Monday, December 1, 2008


Our imaginations are extremely powerful. You may be thinking that you are not an imaginative person, but, we are ALL imaginative. I don't use the word imagine in the sense of dreaming up ideas outside of reality; but in the sense that we have the ability to imagine. We all see life through the pictures and images that are created in our minds.

Think about this for a moment, as you read the following words, do so slowly, think about each one and notice what happens in your mind: church, dog, house, Bible, man. As you read each word I will bet you imagined in your mind a picture of a familiar church, a familiar dog, house, Bible or man.

As in this example, we readily create images or scenes in our minds based on information that we have already stored. The question is, are we using our imaginations according to the Word of God? Are our minds renewed to the point of instinctively imagining the best?

For example, if you find out that you are being let go from your current employment position, do you automatically paint a picture in your mind of having no money, not being able to pay your bills, or having a problem finding another position that will meet your needs? Or, is the picture you paint an image of God providing for you in the most amazing ways, while guiding you to an even better job where you will be able to have an even bigger impact on the world with His love?

We also imagine what others think and feel about us as well. We so often allow our imaginations to run wild with accusations toward others. Here are a few examples. A friend doesn't called us back, and we begin to imagine that she/he is mad or does not care, etc... We notice two friends laughing and joking and we begin to imagine that they are laughing and joking about us. We meet a new person and think "I don't think he/she likes me." All of this is based on nothing but negative imagination. We feed these thoughts with more thoughts, and before we know it, we are offended and holding offense against others based on no truth at all.

"Finally, brothers, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things."

Philippians 4:8

We should not be assuming the worst, as in the above examples. What we should be doing is assuming that all is well, unless we are told otherwise. We must learn to not allow our "thinker" to tell us that we are not liked or looked upon with favor. These are lies from the enemy that are intended to bring us down and plant doubt in our hearts about who we are in Jesus. A friend of mine said it something like this "I know that the purpose of my life is for God to show others His promises through me." (Thanks Jen :)

If we want to walk in the abundant life Jesus died for us to have it is imperative that we think according to God's truth. learning to think like God, will enable us to live in the peace that Jesus gave us. We worship an amazing God who loves us beyond what our imaginations can comprehend. What problem or situation could possibly be "BIG" when it is placed in the shadow of the Almighty God?

So, the next time we find ourselves "imagining" lets ask God to help us place our imagination in His very big shadow.

Lets Talk Grace! What are your thoughts on imagination? Do you have any stories to share about a time when your imagination caused you to think thoughts that were not true? Lets Talk Grace!

Monday, November 24, 2008

Giving Thanks on Thanksgiving - To Good to Be True

Before I knew Jesus:
I was born into dysfunction, as so many of us are. My childhood was not filled with security or an overwhelming sense of love and acceptance. As a matter of fact, I recall feeling quite insecure and unsure of myself the majority of the time. As I grew older all of these feelings grew along with me. I became a mom at the age of sixteen and started out into the "real world" for a taste of bitter sweet reality. Even with child in tow, and a new set of circumstances, I simply wanted to fit in. I wanted to be accepted, but try as I might, I never felt as though I was good enough. I hung out with the wrong crowd for the most part, doing the wrong things at the wrong times. But even the wrong crowd could not make me feel right about myself. I would not have recognized or known real love if it had knocked me upside the head and flat on my behind!

I eventually woke up one morning and realized that once upon a time, when I was a very little girl, I had dreams and I was going to do something great someday! I looked around and realized that "great" did not describe the life that I was living. It also, did not describe the life I was giving my son. So, I made some changes. Then,a few Months after my Ah-Ha moment, I met a great guy, got married,and had another baby. Yet, with all of this greatness in my life, that emptiness still nagged away at the inside of me, taunting me to not trust in love or happiness. My marriage was struggling, and I was feeling as though I could not get anything right. I felt as though it was inevitable, If I could mess up a good thing, I would.

When I met Jesus:
I was pregnant with my third child when a friend invited me to church. I wanted to go, but continued to put it off and put it off for weeks. Finally one cold, March morning, I decided it's now or never. I got my 8yr old ready, bundled up my baby and off we went. My friend met me in the lobby, showed me where to take my children, and ushered me to my seat. I remember thinking "This is church?" It was so unlike the stuffy images I had painted in my head. The worship was energizing and refreshing, and the people were all friendly and seemed to genuinely be glad to make my acquaintance. I decided fairly quick that I loved it. I returned the following Wednesday evening, and the following Sunday, and the Wednesday after that, I gave my life to the Lord.

I remember the moment so very clearly. I was watching a woman worship on stage and thought to myself "How can she be so full of joy? I want whatever it is she has!" you see, I knew this woman had suffered the loss of a child, and yet, she had more joy than I had ever even imagined having. I prayed that night, from the bottom of my heart, and asked God to come into my life. I have been running toward Him, feet going as fast as they can, ever since. Unfortunately, my husband was not as thrilled about my new found faith as I was. But, the story is not yet over.

After I met Jesus:
God began house cleaning in my heart from day one. The first of many areas was my marriage. God has done, and is still doing, an incredible work in both of us. He has blessed us with a wonderful marriage that is filled with the beauty of friendship. My husband has become my very best friend, and we have a relationship built on love, support, honesty and acceptance. My husband and I, even after all these years, are still not completely on the same page spiritually. However, we are getting there, and I have learned that God is faithful, the work that He has done in both of us, is irreversible, and there is no where to go but forward.

God has taken my insecurities and turned them into promises. He has taken my fear of messing up and turned it into an excitement that awaits the next step of our journey together. He has shown me that the love I have always longed for is found in His eyes, and He has turned my "little girl dreams" into realities that are within reach. Through Jesus I have learned who I really am, Who I was meant to be, and what I am capable of accomplishing through Him. I no longer feel unaccepted, I feel as though I am right where I was always meant to be. And, I know for the first time in my life that this is one good, no, great thing, I will never mess up. It is not about me and how well I am able to perform, but about Jesus and what He has already done!

All of my "trying" got me no where, but trusting in the gospel saved my life. "Gospel" is actually associated with a Greek word that means to good to be true. God has an abundant life of, to good to be true, just waiting for each of us. This is something we can all be grateful for this Thanksgiving. As we draw close to Jesus He will show us how to receive everything that has been accomplished for us on the cross.

"Today, many of us bloggers have devoted a special post in which we are "Giving Thanks on Thanksgiving" by sharing our personal testimonies of the Lord's work in our lives and/or that of our families. Our collective prayer is that this sharing of our testimonies will not only encourage each other and give Glory to our Lord, but also to those who happen upon our blogs. To enjoy many more testimonies like the one you've just read please visit the "Giving Thanks on Thanksgiving" blog located HERE. The direct link to this site can be found in the right sidebar under Giving Thanks on Thanksgiving 08'

Monday, November 17, 2008

Simply...Turn to JESUS

Read Matthew 11:25-30

There are many teachings in the Christian world today that are taught in the name of Jesus, then turn around, and point us in the direction of more self-effort. These messages say to us Jesus did all of these great things for you--now, it is up to YOU, and YOUR understanding, to go figure out how to walk in His power! This can leave us feeling void, insufficient, and well, hopeless. Messages that are truly taught in Jesus name ALWAYS point us to no one other than...JESUS!

Lets think about this for a moment. As believers are we called to look at ourselves and our own ability to figure it all out? We try to think right, act right, and talk right. We exhaust ourselves with wonder as we "try" to discern if we are even believing or interpreting the scriptures right. As believers, is it really necessary to "try" so hard? Jesus did not walk this way "trying" with all His might to be what the Father had called Him to be and do what the Father had called Him to do.

"For My yoke is wholesome (useful, [a]good--not harsh, hard, sharp, or pressing, but comfortable, gracious, and pleasant), and My burden is light and easy to be borne."

Matthew 11:30

He simply was. He simply did. He simply said. He simply rested in His oneness with the Father.

I recently read a teaching that said God had set up spiritual rules that must be followed in order for us to walk in the abundant life that Jesus died for us to have. Now, I am not disputing that there are rules set by God in the spiritual realm, as gravity is a rule in this realm. I am disputing that we have the ability to figure them out. I am disputing that it is anything other than God guiding us and revealing the mysteries and secrets of His kingdom to us, that leads us to the place of walking in His abundance. Jesus was ONE with the Father and through this He instinctively knew what to do. He had the desire and will to do, say and think what was right.

"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33

When we seek first the kingdom, God will add all we need to know into our daily lives, along with all we need. We have to learn to trust what is inside of us instead of second guessing ourselves. After all, as believers we have been given a new nature in Christ. A nature that now desires to be one with our heavenly Father through Jesus. When we spend time worrying over whether or not we are getting it right, or whether we are doing well enough, we put a kink in the flow of God's grace in our lives. God's grace--His undeserved favor, along with His power and ability to overcome and change what needs to be changed--works best in areas that we have completely surrendered and stopped worrying over.

Jesus says in Matthew 11:30 that His yoke is comfortable, do you feel comfortable? Does your life, how you feel about yourself, where you are and what you are called to do feel hard, harsh, sharp or pressing? If so, this is not the yoke you were called to carry. We have been taught by religion that we should be afraid of comfort, that if we feel comfortable we should worry. We have been given the impression that comfort and rest means that we are not growing in our walk with God. However, this is not what the Bible teaches.

Websters definitions of comfortable speak of physical ease, or more than what is needed. Jesus, says He will give us rest when we come to Him. A rest from physical or self effort. When we come to Him He is more than enough for a comfortable walk. When we are ONE with Jesus as He is ONE with the Father, we will instinctively desire to do and say what is right.

Does this mean that we will walk in perfection and never make any mistakes? Does this mean that we will never have to go and make a wrong right? No, it means that when--and I mean when--we get off course, when we realize we have missed the mark in some way or another, we will desire to make it right. When we turn to God and trust Him to guide us and lead us He will show us how.

I have come to a place in my life where I just want to simply Be. I want to enjoy everyday, where I am, not worry about where I am going, while trusting that Daddy is taking me there. I want to fellowship with Him and enjoy His company, not worry if I am good enough, or trying hard enough. I want to Simply...Turn to Jesus, and trust in what He has done for me.

Lets Talk Grace! Are you ready to simply Be? Are you too, tired of "trying"? What are some thoughts or insights you might have to share? Lets Talk Grace!

Thursday, November 13, 2008

A Prayer in Action

There are many who "pray" for others. Praying of course is powerful, necessary and not to be underestimated. Prayer is how we communicate with our heavenly Father. But, I wonder how many times do we pray for God to do things that we can do ourselves, as His representatives, as His hands and feet?

Now, I realize that we cannot save every person from every problem, and we cannot solve every financial crisis that passes by our doorstep. But, I am challenged to ask myself and others if we are helping when we can--or, do we just pray, asking God to do what we have the been given the ability and power to do ourselves?

If a friend comes to us with a need that we could help meet, do we? Or, do we "Pray" for them? How many are willing to look for a way to help meet the needs of others? I was deeply touched by a friend today who put a prayer into action to help meet a need that most would "pray" for.

My home church The Grove Fellowship in Boone County IL, is hosting a camp next summer for foster children called Royal Family Kids Camp RFKC. We are in the process of raising at a minimum $10,000 for the operation of this camp. This camp is designed to give these children a jam packed week of being loved on, fussed over and treated like royalty, something many of them have never experienced before. A week that says we care, we love you, but most of all, God loves you!

My friend Heather lives in Florida, and has never attended our church, however she listens to the messages that are posted at and came across the one about RFKC. She was moved enough to pray for this event, the workers, and the kids. However, when I read her blog today (Swallowingamouse found in my list of Blogs) I found myself choked up and at a loss for words (those of you who know me know that this is no easy task, me at a loss for words)! Heather has put her prayer into action, she has put a valuable item on ebay in order to help raise money for this camp. Sometimes, we need to be the answer, or part of the answer to a prayer, not just the one praying.

I have recently been challenged in this area myself, and have found that there is great joy and excitement in being part of the answer to the problem.

Again, we cannot fix everything for everyone, but are we doing what we can? Gods favor flows into the lives of those who believe and trust Him--undeserved and unearned, do we extend that grace to others when given the opportunity?

If you would like more information or you too, would like to help RFKC, please contact The Grove Fellowship at

Lets talk Grace! Does this speak to you? What are your thoughts on Prayers in Action? Does this challenge you to step out and take more action? Lets Talk Grace!

Monday, November 10, 2008

True Confessions of a New Covenant Believer

"Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and they who indulge in it shall eat the fruit of it [for death or life]. Proverbs 18:21

This is a very popular verse in Christian circles today, most have heard it at least once or twice. But, do we really understand the depths of what this is saying to us? Our words are very important. God spoke and the world was created, likewise, we, being made in the image of God, have the power to speak into our lives, either for the production of fruit or poison. So how can we be certain that we are speaking life?

John 14:6 tells us that Jesus is Life, therefore, our words, our confessions, need to agree with what Jesus says about us. Our words need to be in alignment with the finished work on the cross. We all encounter trials in this life and there is no need for us to pretend otherwise. We just need to make sure that what we are confessing about our trials is in agreement with the finished work of Jesus.

let me give you an example, awhile ago I was going through a very rough time with one of my children. At times it felt as though my heart was breaking. It would have been silly for me to deny that I was having a rough time because my friends would not have been able to encourage me and speak truth into my life. Fellowship means to make deposits and in this case I needed their deposits. Likewise, it would have been deadly (spiritually) for me to focus on only my feelings or what I saw. When I shared my circumstance with my closest friends, I did so in a way that said "I am hurting and I need you, but I am going to keep my eyes on Jesus because I know what He did for me, I know how much He loves me and my child, and I know that if I focus on Him and not my problem I will to see His victory!"

The Greek word for confess is Exomologeo it is also the word used for to praise.

Ex means - By, out of, derived from

Homologeo means - to agree with another, say the same thing as, to praise, declare one's self the worshiper of one

So, what we confess into our lives needs to be derived from what Jesus did, and agree with the finished work of Jesus on the cross. The New Covenant believer walks in God's grace! We are not earning anything from God, simply receiving because of what Jesus has done for us. As we begin to receive God's unearned, unmerited favor in our lives we will begin to believe all of His wonderful promises,and our tongues will begin to line up with His truth!

This same principle applies to the confessions we make before God about ourselves. We should be confessing to God that even though we may have blown it here or there, He is worthy of praise because Jesus got it all right!

Do we confess our sin to God? Absolutely! But not so that we can earn His forgiveness, we already have it. We share with Him how we feel because we have a relationship with Him and we want to tell Him that we are sorry, and that we love Him. So when you come to God with a deed done wrong say " Father I messed up and I am sorry, but I thank you that you have already forgiven me! I thank you for Jesus, I thank you for how awesome and wonderful you are! Thank you that I am your child!" Confess what Jesus says is true! Praise Him!

Lets talk grace! What are your thoughts? Do you have any examples of times you let go and trusted in the lord believing and confessing His truth? Do you still feel as though you have to beg God to forgive you? Has this Blog helped in any way? Any questions? Lets talk Grace!

To listen to this message in its entirety please visit under Messages and Podcast. (This message is dated November 9th,if it is not yet available please try back)

Friday, October 17, 2008

"I Yam What I Yam"

Insecurity. Such an ugly word, yet it takes up residence in some shape, size or form in each man, woman, and child. Over the last few years I have discovered more insecurities about myself than I care to admit. However, I am thankful, because if God has placed me in a position where they are manifested, then, I can ask Him to change me. I can ask Him to help me become more secure in who I am in Jesus. I can ask Him to help me not allow the opinions of other people, to shadow God's opinion of me, and, I can ask Him to help me see myself through His eyes. After all, "I Yam What I Yam" no more, no less, said so beautifully by none other than Popeye.

I think insecurity is the root of so many human behaviors. It is one weapon that the enemy keeps in the front of His tool belt, trying to make us feel as though we are not good enough. But God says that there is no condemnation for those in Christ Jesus (Romans 8:1). Condemned is unfit for use, and every believer, yet unperfected, is able to be used and transformed by God.

Insecurity also causes us to give the opinions of others far to much control over us. As well as leading us to assume that others are thinking thoughts toward us that they may not even hold. The enemy is nothing more than a liar and a deceiver. He has no real power, therefore, he must manipulate his way through trying to destroy God's creation. If we stand in the truth, and keep our eyes on Jesus, there is no insecurity that we cannot overcome. God's grace, Jesus, is more than capable of teaching us how to not only know we have the victory, but to stand in it as well.

So, if you, like me, are on the road to complete and total freedom in this area, remember to keep your eyes on Jesus. Focus on His goodness, His worth, His love for you, and His ability. We all fall short, but God accepts us and loves us as we are. He choose each of us, knowing that we have insecurities to overcome, knowing that we have flaws, yet He does not see us that way. And, those things that seem to so readily steal our peace, are already overcome by the cross.

"I have told you these things, so that in Me you may have [perfect peace] peace and confidence. In the world you have tribulation and trials and distress and frustration; but be of good cheer [take courage; be confident, certain undaunted]! For I have overcome the world. [I have deprived it of power to harm you and have conquered it for you.]" John 16:33

We do not have to live under the enemies lies. We are FREE! Just as Jesus is so are we in this world, and He is an overcomer!

Lets Talk Grace! What do you think about insecurity? What are some that you have overcome or are still overcoming? Do you believe that God through His grace, is able and wants to help you stand in victory in your area of struggle? Lets Talk Grace!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008



Grace. I have discovered the beauty of this word and the power that it contains to change and transform me. The Word "grace" is one that I have heard many times in my life as a believer, however, until the last few years it has lacked the person of Jesus. Many, myself included, have often thought of grace as a type of "Tylenol." Ah, how wrong we are!

"Tylenol" covers up symptoms and "gets us through. Grace overcomes! I have discovered that grace is the power of The Gospel. Jesus gives us gifts when we say yes to Him in our lives. One of those gifts is righteousness (right standing with God), the other is grace.

"Those who receive [God's] overflowing grace (unmerited favor) and the free gift of righteousness [putting them in right standing with Himself] reign as kings in life through the one man Jesus Christ the Messiah, the Anointed One).
Romans 5:17

The Amplified Bible, in various place describes grace in three different ways. The first one is: God's undeserved, unmerited favor. The second is: The power of the Holy Spirit to overcome every and any evil tendencies. And last, but certainly not least is: The unmerited favor and merciful kindness by which God, exerting His holy influence upon souls, turns them to Christ, and keeps, strengthens, and increases them in Christian virtues. WOW! The word "I" is not contained in there anywhere! Amen!

I used to think I had to earn all that stuff! I thought I had to read my Bible the right amount of time. I thought I had to pray long enough, and hard enough. I thought I had to have good attendance at church. And, I thought I had to give enough to God that He would give back to me. Oh, I knew I was saved, I just didn't know I had all that righteousness and grace contains without self-effort!

Don't misunderstand, as I said in the last post, I am not implying that we do not need to do anything. But, what I am saying is that none of those things mentioned above score us points with God! All of our doing is not what we must do, what must be done was taken care of by Jesus! But, we get to participate, therefore, there are things we will do! Our doings are called fruits not efforts. The Fruits of Righteousness (Philippians 1:11)!

Lets reign as kings in life together and let go, and let God be God. All of our trying to be good enough will only leave us feeling frustrated and insufficient. Whenever you feel like you are lacking, turn to Jesus and thank Him for who you already are because of Him. May His GRACE flow freely in your life!

Lets talk Grace! What are your thoughts on Grace? Does this challenge you in anyway? Do you agree that Grace is person named Jesus? Let's talk Grace!

Monday, October 6, 2008

What to do, What to do....

What to do, What to do...

Please read: Philippians 1:9-11, 2:13, 3:9-11

Would you believe me if I told you that when you are born-again you do not have to focus on your behavior? Ah, now I've got your attention! As crazy as this statement may seem it really is the truth. If you are truly born-again and you have surrendered yourself to Jesus, right doing will happen naturally as you draw closer to the Lord. Don't believe me? Let's see what the Bible says!

Philippians 1:11 refers to right doing and right believing as fruits of righteousness. I am not saying that we do not need to do the right thing. What I am saying is that when we focus on Jesus, and we learn to trust in Him, when we grow in His love for us, our actions will follow what we believe in our hearts. When we learn to trust in, rely on, and cling to the Lord--when He becomes our determined purpose --we will naturally produce Fruits of Righteousness.

"[For my determined purpose is] that I may know Him [that I may progressively become more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him, perceiving and recognizing and understanding the wonders of His person more strongly and more clearly], and that I may in the same way come to know the power outflowing from His resurrection [which it exerts over believers]..."
Philippians 3:10

Simply doing the right thing does not make us righteous, receiving the righteousness of Christ does. We must focus on only one thing--Jesus. When we do this, His presence and power in our lives will bring transformation. Focusing on our behavior alone, will only leave us frustrated and feeling condemned (or prideful, if we think we have done it all right). Focus on Jesus and His love for you and you will walk in Fruits of righteousness!

Tell me what you think. Let's talk Grace! Does this thought pattern challenge you in anyway? Does it offend you? What are some behavior area's in your life that seem to have grabbed your attention away from Jesus?

Being loved by HIM, with you,

Sunday, September 28, 2008

"Keep on asking and it will be given you; keep on seeking and you will find; keep on knocking [reverently] and [the door] will be opened to you. For everyone who keeps on asking receives; and he who keeps on seeking finds; and to him who keeps knocking, [the door] will be opened."

Matthew 7:7-8

As I stated in the last post, I think we often mistake persistence for more self-effort. If the circumstances in our lives are not working we try something new, and something new, and something new. If we feel as though we are not making head-way we try approaching the situation harder or faster or we try to think of a new angle. However, none of this is God's idea of persistence for those that belong to Him. For those that belong to God life should be rested. Rested in the finished work of Jesus.

Several years ago a friend had a vision from the Lord that was for me. In this vision I was trying to kneed dough, but I was continually trying to forcefully stab at the dough with my finger, attempting to get the dough to cooperate by force. Then, the Lord came and took hold of my hand and gently guided my hand into the dough and I began to gently kneed it. At the time I thought that I had understood what this meant. Now, all these years later, the Lord has reminded me of this, and I have a more complete understanding.

Persistence is continually looking to Jesus. It is not trying new angles, or running harder or faster to accomplish what we want done. I am not implying that we will never have to do anything, but when we are trusting in Jesus and the power of the Holy Spirit to work in us and for us, we will respond when needed instead of running in circles and being frustrated. Asking why God, does nothing ever happen the way I want it to?

Continually looking to Jesus and His grace is the only way. Being persistent in being one with Him is the only answer. God does not come through for us because of anything we have done. He is not looking upon us thinking "As soon as I see that He/She has exhausted all of his/her effort then I will help!" No, God simply wants us to look to Him and trust Him to work on our behalf. The above scripture is not just referring to us being saved from hell. It has to do with our entire lives in Christ. Salvation is multi-faceted and means safety, deliverance, ease, soundness, prosperity, in good condition, not damaged injured or diseased.

So, when you think of persistence, what do you think of? How does the person of Jesus who is grace and truth impact and change the worldly view of persistence? Lets Talk Grace!

Being loved by HIM, with you,

Friday, September 26, 2008


Well, I have decided to join the wide world of blogging! I am just getting started and still learning how to set up my blog page. But, once I have this done I will have much to say! I am never at a loss for words. Okay, never might be a slight stretch (not by much though).

I look forward to sharing insight from from God's Word, and sharing what is happening in my own life as well as my heart. I have been thinking a lot about persistence lately. I think we have some how mistaken persistence for more self-effort. I believe that when God speaks of persistence in His Word He is calling us into something much deeper than an increase of our own self-efforts.

More to come on this later. This is just a nibble of what this blog will be about. It will be all about resting in the finished work of Jesus. It will be about living a life that is so wrapped in God's grace that favor and blessing will follow us where ever we go!

Talk Soon, Daveda