Jesus Always

You are not your own, for you were bought with a price. And that price was exorbitant—My very Life! I went through excruciating pain and humiliation as I sacrificed Myself for your sins. This was a gift of infinite value—an act of indescribable Love. However, only those who recognize their sinfulness, their need for a Savior, can receive this astonishing gift of Love. Hear My invitation calling out: “Come to Me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” Sin is a terrible, crushing burden, but I have paid the price in full to remove it from you forever.

When you awaken each morning, say to yourself: “I am not my own. I belong to Jesus.” Then keep in mind Whose you are as you make your way through the day, especially as you make plans and decisions. Knowing that you belong to Me helps you keep your feet on the path of Peace. This knowledge meets deep-seated needs. You can find spiritual and emotional security by remembering that you are Mine—My beloved.

Or do you not know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit within you, whom you have from God? You are not your own.

—1 Corinthians 6:19

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.”

—Matthew 11:28

And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death, to guide our feet into the path of peace.

—Luke 1:76–79

Jesus Always

I delight in brightening your perspective. That’s why I ventured into your world, knowing full well the terrible price I would pay. I came to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison, and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness. When you find yourself imprisoned by ingratitude, ask Me to open your eyes and release you from that dark place.

You live in an age of entitlement, so you need to counteract the messages proclaiming that you deserve more. One way is to jot down some things you’re thankful for each day. This changes your focus from things you wish you had to blessings you already have. 

Saturating your mind with Scripture can help you see from My infinitely wise perspective. My Word is sharper than any double-edged sword; I use it to perform spiritual surgery on the thoughts and attitudes of your heart. As Scripture lights up your point of view, I set you free from the dungeon of ingratitude, releasing you to enjoy the pleasures of a thankful heart.

“To open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness.”
—Isaiah 42:7 

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.
—Psalm 119:105 

For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.
—Hebrews 4:12

Jesus Always

As you come to know Me more intimately, you grow increasingly aware of your sins. This presents you with a choice: to focus on your flaws and failures or to rejoice in My glorious gift of salvation. When you keep your focus on my sacrifice for your sins, you live in the joyful awareness that you are wonderfully loved. There is no greater Love than Mine, and it is yours forever! The best response to such a fathomless gift is to love Me with all your heart.

Tragically, many people think they have little—or even nothing—for Me to forgive. They’ve been deceived by the prevailing lie that there is no absolute truth. They believe good and evil are relative terms, so they see no need for a Savior. These deluded ones do not seek My forgiveness, and their sins remain unpardoned. The evil one’s deceptions have darkened their minds. But I am the Light of the world, and My Light can shine through you into their lives. Because you are My follower, you never walk in darkness—you have the Light of Life!

But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me.
—Psalm 13:5–6 

“Greater love has no one than this, than to lay down one’s life for his friends.”
—John 15:13

Jesus replied, “ ‘Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.’ This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’ ”
—Matthew 22:37–39

When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.”
—John 8:12

Jesus Lives

Depending on Him

I have called you out of darkness into My marvelous Light. I brought you not only out of darkness but also into My royal family. I clothed you with My own robe of righteousness—making you fit for My kingdom. You are one of My own special people: You belong to Me, and I delight in you.

I have chosen to use imperfect ones like you to proclaim My praises. I know you cannot do this as well as you would like. The truth is, without My help you can’t do it at all. This gap between My call on your life and your ability to respond is part of My plan. It heightens your awareness of your utter insufficiency. Because you are Mine, I allow you to connect your deep inadequacy to My boundless sufficiency. Instead of focusing on your imperfection, make every effort to stay connected with Me. The more you depend on My resources, the more you can celebrate My Majesty. In whatever you do, consciously rely on My help—living in the joyous wonder of self-forgetfulness. As you look to Me continually for all you need, your face will reflect the Light of My surpassing Glory.

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.
~ 1 Peter 2:9

I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God. For he has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
~ Isaiah 61:10

I am the vine, you are the branches. He who abides in Me, and I in him, bears much fruit; for without Me you can do nothing.”
~ John 15:5

And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit. 
~ 2 Corinthians 3:18

Jesus Always

You are ready for anything and equal to anything through your living relationship with Me. Rest in My Presence while I infuse inner strength into you. Because you are a child of the King of kings, you are capable of so much more than you realize. To benefit fully from your privileged position, however, you need to spend ample time with Me. As you relax in My Presence—delighting in Me and opening your heart to Me—I fill you with inner strength. This time spent together is not only pleasurable, it is empowering.

When there is much to do, it’s tempting to rush through your time with Me and dive into the activities of the day. But just as eating a healthy breakfast helps you function at your best, so does feeding your soul a healthy diet of Me. Bask in My Word, asking My Spirit to make it come alive to you. Savor these words of Life! Your living relationship with Me helps you approach each new day with confidence—ready for anything that comes your way.

I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me [I am ready for anything and equal to anything through Him Who infuses inner strength into me; I am self-sufficient in Christ’s sufficiency].

—Philippians 4:13

Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.

—Psalm 37:4

In the morning, O Lord, you hear my voice; in the morning I lay my requests before you and wait in expectation.

—Psalm 5:3

Jesus Always

I rejoice over you with singing. Open wide your heart, mind, and spirit to receive My richest blessings. Because you are My blood-bought child, My Love for you flows continuously from the throne of grace. Look up and receive all that I have for you. Listen and hear Me singing songs of Joy because of My great delight in you. You can approach Me boldly—with confidence—trusting that you are indeed the one I love.

The world teaches you that love is conditional: based on performance, appearance, and status. Even though you don’t believe this lie, the constant onslaught of this message in the media can penetrate your thinking. That’s why it is so important to spend time focusing on Me—soaking in My Presence, absorbing My Word.

Setting aside time to be alone with Me is countercultural, so this practice requires discipline and determination. However, it is well worth the effort. Living close to Me brightens your life immeasurably. With Me is the fountain of Life; in My Light you see Light.

“The Lord your God is with you, he is mighty to save. He will take great delight in you, he will quiet you with his love, he will rejoice over you with singing.”

— Zephaniah 3:17

Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.

—Hebrews 4:16

About Benjamin he said: “Let the beloved of the Lord rest secure in him, for he shields him all day long, and the one the Lord loves rests between his shoulders.”

—Deuteronomy 33:12

For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light.

—Psalm 36:9

Jesus Always

My paths are beyond tracing out! Come to Me with humility in your heart, bowing before My infinite intelligence. Relinquish your demand to understand; accept the fact that many things are simply beyond your comprehension. Because I am infinite and you are finite, the limitations of your mind make it impossible for you to understand much of what happens in your life—and in the world. So it’s vital to make room for mystery in your worldview.

You are privileged to know many things that were formerly mysteries—things that had been kept hidden for ages and generations. The New Testament is full of revelations that came through My incarnation, life, death, and resurrection. You are immeasurably blessed to have this priceless knowledge!

Nonetheless, the ways I work in your world are often mysterious to you—beyond tracing out. This presents you with a choice: to resent My ways or to bow before Me in wonder and worship. Marvel at the depth of the riches of My wisdom and knowledge!

Oh, the depth of the riches of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable his judgments, and his paths beyond tracing out!
—Romans 11:33

Trust in the Lord with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.
—Proverbs 3:5

 . . . The mystery that has been kept hidden for ages and generations, but is now disclosed to the saints.
—Colossians 1:26