It Is Finished

Those of us with mental checklists of all the things we must accomplish in life must remember that there will be many things left undone when we pass on.

Someone will have to come in and take our place at work, at church, and in our family and neighborhood. We are not irreplaceable. We are just temporally graced with a modicum of responsibility that allows us to develop in character and love as we train the next generation to take over our responsibilities.

However, if we abide in faith, we will be able to say at the end, “It is finished“, just like Jesus did.

“We are God’s workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.”

Therefore, we just need to be mindful of what Our Father wants us to do each day, not what we think needs to be done. He knows what is important to do and what is not; we must heed his wisdom, knowledge, and understanding instead of our own.

This is where true freedom and the abundant life that Christ promises us comes into play. When we keep our spiritual eyes on him and what he is doing, and we begin to work with him, wonderful things begin to happen.

Doors open up; people are loved and helped, and we can finally learn to rest and be blessed. What we must give up is our ambitions; what we gain is the life of God flowing through us. No better bargain will ever be found. No better life will ever be lived. No greater peace will ever be achieved.

~ Brad Heilhecker

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Holy Fury

Wickedness, evil, selfishness, sin – let us not be deceived into thinking that Our God is either unaware, unconcerned, or unable to do anything about such things.

He sees everything and knows even the secret thoughts of men. Nothing is hidden from his sight. And a day of vengeance is coming, just as surely as the sun is going to rise tomorrow.

But I thought that God is love.  

He is, but his is a holy love. Because of his great love, he hates evil with a passion.

Anything that causes pain or unjust suffering is on his hit list, and his vindicator is Jesus Christ himself.

Really? The babe in the manger? The obedient one hanging on a cruel cross?  Really.

He is coming back to take his people to himself but also to take vengeance on his enemies.

You may say, “Well, I just don’t believe that.” You don’t have to believe it; you can just wait and see. But I would recommend staying on his good side while you wait, abiding in his love, trusting in him, obeying him. He is not to be trifled with.  

It is written, “Because there is forgiveness with him, he is to be feared.” Also, “The fear of the Lord is to depart from evil.”

Let us turn away from evil, put our trust in the atoning blood of Christ, and wait for his deliverance from all evil.  Amen.

~ Brad Heilhecker

Image by Chris Rhoads – Unsplash

Time Is A Gift

time is a gift,

so stop wasting it in the past

cause there’s nothing new

for you there;

stop dragging your past

along for the ride,

leave it behind;

trust me, you won’t regret it

you don’t need it

cause all it will do is destroy

you;

stop believing the lie

that you’re nothing

cause if you were,

you wouldn’t be here;

allow His love to find you

and remove the lies within

cause you are worth more

than your past can offer you-

nothing,

but pain,

fear,

shame,

and lies;

how can you be lost

when He calls you found?

the only thing lost

between then and now

is the time

it took you to realize this,

so stop wasting more of it

and live your life to the fullest,

in the present,

beautiful one

~ Bethany Anne

Think First

“Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger;” James 1:19 ESV

I love how Jesus understands the depths of our heart and how he knows us in a way that is intimate and eternal. He knew that we would become offended with one another. He even realized that we might include him in some of our offenses. Jesus loves us anyway.

Jesus isn’t quick to speak in anger. He is completely mindful of our intentions and actions. He knows us. He listens to us. He hears us. He is for us.

I wonder how we might affect those around us if we love like Jesus loves? Could it bring a change in heart?

Evaluate your relations. Do you provide the heart of Jesus to those around you? Let us be mindful as Jesus is and was and choose to set an example of his love.

Baring His Beauty,

Tiffany Thomas

Breakthrough

For years she was locked up

in a prison of her past

The keys thrown away

Hopelessness keeping her

in bondage

No freedom in sight

The little girl still hiding

Behind her anger, pain and rejection

Freedom was waiting for her

but she did not know

Inviting her to step out and grab a hold

of what was her birthright

Papa is giving an invitation

to all of His daughter’s

Inviting them to go deeper

with Him

Past the hopelessness that clings to them

Past the voices that beg them to stay

Past fears keeping them in shackles

Rise up and take back

what the enemy took

Your voice!

Your future!

Your fight!

Go through the process of

deep healing

Surrender and give Him

your will

He knows what He is doing

You are dynamite waiting to

be set alight

The enemy fears the day

you send him to flight

In the wilderness

He will do a heart transplant

Every wall will have to crumble by His might

You don’t know just how

strong you are

This is the time for Papa’s daughters

to get their fight back

The enemy has stolen enough

While we sit back

He will restore His daughters

to their rightful place

They will walk in liberty

Experience breakthrough after breakthrough

Finding their purpose

locked in His heart

Nothing in your life

Would ever make sense

Till that moment when you see yourself through My eyes

Oh if you could get

just a glimpse of My heart

You will see how deeply

In love I am with you

My love will put all your broken pieces

back together again

It is available to you

Hand Me your heart

Surrender completely

To experience a fearless

life in Me

I will perfect you through

My splendour

Your life will be a testimony

of what I can do

He healed her heart

He erased her past

He set her free from every fear

that kept them apart

Her circumstances did not change

But she did

Her power was hidden in her surrender

On their journey of love

He spoke life over her and

She arose to take her place

His love gave her wings

Every yoke was broken

She could fly with Him

In His eyes

she saw what He knew all along

That she’s a demon slayer!

An atmosphere changer!

Rebuilder of ancient ruins!

A collector of spoils!

Generations turn to God

because of the legacy she leaves!

~ Ebigale Wilson

Breakthrough

The Journey

http://www.restoredministries.org

Restoration Stories – Heidi Krieghauser

March 12, 2015 began just like any other day. I woke up next to Bill, my husband of nearly 25 years. Bill, was my favorite person. He was everything to me. He was my rock and my comforter. Even after having raised 2 kids, and having seen one another through all of the challenges and victories in life, we still really liked each other.

Bill was one of those very rare men who you could count on always in all ways. He was big and strong and very, very dependable. That paled in comparison to his love for our family, his kindness, impeccable character and willingness to indulge me with a courtesy chuckle at my bad jokes and puns. If Bill was there, you just knew everything was going to be okay.

We were a very typical family who lived in the Suburbs of Northern Virginia. Bill worked for the Federal Government in a position he worked hard to attain. I had been in Real Estate for years and had a career that was considered to have been successful. Our two amazing children, 24 and 22 years old, were both out of the house pursuing their education and dreams of their own.

Both Bill and I were believers in and followers of Jesus. We had served in ministry our entire marriage and had a ministry years before this fateful day called, Christ Stalkers. It was a youth ministry and over the 10 years we were its overseers, there were more than 4,000 youth who came to know Christ as their savior. We had planted churches and raised our family in church. Ministry and a relationship with God was no stranger to our family.

But by the end of that day that had begun like so many of our more than 9,000 days together, my beloved had gone home to heaven. In an instant he was gone. In fifteen minutes Bill went from saying he, “didn’t feel quite right” to taking his last breath as I held him in my arms. He was gone. My everything was gone. He was 49 years old.

After the doctor told me they were unable to revive him and did, “everything they could”, my son, who was home on Spring break, went to call people and I was left alone in that ugly, little room. We all have seen that room on TV where they take the family to break “the news” that looks so Hollywood-inspired, for dramatic effect, but is quite real. I tried to process all of this.

He had ankle surgery and had been in the hospital but was given a clean bill of health. But an oversight by the doctors, who did not prescribe blood thinners, and he died of a blood clot, taking everything from me and our kids. Not Bill. Are you sure? MY Bill? Things like this just don’t happen to people like us!

Who was I now? Since I was 21 I had been his wife. It was painfully obvious to me that I no longer held that distinction when they handed me his ring. The ring that belonged on HIS finger, not in a little bag in MY hand.

He was everything to me! How can I get through this life without him?

For a quarter of a century it had been Bill and Heidi. When people thought of me, they thought of him and vice versa. We were fine on our own but we were much, much better together.

Now, without him, who was I?

And our kids! How can I be everything to them that they needed him to be to them?

The immediacy of the pain was overwhelming and took my breath away.

So, I sat alone, in that ugly little room. Or perhaps it was quite pretty, I don’t know. And THAT is when God, although already very real to me, simply invaded my life in a whole new way.

I opened my mouth and my own words surprised me. Through tears, I whispered, “God, I NEVER questioned you when you were blessing us. I will NOT question you in this.”

HE gave me the grace and the wisdom to speak those words. I am not that gracious or that wise. He is.

I was a Christian for over 30 years but it wasn’t until I was suddenly and unexpectedly widowed that I became a TRUE Christ Stalker. It was in that moment, God ran to me and I to Him.

I needed God for every breath. I had trusted Him before but I had never had to trust Him like I did now. And in the midst of my pain and the vast absence of my Husband I found what I had longed for all my life, the unconditional love of Christ. And God had finally gotten from me what He had put me on this planet for, the absolute reliance on and unencumbered relationship with Him.

Over the last three years, there were times when the only movement forward I was able to muster was an army crawl, on my stomach, in the muck and the mire.

And times when I thought the pain on Bills loss was so overwhelming that I was surprised that I woke up because I thought the physical anguish alone would have killed me.

But in all of that, I pursued and consumed Jesus like never before. And He met me. He never left me. He was pursuing me as I was pursuing Him.

It has been, at times, a heart wrenching journey and I have cried more tears than I ever thought one person could create. But in all of the pain and uncertainty, Jesus has revealed Himself to me in a way I never thought possible!

My life now is a true fulfillment of Romans 8:28, “And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.”

The love God has shown me in this journey is like no other. He carried me when I needed to be carried. He held me when I needed to be held. Gave me strength when needed and has become all things to me always, in all ways.

It is difficult to pick out just one scripture that got me through. God used every verse to speak to and comfort me. But Joshua 1:9 is probably my favorite: Have I not commanded you to be bold, strong and very courageous. Be not afraid, neither be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you, wherever you will go.

What a beautiful promise!!

There is one song that I put on loop whenever I felt like I could not even get through the next second. Some of the lyrics that gave me great hope were found in the song, It is well:

Through it all, through it all

My eyes are on You

Through it all, through it all

It is well

Through it all, through it all

My eyes are on You

It is well with me

Far be it from me to not believe

Even when my eyes can’t see

And this mountain that’s in front of me

Will be thrown into the midst of the sea

Through it all, through it all

My eyes are on You

Through it all, through it all

It is well

Through it all, through it all

My eyes are on You

It is well, it is well

So let go my soul and trust in Him

The waves and wind still know His name.

~ Heidi Krieghauser