Skip to main content

TRUE words for today

Dear Friends, we're beginning the four week countdown to REAL with this gift for you. It is the first of 14 Daily Devotions. Each was written by a woman in our community, led by the writers of Exposition.

They were written with you in mind, that you would carve out a few minutes today to read these words, to help you to read the Word, and to let these words bring Truth to you and your situation.

So each Monday on the run up to REAL, and then after the conference, each weekday for two weeks, I'll post a Daily Devotion on my blog. It will also be sent out by email to all the REAL delegates.

We pray that you'll be blessed, encouraged and challenged. God loves you!

We can't wait to all be together soon at REAL.Until then, pop the kettle on, settle down and let these words of real truth bring freedom,

With love Catrina and the REAL team x

 

To the Jews who had believed him, Jesus said, ‘If you hold to my teaching, you are really my disciples. Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.’ John 8:31-32 (NIV)

In the previous chapter of John we read that there is much debate and speculation about Jesus’ identity. Some were inexplicably drawn by a hunger that was unlocked, but many more were offended and resistant; so troubled that they sought to silence and destroy the man they viewed as a heretic.

Jesus was creating a stir and stimulating debate and gossip. This set the curious off investigating, talking to anyone who knew anything and voicing their opinions, making judgments and shifting their views according to whom they listened to.

Humans are social beings so we form our beliefs according to all sorts of alliances and allegiances that we make. Some are thrust upon us by the nature of our birth and the innate qualities that define our unconscious world view. Other values are driven by the environment and the experiences that shape and form us.

Some of us have multiple streams of influence flowing through us every day. The term "Twittersphere" and "trending" are recent constructs to measure what topics have momentarily surfaced as noteworthy; headlines on a news report or the success or failure or notoriety of fickle public interest.

So who influences me? Do I hop from blog to blog, or book to book, or listen and watch the latest voice? Am I like a foraging insect moving from flower to flower taking what I can and filling every waking moment with entertainment and distractions, always consuming more?

Yes, I can be like this, so I have to make decisions about who and what influences me. I find that the first part of my day is sacred and informs the hours that follow. I look to build a solid foundation each day by consciously setting my thoughts on Christ through reading the bible and prayer. If I skip this then I rarely find that time is captured back. Throughout the day I have frequent brief times of stopping for silence and reflection and one sentence prayers. These help me to centre and settle and rest from the onslaught of the external influences that fill my day.

Jesus says here if you hold to my teachings. To hold is to grasp and have a physical connection. We hold a child’s hand to guide them safely across the road. There is proximity and intimacy. Holding is about familiarity, knowledge and personal experience. When I read the bible I receive guidance and inspiration through my personal encounter of the Holy Spirit which revives and directs me.

To hold can also mean to keep and maintain a steady dedication and commitment. I am able to stand secure in times of trouble, anxiety and challenge. I will not be derailed by external forces seeking to control or influence me. To be a believer and disciple of Jesus calls for holding His hand, and walking in His ways knowing that He is trustworthy and true. The consequence is freedom. I am no longer to be swept away by the opinions of others and can experience true liberty and enjoy being myself.


Prayer: Lord Jesus, I want to hold to your teachings. Give me the desire and discipline to stop and make time to encounter your presence and power as I read the bible each day. Help me to have the courage to turn off the noise and create pools of refreshing silence and prayer. Amen

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

African sky

I'm writing this in the eerie light of Monday afternoon - anyone else noticed the yellow-tinged sky? I'm reliably informed (thanks Jake!) that the high winds are picking up dust particles from Liberia and North Africa, turning our sky a yellowish colour and definitely giving off an unusual atmosphere! Kind of intriguing too, as we are about to leave for a 10 day trip to Zambia this evening! We're flying overnight, and when we get there temperatures are high 90s - I have no idea how I'm going to cope with that at all...so I'm not even thinking about it right now! 
We'll stay a few days in Lusaka, visiting Sam and Hannah Fairs-Billam and their girls;  and Tehila, the charity they run, Then it's a 5 hour journey North to reconnect with the pastors and families in Serenje, and visit the Dormitory to meet the girls. 
Please do pray for us - safety and good health, pray for our families, pray that everywhere we go we take people up in their lift! (If like me you…

It'll All Be Over Soon...don't miss it!

Well the time is flying isnt it? (or is that just me?)
Ready or not, 2017 is coming to an end and Christmas is fast approaching.


Every. Single. Year. I declare "This is the Christmas I'm going to be calm / spend less / really feel ready and at peace / have time for people / feel close to Jesus and hear His voice / have time and space to enjoy the run-up...and so on (sound familiar anyone?)

Anyone else secretly echoing this top's sentiments in their thoughts?!?!

I'm not an earlybird, or the most organised - and get this, right now I can't find my little Christmas notebook - you know, the one with the last last 4 years of presents given and received listed - anywhere!!!! If you heard Simon preach on Sunday you'll know this is driving me mad!

I'd really love to hear your tips for enjoying and flourishing during this season. We don't' want to just "survive it" do we!
Here are a few of mine.

Make my money go further
First thing to say is to set a limi…

Hello again :)

Long time no see!!!!
What to talk about after so long an absence?!?!

I've had so many wonderful experiences and opportunities recently, and so I can't wait to tell you the stories of my travel to support women's conferences in Albania and Macedonia. 

God was so good to us, and it was such a privilege to travel there with our wonderful Kerith women, to pray for the Balkan women and to stand alongside them as their sisters, encouraging them in their faith. 
We had adventures; new experiences; thunder storms and sunshine; lost luggage and unexpected gifts. We saw salvations and re-commitments; we prayed for women of all ages and backgrounds; some of us were more successful at mastering the language than others, but we had a go! We sang worship songs in a mixture of "have-a-go-Albanian" and the few English lines we could remember (and just kept repeating them!) 
We gave away what we had in terms of our faith and trust in God. We know that we received so much from being th…