He will walk with us.

I read this passage this morning, and I thought it should be shared!

Isaiah 43:1-3a

“1 But now, O Jacob, listen to the Lord who created you. O Israel, the one who formed you says, “Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine.
2 When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you.
3 For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior…”

That is so reassuring: that no matter what we go through, God has set us apart to be with us in any situation. He has claimed us as His own, and He will never abandon us. He will continually save us time and time again, without fail, in His own timing and plan.

Who is God to you?

Who is God? Is He mighty? Is He forceful? Is He loving? Is He just? Is He kind? Is He holy?

Our God is all of these things. He can make all creation shout His praise, and all the heavens thunder and applaud His glory; but He also speaks to us in a gentle whisper and knows every tiny detail of our lives.

Isaiah 40:12-20, 26-28

“12 Who else has held the oceans in his hand? Who has measured off the heavens with his fingers? Who else knows the weight of the earth or has weighed the mountains and hills on a scale?
13 Who is able to advise the Spirit of the Lord? Who knows enough to give him advice or teach him?
14 Has the Lord ever needed anyone’s advice? Does he need instruction about what is good? Did someone teach him what is right or show him the path of justice?
15 No, for all the nations of the world are but a drop in the bucket. They are nothing more than dust on the scales. He picks up the whole earth as though it were a grain of sand.

16 All the wood in Lebanon’s forests and all Lebanon’s animals would not be enough to make a burnt offering worthy of our God.
17 The nations of the world are worth nothing to him. In his eyes they count for less than nothing—mere emptiness and froth.
18 To whom can you compare God? What image can you find to resemble him?

19 Can he be compared to an idol formed in a mold, overlaid with gold, and decorated with silver chains?
20 Or if people are too poor for that, they might at least choose wood that won’t decay and a skilled craftsman to carve an image that won’t fall down!
26 Look up into the heavens. Who created all the stars? He brings them out like an army, one after another, calling each by its name. Because of his great power and incomparable strength, not a single one is missing.
27 O Jacob, how can you say the Lord does not see your troubles? O Israel, how can you say God ignores your rights?
28 Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The Lord is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding.”

So amazing. God holds the earth, yet He sees us and knows us and gives us strength. That’s the kind of God I want in my life.

I love this song, and it totally describes who God is in our lives:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=N6J5TzSE_18

He will never forsake us.

Ever since I was little, I’ve known that God says He’ll never leave or forsake us. While that meant a lot to me back then, I’d reason to say that it’s meant even more to me now as I’ve been growing up. It was super easy to believe that God was always with me when I was in a Christian school, learning all about God and the stories of the Bible. But now, when I see teenagers at school that have never had a relationship with God before, and don’t have Him as a part of their lives, it’s easier to believe the lie that God is not here to stay in our lives. But when I think that, I just need to remind myself that that is not true according to God’s Word.

Hebrews 13:8 says, “God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.”

Matthew 28:20 says, “And be sure of this: I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

Psalm 36:5 says, “Your love, O LORD, reaches to the heavens, your faithfulness to the skies.”

Our God is faithful, honest, true, loving, compassionate, tender-hearted, forgiving, and trusting.

When we ever doubt His presence in our lives, all we need to do is look into the Bible for His words of promise. We must also remember what He has brought us through in the past. He’s been there for us before, and He will be there for us again and again.

Always There.

Isn’t God so faithful? This world and everything in it could fail us, but He will never leave our side. His presence will never subside, and His truth will never fade. He formed the whole entire universe, yet He still cares for us, his children. He handcrafted the sun, stars, and ocean, but he still listens to our every word and cares for us when we cry.

For the truth is, God isn’t just the sovereign Master of all; He is the closest and most intimate One to us that we could ever know.

Joy in the Mourning

Recently, I was in the Fine Arts competition with church. (For those who have never heard about it, Fine Arts is an opportunity for teenagers to minister with their gifts and talents)

I love to write, so I decided that for the category of “First Person Essay,” I would write about what God has done in my life ever since the death of Katie. As I started writing it, I was amazed as I looked back at my past and saw how God is currently shaping my future through Katie’s testimony.

I entered this essay in the district competition, and it advanced down to Orlando for National Fine Arts. I felt so blessed that God let it advance. More importantly, though, I was blessed that God was using the essay to bless others with it. I’ve been able to read this essay numerous times: in front of relatives, for those who have lost loved ones, and even in a church youth group last month.

I feel that as I read this account of what God’s done, I am being poured out by Him. For me, there is so much fulfillment found in knowing that I can show other people God’s comfort by letting them know that I have received it myself.

If you would like to read it, just click on the link entitled “Printable Joy” on http://s149930.gridserver.com/joy-in-the-mourning/

I hope and pray that you are blessed abundantly by it!

Psalm 34

“1 I will praise the Lord at all times. I will constantly speak his praises. 2 I will boast only in the Lord; let all who are helpless take heart. 3 Come, let us tell of the Lord’s greatness; let us exalt his name together. 4 I prayed to the Lord, and he answered me. He freed me from all my fears. 5 Those who look to him for help will be radiant with joy; no shadow of shame will darken their faces. 6 In my desperation I prayed, and the Lord listened; he saved me from all my troubles. 7 For the angel of the Lord is a guard; he surrounds and defends all who fear him. 8 Taste and see that the Lord is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him! 9 Fear the Lord, you his godly people, for those who fear him will have all they need. 10 Even strong young lions sometimes go hungry, but those who trust in the Lord will lack no good thing. 11 Come, my children, and listen to me, and I will teach you to fear the Lord. 12 Does anyone want to live a life that is long and prosperous? 13 Then keep your tongue from speaking evil and your lips from telling lies! 14 Turn away from evil and do good. Search for peace, and work to maintain it. 15 The eyes of the Lord watch over those who do right; his ears are open to their cries for help. 16 But the Lord turns his face against those who do evil; he will erase their memory from the earth. 17 The Lord hears his people when they call to him for help. He rescues them from all their troubles. 18 The Lord is close to the brokenhearted; he rescues those whose spirits are crushed. 19 The righteous person faces many troubles, but the Lord comes to the rescue each time. 20 For the Lord protects the bones of the righteous; not one of them is broken! 21 Calamity will surely overtake the wicked, and those who hate the righteous will be punished. 22 But the Lord will redeem those who serve him. No one who takes refuge in him will be condemned.”

Over and over again in this chapter in Psalms, we see the Lord’s provision on the righteous and those that He loves. He will never leave us nor forsake us. He will always be there for us no matter what and in any circumstance of our life.

When we feel alone, God is there to comfort. When we have grief, He will mend our hearts. When we are discouraged, He is there to encourage. And on and on it goes… God is there for us, and He will be there for us for eternity. That is so comforting!