Are You Going Hard for Jesus?

Many of us go hard for the things we want. That mate. That job so we can get money to get that house, car, clothes or shoes, to pay bills and to take that vacation. We go hard for our children and/or grandchildren. We go hard for everything that can disappear from our lives within a blink of an eye. But do we go hard for Jesus? I am not talking about going to church every Sunday and Bible Study every week. We can play the part when we are at church but outside of church, are you going hard for Jesus? Do our actions reflect Him? What about our speech? Do our words reflect Him? How are we treating people these days? Do we smile in their faces and take out a knife when they turn their backs? What about our children? Are we doing all that you can to lead them to Christ?

Take a moment and reflect on your life right now. Are you going hard for Jesus?

-Author Stacy Lynn Montgomery

Pray for Fathers

I posted some encouragement on my Facebook page earlier for men and I would like to continue that encouragement. The Lord has a special calling for men to be strong, courageous leaders. They need continuous encouragement and godly wisdom. To the biological father, stepfather, spiritual father, soon-to-be father, mentor or the father who has fallen off the path of fatherhood – please know that there are women who are praying for you and who support you. And women, we need to refrain from putting our men down, even when we know they have done wrong because we, too, do things that are not right as mothers. Let’s pray for our men more. God gave men the responsibility of being a father who is a loving, compassionate and honorable father. Just as motherhood, fatherhood is no easy task and requires a lot of hard work, dedication and love. So take time out to pray for our men more, even the ones that society labels as “deadbeat.” Our children need positive guidance like never before from our men. Women need the support of fathers in raising children. Let’s turn badmouthing and bitterness towards our men into PRAYER. Let’s pray that Christ be beside our men, before our men, behind our men, within our men, beneath our men, above our men, on the right and left of our men, where our men lay, where our men sit, where our men rise, in the hearts of all who think of our men, in the mouths of all who speak of our men, in every eye that sees our men and in every ear that hears our men. “The righteous man walks in his integrity; his children are blessed after him” (Proverbs 20:7).

-Author Stacy Lynn Montgomery

Love

Valentine’s Day is approaching and sadly, many will practice love on that one day and the next day, they will be back to toxic ways. Some may read this and be like, “She is just saying this because she isn’t married.” Well the truth is I am not be married but I know that LOVE should be in action 365 days of the year, not just on February 14. I honestly don’t think one day of love can make up for 364 days of bitterness and hatefulness you have towards someone. It could be a spouse, a girlfriend/boyfriend, your children or just a friend. It really doesn’t matter who but it does matter if you are putting love in action everyday. Love can be a phone call, a text, a letter or card, a genuine pat on the back, a hug, a visit, etc. God is love. If you love God then loving others should be in your character. We have to love regardless of who, what when, where and why. 1 John 4:16 reminds us, “And so we know and rely on the love God has for us. God is love. Whoever lives in love lives in God, and God in them.”

-Author Stacy Lynn Montgomery

 

Each Day

This world has its grumblers, complainers and its critics or haters. Make sure you wake up each day doing your best to not fall in one of those groups. Wake up each day thanking God and asking Him what He wants you to do for that day. Wake up each day choosing joy no matter what comes your way. Yes, it gets hard but practice makes it a habit – a good habit. That habit becomes a lifestyle – a healthy lifestyle. Choose your words with care. Our tongues have the power to bring about blessings or cursings upon our lives and the lives of others. If you woke up complaining, grumbling, depressed, etc., I have some great news for you – you still have have the opportunity to turn to joy right now. You have an opportunity to turn the knob of negativity to positivity. Will you do that right now?

-Author Stacy Lynn Montgomery

Prayer

Some of us attempt to make prayer very difficult when it is just a conversation with the Lord. God doesn’t listen for words of eloquence but the voices of need. Prayer isn’t some religious exercise where you have to jump through hoops to get your prayer heard and answered. We don’t have to always get on our knees and close our eyes to pray. Prayer is an ongoing conversation between our hearts and the Heart of God. Prayer should be natural like breathing and never a last resort.

-Author Stacy Lynn Montgomery

The Empty Chair

A man’s daughter had asked the local pastor to come and pray with her father. When the pastor arrived, he found the man lying in bed with his head propped up on two pillows and an empty chair beside his bed. The priest assumed that the old fellow had been informed of his visit.

“I guess you were expecting me,” he said.

“No, who are you?”

“I’m the new associate at your local church,” the pastor replied.

“When I saw the empty chair, I figured you knew I was going to show up.”

“Oh yeah, the chair,” said the bedridden man. “Would you mind closing the door?”

Puzzled, the pastor shut the door.

“I’ve never told anyone this, not even my daughter,” said the man.

“But all of my life I have never known how to pray. At church I used to hear the pastor talk about prayer, but it always went right over my head..”

“I abandoned any attempt at prayer,” the old man continued, “until one day about four years ago my best friend said to me, ‘Joe, prayer is just a simple matter of having a conversation with Jesus. Here’s what I suggest. Sit down on a chair, place an empty chair in front of you, and in faith see Jesus on the chair. It’s not spooky because he promised, ‘I’ll be with you always.’ Then just speak to him and listen in the same way you’re doing with me right now.”

“So, I tried it and I’ve liked it so much that I do it a couple of hours every day. I’m careful, though. If my daughter saw me talking to an empty chair, she’d either have a nervous breakdown or send me off to the funny farm.”

The pastor was deeply moved by the story and encouraged the old guy to continue on the journey. Then he prayed with him, and returned to the church.

Two nights later the daughter called to tell the pastor that her daddy had died that afternoon.

“Did he seem to die in peace?” he asked.

“Yes, when I left the house around two o’clock, he called me over to his bedside, told me one of his corny jokes, and kissed me on the cheek. When I got back from the store an hour later, I found him dead. But there was something strange, in fact, beyond strange-kinda weird.

Apparently, just before Daddy died, he leaned over and rested his head on a chair beside the bed.”

-Original Author Unknown
-Shared by Author Stacy Lynn Montgomery

Keeping Your Joy

Do you struggle keeping your joy? Some of us do. In times like these, let’s recall how many times God came through for us unexpectedly and how He made a way when no other way was possible. Lets recall how He still makes a way for us and how He truly loves us. Let’s do something that brings us joy like reading, taking a relaxing drive, going for a walk in a park or doing something special for someone else. And know that there is no joy in measuring your life against others. Joy is in the Lord. In order to get it, seek Him. In order to keep it, keep seeking Him. Do the things that are of Him. “These things I have spoken to you, that my joy may be in you, and that your joy may be full” (John 15:11).

-Author Stacy Lynn Montgomery