance to Absalom and willingly joined the revolt. It was an absolute mess.
Though Absalom’s rebellion was part of God’s judgment against David for committing adultery with Bathsheeba and having her husband Uriah killed to cover up his wrongdoing (See 2 Samuel 12:10), the Lord was still with David. The throne was not Absalom’s to take. He couldn't snatch away something God had preordained for someone else. Really, Absalom was waging war against God.
In Hebrew, Absalom’s name means “Father of peace,” but he certainly didn’t live up to his name. Rather, he created an environment of chaos and lawlessness.
So David and all of his allies, except for 10 concubines he left behind to take care of the palace, were forced to leave Jerusalem to escape Absalom, whose military coup had gained tremendous momentum.
Feeling concerned and hoping to invoke God’s protection, the Bible says Zadok the priest and the Levites got the Ark of the Covenant, which was symbolic of God’s presence guiding His people, to take with them. Understandably, they wanted to be shielded from impending doom.
Though David had great respect for the Ark of the Covenant and how God revealed His power through it, in this case, he felt led to go forward without it. According to 2 Samuel 15:25-26, David told Zadok to take the Ark back into the city of Jerusalem.
“’If the Lord sees fit,’ David said, ‘he will bring me back to see the Ark and the Tabernacle again. But if he is through with me, then let him do what seems best to him.’”
Re-read what David said in verse 26: “But if he is through with me, then let him do what seems best to him.”
Pause there and really think about that.
David’s statement reveals his full trust in the sovereignty of God. He was completely surrendered to the Lord’s will—whatever it was.
That’s the way we ought to be.
Well, my friend, the Lord wasn’t through with David. Absalom was killed in battle and David, whom God had chosen to reign, resumed the throne unharmed. The evil scheme did not work.
It's not over! There's more, better and greater coming. God's not finished with you yet.
When God has His hand on your life, it does not matter who or what comes against you. You will be protected, sustained and delivered from trouble. “The righteous person faces many troubles, but the LORD comes to the rescue each time” (Psalm 34:19, NLT).
Today, the Lord is sending a reassuring word for you: He’s coming to the rescue, because He is not through with you yet. The enemy’s greatest attempts will fall flat. You will keep standing strong after Satan hits you with his best shot. God’s purpose for you must be fulfilled and He will not allow the devil to derail your destiny.
Again, God’s not through with you.
You have no need to worry, fret, or fear. His mighty hand of favor is outstretched toward you and His perfect will, will be accomplished. The raging storm will not overthrow you. The crashing waves will not drown you. The furnace of affliction will not consume you. The snares of the enemy will not entangle you. The fiercest attack will not destroy you, for the Lord will uphold you.
You, like David, may be going through an intense season of adversity. God sees. He has not abandoned you. The enemy has not and cannot win.
God has pronounced blessings over your life and what He has planned for you will come to pass. So don’t be sidetracked, discouraged and disheartened by the opposition you face. As I often tell you, know who and whose you are. You belong to the Lord.
He has the final say.
In 2 Samuel 18:28, Zadok’s son Ahimaaz delivered news to David that Absaolm and his enemies had been defeated. So I’m stirring the first part of what Ahimaaz told the king right after the victory was won into your cup of inspiration.
In the New Living Translation he said, “Everything is all right!”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know that everything is all right.
Because God is not through with you. He’s not finished blessing you. He will rush to your defense in the time of trouble.
“When the enemy shall come in like a flood, the Spirit of the Lord shall lift up a standard against him” (Isaiah 59:19, KJV).
Now let’s pray.
God, the storms of life are raging and in some areas, things don’t appear to be working in my favor, but I trust that You are not through with me. I know this is not the end. I declare by faith that better days and greater things are on the way for me. Thank You for them! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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.
I almost didn’t believe it when I was told she had stolen something from me and attempted to sell what was mine to someone else.
“I mentored her. She seemed so sweet. How could she do something like that?” I said to my husband Kenya, struggling to process the unexpected news I received that day. I actually would not have accepted any of it as true had I not been given official evidence verifying what this individual tried to do in another state.
But she got caught.
“Did she think I wouldn’t find out?” I said. “How could she?”
Kenya was just as stunned as I was.
As much as I wanted to, I couldn’t deny what had happened. I felt betrayed, confused and shocked.
My heart bled.
Have you ever had something happen to you that you thought never would and then you struggled to work through it mentally? That’s where I was.
It took a lot of prayer for me to overcome that deep wound. I didn’t want to be angry, bitter and afraid to trust. I didn’t know how to move forward, but I knew who to go to for help. I cried out to the Lord with my whole heart. I searched His word for answers, strength and guidance.
The more I sought Him, the more He helped me.
That happened more than ten years ago and I remember well the feeling I had the first time I saw her again. I happened to be walking through the mall with our two daughters, Kyla and Kaiah, when I spotted the person who attempted to get over on me and never apologized.
I hadn’t seen or heard from her since the incident a few years prior. Initially, I wasn’t sure it was her. I thought my eyes were fooling me. But the closer I got, I had no more doubt.
“Hey, how are you?” the words escaped my lips along with a wide smile. I didn’t feel the slightest hint of anger. She, on the other hand, cringed a bit, which was understandable. She looked like she had seen a ghost and quickly, and awkwardly waved as she scurried along.
After the brief interaction I knew for certain that, by the grace of God, I had truly let it go. Though the devil would have loved for me to hold on to that offense and allow bitterness and unforgiveness to poison my spirit, I refused.
Friend, in life, things happen. Troubles come. People do you wrong. You go through disappointments. You deal with setbacks. Things don’t turn out the way you thought they would.
We all go through unpleasant things. Nevertheless, you don’t have to allow negative circumstances to control you, when you allow the Spirit of God to control you.
Earlier, I was reading 2 Timothy 4:10, where the Apostle Paul was talking about a man named Demas who once worked alongside him in ministry. But you know what happened? Demas changed.
Paul told Timothy, “because he loved this world, [he] has deserted me and has gone to Thessalonica.”
That must have hurt.
Paul was a leader who loved people. He poured into them, mentored them and helped build them up. But those he loved weren’t always loyal. In verse 11, we discover that, not only did Demas leave Paul, but everybody abandoned him except one person.
“Only Luke is with me,” he told Timothy of the loyal doctor who was a co-laborer in ministry.
In this passage, Paul, who was in Rome, was close to death. This is his final letter. So here he is at the end of his life and those he trusted weren’t there for him.
In verse 16, he said, “At my first defense, no one came to my support, but everyone deserted me.”
No one supported him.
That seems sad, doesn’t it?
But wait. I love what Paul said in verse 17: “But the Lord stood at my side and gave me strength…”
When everyone else forsook him and it seemed like the whole world was against him, Paul knew God was for him. The Lord strengthened him.
That word strengthened is a Greek word, endunamoó (Pronounced en-doo-nam-o'-o), which, according to Strong’s Concordance, means to empower.
By definition, endunamoó means, “I fill with power, strengthen, make strong.”
In a situation where Paul should have been feeling weak, lonely, depressed and sorrowful, God empowered Him to hold his head up and be assured that the Lord was with him.
God's strength is carrying you. His power is resting on you. You won't be defeated!
Now how does this apply to you?
Well, there are some things you’ve been through that should have caused you to give up, lose your mind and be utterly hopeless. But you’re still standing firmly in faith, speaking the word of God, believing in His promises and moving forward because of endunamoó—divine strength and power from on high—that is holding you up.
Without the strength of God, you couldn’t have made it. The abuse would have destroyed you. The broken relationship would have shattered you. The closed door would have stopped you from ever trying again. The setback would have set you back for good.
You would have walked away a long time ago. But the fact that you are pressing forward is evidence that a power greater, stronger and mightier than you, is keeping you.
Thank God for His keeping power, amen?
You’ve got power to overcome; power to forgive; power to fulfill your divine purpose; power to thrive in a hostile environment; power to fight through those physical, mental, emotional and spiritual challenges; power to withstand every attack of the enemy.
No weapon formed against you will prosper because of endunamoó.
God has equipped and empowered you to win!
To remind you of this truth, I’m stirring what Paul said in the first half of 2 Timothy 4:18 into your cup of inspiration. He declared, “The Lord will rescue me from every evil attack…”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, be assured of God’s power working in your life right now to overcome every evil attack, every assignment of the enemy, every fiery dart Satan has aimed at you.
It won’t penetrate.
Because the King of Glory is fighting for you.
“Who is this King of glory? The Lord strong and mighty, the Lord mighty in battle” (Psalm 24:8, NIV).
As you rejoice for the power of God working in you, for you and through you, please join me in interceding for those who have asked to be included on our Thoughtful Thursdays intercessory prayer list today. As you pray earnestly for others, God will move in your life as well.
My mother has a cancerous stomach ulcer. We are believing God for healing! Please pray for her. I am trying not to be scared but I can’t lie. I am! Please pray this spirit of fear off of me. I need to be strong for my family and my two younger brothers who are taking the news very hard. Thank you.
Please pray for myself and my in-laws. My father-in-law has been scheduled for chemo on Stage 4 cancer starting 2/22/2016 for 24 weeks. We all need prayers to strengthen our family and to humble my mother-in-law so she will accept his daughter he had before he met and married her. The daughter wants a relationship with her father. This is a critical time. I myself need help in praying for our family during this critical time. I know God can do anything, and nothing is impossible. I know it sounds like I aired family secrets, but I feel this way you know and I feel this is a God fearing team and power in prayers work. God bless you all and Thank you in advance. God be the Glory!!
I myself have been brought back miraculously from a massive stroke that put me in a coma for 3 weeks. I know God left me here for his purpose. I would like prayer in helping me to realize His purpose and His help in bringing it into fruition.
I ask for prayer for emotional, physical, spiritual healing of my family. I ask for prayer for healing and restoration of my marriage and strength to stand despite circumstances pointing towards letting him go. I need guidance because it is getting harder to know God's direction in my life.
I feel myself slipping. I've been trusting and believing God for so long and keep receiving the positive affirmations of what I believe He has said to no avail. I am tired of hoping. It is making me cynical and bitter at best as the days, months, and years pass me by. I almost don't want to be encouraged as it brings me back to a renewed hope. I want to quit. It may hurt less. I'm frustrated and confused and ashamed. He said He would not put me to shame, but that's where I am. I don't know how to pray differently about this than I already have in the past years. I'm tired. Please help.
I love your words of encouragement. They help me get through. Please pray for me as I have just broken up with my boyfriend of three years. He was abusive to me and I finally found the courage to walk away. I still miss him though and I feel myself getting weak. I don’t want to go back. He almost killed me the last time and has terrible anger issues, but I feel like I know him and understand him. Lord please help me to be strong move on with my life. Amen. Please pray for me.
My husband is a church deacon who strayed away from the Lord. Last month he told me he wanted out of our 20-year marriage and has not been back home since. My heart is aching. Why is this happening? I need prayer in the worst way!
I apologize if I have sent this request before. The situation is no better as of this writing. Emergency prayer please for the Lord to provide funds for past bills, medical needs, utilities, repairs etc. This is a result of continual long term unemployment. This battle feels as if it is actually spiritual warfare behind the scenes-it is so entrenched and creates such fear and disillusionment and one trial after another keeps occurring with no relief. This does not seem like the normal stresses of life. God bless you for addressing these needs with your intercession.
Please pray with me about what college I should attend. I've thought about bible college, but I feel that it may be directed more so towards people who want to be preachers or ministers. I've also considered normal (secular) colleges. I hope you see this post, and if you do, thank you for your prayers.
Pray for me, I'm going through a rough patch financially and spiritually. Pray that I don't develop a spirit of complaining and bitterness. Pray that my son will be blessed with a job.
Praying for restoration and increase in every area of my life. Praying that I will experience breakthroughs where needed, especially employment and finances. Praying that GOD will turn NO's into YES, open up doors that only HE can open, and the IMPOSSIBLE into POSSIBLE, like only HE CAN DO. Praying for supernatural abundance, more than I can think or imagine. Praying for this dry season to be over if it's HIS WILL!!!!!!!
Please pray with me for this job that I've been given. I pray for Wisdom, knowledge and understanding. I Pray that I will be the best that I can be and to enjoy it, to find it fulfilling and to give it my all, in Jesus name amen.
God, when I feel too weak to bear these burdens, thank You for reminding me I am not on my own. Your strength is empowering me to make it. Instead of worrying and fretting over my circumstances, I will rejoice in knowing that You have anointed and equipped me to go through and come out of this victoriously. Thank You Lord that, when the enemy is attacking me, You are fighting for me and upholding me through it all. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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.
It was Sunday morning and I had cracked open a book and began reading. Though I was tired from having arisen at 4 AM for an early flight out and had somewhat of a nagging headache, all in all, everything was well.
About 20 minutes into the flight, I heard sniffling from the blonde-haired woman seated next to me. At first, I didn’t look up from my book. But the sniffs grew louder and more steady. When I glanced over and noticed her crying, immediately, I felt sympathy for her and wondered what was wrong. But she had her eyes sealed shut, as her cheeks glistened from the rivers flowing out of them. Her earbuds blocked out the noise of her surroundings as she was having a very private moment of overwhelm in a public place.
I prayed for the Lord to give her comfort. Then, I heard the Holy Spirit speak to me and say, “I want you to minister to that woman, Dianna.”
Feeling instantly anxious, I had an internal dialogue with God about this whole thing, which sounded like a bad idea to me.
Now, Lord, I don’t know this woman, I reasoned. She doesn’t seem to be doing very well and I don’t think she would take too kindly to me invading her space like that.
I didn’t want to be the bizarre lady creeping out a random stranger. So I protested—at first— as if I was in the position to advise God on what should or shouldn’t be done.
Despite my internal objections, God wouldn’t let me off the hook.
Always wanting to be in His will, I relented and waited for the right moment, which finally arrived when she removed her headset.
“What were you listening to?” I asked, uttering my first words to her.
“Chris Tomlin,” she responded.
“I enjoy his worship music,” I replied.
From there, I trusted God to word my mouth as I shared the message of love, compassion and hope He led me to give this woman.
Her name was Bernadette.
Once I started talking to her about the Lord and sharing what God had given me to say, she was extremely excited to learn I was a Christian and thanked me for my words. She told me she needed to hear exactly what I was expressing at that time in her life.
“God is amazing!” she beamed, laughing with wonder in her eyes.
Turns out, this woman was going through a rough time after having come back from visiting her dying mother the night before. Bernadette told me she was a former drug addict and alcoholic who was introduced to the Lord by her daughter who happened to be a foreign missionary.
Bernadette opened up about what a long and difficult night it had been seeing her mom on her deathbed. She was rejoicing that she didn’t relapse as she had done many times before.
The more we went back and forth, the more she opened up about her faith journey. “It wasn’t a statue, a tree, or the universe that helped me get sober,” Bernadette said. “It was Jesus literally bringing me to my knees."
She continued, “It would have been impossible without Jesus and I just want to tell others about it.”
When we landed, she let me know that one of her deepest heart’s desires and prayers was to “be used as a vessel for God” to help youth and to share her story with others who may also need to be free of addiction. But she felt like she had messed up too badly and wasted too much time abusing her body to ever be good enough to be used by the Lord.
No wonder God wanted me to share His message of love and grace with Bernadette!
By the end of our talk, she was overwhelmed by His compassion. She told me she could hardly believe God had positioned her on the plane next to another believer who had a special message for her. She felt His love in a new way.
“Please tell my story,” she said, after hugging me goodbye in the airport.
I promised her I would.
Friend, I didn’t know when I boarded the plane that God would introduce me to a former drug addict and alcoholic saved by the power of the cross. I was unaware that Bernadette needed to know God was with her during a difficult time of grief. Furthermore, I had no insight about her past and how she desperately wanted to let as many others as possible know that Jesus saves.
But, because I obeyed God, despite what I felt, thought, or couldn’t understand at the time, Bernadette’s prayers were answered and ministry is taking place as you read this. God still delivers from addiction. He yet speaks. He answers prayer!
God knows exactly what He's doing. Trust His will, way & timing!
Because of Him, Bernadette is testifying through me right now.
Isn’t God amazing?
He always has a way to accomplish His plan. You never know what God is doing, what He has in store, or how He will fulfill His will. Just know that the deepest desires of your heart, like those of Bernadette’s, will be fulfilled if you trust the Lord.
Even if He has to use a complete and reluctant stranger on an airplane to minister to your needs, God will go to great lengths to bless you.
This makes me think about 1 Kings 17—a passage I’ve shared before. Do you recall how, in the middle of a severe drought, God sent the prophet Elijah to a widow in Zarephath in the region of Sidon, whom He had commanded to feed the man of God?
When he arrived, the prophet discovered that her resources had been depleted by the drought and famine. Yet, he asked the widow for some water and a piece of bread.
According to verse 12, she told him she only had a small amount of flour, a little bit of olive oil and some water to make the last cake for her and her son. They were about to split their paltry rations and prepare to die of starvation.
Why in the world did God send Elijah to be fed by someone who was about to starve to death? That doesn’t make sense, right?
Not to us.
But remember what God said in Isaiah 55:8: “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways.”
His ways often defy logic.
That’s why Elijah couldn’t go by what He saw. Neither could the widow. He had to unflinchingly speak what God said, despite how things looked. And she had to unflinchingly obey what God said, despite how things looked.
In verse 14, Elijah told this financially destitute and hopeless woman, “The jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry until the day the Lord sends rain on the land.”
When she heard the word, there was no tangible evidence of its validity. There were no signs indicating that a miracle was about to take place in her life. Yet, she believed and obeyed. She lacked money and full cupboards, but she had plenty of faith.
The Lord sent Elijah to be blessed by a woman who was poor in material wealth but rich in faith.
Faith was all she needed.
That’s what the Lord wants you to see today. He’s after your faith. Even in lean times, dark seasons and difficult moments, if you can just believe God for breakthrough, you’ll position yourself to reap bountifully.
When this widow made bread for the prophet to eat as he had requested, just as the word of the Lord said, there was food every day for Elijah, the woman and her son. God made a way for them. He’s going to make a way for you, too.
The same God that supernaturally provided in Bible days will provide for you this day. He already has a plan. He has the solution to your problem, whatever it may be. It’s not too complicated for Him!
Trust Him. He already has a way.
To encourage you, I’m stirring Jeremiah 17:7 NIV into your cup of inspiration, which says, “But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know that the way is already made. Even if the way is not immediately clear, trust the Lord.
He will take care of you, work things out for your good and get you to the place you need to be.
Now let’s pray.
God, I don’t see the way, but I’m trusting You to make one. In times when I lack clarity and understanding, please help me place my confidence in You, the One who holds my destiny firmly in Your hands. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
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.
“You know, the guy from the movie,” he said, with a look indicating I should have known what he was talking about.
I had no idea.
“The lead character from the film we watched last night,” he dropped another big hint after rightly interpreting the blank stare on my face to mean I was completely lost.
“Oh, that was his name?” I said, laughing at my absentmindedness.
Kenya is great at recalling names, faces and intricate details.
Not so much.
Even though I thoroughly enjoyed the plot and was pretty much engrossed the whole time, hours after seeing the film, the cast members, as well as specific events from the compelling script escaped me.
Why couldn’t I remember?
Well, if you have been a loyal reader of Your Daily Cup of Inspiration for several years, you already know I have battled memory loss for quite some time. Following surgery in 2011, I went into cardiac arrest, stopped breathing and was without oxygen for approximately 5 minutes.
I nearly died.
By the grace of God, breath returned to my body, but some of my brain functions did not. To this day, that traumatic event still impacts me and often hinders my mental ability to connect the dots between my past and present. I face challenges with my short term recollection too, which is why that movie plot was hazy yesterday.
Those closest to me are aware of this issue, so when I ask them the very same question they answered a few weeks, days, hours and occasionally, minutes ago, they patiently repeat the information for me. Thankfully, they don’t get frustrated because things slip my mind so quickly.
I have to rely heavily on my assistant to help me keep appointments and honor obligations. I need notices for my notices. So when I tell people, “If I forget something important, please charge it to my head and not my heart,” I mean that.
Individuals unfamiliar with what I have been through, however, ask me incredulously, “Are you serious? You really don’t remember?”
It can be awkward on occasion.
But you know what the remarkable thing is?
When it comes to the word of God, the scriptures I have read throughout the years, meditated on and internalized—both before and after my trauma—have stuck with me.
From time-to-time, I stop and reflect on how awesome God is, particularly when I have to minister His word. He brings it all back. With just a few notes, outlines or external helps—sometimes none—I hear His voice. By His spirit, He unfolds revelation to me.
Because I know my limitations, I am even more in awe of His wisdom and power working through me. Without Him, I am nothing.
I can do nothing.
God's power is in no way limited by your limitations! He's able to do anything.
Although I would love to have 100% of my cognitive abilities restored and I am believing God to do it, in the meantime, my deficiency keeps me relying on His sufficiency. Instead of worrying about what I am unable to do, I rest in the one who is able to do all things.
Friend, we are all limited in some regard. We each have struggles and crosses to bear. But God is not hindered by what hinders us. He is not limited by what limits us. He is still able to use us, make up for what we lack and accomplish His will through us.
This reminds me of a story of a man named Mephibosheth in 2 Samuel 9. The Bible says he described himself as a “dead dog” and felt unworthy to be loved. His warped self-perception was tied to an incident in his past.
At just five years old, this boy’s father and grandfather were both killed in war. After hearing of his family’s fate, the child’s terrified nurse took off running. In her haste, she accidentally dropped Mephibosheth on the ground.
He fell so hard he was left crippled.
Years later, he heard that a rich and powerful man, an old friend of his father’s, wanted to show him kindness and Mephibosheth, disabled and forgotten, could hardly believe it.
That rich and powerful man was King David.
Mephibosheth was the son of Jonathan, David’s former best friend and was also the grandson of jealous King Saul who once sought to take David’s life. In this biblical account, David remembered his promise to God that he would show loyalty and kindness to Saul’s family. That’s when he was directed to Mephibosheth, whose name means "dispeller of shame.”
To dispel, which is to make something disappear, is the perfect word to describe what God did for this man. The Lord erased, got rid of and totally wiped away Mephibosheth’s shame and replaced it with favor and blessings.
David gave him the full inheritance of Saul and his family. This great harvest now belonged to Mephibosheth who, despite his deficiency, would always be a guest at King David’s table (2 Samuel 9:9-10).
Before this divinely orchestrated breakthrough in Mephibosheth’s life, I can only imagine how many people wrote him off. They assumed that, because of his inability to function the way others did, he wouldn’t be, do, or have very much in his life.
How wrong they were!
They were focusing on his disability, while discounting God’s ability.
The Lord is able to do anything!
Friend, if God greatly blessed Mephibosheth despite all he had working against him, He will do the same thing for you.
I’m a living witness that He’s able.
No matter where you are or what your limitations may be, when God gets ready to bless you, He’ll make sure favor finds you. With or without a lot of money, education, connections, physical strength or all the other stuff the world says you need, the Lord’s plan for your life will be fulfilled.
You’re not too broken, old, weak, sickly, far behind, or limited for God. He chose you and He’s going to bless you beyond measure!
So if you’ve been feeling concerned about what you lack and trying to figure out how you will access all God has for you, this is your reassuring word. You don’t have to go to it; it will come to you.
The blessings of the Lord will chase you down and overtake you. Stop worrying about what you can’t do, what you don’t know and all you don’t have. Just be still and know that He is God.
Mephibosheth couldn’t walk. He was confined to a place called Lodebar, which, in Hebrew means “no pasture.” There was no fruitfulness. It was a dry place. But God’s favor changed all that. What should have been a desolate life became an abundant life.
Perhaps you are in your own Lodebar, a dry place with no pasture. Like Mephibosheth’s name signifies, you could be dealing with shame, maybe because of some sort of failure, mistake, shortcoming or limitation. You, like Mephibosheth, may have been dropped in life, but you have not been forsaken.
Wherever you are and whatever the case, God wants you to know He has a good plan for you. He is turning things around.
To remind you of this truth, I’m stirring, Isaiah 61:7 NIV into your cup of inspiration, which says, “Instead of your shame you will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace you will rejoice in your inheritance. And so you will inherit a double portion in your land, and everlasting joy will be yours.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, prepare for God to dispel your shame and turn your “no pastures” into “green pastures,” because He is your shepherd, according to Psalm 23.
Open your heart and fix your mind to walk into a new season of harvest; a season of overflow; a season of a double portion.
Trust Him. God will make sure blessings and favor comes looking for you.
Now let’s pray.
God, I have been in a dry, desolate place. Things have not been coming together for me. But I declare by faith that things are turning around. I thank You for supernatural favor that has produced this next bountiful harvest I am about to reap. It is done. It is mine. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I was vacuuming the floor at home today, thanking God.
I let Him know how grateful I was to even have a floor to vacuum, a roof over my head and strength to complete chores.
Before cleaning, I enjoyed reading scriptures that strengthened my spirit. So I thanked God for having the freedom and privilege to open the Bible, and glean from the wisdom of His word whenever I want to.
There are some people in other countries that long to own a Bible of their own, but can’t. They wish that had liberty to worship God openly, but don’t.
I am blessed to freely seek and serve the Lord.
So are you.
With all the busyness of life, family, ministry and business obligations, I never forget to give glory to the One who makes it all possible.
If we are not deliberate about it, however, it’s easy to neglect to take time out to say thank you.
I make it a habit to praise God in both good times and bad times, because all the time, He is worthy.
We all must make the effort, especially in the not-so-good times in order to avoid behaving like Israel.
After God used Moses to deliver them from Egyptian slavery through the miraculous Red Sea crossing, they immediately sent praises up. In Exodus 15:1-21, we get a view of them lifting up a beautiful song of gratitude to God for delivering them.
But their jubilation and grateful attitude was short-lived. In verse 22, their exultation was cut short by a bitter circumstance—literally.
The Israelites entered into the Desert of Shur and for three days, there was no water. The Bible says, when they finally did come across some water, they could not drink it, because it was bitter.
That’s why the place was called “Marah,” which is the Hebrew word for bitter.
They went from rejoicing over their deliverance and how God had made their lives better, to murmuring about what was bitter.
God's chosen people began grumbling and complaining, asking Moses, “What are we going to drink?”
Have you ever come to place in your life, where, for a moment, things appeared to be looking up, but then, you hit a wall or some sort of setback? Ever thought you had broken through, but then, it all fell through? If this has happened, you know how quickly you can go from praising God for better and instead, focusing on the bitter.
Don’t fall into that trap.
1 Thessalonians 5:18 NIV says, “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus.”
Praise through every phase and season, with the assurance that the setbacks, trials, disappointments and negative situations are temporary. God will move, just as He did on behalf of Israel.
Your circumstances are about to shift. Praise God in advance for what's coming!
In Exodus 15:25, after things looked bleak, God showed Moses a piece of wood. When he threw it in the water, it went from bitter to sweet. That lets you know God is able to turn your bitter defeats into sweet victories. Just trust Him. Remain faithful. Obey His word. Follow His leading. Be grateful, even before things change.
Hold on to your faith that the struggle won’t last always.
Friend, God already has a plan to deliver you.
In verse 27—the final verse in this awesome chapter—after Israel had suffered and thirsted, they came to a place called Elim. Here, there were twelve fountains and seventy palm trees, and they were able to camp out near the water. They went from lack to abundance.
God knew all along that their dry place was temporary. So is yours.
God has a good plan for your life. He’s going to bring you out of this dry season. He’s going to lift you up out of this deep valley. While you’re waiting, instead of complaining about your present circumstance, begin rejoicing for your future breakthrough.
It’s on the way.
I don’t know where you are and what you’re believing for, but God does and He’s sending you this message.
If you’re trusting God for better, while things around you seem to be getting worse, don’t give into discouragement. Walk through this trial knowing that, on the other side of this dry place, a new thing is waiting.
To encourage you, I’m stirring Isaiah 43:19 NLT into your cup of inspiration, which says, “For I am about to do something new. See, I have already begun! Do you not see it? I will make a pathway through the wilderness. I will create rivers in the dry wasteland.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know this: God indeed has more for you.
Even if you’re dealing with less-than-ideal circumstances, rejoice for the new thing that’s coming. Divine blessings and favor belong to you.
Go ahead and praise in the middle of bitter Marah, on your way to Elim, where showers of blessings will spring forth.
You’re coming out of this dry place!
Now let’s pray.
God, I thank You for victory, breakthrough, increase and showers of blessings! Even though I’m going through a dry wilderness season, I know I’m on my way to my Promised Land. In the meantime, I eagerly anticipate what’s to come. I declare by faith that greater is on the way. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
That’s because my siblings and I were constantly surrounded by sweet treats on our front porch, though they weren’t for our own consumption or enjoyment.
As much as all of us would have liked to have gobbled up those sugar-filled goodies, they had a very special purpose. The boxes of candy were designated exclusively for church fund-raising efforts.
Sometimes, we’d even go door-to-door asking, “Would you like to buy some candy to help the church?”
I sold candy, donuts and all kinds of things to assist in keeping the doors of our small ministry open.
Years ago, we’d also sell chicken and fish dinners from home. As a young girl and teenager, I would help get the Styrofoam plates prepared based on the orders coming in.
If I close my eyes right now, I’m transported right back to Mom’s kitchen. I can hear the sizzle of the fried chicken in that old deep fryer. The sweet scent of candied yams is vivid all these years later.
My mouth would be watering looking at all that delicious food.
“Can I taste it?” I’d often ask, salivating over the macaroni and cheese, collard greens and cake.
“No, you can’t eat that. It’s for my dinners,” Mom would say as she rushed around the kitchen, working hard to get the orders out on time. She’d get the most intense look on her face as she counted the plates and double-checked their contents before sending them off.
Dad would deliver the dinners in our family vehicle.
It was a lot of hard work.
Those days taught me discipline and delayed gratification. Some stuff, no matter how much I wanted it, was set aside for the work of the Lord, rather than my personal pleasure.
When you honor God, He'll honor you & supply EVERY need!
If a man named Achan could have remembered this in Joshua 7, the Israelites wouldn’t have been defeated in a small Canaanite city called Ai. Furthermore, he and his family wouldn’t have lost their lives.
Achan, whose name is derived from a Hebrew word meaning to trouble, certainly caused a whole lot of trouble for Israel. He disobeyed the Lord and stole some items that were supposed to be set aside for God. This misstep caused Israel, God’s chosen people, to be defeated in a battle they should have won.
To understand Achan’s sin, you have to go back to that powerful story in Joshua 6 where God gave His people victory over Jericho, causing the walls of the city to fall flat. In verse 17 of that chapter, the Lord told them, everything in Jericho—the plunder, the spoils, the treasures—were not for Israel to take. They were supposed to be destroyed as an offering unto the Lord.
Sadly, Achan was seduced by his own desires, causing the Israelites to end up running from their enemies, the Amorites.
Before their crushing defeat, Israel thought this victory was in the bag. They didn’t even take their full 30,000-member army with them. They took approximately 3,000 soldiers of which 36 were killed. The rest were sent fleeing for their lives.
Because of this, according to verse 4, Israel was “paralyzed with fear at this turn of events, and their courage melted away.”
Has a turn of events ever robbed you of confidence and caused you to slip deep into a valley of discouragement and defeat? If so, you can understand, at least on some level, how Israel felt. Here they were, expecting God to give them victory before their enemies, but instead, they were publicly humiliated. Retreating was the ultimate disgrace.
Not until they got right with God could Israel have victory on the battlefield.
Well, in verse 20, we see Achan confessing his crime. He was the culprit. “I have sinned against the Lord, the God of Israel,” he admitted. He took a beautiful robe from Babylon, 200 silver coins, and a bar of gold.
Achan said, “I wanted them so much that I took them. They are hidden in the ground beneath my tent, with the silver buried deeper than the rest.”
So he and his family were killed, which was, at that time, the way God mandated that Joshua cleanse the camp. After the purification of Israel was complete, Joshua was once again commanded to fight against the city of Ai.
In Joshua 8, this man of God told the people not to be afraid to go back out and fight. I imagine they were pretty shaken. Wouldn’t you have been? Think about it.
Have you ever been defeated, disappointed, hurt, let down and crushed in a situation or relationship and God tells you to try again? If so, you likely know all the reservations you have about a scenario like that. The enemy begins conjuring up the previous disappointment and pain associated with it as a way of keeping you from hoping again, believing again, and stepping out in faith again.
Don't be discouraged by past disappointments. God has more, greater & BETTER for you!
But be like Israel and refuse to allow what happened before to stop you from believing God for breakthrough.
In Joshua 8, when Israel reemerged the second time, it was a very different story. Joshua and the Israelite army defeated the city of Ai, which, in Hebrew, means “ruin” or “heap of ruins.”
The Bible says they set Ai on fire and gained victory in a place of former defeat.
Friend, God will take your place of ruin and make it your place of restoration if you’re willing to obey Him and place your trust in Him.
Trust and obey.
Satan doesn’t want you to do that. That’s why he keeps trying to get you to step outside the will of God and also focus on your worst days that are behind you. That way, you won’t be in position to reap a harvest and you’ll be too afraid to believe God for your best days.
But rebuke the devil and stay in God’s will.
When you do that, you can be assured that, even in the midst of a setback, all is not lost. It is not over. Restoration is possible. You might be standing in the middle of your own personal Ai or heap of ruins today.
Perhaps your finances are in ruins. Your marriage, career, business, ministry, health, emotions, loved ones, opportunities, or even confidence may seem ruined right now. But this is not the end. God is giving you the victory.
He is turning your ruination into restoration!
God is going to restore to you what the enemy has stolen. You may have been defeated before, but this is a new time, a new day, a new season.
In Joshua 8, not only did God make Israel victorious in Ai, but He also gave them the spoils to keep for themselves! He gave them the victory and some more on top of that.
If Achan could have just waited a little while longer, he would have gotten his heart’s desire.
The message today is wait on the Lord. He has more, greater and better for you. Don’t get weary. You are steps away from your promise.
God is about to restore what you lost and give you some more on top of that. Like Job, there’s a double portion coming.
To remind you that restoration is on the way, I’m stirring a portion of Deuteronomy 30:3 into your cup of inspiration from The Message Bible translation. It says, “God, your God, will restore everything you lost…”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, get ready to receive. Rejoice in advance of the arrival of what you know is coming. Rebuke fear and let hope arise within you again.
Sense the Holy Spirit speaking.
He is saying try again; trust again; believe again; dream again; expect what you lost to be returned to you again.
God will restore everything—plus some.
As you rejoice over what's to come, please also join me in praying for those who asked to be included on our "Thoughtful Thursdays" intercessory prayer list. As you seek God on their behalf, I believe He'll move on your behalf.
Please pray that God completely heals my body of cancer and PTSD. I have been battling breast cancer for almost 5 years now. It has gone in and out of remission over the years. It has spread to my lung. Sometimes I just feel so tired of the fight but I have young kids who need me.
I was diagnosed with cancer in October. Have had numerous surgeries. No financial income, no family support. Had another surgery last week awaiting the results. My strength is weak, (spiritually, physically and emotional). Asking for prayer that my health will be restored, and my strength will be renewed in Christ.
Please pray for my friends who are in the midst of fighting breast cancer. Pray their fears are replaced with faith and their health is renewed. These are uncertain times, but I pray these are times we can increase our faith and lean closer to Him and HIs word for comfort and healing. Please pray for my friends. I believe prayer in multitude is always better.
Feeling hopeless. I have been here too long. Job losses, foreclosure, eviction. I have been trying to put my life back together for at least five years. It is getting up falling down, another setback, another disappointment. I am tired weary. I feel like God blesses everyone but me. I am slipping into a depression. I have to force myself to go places, even to go to this new job. I am so afraid I am going to lose it like the others. I am so used to loss I don't expect to win. I lose at everything. Even men, they lie to me use me. I am feeling desperate. Please pray for me. I hate how my life is. I am over 50. I feel like I am running out of time. Running out of life running out of years.
Hello Dianna and God Bless you! I am asking that you stand in agreement with me that my mother's surgery tomorrow is successful and no cancer is found. I also pray that my health is well when I visit my doctor next Friday. The enemy is so busy in my life right now. But I'm believing God has heard my prayers. It never hurts to have more warriors on your side :) Thank you. Love and blessings.
Please pray for Rebecca McNair, my mother who had a stroke on January 27th. She needs healing in mind, spirit and body. Pray for all residents in nursing facilities and hospitals as they recover from illnesses and for their caregivers. Thank you and God bless you. I'm claiming VICTORY in advance!
My husband had a stroke on Jan. 4, 2016, and was just released from rehab. He has movement of all his limbs (Glory be to God) but he has swelling on the brain and sometimes he doesn’t remember things and gets our sons’ names mix up. Here is a man that we saw as a strong man and provider for his family, who gave more of himself than sometimes he received back. I was not always the best wife (never cheated) just didn't treat him with respect all the time. I asked him to forgive me. It was not him but me. I never knew how to treat my husband because I never had an example to follow. We were told to be strong women and don’t let men walk all over you. Since my husband’s illness I know I love him. And I pray he gets his memory back, so I can tell him and he understand it and receive it.
I feel lost. I've been working long hours and I'm not treated fair at work. I have 2 years before I retire. I need a refreshing of the Holy Ghost. I want my joy back!!!!
Pray for me, as I have hernia surgery on February 15, 2016. I trust God to bring me through. He is purifying me for greater things to come. Thank for your prayers & encouragement. God is my healer & deliverer!
My 62 year old mother has just been diagnosed with dementia. Both my parents, as strong as their faith is, feel that our families outcome is bleak. I must admit I've had my moments of weakness, however I look for daily inspirational quotes & faith & love each day and have told my parents it's at our darkest hour we need to trust in God the most & have a stance of our strongest faith EVER. Yet I think their daily struggles with this usually declining disease is overtaking their strong beliefs and faith. I need help to pray for two things, 1st that my parents complete & 100% faith is restored & trust God knows what he has planned & what he is doing, 2nd that no matter what, my mother is protected, healed, cured & stays on this earth to hold our family together as long as possible. I love & trust in the Lord God and know he will look after my mum dad & brother. I just need them to know and believe it...Thank you so very much in advance for your help faith love & prayer!
I am praying for the freedom and courage to love again without fear of what could go wrong based on past experiences. Total restoration. In Jesus' name.
I'm a faithful reader of your Daily Cup of Inspiration and a believer of God and his son, Jesus. My prayer request is for my daughter and granddaughter, please pray that God will show them favor in a upcoming court battle with the father of my granddaughter. The father has been absent from my granddaughter's life for 6 months with no form of contact and now he is trying to cause a great storm in their lives. Please pray that God will reveal the truth of this matter and let peace return to each of their lives. Children need both of their parents and lots love. Thank you for your time and prayer.
I am currently undergoing a case trial in High Court. This case has been on for the past six years. I believe in God for a miracle. I request prayers that this case come to an end.
Hi feel like that “man at the well.” The only difference is I have been trying hard to accomplish things in life but can’t see anything for the hard work. I lost my house, have a self-centered wife. I went back to school, but now the oil and gas sector is in shambles. Now I am thinking career change. When is my deliverance coming? The name of Jesus is a mighty fortress, but I can’t run into it. It seems like I am burdened, crawling into it.
Now let's pray.
God, I have been through painful trials, numerous setbacks and difficult circumstances. But I refuse to allow the pain of my past to rob me of my hope for the future. I yet trust You Lord. Right now, I stand in earnest expectation of the manifestation of restoration in my life. Thank You for my new season! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I bent over, placing my hands on my knees, huffing and puffing, thinking about how terribly wrong my brisk walk had gone that day. My t-shirt was soaking wet.
My husband Kenya and I were new to Pike Creek, Delaware when I chose to get some outdoor exercise on that sunny afternoon. I don’t know how I got turned around, but all I saw were trees to my right and private residences to my left along the hilly road.
After my brief rest period, I picked up the pace and began jogging. I had already been gone too long and since I left my cellphone at the house, assuming it would be a quick 15-minute workout, I had no way of telling Kenya I was okay.
I didn’t want him to worry.
Panting heavily and wiping sweat from my brow, I resisted the urge to stop.
Ten minutes passed.
A half hour.
My heart knocked violently against my chest. My throat and legs burned. I was sure I was about to pass out. But I kept on running. In fact, though I was at the point of tears and nearly delirious, instead of allowing each painful step to halt my progress, I pushed harder.
I prayed and ran.
Prayed and ran some more.
I was on a mission and felt determined not to give up until I reached my destination. Physically exhausted and emotionally drained, I pressed onward. Then, just when I thought I couldn’t go any further, something remarkable occurred, unlike anything I had ever experienced.
Suddenly, my breathing regulated. My muscles and joints quit aching. Seemingly, out of nowhere, I got this burst of energy. Running felt easy.
That’s when I looked up and saw my neighbor’s house! I was just minutes away from home.
I bolted onto our doorstep, pounded on the door, astounded that my breathing wasn’t labored. I didn’t feel a hint of tiredness.
Kenya, who told me he was relieved to learn I was alright after not hearing from me for so long, was also fascinated by what I shared. Though I didn’t know what happened to me, he understood.
A former cross country runner, Kenya explained that I had gotten what’s called a “second wind”—something distance runners know all about. It’s when the body, once too weak and weary to go on, finds the strength to press on with less exertion.
For somebody reading this, you’re about to get your second wind.
You have been feeling tired, discouraged and worn out by life’s trials. The enemy has been saying you won’t make it through and you don’t have what it takes to endure. But, because you didn’t give up and you kept on pressing, you’re going to experience a renewal of your strength, peace and joy, and receive a breakthrough.
You have been pressing like the woman with the issue of blood did in Luke 8:43-48. Though her constant bleeding for 12 years made her unclean according to the law in Leviticus 15:25-27, she refused to go into hiding and miss her chance to receive healing from the Savior.
This woman had had enough.
She was bleeding both physically and financially. The treatments she’d sought to heal this vaginal hemorrhaging had cost her everything she had. Broke and broken she made her way to Jesus. Weary and worn she pursued Him by pressing her way through the crowd.
When she touched the hymn of His garment, Luke 8:44 lets us know that what had been ongoing for more than a decade immediately stopped.
In the Greek, that word immediately is “parachrema,” which means “at that moment,” “right away,” or “so quickly.”
What once took so long turned round so quickly!
The Lord is shifting things in your favor & He's doing it swiftly!
There are some things about which you have cried long enough, prayed for long enough, believed for long enough and dealt with long enough. A shift is taking place.
The man Jesus healed at the Pool of Bethesda had been waiting 38 years according to John 5:1-15. He was lying around with many others who were sick, hoping he could jump in the pool when the water was troubled. If he could just be the first one to hop in, he would get his healing. But everyone else seemed to get there before he did. The impotent man had no one to help him.
At least not before Jesus showed up on the scene.
When the Master stopped by Bethesda, which means "House of Mercy," everything changed. The place where this man had been for almost four decades, feeling stuck and hopeless, became his place of healing.
Friend, the Lord is about to show you mercy, grace and favor. He knows you have been in this low place for a long time. Change is coming.
Your “suddenly shift” has been years in the making. Some days it has looked like things would never change, but God was just setting you up to get glory out of your situation.
If you simply keep on pressing, you will get your breakthrough. Just don’t give up prematurely. While holding onto the ropes of life, don’t allow your weariness to convince you to toss your towel into the ring.
Breakthrough is coming. Change will happen.
To remind you that God is able to do things suddenly, I’m stirring Isaiah 48:3 into your cup of inspiration. But first, I want to provide a little context. This verse was spoken by God during a time of judgement against the stubborn and disobedient children of Israel. I’m sharing it here, however, as a way of reminding you that, when God says a thing—good or bad—it will show up…suddenly.
Here’s the verse in the New American Standard Bible translation: “I declared the former things long ago and they went forth from My mouth, and I proclaimed them. Suddenly I acted, and they came to pass.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, rejoice, because some good things God promised you long ago, are about to show up suddenly.
God has sent out a word of deliverance over your life and what He says will manifest.
Now let's pray.
Kaleb, our 9-year-old, had his appliances adjusted today at the orthodontist’s office and the procedure caused some discomfort.
I knew it must have hurt pretty badly when I saw a steady stream of tears flowing from the eyes that usually sparkle with delight beneath the dentist’s bright overhead light.
Kaleb gets excited about his appointments and typically is all smiles throughout the entire process.
But not today.
The sensation of pressure and pinching got to be too much.
“That hurts!” he yelled in between sobs as I stood there silently gazing and internally cringing.
Thankfully, it was over soon after.
“It was supposed to be an easy day,” said the dental assistant who didn’t expect the manipulation of the metal in Kaleb’s mouth to cause pain.
“But since we made it so hard,” she said from behind her blue mask, while opening up a drawer on her rolling cart and pulling out a shiny gold coin, “we’re going to give you one of these.”
Still sniffling, I noticed an ever-so-slight smile creep across our youngest son’s quivering lips, replacing his sad, anguished look. Quickly, he headed right over to the on-site toy machine filled with simple prizes for patients.
Kaleb is a huge fan and collector of the miniature ninjas inside the giant coin operated capsule machine. He spends his play money the same way each time.
“Wow! You got a green one,” I said when he removed his tiny plastic ninja from the transparent bubble. By this time, the half grin had blossomed into a wide, open-mouthed smile.
He had forgotten all about the pain and was enjoying the reward.
On our way to the elevator, I told Kaleb, “See? It worked out for the best.”
That’s when I got an idea. I realized this was a teachable moment. When we returned home, I told our little guy to grab his Bible and bring it to me, along with his green ninja.
Together, we sat down on my bedroom floor hunched over his open Bible and read aloud, “And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them” (Romans 8:28).
I asked him some questions and incorporated his new favorite toy into the brief, impromptu lesson. Then, I explained how, even though what he endured today was painful, in the end, he received something good out of it.
“Would you have received that coin to get a ninja today if you weren’t hurt?” I questioned.
“No,” he said, with an intrigued look.
“Always remember, in life, as long as you love God and have a purpose—which you do—no matter how much something hurts and how bad it begins, when it’s all over, the Lord will cause something positive to come from it,” I told him.
While I stressed that the turnaround might not come as quickly as it did at the orthodontist’s office today, I reiterated, “Eventually, something good will come from it.”
Sometimes we need to be reminded that the things that hurt us the worst can still work out for the best, right? The Lord is able to turn our tears into joy and our sorrows into gladness. He can cause anything, despite how awful it is, to benefit us in the end.
In Genesis 39, we see Joseph, to whom God revealed in dreams that he would one day be a powerful leader (Genesis 37), being sold to an influential Egyptian man.
His new Master, Potiphar, was “captain of the guard”—literally meaning a slaughterer—for Pharaoh, the Egyptian king.
After Joseph began working for this chief executioner, Potiphar noticed what an excellent servant he was. The Bible tells us that, because of God’s favor, Joseph succeeded in everything he did and Potiphar’s house was blessed because of him.
Potiphar knew that God was with Joseph. So he promoted him twice. First, he became Potiphar’s personal attendant and later, was elevated to administrator over everything Potiphar owned.
Joseph ran it all.
Unfortunately, Potiphar’s wife began lusting after Joseph and was personally offended when he refused her advances. So she falsely accused him of sexual misconduct (Genesis 39:7-20), which landed him in jail.
That must have been devastating. But God had a plan for Joseph, even while he was incarcerated.
While there, Joseph interpreted dreams. This exposed his gift to the king’s cupbearer, who was also locked up. Later, after the royal servant’s release, he introduced Joseph to Pharaoh when the king was in need of an interpreter.
As you see, the person God hand-selected to help usher Joseph into destiny was also in jail. The very place that seemed to be the lowest of the low, reserved for criminals and castaways, was the breeding ground for destiny.
Sometimes, the situations we cry over, agonize over, ask God to deliver us out of and feel forsaken in the midst of, are the very circumstances tied to our breakthrough.
God DOESN'T cause everything, but He DOES cause everything to work together for our good.
God can turn anything around!
Not only did Joseph interpret dreams in jail, but God gave him favor with the jailer. So Joseph stepped into administrative shoes and acted as the warden. He was over the other prisoners.
That meant he was able to further develop and enhance his management skills he had learned in Potiphar’s house, which were about to come in handy. God knew he was going from the prison to the palace.
Friend, in this current season, you may feel imprisoned by your circumstances, but you’re not in prison. You’re in prep school. God is preparing you for the breakthrough that’s coming.
By the time Joseph’s date with destiny arrived and he came face-to-face with Pharaoh (Genesis 41), he was polished, experienced and well able to manage the resources of Egypt in a time of famine.
See how God caused all things to work together for Joseph’s good? His process was disappointing, painful, unfair and unmistakably hard. But God’s purpose was being fulfilled through it all. Something amazing came out of all he went through.
Today, God wants you to be assured that He’s causing everything that seemed to be working against you in the beginning to work for you in the end.
So don’t get down in the dumps over the process. This isn’t the end of your story.
I know where you are right now may not look like where God has said you will be. Some days, it may not seem fair. You might feel overlooked. You’re probably wondering when it will be your time and your turn.
In the meantime, God is sharpening your skills and refining you for your next dimension. He’s building you up, because He’s taking you up. Even in the midst of your affliction, know that God is up to something. He’s doing great things and working in your favor.
Here’s something I want to share with you.
After Joseph settled into his new role and got married, he had children. He named his second son Ephraim for a very specific reason, which I’m stirring into your cup of inspiration.
Joseph’s words about the naming of his seed are found in Genesis 41:52 NASB, which says, “God has made me fruitful in the land of my affliction.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, know that your affliction is tied to your promotion. This is just a blessing in disguise. God is making you fruitful. God is destroying the yoke of bondage off of you and catapulting you into your place of promise.
Where you are at the moment is not where you shall be. You’re about to walk into your place of favor.
He’s turning it around.
Now let’s pray.
God, some days, these difficult situations I’m facing seem too much to handle. But thank You for the assurance that, through this affliction, I will be blessed. In the meantime, please help me not to grow weary. Today, I declare by faith that I’m about to walk into a new season of breakthrough, blessing and favor, and I thank You! In Jesus’ name, Amen.
I can hardly believe it as I’m typing it. Where has all the time gone? When did she go from being a toddler to a teenager?
I remember bringing her home from the hospital tightly swaddled, doing everything in my power to protect her delicate face from the blustery wind on that cold February day. My heart was bursting with gratefulness.
You see, before giving birth to Kyla, I went through one of the darkest seasons of my life. The year was 1998 when Kenya and I were dealt the crushing blow of having our first pregnancy end with the announcement, “I’m sorry, Mrs. Hobbs, but it looks like you have had a miscarriage.”
What I thought was a routine prenatal checkup turned into a heart-breaking day when the heartbeat I longed to hear was no more. There was only silence as the technician rubbed the ultrasound probe across my slightly protruding belly.
I recall the slight frown on her face as she began pressing buttons rapidly on the sonogram machine’s keyboard. I was hoping that didn’t signal trouble. When I asked, “Is everything okay?” and she replied, “Let me go get the doctor,” I still didn’t want to believe the worst.
When the devastating news was revealed, I felt empty, depressed and physically weak. I refused to eat. I could not sleep. Everything reminded me of the baby I would never hold in my arms after carrying this precious gift for four months.
Miscarrying was the last thing on my mind. I thought I was out of the danger zone, because that’s what everyone had told me. They said if I got through my first three months, I would be alright. But that was not true in my case.
So when I discovered I was pregnant with Kyla following that ordeal, I had confused and conflicting emotions raging within. On the one hand, I was incredibly excited and thankful. On the other hand, a little voice kept saying, you’re not going to give birth. You’re going to lose this baby, too.
One day, I was standing in my room. At the time, I was eight months pregnant with Kyla, when all of a sudden, thoughts of what might go wrong attacked my mind all at once. Overwhelmed and overcome by emotion, I fell to my knees and wept bitterly.
I was still grieving the child I lost and didn’t feel strong enough to fight the mental battle the enemy was waging against me. I prayed that God would give me peace and confidence that He would bring me safely through delivery.
And you know what?
After that severe meltdown, the presence of the Lord comforted me. I chose to lean on His strength, because I had none left. I can truly say that 2 Corinthians 12:9 is true. His strength is made perfect in our weakness.
He upheld me and held my hand.
So every time we celebrate Kyla’s birthday, I think about the faithfulness of the Lord, as well as the terror of fear that can easily grip our hearts when we don’t trust Him. I know it can be hard to look ahead and believe for good things to happen when you have suffered losses, setbacks and endured failures. The enemy loves to remind us of past hurts and disappointments to torture us and make us believe things won’t work out.
But he is a liar.
Although I don’t know why Kenya and I lost our first child, I do know that the Lord healed our hearts and restored what we lost. We are now the proud parents of four.
Friend, I don’t know what you might have lost or what heartbreak you have endured, or may be enduring right now, but the Lord wants you to know, it’s not over. He is not finished with you. He’s not through blessing you. Good things are on the way, despite the bad things that may have preceded them.
God is turning your situation around. Blessings are on the way. Restoration is coming! #Believe
While many of us have read or heard about Job in the Bible and we rejoice over his turnaround, when it comes believing God for our own breakthrough, we struggle.
We see that Job, an upright and holy man of God was living in total misery. He didn’t do anything wrong and yet, suffered a great deal. One moment, he was a picture of wealth, health and happiness. The next moment, death hit and Job mourned the loss of seven sons and three daughters. Lack hit and all of his wealth disappeared. Sickness hit and there were open sores all over his body. Relationship troubles hit and his wife turned on him, telling Job to curse God and die. Even his once loyal friends lost respect for Job and began blaming him for his trials.
Job was being hit from every angle, with no sign of relief in sight. But in due time, God intervened. In Job 42:10, we learn that the Lord not only restored Job, but He gave him twice as much as he had before. This faithful servant of God received double.
Can you believe God for double? He’ll do it in your life, just as He did it in Job’s life.
Still today, we serve the God of the double portion. You will receive deliverance. Restoration will come. You may not know how or when, but know that God will do it.
Interestingly, biblical scholars say, in Hebrew, Job’s name means “the persecuted one.” His name reflected his life. It was full of persecution, suffering, pain and distress. But, despite the meaning of his name, God ordained that Job would not be perpetually defined by his struggle.
He came out of a season of persecution and into a season of restoration.
Just as Job wasn't, you will not be defined by what you lost, what you currently lack, or the areas in which you’ve suffered in the past. To look at your life right now, someone might label you, like Job, “the persecuted one,” or “the struggling one,” “the depressed one,” “the forgotten one,” “the lonely one,” “the sick one,” or “the defeated one.”
But the Lord has a plan and you are about to become “the restored one,” “the victorious one,” “the prosperous one,” “the delivered one.”
Begin expecting and thanking Him for restoration. Rejoice for your double portion. Know that God is turning things around in your favor. You're coming out. Your season is changing for the better.
To help you confess this truth, I’m stirring Isaiah 61:7 NIV into your cup of inspiration, which says, “Instead of your shame you will receive a double portion, and instead of disgrace you will rejoice in your inheritance. And so you will inherit a double portion in your land, and everlasting joy will be yours.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, rebuke discouragement. See your present difficulties and harrowing circumstances as transitional phases on your road to breakthrough.
Be assured of this: God’s word will come to pass in your life and He will restore double.
Now let’s pray.
God, I have been hurt, disappointed and unfulfilled in some areas of my life. But I know this is not all You have for me. You will heal the broken places and restore what I have lost. So, today, by faith, I thank You for my double portion and anticipate all the blessings You will pour out. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Initially, she thought it was a persistent virus of some sort causing the high fever, vomiting and other disturbing symptoms. But after her head felt like it would explode and she could no longer manage the pain, she sought medical attention.
Good thing she did.
Quinny’s blood pressure was through the roof and doctors couldn’t lower it, so they admitted her.
At its highest, her pressure shot up to 206/124. Her eyes were bloodshot. Her body went through all different kinds of changes. At moments, she told me, “I felt like I was going to die.”
She was fatigued, weak from being unable to keep anything down, and deeply concerned. Through tears, aches and rough nights, Quinny prayed that God would help.
I won’t go into all the details of her medical situation, but I will say, it has been an up-and-down process. We are still praying for total deliverance.
At her lowest points, as I was learning more about her health battle, I had to rebuke worry so I could intercede for my loved one. When the enemy planted negative thoughts in my mind about what was going to happen to her, I hit back with the word of God.
At the same time, however, the big sister in me wanted to fix it. I asked as many questions as I could about what doctors were saying and doing, and how she was progressing. I did personal research, looking for answers—as if I could, on my own, stumble across some medical breakthrough.
In the middle of all my efforts, the Lord led me to truly place it in His hands. He wanted me to stop checking in with her so frequently and spend more time checking in with Him through prayer.
That wasn’t an easy thing, but I obeyed.
After all, my regular status reports and updates, no matter how thorough, couldn’t change what was happening. The most they could do was minimize the uncertainty a little.
But God wasn’t interested in my approach to the situation at hand. He wanted me to focus on Him and trust Him.
So I not only began praying more fervently, but I also declared His word and promises over Quinny’s life. I walked the floor and petitioned God to turn her situation around.
Well, yesterday when we spoke, we praised over her incredible progress. She’s stronger. She feels better than she has in weeks. This morning, her blood pressure was down to 130/99—the lowest it’s been this whole time.
I’m so thankful.
“The power of prayer works,” Quinny said. “I could feel the prayers!”
God is good.
Friend, it’s easy to get worked up, worried and go into fix-it mode when situations and problems arise. We wish we could make our loved ones whole, or rectify our own issues. But the power does not lie in our ability, but in God’s alone.
God is able to heal, save & deliver. Even when we are all out of answers, He never is.
If you are carrying burdens today because a loved one is struggling or suffering, or you are battling through storms of your own, God is challenging you to give it over to Him.
He can handle it. He is able to move and turn things around, and get glory, even out of a bad situation.
He’s certainly getting glory out of Quinny’s battle. Here we are focusing on how powerful prayer is and how God can take any negative problem and cause it to work for good.
He also was glorified in Acts 8-9 during a time when the early church endured an intense season of persecution. Followers of Christ were being killed and imprisoned for their faith.
Because of this intense persecution, the Bible says believers were driven out of their homes and scattered throughout Judea and Samaria. Of course, when we read in Scripture about cruel acts against Christians, who, at that time, were called “The Way,” we understand that it probably didn’t feel like God was being glorified, right?
Stephen, a faithful follower of Christ, had been stoned to death. Saul of Tarsus, a Jew based in Rome, approved of Stephen’s death. As a matter of fact, Saul stood by and casually observed as those responsible for murdering Stephen laid their coats at his feet (Acts 7:58).
After Stephen was killed and buried, Acts 8:3 says, “But Saul was going everywhere to destroy the church. He went from house to house, dragging out both men and women to throw them into prison.”
Things looked to be as bad as they could get, but God wasn’t finished.
In the very next chapter, Acts 9, while Saul was on the road to Damascus, he saw a bright light from heaven, fell off his animal and heard the voice of the Lord.
Saul’s life was never the same again. Through one encounter, Jesus totally transformed him. He went from being a Christian persecutor to being a Christian proselytizer. He transitioned from witnessing against Christians, to witnessing for Christ.
God got the glory!
But if you looked at Saul in the previous chapter, you wouldn’t have thought he would be converted in the very next chapter.
So what do we learn from this?
Friend, this is not the final story. You’re one chapter away from a breakthrough.
Things might look bad now. The enemy wants you to be weary and discouraged. But don’t fret. You haven’t read your next chapter yet.
After this, a mighty harvest, a great breakthrough, a windfall of favor is headed straight to you.
Don’t get down and out about what’s happening now. Wait until you see what God does next.
It will defy logic, beat the odds, make others scratch their heads and say, no way! You have not yet seen your best days. It has not been revealed what you will become.
To remind you of all God has in store, I’m stirring 1 Peter 5:10, one of my favorite frequently-quoted passages, into your cup of inspiration, which says, “And after you have suffered for a little while, the God of all grace, who has called you to His eternal glory in Christ, will Himself restore you, secure you, strengthen you, and establish you.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, be determined that, the next time discouragement comes knocking, you’ll answer by saying, “God’s not finished.”
He’s not finished with your loved one; in your home; on your job; in your finances; in your ministry; in your business; in your personal endeavors; in your relationships; in your body; in your life.
His plan will unfold. His goodness will be revealed. The grand unveiling of the divine masterpiece of destiny will be more than you asked for, better than you expected and greater than you could have ever imagined!
You’re about to step into what’s next.
Now let’s pray.
God, thank You for assuring me through Your word that this difficult chapter is not the conclusion of my story. I believe that more, greater and better is on the way, and I thank You for it in advance of receiving it. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
“It’s mine,” I said, after recognizing the carry-on that the stern-faced, blue-eyed, uniformed woman held up.
“Step to the side please,” she said in a demanding tone.
I had just gone through the full body scanner without incident and was cleared to enter the airport. I wondered what had gone wrong as I rushed to collect my laptop and other personal items from the conveyor, and put back on my coat, scarf and shoes.
I quickly headed over to the female Transportation Security Admission official and said, “Hi, what’s going on?”
Without answering, she stuck her blue-gloved hands into my bag and pulled out a full unopened bottle of water.
Instantly, I knew what this was about.
“I totally forgot that was in there,” I shook my head at myself for mistakenly violating TSA’s liquid rule. It’s illegal to carry a container with more than 3.4 ounces of liquid in it through airport security. Anything that exceeds that limit has to be inside checked baggage, but can’t be brought onto the plane.
In my haste to make a recent early flight, I neglected to remove my Aquafina from my carry-on before going through security.
Usually, I’m super careful about obeying this rule in order to avoid unnecessary delays and issues.
I dropped the ball that morning.
“Are there any sharp objects, weapons, or hazardous materials you know of in the bag?” the woman asked.
“No,” I assured her, as she rummaged through my personal items with her long security wand. I patiently and silently waited.
“You’re all clear,” she finally told me, handing my bag back to me.
“But this can’t go with you,” she said, holding up the water bottle. “You can either drink it now if you’d like, or leave it with me.”
I wasn’t thirsty at that moment so I said, “I’ll leave it with you.”
I was just happy to be free to move forward so I wouldn’t miss my flight. I could easily buy another bottle of water from one of the stores inside the Buffalo Niagara International airport.
Where I was going was more important than what I had to leave behind to get there.
But what if I had told the TSA official she couldn’t make me give up my brand new, refreshing water and refused to let it go? I wouldn’t have been able to fly, right?
Both me and my beloved water bottle would have been stuck in Buffalo. I would have been well hydrated and going nowhere.
If we're not careful, in everyday life, we'll hold on to what we need to let go. That's why we have to be sensitive to God's leading, so we don't miss out on our blessings.
Sometimes, what you're willing to release from your life determines what God is able to release into your life.
Never forget that.
In order to soar, you have to be willing to say goodbye to some people, places and things.
You’re about to soar in your life. God has predestined you to fly high for His glory. That’s why He won’t allow you to be a part of every circle, enter into just any old relationship, or walk through each door that opens. Some things, God will lead you to say no to, so you can say yes to His will.
Your willingness to cooperate with Him and fall in line with His plan daily, will determine how high you soar.
If we get addicted to what we want, instead of embracing God’s will for us, we’ll preserve our comfort at the expense of our destiny.
Israel is a great example of this.
Remember when God delivered them out of Egypt where they once enjoyed tasty meals and fed them less flavorful manna in the wilderness? They started craving what they left behind.
So Israel began wailing and complaining, “If only we had meat to eat! We remember the fish we ate in Egypt at no cost—also the cucumbers, melons, leeks, onions and garlic. But now we have lost our appetite; we never see anything but this manna!” (Numbers 11:5-6, NIV)
Manna, in Hebrew, means “What is it?” In the Bible, it was bread from heaven that God miraculously provided for his people daily. When they woke up, there would be manna covering the ground like frost. The people would gather enough for a day’s supply, cook it in a pot, or make it into loaves.
But over time, they started seeing miraculous manna as an old, tired, worn-out-its-welcome meal. This fresh bread, this wondrous work of God, in their minds, got stale. Though Israel had been slaves under cruel masters back in Egypt, while in the wilderness, they missed their slave masters’ catering.
Their nostalgic memories of the past blinded them to the blessings of the present and future.
What a terrible state to be in.
The wilderness was temporary and Israel was headed to their Promised Land, which was flowing with milk and honey. Yet, they couldn’t get past their past. God had prepared a place for them, where good things were overflowing. Too bad they didn’t want to go through the process. It felt easier to just settle for bondage. They started thinking, Well, Egypt wasn’t that bad. At least the food was better than this bland tasting manna!
Their incessant complaining and refusal to release what was, so they could receive what was to come, caused some of them to die in the wilderness.
They never made it to experience the new because they were addicted to the old.
Friend, if you can do what Israel couldn’t and keep pressing forward toward your breakthrough, without wasting time and energy mourning what you lost, you’ll be alright.
You’ve got to trust God through uncertain times, seasons of lack and periods when things feel mundane. You have to know that you will get to the next level if you keep walking on by faith. God will give you more than what you gave up. He’ll pour out double what you lost. He’ll replenish, restore and release great provision. All you need, He’ll supply.
But it requires a release of what’s behind.
Know this: neither the failures nor successes of your past can compare to the glorious things God has in store. Amazing breakthroughs are on the way.
Where you are now, is not where you shall be. Where you were and what you had before, isn’t as marvelous as what you will have. Prepare for your new thing.
To help you shift your mind from what’s behind you to what’s in front of you, I’m stirring Isaiah 43:18 NIV into your cup of inspiration, which says, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.”
As you drink down the contents of your cup, God is calling you to get ready for a new season, increase of favor, greater opportunities, better circumstances and the manifestation of His promises.
Forget about what’s behind you. He has so much more for you.
As the word of the Lord says in Isaiah 43:19, He says to you today, “I am doing a new thing!”
Now let’s pray.
God, thank You for the great things You have in store for me! I ask that You help me let go of what’s behind me. By faith, I prepare for the blessings, favor, new doors and all the awesome things You will release. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
After such a tremendous time of sharing “The First 21 Days” online devotional series, I’m going to take a few days to allow God to pour into and replenish me.
It will seem odd not to write, since I have posted a message every day for the past three weeks. I will also miss connecting with you here. But I feel led to rest and must be obedient in all things.
Thank you for your prayers for my refreshing and renewal of strength. I truly feel them. You are a blessing to me indeed.
I look forward to sharing again!