Rhubarb Reflection

This morning I had to trek out to the backyard to see just what was sprouting in our yet to be tended to plot of ground that we like to call our “garden”. At the moment our dog Brave is the only one doing his part to faithfully care for this dirt plot, providing his own organic fertilizer; regularly.  

Much to my delight I came upon this baby rhubarb sprout!! I had forgotten that last summer we had planted rhubarb for the first time and that it is a perennial! I didn’t do anything but enjoy God’s faithfulness! 

God’s sent a love note in the form of a perennial rhubarb sprout. Remembering His faithfulness leads to rest; it’s when we forget that we fret. Just trust and enjoy dear one, for he who promised is faithful. (Hebrews 10:23) 

Independent read: 2 Timothy 2:13, 2 Corinthians 1:20, 1 Corinthians 3:7

Receive Not Achieve

Between the bill and the head of a woodpecker is a sponge like bone called the cancellous. It absorbs the shock and prevents potential trauma to the bird as it’s out there doing life. 

(I think this is one of God’s love notes to us all!)

The same God that loved enough to cancel the deadly harm that would come to this little bird, is the very same God who loved enough to come between life and death for us. Our God canceled our debt as He Himself absorbed the shock and trauma of our sin on the cross to offer us a rescue to all who would receive Jesus as Savior!

No shock that He’s in all the details! Maybe if we stop trying to achieve what we can only receive we might begin experiencing the rest and peace that passes understanding in Him. 

that everyone who believes may have eternal life in him.” For God so loved the world that he have his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life. John 3:15-16

Believe and receive.

Summer Bible studies beginning to form!! Find out more at redeeminggrace991ministries.com  YOU are invited!

Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ, who gave himself for our sins to rescue us from the present evil age, according to the will of our God and Father, to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen. Galatians 1:3-5

EVERYTHING’s Simple

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“I am the LORD, the God of all mankind. Is anything too hard for me? Jeremiah 32:27 (NIV) 

It’s simple to frame our God into a picture we can see and comprehend, but then we miss the beauty of life as He intended all together. In John 14:1 (NLT) Jesus states, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, trust also in me. 2 Corinthians 5:7 (ESV) states, for we walk by faith, not by sight. The life of faith is framed in trust. A trust that our God reaches infinitely beyond any frame we humans could construct; way beyond what we ever could think, ask or imagine. 

This trust can often seem hard but it’s in those moments His strength can exude our weakness (2 Cor. 12:9) and His peace can surpass our comprehension (Phil. 4:7). A troubled heart can take up a whole lot of space within us… are we willing to let it go to take up His offer of peace and sustaining strength? Are we willing to release ourselves, loved ones and our circumstances into His will, His way and to His timing? There is authentically simple yet profound rest found in the childlike trust of real faith. 

2 Kings 20:10-11 finds king Hezekiah deathly ill. He seeks the Lord’s help and God has declared Hezekiah will take victory over this illness. Hezekiah however would like a sign to verify this word from God. So God is willing (in His amazing grace) to do one of two things to prove to Hezekiah He will heal as He has promised. God offers to either move a shadow forward ten steps or back ten steps. Hezekiah states it’s simple to move a shadow forward so he requests that which he feels would be hard for God to do. Hezekiah asks that God move the shadow cast by the sun, backwards! 

…and the LORD made the shadow go back ten steps… (v. 11) Simply stated. No record of sweat or strain. No hours of planning or contemplating the logistics. No stress that Hezekiah had selected the “harder” choice. No, because both options were simple to God. EVERYTHING is simple for God! 

Healing cancer is no harder than healing the sniffles from a common cold! Rising the sun is no more difficult than rising a tulip! We can’t frame Him! We can’t contain Him! Whatever battle you are facing today, KNOW without a shadow of a doubt on the cross Jesus said, “It is finished.” (Jn. 19:30) then rose again! So there is now nothing that can overcome a soul that belongs to God Almighty! Your battle is won and through the steps in between now and tasting that sweet victory, God has given us His Word; His faithful and precious promise that we will never walk alone (Matt. 28:20). He promises to take hold of our hand, whispering, “Do not fear, I will help you.” (Is. 41:13) It may feel we walk blind at times but if we will obediently follow and trust that the One who created sight will see for us, He will lead us out of that silly simple frame we have created for Him into an adventure beautifully beyond framing. Your life will be a mural to behold eternally to His artistic praise and glory, for nothing is too difficult for Him, EVERYTHING is simple – trust Him.

Go In to Come Out

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The LORD then said to Noah, “Go into the ark, you and your whole family, because I have found you righteous in this generation. Genesis 7:1 (NIV) “Come,” he said. Then Peter got down out of the boat, walked on the water and came toward Jesus. Matthew 14:29 (NIV) 

God has always desired to be with us, to have a personal relationship with each one of us. He wants and deserves to be our most predominant passion and deepest desire. He is jealous for us with a godly jealousy; that is a jealousy rooted in wanting only the very best thing for us. God knows He Himself is what’s best for us so anything that snags our heart otherwise, breaks His. 

Sin separates us from Him and breaks His heart, so He Himself provided a way for us to be cleansed completely and brought back into His presence, white as snow. Through belief in Jesus’ death on the cross in our place for the forgiveness of our sin and through His resurrection from the grave we receive eternal life (John 3:16)! 

When the Lord called Noah into the ark it was to preserve his life as God cleansed the world of sinful wickedness. Through immersing the earth in the greatest flood this world has ever known this cleansing was accomplished. If Noah had not chosen to be obedient to the Word of God he and his family would have been lost. We too, have been given free will. Jesus came to earth and lived a life for us to follow in thought, word and action. 

In Matthew 3:13-17 Jesus is baptised which sets an example for us to follow. Baptism publicly proclaims one’s belief in Jesus and their desire to live for Him. And he died for all, that those who live should no longer live for themselves but for him who died for them and was raised again. 2 Corinthians 5:15 (NIV) Baptism is symbolic of our old sinful nature dying through immersion. (Similar to the cleansing of the earth submerged in The flood.) Then as we rise up out of the water the new life of a believer in Jesus emerges, beginning afresh and washed clean. Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! 2 Corinthians 5:17 (NIV) 

Once we have chosen to receive the life of Jesus as Truth within us, we can walk with Him in what will be our grandest adventure! Noah from the Old Testament was called into the boat, Peter from the New Testament was called out of the boat, to walk toward Jesus! “Where, O death, is your victory? Where, O death, is your sting?” The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law. But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. 1 Corinthians 15:55-57 (NIV) Noah obeyed the command to go in and emerged victorious. Peter obeyed the call to come out and walked on water in the middle of a raging storm! It’s bowed low in humble submission to God Almighty that one finds they can rise above. 

Go into Jesus and you will find you can walk out set free, a vessel now of His victory!

So Much More!

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Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:20-21 (NIV) 

Amaziah probably found himself feeling a little more than amazed at the word brought to him by a man of God one day. Amaziah had made EXTENSIVE preparations for a battle. He gathered people from Judah and went to great lengths to organize them according to their families, assigning them to commanders of thousands and commanders of hundreds for all Judah and Benjamin! He mustered up those 20 years old or older and found 300,000 able fighting men. He ALSO hired 100,000 fighting men from Israel at no small price!! This was no rinky dink operation to say the least! 

Now, I am no army commander of hundreds of thousands BUT as a mom of six kiddos I understand the importance of strategic planning and the hours of effort that can go into hosting a well organized event! So my heart kinda goes out to ol’ Amaziah as he receives a rather large wrench thrown into his elaborate agenda. 

The man of God tells Amaziah, Even if you go and fight courageously in battle, God will overthrow you before the enemy, for God has the power to help or to overthrow.” Amaziah asked the man of God, “But what about the hundred talents I paid for these Israelite troops?” The man of God replied, “The LORD can give you much more than that.” 2 Chronicles 25:8-9 (NIV) 

Although Amaziah may have been amazed at such a word, to his credit he answers with obedience. Although he met with some pretty disgruntled soldiers upon their dismissal he marshaled his strength and led GOD’s army, by GOD’s way, in GOD’s plan, and met with victory.

Is there anything in your life today that seems to have gone left when you were planning a right? Do you want to ask the same question as Amaziah did, “But what about…?!” 
Then be encouraged, because God can give you “MUCH MORE THAN THAT”! Jesus says, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die; and whoever lives by believing in me will never die. Do you believe this?” John 11:25-26 (NIV) Nothing dies, stays small or remains inadequate when placed in His capable hands. If your plans have fallen flat praise our God who fights for you (even still) to flourish in a far bigger frame than you ever could have even measured for dear one!

The Lord Keeps Vigil

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Because the LORD kept vigil that night to bring them out of Egypt… Exodus 12:42 (NIV) 

“The LORD kept vigil”. Vigil means to keep awake, especially to keep watch. During that night that the angel of death passed over Egypt, Exodus tells us the Lord kept vigil to bring His people, the Israelites, out of Egypt, out of slavery! Exodus 12:41-42 (NIV) states, At the end of the 430 years, to the very day, all the LORD’s divisions left Egypt. Because the LORD kept vigil that night to bring them out of Egypt… 

“…to the very day…”, seems God was right on time and doing things in a fitting and orderly way according to His perfect plan.

“…all the LORD’s divisions…” seems not one was missing.

“…the LORD kept vigil…” seems if God’s awake and keeping watch, you and I can rest in peace (like a baby… His trusting child). Even though we walk through the valley of the shadow of death; even when the angel of death soars over us. 

Our God is the same yesterday, today and forever. The same God who kept vigil so the Israelites could experience freedom is the same God that keeps vigil over you and I so that we too can experience freedom from worry, anxiety, stress and any number of ailments that would keep us in a pattern of sleepless nights. 

Dear one, let the Lord keep vigil over you, He’s really good at it, been doin’ it for centuries, He is the One you can trust. …be of good courage, and he shall strengthen thine heart: … Psalm 27:14 (KJB)

In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, LORD, make me dwell in safety. Psalm 4:8 (NIV) 

The Wild Win

During the last watch of the night the LORD looked down from the pillar of fire and cloud at the Egyptian army and threw it into confusion. Exodus 14:24 (NIV)

During which watch of the night did the Lord throw the enemy into confusion according to the verse above? THE LAST! It’s like God is a professional at pulling out the game point win with only a .1 millisecond left on the clock!! Games like that are super intense and rare but it seems our God can pull out a wild win like that anytime He wants! 

Jacob wrestled with God all through the night (Gen. 32:22-32) and it wasn’t until just before daybreak that Jacob got the blessing. He was called an overcomer by God. I bet Jacob was wondering what God was talking about?! Jacob probably didn’t feel like much of an overcomer having to wrestle ALL night long!! But I believe it was at the moment that Jacob recognized that he couldn’t bless himself… that any blessing he received would have to come from Sovereign God Almighty. It’s in obedience and submission to God that we become overcomers. 

Jacob walked away from that match with a limp but a limp that made sure he never forgot just Who was Sovereign and Almighty over the very gift of breath he had. Every ache of his hip (that may have acted up especially in the rainy seasons of his life) reminded Jacob he was blessed and not alone – an overcomer. The ache gave him reason to praise God even in the rainy seasons! 

God sits enthroned upon our praises which shames the enemy with defeat. Jacob had wrestled with God and hung on, recognizing his life Source. When we reverence our life source as Jesus, Sovereign God Almighty, we too become overcomers. May any “limp” we acquire not keep us in the shadow of shame or under the rock of regret but rather in the enemy defeating praise performance of a lifetime, to our Savior’s glory!

In the dark of night don’t let the enemy have the upper hand in his finest hour! Wrestle through! Walk through that last watch, for it is at the break of day that God’s mercies flow fresh and new!! Jesus holds the ultimate victory so He can bring a wild win through your current “game” no matter what the score board reads or how much time is left on the clock! Just wait for it… God loves a wild win!

Stick to the Pattern

See that you make them according to the pattern shown you on the mountain. Exodus 25:40 (NIV)

Image result for person tangled in yarn

When Moses was commissioned to build the tabernacle in the desert God reminded Moses to build according to the plans He gave him in His presence.

Have you let the distractions in your “desert” blur the details of the plan God commissioned you with in His presence? Have you begun to doubt or take building advice from other voices? Is the pattern God gave you taking longer than expected or maybe it’s just hard and looking very different than you thought?!

We can rest in the wait because we know Who holds the weight. Noah did. Noah was given the pattern to build an Ark for God and no one (including Noah) had ever even seen rain before! Noah gave the most weight to the Word of God and His family was saved! What plan, what voice, who’s opinion do you allow to hold the most weight in your heart/mind?

and Noah did all that the LORD commanded him. Genesis 7:5 (NIV) We can’t expect to understand a “pattern” He gave someone else when they were alone with God. We can also not measure our own God given “pattern” with another’s. Each life is His fresh new idea and will reflect Him in a fresh angle to the world. Are we willing to see it? To be it?

Jesus modeled the way to keep to the pattern for your life, HIS pattern for your life. Through earnest prayer and reading the Scriptures with a gentle and humble heart of which only He can give us if we’ll receive it.

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. Matthew 11:28-29 (NIV)

I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you a hope and a future. Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. Jeremiah 29:11-13 (NIV)

Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will ear a voice behind you, saying, “This is the way; walk in it.” Isaiah 30:21 (NIV)

But blessed is the one who trusts in the LORD, whose confidence is in him. Jeremiah 17:7 (NIV)

Don’t give up, stick to your God given pattern, sustaining strength is found in Him – let Him finish what He has started in you as He promises to (Phil. 1:6) – He only builds good and beautiful things to His great glory dear one (Ecc. 3:11).

Thank you for stopping by Overflowing Hope! Check out redeeminggrace991ministries.com for so much more! God bless you muchly~

A Light To Be Shared

Praying to GROW through what we go through. 

That all the fiery trials of life that the enemy means to turn us into ash with, will rather refine our faith into something that rises with the most breathtaking beauty!

He rose again so that we can rise again!

He overcame so we can be overcomers!

He reigns victorious so we can carry His victory in this world EVEN WHEN it “rains”!

Think about Jesus. He held on patiently while sinful men were doing evil things against him. Look at Jesus’ example so that you will not get tired and stop trying. Hebrews 12:3 (ICB)

Entrusting our hearts fully into His steady hands ensures we will always have Light to share. …his word is in my heart like a fire… (Jer. 20:9)

Never forget you are dearly loved (with unfailing love) by The King that knit your heart! 

May God bless you very muchly as you choose to LIVE in the gift of His love today.

PS. Check out the song titled “Carriers” by Jeremy Camp

Made me think I want to be…

*a carrier of His name

*vaccinated by His love

*and a walking inoculation center, ready to share Him with anyone!

Zech. 4:6 ‘Not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit,’ says the LORD Almighty.