What About the Consequences?

There is not a single “useless” step of obedience. No matter how small and insignificant it may seem or how big and impossible, be assured of this: anything God calls us to do will not be wasted or inconsequential.  

There are consequences to our obedience.

We typically only think of this idea in the negative connotation and agree, “Yes, there are consequences to disobedience”. 

Yet because He has a plan behind even the simplest of instructions, there WILL always be consequences as you obey – consequences for you and perhaps many others whom you may not realize your life touches.  
Trust Him. 

No call of His is without purpose, and there is never a WASTED step of obedience! Never. Not one little step is worthless.

So, step out in faith in your big God and allow Him, in His mighty love, to quiet all of your fears.

Destroy the “speculations” (what if . . .) and “every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God”. Destroy all the lofty FEARS and “shakings” that are raised up against your real knowledge of Who He is and has promised to be, and take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ (2 Corinthians 10:5). 

As those FEARS arise, immerse yourself in His Word. 

As you see Him – in His Power – in His Word He will get BIGGER in your whole soul, and the fears will HAVE TO submit. YOU SERVE A VERY BIG GOD!

For though we walk in the flesh, we do not war according to the flesh, for the weapons of our warfare are not of the flesh, but divinely powerful for the destruction of fortresses. We are destroying speculations and every lofty thing raised up against the knowledge of God, and we are taking every thought captive to the obedience of Christ”  2 Corinthians 10:3-5.

What is God purposefully asking you to do today? Not sure? Then ask Him and listen. Submit to trusting Him and walking that thing out in real life.  

Stop just contemplating obedience. 

 Obey. 

And watch as the consequences unfold beyond anything you could “think or imagine”.

“Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly beyond all that we ask or think, according to the power that works within us, to Him be the glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations forever and ever. Amen.” Ephesians 3:20, 21

Hi friends,

Be encouraged!

In addition to this truth, He gives us everything we need to walk out the steps of obedience that He calls us to. And He is strong in our weakness (2 Corinthians 12:9, 10). May we all TRUST Him and step out in obedience to His call today and tomorrow and the next and the next. Simple little steps of faith can lead us places we never dreamed. But we must start walking – one step at a time – by faith (2 Corinthians 5:7).

This post was originally posted in 2012 on my previous blogspot here, and I found myself quoting some of these truths yesterday. So I thought I would share it again. I’d love to hear the steps He’s calling you to and to join you in prayer in those areas. Let me know. Click the link to this post and leave a comment or contact me.

With love,

Traci

If someone comes to mind that would be encouraged by this, please share. And if you aren’t receiving these weekly devotionals in your inbox and would like to, let me know by clicking here.

In His Hands

Show up. Be willing. Be used. 

Be used as the beautiful instrument that you are in the Heavenly Father’s hands, living out His song of LOVE for His people.

Oh, what He can do with you!

Being used by Him truly is where the JOY is: being His hands and feet, a conduit of His love and grace, experiencing His love in fullness as He pours it out through us unto others. So, when we protect ourselves by not showing up, we actually forfeit the best life has to offer.

May we LOVE and care for others (even in intercession) more than our own comfort (and more often than we give into fear and retreat). Let’s trust Him more than we fear the unknown.

May we stop protecting ourselves. 

Do not be anxious, but pray!

If we all obeyed this simple instruction every time we felt a sense of anxiety, there would be so much more prayer and therefore so much more power and the promised result of peace

“Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.” Philippians 4:6, 7

Oh Lord, raise up an army of “alive” believers – alive in every way! “Dead to sin and alive to God” (Romans 6:11). Believers who believe You.

And, Lord, we each come before You and say, “May it begin here with me, the one I am responsible for, that I may be able to say, ‘Be an imitator of Me as I am of Christ’ (1 Corinthians 11:1) – a prayer request You must delight to answer! 

Make Me more and more like You, to ‘walk in a manner worthy’. I give myself afresh to you today.

Lord, make me a vessel, an instrument of Your love.

Show Me today’s step of action to live this out. I choose to obey.”

Friends,

I am praying for your protection and courage today. May you experience His peace and grace in any and every trial you face. Take His courage and move forward in His strength. 

Blessing to you,

Traci

If someone comes to mind that would be encouraged by this, please share. And if you aren’t receiving these weekly devotionals in your inbox and would like to, let me know by clicking here.

You Can!

“. . . be filled with the knowledge of his will in all spiritual wisdom and understanding, so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to him, bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.” Colossians 1:9, 10 ESV

Let’s get serious – starting right here and right now, concerning ourselves– not just about the “life” that we want people to see, but about the life that is lived in secret before God alone: the moments that no human eyes see, along with the thoughts, the intentions, motivations, and the meditations of our hearts. 

(Oh, search us, Lord God, and show us, that we may repent and return “in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” -Acts 3:19.)

God, the Holy Father, who loves us and wants what is best for us, is always presently present, AND God, the Son, is always interceding for us, an ever-present HELP. Let’s not quench (1 Thess. 5:19) or grieve (Eph. 4:30) the Holy Spirit whom we NEED desperately. Let’s live in authentic holiness– wanting “to please Him in all respects” and longing “to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord” (Colossians 1:10), honestly living the holy life that God calls us to inside and outseen by man or unseen, knowing that all is seen by our holy God who calls us to be holy in all our behavior as He is holy (1 Peter 1:15, 16). If He calls us to it, we can’t say that it isn’t expected of us or that it’s not possible.

Holiness – what a life goal! made up of moment-by-moment goals of obedience, depending upon the Presence and Power of the Living God in Whom “we live and move and exist” (Acts 17:28). 

Such a goal would certainly keep us on “the way that is narrow that leads to life” (Matthew 7:14), where there is abundance (John 10:10). May we not allow this promised abundance to be stolen away from us by “shiny things that distract” or by our own laziness or certainly not by this world and its foolish ways. 

Let’s determine to know what that path of life is with a true knowledge of the Word, the “doctrine conforming to godliness” (1 Timothy 6:3), and may our lifework flow out of a heart of love for our Holy God, who has loved us so well and has provided all that we need for life and godliness (2 Peter 1:2, 3).

May we live a holy life of “response” to our Heavenly Father.

We cannot be too serious about Him!
~~~~

Take some time with the Lord, with a pen in hand, and ask:

“What do I want people to see in my life that is not really authentically true of me when no one is watching?” Invite Jesus in to really show you every area. There is no hiding. Realize that you don’t want to hide anymore. Put pen to paper and hash this issue out honestly with Him. 

Then repent. Name sin for what it is, lay it at the foot of the cross to die, and CHOOSE to rely upon the power of God within you to bring about the needed change.

Realize that if it is a godly “want” for your life, it can be authentically yours and true of you by the power of Christ in your life. Don’t give into the enemy’s “lies of impossibilities” that are only meant to rob you. 

“Then Jesus said to His disciples, ‘If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it . . .’” Matthew 16:24, 25

Do you wish to come? Take any necessary steps.

What are your “today” action steps?

Prayerfully read through the book of Ephesians this week and journal through the truths found there. Believe Him. Take Him at His Word. Live. 


So glad you are here today. I pray that this encourages you in some way for “life change”. If someone comes to mind that would be encouraged by this too, please share. And if you aren’t receiving these weekly devotionals in your inbox and would like to, let me know by clicking here.

And remember, you can see all the verses mentioned in their entirety as you hover over the references above.

Do You Ever Wonder About God’s Timing?

“Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.” Galatians 6:9

From the Heart of God:

I am not on your timetable, but you’re definitely on Mine. You wonder at times if I even have one. Yep I do, and you know it. I hold time and eternity in My hands, and nothing slips through the cracks forgotten – no small detail, and certainly not big ones. 

I have already put all the ingredients together (before time even began), and things are always IN PROCESS. People tend to hate “process”, but it is what life is made up of.

Embrace life to its fullest; don’t allow what is “not yet” to rob you of TODAY.

Start a gratefulness journal and lean in. Put your “ear to My heart”. Hear it beat: rhythm, process, steady, dependable, strong for you, for you, My love. 

Lean in, press your ear and hear. Write it down, and give thanks for all My many blessings. 

You’re not forgotten, looked over, or taken for granted – NEVER these, in My heart. Seek My heart on things, not just how they feel, seem, appear, what’s practical, or shiny and pretty.  

Lean in and hear My heart. 

I have given you an open ear to hear it’s beating, not only for yourself but also for those I place in your path.

I invite you to lean in.

There is a process of putting ingredients together – each individual part being absolutely necessary and not to be missed! There’s then (think of bread baking) the time of kneading, of resting and rising, and cooking – when you finally smell the fragrance and know it’s almost done. Most of this process is easy as it just happens and yet hard as you must WAIT – “easy/hard”. Don’t grow weary of the work or the wait. It WILL YIELD!

There is a day coming when all that you have been waiting for will be seen. It will be right there before your very eyes, and it will be worth the wait. You will say, “This is it!” I will release that proclamation to your heart. “And you will know that I am the LORD; Those who hopefully wait for Me will not be put to shame” (Isaiah 49:23b).

~~~
Wait upon the Lord, and as you do, sing His praises.

“You keep him in perfect peace
  whose mind is stayed on you, 
  because he trusts in you.
Trust in the LORD forever,
  for the LORD GOD is an everlasting rock.” Isaiah 26:3-4 ESV

I pray that this encourages those of you who are in any season of waiting, as many are. May we all trust Him and His perfect timing. If you aren’t receiving these weekly devotionals in your inbox and would like to, just let me know by clicking here.

What is your plan to lean in to hear His heart today? He is a “rewarder of those who seek Him” (Hebrews 11:6). Believe!

“You will seek Me and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.” Jeremiah 29:13

Are You Bearing The Fruit of Repentance?

I love this example of Paul living a life that loved people well: “. . . I did not shrink from declaring to you anything that was profitable . . . I testify to you this day that I am innocent of the blood of all men. For I did not shrink from declaring to you the whole purpose of God” (Acts 20:20,27). 

Will we follow Paul’s example?

Likewise, we are given the instructions in the Great Commission to go and teach all that Jesus commanded (Matthew 28:19, 20).

Will we obey?

We must not pick and choose truths that are convenient. 

Paul also testified, “… I did not prove disobedient to the heavenly vision, but kept declaring both to those of Damascus first, and also at Jerusalem and then throughout all the region of Judea, and even to the Gentiles, that they should repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance” (Acts 26:19-20).

True repentance will bear fruit. May we all bear fruit through a continually changed life, going deeper and deeper in relationship with Christ, looking more and more like Him each day. This change will come from daily time with the Father – seeking His Presence and His truth – and in keeping short accounts with Him, asking Him to search our hearts (click here for more) .

“Therefore bear fruit in keeping with repentance” Matthew 3:8.

Examine yourself.

“If we say that we have no sin, we are deceiving ourselves and the truth is not in us. If we confess our sins, He is faithful and righteous to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:8-9

“Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance?” Romans 2:4

“‘Thus it is written, that the Christ would suffer and rise again from the dead the third day, and that repentance for forgiveness of sins would be proclaimed in His name to all the nations’” Luke 24:46-47

Such good news!

Thank You, Lord, for Your beautiful kindness to us – to not ever leave us as we are. Keep growing us more and more into Your image, we pray. In the name of the Lord Jesus. Amen.

Friend, part of loving people well is speaking the truth.
-Are you biblically loving people well?
-Who in your life needs to hear the life-giving, life-saving truth today?
-Will you depend upon the leading of the Holy Spirit and His timing and ask for opportunities to speak up in boldness?

Thank you for stopping by! I’d love to hear from you. And if you aren’t receiving these weekly devotionals in your inbox and would like to, just let me know by clicking here.

The Kindness of God

“God is kind, but he’s not soft. In kindness he takes us firmly by the hand and leads us into a radical life-change.” Romans 2:4 The Message (MSG)

Paul said to the Corinthians, “For though I caused you sorrow by my letter, I do not regret it; though I did regret it – for I see that that letter caused you sorrow, though only for a while – I now rejoice, not that you were made sorrowful, but that you were made sorrowful to the point of repentance; for you were made sorrowful, according to the will of God, so that you might not suffer loss in anything through us. For the sorrow that is according to the will of God produces a repentance without regret, leading to salvation, but the sorrow of the world produces death.” 2 Corinthians 7:7-9

It is God’s will that we, as needed, are rebuked and made sorrowful and are led to repentance (a change of mind) that therefore produces a change in our mindset, actions, and thus in our whole lives.

It is the kindness of God that leads us to repentance (Romans 2:4). And it is so KIND of God to lead us to repentance, even if that leading doesn’t feel kind in the moment.

Just like Paul, we may be the sender of “the kindness of God” that brings sorrow (or we may be the receiver), and though the results may not look good and we may even regret for a time some action taken, we must walk by faith (not by the negative results that we initially see) and pray that there is a sorrow to the point of repentance, for life change. The eternal stakes are too high to withhold the call to repentance. May we always find that we are more concerned for people’s eternal well-being than in keeping them comfortable.

“Or do you think lightly of the riches of His kindness and tolerance and patience, not knowing that the kindness of God leads you to repentance? But because of your stubbornness and unrepentant heart you are storing up wrath for yourself in the day of wrath and revelation of the righteous judgment of God, who will render to each person according to His deeds: to those who by perseverance in doing good seek for glory and honor and immortality, eternal life; but to those who are selfishly ambitious and do not obey the truth, but obey unrighteousness, wrath and indignation.” Romans 2:4

The call to repentance is serious business.

Is there anyone that you are currently trying to protect from sorrow? Could you also be hindering that person from an encounter with the truth of God that would bring repentance and change their life?

Furthermore, are you protecting yourself? Is there an area in your own life that you need to allow God (and even others) to shine Light upon, for your good and His glory?

I know that it’s a strong question when put this way, but “who are you protecting from repentance and therefore, a change of life that effects the here-and-now and all of eternity?”

Would you talk to the Lord about this this week?

The kindness of God leads (calls us) to repentance.
In love (because you truly love), speak truth to others AND to yourself.


Search Me, O God

“As obedient children, do not be conformed to the former lusts which were yours in your ignorance, but like the Holy One who called you, be holy yourselves also in all your behavior” 1 Peter 1:14-15

“Search me, O God, and know my heart! 
Try me and know my thoughts! 
And see if there be any grievous way in me,
And lead me in the way everlasting.” Psalm 139:23 ESV

I believe that if we consistently pray this prayer and listen for what He would reveal to us, many of the grievous ways (or in other translations “any hurtful way” or “way of pain”) would be dealt with much more quickly and not be given the space and power to fester into more painful circumstances. 

If we were more serious about sin, if we were more serious about allowing God to search our hearts, confessing our sin, repenting, being cleansed and changed, we would live in so much more confidence and purity and victory. 

And, friend, the world needs us to live in that pure, loving, bold confidence.

May this be a reminder to keep short accounts with God, to confess our sins, to repent, to turn to Him, and in dependence upon the power of the Holy Spirit “bear fruit in keeping with repentance” (Matthew 3:8).

Repentance will change our conduct, our behavior, our way of daily living. It’s a change of mind that impacts our behavior. A repentant life will produce evidence consistent with that change of heart.

“...repent and turn to God, performing deeds appropriate to repentance.” Acts 26:20

You cannot be too serious in dealing with a Holy God or too serious in dealing with sin. 

May we allow the Lord God to search us daily and, in His great kindness, to do whatever it takes to lead us to a repentance that changes our direction, where we change our mind about any sin that we have allowed in our lives and we follow the Lord Jesus Christ fully. 

“For this the Lord God, the Holy One of Israel, has said,
‘In repentance and rest you will be saved,
In quietness and trust is your strength.’

But you were not willing” Isaiah 30:15

Repentance, rest, quietness, trust: may we be a people willing!

“Therefore, repent and return, so that your sins may be wiped away, in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord” Acts 3:19

Spend some time with the Lord today asking Him to search you and to convict you of any and all sin. Repent. And ask that He make you holy in all your behavior. Allow the Holy Spirit to lead you and do His work in and through you. 

Here’s a phrase that the Lord first spoke to my heart in 2012: “Holiness and radical obedience will be your covering.” It was spoken in the context of the spiritual battle that the church is in, and it has been a phrase that He has spoken over and over in my journals since. Our holiness and our obedience are so important and serious.

Some Good Questions to Ask Ourselves

Is this our aim:
to be holy in all our behavior (1 Peter 1:14-16), 
pleasing Him “in all respects”, 
walking “in a manner worthy of the Lord”, 
“bearing fruit in every good work 
and increasing in the knowledge of God
strengthened with all power, 
according to His glorious might” (Colossians 1:10)?

Is this standard of life our main objective? This is the abundant life that He has provided for us. 

Do we aim to live lives that can say, like Paul, “Be imitators of me, just as I also am of Christ” (1 Corinthians 11:1) with an “earnest expectation and hope, that I will not be put to shame in anything, but that with all boldness, Christ will even now, as always, be exalted in my body, whether by life or by death. For to me, to live is Christ and to die is gain” (Philippians 1:20-21)?


Or have we settled for “less than” what has been provided, promised, and asked of us? Have we settled for the status quo and a “quenched” Holy Spirit? It’s important that we take the time to ask the Lord to show us the answers to these questions.

“Search me, O God, and know my heart;
Try me and know my anxious thoughts;
And see if there be any hurtful way in me,
And lead me in the everlasting way.” 
Psalm 139:23-24


From the Heart of God:

Go forth in boldness and proclaim My excellencies, the excellencies of My Name, My way, My plan. 

And take action. Do not neglect “the straight ways of the Lord” (Acts 13:10).

Do not neglect My Word – not just the reading, but the DOING, the believing, the pressing in, the praying without ceasing, the living of My Word. Do not neglect it.

Take action. Act like My Word is true, because it is! Live it. Step out in faith and see Me move. “Action” (also known as obedience) will take care of so many of the other issues you are trying to work through within yourself. 

So often you wait to put the truth into action until you think yourself ready, when acting in faith in obedience will break those bonds and set you into complete freedom and clarity and make you ready.

Take Me at My Word. This really is the answer to all problems.


Let’s know His Word, believe Him, and obey. 
Take action.

Pray, listen, and write*:
– Ask Him to search your heart today: are you settling for “less than” He has for you and has called you to?
– Lord, show me where I am not walking in holiness in my behavior or my thoughts.
– What does it mean for me today to live in a manner worthy of you, Lord?
– What fruit do You want me to bear so that others can be blessed? What are those good works that you prepared beforehand that I would walk in them (Ephesians 2:10)?
– Lord, I pray that you will always be exalted in and through my life. Show me what needs to change for that to be so. Search My heart and lead me in the everlasting way.
*Put pen to paper and ask these questions before the Lord. Write until He shows you the answers.