Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Question of the Month ~ We want to hear from you!

We want to hear from you!

Here's the question for the month:

What is 1 thing that helps you grow in your relationship with Jesus?

                                                                     {Please comment below!}

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life."

~John 3:16 

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

There Is No Friend Like Jesus ~ Kayla's Testimony

 When I was 10 years old, I heard a speaker share the gospel. I was very convicted by what he said, so later that evening I went in tears to speak with someone who could explain the gospel to me because I did not think I was really saved. She explained salvation to me and I put my trust in Christ as my Savior and Lord. After that I had an intense desire to read and study God’s Word and get to know Jesus better. The more I studied, the more I realized how amazing Jesus is and that He is not just a God far away, but someone who can be a close friend, even a best friend. He has always been so faithful to show me His mercy and grace and love each day. Jesus has given me so much hope and joy that I never find with anyone else. I have so much peace when I walk closely with Jesus and even in the times when I have drifted away some, He has been faithful drawn my heart back to Him.

One example of a time I started to drift was last summer when I started to become really good friends with someone from my church. We spent a lot of time together and we would talk on the phone and text a lot too. It was a very godly friendship. We would often read our Bibles and pray when we would get together, and on the phone we would talk about church and tell each other what God had been doing in our lives. I was so happy that God had blessed me with such a godly friend.
 But over time I noticed something started to happen. I was spending less and less time reading my Bible and in prayer. I did not think about the Lord as much throughout my day and how I could honor Him. I was too preoccupied with this newfound friend who was taking a lot of my time and thought. So I started to drift away from my friendship with Jesus and He was given second place.

 As I realized this was happening, I also started to realize a lot of my joy was gone. I was not living in the peace that only God can give because problems started to surface as a result of this friendship. I went from being very happy to not very happy at all. I was had a lot of inner turmoil. It was at this time, that God removed this friend from my life. It was a little difficult at first, but I could see God’s grace through it in so many ways.

I now had so much more time to spend in my personal devotions. It was so wonderful to be able just to focus on Jesus and His Word. I could pray without any distractions. I was not looking forward to being with someone else more than I was with my Savior. I began to experience again the joy that only comes from being close to Jesus and having Him as my best friend.

It is good to have close friendships with other godly people, but when they replace Jesus as your very best and closest friend, they can become a distraction and God, in His love for us, may remove them from our lives or lead us to back away a little. Even though it can be hard sometimes, God always does what He knows is best for us and what He knows will give us the most joy. And He has shown me that nothing or no person can give you more joy than walking closely with Jesus and having Him as your closest friend.

Jesus Satisfies...

"For he satisfies the longing soul, and the hungry soul he fills with good things."
~Psalm 107:9

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

A Journey of Love with Jesus ~ by Amy Vest

Jesus is calling you to Himself.

He is inviting you on a journey with Him.

You were created for a journey of love with Jesus.

This is a journey that is meant to deepen every year you walk with Him - amid all of the happy and hard times - bringing matchless joy to you, glory to Him, and overflowing in blessing to others.

You were meant for this journey with Jesus, friend.

Nothing compares.

Never forget that you were created for Jesus and will not be satisfied anywhere else.

He IS love and is calling you to a journey of love with Him.

"I have loved you with an everlasting love;
Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness." (Jeremiah 31:3)

Let's take a glimpse at 3 elements of this journey of love:

1. Know His love personally and love Him in return.  He pursues and we respond.
- Know for yourself His love in His Word, Salvation (more on this HERE), and His being present and at work in you every moment by His Spirit. (John 3:16)
- Love Him in return by putting Him first in heart, seeking Him, worshiping Him, and living for Him. (Mark 12:30)

2. Live in and from His love.
- Live in His love - soaking in it every day thorough His Word, prayer and fellowship with Him through the day, and remembering His love. (2 Thess. 3:5)
- Live from His love - letting the love that is forever and unchangeably yours in Him motivate and empower all you do vs. trying to live to earn His love that is already yours and cannot be earned. (2 Cor. 5:14)

3. Share His love.
As you receive His love and love Him in return, allow that love to spill out to others. "We love because he first loved us." (1 John 4:19)

Oh, friend! You have the joy of walking in this relationship of love with Jesus every moment of your life!

It is a relationship.
It is love.
It is a journey.
It is with JESUS! 

There is nothing sweeter in all the world.

And Jesus is calling us to this!

I want to live each moment with:
my hand in His hand and my heart in His heart,
basking in His love and presence,
soaking in His Word and listening to His voice,
loving Him with all that I am,
spilling out His love to others and calling them to know it for themselves...
Following wherever Love leads.

Do you?

There is no other journey worth taking - and on this journey He guides you to all else He has for you.

He is pursing you, revealing His love, guiding your steps, teaching you His Truth, giving grace to walk with Him. When you fall, He picks you up, when you disobey, He lovingly disciplines you and draws you close, when you are weak, He strengthens you...He will keep you.

Nothing can separate you from His love.

"...I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord." (Romans 8:38-39)

As we embrace this, life - in all of its seasons - becomes an amazing journey of a deepening relationship of love with Jesus - the One who is Love.

He has so much in store for you, friend.

Jesus is calling you to this journey of love with Him - will you answer?

Love the Lord...

"And you shall love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all of your soul and with all of your mind and with all of your strength."

~Mark 12:30 

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

Join us for Session 1 - "Jesus is Your Best Friend" - of the Beautiful to God Online Conference!

Session 1 ~ "Jesus is Your Best Friend" ~ Beautiful to God Conference from Loving the Lord Ministries on Vimeo.

Welcome to Session 1 of the Beautiful to God Conference - Jesus is Your Best Friend!

The reason you are on this earth is for a relationship with Jesus that satisfies you and glorifies Him! This relationship with Him is the most important thing in this life and in eternity. Jesus is so amazing and knowing Him will transform your life!

Join us for this powerful session as we look at the most important relationship in the world with Jesus - the One who alone can satisfy the longings of our soul. It is our prayer that you will encounter Jesus for yourself - in a deeper way, or for the very first time - and you will never be the same!

Please visit our website under the "Beautiful to God Online Conference" section for the handout for this session!

We would love to have you comment below and share something the Lord did in your heart as you watched this video!

"And you shall love the Lord your God with all of your heart and with all of your soul and with all of your mind and with all of your strength." Mark 12:30

Launching the New Blog Plan Today!

Today marks the launch of the new blog plan for the coming months! 

We are so excited to seek our Jesus together and know that He has amazing things in store!

Each month of the plan will include:
~ A "Beautiful to God" Session Video
~ An encouraging article from Amy
~ A powerful testimony by a young woman
~ A question to apply this topic to your life and get your feedback on the online community

Know that we would love to have you interact as part of the community here on the blog - so feel free to comment, ask questions, etc.!

Jesus is amazing and nothing compares to life in Him!  Let's seek Him with all of our hearts together!