Tuesday, November 22, 2011

The God Who Listens

"Lord, what is man that You take knowledge of him? Or the son of man, that You are mindful of him?" Psalm 144:3

One of the most profound ways the Lord has been showing me how He feels about me is in that He listens to me. We are mere men made from dust- sure we think we are great and glorious in our own works, but when we stop and look at the planets, the stars, the galaxies, and the universes yet to have been discovered, we are just dust. However, though we are dust, He looks at us! He actually bends low to listen!!

One of my personal pet peeves is when I have something that is really serious and important to me I am trying to share with someone, and I don't feel like they are giving me the attention the nature of the topic deserves. Not that for every time I am talking to someone about something, but I remember one time in particular, before my husband and I were engaged, and we were talking on the phone. We were at the stage of getting to know each other where we were sharing our childhood memories, etc. I was telling him of personal things that had happened to me as a child and it was a serious conversation. He interrupted with something menial, or off-topic, which made me feel like his mind was wandering while I was pouring my heart out!

After that incident, he knew how important it was to me to feel listened to. When I'm talking about something that is emotional to me, I want eye contact. I want "face time". T=I am not talking about menial chatter- I mean heart talks deserve eye attention.

Now you can understand why knowing God is listening to me is so important. It goes back to the age old question- "Why pray if God is going to do what He wants anyway?" If God was not listening, and not desiring human involvement in His creation, why do we have voices to cry out? Why couldn't "thought" prayer be enough? No, He wants us to talk, and He is there to listen!

Here are a few verses to pray:

"I waited patiently for the LORD; He inclined to me and heard my cry." Psalm 40:1
"Now I know that the Lord saves His anointed; He will answer from His holy heaven with the saving strength of His right hand." Psalm 20:6
"As for me, I will call upon God, and the Lord shall save me. Evening and morning and at noon, I will pray and cry aloud, And He shall hear my voice." Psalm 55:17-18
"But certainly God has heard me, He has attended to the voice of my prayer." Psalm 66:19

Here is a prayer for today:

Father, I am so thankful today as I remember how You love to listen to me. Though men get tired of my voice, you never tire. To you my voice is sweet, and my face is lovely. You have invited me to talk to You night and Day, and You love to hear me! Father I thank You that when I speak You listen! And today talk to You, the God who listens to me, and I am confident in Your attentiveness. Thank You Father for fellowshipping with me, looking at me, and giving me Your attention. Thank You oh God that Your eyes are ever on me! You look right in my eyes when I am talking, and Your mind does not wander! You perfectly listen to me! You incline to me, You bend down close to hear me! Oh God, thank You for how You have revealed Your loving kindness to me! In Jesus name, Amen.

Happy Thanksgiving,
- Gina

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The God Who Loves Me

"Jesus loves me this I know, for the Bible tells me so..."

Well, we have all heard that song, but where does the Bible really say that? I remember several years ago going through a dark time of depression when I thought to myself, "Lord, I know You love me, but I don't believe it right now." And honestly, I could not think of a scripture passage, other than John 3:16, that said God loved me, and even John 3:16 wasn't satisfying me - because it says He loves the "world", not me.

Years ago I began looking up passages for meditation on this issue, so that I could get it settled in my heart, that He really does love me. Have you ever felt that way? Maybe some people don't struggle with knowing how God feels about them, but for me it has been something I am finding I need to review very often! My list has really expanded, but for now, here are a few good ones for meditation.

“He brought me to the banqueting house, and his banner over me was love.” Song of Songs 2:4

But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Romans 5:8
“But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ.” Ephesians 2:4
The LORD has appeared of old to me, saying: “ Yes, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore with loving kindness I have drawn you.” Jeremiah 31:3

Prayer For Today:
Father of Glory, today I receive Your love for me. I declare Song of Solomon 2:4 over my own life, that You have invited me to Your house, and You have put a banner of love over me. You have declared Your love for me! You are not shy in stating how You feel towards me, You have made it clear, that You love me, and You have invited me in. In Your eyes I am not a stranger or a servant, but I am Your daughter (son) whom You adore! You love me so much that You demonstrated Your own love toward me, even while I was yet a sinner, You died for me! I declare that You have loved me with an everlasting love, a love that will not quit, nor fail! You are fully committed to me!
Father, I confess there have been times I have doubted Your love for me, I have not felt like I was a part of Your family, but an outsider. But today, I declare that I am Yours, I belong to You, and I receive Your love. It is my identity. Thank you, Abba, for Your strong love toward me, that You never give up, that You continually pour out Your love. Thank You for strengthening me today in Your love. In Jesus Name, Amen.
This is a fabulous song to play, sink, soak to, and just let it soak in! Have a great day!

Saturday, November 12, 2011

The God of Hope

As I began the journey of meditating daily on how God feels about me, I began to feel hope arise in my soul. Of course, a great resource for the 'hope' topic is Bob Hartley.

I watched some of his videos online and began creating my own prayer book this week.
In my prayer book, I am adding verses for meditation, prayers to strengthen my inner man, and names of God for Adoration just to start. I realized that I needed a tool of my own, that was uniquely me to help me Adore, Proclaim, and speak the passages about Who God is to me.

"Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13

Have you met God as the "God of Hope"? I have seen Him as the God of Hope, and this is what I am meditating of today. Here is my prayer and a video for this weekend devotion. Pray this aloud too if you would like, and comment a hope filled story to share!

Father, Your word says You are the God of hope, that You fill us with all joy and peace by believing. Lord I come to You, my hope, and I confess I have lacked hope, I have lacked believing in You to come through for me. I have forgotten this "face" of who You are, the God of Hope. But today, I look to You and confess that You are my hope, that You are the only source of hope for all mankind. Abba, I thank You for never giving up on me, for always waiting for me, and being tender and patient with me. I thank You for the hope that You are and You bring.
I remember when I was in darkness and had no hope at all, I remember days when I couldn't see through the clouds and hope for my future, and You came and restored hope to my mind and reassured me that my life was not over, that You indeed had a plan and a purpose for my life. Father, I come to You once again and look at this face, the God of Hope, that my soul would be lifted up once again. Amen.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Journey into Love - PART Three

I recently went through my heart history in a fraction of a second, like a flashing before my eyes, when I heard Bob Fraser share his desire for a revelation of the love of God. My heart leaped out of its skin remembering how I too, have ached and groaned for a deeper understanding of God's love.

Throughout my Christian walk I have been told about God's love, and prophetically that I am some kind of "carrier" of His love. Well, yes, of course we all are suppose to be messengers of His love, but for me it has been spoken over me that it is some sort of life calling, or life message, of mine to deliver the love of God to others. The only problem with that, is that I don't feel like a very loving person. I struggle just to believe God loves me, let alone anyone else. How can I get filled with God's love enough that it overflows out of me?

This painting that I did (pictured above) is a visual of just that. That I know God loves me with my mind, yet my heart struggles to believe because my life doesn't reflect the truth that I believe- at least not most of the time!

But I want to become a carrier of God's love, I want to walk into a room and the watch the joy of the Lord increase! I want to do all things out of an overflowing love for God.

Recently, at our Marketplace Impact Conference at Convergence House of Prayer, Bob Fraser spoke about how when he was seeking this revelation of God's love. He shared that over a period of four months or so, as he meditated and proclaimed by reading verses that declare how God feels toward us, he began to have a great increase in this area. As he was sharing that, I remembered how when I first started meditating on scripture, about four years ago, I asked the Lord, "where do I start"? The Lord clearly revealed to me that I needed to have faith increase on this topic of "How God Feels About Me". In fact, the first children's curriculum I began to write was called, "How God Feels About Me"! What happened? I think I must have dropped the ball, got off into studying other things and left this important meditation behind.

I feel so urgently now that I need to gain great revelation of this, that I am going to go after this for the next two months, really going after how He feels toward me. If you would like to come along for the journey, I will try to post as much as possible from now until Christmas on the topic.

If you would like more resources on Adoration and Proclamation, here are a few good ones! Let the journey begin!

- gina