“There is no fear in love, but perfect Love casts away fear…”

– 1 John 4:18

I love this verse. Speaks volumes to me, especially since I’ve always been one to run from love. I know, right?! I always prayed for love, but deep down, I always was fearful of what would happen when/if I finally found it…. Would I get hurt? Will he cheat on me? What if I hurt him? What if it doesn’t work out? What if I get bored and want out? What if I can never love him? What if he does not love me back? What if things get complicated? What if I’m not pretty enough for him? What if there’s drama? What if he’s too possessive? What if he makes me change? What if he feels intimidated by me? What if he distracts me from God? What if, what if, what if. I must admit I am so tired of asking myself that question, wondering, assuming, guessing, hypothesizing, over thinking. And have you ever noticed that whenever we do wonder and hypothesize and over think, it’s always about the negative things? Why can’t we ask, What if it works out? What if it’s the best decision I make in my life? What if it brings me everything I’ve ever desired and more? What if it’s all worth it? What if we both fall in love? What if it’s the best thing that ever happened in my life? Well, there’s only one way to find out… You will never know if you never try.

All our lives, we are conditioned to think about the negative what ifs. We are taught to follow the rules, to be serious, to plan ahead, to analyze and make an informed decision, to save money for the future (which yeah, I agree it can be good), to think inside the box, to never trust anyone, etc. We are never taught to be creative, to take risks, to make spontaneous decisions, to laugh at the inconveniences, to think outside the box, to go on adventures, to love despite what might happen, to see the good in people and think the best of them, to think for ourselves, to follow our gut, to love the unlovable, etc. We have been raised to always be careful, to keep our distance, to protect ourselves from getting hurt, because getting hurt would just be the worst thing ever. Would it really? For me, I’ve realized that the pain of regret (What if I would’ve taken that chance?) is far greater than the pain of loving someone and then being disappointed by them.

The Bible makes it very clear in the book of Corinthians:

“Love is patient, love is kind. It does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. It does not dishonor others, it is not self-seeking, it is not easily angered, it keeps no record of wrongs. Love does not delight in evil but rejoices with the truth. It always protects, always trusts, always hopes, always perseveres. Love never fails..” – 1 Corinthians 13:4-8

And if that, indeed, is what Love is, and God commands us to love everyone, including our enemies, then why are we still so hesitant to follow through? He commands us to love one another and build each other up. He says, love your neighbor as yourself. He says, love your enemies. Your neighbor is anyone you come across with. That person from work who is gossiping and lying about you, that person who backstabbed you, that person who always seeks to bring you down, that person who tries to belittle you.

“But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you…” – Matthew 5:44

“The second is this: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself….” – Matthew 12:31

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear and timidity, but of power, love, and self-discipline.” 2 Timothy 1:7

So if the Word of our Lord teaches us to love with no agenda, no boundaries, no limits, why then are we still so afraid to take risks for love?
I believe that if we keep hiding ourselves and building up walls to try to keep others from hurting us because we are afraid of being hurt, it means we haven’t really understood God’s love. God is Love. Love and fear cannot go together, because when you choose to truly love, you’re choosing to let go of your fears and take a leap of faith. Nothing can guarantee that you won’t get hurt, but that’s the beauty of it. Loving no matter what.

Which reminds me of something I read a few weeks ago by A.W. Tozer:

“Love wills the good of all and never wills harm or evil to any. This explains the words of the apostle John: “There is no fear in love; but perfect love casteth out fear.” Fear is the painful emotion that arises at the thought that we may be harmed or made to suffer. This fear persists while we are subject to the will of someone who does not desire our well-being. The moment we come under the protection of one of good will, fear is cast out. A child lost in a crowded store is full of fear because it sees the strangers around it as enemies. In its mother’s arms a moment later all the terror subsides. The known good will of the mother casts out fear. 
The world is full of enemies, and as long as we are subject to the possibility of harm from these enemies, fear is inevitable. The effort to conquer fear without removing the causes is altogether futile. The heart is wiser than the apostles of tranquillity. As long as we are in the hands of chance, as long as we look for hope to the law of averages, as long as we must trust for survival to our ability to outthink or outmaneuver the enemy, we have every good reason to be afraid. And fear hath torment. 

To know that love is of God and to enter into the secret place leaning upon the arm of the Beloved – this and only this can cast out fear. Let a man become convinced that nothing can harm him and instantly for him all fear goes out of the universe. The nervous reflex, the natural revulsion to physical pain may be felt sometimes, but the deep torment of fear is gone forever. 

God is love and God is sovereign. His love disposes Him to desire our everlasting welfare and His sovereignty enables Him to secure it. Nothing can hurt a good man. ”

Let us pray together:

Lord, You know our innermost fears. You know all of our doubts, our worries, and our stresses. Help us to realize that there is no fear in Your shelter. Help us to lean on Your arm, Father, and believe with our whole hearts that You are Love, and that there is no fear in Love. Teach us to love with no limitations, and grant us Your peace when we find ourselves being attacked by the enemy. May we become brave and fearless. In Jesus’ holy and powerful name we pray, Amen.

Now go on, go spread the LOVE!

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Faith Child – Pauses

Loved this! ❤️

ChristianBlessings

slide-power-of-the-pause-002When overwhelmed by anxiety, fear, insecurity, doubt at crossroads of life ,and  emergencies we often plunge headlong  into action, without sufficient thought , in our effort to resolve the impasse or issue as soon as possible, for we are not comfortable with uncertainty

We think that when we pause — whether for a brief break or a week-long retreat — we are losing time that could be used productively. We think we’re making progress when we’re in motion — moving forward, as it were, on our way to our goal. In reality, it’s often when we pause that the most progress is made.

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Your Grace has overwhelmed my brokenness.

This verse from Hillsong’s “To Know Your name” song has stuck with me for years.

It is such a powerful declaration. Whenever I feel tired and like I can’t keep going, I think about this verse. No matter what I’m going through, no matter the trials and problems that may arise, I’m always reminded that His Grace has already overwhelmed all of my brokenness, that I have nothing to worry about because I’m in His hands.
I am a sinner saved by His Grace every single day. Sometimes I am tempted to believe the enemy’s lies, that maybe I’m just not good enough, that maybe I will never be, that God could never love someone like me. Why would He anyway? Then I open my Bible, and am reminded of His truth:

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” – John 3:16

Thank You, Jesus. Every time I think about Your truth, I am so overflowed with joy, love, and Your “peace which transcends all understanding” (Phil.4:7).

I am loved by a beautiful God. His Grace has overwhelmed all of my brokenness. And that, my friends, is a good reason to smile. 😉

“The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.” – James 5:16

Amen.

Have you been praying for something for a while now and feel like God is not answering?

I have been there, many times. I’ve had to learn to trust in Him even when the things I pray for aren’t being granted to me, yet.
I’ve learned to understand that God knows exactly what and who I need, when and how I need it. Sometimes He needs to say no to some of our prayers because He has greater things in mind for us. Maybe He didn’t let things work out with that last guy you met because it would’ve taken off your focus from the right man He is eager to introduce you to. Maybe if He listened to and granted all of our prayers, we would be led into a bigger mess than we already are in.

“Some of God’s greatest gifts are unanswered prayers.” You may think you know what you need, but sometimes we are led to pray through our feelings and emotions, and not through the Spirit. I’ve learned to understand between an effectual and fervent prayer and a prayer from the flesh. We pray for things we FEEL are good for us NOW, while God knows that they wouldn’t be good for us in the long term. See, God sees the greater picture; The past, the present, and the future. He can already foresee all of our days to come, and He knows that if He’d let us have our way all the time, we would end up lost and discouraged, in bad company, away from Jesus, and buried deep into the things of the world.

I have to admit that there have been times when I’ve felt forgotten by God. All of my life, I’ve had one prayer be the same one.
“Lord, please let me find true love. I want to fall in love with a man who loves me back.” And here I am, still single as can be. I’ve relied on things of the world at times to distract myself while I wait for God to answer my prayer. Doesn’t that sound silly? Probably because it was. Where was my Faith, if I had to rely on things of the world to pass the time? There was one year where i dated like 6 guys back to back, never spending a minute alone, because I was so afraid of being lonely. Then last year I realized that I couldn’t keep doing that anymore, and decided to remain entirely single until I met a man who made me change my mind completely, a man who could show me God’s love in person, a man who would make it all worth it. And here I am, still single. There is a huge difference now though. My prayer has changed from, “Lord, please let me find true love. I want to fall in love with a man who loves me back.” to :

“Lord, thank You for loving me more than anyone could ever love me. You know all of my heart’s desires, You know all of my fears, You know how much I yearn to be loved by a man who loves You first and me second. I pray that You keep molding me into the person that I am meant to become, and that if a Godly marriage is in Your plan for me, I trust that You will guide him to me in Your perfect timing. In the meantime, I will keep my eyes fixed on You, until one day I can share You with the man that You’ve so lovingly prepared for me. In Jesus’ name, I pray. Amen.”

I feel such a big difference in today’s prayer compared to last year’s. Thank You, Lord, for helping me mature in faith, and for letting me rest in knowing that You are in control, every second of every day. Thank You for reassuring me that You have great things in store for me, even when at times it seems like nothing is going my way. I go back to,

“… For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
    neither are your ways my ways,”
declares the Lord“As the heavens are higher than the earth,
    so are my ways higher than your ways
    and my thoughts than your thoughts.” – Isaiah 55:8-9

 

So if you’re feeling a little discouraged today, know that sometimes God’s no is really a ‘Not yet’. So let’s never stop praying in Faith, through the Spirit, even if, at times, we feel like giving up. God is teaching us to trust in Him. God is teaching us Faith. God is teaching us patience and endurance.
So while we wait for Him to answer in His own way and in His own timing, let’s keep building each other up, spreading His hope with others, getting to know God more, meditating on the Word, spending crazy time with Him, falling deeply in love with Jesus, and becoming the best versions of ourselves.

Thanks to everyone who reads my blog. I pray you are encouraged. 🙂 Be blessed.

 

Philippians 1:6

I may not be where I need to be yet, but I am “confident of this, that He who began a good work in me will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus” 

In moments when I start to feel overwhelmed with so much going on, I realize it’s because I’m taking my eyes off of Jesus. How can I feel overwhelmed and exhausted when I’m fixing my eyes on the One who can do all things, the One who loves me despite my flaws, on the One who perfectly created me to His likeness, on the One who died on the cross to save me from my sins, on the One who rose from the dead to give us eternal life, the One who gives me the strength to do ALL things (Phil 4:13)? When I find myself feeling down, I am reminded of His love. And when I start feeling weary and tired and like the load is just too much for me, I’m taken back to this verse:

“Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest…”Matthew 11:28

And this one:

Give all your worries and cares to God, for He cares about you..” – 1 Peter 5:7

He cares about me. And you. You reading this post right now, He cares about you. He loves you. If you’re feeling exhausted, drained, tired, overwhelmed, weary, down, forgotten, lonely, hopeless… you are not alone. He, the Master of the universe, the Creator of everything seen and unseen, the King, our Savior, our Lord, HE loves you.

Knowing that God loves us even when we feel our absolute worst, is a beautiful encouragement. It definitely puts a smile on my face.

So as you go about your day, remember this, you are loved by an Almighty and Powerful God. 🙂

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.” – 2 Corinthians 13:14

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2 Peter 1:5-8

“For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness; and to godliness, mutual affection; and to mutual affection, love. For if you possess these qualities in increasing measure, they will keep you from being ineffective and unproductive in your knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ.”

Wow.. i have read these verses before, but they struck me more today. Why you might wonder? Well, because at the start of Lent, I said to myself I was giving up men as this year’s “sacrifice” to get closer to Christ during these days. That included thinking about, talking to (in a more than friends manner), spending time with, men.

I made this decision because I had been dating guys just out of thoughts like this one: “Who knows? Maybe he could be the one. I’ll give him a chance and get to know him better.” And then i get bored… and it ends up as just another disappointment. So I realized that I’d been wasting too much time trying to make things work with guys that I wasn’t really interested in in the first place, instead of focusing on my Lord. I’ve also come to realize that the moment that I meet the right guy, I won’t have to wonder so much, nor force myself to try it out just to see what comes out of it. I don’t think that’s how true love works.

There was a time when I had stopped believing in love altogether, after going through so many hardships with my parents’ situation. I said to myself, “If my dad could do that to my mom, then love is crap. There is no such thing as a soulmate, as true love. It’s all a faux.” And so I went along with that thought until I completely believed it.

But when my brother met his now wife, they taught me different. I have never seen a love so true before, EVER. What an amazing love they share since day one. It’s as if they were truly made for each other. It’s as if the sole purpose of my brother being born was to be her husband, and hers was to be his wife. They are perfect together, and I didn’t think I’d ever believe anything would be perfect. Thank God for them, because thanks to them, I started hoping and believing in true love again. They never forced anything; Things just happened. She was always herself, he was always himself, flaws and everything. And belieeeeve me, they have MANY flaws, that I’d think, “Huh? How can she love this about him? Is she freaking crazy?” and also, “What the heck? He puts up with all of that? How can he be so patient? How did he just hug her after that? Huuuuh?” It’s really quite funny. And AMAZING. I want that. I want exactly that. I want a man who will love me for what and who I am. Which brings me to this quote from a movie I watched a while back:

“Look, in my opinion, the best thing you can do is find a person who loves you for exactly what you are. Good mood, bad mood, ugly, pretty, handsome, what have you, the right person is still going to think the sun shines out your ass behind. That’s the kind of person that’s worth sticking with.” 🙂

Anywho, back to the subject of this post haha. The reason why these verses struck me more now than before is because I’ve broken that promise I made at the start of Lent. Didn’t plan it, never expected it, didn’t think much of it, and before I knew it, I was starting to talk with this guy whose name I won’t mention. Sigh.

… make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge; and to knowledge, self-control; and to self-control, perseverance; and to perseverance, godliness...” 

Self control…. Perseverance…. Godliness… so hard to apply these. Why is it so hard for me? These are the times when I have a bit of a wake up call. It’s as if God is saying to me, “Hey! Vanessa! I’m here! Don’t forget about me, you said you’d give me more time. You promised. I want your attention! Hello!”

God knows all I want is true love. He knows more than anyone could ever know, how much I long to love and be loved in return by the RIGHT man.

Thank You, Lord, for you never forget about me, no matter how many times I forget about You. You, unlike imperfect me, keep your promises. I love You so much, and I am so blessed to be able to realize this. Thank You for loving me for me, good times, bad times, very bad times, and very very bad times. Your Love is what truly sustains me. Your Love is what teaches me patience and discipline. Thank You for breaking me down and reminding me what truly matters.

Which brings me to this song again: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O5_Z3ZZYLDc

“I am sweetly broken…”

To anyone who reads this, I pray God blesses each and everyone of you richly.

We are all rich…

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Read these verses today and they got me thinking. Hmm, I am not rich, so I can just ignore this, right? Wrong. Jesus didn’t mean only those who have material possessions.

It turns out I have been rich all my life and I had no idea! I’ve always said I have so much love to give. I’ve even mentioned before that I felt it was all going to waste because I hadn’t found the man of my life. Why not share all that love with the world instead? The great thing about sharing love is that the more you give, the richer you get. You want to be rich forever? Share your love today with someone. Smile at a stranger. Help an elderly lady cross the street, carry her groceries, etc., tell someone you care about that you love him/her, give lots of hugs, avoid gossip, eat less and share the rest with a homeless person, share a Bible verse with someone, pray for others, even for your enemies, don’t over spend on unnecessary things, let go of your pride and say you’re sorry, lead by example … You see, it’s sometimes the little things you do that end up making the difference. There are so many ways to share with others… Try one today!

And whatever you do, keep smiling!

God bless. ♥

Keeping the Faith..

Hebrews 6:11-12

¨We want each of you to show this same diligence to the very end, so that what you hope for may be fully realized. 12 We do not want you to become lazy, but to imitate those who through faith and patience inherit what has been promised.¨

I know I have not blogged for almost a year now… but here I am today… thinking and wishing I hadn´t stopped… yet again.

While reading the Word this morning, these verses spoke loudly to me. I had to read them a few times to grasp the beautiful meaning in its entirety. It seems that whenever I have a question, doubt, concern, God answers me through His Word. I had been wondering about love lately.. a lot. Wondering when it´s going to finally be my turn to find that amazing, extraordinary Love I´ve always longed for. It may sound silly to some, but to me, life without love is pretty much pointless. I have so much love to give, that sometimes I get frustrated thinking it´s all going to waste. But then God gives me a wake up call… and teaches me that love is everywhere. It´s in a child´s smile. It´s in a stranger´s ´good morning´. It´s in your co-worker´s assistance. It´s in a friend´s phone call. And it´s in the Bible. I think that if I hadn´t stopped writing and reading the Bible, I´d be fully satisfied with God´s love in my life, and I would realize that the love Ive always been searching for has been within me all this time.

The Lord is teaching me patience alright.. and is letting me know that it´s not really about believing when everything is going accordingly… it´s actually when you keep believing even amidst all the darkness and troubles that you start witnessing miracles all around you. Faith is believing and trusting even when everything seems to be going the exact opposite way.

Which reminds me of this amazing song:

“I will walk by faith, even when I cannot see. Well, because this broken road, prepares Your will for me.” 🙂

I know I will find true Love one day, and I will not get bored after 2-3 months, and I will not be afraid of taking the leap, and I will make him the happiest man on earth, and I will break free of all the chains that have been holding me back from just letting go and being vulnerable, and I will be so happpyyy. I know this. But in the meantime, I will focus on my relationship with Christ. I want to fall in love with Him all over again, and I want to learn to love myself a little more, until the Lord decides to bring me to the man he has been saving for me. 🙂 and once that man finds me, I know we will base our relationship on the Lord, and He will be our Rock. Amen.

I pray God blesses all of you today and every day.

Best regards,

V

The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their cry. – Psalm 34:15

I know I haven’t blogged in a while… I was thinking about this yesterday and kinda wished I never stopped. I guess sometimes we get so caught up in life and all its craziness that we tend to forget what’s really important, which is God. And God to me is Love. 

What a beautiful way to wake up this morning… with amazing news that my friend’s little brother was back home, after having been kidnapped for over 9 days. I’m just so overwhelmed by His love right now, His Grace, His mercy on us. This is really a miracle of Love. This is nothing less than a miracle. 

As I was reading the Word earlier, this verse spoke loudly to me. “The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, And His ears are open to their cry.” – Psalm 34:15 

AMAZING. The Lord definitely had His eyes on us and He definitely heard our cries for mercy, for help, and He definitely proved to us that with Faith, ANYTHING is possible. When we were tempted to give up, He gave us hope, when we were about to fall, He was our strength. I have no doubt that God was with Jose every single minute, and the reason he is back with his family is because He held Jose in His hand all the time. He was safe in the shelter of the Lord.

Blessed be His name, all Glory and Honor to the One and Only, our SAVIOR!! 

I want to thank everyone who prayed for his safe return. Thank you so much for your love and faith. It has definitely meant the world to my friend and all of their family, and to me. God bless each and every one of you. 

Let’s try to stay focused on what’s most important in life. It’s HIM. Yes, Jesus. He is the reason why we’re still here today. His Grace saves us EVERY DAY. 

“Cast all your cares on Him, for He cares for you. He’s near to the broken and confused. By His stripes, our spirit is renewed..” AMEN.

Happy Valentine’s day to all of you, and remember, TRUE LOVE (GOD) should be celebrated EVERY DAY. It’s the only everlasting Love there is. His Love never fails. ❤ 
I’m having a Valentine’s day date with Him today 😉  

My song for today: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sRPOD0b4GTk 

And to start your day off right, repeat after me: THANK YOU, LORD, THANK YOU!!!  🙂 Being grateful makes life so much brighter.

 

Much Love your way,

 

Vanessa I. 

 

 

“You are the Only Thing that is Beautiful in me…”

 

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CT8_QlJ7rTs&feature=related

Beautiful song. Listen carefully to the lyrics… You, Lord, are the only thing that’s beautiful in me…

Anything good that I’m able to do, I do it through You. You are everything. And all I can say, is thank You. THANK YOU, LORD, THANK YOU.

Psalm 30:11-12 (NIV)

You turned my wailing into dancing;
You removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
that my heart may sing Your praises and not be silent. 

 LORD my God, I will praise You forever.

All Glory to God.