Be cheerful

Welcome back readers! I hope your week is going well. Today, we are going to focus on being cheerful. Have you ever been around someone who always seems to be grumpy? Are you that way? I know I have had my moments, but it is during those times that we have a choice: to be grumpy or be cheerful. When we are truly seeking God, he fills us with His joy, His love and His power. We are much happier and cheerful when our heart and soul belongs to Christ. Let’s see what the Bible tells us about being cheerful:

Proverbs 15:15
“A cheerful heart has a continual feast.”

2 Corinthians 9:7
“Each person should do as he has decided in his heart–not out of regret or out of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

Philippians 2:14-15
“Do everything without grumbling and arguing, so that you may be blameless and pure.”

James 5:13
“Is anyone among you suffering? He should pray. Is anyone cheerful? He should sing praises.”

You have the choice….be grumpy or cheerful….which will you decide today?

Be a blessing to others,
~M

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A Prayer of Forgiveness

Welcome back to the Encouragement Challenge. As week 3 comes to a close, I would like to offer up a prayer for each of you. This week has been tough. Forgiveness is a hard thing to grasp. Today, I would just like to pray for you. Have a wonderful weekend! See you back next week for the conclusion of the Encouragement Challenge.

Heavenly Father, thank you so much for the wonderful readers of our blog. We long to bring You honor in everything we write, say and do. I pray for each person who reads this blog. I pray that they will experience Your love, Your forgiveness and pure joy in their lives. Lord, we’ve talked a lot this week about forgiveness. I hope that we have all searched our hearts & lives and been able to forgive others while allowing Your forgiveness to shine through to our lives. O Lord, free us from all anger and bitterness. When we are bitter and angry, we cannot feel Your perfect peace or Your presence. Please help us all to remember that forgiveness is Your command. Let us turn away from all bitterness and remember the forgiveness that came through the gift of Jesus Christ. Help us to not judge others. You have forgiven us, Lord. Let us forgive others, love them and help them without judging them. If there is anyone reading this who does not know You as Lord of their life, my prayer is that you would pierce their hearts and allow them to hear You speak to them. Let them admit You are God and they have sinned, Believe that Jesus is Your Son, and Confess You as Lord of their lives. Protect us from evil. In Jesus Name, Amen!

Be a blessing to others,
~M

You are Forgiven

Welcome back to the Encouragement Challenge Week 3! We are talking about forgiveness this week. Today, we are going to focus on God’s forgiveness towards us. We are forgiven! You are forgiven!! No matter what you have done…you are forgiven! All you have to do is ask God to forgive you! He is faithful and just and will forgive our sins!

Here are a just few scriptures about God’s forgiveness:

Psalm 32:5 “Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, “I will confess my transgressions to the LORD.” And you forgave the guilt of my sin.”

Matthew 26:28 “This is my blood of the covenant, which is poured out for many for the forgiveness of sins.”

Acts 2:38 “Peter replied, ‘Repent and be baptized, every one of you, in the name of Jesus Christ for the forgiveness of your sins. And you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.'”

1 John 1:9 “If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.”

John 3:16 “For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

Repent (turn away from) your sins and be forgiven. God has forgiven you…so now forgive yourself. We all fail and need forgiveness. Allow God to forgive you. Then, forgive yourself.

Be a blessing to others,
~M

Let God Judge

Welcome back!! Today, we are continuing to talk about forgiveness. Have you ever judged anyone? While I was in college, I would judge high school cheerleader tryouts. I did not like doing it. It was so hard to judge them when I knew that someone’s dreams would be crushed if they didn’t make the team.

We are judged on a daily basis by what we wear, what we eat, what we say and even what we don’t do. As Christians, our lives are judged even harsher by the world. However, we often tend to judge others, too. We need to remember that we have ALL fallen short of God’s commandments. God has forgiven us, so we need to forgive others.

God does not need or want our help judging someone. He is perfectly capable of judging the human heart. He is perfect. We are not. When we judge someone else, we are living outside of God’s will for our lives. He has forgiven us for all our mistakes. Instead of being quick to judge someone…let’s stop. That is God’s job not ours. We have enough to worry about in our own lives than focusing on someone else.

Let’s see what the Bible has to say about this.

Matthew 7:1-5 ““Judge not, that you be not judged. For with the judgment you pronounce you will be judged, and with the measure you use it will be measured to you. Why do you see the speck that is in your brother’s eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye? Or how can you say to your brother, ‘Let me take the speck out of your eye,’ when there is the log in your own eye? You hypocrite, first take the log out of your own eye, and then you will see clearly to take the speck out of your brother’s eye. ”

Luke 6:37 “Judge not, and you will not be judged; condemn not, and you will not be condemned; forgive, and you will be forgiven”

James 4:11-12 “Do not speak evil against one another, brothers. The one who speaks against a brother or judges his brother, speaks evil against the law and judges the law. But if you judge the law, you are not a doer of the law but a judge. There is only one lawgiver and judge, he who is able to save and to destroy. But who are you to judge your neighbor?”

Don’t judge–just forgive!

Be a blessing to others,
~M

Don’t Let Bitterness Rule You

Welcome back to the encouragement challenge. Congratulations!! You have made it to week 3!! This week we are focusing on forgiveness. We are going to talk about bitterness today. What is bitterness? Bitterness can be described as, “the experience of a negative emotion (anger or hatred, for instance) felt as a result of a real or imagined wrong done.” Bitterness is what happens when you hold a grudge for too long. Bitterness will not hurt the person who wronged you. It only hurts YOU! Let it go. Forgive and move forward in your relationship with Christ! Let’s see what the Bible has to say about bitterness.

Ephesians 4:31-32 “Let all bitterness and wrath and anger and clamor and slander be put away from you, along with all malice. Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.”

Hebrews 12:14-15 “Strive for peace with everyone, and for the holiness without which no one will see the Lord. See to it that no one fails to obtain the grace of God; that no “root of bitterness” springs up and causes trouble, and by it many become defiled”

Romans 12:17-21 “Repay no one evil for evil, but give thought to do what is honorable in the sight of all. If possible, so far as it depends on you, live peaceably with all. Beloved, never avenge yourselves, but leave it to the wrath of God, for it is written, “Vengeance is mine, I will repay, says the Lord.” To the contrary, ‘if your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink; for by so doing you will heap burning coals on his head.” Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.'”

I urge you today to seek your heart. Let go of any bitterness you are harboring. Let go and Let God take full control of you heart. Allow His love to consume your heart today.

Be a blessing to others,
~M

Encouragement Challenge Week 3 — Forgiveness

Hello Readers!! I hope you had a great weekend! Today, we are going to start with week 3 of the encouragement challenge. This week, we are going to focus on forgiveness. Forgiveness can be defined as, “to stop feeling angry or resentful toward someone for an offense, flaw, or mistake.”

When you forgive, you are setting yourself free from something that has been holding you back. You can become the person God wants you to be if you hold onto grudges. His Word reminds us of that.

Matthew 6:14-15 “For if you forgive people their wrongdoing, your Heavenly Father will forgive you as well. But if you don’t forgive people, your Father will not forgive your wrongdoing.”

Proverbs 11:12 “Whoever shows contempt for his neighbor lacks sense, but a man with understanding keeps silent.”

Mark 11:25 “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive him, so that your Father in heaven may forgive you your sins.”

Forgiveness is your choice. Will you choose to forgive or will you continue to hold that grudge?

Be a blessing to others,
~M

Generosity

Welcome back readers!! Today, we are going to talk about Generosity. Generosity can be described as “the quality of being kind and generous or the habit of giving without expecting anything in return”. I have found that when I help others, God will bless me and enrich my life. You don’t have to give monetary gifts. Just find a way to share your blessings. Some ways you can be generous are spending time with someone, sharing your talent with someone, encourage someone, volunteer to help your church, smile at someone, love others, and love God!

The Bible reminds us to be generous in the following scriptures:

Acts 20:35: “In every way I’ve shown you that by laboring like this, it is necessary to help the weak and to keep in mind the words of the Lord Jesus, for He said, ‘It is more blessed to give than to receive’.”

Galatians 6:10: “Therefore, as we have opportunity, we must work for the good of all, especially for those who belong to the household of faith.”

2 Corinthians 9:7: “Each person should do as he has decided in his heart—not out of regret or out of necessity, for God loves a cheerful giver.”

Be a blessing to others,
~M

Encouragement Challenge Week 2

Welcome back to the 2nd week of the Encouragement Challenge. Today, we are going to talk about the Power of Kindness.

Kindness can be defined as “the act of having or showing a gentle nature and a desire to help others; wanting and liking to do good things and to bring happiness to others.”

Kind words can last a lifetime, but so can mean words. Do you want to be the positive influence in someone’s life or the negative, hurtful influence? Being kind to someone can change their whole life. We need those encouraging, kind people in our lives. What would you like to be known for: being kind or hurtful? It is your choice.

1 Thessalonians 3:12 — “And may the Lord make you increase and abound in love to one another and to all.”

Ephesians 4:32 — “And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.”

Ephesians 4:9 — “Watch the way you talk. Let nothing foul or dirty come out of your mouth. Say only what helps, each word is a gift.

Lord, please help us to be kind to others. Let us rise above the need to criticize others. Let me be the source of genuine kindness and encouragement to my family, friends, coworkers and anyone You put in my path. In Jesus Name, Amen!

Be a blessing to others,
~M

Take Time to Listen

Welcome back to the Encouragement challenge. Today, we are going to talk about taking time to listen. Listening is a key to encouraging someone. We must know what they are feeling about themselves and their situation to give personalized encouragement. Some people just want someone to listen when they are feeling sad; while others may need prayer. Today, take time to truly listen to someone and offer them encouragement.

James 1:9 — “Be quick to hear, slow to speak.”

James 1:19 — “Know this, my beloved brothers: let every person be quick to hear, slow to speak, slow to anger”

Remember to be a blessing to others,
~M

To Build Up

Welcome back to the 30 days of encouragement! Another way we can describe encouragement is building each other up. I had this wonderful art teacher in High School. One day, she gave us an assignment to write something nice about everyone else in the class. We were all smiles after we finished reading the notes from our classmates. So, take some time out of your busy schedule today, and build someone else up.

1 Thessalonians 5:11 — “Therefore encourage one another and build each other up, just as in fact you are doing.”

Ephesians 4:29 — “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”

1 Corinthians 14:26 — “What then, brothers? When you come together, each one has a hymn, a lesson, a revelation, a tongue, or an interpretation. Let all things be done for building up.”

Hebrews 10:24-25 — “And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.”

Be a blessing to others,
~M