Are You Looking For God?

Prodigal: The beach is nice today.

Me: I would agree.

God loves us. You have heard that before? Have you accepted it? You have? Well what about right now, in this day, when you are too busy and the stress has increased.

Yesterday was busy. You know the kinda of busy that has your mind racing with your feet. It seems at times that you might not be able to catch up to the run around quickness all around you.

What do you forget to do when demands have surrounded the air that you find yourself in? Do you forget to sit down. Maybe you forget bathroom breaks. Or you might be the person who forgets where they put things.

I will get carried away with the day and not make myself time to sit down and eat. How long does it really take to eat? I quick bar can take about 2 minutes to chew in small enough bites to swallow. Some of y’all probably are laughing and saying, I can eat in 30 seconds while combing my hair and put a shirt on my child. I am impressed, because I have not figured that out yet. So here comes the days of rushing, moving, constant motion that will develop with no food.

Do I work better with food in my stomach and fuel for my cells. Yes, I do. Have I made the mistake of not taking time to eat and then feeling drained, sluggish, and developing a headache. Yes, too many times to really count. You know how we are. We know things. We have read them, been told them, we have even told others the same, and yet we have not figured out how to add it completely in our own lives.

So I have no idea how it all creep up on me. But before I knew it I was busy every second of the day yesterday that lasted for several hours. No breaks and constant phone calls, emails, talking with others and sorting through what needs to be done now and what can wait. At this point your probably wondering how did it go?

Well, praise God that I don’t try to do this completely empty but I had started my day at home with God in quiet time and then started my work day with God in prayer at the office.

I had some spiritual refreshing. Some spiritually fuel for the day. So physically I was running on low close to crashing and I had to reach out toward the spiritual. I prayed before and during the session. Lord help me to be present, help me to speak your truth and Lord help me be used by you.

God loves me. God really does. Because even though I was not doing all the things I should. Even though I was stacking my schedule too packed. Even though I did not take a break for my own physically renewal. The Lord gave me that strength. Did this have anything to do with me? Of course not. God allowed me to speak His words and guide His children.

God did not scold me that day. He allowed me to continue to minister. He allowed himself to be shown. I was able to share the gospel with one and the another one had a break through and some tears of joy and conversation was exchanged.

How could that happen? I was not doing everything I know I was suppose too. I was barely able to silence the throbbing in my head from lack of food. Should I not focus on making sure I have the list of what I need to do before going to God for help. I need to offer God a list of goodness before He will show up. Well, I use to think that . Now, I know I can go to Him, no matter what state I am in.

God loves me because it is in the small and big ways that he helps me in a busy day. He helps guide me. He will not leave me alone. The burden does not weight me down. No the burden is shared with the Lord. I know that He will help me. He will help others.

I receive a thanks.

I Praise the Lord.

I take 10 seconds to say a silent prayer. Lord thank you for showing up again and taking the burden.

God loves me. Yes, that is what I have accepted. Have you?

Ephesians 2:1-3

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience–among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

The Ultimate Power

Prodigal: There is a lot of power in this truck!

Me: I will talk about real power.

This is from the book The Meaning of Marriage by Timothy Keller

Marriage has unique power to show us the truth of who we really are. Marriage has unique power to redeem our past and heal our self-image through love. And marriage has unique power to show us the grace of what God did for us in Jesus Christ. In Ephesians 5, Paul tells us that Jesus laid down his life for us, forgiving us at great cost to make us something beautiful. And because he has done it for us, we can do the same for other.

Grace is not what you want to give today. You feel like everywhere you turn you have to give grace and it is wearing you down. In a way that it part of the point. Grace is suppose to wear down the selfish parts of you that demand it be all about you. Grace reminds us that we have to give love to others at times. This means they are the focus and you are not. How many times does the Lord listen to the focus be about you in the prayers and not just praise for all that He has done. He expects us at times to demonstrate this to others. Today we put that in practice again and tomorrow may be the same but one day you will need to receive also.

Mark 10:43-45

But it shall not be so among you. But whoever would be great among you must be your servant, and whoever would be first among you must be slave of all. For even the Son of Man came not to be served but to serve, and to give his life as a ransom for many.

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalipig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

Women Lovin’ Jesus

Prodigal: I brought a couple of friends with me.

Me: The more the merrier!

This is a short video devotion on proverbs

click here to watch the video

Proverbs 6:30

Men do not despise a thief, if he steal to satisfy his soul when he is hungry;

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

Romans

Prodigal: I reckon this day will be hotter than the frying pan.

Me: I might have to agree with you on that.

This is from the book The Cross of Christ by John R.W. Stott

Paul also writes about the love of God in the first half of Romans 5. He refers to it twice, and thereby supplies us with two complementary ways of becoming assured of its reality. The first is that God has poured out his love into our hearts by the Holy Spirit, whom he has given us’ (v5). The second is that God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us (v8). One of the most satisfying aspects of the gospel is the way in which it combines the objective and the subjective, the historical and the experimental, the work of God’s Son and the work of God’s Spirit. We may know that God loves us, Paul says, both because he has proved his love in history through the death of his Son, and because he continuously pours it into our hearts through the indwelling of his Spirit. And although we shall concentrate, as Paul does, on the objective demonstration of God’s love at the cross, we shall not forget that the Holy Spirit confirms that historical witness by his own inward and personal witness, as he floods our hearts with the knowledge that we are loved. It is similar to our experience of the Holy Spirit testifying with our spirit that we are God’s children – witness he bears when, as we pray, he enables us to cry “Abba, Father’, because we then know ourselves to be God’s justified, reconciled, redeemed and beloved children (Rom 8:15-16).

God gave us a gift. He gave something that was part of Him for us. Something we did not deserve. Something that we take for granted. The Lord has granted us this love, so that we may know what true love is. That we may say that no matter what has happened to us in the past, we can say we were loved.

Psalm 104:24

O LORD, how manifold are thy works! in wisdom hast thou made them all: the earth is full of thy riches.

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

What’s in Our Lives

Me: Pie Factory looks tempting!

Prodigal: Yes, maybe a little will not hurt.

Me: Sometimes we have to slow down for the good moments in the day.

This is from the book God Works the Night Shift by Ron Mehl

The Lord knows what’s in our lives that shouldn’t be, and what isn’t that should. He sees the obvious and the hidden. While others may evaluate our lives by external measurements in the bright light of day, the Lord is busy on the night shift, working away at the hidden areas others can’t see.

First of all,it’s encouraging to remember He sees the strengths in my heart no one else may ever observe or note.

Our world doesn’t make values and commitments and faithfulness high priorities, but God does. The world doesn’t see those agonizing decisions made in secret, but He does. The world doesn’t see the victories in my thought life, but He sees. The world isn’t aware of my faithfulness to a whispered promise, but He’s aware. The hidden things mean everything to Him. He sees under the sometimes scuffed paint and peeling wallpaper of my life to give me credit for good wood underneath.

That is what I like about friendships. I get to see some of the hidden sometimes. I must say that my friends really do a lot behind the scenes. I am forever grateful and encouraged with all you do. God sees also and is honored at how you love others.

1 Corinthians 15:58

Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that in the Lord your labor is not in vain.

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

Women Lovin’ Jesus

Prodigal: It is time for watermelon!

Me: Yummy, let me feed you with God’s word while we enjoy.

This is a short video devotion on proverbs

click here to watch the video

Proverbs 6:29

So is he who sleeps with another man’s wife; no one who touches her will go unpunished. (NIV)

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

Divine Action

Me:  How are you feeling about riding with Brady?

Prodigal:  I’m as nervous as a cat in a room full of rocking chairs.

Me:  HAHA, well just hold on and I will share to distract your thoughts.

This is from the book  All of Grace by C.H. Spurgeon

A silly servant, who is told to open a door, puts his shoulder against it and pushes with all his might, but the door does not stir, and he cannot enter, whatever strength he uses.  Another comes with a key, easily unlocks the door, and enters immediately.  Those who would be saved by works are pushing at heaven’s gate without result, but faith is the key that opens the gate at once.

O sing unto the LORD a new song; for he hath done marvellous things:  his right hand, and his holy arm, hath gotten him the victory.

Psalm 98:1

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

Prayer for Tomorrow

Prodigal: What will tomorrow bring?

Me: I reckon we don’t know, but God does.

Beyond today will be tomorrow,

But what it will bring of joy or sorrow

I cannot know. I only pray

Your guidance, Lord, each hour, each day,

Your strength to bear whatever may be

Your loving wisdom has for me.

So sweet or bitter, sad or gay,

Be with me, Lord, beyond today.

by Carlene A. Wallace

Proverbs 13:1

A wise son hears his father’s instruction, but a scoffer does not listen to rebuke

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

Women Lovin’ Jesus

Prodigal: I like the colors, made you should start over and choose other ones though.

Me: I’d sooner dive into a bed of poison ivy than do that.

Prodigal: Just joking.

This is a short video devotion on proverbs

click here to watch the video

Proverbs 6:28

Can one go upon hot coals, and his feet not be burned? (KJV)

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org

Contaminated No Longer

Prodigal: I have somewhere I need to be.

Me: We all do, but time together is always important.

This is from the book Voices of the Faithful by Beth Moore

Being new in the city of Jerusalem. I was culturally inept. Used to greeting people I met on the street, I quickly learned that many of my Orthodox Jewish neighbors wouldn’t greet me in return. Being a Gentile woman makes me unacceptable in a religious sense. While shopping in the Old City, a Muslim shopkeeper assisted me in a store. In completing the transaction, I thanked him and thoughtlessly extended my hand whereupon he solemnly explained that he was on his way to prayers and could not touch me.

Religiously, I am considered a contaminant to the people I live among. As I replayed these experiences in my mind, I saw my sinfulness in a fresh way. Yet new gratitude came for the Holy One. He is not defiled by me. Instead, in grace, He has actually imputed His own righteousness to me.

Several months after these experiences, my husband and I were walking when a man in Orthodox Jewish dress stopped us, asking if we loved God and knew how to pray. We affirmed our love for God, explaining that we pray to Him through Jesus the Messiah. He asked us to pray for him, saying that he needed to find peace with God. Finding a place where he wouldn’t risk being seen with us, we prayed for him. As we prayed, he reached out and held our hands.

Knowing one needs peace with God strips us of pride in the presence of each other and the One who died for us.

—A worker in Northern Africa and the Middle East.

Proverbs 20:3

It is an honor for a man to keep aloof from strife, but every fool will be quarreling.

Jennifer Van Allen

www.theprodigalpig.com

www.faithincounseling.org