Circumstances do not change the goodness and faithfulness of God. He is always worthy of our praises. When we're in the valley, our thanksgiving lifts us into heavenly places and enlarges the vision of who our God is. The greater our sacrifice of praise, the greater will be our joy and assurance of victory.
Read Ps. 34:3-10, Ps. 50:14-15,23, Ps. 107:1-32, Phil. 4:4-13, Col. 2:6-7, 1 Thess. 5:16-24 read more
Years ago while speaking to a group of new Christians, I noticed a beautiful, young, blonde girl across the room. I flipped out! I had never felt such intense emotions as those that filled me when I gazed across the room at Diane, the girl who was to become my wife. On our first date I was amazed that she seemed to share my feelings, and we became engaged after just one date.
My deep love for Diane and my desire to be with her helped me understand the love Christ feels for His bride. The prayer He prayed just before His death, recorded in John 17, is especially revealing. He said, "Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am" (v. 24, NKJV). Here was my Lord, only hours before His agonizing death on Calvary, crying out to the Father with intense cravings for His bride—for me!
He was consumed with love for His bride and longed to have her with Him for eternity. read more
Lisa Bevere lost an eye to cancer when she was five years old. The ordeal left her insecure, intimidated, and afraid to fulfill her purpose. But she released her fears to God and today He is using her to minister to women across the country. To watch Lisa's inspiring testimony, click below. read more
What does God think about when He thinks about you? When God meditates on you in His heart, what does He feel? When God focuses His eyes on your soul, what does He see? When God opens His mouth to speak of you, what does He say?
Perhaps many of you would answer those questions like this: He thinks badly of me; He feels repelled by me. He sees all my ugliness, and He says, Yuk!
Nothing could be further from the truth! Notwithstanding what you have been told in the past or what you may feel in the present, when God thinks about you, feels for you, and sees you, He opens His mouth and sings with inexpressible joy! read more
Several years ago my friend mustered up the confidence to tell me about her struggle with lust. Even though she wasn't dating anyone, she was afraid her fixation would eventually seduce her into having premarital sex.
Thinking about her problem made me want to blog about premarital sex, a topic I believe the church often shuns. But why? Christian singles have sex or want to have sex too. And though the Bible prohibits such behavior, that hasn't stopped believers from going too far. read more
Daily my heart is cleaving more closely to Christ and getting more detached from earthly objects. The weaning process is going on. I find the closer I get to the heart of Infinite Love—the nearer to the Son of Righteousness—the more sensitively do I feel, to my heart's deepest core, everything that is contrary in spirit, word or action to the law of love.
If we do, indeed, get nearer to the Son of Righteousness, we cannot help but see with greater vividness everything that is unrighteous and unlovely. And then the sight of the eyes will affect the heart. read more
We've likely had many opportunities to learn that seeking acceptance from anyone other than God is sinful, not to mention futile. But the hurts we experience in life can sometimes leave us feeling such rejection that we become desperate for people's approval. This sets us up for more heartache since no one can consistently give us the kind of approbation we need.
No human being can accurately assess our worth. Only our Creator really knows our value. read more
Every mother occasionally finds herself watching her child with a stirring suspense, wondering about his or her destiny. "Perhaps my child will become president," she muses. "Or maybe a teacher, or a missionary, or a scientist who will discover the cure for cancer." A profound sense of responsibility grips you when, as a parent, you realize the mandate you have to greatly influence one of God's dear children.
Yet as Christians, our opportunities to invest in the lives of people go far beyond natural parenthood. The world is filled with spiritual children—believers and seekers alike—and God wants us to recognize the potential for greatness He has planted in each one. Then He can use us to impart to them a sense of spiritual destiny. We might be surprised to see what extraordinary intentions God has for the ordinary people who walk among us today! read more
Are you hurting? If you are, you know that physical, emotional or mental pain can make life very unpleasant. I learned this fact firsthand: I was sexually, physically, verbally and emotionally abused from the time I can remember until I left home at the age of 18. Shortly after, I was married—and during the next five years I experienced further rejection, abandonment, betrayal, and finally, divorce.
I know what it is to be a victim. But I have learned from experience and the Word of God that we can have victory over pain instead of being the victims of it. I also know that we can increase or decrease the intensity of our pain by the way we handle it.
The medical field offers "pain management" classes for people who have chronic pain that medication cannot alleviate. "Stress management" seminars are available to people who suffer from stress, which can cause emotional or mental pain as well as physical illness. read more
Ever wonder if the words you pray for yourself and others reach heaven? And if you do manage to get a prayer through, do you think that God won't answer you? As believers we have a spiritual mandate to pray and not let up. read more
One evening when I was praying, the Lord came to me and said, "If you will spend the night with Me, as the day dawns into the morning I will teach you how to have power over the devil." You can be sure I did not sleep that night.
I sat on a daybed by the window watching for the day to break. Just as it began to crack the tiniest bit, someone walked into my room. read more
Recently my good friend and co-worker married a wonderful, God-sent man. As I watched their beautiful Italian ceremony, I was reminded of the many years I spent with her praying and asking the Lord to send her a husband. So needless to say, I was excited to see her stroll down the aisle!
My friend wanted to be married, but she didn't waste time lamenting her singleness. But for many women, being single is a lonely life to live. They exhaust a lot of prayer time cutting deals with God: "Lord, if You allow me to get married, my husband and I will work together in ministry for You." But the reality is not everyone will get a chance to say I do, and God will still expect us to serve Him. read more
In 1925, the Lord told Bishop Charles Harrison Mason to send Elder O.T. Jones to pastor a large mission in Philadelphia. Elder Jones asked if my husband, Elder E.H. Dabney, and I could assist him. Bishop Mason said yes, and told me my job was to pray and write for the church.
One afternoon the Lord called my attention to [a bad] situation in the neighborhood. I asked God if He would give us the victory if I made a covenant with Him to pray. He said He would. God told me to meet Him the next morning at the Schuylkill River at 7:30.
I went home and asked my husband to take me to Riverside Drive the next morning. ... I was so afraid I would miss the appointment with the Lord that I sat up all night and crocheted. I dared not put my trust or confidence in an alarm clock. We arrived at a place where a tree was bent over the road, and the Lord said: "This is the place." read more
As her fingers eased over the piano keys, repeating gently the notes of the last chord of "Purify My Heart," Karen knew in her spirit that many had been touched by the worship this evening. A lingering smile sent her way from Wes, the worship team leader, confirmed it.
Karen slid quietly off the piano bench and headed for the music office. She glanced at her watch. If her husband, Marty, had been here, he would have been irritated that the music had taken so much time. He was always in a hurry to get home to his computer and The Wall Street Journal. She sighed.
"What was the sigh for?" asked Wes, who had been following her down the dimly lit hall of the Sunday school wing. "A pretty lady like you shouldn't have a care in the world! And your piano playing was...was...how can I describe the beauty and majesty you draw from those keys? Just being on the same team with you has been a thrill for me."
Do you sometimes wonder if God's promises to you will ever come to pass in your life? It may seem as if the Father has forgotten what He whispered to you in prayer, but He hasn't! Take heart and trust His Word. His plans for your life will come to fruition in His perfect timing. read more
The Bible tells us that God knew what He was doing when He made our physical bodies. "You formed my inward parts," the psalmist says, and "I am fearfully and wonderfully made...My frame was not hidden from You, when I was made in secret...Your eyes saw my substance" (Ps. 139:13-16, NKJV). It is no accident, then, that women are equipped with certain body parts men don't have: wombs and breasts.
Why did God give women wombs? Why did He put breasts on them? The most obvious reason, of course, is to make it possible for them to bring forth and sustain physical life. In His perfect plan, God provided a means for mankind to "be fruitful and multiply" as He commanded (see Gen. 1:28; 9:1; 35:11). read more
This week I traveled to South Bend, Ind., to attend the funeral—or should I say the home-going service—of my 94-year-old grandfather. Lawrence Lowe Sr. was a spry man and as the patriarch of the Lowe clan, he possessed wisdom far beyond his years.
He stood about 5 feet 11 inches tall, but in my eyes he looked more like 6 foot 6. His ebony complexion hid the scars and hardships of growing up under the burden of racial segregation and Jim Crow laws. But he let nothing stop him from leaving his mark on the earth in his own unique way.
He spent his early years working as a farmer on his dad's farm along with his eight brothers, and as a carpenter in his latter years. His huge fists no doubt held the key to thousands of family stories that I unfortunately never got a chance to hear. read more
Hattie Philletta Hammond was born in Williamsport, Maryland, in 1907. She was always aware of the call of God on her life and at first wanted to be a missionary.
When her cousins would come for a visit, they would play Sunday school and church, converting and baptizing all the dolls in the neighborhood. She would preach to cows and chickens and to herself in the mirror. At school she gave out tracts and knew more about the map of Africa than the map of America.
When she was 12, Hattie was stricken with typhoid fever and was not expected to live. Her pastor was led to anoint her with oil and pray. Soon, her 106-degree fever broke, and from that moment, Hattie began to get well.
Still religiously inclined during her early teens, Hattie nevertheless found church life unsatisfying and would sneak off to take part in worldly activities. read more
In the beginning, God created male and female because both were essential to express the totality of His nature. The entrance of sin into the world through Adam has resulted in centuries of gender conflict and distorted relationships. Only through the cross of Jesus Christ is spiritual equality restored. read more