Tag Archives: Journey to Abundant Life

Journey to Abundant Living – Day 6

Our heavenly Father created this universe in six days.  We have arrived at the completion of one work week in the realm of your faith journey.  My prayer is that you have had new insights about the magnitude of the life Christ provides for those who put their faith in Him.  This journey to a life of peace, joy and purpose has been my experience for over twenty years…and every year it gets better.

Proverbs tells us that ‘all work bears profit,’ so I trust that as you have prayed and contemplated this week, God has nudged you to focus on specific areas.  He loves us exactly as we are…but He loves us too much to leave us where we are.  Use your notes, the ratings you prayerfully assigned to the four areas of life and the answers you gave to the questions to design a road-map for growth.

Press on in your journey and rejoice in what He works in and through you!  Remember you are a beloved Child of God!

Browse around this website.  In addition to several discipleship tools, there are numerous articles on the site focused on the beauties of our God and the privilege we have in being His children.  I would love to ‘chat’ with you personally.  Simply comment on an article or use the contact options scattered throughout the site.

Following are a few small booklets available as PDFs here on the site.  The books can be purchased in traditional format if you prefer.

Soul Training cover
Growing as His Disciple

Soul Training in the Barn is a great resource if you need to develop the disciplines that shore up a faith foundation.   

Joy in the Journey

Joy in the Journey offers an approach that helps readers recognize the presence of God–and find healing for hurts.

Fixing Our Eyes on God
Knowing God More

Perhaps my favorite book, though, Fixing Our Eyes on God.  This 26-week devotional examines Names of God; gazing on His beauty always transforms us.

Thank you for sharing this time with me.  I would love to hear how God has worked in your heart as you sought Him these last few days.
Continuing to join you in prayer for God to direct your faith future,

Billie Jo

Journey to Abundant Living – Day 5

Has your view of faith been challenged this week?  A faith walk is not meant to be isolated to Sundays–it is a 24-7 proposition.  It covers every aspect of life.  Today, we look at the final connection we need for abundant living.  Are you ready?  It is huge.

How is your relationship with all else that God has entrusted to you?

You have made it to Day Five.  Today, we will examine that last relationship that must be strengthened for us to enjoy the abundant life Jesus offers.  It is a big one for many reasons.  The last connection we will examine is our relationship with the blessings God provides.  Seeing and appreciating those blessings is key to enjoying His presence.

Before God created Adam and Eve, He created the world and all that is in it.  He prepared a place for humanity and entrusted it to us.  Work was not the result of the curse; it is part of the design for humanity.

Adam was charged with dressing and keeping the world God created.

All that God entrusts to us is for our use in His work.  We live in a culture that encourages us to enjoy the pleasures of life.  God is not against enjoyment!  In fact, one of the best summaries of what God desires for us is found in the Westminster Catechism:

Man’s chief end is to glorify God,
and to enjoy him for ever. 

 

Too often, we are ruled by the things we enjoy instead of ruling over what we have been given.

What gifts do you see that God has given to you?
Are you thankful for them?
In what areas do you struggle with over-indulgence of those gifts?
How well do you manage your time?  Your finances?
Are your priorities in an order you believe God approves of?
Do you have un-surrendered areas of your life or temptations that you cannot resist?
If you did not consider health issues on Day 2, this is a good place to allow them some space in your mind.  Health is a gift that we take for granted.  Are you caring for that gift?

Using the scale of 1-10, how would you rate your stewardship of the gifts God has given to you?


Until tomorrow…joining you in prayer for God to direct your faith future,

Billie Jo

Journey to Abundant Living – Day 4

Here we are at Day Four of the journey.  The journey to a life of peace, joy and purpose is found in Jesus Christ and lived out by us in the context of our days–and the midst of the people who populate our day!

There is an acrostic for J.O.Y.  that I love:  Jesus, Others & Yourself.  JOY is found by focusing on Jesus first, then others and finally ourselves. We have dug deeply into Jesus and Ourselves.  So, today, let’s look at the “O” of JOY: OTHERS.

How are your relationships with others? Faith was never meant to be isolated to Sundays or church-services.  It is not meant only for ourselves and the ones we love.  This is a criticalaspect of Christian living that unmasks many.  Human nature does not do what Jesus did…it does not look at those who torture it and say, “Forgive them.”

There is no way to love one’s enemies without the love of Christ within.  Examining your relationships with others will help you see where more of Christ is needed.

We live in a world of broken relationships.  Resentments, bitterness and unforgive-ness plague most every family.  Divorce is nearly as high in the Church as it is for secular couples. Hurt feelings run rampant in churches.  It ought not be.  It must not be if we are to fully enjoy the life Christ came to give us.   The beauty of the relationship we have with God is meant to be reflected in every one of our personal relationships…at home, at work, at church, in the store…everywhere.

We have a high and holy calling in this area of life.  Contrary to what we tend to think, conflicts (and the hurts that cause them) are one of the most beautiful gifts God entrusts to us.  They are the opportunity to share in the fellowship of Christ’s suffering in a very tangible way.  Christ came to reconcile us to the Father.  Those who hurt us present the very same opportunity to us:  we are to show what love really looks like!  The ministry of reconciliation is a tremendous privilege.

SO, do your relationships feel heavenly or hurtful?
Do you have people you ‘forgive’ for hurting you but that you avoid?
Do you live with the saying, “I’ll forgive but I’ll never forget.”
How do you handle your emotions?
What do you find to be the most difficult aspect of connecting with others?
Do you have pockets of resentments that need to be attended to?
Can people see the love God has for them in the way you treat others?
On that 1-10 scale we have been using, what rating would you place on your connection to others overall?
Until tomorrow…joining you in prayer for God to direct your faith future,

Billie Jo

Journey to Abundant Life – Day 3

Here we are half-way through our week.

The journey to a life of peace, joy and purpose is found in the life of Christ that dwells inside of us when we put our faith in Him.

We lose sight of the fact that we are the dwelling place of God!  We are the clay pots that hold the priceless treasure of divinity.  We fail to grasp our value and even beat up on ourselves.  It is a horrible hindrance to the life Jesus came to give us.

The Scriptures tell us that our life is now hidden in Christ.  We identify with His death–placing our natural self on the Cross and joining Him in resurrection life.  All throughout the book of Romans, Paul seeks to help us understand what side of the Cross we now live on.   We live inside of the very life of Christ.  Our failures are hidden in Him.  Grace is the air around us.

Today, the focus will be on your relationship with yourself.  It is more important than you know.  Self can get in the way by demanding its own way–or by limiting your confidence in the life of Christ within us.  Learning to love ourselves is imperative for a very important reason:  it is no longer I who lives.
My old self has been crucified with Christ. It is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me. So I live in this earthly body by trusting in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.  Galatians 2:20.
The Scriptures give us two standards for loving.  An Old Testament premise was quoted by Jesus:  “Love others as you love yourself.”  For years, I saw this is a ‘divine loophole’ of sorts. Clearly many people do not care about themselves very much–and their treatment of others is in kind with their treatment of themselves.  However, the life of Jesus presented a high standard in every behavior:  Love others as I have loved you.

THAT is not a standard we can reach on our own.  The love we have is inadequate.  We must receive that love for ourselves…and then allow it to overflow.  One of the easiest ways to test where you are in this is to place yourself in 1 Corinthians 13:4-7. Read the passage below twice.  The first time, put the name of Jesus in the blank.  The next time put your name there.

________ is patient and kind. ________ is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. ________  does not demand its own way. ________  is not irritable, and ________  keeps no record of being wronged. ________ does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. ________  never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

Reading it with Jesus’ name feels fairly easy, but putting our own name in challenges us!  Consider, though:  the life we live IS His.  This passage is how God, the Father, sees you and me.  Do you fail that standard?  Yes.  Is God mistaken in seeing you that way?  Is it your destiny?  Yes.

Emerson (among others) once wrote “Treat a man as he could be and he will become it.”  That is a vital principle in growing into the likeness of Christ.  How we love our self impacts how we live our life.

So, how do you love yourself?
How much of the love of Christ do you allow yourself to enjoy?
Do you put conditions on His love for you?
Can you see Jesus looking at you in love or do you feel judged or condemned when He looks your way?

On a scale of 1-10, how do you rate your relationship with yourself?

Until tomorrow…joining you in prayer for God to direct your faith future,

Billie Jo

Journey to Abundant Living – Day Two

Hello, again!  Yesterday, we began our journey to a life of peace, joy and purpose!  Jeremiah 29:11 reminded us that God has great plans and purposes for us.  The writer of Hebrews encouraged us to step out in faith, and we relied on the wisdom of Solomon as we sought the direction of God.  Today, we are going to explore the most important connection we can ever make.

The most important connection for every individual is the one we have with God. And there is only one way to enter the presence of God:   True connection with God cannot take place except through Jesus Christ.  Here is a beautiful song you may enjoy that shares the Truth.

THERE IS NO OTHER NAME!

Humanity, originally made in the image of God, lost its connection to life when sin was welcomed into Creation.  Sin—choosing a way other than God’s way—brought death then and does today. Human nature carries the deadly infection; Jesus Christ offers healing.  He came to restore us to connection to God, the Giver of Life.

The most memorized verse in the Bible conveys the truth so many struggle to accept.

Eternal life is something that cannot be earned.  It can only be received.  Eternal life is not the gift from God–it is the gift OF God.  He gives Himself.

The key to a life of peace, joy and purpose begins with understanding the life of Christ.  Take time today and really consider the following questions:

What do you understand about the life of Jesus?
Does your experience–the life you live–match what you understand?
How much time do you devote to your connection to God each day?
How satisfying is that connection?
What is most frustrating about it?
What one thing would improve your relationship with God?

Yesterday, we discussed that Jesus came to give us abundant life.  (John 10:10 ). Today, after considering the questions above, rate your relationship with God on a scale of 1-10.   We will be rating our CONNECTIONS throughout the week.  Keep journaling your thoughts!
Until tomorrow…joining you in prayer for God to direct your faith future,

Billie Jo

Journey to Abundant Living!

DAY ONE

Jesus died so we could live abundant lives…not a life of mere survival. Think of this Discipleship Series as “Cross-Life Coaching” –coaching to move you toward the life the Cross offers!

In the next five days, you will explore your personal faith walk and how to live in the abundance Jesus desires for you to have.  I encourage you to grab a notebook and begin jotting your thoughts down as you read these messages.

Every faith journey is unique.  Every person is designed by God to enjoy Him and express Him to the rest of the world in very personal and profound ways.

Those words were written to the people of Israel at a time when they were in captivity.  It did not ‘seem like’ prospering them was in God’s plan.  Sometimes we feel tied up and hopeless too.  It does not have to be that way…there is life in the faith of Jesus Christ.

Faith is the substance of things hoped for, the evidence of things not seen…  (Hebrews 11:1)

And FAITH is the very work of God.  Learning to walk in faith is contrary to our nature.  It can only be done through the power of the Holy Spirit.  For the next five days, a series of posts will give you glimpses of how that kind of life can be yours!

The goal of Heartsong is helping people find the abundant life Christ came to give us!  Unlike counseling where a professional teaches tools to help you produce the best life you can imagine, Discipleship focuses on the application of Truth so you can live the LIFE  of peace, joy and purpose that only Jesus offers.

Counseling helps individuals know themselves better–and how to manage life as they are designed.  Discipleship puts God first, believing He is life–and that knowing Him intimately produces abundant human life.

As a fellow traveler on the journey of life who loves living in the Spirit…loves having the life of Christ expressed through me, I am excited to share this series with you.  And I rejoice in the grace that allows imperfect humans to be His vessel!  That joy is what Cross-Life Coaching offers to all who weave the message into their life.

In the coming days, you will glimpse how abundant living works!  It is not hard.  It is not even something we do.  Like showers of rain, the Spirit of God produces the life of Christ in us.  Cross-Life Coaching offers truth that allows you to surrender to the plans and purposes of God.

CREATING CONNECTION

We are designed for connection.  There are four key relationships in our lives that must be balanced.  We will explore one each day.   At the end of the five days, you will have insights to create your own plan for moving into the life Jesus came to give you!  Christ lived for the plans and purpose of God.  We must do the same if we desire to enjoy His gift of abundant life.  We will close today focused on surrendering this process to the guidance of God.  Proverbs 3:5,6 offers us a great promise to plan from:

Until tomorrow…joining you in prayer for God to direct your faith future,

Billie Jo

 

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