Faith Over Fear

Fear is something we all feel, no matter how big our faith is. Fear is fickle and funny; it creeps in all too often in our fragile hearts. I find myself asking over and over what am I going to choose? Am I going to decide to let my fear overtake my faith in God or, am I going to resolve myself in God’s truth and walk forward and trust Him? These are questions we all face as believers, and to tell you the truth they are hard, but not impossible.

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I found myself staring late last night at my bible app. when I clicked on Luke 8:25 and read this verse there was the question that had been gnawing at my soul all day. A question of my faith, was I going to trust in my living hope; Jesus Christ or was I going to trust in my fleeting feelings?


25 He said to them, ” Where is your faith?” And they were afraid, and they marveled, saying to one another, ” Who then is this, that he commands even the winds and water, and they obey him?”
Luke 8:25 ESV

Where is your faith? That is a question that God asks me continually. I like what is behind that question most of all, ” And they were afraid!!! I am not sure what that does for your heart, but what it does for mine is give me courage! A hope that I can be completely scared out of my ever-loving mind, and still have faith! I can even be amazed at what and how God is working and be terrified all at the same time! What this tells me is I can be in the middle of my fickle fears, and still choose faith! I might feel fear, but I can choose to resolve myself to courage.

In the Merriam-Webster Dictionary

courage

nouncour·​age | \ ˈkər-ij  , ˈkə-rij\

Definition of courage

mental or moral strength to venture, persevere, and withstand danger, fear, or difficulty

In Matthew 14:27 Jesus says something to the disciples in their fear. ” Take courage; it is I. Do not be afraid.”

Jesus knew that the disciples were shaking and quaking in that boat! Jesus spoke to the fear, confirmed His identity, and instructed them in their fear. That is what we have to do; we have to seek God’s wisdom and speak His truth. Jesus will confirm and affirm who we are in Him and finally give us instructions to carry out. We get so caught up the fact that we feel fear, but from what I have read in scripture from Genesis to Revelation, all I see in people is fear in many different forms. What separates the faith-filled from the frightened is courage. No matter how bad it looked, the heroes of faith believed God and GOD BLESSED IT! We can look at their stance; the common thread is they took comfort, hope, and a knowing that at the core of God is love and that He purposed them to do the thing that was asking.

I truly believe in my heart no matter how mature you are in Christ, fear will always be there, not to hinder us but to build our faith in Him. Fear is only bad if we let it overtake and overcome us. We can choose courage over fear through Christ. If you are like me and your struggle with fear these verses will give you the courage to do the thing God has purposed you for. If you are in Christ all things are possible!

We are more than conquers in Christ Jesus Romans 8:37

for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control. 2 Timothy 1:7

You are from God, little children, and have overcome them; because greater is He who is in you than he who is in the world. 1 John 4:4

Father we thank you, for your son, Jesus Christ. We thank you that we are free from fear through Jesus. Holy Spirit, enable and empower us to conquer our fears through courage. Father, tear down any strongholds of fear in us. Lord, we pray 2 Corinthians 10:4-5 The weapons we fight with are not the weapons of the world. On the contrary, they have divine power to demolish strongholds.  We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ. We acknowledge that fear is a weapon, but we know that you Lord are more excellent than he who is in this world. We take heart in Jesus our Savior and commit to believing Him at any costs! Help us to resolve ourselves in your word so that you can fill us up with hope once again. Strengthen and fortify the breaches in our faith. Help our unbelief, Lord! In Jesus mighty name Amen.

The ESV Global Study Bible®, ESV® Bible
Copyright © 2012 by Crossway.
All rights reserved.

The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®)
Copyright © 2001 by Crossway,
a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.
All rights reserved.

ESV Text Edition: 2016

Hearing the Heart

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I think the worst downfall for me is a transition. I mean really how much of us like drastic changes? I know for me I fight with all that I have and the funny thing is I always end up loving the difference. That is where I am currently, right smack dab in the middle of hard change. ( I am sighing at this moment whispering. It is, what it is.) One of my commentaries said: ” Sighing is just groan for home, a cry for redemption.”

Psalm 38:9 ESV

O Lord, all my longing is before you; my sighing is not hidden from you.

 

Even my subtle sigh is heard, nothing missed by the sovereign ears of God. There is great comfort in that for us today. That we would be understood by the creator of life, acknowledged by the lifter of our head’s. It seems when I am tossed around in the waves my heart goes directly to the Psalms, such practical and heartfelt cries to the Lord.  That He not only hears my physical cries, but even more, He actually listens and knows the ache of the heart like a melody.

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Psalm 139:3-4 TPT ( Passion Translation)

You are so intimately aware of me, Lord. You read my heart like an open book and you know all the words I’m about to speak before I even start a sentence! You know every step I will take before my journey even begins.

 

I am reminded to give Him the invitation to search my heart throughout my life. Not just while the ache is the loudest, but when the ache is dull. Continually search and know my heart, Lord.

Psalm 139:23 TPT (Passion Translation)

God, I invite your searching gaze into my heart. Examine me through and through; find out everything that may be hidden within me. Put me to the test and sift through all my anxious cares.

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I invite you today, maybe if you are in the middle of rough transition and your heart is just aching. I merely want to remind you we are all on a journey. A journey with God through this life into the next. A mission is often long and challenging, but it is worth every step. Don’t give up now! Just because you are on the beginning of a new path doesn’t mean that He is not with you. The route could be dark with a blanket of dense fog appearing, but what gives illumination is the beautiful unfolding of His word. It will cast light on the next step. Hang in there, keep praying, keeping reading your Bible, most of all keep worshiping through the transition there is power in His presence.

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Psalm 119:130 ESV

The unfolding of your words gives light; it imparts understanding to the simple.

 

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This simple truth sets an aching heart upright and redirects us right back into the loving gaze of Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

Psalm 46:10 ESV

“Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”

 

 

We Are Called

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You can now listen to New Podcast today @ https://anchor.fm/songstrengthministries/episodes/We-Are-Called-e1i5vr/a-a3o28s

 

Or you can read it right here…

To my sisters who are struggling to see your place at the table:

You have a seat, don’t ever think for a second there is no room at the mighty table of God for you. You were created mindfully by the Creator.

Women are relevant

We have gifts, Jesus can give us insight, Jesus can use us mightily if we surrender and do our homework (study the Bible).

Romans 16 (study it)

Anyone who says women don’t have a place beside our brothers well they have been mistaken. There are so many scriptures that suggest women weren’t just used for ” womanly duties” The women listed in this whole chapter were the exact opposite of the weak-willed woman in 2 Timothy 3:6-9, not all women are easily trapped, some of us know the truth and boldly proclaim it. We get to choose whether or not we will be weak-willed or not. Jesus died for that choice for us. I’m grateful for that, I’m thankful for the truth, so we know who we are in Him. No one can ever take that away. No one. If Jesus is calling you, ladies don’t shrink back from it, embrace it. It won’t be easy, He never promised us that, but it will be worth it. God had purposes for us when He formed us in our Mother’s womb.

Listen, single ladies, it’s okay never to get married! Some of us are not called to marriage. There is nothing wrong with you, your not ugly, your not defective, your not Weird! You are who He has developed you to be. Embrace that!

Married women your ministry is your family but you can serve outside of that if God is calling you, he will give you the strength, wisdom and knowledge/ understanding. He will balance you so that you can do all things through Christ Jesus.

To my divorced sisters regardless of your feelings, you are worthy because Jesus blood made you righteous. No sin is too high for the blood of Jesus to wash away, it is covered sister, it has been paid for by the King. You have been called by Jesus, never let that leave your heart.

We are not disqualified by our brokenness we are equipped by it to minister to those who have felt the same sting, the same heaviness. We all are called to minister to brokenness by brokenness.

Never think for a second that what you think is a weakness disqualifies you. That’s just not true 2 Corinthians 12:9-10

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me. That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
2 Corinthians 12:9‭-‬10 NIV

When I am weak, then I am strong!!! When I don’t have what it takes, then I am in position for God’s presence to rest upon me and through me! We can be our own worst enemies, we can discredit ourselves before we even allow God to fully show us what purpose He has for us to serve Him with. Every season of our lives will have a different use. Don’t despise these small beginnings.

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Wild Rose

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Last Saturday while moving a section of fence on our property I noticed that there was this wild rose bush. We have tried to kill the thing numerous amount of times. Just because it was growing in an inconvenient spot, the spot is right at the corner post of our fencing. What kind of fencing you ask well it is electric fencing for horses. You see the issue? It would eventually grow so big that it would ground out the current and render the fence useless.

So, as we removed the corner post and I saw this one small thorny green branch and thought, How in the world could you take all that uprooting and hacking and not die? Figuring that I would come out the next day and find it dead as a doornail.  That is not what I found to my surprise I found the wild rose bush doing just fine. As I looked at it again, I said: “Well, if you made it through THAT! Then grow little rose bush! In my books that one little stem deserved to grow!

As I stared down at this little thorny stem, I heard Jesus say to my heart, ” Kinda like you!” I giggled back and said in my heart ” I guess so, Lord.”  I looked back down and realized this little green, prickly, stem was a whole lot like me. Since Saturday I have been thinking about what Jesus said to me. I haven’t been able to get it off my mind. So I decided to look up all I could find about a wild rose bush. I mean who could blame me if Jesus is comparing me to it, I want to know the good, bad and the ugly!

I learned that a wild rose bush only blooms one time a year, those blooms typically only have five petals. The flowers are simple but stunning. Just like those rose bushes, we flourish in season. I love that these roses only have five petals, the number five represents grace in Hebrew.  It is the grace of God we bloom at all.

I also learned that these rose bushes are where we get all roses from. They are a completely original, you and I are original; there will never be another human like us.

1 Corinthians 12:25-28 English Standard Version (ESV)

25 that there may be no division in the body, but that the members may have the same care for one another. 26 If one member suffers, all suffer together; if one member is honored, all rejoice together.27 Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. 28 And God has appointed in the church first apostles, second prophets, third teachers, then miracles, then gifts of healing, helping, administrating, and various kinds of tongues.

In Verse 27 Now you are the body of Christ and individual members, you are original. Even though wild rose bushes can vary from white to pink, there are a million different hues, and each one is unique. We are all different, we have had different situations to create pigment in us. Those situations and circumstance are used to develop our personalities, they are what gives us our shade of color.

A wild rose doesn’t control its color or where it is placed, all the rose does is grow and wait to bloom.

I found out through my research that wild roses thrive on neglect and are exceptionally hardy, they can grow in poor soil, wet soil, good soil. How many times do people, jobs, friends neglect us but we have come to the understanding that even in the worse case scenarios our God never forsakes us. This makes us emotionally hardy to handle relationships, circumstances, loss and gain, sickness and health. I look at this beginning of a wild rose bush and realize that it is in rocky soil has been cut and abused. It has taken all that, and the little stem keeps coming back waiting to bloom. It has a purpose, it has roots deep down in the rocky soil.  Just like this wild shrub we are all planted in different lands, pastures, in dry places, in soaking wet areas, in urban and rural locations. We might not even like the places we are, but we are still there no matter how many times someone has taken a swipe and widdled us down to a nub. We always come back knowing that one day we will bloom and complete our purpose. In His timing and for His glory.

Amos 9:15 

I will plant them on their land, and they shall never again be uprooted out of the land that I have given them,” says the LORD your God.

You and I are planted purposefully and will not be uprooted out of the land that God has set us in. We don’t have to understand everything to remain. Once a wild rose bush is allowed to reach it’s full potential and blooms it not only is uniquely beautiful, but it leaves something vital behind, rose hips. These rose hips carry over into the winter months providing food for the birds.

Matthew 6:26 ESV

Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?

Psalm 50:11 ESV
I know all the birds of the hills, and all that moves in the field is mine.

Every single bird, hill, and field is His. He knows exactly the time to allow us to bloom so that we can feed those around us. That our lives in full bloom leave necessary provisions for others to come and feed off of while in a winter season. A beautiful picture painted by God himself, that while we are growing. While God is sending the rain, sun, the wind.  Every single branch, stem, leaf, every bud we are strategically positioned to open and display His glorious grace. This grace was intended to give life to a searching heart, and a hungry soul that see’s the grace of God in the wild rose bush. In a God who purposed such a beautiful bloom to provide food for another soul.

Not for a second does the Father not see how many times we have been cut down, trampled, misused, abused, forgotten, weed-ridden, planted in poor soil, and neglected we have grown through it all, by the grace of God. We have grit and tenacity that only comes from the Holy Spirit.  I see now why Jesus said we were like wild rose bushes, growing in a pasture in a fence row, in poor conditions, in poor soil. We are hardy and exceptionally resilient.

No matter what comes, I am determined to bloom where I am planted so that my blooms will one day feed a hungry little bird searching for food. I want to be the vessel that God uses for that task. I am reminded more than ever when I am weak, I am strong. My current sufferings are not worth comparing to the glory in Christ Jesus that one day my face will behold.

Romans 8:18 ESV

For I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.

2 Corinthians 12:9

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

New PODCAST!!!

 

 

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Great News! We have started a PodCast!! You can listen to us, while on your way to work or while dropping those kiddos off to school. https://anchor.fm/songstrengthministries

We are looking forward to serving you in different ways. I am excited to be on this journey with all of you. Thank you, for allowing me to serve you in this way. It is truly an honor. I am seeking better ways to connect with my online audience, of course, you can reach out to me on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and send us your prayer request or questions.

Here is the link to Song & Strength Podcast:https://anchor.fm/songstrengthministries

I hope you will follow, will be uploading new podcast daily.

 

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In His Service,

Kimberly Ferren