Disappointment into Blessing

A little more than a year ago I was struggling at work.  I had been in the same department for 20 years and it was time for a change.  A few positions opened which piqued my interest, so I applied.  After interviewing for two of the jobs which I thought I would have been a shoo-in for, I was disappointed to learn that the positions were offered to others. 

I started to focus on my feelings about being passed over for the jobs.  I was sad, disheartened, angry and a little confused.  I had prayed about each position.  I believed my years of experience and commitment to our organization would make me the top choice.  I asked God for “favor” in the eyes of those who interviewed me.  So, why God, was I not offered either position?

I realized that I had forgotten to pray the prayer which never fails, that God’s will be done.  Sure, I asked God for favor and I “told” Him how much I “really wanted” the job…but, I never thought to ask that His will be done.  A while after this another position opened.  It interested me, but the hours were considerably less.  I almost did not apply.  Another employee in that same job role sought me out and encouraged me to apply.  This interview “felt” different.  There was a peace during the interview.  I realize now the peace was from our omniscient Father God. I see now that even though I had forgotten to ask for it, God’s will was being done.

The job was offered to me, I accepted, and the experience has been so amazing!  My new colleagues are wonderful, I am gaining even more experience and meeting so many new people.  This job has been a “perfect fit” for me.

Recently Covid-19 has created a pandemic in the world; what we once knew as “the norm” currently no longer exists.  There have been so many individuals across our nation who have lost their jobs due to mandated business closures and the failing economy.  I praise God daily for the job I continue to have.

Today as I was thanking God for my job I heard this quiet voice within me say, “Do you remember how frustrated you were when you did not receive those other positions?  Those two jobs are no longer in place; the individuals who accepted those positions have been furloughed.  I knew which job you were to have, even if you thought otherwise”.

Our God knew Covid-19 would happen.  He knew well before I applied for a new job over 14 months ago which positions would be furloughed.  Our God is not a God of coincidence; He is omniscient, and He grants favor to those who believe in Him. My disappointment in not getting the positions I “thought” I deserved has turned into so many blessings that I cannot even begin to count them.   It is entirely because our Heavenly Father knew where I needed to be during this unprecedented pandemic that both my employment and my joy are secure.  How about you?

“Heavenly Father, thank You that Your Word says You have plans to prosper us (Jer 29:11).  Lord Jesus, thank You that You alone know what is best for us.  You Word says in 2 Sam 22:33,” It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure”.  Praise be to God that our way is secure in our Lord, Jesus Christ.  Thank You, Father, for Your provision in our lives. Thank You for knowing our future from before we existed and for turning our (perceived) disappointment into blessings. In Jesus’ Name we pray.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

Liar

Deception is Satan’s main motive in trying to accuse those who belong to the family of Christ.  Satan takes no greater pleasure than when he whispers lies to us attempting to lead us to doubt ourselves, our calling, or our decisions.  In John 8:44b (NLT) Jesus says of Satan, “He has always hated the truth, because there is no truth in him.  When he lies, it is consistent with his character; for he is a liar and the father of lies”. 

Do you sometimes hear, “God did not call you to lead”?  Or, perhaps, every door you try to step through for the work you have been chosen by God to do seems to close in your face.  Maybe strife in your closest relationships keeps you focused on life’s problems.  Are you feeling sad or discouraged? Lonely or afraid?  I believe these are but a few of the ways Satan tries to deceive us. 

Why does Satan try so hard to deceive us?  The reality is he is already defeated.  If you do not believe me, just read the book of Revelation and see exactly what Satan’s fate is.  It is because Satan knows full well that he is defeated by Christ that he lies to us.  He lies, hoping that we will believe him for even just a moment, so our work for the kingdom of God will be side tracked.  It is Satan’s primary objective to keep us in chaos and confusion through his deceitful ways. But, Satan knows he cannot defeat the children of God; our victory is secure because of the shed blood of Jesus Christ.

The old testament book of Isaiah tells of our victory over Satan’s weak and pathetic attempts to deceive and discourage us.  In chapter 54 verse 17 it states, “No weapon forged against you will prevail, and you will refute every tongue that accuses you.  THIS is the heritage of the servants of the LORD, and this is their vindication from me,” declares the LORD. (emphasis mine)

Psalm 118:13-14 (AMP) also speaks of our triumph in the Lord; “You [my enemy] pushed me violently so that I was falling, But the LORD helped me.  The LORD is my strength and song, And He has become my salvation”.

We have a decision. Whose voice will we listen to?  Will we allow the father of lies to distract us or will we do as the Casting Crowns song says and “choose to listen to the Voice of Truth”? By getting into the Word of God and into prayer we can hear the Voice of Truth. 

Satan is ALREADY defeated.  I encourage you to waste no more time listening to his lies.  God HAS called you for a very specific purpose.  Listen for His voice.  He will lead you, encourage you and show you His truth.

“Lord Jesus, thank You for the victory we have in You.  Turn our ears to Your voice today and always.  In Jesus’ Name we tell Satan that his lies are not welcome here and that NO weapon of his shall ever prosper against us because we are Your children and we have victory with you.  Praise be to You, Lord Jesus.  Use us daily for Your kingdom’s glory.  In Jesus Name we pray. Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

Fellowship

Sometimes I read Scripture and the imagery brought to my mind is so vivid and clear it is as though I see myself in the stories being told.  What an amazing and awesome experience it would have been to follow Jesus while he walked this earth. 

One chapter of Scripture I recently read was in Acts.  In Acts chapter two Luke writes about the day of Pentecost and the gift of the Holy Spirit being poured out upon the apostles.  The visible tongues of fire which came to rest upon each of them would have been stunning to see.  And the speaking of other languages as the Holy Spirit enabled them; what an astonishing experience to witness.

There were many who observed the outpouring of the Holy Spirit and who obeyed the command to repent, be baptized and receive the gift of the Holy Spirit.  Luke writes that “about three thousand were added to their number that day”.  It was like an instant mega church.

In the days that followed Pentecost the believers continued to meet regularly.  They did this for fellowship with one another.  The Greek word for fellowship in Acts 2:42 is koinonia which essentially means partnership.  They gathered out of deep love for one another and a partnership to further the kingdom of Christ.  Because of the gift of the Holy Spirit the believer’s hearts were bound together in supernatural affection for one another.  They were now all part of one family.

As the apostles and converts met others would gather to witness the signs and wonders being performed.  They also witnessed the genuine joy and love of believers who ate, worshipped, and fellowshipped together.  I imagine the people of Jerusalem watching all of this and thinking, “I want to be part of this group!”.  As Acts chapter two concludes Luke tells us that “the Lord added to their number daily those who were being saved”.  Can you envision it?

Gathering with other believers is vital.  We are to spur one another on while meeting together.  We are to encourage one another.  (Heb 10:24-25) Believers should worship together with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit singing to God with gratitude. (Col 3:16) 

I believe we are to gather so that others may see the koinonia we share through the gift of the Holy Spirit.  I also think we are to gather to strengthen our koinonia.  We are to “encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness”. (Heb 3:13) God never intended for us to live a life of solitude.  We need the fellowship of other Christians and it is through the gift of the Holy Spirit we can enjoy that.

“Heavenly Father, thank You for the supernatural gift of koinonia.  Thank You for a family of believers with whom we can fellowship and grow.  We need each other, Father.  The body of believers is a gift for each one of us. Fellowship with like-minded, Holy Spirit-filled believers builds us up through mutual love and encouragement which comes from You.  May we never stop meeting together.  In Jesus Name.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

Action Required

Ephesians 6:12 tells us that our struggle is not against flesh and blood…but against the rulers…the authorities…the powers of dark…and against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly realms.  So, the battles we have with others and the actions we let consume us should not be where our energy and focus go.  We should set our minds on things above, on the spiritual battle raging between good and evil in the heavenly realms. 

This is not an easy feat.  It is much easier to hold a grudge toward someone who has hurt you or to spread gossip about the coworker you find annoying.  Unfortunately, it is even easier to cause strife and discord within the body of believers.  Maybe the Pastor did not respond the way you “expected” so you become bitter and try to cause dissention in the congregation.  When these things occur, we need to look again at what God is telling us in Ephesians 6:12. Our struggle is NOT against flesh and blood it is against the spiritual forces of evil, i.e., Satan and his minions. 

One of Satan’s goals is to cause confusion and chaos in the life of a believer, so they spin their wheels over miniscule, worldly issues.  This keeps the believer ineffective for God’s purpose for their life.  Satan loves to keep our focus on ourselves and on issues with others because he knows that if our attention were truly on God we would be dangerous.  How can we protect ourselves against Satan’s feeble attacks?  We must act.

James 4:7-8 clearly tells us the actions we must take to defeat Satan.  “Submit yourselves, then, to God.  Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.  Come near to God and he will come near to you.  Wash your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded”.  Did you catch the verbs in those phrases?  Verbs are action words and these two verses command us to perform quite a few.  Submit, resist, flee, come near, etc.…  When we initiate the action, God honors us by responding.  We first submit to his authority.  Then we resist the devil and the devil MUST flee!  And when we come near to God He responds by drawing near to us as well. 

Salvation is found in Jesus Christ alone.  His death on the cross is what allows us access to God the Father and the Holy Spirit.  It is a gift we have done nothing to deserve.  But, our continued responsibility is to act (James 4:7-8) to fight the battle waging in the heavenly realms (Ephesians 6:12).  Draw near to God and to His strength and He will draw near to you.

“Lord Jesus, thank You for the gift of Your salvation.  Thank You for calling me to battle for Your kingdom’s glory.  I choose to submit to Your authority and to draw near to You so as I resist the devil in Your Name he will have to flee.  Use me today to further Your kingdom.  In Jesus Name I pray.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

Spirit, Soul and Body

Before accepting Jesus Christ as my Lord and Savior my decisions were dictated primarily by my soul (i.e., my psyche; my mind, will and emotions).  If I “felt like” doing something to make myself happy I would do it without concern for others.   I would choose to do things that I thought made me happy but in reality did not; even to the detriment of my body.  As an example, going out and getting drunk and waking up without a clue as to what happened.  Perhaps even abandoning a friend or two in the name of finding “more fun”.  Usually, this degree of drunkenness had some associated ill side effects.  My body suffered the consequences of my soul’s decision to party hard. 

Once I became a believer Christ’s Spirit took up residence within me.  I no longer had only a soul living in a body.  I now had a spirit living within me; the very same Spirit as Jesus. It is this spirit which now guides my conscience.  This spirit which separates me from my “old” self and which leads me to make right choices.  It is this spirit that I desire to be in control of my life, though in my humanness this is not always the case. I praise God that Jesus Christ is always there to forgive me for wrong choices and to guide my spirit back to His.

The Bible states in 1 Thessalonians 5:23 (AMP), “Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you through and through [that is, separate you from profane and vulgar things, make you pure and whole and undamaged – consecrated to Him – set apart for His purpose]; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept complete and [be found] blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ”. 

I am by no means perfect.  I made bad choices before I had Christ’s Spirit living within me and I have continued to make bad choices, at times, since then.  As Paul writes in Romans 7:19, “For I do not do the good I want to do, but the evil I do not want to do – this I keep on doing”.  I try not to judge others because I see the imperfection in myself; I experience my own bad decisions.  Praise to God that His Spirit refuses to leave me but draws me back to His Word.  It is through the conviction of the Holy Spirit within me that leads me to repentance and back into right standing before the throne of God.  Our Father wants this for me and for you; we need only ask.

“Heavenly Father, thank You for the free gift of Your Holy Spirit.  If we do not have Your Spirit living within us, we pray right now for forgiveness in the Name of Jesus Christ.  We say with our mouths and believe in our hearts that Jesus Christ is Lord. We invite Your Holy Spirit to take up residence in our hearts.  We accept Your salvation because of Jesus’s death on the cross in place of us; He took our sins upon Him so we could experience eternal life.  We thank You, Father, for this precious gift.  In Jesus Name we ask these things.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

The Healing of Reconciliation

Most of us would agree that we receive Spiritual healing when we seek forgiveness and are reconciled to our Heavenly Father through the saving blood of Jesus Christ our Lord.  What about other manifestations of healing?  Do we receive emotional and mental healing?  How about healing and restoration of severed relationships?  Are we healed physically through forgiveness and reconciliation?  As the Word of God says in Isaiah 53:5 (AMP), “But He was wounded for our transgressions, He was crushed for our wickedness [our sin, our injustice, our wrongdoing]; The punishment [required] for our well-being fell on Him, And by His stripes (wounds) we are healed”. 

This verse does not identify a specific “kind” of healing.  It simply states we are healed because Jesus lovingly and willingly took all of our sins; past, present and future, upon Himself and He suffered a horrible death so we could have salvation and healing.  It is because of God’s great love for us that we can experience this. (John 3:16) And if we believe that we, too, have been crucified with Christ (see Gal. 2:20) than it is Christ who lives inside of us.  Because we have Him in us we are compelled to be like-minded toward others.  That is, as God through Jesus readily forgives us, we are to also forgive others. (Col. 3:13)

I have heard many a Pastor preach on the truth of Matthew 11:25. “And when you stand praying, if you hold anything against anyone, forgive them, so that your Father in Heaven may forgive you your sins”.  If we hold unforgiveness in our hearts we are separated from God because God is love (1 John 4:8).  I personally believe it is impossible to be unforgiving toward someone while having the love of God in my heart for them.  In fact, I would say my unforgiveness leads to bitterness and the bearing of grudges.  Now if those two things don’t sound like a breeding ground for sickness and disease (of all kinds) I don’t know what does.

But, in whom exactly is the sickness and disease breeding?  Unforgiveness toward someone does not seem to adversely affect them.  No, it is the one holding on to the bitterness of unforgiveness and who is bearing the grudge; they are sick and diseased.  How so, you ask?  I can only speak from experience.  My bitterness has led to mental issues (depression, anxiety), emotional issues (anger, impatience), relational issues (marital discord, strife with others) and physical issues (fatigue, pain). 

Take a moment to consider your state of well-being.  If you find yourself longing for healing of any type I challenge you to get before our Lord and Savior and ask Him to reveal to you any areas of unforgiveness you may be holding onto.  If He brings anything before you, ask Him to forgive you for the sin of unforgiveness and choose to forgive. This includes forgiving yourself.

“Lord Jesus, it is by Your great sacrifice that we are healed.  By revelation of Your Holy Spirit show us all areas of our unforgiveness.  Make us quick to repent.  Thank You, for Your salvation and healing.  In Jesus Name we pray.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

The Law

Have you ever gotten bogged down by the thought of keeping all the laws handed down to us in Old Testament Scripture?  Who of us could even come close to such a difficult task?  And, aren’t we as Christians free from that requirement anyway? Not free from avoiding sin, but free from the legalism of trying to keep all the laws which no human possibly can.

 As with all Scripture, the law mentioned in the Old Testament is God-breathed (2 Timothy 3:16). Our Father God wants us to know His laws and His expectations.  As a New Testament believer of the saving grace of Jesus Christ, I think the purpose of the Old Testament law is to define for us what sin is.  That is, if there were no law we would not know what is right and what is wrong (sin).  I do not, however, believe that we can keep every one of God’s laws…not of our own strength. 

In Romans chapter seven Paul vividly paints a picture of the war which wages inside of us.  A battle to follow the law which is good versus the desire of our sinful nature to do as we please.  In verse twenty-four Paul asks a question of hope, “What a wretched man I am!  Who will rescue me from this body that is subject to death”?  Who indeed? 

If we stopped reading after Romans 7:24 we would not know the glorious truth that is Jesus Christ.  We are delivered from the impossible burden of “trying” to keep the law because of the sacrificial death of Jesus Christ. 

The law was made an impossibility because of our sinful nature, but the once and for all sin offering of God’s only Son has set us free.  Free to sin without consequence?  Absolutely not.  Free to find redemption and right standing with the Father?  Totally. 

As Romans 8:1 tells us, “There is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus”.  I am confident of the truth in this verse.  Christians are no longer subject to a feeling of condemnation, however, being convicted when we sin is how the Spirit brings us back to a place of repentance before God.  This necessary repentance leads us to redemption. 

The takeaway? None of us are perfect.  Because we are human we are subject to temptation and we will sin.  But, the mistake of sin does not have to be our final stop.  Jesus Christ died for all sin forever; we only need to ask for His forgiveness.  As we repent and reestablish connection with the Holy Spirit of God we will be convicted by that same Spirit when temptation strikes again.  Pray for the strength of the Spirit; ask Him for His help over temptation and sin.  Ask in Jesus’ Name and you shall receive (Mark 11:24).

“Heavenly Father, thank You for the gift of Your Son, Jesus Christ.  Thank You for the sacrifice of Jesus’ death for the sins of all mankind.  Provide opportunities for me to share this Good News of Jesus’ sacrifice for Your kingdom’s glory.  Thank You, Father, that we have eternal life because of Your merciful gift.  May we never take Your gift for granted, Lord.  In Jesus’ Name we pray.  Amen”.

Kami R. Lobner

The One Who never leaves

You know the old saying, “friends may come and friends may go”…but, there is One Who never leaves us.  One Who longs for us to draw near to Him and confide in Him.  Our Heavenly Father calls out to each one of us to turn to Him.  Jesus longs for us to talk with Him and to fully place our trust in Him.

Psalm 27:7-9,11  (NLT) states in part, “Hear me as I pray, O Lord…My heart has heard You say, come and talk with me. And my heart responds, Lord, I am coming…You have always been my Helper.  Don’t leave me now; don’t abandon me, O God of my salvation!…Teach me how to live, O Lord.  Lead me along the right path”.

Did you catch that?  God says to us, “come and talk with me”.  I don’t know about you, but I desire to do as the next line states and respond to my Lord with, “I am coming”.  Yes, that is my desire and yet I somehow fall short of doing that very thing.  Don’t get me wrong, I spend time talking with God. Unfortunately, I can also say that I look to other like-minded believers with whom to talk sometimes more often than coming to the Father.  Why is that?

I think that for me it is just easier.  It is my “nature”…my God-given personality to be around people.  I like the connection; even more than that, I long for the connection I can have with a brother or sister in Christ.  I believe God created us for relationship with each other.  But, I personally tend to forget that He FIRST created us for relationship with Him.  God created each one of us and He calls out to us, “come and talk with me”.  Maybe we respond by talking with Him…for awhile anyway, but then we leave to do our own thing.  We leave to pursue relationships elsewhere and sometimes forget to go back and “talk with” our Heavenly Father again.

The neat thing is He never leaves.  He patiently waits for us to hear Him calling and to once again respond. God is always there.  He is waiting to be our Helper.  He is our salvation.  God wants to be our teacher and to lead us along the right path.  We need only quiet ourselves in His Presence and respond to His invitation to “come”.  I praise God for the like-minded believers He has placed in my path.  I also praise God for calling out to me to “come talk” with Him when my focus shifts to others ahead of Him.  He is the One and Only Who shall never leave nor forsake me.  Perhaps it is time I focus on remaining also in Him. 

“Heavenly Father, I praise Your Holy Name.  Thank You, Jesus, for calling out to me when my focus shifts to the things I can see in this temporal world and when I lose track of You.  Lord Jesus, I praise You for the gift of like-minded brothers and sisters.  I cherish those whom You bring into my life; may I bless them as they have blessed me.  More importantly, Father God, I praise Your Holy Name that You never leave me.  Thank You, Jesus, for calling to me to come and talk with You.  Sometimes loneliness overwhelms me and I hear You calling.  Sometimes tragedy strikes and You call to me.  Other times You speak to me during a quiet moment of reflection.  Praise be to Jesus that You never stop calling me.  Thank You, Father, for creating me for relationship; first of all with You and then with others.  Lord God, keep my priorities straight in that regard and lead me, always, down the right path.  It is in the Name of Jesus I pray.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

Pray for a Sharpener

Proverbs 27:19 says, “As a face is reflected in water, so the heart reflects the real person”.  I have wasted years of my life hiding my heart’s reflection.  Was it fear?  Was it embarrassment?  Was it “no one here gets me”?  I think at times it was all these things.

I believe that I am a likable person.  I think I am funny and can get along with most people.  I “know” many people, but I let very few truly know me.  Very few see the true reflection of my heart which is the Holy Spirit living within me.  I get so excited when I meet a like-minded child of God because I can let my heart’s true nature shine. 

My two best friends used work with me.  I could talk about God with them.  We studied the Bible together and prayed with one another.  I miss them.  I miss doing those things.  I have begun to pray that God provide me another friend with whom I can “just be me” around; someone with whom I can talk and pray and whose excitement for God is like my own.  No one will replace my friends who have moved; we are eternal friends and we keep in touch as often as possible.  But, God knows me inside and out; He created me after all.  God knows the need I have for a like-minded friend.  He gave me that need.  He has also given me the heart of a servant; I pray He brings others into my life who willingly receive and encourage my servant’s heart.

I long for what God’s Word states in Proverbs 27:17, “As iron sharpens iron, so a friend sharpens a friend”.  I ask God right now in Jesus Holy Name to bring a Proverbs 27:17 friend alongside of me at work, at home, at church and during my daily activities.  This does not have to be the same like-minded individual.  It could be multiple individuals.  We serve a big God, so I am asking for a big gift…the gift of a sharpener or two.  I believe that the God who created us for His companionship and in His image fully intended for us to have like-minded brothers and sisters in Christ come along side of us to sharpen and encourage us and for whom we can do the same. 

“God, You know our needs.  Your Word says that You give us the desires of our hearts.  I ask You now in the Name of Jesus for a friend or two who will sharpen and encourage me and whom I can sharpen and encourage.  Lord, in Jesus’ Name I ask You for that Proverbs 27:17 friend who will challenge me to grow in knowledge of and boldness for You.  God may Your kingdom’s work be increased through us as we come alongside other believers for Your good purpose and plan.  It is in the Name of Jesus Christ our Lord that we pray these things.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner

Change the Filter

Reposted from January, 2019.

I recently found this applicable in my life again. I have battled my whole life to view myself as God sees me. Early in life (and often ) I was rejected and humiliated by someone who should have protected and loved me. So, I’ve always been a people pleaser. I also overcompensate for the worthless individual I was made to feel like at a young age; so much so that I can become overbearing. I “try” so hard sometimes to be seen as the child of God that I am. I try to be “likable”, which is futile if you think about it. I shouldn’t waste energy “trying” to be seen as the Child of God that I KNOW I am. I AM that child of God because of His free and great love for me. I AM compassionate, loving, kind AND lovable because I am a daughter of the King! Satan keeps me spinning like a top when I focus on the lie that I am unworthy. What a waste of time. What a waste of not being available to be used by God while my focus is on whether or not someone will accept me for who I was created to be; when my wheels are spinning to “make sure I don’t mess up”. BUT, PRAISE BE TO GOD that what might have sent me away hurting or angry now brings me to my knees asking the Father to show me why I do what I do and then show me His truth. Praise to God that I can GENUINELY see the love of God in the other person and I KNOW that there is no sense in “trying”; since God’s love is in both the other person and myself, life will be blessed for both of us and God will navigate the direction of our interactions. So, as a reminder to myself and anyone for whom this devotional rings true…

A very dear friend of mine recently prayed that God would free me from the filter of past hurts. She prayed that Jesus would heal me from wounds made by individuals I had once trusted and that I would no longer view myself through the eyes of anyone but my Heavenly Father.

My friend is very wise and knows me well; she knows the rejection of my past and the pain which went with it.  She prayed, I believe, as the Holy Spirit led her to pray.  She prayed these things so when someone says or does something which reminds me of a past pain I will be encouraged. She prayed these things, so I would not be prompted to sift other’s words and actions through my skewed and faulty filter of past sufferings.

But, “how” do I get to this place of not analyzing everything said or done to me when it triggers a feeling of past pain or rejection?  I take my friend’s prayer into consideration and I begin to ask God to free me from the former filter by changing how I screen other’s words and actions.  I begin to ask God to change my filter to His.  (John 15:12)

As I continue in the Word my heart and mind begin to change as the Holy Spirit works in and through me.  My filter begins to change.  I can trust God to heal old wounds and to help me better understand current situations and people.  I can begin to see how my Heavenly Father sees not only me, but the other person as well.  (Phil 2:1-4)

My filter changes from a past, egocentric view to a more unselfish and Spirit-led perspective.  When I allow Jesus Christ to lead my thoughts, feelings and emotions I am better able to sift other’s words and actions through His loving filter instead of my own narrow-minded view.  When I do this, I can look at others more compassionately.

What a change we would see in our world today if we all asked God to change our filter to His.  Maybe your filter is not the filter of past rejection and hurt; maybe it is a filter of deceit and being let down.  Maybe it is the filter of abuse or alcoholism.  The point is, we each have a history. We each have filters we screen life through, but when our filters are skewed by things contrary to God’s Love and His Word, we need to pray for His filter and not our own.  We need to pray for His eyes to see other’s as He sees them.  (1Thes 3:12)

“Heavenly Father, I thank You for friends who pray with and for me.  I thank You for the wisdom You provide to me through Your Word and through others You place in my life.  Lord, may I remain in Your Word and seek a change of filter from mine to Yours.  As I have been encouraged by my friend, may You provide me opportunity to pay that encouragement forward to someone else.  I praise You and I thank You for Who You are and how You see me; I thank You for Your truth and Your love.  In Jesus’ Name I pray.  Amen.”

Kami R. Lobner