Thirsty For Christ Thursday

What Kind of Faith?

Thursday

What good is it, dear brothers and sisters, if you say you have faith but don’t show it by your actions? Can that kind of faith save anyone? Suppose you see a brother or sister who has no food or clothing, and you say, “Good-bye and have a good day; stay warm and eat well”—but then you don’t give that person any food or clothing. What good does that do? So you see, faith by itself isn’t enough. Unless it produces good deeds, it is dead and useless.” James 2:14-17 NLT

For a long while, I felt like the passage above from the book of James rivaled this one from Ephesians…and it bothered me:

God saved you by his grace when you believed. And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God. Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done, so none of us can boast about it.” Ephesians 2:8-9

In fact, these passages don’t rival each other in the least. They are simply written for different audiences, and are both speaking about true faith.

So what kind of faith do you need exactly?

One that is real.

James isn’t saying here that grace is negated. No, the grace of God, Jesus’ death on the cross is what saves us from our sin and brings us to eternal life. No, James is saying that if you truly know Jesus your life will be a reflection of that.

This is not to say we aren’t human and make a ton of mistakes (Romans 3:23), but once you encounter the Lord, you cannot help but be changed! Having true faith is more than just believing in God…It is more than believing Jesus was truly the Son of God. Faith is defined in Hebrews as “…faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” (Hebrews 11:1)

The Second letter to the Corinthians tells us, “For we live by faith, not by sight.” (2 Corinthians 5:7). If you are living by faith [the assurance of things hoped for; the conviction of things not seen], you are putting your trust and reliance solely on Him – or at least striving to do so.

And how would a lifestyle like that look?

You would be kind to others, no matter how they treated you.

You would give anything you had to help someone else.

You would pray for those around you – whether you liked them or not.

You would never be worried about how your basic needs would be met, so you wouldn’t live in a constant stress about finances.

Your life would emanate the Light of Christ.

So then, plain faith, alone, isn’t enough. True faith – the kind with the Holy Spirit living inside of you – guiding your life.

59 James - 1985
Click Here For An Entire Series On The Book of James By Skip Heitzig

If your life isn’t completely surrendered to Him, and He isn’t knocking on the door of your heart about it…

What kind of faith do you have?

We would love to pray with you! Comment below or send us an e-mail! We would love to hear your heart.

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Thirsty For Christ Thursday

Prayer Changes…?

Thursday

Prayer. If I don’t begin my morning with it, the rest of my day goes quickly downhill.  And the question is: Why?

Does my prayer change what’s happening around me? Does prayer persuade God to do things differently? And what is it that we should be praying for, anyway?

I believe much of the answer to all of these questions is found in the book of 1 Kings, Chapter 3 – to be specific:

Solomon loved the Lord, walking in the statutes of David his father, only he sacrificed and made offerings at the high places. And the king went to Gibeon to sacrifice there, for that was the great high place. Solomon used to offer a thousand burnt offerings on that altar. At Gibeon the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream by night, and God said, “Ask what I shall give you.” And Solomon said, “You have shown great and steadfast love to your servant David my father, because he walked before you in faithfulness, in righteousness, and in uprightness of heart toward you. And you have kept for him this great and steadfast love and have given him a son to sit on his throne this day. And now, O Lord my God, you have made your servant king in place of David my father, although I am but a little child. I do not know how to go out or come in. And your servant is in the midst of your people whom you have chosen, a great people, too many to be numbered or counted for multitude. Give your servant therefore an understanding mind to govern your people, that I may discern between good and evil, for who is able to govern this your great people?”

It pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this. And God said to him, “Because you have asked this, and have not asked for yourself long life or riches or the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern what is right, behold, I now do according to your word. Behold, I give you a wise and discerning mind, so that none like you has been before you and none like you shall arise after you. I give you also what you have not asked,both riches and honor, so that no other king shall compare with you, all your days. And if you will walk in my ways, keeping my statutes and my commandments, as your father David walked, then I will lengthen your days.” 1 Kings 3:3-14 ESV

Solomon could have asked God for anything, and yet, he chose to ask for wisdom… and God responds by not only giving him wisdom in abundance, but by giving him all the more on top of this – things above and beyond, that Solomon didn’t even ask for.

So, what does this have to do with our prayer lives?

It should tell you two things:

  • We should be praying for wisdom to discern God’s Will in our lives above all else.
  • When we are following the Lord, not only will He answer, abundantly, our prayers for wisdom and guidance, He also will provide the things we unselfishly don’t ask for.

We are all familiar with The Lord’s Prayer – right?

It’s found in Matthew 6:9-13:

Pray like this:

Our Father in heaven,
    may your name be kept holy.
May your Kingdom come soon.
May your will be done on earth,
    as it is in heaven.
Give us today the food we need,
    and forgive us our sins,
    as we have forgiven those who sin against us.
And don’t let us yield to temptation,
    but rescue us from the evil one.

Lord, let us honor YOU above all and anyone else. Please come quickly and take us with you to your Kingdom. Please give us wisdom to discern your will on earth. Provide our basic necessities, and forgive us like we have forgiven others. Give us the strength to follow you at all costs and overcome temptation. Save us from death and satan’s tricks.

I think it’s pretty obvious from only those two (of thousands) passages from the Bible what we should pray for and how. I also think reading these prayerfully, it becomes quite clear that prayer changes us – the way we think, how we go about our day, our interactions with others…

If I am praying for the Lord to guide me and give me wisdom, the same troubles and difficulties may come my way…but how I approach them will be different.

If I am praying for God to give me strength to resist the devil, when temptation comes, I am prepared to stand firm.

Recently, God put something on my heart. Something big. Something I didn’t even want to think about talking to Craig about. But the Lord was persistent. The more I sat in prayer with Him…the more I was convinced I just had to talk to Craig…

…Craig reacted in just the way I thought he would. He was totally opposed to what I told him God had put on my heart. I told him I was too…but that the Lord was very strongly speaking to me. We prayed about it more…We studied Scripture and we prayed again.

About two weeks later, Craig came to me and said, “The Lord changed my heart. He is telling me exactly the same thing as He’s been telling you.”

Still, this calling was/is not what neither Craig nor I would have chosen for ourselves, but prayer gave us peace with God’s plan. It provided understanding about how this would be possible. It allowed us the wisdom we needed to hear Him.

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Until Tomorrow,

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TTC Tuesday

Bless The Lord, O My Soul!

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Yes, I know. I have been a bad blogger and ALREADY broken my ‘resolution’ of daily (M-F) blogging and we aren’t even out of January yet! 🙂 But, I have a good excuse…

Wednesday I trained a temporary employee all day at work, and then Thursday through Monday we were out of town. So, see…Does that really count as breaking my resolution??? 🙂

Well, since I have been playing catch-up all day at the office, I wanted to keep this post short and to the point, so here goes!

The current Bible reading plan I am using also includes one ‘focus Scripture passage’ for every week…I’m a little bit behind (of course), but I have been stuck on the first passage of the year. I keep it on a post-it note at my desk, and I feel like I have been gaining insight about what scripture is saying for several weeks now:

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I realize now that I’ve attached the photo you can’t really see the verses written on my turquoise stickie (because you know I can’t use a plain yellow stickie note, right?!?!???)… So let me share what my little note says:

Bless the Lord, O my soul; and all that is within me, bless His holy name! Bless the Lord, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits – who forgives all your iniquities, who heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from destruction, who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies.” Psalm 103:1-4

Wow!!! I just LOVE that Psalm!! What beautiful knowledge to be reminded that our Savior forgives everything we do, heals us to complete perfection (upon our entrance into Heaven), saves us from eternal fire, and once we are His, we are CHANGED!!

When I look up at my little note at my desk and see this, I am reminded that no matter how busy I am – no matter how much I am dreading the commute home or the upcoming meeting – no matter how sad I am that Craig is on a trip for work and I’m still not pregnant…this little reminder reminds me that He is in control; reminds me that He is my Savior, and I am His – that no matter what else is erupting around us in this world, our Lord is THE Almighty, and all things are possible through Him.

When you don’t know what to pray, repeat this passage. Praise Him for all the many things He has done for us! Ecclesiastes 11:5 (NLT) says, “Just as you cannot understand the path of the wind or the mystery of a tiny baby growing in its mother’s womb, so you cannot understand the activity of God, who does all things.”

The Lord is so amazing and wonderful, He is beyond our human capacity of understanding! So this small set of four verses is a good place to start in our praise of Him. It reminds me to be thankful, joyful, peaceful and patient. So for you, I have made a little printable, so that you, too, can have Psalm 103:1-4 close-by to keep your mind on how amazing God is!

Psalm1031-4

Print this out, and enjoy being reminded as you go about your day, what an AWESOME GOD WE SERVE!!

Until tomorrow (and yes, I promise I’ll be back!!),

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TTC Tuesday

Our Limitless Savior

Tuesday

Early this morning, on the way in to work, I wasn’t sure what exactly today’s post would be about. Sometimes, though, the answer is all in my morning devotion – and this morning was no exception. ‘Jesus Today’ by Sarah Young (a ‘sequel’ to Jesus Calling) is one of the devotionals I’m currently reading and when I read this entry for January 12th…I could feel the Holy Spirit upon my heart.

What a beautiful feeling. There is absolutely nothing like it! And when it’s truly the Lord pressing on your heart, you cannot help but want to share His message! And so I knew that what impacted me this morning would be my gift to y’all today:

Jesus Today January 12

 

And before you argue that this is ‘just’ a devotional reading…all of these promises are backed up by the Word of God:

Verses.January1216

Faith in Christ is truly the answer. It leads to prayer, persistence…hope…joy. If you are merely living your life…going to church now and then – or even every week! – but don’t have a true living relationship with the Lord, you just cannot even fathom what the life God has in store for you really consists of!!

When you’re in a seemingly discouraging situation, life can look bleak and hopeless. But Christ tells us to write His Word on our hearts (Deuteronomy 11:18), and that isn’t so we can look impressive with the amount of scripture we have memorized, but so that, as believers, we have the comfort of His promises in our souls whenever any situation arises.

The Lord keeps all of His promises (Proverbs 30:5), so we can rest knowing that He hears His children. Although it isn’t easy, there is never a need to ‘help’ God along and trying to do so shows a lack of faith…In true worship of Our Savior, we must acknowledge that He alone is limitless in His ability and able to do anything – creating life out of barrenness, healing the incurable, saving the unsaveable, providing the impossible.

In this day and age, it seems as if nothing shocks or amazes us anymore. But GOD is above and beyond any place your imagination could take you, and His Love is infinitely beyond our comprehension. While we remain on our knees in faith, He has already answered our cries in the best way. Just as you would never give your child a gift that might cause him harm, He gives His children the very best.

In His Word and in the devotion for today, Jesus is assuring us of His love for us…As a Father to His Children, the Lord wants the very best for us. All we must do as Christ Followers is to pray faithfully, and live our lives in relationship with Him. It is surely not a simple undertaking, but it is a beautiful and rewarding life to live unhindered in His Promise.

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Thirsty For Christ Thursday

Waiting On Him: What To Do?

Thursday

Waiting. Not one of my favorite things. And really, is it anyone’s?

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But, as we mentioned in yesterday’s post, currently, we are in a season of waiting on the Lord…So, I thought I’d talk a little bit today about what exactly that means…

Joyce Meyer explains waiting on God well when she tells us:

Once we’ve asked God to answer a question or solve a problem, we need to be eagerly awaiting His answer. We need to be serving actively, aggressively and expectantly. When our hearts are eager to hear from God, He loves to rush in suddenly with His solution. In many cases this waiting period actually serves as a time of preparation for the answer. If God answered right away, many of us would be ill-prepared to handle His solution.

Sometimes we find ourselves in such horrible messes that it’s hard to imagine waiting one more second. But we need to keep waiting on God and trusting Him with a sweet and simple faith. Then, in a way we never could’ve figured out—God moves suddenly!

When waiting on the answer to a prayer or for a promise to be fulfilled, I feel that so much of the ‘waiting room’ is about how you use your time. Waiting expectantly rather than passively is key.

Many examples in the Bible show expectant waiting, and the subsequent reward of answered prayer from the Lord: Hannah’s continuous prayer for a child; Paul & Silas praying and praising God in the midst being held in a jail cell; and Noah building the ark in expectation of the promised floodwaters – just to name a few.

noahs-ark-zoom

In our time(s) of waiting, Craig and I have certainly fostered stronger relationships with the Lord – both individually and together. We have tried to serve Him by serving others. We have spread His Word, and continue to focus on putting Him first in everything we do. We have delved into reading and studying the Word. And above all, we have prayed.

Is it, perhaps, the case that our waiting on Him – yours and ours – is often more about developing our relationship with God than our answered prayer or promise being delayed?

Caroline MacInnes wrote an article several years ago for Boundless.Org, with this to say about how beautiful the Lord’s waiting room can be:

Somewhere in The Meantime, God changed my theme verse from “How long, oh, Lord?” to “Behold, I am doing a new thing; now it springs forth, do you not perceive it? I will make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert” (Isaiah 43:19, ESV). And I literally went to the desert of West Texas to find that “new thing.” I attended graduate school to study what I loved, mentored kids, traveled overseas, and overall, developed a fresh vision of God’s plan for my life…

…Each of us can choose how we spend our days, but God’s wish for us is clear: “I came that they may have life and have it abundantly” (John 10:10).

satan loves to discourage us in our time of waiting…but as the first part of John 10:10 reads, “The thief does not come except to steal, and to kill, and to destroy…” Jesus is the one who came to bring us LIFE. And He doesn’t call us to live it out in front of the tv or with a box of tissues. He calls us to live BOLDLY for His glory – both in the waiting, and out. Don’t let the enemy bog you down by stealing your joy, killing your faith and destroying your opportunity! Use your waiting time wisely!

2 Timothy 1:6-7 ESV 

For this reason I remind you to fan into flame the gift of God, which is in you through the laying on of my hands, for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.

Hebrews 13:6 ESV 

So we can confidently say, “The Lord is my helper; I will not fear; what can man do to me?”

waiting

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What's Up Wednesday

What If…

Wednesday

Are you a worrier? Do you lie awake at night processing every.single.thing. that could possibly go awry? When you pray, do you omit certain requests because you worry that God might actually say ‘Yes’, or perhaps, that if His Will really is done in your life, things might get uncomfortable?

I’ve been there. I’ve prayed, “God, please let Your Will be done in my life…but…please, let it include this and not that…”

But today, as I was reading Beth Moore on my train ride to work (another story in and of itself), something so simple (and yet so profound) dawned on me:

He always takes care of the details.

You see, my issue is not in saying YES to following Him. My issue is in saying YES and then freaking out over how everything is going to work out. I know that it will work out…it’s just the process in getting from Point A to Point B.

Here’s an excerpt from Beth Moore’s book ‘Jesus’:

“Could a teenager have fathomed that she was to give birth to the Son who was the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of His being? (Heb. 1:3) Perhaps Mary’s age was on her side. When my two daughters were teenagers, and when they would tell me something, I always had more questions than they had answers. I’d say, ‘Did you ask this question?’ to which they’d invariably say, ‘No ma’am. Never even occurred to me.’ I want to know every detail. They were too young to realize any were missing!

Mary only asked the one question. When all was said and done, her solitary reply was: ‘I am the Lord’s servant…May it be to me as you have said.” (Luke 1:38) The Greek word for servant is doule, which is the feminine equivalent to doulos, a male bondservant. In essence, Mary was saying, ‘Lord, I am Your handmaid. Whatever You want, I want.’ Total submission. No other questions.”

Luke 1:45 tells us, in reference to Mary, “Blessed is she who has believed that what the Lord has said to her will be accomplished.” When we are totally sold out to the Lord, we believe wholeheartedly – no details needed. We say YES, resoundingly, because we know Him and we know He takes care of all the details.

Have you ever heard the saying, “If He brings you to it, He will bring you through it”?

It’s true. When you are following His Will, He will supply your every need – not your every want, but your every single need.

One of the most heartwarming portions of Scripture follows below:

“And [Jesus] said to His disciples, Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious and troubled [with cares] about your life, as to what you will [have to] eat; or about your body, as to what you will [have to] wear. For life is more than food, and the body [more] than clothes. Observe and consider the ravens; for they neither sow nor reap, they have neither storehouse nor barn; and [yet] God feeds them. Of how much more worth are you than the birds! And which of you by being overly anxious and troubled with cares can add a cubit to his stature or a moment [unit] of time to his age [the length of his life]? If then you are not able to do such a little thing as that, why are you anxious and troubled with cares about the rest? Consider the lilies, how they grow. They neither [wearily] toil nor spin nor weave; yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory (his splendor and magnificence) was not arrayed like one of these. [I Kings 10:4-7.] But if God so clothes the grass in the field, which is alive today, and tomorrow is thrown into the furnace, how much more will He clothe you, O you [people] of little faith?

 And you, do not seek [by meditating and reasoning to inquire into] what you are to eat and what you are to drink; nor be of anxious (troubled) mind [unsettled, excited, worried, and in suspense]; For all the pagan world is [greedily] seeking these things, and your Father knows that you need them. Only aim at and strive for and seek His kingdom, and all these things shall be supplied to you also.” (Luke 12:22-31 AMP)

I get chills just thinking about it. He has a grand plan for your life and not only that, He supplies everything you need to follow His Will. If He calls you to youth ministry, you don’t have to worry about a job search – He will lead you right to the church doors. If He calls you to be a wife, He will supply the very best husband for the job. If He calls you to share the gospel, He will lead you to an ear that needs to hear. And as long as you are following Him (‘Only aim at and strive for and seek His kingdom, and all these things shall be supplied to you also.’ – vs. 31), everything thing you need in between will be supplied.

You see, we don’t serve a God who sits high upon His throne and waves an angry scepter at His servants. We serve the Lord of Lords and King of Kings, Who desires a personal relationship with each and every one of His children – a relationship so personal that He not only KNOWS your needs, but provides for them, too.

So there’s no need to lose sleep at night. Your Father in Heaven has you in the palm of His Hand.

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Food For Thought Friday

Don’t Be Fooled…

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Because sometimes all you need is a visual reminder of His goodness…

Psalm16

In today’s world, many – in fact MOST – do not set the Lord before them…They do not set ANYONE or ANYTHING before THEMSELVES at all, in actuality. And isn’t that satan’s trick? When we place everything else before God, and nothing in front of our selfish desires, we are only fooling ourselves. True pleasure, pure joy, real love…all those things come only from Our Father Above.

This weekend, do yourself a favor and read ‘The Screwtape Letters’ by C.S. Lewis. It’s a classic, and it will make you think and open your eyes into the world of spiritual warfare.

Don’t let yourself be fooled. Set the Lord always before you, and He will guide you along the path of life. 

Happy Friday!

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My Choice Monday

The Most Awesome Anxiety Attack

Monday

Have you ever had an anxiety attack?

I know it can be a different experience from person to person, but for me, anxiety feels like my heart is about to beat out of my chest. My thoughts become so singularly-focused, I can hardly concentrate on anything else, and I feel jittery – like I’ve had 2 energy drinks and 3 cups of coffee.

But it doesn’t take a frightening situation or a nerve-wracking possibility to create this sensation for me.

This is how I feel when God has charged me with a mission – something to complete and take hold of. I don’t feel like I can possibly sit still or accomplish anything until I address what God has placed in front of me.

And why do I feel this relates to an anxiety attack?

Well, I can’t think of another human experience that is as overwhelming…When God tasks me with a plan…or even just a hint of what He has in store, I can’t contain myself! From reading God’s Word and my relationship with Him, I know a sliver of just how BIG and MIGHTY and ALL POWERFUL He is! With Him, the possibilities are simply endless, and how overwhelming that is for us as mere humans.

But this anxiety is an exciting one of possibility, adventure, thrill. Serving Jesus Christ and His Kingdom is an awesome challenge and responsibility, but nevertheless, I have never felt more comforted than when I knew He was solely in control and our steps were completely dependent on His Word.

“Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of [the nations in the Promised Land]; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.” Deuteronomy 31:6 NKJV

“I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which He has called you, the riches of His glorious inheritance in the saints, and His incomparable great power for us who believe.” Ephesians 1:18-19

“Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to His power that is at work within us.” Ephesians 3:20

We are all called by God to do His work. He may call you to travel many miles on His behalf, or simply to stay right where you are, but you are called.

And this should excite you beyond measure.

If you are ‘stuck’ in your church service week after week, hearing the same story about walking in the power of Christ, and never doing anything about it, then you aren’t living your life to the fullest potential. And that is the saddest result of a Christian life I can think of.

When you reach Heaven, at the end of the days God has numbered for you on this earth, and He asks you how you spent your time, are you satisfied to tell him:

“ Oh, Lord, I went to church when I could…”

“I know you wanted me to feed the poor, but I was just too tired when I got home from work…”

“Precious Jesus, I was in church every Sunday! I sang songs about Your glory each week, at the top of my lungs! I listened to every sermon about Your incredible power!!”

But Jesus responds that that is not enough. We are saved by faith, of course, but faith without works is dead. If you are truly a follower of Jesus, you long to follow Him – anywhere and everywhere He leads.

Matthew 28:19

Go to the people of all nations and make them my disciples. Baptize them in the name of the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit…”

Acts 22:15

“For you will be a witness for Him to all men of what you have seen and heard.”

Ephesians 6:20

“…for which I am an ambassador in chains; that in proclaiming it I may speak boldly, as I ought to speak.”

1 Timothy 4:12

“Let no one look down on your youthfulness, but rather in speech, conduct, love, faith and purity, show yourself an example of those who believe.”

Is it scary? YES.

Is it completely against everything this world teaches? YES.

But it is at once the most incredible decision to follow Him at all costs. When you decide to stop being an armchair Christian, Jesus will use you in incredible and amazing ways.

Are you ready for your ‘anxiety attack’?

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TTC Tuesday

No Matter What

Tuesday

Happy Tuesday Everyone!

Here at The Newlywed Lefebvre’s blog, Tuesdays are for thanking Jesus, and there just isn’t a better month for that ‘theme’ than November – Thanksgiving time!

As I’m reading (straight through) the Bible, I’m noticing that the book of Psalms is a lot more than what I had at first envisioned – a book of (boring) poetry and songs and flowery language. Quite the opposite, actually. As I read the book (actually five separate books, combined into one), I’m realizing that David (and the other authors of the psalms) had a heckuvalot in common with me and the rest of us average joes (janes?)!

Psalms are beautiful prayers; cries out to God in anguish, in joy, in hope, in fear, in sorrow; deep shouts of praise and thanks! Just open your Bible to the middle and I’m almost certain one of the psalms you come upon will speak to your heart.

Today, we will look at two psalms that denote thankfulness – perfect for Thank You Jesus Tuesday and for this time of year:

“Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise; give thanks to Him and praise His name. For the Lord is good and His love endures forever; His faithfulness continues through all generations.” Psalm 100:4-5

“Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, and for His wonderful works to the children of men! Let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving, and declare His works with rejoicing.” Psalm 107:21-22

It is so easy to thank God when things are going well. When everything is moving along and life is hunky-dory, we are almost quick to forget to thank Him for His goodness. But the question is how on earth do you thank Him when things are NOT going well? How do you praise God in the midst of suffering?

You thank God during times of trouble because you remember the cross. Hebrews 4, verses 15 and 16 say:

“For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but one who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin.  Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”

We can thank Him during our times of need and weakness because He is not some lofty god who rules from on high, apart from his creation – He came to earth in human form and lived a human life, ending with His suffering on the cross as the one and only sacrifice for our sins.

We can thank Him at all times because “…God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Romans 5:8).

No matter what – I will praise Him in this storm and in the sunshine that follows.

So today, as I sit here with a yucky sinus infection, and my sweet Mama Dee is in a brace and awaiting orthopedic surgery for her broken patella, I am thanking my Savior for the beautiful life He blessed me with, and for the gift that is my grandmother. As we await His beautiful promise of our precious Jonah Elizabeth, I thank Him that He not only knows us by name – but gave such a beautiful name to our future daughter.

What storm are you waiting in today, and how can you be thankful in its midst?

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TTC Tuesday

Dani’s Journey: My Victory Over Infertility

TuesdayGood Morning Folks,

We have a special special treat for you today! One of my dearest did us the honor of authoring a guest post for this edition of ‘Thank You, Jesus! Tuesday’ and boy, does she have a powerful journey to share!

So…a Looooonng while back I was asked to share my experience with infertility and how waiting on the Lord was a challenge. I’ve been married 3 years this November and when we were married I wanted a baby like “yesterday”!

The Newest Newlywed Lefebvres!

However, there was a button on pause for us. I had been on the Depo-Provera shot for 3 injections prior to marriage to help with my hormonal imbalances, but this caused my pituitary gland to essentially “turn off”. With this crucially important gland not functioning, my body was not able to create the proper hormones which make uterine lining, ovulation and proper mucus.

The doctor’s rule was I couldn’t be considered infertile until I tried naturally to conceive for one full year. I can’t put into words how hard it was to know that for one year “all I could do” was pray. Sounds silly that I was disappointed by this, right? I didn’t feel that way at the time.

I was impatient and frustrated and sad as the months passed with no period and therefore, no possible pregnancy. After a year of marriage, I was ready to get into that doctor’s office and “DO” something! At first, I was put on hormone medications to hopefully, kick-start my brain into producing the hormones naturally. Oh how I prayed to God that He would make this work! I wanted Him to give me instant results, as my heart was aching for a precious baby.

After many long talks with God, I still didn’t understand how He could put such a strong and deep desire in my heart for a baby, but was making me wait. I knew that I’d have a baby someday, but what I didn’t know was when or how my child would come. My doctor was confident that I’d be able to have kids one day, and this kept me on the path to get pregnant.

After almost six months on hormone therapy my periods started!!!!! I was ecstatic! I was praising God for His miracle that now pregnancy was a possibility. Although I got my period back, it was not consistent. I had an ultrasound done to see if I was ovulating and I wasn’t. After finding out this information, I was devastated and found myself once again asking God why? It seems silly now to me how I went from happy bliss towards God to disappointment so quickly

I began praying more often but wasn’t truly letting go and letting God take over. For the next 3 months, the plan was to start taking a medication to help me ovulate and then to plan conception. For two years I had been crying regularly and couldn’t understand why God needed me to wait. After all, He was the one who put this desire in my heart…

After two of the three months passed on this ovulation medication, I was a complete mess. I was sick and tired of feeling helpless and disappointed! I mentally, emotionally and spiritually could not handle it and fell to my knees in prayer. I made the decision to stop the treatment to get pregnant and to let God take over.

This was HUGE for me! I had been trying to do this for months but always had one foot in and the other out. I now had to trust God completely that He had a plan… and sure enough, He did! I had continued to track my cycles but had no more medical intervention nor did I have that heart, heavy with disappointment. I stopped the medication in April of 2014 and conceived in September 2014! The Lord had answered my prayers and given me that baby He promised! 🙂 

Within days of finding out I was expecting, I then knew why I had to be patient for this gift. I was very sick with hyperemisis gravidarum until week 16, followed by migraines that could knock a full grown man to their knees. Both conditions caused hospital visits due to pain, dehydration, blindness, etc. I was pretty much bed ridden from week 4/5 to 21. It was awful.

Then, the migraines, vomiting, and blackouts let up. I found out at week 22 that we were having a girl!

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I knew it all along but was always told “you never know”. I was so happy and once again, thanking God!

Little did I know that just a few weeks later, what I thought was my turn for the best became my turn for the hardest. At twenty-seven weeks along, I developed gestational hypertension. The following week, I was admitted to the hospital for 3 days due to high blood pressure and water retention. Within days of coming home, I went into kidney failure with Pre-Eclampsia and was told that without immediate intervention I would lose my life and my baby’s.

My daughter was born at 29 weeks to the day at 2lbs 7.2oz. She was a fighter, but I became more ill after delivery and ended up with Post-Eclampsia. It was days before I pulled through and could see my own daughter!

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I still had a long road ahead with our stay in the NICU and my own recovery to health. But because of my faith and reliance on God, I was able to handle the situation.

He knew if He prolonged my waiting for a child,  I would eventually surrender (I’m very stubborn) and rely on Him wholeheartedly – and I did. Without His timing I would not have been prepared mentally, emotionally or spiritually. God gave me a peace when I had to deliver her. I was not concerned with anxiety but had faith it would all be okay. “God’s got this!”, I thought.

Each day I prayed for something new of healing with my daughter and every day each prayer was answered! God is amazing and works miracles!!

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Because of His timing, I’ve gained patience, understanding and have learned humility! These were all my worst traits before, but now, they are my best! God knew what He was doing when He had me struggle with infertility. He was teaching me and preparing me for His bigger purpose…His bigger plan.

For anyone struggling with a desire of their heart they know the Lord placed there, rely solely on Him for it. He placed the desire, and will fulfill it one way or another. It may not be the way that you expect or take the you on the journey you thought you were prepared for, but He has a bigger plan for you than you have for yourself.

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He says He has a purpose for you and a future! (Jeremiah 29:11) Take a moment today to reflect on what it may be that you are struggling to let God take control of…now try to think why? If you keep it simple, then the answer is simple – because you are not ready. But thankfully, He knows when you will be, and He’s preparing you! 🙂

In Christ,

Dani

Wasn’t that a beautiful story of God’s grace and love? Keep this one in your pocket, or on your bookmarks bar to uplift you when you feel like His Promises aren’t for you. They are. Remember, God doesn’t play favorites. (Acts 10:34) Craig and I are the proud Godparents of this amazing miracle, and can’t wait to share pictures from her baptism this weekend!

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