Tag Archives: strength

Abandon: Five Minute Friday

We are given 5 minutes to write without editing on a word every week. This week’s word is ABANDON.

abandon

Sometimes I want to abandon what I am doing. I ask myself why am I doing this? This is especially true about my writing and art. Sometimes I get discouraged and feel like giving up. But then I read God’s Word and He tells me to persevere, to not give up. He speaks to me about telling others how awesome it is to give ourselves to Him.

In a way that is abandoning too.

Can we abandon ourselves to Jesus?

Can we let all our cares be given over to Him?

That’s what He asks us to do.

How are you doing in that department? Most of the time I can do it – but sometimes I know that emotions and self get in the way and make me want to take control again.

Thank You Lord for Your Word – because Your Word always brings me back to the centre – to You. You remind me again and again that You are the Lord. That you are working in and through everything.

And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose (Romans 8:28, NIV).

That You have all things under control. That you know my thoughts and you know when I start to falter. I love it when I know that I can trust in You completely.

By abandoning myself to Your love and care, I can relax in body and spirit. (click to tweet)

You flood my being with Your Presence. You help me heal, get strength, have wisdom and see the direction You are heading me in.

I may feel tired and frustrated sometimes but I know You will never abandon me. I read Your Word and I know what is true.

 We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;  persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed ( 2 Corinthians 4:8-9, NIV).

Time’s up. 5 mInutes goes fast when you are typing and thinking. It’s your turn. What are your thoughts on the word abandon?

I am joining Kate Motaung again this week. You can join in too. Just follow the link.

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Sometimes I link:

Grace and Truth Linky @ Arabah Joy

#DanceWithJesus Friday @ SusanBMead.com

Faith & Friends Friday @ Counting My Blessings

#UTCOP – Praying Through Poetry #2

#UTCOP – Praying Through Poetry #2

by Joy Lenton

Praying-Through-Poetry

Thanks to LadyHeart at Morgue File for the image.

Lord,

You are our Rock, our Strength in times of trouble
through all the length of days, in every struggle

Whenever hardship comes our way You’re there
responding swiftly to our every prayer

Your presence brings a lasting peace
with comfort, reassurance, ease

Even though we often feel alone
You never leave us on our own

Holy Spirit continually reveals
You as the One who saves and heals

The Word made flesh who imparts
truth and hope to weary hearts

So no matter what calamities we will face
may we always rely on Your continual grace

Trust in the message seen and heard
Love poured out in Your written word

To read Joy’s other prayer check her post from September 2.

Tweetable:

Joy Lenton shares her prayer through poetry. (tweet this)

Joy Lenton

Joy's-bio-photo-web

Joy is a grace-dweller and storyteller who weaves words out of the fabric of her days. Her desire is to seek the poetic in the prosaic and look for the eternal in the temporal.

As an M.E and chronic illness sufferer, who is also recovering from a painful past, she writes with a heart for the hurting and to support and encourage others who are struggling with life and faith issues.

She is  a member of the Association of Christian Writers and Fellowship of Christian bloggers.

You can connect with her at her blogs, ‘Words of Joy’ or ‘Poetry Joy’, and on TwitterFacebookGoogle + or Pinterest.

 

#UTCOP – How to Pray for Those Facing Sickness

I would ask that you pray especially for Tanya today. She request this prayer: “Please pray for God’s strength, guidance, peace and healing as I face illness and as my family go through this ordeal along with me.”

How to Pray for Those Facing Sickness

how-to-pray-for-those-facing-illness

Photo by freedigitalphotos.net

All mighty God, today we uplift all those who are facing illness in their families. Illness comes in like a thief to steal joy, hope and peace, but we thank You Lord, that You are with us through illness. We praise You because of the assurance that though the outward man perishes our inward man will be renewed.

Bring comfort to those that are ill. Heal according to Your will. And above all else Lord, strengthen them that they may endure all that they face and be victorious in You.

Be with the family, help them to be the strength that their ill loved one needs when they are feeling especially weak. Help them to be compassionate and supportive through all the difficulties that arise. And help them also to bring their loved ones before You, because You are the Great Healer, not only of the body, but of the soul.

So Lord, be with us all who face illness. Help us never to let go of You but to help us to see and know and show who You are in spite of all that we face.

We pray all this is the name of Our Saviour, Amen

 

Tweetable:

A prayer for those who face illness. (tweet this)

 

Tanya – from God’s Character

Tanya is a child of God, wife, stay at home mom and homeschooler. She loves the Lord and loves telling people about who He is. By God’s grace her husband and she intend to live out Joshua’s statement “but as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord”. And so her greatest desire is to see her Lord face to face and along with her family, join in the joyous strains of triumphant voices praising our Lord and King. Check out her blog at God’s Character.

Sunday Stillness – Deuteronomy 33:25

Sunday Stillness – Deuteronomy 33:25

Deuteronomy-33-25

Watercolour Painting by Janis Cox, 2013 based on an ad I found at http://www.heels.com/womens-shoes/trevina-sandal-bronze.html

Last Sunday the Sunday School in Arizona asked me to do the Storyteller’s part for the children’s service. I had done this a couple of times last spring. I received the story and realized it was a Proverb – not a real story.

Of course, Satan tried to have a field day with me. He told me, “You can’t do this.” I felt confused. Then I said to myself, “No way, Satan, you are NOT getting to me. I have Jesus to give me strength, words and confidence.”

In my weakness – I kept saying – He is strong. And He was. Even though I didn’t feel adequate at all, I kept trusting Jesus to pull me through. And He did in a marvellous way. I had a great time. I thoroughly enjoyed myself.

So this pair of sandals is my vision for this strength. There are two very different versions for this passage. In the New Kings James Version it is sandals.

Your sandals shall be iron and bronze;
As your days, so shall your strength be (Deuteronomy 33:25, NKJV).

But check out what the NIV says:

The bolts of your gates will be iron and bronze,
and your strength will equal your days.

And The Message:

Safe behind iron-clad doors and gates,
your strength like iron as long as you live.

I decided it didn’t matter what the vision – the strength is the same. I like the idea that:

God puts iron and bronze shoes on my feet
to give me strength against the Enemy. (Tweetable)

The whole point is – God gave me strength. I allowed Him to be the strength in my weakness. And I enjoyed the journey.

Today is Sunday Stillness – be still before Him.

Stop and feel His touch.

Blessings,

Janis

Do you have a Scripture that spoke to you this week? Please link below. If you post to Twitter use #sundaystillness and @authorjaniscox.

Feel free to pin the picture. Follow me at AuthorJanisCox on Pinterest.

I would love it if you would subscribe to my blog. See the sidebar to enter your email address.

Read the Sunday Stillness rules if you are new here.

I would appreciate if you would link only about God’s Word. If you have a linky party that’s okay if it is about the same thing. Please no sales or prizes. I want this to be friendly but I must ask you to abide by the rules. Others want to read God’s Word – and that is what I would like the links to be about. I must take down the links that don’t follow the rules. Thanks so much.

JOIN THE SUNDAY STILLNESS COMMUNITY – 
READ OTHER POSTS AND ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER.

Please check out all the places I link to during the week. Thanks to everyone who has joined Sunday Stillness. I do try to get to your posts every week but I admit sometimes I don’t have the time.

Here are my favourite links for Sunday Stillness:

The Sunday Community

Still Saturday

 Sharing His Beauty

Missional Women – Faith Filled Fridays

Scripture and Snapshot

http://christianmommyblogger.com

The Weekend Brew

 



SUNDAY STILLNESS – Treasure

Sunday Stillness – Treasure

2 Corinthians 4;7 POTS

Watercolour painted by Janis Cox 2013.

I really felt this Scripture this week as I am extremely tired but God kept giving me strength to push through. I know the power comes from Him.

The rest of the verse reads as follows:

 “We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair; persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.  We always carry around in our body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be revealed in our body.  For we who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that his life may also be revealed in our mortal body. So then, death is at work in us, but life is at work in you (2 Corinthians 4:8-12, NIV).

So let’s live on in Him who gives us the strength, the patience, the kindness and the love.

Join us in providing your link about what God has spoken to you about this week.

Today is Sunday Stillness – Do you have a Scripture that spoke to you this week? Please link below. If you post to Twitter use #sundaystillness and @authorjaniscox.

Feel free to pin the picture. Follow me at AuthorJanisCox on Pinterest.

I would love it if you would subscribe to my blog. See the sidebar to enter your email address.

Read the Sunday Stillness rules if you are new here.

I would appreciate if you would link only about God’s Word. If you have a linky party that’s okay if it is about the same thing. Please no sales or prizes. I want this to be friendly but I must ask you to abide by the rules. Others want to read God’s Word – and that is what I would like the links to be about. I must take down the links that don’t follow the rules. Thanks so much.

JOIN THE SUNDAY STILLNESS COMMUNITY – 
READ OTHER POSTS AND ENCOURAGE ONE ANOTHER.

Please check out all the places I link to during the week. Thanks to everyone who has joined Sunday Stillness.

 



FIVE MINUTE FRIDAYS – Jump

Five Minute Fridays  – Jump

double dutch

Click on picture – found on Wikipedia

On Fridays I link to Lisa Jo Baker and take only 5 minute to write a post. Great for making me sit and write with total freedom. Here goes:

JUMP

When I think of JUMP I think of double dutch (the double skipping rope game). To be able to conquer the doubles ropes required perfect timing and then to jump while in the ropes required focus and control.

At the age of 10 I had grown to almost my 5 foot 10 inch height. My feet felt extremely far away and my arms always knocked things over. Graceful I was not. And I had a slender frame – skinny.

To master double dutch became a passion and I worked at it until it was accomplished.

All my life this passion to JUMP in has pushed me further. When I don’t know something or think I can’t do it – I jump in anyway because I have learned three important things:

I belong to Jesus:

“Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls” (Matthew 11:29, NIV).

Jesus is my strength:

“but those who hope in the Lord
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint” (Isaiah 40:31, NIV).

I no longer have to fear, so have peace:

“Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus” (Philippians 4:6-7, NIV).

We can do all things through Christ who strengthens us.

Now where will I jump next? I love this video of my church in Arizona who are ALL IN. I have shown this before but I really like it.

Is there anything you feel God is calling you to jump into? What is holding you back?

JUMP

 

Linking in with Lisa-Jo Baker and Five Minute Fridays.

Time’s up. What do you think of when you think of the word JUMP?

1. Write for 5 minutes flat for pure unedited love of the written word.
2. Link back here and invite others to join in {you can grab the button code in my blog footer}
3. Go leave some comment props for the five minute artist who linked up before you {and if you love us, consider turning off word verification for the day to make it easier for folks to say howdy}

It’s a great way to catch your breath at the end of a long week.

WEDNESDAY’S WORD – Strength

Wednesday’s Word – Strength

 

Rock - Psalm 18

Picture taken in Czech Republic

Oh I have not had any of my own strength in the past week. With allergy season kicking in; with my head filled with ideas and keeping me awake; with my hubby snoring – well sometimes I feel rather blah.

But – and there is a big but.

I don’t have to do anything in my own strength. Tweet this.

Here are three examples from the past week.

Last Tuesday I had an interview with Robert White on FaithFM Radio. The call was at  at 6:15 am (time change made it 1 hour earlier than I had expected). And I had not slept that night – allergies and snoring husband. I arose at 5am. A prayed and studied. I had a shower to wake me up a little more.

I am not sure how I did but I know I felt God’s spirit strongly as I spoke. The prayers of my prayer team were also holding me up. God is able even though I am not.

The Results:

1. I had my first interview and got through it.
2. I actually enjoyed it even though I felt nervous.
3. Someone on Facebook said he heard “an awesome interview from Janis Cox”.

On Saturday I had a table at a small Arts and Crafts Fair in my community – to sell Tadeo Turtle. I did not sleep the night before (allergy and snoring of hubby; excitement and too much on my mind). However, I got up at 6am as I always do – studied and prayed. I felt the Lord’s presence and an infusion of energy. Off to the show I went:

The Results:

1. My nose seemed okay the whole time. (allergies under control)
2. I stood for 6 hours and was able to smile, laugh and sell lots of books.
3. When I returned home – I had a nap. Yes I was tired but elated that God had pulled off this miracle.

On Sunday I was to be the storyteller for 2 services at Sunday School. Of course with these allergies I did not sleep well once again. Up again at 6am I prayed and studied. Renewed with His Presence I went off to church. My hubby was praying for me.

The Results:

1. The kids were very attentive.
2. I enjoyed myself thoroughly.
3. I had lots of energy to sing and dance with them as well as tell the story and have them act the story out in a play.

So I know for sure – for sure – that God is my strength. Tweet this.

“I love you, Lord, my strength.

 The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold” (Psalm 18:1-2, NIV).

Here is Chris Tomlin singing one of my favourites. Everlasting God.

These words speak to me:

Our God, You reign forever
Our hope, our Strong Deliverer
You are the everlasting God
The everlasting God
You do not faint
You won’t grow weary

 



LEAN ON HIM

Lean on Him

by Jan Cox

Am I living in my own strength or God’s?

“I can do all this through him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:13 NIV).

I read this passage and wondered why I don’t do it all in His strength. What is holding me back? I took a closer look at what happens when I do something in my strength and something with God’s. Here is what I found.

What’s the difference between doing something in my own strength or doing it in God’s strength.

Physically:

On my own I get tired – first I may feel exhilarated and excited – but as I progress my body can wear out.

With God – there is something extra – a push through – a deep fire underneath – an extra boost of power – and a body at peace through it all.

Mentally:

On my own – I have been blessed with a reasonable brain; I can think most things through to a satisfactory conclusion. But I use what I have stored up in my brain to rethink things. And that is not much.

With God – my thoughts expand. I can think beyond what I already know. Clarity and inspiration abound. My mind can soar to new heights.

Emotionally:

On my own – I am excitable; I can jump to conclusion; I can think of myself only and lose control easily.

With God – tempering, yes I think He can help me know when I might react falsely to a situation. I know He can bring me down from an overreaction before it gets too out of control. He can keep me at peace through turmoil.

So why don’t I always live in His strength. Because I forget. I let ME and I get in the way. They are always there and they want control. They want to show what I can do.

I continue to learn each day to trust Him more and more. The words of a secular song come to mind:

“Lean on me when you’re not strong; I’ll be your friend; I’ll help you carry on” (Bill Withers, 1972).

Will you join me in leaning on Him this week?

Prayer:

Father, I try to do things in my own strength. But when I do my body fails me. Help me to remember to lean on You, more and more. In Jesus’ name. AMEN.

My Gratitude List – counting to 2000. I am at 1308.

  • clear head to get all computer entries done
  • excited to see family this weekend
  • got TV to work through Apple TV
  • sunny sunny day but below 0 Celius
  • summer is coming – our community docks are in
  • love to use a crock pot – made more chili
  • quick afternoon revival naps – 20 minutes
  • grandchildren!

the gang

  • playing games
  • lots of chatter, laughter and noise
  • putting together a barbecue – thanks boys

Where does that part go?

  • Wayne and I taking 3 grandchildren to church
  • a band in church where I can move, dance and worship
  • cold weather but sunny
  • cuddles with new grandbaby
  • giggles smiles and energy in one small package
  • playing in the park early Sunday morning with daughter and 2 grandchildren

Riding Bikes

Over the Bridge

  • first long walk with Snowball since coming home
  • safe trip to and from Barrie even in foggy, rainy, dark night
  • hugs with my sister
  • sorting through my Mom’s things
  • seeing God’s Hand in little things like opening time slot at bank
  • doing my life more and more in His strength
  • remembering to say THANK YOU to God for each minute of living
  • not being caught in a thunderstorm while driving
  • meeting and studying with my women friends after 6 months away
  • studying Moving From Fear and Freedom Bible study with 11 women friends – awesome!

Contributors

Jan Cox

Jan, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. She has published two devotionals and a number of articles for magazines and a Bible study. She is owner of Under the Cover of Prayer and moderates the site. She also writes at A Better Way. Jan is working on a couple children’s books in which she is also the watercolour illustrator.

HARD EUCHARISTEO

Hard Eucharisteo

by Jan Cox

In many of the past posts we have talked about prayer in all circumstances. This week I learned the practical reasons for this.

Last week my husband’s van collided with another van at an intersection. He had a green light and had started into the intersection as another van ran through the red light on the cross street. Our van spun around and the airbags deployed. Wayne broke his sternum and two ribs. He spent two days in hospital and is now recovering at home here in Arizona. We believe it will take 4-8 weeks to recover.

From the time I learned of the accident (the police called me) to this point I have been thanking God for being in every circumstance. I remembered that thanks is a verb. My prayers became thankful prayers.

There have been times with all the extra details of driving in unfamiliar traffic, listening to doctors, giving medicines and dealing with insurance companies that I would have a tendency to get uptight. But I keep focusing on Jesus – calling to Him to help me – and He is there, holding me steady and giving me peace.

I am so grateful that Ann Voskamp heard His voice and wrote One Thousand Gifts. I am so grateful I have read the book four times and have led a Bible study based on it.

To read it – to teach it – and then to live it – Eucharisteo – that word stuck in my mind.

From Ann’s words on qideas:

It [Eucharisteo] means thanksgiving in Greek. My life’s struggling to pronounce it, that word that’s set like the unexpected crown jewel in the center of Christianity, right there at the Last Supper before the apex of the Cross. When Jesus takes the bread, gives thanks for it, that’s the word for his giving thanks: eucharisteo. It’s like a language lesson: in that word for thanksgiving, eucharisteo, are the roots of charis, grace, and chara, joy. If you can take all as grace, give thanks for it, therein is always joy.  Eucharisteo –  grace, gratitude, joy – one word that God in flesh acted out when he took the cup.

©iStockphoto.com/Annette Wiechmann

Now as we head into Advent season (this Sunday is HOPE) I would encourage everyone to starting writing down the gifts that you see, hear, feel and touch this Christmas season. Let us give thanks to God in every situation and find His joy.

Here are other links for thankful ideas for Christmas and Advent.

With Thankful Hearts

Haliburton Pastoral Charge Thanksgiving Letter

Haliburton Pastoral Charge Advent Letter

Ann Voskamp’s Jesse Tree Family Devotional

My Gratitude List for this week – I have skipped over many to be able to write this week’s list. I am counting and up to 689. This is a long list but it has been a long week.

  • Hard Eucharisteo – Wayne is t-boned in an accident, broken sternum and bones
  • Friends who pray
  • Family and friends who care
  • A friend who loaned me his car to take Wayne to the hospital
  • Car insurance and medical insurance
  • Your calming presence in my life
  • The gift of prayer
  • Knowing You are in charge
  • My daughter’s presence here in Arizona during this time
  • Kind, caring doctors at the first hospital
  • A nurse who brought me an orange and another who brought me a hearty salad
  • A warm blanket for me
  • A TV to pass the time while we waited for test results (5 hours)
  • Good doctors watching Wayne for any complications
  • Safety on the roads to the airport and hospital
  • Arriving safely back to our home in AZ with Wayne
  • All the prayers from friends and family
  • Energy to continue when I just want to lie down
  • My daughter safely back home in Canada
  • Wayne comfortable on medications
  • Wayne’s laughter even when it hurts
  • Walks around the lake
  • Snowball’s new tricks
  • A good book to just pick up and read
  • Morning time to think and pray and rest in Him
  • So many email friends praying
  • A nap that restores my energy
  • Another friends’ car to use – a “red box”
  • Pain meds for Wayne
  • A rental car
  • Regular routines
  • Learning the steps to a dance in tap
  • Finishing an easy Sudoku
  • Remembering that it is not about me – instead to serve
  • My shoulder feels almost normal
  • Jesus – to call upon
  • Scripture to keep me strong and at peace
  • A replacement vehicle for the one totaled (more mileage but insurance money paid for it)
  • Trust and belief in God
  • Writing all this down
  • Growing in the knowledge of God

Jan Cox

Jan, a former school teacher and small business owner, found a new passion in writing in her retirement. She has published two devotionals and a number of articles for magazines and a Bible study. She is owner of Under the Cover of Prayer and moderates the site. She also writes at A Better Way. Jan has written a children’s book in which she is also the watercolour illustrator. She hopes to publish it some day.

THE DREADED DIET

The Dreaded Diet

Read: Philippians 4:10-13

“I rejoice greatly in the Lord that at last you have renewed your concern for me. Indeed, you have been concerned, but you had no opportunity to show it. I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances. I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation, whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want. I can do everything through him who gives me strength.”

There are certain foods that I have learned not to eat. My health depends on following this diet. But it isn’t easy to stick to. Restaurants do not always have choices that are suitable. I am tempted at parties and church suppers. Other times, I just want something different. I want to rebel.

This reminds me of the Israelites and how God gave them manna (described as a “thin flakes like frost on the ground”, in Exodus 16:14) in the desert each day. It was a boring diet but sufficient to sustain life. However they grumbled and asked for something different. They were not satisfied.

I have found that there is only one way to stay on my prescribed diet and that is with Christ. He gives me the strength and willpower to make the right choices. I am able to do everything “through Him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:13 NIV).

Paul suffered much while he taught about Christ. However he persevered because he knew the truth and knew God would be there throughout his trials.

Is there a particular area in your life where you need the strength of Christ? Ask Him for help and He will be there for you, to listen, comfort and guide you.

Remember: God may not change our circumstances but God can change us in our circumstances.