Soul H2O Devotions

  • What Are You Searching For?

    If you search for good, you will find favor; but if you search for evil, it will find you!”

    Proverbs 11:27 NLT

    I needed a new purse. The one I had was old and missing a few rhinestones. Quite an issue for me! The white was quickly becoming dingy and passing beyond “winter white” status. So what did I do? I went to Home Depot and headed down the power drills aisle…of course not! I went straight to TJ Maxx and found a replacement. This one’s so cool it will match with gold and silver accessories! In life and shopping you need to know the answer to the question: What are you searching for?

    This verse in Proverbs seems so simple, but yet it packs a powerful wisdom punch. So often people live their life saying that they are seeking after one thing, but their actions reveal a different pursuit. A person might say they’re seeking a debt-free life, but their spending reveals a whole in their plans. Someone might say they are searching for the mate God has for their lives, but end up scoping out the bars to find a date. Often what we’re finding is truly what we’re searching for, but not necessarily what we really want. We often give up too quickly on our quest for the best.

    If you’re not finding what you want in life, I encourage you to honestly ask yourself the question: What are you searching for? Search after God’s good plans for your life like I hunted after a new purse. Keep going to the right place, at the right time, with the right attitude and you’ll be amazed how you will find God’s good favor.

    Prayer

    Father…I thank You for the simplicity of your advice. Help me not to bring things into my life that I don’t really want by what I seek after. I want to pursue You and Your favor in my life. I want to walk in the goodness Your favor brings. In Jesus Name…Amen 

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  • Stay

    I am going to send you what my Father has promised; but stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.”
    Luke 24:48 NIV

    In my lifetime I’ve had a few dogs. There was Missy, then Coby, next a crazy Daisy followed by Roxie and a brief stint with Chancho. With training, or shall I say, trying to train all those dogs, there were a ton of “Stay” directives spoken. Some dogs learned the command quickly. Crazy Daisy and Chancho never learned to come under their master’s authority.

    In this verse, Jesus is at the end of His life. He’s just about to be ascended back to heaven when He gave the disciples this command to “stay in the city until you have been clothed with power from on high.” Learning to stay is not an easy lesson to grasp.   As a first-born, with a slightly Type-A personality who was raised at the dragstrip; I’ve struggled with learning to stay. I don’t want to slow down, and I especially don’t want to stay. I want to get things done but, if I don’t heed the master’s voice when He’s directing me to stay, and I run on ahead of His timing; I end up in a whole heap of problems.   Jesus knew what was ahead for the disciples. He knew that they had so much to do and couldn’t do it in their own strength. They needed to stay and wait for the power of the Holy Spirit to accomplish all that God desired them to do.

    Could Jesus be directing you to stay? Trust that He knows what is ahead of you. I encourage you to discern His voice and learn to stay until you hear His voice declaring a FORWARD command.

    Prayer

    Father…My heart’s desire is to follow You; not running ahead or lagging behind. Help me to rightly discern the direction You’re giving me today. Please take away my anxious heart and help me to accept Your command when it’s given to stay; not as punishment, but protection for what’s ahead.   May I stay still long enough so You can clothe me in Your power! In Jesus Name…Amen

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  • Be Careful Little Eyes

    “I will behave wisely…I will set nothing wicked before my eyes…”
    Psalm 101:2-3 NKJV

    When I read this verse the Sunday School song “O Be Careful Little Eyes” starts playing in my head.

    “O be careful little eyes what you see, O be careful little eyes what you see. There’s a father up above who is looking down in love. O be careful little eyes what you see.”

    Such a simple song, with such profound truth!

    David penned this psalm “when he was about to become king in Israel”,1 long before he set his eyes on Bathsheba and committed adultery with her. David here is making the same kind of promise to God that Job did when he said, “I made a covenant with my eyes not to look lustfully at a young woman.”2 David started off good, but sadly David didn’t stick to his statement of faith and let his eyes wander where they never should have gone.   So much heartache and the death of two innocent people would have been averted if David would’ve guarded his vision. Even the very first sin was tempted through sight. Genesis 3:6 says that Eve “saw that the tree was good for food, and that it was a delight to the eyes..”.

    [tweetthis]Wandering eyes lead to unwise behaviour. Ps. 101:2-3[/tweetthis]

    Sunday School taught me a lot of lessons that I would be wise to follow. “O Be Careful Little Eyes” is one lesson I need to remind myself of often and keep, like Job who started and finished well.

    Prayer

    Father…Thank You for Your Word. It gives me such good advice. Your Word helps me see how I need to be mindful of the little things in order to keep my life pleasing to you. Help me to be wise and take control of what I look at today. Let me set my eyes on You, the “pioneer and perfecter”3 of my faith so I can finish well. In Jesus Name…Amen  

    1. https://www.biblestudytools.com/commentaries/treasury-of-david/psalms-101-1.html
    2. Job 31:1
    3. Hebrews 12:2
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  • Tell The World

    Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done.”

                                                                       Isaiah 12:4 NIV

    As I thought about what to write I read Isaiah 12:4 and the last part of the verse hit me. It’s my role to “make known among the nations what God has done”. I “give thanks to the Lord” when I tell the world what God has done for me.

    In my life I have seen God do so many miraculous things! In College I experienced my first physical healing. A year later my heart was breaking when my unsaved grandfather was dying of cancer. One night I went to bed praying for his salvation and healing. I felt the Lord ask me to pray for an hour. I didn’t know how I could ever pray that long, but I did. When I felt like it was ok to stop praying I checked the clock and it had been one hour. God chose to extend Grandpa’s life for a year and in that time he made his heart right with God, the week before he passed away! My son has experienced physical healings a few times. Just recently my daughter broke her ankle and it healed in an unexplainable amount of time. My father was healed of paralysis on one side of his body as a young child. I’ve seen people’s lives drastically changed as we prayed togethe: marriages healed, hearts restored and people who’ve been held captive by sin, sickness or depression set free. I could write a book on all the miraculous acts that I’ve witnessed God perform.

    Today I’ve taken the opportunity through this blog post to tell the world just a few of the things that God has done. I hope they have encouraged to believe in faith that God can heal, restore, make right, save, mend…or set free! Whatever your need; God can meet it. Whatever need He’s met in the past, share with someone else. Do your part to tell the world what He has done.

    Prayer

    Father…Thank You all the great things you’ve done in my life. Help me to remember the miracles of the past, so I can tell the world about them. Let my story bring You glory! In Jesus Name…Amen 

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  • Sand In Your Shoes

    ‘…And I will gain glory through Pharaoh and all his army, through his chariots and his horsemen.”
                                                                           Exodus 14:17 NIV

    I love watching God take broken lives, bring restoration, then use people for His glory! We often don’t understand what purpose there is in our problems, but like my hubby Todd said to me, God didn’t have you go through the desert just to get sand in your shoes.1 God has a plan. He gains glory when we get through hard times with Him!

    In Exodus 14:17 God is speaking to Moses when the Israelites are in an extremely difficult time. Theyve just left slavery in Egypt when all of sudden they can see their slave masters chasing after them. The only route in front is a sea with no way of escape…or so they thought! Fear gives way to faith and they crossover to safety with their enemies miraculously being defeated. God uses the hard times of our lives as an opportunity to provide miracles. This way He can gain glory, not us and draw people to Himself. God will take every desert circumstance and use it for your benefit and His glory, when you follow Him!

    So, fight the feelings of irritation. Get rid of the sand in your shoes and let your desert time be the very thing God uses to gain glory through you!

    Prayer

    Father…Thank You for being with my in the desert. Help me to change my view on the hard times of life from irritation to opportunity. Let my life draw others towards You and may You be glorified today! In Jesus Name…Amen

    1 Stahl, Sherry. WATER IN THE DESERT, Acknowledgments page © 2015 Word Alive Press; Winnipeg, MB

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  • Believing Without Seeing

    Because you have seen me, you have believed; blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
    John 20:29  NIV

    In Grade 12 I took a course on ancient history. I remember at the end of one class my teacher saying something along these lines, “Next week we start a study on the life of Jesus Christ. I don’t want you atheists skipping class and I don’t want you Christians taking this time to evangelize in your comments. We are learning about a historical figure Jesus Christ. We study his life because there is more proof that Jesus Christ lived, died and rose from the dead than there is that Julius Caesar lived.” That last comment changed my life. I had struggled with the fact that people always said Christianity had to be followed with blind faith. I was beginning to learn that although I had to live believing without seeing, it wasn’t blind, uneducated or illogical faith. My faith had backing, beyond just my experience with God.

    When Jesus spoke the words above recorded by John he was pronouncing a blessing on people like you and me. People all over the world who would have to come to faith in Him, believing without seeing. We live in a world where people are distrustful, with good reason. Politicians and preachers; family and friends make great promises, only to break them, often with consequences that affect the lives of others. We live in a day where people say ‘I’ll have to see it to believe it’. That’s why so many, myself included, have struggled with faith in God. We weren’t there to see Jesus live, die, raise from the dead and ascend to heaven, but the disciples were there recording, along with a group of other historians.

    Over the many years since High School Ive been diligent to add fact to my faith. I’ve studied and confirmed for myself that the Bible records the truth about Jesus; from birth to death. The question is, will you receive the blessing Jesus spoke and live believing without seeing?

    Prayer

    Father…I’m filled with gratitude that you sent Your son. Jesus, I’m overwhelmed with Your love. I’ll never understand why you would leave the glories of heaven and come here to earth for sinners like me. I don’t deserve what You did, but I’m so thankful for Your sacrifice. Please open the eyes of my spirit, so I can live believing without seeing while growing in my knowledge of Your truth. In Jesus Name…Amen 

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  • Jesus Was Full of Passion

    “As he approached Jerusalem and saw the city, he wept over it.”
    Luke 19:41 NIV

    True love wells up passion in your heart that’s impossible to keep inside.  Passion bubbles up and spills out!  It’s the force inside that compels people to greatness despite adversity; an emotion that propels us.  Passion is aroused from either a great love or hatred.  One motivator brings about increased love, while the other produces hurt.   Passion motivated by hatred caused Romeo and Juliet’s parents to try and break up their love, while passion motivated by love made the couple willing to die for each other.

    During Passion Week, Jesus was heartbroken over how the people of Jerusalem were rejecting the God who was doing everything to reach them and show them His love. The most religious of cities, yet their lack of faith in God brought Jesus to tears.  Jesus passionately loved the lost people of Jerusalem even though they rejected Him.  Like Romeo and Juliet, He was willing to die for the sake of love.  This love caused Jesus to passionately pursue God’s plan for His life.  Nothing and no one could stop Him from fulfilling His mission to restore us to right relationship with the father.

    When I read how Jesus lived and loved, I want to follow suit.  I don’t want to live my life with a ‘get by’ mentality.  I want to live with passion and reach the world with the love of Christ!  I want to see each day as an opportunity for adventure and ‘seize the day’!  This Easter, let the passion of Christ renew your passion to love and serve Him more!

    Prayer

    Father…I cannot thank You enough for sending your son.  Jesus I thank You for the way You lived Your life with passion because of Your love for me.  That thought is overwhelming.  I don’t deserve your love, but I’m grateful for it!  Help me to passionately pursue the life You have planned out for me so others can know the depths of Your love.  In Jesus Name…Amen.

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  • Unleashed

     “…Jesus sent two disciples, saying to them, “Go to the village ahead of you, and at once you will find a donkey tied there, with her colt by her. Untie them and bring them to me. If anyone says anything to you, tell him that the Lord needs them, and he will send them right away.”
    Matthew 21:1,2
    NIV

    This week I am preaching three times in three days. I couldn’t be more excited! Friends can’t understand me and think I’m crazy, but for the first time in my life, I feel I’m truly beginning to walk in the destiny that God has called me to, since I was 19 years old. I hate to compare myself to a donkey; it’s not a very flattering thought, but as I read this verse, I too feel like someone has unleashed me to reach my potential.

    Just before Jesus triumphal entry into Jerusalem, he instructed two of his disciples to untie two donkeys; a mom and her colt because ‘the Lord needed them’. Being used by God is exhilarating, but it doesn’t mean you’re anything special. God often used donkeys; a lowly animal, for His glory! Balaam’s donkey talked and Jesus first important donkey ride was inside his momma on the way to Bethlehem. Mark and Luke record that this colt would be one “no one has ever ridden.” He was so young he hadn’t ever left his mother’s side. This donkey had never reached his potential. He was bound and Jesus set him free to be used for the Father’s glory! As the colt was unleashed, so was his mother.

    Today, God needs you like he needed the donkey. God desires to untie the leash that is keeping you bound so you can fulfill your God-given destiny. As you move forward, your freedom will affect the people closest to you so you can all live…unleashed!

    Prayer

    Father…I thank-You for sending Your Son to set me free! I’m bound in so many more ways than I realize. Help me to not fear, but let you ‘cut me loose’ so I can fulfill the destiny you have for my life. May I live unleashed as the vehicle You use to bring Jesus to this lost world. In Jesus Name…Amen.

    #DareToShare …Post in the Comment Section below and bolster the faith of someone else!

    [tweetthis remove_url=”true”]Being used by God is exhilarating, but it doesn’t mean you’re anything special. God often used donkeys![/tweetthis]

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  • John C. Maxwell And God Want You To Be A Talent-Plus Person

    “Do not neglect your gift,
    which was given you through prophecy
    when the body of elders laid their hands on you."
    1 Timothy 4:14 NIV

    Recently I made a decision that has the potential to change my life in dramatic ways. It’s not easy for me to choose to do things for myself but years ago my friend Staci helped me to get better at that and I’m forever grateful to her! Lately, I’ve been trying to figure out what to do with the rest of my working life and decided I really don’t want to work in finance anymore. I want to pursue the giftings God has placed in me, so after much deliberation, prayer and consultation, I registered myself for the John Maxwell Speaker and Life Coach Certification Course because I want to become a Talent-Plus person!

    [tweetthis]Invest In Yourself #youreworthit [/tweetthis]

    John Maxwell Wants You To Be A Talent-Plus Person

    John C. Maxwell

    Talent PlusI’ve been greatly influenced by the writings of John C. Maxwell. I see the principles in his books all throughout scripture. The teachings in John’s book, Talent Is Never Enough1 emphasize the truth of today’s verse, 1 Timothy 4:14.  Paul taught us through his writings that we all have been given gifts from God to be used for the benefit of the body.

    In the scripture above, Paul is encouraging Tim, the young minister to not neglect his gift, and in Paul’s second letter to his young protégé, Paul encourages Tim to “stir up the gift” or “fan it into flame” (2 Timothy 1:6 NIV/ KJV).   Paul is encouraging Timothy to become a Talent-Plus person.

    God Desires For You To Be A Talent-Plus Person

    And, it’s not just John C. Maxwell, God desires for you to be a Talent-Plus person. John’s book suggests you need to have talent plus: belief in yourself, passion, initiative, focus, preparation, practice, perseverance, courage, teachability, character, right relationships, responsibility, and a team to be successful.

    Take a good look at your life and don’t neglect your gift!  ‘Stir it up’ by taking the time to develop the gift God has given you, for His glory.

    Prayer

    Father…I thank-you for the gifts and talents you have placed in my life. In my eyes, they seem so small and insignificant. Help me to see their purpose in Your plan so I understand their value. Show me how I should be working to develop the gifts You’ve given me. In Jesus Name…Amen

    Talent Plus

    #Dare2Share Post in the Comment Section below and let me know what you’ve done to become a Talent-Plus person or what you’re going to do…

    [tweetthis]I want to become a Talent-Plus person! @JohnMaxwellTeam #JMTeam #JMTdna #talent @JohnCMaxwell [/tweetthis]

    [tweetthis]Don’t neglect your gift! 1 Tim 4:14 #JMTdna #JMTeam @JohnMaxwellTeam @JohnCMaxwell [/tweetthis]

    I DID IT!
    I PASSED THE JOHN MAXWELL TEAM CERTIFICATION, MET AND TALKED TO JOHN C. MAXWELL!

    If you’re interested in finding out more about the John Maxwell Team or the Online Leadership University I’m a part of, just email me from my Contact Page, I’d love to tell you how much it’s benefitted me.

    John Maxwell

    1 Maxwell, John C. Talent Is Never Enough © (P) 2007 Thomas Nelson Publishers, Nashville, TN Abridged Audiobook
    https://www.johnmaxwell.com

    [tweetthis]#PAPERBACKPIC Talent Is Never Enough by @JohnCMaxwell @JohnMaxwellTeam [/tweetthis]

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  • A Cheerful Heart

    A cheerful heart is good medicine, but a broken spirit saps a person’s strength.
    Proverbs 17:22 NLT

    This weekend my son and his sweet girlfriend came down to visit. I love when Brandon comes because you know you’ll have a good time. Since he was a little kid he loved to laugh and tease. He’s always up for fun and this weekend was no different. We ate too much, watched a funny movie, laughed a bunch and most importantly…Todd and I won the best of 5 series in the game of Sequence! Scripture is right when it says, “A cheerful heart is good medicine”.

    Laughing and having fun is what I believe God intended for his people. Sadly churches have presented God to so many in a drab, dreary way.  Think about this…what boring God would ever create a giraffe, rhino, otter, emu, sloth or ring tailed lemur? Another thing to consider is when God made Adam…He recognized that something was missing and placed Eve in the garden with him. God didn’t want anyone to go it alone, or to journey through life without a cheerful heart. God wants us to enjoy our time on this earth and to have fun!

    So, if your spirit is broken and you strength is sapped, don’t just go to bed. Find a friend, or watch a funny movie. Do something that will bring you a cheerful heart. It’ll be like medicine for your soul!

    Prayer

    Father…I thank-you for the people you have placed in my life that help to bring about a cheerful heart in me. Help me to not just sit in my sadness ever, but to follow your direction and seek out joy. May I live my life in a way that brings a cheerful heart to others! Let ‘the joy of the Lord be my strength’.1 In Jesus Name…Amen

    1Nehemiah 8:10

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