Turning Pain into Power

I know what it’s like to hold your new baby and feel nothing because of postpartum depression and trauma. I know what it’s like to second guess everything you say and do out of fear and insecurity. And what it’s like to worry about my kids issues and try to hold broken relationships together unsuccessfully. I know failure. I know sin. I know pain. No more or less than you. But Friends, I tell you this because I know you often feel like you’re the only one going through that “thing”. But you’re not. We’re ALL messed up and we ALL need Jesus–and each other.

It’s uncomfortable to tell our weaknesses, especially in the Christian community where often we hide our hard. But I want to tell you, God greatly desires to HEAL and USE all your pain and weaknesses. I’ve learned living through hard things with Jesus is your greatest asset in God’s kingdom.

Do you know I started this blog out of hurt?

As I got to know Jesus through reading Scripture and he started healing my heart in lots of ways, and I couldn’t keep the good news of His love to myself. I pictured you searching for answers like I did.(God are you real? Do you care? Do you see me? Can you even do anything about this “thing”??) And needing a safe space to work out thoughts like I did. And my empathy for you outweighed my desire to look awesome. 

That’s why I do this. That’s why I’m here. And I wanted to renew my reason “why” today just so you know the heart behind this space. Every Christian is being built, it’s a process, I’m still learning and growing and healing just like you. But God has used all my pain and weaknesses for your strength as I speak freely of my brokenness and His goodness.

And I bet someone needs you to be that for them.

I bet you are a well of empathy too. You’ve lived through some hard stuff too. And because of that, you see others’ pain better. It sinks into you and God prompts you to reach out because you can’t stand to leave someone in that space alone.

That is you doing God’s work. It’s you allowing the Lord to redeem your weakness to be someone else’s strength. Revealing your hard for someone else’s good is brave and beautiful. It takes vulnerability, compassion and faith.

I recently attended the IF:gathering online event and listened to Pastor Mike Todd speak on being an anchor for others. That sometimes people need us to be an anchor they can hold onto before than can hold onto Jesus. Oh man, it struck my heart.

Who in your life is reaching out their hand and needs an anchor? Who is where you were and needs you to say, “I know, I’ve been there, let me hold onto you while you weather this storm.” Only Jesus can heal our inner wounds, but the body of Christ, You and I, can give to others what we’ve received from God.

Let’s allow God to transform our pain into power. Let’s give away whatever goodness we’ve receive from God in the hard. And be a little anchor of hope and love in our homes and communities.

Whether you’re a new believer, a veteran Jesus lover, a mom, a wife, a friend, or simply a person getting through the ups and downs of life–may you find healing and strength in Jesus and may He embolden you to care for others with the same care He’s shown you. Amen.

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as we share abundantly in Christ’s sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too(2 Corinth 1:3-5).

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Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

Why Don’t We Pray About It?

I know my problems are real, but often I wonder if my prayers are. Am I praying “right” and does God care? I’m so honored to host author Elisa Morgan (MOPS President Emerita) on such a tender topic. Her words are just what I needed lately. Read on for a fresh perspective on your prayer-life. -Andrea


Why Don’t we Pray About it?

by Elisa Morgan

I lie awake in the night and worry. Driving on errands, my mind darts between the obstacles in my day, searching for a smoother path. Knee-deep in a conversation, I reach for a handhold out from what seems like a ditch of disconnection.

Why don’t I pray about what’s in my heart and on my plate?

Author Paul Miller commiserates, “Our inability to pray comes from the Fall. Evil has marred the image. We want to talk to God but can’t. The friction of our desire to pray, combined with our badly damaged prayer antennae, leads to constant frustration. It’s as if we’ve had a stroke.” (1)

Oh so true! There are moments I experience a kind of spiritual aphasia before God. I send commands to my being to express my desires to God and my yieldedness to his will but then my mouth won’t move. I form some words, slingshot them toward God but before I’ve even finished my release, I’ve forgotten my prayer posture and my mind slips toward something else.

James writes of the trouble such a condition can bring, “You do not have because you do not ask” (James 4:2).

Sometimes I’m a doubter, “like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind” (James 1:6).  James goes on to say that such a person “should not expect to receive anything from the Lord” (verse 7).

In other moments I conclude that I’m too selfish to experience God’s response to my prayers as James, again, warns, “When you ask, you do not receive because you ask with wrong motives, that you may spend what you get on your pleasures” (James 4:3).

At the center of all my struggles, I’m not sure my babbling before God actually counts as praying.

“Perhaps prayer doesn’t have to begin with an “Our Father” and end with an “Amen” to be a prayer.”

Elisa Morgan

Okay, settle down, Elisa. The psalms are filled with examples of David and other pilgrims crying out to God in everyday emotion. Perhaps prayer doesn’t have to begin with an “Our Father” and end with an “Amen” to be prayer. Theologian Richard Foster offers such hope as he writes, “Countless people, you see, pray far more than they know. Often they have such a ‘stained-glass’ image of prayer that they fail to recognize what they are experiencing as prayer and so condemn themselves for not praying.” (2)

Whew. Whether bent-kneed and patterned or simply stream of conscious rumbling, my prayers are just that: prayers.

I’m pretty sure you relate here. Why don’t we pray more about more things that really matter to us? Why don’t we take advantage of the heart relationship of prayer that God provides for us? Like me, have you been making prayer harder than it has to be? Harder than God means it to be?

For Jesus, prayer was an unending, uninterrupted conversation with the rest of himself. And for us, prayer can be the same: conversation with the God who formed us in our mother’s wombs, who knows the number of hairs on our heads, who hears a word before it is formed on our tongues and who longs to give us what we need before we even ask.

Why would we do anything but pray about it?

Before a word is on my tongue, you Lord, know it completely. Psalm 139:4

Notes:

1. Paul Miller, “The Hardest Place in the World to Pray,” April 11, 2017, http://thedisciplemaker.org/the-hardest-place-in-the-world-to-pray/

2. Richard Foster, Prayer: Finding the Heart’s True Home (New York: HarperCollins, 2003), xi-xii.

***

Elisa Morgan (MDiv) was named by Christianity Today as one of the top fifty women influencing today’s church and culture. She has authored over twenty-five books including The Beauty of Broken, Hello, Beauty Full, She Did What She Could and her most recent release, When We Pray Like Jesus. For twenty years, Elisa served as CEO of MOPS International and now is President Emerita. She speaks internationally, writes for Our Daily Bread Devotional and co-hosts Discover the Word radio and the podcast God Hears Her for Our Daily Bread Ministries.

You can find out more about Elisa, book her to speak at your event and sign up for her blog, Really, which reaches thousands at www.elisamorgan.com. Follow her on Facebook and Instagram (@elisamorganauthor) and on Twitter (@elisa_morgan).  

With her husband of forty-one years, Evan, she has two grown children and two grandchildren who live near her in Denver, Colorado. Coach, her Rottie-wannabe, takes her on walks daily. 

Originally published on the Really blog at www.elisamorgan.com. Used by permission of Elisa Morgan. 

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Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

Keeping Your Heart Door Cracked Open in Messy Relationships

Your friend royally hurt your feelings. Their words stung deep. There was no ‘I’m sorry’, no acknowledgement of wrongdoing. So what do you do? Many of us take the easy way out in conflict. We talk to others about the problem instead of confronting the person who hurt us. Perhaps we think it’ll make things worse, maybe we’re just plain scared. But Jesus gave us instructions on how to handle messy relationships.

He said in Matthew 18:17, If your friend sins against you go straight to that person. Then if he still doesn’t make it right, take another person along and try again. If he refuses to listen to them, tell it to the church, and if he refuses to listen even to the church, treat him as you would a pagan or a  tax collector.

But here’s the catch. How did Jesus treat the outsiders and tax collectors? He ate supper with them! He showed them kindness. He treated them with dignity and love when others scoffed.

Jesus never slammed a relational door shut. He always left it cracked open for anyone who decided they wanted forgiveness and reconciliation.

andrea chatelain

Jesus never slammed a relational door shut. He always left it cracked open for anyone who decided they wanted forgiveness and reconciliation.

So what does that mean for us? How do we love those who hurt us and created conflict? We follow Jesus’s lead. We try multiple times to make peace. If they decide not to change, we have the right to distance ourselves. But we leave the door cracked open in our hearts.

If they come back and ask for forgiveness? Forgive. Doesn’t mean you are best friends. Doesn’t mean you devote your life to them. But you freely offer the most important gift you have to share–God’s grace.

Because that’s what Jesus did for you.

Application Questions: Who have you had a hard time forgiving? Even if reconciliation isn’t possible right now, how can you leave your heart open to forgive?

(originally featured as an ODB daily devotional)

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Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

Beating Fatigue in Long Seasons

Winter in cold climates can feel suffocating. The snow falls endlessly, tree limbs threaten to break at the weight of the season, and all signs of life go into hiding. You know the heaviness of hard seasons too. (Hello Covid a year later! plus all other life stressors) It’s easy to pile up years of hurt, rejection, and disappointment without clearing a path for joy. But that’s exactly the antidote you need when life’s too much. You need the warmth of joy to melt some of the cold, to beat fatigue.

I see you doing all the things. Packing endless lunches, zooming til your eyeballs turn red, trying to have that conversation YET AGAIN. There will always be struggle. But there will always be JOY. Even if you don’t feel it. Even if it seems lost. Joy cannot be lost. It’s held and given out in Jesus. You with me??

There will always be struggle. But there will always be JOY.

Andrea Chatelain

Israel’s King Solomon knew and wrote about a gamete of emotions in the book of Ecclesiastes. He experimented and documented thoughts of pleasures and toils, the highs and lows of life that are endlessly twisted together. In the end though, he said “I commend joy, for man has nothing better under the sun but to eat and drink and be joyful, for this will go with him in his toil through the days of his life…” Ecclesiastes 8:15 ESV.

We need joy, God-given joy, to go with us and hold onto us through the turmoil–COVID, career lows, family drama, motherhood. So how do we fight fatigue? We snuggle up to the source of Joy. Jesus himself keeps alive in us what the world’s weight tries to suffocate. As we walk through long days with God, treading on His sweet stepping stones of joy, life will melt into spring.

So diligently seek joy in the Lord even if it doesn’t make sense. Need ideas??

  • Pray and ask God to renew in you a joyful Spirit (he knows how you’re feeling anyway).
  • Set reminders on your phone to think of three things you’re thankful for.
  • Spend 10 minutes a day in the Bible to set your thoughts on God’s goodness (if you don’t know where to start I recommend first5app or @shereadstruth).
  • Go to lunch/coffee with a friend or CALL someone once a week to check in (You’re made for community).  
  • Wake up and repeat “I EXPECT God to do GOOD things today because HE is good.”

Don’t let yourself grow cold and bitter. Instead warm yourself up next to Jesus. What struggles seem too much lately? What comfort, peace, and joy has God offered to help you through?

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Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

A New Way to Lent

So what is it that you gave up for lent? TV? Social media? (that’s me!) Sugar? What if I told you God’s not concerned at all with what you ‘give up’ and totally watching your thankfulness? You might squirm a bit like me, but then realize it’s pretty awesome news.

In the Old Testament (Leviticus) you can read about life before Jesus. How God’s people had to burn up their crops and livestock daily as sacrifices for their sin, guilt… and fellowship with God. I’m pretty sure you don’t have a continual barbeque to the Lord happening on your back porch. Neither do I.

Now we take that last part for granted. Without Jesus’s atonement for your daily sin, you’d still be burning up the best of your summer garden produce or the first bag of groceries you bring home from the store. It’d be a daily reminder you are far from God and something needs to be done to make the relationship right. How awful does that sound??

Instead we go through our day without ever sacrificing because Jesus is the sacrifice needed to restore your relationship with the Father. And what does He want? Not your ‘have to’ offerings or ‘have to give ups’–but your ‘get to’ attitude.

In Psalm 50 God tells His people, look it’s good that you’re trying to make it right day in and day out, but let’s be clear, I don’t need your stuff. You’re not giving me anything that isn’t already mine–the whole world and everything in it to be exact belong to me. So what do I want? Thanksgiving.

The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me

Psalm 50:23

Literally the best thing you have to offer God is your attitude. Your thankful praise. Your ‘get to’ instead of ‘have-to’. Your eyes looking up to the actual provider of everything you have and will ever need and acknowledging that everything is His and He’s been generous to you.

It’s a complete mental shift for me. I always want to DO something to show God I love Him. And the good news is He’s done it all. He’s given all. He just wants to gather up my heart and yours and hear you say, Father you’re pretty awesome. Thank you for everything.

So what does that mean for Lent? It means you can still find ways to seek God and practice sacrificial living. But practice THANKSGIVING more than anything. Keep a gratitude journal. Set alarms on your phone 3 times a day to remember to focus on all God has done for YOU. Serve out of the overflow. And model all of this to your kids so they see you in awe of your Father through Lent.

A prayer to get you started….Thank You God for all that you are and all you provide. Including your Son who was the only sacrifice that could fill in the gap between us and heaven. You are so generous and good. I praise you! Amen.

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Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

Confidence Boost for SAHMs transitioning to Working Mom

So you’ve been home with your kids. Maybe working part-time, maybe not. You sent your last baby to school and now what? You feel like you’re graduating college again. You know you’re qualified to do many things, but you’re also shaking in your boots thinking about interviewing. It’s a huge life choice that affects the whole family! Thoughts swirl. What is it that you want to do? Which way is the right way? Gah! I have good news for you today. You can do this!

I’m there with you. I’m in the space of qualified and feeling unqualified. That uncomfortable place of ‘I once was something different and motherhood shaped me into a new person’. My goals have changed, what I think is important has changed. The way I want to spend my precious time has changed. And it’s ok.

Change is coming for you if you’re a mom.

We have to make peace with that. Right when you get the hang of taking care of littles, they decide to be big. And you’re left packing their onesies into a tub in the basement just in case you want to look the ‘Allstar’ or ‘Momma’s Bestie’ 2T someday. Cue cry.

And let’s be real, the working world doesn’t accept “raised my kids” as qualification on your resume. It can be a daunting and humbling process to reinvent yourself. It can make you feel unprofessional to talk to the HR gatekeeper when you haven’t had adult conversation in months. But let me tell you, wherever you are in the process, God has a plan for you and His success doesn’t depend on how qualified or unqualified you feel.

God has a plan for you and His success doesn’t depend on how qualified or unqualified you feel.

Andrea Chatelain

Let me share with you a verse that empowered me as I interviewed for a position. Job said to the Lord, “I know that you can do all things, and that no purpose of yours can be thwarted,” (Job 42:2 ESV).

Now God has a sense of humor using a verse from “Job” to encourage us when we are job hunting. But the truth here is serious. Job in his weakness says he knows GOD can do all things and that HIS purpose can’t be thwarted.

So maybe your plans won’t work the way you’d hoped. But as you step out embracing new seasons of life, know that GOD has a plan. HE can do all things even when you feel lost. And HIS plans and purposes can’t be thwarted. So you just have to be brave enough to follow his lead.

Go confidently friend! It’s a bittersweet transition. But God has big plans for you.

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Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

3 Ways to advance Pro LIFE under a Pro CHOICE Administration

There’s much to celebrate right now, but also much work to be done on many justice fronts. Readers have voiced hopelessness and frustration to me rooted in the topic everyone has an opinion on –abortion. It’s a horrible reality we shouldn’t look away from. But often the Christian gaze is fixed on the effect instead of the cause. And when we yell at the end result, it doesn’t help change those struggling in the middle. So how can we as pro-life Christians, lead the way to change while living under a pro-choice administration? I hope this shows you how much power you’ll always have…

YOUR MOUTH WORKS FOR CHANGE WHERE YOUR FEET MAY NEVER GO:

“And will not God give justice to his elect, who cry to him day and night? Will he delay long over them? I tell you, he will give justice to them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will he find faith on earth?” Luke 18:7-8

Every woman who has felt abortion was the best option matters to Jesus.

He saw her whole life, the way men abused and used her. The poverty or pain that led her there. The judgmental stares and unmerciful attitudes. The true enemy whispering lies of insecurity and fear in her heart. Her youth and no trusted adults to guide her. Her identity in everything other than His love. And few or no prayers for her. And I believe Jesus has intense mercy, love, and grief for each woman.

We want justice for babies, but it starts with justice for their mothers. And justice for their mothers starts with daily repentant prayer that we haven’t shown up for her in ways Jesus has asked us to love the outcast in Scripture. Me included. But that stops now. God invites us to partner with Him in prayer and His work powerfully moves in people’s hearts we may never personally know. Can you imagine if we all prayed for abortion vulnerable women for 30 days?!

*ACTION PLAN: Commit to 30 DAYS OF PRAYER for ABORTION VULNERABLE WOMEN. (see below) I’ve made it easy with prompts, you do the work believing your mouth is powerful in prayer.

GOD CAN USE YOUR RESOURCES FOR CHANGE:


“And whoever gives one of these little ones even a cup of cold water because he is a disciple, truly, I say to you, he will by no means lose his reward.” Matthew 10:42 ESV

The people on the front lines of love and justice need money to support vulnerable women. I’ve volunteered at low income housing projects for women, helping teach them how to peel carrots for freezer meals and sitting in awe of their stories during Bible study. These are Jesus’s people and they need support. And the people working with them need support and funds.

There are problems galore in the system, but there are lights of hope in individual stories of healing. God is working with or without us, but from the Scripture above, it seems He’d like us to be all in. If we truly are passionate about the issue of abortion beyond simply our opinion, why not invest in the solution?

*Action plan: Search for women’s shelters and pro-adoption clinics in your city. Give boldly to these projects this year as God instructs. If there are none, perhaps you are who God wants to use to start one! Here’s one doing great things in my community…Assure Women’s Center.

YOUR TIME IS POWERFUL:

“Which of these three, do you think, proved to be a neighbor to the man who fell among the robbers?” 37 He said, “The one who showed him mercy.” And Jesus said to him, “You go, and do likewise.” Luke 10:36-37 ESV

Can you mentor young girls so they have a trusted adult before they even hit puberty? Can you sit with a young woman at a Christian pregnancy center while she waits for her ultrasound appointment so she’s not so afraid? Can you spend time having important conversations with your children about how to be a friend to the friendless? Can you volunteer at women’s shelters so they can have a break from motherhood and attend Bible study? There’s always SOMETHING you can DO! And that’s powerful.

When the problem seems so much bigger than one person’s abilities, I always remember I personally can help ONE PERSON. I struggle with getting out of my comfort zone and heck we’re in a pandemic. My initial response is to make excuses as to why I can’t. But, if God’s put it on our hearts then obedience brings fruit, not failure.

ACTION PLAN: Choose one of the above mentioned ideas to spend your time serving the invisible in your community.

Friends, we are only powerless if we are loveless. May you and I love in action and deeds, flowing Jesus’s mercy and love at all times, through all generations, so we may see God’s work lighting up our communities. AMEN!

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Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

3-2-1-0 Kids’ Prayer Technique

My daughter Natalie (7) had big feelings before bed, but I was exhausted and didn’t want to take the time to deal with it. That’s how real life goes sometimes. But in that moment of burnout, God gave me an idea, “Let’s pray 3-2-1 sweet girl.”

It didn’t drag out bedtime, instead when we started this simple method of prayer it brought much needed calm so she could sleep.

**SO in January’s FROM ME TO YOU EMAIL you’ll find your free prayer guide outlining the solution God’s used to help me support my kiddos in faith at bedtime. It’s easy for kids to learn and Natalie now reminds me, “Mom, we need to do 3-2-1!” I’m so happy to share it with you and hope it brings you and your kids closer together. 

Perhaps commit to praying 3-2-1-0 with your kids (or even your spouse!) for a week to get into the groove. For me, it’s given me precious insight into what my kids are THINKING and WORRYING about, and helped motivate my prayer life as well so I know how to pray for them. 

Click here if you would like this free faith resource for your kids.

Your friend in Christ,
Andrea Chatelain

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If you read this far that means we’re two peas in a pod. Jot your email down to GET this month’s from ME to YOU freebie…and so I can connect with you more! We’re in this together!

Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

Understanding God’s Throne in Time of Need

The attack on the capitol yesterday reminded me how far faithlessness will take us. How pride and power will twist and darken our hearts if we let it. And not just in the people we saw on tv, but in you and me. How if we don’t have faith that all things in heaven and earth are under God’s control, fearful human egos will grasp at their fleeting kingdom instead of standing secure in God’s. So let’s get some faith today. 

It’s important to note that the root of the sin that emboldens faithless action, like overthrowing and ransacking our capitol in hate, lives in all of us. Sadly, it doesn’t shock me, but it reminds me the importance of obedience and reflection for each believer. Whose THRONE do I want to succeed? Mine or Jesus’s? And who do I trust TO SIT on that throne? Me or God?

God’s throne is called the “throne of grace”. How different that is than the throne of power man seeks. 

Urging us on in prayer and faith, the writer of Hebrews penned, “Let us then with confidence draw near to the throne of grace, that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.” (Hebrews 4:16 ESV)

Well I’d say it’s a time of need for our country so let’s dig into this concept.

That word grace (xaris) means reaching out freely in kindness to share a benefit. It literally means God’s throne leans toward you holding out all His goodness freely sharing His inheritance, mercy, and love. So we lack nothing.

God’s “throne of grace” leans toward you holding out all His goodness freely sharing His inheritance, mercy, and love.  We lack nothing.

-Andrea Chatelain

If we truly believe that the throne of all time is reaching towards us completely open with everything we need, our hands simply must open and lean back into God to receive. 

There’s no grasping for power in God’s kingdom. All is his. There’s no reason for pride, because all His sons and daughters receive what they need. And there’s no room for fear because our Heavenly Father’s in control and His throne is immovable, impenetrable, and eternal.

Lord, may we be confident, faithful, children of God who seek the “throne of grace” above all others vying for our adoration. May we humbly keep our hands out accepting all goodness from our generous Father and look to Him only in our country’s time of need. 

May we find unity as one body of believers under God’s reign of our hearts, speech, and action. And comfort in His power knowing He has already overcome all evils of this world. Amen.

Hi Friend!! Connect with me below!

If you read this far that means we’re two peas in a pod. Jot your email down to GET this month’s from ME to YOU freebie…and so I can connect with you more! We’re in this together!

Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

If You Do Nothing Else This Christmas

If you’re like me, you feel the “I don’t know” in the air. Will we celebrate at grandma’s? Hopefully. Will we go to church in person or online? Depends on health. Should I get a tenderloin for the deep freeze just in case? Perhaps. Did Jesus come for me and will He come again? Yes. If you do nothing else this Christmas, reflect with me for a minute on what the manger holds for you.

There are some questions we can and should reflect on this Christmas season. And the one that’s ringing in my ears today is, why did God send His son Jesus to live among us?

So we’d know and believe that the Father loves us.

It’s simple. It’s true. And it encompasses so much at the same time. Through Jesus, we can see the unseen God’s character. We witness what’s important to our heavenly Father. We have proof that He’s not forgotten about us, but is pursuing and planning for our good.

How does it feel to have a personal God who’s not far off, but as near to mankind as a child in a womb? How does it repair what’s been damaged within you, the doubt or the fear, that He came for you specifically?

This week I’m settling in to a piece of Scripture that deserves to dwell in our hearts for good.

“But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us,  even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus,” (Ephesians 2:4-6 ESV).

God’s son lowered from heaven to an earthly manger is the grandest gesture of “great love” and “rich mercy” one could ever fathom. And He did it to raise us up to our right standing with God.

God’s son lowered from heaven to an earthly manger is the grandest gesture of “great love” and “rich mercy” one could ever fathom. And He did it to raise us up to our right standing with God.

Andrea Chatelain

He saw me and you in the dark and He chose to be our light. We were dead in sin, and He came to BE our life. He’s restored our honor, our goodness, our rightness as a gift so that we have a direct line of relationship heavenward.

Do not take Christmas lightly. While most things in this world may be lost or unsure. Everything that Christmas stands for will remain. And because of that I invite you to ponder the hope of the season as you reflect on passages that prove God’s love like Ephesians 2:4-6. You, dear reader, are greatly loved by God and have a treasure that cannot be taken.

So CELEBRATE! Rejoice! Bring out the peanut butter blossom cookies and hot cocoa. Decorate with lights galore. But more importantly, be blessed as you fill up on the Lord’s presence.

Hi Friend!! Connect with me below!

If you read this far that means we’re two peas in a pod. Jot your email down to GET this month’s from ME to YOU freebie…and so I can connect with you more! We’re in this together!

Andrea Chatelain’s mission is to meet women in their struggles and love them forward with God’s truth. She’s a Midwest mom of three, faith and family writer, and college English instructor to immigrants and refugees. She believes Jesus transforms lives when His people boldly seek Him. Her writing reflects her love for Jesus and heart for fellow believers.

Grow in faith with Andrea’s video Devotionals on Our Daily BreadOr follow her on Facebook/Instagram.

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