A Word of Encouragement

Oh my gracious, ya’ll….fasting is hard!  Yesterday was a little hard for me, I just kept having that sweet-tooth craving for sugar.  Everywhere I turned, leftover Christmas stocking candy seemed to call out to me and mock me.  But, you know what?  I made it, and we are half-way through this fast.

You know what got me through?  The knowledge that Jesus himself suffered through forty days of fasting in the desert, even through Satan’s temptations.  I’m not just talking about sweets & breads, I’m talking EVERYTHING!  For forty days!  Not only that, He suffered the most horrible beatings, He was spat upon, He was derided, He was hung up on that cross, for me.  For imperfect, unworthy me!  He let Himself be hung up on that cross, slowly, painfully waiting and praying until His last breath, crying out, “It is finished” within that last breath, all to save me, you, my children, everyone on Earth.  Why?  Because He loves us THAT MUCH!  I can’t even begin to imagine what He suffered because of His love for us.  If He can do all that, guys….seriously, me fasting sugar and suffering a few cravings isn’t even a drop in the bucket.  He deserves a whole lot more than what I can give Him.

Yes, He deserves my all, my everything, and I’m giving my all to Him.  I don’t know about you, but I don’t think I could make it in this crazy, mixed-up world without Him.  I sure don’t want to even try.  Even when the little things in life start to get to me, I’m able to stop and tell God, “thank You!”  I know I’m late and traffic is horrible, but thank you God.  Making me sit here at this light is probably Your way of preventing some terrible accident if I were just a few miles down the road.  I know life seems to be pressing in on me right now, but thank You God, because with all the pressure of life, I know You are also teaching me something.  Thank You God, just for being with me all the time, throughout every single circumstance, through the good and bad.

He deserves our all, our everything.  Through every circumstance, He deserves our praise.  Through all the ups and downs, He deserves our attention.  Through every trial, He deserves our faith in His wisdom.  Thy will be done, Lord.  I thank You for Your wisdom, Your mercy, Your grace in my life.  I thank you for Your will, Lord, because I know Your will is always to provide what’s best for me.

So be encouraged.  Yes, we still have 11 more days of fasting to go, but we are half-way through.  We can do this, you can do this.  You know why you are going to get through this?  Because He has something great planned, I just know it.  He’s working in us, He’s working through us.  You may see it now, or you may not see it for a few weeks or months, but He’s doing something wonderful.  Be faithful and steadfast in you fasting and prayer, He WILL reward your faithfulness.

John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Isaiah 40:31, “but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength.  They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.”

Isaiah 43:2, “When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers, they will not sweep over you.  When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze.”

1 Samuel 12:24, “Only fear the Lord and serve Him faithfully with all your heart.  For consider what great things He has done for you.”

Proverbs 3:5, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.”

1 Corinthians 2:9, “But, as it is written, ‘What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love Him'”

 

 

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