Jesus Always

I delight in those who fear Me, who put their hope in My unfailing Love. “Fear of the Lord” is often misunderstood, but it is the foundation of spiritual wisdom and knowledge. It consists of reverential awe, adoration, and submission to My will. You submit to Me by exchanging your attitudes and goals for Mine. Since I am your Creator, aligning yourself with Me is the best way to live. When your lifestyle exhibits this biblical fear, I take delight in you. Seek to feel My pleasure shining on you at such times. 

Living according to My will is not easy; there will be many ups and downs as you journey with Me. But no matter what is happening, you can find hope in My unfailing Love. In your world today, many people are feeling desperate. They’ve become disillusioned and cynical because they put their confidence in the wrong thing. But My steadfast Love will never let you down—it will never let you go! Cling to hope, beloved. It’s a golden cord connecting you to Me.

The Lord delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love.
~ Psalm 147:11 

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
~ Proverbs 1:7

The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness.
~ Lamentations 3:22–23 

Dear Jesus

When you are weary and everything seems to be going wrong, you can still utter these four words: “I trust You, Jesus.” By doing so, you release matters into My control, and you fall back into the security of My everlasting arms.

Dear Jesus,

It’s so hard for me to release things into Your control, rather than trying to fix them myself. I recognize that ultimately this is a matter of trust. I know enough about You and enough about me to realize how ridiculous it would be to trust myself more than You. In the depths of my soul I do trust You far more than anyone or anything else. However, I tend to live on a surface level much of the time—living by sight more than by faith. Help me overcome my unbelief!

Beloved, that cry of your heart is a prayer I am eager to answer. I can see into the depths of your soul, where you do indeed trust Me. I am pleased that you recognize the discrepancy between the trust in your soul and the controllingness of your surface-level behavior. When you are living superficially, you tend to be unaware of your thoughts. As a result, you follow well-worn paths of habitual responses. In this condition of mental slumber, you are unable to hear My voice. As soon as you become aware of your condition, you need to speak to Me. You can say, “I trust You, Jesus,” regardless of how you are feeling. Intentionally release your worries into My care and keeping—My control. You can even symbolize this release physically, by opening both hands fully to Me. Then, rest in the knowledge that I am taking care of you and all that concerns you. As you trustingly relax in My Presence, your mind reconnects with your soul. Find refreshment in the refuge of My everlasting arms.

The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms. 
~ Deuteronomy 33:27

Immediately the boy’s father exclaimed, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief!” 
~ Mark 9:24 

Commit your way to the Lord; trust in him and he will do this: He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun. 
~ Psalm 37:5–6

Jesus Lives

ASSURANCE

Bring your attention gently back to Me whenever it starts to wander. Find relief in the truth that I look for persistence—rather than perfection—in your walk with Me.

Are you amazed at how quickly and how far your mind can wander from Me? When you recognize this has happened, don’t be shattered by disappointment or distracted by discouragement. Instead, simply return your attention to Me and to the truth that I accept you in all your imperfection.

Not only do I accept you as you are, I love you as you are. I died a criminal’s death so I could adorn you with My own perfection. That’s why bringing your thoughts to Me is so important: It is My perfect righteousness that saves you, and it will never be taken away from you! 

You can easily fall prey to self-rejection if you have unrealistic expectations for yourself. When you fail, I want you to bring your focus back to Me gently, without judging yourself. Instead of doing further harm by putting yourself down, persist in setting your sights on Me. I always welcome you back with unfailing Love.

But when this priest had offered for all time one sacrifice for sins, he sat down at the right hand of God. Since that time he waits for his enemies to be made his footstool, because by one sacrifice he has made perfect forever those who are being made holy.
~ Hebrews 10:12–14 

“Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.” 
~ Luke 10:41–42

How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings. 
~ Psalm 36:7

Jesus Always

Your life is a precious gift from Me. Open your hands and your heart to receive this day gratefully. Relate to Me as your Savior and Friend, but remember I am also your Creator-God: All things were created by Me. As you go through this day that I’ve gifted to you, look for signs of My abiding Presence. I am with you, watching over you continually. On bright, joyful days, speak to Me about the pleasures I provide; as you thank Me for them, your Joy will expand abundantly. On dark, difficult days, grasp My hand in trusting dependence. I will help you, beloved.

Your physical life is an amazing gift, but your spiritual life is a treasure of infinite value! People who don’t know Me as Savior will spend an eternity in terrible separation from Me. But because you belong to Me, you will live with Me forever, enjoying a glorified body that will never get sick or tired. Since I have saved you by grace through faith, let thankfulness for this indescribable gift fill you with overflowing Joy!

For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.
~ Colossians 1:16 

“I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go, and I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”
~ Genesis 28:15

“For I am the Lord, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you.”
~ Isaiah 41:13 

For by grace you have been saved through faith, and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God.
~ Ephesians 2:8

Dear Jesus

I love you regardless of how well you are performing. Bring your performance anxiety to Me, and receive in its place My unfailing Love.

Dear Jesus,

I know that performance anxiety is foolish and counterproductive. My mind has unmasked this robber of Peace many times, but the rascal continues to claw at my heart when I let down my guard. I find myself struggling with feelings of failure, sometimes without even knowing why. Help me break free from this bondage through the empowerment of Your Love.

Beloved, come to Me with your feelings of failure. Bring them into the Light of My Presence, where we can examine them together. In My brilliant Light, the feelings shrivel and shrink, because they are based on lies. These things thrive in the darkness, where you are hardly aware of them at all. Performance anxiety has been such a regular part of your life that you barely notice it. Yet I defeated that villain in the same way I triumphed over Satan—through My finished work on the cross!

When feelings of failure weigh you down, look up to Me! Let the Light of My unfailing Love shine upon you: dispelling the darkness, lifting you closer and closer to Me. The nearer you are to Me, the better you can see My smile of approval. As you bask in this unconditional Love, you gain strength to break free from your nemesis—performance anxiety. Even if you slip into old habits again, you can turn back to Me anytime. My unfailing Love is always available to restore you, because you belong to Me forever.

Turn, O Lord, and deliver me; save me because of your unfailing love.
~ Psalm 6:4

How priceless is your unfailing love! Both high and low among men find refuge in the shadow of your wings. They feast on the abundance of your house; you give them drink from your river of delights. For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light.
~ Psalm 36:7–9 

But thanks be to God! He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
~ 1 Corinthians 15:57

Jesus Lives

His Presence

I am always before you, beckoning you on—one step at a time. Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, can separate you from My loving Presence.

I want you to live your life focused on My Presence in the present. Since you know I am always with you—leading and encouraging you—you can live in that reality moment by moment. Your mind tends to leap over the present moment to the next task, ignoring the one that is before you and the One who is before you. During rare times when you are able to stay focused on Me, your work is infused with My Presence. It is no longer laborious but delightful: more like play than work.

Living in collaboration with Me can be a foretaste of heaven. It is wonderful, though not easy: It requires a level of spiritual and mental concentration that is extremely challenging. In the Psalms, David wrote about this collaborative way of living, declaring that he had set Me always before him. As a shepherd, he had plenty of time to seek My Face and enjoy My Presence. He discovered the beauty of days lived with Me always before him—and beside him. I am training you to live this way too. This endeavor requires more persistent effort than anything else you have attempted. Yet, rather than detracting from your other activities, it fills them with vibrant Life.

Whatever you do, do it for Me—with Me, through Me, in Me. Even menial tasks glow with the Joy of My Presence when you do them for Me. Ultimately, nothing will be able to separate you from Me, so this you-and-I-together venture can continue throughout eternity.

For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. 
~ Romans 8:38–39 

I have set the Lord always before me. Because he is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. 
~ Psalm 16:8 

And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men . . .; for you serve the Lord Christ. 
~ Colossians 3:23–24

Jesus Always

I give strength to the weary and increase the power of the weak. So do not be discouraged by your weakness. There are many kinds of weaknesses, and no one is exempt from all of them. I use them to keep My loved ones humble and to train them to wait on Me in trusting dependence. I have promised that those who wait on Me will gain new strength.

This waiting is not meant to be practiced only sometimes. I designed you to look to Me continually, knowing Me as the Living One who sees you always. Waiting on Me is closely related to trusting Me. The more time you spend focusing on Me, the more you will trust Me. And the more you trust Me, the more you will want to spend time with Me. Waiting on Me in the midst of your moments also increases your hope in Me. This hope blesses you in countless ways—lifting you above your circumstances, enabling you to praise Me for the help of My Presence.

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak.
~ Isaiah 40:29

Though youths grow weary and tired, and vigorous young men stumble badly, yet those who wait for the Lord will gain new strength; they will mount up with wings like eagles, they will run and not get tired, they will walk and not become weary.
~ Isaiah 40:30–31 NASB

Therefore the well was called Beer-lahai-roi [A well to the Living One Who sees me]; it is between Kadesh and Bered.
~ Genesis 16:14 AMP

Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him for the help of His presence.
~ Psalm 42:5 NASB