“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!


“God- The Strength of Our Heart”

 
 
strength of my heart
 
 
 
Philippians 4:12-13
“I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do all this through him who gives me strength.”
 
 
 
 
Paul wrote that he had learned the secret of  being content. I love how this version used the word
secret. Being content is a beautiful way to live. The dictionary defines secret being used in this context as a method, formula, plan, etc., known only to the  initiated or the few: the secret of happiness; a trade secret.
 
 
 
 

If you are a believer you are one of “the few”, and within us we embrace a precious secret to strength. We can say that by the strength  of the Lord we can be content no matter what is going on around us. Paul  understood this, and he spoke with the authority as well. He said, “…for I have  learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in  need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being  content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry.whether living in  plenty or in want…I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”

 
 
 
 

I think it is important to note that Paul said two times here that he had  learned contentment. Contentment does not just fall on your lap like a ripe  apple from a tree. Contentment is developed through decision making in times  of crisis or problems you face. It is when you learn the secret of contentment that you can look to the Lord and proclaim “I CAN DO everything through Him who strengthens me. Sometimes when we face needs in this life and we decide to be content until the manifestation, God can work in us and also on our behalf. It is those times that we realize after we get through the trial that the situation gave us new insights and we became stronger because of it.

 
 
 
 

Let us not call upon His strength to just escape and run away from our needs but rather to be strengthened to walk through them. Let us bare the testimony  that Paul wrote ” I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me.” It is as we do this that we can truly say that we can do all through Him who strengthens us!  May we rejoice in God for He is the strength of our hearts!



“The Light that Dispels All Darkness”

light overpowers
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
 You walk in a dark room, and the first thing you do is reach for the light switch. An electrical storm zaps your electricity, and what do you do? In our home we have a box that has flashlights, and batteries and also two lanterns where we know to go for that we can bring light to the situation. We want to know we are prepared for such a situation.  We know that in the midst of darkness there must be a means of seeing in order that you do not stumble.
 

Now let us think about what would happen if your electricity went out and you had a box full of flashlights but there were not batteries. You have what it takes to bring light but these flashlights are worthless without what gives them their ability to overcome the darkness you are experiencing.

 

Today I just want to share about the dark in this world, and how we as believers fit wonderfully into this picture.   Our world in which there are those that still do not know Him, live in darkness.   Sadly, they do not know how dark their world really is.    Many have compensated with the light that only our enemy the devil can offer.   We are the vessels that must stay full of everything God is so that we can bring true light to the hopeless, confused, and the fearful around us.

 
 
 
2 Corinthians 4:4-7 New Living Translation (NLT)
“Satan, who is the god of this world, has blinded the minds of those who don’t believe. They are unable to see the glorious light of the Good News. They don’t understand this message about the glory of Christ, who is the exact likeness of God.

You see, we don’t go around preaching about ourselves. We preach that Jesus Christ is Lord, and we ourselves are your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let there be light in the darkness,” has made this light shine in our hearts so we could know the glory of God that is seen in the face of Jesus Christ.

We now have this light shining in our hearts, but we ourselves are like fragile clay jars containing this great treasure. This makes it clear that our great power is from God, not from ourselves.”

So you see God desires that we promptly and obediently bring light to this present darkness on earth. Let our prayer be today that we would desire to be vessels for His use that we may bring glory to Him!

” Lord, you provide the flame for my lamp.
You, God, turn the darkness around me into light.”
Psalm 18:28



“God’s Will For Every Believer”

prayer matters
by Dona Hake

Paul said in 1 Thessalonians to rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.    Many might say, “I do not know what God’s will is for me?”   Well, here it is in part.   God desires that we guard our joy for it is the Lord’s strength for us to live. It is is will that we stay hooked up to Him by prayer, and in the midst of ALL circumstances we look up to Him and give thanks.  

There will be days in which we must remind ourselves to rejoice even when we do not feel like it. May we look to Him in prayer at the beginning of our day, and as much as we can during the day.   Prayers can be spoken from your heart at any given time and at any place.    God did not intend prayer to be only for problems but a means of sweet fellowship with Him.  This is God’s will for us to do so I encourage you today to do so. I leave you with this prayer that flows with what I have been sharing.

Prayer is so simple.
It is like quietly opening a door and slipping into
the very presence of God
there, in the stillness,
to listen for His voice,
perhaps in petition
or only to listen,
it matters not,
just to be there,
in His presence
Is prayer.
Anonymous




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!