Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Reminders of Jesus ~ Practical Application ~ by Amy Vest

I love reminders, don't you?

If you are like me, even when you want something so much, it is easy to get distracted and reminders can be so helpful!

When I was growing in my walk with Jesus, I wanted to have something that reminded me of Jesus, His love, and my relationship with Him.  He gave me anything shaped like a heart as a reminder of Him and His love for me. 

It was so amazing to watch as suddenly heart shaped things started appearing everywhere - clouds, a carrot in my salad, a splash of paint on the sidewalk, and so much more!

Often I will see the reminder, smile, and say, "I love You, too, Jesus!"This shifts my whole perspective as my eyes are lifted from my day to the One Who loves me and is my life - and then changes how I live!

Often the Lord will bring it just when I need it - like one time I was cleaning the bathroom and having a harder day.  I looked at the counter as I cleaned and there was a heart shaped puddle of water!  My whole perspective changed as I remembered Jesus and His love for me!

This reminder continues to be so sweet to this day.  (Scattered through this post are a few pictures from the last couple of weeks!)

These reminders can be such a powerful tool in pointing our minds and hearts to Jesus and living more fully with Him as our life!

"For your steadfast love is before my eyes, and I walk in your faithfulness."  Psalm 26:3

I have other reminders as well - a ring I wear, things around my room, sunlight sparkling on the water, a loon's call, etc., but the heart-shaped things remain the sweet, practical reminder that Jesus uses again and again to turn my mind to Himself and His love!

Young women I know have chosen all kinds of things - roses, butterflies, stars, the cross, sparkles, etc. - that are special reminders in their walk with the Lord! 

I encourage you to ask the Lord what you can have as a reminder of His love and a tool to point you to living with Him as your life!

It is important to remember that He is always there, He always loves you, and He is always true life whether you are seeing those reminders, or not.  These reminders are just a sweet tool the Lord can use to encourage us in Himself and in living with Him as our life!

I want that, don't you?

May Jesus use these reminders to encourage you in your journey of drawing deeper with Him!


It's your  turn - we want to hear from you!  What is a reminder you have of Jesus and living with Him as your life? We'd love for you to leave a comment below!

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

The "Beautiful to God" Class ~ Session 2 ~ "True Friendship" ~ Photos and Report

We just loved our second session today at the Beautiful to God Class on True Friendship - friendship that points us to Jesus!

We talked about the importance of the friends we choose, how to be a friend like Jesus, and what the heart of friendship is - the selfless love of Jesus!

Our theme verse was the second commandment, "You shall love your neighbor as yourself." (Matt. 22:29) and we talked about how the second commandment is only possible when the first commandment to " the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind..." (Matt. 22:27) is a reality.  When we know and are satisfied in Jesus' love and He loves through us, then we are able to truly love others and have relationships that glorify Him!

What a gift it is to seek Jesus and look at His Word with others who love Him - our best Friend!

Monday, September 26, 2016

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Seeing the One Who is Life in All of Life ~ Bella's Testimony

Can you introduce yourself to us? 

Fully blessed is how I see my life. Fully blessed because I've been given fullness of life in the One who is life, in the One who fully knows me and fully loves me, in the One who offers fullness of joy and full blessings of grace upon grace to me - Jesus Christ.  Because of this gift I've been given in the midst of struggles in life, my heart beats to share this with others, to spread His hope and beauty with hearts that are hurting. He has used my story - a story of taking my brokenness and turning it into something beautiful - to give me hope, and this is now what I aspire to be - a spreader of hope with hearts that are hurting and broken.  

                                                                                          How did you meet Jesus? 

Growing up in a Christian home allowed me the chance to meet Jesus at the young age of three.  I continued to grow in my knowledge and love for Jesus and deepened in my relationship with Him. It wasn't until I was in a very low and broken time of life, however, that I saw how truly beautiful and real Jesus is.  And when I began to see Him for who He truly is, I began to see myself for who I really am, loved, forgiven, free.  At age 19, at a Summer camp in the beautiful mountains of Colorado, I met Beauty Himself in the most profoundly life-changing way. Since that moment, my life has never been the same.

How has He become your life? 

Wow!  Where to start?!?  He is in the joys and the tears in life.  Each experience, each moment really, has brought me more of Him...more of LIFE Himself.  

"All streams run to the sea." -Eccl. 1:7 In other words, all gifts in life point to the Giver.  Jesus has given beautiful gifts, gifts in life that point us to Him, that allow us to experience and live that FULLNESS of life, because Life Himself has become our life.  For me this journey of truly experiencing Him to be my all, my full joy, my love, my LIFE, has began with simply opening my eyes.  He is who He is regardless if I acknowledge this or not, but it's not until I open my eyes that I can truly know and experience this myself.  
"Jesus gave us eyes, eyes to see the beauty around us."  These words popped out at me as I was reading stories to a little boy one sunny afternoon.  I have eyes, eyes to see the beauty around me, all of which points to Beauty Himself, the source of all life, my life!  But, how often am I awake, looking, seeing, letting His love rush in?  How often am I too rushed and not looking, missing little joys which echo Him that are all around me?  

When people speak of Jesus being their life, we get this sense that they are satisfied, deeply and fully satisfied because they have found that fullness of life!  I realized that I cannot make up satisfaction and contentment.  I cannot just decide I'm content and Jesus is my life.  I must open my eyes and let His love rush in so I can be truly filled - for I can only be satisfied if I'm filled. And it wasn't until I decided to fight every single day to live this fullness of life in the One who is life, that He has truly become my life!  It's been a fight, to receive grace, to simply look and SEE, to live wide eyed and awake to the gifts...the GIVER.  

My hearts cry is with the man who Jesus asked, "What do you want me to do for you?"  to which the man answered, "Open my eyes so I can see."  Because when we can see the gifts, we see the GIVER. This is when that fullness of joy rushes in, the joy that cannot be taken away or added to, because it is so full, it is that full life, the life that cries, JESUS is my LIFE, because we've seen Him more in life, by simply looking, seeing and thanking.  

This, this is what has changed my life.  Opening my eyes, by thanking the Giver of Life for the gifts in my life.  In this He has opened my eyes to the fact that He is the source of all life, the giver of all life, and the sustainer of all life.  The maker of the stars, the glory in a sunrise, the comfort in my pain, the peace in the storm, the joy in a smile... the gifts that point to the Giver.  And in seeing Him, Life Himself, I have seen He truly is everything, He truly is MY LIFE.  

What are ways that help you embrace Jesus as your life more and more? 

Simply embracing Jesus, opening my eyes to Him in life, all of it from His salvation of my soul, to soft breezes blowing the pages of my journal, to His comfort in painful nights, to sun beaming through the windows, to the sea crashing into the shores, He is LIFE... the Giver and Sustainer of life, and this has caused me to realize He is my life.  

Someone has shared the challenge to write down the gifts in life, and this has been a very practical way for me to live this out.  

Is there any specific encouragement you would like to share with our readers?

We must receive what God offers as is what we were  created for... To trust Him for salvation, to enjoy Him, to worship Him, to experience Him, to experience fullness of life in the One who is Life!  Only then can He become our life, when we see life is nothing without the source of all life.

Monday, September 19, 2016

Friday, September 16, 2016

The "Beautiful to God" Class ~ Session 1 ~ "Jesus is Your Best Friend" ~ Photos and Report

This week was the first session of the "Beautiful to God" Class! 

The Lord met us and we had a beautiful time looking at the reality that "Jesus is Your Best Friend".  We had a wonderful time getting to know one another, sharing about Jesus, looking into His Word, and talking about how we can grow in our walk with Jesus!  Our theme verse for this week is "For he satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things." (Psalm 107:9) 

It is so sweet to seek Jesus with precious young women who love Him!   (You can see more photos HERE.)


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Monday, September 12, 2016

Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Jesus is Your Life ~ by Amy Vest

Jesus was meant to be your life.

Yes, friend, read that incredible reality again.  Jesus was meant to be your life.  Not a part of your life.  Not a very important part of your life.  He was meant to BE your life.

In Jesus alone you will find the life you are longing for - the life He created and redeemed to give you - Himself.  When we look to other things for the life only He can give, we always come up empty.  Hear Jesus calling you, "I am"  (John 14:6)

When I was younger there were popular t-shirts and bumper stickers that said, "Soccer is life, the rest are just details."  or a lot of other things that people loved (ballet, fishing, etc).  I hope that by the end of this post, we will all want to live with the motto, "JESUS is life, the rest are just details." - and even better - "To live is Christ." (Phil. 1:21)

Let's look at 4 amazing ways Jesus is your life - and let's do it in the acrostic: L-I-F-E:

L - Life-source - He is the source of your whole life: salvation, spiritual life, and physical life.  "Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst." (John 6:34)

I - Individual purpose
- He is your only reason for living, your motivation for what you do, and the One your life points to and proclaims.  "To live is Christ..." (Phil. 1:21)

F - Fellowship
- He is the One you can share every moment of life with. “‘In him we live and move and have our being..."' (Acts 17:28)

E - Everything
- He is your entire life (not just a little part), your satisfaction, the One you are consumed with and live and breathe - not just part of your life, but your whole life.  "...Christ who is your life..." (Col. 3:4)

Jesus is meant to be who you live from, with, and for - and so much more!
How living with Jesus as your life changes your life:
As you live with Jesus as your life, the more life explodes with meaning, power, joy, and purpose! 

He becomes the joy in your heart, the breath in your lungs, the light in your eyes, the story of your life, the reason you get out of bed, your motivation for all you do...

Every moment becomes an exciting opportunity to know, live more deeply in, and point to Jesus. 

When you open your eyes, HE is your first thought; as you walk through the day, you walk with Him; and He is the last one you say goodnight to before you drift off to sleep.

The outflow of Jesus as your life will impact every aspect of all you are and do - and others will see and experience Him through your life, seeing His goodness.

No matter what you face, life is good, because your life is not ultimately dependent on your circumstances, feelings, relationships, health, etc., but on Jesus.

I cannot even express how seeing and embracing the reality of Jesus being my life changed - and continues to change - my every moment!  Jesus became no longer just a part of my day when I did my devotions and maybe prayed with a friend on the phone - Jesus became my life, the source of my life, the reason I live, and my companion every moment.  Every moment was an opportunity to walk with Him, know Him, depend on Him, live for Him, and share Him.  I found when He is your life, life is filled with fullness and purpose, no matter what I face, because life is Him!  It is a lifelong journey of learning, growing, repenting (of looking to other things for life) and reviving, and rejoicing in living with Jesus as my life - and there is no life I would rather live

So what are some practical ways you can live with Jesus as your life?

~ Look to Him as your source of life every moment - first through salvation, and then looking to and depending on Him for all you need for spiritual and physical life.

~ Share each moment with Him - inviting Him into your day and talking with Him about what you're facing. (Having reminders that turn your heart to Him are so helpful - We will have a post on this later in the month!)

~ Let your life be about Him - doing what you do with Him as the focus and motivation (conversations, social media, serving, etc.), and seeking to point everyone around you to the One who is your life.

You can pray a simple prayer like, "Jesus, please be my life today." and ask Him to help you increasingly live with Him as your life.  He will.
It is a lifelong growing into living with Jesus as your life - and He is there with you to help you every step, the more you grow in Him as your life you find the more beautiful life becomes, and you see this physical life is just a stepping stone into eternal life with the one who is your life - Jesus!

"Jesus said... come to me that you may have life..." (John 5:40)  Come to Jesus for salvation and keep coming to Him for life every moment of your life.

Jesus is the life you are looking for, friend.  Will you embrace Jesus as your life today, friend?

When Jesus is your life, life is good, because life is Jesus.

Yes, "Jesus is life, the rest are just details."

"To live is Christ."

Re-launching the Loving the Lord Blog TODAY!

Dear Friends,

We are so excited and grateful to Jesus to re-launch the Loving the Lord Blog TODAY!!!

Our Jesus is so amazing, we love you, we love seeking Jesus with you, and we are eagerly anticipating all that Jesus has in store as we seek Him together here on the blog in the coming days!

This is meant to be a gathering place to cheer one another on in Jesus - so please come often, interact in the comments, and invite your friends to join us!

You can watch for:
Encouraging articles
Powerful videos
Inspiring testimonies
Practical application ideas
...and more!

Please feel free to comment below to say "Hi" and to tell us anything you would like us to pray about covering on the blog in the months to come!

Jesus is ready to meet us! 

Are you ready?

With much love in Jesus,
Amy Vest and the Loving the Lord Ministries Staff

P.S.  You can subscribe to email post updates by entering your email address in the space provided on the right side of the blog - and you will never miss a post!

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Meet Mandy ~ Our new blog and social media manager!

We are so excited to introduce to you, Mandy! The Lord has beautifully brought Mandy to manage the blog and social media for Loving the Lord Ministries. She has a deep love for Jesus and for young women - and a heart to encourage others in Jesus! We are so grateful to the Lord to have her as a part of the team!

Summer Devotions Pursuit Charts!

We are so blessed as your Summer Devotions Pursuit charts come in from all over the country - and beyond!

What a gift to know that you were meeting Jesus this summer - and to hear what He has done in your time with Him!  We will post some testimonies in the days to come!

Just a reminder that if you didn't get yours in the mail to meet the deadline, you can scan or take a picture of your chart and email it to us at!

"He satisfies the longing soul..." ~ Psalm 107:9

The "Beautiful to God" Class is now full!

Sweet Friends,

This is just a little notification that the "Beautiful to God" Class is now full! 

We are so excited to seek Jesus with those of you who are registered!

We love seeking Jesus with all of you here!

With much love in Jesus,

Thursday, September 1, 2016

Exciting Announcement!

Exciting Announcement! from Loving the Lord Ministries on Vimeo.

We are so incredibly excited to announce the fresh launch of the Loving the Lord Blog next Wednesday, September 7th! 

If you are an old friend of LTLM or a brand new friend - or anything in-between - please say "Hi" and introduce yourself below!!!

We love you and are so looking forward to seeking Jesus with you!

Stay tuned for an exciting announcement!