Fear Not, Dear One

Hello, Dear One!  It seems like a good time to re-run this devotion because of the war breaking out in eastern Europe.  God comforts us and says, “FEAR NOT” in His word.  Today I run this post from July 2021 with a few updates:

Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.
Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)

Fear not, daughter of Zion;
Behold, your King is coming… John 12:5 (NKJV)

Hello, Dear One! I’m writing this for myself, as well as for you. Perhaps you’ve heard disturbing news recently that has you fearful? I know I have! Earlier this year a friend mentioned there are 365 Bible verses that tell us not to fear, one for each day of the year. When I have my quiet time with Jesus, I’ve been writing down the “fear not” verses He shows me in His Word.

Before I share those with you, let’s remember there is One we should fear — God. Joshua 4:24 says, “That you may fear the Lord your God forever.” That means we fear the Lord more than any person. We would rather please God than man, and so we obey all His commandments.

Who would not fear You, O King of the nations?
For this is Your rightful due.
For among all the wise men of the nations,
And in all their kingdoms,
There is none like You.
Jeremiah 10:7 (NKJV)

But I will show you whom you should fear: Fear Him who, after He has killed, has power to cast into hell; yes, I say to you, fear Him! Luke 12:5 (NKJV)

Oh, fear the Lord, you His saints!
There is no want to those who fear Him. Psalm 34:9 (NKJV)

We must be like Daniel and his friends. Daniel did not fear the lions, he only wanted to please God with his prayers. Shadrack, Meshach, and Abed-Nego did not fear the fiery furnace, they feared God and would not bow down to any idol. Dear One, we too must follow their examples and say…

If that is the case, our God whom we serve is able to deliver us from the burning fiery furnace, and He will deliver us from your hand, O king. But if not, let it be known to you, O king, that we do not serve your gods, nor will we worship the gold image which you have set up. Daniel 3:17-18 (NKJV)

May we have such courage when we face fearful situations! From Genesis to Revelation, God tells us to FEAR NOT!

Now therefore, do not be afraid; I will provide for you and your little ones…. Genesis 50:21 (NKJV)

And Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today. For the Egyptians whom you see today, you shall see again no more forever. The Lord will fight for you, and you shall hold your peace.” Exodus 14:13-14 (NKJV)

You must not fear them, for the Lord your God Himself fights for you. Deuteronomy 3:22 (NKJV)

You shall not be afraid of them, but you shall remember well what the Lord your God did to Pharaoh and to all Egypt. Deuteronomy 7:18 (NKJV)

Be strong and of good courage, do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the Lord your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31:6 (NKJV)

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and of good courage; do not be afraid, nor be dismayed, for the Lord your God is with you wherever you go. Joshua 1:9 (NKJV)

Be strong and courageous; do not be afraid nor dismayed before the king of Assyria, nor before all the multitude that is with him; for there are more with us than with him. 2 Chronicles 32:7 (NKJV)

Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
I will fear no evil;
For You are with me;
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me.
Psalm 23:4 (NKJV)

You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day.
Psalm 91:5 (NKJV)

The Lord is on my side;
I will not fear.
What can man do to me?
Psalm 118:6 (NKJV)

Do not be afraid of sudden terror,
Nor of trouble from the wicked when it comes;
For the Lord will be your confidence,
And will keep your foot from being caught.
Proverbs 3:25-26 (NKJV)

For I, the Lord your God, will hold your right hand,
Saying to you, ‘Fear not, I will help you.’
Isaiah 41:13 (NKJV)

But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob,
And He who formed you, O Israel:
“Fear not, for I have redeemed you;
I have called you by your name;
You are Mine.
Isaiah 43:1 (NKJV)

Listen to Me, you who know righteousness,
You people in whose heart is My law:
Do not fear the reproach of men,
Nor be afraid of their insults.
Isaiah 51:7 (NKJV)

Do not be afraid of their faces,
For I am with you to deliver you,” says the Lord.
Jeremiah 1:8 (NKJV)

But Jesus came and touched them and said, “Arise, and do not be afraid.” Matthew 17:7 (NKJV)

But the angel answered and said to the women, “Do not be afraid, for I know that you seek Jesus who was crucified. Matthew 28:5 (NKJV)

...Do not be afraid; only believe. Mark 5:36 (NKJV)

...Be of good cheer! It is I; do not be afraid. Mark 6:50 (NKJV)

Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom. Luke 12:32 (NKJV)

For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind. 2 Timothy 1:7 (NKJV)

,,,Do not be afraid; I am the First and the Last. Revelation 1:17 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Read Daniel 3 and be encouraged by the story of Daniel’s courageous friends. Read Psalm 27 and be comforted by God’s Word. Perhaps you’d like to begin your own treasure hunt to find all 365 “fear not” verses. Underline them in your Bible, write them on notecards, put them where you will see them each day, and share them with your friends. Reading the Psalms may also quiet your fears, Psalm 140 is appropriate to pray at this time. Oh, Dear One, God has a plan, fear not!

Say to those who are fearful-hearted,
“Be strong, do not fear!
Behold, your God will come with vengeance,
With the recompense of God;
He will come and save you.”
Isaiah 35:4 (NKJV)

You will keep him in perfect peace,
Whose mind is stayed on You,
Because he trusts in You.
Trust in the Lord forever,
For in Yah, the Lord, is everlasting strength.
Isaiah 26:3-4 (NKJV)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

Wars and Rumors

But when you hear of wars and commotions, do not be terrified; for these things must come to pass first, but the end will not come immediately. Luke 21:9 (NKJV)

And you will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not troubled; for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. Matthew 24:6 (NKJV)

But when you hear of wars and rumors of wars, do not be troubled; for such things must happen, but the end is not yet. Mark 13:7 (NKJV)

The news reports are coming in about a war in eastern Europe between Russia and Ukraine.  Innocent people are being caught like chess pawns in the middle of a Risk game.  Photos of husbands hugging wives good-bye as they send them to safety grace our newspapers.  Forlorn children ride the train to who-knows-where.  Our hearts ache at these images and we ask the Lord to help these dear ones.  But do we really know the reason for the fighting?  I don’t think so. 

Wisdom is better than weapons of war;
But one sinner destroys much good. Ecclesiastes 9:18

Do you remember how Job and his friends argued for over 30 chapters about why all this evil had come upon Job?  They did not know about the meeting God and satan had in heaven and how God gave satan permission to harm Job, knowing Job would come through the fires of trial as gold.  Recall how Daniel prayed earnestly for the nation of Israel, yet help was delayed in the heavens and the angel Michael had to assist the angel Gabriel so he could come to Daniel (Daniel 10:13). There are battles going on in the heavens of which we know not, yet some of those battles seem to come to earth for us to see.

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

So, how can we best discern these recent world events? We can’t trust the news services that two years ago magnified the covid virus beyond what it was, and one year ago falsely promoted the benefits of the “vaccine” to the demise of thousands.  Only God knows the truth.  While we’re waiting for the truth to come out, what can we do?  We can pray!  We can open our hearts to help. We can love our neighbors. We can search God’s Word.  Why did people battle in Bible times? What was the response of God’s children in those battles?  What does Jesus say about wars in the end times?  He says, “Do not be terrified, see that you are not troubled, do not be troubled, fear not!”   

Fear not, for I am with you;
Be not dismayed, for I am your God.
I will strengthen you,
Yes, I will help you,
I will uphold you with My righteous right hand. Isaiah 41:10 (NKJV)

…Your word is truthJohn 17:17 (NKJV)

In one Old Testament battle, David and his men were fighting the Philistines when they stopped at the cave of Adullam to rest. While there, David lamented, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of the water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate.  So the three mighty men broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless he would not drink it, but poured it out to the Lord (2 Samuel 23:15-16).

This is what we need today — mighty men and women to break through with prayer to the throne room of God, Remember, God loves this world so much that He sent His only Son Jesus to die for our sins.  Hold onto the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world. Jesus has already torn the curtain for us (Luke 23:45), so we can enter the Holy of Holies to meet with our Lord. Pour out your heart to Him there and bring back Living Water for the thirsty souls here on earth.  

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Read Psalms 2 and 133.  Keep praying , dear ladies! Remember, Jesus wins the final battle in Revelation.  Truth triumphs over evil.  Our God reigns!

The name of the Lord is a strong tower;
The righteous run to it and are safe.  Proverbs 18:10 (NKJV)

O Jesus, O Father, I break through boldly into Your throne room, for You have torn the curtain for me. I draw Your Living Water from Your Word, the Well. But unlike David, I drink it and want more and more, and pour my heart out to You in prayer.  Now, refreshed, I boldly ask you to break through the chaos in our world today.  There are wars and rumors of wars. There are viruses and rumors of viruses. There are deaths and rumors of deaths.  There are famines and rumors of famines.  Of Jesus, stop the rumors, end the wars, heal the viruses, halt the deaths, pour out Your Living Water on the famine so that we may bear fruit for You again. Show us ways we can help. And most of all, save lost souls for Your Heavenly Kingdom.  Use all this turmoil and tribulation to turn hearts to You. Open eyes, open hearts, open ears.  Pour out Your Holy Spirit upon this land.  Send a revival, the likes of which have never been seen before.  Do this amazing break-through in the Name of Jesus Christ, and the Blood He shed on the cross.  We claim Your victory over death and the devil — for our nation and world, for the children of Israel, for the innocent citizens of Ukraine, Russia, and surrounding countries, for folks suffering health issues around the world.  We claim Your victory in the mighty Name of Yehovah God, the Great I AM, Creator of the Universe. Hallelujah! Amen! 

P.S. Please add to your prayers these next 2 weeks a certain young man on a mission trip to Eswatini, Africa!  

The next day John saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold! The Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!   John 1:29 (NKJV)

...but grace and truth came through Jesus Christ.  John 1:17 (NKJV)

For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but that the world through Him might be saved.  John 3:17 (NKJV)

Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.  John 14:27 (NKJV)

These things I have spoken to you, that in Me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world. John 16:33 (NKJV)

And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:7 (NKJV)

And Moses said to the people, “Do not be afraid. Stand still, and see the salvation of the Lord, which He will accomplish for you today… Exodus 14:13 (NKJV)

You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem!’ Do not fear or be dismayed; tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.”  2 Chronicles 20:17 (NKJV)

For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds, casting down arguments and every high thing that exalts itself against the knowledge of God, bringing every thought into captivity to the obedience of Christ.  2 Corinthians 10:4-5 (NKJV)

He shall judge between the nations,
And rebuke many people;
They shall beat their swords into plowshares,
And their spears into pruning hooks;
Nation shall not lift up sword against nation,
Neither shall they learn war anymore.  Isaiah 2:4 (NKJV)

Why do the nations rage,
And the people plot a vain thing?
The kings of the earth set themselves,
And the rulers take counsel together,
Against the Lord and against His Anointed,saying,
“Let us break Their bonds in pieces
And cast away Their cords from us.”

He who sits in the heavens shall laugh;
The Lord shall hold them in derision.
Then He shall speak to them in His wrath,
And distress them in His deep displeasure:
“Yet I have set My King
On My holy hill of Zion.”  Psalm 2:1-6 (NKJV)

Though an army may encamp against me,
My heart shall not fear;
Though war may rise against me,
In this I will be confident. Psalm 27:3 (NKJV)

Behold, how good and how pleasant it is
For brethren to dwell together in unity!

It is like the precious oil upon the head,
Running down on the beard,
The beard of Aaron,
Running down on the edge of his garments.
It is like the dew of Hermon,
Descending upon the mountains of Zion;
For there the Lord commanded the blessing—
Life forevermore.  Psalm 133 (NKJV)

Let us therefore come boldly to the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy and find grace to help in time of need.  Hebrews 4:16 (NKJV)


Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982

Looking Up at the Big Blue Sky

Today’s post first ran ten years ago, on February 22, 2011. As I started to write about “Looking Up” in this New Year of 2022, the Lord reminded me I had written about this before. So today, I share an updated devotion with a surprise ending for you.  Little did I know that 9 months after writing this post, I would hold in my arms the desire of my heart — a brand new baby boy, be living in a different house, and my husband would have a new job! That little boy is now 10 years old!  Since that time we’ve had many joys and many sorrows, but through it all we continue to LOOK Up to Jesus, our Messiah.  As our world crumbles under covid, mandates, and immorality, may we all pray continuously to the Father and keep LOOKING UP to Him, our only hope!  Alleluia, Jesus is coming! His children win!

Then I turned and raised my eyes and LOOKED…  Zechariah 6:1 (NKJV)

LOOKING unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith… Hebrews 12:2 (NKJV) 

Do you LOOK UP?  When I was little, I always wanted to be near a window to catch a glimpse of the blue sky.  If I could just see the sky, I could smile up at God.  On my walks home from school I would smile at the puffy clouds and talk to God about my day.  When I was a teenager and started running, it was that blue sky that kept me going.  When my college cross country team died in a plane crash, I LOOKED UP at the dreary November atmosphere and questioned the God in charge of the universe, and decided I didn’t trust Him anymore.  After two years without God or my blue sky, the sun finally shone for me when dear friends introduced me to Jesus Christ. Jesus took my broken soul and washed away my sins, making my sky blue again.

Now I’m blessed to live in the Big Sky State of Montana, where the sky really is bluer than anywhere in the world (according to friends from Rhode Island).  Even though I live in a narrow valley, I can see a big blue strip up above each day.  As I sit by my “Daniel” window for my morning TEA CUPP, I LOOK UP at the still dark, star-speckled sky and whisper, “Good morning, Jesus.” While I pray, the sky lightens, the day dawns, and I’m having TEA with Jesus under the big blue heavens.

You know, when we choose to LOOK UP to Jesus, no matter what our circumstances, life tends to LOOK UP after all.  In recent years we’ve lost 3 babies, 3 cats, a job, and other great sadnesses.  I could look away from God as I did as a college student, but you know what that means?  If we aren’t looking up to Jesus, where are we looking?  We are looking down to Satan, and I don’t want to look there!  So, I keep LOOKING UP…I want to encourage you to do the same through God’s Word.

In the book of Acts we read about a deacon named Stephen.  For his preaching of God’s Word, Stephen became the first martyr of the Christian faith.  Just before he was stoned to death, Stephen called to the crowd…

…LOOK! I see the heavens opened and the Son of Man standing at the right hand of God!. Acts 7:56 (NKJV)

But their hearts were too hard and their eyes closed, so they could not see Jesus.  And they killed Stephen. Jesus, help us to not be like those men.  Let our hearts be softened and our eyes opened as we LOOK UP at the sky for Your coming.

Are you having trouble LOOKING UP?  It might be because of your sins. When this happens, we must ADMIT our sins to Jesus…

For innumerable evils have surrounded me;
My iniquities have overtaken me, so that I am not able to LOOK UP;
They are more than the hairs of my head;
Therefore my heart fails me.
Psalm 40:12 (NKJV)

Did you know Jesus CALLS us to LOOK UP?

Then they will see the Son of Man coming in a cloud with power and great glory. Now when these things begin to happen, LOOK UP and lift up your heads, because your redemption draws near. Luke 21:27-28 (NKJV)

LOOKING for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave Himself for us, that He might redeem us from every lawless deed and purify for Himself His own special people, zealous for good works. Titus 2:13-14 (NKJV)

Then He brought him outside and said, “Look now toward heaven… Genesis 15:5 (NKJV)

While we are waiting for Jesus to return, He CALLS us to LOOK UP to Him as an example of how to live our lives…

If then you were raised with Christ, seek those things which are ABOVE, where Christ is, sitting at the right hand of God. Set your mind on things above, not on things on the earth. Colossians 3:1-2 (NKJV)

But you, beloved, building yourselves up on your most holy faith, praying in the Holy Spirit, keep yourselves in the love of God, LOOKING for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ unto eternal life. Jude 20-22 (NKJV)

…LOOKING for and hastening the coming of the day of God, 2 Peter 3:11-12 (NKJV)

…and looking up to heaven, He blessed and broke and gave the loaves to the disciples… Matthew 14:19 (NKJV)

I UNDERSTAND in my story how God has helped me to LOOK UP to Him each day…

I will LIFT UP MY EYES to the hills—
From whence comes my help?
My help comes from the LORD,
Who made heaven and earth.
Psalm 121:1-2 (NKJV)

Unto You I LIFT UP MY EYES,
O You who dwell in the heavens.
Behold, as the eyes of servants look to the hand of their masters,
As the eyes of a maid to the hand of her mistress,
So our eyes LOOK to the Lord our God,
Until He has mercy on us.  Psalm 123:1-2 (NKJV)

But we SEE JESUS, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone. Hebrews 2:9 (NKJV)

And He PROMISES that one day while we are LOOKING UP He will come again…

And He said to him, “Most assuredly, I say to you, hereafter you shall SEE HEAVEN open, and the angels of God ascending and descending upon the Son of Man.” John 1:52 (NKJV)

“Men of Galilee, why do you stand GAZING UP into heaven? This same Jesus, who was taken up from you into heaven, will so come in like manner as you saw Him go into heaven.” Acts 1:11 (NKJV)

Behold, He is coming with clouds, and EVERY EYE WILL SEE HIM, even they who pierced Him. And all the tribes of the earth will mourn because of Him. Even so, Amen. Revelation 1:7 (NKJV)

Blessed are those servants whom the master, when he comes, will find watching… Luke 12:37 (NKJV)

LIFT UP YOUR EYES to the heavens,
And look on the earth beneath.
For the heavens will vanish away like smoke,
The earth will grow old like a garment,
And those who dwell in it will die in like manner;
But My salvation will be forever,
And My righteousness will not be abolished.
Isaiah 51:6 (NKJV)

And we can petition our Father in heaven as we LOOK UP to Him!

My voice You shall hear in the morning, O LORD;
In the morning I will direct it to You,
And I will LOOK UP.
Psalm 5:3 (NKJV)

O our God, will You not judge them? For we have no power against this great multitude that is coming against us; nor do we know what to do, but our EYES are upon YOU. 2 Chronicles 20:12 (NKJV)

But my EYES are upon YOU, O God the Lord;
In You I take refuge;
Do not leave my soul destitute.
Psalm 141:8 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Here’s a unique story to complete our devotion today: Will you consider that perhaps Jesus first miracle will also be His last? Read John 2:1-11, The Wedding at Cana.  In this account, the wedding party ran out of water, so Jesus performed the miracle of turning water into wine, better than any wine they had ever tasted. The master of the banquet was so amazed that the good wine came last.  Dear ones, the same is true for us today. The peace and joy and comfort we receive from the Lord now are just a foretaste of the wedding feast in heaven.  Prepare your heart! Keep LOOKING UP! The good wine is yet to come!

“…You have kept the good wine until now!”  John 2:10 (NKJV)

…all the people shall keep the WATCH of the Lord. 2 Chronicles 23:6 (NKJV)

Then Abraham lifted his eyes and looked… Genesis 22:13 (NKJV)

And Isaac… lifted his eyes and looked… Genesis 24:63 (NKJV)

For then you will have your delight in the Almighty,
And lift up your face to God. Job 22:26 (NKJV)

Therefore I will LOOK to the Lord;
I will wait for the God of my salvation;
My God will hear me. Micah 7:7 (NKJV)

Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion!
Shout, O daughter of Jerusalem!
Behold, your King is coming to you… Zechariah 9:9 (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982

Just Do It for Jesus!

    His mother said to the servants, “Whatever He says to you, do it.”   John 2:5 (NKJV)

For many years, a famous brand of athletic gear has had the slogan, “Just Do It!” encouraging the athletes who wear their products to get out and do their sports.  Today I also want to encourage you, if God is calling you to a task, just do it for Jesus, and the Lord will be with you.  Let me tell you my story…

…Be of good courage, and do it.”  Ezra 10:4 (NKJV)

For months I’d been disturbed about the harm from the vaccine craze in our country and world.  I prayed, I wrote blog articles, I wrote to my newspaper, I emailed friends… but I couldn’t see that I was making a dent in the problem.  Then one day, the Holy Spirit put the idea in my head to visit our county health nurse and ask her to quit giving the shots.  I had to ponder this for awhile.  I shared the idea with Shannon, one of my prayer partners.  

Is God calling you to a task? Shannon said that to know if the calling is from God, there should be two or three witnesses telling me to do it (Deut. 19:15, Matt. 18:16, John 8:17-18).  If I was told in two or three ways to go see the county health nurse, it must be from the Lord. For example, the Holy Spirit tells you to do something, you read it in God’s Word, and then a friend tells you or you read it in another place in God’s Word.  Shannon also said I can ask, “Would my flesh think of doing this and want to do it?” “No!” “Is this something the enemy wants me to do?” “No!” “Would Jesus want me to do this?” “Yes!”  “Is this something that will please the Lord?” “Yes!”

…whatever God has said to you, do it. Genesis 31:16 (NKJV)

So after reading several Bible verses that encouraged me, I finally set the date to go visit the nurse. The day before my mission I spent in fasting and prayer. The Lord gave me more verses to encourage me, like 2 Chronicles 18:13…As the Lord lives, whatever my God says, that I will speak. And John 6:20…But He said to them, ‘It is I, do not be afraid.’ And John 6:38…For I have come not to do my own will, but the will of Him who sent me. The day arrived and it was snowing hard.  I decided to wait until afternoon, that meant fasting another half day.  Finally, I went in to her office and she was out for the day!  I came home and finally ate, knowing I would still have to go back the next day. 

Strengthened by that meal and more of God’s Word, I returned the following day. Jesus gave me more verses to sustain me: 2 Chronicles 19:9…Thus you shall act in fear of the Lord, faithfully and with a loyal heart. And 2 Chronicles 19:11… Behave courageously, and the Lord will be with the good. And 2 Chronicles 20:17…position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord, who is with you…do not fear or be dismayed. And Zechariah 4:6...not by might nor by power, but by my Spirit says the Lord of hosts.  As I drove there, I prayed more Scripture, “Fear not for I am with you, be not dismayed for I am your God, I will strengthen you, I will help you, I will uphold you with my victorious right hand… May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in Thy sight, O Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer…” (Isaiah 41:10, Psalm 19:14). 

When I arrived, someone was in the nurse’s office receiving a shot. Another person was standing in the hallway awaiting her turn.  As I waited for an opening, I prayed.  Finally, just before three o’clock, I slipped into her office and asked if she had a minute.  She looked at her calendar and at the clock and said that was about all she had before the next patient.  So with just two minutes allowed, I jumped right into my mission.  I said, “God sent me to pray for you.”  I thanked her for all the times she helped my boys to go on mission trips by researching the necessary vaccines for those countries. I said, but I’ve heard some bad things about this current covid vaccine, and I asked her to quit giving it, especially to babies and children.  She replied that you have to check your sources and that if parents want to give it to their kids, they can do that.  Knowing that my time was almost over, I offered to pray.  I thanked Jesus for her hard work during these trying times the past two years, I asked the Holy Spirit to stir in her heart if she heard anything questionable about the vaccines, and I prayed God’s blessings upon her family.  Then it was the next person’s turn.  I drove home wondering if I had done any good, yet thankful I had been obedient to God’s calling.

The next day I went to see a friend I’d been wanting to visit for a long time. She told me she and her husband had been vaccinated. My heart broke.  The following day I had a really hard day.  Always, like Elijah after his Mt. Caramel victory, I break down at the threats of Jezebel.  My prayer friend Shannon explained to me later that when we are in battle mode, the dragon cannot get us. But after the battle, we let down our guard and the dragon hits us with his tail. That’s just how it was!  But on the evening of that hard day, only wanting to stay home, but being urged by my husband, we went out to attend a Christmas concert.  There, a neighbor came up to me and said, “I hear you’re praying for the county health nurse. That’s great! We all should be praying.”  Thank you, dearest Jesus, for confirming my call.  And now we keep praying for her and for others like her across this nation to just stop the shot.  For if they stop it, we won’t have it anymore. All glory to God!

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Is God calling you to a task?  Has He told you in two or three ways? (Yes!) Does this calling line up with Scripture? (Yes!) Would my flesh think of doing this and want to do it? (No!) Is this something the enemy would want me to do? (No!) Would Jesus want me to do this? (Yes!)  Is this something that will please the Lord? (Yes!) Pray hard, ask others to pray, and then, just do it for Jesus! And may the Lord be with you this new year, dear sister!

But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.  James 1:22 (NKJV)

Now therefore, let the fear of the Lord be upon you; take care and do it2 Chronicles 19:7 (NKJV)

…and see that you do it quickly. 2 Chronicles 24:5 (NKJV)

If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them. John 13:17 (NKJV)

do it according to the will of your God. Ezra 7:18 (NKJV)

…and if I perish, I perish! Ester 4:16 (NKJV)

 It is also written in your law that the testimony of two men is true. I am One who bears witness of Myself, and the Father who sent Me bears witness of Me.”  John 8:17-18 (NKJV)

…by the mouth of two or three witnesses the matter shall be established. Deuteronomy 19:15 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers, if you are motivated by today’s devotion, you might also like to read: Esther’s Great Calling and  Steadfast and Stout-hearted.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982

Christmas Gifts!

…but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

Hello, ladies! I know many of you are still looking for that perfect gift for a friend or family member or sister in Christ. If you’re seeking a gift with eternal significance that encourages ladies to read God’s Word, I have 3 My TEA CUPP ideas for you!

 

Good Morning, Jesus, Prayer Journal ($20 suggested gift)

This journal is designed to be a companion to my books, My TEA CUPP Prayers and Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers.  In these devotional books, I invite you to sit down each morning with your Bible, a cup of tea, and Jesus.  As you drink from His Word and sip from your favorite morning mug, you will draw near to your Savior and be filled with God’s blessings.  You underline your favorite verses and use those verses as conversation starters as you pour your heart out to God in prayer.  I pray you will be in God’s Word each day, reading your Bible and blessed by this journal as a way to get you started.  

My TEA CUPP Prayers ($15 suggested gift)

YOU are invited to TEA with Jesus TODAY!!!  “Come to Me,” Jesus calls in Matthew 11:28.  Please accept!  Allow God to draw you into a daily TEA time with Jesus through this 77-day devotional. My TEA CUPP Prayers is an invitation to women everywhere to sit down daily with Jesus for a cup of tea.  The TEA CUPP acronym provides the parts of prayers, as we use the BIBLE to talk with our Lord.  Here new Christians discover a way to draw nearer to Jesus and old Christians taste a fresh flavor for their prayers. Women will dig deeper into God’s Word, come closer to Jesus by meeting with Him each day, and unleash the power of the Holy Spirit through their prayers.

 

Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers ($16 suggested gift)

What will you find when you open the pages of Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers?  You will discover a 77-day devotional that takes moms gracefully into a daily TEA time with Jesus.  Every Sunday you will meet a new Bible mom who will introduce you to another part of prayer.  And during the week you will again be encouraged to read your Bible and pray for your family, as I share stories God has given me, including our miracle baby. The book also has a week of Christmas devotions which I hope will bless your Christmas season this year and in years to come.  They might be just the thing to read to your small group or family this Advent season. Mom’s TEA CUPP Prayers is an invitation to moms everywhere to sit down each day with Jesus, a Bible, and your favorite morning mug.

You can order one item or bundle them together to make an extra special gift. Each one comes with a My TEA CUPP Prayers bookmark, and to those who request it, you can even receive a M’Cheyne Bible Reading Plan. Because I hope to get these into the hands of many ladies, I’m offering free shipping for the rest of December.

We aren’t set up for credit cards, so if you could please snail-mail a check to My TEA CUPP Prayers, PO Box 1003, Big Timber, MT 59011, that will work well. You can also text me here. Please include a short note with your mailing address, phone number in case I have questions, and what items you would like sent.

Thank you for considering these My TEA CUPP items for your Christmas gift-giving. Here are some Christmas devotions to bless your day until your books arrive. He Comes with Presents is a good one :-). Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers! Merry Christmas! Jesus is coming soon!!!

If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask Him! Matthew 7:11 (NKJV)

But earnestly desire the best gifts. And yet I show you a more excellent way. 1 Corinthians 12:31 (NKJV)

Thanks be to God for His indescribable gift! 2 Corinthians 9:15 (NKJV)

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning. James 1:17 (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 

The Well of Bethlehem

And David said with longing, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of water from the well of Bethlehem, which is by the gate!”  1 Chronicles 11:17 (NKJV)

1 Chronicles is an unusual place to begin the Christmas story, yet here we are for that “Little Town of Bethlehem” of which the carolers sing is found in this Scripture.  David and his army had just conquered and reclaimed Jerusalem, but the Philistines still occupied Bethlehem.  David was yearning with a wistful longing for a drink from the well by the gate of Bethlehem.  How did David know such a well was there? He lived there! His family, all the way back to his great-great-grandfather Boaz lived there (Ruth 2:4).  When David was young, he watched his father’s sheep in Bethlehem and it was there that Samuel had anointed David as king (1 Samuel 16:1).  No wonder David was sentimental about the well. Some of his men overheard his desire, risked their lives, broke into the enemy camp, and returned with the water.  Now we think David would have taken a big drink and passed it around to share with his warriors. But what he did instead surprises us… he poured it out on the ground!  

So the three broke through the camp of the Philistines, drew water from the well of Bethlehem that was by the gate, and took it and brought it to David. Nevertheless David would not drink it, but poured it out to the Lord. 1 Chronicles 11:18 (NKJV)

This well was located by the same Bethlehem of which the prophet Micah foretold (Micah 5:2) and of which Luke spoke in the famous Christmas story (Luke 2:4-5), the birthplace of our Savior. This year, when you hear and read these passages, do more than nod the head, enjoying the familiar words washing over you in a sentimental way. Put yourself in that time in history and experience this real place called Bethlehem, a real town first mentioned in our Bibles in Genesis 35:19. There, Jacob’s beloved wife Rachel was buried after dying from the birth of Benjamin. Do you think Mary, in her very pregnant state, thought of Rachel while enduring the trip to Bethlehem, perhaps wondering if the same fate was in store for her?  

Joseph also went up from Galilee, out of the city of Nazareth, into Judea, to the city of David, which is called Bethlehem, because he was of the house and lineage of David, to be registered with Mary, his betrothed wife, who was with child. Luke 2:4-5 (NKJV) 

Ponder that poor young couple, Joseph and pregnant Mary, on their journey to Bethlehem, awaiting the arrival of Jesus, the Savior of the all who will believe in His name. Think of that long, tedious trek (have you ever ridden a horse or bicycle when very pregnant and the baby’s head already wants to push its way out? Very painful indeed! Even walking can bring on labor).  Mary’s distress and extended belly foretell of our pregnant world, swollen with plagues and sin and despair, painfully riding our donkeys from day to day, waiting, watching, longing, desiring, yearning, hastening, welcoming the triumphant return of our Blessed Lord, Jesus Christ, the Son of God.

Has not the Scripture said that the Christ comes from the seed of David and from the town of Bethlehem, where David was?”  John 7:42 (NKJV)

Now, Jesus is that Well of Bethlehem and His water is sweeter than that for which David longed.  His water is purer, cleaner and greater than anything this world can offer. Come ye, O come ye, my dear TEA CUPP ladies, to Bethlehem.  Drink of Jesus’ water and pour it out for others. Like the shepherds, Come to Bethlehem and see, Him whose birth the angels sing. Come adore on bended knee, Christ the Lord, the new born King*. 

Oh, holy Child of Bethlehem! Descend to us, we pray; Cast out our sin, and enter in; Be born in us today. We hear the Christmas angels the great glad tidings tell; O come to us, abide with us, Our Lord Emmanuel. (Phillips Brooks, 1868)

Looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ. Titus 2:13 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Read Luke 1-2 this week. We who have tasted the Well of Bethlehem, the Living Water, are called to pour it out for others before the Lord.  Pour out your heart to Him in prayer for the lost. Pour out your testimony and love of Jesus to those you see each day. And, if God is calling you, answer His call to missions, pouring out your life for Jesus, hearing the cries of the thirsty around the world who are calling, “Oh, that someone would give me a drink of water from the well of Bethlehem.” 

…“Give us water, that we may drink.”… Exodus 17:2 (NKJV)

…Jesus said to her, “Give Me a drink.” John 4:7 (NKJV)

And all drank the same spiritual drink. For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.  1 Corinthians 10:4 (NKJV)

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled. Matthew 5:6 (NKJV)

O God, You are my God;
Early will I seek You;
My soul thirsts for You;
My flesh longs for You
In a dry and thirsty land
Where there is no water.
So I have looked for You in the sanctuary,
To see Your power and Your glory.  Psalm 63:1-2 (NKJV)

He who believes in Me, as the Scripture has said, out of his heart will flow rivers of living water. John 7:38 (NKJV)

“But you, Bethlehem Ephrathah,
Though you are little among the thousands of Judah,
Yet out of you shall come forth to Me
The One to be Ruler in Israel,
Whose goings forth are from of old,
From everlasting.” Micah 5:2 (NKJV)

 So it was, when the angels had gone away from them into heaven, that the shepherds said to one another, “Let us now go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has come to pass, which the Lord has made known to us.”  Luke 2:15 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers. If you enjoyed today’s devotion, please check out To You and The Best Water.  God bless your Advent and Christmas season, dear one!

O come ye to Bethlehem**

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 

*Hymn: Angels We Have Heard on High, verse 3, traditional French carol.  

**Latin hymn O Come, All Ye Faithful, sung by Hillsong, John F. Wade, 1751

Consecrate a Fast

Blow the trumpet in Zion,
Consecrate a fast,
Call a sacred assembly.  Joel 2:15 (NKJV)

Dear Ones, Can you hear the trumpet blowing? God is calling us to fast!* Our nation has been in an uproar this past year with mandate after mandate, vile law after vile law, immorality after immorality… we cannot deny that we are on the course for a train wreck unless something changes immediately.  Some very hard-working people spent the past year researching evidence to prove that the 2020 election was stolen (God bless these courageous souls!).

On Tuesday, November 23, they will be taking this case to the Supreme Court of the United States of America.  Dear ladies, if the election can be overturned and Christian leaders put in office, we will have more time to bring people to Christ before He returns (which is imminent).  If the election is not overturned, if the justices close their ears to the evidence, the judgement of America will be just days away with Jesus standing at the door!  Either way, we want to get our hearts and houses in order!  

...then they will fast in those days.  Luke 5:35 (NKJV)

God has held out a plumb line (Amos 7:8) to our nation and we are not plumb, in fact, we are very crooked!  The handwriting is on the wall. We’ve been measured in the balance and found wanting.  Our days are numbered (Daniel 5:25-28).  We are not prepared to meet our God (Amos 4:12).

A few weeks ago I was at a prayer meeting where the November 23rd court date was mentioned. When I arrived home, I read an email from our old church in Ohio, calling everyone to fast on that day.  Then I started reading many fasting verses in my Bible and I knew this is God’s calling. I invite and exhort you to join us in fasting that day, not just for one meal, but for the entire day.  Rend your hearts, not your garments.  Feed on God’s Word, not your fridge.  Consider it not a pre-holiday diet, but a fast so that we may continue to celebrate those Holy days!  

As these brave men and women take their evidence to the gates of our nation’s highest court with this crucial case, let us storm the gates of heaven with our prayers and fasting, begging the Lord for His favor and and mercy for this great nation that was started in His name.

No one is too old or too young to fast.  When Baby Jesus was brought by Mary and Joseph to the Temple to be dedicated, an 84-year-old lady named Anna, who had been fasting and praying, greeted and blessed them (Luke 2:37).  In the book of Jonah (3:5-7), the entire city of Nineveh, from the king to his youngest servant to even the animals, gave up food and water. When King Saul died, valiant men fasted for seven days before asking David to be their new king (1 Chronicles 10:12).  Even wicked King Ahab fasted and God heard his prayers (1 Kings 21:27). And King Darius fasted for Daniel when he was forced to throw him in the lions’ den (Daniel 6:18). Esther, Ezra, Isaiah, Nehemiah, Moses, Jehoshaphat, Paul and many others… even Jesus all fasted and prayed, and we must follow their example.

Then I proclaimed a fast there at the river of Ahava, that we might humble ourselves before our God, to seek from Him the right way for us and our little ones and all our possessions… So we fasted and entreated our God for this, and He answered our prayer.  Ezra 8:21,23

Now, therefore,” says the Lord,
“Turn to Me with all your heart,
With fasting, with weeping, and with mourning. Joel 2:12 (NKJV)

And Jehoshaphat feared, and set himself to seek the Lord, and proclaimed a fast throughout all Judah. 2 Chronicles 20:3 (NKJV)

Our Father who art in heaven, we boldly come before Your throne this day, pleading with you for mercy for our nation, the United States of America.  We know we don’t deserve Your forgiveness, but ask that You show Your grace and mercy yet again.  Help us lay aside all filthiness and receive with meekness Your salvation and the implanted Word of God. Help us return to You, Lord.  For You have torn, but You will heal us. You have stricken, but You will bind us up.  We set up kings, but not by You, we made princes, but You did not acknowledge them. Bring the ark of God, Your Word, the Bible, back to America, our schools, our courthouses, and our government.  I claim Your promise for Mike Lindell and all his helpers who asked You, “Shall I go up against the Philistines?”  And You replied, “Go up, for I shall deliver them into your hands.” Help our judges and leaders to do as You command and overturn the 2020 election, reinstating the rightful president. And You, O God, will break through our enemies like a breakthrough of water!  May justice run down like water, and righteousness like a mighty stream. May You use President Trump and all the new Christian leaders to cleanse this land of all the evil doers and wickedness.  Like David, his fame will go into all lands, and the Lord will bring the fear of him on all nations. Most of all, people will know Jehovah God, the Great I Am, has done this!  Send a last Great Awakening before Jesus Christ’s return, where missionaries can travel without fear nor vaccine mandates, and are welcome to bring the Good News of God’s salvation through Jesus Christ to open hearts.  Not to us, O Lord, not to us, but to Thy Name be the Glory! We pray all this in the precious Name of Your Only begotten Son Jesus whose blood was shed even for us and even for such a time as this. Amen.

(Hebrews 4:16, James 1:21, Amos 5:24, Hosea 6:1, Hosea 8:4, 1 Chronicles 13:3, 1 Chronicles 14:10,11,16, 17, Psalm 115:1)

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Please fast on Tuesday, November 23 for God’s justice to prevail at the Supreme Court hearing.  Please also consider fasting again the following Tuesday, November 30th to pray for the December 1 Supreme Court hearing to overturn Roe vs. Wade and turn back God’s wrath on America for the deaths of all the innocent babies.  Thank you and God bless you!

* Fasting is when you give up food for a time, that’s why the first meal of a new day is called “breakfast” because you are breaking your nightly fast. When we fast and pray, we give more power to our prayers, and with each hunger pain, we are reminded to pray yet again).  For someone who has a lot of trouble with food, fasting can be hard for me, but when God calls me to do it, I do it with all my heart and steadfastness and by His strength. This is one of those times!

P.S. Please share this with others, God hears our prayers!

“Save us, O God of our salvation;
Gather us together, and deliver us from the Gentiles,
To give thanks to Your holy name,
To triumph in Your praise.”
1 Chronicles 16:35 (NKJV)

But let justice run down like water,
And righteousness like a mighty stream.  Amos 5:24 (NKJV)

Blessed are you who hunger now,
For you shall be filled.
Blessed are you who weep now,
For you shall laugh.  Luke 6:21 (NKJV)

I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.  Philippians 4:13 (NKJ)

I have not departed from the commandment of His lips;
I have treasured the words of His mouth
More than my necessary food.  Job 23:12 (NKJV)

Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness,
For they shall be filled.  Matthew 5:6 (NKJV)

He has put down the mighty from their thrones,
And exalted the lowly.  Luke 1:52 (NKJV)

To grant us that we,
Being delivered from the hand of our enemies,
Might serve Him without fear,
 In holiness and righteousness before Him all the days of our life.  Luke 1:74-75 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers.  If you enjoyed today’s post, you might also like to read My Fasting TEA CUPP and Prayers for Our Nation.

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 

Wrestling with Abba Father

And because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into your hearts, crying out, “Abba, Father!” Galatians 4:6 (NKJV)

It was the match of all time.  In one corner was Jacob, the supplanter, the deceiver, the polygamist.  In the other corner was the Angel of God, the pre-incarnate Son Himself, the Mighty, all-powerful One, Creator and King of the Universe.  They met on the open plain.  Jacob had sent his wives and children ahead.  He was alone, much the same as his first journey when he saw the ladder going up to heaven (Genesis 18:10-22). Yet this time, he had to wrestle for a blessing.  The odds were stacked against him.  The angels placed their bets on God the Father, and in the end, guess who won? (Genesis 32:22-32).  

Then Jacob was left alone; and a Man wrestled with him until the breaking of day. Now when He saw that He did not prevail against him, He touched the socket of his hip; and the socket of Jacob’s hip was out of joint as He wrestled with him. 

God: “Let Me go, for the day breaks.”

Jacob: “I will not let You go unless You bless me!”

God: “What is your name?”

Jacob: “Jacob.”

God:Your name shall no longer be called Jacob, but Israel; for you have struggled with God and with men, and have prevailed.”  Genesis 32:24-28 (NKJV)

If ever there was a time in history where we need to wrestle with God and prevail, ’tis now. If ever there was a time for people to cry out, “Abba, Father!” ’tis now! With every page of the newspaper, with every change of the channel or website, with every inspection of our cell phones, we come across bad news… heart-breaking stories, immorality, deaths, mandates, lies, deception, tyranny… It is often so much, we don’t even want to look at it! But God the Father already knows all about it and He is waiting for us to call Him. So, let’s not keep Him waiting any longer, let’s call on the Lord today!

Hear my cry, O God;
Attend to my prayer.
From the end of the earth I will cry to You,
When my heart is overwhelmed;
Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
Psalm 61:1-2 (NKJV)

What should we pray for, and what should we cry about? God says we can ask anything in His Name, and He will do it (John 14:14). Dear One, you may cry out to God with whatever He puts upon your heart, whatever the Holy Spirit leads you to pray. When King Hezekiah received bad news in 2 Kings 19, he took it to the temple and spread it before the Lord. We can do that, too, spread your newspaper or cell phone before the Lord and pray King Hezekiah’s prayer in 2 Kings 19:16,19:

“Incline Your ear, O Lord, and hear; open Your eyes, O Lord, and see; and hear the words of Sennacherib, which he has sent to reproach the living God…  O Lord our God, I pray, save us from his hand, that all the kingdoms of the earth may know that You are the Lord God, You alone.” 2 Kings 19:16, 19 (NKJV)

What am I wrestle for right now? Our children and grandchildren, our country, healing for loved ones, salvation for so many, for My TEA CUPP mission, for the USA, for Israel, for healing for the nations… If you need ideas for your wrestling prayers, Scripture tells us many things about which we can pray,,,

Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— Ephesians 6:18 (NKJV)

And pray that your flight may not be in winter or on the Sabbath.  Matthew 24:20 (NKJV)

Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.  Luke 21:36 (NKJV)

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:
May they prosper who love you.  Psalm 122:6 (NKJV)

…Therefore lift up your prayer for the remnant that is left. 2 Kings 19:4, Isaiah 37:4 (NKJV)

Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they may be saved. Romans 10:1(NKJV)

…pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you. Matthew 5:44 (NKJV)

…pray the Lord of the harvest to send out laborers into His harvest. Matthew 9:38 (NKJV)

Ask the Lord for rain in the time of the latter rain. The Lord will make lashing clouds… Zechariah 10:1 (NKJV)

I was asked recently if my prayers bring me peace and I had to stop and think for a minute.  I come to Him everyday with a heart heavy-laden with the concerns of this world, and He promises He will give me rest and carry my burden for me (Matthew 11:28-30).  When I’ve prayed every prayer and unloaded my concerns, I should walk away with the peace that passes all understanding (Philippians 4:7). 

Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.  Matthew 11:28-30 (NKJV)

Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:6-7 (NKJV)

Why don’t we always feel that peace?  Perhaps it’s because we’ve been wrestling in prayer. Perhaps we are taking all the cares of the world upon ourselves.  Our prayers are more like those of Jesus before He went to the Cross. In the Garden of Gethsemane, He was praying so hard, His sweat was like drops of blood (Luke 22:44).  Or perhaps, for all our wrestling, we are hurt like Jacob, who wrestled the Angel, receiving a life-long injury, yet at the same time, he was given the blessing of the Father for all eternity. Why does prayer often hurt so much?  Because we are not wrestling with our brother or sister or neighbor or even the government, our battle is against principalities (Ephesians 6:12), powers, rulers of the darkness, and spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavens whom we can’t even see, but God sees and knows all about them. 

When we wrestle for the Lord here on earth, we are joining in the battles already in progress up above.  Do you remember when Daniel started praying for his people in Daniel 9 and 10?  It took almost three weeks for an answer to come. When the angel Gabriel arrived, he declared that he had left the moment Daniel had started praying three weeks before, but had been detained by evil angels and the angel Michael had to assist him (Daniel 10: 12-14).  It seems those evil angels have been busy detaining the answers to our prayers, and so we must keep praying, just as Daniel did, and hold onto to God until He gives us a blessing, just as Jacob did, and keep sweating those drops of blood in prayer, just as our dear Savior Jesus did before He went to the Cross on our behalf, trusting that peace and rest is coming on the other side.

Then he said to me, “Do not fear, Daniel, for from the first day that you set your heart to understand, and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard; and I have come because of your words.  Daniel 12:10 (NKJV) 

And being in agony, He prayed more earnestly. Then His sweat became like great drops of blood falling down to the ground.  Luke 22:44 (NKJV)

For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.  Ephesians 6:12 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Oswald Chambers said, “Prayer is not preparation for the battle, prayer is the battle.” Dear Ladies, thank you for joining Jesus on the battlefield every morning in prayer for your loved ones, our nation, and our world. Keep your armor on! Keep wrestling!  Always looking for the blessed hope and glorious appearing of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ (Titus 2:13). Jesus is coming soon (Joel 2:1)! God bless you always!  

But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ1 Corinthians 15:57 (NKJV)

He took his brother by the heel in the womb,
And in his strength he struggled with God.
Yes, he struggled with the Angel and prevailed;
He wept, and sought favor from Him… Hosea 12:3-4 (NKJV)

And He said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible for You. Take this cup away from Me; nevertheless, not what I will, but what You will.” Mark 14:36 (NKJV)

For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”  Romans 8:15 (NKJV)

Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel,
You who lead Joseph like a flock;
You who dwell between the cherubim, shine forth!  Psalm 80:1 (NKJV)

But the end of all things is at hand; therefore be serious and watchful in your prayers.  1 Peter 4:7 (NKJV)

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982
 
To my faithful readers: I’m so sorry to keep you waiting on this devotion, I’ve been busy wrestling with God :-).  

Be a TEA Diffuser

Now thanks be to God who always leads us in triumph in Christ, and through us diffuses the fragrance of His knowledge in every place.  2 Corinthians 2:14 (NKJV)

My friend Riza owns a tea company in the mountain West.  On the wall of her office, a collection of tea infusers is artfully displayed.  From America to the Far East, from present day to decades ago, and all shapes and sizes, her collection captures the hearts of all who enjoy an aromatic cup of tea.  

Being new to the art of loose-leaf tea drinking, I checked out Riza’s company website to discover what makes using these tea infusers so precious.  Some important tips I learned include:

  • Allow your tea leaves enough room to fully open and the water to infuse through them properly. They should not be “stuffed” into a small confining holder.
  • The only time you would use something such as a “teaball” or closed teaspoon is when you are brewing a small particle tea such a rooibos or herbals.
  • The openings of the infuser should be small enough to keep pieces from getting into your cup.

…a sweet-smelling aroma, an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God.  Philippians 4:18 (NKJV)

As I read my Bible while sipping my loose-leaf tea each morning, I come across words like “diffuse” and “fragrance” and “sweet-smelling” and “aroma,” and I know there must be a lesson in all of this for us.  Just as the tea is infused into the hot water, so God’s Word is infused in me, as I drink from His fountain of Living Water.  And just as the leaves should be given room too open, we too must allow our hearts to be fully open to God’s word and guidance.  And just as the tea’s aroma brings me joy, my prayers bring joy to the heart of God.  If a friend or family member were to walk by while I sipped my tea, they might say, “Mmm, that smells delicious, what flavor are you having today?”  And as I go out into the world to run errands and do all God calls me to do, perhaps others will smell the sweet fragrance of His Word shining out of me, asking, “What makes your life such a pleasant aroma?” 

May my meditation be sweet to Him;
I will be glad in the Lord Psalm 104:34 (NKJV)

For we are to God the fragrance of Christ among those who are being saved and among those who are perishing. 2 Corinthians 2:15 (NKJV)

Most of all, we must look to Jesus, our example for all we do.  Ephesians 5:2 tells us to walk in love like Jesus.  For when He gave His life for our sins on the Cross, it was the sweetest fragrant offering God the Father would ever receive.  Remember, in the Old Testament, God’s children were required to bring animal sacrifices to the temple to atone for their sins (Leviticus 1).  Even before that, Noah offered animal sacrifices to the Lord as soon as they got off the ark, and it was a soothing aroma to Him (Genesis 8:21).  Yet we, the Church, children of the New Testament, do not offer the animal sacrifices, because Jesus already paid the price for our sins on the Cross. All we have to do is accept His sweet offering, and we also will have His beautiful fragrance.

And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us and given Himself for us, an offering and a sacrifice to God for a sweet-smelling aroma. Ephesians 5:2 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Be a TEA Infuser! Start your day with Jesus by reading His Word, your Bible.  Let your prayers come before Him as a sweet incense.  Then go out and infuse the world with His love!!! Tell them, Jesus is coming soon!  (If you missed last week’s post, you will want to exhort them to Get on the Ark!).  

Let my prayer be set before You as incense,
The lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.  Psalm 141:2 (NKJV)

…and golden bowls full of incense, which are the prayers of the saints.  Revelation 5:8 (NKJV)

I will accept you as a sweet aroma when I bring you out from the peoples and gather you out of the countries where you have been scattered; and I will be hallowed in you before the Gentiles.  Ezekiel 20:41 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers! If you enjoyed today’s devotion, you might also like to read A Sweet Aroma and Filling the Bowls.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 

Get on the Ark! (The Storm is Here!)

So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near.  Luke 21:31 (NKJV)

Can you hear the thunder?  A storm is coming! First, a far away rumble, next, a closer thunder, finally, a very-close Ka-boom and the rain drops start falling. It began years ago with distant rumblings… wars, abortion, immorality, gay marriages, transgenderism… all sins that break the heart of God. Yet Jesus can wash away and extend forgiveness to repentant believers because of His saving work on the cross.  But people don’t want His forgiveness, they don’t want His salvation, their pride gets in the way, they say, “We don’t need Your Cross or cleansing Blood.” So every day the thunder gets nearer and louder, until finally, the storm clouds burst open and God’s wrath rains down.   

Then the Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intent of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually. And the Lord was sorry that He had made man on the earth, and He was grieved in His heart.  Genesis 6:5-6 (NKJV)

In the six hundredth year of Noah’s life, in the second month, the seventeenth day of the month, on that day all the fountains of the great deep were broken up, and the windows of heaven were opened.  Genesis 7:11 (NKJV)

“Now, wait a minute,” you say?  “You seem to have combined today with the Genesis story from our Bibles, and didn’t that story end with God promising never to flood the whole earth again? Don’t you remember the rainbow?”  You are right, God set a rainbow in the sky, but He has other ways of pouring out His wrath in the latter days.  The book of Revelation gives us a clear picture of what is to come, as God warns His church, rescues His children, pours out His wrath on the earth, and reigns victoriously. Oh, dear ones, if our Lord God Almighty destroyed Sodom, Gomorrah, Jericho, and Nineveh (long after Jonah’s visit) for their sins, what hope does America and the world have today?  I’ll tell you… that hope is Jesus!

By faith Noah, being divinely warned of things not yet seen, moved with godly fear, prepared an ark for the saving of his household, by which he condemned the world and became heir of the righteousness which is according to faith. Hebrews 11:7 (NKJV)

And did not spare the ancient world, but saved Noah, one of eight people, a preacher of righteousness, bringing in the flood on the world of the ungodly.  2 Peter 2:5 (NKJV)

Think of faithful Noah who spent close to 100 years building the ark (Genesis 6-9).  He used countless boards of gopherwood, numerous nails, and sealed it with pitch, saving eight people and all of creation.  Jesus’ Ark was just two boards connected in a cross, three nails for His Body, and He sealed it with His Blood, saving all humanity. Noah’s ark and the flood are part of Biblical history, but Jesus’ Ark is still accepting passengers until the doors close, and no pounding on the door will open it then (Genesis 7:16).  I want to urge you to GET ON THE ARK and bring your family, too!

For we know that the whole creation groans and labors with birth pangs together until now.  Romans 8:22 (NKJV)

In Matthew 24 and Luke 21 we read about the signs that must take place before Jesus returns.  These are the rumbling thunders, the birthpangs, that signal His return is imminent.  Whereas in the past these rumblings were few and far between, now it seems that daily we are bombarded with all these things:  Immorality, persecutions, abortion, riots, gender issues, wars and commotions, nation rising against nation, earthquakes, pestilences, fearful sights, betrayal by family and friends, Jerusalem surround by armies, hearts failing… and many more signs!  Some are happening now before Jesus takes His bride the Church (all who believe in Him) to heaven.  More signs will continue before He returns to judge and reign on earth.  

But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only. But as the days of Noah were, so also will the coming of the Son of Man be. For as in the days before the flood, they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark. Matthew 24:36-38 (NKJV)

You must board this ark NOW and urge your friends and family, too!  This ship sets sail soon.  (There are some helpful links below for putting your faith in Christ). Get on board before Jesus comes to rescue His Church from the tribulation, before He pours out all His divine wrath. If you are a split second too late, the doors will be closed, and Jesus will call through the keyhole, “I do not know you.” (Matthew 7:21-23, and the foolish maidens in Matthew 25, and the man who snuck in without the wedding garment in Matthew 22). 

So we see that they could not enter in because of unbelief.  Hebrews 3:19 (NKJV)

So you also, when you see these things happening, know that the kingdom of God is near.  Luke 21:31 (NKJV)

Watch therefore, and pray always that you may be counted worthy to escape all these things that will come to pass, and to stand before the Son of Man.  Luke 21:36 (NKJV)

Alas for the day!
For the day of the Lord is at hand;
It shall come as destruction from the Almighty.  Joel 1:15 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Read Psalm 29 and Matthew 24. Know that the Lord, He is God, and glorify His Name.  Get onto Jesus’ Ark, accepting His saving work on the cross.  Plead with your family and friends to get on Jesus’ Ark, too!  

“Sirs, what must I do to be saved?” So they said, “Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ, and you will be saved, you and your household.”  Acts 16:30-31 (NKJV)

The voice of the Lord is over the waters; The God of glory thunders; The Lord is over many waters. …The Lord sat enthroned at the Flood, And the Lord sits as King forever. The Lord will give strength to His people. The Lord will bless His people with peace. Psalm 29:3, 10-11 (NKJV)

Tremble, O earth, at the presence of the Lord,
At the presence of the God of Jacob,
Who turned the rock into a pool of water,
The flint into a fountain of waters. 
Psalm 114:7-8 (NKJV)

Having faith and a good conscience, which some having rejected, concerning the faith have suffered shipwreck. 1 Timothy 1:19 (NKJV)

Then they cry out to the Lord in their trouble,
And He brings them out of their distresses.
He calms the storm,
So that its waves are still.  Psalm 107:28-29 (NKJV)

At this also my heart trembles,
And leaps from its place.
Hear attentively the thunder of His voice,
And the rumbling that comes from His mouth.
He sends it forth under the whole heaven,
His lightning to the ends of the earth.
After it a voice roars;
He thunders with His majestic voice,
And He does not restrain them when His voice is heard.
God thunders marvelously with His voice;
He does great things which we cannot comprehend.  Job 37:1-5 (NKJV)

He has made the earth by His power;
He has established the world by His wisdom,
And stretched out the heaven by His understanding.
When He utters His voice—
There is a multitude of waters in the heavens:
“He causes the vapors to ascend from the ends of the earth;
He makes lightnings for the rain;
He brings the wind out of His treasuries. Jeremiah 51:15-16 (NKJV)

And as it was in the days of Noah, so it will be also in the days of the Son of Man: They ate, they drank, they married wives, they were given in marriage, until the day that Noah entered the ark, and the flood came and destroyed them all. Likewise as it was also in the days of Lot: They ate, they drank, they bought, they sold, they planted, they built; but on the day that Lot went out of Sodom it rained fire and brimstone from heaven and destroyed them all. Even so will it be in the day when the Son of Man is revealed. Luke 17:26-30 (NKJV)

Thank you for stopping by My TEA CUPP Prayers. If you enjoyed today’s devotion, you might also like to read Come to the Wedding and Jesus, Calm the Storm and TEA in the Storm.  And here’s a great reference to share with others: The ABCs of Salvation.  You will also be blessed to add Olive Tree Ministries and Prophecy Pros to your podcast listening. God bless you, dear sister in Christ!

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.