Focus Friday – Change Your Focus

Change your focus in those moments when doubt sweeps over your soul. Remember to do as Hebrews 12:2 suggests:

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith.”

Focus on that scripture throughout the day. Focus on His unchanging love. Focus on His unstoppable power. Focus on His faithfulness to always say “Yes” to His promises.

change your focus - looking unto Jesus

 

How to Have Strong Faith

Have you been wondering how to have STRONG faith?

strong faith

Let us hold tightly to the confession of faith without wavering; for He is faithful that promised.” ~ Hebrews 10:23

The character of Jesus is such that He would NEVER lie (Numbers 23:19). His character, which is completely based on love, paves the way for having strong faith in Him because He would never make a promise and then go back on His Word or fail to fulfill it. Hold tightly– don’t loosen your grip on His promises. God’s words and His promises are true. Get into the habit of confessing your faith in them out loud.  The passage in 2 Corinthians 1:20 assures us that His answers to His promises are already “Yes” in Christ.

How can you have strong faith?

Romans 10:17 informs us that faith comes by hearing:

“So faith comes from hearing, that is, hearing the Good News about Christ.” (NLT)

“The Good News about Christ” is that He has finished all the work and fulfilled all the requirements necessary in order for the Father to say “Yes.” There’s no work left to be done except to believe in Jesus’ love and His willingness to bring good things into our lives (John 6:29). When we hear ourselves reading about His love and repeatedly hear ourselves saying God’s words, it builds our faith. When we hear ourselves speaking the specific promises God made about our personal situation, it builds our faith in those promises. It increases our confidence in God’s integrity, in His ability to do what seems impossible, and in His willingness to do everything He promised.

Doubt is the enemy that comes along to plug our ears to the Good News  so that we’re not hearing God’s promises. Doubt distracts us from looking to Jesus. When we’re enticed by the devil’s doubts to give up on God’s promises, we must react by speaking God’s Word to those doubts. By doing so, we choose to retain hope within our soul and expect God to do what He said He’d do. Our  soul, which consists of our mind, will, and emotions, must choose to believe the promise, speak the promise to the problem while undergirding that confession with hope, and “act as if” the promise is already true.

When we have confidence in God fulfilling His promises and we have only a strong expectation of a good outcome, that is when we are empowered and living with strong faith.

 

Focus Friday – It Takes a REAL Act of Faith

Faith is believing God’s words.

Having faith in God’s promises means you allow the words in His promises to become influencers of how you think and act.

Focus on the following scripture throughout the day. It’s God’s Word and it’s what He desires us to believe. Believe it is true for your circumstances because God’s Word is Truth. Act like it is your truth.

Real Act of Faith

The Danger of Hopelessness During Infertility

Infertility and hopelessness--don't give up jpg

Hopelessness during infertility. The two seem to go together. But do they have to?

The danger of hopelessness is a loss of your joy, a critical element in maintaining hope. Hopelessness is spawned from giving up. Giving up on something means losing faith or belief that the thing will ever happen.  It’s an act of surrender to an enemy. You feel forced to give up and give in.

In the case of infertility, giving up is the choice someone makes when they declare that they are abandoning the fertility promises God  made. It’s a decision that infertility is incurable or unsolvable. As hopelessness swirls into every area of life and becomes a consuming power, it pulls all kinds of negative and dangerous thoughts into one’s mind. One might think that infertility is too hard for God (it’s not–Genesis 18:14; Jeremiah 32:27). Or she may choose to think that God’s promises are not for everyone (they are — 2 Corinthians 1:20; 2 Peter 1:3-4).

I frequently hear from women who are considering giving up on the thought that they will ever conceive and give birth to a child. They feel inept, broken, forgotten by God, and are sick and tired of trying to stand up to infertility.
Keep calm--infertility and hopelessness

But I want to offer an alternative to the hopelessness. There is no need to abdicate your position of authority over infertility when you are focused on Jesus, the One who is the cure for everythingFocus is everything.  Keep your focus on the Problem-Solver instead of on the problem.

 

Decide now to continue to trust God’s promises of fertility as being solid ground to stand on. They are never shaky because God does not lie; they are not like quicksand because they are based on the Solid Rock, Jesus. His promises are His forever-settled Word— God’s Word is His bond.

 

It can be tough to continue to have hope when your faith has become weak and you feel like giving up. But that’s the time to take this essential next step:

  • Speak and sing words of God’s praise to yourself and thank Him in advance of the manifestation of His promises. Do this repeatedly, every day.

Those words will begin to bring the joy back into your situation and soon you’ll feel strong again because “the joy of the Lord is our strength!”

 

“Sometimes you want to give up, but you can’t–something deep inside you won’t let you. No white flags, no bailing out, no throwing in the towel for you. You have to keep going; you must carry on you just take the next step…and the next…and the next.” ~B. J. Gallagher

 

HOW CLOSE ARE YOU?

You may be closer than you think!

infertility and hopelessness - don't quit - you're close

 

“Keep Calm” image courtesy of Keepcalm-omatic.com

Monday’s Marinade – It Takes Courage to Have Hope

Monday’s Marinade is provided to you as a means of “soaking yourself” in the hope-filled Word of God at the beginning of your week. Start your week by meditating about having the courage to keep your hope based on God’s promises and not your circumstancesRepeatedly think about this and quietly say it to yourself.  Marinate and season your week with hope and a confident expectation of good things happening!

Here’s your spiritual marinade about courage for this week:

Monday's Marinade - hope and courage

Focus Friday – See God As The Promise Keeper

Do you view God as a strict Judge or a loving Father?

The more confidence you have in His love for you,

the more you will trust that He is not only a promise maker

but He is also a promise keeper.

Focus on the following scripture throughout the day. It’s God’s Word and it’s what He desires us to believe. Believe it is true for your circumstances because God’s Word is Truth. Act like it is your truth.

 

Promise Keeper

Monday’s Marinade – Don’t Quit

Monday’s Marinade is provided to you as a means of “soaking yourself” in the hope-filled Word of God at the beginning of your week. Start your week by meditating about never giving up on God coming through for you. Don’t Quit! Repeatedly think about this and quietly say it to yourself.  Marinate and season your week with hope and a confident expectation of good things happening!

Here’s your spiritual marinade for this week:

Monday's Marinade Ps 27-14

Focus Friday-Rest in Hope

Rest in Hope

Image courtesy of Nutdanai Apikhomboonwaroot | FreeDigitalPhotos.net

 

Focus on the following scripture throughout the day. It’s God’s Word and it’s what He desires us to believe. Believe it is true for your circumstances because God’s Word is Truth. Act like it is your truth. Speak this Word to yourself as an affirmation throughout the day. Personalize it by putting your name in it. Expect it to manifest in your life!

 

“I have set the LORD always before me; Because He is at my right hand I shall not be moved. Therefore my heart is glad, and my glory rejoices; My flesh also will rest in hope.”

~ Psalm 16:8,9 NKJV~

How to Incorporate Gratitude into Your Daily Life

Gratitude by Ziglar“Gratitude is a marvelous place to start.” ~Zig Ziglar

I’m choosing to be grateful for what I have, do, and experience. When a friend was recently talking about gratitude, it reminded me of  something that I starting doing years ago. I developed the habit of writing what I was grateful for at the end of each day. Every night before getting in the bed, I made a quick not about what I was grateful for that day. I made it easy on myself: I wrote 4 simple things that I possessed, did, or experienced that day. Of course, once I got going, I would think of more than 4 things but I limited it to 4 so I wouldn’t feel overwhelmed the next day to come up with a lot of things to be grateful for.

Living with an attitude of gratitude is a choice. And if, as Zig Ziglar stated, gratitude brings more to be grateful for, then I’m all in! I choose to be grateful. I expect an abundance of  good things to come my way that will reinforce and grow this attitude so I can constantly be grateful, even in the midst of difficult circumstances.

What thing(s) do you do to remind yourself that, in spite of your circumstances, you have much to be grateful for?

How to Have Ridiculous Hope Like Abraham

Abraham firmly believed God’s promise. Romans 4:18 (NLT) tells us how Abraham had ridiculous hope—”Even when there was no reason for hope, Abraham kept hoping—believing that he would become the father of many nations.”

I recently read how Jewish tradition promotes that Sarah actually had no womb:

Sarai was barren, she had no child.

[Why the double phrasing?] To teach that she did not even have a place for offspring – i.e. a womb. (Rashi, citing Talmud – Yevamot 64a)

[This is an interpretation of Genesis 11:30.]

Ridiculous hope

Photo courtesy of Michal Marcol/ FreeDigitalPhotos.net

But even when there was no reason to hope — Sarah had been barren for decades and he was nearly 100 years old — Abraham kept believing that they would have a child. Their predicament made hope seem nonsensical, even laughable. But Abraham kept hoping.

This wasn’t the first time Abraham had experienced and maintained ridiculous hope. God told him to leave his extended family (very unusual in that culture) and go to a different land, promising him that he would be blessed and become great.  Abraham made a decision to step out and find out. The promises came true as Abraham trusted God.

I think Abraham was an outstanding example of how to have ridiculous hope in the midst of infertility. He opened himself to hear from God. He trusted what God said. So much so, that he changed his name from Abram, which means “exalted father”  , to Abraham, which means “father of many nations.” Imagine hearing other people call him father of multitudes when he and Sarah didn’t even have one child!  Think of the ridicule he must have experienced.  His ridiculous hope required having faith in what God had promised, trusting that what God had promised would indeed come to pass. Repeatedly hearing that description of himself , through others calling his name, surely must have built Abraham’s faith (faith comes by hearing–Romans 10:17).

There was another factor that increased Abraham’s hope for a child and faith in God’s promise. We learn in Romans 4:20  (YLT) that he “was strengthened in faith, having given glory to God.” The act of praising God, acknowledging His power and honoring Him by the words that Abraham spoke, helped to build up his faith.

Abraham had ridiculous hope in God, viewing Him as the only One who could give him all that he desired.

What will it take for you to live each day having ridiculous hope?