Jesus Always

Thank Me for the glorious gift of forgiveness. I am your Savior-God, and I alone can give you this blessing. I went to exorbitant expense to procure this gift for you. You receive forgiveness and become My child by receiving Me and believing in My Name. This Name, Jesus, means the Lord saves. To receive this gift of salvation, you need to trust Me as your only Hope ~ the One who delivers you from all your sins.

There is no condemnation for those who are in Me. I want you to enjoy the wonder of walking through your life as My follower, totally forgiven! The best response to this wondrous gift is to live in gratitude, seeking to please Me above all else. You don’t need to do good things to secure My Love, because it’s already yours. Just let your desire to please Me flow readily out of your grateful heart. Thanking Me frequently will help you stay close to Me, ready to follow wherever I lead. Rejoice, beloved, for through Me the law of the Spirit of Life has set you free!

Yet to all who received him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.
~ John 1:12 

And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved.
~ Acts 4:12 [NASB]

Therefore, there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.
~ Romans 8:1–2

Dear Jesus

The secret of being thankful is learning to see everything from My perspective. My world is your classroom. My Word is a lamp to your feet and a light for your path.

Dear Jesus,

I know from experience that days when I’m thankful tend to be times of blessing. Sometimes it’s easy to be grateful—when I wake up on the right side of the bed and encounter no major problems. At other times, thankfulness feels as unreachable as the stars. That’s when I need a perspective-lift: helping me see things from Your viewpoint.

Beloved, I delight in lifting your perspective. That’s why I ventured into your world as an infant, even though I knew the price I would pay. My motivation was to open eyes that are blind, to free captives from prison, and to release from the dungeon those who sit in darkness. When you are feeling thankless, ask Me to open your eyes and release you from the dark dungeon of ungratefulness. 

You live in an age of entitlement, so you need to counteract the barrage of propaganda proclaiming you deserve more. One way to lean against such lies is to jot down each day some things for which you are thankful. This helps you focus on blessings in your life, rather than on things you want but do not have.

It is crucial to saturate your mind with Scripture: reading it, pondering it, memorizing portions of it. This can help you see things 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 perspective and your path, I set you free from the prison of ingratitude. Thus I release 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 Lives

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances. The only way to be joyful consistently is to take pleasure in your invincible relationship with Me—the One who rules the universe. This relationship is full of hope, so it is possible to be joyful in hope even in the midst of ongoing affliction. 

The simplest way to find Joy in Me is to give thanks in all circumstances. There is immense Power in praying simply, “Thank You, Jesus.” This brief prayer is appropriate for all times and all situations because of My great sacrifice for you. I encourage you to thank Me for every good thing as soon as you become aware of it. This practice adds sparkle to your blessings, increasing your Joy; it also helps you pray continually—persistently, perseveringly. 

When you are feeling dull or downhearted, it is still a good time to thank Me. This tiny act of gratitude can brighten your perspective immediately. To deepen your thankfulness, ponder specific things about Me that delight you—for instance: My lavish grace, My unfailing Love, My continual Presence. Giving thanks in all circumstances is a joyous discipline; it empowers you to lift up your soul and live close to Me.

Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:16–18 

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. 
~ Romans 12:12

In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God’s grace that he lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding. ~ Ephesians 1:7–8

Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.

~ Psalm 143:8

Jesus Calling

YOU NEED STILLNESS—outer and inner—to hear My gentle whispers in your heart. Find a quiet place where the noise of the world is minimal. Then focus your mind on this verse: Cease striving and know that I am God. Be still, let go, and relax in My Presence while I commune with you in holy whispers.

I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. 
~ EPHESIANS 3:16–17 

 Ceasing striving and know that I am God.
~PSALM 46:10 [NASB]

Also read: HEBREWS 1:2; 1 KINGS 19:12 

Before You Turn Out the Light Delight in Me and My righteousness that purifies you.

Jesus Always

No matter how inadequate you may feel, you can always look to Me for help. You don’t need to go to a special place or assume a certain posture to seek My Face. Nor do you need to use elegant language or work to win My favor. I always look favorably on you because I see you clothed in My righteousness. I am alive in you, and I understand your thoughts perfectly. So a simple glance at Me—made in faith—is enough to connect you to My help.

You tend to waste energy trying to determine whether your resources are adequate for the day. You keep checking your “power gauge” instead of looking to Me for My provision. How much better to simply acknowledge your insufficiency when you awaken! This frees you to rely on My boundless sufficiency. If you stay in touch with Me, I will place enough Power at your disposal to meet your needs as they arise. Keep turning toward Me, your ever-present Help, and your strength will be equal to the demands of your day.

Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.
~ Psalm 105:4 

I will greatly rejoice in the Lord, my soul shall be joyful in my God; for He has clothed me with the garments of salvation, He has covered me with the robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom decks himself with ornaments, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels.
~ Isaiah 61:10 [NKJV]

God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble.
~ Psalm 46:1

The bolts of your gates will be iron and bronze, and your strength will equal your days.
~ Deuteronomy 33:25

Jesus Always

Don’t think of prayer as a chore. Instead, view it as communicating with the One you adore. Delight yourself in Me; this will draw you irresistibly into communion with Me. Remember all that I am to you, all I have done for you. I love you with perfect, everlasting Love, and I take great delight in you. Let My tenderness embrace you, convincing you that you are indeed My beloved. Rejoice in the One who will never let you go!

Often the easiest way to start talking with Me is to thank Me for being your Savior, Redeemer, and Friend. You can also give thanks for things that are happening in your life, your family, your church, and beyond. These grateful prayers connect you with Me and ease the way into other prayers. 

You can talk freely with Me since I know everything about you and your circumstances. I never reject you because the penalty for your sins has been paid in full with My blood. Trust Me enough to pour out your heart to Me, for I am your Refuge.

Delight yourself in the Lord and he will give you the desires of your heart.
~ Psalm 37:4 

“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

You are my God, and I will praise You; You are my God, I will exalt You. Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.
~ Psalm 118:28–29 [NKJV]

Trust in him at all times, O people; pour out your hearts to him, for God is our refuge.
~ Psalm 62:8

Jesus Lives

A life lived close to Me will never be dull or predictable. Expect each day to contain some surprises! I know you greet that prospect with mixed emotions because of your love-hate relationship with surprises. You enjoy the adrenaline rush that accompanies new, unexpected experiences; this wakes you up and takes you beyond your ordinary routine. Yet there is also a part of you that longs for your life to be predictable. In fact, you usually try to arrange things so as to minimize the possibility of being taken by surprise. 

I will never limit Myself to doing only what you can anticipate and understand. My ways and thoughts are too high above yours for that to be possible. To do so would be to cease being God! So, expect your life to become increasingly surprising as you grow closer to Me. Still, I want to help you become more joyful about your unpredictable journey with Me.

There is actually much merit in expecting surprises. This helps you view an unforeseen event not as something wrong but as something from Me. With this mind-set you are more likely to turn to Me immediately rather than getting upset. You can ask Me to help you find all the good I have infused into the event so you can respond appropriately. If you feel unsteady, simply draw nearer to Me. 

As you learn to expect surprises each day, your life will become more exciting. You will discover traces of My vibrant Presence in unusual places. Increasingly, you will find your days bright with Joy – the pleasure of knowing Me more intimately.

“As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” 
~ Isaiah 55:9 

With your help I can advance against a troop; with my God I can scale a wall. 
~ Psalm 18:29 

And though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and full of glory. 
~ 1 Peter 1:8 [NASB]

Jesus Calling

I HAVE ALREADY ACCOMPLISHED the greatest miracle—saving you from your sins. The next time you face an “impossible” situation, turn to Me immediately with a hopeful heart. All things are possible with Me!

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.”
~ MATTHEW 19:26 

 The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.
~ DEUTERONOMY 33:27 [NKJV] 
 

Also read: JAMES 1:2–3; HABAKKUK 3:17–18

Before You Turn Out the Light …
Be courageous—“impossibilities” are My specialty!

Jesus Always

Let My Peace rule in your heart, and be thankful. And let My Spirit help you in this challenging endeavor. The Spirit lives in you, so His fruit—Love, Joy, Peace—is always accessible to you. A simple way to request His help is to pray: “Holy Spirit, fill me with Your Peace.” Try sitting in a quiet place until you feel relaxed and calm. When you are thoroughly relaxed, it is easier to seek My Face and enjoy My Presence.

While you rest in My Presence, take time to thank Me for the many good things I give you. As you focus on Me and My bountiful blessings, let your heart swell with gratitude and even leap for Joy. One of the most precious gifts imaginable is My robe of righteousness—to cover your sins. This glorious garment of salvation is a priceless blessing for all who trust Me as Savior. The gift of eternal righteousness, purchased through My blood, provides a firm foundation for both Peace and Joy.

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
~ Colossians 3:15 

But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law.
~ Galatians 5:22–23 [NKJV]

The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.
~ Psalm 28:7 

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

Jesus Lives

Renewing Your Mind

I redeem you from hell—crowning you with Love and mercy; I wrap you in goodness and renew your youth. I delight in giving you these marvelous gifts because I take pleasure in you. Let My delight in you sink into the depths of your being. This satisfies your soul as nothing else can. Although I see your sins and flaws, my perfect Love for you never wavers. I see you first and foremost as My redeemed one—wearing a paradise crown and wrapped in beauty eternal.

I want your identity as My beloved to be front and center in your mind. However, your thoughts often get stuck on trivial matters, especially when your mind is in neutral. This is why I urge you to be alert and always keep on praying. In fact, praying is one of the most effective ways to keep your mind well-focused. As you face your circumstances here and now, invite Me to enter into them. Bring Me whatever you are doing, thinking, feeling; stay in conversation with Me. This will help you focus not on trivial matters but on glorious realities. While you commune with Me, I will renew your strength. No matter how old you are in years, you’re always young in My Presence!

He redeems you from hell—saves your life! He crowns you with love and mercy—a paradise crown. He wraps you in goodness—beauty eternal. He renews your youth—you’re always young in his presence. 
~ Psalm 103:4–5 [MSG]

For the Lord takes pleasure in His people; He will beautify the humble with salvation. 
~ Psalm 149:4 [NKJV]

And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep on praying for all the saints. 
~ Ephesians 6:18 

But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles, they shall run and not be weary, they shall walk and not faint. 
~ Isaiah 40:31 [NKJV]