Welcome to the FALL 2018
edition of the From His Heart Newsletter: REAL
. We trust the insights below will be a blessing to you. Scroll down to view the following articles in this edition or click here
to download the newsletter as a PDF.
What is inside?
- Discover the Secret to Loving Life - by Pastor Jeff
- Practical ways to deal with stress - from Pastor Jeff
- Learn to lean on God when you are worn out - by Debbie Schreve
- How to persevere in the down times - from Pastor Jeff
- Listen to 12 Timeless Favorites from Pastor Jeff
by Dr. Jeff Schreve
In my recent letter to you, I talked about the secret to loving life. But I shared only one of the three steps with you. So I thought we’d look at the second step today.
As you’d probably expect, a lot of people enjoy life when things are going well; but the moment things get difficult, their joy vanishes. God wants you and me to be able to experience joy in every circumstance—even when life is hard.
The three-step secret to loving life can be found in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, “Rejoice always; pray without ceasing; in everything give thanks, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
The first step, we discovered, is Never grumble, but always rejoice. Today, let’s look at the second step that can help you love life: Never despair, but always pray.
The hard truth is that life will deal you some difficult blows along the way. People will hurt you (intentionally or unintentionally), trials will come, and your health will eventually falter. Faced with that grim reality, it’s easy to say, “My situation in life is hopeless.”
But you never have to despair, because God is able. Over and over again, the Bible tells us God is able, regardless of the circumstances. We read about countless miracles God did in Scripture to show that in any and every situation, He is more than able to calm our hearts and bring us through.
That’s why you can joyfully trust Him, no matter the trials you may be acing. So the big question: how do you actively put your trust in God when everything within you tempts you to despair? The answer is you pray.
God works His miracles when we pray. To get in on the supernatural ability of God, you and I have to start calling upon His name. God’s Word says in James 4:2, “You do not have because you do not ask.”
Now you might be saying, “Jeff, I don’t understand. How am I supposed to “pray without ceasing” as 1 Thessalonians 5 commands me to do? I can’t pray 24-7.” Warren Wiersbe, the great Bible teacher and commentary writer, states this, “‘Pray without ceasing’ does not mean we must always be mumbling prayers. The word means ‘constantly recurring,’ not continuously occurring.”
Think of it this way: when you wake up in the morning, call to the Lord in prayer and never hang up the phone. Keep the line of communication open all day long. All throughout the day you can say, “Lord, I have a problem here. Will You help me with this?” You’re constantly talking to the Lord … and trusting Him to respond as only He can.
In Jeremiah 33:3 the Lord says, “Call to Me and I will answer you, and I will tell you great and mighty things, which you do not know.” But you won’t get those “great and mighty things” unless you call to Him, unless you pray!
Are you worried about something in your life today? Bring that worry to the Lord. Don’t despair and say, “My situation is hopeless.” Say aloud, “My situation may be great, but God is greater! He is for me and promises to help me!”
When Lazarus died and was put in the grave, his friends and family said, “It’s over. It’s hopeless. He’s dead.” But it ain’t over till Jesus says it’s over. And the Lord raised him from the dead four days later. You might have something in your own life that’s dead. Don’t give up! Keep praying!
It is possible to love life even in the midst of difficult circumstances. But the only way to experience the peace and joy God wants to give is to stop doing it your way and start doing it His way. Start today by making a choice to Never despair, but always pray. Then you’ll see God coming through for you … and you’ll discover the secret to loving life!
Q: There are so many demands in life, as well as unexpected problems. What are some practical things believers can do to cope with the pressure?
A: I would encourage people who are facing the pressures of life to take a step back a reevaluate things. Oftentimes, we put undue pressure on ourselves and load our schedules in ways that God never intended. Some things we consider so important really aren’t that important when you look at it from God’s perspective. In Luke 10, Martha was worried and stressed because Mary wasn’t helping her fix dinner for Jesus. Instead, she was “sitting at His feet, listening to His Word.” Jesus told Martha that it was her, and not Mary, who needed to make changes. When all is said and done, what truly matters is to place our lives at the feet of Jesus and surrender ourselves to Him.
Q: What Bible verse or passage has helped you the most in a difficult season in life?
A: There are a few passages that help me in times of trouble. Isaiah 26:3 speaks of the promise of God’s peace. Isaiah 41:10 reminds me not to look around at my circumstances and worry but to look up to the Lord in confident assurance. Romans 15:13 encourages me to in the fact that God is the God of hope. No matter how black and bleak my situation may be, there is hope because God is still on His throne. If He can part the Red Sea, rain down manna, and bring water from the rock, He is more than able to meet my needs in miraculous ways.
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by Debbie Schreve
Remember the creation story in the book of Genesis? Each day's creation was good until day 6. On that day something changed. After God saw that it wasn't good for man to be alone, and He created a helper suitable for him, then things were VERY good. (Gen. 1:31) This "fashioned" creation, woman, made things that were good...VERY good.
So often, we as women, don't feel good about ourselves, must less very good. In the day and age in which we live, we are busier than ever. We define the word "multi-tasking." We love Jesus, we birth children, raise children, manage our homes, have jobs outside the home, care for aging parents, serve in our churches and communities, help our husbands and this is just a drop in the bucket. Add to that mix hormones (or lack of them) and we can easily become exhausted, overwhelmed and struggle with feeling defeated.
If that describes you today, you are NOT alone! I can totally relate. Like you, I have a lot of responsibilities that won't go away. And like you, I have some things on my plate that can go away. These are things that I've added to my schedule because I wanted to, but they truly are optional.
I want to encourage you today, to take your overwhelming list of responsibilities to the Lord and ask Him to show you which ones you are able to take off your list. I've learned that there are seasons in life (Ecc. 3:1) when I have to be VERY strategic about activities in which I allow myself to get involved. Seasons change! Things won't always be as they are now.
Unfortunately, there are times when there is nothing on your list that is negotiable. Your list is full, you are worn out and you feel like a failure. This too is a season. That is why. at these times, you ask the Lord to give you an extra measure of His abundant grace. Ask Him each day to direct your steps, to multiply your time and your energy and to enable you to do all you need to do. Keep trusting Him because He is a good God and He loves you.
Remember: "You can do ALL things through Christ who strengthens you" (Phil. 4:13).
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All of us can relate to problems and trials. Sometimes those problems and trials can multiply and go from a thunderstorm to a flood!
The devil is at work in times of trouble. He wants to wear us down with his lying accusations and faithless conclusions so that we will despair, throw in the towel, and quit.
But what the devil tries to use to destroy you, God uses to make you stronger than ever.
God uses pressures, afflictions, and difficulties to develop perseverance in you—the ability to bear up under the worst of circumstances. The root word in persevere is “severe.” Maybe you’re facing some severe situations right now. Maybe you feel like throwing up your hands and giving in to the fear and desperation. Don’t!
The Lord wants to teach you and me perseverance. The apostle Paul said, “We also exult in our tribulations.” Why? Because “tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope” (Romans 5:3-4).
I don’t know what you’re dealing with today, but God does. All you can see is what’s in front of you right now, but God sees the end of that difficulty. And the Lord says to you, “Don’t let the devil cause you to quit. Just wait on Me.”
Galatians 6:9 says, “Let us not lose heart in doing good, for in due time we will reap if we do not grow weary.” Do you know what that means, to “grow weary”? It means to loosen, to weaken, to release. In other words, it means to quit!
We all need to be reminded to persevere, and I hope you’ve been encouraged as you’ve read through your newsletter today. There is hope, strength, and victory as we keep trusting in the Lord!
Thank you for any gift you’d like to send today to help share the hope of Jesus with more lost and hurting lives across our nation—and around the world—via television, the radio, and online.
It’s such a joy to proclaim God’s Word together and bring real truth, real love, and real hope to millions of people. May God richly bless you!
Pastor Jeff Schreve
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Everybody needs encouragement from God’s Word to get through the challenges of life, and you have helped bring real hope to people like Gary. He wrote …
“Thank you for the inspiration on a daily basis. It seems as if you’re talking to me, and it goes straight to my heart. Your messages give me hope and drive to continue during bad and good times.”
That’s the powerful impact of your generous support. And one of the big ways you can expand that impact and tell even more people about Jesus is by becoming a Vision Partner. Our VPs are the backbone of this ministry. They provide a regular monthly gift to From His Heart. You can find out more about how to become a Vision Partner by going online and click the Vision Partner link.
Thank you for considering how you can impact the next generation with your faith!
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