Weekly Memory Verse: "Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight." --Proverbs 3:5-6
For the past year I've been struggling in the relationship with my earthly father. I realize that the factors surrounding our disconnect are completely out of my control. In my moments of sorrow, frustration, anger, and pain I meditate on the comforting knowledge that God's plans for my life are prosperous and not harmful (Jeremiah 29:11). I must continue to trust in the Lord regarding my father and our relationship. I pray every day for healing and restoration, but I also whole-heartedly trust God's will, should it be different than my fervent requests. My trust in God allows me to breathe, refocus, forgive, and stay resilient in prayer.
Thank you, Lord, for the peace you provide amidst the daily struggles of this life, and the hope you give us through Your son, Jesus Christ.
Weekly Memory Verse: "Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. " --Joshua 1:8
Although this verse can be permanently found at the top of the "Memory Verse" page, I feel like I need to focus on memorizing these words to kick start my plunge into reading The Bible daily, once again. Just as starting the day in prayer can ground your entire day, so can reading His Word. When I first started the chronological reading plan earlier this year I chose it as a new way to read The Bible, hoping it would keep the experience "fresh." But sadly, I got bored and quit. I think this happened because I was only reading with the intention to finish The Bible again. I need to find purpose in my reading and ask God to speak to me through this living work. Joshua 1:8 states that keeping His words on our lips will make us prosperous and successful. That's a guarantee I'd like to accept, but I need to put in the time to complete my end of the commitment - I read, learn to follow His commands, and he makes me successful. Sounds like a good deal to me!
Dear God, please give me the desire to read Your Word each and every day. Guide me in making The Bible a priority among my daily tasks. Help me to read out of joy and not duty. Please speak to me as I read Your Word and allow me to focus solely on You as we grow in our relationship together. I ask this in Jesus' name. Amen.
Weekly Memory Verse: "For I am the LORD, your God, who takes hold of your right hand and says to you, Do not fear; I will help you." -- Isaiah 41:13
Over the past year, fear has been an unfortunate constant in my life - fear for my husband's life while he was at war, fear about how Adeline and I would live without Tim if God took him Home, fear for my little girl's health (severe reflux, food allergies, and aspiration), fear about my parents' divorce, and fear for my daughter's safety (unspoken reasons). However, my fear is disobedient to God. Fear is written about over 500 times in The Bible and "fear not" is the most repeated command in His Word. I guess God knew we would struggle with this emotion! I want to make the choice, here and now, to trust God's plan for my life and to fear not. He is in control, He is my protector, He causes all things to work together for good, He knows the number of my days.
When I came upon this verse, I felt a physical rush of calm as I imagined God truly holding my hand. Really, try this! Close your eyes and feel the sensation of God holding your hand and embrace it for a few moments. Isaiah 41:13 ensures us that God WILL help us: "...Do not fear; I will help you." I believe this promise. When fear inevitably creeps in I will use this verse to defend myself against Satan's grip and choose to feel God take my hand instead.
P.S. As I wrote this post, CNN aired a show called "To Heaven and Back." One of the interviewees who was diagnosed with cancer, died, went to Heaven, and came back to life explained that she learned fear literally poisoned her body. Once she experienced the love of Christ in Heaven, she knew to fear not! Now, she is cancer free. Five different oncologists remarked that they have never experienced cancer disappear as it has in her case.
I'm Ashley Ashcraft,
a military wife and
stay-at-home mama, earnestly seeking the Christ-like life. I invite you to walk alongside me in my quest to raise our children and join the antics of our unpredictable military lifestyle. I pray your heart feels rejuvenated and inspired each time you visit OFH!