Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Right On Time

Timing is important. I remember the job interview at Kimberly-Clark. I had recently finished an internship as an Exercise Specialist at Dow Chemical. My boss had liked my work and created a contract position that would allow the company to retain me.

The Kimberly-Clark interview couldn't have come at a better time. Although I really wasn't interested in moving from my home town of Midland, Michigan, to Alpharetta, Georgia, the interview could prove helpful. It just might offer me the leverage I needed to convince the higher-ups to change my position from contractor to full-time employee. It was worth a shot.

In the end, I wasn't offered the position at Kimberly-Clark, but following that interview, my position at Dow changed from contractor to employee. Mission accomplished. Staying local also allowed me to continue dating a wonderful, young man who later became my husband. Our journey together has included a series of moves, each one orchestrated in God's perfect timing.

I'm reminded of the Lord's timing in the lives of the Israelites. Following the exodus from Egypt, the children of Israel were no strangers to moving. They got used to pitching camp, staying put, then breaking camp and moving on when the time was right. How did they know when to stay or when to move? A pillar of cloud and a pillar of fire.

Early in their journeys, "...the Lord went before them by day in a pillar of cloud, to lead them the way; and by night in a pillar of fire, to give them light; to go by day and night: He took not away the pillar of the cloud by day, not the pillar of fire by night, from before the people," (Exodus 13:21-22; KJV).

Later, after the tabernacle was constructed, the cloud still played an important role in the Israelites travels. Moses writes, "And when the cloud was taken up from the tabernacle, then after that the children of Israel journeyed: and in the place where the cloud abode, there the children of Israel pitched their tents. At the commandment of the Lord the children of Israel journeyed, and at the commandment of the Lord they pitched: as long as the cloud abode upon the tabernacle they rested in their tents," (Numbers 9:17-18).

The Lord knew what was right for the children of Israel. When they needed to rest and when they needed to move on. They merely had to look to the pillar of cloud He provided, for guidance. The same is true in my life. God knows when I need to stay put and when I need to move on. It may not be a literal move, but He knows when I need to shift gears from one task to another.

Today I can't look to a pillar of cloud, but God directs me through His Word and the power of His Holy Spirit. His Word is "a lamp unto my feet, and a light unto my path," (Psalms 119:105). When I'm seeking His guidance for something specific in my life, I can be assured that He has the answer. My job is to bring my request before Him, search His Word for direction, and then act on His answer in His perfect timing.

He has a purpose and a plan for me. When I'm obedient to seek Him, and follow when He leads, I'll reach the goal He has for me right on time!

Do you rush ahead of God's plan for you? Trust that He knows what's best, and enjoy the times of rest AND the times of moving ahead.

Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for the story of the Israelites who were dependent on Your pillar of cloud to direct their travels. Help me not to run ahead of You, but trust in Your perfect timing. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Monday, June 27, 2011

Fruit Worth Growing

It was a good feeling. Getting our financial information plugged into a new program that offered both budgeting tools, and goals for future wealth management. Knowing how our money is being spent gives us the opportunity to evaluate where changes need to be made. Oddly enough, although I sometimes fight against the discipline of tracking our spending, ultimately, it frees us up to set goals for future spending.

Early next year, we're considering taking a mission trip. I'm excited! We know approximately how much the trip will cost. We plan to save some money for this adventure. Being willing to spend less of our discretionary income will be much easier with this goal in mind. Self-control will play a key role.

Self-control is defined as "the act, power, or habit of having one's faculties or energies under control of the will," (Funk & Wagnalls Standard Desk Dictionary, Vol. 1). Truth be told, it's a fruit of the Spirit. The Apostle Paul writes, "But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith, meekness, temperance (self control): against such there is no law," (Galatians 5:22-23; KJV; italics mine).

Self-control is an important characteristic to display not only in financial matters, but in all areas of life. Since it's a fruit of the Spirit, it's vitally important that I stay in tune with Him. How do I do this? Again, the Apostle Paul, writing by the inspiration of the Holy Spirit, shares the answer: "This I say then, Walk in the Spirit, and ye shall not fulfill the lust of the flesh," (Galatians 5:16). To walk in the Spirit, I need to be willing to submit to His ways.

When I struggle with self-control, I'm battling my natural desires and tendencies. My thoughts center around what I want now, and I forget about others and the more important long-term goals. Selfishness is evident, drawing attention to me - rather than self-control, pointing to the Spirit of God.

Self-control doesn't just happen. It's something that needs to be pursued. A discipline that needs to be developed. As an avid exerciser, I realize that in order to be fit, I need to develop both my muscles and my cardiovascular system. Just thinking about exercising is of no benefit. I actually have to put myself through some type of exercise routine to achieve my goal of being fit. The same is true for self-control. I need to practice implementing discipline in my life in order to see growth in this area. Paul puts it into perspective, "...and exercise thyself rather unto godliness. For bodily exercise profiteth little: but godliness is profitable unto all things, having promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come," (1 Timothy 4:7b-8).

The fruit of the Spirit develops as I allow Him to work in my life. The right elements cause it to 'ripen:' reading God's Word, praying, submitting to God's will. When I choose to use these tools for growth, self-control will be evident in my life!

How are you doing in the area of self-control? What step will you take today to make this fruit of the Spirit evident in your life?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for the presence of the Holy Spirit in my life. Help me to submit to Your will so self-control will be evident in my life. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Bonus Post Friday: Double Tagged & Now You're It!

I've been double tagged! First by D.U. at DUO Says and then by Marji Laine at Marji Laine Writer. Thanks ladies! I took this as a hint, and answered the 6 tag questions. Here goes!

Do you think you're hot?

With the first official day of summer being Tuesday, and actually for the last few weeks, I can say 'Yes!' I'm hot. Any time spent outside has me sweating up a storm! Ha! Ha!

Upload a picture or wallpaper you are using.

When was the last time you ate chicken?

Monday night. I had leftover chicken and stuffing casserole (made in the crock pot!). As Rachael Ray would say, "Yumm-o!"

What were you thinking while doing this?

It's great FUN to answer random questions! And I'm actually answering them a day early! I'm not scheduled to post this till Friday! (This is an accomplishment!)

What song/songs have you listened to recently?

Laura Story - Blessings

Do you have any nicknames? What are they?

I really haven't had any nicknames since college. One of my roommates called me Mia.

Tag 5 blogger friends:

Dorothy Adamek at Ink Dots - She was one of my first followers and we were in an on-line writing course together. Dottie lives in Melbourne, Australia and is currently working on a 3-book series set in the 1870's. She's both a fantastic writer and a sweetheart!

Marja Meijers at Fresh Insights on Ancient Truths - She is an inspirational writer and wonderful encourager. Marja was born and raised in Holland. She is the author of several books that have been published in the US and one that was recently published in Holland! She is fluent in 5 different languages. What an inspiration!

Robyn Campbell at Putting Pen to Paper - She's the type of person you feel like you've known all your life. Her love for the Lord and family are obvious. Robyn writes children's books and MG novels. You'll be glad you stopped by her blog!

Janette at Janette's Sage - Talk about wisdom! I love the way she shares the experiences in her life in a loving, yet no-nonsense way. Life as a home school mom of six, has certainly earned Janette a place in my book of heroes. Her writing reflects her love for the Lord and the lessons she's continuing to apply. Her take on life? "I am entering my 5th decade of life while the Lord continues to transform me into His image. Transformation can be messy, so excuse the mess."

Nana Nor at Life Blessings - Noreen is a dear! She is quick to share the blessings of the Lord on her site. She has a real green thumb and posts beautiful pictures of her gardens. She also has a real talent for quilting. Family and friends are important to her and her sweet spirit drew me to her immediately!

Okay girls, now it's your turn! If you're up for the challenge, just answer these questions on an upcoming blog post and tag 5 of your followers. If you choose not to participate, that's perfectly alright too! God bless!

Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Time to Celebrate!

A birthday. An excellent time for celebrating. And this wasn't just any occasion, it was our Golden Retriever's fifth birthday. Yes, we actually celebrate our dogs' birthdays! This year we donned our party hats, (the dogs joining right in!) sang Happy Birthday, and spoiled both retrievers with a hot dog and hamburger grilled to perfection.

A romp in the front yard, affectionately referred to as the 'green space,' followed by a long walk, rounded out the birthday festivities. The perfect party, complete with pictures to enjoy for years to come.

I'm glad the Lord gives us lots of reasons to celebrate. Have you ever noticed the many feast days and celebrations included in the Old Testament? Believe it or not, there were 19 days that were observed by the Israelites as holidays. The Lord Himself implementing every one of them.

If you take a closer look, seven feasts were celebrated at various times, totaling 19 days. The feasts were times of worship that included both confession and celebration. I like the way my study Bible describes these holidays, " Israel's national holidays, the balance seems heavily tipped in favor of celebration - five joyous occasions to two solemn occasions. The God of the Bible encourages joy! God does not intend for religion to be only meditation and introspection. He also wants us to celebrate. Serious reflection and immediate confession of sin is essential, of course. But this should be balanced by celebrating who God is and what he has done for his people," (Life Application Study Bible, KJV, Tyndale, italics mine).

Today we have the privilege of celebrating some national holidays as well; Thanksgiving, Christmas, and Easter. Holidays that give us the opportunity to focus on the greatness of our God and His amazing provision. Christmas heralds the miraculous birth of Jesus, fully God and fully man. We celebrate His life's purpose at Easter when we remember His death on the cross, His burial and resurrection. The perfect man who offered His life to pay our sin debt. "For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life," (John 3:16, KJV).

And then there are birthdays - a celebration of the precious life God gives. They're the icing on the cake in my opinion. Each day is a blessing from the Lord. An opportunity to live for Him while pointing others to Him. The Apostle Paul puts it like this, "Rejoice evermore. Pray without ceasing. In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you," (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18). Today is a good day to celebrate!

Is there joy in your life? Do you take time to celebrate who God is and what He's done for you? If not, take a step away from the mundane and re-focus on the wonders of the Lord!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for giving me a reason to celebrate. When I focus on all You are and all You've done for me, I've got every reason to rejoice. To You be the glory. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Fry Now...Pay Later

'Sun' and 'damage.' Two words that I don't normally think of in the same sentence. After all, I love being outside on bright sunny days. And doesn't a tan look healthy? Damage from the effects of the sun on my skin is the farthest thing from my mind. But a trip to the dermatologist put some things into perspective for me.

A mole that I've had for years was the subject in question. The dermatologist referred to it as 'atypical.' That didn't sound too good! I was reminded of all the times I had been out in the sun, sans sunscreen - from my teenage years into my twenties. Okay, I have to admit that even as recently as this summer, I've worked out in the yard minus the sunscreen, a time or two.

I think back to my high school days, when I spent hours in the sun before heading off to work. I can still see my Dad shaking his head and hear him saying, "You're doing it to your skin again!" But at seventeen, with not a wrinkle in sight, all I was interested in was a deep, dark tan. I was willing to ignore the posters that warned, "Fry later!"

Looking back, I would have been wise to heed his words of wisdom. Properly applying sunscreen and limiting my exposure to the sun would have minimized the pigment spots, moles, and fine lines and wrinkles. But instead of listening to his advice, I chose to do things my way - learning by experience.

We really DO learn by one method or the other. Either we listen to wise advise and act on it. Or we choose to ignore counsel and attend the School of Hard Knocks. I'm reminded of the instructions God gave the children of Israel.

He had reviewed the commandments with them and proceeded to give them a list of all the blessings they'd receive IF they obeyed His directions. Then He outlined an ominous list of curses that would plague them if they chose to disobey. Much the same thing we do with our own children. Outlining the good that comes from obedience, and the consequences that result from disobedience.

I'm sure you're familiar with the story of the Israelites. At times they obeyed God whole-heartedly - for awhile. But by and large, they drifted back to their sinful ways or those of the surrounding cultures. Before I simply write them off as a stubborn and rebellious lot, I need to take a look at my own life.

Do I have a teachable spirit? Am I willing to take God at His word and believe Him? Do I believe His Word is the truth? If the answer is 'Yes' to each of these questions, then I need to live like it. I need to give God top priority in my life. I'm to, " the Lord thy God with all thine heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy might," (Deuteronomy 6:5; KJV). When I obey, His blessings follow. When I put myself first, I follow in the footsteps of the prideful and end up in a mess. "Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall," (Proverbs 16:18).

God created me with a free will. I can choose my method of learning. The Bible is filled with wisdom and the right way to handle all kinds of situations. Will I choose to believe the truth of God's Word and live according to it, or will I go my own way, and ignore instruction? Today I choose to listen to God's instruction.

Do you listen to godly counsel or have to learn things the hard way? Accept counsel from the Word of God, "Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. Draw nigh to God, and he will draw nigh to you, " (James 4:7-8a).

Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for Your instruction manual, the Bible. Forgive me for the times that I'm stubborn and go my own way in spite of being warned. Help me to have a teachable spirit and to be willing to learn from godly counsel. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

In the Word Wednesday Guest Post

Join me over at my friend, Jessica R. Patch's lovely blog, where I'm guest posting for In the Word Wednesday. Wow! What a privilege! Stop by and say hello. And get to know Jessica while you're enjoying her site! Have a wonderful week and I'll see you back here on Monday. Blessings to you and yours!

Monday, June 13, 2011

Living on Purpose

A routine can be good. There's something comforting about the familiar. My dictionary defines the term as, "a set of customary and often mechanically performed procedures or activities." The things I do every morning can easily be considered a routine. I exercise, take care of our pets, do my Bible study, spend time writing.

But part of the dictionary definition bothers me. It states that a routine is "often mechanically performed." I get the impression that I can do these things without much thought. Without much effort. It screams of just going through the motions. Definitely NOT what I'm after.

So is a routine truly a good thing? It definitely can be. It does give structure to my day. The challenge comes down to my attitude. It's up to me to choose to be aware of what I'm doing and not give into the temptation to shift into neutral. Just because it's a routine doesn't mean I can't set goals for each of these activities. After all, growth is what I'm after.

Time to give some thought to steps for growth. What better place to find direction than God's Word. The book of Luke describes the growth of Jesus," And Jesus increased in wisdom and stature, and in favour with God and man," (Luke 2:52; KJV). Even at the age of twelve, Jesus was developing physically, mentally, socially, and emotionally.

Some things happen naturally, like the physical growth of a child. Yet, as an adult, I have the opportunity to choose what foods I'll eat and whether or not I'll exercise. The Apostle Paul shares the importance of taking care of my physical body and my spirit, "What? know ye not that your body is the temple of the Holy Ghost which is in you, which ye have of God, and ye are not your own? For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God's," (1 Corinthians 6:19-20). I can determine what level of fitness I'm after and figure out what nutrients and activities will help me achieve that goal.

In order to grow in my relationship with the Lord, it's important for me to study His Word and obey His directives. "He that hath my commandments, and keepeth them, he it is that loveth me: and he that loveth me shall be loved of my Father, and I will love him, and will manifest myself to him," (John 14:21). Setting a goal for memorizing His Word and spending time in prayer and Bible study help me achieve the growth I'm after.

Relationships are very important. They take work and effort. My relationship with God doesn't just happen - it takes concentrated time. The same is true regarding relationships with people. Any relationship that is strong is the result of time spent cultivating that bond. God designed me for relationships. Jesus was very clear, "...Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself," (Matthew 22:37b-38).

When I realize the value of family and friends in my life, I am willing to set aside time to nurture those relationships. To plan for regular time together. To put their needs ahead of my own. As a result, growth will happen. With the right attitude, I can stick to my routine AND see positive growth!

Do you have a routine? If you're just going through the motions, what steps will you put in place to achieve growth?

Heavenly Father, Thank You that Your Word shows the importance of growth in all areas of my life. Help me to set realistic goals to achieve this growth. Your Word is clear, "Show me thy ways, O Lord; teach me thy paths. Lead me in thy truth, and teach me: for thou art the God of my salvation; on thee do I wait all the day," (Psalm 25:4-5). In Jesus' name, Amen.

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Something to Gain from Pain

The sprain couldn't be ignored. I'd have to stay off my left ankle for a few days. Ice bags, an ace wrap, and a gel brace became my constant companions. The pain in my ankle paled in comparison to the aching muscles in my back. I hadn't injured my back, but obviously, when I hobbled around I was compensating with muscles I didn't normally use to walk.

Oh how this physical lesson has played out over and over in my spiritual life! When God puts his finger on something that needs attention, quite often He requires me to use spiritual 'muscles' that need to be strengthened. And the 'workout' leaves me sore!

His Word may remind me that an attitude isn't right. I've become critical. Complaining is second nature. I read about the children of Israel who were miraculously delivered from the hand of an evil Pharaoh and the land of Egypt. I shake my head in astonishment, as the story unfolds - clearly the Lord has led them out of bondage, yet when they see that Pharaoh and his army are pursuing them, they lash out at Moses. "And they said unto Moses, Because there were no graves in Egypt, hast thou taken us away to die in the wilderness? wherefore hast thou dealt thus with us, to carry us forth out of Egypt? Is not this the word that we did tell thee in Egypt, saying, Let us alone, that we may serve the Egyptians? For it had been better for us to serve the Egyptians, than that we should die in the wilderness," (Exodus 14:11-12; KJV).

How ungrateful can these people be? Then comes the nudge. The still, small voice of the Holy Spirit. I've brought you out of bondage too - why is it that you're complaining about your current circumstances? Ouch! Okay, what do I need to learn here? Time to search out the passages that will correct the problem. It doesn't take long to find verses that deal with my attitude without mincing words, "Do all things without murmurings and disputings: That ye may be blameless and harmless, the sons of God, without rebuke, in the midst of a crooked and perverse nation, among whom ye shine as lights in the world," (Philippians 2:14-15).

Time to exert those spiritual 'muscles' that have atrophied. Time to get back to the reason why God saved me in the first place - to bring honor and glory to Him. Not to live a problem-free life that's self-serving. The Philippians passage gets my heart back in gear. When I approach every situation with the right attitude, and avoid complaining, it's UNNATURAL. That's just what the Lord wants. Others will stop and take notice of my positive response, will realize that there's something different about me, and will be pointed to Him.

With my eyes on the Truth, concentrating on one situation at a time, slowly but surely my spiritual 'muscles' gain strength. The process is often slow and painful, but the results are worth the effort - a life that reflects the Lord Jesus Christ!

What spiritual 'muscle' needs to be strengthened in your life? Search for verses that apply to your need and begin applying them to your life today!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, Thank You for Your still, small voice that loving shows me areas that need attention. Help me to obey Your Truth and begin exercising my spiritual 'muscles' so others will see You. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Monday, June 6, 2011

Need Help?

We hadn't seen her in awhile. My husband, Steve, and I were busy weeding and laying pine straw. Last time we checked, both dogs were playing in the front yard. But as I glanced up from yet another bale of pine straw, I couldn't locate our Golden Retriever, Precious. Steve hadn't seen her either. Yard work momentarily forgotten, we began calling her. Scouring the areas her mischievous paws may have taken her.

It didn't take long to find her. She had wandered down into the creek and was unable to figure out how to get back up the steep bank. She had managed to climb up onto a limb that was jutting out of the bank. Trouble was, the limb was supporting her in such a way that her front and back legs were suspended in mid-air! She wasn't going anywhere soon. Yet in her awkward predicament, she hadn't made an attempt to get our attention. She was trying to figure this one out herself.

Steve ended up making the heroic rescue. Jumping down the embankment and giving our dog the lift she needed to scramble off the limb and back to safety. Her adventure seemed to sap her energy. The remainder of the day she was quite content to lay under the shade of a tree and rest.

I have to admit that I can be a lot like Precious. Not willing to ask for help when I clearly need it. Trying to figure things out on my own when I get into a jam. While the entire time my arms and legs are flailing about, plainly indicating my need for help.

King Solomon gives wise counsel, "Two are better than one; because they have a good reward for their labour. For if they fall, the one will lift up his fellow: but woe to him that is alone when he falleth; for he hath not another to help him up," (Ecclesiastes 4:9-10; KJV). Sometimes, in my pride, I forget this. And avoid the wisdom of godly friends. I'd do well to heed more of Solomon's advice, "Where no counsel is, the people fall: but in the multitude of counselors there is safety," (Proverbs 11:14).

Remember the story of Esther? She found herself in quite a quandary. Her people, the Jews, were to be slaughtered, and her cousin, Mordecai wanted her to go before the king to plead for their lives. That doesn't seem so difficult, considering the king was her husband. Yet the custom of the day forbade her to come into the king's presence unless she had been summoned. The price for coming before him unbidden? She could be put to death.

Mordecai's response is hard to swallow. "Think not with thyself that thou shalt escape in the king's house, more than all the Jews. For if thou altogether holdest thy peace at this time, then shall there enlargement and deliverance arise to the Jews from another place; but thou and thy father's house shall be destroyed: and who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?" (Esther 4:13b-14).

Instead of trying to figure out this grave dilemma on her own, Esther requests that Mordecai assemble the Jews to fast and pray for her, while she and her servants do the same. Her famous words follow, "...and if I perish, I perish," (Esther 4:16).

What happens next is nothing short of miraculous. The king extends the royal scepter to Esther, sparing her life, and allows the Jews to defend themselves when their enemies seek to slaughter them. The Jews are spared and Mordecai is placed second in command in Shushan.

Esther was willing to ask for help and accept wise counsel. God did the rest. What about you? Are you willing to ask others for help when you're facing a difficult situation? Do you readily accept godly counsel? What does God want you to do today?

Heavenly Father, thank You for giving me godly friends with whom I can share my struggles. Help me to turn from pride and be willing to listen to and follow biblical counsel. I know I can trust You for a good outcome. In Jesus' name, Amen.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Blogging Birthday!

The month of June marks two years. Two years of blogging. What a journey it's been. As I look back on all the life lessons I've shared - I'm grateful for growth in so many areas and even more grateful for God's grace in the areas where development is still needed. His direction for me is clear, "But grow in grace, and in the knowledge of our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ," (2 Peter 3:18a; KJV).

Passing along the lessons God is teaching me has been a joyful, and sometimes humbling experience. My goal has been to consistently share the practical truths of God's Word to bring honor and glory to Him. In the coming year, my goal remains the same.

But being consistent has its challenges. Life is hectic. Distractions will come. It's easy for me to get swept away in the current of the urgent and not attend to the important. Balance in each area of life is crucial. Staying focused and motivated are keys. King Solomon penned these wise words, "Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life," (Proverbs 4:23). Truth is, I'll find time to do what I want to do. My task is to concentrate on those things that keep my feet on the right path.

Need an example? Glad you asked. The Lord has given me a desire to write. With summer here, our daughter home from college, a number of projects needing to be tackled, and the same amount of writing to be done, I feel torn in a million directions. Instead of throwing my hands up in frustration and giving into defeat, God's Word shares a different perspective: diligence and perseverance.

It's easy to say I'll do something. Following through is the hard part. Paul wrote to the Corinthian believers about this exact situation, "And herein I give my advice: for this is expedient for you, who have begun before, not only to do, but also to be forward a year ago. Now therefore perform the doing of it; that as there was a readiness to will, so there may be a performance also out of that which ye have," (2 Corinthians 8:10-11; italics mine). These Christians had a great plan. They wanted to collect money for the churches in Jerusalem. The problem? Over the time period of a year, nothing had come of their plan. Paul encouraged them to be diligent and persevere - to follow through.

Choosing to be diligent and persevere in the face of difficulties isn't easy. But it's the right thing to do. And God's blessing will follow. "For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labour of love, which ye have showed toward his name, in that ye have ministered to the saints, and do minister. And we desire that every one of you do show the same diligence to the full assurance of hope unto the end: That ye be not slothful, but followers of them who through faith and patience inherit the promises," (Hebrews 6:10-12).

Do you struggle with follow through? How would a commitment to being diligent and to persevere change the outcome?

Prayer: Heavenly Father, thank You for Your continued work in my life. Thank You for showing me the importance of following through - of being diligent and persevering. Give me the strength and help I need to focus on Your truth, and stay on the path You have for me. In Jesus' name, Amen.