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Showing posts from February, 2009

Your personal relationship with Jesus: Is anyone among you suffering? Let him pray. James 5:12

Divine Note #8– Feb. 23, 2009
I shared my love of Christ and how my entire life has changed at Celebration and paid tribute to three women who have helped me get closer to God. When I heard Joan Murray say that prayers go into eternity and that they are heard, my soul was touched and I remembered my grandmother. She would testify about how God changed her life and you can imagine my teenage embarrassment when she would talk about me! After my dad passed away, she often told the church family that she put us in the loving arms of Jesus.

God answered my grandmother’s prayers for me through righteous women who love God. Can you imagine if Fern had not encouraged me to do God’s work through Celebration (James 5:14)? What if Lorraine had not prayed a powerful prayer asking the Holy Spirit to help me share what I have been through, so that I might help others because it’s not about me (James 5:16)? My child, Jackie, loves God and is determined to do His will for her life. I give Him all credi…

Your personal relationship with Jesus: Be comforted and comfort others – 2 Corinthians 1-4

Divine Note #7 – Feb. 16, 2009

It’s not about me. As I grow in my relationship with the Lord, I realize that there are so many people who desperately need the love and comfort of Jesus Christ that we are all called to share. In verse 4, Paul tells us that our God comforts us in our affliction so that we may comfort others in their time of need.

It’s so easy to go about our daily, busy lives and not think of those close to us who may need a comforting word. Maybe it says something about our society that even while we’re so connected by technology such as cell phones, computers and e-mails; we are still very much in need of a friendly voice or hug to comfort us during a valley period. Do you ever find yourself e-mailing or texting with family and closest friends and then realizing that you don’t really know what’s going on in their lives? Welcome to my world. Technology has made our lives so much less personal.

If our friends and family feel like they can’t get enough of our time, what abo…

Your personal relationship with Jesus: Encouragement is just a word or prayer away – 1 Thessalonians 3:1-10

Divine Note #6 – Feb. 9, 2009

All it takes is a word of kindness, a hug or a smile to tell people around us how valuable they are. The apostle Paul was encouraged when Timothy returned from visiting the Thessalonians with good news of the faith and love of believers who had limited access to the apostle’s teachings. Paul knew how important it was to encourage and to be encouraged by believers.

Over lunch a few months ago, a long time friend told me that because I took the time to listen, to ask questions and to tell her to get a grip and get help, that I prevented her from committing suicide many years ago. That’s mind boggling. What if I hadn’t taken the time to be there for her? Many of you have recently been praying for another friend’s family as they removed their loved one from life support, agonized over hospice care and are now facing funeral arrangements. As a result, I know that God is wrapping them in His loving arms during this painful time and they appreciate your prayers.

Wh…

Your personal relationship with Jesus: These things I have spoken to you, that My Joy may remain in you, and that your joy may be full - John 15:11

Divine Note #5 – Feb. 2, 2009

Dear Women of the Word,
As God transforms my life, it’s easier to share my testimony so that others can see how He changes in our lives. My dad passed away unexpectedly at the age of 36, on February 6, 1970, when I was 12 years old. That impacted my life in many ways and has made me a relationship expert – as in what not to do in relationships. But the main point that I want to make is that for many years, I dreaded the month of February and the sad memories.
Over the years, I’ve discussed it with counselors, friends and family, and I even took grief seminars and read books -- all in an attempt to cope with unresolved grief. But it wasn’t until I accepted God’s free and unmerited grace, that I can now say that everyday of my life is joyful. I no longer dread February and instead, my heavenly Father has given me the ability to have wonderful memories of my human father, who was a very talented, loving and handsome man. So, whatever is impacting your joy, GIVE…

Your personal relationship with Jesus: Ask Him to search your heart Psalm 139

Divine Note #4 – Jan. 25, 2009

In the Psalm, David tells the Lord: Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my thoughts, v23. David is basking in the Lord’s love and he wants more and more! When you have a deep, abiding relationship with God, you want him to be a part of your entire life! I promise you that there is nothing that compares to having a close spiritual connection to our great God!

If you prayed the prayer of salvation and asked Jesus into your life, what’s next? Whether you accepted Jesus for the first time or if you are a long-time Christian, you have some choices to make. When you ask the Holy Spirit to transform your life, it’s just the beginning of your journey to spiritual maturity and a closeness to God that many Christians miss. Sadly, some believers never grow because they see Salvation as only a ticket to heaven. Others feel that attending church is all they need to do and that’s good. But a third group of believers gets it! They want to develop a deep…

Your personal relationship with Jesus: He meets you where you are - Luke 11:9-10

Divine Note #3 – January 19, 2009

Since I wrote the Top 12 Tips last week about the things I am doing to get close to Jesus, I’ve had a huge revelation. He inspired them for me, so that I could move to the next step in my relationship with him! I am a visual learner, so I had to see the message on paper before I understood it! As I seek more of his grace, goodness and joy, he gives me more. As I surrender my will, the Holy Spirit moves in my life. He can do the same for you, when you are ready to accept it.

A great way to begin your journey in 2009 is by asking God for the free gift of salvation (Romans 10:13). Here’s a sample prayer that I use from one of my favorite pastors, Dr. Charles Stanley.

Father God,
I know I need you but can never get to you on my own. I receive your son Jesus as my personal savior. I believe he took all my sins onto himself when he died on the cross, conquering death for my sake and giving me access to you. Thank you for forgiving me and for sending the Holy Sp…

Your personal relationship with Jesus: Top 12 tips Romans 12:2

Divine Note #2 - Monday, Jan. 12, 2009
Try a 30 day challenge to take your relationship with Jesus to the next level. A popular local Christian radio station, KSBJ, is challenging listeners to make one change for good. It’s easier than making resolutions that are impossible to keep. Why don’t we all join together and make one positive change to enhance our walk with the Lord? I’ll share what I’ve been doing in my walk. Try one and see what happens!
Start the day by saying, “Good morning, Lord.” Pastor Michelle once suggested saying, “Thank you for letting me join your day, Lord!”I awaken at 5:45 a.m. and listen to Dr. Charles Stanley at 6 a.m. on FM 105.6 from Monday through Friday. I take notes and read Scripture quoted. This practice took time to develop, but it has enhanced my relationship with the Lord.I keep a notepad in my purse, so I can write messages when I hear his voice. Those messages have resulted in this series of notes. I also keep a devotional book in my purse, so I can…

It’s all about your personal relationship with Jesus – John 3:12-15

Divine Note #1 - Monday, Jan. 5, 2009

Many people who lived when Jesus was on Earth had a hard time believing that He was the Son of God. Jesus understood it and in John 3:12-15, He tells Nicodemus, a leader of the Jews, that unless he believed that it would be impossible for the Jewish leader to understand “heavenly things.”

As Christians today, we have divine revelation through the Bible and through our relationship with the Holy Spirit of God. I believe that Jesus reveals his purpose for our lives when we surrender our plans to his will. But many of us refuse to allow him to take control of our stressful, busy and hurting lives.

It’s all about relationships
Join with me this year and make your relationship with Jesus the top priority in your life, Philippians 3:10. I believe that if I fulfill his purpose for my existence that it will strengthen the relationships in my life that need healing.
Decide to spend time with God. Pray. Listen. Be quiet. Take action. Do what God asks you to do…

God chose you to be saved…that you may share the glory of Jesus! 2 Thessalonians 2:13-14

Divine Note #4 - Monday, Dec. 29, 2008

Next year decide to move on to the next stage of your life. Just as Paul encouraged the church during his time on earth, today the Holy Spirit guides believers to fulfill their God-given purpose. If you believe in God’s inspired Word, then you must move beyond the walls of home and church to share the news with everyone!

Your ministry is everyone who is around you! Please don’t wait to be healed, to feel anointed, to get over grief, to have time, to have enough money or until the kids grow up. Whatever gifts you have been given, I promise you that God needs your service now (1 Corinthians 12:7). Challenge yourself to move out of your ‘comfort zone’ and share your gifts with those whom God puts in your path!

First, have a plan. Pray and ask God for guidance on how you need to grow and serve during the next year. It’s critical to seek God’s direction and then take His hand!
Second, find out what your ministry gifts are. Talk to your pastors or trusted…

Accept the gift of grace, it’s free: Ephesians 2:1-10

Divine Note #3 - Monday, December 22, 2008

I remember reading the Bible and attending Bible studies years ago, but nothing touched my heart. I felt guilty because I was not “getting” God compared to the other people in my life. They were all in love with Jesus and I was on the outside looking in, thinking that I was not worthy. Little did I know that Jesus was preparing my heart to accept His grace!

In the dictionary, grace is defined as the freely given, unmerited favor and love of God. Grace is when God gives you what you need and not what you deserve as Rick Warren notes in his latest book, The Purpose Driven Christmas. The moment when I gave up control of my life to Jesus, His love and joy touched my life in a big way and He has been with me through the ups and downs of my life. I get direct answers from the Bible by just asking Him for guidance.

This Christmas remember that Jesus came into the world at the right time (Gal. 4:4) to adopt us into His family. You have every right to ca…

Listen for your own message: Hebrews 1:1-4

Divine Note #2: Monday, Dec. 15, 2008

Every day we’re bombarded with competing messages about how we should behave, what God’s expectations are and how we should live our lives. We get messages at church, from family and from society. But really, I have found that it’s in the quiet times and when I am genuine, that I am open to listening to God. He speaks to my heart, I just have to be still and listen.

In the Old Testament, God spoke through prophets, but now we have His Son – that wonderful Jesus! Don’t get ahead of yourself or try too hard to “get a message.” Instead, listen with your heart and obey the promptings of His Holy Spirit.

Consider writing down your thoughts and perhaps starting a journal to help you connect with Him. This also helps you remember the good things He has done for you when you are in a valley season. Maintain a continuous conversation with Jesus during the day; don’t just just pray at night. And remember to listen, quiet your spirit and hear His messages for y…

He understands and cares about you deeply: John 11:33-36

Divine Note #1 - Monday, Dec. 8. 2008

I've been thinking about how He came to earth and lived a pretty typical human life, so He understands how we, his human creations, feel. I am very touched by the fact that when he was told that Lazarus had died, he was deeply moved in spirit and troubled. The two words in verse 35 have been in my heart for a couple of days, Jesus wept.

Can you imagine the Savior of the universe weeping? He very much cared about Mary and Martha during their time of anguish over the death of Lazarus. He cried, He wept! He loved Lazarus! Think about how He loves you! Never doubt that He loves you because He created you and he understands how you feel.

Talk to Him like you would your best friend, He’s ready to listen and He loves you for you!