“Pray About Everything”

instead pray
 
by Dona Hake
 

The Word is telling us in Philippians to worry about NOTHING.   Not the littlest of a problem should tempt us to worry, but oh how hard this can be at times.    Sometimes our minds can become nervous as anxious thoughts wander through our mind, and may ultimately  affect us physically.   
 
 
 
I shot weddings for seven years, and even in my seventh year I would still deal with “butterflies” in my stomach right before a wedding.   Once I was at a wedding and things got rolling, I would be fine, but the bottom line for the “butterfly” thing in my stomach was the fear of something going wrong, or things being out of control.      Even after all the experience I had, I would still be tempted to fear that I may not have a successful day or make some sort of a mistake.   There were many times that the time allotted for me to shoot would be altered drastically due to unforeseen things.   I had to learn to flow with this, and keep my peace so that I could  take beautiful images of such a memorable day.   I learned that worrying and lacking peace contributed nothing  and no matter how I try to organize things…my plans could be subject to change.    We need to assure ourselves that God is all about desiring to perfect anything that concerns us.
 
 
I would always have to remind myself that when I felt tempted to feel inadequate  that I was at the best place ever.   When we come to realize our inadequacy without Him, it is  then that He is  able to show Himself big on our behalf.   He desires that we look up to Him anytime we have a need and just ask Him and thank Him for His answers!
 
 
 
 
 Philippians 4:6-14 (TLB)
 
“Don’t worry about anything; instead, pray about everything; tell God your
needs, and don’t forget to thank him for his answers. “
 
 

Today I encourage you to give your anxious thoughts and worries to Him and expect Him to move on your behalf.  Do not ponder how you think it should all work out, but watch and wait expectantly as He unfolds the answers in your life.  Most importantly, do not forget to praise our wonderful God that is faithful to answer our prayers.  God bless!
 


“He Directs the Humble In Heart”

with justice
 
by Dona Hake
 
 

Proverbs 25:9 (The Voice)
“With justice, He directs the humble in ALL that is right and He shows them His
way.” We can stand in knowing that He will direct us to walk in the right path
and He will be faithful to cause us to walk in that path.

 
 
 
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.”
 

 
 
Wouldn’t it be a blessing and a good feeling to know that you are on the right track in everything you do?    It is so important that we are seeking daily that God has His hand on all that we do, and that we are following the direction of His sweet Spirit.        The scripture I am sharing today from Proverbs 25:9 is very plain that God directs the humble in heart.    It not only says that He directs the humble but He directs them in ALL that is right.  Yesterday I had shared how magnificent the handiwork of our Lord was in the creation of the heavens and the earth, yet after He created it all, His eyes are still looking to and fro for the one that will serve Him with a humble and contrite spirit.  
 
 
 
 
In 1 Peter  5:5 it was written that God actually sets Himself against the proud in heart.  I do not know about you, but I certainly do not want God to set Himself against me.   The truth is that when ever we exalt our opinions or experiences against God’s Word, we are positioning ourselves to have our hearts rooted in pride.  God hates pride, and He resists it.
 
 
 
 
 
Lord, we ask You today to help us be mindful of the condition of our hearts and the realm of our thoughts.   May the flags go up in our spirits when we begin to think too highly of ourselves, and seek to put our opinions or experiences above what Your Word says.   Your Word is the highest truth, and we ask You remind us to stay in a place of humility.   We delight in knowing that You are drawn to the humble in heart.   Show us Your ways of humility, and cause us to grow in it.


“My Hand Made All These Things”

my hand made all these things
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
 
 

“My hand made all these things
and brought them into being, says the Lord.
But here is where I will look:
to the humble and contrite in spirit,
those who tremble at my word.”

 

As God in Heaven proclaims what He did with the work of His hands He goes on to say, “but here is where I look: to the humble and contrite in spirit, those who tremble at my word.” I do not know about you but I want to know what God is looking for. After all the beauty and wonder of His creation He is still looking? I love this because it is reminding us that God’s eyes are moving to and fro watching for the one that will ALWAYS put Him and His Word first and reverently respond to what He says. He is looking for those that even when they mess up they will admit they are wrong, and receive His forgiveness. He is watching for the man and woman that desires to be humble and respect His Word above their own opinions and thoughts. 

 
 
 
Lord, help us be mindful of how awesome You are, and how the work of Your hands is beyond what we can comprehend.     You created the heavens and the earth.   You created us, and before we were even born, you knew every one of our days.   As we look at all the beautiful things that You have created, our hearts are in awe, yet you see something even more awesome than what Your hands have created, and that is the man or woman that respects your Word, and is humble and contrite in spirit.  Help us this day to be in pursuit of maintaining a humble heart before you, and a determination to love and respect your Word.   In Jesus Name!!!


“You Are All Around Me”

you are around me
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
“Lord, you have tested me,
so you know all about me.
You know when I sit down and when I get up.
You know my thoughts from far away.
You know where I go and where I lie down.
You know everything I do.
Lord, you know what I want to say,
even before the words leave my mouth.
You are all around me—in front of me and behind me.
I feel your hand on my shoulder.
I am amazed at what you know;
it is too much for me to understand.”

Psalm 139:1-6 Easy-to-Read Version

 

His precious love is surrounds us and He knows every detail about us. What a thought! What blessed assurance we can hold fast to in knowing that we can serve a God that totally understands us inside and out. Even before words leave our mouth He knows what we are going to say. There is no escaping His loving knowledge about us.

 

The Amplified version says in verse three “You sift and search out my path.” I love this because it gave me the visual of using a sifter to catch that which you do not want in the mix. As we remain humble before Him there is freedom in knowing that He desires set our feet firm on good paths that we

walk for Him.
 

As we start our day let us remind ourselves to allow Him to search our hearts and speak to us. We should be amazed at how awesome He is. This is a thought that should keep us humble before Him in every area of our life. As we do this, we will live in peace and freedom in Christ!  Today, enjoy the presence of the Lord for He is all around us, in front of us, and behind us!!!   


“Whatever Be Your Task…”

whatever may be your task
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
I absolutely hate if I am trying to do something, and I just know that my heart is not in it. When we are trying to do our job or do something and our heart is not connected it simply feels like we are going through the motions.   Oh that the Lord would reveal to us that we need a heart adjustment in order to do all that we do with every bit of our energy and heart.   May He show us  the maintenance adjustments that are much needed in our heart, mind and soul when we are not working heartily
  from our soul.
 
 

Colossians 3:23 (AMP)
” Whatever may be your task, work at it heartily (from the soul),

as [something done] for the Lord and not for men…”

 

In this scripture we can see that as we do anything, our focus needs to stay on the Lord. We need to work as if we are doing it for Him.  Another translations says, in ALL the work you are given, do the best you can. I think that is a great attitude to carry with us as we face each day’s demands whether if be at home, school or our jobs. No matter what it is that is your responsibility just simply do the best you can, and do it as if you are doing it for Him. As you pursue to make this a habit of your heart, I guarantee you that He will prosper all that you put your hand to.

 
 
 
Lord, we ask You today to help us stay sensitive and aware that we are doing all that we 
do with all of our heart, and with a good attitude.   Each day we believe that
Your grace will flow to us that we will be able to do all that is required of us.
We thank you for your strength and wisdom as we serve You each day.
 


“Let Us Drop Every Weight”

let us drop
 

 

Hebrews 12:1-2
The Voice (VOICE)


“…let us drop every extra weight, every sin that clings to us and slackens our pace, and let us run with endurance the long race set before us.

 

We may feel alone, but we aren’t. We are surrounded by an army of witnesses. They have run the race of faith and finished well. It is now our turn.

Now stay focused on Jesus, who designed and perfected our faith. He endured the cross and ignored the shame of that death because He focused on the joy that was set before Him; and now He is seated beside God on the throne, a place of honor.
 
 
 
 

What does it take to run the race that God has set before us? This scripture in Hebrews makes it pretty plain. First, we must drop unnecessary weight or anything that is keeping us from moving forward.   Do you know the “weights” in your life that have held you back?   We all have things that are trying to weight us down, and we as individuals need to recognize what it is. I can remember hearing 

 
 
“50% of a problem is solved just
understanding what the problem is.”
 
 
 
 
As we acknowledge what our weight is and humble ourselves to God and ask Him for help, He will surely help us.Remember…God understands you inside and out, and He certainly has a way to help you lose that “unnecessary weight” that you are carrying around!
 
 
 

 

Secondly, we must stay focused. Anything that draws you away from keeping your eyes on a goal will be your hindrance. The devil understands our weaknesses and he knows how to distract us. He is crafty and understands how to throw us out of the game if we are not diligent to keep it right in our hearts and minds. He roams about like a roaring lion seeking ways to devour us. I love this quote I found relative to maintaining strong focus.

 

 

“Obstacles are those frightful things you see when you take your eyes off the goal.”
Henry Ford

 

 

Obstacles can serve to obstruct or hinder your progress or you can use it to make you a stronger person. It is all how you handle it as you see it approaching you. Today I encourage you to run the race in the strength of the Lord. Take these two tips from Hebrews 12, and you will run strong in this race that the Lord has put before you.   Drop unnecessary weight and stay focused on the finish line!!!



“Let Heaven Fill Your Thoughts”

let heaven fill your thoughts
 
 
by Dona Hake
 
 

 

What a refreshing yet challenging scripture.  “Let heaven fill your thoughts…”    Does heaven fill your thoughts?   Sometimes it can be very hard to keep our minds full of heavenly thoughts because we are hit hard at times with the trials, sorrows, and challenges of this earth.    I have found myself praying more and reminding myself that I must keep myself permeated in His peace.   I find that all that is going on in the world can make my heart feel heavy at times, and I must purpose to keep my eyes on the One that said, “In this world there will be trials and tribulations.”  He also said that He will not forsake us, and day by day He proves to be faithful to those that He loves!

 
 
I can remember going to my front garden one day during a summer morning to photograph a stepping stone that laid among the colors of my beautiful flowers.   This morning it lays buried under the snow, but it always reminds me to look up and stay focused on the things that are really important.  My stepping stone says, 
 
 
“Set your mind on things above.”
 
 
 
 Today I encourage you to look up and also keep an eye on your heart within. Pray diligently, and guard that precious peace that is within you.  Keep check on your heart with the help of God to be diligent to do the things that really matter, and count as a good and profitable for His kingdom.
 
 
 

Colossians 3:2 (TLB)

 
“Let heaven fill your thoughts;
don’t spend your time worrying about things down here.”


“The Consistency of God’s Wisdom”

the consistency of gods wisdom
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
James 3:7-12 (PHILLIPS)

 

“Beasts, birds, reptiles and all kinds of sea-creatures can be, and in fact are, tamed by man, but no one can tame the human tongue. It is an evil always liable to break out, and the poison it spreads is deadly. We use the tongue to bless our Father, God, and we use the same tongue to curse our fellow-men, who are all created in God’s likeness.

Blessing and curses come out of the same mouth—surely, my brothers, this is the sort of thing that never ought to happen! Have you ever known a spring to give sweet and bitter water simultaneously? Have you ever seen a fig-tree with a crop of olives, or seen figs growing on a vine? It is just as impossible for a spring to give fresh and salt water at the same time.”

Words spoken apart from God’s wisdom can cut deep into the soul. Words that proceed from an angry heart can be mean and spiteful. God desires that our words and actions are the fruit of all that He is. Wisdom is knowing what is true or right coupled with good and just judgment as to what action to take.

I believe that James was addressing the importance that we take seriously that we are being consistent with our words and actions. “Blessing and curses come out of the same mouth- surely, my brothers, this is the sort of thing that never out to happen!” These are strong words that James spoke but yet they are true. I believe James was strongly admonishing those he was speaking to that they keep an eye on the fruit that they are bearing.

As we purpose to keep our words in line with what we believe, we will be examples of consistency in God’s ways. Our judgments will be pure and we will have discerning hearts.



“Seeking and Pursuing Peace”

be still
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
My oldest granddaughter was sitting beside me on her sofa staring into my eyes as I was doing my best explaining how God wants us to make sure we hold fast to peace.   Children are so precious to share the Word with.   They are like a fresh canvas or a little sponge ready to soak it all in.   I love when the Lord begins to help me bring His Word to a small child, especially when I can tell they are struggling to understand something in Spirit.
 
 
 
As we sat quietly talking about His peace, I began to share how God wants us to hold on to it so tightly, and not let it go.   I started to think about helium balloons flying away if not held on to tightly enough.   I said to her, “You know if it was your birthday, and you had a bunch of pretty balloons, you would want to hold onto them wouldn’t  you?”  Of course she nodded her little head, her eyes sparkled, and she had the sweetest little grin on her face.   I said then, “If you went outside, and you were careless not to hold them tightly, what would happen if you let them go?”   Immediately I could see she took hold, and a degree of revelation of God’s peace went into her little heart.   I proceeded to explain how God wants us to hold tightly to His peace as well.   The same way we would not let  our special balloons get away from us, we should not allow our peace to get away either.
 
 
 
 
Today I encourage you to hold fast to His peace, seek it, crave it,  and determine yourself that you will not let it go!
 
Psalm 34:14b  Amplified Bible
“… seek, inquire for, and crave peace and
pursue (go after) it!”


“He Loved Me Enough…”

he loved me enough
 
 
by Dona Hake
 
 
Have you ever had a conversation with someone, and in the midst of it you feel as if they may not be totally paying attention and listening.   This can be quite discouraging especially if you are sharing your heart or you are upset.   Today let us meditate upon the fact that we serve a living and loving God that always listens, and hears our prayer as we go to Him with humble hearts.   
 
 
 
I would like to share from Psalm 116. The psalmist begins the chapter by exclaiming, “I love the Lord, for He heard my voice…” He proceeded to say that he knew God’s ear was toward him and then he said, “I will call on Him as long as I live!”
 

You see this psalmist understood that death was staring him in the face and he had no where to turn. I am sure that what the writer went through was terrifying and he stops and reminds himself of who and what his God is all about. This is what Psalm 116:7-9 says…

 

“Return to your rest, my soul,
for the Lord has been good to you.
For you, Lord, have delivered me from death,
my eyes from tears,
my feet from stumbling,
that I may walk before the Lord
in the land of the living.”

 

I believe this chapter in Psalms can serve to remind us that in trying circumstances we absolutely must call on the Lord for our help and we must purpose to remind ourselves of His love and care over us.   Lord, we thank You that Your ear is ever open to listen to our heart’s cry no matter how big or small it may seem.   We thank You for your faithfulness and lovingkindness toward us!




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!