Big Bucks Barb – Day 21

Psalm 26:7 – That I may proclaim with the voice of thanksgiving and tell of all your wondrous works.

I have a friend and her name is Barb. Barb is a streetwise , no holds barred, tell you like it is kind of woman. She was in and out of trouble  with the law for years. She struggled with addiction for a long time. Barb has since become a new creation!                            

She works so hard to provide for her family and takes lots of overtime to pay all her bills. Her husband died many years ago, so she is on her own. Barb volunteered to go in a recovery program to get her life straight. She called upon the Lord to get her through. His promise stands tall! She is now gotten a promotion after working in the same manufacturing plant for almost 3 years . Her new job is one of the highest paying jobs in the plant. That’s why I call her Big Bucks Barb.

She has told me on many occasions how thankful of all the wonderful  things that the Lord has done for her. Praise God! Barb has spoken twice to the judges and lawyers of York City of how well the recovery program is. It just does my soul good to see His wondrous works!    
 
– Laurie Kuhn         

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Beloved Identity – Day 20

Over the last several months, Yahweh has been showing me more and more what it looks like to be loved by Him. I’ve been reading through the Song of Songs and in doing so I can physically feel His love drenching me. The Song of Songs was written by King Solomon to a Shulamite woman, his beloved. But this book is more than just poetry written to Solomon’s beloved; it’s a beautiful depiction of the Father’s love and admiration for us.

My dearest one,
    let me tell you how I see you—
    you are so thrilling to me.
    To gaze upon you is like looking
    at one of Pharaoh’s finest horses—
    a strong, regal steed pulling his royal chariot.

– Song of Songs 1:9 (TPT)

When I first read, “you are so thrilling to me” it left me in complete awe and wonder. How is it that the Creator of the universe – the One who knows every one of my thoughts, each hair on my head – how can He find me thrilling? So thrilling in fact, that He compares me to Pharaoh’s horses. To fully understand this, we have to realize that He’s comparing us to the best of the best. Pharaoh’s horses would have been the most physically attractive and strongest horses. What Yahweh’s saying here is that He sees us for who we are, in the places we are. He sees us as the most beautiful child that He created. We may be a mess and our lives may be organized chaos, but He looks at us in a way that we may have a difficult time understanding. We are His favorites. He longs to spend time with us. He yearns for our affections toward Him. Yahweh lavishes His love, His goodness, His kindness, His gentleness on us every moment of everyday. I believe that if we begin to grasp the reality that we are His beloved, our lives would naturally begin to look more like the Father. We were created to have our identity rooted in Him – beloved identity.

I encourage you to read through this book with the Father’s love for you at the forefront. Spend some time meditating on the words that are from Yahweh. Let them soak into you.

You are beloved.
 
– Whitney Rohrbaugh

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Choose Joy – Day 19

I enjoy a good graphic t-shirt. Ones that have fun messages like, “This Mama runs on Coffee, Amazon Prime and Jesus,” “Quiddich is my favorite sport” (points if you know the reference!), or “Thankful,” etc. There is really nothing that you can’t put on a t-shirt it seems. How fun! I saw a line recently of ones that start with “Choose”- for example “Choose Hope,” “Choose Courage,” or “Choose Joy.”

It is a choice! He wants us to choose to live more like Him. In the Word, these are ways people will know we are Christ followers. Galatians 5:22 “The fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.”

Sometimes I’m quite frustrated with myself, if I’m honest, and as much as I want to “Choose Joy,” I’m not always feeling it. The dishes, laundry, reports that need to be written, emails returned – the list goes on and on – give me a feeling of much less than joy. Add in a whining child and the stress of undone tasks, and I’m on the train to feeling in the doldrums.

But I believe we as believers are not meant to be downtrodden people. For we know the hope and we know we have a future (Jeremiah 29:11). I think I may even limit my testimony when I do not show joy. I end up looking like the rest of the world…under the weight of life’s pressures instead of filled with the Lord and living in light of eternity.

Don’t get me wrong…I don’t believe this means we can never have a bad day. But how do we approach each day? How do we greet those we encounter, even when we feel sad, weighed down, worried or stressed? Are we able to continue to look to the Holy Spirit to fill us and work through us even in those moments?

Because when in the midst of trials we can meet the need of someone who does not believe, how much more does that speak to them of the hope that lives within us? When we CHOOSE joy above choosing bitterness, anger, frustration or apathy even, we show the world His light, His power, His strength. “The joy of the Lord is your strength” (Nehemiah 8:10b).

Philemon 1:7 reminds us that as we share the joy He overflows in our heart with those around us, we can bring refreshment to this weary world. “Your love has given me great joy and encouragement, because you, brother, have refreshed the hearts of the Lord’s people.”

Prayer: Lord, I pray that I would reflect you more in all I do. Today I come asking you to fill me with your spirit that you would overflow from me the fruits of the spirit. Work in me that joy may flow freely; that I may be able to show the world the hope that lives inside me, and that I may share in others joy freely, not looking to the left or right, but looking directly to you, the source of my strength each day. Thank you for loving me and giving me everlasting joy. I love you, Lord.
 
– Laura Enslen

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The Presence of God Blesses Our Home – Day 18

The book of Joshua is a story of conquest and fulfillment for the people of God. After many years of slavery in Egypt and 40 years in the desert, the Israelites were finally allowed to enter the land promised of their fathers. Joshua was destined to turn that promise into reality. Joshua appealed to the Israelites to put away the gods of their forefathers in Mesopotamia and Egypt. In Joshua 24: 14-24, we read the story of how Joshua encouraged and led his people to serve the one true God. The Israelites had to make a choice on who to serve. Joshua made a public commitment to serve his Lord by stating, “But as for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” So just like Joshua, we, too, must make a choice on who we will serve. Do we serve the “worldly gods” of wealth, power and status? Or do we serve our Lord in ways that reflect the light of Jesus and what He has taught? That decision is up to each of us, just as it was to Joshua and the Israelites!

As many of you know, our family recently downsized in property and house size. Recently, our “home group” celebrated a house blessing during which we prayed over each room of our house, our property and the neighborhood. The purpose of this time was to consecrate our new home for the Lord’s use, ministry and protection. What a sweet evening of fellowship, refreshments and prayers!

Whether you live in a house or an apartment, in one room or many, you can affirm that God is the one presence and power within your home. The presence of God permeates our home with life, love, joy and peace. Because of the loving presence of God in our home, a spirit of order and beauty shines in every room. Our home is a haven of rest and contentment. God is a loving counselor in family decisions, promoting understandings and cooperation. The love of God fills our home, and all those who enter it are aware that they are in a haven of love and peace. We all can be like Joshua and allow our homes to be a sanctuary for the Lord and state as Joshua did, “As for me and my household, we will serve the Lord.” Blessings to all of your homes this Easter season!

Prayer: Heavenly Father, I pray that each one of us will realize that all of our many blessings come from you. I pray that each and every house in this congregation will be a sanctuary for You. I pray that Your Spirit will guide us in family decisions related to work, finance, parenting and leisure time. We ask this in Your Son’s Holy Name. Amen.
 
– Don Abbey

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Jesus is the Reason – Day 17

As children, we all viewed Easter in a different way. Painting eggs the night before, making cookies and candy. Then go to bed! The Easter Bunny is coming! Get up in the morning with a basket full of candy, then outside we go looking for Easter Bunny eggs. Then a great dinner. But we all grew up and went on our ways.

I have a daughter, and Easter is the same as when I was little.

Then big changes happened. Grandparents started passing away, and then on July 1982, I lost my father at the age of 59. My dad and I were close and when he passed so did a part of myself. He asked me before he died to take care of my mom; she can’t do it alone. I promised I would. The holidays weren’t the same anymore, but we still had mom and that was great.

On January 1996, tragedy fell again and I lost my mother. As I sat in her empty room that evening, I realized I had no one to turn to anymore. I was the high authority now. Then a voice said to me, “You always had high authority.” Then I understood what that voice meant. It was God all along in my life. My life changed from that day.  I started reading the Bible, studying, listening to prophecy seminars and speakers. I learned so much. I missed so much in my life.

My holidays have changed now. Christmas is all about Jesus, not presents and dinner. Easter has changed also. Bunnies don’t lay eggs. Easter is all about Jesus.

I realized how all these holidays have changed. False pagan traditions are taking over everyone’s homes and Jesus is being pushed out the backdoor. We need to bring him back in our homes through the front door. The backdoor is for Satan to be thrown out of.

Having a little fun at the holidays is okay, but we need to make sure our children know that Jesus is the number one reason for the holidays. As said in Matthew 28:20, and be sure of this, “I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

Prayer: Dear father, please help us to bring you back into this world the way you should be. In our schools, businesses, government offices and in our lives. Help us to keep you and your son strong in our hearts. You are the first and the last. Thank you for filling my heart with your words and your love. In Jesus name. Amen.

 
 

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Scripture Reading – Day 16

Matthew 16:21-28 (NIV)

Jesus Predicts His Death

 From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.

 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This shall never happen to you!”

Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.”

Then Jesus said to his disciples, “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.  For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it.  What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father’s glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done.

 “Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”


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