Hope Reflected

Encouragement and Hope from God's Word

Wednesday Wisdom Archive

Wednesday

30

August 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | God Won’t Forget You

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God won't forget you or forsake you (Luke 12:6) | See more at hopereflected.com

“Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” Luke 12:6-7

It’s easy to get discouraged; all you have to do is turn on the news! Sometimes in the midst of trying or difficult circumstances, the first place our mind wanders is into negative waters, and it can be hard to pull yourself back. The thing to remember is that God knows. God won’t forget you and He won’t forsake you. He’s aware of what you’re going through, and He is with you.

David said in Psalm 139: 17-18, “How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; when I awake, I am still with You.”

When you’re feeling down or discouraged, consider this: God’s thoughts toward you are more in number than the sand. You are not insignificant; you are precious to Him!

God won’t forget you and He won’t forsake you.

“Are not five sparrows sold for two copper coins? And not one of them is forgotten before God. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows.” Luke 12:6-7

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Wednesday

23

August 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | Attitude of Gratitude

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What if you woke up today with only the things that you thanked God for yesterday? | See more at hopereflected.com

“What if you woke up today with only the things that you thanked God for yesterday.”

This quote really resonated with me, and I was immediately convicted. It was the middle of the week, on a day where I hadn’t really taken much time throughout the day to be in conversation with God. This quote really spoke to me and reminded me of the importance of taking the time to give thanks, to express gratitude.

I’ve written before in my column about the importance of developing an attitude of gratitude, rather than getting caught up complaining about our circumstances.

What if you woke up today with only the things that you thanked God for yesterday? Can you imagine?

Take time today to thank the Lord for His goodness and His blessings. Take time to give thanks for the people in your life who care about you. The world would be a better place if we all took time to give thanks!

“Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his lovingkindness endures forever.” (Psalm 136:1)

“What if you woke up today with only the things that you thanked God for yesterday.”

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Wednesday

16

August 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | The Sovereignty of God

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Wednesday Wisdom | The sovereignty of God (See more at hopereflected.com)

“When you go through a trial, the sovereignty of God is the pillow upon which you lay your head.” C.H. Spurgeon

When you’re going through a trial, how well do you sleep at night?

When you’re trusting the sovereignty of God, you’ve got the most comfortable, reassuring pillow there is.

Sure, it’s easier to say than to do, but there are seemingly endless verses throughout the Bible about trusting God and His sovereignty. So what are you waiting for?

No matter what you’re facing, claim God’s sovereignty to get you through it. Don’t forget that He is in control — and that can be a real challenge at times, can’t it?!

In times of trials, focus on the Bible verses (or better yet, commit them to memory!) that remind you of God’s strength, His power, His care, and His sovereignty:

  • Cast all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7)
  • Bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who despitefully use you. (Matthew 5:44)
  • And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose. (Romans 8:28)
  • Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid. (John 14:27)
  • The LORD is my strength and my song, and he has become my salvation; this is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him. (Exodus 15:2)
  • Seek the LORD and his strength; seek his presence continually! (1 Chronicles 16:11)
  • Fear not, for I am with you; be not dismayed, for I am your God; I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand. (Isaiah 41:10)
  • I can do all things through Christ which strengthens me. (Philippians 4:13)
  • …God who equipped me with strength and made my way blameless. He made my feet like the feet of a deer and set me secure on the heights. (Psalm 18:32-33)
  • But the Lord stood by me and strengthened me. (2 Timothy 4:17)
  • Rest in the LORD and wait patiently for Him. Do not fret because of him who prospers in his way, because of the man who brings wicked schemes to pass. (Psalm 37:7)
  • Be strong and of a good courage. Do not be frightened, neither be dismayed, for the LORD your God is with you wherever you go. (Joshua 1:9)

Remember, when you go through a trial, God’s sovereignty will be your rest. Keep your eyes on Him!

“When you go through a trial, the sovereignty of God is the pillow upon which you lay your head.” C.H. Spurgeon

 

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Wednesday

15

March 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | Living Slowly

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living slowly wednesday wisdom

“Everywhere, people are discovering that doing things more slowly often means doing them better and enjoying them more. It means living life instead of rushing through it. You can apply this to everything from food to parenting to work.” Carl Honoré

I’ve long been a fan of Carl Honoré’s insight into the slow movement; he comes at the topic from a place of practicality, and believes in the value of moving more slowly.

Where are you today? Rushing through work, sending off a series of emails, or trying to complete as many things as possible off your to-do list before the end of the day?

Time is a hot commodity and often we spend so much of our energy trying to jam as many activities into our limited time that we lose sight of the things that really matter. We even practice daylight savings time in an effort to give ourselves more daylight hours to get things done!

Wes and I were talking last night about how in some cultures, there is beauty in slowness. Life, when it’s not muddied by our modern-day “conveniences” (smart phones, internet, fast cars) becomes something that we can appreciate, and even enjoy.

Is the stress that rushing brings really worthwhile? Is pushing through a task just to complete it really better than taking the time it deserves to be done right? Does eating fast make my dinner taste better than if I actually took the time to taste it? The answer to all of these questions, is no.

“Everywhere, people are discovering that doing things more slowly often means doing them better and enjoying them more. It means living life instead of rushing through it. You can apply this to everything from food to parenting to work.” Carl Honoré

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Wednesday

22

February 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | Faith

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faith

“Faith does not make things easy; it makes things possible.” Luke 1:37

We know from reading the book of Hebrews that “Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)

Facts about faith:

Prayer, fellowship, and quality time in God’s Word are the essentials of a strong faith.

Trust, assurance, confidence, and a firm foundation in Christ are the results of a strong faith.

Looking to strengthen your faith and your relationship with God? Get into His Word. Having a relationship with God doesn’t always make things easy, but it makes them possible.

“Faith does not make things easy; it makes things possible.” Luke 1:37

 

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Wednesday

15

February 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | A Firm Foundation

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firm foundation wednesday wisdom a purposeful life is built on a foundation more than mere possessions

“A purposeful life is built on a foundation stronger than mere possessions.”

A few weeks ago, my Wednesday Wisdom post resonated with many of you. I heard several comments from several readers who agree with the adage that “when you love what you have, you have everything you need”. An attitude of gratitude certainly is one of the components to a joy-filled life. On another, deeper level, we also have to realize that in order to live a purposeful (or purpose-filled) life, we need to build our lives on a foundation that’s stronger than mere possessions.

Life isn’t about how much ‘stuff’ you have; life is more than an accumulation of ‘things’. Each of us was created for a unique purpose, and until we start building on the foundation that God formed us and created us and has a plan for us, we’ll just be wandering through this life without real purpose.

You may think that love, or success, or even sunshine and warm weather, will help you live the life you want to live, however without the proper foundation, ultimately your life will amount to nothing. As we’re told in 1 Timothy 6:7, “After all, we brought nothing with us when we came into the world, and we can’t take anything with us when we leave it.” Your life is about more than mere possessions.

A purposeful life is built on a foundation stronger than mere possessions. What foundation are you building on?

 “Therefore everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell—and great was its fall.” Matthew 7: 24-27

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Wednesday

8

February 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | Trusting God

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trusting God

“Worrying is assuming that God doesn’t know what He’s doing.”

How many times has someone told you, “Don’t worry!” Two of the easiest words to say, am I right? The truth is though, that when we worry, we make the assumption that God doesn’t know what He’s doing. We let ourselves believe that we’re in full control. Quite often, we get so focused on our circumstances and controlling things, that we lose sight of trusting God and the fact that God’s in control.

David had it right in Psalm 62:8 when he said, “Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us. Selah” (Psalm 62:8) We are commanded to trust God at all times. Not sometimes, not occasionally, not just when everything’s going the way we think it ought it to; we are to trust God at all times.

Consider this: We serve a God Who can be trusted at all times. That truth alone should put our hearts at ease! Trusting God should be as much an encouragement to our hearts as it is a challenge.

 

 

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Wednesday

1

February 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | Meekness isn’t weakness

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meekness isn't weakness; it's strength under control.

“Meekness isn’t weakness; it’s strength under control.”

I love this quote. Meekness can be defined in several ways, including gentle, humble, soft, or mild. Meekness is not weakness.

Just because you’re gentle, just because you’re humble, just because you’re kind— in no way does that mean that you are weak. In fact, I’d say quite the opposite. Meekness requires a great deal of strength.

Meekness requires strength to maintain grace and poise when others oppose you for standing up for what’s right; meekness requires strength to remain calm even though inside you’re not; meekness requires strength to have a heart and a spirit that are submitted and committed to living for the Lord.

Ephesians 4:1-2 says that we should “walk in a manner worthy of the calling to which you have been called with all humility and gentleness.”

“Meekness isn’t weakness; it’s strength under control.”

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Wednesday

18

January 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | When you love what you have, you have everything you need

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love what you have

“When you love what you have, you have everything you need.”

In my column, “Some Habits Are Actually Good,” I talked about learning to be content with yourself. You learn contentment when you make the choice to stop comparing yourself to others and competing with others. The grass isn’t greener on the other side; the grass is greenest where you water it.

You learn contentment when you continually give thanks and practice an attitude of gratitude.

You learn to love what you have when you’re content.

So what does the Bible say about contentment and gratefulness?

  • “I know how to be abased, and I know how to abound. Everywhere and in all things I have learned both to be full and to be hungry, both to abound and to suffer need. I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.” Philippians 4:12-13
  • “Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5
  • “But godliness with contentment is great gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and we can take nothing out of it.” 1 Timothy 6:6-7
  • “Then he said to them, ‘Watch out! Be on your guard against all kinds of greed; life does not consist in an abundance of possessions.'” Luke 12:15
  • “In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:18
  • “Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.” Psalm 100:3-4
  • “So you shall rejoice in every good thing which the Lord your God has given to you and your house,” Deuteronomy 26:11
  • “The LORD has done great things for us; we are glad.” Psalm 126:3
  • “Oh give thanks to the LORD, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!” Psalm 118:1

There are so many verses throughout the Bible about contentment and gratefulness. The key to contentment is living with an attitude of gratitude, and the key to loving what you have is learning contentment!

“When you love what you have, you have everything you need.”

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Wednesday

11

January 2017

Wednesday Wisdom | Listen to Your Heart

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be yourself listen to your heart

“Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you’ll be criticized anyway.” Eleanor Roosevelt

In her book, You Learn by Living, Eleanor Roosevelt provided many nuggets of wisdom, including the wise words to listen to your heart. A politician, diplomat, and activist, Eleanor Roosevelt was a great example of a strong woman.

When I was a child, my Mum always used to tell me to be myself, to do what I felt was right, regardless of what everyone else was doing. As a child, that’s hard advice to take, especially when you want to ‘fit in’. Looking back, I am so glad that I heeded her wisdom to listen to my heart and stay true to myself, even if it wasn’t ‘cool’.

No matter what you do, there is going to be someone out there who criticizes you, or thinks they know better, so why bother trying to be a people-pleaser when you can be the unique creation God intended you to be? Be yourself; there is no one else better suited. God created you with a unique purpose that only you can fulfill, so trust Him and listen to His leading.

There are several verses throughout Scripture that talk about the importance of what’s in your heart:

  • “Trust in the LORD with all thine heart, and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6
  • “Delight yourself also in the LORD, and He shall give you the desires of your heart.” Psalm 37:4
  • “Keep thy heart with all diligence, for out of it spring the issues of life.” Proverbs 4:23
  • A good man out of the good treasure of his heart brings forth good; and an evil man out of the evil treasure of his heart brings forth evil. For out of the abundance of the heart his mouth speaks.” Luke 6:45

Don’t be afraid of what other people will think of you, just be yourself and listen to your heart; the only opinion of you that matters is God’s.

“Do what you feel in your heart to be right, for you’ll be criticized anyway.” Eleanor Roosevelt

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