“His Overflowing Grace”

god is able 2 26 14

by Dona Hake

2 Corinthians 9:8 (HCSB) 

“And God is able to make every grace overflow

to you, so that in every way, always having

everything you need, you may excel in every good work.”

This scripture just really blesses me.  I love meditating on the fact that God is desiring to shower us with His all sufficient grace as we set out to do His will.  I made this little devotional a bit different today.  I am going to give you some “D” words to get the truth of His overflowing grace sticking in your mind and heart!

As we DESIRE to be living examples of excellence in all we put our hands to.  Let us

DRAW upon His grace that He will shower upon us as we believe Him for it.   It is as we do this that

we will DEMONSTRATE that He is the God that is more than enough!

Psalm 1:3 (ESV)

“He is like a tree
planted by streams of water
that yields its fruit in its season,
and its leaf does not wither.
In all that he does, he prospers.”



“…and Jesus Calmed the Sea”

It is Well With My Soul Church Bulletin Cover

by Dona Hake

Mark 4:35-40

“It was evening of that same day. Jesus said to them, “Let us go over to the other side.”  After sending the people away, they took Jesus with them in a boat. It was the same boat He used when He taught them. Other little boats went along with them. A bad wind storm came up. The waves were coming over the side of the boat. It was filling up with water.  Jesus was in the back part of the boat sleeping on a pillow. They woke Him up, crying out, “Teacher, do You not care that we are about to die?”  He got up and spoke sharp words to the wind. He said to the sea, “Be quiet! Be still.” At once the wind stopped blowing. There were no more waves.  He said to His followers, “Why are you so full of fear? Do you not have faith?”

This is one of those stories that make me wish I would have been there just to see the raging waters be calm at the command of Jesus’ voice.  These words from this portion of scripture have created faith in my heart many times when things around me seemed to be out of control.  To know that He can bring peace to the raging waters of my life causes me to know that “it is well with my soul.”

The important thing to remember is that God is able to bring peace to a situation yet that does not necessarily mean the problem has gone away.  When God’s peace prevails within us, our hearts will be still and we will be calmed.  It is in those times that you will then be able to hear His whisper as He directs you into the next step.   Let us remember that in the midst of a problem or crisis that it is vital we hold fast to our faith and have our ears towards the Lord that He may reveal the wisdom that we need.

I love how Francious deFenelon’s quote makes this story from the book of Mark  even more real.

“A word from the Lord stilled the raging sea

and a glance from Him to you, and from

you to Him, will do the same for you.”

~~~~~~~~~~



“He Sets Me In High Places”

hidden

by Dona Hake

Each morning my deck is full of a variety of birds munching away on all the good seed I provide for them. Along with my feathered friends I have two squirrels (aka Piggy and Porky) that are there as much as the birds. There is only one problem though, when I leave my German Shepherd out in the backyard it startles them. It is interesting how the little birds just flee, but the doves just go and peacefully sit in my willow trees and just wait. Somehow the doves just seem to know that they are safe. The squirrels on the other hand get frantic. They scurry around the yard and nervously run to escape. Our dog has the time of her life chasing them and it seems to amuse her. This morning Aasha almost caught her first squirrel. (Yikes!)

The thing that inspired me with seeing my birds and squirrels run for safety was that they were already safe on the deck of my home. There was no way for my dog to get to them. The deck has no stairs and she cannot get to them even if she tried. As I pondered the whole thought the one morning while my dog was out I began to think about the safe places that God has for us. He has those places of hiding that He desires that we dwell. When we abide in Him there is a place of refuge and everything will be okay. By faith we must believe that He has provided a way of escape and our hearts can rest and be at peace even when turmoil is all around us.

Psalm 27:5 (TLB)

” There I’ll be when troubles come.
He will hide me.

He will set me on a high rock”

When unrest visits our soul, it is a beautiful thing to know that we have a God that has a plan of escape for us. As he hides us under His wings we can be assured that He is well able to get us through any battle in this life. Today I especially am desiring to reflect on His wonderful peace as a place of refuge. His peace exceeds all our thoughts about any matter and it will guard and shelter our hearts and minds!

Philippians 4:7 (CEB)

“Then the peace of God that exceeds

all understanding will keep your

hearts and minds safe in Christ Jesus.”

 

~~~~~♥~~~~~



“Lord, All My Cares Belong To You”

all my cares

by Dona Hake

Matthew 6:27 (God’s Word Translation)
“Can any of you add a single hour to your life by worrying?”

It would be interesting to know who much time we actually invest in worrying or being preoccupied with unnecessary thoughts.  The Lord knows well our frame and how the fears of this life can pull us into a place of fearing our future.

Jesus was basically saying that worry is a waste of time and it is not going to add anything to our life. Worry can damage our health, cause the object of our worry to consume our thoughts, negatively affect how we treat those around you, and worst of all it keeps us from trusting Him.

Worry has the ability to just bring us to a standstill. It is totally normal to be concerned about what we face in this life yet we need to remind ourselves that it is Him that will perfect that which concerns us.

The following is an interesting quote by Benjamin Franklin…

“Do not anticipate trouble or worry about what may never happen.

Keep in the sunlight.”

As we stay in the “Son’s light” by keeping ourselves absorbed in His Word, all fears must go!  Even in the face of negative we need to believe God can turn it inside out and we can be on the victory side!   Let us ask the Lord as we face fears and difficulties for His help and His perspective. Pray that He would give you courage to face your tomorrows and believe that He is indeed walking with you.

1 Peter 5:7

“Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your
concerns,once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and
cares about you watchfully.”

 (this is a revised archived devotional from 9/26/13)



“If We Do No Lose Heart”

grow weary

by Dona Hake

I don’t know about you but I love when I am doing something and I just know beyond a shadow of a doubt that my heart is in it.   I know when I stay focused on God’s grace flowing through me that I can do anything He requires me to do.  The Word of God says in Galatians that is we do not “lose heart and grow weary”  we shall reap.

Galatians 6:9 (AMP)

“And let us not lose heart and grow weary and

faint in acting nobly and doing right, for in due

time and at the appointed season we shall reap,

if we do not loosen and relax our courage and faint.”

It is when we lose heart that most of us can identify and will express words like “I just feel like I am going through the motions.”  It is usually at this time you will be drained in your attempts even to do a good thing.  Most certainly at times like these our mind will begin to develop a bad attitude and this is a sure guarantee that the Lord’s hand will not be able to bless what we are doing.  I think it is always important to remember  even when we step out in an attempt to do a good thing by no means gives us the guarantee of smooth sailing.

As we establish in our hearts and mind what  the will of the Lord is, we must keep our eyes on Him.  It takes courage and strength to persevere in this life and as we continue to focus on that which He has instructed us to do we shall reap!

“And to the rest of you I say, dear brothers,

never be tired of doing right”



“The Hope That Testimonies Bring”

testimonies

by Dona Hake

I love when someone shares what the Lord has done for them.  Testimonies bring hope and refreshment to our hearts.  Today while I was traveling I got to hear such an awesome testimony.  I call it one of those “Divine Appointment” testimonies.

This woman had shared how she lived in Florida and she received a phone call on her cell phone from Pennsylvania.  She did not recognize the number but she felt to answer it.  The man on the other end was obviously confused and he said he was trying to reach a family member.  He apologized and hung up and she felt prompted to call the police in the area in which the call came from.  She felt a bit awkward but explained to them that she really felt something was wrong with this gentleman.  The police arrived at  this gentleman’s house and he indeed was in need of help.  After a week in the hospital they diagnosed him with a life threatening blood infection.

Needless to say the family of this man were ever so thankful and this young woman’s simple act of kindness and going the extra mile very likely saved this man’s life.  The testimony just really touched my heart.  Everyday we need to be  sensitive to opportunities that seem small yet they may be big to someone in need.   Sometimes you never really know how that one word you spoke in due season could have sparked hope to a person’s soul.  Let us be sensitive to the times that we are presented with opportunities to give a listening ear to a lonely person or  just take the time to pray for someone because you felt prompted.  These things are all part of ministering the love of God and just possibly setting someone up for a beautiful testimony of the Lord’s great work in their life!

~~~~~♥~~~~~



“Blessed Are the Hungry and Thirsty”

Blessed are they which thirst after righteousness

by Dona Hake

Just as our bodies hunger and thirst so do our souls.  I can remember when I was about seventeen years of age how every night before I would close my eyes I would pray “Lord, there has to be more to this life than this…”   My life was empty and I was so miserable inside.  My heart was yearning for more.  Yes, even before I had a personal relationship with Jesus I could feel my heart being tugged at, and there was an emptiness.  There was a need and hunger within me that only He could fill.

I was a stubborn person, full of opinions and arguments against the truth of His Word.  I could wear down my loving friends with all kinds of arguments against God, yet I knew deep down I was the one that was wrong.  Thankfully there were those that continued to pray for me and they believed that the Lord could touch my heart.  I can remember the evening that I surrendered all to Him.  I can remember the freedom that I experienced and I continue to experience.  My heart was changed and my hunger and thirst for more was fulfilled.

John 4:13-14 (PHILLIPS)
“But whoever drinks the water I will

give him will never be thirsty again.

For my gift will become a spring in the

man himself, welling up into eternal life.”

Today I thank God for that living water that is as a spring of life within me.   It is only His life and His Word that can satisfy the hunger and thirst of one’s soul.  God is good.

~~~~~♥~~~~~



“Reminder!!!…”

seize opportunities

by Dona Hake

Each day we awaken let us remember that our day is a gift to us from the Lord.  Let us thank Him for that and let us be mindful to be wise with our time.

Psalm 90:12 (CEV)

“Teach us to use wisely all the time we have.”

I love my “To do” lists and I love my post it notes!  God knows I need them because it just keeps me on schedule and I feel like I am getting the most our of each twenty four hours in a day.    We all have those days where the “To do” lists go up in smoke but at least you tried!  The Lord can help us flow with those days as we keep our hearts at peace and rest in Him.

Many times our schedules may be interrupted with wonderful opportunities to help someone.  It depends how you view it.  For me it always seems that if I keep my heart right that those type interruptions are such a blessing.  It almost seems like my time becomes multiplied.

Ephesians 5:16-17
Amplified Bible (AMP)
“Making the very most of the time [buying up each opportunity]…”

I encourage you to seek Him on how to squeeze all you can out of your God given time.  Love every minute of your life.  I love this scripture because it makes me feel like our time given to us is so very valuable.  We should treasure it as we do our money.  Use it wisely, plan your time wisely, and think about how you can buy some opportunities to bless someone and be used by Him!

~~~~~♥~~~~~



“You Know Everything!”

All 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 knows all about us.  There is protection in knowing that He sees everything before us and behind us.

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!

~~~~~♥~~~~~



“He Lifts Up the Fallen”

Falls but lifted up again

By Dona Hake

The strength of a man or woman is revealed  when the pressure is on.  It is easy to appear strong when all seems to be on your side but we find out who we really are when we are weak , in trouble or we experience failure.  When we are down and out and failure is trying to haunt us, we have a choice…  quit or determine to get back up again.

God promises to lift us back up when we fall.   Even when you are at your lowest, if your heart is open to Him, He can teach you and strengthen you like never before.  Many times the worst of hardships can cause you to come back stronger…if you do not quit.

“I don’t measure a man’s success by

how high he climbs but how high he bounces when he hits bottom.”

General George S. Patton

I believe if our hearts are focused with God infused determination we will not permit mistakes or failure to dictate us, but rather we will come back stronger and rise higher!

Psalm 145:14 (ERV)

“The Lord lifts up people who have fallen.
He helps those who are in trouble.”

~~~~~♥~~~~~




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!