There's some really good stuff in this video including what happens in your brain when you worship.
Be Loved is the first book by YouTuber Emma Mae Jenkins. It is about her journey through High School and is full of encouragement, prayers and scriptures. The book is beautifully presented with full colour throughout, gorgeous photos and lots of fun fonts. Emma is not everyone's cup of tea - she is super sweet and bubbly. But she loves Jesus and is passionate about following him and you can't criticise her for that. It's a great book for anyone who has felt they don't fit in (practically everyone).
In Matthew 8:23 Jesus and the disciples got into a boat to cross the lake then there was a furious storm. Jesus was fast asleep but the disciples were terrified - they thought they were going to drown. Verse 26 says, Jesus answered, “Why are you afraid? You don’t have enough faith.” Then he stood up and gave a command to the wind and the water. The wind stopped, and the lake became very calm. It's interesting to note that Jesus reprimanded the disciples for being afraid and not having enough faith before he reprimanded the wind and waves. He didn't tell them off for waking him up or disturbing him - he is always ready to hear our prayers and requests.
Five times in Matthew Jesus rebuked the disciples for having too little faith. Jesus had been healing the sick, but still the disciples didn't understand that he had power and authority over all things. Earlier in chapter 8 a centurion (Roman soldier) asked Jesus to heal his servant who was sick. He told Jesus that he didn't need to come to his house, he just had to say he would be healed, it would happen. The centurion recognised that Jesus had authority. Verse 10 says, When Jesus heard this, he was amazed. He said to those who were with him, “The truth is, this man has more faith than anyone I have found, even in Israel.
I know that I am often guilty of not having enough faith. I choose to believe the limiting beliefs about God and myself that Satan tells me. What areas of your life, circumstances that you face, doubts and insecurities do you have that you need to have more faith for? Read the Word and see what it says about God, his goodness, faithfulness, power and authority.
The Pulpit Commentary explains that 'renews my strength' or 'restores my soul' (as some versions read), means God revives your soul and reinvigorates it when it is exhausted and weary. I don't know about you, but sometimes my soul gets exhausted and weary. I find that going to church, singing songs of worship, reading my Bible and spending time in prayer revives my soul and give me new strength. I like to think of these things as paths of righteousness or paths that are right. Some versions read, "for His name's sake," which can be confusing. I like how the Living Bible puts it, He gives me new strength. He helps me do what honours him the most. He strengthens us and leads us into paths that are right so that his name will be honoured and glorified.
So here's my takeaway from verse three: God revives and renews my soul when it is weary. He calls me to pray, worship and soak in his Word so that I will make good choices and so that His name will be glorified.
Matthew 7:13-14 says, Enter through the narrow gate. The gate is wide and the road is wide that leads to hell, and many people enter through that gate. But the gate is small and the road is narrow that leads to true life. Only a few people find that road. Jesus wasn't literally talking about a roads and gates but he was talking about life choices. If you choose to do your own thing, like most people will, then it will be a relatively easy life.
If you choose to follow Jesus you will face several obstacle
1. You will face a spiritual battle - doing what God wants you to do versus what you want to do. Paul said, "What our human nature wants is opposed to what the Spirit wants, and what the Spirit wants is opposed to what our human nature wants" (Galatians 5:17). You will need to choose prayer, fasting, Bible study over more selfish pursuits.
2. You will be persecuted for your faith. In 2 Timothy 3:12 Paul said, "Everyone who wants to live the way God wants, in Christ Jesus, will be persecuted." You may not be stoned or put to death for being a follower of Jesus but you can be certain that you will be ridiculed or ostracised for your faith. This may not happen often, but it will happen.
It's not easy, but it's worth it. Romans 8:18 says, "I am sure that what we are suffering now cannot compare with the glory that will be shown to us." It's like an Olympic athlete who sacrifices free time, sweet treats, sleeping in and socialising so that they can train and compete to try to win a gold medal.
It's important to remember that the gate is narrow to eternal life but the destination will be glorious. God is preparing a place for you in eternity. I think he did an amazing job of creation the first time round, so imagine what he is planning for those who love him.
Short and sweet inspirations for Christian teen girls.