The Reason You Are Unfulfilled

But I have this against you, that you have abandoned the love you had at first. Remember therefore from where you have fallen; repent, and do the works you did at first. 

(Revelation 2:4-5a ESV)


I’ll tell you a juicy secret.

I’m guilty of something. And I realize that every believer is guilty of this, too, at some point in their faith.

In the midst of all the losses and gains in our lives, we forget our first love. standing alone_edit

A fulfilling relationship with Jesus Christ can easily stop at the moment of salvation. By that, I mean we invite Christ into our hearts, acknowledging our need for Him for eternal life. This saves us and secures us for heaven. But we need to know that salvation doesn’t stop there. It continues now in our relationship with Him. Just as you desperately needed God to save you from sin, you still desperately need him to be everything–above any earthly desire you currently have.

Are you finding it difficult to really give something to God? You can pray and pray over and over, submitting it to the Lord. And you should. We’re taught to pray without ceasing (1 Thessalonians 5:16-18), to come boldly before the throne (Hebrews 4:16), to test every spirit–any thing or person that comes our way–to see if it is really from God (1 John 4:1).

But if you’re struggling with unfulfilled desires and deep longings that seem to remain unmet time and time again, you may be missing a crucial thing.

Continue reading “The Reason You Are Unfulfilled”

Verses To Get You Through Heartbreak

Heartbreak can be an unexplainable feeling. If you’re dealing with the loss of a loved one, the end of a relationship, or a hurtful circumstance, God hears you. It’s not over for you. You can move on, forgive, heal, and grow even in these dark, painful moments.

Today’s YouTube video features a collection of verses for comfort, peace, and understanding when you don’t understand.

It’s Better to Believe

For we were saved in this hope, but hope that is seen is not hope; for why does one still hope for what he sees? But if we hope for what we do not see, we eagerly wait for it with perseverance.

(Romans 8:24-25 NKJV)


Do you ever wonder what can get in the way of miracles?  sparklers_believe post.jpg

Sometimes, we can rely on rituals to “make sure” that God answers our prayers. Maybe this can look like feeling you need to pray the exact prayer you did the last time God blessed you…or making sure you wear the same shirt you were wearing when God helped you ace that test…or worrying that God won’t protect you today because you didn’t get up at 5:00 am to pray.

This is tiring! I believe that we should be disciplined in seeking God, but we’ve taken up a wrong mindset if we start to get paranoid that God won’t be there for us if we “mess up” on a made-up routine in our heads. The sacrifices we make to seek Christ, based on His Word, should bring peace in our hearts.

“For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light” (Matthew 11:30 KJV).

Acts 16:31 reminds us that the foundation of our faith is believing God for who He is: “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and thou shalt be saved.” However, the miracle of salvation is just the beginning. Believe that if God has the power to save you from sin through Jesus Christ, He has the power to provide for you in everyday life. And as Romans 8:25 encourages us, we can wait in expectancy for what He will do.

Continue reading “It’s Better to Believe”

Beyond the Flesh: Thoughts on Forgiveness

Be of the same mind toward one another. Do not set your mind on high things, but associate with the humble. Do not be wise in your own opinion. Repay no one evil for evil. Have regard for good things in the sight of all men. If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men.

(Romans 12:16-18 NKJV)


How would you evaluate your interactions with others? shaking-hands_black-and-white

Sin often gets between our relationships, because Satan wants us to live contrary to the way God has called us to live. He wants us to be angry, unforgiving, jealous, and judgmental. Many of these emotions emerge as part of our sinful nature, especially when we face difficult situations, but these reactions are traps that cause destruction, brokenness, and distraction.

Even if we don’t react outwardly in negative ways, our inner heart is still visible to God:

“I the Lord search the heart, I try the reins, even to give every man according to his ways, and according to the fruit of his doings” (Jeremiah 17:10 KJV).

…And somehow, what’s inside will come out in public. Numbers 32:23 says, “But if you do not do so, then take note, you have sinned against the Lord; and be sure your sin will find you out” (NKJV).

Of course, God doesn’t leave us hopelessly stuck in our weaknesses–He provides a solution. I love looking at the Fruit of the Spirit, because it sets standards for our character that we should follow:

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, gentleness, goodness, faith,

Meekness, temperance: against such there is no law (Galatians 5:22-23 KJV).

The Lord wants us to grow and be transformed–to do away with the wrong things we might say or think (see Colossians 3:8). Practicing the Fruit of the Spirit can transform who we are and how we treat others.

It’s important to see the reality behind our human struggles. Ephesians makes it clear that these fleshly battles are spiritual ones underneath:

For we wrestle not against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this world, against spiritual wickedness in high places (Ephesians 6:12 KJV).

There is an invisible battle around us in which the enemy is trying to tear people apart, stealing lives that have potential to glorify God. However, we can choose forgiveness and a Christ-like mindset. When we reject our sinful ways, we are fighting the enemy, opening eyes to Christ, and winning lives for the Kingdom–and it’s all possible through Him.

When we respond in fear of people or focus on the wrongs they’ve done, we can be wasting precious time. Dwelling in the past is a time-waster, a joy-killer. There’s a reason that God values relationships, families, and friendships. There’s great power in just two or three people coming together for Christ (see Matthew 18:20). The more godly connections, the more He shines.

Satan tries to manipulate relationships, because he knows he is no match for the body of Christ. I believe he tries to distract us from our mission and purpose on this earth with these earthly battles. Losing sleep over people is not part of God’s plan. Separation and pain caused by grudges, bitterness and anger are not part of God’s plan. Fallouts and unnecessary disagreements are not part of God’s plan.

The devil is your enemy, not people. 1 Peter 5:8 states, “Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:” (KJV).

Although situations can come into our lives without our control, without being our fault, we must remember that God restores. He has the power to replace what has been taken unjustly, and He has the power to provide better things from what has gone away. Don’t allow the enemy to lock you in the past, but also don’t allow him to control your actions in the future.

We have authority in Christ! Guard your heart, and respond with maturity and Christ in mind when it comes to personal conflicts. God has something greater for us to do than be distracted by Satan’s schemes.


Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.

(Proverbs 4:23 KJV)

Obedience and Healing

And it came to pass, as He went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee. And as He entered into a certain village, there met Him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. And when He saw them, He said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed. And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, And fell down on his face at his feet, giving Him thanks: and he was a Samaritan. And Jesus answering said, Were there not ten cleansed? but where are the nine? There are not found that returned to give glory to God, save this stranger. And He said unto him, Arise, go thy way: thy faith hath made thee whole.

Luke 17:11-19 (KJV)


When I was younger I learned quickly that my parents were “always” right.

It took time for me to realize this. I was always stubborn and wanted to do things my way. But soon I learned that if I obeyed my parents, something good happened, but if I disobeyed them, it typically resulted in something not so great.

Now, of course, I later realized my parents aren’t perfect. But they are older than I am and have gone through many of the things I will, and through god-given wisdom, they were able to handle them. So, obeying them as they obey God leads me in the right direction.

I will never forget a particular time when if I had listened to my mom, I could have avoided some painful results.

While shopping with our mom, my brother and I decided to play tag in the parking lot of the shopping center. My mom told us to stop running, but I wanted to sprint to the car–the designated “safe zone”–and win. So I did.

I was running so fast that as I tried to stop myself, I skidded and fell, scraping my knee on the pavement. As I felt the stinging sensation of my fresh cut, I realized that if I had just listened to my mother, I would have prevented the pain. Over time, the wound healed, but it left a scar on my knee–perhaps a little reminder of my childhood stubbornness.

While this example of disobedience did not result in tremendous consequences, there are times when disobedience leaves life-altering “scars.”

God gives us specific instruction on how we ought to conduct ourselves. Just as my mom gave me a warning to stop running to avoid falling, God gives us instructions to avoid harming ourselves. We don’t see the accident up ahead, but He does.

Isaiah 55:8 says that God’s thoughts and ways are above our own. He is more knowledgeable than we will ever be, and so His plan will always be much better and wiser than ours.

Jesus’ miracles are the result of obedience.

When we obey God, we can receive His blessings and wholeness. Luke 17:11-19 illustrates this, as Jesus heals ten men who have leprosy.

Problem | the illness:

And it came to pass, as He went to Jerusalem, that he passed through the midst of Samaria and Galilee. And as he entered into a certain village, there met him ten men that were lepers, which stood afar off: (Luke 17:11-12)

Leprosy is a severe bacterial infection that deteriorates the skin, causing wounds that often lead to the loss of body parts. Particularly in Biblical times, it was so infectious that it separated those who were affected from those who were not, shunning them from society.

When the lepers see Jesus, they stand “afar off” (v. 12), knowing their position in society–outcasts. They suffer the emotional pain of isolation, and they experience the physical pain of decaying flesh. These are men in need of a great healing.

Solution | the command:

And they lifted up their voices, and said, Jesus, Master, have mercy on us. And when he saw them, he said unto them, Go shew yourselves unto the priests. (Luke 17:13-14a)

Before healing takes place, the lepers have faith. They go to Jesus, knowing who He is, and lift their voices to Him (v. 13). They know that Jesus is God and capable of healing them, and so they seek Him out and ask for a miracle.

Jesus immediately gives them a solution the moment he sees them. He instructs them to go to the priests.

Response | the obedience

And it came to pass, that, as they went, they were cleansed. And one of them, when he saw that he was healed, turned back, and with a loud voice glorified God, (Luke 17:14b-15)

Once Jesus gives them a solution, they listen and act upon it. Jesus could have healed them on the spot, but instead He gives them an instruction. Here is their opportunity to put their faith into action by obeying Him without question or hesitation. This obedience, based on their faith, allowed them to be cleansed.

Another response to note is that of one leper who returns to Jesus. The others depart, now healed, but this man shows his gratitude to Jesus. Although Jesus knows that the other nine men are not going to return to Him and thank Him, He still physically heals them.

This man’s faith set him apart from the others. He provides a model for us on faith and gratitude. Acknowledging his faith, Jesus tells him it is his faith that has made him whole (v. 19). This wholeness goes beyond physical healing–he received a spiritual healing due to his gratitude and obedience. He is now a new person, a whole man.

Afterwards, Jesus gives him a direction. He instructs him to go forward (v. 19). He can do so in  faith with a new appreciation for who Jesus is and what he has done in his life.

Obedience is faith put into action.

What can we learn from this man?

  1. God recognizes our gratitude, which reflects the state of our hearts
  2. He gives us direction and renewal
  3. He rewards our faith

As demonstrated in this passage, Christ came to heal us from our pains–physical, emotional, and otherwise. But how are we to expect to receive from Him if we are not obeying His commands? Just as He gave the lepers instruction which set them on a new path, through His word, he is instructing us also to set us on a new path of healing and restoration.

Whatever length of time the lepers may have been suffering, they still sought Jesus out in faith. If you have been praying for a long time for physical, emotional, or spiritual healing, continue to seek the Lord. Turning away from Him leaves scars.

The man who returned to Christ shows us that healing can be physical and spiritual if we allow God to do the work. I encourage you to remain in faith. Christ is the one that can wipe us clean from our pasts and our pain and make us whole. In the process, He is working on our hearts, and He is looking at our responses–our obedience.


But he said, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and keep it!”

(Luke 11:28)