encouragement

Never Alone

I’m not sure who needs to hear this right now, but you are NOT ALONE. There is nowhere you can go that God isn’t able to find you or meet you where you are. Today may be hard, this season may be hard, this year may have not gotten off to the start you were hoping for, but it’s not over. Get back up, and keep going. Wherever you are, if you just keep moving forward, the storm clouds will soon fade into the background and the beauty of God’s promises will begin to shine over head. The radiant beauty of God’s promises will peak through and bring light to what God is doing and will remind you of what God has said for you. His light will reveal how He is with you and who He is keeping you.

Jesus loves you and you matter to Him, even if you can’t always feel it. He has a purpose for your life and it is more beautiful than you could even ask for, think, or imagine. He has plans for you and they are incredible.

“For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 NLT

“For we are His workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:10 NKJV

There is no place He cannot meet you in or pull you out of. His arms are not too short that He cannot save nor are His ears to bogged down with stuff that He cannot hear your request or cry. He is not over you or done with you, but He is actually desiring and willing to endure with you. There is nowhere you can go that He cannot find you, heal you, help you, and love you.

He loves us so much that He sent His Son, Jesus Christ, in the form of a baby who would live the perfect life, that we could never live. Then He died a death that we as people, could never die; a death that would heal the divide between God and man. It’s because of Jesus Christ and His love for all of mankind that brought Him down to earth…to be a gift for us and to one day become the ransom, the payment for yours and my own sin. Sin causes us to miss God’s standard for our lives, it causes us to live in ways that draw us away from Him and pulls away from our purpose. But because He loves us, He chose us and came to earth to let us in.

You matter to Him. Let Him in. Invite Him into your life. Ask Him to come live with you. If you already have, it doesn’t stop there, but invite Him into your daily living; into your good days and your bad days. Invite Him into the places no one has seen and even let Him be your Valentine this weekend. He loves you, and desires to walk with you each and every day. He wants to love you in all of the ways you need to be loved. He desires to show you all that He has places inside of you; all of the gifts and talents within you that will bless the world and move mountains. And just a little reminder: no matter how crazy things look now, He is working on your behalf; completing things in you and in your life that you know not of.

“And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.” Philippians 1:6

He will NEVER EVER FAIL YOU and He WILL ALWAYS love you!! You mean everything to Him and He will always be there. He is just a call away.

I hope your day, your weekend, and your journey will be filled to overflowing with God’s love, kindness, mercy and joy. And when you feel alone, or you feel like things are all bad, look up; you’ll find your help there.

Psalm 121

“I look up to the mountains. Where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord. He is the Maker of heaven and earth. He won’t let your foot slip. He who watches over you won’t get tired. In fact, he who watches over Israel won’t get tired or go to sleep. The Lord watches over you. The Lord is like a shade tree at your right hand. The sun won’t harm you during the day. The moon won’t harm you during the night. The Lord will keep you from every kind of harm. He will watch over your life. The Lord will watch over your life no matter where you go, both now and forever.”

I am praying for you. I pray that your head be lifted high today as you finish reading this. I pray that your heart be filled with joy unspeakable. I pray that you experience God’s hope which is always full and never empty. And I pray that you experience His love which never fails, always continues with us and endures patiently with us. May you experience Christ’s love and His presence in your life in ways you never thought possible.

“For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Romans‬ ‭8:38-39‬ ‭NIV‬‬

God Bless you,

Arnita Faith

encouragement

He Hears You When You Call

Did you know that when you call out to God, He hears you? But that He doesn’t just hear you and keeps silent, but that He hears you and will answer you to bring you peace, some joy, a renewed perspective, hope, strength and will remind you of who you are to Him? And this is just the tip of the ice burg.

A few months back, I was given the opportunity to teach a bible study on the benefits of God and I found myself in Psalm 3. This is by far one of my favorite psalms to read, but as I began studying it, the power of call on God was illuminated to me in a greater way.

The Backdrop of Psalm 3: King David is on the run from his son and is now hiding out in a cave. His son Absalom has caused a revolt against him and was in the process of turning the entire kingdom of Israel against him. Absalom turned the people against David and some of his most trusted advisors. When David found out, he took the few people who were still on his side and he fled. In the book of Second Samuel, we see David in great sorrow and agony. He has been betrayed by the people he loves and cares about, and to top it all off, it is all being spearheaded by his own son. He is in a place of mourning, confusion, and does not know what to do. People are telling him that this is all his fault and that God has forsaken him and he deserves all that is happening to him. Talk about kicking a person when they are down.

In Psalm 3, we meet David in the midst of this. But as we go from verse to verse we see David’s countenance shifting. He starts off in verses one and two telling us what people are saying about him. 

“Lord, how they have increased who trouble me! Many are they who rise up against me. Many are they who say of me, “There is no help for him in God.” Selah”

But then we see, in verse four, David respond to life’s circumstances by going away to talk with God in a one on one chat with the Lord God, his Father and Creator.

“I cried to the Lord with my voice, And He heard me from His holy hill. Selah”

This verse!!! In this verse, David is teaching us of how we should respond when life is going haywire or when our lives seem to get flipped on their heads. He makes the point to say that he cried out, or called out to the Lord. He didn’t go to advisors for wisdom or army commanders for military strategies, but He went to the One who could see all angles and attend to what he was going through from every side. He went to the One who would make a real difference. Now, don’t get me wrong. I’m not saying we cannot go to people we trust when we are going through, but through them we should ALWAYS be pointed back to Christ in their counsel. Also, God desires to be our first run to; so when others don’t answer or when we don’t want to be bothered with things, God should be our go to because His insight and perspective is higher and beyond our own. He desires to be our first place of outpour and home of refuge.

I love that it says that David cried out to God. This word cried, in its original Hebrew language, means to call out loudly in order to get someone’s attention. It’s a word used with expectation. He wasn’t just crying, but he expected God to hear him and respond. 

When you cry out to Jesus, is it with such expectancy? Is it with the belief, the faith, that He WILL be attentive to your call? If not, I hope it becomes this for us all. This has challenged me to not just fuss, but to look to God with the expectation of His intervention. Babies cry out with purpose, knowing they are going to catch someone’s attention because they have a need met. Something that is causing a bother to them. The are seeking to to be held, fed, changed, picked up, and maybe even just to be noticed and get some attention. They do it with the expectation of getting their needs met and they do it until it’s met. Well, we are God’s babies, and our cries matter to Him and He desires to be attentive to then and sustain us.

“Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.” Psalm 55:22 New Living Translation Version

So when you call out to Him, do it KNOWING you’re going to get His attention because He cares for you beyond what you could ever think, hope for or even imagine. And the bible says, “[that] His ear is not too heavy that He cannot hear”. He is listening.

And David was rewarded for his cry; he was heard by God. But God didn’t just hear him, oh no, no, no; He answered him from His holy hill. Meaning, God answered David from a place of authority, a place of higher perspective and insight, from a place of wisdom and understanding of what was, is, and what was still to come. God’s response to David didn’t change the things that were happening around David, but He DID change David’s response to what was happening around him. When I was studying this text, I learned that verse three was the result of verse four. Because David cried out to God, he received a response from God and the answer from God shifted his entire perspective. So much so, David began to remember who God was to him and who he was to God (which was not dependent on the situation). David said, “But You, O Lord, are a shield for me, My glory and the One who lifts up my head.” Meaning:

“But You, O Lord, are a shield for me” = You Lord, are my protection and You will be my defense! It does not matter how many are against me because I know I have You to fight for me and that you are on my side. God, You cover me…You’ve got my back and You will be my guard!”

“But You, O Lord, are…MY glory” = You Lord, are the One who brings significance and worth to me. It’s not from the title You’ve given me or the position You’ve placed me in. But I am significant because I am connected to You. I matter and have meaning because I have You; not because of my kingship or because of what people think of me or what I have done. All that can fade away or be taken from me, but because I still have You, I have EVERYTHING. Because of You Lord, I have purpose, value and importance.”

“But You, O Lord, are…the One who lifts up my head.” = You Lord, are the One who shifts my perspective from a low, defeated, and distracted place to a high and victorious place; to a place of peace and clarity. You are my Encourager, the Restorer of my joy and the Resurrector of my vision. The One who sets my eyes, my thoughts, and my understanding in the place where You are. The One who helps me see a clear picture.

This is what calling on God does. It changes things. It gives you back your fight, it gives you back your vision and it gives you back your strength to continue forward. So many times we feel so weak and downcast and heavy burdened with life and we just walk around with it on our backs; carrying things God is telling us to “just come to Me and put it in My hands”. One of my pastors said, “We have to give Christ our burdens because He cannot fix what is in our hands”. So many times we want things to change or to be mended but more often than not, we are willing to call on Him and place it firmly in His hands.

“casting all your cares [all your anxieties, all your worries, and all your concerns, once and for all] on Him, for He cares about you [with deepest affection, and watches over you very carefully].” 1 Peter 5:7 Amplified Version

We have to learn how to willingly go to God, call on Him and tarry in His presence; we have to learn how to stay put in His presence until we receive the response we need. And we may be seeking for God to change outside situations when really God wants to shift things within us. Proverbs 16:1 says, “We can make our own plans, but the Lord gives the right answer.” We can try to do things our way, but it’s God alone that has the response we truly need. 

It’s in our time away with God, that as we call on Him, He will answer in the perfect way that is needed. It may not always come how we want it, but it will always be what we need. In Jude, it says that God is the only wise God, which means that He sees the perfect start of something and the perfect ending and all the perfect pieces, parts and steps in between. He never misses a step; not one beat. But we have to be willing to cry out to our Father. We have to be willing to run to Him as our refuge and call out to Him with expectation.

He loves you and has so much to share with you. It does not matter what you have done up to this point in time. It does not matter if the situation you are currently in is of your own doing. God still loves you and has a perfect plan for you. Jesus died on the cross for these very things; for our sins, our shortcomings before God. He knew we would never get it right on our own, so Jesus, who is the Only Begotten Son of God, came to earth to make a pathway back to the only One who could get it right for us, God Himself. We will forever fall short of God’s standard of living, but with Christ, we have received the lifeline of grace that pulls us from trenches of death and grants us eternal access to God, our Father and Creator, who has ALL that we need. With Christ, we CAN conquer and overcome, but alone, we NEVER will.

Run to Him! Call on Him. Give Him your burdens. Listen for is response to you. Live in it. Believe in Him. Believe that when you call out to Him, He hears you and will give you the answer you have need of. 

I am praying for each of you reading this. That there will be an unlocking in your heart, an unveiling of your eyes and understanding, a Godly shifting of your perspective and a reviving of your connection and relationship with Christ Jesus. I declare that this shall be so, in the mighty and matchless name of Christ Jesus, Amen!

Love you and God’s Blessings to you,

Arnita Faith

encouragement

The Invitation to Selah

img_2949

Selah. This is a word that is mentioned 74 times in the bible but can be found in only two books of the Bible: Psalms (71) and Habakkuk (3). It’s a word that holds some mystery within it because no one knows the exact meaning of the word. It makes me think of Ro1 Corinthians 13:12 when Paul said,

“For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.”

Its hidden meaning makes it that much more beautiful to me; its mystery creating a deepening desire to come near. Though we do not yet understand its full meaning, God ordained it to be apart of His word, mystery meaning and all. No word in the Bible is there without importance. So it ought to be cherished and attempted to be understood.

According to gotquestions.org, Selah could possibly mean a few different things. One could be from the Hebrew word calah which means “to hang” or “to measure or weigh in the balances.” Another could possibly come from the combination of two Hebrew words, s_lah, which means to praise or s_lal, which means to lift up. Another could be that it simply means to pause or to take a breath that comes from the Hebrew word salah. But the beauty of this word intensifies when these definitions are all combined into one definition creating one incredible image of what it could mean. Placing them together causes it to mean, to pause, praise, and reflectively think about what has been said, done, and reflect on who God is. Finding this word in the Bible has become such a high point for me. It causes me to stop and reflect heavily on what I just read. It’s like the bible’s own pause and reflection section to make sure we really take in and understand what we are reading.

Selah is found in one of my favorite chapters in the Bible, Psalm 3. This chapter is only eight verses, but this word is present three times within it. Psalms 3 is power-packed with so much and when you know its history, the text becomes that much richer (the back story is found in 2 Samuel 15-18). David is on the run, in fear for his life because of his son Absalom. He is so grieved within. He could have responded to this situation in any kind of way, but instead of handling things his way, he cries out to God. With each selah we read, we see his strength and faith in God increasing rise. 

Psalm 3

1 O Lord, how many are my foes! Many are rising against me;

2 many are saying of my soul, “There is no salvation for him in God.” Selah

3 But you, O Lord, are a shield about me, my glory, and the lifter of my head.

4 I cried aloud to the Lord, and he answered me from his holy hill. Selah

5 I lay down and slept, I woke again, for the Lord sustained me.

6 I will not be afraid of many thousands of people who have set themselves against me all around.

7 Arise, O Lord! Save me, O my God! For you strike all my enemies on the cheek; you break the teeth of the wicked.

8 Salvation belongs to the Lord; your blessing be on your people! Selah

Have you have reflected like this before? Have you ever, during a frustrating or painful experience, and just paused to call out to God? Have you ever just paused in the midst of a stressful moment or day and breathed and paused with the intentionality to invite Christ into the middle of it? Or have you ever just paused and breathed in the goodness of God all around you? Pausing to thank God for the ability to breathe, for the ability to speak, for the ability to be able to feel the breeze of the day on your skin; the ability to hear the birds chirp, or the ability to be able to feel the ground beneath your feet or to see the trees move, or the colors of the sky? Oh, how wonderful it is to pause and really let the goodness of God in. Pausing in the midst of busyness or sorrow or gladness gives us the opportunity to invite God’s presence into our day and His uncompromising perspective to permeate the depths of our hearts. 

There is something about pausing and just taking a deep breath and centering yourself. But there is something so much richer when you pause, breathe, and reflect on the goodness of God. To take a moment in time to pause and close the gap of distance that the day has set between us and Him. It sets the stage for a moment of intimate fellowship with our Creator, our Father, our Friend. Taking these moments throughout the day rejuvenates us, renews us, restores us, empowers us; it brings hope into our hearts and builds faith within us. It causes us to stop looking around at what we can see and sets our eyes back on the God we cannot see, the One who created heaven and earth. The One who is greater than all that we see and experience. The One who is fully in control. If you have never taken a Selah moment, take one today; take one now! Thank You, Lord, for the opportunity to pause and release; to be still and to receive!

Below is a video that I absolutely love; it leads us through a moment of selah in such a great way. I hope you enjoy this moment of worship and join in as we are taken on an adventure through the serene terrain of the pause of Selah. Enjoy. 

I am praying for you. Blessings.

Arnita Faith

Selah Moment with Alysia Harris (Just Worship 2020)

encouragement

He Knows

Sunflower blowing in the wind

I pray that whatever you are going through in this time, you would turn to Jesus who has a plan prepared just for you. He knows you. He knows the storm you are facing right now. He knows the valleys of sorrow and defeat that are trying to enclose you, but it’s ONLY HIM who can create the steps to bring you out safe. He has a plan for you, whether you realize it or not. He fashioned you in your mother’s womb. He mapped out your days before you came into existence, and He is willing to light the right path for you to travel on. 

Don’t allow everything that is happening in the world right now,  to rob you of reaching out to God. But instead, let it make you truly search for Him and get to know who He really is. He loves you; He really does. He has the answers you’re looking for. He is the answer you’re looking for. Stand still, take a deep breath, and lean into Him. Talk to Him and pour out your heart to Him; tell Him your fears and your doubts. Share with Him your longings and frustrations. Share with Him what keeps you distant and apprehensive of Him. He is not overwhelmed by anything we have to say, nor is He offended, BUT He is listening. His ears are not turned off from you and His arms are not too short that He cannot reach out to you.  

“Day 19” is the poem that is featured below by a young woman named Alexandra Hill. She wrote it during a stormy season in her life that only God was able to carry her through. She said, “I named it [Day 19] because, in that time of my life, I could only see one day at a time, so I [named it] according to the day that had passed”. 

Whatever the day is for you, let Jesus be apart of getting you through it. We cannot do this life alone, it would only destroy us. But with Jesus, we are strengthened, made whole, find meaning and are revitalized for the journey ahead of us.  Let Jesus grow you through this storm, and draw you in close to Him. He is speaking. Are you listening? 

I am praying for you and for the world as we are facing such an incredibly difficult time in history. May God keep you and your loved ones and draw you in close. God Bless. 

Day 19 by Alexandra Hill 

Standing in the garden

Searching

Waiting

Listening

For Your voice

Sitting in silence

There

Right there

You caught my ear:

“Don’t give up

Though you might lose focus

Though you can’t seem to find yourself

You’ve lost sight of who you are in the chaos

Trust ME

I know you

LISTEN to ME

I AM WITH YOU

I won’t let you fall

Lean on Me

Draw from Me

You are still standing

Don’t you know that I made you this resilient?

Storms have come and gone

But look at you

My love,

You have weathered them gracefully

The winds have threatened to knock you down

But darling,

I’ve held you up

You’ve felt weak, but I’ve been your strength

You feel defeated, but you’re still in the race

Don’t you know that I chose you?

Amongst all others,

I know you

I wanted you

I kept you

Everyday

I have watched you grow

When you had lost all hope

When you saw only faults and imperfections

Just when you had given up

I took you from a place of despair

And planted you firmly in a place that I knew you would thrive

It’s hard to look at how far you’ve come

It’s hard to see the scars and not feel the pain that came when they were still fresh wounds

But if you could see yourself the way I see you

Beyond the imperfections that I love anyways

You, My darling, would see growth

During the uncertainty of life, you came boldly before Me

Through fear of the unknown, your faith grew in Me

Calling on Me to be your strength when you felt weak

Still standing before me

You are My masterpiece.”

 

“Day 19” the poem was retrieved, with the permission of the author, from her personal Instagram page. The image above was retrieved from google images.
Uncategorized

A Quick Reminder

Just in case you didn’t know, or just need a reminder: Jesus loves you!!
Life happens, and it can throw us for some major and heart wrenching loops. When this happens and disappointment sets in, it is so easy to miss or forget that we are loved by an immeasurably, infinite God. One who sees us at our worst, understands the source of our weaknesses and shortcomings, and still chooses to love us, beyond us, in ways no one else can. His mercies are new each day (and never run dry), His compassion towards us is never ending and His pure joy gives us the strength we didn’t even realize we needed or were missing. Smile and rejoice! There is never a moment in time that you are not loved, not being thought of, or not being perfected by the Creator of the Universe! You are special and precious in His sight!!!
Uncategorized

His Love

His Love Image

God is love…

His love is one that is uncanny and unmatched to anything ever seen in all of humanity. It is just, yet graceful; it is stern yet tender; it keeps us in times when we should be let go; it is steady when our choices and habits make the ground of our lives rocky and turbulent. It is patient and kind when we are hasty and disingenuous. It is forgiving and it is willing to walk us through the hurricane winds of unforgiveness that pressure us to discard those that have ushered in the storms of hurt and pain into our lives. It is selfless when we are selfish and self-seeking. It is a healing balm to our wounds that ooze out infectious toxins that debilitate and cripple us from moving forward in our lives.

His love deeply penetrates like a scalpel making an incision for surgery; opening us up to remove what has caused the toxicity within us. His love cleanses us of bitterness, hate, insecurity, confusion, rebellion, hopelessness, brokeness, unrighteousness, emptiness, unforgiveness, pain that was never meant to cause the damage that it did, hurt that was never given to Him to deal with that has lingered within us that’s caused a cancerous-like mass of disdain toward people, situations, and relationships. His love severs roots of old that have tried to choke out our purpose, our dreams, our light, and our wonder from within us. Christ’s love is one that soothes and cleanses like soap and water to a skinned knee; it wipes away the dust and dirt of this world that has sliced into hearts and minds and bandages us up delicately to allow us to heal in such a way that causes us to become better versions of who we were even before we encountered the heavy-handed hit of the world to our lives. 

Oh! How beautiful is this love?! 

He embodies a love so world-renowned that all of mankind is chasing after it but with misinformation of where to find it. So instead of tapping into the Original Spring, we go out and try to find it in broken relationships, turned up bottles, pill concoctions, and hallucinogens that get us off-balanced. We try to find it in titles, affirmations, and validations. We look for it in chasing money, gossip, and in all the “latest and greatest” things. We look for it in the universe, nature, rocks, crystal and good energy. We seek higher powers that don’t talk back to us and lead us only to destruction. And we even turn inwardly to ourselves as our own high power, believing that we know, in our own finite knowledge, what’s best for us.

So we miss it. We miss the opportunity to get to know the love of the One who created us with a purpose in mind. We miss experiencing the purest love that we will ever find. Love that is patient and kind. Love that keeps no record of wrongs, and a love that picks us up when we fall without a condemning grasp. We miss the opportunity to experience a father’s love; our Father, the One and True Creator of the universe, Jesus Christ Himself. 

In Him is the love, joy, peace, strength, and hope we look for in day to day occurrences, but the truth is, there is only one way to experience fulfillment, purpose and the wholeness we are all striving to experience…through getting to know the One who fashioned your days and created each of us with a special, unique design. Experiencing God’s love is the only way to satisfy the hunger in our lives we are so desperately trying to feed. He is the only One that has what it takes to satisfy the appetite of our unending desires. He is waiting for us to come to Him with a simple asking for His love because within Him is all that we need.   

God Bless.

Arnita Faith

Uncategorized

It’s Going to be Alright

Everything Will Be Alright

Have you ever heard the song, “Every Little Thing” by Hillsong Young and Free (I am going to place the lyrics and YouTube video down below)? It is an amazing, encouraging song that reminded me that everything happening in this life is going to be alright.

I just want to share this song with anyone that is trying to figure out this thing called life, and I want to encourage you that every little thing, every detail, every plan, every situation, every pain, every stress, every loss, every impasse you may find yourself at, everything that seems incomplete, everything that seems impossible to face or handle, that every little and big thing is going to be alright. God has a distinct plan for your life, and I know it doesn’t all make sense yet…the key word is YET, but it will. And the only way you are going to know His plan is if you keep going.

He is not blind nor deaf to where you are or to what you are up against, but He is working things out better than we could ever do on our own. His thoughts are higher than our thoughts and His ways on a higher playing field than our ways. Jesus is ALL KNOWING, ALL POWERFUL, ALL WISE! He sees our lives in dimensions and realms that we cannot see or comprehend because we are only seeing from a horizontal view. His promise is that everything concerning us will work out, that every little thing, no matter what it looks like now, is going to be alright.

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” Romans 8:28

Keep going…Start believing Him…Learn how to trust Him…He has our best interest at heart. I promise the plan God has in place for you is worth it all. God Bless.

[Intro]
Every little thing-ing-ing

[Verse 1]
Your favour waits within the future
My dreams are small compared to Yours
Why should I worry ’bout tomorrow when I know
That all I gotta do is trust You, Lord

[Chorus]
Every little thing is gonna be alright
Every little thing is gonna be just fine
Whether I can see it now
I know You will work it out for good
Every little thing, everything will be alright

[Verse 2]
Behind the scenes and in the details
You plan the perfect way for me
Why would I dwell upon the road’s uncertainties
When all I gotta do is look to You
Yeah, all I gotta do is look to You

[Chorus]
Every little thing is gonna be alright
Every little thing is gonna be just fine
Whether I can see it now
I know You will work it out for good
Every little thing, everything will be alright

[Post-Chorus]
Every little thing, every little thing
Every little thing, everything will be alright

[Bridge: Andy Mineo]
Hey God, I know You don’t need no one to advise You
You probably do a better job running the world than I do
I just thought I’d remind You
I’ve been trying to find You
It feels like Satan working overtime, times two
They say if it doesn’t kill ya that refines you
But I’m trying to live, and that’s bigger than survival
It’s been a long night
It’s been a long fight
So just remind me now
Everything will be alright

[Outro]
Every little thing, every little thing
Every little thing
Every little thing
Every little thing, everything will be alright

All Bible verses have been retrieved from biblegateway.com. The video was retrieved from YouTube. The photo image was created on Word Swag.