After attending church online and helping my mother with the cooking, I have realised how blissful Sundays are. By being surrounded by people you love and hearing the Word of God, you are filled with a godly righteousness to fill others and lift them up higher.
Despite the limitations of not being able to have the physical interactions with others at church, just hearing the voices of friends and being able to chat with them has helped me to remember that we are all in this together. We are able to encourage one another with Bible verses and remember the God we serve.
Although there is no guarantee or promise that we can make as individuals about the future, we can be certain of trusting God who is with us during this time and will never leave us, regardless of how we may be feeling of what we are going through.
Before I gave my life to Christ, I really struggled with the idea of talking to God about my problems and telling Him how I felt about life. I couldn’t understand why God wanted a relationship with me; I felt like I was a burden to Him.
Having seen God’s goodness and work in my life, I now understand how important it is for us to cast our cares onto Him. God is not trying to make us feel downhearted or instil us with worries; He simply wants us to place Him at the centre of our hearts and turn to Him with all we have. When we trust God and cast our cares onto Him, He promises to listen to us and grant our heart’s desires.
‘Do not be anxious about anything, but in prayer and petition with thanksgiving present your requests to God, and the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.’ Philippians 4:9
During my summer holidays, I stayed with my family and felt blessed to be with everyone that was close to me. However, as I was very young, I refused to share a gift I was given with my cousin, as I felt it was only meant for me. My grandmother turned to me and said ‘Christine, sharing is caring.’
As Christians who aim to reflect Jesus in their lives, I believe the same old saying still stands. By showing generosity and sharing with others, we display the affectionate side of love Jesus wants us to have. It is important that we continue to put others before ourselves and share what we have with others.
Whether it is food, money, time or even just a listening ear and showing that we can share our advice and open hearts with someone, we follow the lead of Jesus who did more sharing than we could ever imagine. We glorify His name and show how much we appreciate His love and grace by sharing with others.
‘And do not forget to do good and share with others, for which sacrifices God is pleased.’ Hebrews 13:16
As Christians, we are meant to set an example to others by reflecting Jesus in the way we live our lives and make our decisions. By being unique and showing that God is first in our hearts, we remain obedient to His Word and grow in our walk of becoming more christlike.
Each day we are being sanctified by Him, and should embrace the opportunity to reflect Jesus at work in us by living just the way He did and showing that God’s commands live indelibly at the centre of our lives. The people around will be able to tell that we love Jesus and stand to represent and glorify His name.
‘You are the light of the world. A town built on a hill cannot be hidden.’ Matthew 5:14
‘In the same way, let your light shine before others, that they may see your good deeds and glorify your Father in heaven.’ Matthew 5:16
Our mindset can greatly determine and impact what we do and the way we think about things. Sometimes, our thoughts can overwhelm us; It feels as if we must submit to what our mind tells us. During this time, it can be easy to have fear-filled thoughts which cause to feel hopeless and think negatively about the situation we are facing.
Regardless of how hard we try, it can seem as if our thoughts manage us instead of us controlling them. We have to find a way to gain control over our thoughts because they inevitably determine what we say and do. In the Bible, we can find guidance on how to gain control over our thoughts and think about things which are pleasing to God and glorify Him.
‘We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.’ 2 Corinthians 10:5
‘Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable-if anything is excellent or praiseworthy-think about such things.’ Philippians 4:8
Yesterday, I received the devastating news of a friend who passed away and was unable to make a blog post. Hearing the death of a loved one is heartbreaking for anyone, and words cannot express how one may be feeling during this time.
The truth is, Jesus has defeated death once and for all, and one day we will be with Him in heaven. Sin will be no more and we will enjoy praising God forever and ever. Trusting and having faith in this promise is what builds us to love and serve God for what He has done and remain thankful for His sacrificial price on the cross.
Going back to my Bible, I read about the eternal place God is preparing for us after this life, which worth far more than this world, and is the prize we look forward to.
Rather than focusing on the temporal things of this world which eventually fade away and cannot save, we need to keep our eyes fixed on Jesus. By remaining obedient to His word, we recognise our need for a Saviour- the true sacrificial lamb who paid for our sins on the cross.
‘For we know that if the earthly tent we live in has been destroyed, we have a building from God, an eternal house in heaven, not built by human hands.’ 2 Corinthians 5:1
In this time of confusion and uncertainty, we need to remain prayerful. As believers in relationship with God, we need to connect with our Heavenly Father for strength, wisdom and guidance.
When we take up our responsibility of prayer and quiet time with God, we recognise that we are insufficient and need God to sustain and guide us. Furthermore, we show our understanding of God’s sovereignty and authority as Creator of the universe.
By praying for our world and casting our cares onto God, we are submitting to His will and acting in accordance with His Word. In the Bible, we are reminded of how important prayer is to coming to know God and His plans for our lives.
‘Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you.’ Jeremiah 29:12
‘Look to the LORD and his strength; seek His face always.’ 1 Corinthians 16:11
Before I moved out from home, my family would end each prayer with a well-known saying, ‘God is good all the time and all the time, God is good.’
This really stuck with me growing up, and in the midst of our current situation we can begin to question whether God is actually good in nature.
In Luke 18:19, Jesus declared, ‘No one is good except God alone.’
To say that God is good means that God always acts in line with is right, true, and good. Goodness is part of God’s nature and He cannot contradict this by doing something which unholy or unrighteous. As evil is the absence of goodness, it cannot dwell in God. He did not create evil and abhors sin because of His goodness.
God’s goodness is seen in His plan to redeem us from sin. The gospel is “good news.” In His goodness, God sent His Son to become the perfect sacrifice so we could be forgiven of our sins. God does not want ‘anyone to perish but everyone to come to repentance’ 2 Peter 3:9
God’s goodness should lead to thankfulness on our part: ‘Give thanks to the LORD, for He is good; His love endures forever’ Psalm 107:1
God never loses interest or grows tired of us. He doesn’t hear our cry and say ‘Oh no, not this person again!’ Our Heavenly Father delights in every detail of our lives and is constantly protecting and watching over us.
‘The eyes of the Lord are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good.’ Proverbs 15:3
‘He who watches over you will not slumber.’ Psalm 121:3
God never needs to take a break from being our Heavenly Father. He does not require someone to wake Him up or act as a reminder for certain events. He is all knowing and perfect in all His ways. We can trust Jesus to sustain and walk with us during times when we feel restless and unsettled. He does and will watch over us.
God is as interested in the day-to-day events of our lives as He is in our death and eternity. Our Creator is with us, His spirit dwells in us and He is always watching over us.
Last week I made a plan and I thought it was perfect.
I thought I had covered every intricate detail and was ready to face the week ahead. When I noticed the errors in my plan, I realised how much more I need to depend on God and trust His plan for my future.
The fact is, regardless of how perfectly designed we think our plan is, God’s plan will always be better, greater and much more immaculate than ours. We need to trust God’s timing and allow His plan to come into place, rather than conjure up our own methods in life.
‘For I know the plans I have for you, declares the LORD, plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.’ Jeremiah 29:11
God is outside of time and there is no end to His nature. As humans, this can difficult for us to grasp as most of what we know has a start and expiry date. However, this is why He is God and we are not. By trusting God’s timing, we submit to Him in obedience and realise that our timing is not perfect.