“Where Do You Dwell?”

 
 
he who dwells
 

God has provided for us His place of refuge. He knows exactly what we need to feel secure from the things of this life. He desires that we dwell there, and that we remain. In other words, we cannot allow things to pull us out from that place that He has provided for us.Let us purpose to remain in the place of His peace, love, joy, protection, and all the wonderful things He has provided.

 
 

There will be things around us from day to day that will tempt us to walk out from His shelter. Many times people may choose anxiety over peace or bitterness over love, etc. This is only a few of the many choices we can make that can rob us from the hiding place and shelter He has provided. Remember, His shelter is our refuge. Next time you are tempted to get upset, instead of dwelling on the one who upset you or the circumstance, choose rather to run to Him for help, and refuge from the problem.

 
 

Psalm 91:1 (GW)
“Whoever lives under the shelter of the Most High
will remain in the shadow of the Almighty.”

 
 

In our home, my husband and I have lived by a rule since the day we married. We will do whatever it takes to maintain peace in our home. We value the peace in our home and in our hearts. We never leave each other with things unresolved, and we purpose to continue doing this. This is also a truth we imparted to our sons. No one went to bed until we knew there was peace in our hearts. No matter how long it took, we talked until it is resolved.

”When angry, do not sin; do not ever let your wrath
(your exasperation, your fury or indignation)
last until the sun goes down.”
Ephesians 4:26

 
 

You see, God well knows our human nature, and that there will be times that we will heed to anger, but the warning here is to deal with it and resolve it. Do not go to sleep with anger in your heart for when you awaken it will be there, and you will surely carry it with you throughout a new day. This is not God’s plan for you! God wants us to live in a place of peace in our hearts as well as in our homes, and those around us.

 
 

Today I just want to encourage you to value the wonderful blessing of Him providing a place for you to dwell. Do not allow the negative things of this life to pull you from that place of love, peace, and protection that He has so abundantly blessed you with. For every problem we have, He has a solution. All we need to do is remain in His presence, look to Him, and He will be your helper, and all that you need to keep you there.



“You’ve Been Given So Much”

give and it shall be given
 
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
Today I want to share with each and every one of you that God has given you something, and He wants you to pass it on. Each of us are blessed in different ways and He desires to flow through us to those around us. I have heard people over the years exclaim that for some reason or another that they feel they have nothing to give. Sometimes people limit themselves to giving because they think of it being only monetarily. There is more to giving than just the giving of money. God can use us in so many ways to touch lives in extra special ways everyday. There are those that need your listening ear or a word of encouragement or wisdom. In those times that the Lord lays an individual on your heart, I encourage you to stop and pray, for your obedience could make a difference in their life in that moment in time.
 
I am going to share two quotes with you that are the words of Mother Teresa. I admire the life of this loving, gracious and humble woman of God. Read and take heed.

 

“If you can’t feed a hundred people, then just feed one.”

Mother Teresa

 

“God doesn’t look at how much we do,

but with how much love we do it.”
Mother Teresa
 
 
As we are obedient to the voice of the Lord to give what we have, He will surely bless it. Along with obedience in our giving let us do it with a heart of love. The scripture I am want to share with you now is from Luke 6:38 (ERV)
 
 

“Give to others, and you will receive. You will be given much. It will be poured into your hands—more than you can hold. You will be given so much that it will spill into your lap. The way you give to others is the way God will give to you.”

 
Now I want to emphasize that your giving should never be for the sake of what you get back. When God gives back to you, it is solely for the purpose of your hands being filled to the full that you can continue to give out, and be a blessing to those in need. I encourage you today to open your hands to those around and obediently give that which the Lord has so graciously blessed you with!


“We Can Endure”

 
 
FindYourStrengthInGod
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
 
 
 
Philippians 4:13 (CEB)
” I can endure all these things throughthe power of the one who gives me strength.”
 
 
 
 

What a blessing it is to know that we have all that we need for anything that we face. Let us look at this verse and as you read it emphasize the first two words, “I can.” Many times when we are faced with adversity or we are feeling weak, the first words that we may be tempted to entertain in our minds are “I can’t do this.” Today I want to encourage you to seek daily to find your strength in God.

 
 
 
 
 
In preparing for this particular devotional my original focus on scripture was John 10:10:
 
 
 
 
 
 
John 10:10 (AMP)
“The thief comes only in order to steal and killand destroy. I came that they may have and enjoylife, and have it in abundance

 (to the full, till it overflows).”

 
 
 
 

In this life we have an enemy, and it is the devil.    He seeks to rob and destroy from us.   He will try to convince us that we cannot stand strong in the midst of a storm.    He will try to kill our dreams, weaken our faith, and more than anything try to convince us that “we can’t” be an overcomer. He seems to sometimes have the mysterious ability to make the smallest of things look bigger than what they really are, yet we serve the one that can bring all problems down to size if only we keep our eyes on Him. Praise God that we can stand as overcomers for Jesus made it possible that in Him we can overcome!

 
 
 
 
The Apostle Paul  spoke of when he was his weakest was when he truly experienced God’s strength. As we look to live in His strength we can know that no matter how things are going in the natural, He is with us, and He will show Himself strong on our behalf.  Lord, we thank you today that You
have made us more than conquerors.   Remind us to keep our eyes on You, and help us by Your
Spirit and Your wonderful grace that flows so freely toward us.   We thank you that when
we are weak it is then that we can experience your total strength.   Thank you Lord that this is done in
Jesus Name!


“Keep Your Eyes On His Footsteps”

steps of a good man are ordered of the lord
by Dona Hake
I can remember like it was yesterday when  I was taking my little Granddaughter to breakfast, and it was bitterly cold and windy. As we were walking from the car to the restaurant I found myself walking a bit faster than usual forgetting the little feet beside me were running to keep up with me. I looked down and found her watching my feet, and trying her best to keep up her pace with mine. I realized I needed to slow down for her, but what stood out to me was that she was trying her best to walk like Grandma, and keep up! After all she knew she was heading for her favorite breakfast restaurant!
Do you observe the pace that the Lord is desiring to walk?   Do you ponder His steps, and strive to follow them exactly?   Many times we wished the Lord might be moving us along a bit faster, and you are not enjoying the pace that He is taking you  in a particular area of your life.  Sometimes things can seem to be moving slowly, and then out of nowhere business picks up, and the Lord moving in ways you thought were not possible.   The secret was being patient with His pace and His timing. The most important thing is that we are diligently observing the footsteps of the Lord, as He has promised to walk beside us.  May we also remember that His pace is the perfect pace!

                                                                         Psalm 37:23 (AMP)

“The steps of a [good] man are directed and established by the Lord when He delights in his way
                                                   [and He busies Himself with his every step].”
The Lord is very interested in the paths that we walk on. I love how the Amplified version say that He busies Himself with my every step! It is important that we know He is delighting in the path that we are walking. All too often we can get into our own ways and ability, and stray from the path He desires. Today I encourage you to look often at the path or ways you are choosing for God desires to walk with you, and guide you with His wisdom according to His will and plan for your life.

Psalm 84:5
                                                       “Happy are those who are strong in the Lord,
                                                          who want above all else to follow your steps.”



“Jesus Never Changes”

 
 
Jesus the same yesterday today forever
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
I have heard it said that 67% of people hate change. I kind of feel that holds  true. I really can not say where I stand on this thought because some days I like to see things a bit unpredictable yet there are other days I hate the kind of changes that can come in this life. I am sure you too could agree.
 
 
 

One thing is for sure, and that is our Lord Jesus never changes.   He remains the same.   His Word does not change nor weaken in the midst of our storms.   He said He will never leave us, and He will never forsake us.   I am so thankful that Jesus never changes.   My heart is so grateful that His love never changes for me. No  matter how bad I mess up, He still loves me. I am glad that He never changes  where He is at. He is always by my side. I am so glad that I can count on
that. His ear is always towards me when I pray. I am glad that He did not  change on this matter because it would be upsetting to know that He decided not  to listen to my heart today. On and on I could go but it’s just that simple… Jesus never changes.

 
 
 

 The world may change and we all well know that it is. There may be things that are changing around you and it is beyond your control  but take comfort in this scripture…

Hebrews 13:8 (VOICE)
“Jesus the Anointed One is always the same: yesterday, today, and forever.”



“The Streams of His Mercy”

streams of mercy
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
 
 
 I want to bring to your heart a reminder of God’s wonderful mercies in your life. No matter how busy your day is, and no matter how good or bad it seems to be going, I encourage you to ponder this…
 
 
 
Lamentations 3:22-23
New American Bible (Revised Edition)
“The Lord’s acts of mercy are not exhausted,
his compassion is not spent;
They are renewed each morning—
great is your faithfulness!”
 
 
 
 
Oh let us rejoice and thank the Lord that His acts of mercy are NEVER exhausted.   His compassion never runs out for no matter how much you draw upon it today, tomorrow is a new day, and His mercy and compassion are fresh and new for you!    As we look to Him at the start of our day we can stand believing for bountiful blessings flowing from His hand into our life. We can know that everything we will need to sustain us is there, and all we have to do is ask Him for it. I love knowing that I serve a God that is FULL of mercy and He promises that it never runs out nor can it be exhausted! As you meditate upon this, I encourage you to set your gaze upon Him and allow your spirit to receive all that He has for you today. We can look to Him in prayer and believe that His fullness will be upon us as we trust in Him.  I will leave this scripture and blessing for you as you go about your day!
 
 
 
 

Psalm 90:17
“And let the beauty of the Lord our God be upon us,
and direct thou the work of our hands upon us…”

 



“Our Sweet Portion”

 
 
soon in glory
 
 
 
 
I can remember singing “What A Friend We Have In Jesus” as a little girl.  It was always a special song to me.  I can remember this beautiful older woman being my Sunday School teacher when I first learned this song.  I can still see her beautiful hair braided up in the back of her head.   She glowed with a love for Jesus, and His kindness always radiated from her.   I can remember such a calm assurance about her, and that always stuck with me.  I believe she exhibited such an assurance because of her relationship and trust in her Savior.   Today, I know she is walking with Jesus and basking in the presence of our Mighty God!
 
 
 
I want to exhort you today to walk so close with Him that people take notice, and see the love of Jesus working in and through you.     Life goes so fast, let us make the most out of every minute that we live for Him.     The day will come that we will meet Him face to face.     May our lives continue to speak of His testimonies and great works while we were serving Him in our life.   As I share that thought let us look at one of the verses from  “What A Friend We Have In Jesus.”   
 
 

 

 

“Blessed Savior, Thou hast promised
Thou wilt all our burdens bear;
May we ever, Lord, be bringing
All to Thee in earnest prayer.
Soon in glory bright, unclouded,
There will be no need for prayer—
Rapture, praise, and endless worship
Will be our sweet portion there.”
 
 
 
 
As a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ we can set our gaze on the blessed hope that “soon in glory bright, unclouded…” Oh that blessed day when we are in the presence of the Lord and His saints. This is a beautiful hope and it is to be embraced! I love this meditation especially when I think of loved ones that have gone before me. Some day….oh yes!…some blessed day, we will reunite and see each other again! What a wonderful day that will be.
 
 
Until that blessed day when we walk in the sweetest portion, we need to remain trusting in Him and all that He is.  He has promised us refuge, He will heal our sicknesses, and He brings us peace in the midst of turmoil. On and on I could share of the many things that He promises. As for me I want to know that I am sticking by Him closely, and not taking my eyes off of His will for my life. You see, He has promised to never leave us but we do tend to get our eyes off of Him at times. Thank God for His forgiveness and restoration.
 
 
 
So we have this wonderful promise of our “sweet portion” awaiting us, but truth is for now that we each have a work to do here. We need to be strong in our Lord, seek His will and run the race He has set before us. Each of us has a specific race to run, and our time left here is different, but one thing for sure, He wants us to give our all for Him! ~ Praise Him! ~
 
 
 

Hebrews 12:1-2 (ERV)
“…So we, too, should run the race that is before us and never quit. We should remove from our lives anything that would slow us down and the sin that so often makes us fall. 2 We must never stop looking to Jesus.”



“Craving the Lord For All That He Is”

 
 
Pray and learn
 
 
 
Psalm 105:4 (AMP)

 

“Seek, inquire of and for the Lord, and crave Him and
His strength (His might and inflexibility to temptation);
seek and require His face and His presence [continually] evermore.”
 
 
 
I find this translation of this scripture very awesome, and it stirs my heart to think about how I seek and crave the Lord, and all that He is.   In the natural we can have food cravings.   We have all experienced it to the point that you thought you just had to have that particular food.   On a humorous note I can remember an I Love Lucy show where Lucy sent Ricky out very late at night, and he came back with ice cream, sardines, and pickles.   Lucy was pregnant, and she was desiring weird combinations, but she just had to have it!  She mixed them all up, and ate it!   Ricky was almost sick to watch her, but that was her craving!     Today, I want to stir your thoughts and your heart about your cravings and desires for the things that the Lord wants us to have working in us.
 
 
 
 
 
As we ponder the scripture from Psalm 105:4 we too can see that as we truly seek the Lord in prayer, reading, and the hearing of His Word that there is much to be found. Even if you have read a scripture many times over, there is always freshness and newness of life that it can bring to your soul…if you allow it to.  I can remember reading an interesting quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson, this is what he said,
 
 
 
“No man ever prayed without learning something.”
 
 
 
 
 
Today I encourage you to crave Him and His strength.  The more we seek Him the more we will find ourselves needing to seek Him more. The more you experience HIS strength and HIS ability, the more you will crave to turn your face to Him and receive all that He is! Remember that all that He is, and all that He does is brand new everyday. He desires to teach you continually and answer all the questions of your heart. Crave Him, step into His presence, and prepare yourself to learn and receive His portion for you today. God is good!
 
 
 
 

Jeremiah 33:3 (CJB)

“Call out to me,
and I will answer you —
I will tell you great things,
hidden things of which you are unaware.”



“Expressing His Kindness”

kindness given
 
by Dona Hake
 

 

David wrote in the Psalms about the power of hate and contempt in words. David understood the conspiracy and plots against him, and the power of hateful, negative words.

 
 

Psalm 64
“Hear me, my God, as I voice my complaint;
protect my life from the threat of the enemy.
Hide me from the conspiracy of the wicked,
from the plots of evildoers.
They sharpen their tongues like swords
and aim cruel words like deadly arrows.”
 
 
 
 
Words can heal and words can hurt. Let us purpose to work at speaking words that are kind and uplifting. It is amazing the power that a word can carry. I have had times where one negative word has been spoken to me, and even in the midst of positive, that one word was able to tempt my mind to be side tracked. If we entertain the thoughts that go hand in hand with a negative word, you will surely be brought down by it.
 
 
 
 
 
The Word of God also speaks of the healing power within a kind word. Not only is it healing to the hearer but I believe that the individual that speaks kind, loving words is built up in their spirit and soul as well. I can remember a salesclerk that I encountered one day.   I was waiting in line for her to ring up my purchase, and her whole countenance was so bad.   She was border line rude and cut to the quick with each customer.   The Lord reminded me that just maybe something is really troubling her heart and she is really not able to focus to do her job well.   I stood and observed how she would not even look into the customer’s eyes, and barely speak to them as she was ringing them up. 
 
 
 
 
 
 

When I stepped up for her to take care of me I asked her how she was and she said, “Okay…I am just taking one day at a time.” I said, “Honey, that is all we can do. I do hope your day is much better.” She looked into my eyes and smiled real big. She said, “Thank you! Have a good day too!” I wished so badly that there would not have been so many customers behind me so I could have engaged a deeper conversation with her. I walked away and lifted her up in prayer.   You see, sometimes people working in public like this can quickly aggravate us, but we must remember that they are human, and their whole life may be upside down.   I remind myself as well that there are many walking through things, and they have no one to turn to.   You know, God wants us to put our lamp on the lamp stand to shine into the darkest and loneliest of hearts!

 
 
 
 

You just never know what a kind word and simple prayer can do for someone. Let us be ready to share a kind word that brings healing to a hurting heart.
 
 

               Proverbs 16:24 “Kind words are like honey— sweet to the soul and healthy for the body.”



“He Directs the Humble Heart”

 
 
 
 
with justice he directs
 
by Dona Hake
 

Proverbs 11:3 ERV says,,

“Good people are guided by their honesty.”
 
 
 
Above any people on this earth I believe that the believer of the Lord Jesus Christ needs to exhibit integrity. There is  so much deception in this world that people are afraid to trust anyone anymore. How sad it is if a believer is tempted to slip into a path that pulls their heart from truthfulness, integrity, and excellence. Our hearts and souls should be tugged at the mere thought of not doing what the Word of God says. Yet, if one feels that they can pick and choose the way in which they walk, God is surely displeased, and His integrity will not be evident in that one that is deceived.  The Lord
wants vessels that are pure and willing to follow Him wholly in all of His ways.
 
 

The devil is so sly and crafty that he understands how to deceive people into thinking that it is okay to go against the Word of God. God desires that we walk in the totality of His Word and there is no deception in the realm of His truth. If one thinks they are getting away with living a lie, they will surely find out that pay day will come. There will always be consequences for going against the voice of your heart. I will never forget the profound truth Roberts Liardon spoke, “Truth ALWAYS outlives a lie.” God wants our hearts to be pure, right and of utmost integrity. His hand will not bless that which is of an impure motive or thought.

 

Proverbs 25:9 (The Voice)
“With justice, He directs the humble in ALL that is right and He shows them His
way.”

 

1 Peter 5:5 (Amplified)
“For God sets Himself against the proud (the insolent, the overbearing, the
disdainful, the presumptuous, the boastful)—[and He opposes, frustrates, and
defeats them], but gives grace (favor, blessing) to the humble.”

May I emphasize that because our Lord is desiring to lead every believer that there are times our sin inhibits Him to do so. Pride causes one to be deaf to the voice of the Lord. I can only imagine how grieved the heart of God is when He sees one of His children proudly choosing their own way, and along that way their heart becomes hardened to truth.

 
The good news is that if one is in this place of pride that if he or she humbles their heart He will always restore them. He will restore and pour out His grace and blessing  back to them. Let us be mindful of the condition of our hearts in every area of our lives. Ask the Holy Spirit daily to show you if you be in pride in any area of your life that you be not hindered in receiving guidance when you need it. As we pursue to keep our hearts humble, He promises to direct us in everything we do!



6 Responses to “Devotional”

  1. Lisa Viands says:

    This is a good way of teaching the kids to forgive each other(Matt. 5:7). I like the power of this gentle scripture and lesson… Thanks!!

  2. Selena Neely says:

    Ralph &I are really enjoying your devotional together.

  3. Selena Neely says:

    Oh, what a wonderful reminder! I want to break the magnifing glass of worry and trust God for each step I take.

  4. Dona Hake says:

    It is interesting Selena how the more we worry the bigger and more magnified things get in our minds. Oh how important it is to trust our God for the smallest of things! Thank you for sharing!