Casting All Your Cares Upon Him

Casting All Your Cares Upon Him by Kim Spahr

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.

–1 Peter 5:7 (Amplified Version)

Trust in Him at all times, O people: pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge.

–Psalm 62:8(NIV)

Now is the time!  Now you have His favor! Tell Your Father all your troubles, all your cares, all your hopes, and dreams. Now is the time!

Believe!

God is love.  God is light. In Him there is no darkness or deception.  No one loves you unconditionally but Him. There is no one who loves you consistently.  Only Him. He is the only One you can trust without need to fear of anything you have done.  HE is the only One who can do the impossible that you need done in your life today.  

I know He cares.  He gives me peace when I can’t see the final outcome.  He has provided for trips to see my children and their families.  He has helped me in my marriage. He changes my thinking so I can walk in freedom and not be so easily offended.  He gives me words of encouragement for others. He brings me to other people’s minds alerting them to pray for me.  

He gave up all His glory in heaven to die the most grueling death known to man so I can have freedom from worry and the power of sin.  He has given me the hope of heaven where there is no more weeping or disease, no one else doing you wrong. Heaven!

He cares and His promises in Christ Jesus are “YES! And AMEN!” (2 Cor. 1:20 NIV).

Now is the time!  Pour out your hearts to Him during your fast!

Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus

Turn Your Eyes Upon Jesus by Candace Bartlett

There is an old hymn that goes like this:

Turn your eyes upon Jesus

Look full in his wonderful face

And the things of earth will grow strangely dim

In the light of his fullness and grace.

As we continue in our fast, it brings to mind the words Pastor Debbie spoke on Sunday, January 6th. In reference to the promises or the gifts God has for you, she made a point that before anything else, Seek Jesus First.

Hebrews 12:2 (NIV) says, “Fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. For the joy set before him he endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.”

It’s’ so easy to be distracted, with everything we have going on, simply being still and making the time to rest is very challenging.  Sometimes it’s the enemy throwing distractions in our way so that we don’t hear from the Lord. And honestly, sometimes we get in our own way.  We try to juggle too many things or have so much going on that our schedules don’t allow for just a few minutes to meditate on His Word.

I know I get in my own way all the time.  Something always comes up or honestly I get a bit lazy and prefer to “zone out” instead.  But this week during our fast, I am making a point to set aside time to meditate on His Word, to listen without speaking, to not have any expectations and just rest in Him.

I find so much more joy and satisfaction.  It’s not always an hour, sometimes it’s only 5-10 minutes between one thing to the next, but I know He honors us when we give Him our time.

It’s taking a moment to stop and look at Him.  Looking at Jesus, taking a deep breath and just being in His presents in that moment.  It’s like having the warm sun on your cheek in the cold of winter. It’s a beautiful thing.  

As you continue to push through this season of fasting and as challenges of life come your way, I encourage you to make a conscience decision to stop, look at Him, and rest.

Encouragement for the Fast

Encouragement for the Fast by Pastor Laurel Gonzalo

Fasting has always been an interesting concept for me.  Realistically speaking, it makes sense for God’s children to set aside the daily task of harvesting food, preparing food, cooking food, eating food, and cleaning up after food and spend that time focusing on Him instead.

In our culture, however, all those tasks can be absorbed into one trip through the fast-food drive-through!  And the time spent waiting in line can be used to focus on prayer points for your fast! It’s a Win/Win! However, digging deeper one finds a secondary level of purpose…which is always God’s style.  

He usually has several purposes and plans playing out at one time.

Denying our physical, earthly bodies something we know we need via a fast really lets us determine who is in charge of our life.  Do I give in to every whim of perceived hunger that my body thinks it needs? “Oooo, that banana cream pie looks so good! I NEED it!”  Or “I have to have my veinte, vanilla, two shot, iced coffee just to make it through the afternoon!” Really?

Or can I choose to deny this needy, whiny, physical body and make a small sacrifice for a short amount of time to honor the Awesome, Omnipotent, Magnificent God of The Universe?

I know we all want to make the choice to honor God.  I know it’s difficult. But I know that the God who saved us, heals us, advises us, blesses us, and loves us will also strengthen us when we feel weak.  

As we press into this last third of the fast, lean in to Jesus.  It’s worth it.

Fasting and Prayer Brings Change

Fasting and Prayer Brings Change by Patty Stoddard

As I sat at my laptop asking our Father what He would like me to say as a word of encouragement to Restoration, He gave me the following to share with you:

  • He does not demand or command you to fast.  It is not a religious formula with a bibbidi-bobbidi-boo and a swipe of a magic wand!  But it is a tool that He has given us that will set you free and bring breakthrough in areas you have hidden, to squash the fear that hinders you from looking at the area, and to send the spirits of unbelief out of your life. It’s our choice!
  • In Acts:13:2, it describes that while they (believers) were serving the Lord in fasting and prayer, the Holy Spirit said……… during fasting we are open to hearing Him more clearly and seeing Him with new vision!  
  • Fasting and PRAYER (another key) brings change!  Both work together in a miraculous way!

A diet will change the way you look,

Fasting changes the way you see!

                                                                             –Lisa Bevere

My encouragement for you during this season is to make the choice to press in and a desire to uncover the areas that need change!  Sit on His lap in prayer and let Him show you His goodness and love, casting out fear and unbelief! Fast the things that take you away from time with Him!  Ask Him for a face to face encounter that will change your life that will bring about an excitement to move forward in purpose!

Abba, I’m yours!  2019 is a year of testimony!

That All Would Be Saved

That All Would Be Saved by Pastor John Kitterman

The entire purpose of Jesus’ brief trip to earth was to reconcile man to God.  So, by extension and instruction, “Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit,” Matt 28:19.  It is good and appropriate that we intentionally pray for people to come to know Jesus.

Jesus makes it clear that God’s will is that everyone be saved.  In John 6:40 Jesus says, “For this is the will of my Father, that everyone who looks on the Son and believes in Him should have eternal life, and I will raise him up on the day.”

Jesus tells three parables in Luke 15, the lost sheep, the lost coin, and the lost son.  Jesus’ word make it abundantly clear that salvation is a priority for God. There is much rejoicing for every person who is reconciled to God.  We must adopt the mind of Jesus on this – if it’s a priority for Jesus, it’s a priority for me.

Pray that Jesus puts on your heart, the names of people for whom he would have you fast and pray.  This is part of the good works that He has set aside for you to do. There are people to whom you have unique access; these are your charges.  Fervently pray that God would soften your heart toward them. Pray that their hearts as you stand in the gap and call them into the kingdom.

Romans 10:14-15 says,How then will they call on him in whom they have not believed?  And how are they to believe in him of whom they have never heard?  And how are they to hear without someone preaching?  And how are they to preach unless they are sent? As it is written, ‘How beautiful are the feet of those who preach the good news!’” 

His Promises

His Promises by Vonda Williams

My word for this year is Promise. Many people I have talked with have mentioned they are so happy for the new year because 2018 had to many difficult things happen.  An important thing to remember is sometimes when walk through those difficult times, it was to prepare us for the promise of His tomorrows. more “His Promises”