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Tuesday, March 31, 2020

No Fear in His Love


But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.
—Psalm 43:1-3 (NLT)


         “Listen, child, I created you and formed you with my righteousness. You are mine. I gave my life for you. I redeemed you. I am with you in this plague. Do not be afraid. I am not only your safe shelter. I am also your strength and victory. I am the blood on your doorpost that forever shields you. You will not be destroyed. You will not be burned up. I am your Savior.”

         “But he was pierced for our rebellion, crushed for our sins. He was beaten so we could be whole. He was whipped so we could be healed” (Isaiah 53:5, NLT). Jesus was pierced for our sins and crushed as our punishment. He took the whipping of this plague into His body so that we could be healed. 

         “We know how much God loves us, and we have put our trust in his love” (1 John 4:16a, NLT). The question is not how much you love God but if you know how much He loves you? His love does not depend on your love in return. To experience the healing depth of His love, you need to know not only that He saved you but who you are in Him. You are alive because He is alive. You conquer because He conquered sin and disease and death. You can place your trust in Him.

         “Such love has no fear, because perfect love expels all fear. If we are afraid, it is for fear of punishment, and this shows that we have not fully experienced his perfect love” (1 John 4:18, NLT). Do not fear. His perfect love defeats all fear. If you are afraid, you fear punishment. God is not punishing you with evil! He is perfect love. There is no fear in Him.


©2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/no-fear-in-his-love.html

Monday, March 30, 2020

If My People


If my people who are called by my name will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and restore their land.
—2 Chronicles 7:14 (NLT)


         Do you remember the moment when you first heard from heaven—when God listened to your cry, and you believed in the grace of Jesus? Your sins were entirely forgiven by the Savior, who said, "It is finished." There was nothing more you could do to be saved from sin because He had already done it. He had taken your sin so you could have His righteousness. The sweet fellowship with God that was lost in the Garden was restored in Christ. 

         We need to hear from heaven right now, but if we don’t experience our gift of sweet fellowship with Him, we can’t hear what He is saying. He never moves away from us. We move away from Him when we don't spend time with Him in prayer, studying His Word, or when we do things we know are wrong. We hinder our ability to hear. God is always reaching—speaking—sharing—loving—forgiving and drawing. We are His people, called by Him to pray for our land to be restored. For us to understand the power of prayer, we need to know how Jesus reconciled and restored us to God. Many of us don’t walk in the victorious peace of our identity in Christ, because we haven’t hungered enough to grow in spiritual knowledge that transforms our minds.
         
         “For the death that He died, He died to sin once and for all, but the life He lives, He lives to God” (Romans 6:10, NKJV)).  How did Jesus die “to sin once and for all?” If you want to have a victorious life, you need to get this. He never sinned, and He had no sin in Him. His crucifixion spoke death to sin and death to condemnation from sin. Jesus paid the price for sin, so mankind could be forgiven and set free from the power of sin. Jesus took your guilt—any condemnation for not being good enough—all of your punishment to the Cross. For all of eternity, He died for you. When He finally said, “it is finished,” everything changed. You, who had known sin, became sinless to God. Jesus gave you His righteousness and opened the way to your Abba Father. If you have trouble understanding the life-altering change Jesus has purchased for you, then you haven’t grown in knowledge of the new person you are. When you don’t understand the gift of your fellowship with God, you struggle to pray and live a victorious life. When you do know who you are in Jesus, you walk in peace and joy, believing that God hears you from heaven.

         Seek His face and learn who He is in you. Humble yourself and pray, the Word says. “Humility,” Bill Snow says, “is not thinking less of yourself. It is thinking of others more.”  What we are going through right now is felt by everyone in this world—believers and unbelievers alike. But we have the privilege to pray for others to be healed spiritually—to be restored to sweet fellowship with God by the grace of Jesus. That is restoration for the world—a personal relationship with God. 

         “For this is how God loved the world: He gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life. God sent his Son into the world not to judge the world, but to save the world through him” (John 3:16-17, NLT).

         Jesus came not to judge but to save. Now is the time to study His Word and allow His truth to teach you. Jesus restored your fellowship with God. You don’t have to beg Him to hear you. He does! Pray, believing who you are in Him, and you pray in His strength. Peace is your anchor in this raging sea, and you trust that He hears from heaven and restores this land.

©2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/if-my-people.html
          

Saturday, March 28, 2020

Share Your Everything


And how will anyone go and tell them without being sent? That is why the Scriptures say, “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!”   
—Romans 10:15 (NLT)


How beautiful are the feet of those who bring Good News! We may not be able to go and physically share the Good News. But we are not limited. We have internet and email. We have cell phones and texting. There are people staying in place that are terribly afraid. There are people hunkering down who need hope. Our message is the Grace of Jesus that gave us hope. If there was ever a need for news that is too good to be true, now is that time. People need encouragement and unconditional love.

You don’t keep to yourself what has given you the promise of hope and peace. It is the best life-changing gift to be shared. Hope and peace are needed in this world turned upside-down. The promise of new life in Christ is the answer to what rages. Not politics—not opinions—not judgment. Just the Grace of Jesus.

Share your faith. Have beautiful feet! The woman who poured the expensive oil from her beautiful Alabaster box knew the worth of Jesus. He was her everything. Share your everything.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/share-your-everything.html

Friday, March 27, 2020

His New Normal



My victory and honor come from God alone. 
He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me.
—Psalm 62:7 (NLT)

         Right at this moment, your physical eyes can’t help but see evil, and even when you try to avoid it, your ears can’t help but hear. If you trust in God, you learn that what you see or hear around you can’t destroy your faith. Instead of panicking from fear, you believe God will take care of you, no matter what happens. You stand on His truth. No weapon that comes against you has any power to destroy your confidence in His enduring love. Your victory only comes from Him. He keeps you safe where no enemy can reach you.

         “You live by believing and not by seeing,” Paul wrote (2 Corinthians 5:7, NLT). His Word says that we live by faith and not by what we see. Exercising faith is something that I consciously render. When I consistently apply faith to circumstances in my life, I’m changed and renewed in my mind. The Holy Spirit reveals what my natural mind can never understand—the miraculous depth and life-changing power of God’s Truth and Grace.

         My natural inclination is the opposite of the spiritual. The spiritual mind sees possibilities and opportunities and promises of God.  I might experience hopelessness and fear in my logical mind, but as I choose to believe by faith, the mind of Christ replaces my thoughts. His thoughts become mine—my attitude changes. Having hope in a world ravaged by a virus becomes my new normal.

         God has a new normal for all His children—where fear no longer controls your life—where peace is consistent—where what you hear or see with your natural mind gives way to His spiritual Truth. When you live by faith, your perception changes. You change in the spirit of your mind. You spiritually receive the revelation of His Truth and Grace. You have a new ability to believe what you once thought impossible.

         When you place your trust entirely in God, He is your new normal. He is your shelter from the bombardment of the natural world—keeping you safe where no enemy or fear can reach you.

©2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/his-new-normal.html
         

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Fullness of Faith



Yesterday I wrote a bold devotion based on what the Holy Spirit revealed to me in Scripture. I am not entirely there in my faith, but I am growing. I write what I ought to understand, and I am so thankful that the Lord is patient with me. Jesus has given us the authority to speak to evil, and that is just what this pandemic is. Evil. The Holy Spirit indeed works through us to accomplish His purpose, but it is also true that He moves miraculously in response to prayer in times of need. Do the two need to be reconciled? No. Each one of us is at a different level in our faith journey. What we need is respect for each other wherever we are in our walks of faith. 

“Accept other believers who are weak in faith,” Paul wrote, “and don’t argue with them about what they think is right or wrong” (Romans 14:1, NLT). If you have mountain-moving faith, never judge someone if they do not have as much confidence as you. Accept them where they are. Encourage them each day to believe in God’s truth—just as every day, I encourage myself. The Word says that without faith, it is impossible to please God. That is Truth. He says that we can tell our mountains to move—that we have His power to rebuke the enemy. But He also says that all we need is faith the size of a mustard seed. The difference between mustard seed faith and supernatural faith is that spiritual growth has taken place. When the Word nurtures that seed of faith, it will flourish abundantly.

You can have supernatural faith, but never tell someone who is growing in theirs that they don't have enough. Flaunting your faith is not grace. It is pride, and it becomes judgment if you are not careful. Encourage someone to grow in faith in the Truth of God's Word, and as you encourage them, you encourage yourself.  

The virus is real. It is not a figment of our imagination. But with faith, the Holy Spirit calms any fear within us. We don’t have to fear when we trust God. Peace is in His perfect middle. You can be so fearful that you set yourself up for post-traumatic stress disorder, or you can be so prideful that you flaunt yourself and challenge the advice of medical experts. Fearful or prideful—neither extreme offers His peace in this world. 

“When I think of all this,” Paul also wrote, “I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth. I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will empower you with inner strength through his Spirit. Then Christ will make his home in your hearts as you trust in him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong. And may you have the power to understand, as all God’s people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God” (Ephesians 3:14-19 (NLT).

Stretch yourself to grow in supernatural faith, but allow yourself time to get there. As you trust more in God, your roots will grow deep into His truth and keep you strong. You will be empowered with all His unlimited resources. When you trust Him, you are changed by His Spirit. In His infinite grace, you grow in His power. You learn how full, how long, how high, and deep His love is. And you will not be shaken by what is around you. You shall have His strength in your inner man, and nothing will throw you. Nothing. The Holy Spirit will have transformed and completed you with all His fullness and power. 

©2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/fullness-of-faith.html



Wednesday, March 25, 2020

His Power in You




We think you ought to know, dear brothers and sisters, about the trouble we went through in the province of Asia. We were crushed and overwhelmed beyond our ability to endure, and we thought we would never live through it. In fact, we expected to die. But as a result, we stopped relying on ourselves and learned to rely only on God, who raises the dead. And he did rescue us from mortal danger, and he will rescue us again. We have placed our confidence in him, and he will continue to rescue us. And you are helping us by praying for us. Then many people will give thanks because God has graciously answered so many prayers for our safety.
—2 Corinthians 1:8-11 (NLT)


Paul wrote to the church in Corinth and believers throughout Greece about the trouble in Asia, sharing faith in Jesus Christ. The letter, Paul declared was also from their brother, Timothy, and it expressed how they found themselves crushed beyond endurance. In fact, Paul wrote, they expected to die. But they learned something—to quit relying upon their own strength and trust God to supply His. Paul's next phrase captures how infallible that strength is. They discovered God’s power strong enough to raise the dead. 

During the most horrible time of persecution, Paul learned that he had no strength—that God was His supply. Paul came to the end of his resources. When you come to the end of yours, you allow the Holy Spirit to teach you God’s truth. You learn to rely on God’s power. Responding to Paul’s faith, God rescued them from mortal danger. It is the same for us. In response to our faith, God saves us.

Paul stated that they had placed their confidence in God. He was determined not to lose the confident trust he had found. He continued in God's might to receive what God had promised—the mission field to which God had called him. Paul believed that God would continue to rescue them no matter what came against them. They walked by faith in Jesus and were not thrown off track by what they experienced.

You are also to walk by faith and not allow hard experiences to throw you. Just as God rescued Paul, God saves you and desires for you to rely on Him! If you believe in Him, you can speak to your mountain, and it will fall into the sea. You have the same power living in you that raised Jesus from the dead. You, just as Paul, will praise God, who graciously answers the prayers of many who have prayed.

“Very truly I tell you,” Jesus said, “whoever believes in me will do the works I have been doing, and they will do even greater things than these, because I am going to the Father” (John 14:12, NIV). Anyone who believes in Jesus can do what He did? And even greater works?  The Pharisees believed Jesus prideful, when, in fact, they were the ones full of pride. What do some think of believers who believe and act on this Scripture now? That they are prideful? 

Psalm 91, a psalm of divine protection, is quoted a lot right now. Look at these verses:
“If you make the Lord your refuge, if you make the Most High your shelter, no evil will conquer you; no plague will come near your home. For he will order his angels to protect you wherever you go. They will hold you up with their hands so you won't even hurt your foot on a stone. You will trample upon lions and cobras; you will crush fierce lions and serpents under your feet" (Psalm 91:9-13, NLT)!

No plaque or disease shall come near you. God sends his angels to guard you in every way. A lion, the most powerful beast of the forest, shall not be able to harm you. The serpent, your most cunning and deceitful enemy, shall have no power over God’s strength within you. When you dwell in the presence of the Most High, you believe in His Word that does not return to Him without accomplishing His purpose. Even the devils are subject to His Word. And you have been given His power to rebuke any plaque or disease.

The power of God that raised Jesus from death lives in you. Believe it. Place your confident trust in God, and He will continue to rescue you. Speak to your mountains. His power at work in you is the answer. Nothing is impossible with God.

“Now all glory to God, who is able, through his mighty power at work within us, to accomplish infinitely more than we might ask or think. Glory to him in the church and in Christ Jesus through all generations forever and ever! Amen” (Ephesians 3:20-21, NLT).

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/his-power-in-you.html





Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Why Are You Afraid



Jesus responded, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” Then he got up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm.
—Matthew 8:26 (NLT)


I'm sure you've noticed how fearful so many people are. If the news just broadcasted the news—what has happened, statistics, and practical advice instead of speculating the unknown of the future, not so many people would experience panic. We can't change the perspective of the news. However, we can change our attitude to that of the Holy Spirit.

Jesus gives His answer to any storm or circumstance that attempts to destroy you. He asks you why you have fear, and then gives you the reason you are afraid. "You have so little faith," He told the disciples in the boat tossed by the storm. Their perspective said to them that they were doomed. But Jesus showed them the difference between their understanding and His. He stood up in the boat and rebuked the wind and the waves. Suddenly there was calm.

His calm is peace. That is your promise—to know His peace above any fear. When you choose to believe by faith that what Jesus says is true, then what He says is real in your life. You can know above all else that God hasn’t given you a spirit of fear but of His power, His love, and a sound mind. What you see in the physical world is not what is real in the spiritual. The storm was real to those disciples in that boat, but Jesus brought mental calm to them. For the spiritual to be real, you have to exercise faith in what you can't see.

The boat exists. There is no denying that we are in it. But the storm—the speculation of our mind—is calmed by Jesus. He is our peace. We are safe in Christ. We choose to live by faith and not by sight. His perspective is real. To grasp it, you choose to believe it. Don’t be one of “little faith.” Exercise your faith beyond what you see and hear around you. Don’t be held captive by fear. The storm might seem to rock your boat, but the Lord continually speaks peace to your mind and heart.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/why-are-you-afraid.html


Monday, March 23, 2020

Paid in Full


All my life, you have been faithful.
All my life, you have been so so good.
With every breath that I am able
I will sing of the goodness of God.
—Bethel Music


         “Not one time in my life, Lord, have you let me down. Your goodness toward me abounds in everything. I am so aware of it—especially at this time of my life. You are unconditional love and Grace to a world spinning out of control. Fear is rampant, and there are so many who long for peace and don’t know how to find it. You are the answer. With every breath that I am able, I will write of your goodness.” 

         God is not the author of evil. To those who believe in Jesus, He is their Savior of abounding love and forgiveness. God created this world, and He created man to have a relationship with Him. On the Cross, when Jesus said, "it is finished," the debt of this sinful world was paid in full. The gift of a personal relationship with God was offered. When you believe in Jesus, you have no sin for God to judge. Your sin was crucified on Calvary, and you now can have an intimate and deeply personal relationship with God. No longer your judge, God has become your Abba Father.

         You can believe in Jesus and not understand your personal relationship with God. How many believers don’t know who they are? They haven’t read His Word and realized their freedom in Jesus. They are forgiven but struggle with guilt and shame. When you believe in something, and it doesn’t change your perspective, then it is of no value in your life. When that something is Jesus, His revelation truth is halted.

         Do you believe in Him? If you do, you have received His gift of righteousness. His Grace toward you has changed everything. You have received the peace of Jesus that circumstances can't offer. But you won’t experience His peace until you know the person Jesus has made you. Until you know your identity in Christ, you will remain locked in fear and frustration. 

         “Who we truly are, because of Jesus,” Starla Jimenez writes on her blog, “can be unclear and smeared by the trials we go through in life.” 

         When you dwell on your trials, your identity in Christ is smeared by the circumstances of your life. You become confused and don't experience that God has given you love and power and a sound mind. 

         If you are tired of the roller coaster ride in this turbulent world, then KNOW your identity in Jesus. His Grace on the Cross was a life-changer. When He said, "it is finished," not only sin was defeated. Fear was overcome—guilt and shame were washed away.

         Are you ready to experience His peace? Let the Holy Spirit reveal to you what “paid in full” really means in your life.  Allow Him to change your perception of who you are in Jesus.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/paid-in-full.html

Saturday, March 21, 2020

Confident Trust in God



So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord. Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God’s will. Then you will receive all that he has promised.
—Hebrews 10:35-36 (NLT)

Do you trust God, or have you lost hope? Without trust in God, you will not have hope. The writer to the Hebrews defines this trust as being "confident.” Are you confident that God loves you and takes care of the concerns of your heart? Confident trust rises from faith the size of a little mustard seed and grows stronger when nourished with the Word through the revelation of the Holy Spirit. 

“Remember the great reward confident trust gives you," the writer to the Hebrews proclaims! In Hebrews 10, the writer goes on to share the great reward of eternal life that Jesus promises. When life is hard, patient endurance is needed. Knowing your promise of heaven keeps you focused on your reward. But do you "get through life" by only thinking of your reward in heaven, or do you enjoy His abundant life now? 

Abundant life is not everything being in place—running smoothly with no problems. Right at this moment, we realize the uncertainty of this world and how a virus can turn our lives upside down. But confident trust in Jesus inspires peace and joy no matter your circumstance and daily struggle. You choose to have an abundant perspective because you believe that your Father will never leave you or forsake you. You know the Lord is your protector and healer. You are well aware that the enemy’s purpose is to destroy your faith but that Jesus’ goal is to give you a rich and satisfying life (John 10:10). And that abundant life is something you have when you understand what Jesus has accomplished on the Cross for you. 

When you know who you are in Jesus, you discover an abundant life through confident trust in God. This trust fuels your faith. Hope inspires. Peace is constant. Fear doesn’t shake you. Others don't wound you. You understand that abundant life comes from the new life Jesus has given you. There is nothing you can "do" to make it happen. You have confident trust because the grace of Jesus has changed your whole perspective. You know Him as never before. 

The grace of Jesus has set you free from the lies of the enemy! Do you know it? His grace has set you free from fear!  Do you experience it?  "Learn of me," He whispers, "and you will find rest for your soul!"  When you learn about the precious gift of righteousness He has given, you begin to see beyond your circumstance with His understanding instead of your own. You begin to hear His promise instead of worry or fear. Confident trust rises and fuels your faith. The rich and satisfying life Jesus promises is yours. It lives in you no matter what else happens.

If you are hanging on by a thread—living with fear—just waiting for heaven, Jesus has the rewards of peace and joy that confident trust in Him promises now. This life is not just a waiting game. His Kingdom lives within you right now. Grab hold of it with confident trust in His faithfulness. Virus or not, the maker of heaven and earth is your Father. He has this.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/confident-trust-in-God.html

Friday, March 20, 2020

Rose of Sharon



I will preserve a remnant of the people of Israel and of Judah to possess my land. Those I choose will inherit it, and my servants will live there. The plain of Sharon will again be filled with flocks for my people who have searched for me, and the valley of Achor will be a place to pasture herds. 
—Isaiah 65:9-10 (NLT)


Lying between the Mediterranean Sea to the west and the Samarian Hills to the east, the fertile coastal plain of Sharon stretches north to the southern end of Mount Carmel and south to the Yarkon River. It is home to the Rose of Sharon. The valley of Achor lies near Jericho and is called a place of trouble as the consequence of Achan’s sin. Isaiah foretells of a day when a faithful remnant of God’s people, who have searched for Him, will again hope. Sharon shall bloom again, and Achor, once a place of trouble, shall be a doorway of hope. 

“I will return her vineyards to her and transform the Valley of Trouble into a gateway of hope. She will give herself to me there, as she did long ago when she was young, when I freed her from her captivity in Egypt” (Hosea 2:15, NLT).

We, who believe in Jesus Christ, are the remnant who possess God’s promise. Jesus is our promise. Our Red Seas do not destroy us. We have been brought out of captivity to freedom in Christ. No longer in bondage to sin, we are His! The Rose of Sharon blooms each day in the fertile plains of our souls. But if we don’t search for what this truth means, we will not understand the change He has brought. It is horrible to be rich in Him and not know it! When we believe by faith in Jesus, that place of trouble and sin—the valley of Achor—is no more. Jesus has opened His gateway of hope to us. He is our protector and healer. We have His hope and promise. 

“He will rescue you from every trap and protect you from deadly disease. He will cover you with his feathers. He will shelter you with his wings. His faithful promises are your armor and protection. Do not be afraid of the terrors of the night, nor the arrow that flies in the day. Do not dread the disease that stalks in darkness, nor the disaster that strikes at midday. Though a thousand fall at your side, though ten thousand are dying around you, these evils will not touch you” (Psalm 91:3-7, NLT).

If you open your spiritual eyes, you will see that the places in your life that feel barren are actually full of His promise. If you believe in Jesus, the Rose of Sharon will restore what you have lost.

“When they call on me, I will answer; I will be with them in trouble. I will rescue and honor them. I will reward them with a long life and give them my salvation” (Psalm 91:14-16. NLT).

Jesus presents hope. Receive His love and believe. Your desolate valley will open with promise, and your life will bloom again.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher

www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/rose-of-sharon.html

Thursday, March 19, 2020

Praise and Prayer




I will sing to the Lord, for he has triumphed gloriously. He has hurled both horse and rider into the sea. The Lord is my strength and my song; he has given me victory. This is my God, and I will praise him— my father’s God, and I will exalt him!
—Exodus 15:1-2 (NLT)


Moses and the Israelites praised the Lord for His deliverance from Pharaoh!  The Egyptians, who were chasing them, were no more!  God had hurled each horse and rider into the sea! The Lord was their strength and had given them absolute victory!  Their God was also the amazing God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. They praised Him for their miracle. They exalted Him for His promise.

Here we are now—in the midst of our own Red Sea. Our God is still the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and also Moses! But He is more than that! His Son—our Savior, Jesus, has defeated sin and disease on the Cross. He has opened the windows of heaven. God is no longer just our father's God!  Because of Jesus' grace, He is also our Father. We can go to Him with anything. No longer the judge of His children, He is the lover of our souls. We pray in faith, believing, and we praise Him for His faithfulness! The Red Sea that appears before us shall be no more.

Praise is synonymous with strength and is born of trust in our Father, whom we believe takes care of every aspect of life. We face our Red Seas, believing that He has already met our needs. Even now, when we don’t see His provision taking place, we believe because we trust our Savior, who has opened the door to all the resources of our heavenly Father. Prayer then becomes asking from strength instead of begging in fear. We pray knowing He hears our prayers and gives us the authority to speak hope instead of despair and to speak life instead of death. We praise our Father that we can speak to this mountain, and He who loves us so much will move it. 

“It is impossible to please God without faith,” the writer to the Hebrews penned. “Anyone who wants to come to him must believe that God exists and that he rewards those who sincerely seek him” (Hebrews 11:6, NLT). Faith pleases our Father. Seek His Truth. Trust Him. Pray to Him, believing! We don’t have to beg for our Father’s answer. Praise Him that He gave us His answer on Calvary. It is done. The work is finished.

“I will answer them before they even call to me. While they are still talking about their needs, I will go ahead and answer their prayers” (Isaiah 65:24)! And He has answered our prayers! Jesus, His Son, is our final resolution for healing and life. He has given us His righteousness. “The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results” (James 5:16, NLT)!  We don’t need to be talking about our needs. We need to be talking about our answer. 

Prayer changes us. Praise moves the heart of God.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/praise-and-prayer.html

Wednesday, March 18, 2020

Confident Hope



I pray that God, the source of hope, will fill you completely with joy and peace because you trust in him. Then you will overflow with confident hope through the power of the Holy Spirit.
—Romans 15:13 (NLT)

We live in a world where peace is defined by how we feel instead of what we know as truth. Nothing the media tells you—nothing statistics declare, imparts hope. When the world offers hope, that hope is circumstantial. Our hope does not depend on what happens. Our hope is eternal and comes from faith in Jesus Christ. It is evidence of what can’t be seen.

When faced with hardship and pain, life is hard, and hope is sometimes difficult to find. When hope is lost, joy and peace are gone. You may try to stir up hope, but you soon discover you can never stir up hope that lasts. The only hope that lasts comes from God, who is the source of real hope.

When we trust God, He fills us with His hope and not the facsimile we try to work up in our minds. Trust grows when we spend time with Him, and seek to understand who He is and who He says we are. His Word is truth. It is our way to know Him intimately. When we allow His Word to transform our minds, then life with its problems, instead of robbing us of hope, encourages us that He always has something better for us. He has a plan. He has a purpose.  

His Word promises that if we follow Him instead of going our own way—if we hold on and not give up—then we receive His promise. Understanding His truth encourages the hope He renders. And with that hope, trust sprouts deeper roots. With trust in Him, peace and joy rise to carry us safely through what otherwise could destroy us. Confidence gains ground, and it overflows in our lives flowing into the lives of others who are hungry for peace.

When Paul prayed this prayer for the Romans, he prayed through the power of the Holy Spirit. The Holy Spirit persistently seeks to pray from within our discouraged hearts. He continually offers the promise of His hope by trusting Him. When trust in Him claims us in these hard times, we overflow with confident faith that never fails but always believes in His promise.

“Our present troubles are small and won’t last very long,” Paul writes, “yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever" (2 Corinthians 4:17, NLT). Look for things that are unseen. They are eternal. The things we see now won’t last. Don’t dwell on them. God has given you His spiritual vision—to see with His eyes. Exercise what you have and allow Him to strengthen your faith.

"So do not throw away this confident trust in the Lord," the author of Hebrews imparts. "Remember the great reward it brings you! Patient endurance is what you need now, so that you will continue to do God's will. Then you will receive all that he has promised" (Hebrews 10:35-36, NLT). 

Believe, my friend, in His promise. He will never fail you. God is your confident hope.


© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/confident-hope.html


Tuesday, March 17, 2020

Still Water


The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.
—Psalm 23:1-3 (NIV)


Today’s verse on Bible Gateway is one that is so familiar. It has God’s powerful message that can settle our minds today from the turmoil of this uncertain time.

Are you consumed with fear? Don’t be. The Lord is your shepherd. He takes care of you, and you have everything you need. Your need at this time is rest—not only to protect your body from illness but to protect your mind from the enemy’s lies. God quietens your thoughts if you allow.  When fear consumes your mind, you don't see His perspective. You don't let Him guide you. Fear guides you right into a panic. 

The Holy Spirit leads you to "still waters" the KJV translation states. God has peaceful waters to settle your thoughts—to quieten your racing mind. When I think of "still waters," I can't help but remember Stillwater, the Quaker Meeting House in Barnesville, Ohio, that helped shape my faith. There, I heard the still small voice of the Holy Spirit encouraging me not to worry during the Cuban Missile Crisis in October of 1962. During the years I attended Olney, the Quaker school my father also once attended, I learned the strength of his quiet faith that has become the foundation for who I am now.

You, too, have a foundation of faith in Jesus Christ. Allow the Holy Spirit to guide you to the rest of your mind, body, and spirit. You have absolutely nothing to fear when you believe in Christ. He loved you enough to give you His life! He is your provider—your healer. He refreshes your mind—your soul. God has not given you a spirit of fear but of power and love and a sound mind. Roosevelt told the country during the depression of 1933 that we had nothing to fear but fear itself. 

“I am certain that God, who began the good work within you,” Paul wrote, “will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns" (Philippians 1:6, NLT). God began this work of faith in you. Believe that He will continue right through the turmoil of this world until the very moment He comes again. Rest in His still water. It is true, and it is real—no matter what else happens. 

© 2020 Lynn Lacher

Sunday, March 15, 2020

Circumspectly


See then that you walk, circumspectly, not as fools but as wise.
—Ephesians 5:15 (NKJV)


God’s wisdom! There is nothing like it in difficult times. Last night I kept waking up hearing the word "circumspectly." I asked myself sleepily, "Isn’t that word really “circumspectively?" And I heard a definite, "No, it isn't." At this point, there was no way I was going back to sleep, so I got up and searched Biblegateway’s NKJV for the word “circumspectly.” I immediately found only one verse with that word: Ephesians 5:15. The Holy Spirit was strong. He wanted me to see this verse. So I read it again and again.

Some synonyms of “circumspectly” are “cautiously” and “watchfully” and "carefully." I am to walk through the circumstances of life cautiously—watchfully—carefully. I am to walk, not with the fear of a fool but with the peace and understanding that comes from God’s wisdom. 

When the world panics from bad news like the COVID-19 virus, it has no concept of peace that only is real in Christ. The "prepper" in man comes out. Stores are stripped bare. Life moves into "survivor of the fittest" mode. When you have peace in Jesus, you do not succumb to panic that comes from fear. You ask for God's wisdom, and He gives it to you. You make decisions based upon God's understanding instead of man's fear.

“Sensible people keep their eyes glued on wisdom, but a fool’s eyes wander to the ends of the earth" (Proverbs 17:24, NLT). God's wisdom keeps you grounded in His perspective instead of fearfully yielding to every word of bad news. Yes, we need to be prudent, cautious, and careful. Being concerned over the details of the virus is not foolish. Allowing those details to cause panic, is. We don't need to be fearful when we trust God.

The Holy Spirit is here to guide and teach you through any difficult time. When you seek His wisdom and apply it, peace—no matter what is going on in the world—is your promise.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/circumspectly.html

Friday, March 13, 2020

As You Think You Are




As he thinks within himself, so he is.
—Proverbs 23:7a, NASB


         The way you think determines your feelings. You can have can a positive attitude that gives an optimistic view on life, or you can have a negative one that keeps you buried under a pile of emotional rubble. If you want a life flowing with joyful abundance―one that spills over with spontaneous faith—you decide every day to have a positive attitude. You choose to “take on an entirely new way of life—a God-fashioned life, a life renewed from the inside and working itself into your conduct as God accurately reproduces his character in you” (Ephesians 4:24, MSG).

         Being renewed from the inside out is essential to living a joyful and victorious life. "Brothers and sisters," Paul declared, "whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things" (Philippians 4:8, NIV). If you keep your mind focused on God's truth―on whatever is uplifting and joyful, the way you think will change. Allowing the Holy Spirit to develop your character takes time and perseverance.

         Only you decide whether you listen to the encouragement of the Holy Spirit or the negativity of the enemy. “We take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ,” Paul wrote (2 Corinthians 10:5b, NIV). It is impossible to stop the fiery darts that the enemy aims at your thought life, but you can choose not to think negative thoughts. The Holy Spirit gives you His power to bring them under control, but you must exercise His power. When you daily focus your mind on Jesus, and not upon every possible scenario, you experience His peace in the most difficult of circumstances.

          There is no way you can control circumstances, but you can learn to control what happens in your mind as a result. When you learn to take your negative thoughts captive, you change the way you think. Not only are you able to say, “I can do all this through him who gives me strength” (Philippians 4:13, NIV), but you believe without any doubt that you have His strength. Living a life transformed by the power of the Holy Spirit, you have a positive and joyful attitude.

         When you allow the Word to reveal the truth of your identity in Jesus, you have His power to act upon that truth and not let your feelings determine your thought process. Your feelings fall into line with His Word, and you rethink who you are. When you consciously practice positive thinking, negative thoughts fall by the wayside. Dr. Timothy Jennings writes, “As we exercise healthy neural circuits, these circuits develop, strengthen, and expand. Conversely, the brain prunes unhealthy circuits when we leave them idle.”  Let those negative thoughts alone. Leave them idle. Your brain prunes away what is unhealthy.

         When you surrender control and allow the Holy Spirit to change your attitude from the inside out, you learn your identity in Christ. You think differently, so you feel differently. You believe. You trust. With faith, you can tell any mountain which has claimed your mind to move. His peace, which is above any human reasoning, will guard your thoughts. You will see your life filled with infinite possibilities. His joy will be your strength, and you will stand firm in the face of lies. You will rest in His Grace, believing that the life He gave for you on Calvary has made you a new person—entirely recreated by His power.

         Jesus is the fulcrum—the pivot point to the greatest exchange of positive instead of negative. You are new in Jesus with the power to choose positive thoughts and to defeat lies that spring up in your mind. Put on your new nature. Believe who Jesus says you are. Be renewed in the way you think from the inside out. Then the person that Jesus knows you are will be the person you know—the person who was worth His life.

© 2020 Lynn Lacher
www.lynnlacher.com/2020/03/as-you-think-you-are.html

A Revelation of His Love

God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life. —John 3...