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5 posts from December 2010

December 29, 2010

Forget What Lies Behind, Look Forward...

God on the water

Greetings, Dear Friends, and a Happy New Year to You!

Susie Larson here...

And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way. Each month I give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So leave a comment, share a story or insight, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and a friend! 

As most of you know, I have a radio show,Live the Promise with Susie Larson The program now airs 6 days a week! Join us every weekday from 2:30-3:00 CST, and on Saturdays from noon to one, KTIS AM 900, on the Faith Radio Network, or listen online at: www.faith900.com We've had some amazing guests and some powerful dialogue. Hope you can join us!

Also, I want you to have the inside scoop. Be sure to check my Facebook page for a heads up on my weekly giveaways (that way you'll know when to call for a book you may want). I'll also post daily questions and may read your comments on the air.  

Now on to my topic...

As the year 2010 draws to a close it's a great time to pause and thank God for the mercies He has shown us. Each and every morning this past year, new mercies greeted us because we needed them. Each and every night His faithfulness met us right where we lived. God has been faithful. We are still standing!

I'm always amazed when I hear movie stars say that they've lived with no regrets, because I have lots of regrets. With all of my heart, I wish I could say I never hurt another soul, I never uttered words that should not have been spoken, I never had a betraying thought, and I never got so busy that I missed my child's smile. With everything in me I wish I could say that I've been grateful every day of my life that I have a roof over my head, fresh water to drink, a family who loves me, and a God who never fails me. I wish I could say that I've never been impatient with distracted drivers, or that I'm always gracious to rude people. Oh, Lord, I wish I were more like you! But I'm just me - someone whom God renews and redeems in deeper ways every single day. Oh, how I love Him so!

When the Lord told Abraham that he would be the father of many nations and that his wife Sarah would bear a son in her old age, she laughed in disbelief and then tried to cover it up. But how is she remembered in the New Testament? As someone who believed God.

If you are a follower of Christ, your sins are forgiven. The regrets from 2010? They're covered in the blood of the Lamb, buried in the sea of forgetfulness! God remembers them no more! They are put out of His sight, no longer your burden to carry! Isn't that amazing?

What's even more amazing is what He remembers about you from 2010; He remembers every time you smiled at someone even though your own heart was breaking. He remembers when you laughed and played with your child while inside you were concerned about your finances. He remembers that you gave sacrificially to those who have less than you. All of these things are written down in the Book of Life - His book of remembrance of those He loves and has saved. Even when you talk with your friend about faith, He writes it down (see Malachi 3:16). 

Do not let the enemy remind you again of your sins, mistakes, and missteps from this past year. If you are in Christ, you are new creation! There is therefore NOW NO CONDEMNATION for you who are in Christ Jesus.

Forget what lies behind and look forward with faith and hope and thanksgiving! 

We are more than conquerors because of Christ in us! I don't think I'll ever fully comprehend His gift to us. But I am grateful nonetheless.

~Until next year

December 22, 2010

Tell the Story!

Hipsta Sunrise

Greetings, Dear Friends, and Very Merry Christmas to You!

Susie Larson here...

And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way. Each month I give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So leave a comment, share a story or insight, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and a friend! 

As most of you know, I have a radio show,Live the Promise with Susie Larson The program now airs 6 days a week! Join us every weekday from 2:30-3:00 CST, and on Saturdays from noon to one, KTIS AM 900, on the Faith Radio Network, or listen online at: www.faith900.com We've had some amazing guests and some powerful dialogue. Hope you can join us!

Also, I want you to have the inside scoop. Be sure to check my Facebook page for a heads up on my weekly giveaways (that way you'll know when to call for a book you may want). I'll also post daily questions and may read your comments on the air.  

Now on to my topic...

I love Christmas time! God so loved us that He sent His only Son to earth to deliver us from our sin, from the enemy's plan to destroy us, and from our own destructive tendency to go our own way. Just this morning I read again in Psalm 139 that Jesus is so taken with you and me, that He notices when we sit down in a chair, and when we stand up again. Imagine that. You are always on His mind. He is ever and always paying attention to you! We can't even keep watch over our kids every second of the day, but the Lord God Almighty has every hair on our head accounted for. Love, love, love Him! 

So this Christmas season (I'm borrowing this from my Christmas message), I ask you to do 3 things as a remembrance of WHO God is and WHAT He has done (and is doing) in your life:

Tell A Story...

God has been faithful to you and me too many times to count this past year. Pause for a moment and recall some of the ways that He has been good to you; the ways has come through for you. Now tell someone about God's active involvement in your life. The Bible calls us to do just that; to pass on to others the stories of our God's never-ending love and faithfulness. And when you do share your story, share it with passion and purpose so that those listening will know in their hearts that you serve the One True God - the Lord of Heaven and Earth. Jesus Christ, the Savior of the world, is intimately involved in YOUR life. Amazing, no?

See Your Story...

God is moving in and all around you. Stop in your tracks and remember again that He is always good, always working, and intervening on your behalf. Embrace faith, accept His grace, and refuse worry. Reject the temptation to compare your story with someone else's, especially if you're walking through a chapter you don't particularly like at the moment. In the end, you'll LOVE your story. So trust Him now and earnestly look for God's fingerprints on your life. They're there. See your story with His love in mind (see Ps. 26:3). God is up to something good.

Embrace HIS Story...

The Christmas story is not just a quaint, cute story, it's CHRIST'S KINGDOM COME TO EARTH! It's not old news, it's NOW news, GOOD news, the best news of all! Embrace the idea that we now have access to His presence, claim to His promises, and the assurance of eternity with God! Hallelujah! Embrace His story because it involves you! You are a part of the bigger story and you've been placed on this earth for such a time as this. Walk in a manner worthy of your calling. Embrace the Good News because you are a part of God's message to a lost and dying world.

Have a blessed and very merry Christmas, my friend. I pray today's post encourages and blesses you!

~Until next week

December 15, 2010

Training Time for Reigning Time!*

Believe2

Greetings, Dear Friends!

Susie Larson here...

And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way. Each month I give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So leave a comment, share a story or insight, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and a friend! 

As most of you know, I have a radio show,Live the Promise with Susie Larson The program now airs 6 days a week! Join us every weekday from 2:30-3:00 CST, and on Saturdays from noon to one, KTIS AM 900, on the Faith Radio Network, or listen online at: www.faith900.com We've had some amazing guests and some powerful dialogue. Hope you can join us!

Also, I want you to have the inside scoop. Be sure to check my Facebook page for a heads up on my weekly giveaways (that way you'll know when to call for a book you may want). I'll also post daily questions and may read your comments on the air.  

Now on to my topic...

Are you walking through a season that is calling more out of you than you're comfortable giving? Are you carrying more than you're used to and are you feeling the strain on your shoulders? Me too. In fact, I know lots of people who are walking through such a season. 

But I know for myself at least, that I am exactly where God wants me to be. In fact recently I had the revelation that God is conditioning me to prepare me for our next place of promise. He's stretching me that I might be more flexible; He's put more on my shoulders that my spiritual legs might be strengthened. Understanding that fact has helped me to stop whining and to start believing that even in my weakness, I am strong in Him.

I think for many of us, this season is training time for reigning time!

God is preparing us, strengthening us, and equipping us to be used by Him on a grander scale. My pastor always used to say, 'The depth of the dealing corresponds with the height of His calling.' 

In fitness, we increase muscle strength by increasing either the demand or the resistance. At first the muscle fibers break down, but once they heal, they come back stronger. 

Here are several truths I'm hanging on to (perhaps they'll encourage you as well):

  • Cease striving (be still, rest in My care) and know that I am God - Ps. 46:10
  • The sin of comparison bears only rotten fruit (pride or despair)
  • It's not the size of my field that matters, but the quality of fruit that comes from it (much of what looks like success from the world's perspective will pass away and come to nothing)
  • I am my Beloved's and He is mine. His banner over me is LOVE!
  • I don't producer more by doing more, but by BEING MORE with Jesus (Abide in the Vine and you'll bear much fruit. Abide=to be held, wrapped up, embraced, found in)
  • The best fruit comes from a heart of Holy Confidence, Humble Dependence, Kingdom Passion, and Calvary Love
  • I am mighty in God and He is mighty in me!
  • I will not borrow tomorrow's trouble on today's strength (an insight from Corrie Ten Boom)
  • I will walk in His authority and rest in His care
  • Every day I'm in His presence and all that He has is mine! I have more than enough to live abundantly today! (something I say to myself every morning). 

If you are in a time of stretching and you're straining under the weight of it all, you might be in a time of training (or, you may have taken on more that He asked of you, in which case, you might want to get alone with Him and ask Him what you need to release).

When Jesus said, 'My yoke is easy and My burden is light' - He was speaking of the difference between living by the law (an unbearable weight) and living by the Spirit of life in Him (which sets us free from the law of sin and death). What a glorious truth!

But for those of us who are willing to go the distance with Him and who desire to be used mightily by Him, we will go through times of training and refining that are like boot camp for the soul. We must not despair! God is up to something good!

If that's you, be encouraged. God is with you, He is for you, and He is up to something great in and around you!

Trust in Him to finish the work He started in you!

BELIEVE! 

~Until next week

 

*The 'Training Time for Reigning Time' phrase belongs to William MacDonald (Believer's Bible Commentary) 

December 08, 2010

Embrace Small Beginnings...

Breakthrough Sunrise

Greetings, Dear Friends!

Susie Larson here...

And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way. Each month I give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So leave a comment, share a story or insight, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and a friend! 

As most of you know, I have a radio show,Live the Promise with Susie Larson The program now airs 6 days a week! Join us every weekday from 2:30-3:00 CST, and on Saturdays from noon to one, KTIS AM 900, on the Faith Radio Network, or listen online at: www.faith900.com We've had some amazing guests and some powerful dialogue. Hope you can join us!

Also, I want you to have the inside scoop. Be sure to check my Facebook page for a heads up on my weekly giveaways (that way you'll know when to call for a book you may want). I'll also post daily questions and may read your comments on the air.  

Now on to my topic...

I've been thinking today - especially in light of all of the commercials for the next-best-thing - about  our insatiable desire for more - More - MORE. In fact, we rush through stages and process because we're anxious to get to the next - BEST place. 

Now hear me correctly, I say it all of the time, I do believe God has a next place of promise for all of us. But there's something to be said about embracing the small places, the small beginnings, when you're only able to bring a small offering. Those are sweet and sacred places. The Bible says that godliness with contentment is great gain.

I've known a number of people who bit off more than they could chew by stepping into a too-big-for-them business venture that was beyond their ability to carry.  And, in no time, the walls came crumbling down. I've known young people who didn't want to wait for the American dream of a house, two cars, a dog, and a cat, so they put it all on credit and lived the illusion for a short time, until the walls came crashing down.

The Bible calls us not to despise our small beginnings but rather to embrace them. God is a God of process and wisdom and pays a great amount of attention to detail. If we don't have the bigger thing, or if we're not walking in our full-sized dream just yet, it's because it wouldn't be good for us at this moment. God is always good, always looking out for us, and always ready to bless us at just the right time. 

God designed the wonder of life in a seed, and when that seed is planted in the ground, life springs forth. We don't always want to wait for the process, we want the full grown plant. But the process is what makes us ready; it's what matures us and makes us better able to carry and sustain the desire of our heart. It's not just about getting what we want, it's about our ability to steward, carry, and sustain that gift with grace, honor, and humility.

Are you waiting for something bigger, something better, something different?

Embrace your small place and trust God. Give Him an offering of thanksgiving even if it costs you. This is true: how we handle these small beginnings determines how we fare when the blessing comes.

Hope you're having a blessed and beautiful holiday season!

~Until next week...

 

December 01, 2010

Make Room For Peace This Season...

Marvel

Greetings, Dear Friends!

Susie Larson here...

And to those visiting, I say welcome! I post every Wednesday and my sole purpose is to nourish your soul along the way. Each month I give away a $10.00 Starbucks gift card to someone who posts on my blog. So leave a comment, share a story or insight, and just maybe you'll win a jolt of java for you and a friend! 

It's time to announce the winner for November. Drum roll, please...

Nena Harvath, congratulations! Please contact me through my website and send me your mailing address and we'll get the gift card out in the mail to you (PS - you must claim your prize before I announce next month's winner). Blessings to you and thanks for stopping by! 

As most of you know, I have a radio show,Live the Promise with Susie Larson The program now airs 6 days a week! Join us every weekday from 2:30-3:00 CST, and on Saturdays from noon to one, KTIS AM 900, on the Faith Radio Network, or listen online at: www.faith900.com We've had some amazing guests and some powerful dialogue. Hope you can join us!

Also, I want you to have the inside scoop. Be sure to check my Facebook page for a heads up on my weekly giveaways (that way you'll know when to call for a book you may want). I'll also post daily questions and may read your comments on the air.  

Now on to my topic...

This morning I had a great conversation with my sister. We talked about our bursting-at-the-seams task lists along with our desire to enjoy a better pace, a deeper peace, and a few sacred pauses this season. I'm not sure how you do it, but I'd like to share a few ideas that have worked for me over the years.

Remember, the holiday season only lasts a few short weeks. Typically we cram in our already crammed schedule, a bunch of parties, an 'ought-to' cookie exchange that we don't particularly enjoy, and a handful of other activities that make us more tired than joyful. 

Now granted, maybe a cookie exchange is the just the thing that brings you joy. Well, then, that's the very activity you should make time for in your schedule.

But, as Believers in Christ Jesus, as followers of our Most Sacred King, we must make room for HIM this season. We must not be at the mercy of the commercial craziness all around us! Just how do we engage in a better pace, embrace a deeper peace, and pause long enough to marvel at the works of God?

Here are a few ideas...

Postpone: Chances are, you've made for yourself an impossible task list this holiday season. Are there engagements you can postpone until after the holidays? Are there tasks that can wait? Can you make a few calls thereby making a little more room in the Inn this season? I encourage you to do just that.

Plan NOT to have Plans: Right now, before the month gets away from you, mark of at least one (better yet, two) nights a week where you plan not to have plans. Let your children miss practice, tell your church committee you need to be home this week. The world will go on even if you miss a meeting or two. Of course, you want to fulfill your responsibilities to others, but if those responsibilities take you away from Jesus, you might want to make some adjustments sooner than later. I promise you, you won't regret making extra room for Jesus this holiday season.

Practice the Pause: Every chance you get, stop in your tracks and take a brief moment to pause, to be still and know that our God is the One and Only, the True Almighty, the Lover of our Souls, and the Maker of Heaven and earth. Look around you and see His handiwork. Embrace the gift of living in a free country where you can lift your hands and praise Him in public, without fear for your life. Sit by the Christmas tree with a cup of cider and exhale; thank Him for your warm home and comfortable bed. Practicing the pause is excellent for your health and even better for your spirit. Cease striving and know that He is God!

Determine now to make room in your life, in your heart, and in your holidays for the Prince of Peace. I promise, you won't be sorry!

So, what do you do to make the holidays a sacred season? I'd love to know!

~Until Next Week