Knowing the Big Story: An Intro to Biblical Theology

Let’s be honest, for many, simply opening a Bible can be an incredibly intimidating thing, especially if you find yourself in certain sections of the Old Testament. I can’t tell you how many would-be students charged up the hill of God’s Word ready to “learn the Bible” only to retreat in confusion and despair after getting stuck in places like Deuteronomy or Leviticus. Frankly, that’s why you find many Christians who have read the New Testament several times but haven’t made it through the Old Testament even once.

However, it should encourage us to know that the Old Testament was the Bible used by Jesus and the apostles. Both believed it to be perfectly adequate to teach others about Christ and the Kingdom he was bringing. Luke 24 records Jesus giving two disciples a lesson on how they should see the Old Testament. Walking with them to the town of Emmaus, Jesus pulled out his pocket Old Testament and “beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself,” (Luke 24:27).

Beginning with Moses and all the Prophets, he interpreted to them in all the Scriptures the things concerning himself.

– Luke 24:27

Think about this. “Moses and all the Prophets” is shorthand for the entirety of the Old Testament. Do you see the statement Jesus makes? He is saying from Genesis to Malachi, all the Old Testament ultimately points to him. Exodus points to him, Deuteronomy points to him, even Leviticus points to him! Far from being the part of the Bible you should skip, the Old Testament, in some form or fashion, progressively moves the reader down a road that leads to the Person and Work of Jesus.

The study of how every part of the Bible finds its plotline in Jesus is known as biblical theology. It’s an attempt to understand The Big Story of Scripture whereby God is progressively, organically, revealing his plan to redeem sinners through the gospel.

Biblical theology argues that to try to understand the Old Testament outside Jesus not only risks missing the point of the Bible but also that confusion and frustration will abound as you find yourself mired in passages you don’t know what to do with.

The Old Testament is just as much about Jesus as the New.

Graeme Goldsworthy, one of the foremost voices of biblical theology, addressed the essentialness of Jesus in the Old Testament when he wrote: Because the New Testament declares the Old Testament to be incomplete without Christ we must understand the Old Testament in light of its goal which is Christ. Jesus is indispensable to a true understanding of the Old Testament as well as the New (Gospel and Kingdom, 49). He later adds,For the New Testament, the interpretation of the Old Testament is not ‘literal’ but ‘Christological,’ (Gospel and Kingdom, 109).

Want to enjoy the entire bandwidth of Scripture in a way that blesses instead of confuses? Learn biblical theology and how each book of the Bible fits into The Big Story of redemption because we cannot properly interpret any part of Scripture unless, like Jesus, we relate it to his person and work.

Biblical theology…

1. Helps you avoid misapplying the Bible. For example, biblical theology will guard you from moralizing the stories of the Old Testament by seeing how those characters and stories find their place in The Big Story or are a shadow of Christ and his work. You’ll notice how the stories of the Bible serve the story of the Bible, and why trying to turn those stories into a kind of Aesop’s Fables for Christians is a great injustice.

2. Gives you the right questions to ask. You will have confidence that whether you find yourself in Leviticus or any other book of the Bible you know what answers you need to discover like, Where does this stand in God’s progressive plan of redemption? How does this section of Scripture tie to Jesus? What is God revealing to the characters about his plan?

3. Reveals themes, motifs, and concepts that can be traced and developed from Genesis to Revelation. You will learn to see all kinds of redemptive threads woven throughout the Bible that begin with the Old Adam and tie off at the New Adam. It will also convict you of the truth that the Bible is a unified book instead of wrongly pitting the two testaments against each other.

4. Let’s you read the Bible like Jesus read the Bible – a book that from cover to cover is all about him. Jesus reminds us in John 5:39 via a rebuke to the religious leaders of his day, “You search the Scriptures because you think that in them you have eternal life; and it is they that bear witness about me.” The Old Testament and New are about Jesus.

5. Reminds you of the greatness and glory that can only be found in the One of whom the Bible is ultimately about: Jesus!

 


Recommended Resources

  • Gospel and Kingdom by Graeme Goldworthy
  • The Big Picture by Vaughn Roberts
  • The Big Story by Justin Buzzard

 

5 Tips for Parenting in the Digital Age

Technology is everywhere. Even our children are enamored by digital assistants, surrounded by personalized ads, and immersed in multiple devices. It’s changed the ways families live and interact.

There are wonderful graces that accompany these advances. Information is more portable and accessible. We are able to stay connected to family and friends hundreds of miles apart.

As parents, though, we wonder how much technology consumption is just right for our children at every developmental stage. Every child and situation is unique, so it seems as if none of the answers we find online fit perfectly.

Even so, there are some guidelines which can inform family discussions and illuminate decision making for families seeking to navigate this brave new world.

Here are five principles to consider as you lead your children through their interactions with technology in today’s environment.

1. Connect with other parents.

Partner with parents who share your values and who are navigating this journey simultaneously. For us, this occurred in our small group. We had parents to bounce ideas off of, to share experiences, and help keep abreast of emerging trends.

2. Check the Content.

Scrutinize. Be a gatekeeper. Common Sense Media is a solid place to start. They have age-graded reviews and resources ranging from movies to video games to social media and other online platforms. In the beginning, movies and video games are the “content” most parents must monitor.

Over time, apps, websites, social media ought to be considered content as well. Think about what your child interacts with the most. Does every child in your family need the same restrictions? Why or why not?

3. Chaperone your Child.

The word chaperone conveys this idea of going with, or alongside, someone. It’s not an end destination, but it needs to be on the path toward autonomy and not a forgotten rest stop. Checking out the content and checking on your child are two different things. One monitors media, the other monitors behavior.

As parents, we like to threaten our kids with things like, “Well, who do you think is paying for that?” But honestly, does “Who is paying” matter? What happens if the young person gets a job and starts paying? What if they go behind your back to get a cheap throw away phone? For every guideline, for every rule you put in place, explain why. Because one day, you want them to be able to think through new problems with a solid rationale. One day, they will be paying. What do you want them to know? What skills do you want them to possess?

All of it begins with you being a role model and leader in your own home. Start by addressing your own sinful patterns with respect to technology—and walk alongside your child as you both strive to strike a healthy balance in your media consumption.

Children have a hard time processing why you can be on your phone, but they aren’t allowed to be on their device. If they see you tied to your own technology, and if that tie interferes with your interactions with them, be prepared for some dissonance. If devices must be powered down at night or charged in a central location, consider making it a house rule instead of a child-only rule.

4. Counsel with Conversations.

You must create open lines of communication and trust so your children will come to you when they have problems. Counsel doesn’t mean you just give your kids advice.

Young people want to know, “Why are you talking to me?” They have the ability to look up everything you are saying on the internet. They don’t need you to answer random trivia questions or to show them how to fix anything.

Was the internet around when you were a kid? So, why are you worthy of speaking counsel into their lives? Trust is the ultimate goal of your relationship with your child.

5. Create Healthy Habits.

There will be times when your child is not physically with you. They may be playing with friends, at a sleepover, or at school. You will not be able to control what they are exposed to via other children’s devices. However, you do have the opportunity to build healthy habits and to talk through possible scenarios.

  • What will you do when you see something inappropriate on someone else’s phone?
  • How do you react when the music being played is crude or vulgar?
  • What questions should you quickly ask before someone offers to share a picture or video?

Many of these situations happen organically and your child must respond quickly. Sometimes, they must choose what to say or do after the fact. Counseling them before and after incidents occur helps to build healthy habits and gives your children tools for proactively protecting themselves from inappropriate content or behavior from others.

 

There are things we have to address as parents that generations before us never did. But the goal remains the same as it always has. We want to raise our children to be thriving, contributing members of society, to look on others with compassion and kindness, and to love Jesus with everything they have.


 

Open Heart Surgery

The symptoms might be straight forward, subtle, or even hidden; there is a gradual decline or a sudden onset of excruciating pain. Either way, the pathways narrow, the heart becomes hardened, and the pain brings you to your knees.

Regardless of how it happens, when divorce hits, the heart aches. It is both physical and emotional, and it is imperative to find help.

The harm of divorce or separation is far-reaching and takes more than a six-hour surgery or a 13-week rehab program to repair. It is truly one of the most painful experiences in life, undermining our capacity — emotionally, mentally, physically, spiritually, and relationally — for months or even years.

Divorce places us under a microscope, magnifying our strengths and weaknesses. Through it we see how our personal history and the desires of our heart are critical risk factors. This can be overwhelming and leave us stuck in bondage to the past or paralyzed by fear of the future.

We must remember the wisdom of Proverbs 4:23:

Above all else, guard your heart, for everything you do flows from it.

There is hope even when our hearts are broken.

I found hope in recognizing the need for help and risking vulnerability. Allowing ourselves to be vulnerable can open our eyes to our own weaknesses and instill a longing for safety in something greater than ourselves.

I found hope in understanding the recovery process and listening to divorce care experts. Many of them are counselors, speakers, authors and licensed therapists who know firsthand the devastation of divorce having experienced it themselves and are now trained to equip and empower those who are hurting.

I found hope in a community with others who are suffering from the same kind of pain, even in different circumstances. Hebrews 10:24-25 reminds us of the importance of fellowship so that we can encourage one another through good times and hard times. Community moves us from a self-centered space to an interdependent space, and that is God’s design.

And I found hope in serving others in the midst of my misery. By reaching out to others in small, caring ways, meaningful connections were created. Serving someone else shifted my focus.

But ultimately, true hope is found in Jesus Christ.

When I was in the midst of my own divorce, I wish I had known where to look. In the gospel of Matthew, Jesus tells us, “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” But instead, I was searching for financial independence, purpose, and identity in my career.

Then, to manage the emotional fallout of divorce, I did what was comfortable for me, keeping everything personal and private. My community was wrapped tightly around peers in the workforce, and any downtime was spent with my two babies or reading the latest self-help books. My symptoms were apparent, but I tucked them away as I filled my days with busyness to shield myself from pain and disappointment.

I forged ahead alone, and, unbeknownst to me, I was exhausted.

One year later, a friend gifted me a book — a Life Application Study Bible — and for the first time, I began to dig deep for answers. It turns out that the Bible didn’t tell me to persevere and help myself; instead, it pointed to someone other than me: Jesus.

In my brokenness, I felt guilt, shame, and bitterness, but through God’s Word, I discovered grace, truth and love. I began to truly understand what Jesus did for me that no one else would, or could, do.

But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

— Romans 5:8

Recovery wasn’t immediate, but over the years, my broken heart was slowly healed and filled with gratitude. My community grew to include people who genuinely loved God and desired to serve others. At last, my confidence was rooted in the character of God and the truth that is in Jesus

You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

— Ephesians 4:22-24.

Even still, recovery is long and hard. The pathways are narrow and there are unexpected barriers and immeasurable risks. Recovery, and even non-recovery life, requires community, communication, and accountability. Others who have been through divorce will attest that the road of recovery includes progress, but also plateaus and setbacks, much like healing after open heart surgery. But everything suddenly changes when we invite Jesus — the Great Physician — into the operating room.

Jehovah Rapha translates to “The Lord who heals.” Except this healer heals us from the inside out.

Jesus inspects every aspect of our life and then removes all barriers between us and him. He comforts, restores, and grafts new pathways that are full of love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, gentleness and self-control (Galatians 5:22). Jesus understands that recovery is gradual and slow. In fact, he allows us to benefit from his work over a lifetime, discovering that there can be beauty in the pain and process of it all.

And I will give you a new heart, and a new spirit I will put within you.  And I will remove the heart of stone from your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.

— Ezekiel 36:26

Lord, please draw near to those who are struggling with separation or divorce. Let them know they are not alone. Give them the confidence to ask for help and lead them to a community of people who point to you.

 

 

3 Vital Steps to Using Social Media for Good

When people talk about “the problem with the world today,” social media is usually near the top of the list.

The fact that you’re reading this probably means you’ve been thinking about how social media seems to have few, if any, redeeming qualities.

I don’t blame you for thinking that.

But social media, by itself, is actually neutral. It’s a created technology that can be used for bad, but more importantly, something that can be used for good.

So, here are three vital steps to using social media for good.

1. Evaluate the What

Evaluate? Really? I’m searching for answers about how to use social media for good and you’re essentially telling me to think about it?

Well, yes, I am.

If you want to be intentional about using social media for good, you need to evaluate what you are already doing with it.

Look at your timeline. What types of content do you find? Pictures, videos, or text?

Are you primarily creating this content or are you sharing stuff from other people?

How often are you posting? Every day? Every week? Or once every three months?

Who do you follow or friend? Are they people you know or complete strangers? How many organizations or businesses do you follow?

How often do you comment on other people’s posts? How often do you spend time in conversations through direct messages?

How much time are you spending on social media?

After this evaluation, you should be able see some trends, and be able to answer the most important question, which leads us to the next step.

2. Evaluate the Why

Okay, wait a second. Now you’re telling me to think about why I even have social media?! I just wanted advice on some stuff to post!

Trust me, answering this question will free you up to do the things that have the most kingdom impact online.

If you can answer “why do I have a social account?” then you can start strategizing how to individually use it for good.

Do you have Facebook to keep up with your extended family and old friends? Do you have it to exercise those creative muscles by creating videos or capturing engaging photos?

Do you use it as a source of news? Or do you use social media as a means of communication with your friends?

You could use social media to escape your everyday life. You could use it to converse with (read “argue with”) people you don’t agree with. Some people even use social media simply to “hate follow” others because they like watching someone else fail or do something they think is ridiculous.

There are a lot of reasons people have social media, but you need to figure out why it is that you have it.

Because more than just having a personal social media strategy, we should think about a personal life strategy that can help us live out our Christian faith in everything we do, including how we interact with our online community.

To start, I would use Colossians 3:17 as a filter “And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”

Notice Paul doesn’t tell us what to do but instead he tells us why we should do it.

It should be in the name of Jesus.

3. Be Intentional With the How

Finally, what I’m here for!

Well, if you’re hoping I’ll give you a quick “ABC’s to using social media for good” strategy, I think you’re going to be left wanting more than I can provide.

Because in the end, your strategy will look different than mine.

We are different people with different hobbies, gifts, interests, and lives.

The point here is to be intentional about everything you do on social media. Let the why inform the how.

Here’s an example of being intentional with the how.

Take a look through your friends list on Facebook or Instagram. I believe everything happens for a reason — even down to the friends you’ve connected with over the years.

You will find people that you haven’t talked to in a long time. Pray for a few of them. Think about why God has placed them in your life. Ask him to give you courage and opportunities to share the Gospel with those who haven’t heard it.

This is one very small thing, but it’s intentional.

When companies like Nike, Southwest Airlines, and Toyota are trying to sell you a product, they are very intentional about the things they post and the ways they interact with others on social media. It’s no different for us, except that we aren’t trying to sell a product.

We’re trying to help people know Jesus better than they did yesterday.

Social media is simply another tool at our disposal.

 

As you work through all of this, I’d love to know what you come up with! Hit me up on social media: @jon_crump

“And whatever you do, in word or deed, do everything in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through him.”

– Colossians 3:17


 

Bring the Fish

There’s a character in the Bible who you’ll miss if you aren’t looking for him. He’s only mentioned in one verse, but his role in the story is fascinating.

He’s a young boy. We never even learn his name. But one day somewhere near the Sea of Galilee, in the midst of a crowd of over 5,000 people, he gets to give Jesus something.

You see, there’s a problem.

Jesus – an emerging celebrity in the land – is ministering to people, healing the sick, teaching about God’s kingdom, and making extraordinary claims about who he is and what he’s on earth to do. All of that adds up to a lot of people wanting to see this guy for themselves; to see if the stories are true. Jesus wants to teach them about the love of the Father. He wants to dismantle their false beliefs about who God is and what he wants for them. And he also wants to meet their needs.

In this case, he wants to feed them.

But where can you find enough food to feed a stadium full of people? And who’s going to pay for it?

That’s what the disciples want to know.

Until our pal – the boy – enters the story.

One of his disciples, Andrew, Simon Peter’s brother, said to him, “There is a boy here who has five barley loaves and two fish, but what are they for so many?”

– John 6:8-9

Scripture doesn’t say whether Andrew just happened to notice this boy with a picnic lunch, or if the boy came and tapped him on the shoulder to offer his meal. But however it happened, the moment comes where this bread and fish is offered to Jesus.

And he gets that look in his eye; that look the disciples have come to know all too well.

Jesus said, “Have the people sit down.”

– John 6:10

I’m willing to bet he said it with a grin.

Jesus then took the loaves, and when he had given thanks, he distributed them to those who were seated. So also the fish, as much as they wanted. And when they had eaten their fill, he told his disciples, “Gather up the leftover fragments, that nothing may be lost.” So they gathered them up and filled twelve baskets with fragments from the five barley loaves left by those who had eaten. When the people saw the sign that he had done, they said, “This is indeed the Prophet who is to come into the world!”

– John 6:11-14

And that’s the end of the episode. We never hear about the boy again. Jesus leaves the crowd and journeys on.

So, doesn’t the boy seem kind of insignificant?

Well, here’s the thing: he is insignificant. He’s just a kid who brought some fish to a get-together.

What is significant is the impact these offerings made. What is significant is the miracle-working fully man, fully God Jesus ending up with the fish in his hands.

Did he need this boy’s meal?

Of course not. He could have produced fish from thin air or called bread to rain down from the sky. But, instead, he invited this picnic-packing kid into the work he was doing.

And it’s the same with us.

In the middle of this great big world and this grand eternal story, it’s easy to feel small and insignificant.

It’s easy to feel like you have nothing to offer God, or, at least, like you have less than someone else.

But God doesn’t care how much you have. He’s concerned with what you do with it.

Just like the boy in the story, we are invited into the work he’s already doing, and that makes what we have significant. Because in the hands of the God of the universe, even the smallest offering of our time, energy, talents, or resources can have an exponential impact – an eternal impact.

All we have to do is bring the fish.


 

New Creation

REMEMBER // RECOGNIZE // REPEAT

REMEMBER the promise of New Creation 

“For behold, I create new heavens and a new earth;
And the former shall not be remembered or come to mind.”
– Isaiah 65:17

“Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation. The old has passed away; behold, the new has come.”
– 2 Corinthians 5:17

“Behold, the dwelling place[ of God is with man. He will dwell with them, and they will be his people, and God himself will be with them as their God. He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away. And he who was seated on the throne said, ‘Behold, I am making all things new.’”
– Revelation 21:3-5

 

RECOGNIZE the presence of God in Prayer

Father, you are our creator, redeemer, and restorer who makes all things new. We long for the return of Jesus, when every tear will be wiped away, and all that is sad will become untrue. We hope in this promise.

Help us to live in light of the new creation, showing others what your kingdom looks like, and trusting you when we feel overcome by sadness, pain, and tears. Your promises are all true in Jesus and we rest and hope in the day when they are fully consummated.

 

REPEAT the rhythms of God’s presence

Remember that the new creation is marked by justice, peace, love, and the presence of God.

What is a small way you can demonstrate to someone near you what this new creation will look like? How can you seek justice, trust God completely, and love others in a tangible way that points to God’s care and restoration of his creation?

In your small corner of the world, show others justice, peace, and love. Embody the gospel around you and illustrate the kingdom of God.

 

“Is He Worthy?” – Andrew Peterson


 

Transformation

REMEMBER // RECOGNIZE // REPEAT

REMEMBER the promise of Transformation 

“Thus says the Lord,
your Redeemer, the Holy One of Israel:
‘I am the Lord your God,
who teaches you to profit,
who leads you in the way you should go.’”
– Isaiah 48:17

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

“I have been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ who lives in me. And the life I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.”
– Galatians 2:20

 

RECOGNIZE the presence of God in Prayer

Father, we pray to be transformed by the renewing of our minds through your word and your spirit. Help us to understand your will for our lives and help us to look more like Jesus every day.

We pray that our church is a people who are marked by love, who demonstrate joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Father, we confess we stumble and fail, but we trust that you are transforming us as we follow you. Help us to live by faith in Jesus and become more like him as we grow in our relationship with him.

 

REPEAT the rhythms of God’s presence

Ask someone you trust how you could look more like Jesus. God calls us into intimate community. We are adopted into the family of God, and in our family, we love each other and spur one another to holiness. To grow in likeness of Christ takes courage and humility.

Be courageous and humble today and ask your brother or sister-in-Christ to walk with you as God’s Spirit transforms you into a new creation — a new creation that is fully who God created you to be and represents Christ to those around you.

 

“Build My Life” – Passion


 

Peace

REMEMBER // RECOGNIZE // REPEAT

REMEMBER the promise of Peace

“You keep him in perfect peace
whose mind is stayed on you,
because he trusts in you.”
– Isaiah 26:3

“I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world.”
– John 16:33

“Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”
– Romans 5:1

 

RECOGNIZE the presence of God in Prayer  

Prince of Peace, our greatest need is you. Thank you for loving us and granting us peace with you through Jesus. Our world is busy, chaotic, and confusing, but in Christ we have true and lasting peace.

Father, would you quiet our anxious hearts and help us to live into the perfect peace of Jesus, trusting you and finding rest in you, even in the midst of tribulation. We pour out our anxieties and fears at your feet and pray for peace that surpasses all understanding.

Father, we pray for peace for ourselves, peace in our families, peace at work, and peace in this world. Help us to be peacemakers, drawing others to your son, so that they too can know the presence and peace of Christ.

 

REPEAT the rhythms of God’s presence

Become peacemakers. In a world that is fraught with strife and contention, let us be a people of peace. Although we were rebels and sinners, God has given us peace with him and peace in our hearts through Jesus.

With your family, online, with friends and with enemies, step away from anger and contention. Ask God to help you become a peacemaker, one who lives in truth, but never in a way that harms others or disparages the name of Christ.

 

“PS23” – Tanner Smith


 

Forgiveness

REMEMBER // RECOGNIZE // REPEAT

REMEMBER the promise of Forgiveness

“Come now, let us reason together, says the Lord:
though your sins are like scarlet,
they shall be as white as snow;
though they are red like crimson,
they shall become like wool.”
– Isaiah 1:18

“In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace.”
– Ephesians 1:7 

“He has delivered us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of his beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the forgiveness of sins.”
– Colossians 1:13-14

 

RECOGNIZE the presence of God in Prayer

Father, thank you for the grace and forgiveness you have shown me in the person, life, and sacrifice of Jesus Christ. Help me to believe your promise that I am completely forgiven for all of my sin—past, present, and future. I don’t understand it, but I am so grateful. Help me to step out of shame into new life in Christ.

I pray  your Spirit would transform me through your grace into the image of your Son. Help me to sacrifice for others as he has sacrificed for me. Help me to forgive others, as you have forgiven me. Help me to love, completely, those who have harmed me.

In all ways, Father, help me to be a light that points others to forgiveness and redemption in Jesus.

 

REPEAT the rhythms of God’s presence

Treat others as God has treated you: with grace.

In the face of sin and suffering, completely forgive others, as you have been forgiven in Christ.

Remember someone who has wronged you, pray to forgive them, and find a way to love them today, as Christ loves you.

 

“Broken Vessels (Amazing Grace)” – Hillsong Worship


 

God’s Presence

REMEMBER // RECOGNIZE // REPEAT

REMEMBER the promise of God’s presence

“Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by name, you are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you.”
– Isaiah 43:1-2

“God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.”
– Psalm 46:1

“For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of Christ Jesus our Lord.”
– Romans 8:38-39

 

RECOGNIZE the presence of God in Prayer

Lord I come to you today overwhelmed by the way you love me and take care of me. But there are also times when I feel distracted, overworked, drained, and pushed beyond my ability to endure. In those moments, help me to be willing to acknowledge how I am feeling and turn away from the distractions and worldly attachments that never really satisfy.

I want to rest in your presence and find the true peace my soul longs for. Help me to stay close to you and depend upon you. Even when you feel far, Father, help me to know you are near.

Today, help me to remember that there is not one step I am walking alone and I can trust you with the deepest needs of my heart.

 

REPEAT the rhythms of God’s presence  

Remember that God is the only one who truly fills you with peace, purpose, and joy. When you feel afraid, remember he is with you today, tomorrow, and always.

When you feel overwhelmed, remember he sees you and knows you completely. When God feels distant, run back to his open arms where you are safe and loved.

Today, find time to spend alone in the presence of God. Seek him and set your heart and mind to remember God is with you, and that he is more than enough.

 

“Another in the Fire” – Hillsong