PLEASE CLICK ON “READ MORE” TO SEE THE WHOLE ISSUE OF THE LATEST GOOD NEWS DAILY!……………….. TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA “Trust in Him at all times, you people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us…” Psalm 62:8 Dear friend, We are to trust in the Lord at ALL times. More and more the Lord shows me this. That I am to trust in Him no matter my circumstances, no matter how I feel, no matter what people do, no matter what people say, no matter what I think, no matter how things seem. More and more He shows me where I lack trust, where I need more trust, that I am to trust Him in EVERYTHING at ALL TIMES, and that not trusting Him hurts my Father who is so very good to me ALL THE TIME. When I was growing up, I was a late developer. I was short and always wanting to grow taller. Like everyone else. I did grow eventually, but oh so slowly. Sometimes I feel that way in my journey following Jesus. Like a late developer. A slower grower. But growing. That’s how I am with trusting in the Lord. I’m growing. With lots more growing to do. Oh, how patient and merciful and loving and kind is the Lord! Where do you stand with trusting in the Lord? Do you have some growing to do like I do? Let us grow together, friend. It is my hope that the messages He gives me to write are a blessing to you and an encouragement to turn from your sins, to believe in Jesus as Lord, to follow Jesus as Lord, and to keep on growing in His love, in His ways, in trusting in Him, in faithfully following Him as His Spirit leads you forth! In Christ’s most precious heavenly love, Lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION A Warning About Our Hearts & Actions! “Also He spoke this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous, and despised others: “Two men went up to the temple to pray, one a Pharisee and the other a tax collector. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, ‘God, I thank You that I am not like other men—extortioners, unjust, adulterers, or even as this tax collector. I fast twice a week; I give tithes of all that I possess.’ And the tax collector, standing afar off, would not so much as raise his eyes to heaven, but beat his breast, saying, ‘God, be merciful to me a sinner!’ I tell you, this man went down to his house justified rather than the other; for everyone who exalts himself will be humbled, and he who humbles himself will be exalted.”” Luke 18:9-14Do you think the Lord honors the churchgoer who dresses exquisitely, has sat on the same pew for the past 40 years every Sunday service without fail, writes a $2000 check weekly on pretty pink paper to delicately place in the offering plate, calls herself a devout Christian, and professes Jesus Christ as Lord though she has never cried out to God to forgive her sins, has never turned from them, and spends her time in between Sundays living for the pleasures and treasures of this life to satisfy her self with her back for all intents and purposes turned on Jesus as she thoroughly enjoys a life of disobedience to God and His Word even while she faithfully continues on with her “religious” activities as though she can earn God’s love and mercy? Or do you think the Lord honors the homeless man covered in grit and grime, smelly as can be, unshaven, not showered for weeks, poor beyond measure, picking out of the trash for his next meal, who doesn’t hesitate to say he’s a sinner saved only by God’s grace through the Lord Jesus Christ whom He cries out to in faith for forgiveness, for whom He lives and breathes to love, serve, adore, praise, worship, obey, and serve, who huddles up on the freezing cold street corner with an old raggedy Bible some pour soul left had been given and tossed in the trash? The world honors the beautiful woman whose appearance doesn’t have a single flaw, whose pocketbook is overflowing with the wealth of a successful life by the world’s standards, and whose lifestyle is perfectly in sync with the social and entertainment worldly prized high life, doesn’t it? The world looks down its nose with criticism and condemnation at the dirty smelly man whose heart and eyes are uplifted to Christ if the world even bothers to look in his direction at all, doesn’t it? Who does the Lord honor in the Bible verses above? The humble man who knows he’s a sinner and cries out to the Lord for mercy! Who knows he is nothing without the Lord and knows his only hope is in and from the Lord! God sees our hearts. God sees our actions. He can see right past our appearances. He gets down to the heart of the matter. The heart of the matter. Have you humbled yourself before God almighty? Have you acknowledged you’re a sinner in need of God’s mercy? Have you turned from your sins and believe Christ is Lord and died on the cross to pay your sin penalty and was raised from the dead? Have you truly turned to God and His ways? Are you now living your life genuinely and wholly to bring love, praise, honor, and glory to the Lord Jesus Christ? This, friend, is the heart of the matter. Are you living and breathing day in and day out for God almighty in Christ? Jesus Christ and faith in Him, with our lives devoted to Him, this is the ONLY way to an everlasting relationship with God instead of forever apart from God in hell and the lake of fire in everlasting torment. Don’t wait another moment. Give yourself over utterly to Christ – forever! Oh now, now, yes, now, give yourself to Jesus – forevermore! AMEN! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #59 “Teach me Your way, O Lord; I will walk in Your truth; Unite my heart to fear Your name.” Psalm 86:11 Such a simple and powerful and awesome prayer written by a psalmist so long ago, but should this prayer not be our very own? Should we not pray to the Lord with all our hearts that He will teach us His way so we leave behind our own ways and live according to His? Such a beautiful blessing, yes! That we can pray to God through faith in Jesus as Lord, that God hears our prayers, that He answers our prayers when they line up with His will, that He promises His Spirit who lives inside His followers will teach us, that He gives us love and power through His Spirit to learn His ways and to live by them! Thank you, oh blessed forever almighty beautiful precious holy righteous loving Father! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL Strength for This Day “I will love You, O Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer; My God, my strength, in whom I will trust; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.” Psalm 18:1-2 How will I ever make it into New York City [for another season of streets ministry there] when I have so little strength? I wondered. The Holy Spirit reminded me He is my strength, He gives me strength, and He gives me the strength I need for each day. His Spirit reminded me just as He gave the Israelites just enough manna to feed them for one day at a time, He is teaching me to trust in and depend on Him one day at a time for all I need for one given day – strength included. Our trust and dependency, friend, are not to be in and on ourselves and this world. Our trust is to be in the Lord who gives us what we need day by day – strength included – when we live in His will and for His forever glory! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE “Bondservants, obey in all things your masters according to the flesh, not with eyeservice, as men-pleasers, but in sincerity of heart, fearing God. And whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the reward of the inheritance; for you serve the Lord Christ. But he who does wrong will be repaid for what he has done, and there is no partiality.” Col. 3:22-25 I suppose some people might not feel like they’re serving the Lord in their work life if they’re working in jobs not related to a church or ministry and where there may be no mention of the Lord Jesus Christ. But if the Lord calls us to love and serve Him, wouldn’t it make sense He gives us opportunities day by day to do just that? Even in our work lives? Even when we may not be in full-time ministry work as I am? What do you see in the verses above? I see the words, “…whatever you do, do it heartily, as to the Lord and not to men,…” Whatever work you’re in, whatever job you have, first of all make sure it’s a job to which the Lord has called you. Second, check your heart and attitude concerning your work and those for whom you work. The Lord shows us through these verses whatever work we do, that we can perform that work AS THOUGH IT US UNTO THE LORD! As though we are SERVING JESUS! If you’re at a job to which the Lord has not called you, it’s time to pray to the Lord, seek Him, listen for Him, hear Him, and obey Him by switching to work to which He calls you. But no matter what work it is you do, no matter the job He has given you, no matter those for whom you work, no matter their attitude and behavior, no matter what, do your work AS UNTO THE LORD! And may those around you as they watch you work see in and through you the love, mercy, grace, hope, love, light, and peace of the Lord Jesus Christ! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST As love, compassion, honesty and kindness seem to be getting swallowed up by dishonest, hatred, evil, and darkness as the Bible prophesies would happen as a result of so many people choosing sin and Satan over the Lord Jesus Christ and righteousness, it definitely makes being on the road for Jesus an exciting, thrilling, beautiful, and humbling opportunity – not to mention incredible challenge! That said, I would greatly appreciate your prayers as July 1 God willing I head back into New York City for another season of streets ministry there to spread the Gospel message and help people forever follow the Lord Jesus Christ. Strength, wisdom, discernment, safety, health, protection, and financial provision are very much on my heart in the way of prayer needs. Love for each and every one of you in Christ’s name, Lara
TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA “Rejoice in the Lord always. Again I will say, rejoice!” Philippians 4:4 Dear friend, I’ve been reading the Bible daily for years now, and the Spirit of God has been bringing to light increasingly in my reading His heart’s desire that we be JOYFUL, that we REJOICE, and that we PRAISE HIM continually! Why be JOYFUL and REJOICE and PRAISE HIM day in and day out? Because HE IS LORD and because of the bountiful blessings He bestows upon us beginning with a forever relationship with Himself through faith in and a life devoted to the Lord Jesus Christ! Joy is not to be conditional on our circumstances which may be good or bad, easy or hard. Our REJOICING and PRAISE are to be contingent on JESUS SAVIOR OF THE WORLD! Please join me in reading the Bible daily, in seeing how often the Lord speaks of JOY and REJOICING and PRAISE, and in choosing day by day to REJOICE IN JESUS WHO IS FOREVER LORD! Love in Christ, lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION Don’t Take Back the Weight “Therefore we also, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us lay aside every weight, and the sin which so easily ensnares us, and let us run with endurance the race that is set before us, looking unto Jesus, the author and finisher of our faith, who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and has sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Hebrews 12:1-2 “Don’t take back the weight,” the Spirit of God said. I had let something go. Now I was taking it back. God was warning me. Don’t take it back. When God sets us free, it’s to stay free. But sometimes the very freedom He gives us we lose because we of our own will – from fear, pride, lust, selfishness, guilt, rebellion, etc. – return to bondage. You who are reading this, are you weighed down with something God told you to let go? Jesus Christ is Lord, and there should be only one answer when He says let go, and only one answer when He says don’t take back the weight, and it’s this. “Yes, Lord, I will obey!” Are we? TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #58 “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold From those who walk uprightly.” Psalm 84:11 Does God promise in this verse to give us every good thing WE want? No! Friend, He gives us all the good things HE wants us to have. But in our greed and pride, don’t we sometimes lash out at God, turn our backs on Him, distance ourselves from Him, withdraw trust from Him, doubt Him, go running to false gods and idols, etc. because we believe God isn’t good to us? God’s greatest blessing to us is a forever relationship with Himself through salvation based on Jesus’ death and resurrection, and His physical and spiritual blessings are endless. Instead of complaining that we aren’t getting from God what we want and accusing Him wrongfully and arrogantly of not being good to us, let us be joyful and thank Him for His countless indescribably wonderful blessings – starting with HIMSELF! Oh, how good, how good, how very good the Lord is to us each and every day, yes! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL A JOYFUL DECISION! “This is the day the Lord has made; We will rejoice and be glad in it.” Psalm 118:24 “I will be glad and rejoice in You; I will sing praise to Your name, O Most High.” Psalm 9:2 “I will be glad and rejoice in Your mercy, For You have considered my trouble; You have known my soul in adversities, And have not shut me up into the hand of the enemy; You have set my feet in a wide place.” Psalm 31:7-8 “But let the righteous be glad; Let them rejoice before God; Yes, let them rejoice exceedingly.” Psalm 68:3″Let all those who seek You rejoice and be glad in You; And let those who love Your salvation say continually, “Let God be magnified!”” Psalm 70:4One day the Spirit of God brought to wonderful light something I had never noticed before in the first verse above. The psalmist describes MAKING A DECISION to REJOICE AND BE GLAD! Yes, A DECISION! I had never noticed before HIS DECISION! I simply had thought he rejoiced. Friend, we can – and SHOULD – DECIDE TO REJOICE AND BE GLAD AND PRAISE THE LORD every day no matter our feelings and no matter our circumstances. We can – and SHOULD – choose to REJOICE IN AND BECAUSE OF JESUS. This doesn’t mean we won’t experience hard trials and difficult emotions, but it does mean regardless of the details of our everyday lives that we can still CHOOSE TO REJOICE IN JESUS! Let this day be a new beginning for us all of making a decision to REJOICE IN THE LORD JESUS CHRIST and to PRAISE THE LORD each and every day from here on out! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE WHEN to Serve God “Serve the Lord with gladness;…” Psalm 100:2One of the great tragedies of the sin-ridden, me-centered world in which we live is how we are prone to thinking of serving God as something we should do according to OUR wishes, wants, and ways – on OUR timetable – for OUR good pleasure. Jesus Christ is Lord and Savior of the world, and our service to Christ should be based on GOD’S WISHES, WANTS, AND WAYS – on HIS TIMETABLE. FOR HIS GLORY! A true servant serves when his or her master calls and humbly performs the work assigned WHEN his or her master desires. For the sake of the master, is this not true? Sometimes I find myself thinking things like this: “Oh, but I don’t want to do this right now! I’m too tired! I’m busy doing something else! I had other plans! I’d rather be doing what I’ve chosen to do! I don’t have the energy right now but maybe later! I have something more important to do!” Sometimes this involves someone in need. Or several people in need. Or my special needs dogs needing help. Or writing the Lord wants me to finish and send off. Or reaching out to someone I’m not especially in the mood to contact right then – or ever. Friend, serving the Lord IS NOT ABOUT US! Serving Jesus is ABOUT JESUS and ABOUT OTHERS! And it’s about HIS WILL, HIS TIMING, for HIS GLORY! Let us not resist God’s will and timing in our service to Him. Let us HUMBLE OURSELVES BEFORE HIM and go forth serving Him with love & thanksgiving, AMEN! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST I am heading back for another season of streets ministry in New York City in just a few weeks and am trying to get some much needed rest and plenty of time with the Lord in preparation. Please pray for me and the ministry’s special needs service doggies as I take this next huge step of faith forward in my work helping to build His forever Kingdom for the glory of the Lord Jesus Christ! I confess I still feel burned out from years of ongoing personal challenge, years of ministry work with very little help and support, years of caring for special needs rescued dogs, and over two years now of being on the road for Jesus! But I choose to TRUST the Lord will give me the strength I need day by day to do what He gives me to do each day, and I thank you from the bottom of my heart for your love, encouragement, and prayers! Living for the glory of Christ, Lara
TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you in due time,” 1 Peter 5:6 Dear friend, One of the most beautiful, wonderful, precious, awesome blessings when it comes to being a follower of the Lord Jesus Christ is something our human flesh and most assuredly this world aren’t prone to think of as a blessing at all. What is it? HUMILITY! This world thrives on and teaches and models to us PRIDE, doesn’t it? Our world is so focused on appearances, on puffing ourselves up, on climbing corporate ladders, accumulating mass amounts of money and awards, celebrating personal success, trying to tell the world how good and wonderful and beautiful we are, on gathering praise and pats on the backs from others, on glorifying ourselves, etc. But God commands us to humble ourselves and to glorify Him! He despises pride, and He blesses the humble! I want to encourage you today to HONOR THE LORD and to HUMBLE YOURSELF because what matters most isn’t this world that will one day be gone but instead THE LORD WHO WILL REIGN FOREVER who will create a new heavens and a new earth to be filled with those who turn from their sins, believe in Jesus as Lord, and live HUMBLY FOR THE GLORY OF CHRIST FOREVER, AMEN! Oh, let us humble ourselves! By the very hour! By the very moment! By the very breath! Every step, may we humble ourselves and magnify the Lord forevermore! Oh, how blessed we are when we consider we are nothing without Jesus, and the Lord is awesome and almighty and wondrous and glorious and splendorous and almighty forever and ever, AMEN! Every day, yes every day, may we humble ourselves over and again before the Lord seeking humility as a way of life in and for the glory of Christ! “Oh, magnify the Lord with me, And let us exalt His name together.” Psalm 34:3 TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION The Apartment Search – and Answer “Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10 When my old apartment in New York City became available right when I was seeking housing there for my return for more streets ministry work there, the Spirit of God told me NOT to take it and to WAIT for Him to show me which apartment He wanted me to take. Several weeks later, the Lord told me to take that very same apartment! I was confused! Hadn’t He told me NOT to take it and to WAIT? I could see there would be some wonderful blessings if I took it, but I had obeyed Him, not taken it, and waited. Turns out the Lord had wanted to bless me with the apartment all along, but I had needed to repent because my motives had not been pure. I had wanted to rush back to New York City, find a place as quickly as possible that would be as easy and comfortable as possible, and hurry out of New York City as rapidly as I could. I wanted to get my assignment in New York City done ASAP so I could go somewhere pleasing to my flesh. The Lord led me to repentance for my selfish, prideful, and terrible attitude. As soon as I repented, humbled myself before Him, and desired to love, honor, please, obey, and glorify Him with thanksgiving in my heart, He opened wide the door to New York City, to that apartment, and to all He will lead me to do there in this next season of being on the road for Jesus and ministry. My friend, obedience to Christ is NOT just about the actions we take. It’s also about our HEARTS and MOTIVES and ATTITUDES. God wanted me to go back to New York City and that apartment with the motive not to please and satisfy myself but to LOVE AND GLORIFY HIM and to help build His forever Kingdom of followers! How’s your attitude where Christ is concerned? Need some repentance? Now is the time! Daily, hourly, moment by moment, as often as we need to repent, may we repent! May we purify our hearts and lives for Christ’s sake, oh yes, Lord, yes! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #57 “I will praise You, O Lord, with my whole heart; I will tell of all Your marvelous works.” Psalm 9:1 I love how the psalmist tells the Lord he will praise him with his WHOLE heart. He is not promising to give God a little bit of his attention. Nor just a little corner of his heart. He is speaking of fervent praise, isn’t he? Dedicated praise. Passionate praise. Powerful praise. Joyful praise. Devoted praise. True praise. Genuine praise. Not religious praise. Not just going through the motions. Not just checking something off on his to-do list for the day. He is talking about all out praising the Lord! But that’s not all. He is telling the Lord he will praise Him with his WHOLE heart AND He will tell others of God’s wonderful works! He really is going all out, isn’t he? To thank the Lord directly, and to tell others of God’s glory! He is putting his whole heart in his praise! And he is using words directly to God and words to others about God to PRAISE THE LORD! If ever anyone fell short in the area of praise, I feel it is I. How could I ever praise the Lord enough for His glory and goodness, and how could I ever tell others enough about the glory of the Lord? I can’t, but oh, how I desire to try! Oh, friend, let us praise, praise, praise the Lord! And let us tell the world all about Him! With our whole hearts, let us praise the Lord! Oh, how blessed we are by God almighty! And oh, what a blessing to glorify the Lord with our hearts and mouths! Joyfully, joyfully, may we praise, praise the Lord, AMEN! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL “I spread out my hands to You; My soul longs for You like a thirsty land…” Psalm 143:6 “Yes, God is calling me closer,” a sweet, lovely and gentle, beautiful woman I know communicated with me one day. I had reached out to her with these words: “Do you sense the Lord is leading you back to Himself, and to deepen your trust in Him, to let go of some things, and to make a greater commitment to Him than you’ve ever made?” I had felt led to ask her. What a real, raw, honest, and precious answer she had given me. She sensed God calling her closer! My friend, how many of us I wonder need to get honest like this? To acknowledge the Spirit of God is calling us to Himself? And not merely calling us, but calling us closer – and closer still? Because we have never turned from our sins and received Christ as Lord whereby we have genuinely committed our lives to God and His ways? Or because we were once close to the Lord but have drifted away? Or because we made an initial commitment but never really followed through? Or for any other reason? Intimacy with Jesus isn’t up to the Lord. It’s up to us! He created us to be in His forever presence, and we can only be in His intimate fellowship when we repent and turn to Christ as Lord in the first place. But this is not the finish line. It’s but the beginning. If we desire intimacy with the Lord, we need to be humble, faithful, loyal, dedicated, devoted, consciously committed, honoring, reverent followers of His. We need to draw close and closer to the Lord! Jesus wants us in His forever intimate presence. But when He calls us close, and closer, and closer still, how will we answer? Oh, may we come running into the presence of the Lord and draw ever, ever, forever closer to the Lord! May we hunger and thirst for Jesus and for more of Jesus still, oh, yes, may it be so! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE “I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service.” Romans 12:1 I couldn’t believe my eyes one day when I saw on the ministry’s bank statement that an incredibly loving and generous donation had come in without my knowledge from a beloved friend. Not just any of my numerous beautiful sisters in Christ. But from my friend who at the time was undergoing indescribably grueling medical treatment for a major disease with what appeared to be a really tough prognosis. In the thick of what literally was a life-or-death battle, my sweet friend was choosing to make a great sacrifice and to serve Christ with her donation to help support this ministry for the Lord. Oh, I am quite sure she could have spent the money on some important necessity given her medical condition – or perhaps simply on something to bring her some comfort, some relaxation, some relief, some anything at all for her own self and family. But instead, without saying a word to me, she simply humbled herself and chose to serve Jesus with the money she had donated. What sacrifice are you and I making in our everyday lives to serve the Lord Jesus Christ? Are we serving Jesus daily in our everyday lives? Does our service to Christ involve sacrifice? It shouldn’t, don’t you think? Does it? LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST As I am just weeks away from my return to New York City for another season of streets ministry there, I am sensing from the Lord I have much growing to do in the way of TRUSTING HIM in ALL THINGS at ALL TIMES and that I need to go to a much deeper level of living to LOVE AND GLORIFY HIM NO MATTER THE COST TO MY FLESH! I need greater faith, greater trust, greater love, greater humility, greater sacrifice, greater thanksgiving, greater joy, greater anything and everything that pleases the Lord and brings Him joy and pleasure! Please pray I would love and glorify Jesus like never before! Christ’s blessed precious love to you, lara
TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA Dear friend, Right when I was on the verge of taking a huge step forward in life and ministry at the leading of the Spirit of Christ who lives in and through His followers, I was accosted with a mighty big fiery dart of fear. Okay, that’s not entirely true. Lots of fiery darts. One, then another. Reason after reason of why I shouldn’t go forward following Jesus in this big step for Him. Know what happened? I called on the troops. Most assuredly, the Lord always must come first. But let’s not leave out His followers! I reached out to some of my dear fellow Christ followers and shared. One fellow follower sent me scriptures without even knowing what I was going through. The result? My fear turned to faith as I was reminded by my fellow soldiers to get my eyes back on Jesus, on God’s Word, on going forward following my Lord and Savior. Where are your eyes, friend? Where is your heart? Do you need the same reminder I did? The same reminder I need daily? That we are to LOVE JESUS, to TRUST IN JESUS, to LOOK TO JESUS, to SEEK JESUS, to OBEY JESUS, to FOLLOW JESUS, and to GIVE JESUS THE GLORY? Yes we are! Here’s your reminder, you who are reading this. Make sure your focus is on the Lord and the Bible! If it’s not, turn your focus. TO THE LORD OF LORDS AND KING OF KINGS, FOREVER CHRIST, Amen! Love in Jesus’ name, lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION Homeless Man’s Garden ““Blessed are the poor in spirit, For theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” Mt. 5:3 “Who then is Paul, and who is Apollos, but ministers through whom you believed, as the Lord gave to each one? I planted, Apollos watered, but God gave the increase. So then neither he who plants is anything, nor he who waters, but God who gives the increase. Now he who plants and he who waters are one, and each one will receive his own reward according to his own labor.” 1 Cor. 3:5-8 Okay, so it wasn’t a garden exactly. Well, not a garden at all. But seeds are seeds, aren’t they? And some seeds are more important than others. Like seeds of, from, and for THE LORD JESUS CHRIST! Take, for instance, the seed someone planted shortly before I walked up to a homeless man who was sitting on a New York City sidewalk. The seed? Someone had given him a Bible. And when I asked if I could see the print so I could see how small it was, he handed it to me. I opened it and all I saw was the first scripture above. How perfect. A reminder how many of the homeless population whom I so dearly love are poor in spirit – and in dire need of Christ. Like we all are in need of Him! I gave the homeless man my Gospel tract which includes my personal story and walked off. Know what came to me? The second set of verses above. How one plants. One waters. Who gives the increase? Jesus! Only the Lord could have orchestrated sending someone with a Bible to a homeless man and so shortly afterward sending someone else with a Gospel tract to explain the Gospel message and offer personal testimony. And only the Lord can orchestrate all the seed sowers and water bearers He sends out around the world to spread the Gospel message. And only the Lord can bring people to repentance and give them the promise of everlasting life when they repent and turn their lives over to Him as Lord. The homeless man’s garden? His heart, and his life. Where God sent seed sowers to plant seeds to show the man the way to everlasting life instead of eternal damnation in hell and the lake of fire. Please, friend, go out into the world and sow seeds of the Lord Jesus Christ. Share the Gospel message. Give out Bibles. Give out Gospel tracts. Pray for people. Help people believe in and follow Jesus. Do whatever God gives you to do to help the world to know how to have a forever relationship with Him. Amen! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #56 “By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”” John 13:35 In a world in which there is such a lack of love at times, in which there is such a darkening overall and so very much bad news, in which violence and hatred seem to be at all-time highs, there is a love that will endure forever. The love of God almighty. The love with which He created the world. The love with which He sent His only Son to the cross to die to bear our sin penalty and to be raised from the dead so all who believe in Him as Lord, truly committing their lives to Him, are forgiven and given forever life. The love which we who follow Jesus can be filled with when we are yielded to the Lord in such a way that we literally overflow with it. So that the love of Jesus fills us and pours out of us onto those around us. Oh, such a wondrous love this is, this love of Jesus. Such a love that stands in such very strong contrast to the darkness that fills so much of this world and so many within it. What happens when we truly love one another, with this love that comes from Jesus? The world sees we are disciples of Christ. His children. His followers. Love feels wonderful, doesn’t it? But feeling good is not the primary reason to love. It’s an act of obedience to Christ. And it’s a sign to the world that we are His. What a blessing that the love to which He calls us is the love with which He Himself supplies us. We are not called to muster up this love on our own. But instead to be filled with His Spirit who gives us this love that we might love one another and show the world what it looks like to belong to the Lord forevermore! Oh, may we love the Lord! Oh, let us love one another! Oh, to God be the glory for this splendorous love bestowed upon us by Jesus Lord of all! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL Fighting God’s Goodness ““Do not fear, little flock, for it is your Father’s good pleasure to give you the kingdom.” Luke 12:32 “And we have known and believed the love that God has for us.” 1 John 4:16 “For the Lord God is a sun and shield; The Lord will give grace and glory; No good thing will He withhold From those who walk uprightly.” Psalm 84:11 “You need to stop fighting God’s goodness,” a loved one essentially told me one night over the telephone. He knew by the Spirit of God exactly what I needed to hear. He had no idea that in the past 24 hours I had spent time with the Lord realizing how I had been fighting His goodness for a very long time. How so? I had finally come to truly believe He loves me, but I didn’t really believe He wanted to bless me. Too much sin for too long, too much falling no matter how much I tried not to, coupled with some really hard stuff from the past. How could God want to bless someone like me? Friend, we need to believe God’s love for us. We also need to believe His desire to bless us. And we need to receive His love and kindness and goodness rather than turn it away. The best blessing of all? To be in His intimate fellowship forever through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord with our lives genuinely committed to God and His ways. To be His forevermore. Oh, and His blessings go on and on – and on! Oh, to believe His mighty love for us! To believe His forgiveness of us when we turn from our sins and turn to Him! To believe He wants to shower His goodness upon us! To believe He wants to bestow His blessings on us! To not turn Him away, but to open our heart and hands and to fully receive all He is and all He has for us, all to the glory of God almighty in Christ, AMEN! If you’ve been fighting His goodness, please join me in changing your heart. Open your heart to the fullness of Christ and all He has for you in this life – and forevermore, Hallelujah! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE This is What I’m Good At “But we have this treasure in earthen vessels, that the excellence of the power may be of God and not of us.” 2 Cor. 4:7 You may be good at something, but that doesn’t necessarily mean that’s what God wants you to use or do to serve Him. Maybe it is. Maybe it isn’t. It’s up to the Lord. Serving Jesus isn’t about figuring out what we’re good at and going out and doing it. It’s about humbling ourselves before God almighty in heaven, seeking His face, reading His Bible, waiting on Him, hearing Him, and faithfully reverently obeying Him. Whether He chooses to use something we’re good at – or not. See the words “earthen vessels” above? What’s the point of God using earthen vessels? So we pat ourselves on the back and get the glory from the world which watches us? No! It’s so GOD GETS THE GLORY for what JESUS DOES IN AND THROUGH US! Please don’t choose how to serve God in your everyday life based on what you’re good at. Seek Jesus and let His Spirit lead the way. Then remember whatever God calls you to do, don’t steal the glory from the Lord. Give it all where the glory is due. To Christ Jesus forevermore, AMEN! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST I just a few minutes ago sent out the latest ministry update & prayer request separately because it’s a BIG one, but thought I’d include it here just in case you miss it. So here it is…! Not too long ago I was in the Florida Panhandle when I felt like a holy hand was reaching down from heaven lovingly albeit firmly leading me back to another season of streets ministry in New York City. After over two years on the road for Jesus full-time to do streets ministry and write Gospel tracts, devotionals, and books with my little crew of special needs service ministry dogs, I have learned numerous lessons – including this one. Jesus Christ is Lord, and when He says go, no matter my personal dreams and desires, I need to humbly, lovingly, reverently, thankfully go where He is sending me to bring love, honor, praise, and glory to His name as I fulfill my life’s calling to help people find and forever follow the Lord Jesus Christ. Since I’ve been on the road, the Lord has sent me to Virginia, New Jersey, New York City, South Carolina, North Carolina, South Carolina, the Florida Panhandle, Virginia for a night, the Appalachian region of West Virginia, New Jersey, and in just weeks back to New York City! Imagine my surprise when I asked the Lord if He might send me to Bethany Beach, Delaware, to do streets ministry there this summer when He informed me He was leading me back to New York City. A place after 6 months of ministry there last year I thought – and wanted – to never return! So challenging, so expensive, so noisy, so dirty, so smelly, so uncomfortable, so high energy, so not the safest place to say the least! New York City? Again, Lord? Yes! How impossible it would be to find housing for me and the special needs doggies in the right location for ministry with no steps, preferably ground floor and no elevator, as affordably as possible given the specific area the Lord was sending me, then start from scratch again with furniture, household items, etc. What an opportunity for the Lord to show forth His sovereignty, power, love, mercy, grace, and magnificence. And that’s exactly what He did! Only the Lord could have orchestrated what transpired in about 6 weeks’ time. The Lord opened up my old apartment from a year ago that is perfect for the special needs doggies shortly after I arrived in New Jersey to search for housing and prepare for the big return, 1.5 blocks from one of my primary areas of streets ministry, decreased the costs dramatically from a year ago in multiple ways, and then blessed me with the current tenant lovingly graciously donating all her furniture! May I be honest with you? The last place in the world I would have chosen to be going right now is back to New York City let alone to have been in a New Jersey hotel for the past month. This goes 100% against the wishes, wants, and ways of my flesh. There is nothing in my flesh that wants to do this. BUT I LOVE THE LORD JESUS CHRIST MORE THAN ANYTHING AND ANYONE IN THE UNIVERSE, I AM 100% DEVOTED TO HIM, I LIVE AND BREATHE TO LOVE AND GLORIFY GOD FOREVER, AND I DESIRE TO FULFILL MY PURPOSE ON THIS EARTH TO LOVE AND WORSHIP GOD FOREVERMORE AND TO HELP PEOPLE TO FIND AND FOREVER FOLLOW THE LORD JESUS CHRIST! God willing, I will make the big return to my New York City apartment in a few weeks. I would be blessed beyond measure if you would please pray for me, the ministry, the special needs doggies, the countless people worldwide the Lord is reaching through the ministry. Love & blessings to you!
Not too long ago I was in the Florida Panhandle when I felt like a holy hand was reaching down from heaven lovingly albeit firmly leading me back to another season of streets ministry in New York City. After over two years on the road for Jesus full-time to do streets ministry and write Gospel tracts, devotionals, and books with my little crew of special needs service ministry dogs, I have learned numerous lessons – including this one. Jesus Christ is Lord, and when He says go, no matter my personal dreams and desires, I need to humbly, lovingly, reverently, thankfully go where He is sending me to bring love, honor, praise, and glory to His name as I fulfill my life’s calling to help people find and forever follow the Lord Jesus Christ. Since I’ve been on the road, the Lord has sent me to Virginia, New Jersey, New York City, South Carolina, North Carolina, South Carolina, the Florida Panhandle, Virginia for a night, the Appalachian region of West Virginia, New Jersey, and in just weeks back to New York City! Imagine my surprise when I asked the Lord if He might send me to Bethany Beach, Delaware, to do streets ministry there this summer when He informed me He was leading me back to New York City. A place after 6 months of ministry there last year I thought – and wanted – to never return! So challenging, so expensive, so noisy, so dirty, so smelly, so uncomfortable, so high energy, so not the safest place to say the least! New York City? Again, Lord? Yes! How impossible it would be to find housing for me and the special needs doggies in the right location for ministry with no steps, preferably ground floor and no elevator, as affordably as possible given the specific area the Lord was sending me, then start from scratch again with furniture, household items, etc. What an opportunity for the Lord to show forth His sovereignty, power, love, mercy, grace, and magnificence. And that’s exactly what He did! Only the Lord could have orchestrated what transpired in about 6 weeks’ time. The Lord opened up my old apartment from a year ago that is perfect for the special needs doggies shortly after I arrived in New Jersey to search for housing and prepare for the big return, 1.5 blocks from one of my primary areas of streets ministry, decreased the costs dramatically from a year ago in multiple ways, and then blessed me with the current tenant lovingly graciously donating all her furniture! May I be honest with you? The last place in the world I would have chosen to be going right now is back to New York City let alone to have been in a New Jersey hotel for the past month. This goes 100% against the wishes, wants, and ways of my flesh. There is nothing in my flesh that wants to do this. BUT I LOVE THE LORD JESUS CHRIST MORE THAN ANYTHING AND ANYONE IN THE UNIVERSE, I AM 100% DEVOTED TO HIM, I LIVE AND BREATHE TO LOVE AND GLORIFY GOD FOREVER, AND I DESIRE TO FULFILL MY PURPOSE ON THIS EARTH TO LOVE AND WORSHIP GOD FOREVERMORE AND TO HELP PEOPLE TO FIND AND FOREVER FOLLOW THE LORD JESUS CHRIST! God willing, I will make the big return to my New York City apartment in a few weeks. I would be blessed beyond measure if you would please pray for me, the ministry, the special needs doggies, the countless people worldwide the Lord is reaching through the ministry. Love & blessings to you!
Monday, June 10, 2019 TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA Dear friend, I’ve been thinking about blessings, how I don’t deserve any because I fall so very far short of God’s glory, and how He blesses me each and every day anyway.We are all sinners bound for hell and the lake of fire in forever torment unless we turn from our sins and believe in Christ as Lord who died to pay our sin penalty and was raised from the dead whereby we truly commit our lives to God and His ways. God in His indescribably amazing love and mercy forgives us when we put our trust in Christ as Lord and promises us forever life with Him. This salvation is God’s greatest blessing to us because it enables us to be in His forever fellowship, and yet it is only the first of endless blessings He bestows up on us every day of our lives and forever. None of us deserves His love and eternal life with Him, but oh how immeasurably wonderful the Lord is to us in giving us forever with Himself – and in giving us day by day blessing after blessing. Are you thankful daily? Regularly? Continually? I have such a long way to go and grow in feeling and expressing my thanksgiving to Jesus for His blessings. Let us remember day by day to thank the Lord, to thank the Lord, oh, yes, let us thank the Lord! Oh, how awesome is our Lord! Love in Jesus’ name, lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION The Best Shower of All “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 ““Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you cleanse the outside of the cup and dish, but inside they are full of extortion and self-indulgence. Blind Pharisee, first cleanse the inside of the cup and dish, that the outside of them may be clean also.” Mt. 23:25-26 “I’d like to take you out,” I told paralyzed ministry doggy Mr. Simeon. “But I feel dirty, and I’d like to be cleansed.” In plain English, I needed a shower! I wanted to be fresh and clean before taking him on a wheelchair walk. Nothing like a good shower to clean up before going forward in life. But what about our hearts and lives? Shouldn’t we care even more about scrubbing clean our thoughts, words, and actions? So we’re clean before God? So we’re clean before the world? Before we walk further down the pathway of our lives with the Lord? And with others? So we’re fresh and clean? Jesus gave a really stern warning to the Pharisees for being so focused on their outward appearances and not caring about the condition of their hearts and lives. How quick we are to take a shower to feel clean and look good. What matters most? That we’re clean before the Lord. But how? We need to come before Him regularly seeking and receiving His forgiveness so we’re fresh and clean to walk forth! Got some cleaning up to do? The greatest shower of all? God’s love, grace, and mercy paid for by the blood Jesus Christ shed on the cross to pay our sin penalty! How do we take this shower? Turning from our sins and turning to Christ as Lord! Seeking God’s forgiveness through Jesus and receiving it! Oh, how good and blessed and marvelous is our Lord as He showers us with mercy! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #55 “Then He spoke a parable to them, that men always ought to pray and not lose heart, saying: “There was in a certain city a judge who did not fear God nor regard man. Now there was a widow in that city; and she came to him, saying, ‘Get justice for me from my adversary.’ And he would not for a while; but afterward he said within himself, ‘Though I do not fear God nor regard man, yet because this widow troubles me I will avenge her, lest by her continual coming she weary me.’ ” Then the Lord said, “Hear what the unjust judge said. And shall God not avenge His own elect who cry out day and night to Him, though He bears long with them? I tell you that He will avenge them speedily. Nevertheless, when the Son of Man comes, will He really find faith on the earth?”” Luke 18:1-8 I love, love, love to quote, “men always out to pray and not lose heart,…” Oh, how I love this story and the encouragement I find in it to persevere in praying to the Lord no matter what things look and feel like and seem. But somehow no matter how many times I have come back to these verses, I so very much missed the power in the last verse. Please focus on these words with me. “…will He really find faith on the earth?” Let’s go further and focus on you and me. Do we have such faith in God that we keep praying according to His will no matter how impossible something might seem? It takes really strong faith to endure in prayer with the seemingly impossible, doesn’t it? God wants us to pray in line with His will, and He answers prayers the way He desires according to His plan for His glory. So we need to do our very best to pray what we believe He wants us to pray. In the meantime, will we stick with praying to the Lord, to crying out to Him, when it looks like He will never answer? Oh, how we must be filled with faith! And press on in praying! Is there a blessing in this? Yes! In fact, there are at least a few. God hears our cries, He gives us the strength to keep praying, He answers with what He knows is best, He wants us to pray to Him, we can draw closer to Him in praying to Him, and our faith can grow as we continue in prayer. And He teaches and grows us as we continue to pray such as in the areas of patience, perseverance, trust, dependence, and in intimacy with Him as we who follow Jesus come into His throne room in prayer! Praying? Pray on! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL The Lonely Life “My soul, wait silently for God alone, For my expectation is from Him. He only is my rock and my salvation; He is my defense; I shall not be moved. In God is my salvation and my glory; The rock of my strength, And my refuge, is in God.” Psalm 62:5-7 Some people love to be on their own. Some people love people. Some fall somewhere in between. I’m pretty much at an extreme. I absolutely LOVE people. This definitely is a huge help in my calling as an evangelist because I LOVE talking to people – more than anything about the Lord Jesus Christ! But on the other hand, the Lord has called me to a life of much more solitude than I would have chosen. He did not call me to a life filled with marriage, children, grandchildren, family of origin. Nor did He call me to a life filled with a huge social life and constant entertainment and fellowship shared with friends. When I’m not out on the streets ministering to people or on the telephone or Internet sharing with people about Jesus, when I’m not wherever He sends me talking to people about Jesus and encouraging them to believe in and follow Him, much if not most of the time I’m on my own with my special needs doggies praying, seeking God, listening to Him, studying the Bible, and/or writing about Jesus and doing my ministry work. Do I love my work? Oh my gosh, indescribably much – because of my endless ever-growing love for Jesus and for people. But what about the solitude? Oh, it’s hard! Sometimes it’s so very hard! But if you want to know the truth, I don’t live a lonely life. I am never lonely, in fact. Restless, yes. Bored sometimes, yes. Desiring people to fellowship with at times, sure. But I am never, ever lonely. Because I have and experience the ever presence of the Lord God almighty. And He is my Lord, my King, my Savior, my redeemer, my healer, my protector, my provider, my restorer, my counselor, my comforter, my helper, my advocate, my master, my guide, my teacher, my very best friend! Following Jesus is not about religious activities. In fact, many who are “religious” by following religious traditions may not even end up in heaven. For following Jesus is about believing in Him as Lord, entrusting our lives to God and His ways, being conformed to His image, and living a life devoted to Jesus and experiencing His fellowship day by day – and forever. Where do you stand with Jesus, friend? Whether you have a life packed with people, or whether you’re called to more solitude as I am, may your greatest love, greatest desire, greatest friend, may your Lord, may your God, be Jesus the Christ, forevermore! AMEN! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE Not God “Are you me?” the Spirit of God said to me as He interrupted my thoughts. He wasn’t done yet. “Then don’t try to be,” He finished. That’s all He had to say. Immediately I knew the problem. I had been coming up with a plan to try to fix someone who had been broken for years. Did I pray? No. Did I seek God with my plan? No. Did I check it to see if it lined up with the Bible? No. Did I involve the Lord at all? No. I had gone off in the flesh and left the Lord in the wayside. But the Lord in His beautiful mercy and awesome love stopped me. He didn’t simply tell me my plan was bad and wrong. He reminded me HE IS LORD! And he reminded me I AM NOT! I had pridefully exalted myself as though I were the Lord and knew what was best. Sweetly and swiftly, albeit sternly and emphatically, the Lord led me to repentance. Nothing wrong with thinking about how to help someone or to do anything else for that matter. But when we exalt ourselves above the Lord, and leave Him entirely out of the picture, and move the Bible out of the way, we are SINNING AGAINST GOD and WE MUST REPENT! Have some repenting to do? I sure did. And I do daily. Thanking the Lord for His lovingkindness that leads me to repentance, and for His grace and mercy that sets me free when I acknowledge my wrong and turn back to Him! We are called to serve the Lord and others, but to do so with humble hearts remembering to receive wisdom, strength, power, and direction from God and remembering to give Him the glory! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST Getting closer to sharing some big, exciting news with you! Can’t wait. Can you? I’ll give you a sneak peek by sharing with you this. The big news didn’t come until the Lord led me to repentance and showed me I needed to purify my heart and change my attitude. Then came something big and beautiful – for His name’s sake! Yes, for HIS GLORY! Please pray for me and this ministry that GOD WOULD BE GLORIFIED in and through me and the ministry day in and day out. Be blessed, friend! Enjoy His blessings, yes, but most importantly, remember to live to love and glorify God and to bring Him praise, honor, and, yes, GLORY! Amen! In His awesome forever love, Lara
Saturday, June 8, 2019 TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA Dear friend, I’m a clinger. A clutch-er. A cleave-r. A hold-on-to-it person. A hold-on-to-that-person woman. Or to those-people woman.”You don’t need to understand,” the Spirit of Christ spoke to my heart in the middle of the night. “Go.” Now wait a second, Lord. Go somewhere without understanding? That didn’t make sense? That would not likely be altogether easy? Without knowing the details in advance? Without seeing how things would turn out ahead of time? When God tells us to go somewhere, or to someone, or to something, or all of the above, some of us clutch on to where we already are. Or to whom we’re already holding onto. Or to anything or anyone old or new to avoid moving forward. Without knowing everything up front. Without feeling comfortable to begin with. Without understanding, we’re just not going to budge, are we? Following Jesus, friend, involves going when God says go. Simply because He is God and says so. We need to let go of where we are, and we need to cling, clutch, cleave, and hold on to Jesus and the Bible. And off we go. Following the Lord. Is God speaking to your heart right now? Here are some words of encouragement straight from God’s Word: “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.” Proverbs 3:5-6 Love in Christ, Lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION Believers on the Bus: Hallelujah! “For whoever is ashamed of Me and My words, of him the Son of Man will be ashamed when He comes in His own glory, and in His Father’s, and of the holy angels.” Luke 9:26 “But whoever denies Me before men, him I will also deny before My Father who is in heaven.” Mt. 10:33 “Oh, magnify the Lord with me, And let us exalt His name together.” Psalm 34:3 I was about to climb onto the big bus from New Jersey to New York City when the man with whom I had been chatting shared with me a bit of his testimony. As I got on the bus and said the word, “testimony,” the bus driver heard and made a comment. She knew we were talking about the Lord. As soon as the driver and I exchanged a few words concerning the Lord, someone already seated made a comment related to the Lord. Then another person chimed in. Friend, on a day I was feeling pretty discouraged, I became part of what in just minutes was 6 different strangers talking to each other about the Lord. To top it all off, one of the women when I encouraged her starting singing a praise song aloud on the bus! The bus was filled with many other people. But nothing stood out to me more than how talking about the Lord spread like a little wildfire. Know what’s sad? There are believers in Jesus around the world, but we’re living in a time so many people are too afraid, too ashamed, too self-occupied, too prideful, too distracted, etc. to talk aloud in public about the Lord Jesus Christ. The lady who sang aloud sang a song called, “My God is Awesome.” Oh, yes He is! He is indeed! So why don’t more of us who believe in Him proclaim Him and praise Him aloud in the world around us no matter who is listening and no matter how they might respond? Please consider the words above. Pretty powerful, huh? Let’s take heed. Let’s proclaim the name of the Lord whenever the Lord leads us to do so! Wherever! With whomever! Even on a big bus filled with strangers! Yes! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #54 “…Blessed are all those who put their trust in Him.” Psalm 2:12 Who is blessed? Those who trust Jesus! Oh, sure, it’s easy to say, “Well, sure, I believe in Jesus. I know He’s Lord.” It’s easy to say, “Well, yeah, I’m a Christian.” It’s easy to say, “Oh, yes, I trust the Lord.” But seriously, do we? Do we truly trust the Lord? In all things? All the time? We’re in a trust marathon, aren’t we? It’s not a quick sprint across the room or street. It’s a long-distance, over-the-course-of-our-lives distance race. And it’s not to be a rush to get to the finish line. It’s to be a journey following the Lord Jesus Christ. And putting – yes, putting – our trust in Him day by day. Even breath by breath. We trust the Lord to give us our next breath, don’t we? But what about everything else? I’m learning, friend, I’m learning. To go the distance when it comes to trusting God. He is worthy of ALL our trust ALL the time, but we as humans fall so very far short, don’t we? Yet God in His mercy helps us followers along the course of our lives, teaching us to trust Him, leading us to live by faith, forgiving us when we fall and repent, strengthening us when we need strengthening and need help carrying on. It is indeed a blessing when we PUT our trust in the Lord. May this be a reminder for you and I to do just that. To PUT our trust in Him. Oh, and how blessed we are when we do! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL Hearing Jesus “My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.” John 10:27 I hear God a lot. A whole lot. Daily in fact. Sometimes lots in a day. And night. Even the middle of the night. The Spirit of God who lives inside His followers speaks to my heart so very often. Always in line with the Bible because God only and always speaks in line with His Word. Hearing God speak to me as He lovingly teaches me, guides me, loves me, forgives me, comforts me, encourages me, convicts me, leads me to repentance, corrects me, and changes me, has become as natural to me as breathing. Hearing God is one of the greatest blessings of having a deeply personal, ever-growing relationship with Jesus. Why do I hear from the Lord often? Because I’m special? No! Friend, God speaks to His people. You may be surprised by how many people with whom I interact don’t believe God speaks to His children. The Bible makes clear from beginning to end that the Lord has a voice and speaks. Who hears Him? Those who listen. He speaks directly from the Bible to us, and He speaks by His Spirit to our hearts individually as He leads us through our lives. We need to take the time to listen. We need to believe He speaks to us so we do listen. And we need to want to hear Him. Is it possible some of us are afraid to listen to the Lord speaking to us individually because we’re afraid of what He might say, of what He might call us to do, of how He might chasten us, of how He might instruct us, of how He might change us, even afraid perhaps of the strength and beauty of His immeasurable love for us and His desire for us to have intimacy with Him as Lord? An intimate relationship develops over time. It takes love, devotion, commitment, time together, seeking, hearing, giving, receiving, sharing, growing, etc. Spend time with Jesus daily. Pray. Read the Bible. Seek God. Listen. Hear. Obey. Grow. In Christ. Grow closer to Christ. Hear God speak to you in and through and in line with His Word. Hear God, yes! If you’re one of God’s sheep, one of Christ’s followers, then you have the ability to hear from God and God has the desire for you to seek Him, to hear Him, and, yes, to obey Him! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE The Man in My Bathroom When I dropped the cap to a mini-shampoo down the hotel room sink, I wished I could have just plucked it right out. But all my attempts failed, and I had to ask a young maintenance man for help. That’s how he and I ended up standing together in my the bathroom as he tried over and again to get the cap out while I in typical fashion talked on and on. Next thing I knew, as I so desperately love to do, I was talking to him about the Lord Jesus Christ. He said he was a believer, but it became quickly obvious he was as I had once been. A believer but not a follower. He didn’t have a committed relationship with Jesus. May have prayed a little, but didn’t read the Bible. Didn’t assemble with other believers in Christ for the glory of God. Didn’t actively serve the Lord. Etc. So passionately, vehemently, lovingly, in the bathroom with this man, yes, I encouraged him to make a rock solid commitment to Christ not only as Savior but as Lord of his life! Please don’t restrict serving Jesus in any way. Regardless of time, circumstances, details, location, the person or people, how you’re feeling, what you’re thinking, how someone may respond, regardless of anything at all, please be ready at all times to serve the Lord in whatever way He desires most especially in telling the world how to find and forever follow Him. That young man for the rest of his life will probably never forget how some middle-aged woman talked to him about Jesus in a hotel bathroom as her special needs doggies looked on. Serve Jesus, friend, in your everyday life. For the glory of Christ, AMEN! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST “Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” Mt. 6:34 Wouldn’t you think by now given how long I’ve believed in the Lord Jesus Christ and that my life’s calling is full-time ministry for Christ that I would never worry or at the very least not worry often? Sad to say, the more I follow Jesus, and the more the Lord calls me to live by faith and to do big and hard and uncomfortable and exceedingly challenging things for Him, the more I seem to find myself worrying! Though it’s wrong to worry, and I need to repent of it and place my trust in the Lord moment by moment, there is a blessing in my tendency to worry. The blessing of constantly seeing my weakness and God’s strength is having a constant opportunity to learn to draw close and closer to God and to consciously put my trust in God. As the Lord continues to grow me and to grow this ministry for Him, I need to do a much better job of turning to Jesus and trusting in Him rather than getting swallowed up in worry. Please pray for the Lord to strengthen my faith, and that I would be pleasing to Him in all ways – trust included! And please pray for a huge increase in His provision for myself and this ministry as He so lovingly, graciously, mercifully increases the work and fruit of this ministry for HIM!
TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA Dear friend, Tend to take on loads of responsibilities? Find yourself overloaded and overwhelmed? Afraid to let something go? Worried how others will respond when you say no? Feel like you’re the only one who can handle whatever you sense maybe you should let go?First, SEEK THE LORD. Is it HIS WILL that you’re doing what you’re doing? Or is there something He’s telling you to let go? Something you took on He never wanted you to take on? Or something He wanted you to take on but you wouldn’t let go when He wanted you to let go and move on? Second, watch out for PRIDE which God hates. We’re prideful when we think we’re the only ones who can do something, that we’re responsible for everything and everyone, that we’re the very best at something, that nobody else can handle what we’re doing, that the world will fall apart if we let a responsibility go, etc. If you’re struggling with pride, repent before God. Humble yourself before Him. Third, watch out for the FEAR OF MAN. We need to say NO to others when God wants us to say NO instead of saying yes because we’re afraid of what someone will say, think, or do if we say NO. We’re to FEAR GOD not man. We’re to seek and obey God no matter how people react to us. If you’re fearing man, repent before God. FEAR GOD instead. Feeling overloaded? Overwhelmed? Seek the Lord. Humble yourself. Fear God. Obey the Lord. For the glory of God! Love in Christ, Lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION I Don’t Want to Do This! “I have been crucified with Christ; it is no longer I who live, but Christ lives in me; and the life which I now live in the flesh I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave Himself for me.” Galatians 2:20 “I’m about to do something I really don’t want to do,” I thought. I was on the verge of a really big commitment totally opposed to what my flesh wanted to do. I have free will. Why go against my desire? Because I don’t live for me anymore. I live for Jesus. When my desire goes against God’s desire, I need to submit to God because I belong to Jesus now. No matter the cost to my flesh. Christ’s followers need to be willing to forsake all for Him. Yes, all. Anything He asks us to give up, to give up. Anything He wants us to do, we must be willing to do. We are to die to self. We are to live for Jesus. The one who died on the cross and was raised from the dead so we could turn from our sins and believe in and follow Him as Lord and be with Him forevermore! Feel like you don’t want to do something God wants you to do? Do it. Feel like hanging onto something He wants you to let go. Let it go. Die to self, friend. Live for Jesus. Forevermore! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #53 “Oh, that men would give thanks to the Lord for His goodness, And for His wonderful works to the children of men!” Psalm 107:8 Three times in Psalm 107 the psalmist repeats the words from above. What a message! That we should “give thanks” to the Lord for what? “His goodness”. And? “His wonderful works”. Giving thanks is an action, isn’t it? It’s more than simply feeling and being thankful, don’t you think? It’s an EXPRESSION of our thankfulness to the Lord. Let us meditate on God’s goodness and wonderful works, yes. But let’s not stop there. Let’s express our thanksgiving to Him – daily! Oh, we are so very indescribably blessed by God almighty right down to the very breath we are drawing right this moment. May we think about His goodness and wonderful works, yes! And may we tell Him over and again, for the rest of our lives, and forever, how thankful, so thankful, yes, so very thankful, we are to Him, oh yes! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL When You Struggle “And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.” Col. 1:18 “For in the time of trouble He shall hide me in His pavilion; In the secret place of His tabernacle He shall hide me; He shall set me high upon a rock.” Psalm 27:5 When you struggle, is the Lord way off in the background while you go running to the people you love and trust who encourage and comfort and help and support you? Is that special person or those people the ones you rush off to in times of struggle so you can cling to them? Friend, the Lord should be preeminent – NUMBER ONE – in our hearts and lives. And in our struggles, sure, we should reach out to people as God leads us. But the one to whom we must cleave and cling more than anyone on this planet earth is the Lord Jesus Christ. Struggling? Hold onto the Lord and to the Bible for dear life. Reach out to people as He leads you, but don’t leave the Lord in the background. May He be at the very forefront of your heart and life. Day by day. And for always! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE God Sees Our Hearts “But the Lord said to Samuel, “Do not look at his appearance or at his physical stature, because I have refused him. For the Lord does not see as man sees; for man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.” 1 Sam. 16:7God sees our hearts, friend, and He knows our motives when we serve Him. May our motives be pure and honorable.Does it please Jesus when we serve the Lord out of religious duty, to get people to pat us on the back, to prove ourselves, to feel like we’ve done our good deeds, to try to earn God’s love which is impossible anyway, to justify why right after we serve God we should run off and enjoy our fun and entertainment, so we can puff ourselves up with pride, etc.? Or does it honor God to serve Him out of hearts filled with love, adoration, praise, thanksgiving, worship, and a yearning and fervent desire to bring Him joy, pleasure, and glory? When we find ourselves serving Jesus with the wrong heart, may we purge from ourselves what is wrong and serve the Lord with the right heart. May our hearts and lives be pleasing, honoring, and glorifying to the Lord! Day by day, yes, hour by hour, indeed, moment by moment, absolutely, and for eternity, yes! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST Please pray as the Lord leads you. As blessed, humbled, excited, and privileged as I am to love and worship God forever and to help people find and forever follow Jesus as my life’s calling, I have found myself weary quite a bit for some time now. I will not quit. I love Jesus too much to stop chasing after Him. I love people too much to stop telling the world about Jesus. But I most assuredly could use your prayers. The devil would love to get me to quit. My flesh would love to run far away to somewhere easy, cheap, comfortable, and secure. I love Jesus more than anything and anyone. I will not quit. I live for Him. Now. This very hour. And forevermore. I am HIS. And I will persevere in the strength of Christ for the glory of Christ, yes I will! Please pray, pray, and keep on praying as the Lord so leads you! Thank you! I’m excited to share a big praise report and update with you soon…!
TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA “And be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you.” Ephesians 4:32 Dear friend, Years ago the Lord used some very challenging dog rescue work involving a dog dumped at a gas station who was then hit by two cars on the same day and refused to be rescued for 6 weeks to tell me two things. First, to not give up on the dog. And, as I worked on rescuing the dog, He told me not to give up on a human loved one. I was exceedingly exasperated in trying to help the dog who proved so incredibly difficult and fought to no end not to receive help. I was even more exasperated about a loved one whose struggles had taken a terrible toll on him, others, and most assuredly myself! Talk about someone who didn’t want to surrender to the Lord and to receive God’s help let alone mine! The dog Gracie has been with me for years now, and the human loved one and I today by God’s grace alone have an amazing love for one another despite the fact my loved one continues in his extreme struggles. But the Lord has done such a mighty work in me that the exasperation and wanting to give up on my loved one has turned instead into a godly love, mercy, and grace. God has taught me to persevere with my loved one and to pray for and encourage him. Thinking of giving up on someone whose struggles and behavior are exasperating to you? Whose lifestyle is taking a terrible toll on you? Seek the Lord, seek His will, seek His strength, seek His love, grace, and mercy, and obey God however He may lead you. Love in Jesus’ name, lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION The Lady in the Trash Can ““Then the righteous will answer Him, saying, ‘Lord, when did we see You hungry and feed You, or thirsty and give You drink? When did we see You a stranger and take You in, or naked and clothe You? Or when did we see You sick, or in prison, and come to You?’ And the King will answer and say to them, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, inasmuch as you did it to one of the least of these My brethren, you did it to Me.’” Mt. 25:37-40 The senior lady wasn’t in the trash can, well, not really anyway. But let’s just say she was leaned pretty far into it. Far enough to do some serious picking. She was on a mission, you see. To find a good square meal. Or any meal at all. Crumbs probably would have been good enough. Some of us complain when the waiter at a restaurant brings us a meal we don’t feel is tasty enough. The lady I saw scrounging through the trash on a New York City sidewalk could have cared less about how things tasted. I hadn’t planned to do anything. Statistics say there are about 70,000 homeless people in New York City, and my calling above all else is to share the Gospel and help people find and follow Jesus. But I also do my best to submit to God however He leads me. And this time around, the Lord turned me around on the sidewalk, sent me to the woman, and led me to give her a couple of snack bars, a Gospel tract, a hug, and an “I love you.” With no exaggeration, I saw more excitement and joy in that woman’s countenance than you could possibly imagine. She acted like those two snack bars were equivalent to winning the world’s biggest lottery. She spoke a different language, but knew enough English to tell me, “THANK YOU! THANK YOU!” My answer was simple. I pointed upward. And I told her to THANK JESUS! I walked away with two messages for you bundled into one. First, let us always be thankful to the Lord for His endless blessings and to work hard not to take for granted the things that so many around this world have such great need of – like food that doesn’t come out of the trash. Second, let’s share with others the blessings God gives us – most importantly the Gospel message that repentance and faith in Christ as Lord with our lives truly turned over to Him is the only way to a forever relationship with God! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #52 “if My people who are called by My name will humble themselves, and pray and seek My face, and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin and heal their land.” 2 Chron. 7:14 How often is this Bible verse quoted? Again and again – and again. It is a well- known verse, isn’t it? And oh, what an incredible, incredible blessing that the Lord will forgive us! That He will heal our land! But my friend, is it possible especially when it comes to well-quoted scriptures that we jump quickly to the blessing and skip over the part that comes before? Please read this verse carefully, friend. We must do what? HUMBLE OURSELVES? And? PRAY. And? SEEK GOD’S FACE. And? TURN FROM OUR WICKED WAYS. Then what? THEN God will hear us and answer! Humility, prayer, seeking God, and TURNING FROM OUR SINS. Blessing? Oh, what a blessing it is to be forgiven by the Lord! As individuals, and as whole nations which has happened before! But let us not run so fast for the blessing that we miss our instructions. Obedience is fundamental. And it all begins with humbling ourselves before the Lord God almighty! THANK YOU FATHER for your amazing undeserved forgiveness! Help us, help this world, help me, help the person reading this, help us all to humble ourselves before you, to pray, to seek you, your very presence, and to turn from our sins! Help us to receive your forgiveness, oh Lord, and THANK YOU JESUS! AMEN! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.” John 14:6 I was walking paralyzed doggy Mr. Simeon on a pathway by a New Jersey river near where I am staying in a hotel as I seek housing in New York City to return there for my streets ministry work when I noticed an elderly woman from India dressed in her native clothes wanting for me to come sit beside her. She motioned with her hand by patting it on the bench to show me she wanted me to spend some time with her. She was desperate for company. I pulled up Mr. Simeon’s wheelchair and sat down beside her. I knew she couldn’t understand a word I spoke. But I knew Jesus knows her language. And I sensed like so many around this world that her god is not the one true God the Lord Jesus Christ. What would I do? How would I speak to her? The Lord showed me what to do. I used hand motions to ask if I could pray for her. She assented. I placed my hand on her and prayed God would bring her into His Kingdom through faith in the Lord Jesus Christ. Then we sat and kept each other company for a little while. I drew her a picture of a heart, gave it to her, used hand signals to ask if I could hug her, then hugged her and told her I LOVE YOU. When I walked away, I saw a deep, deep sadness come over her. When I passed by her a little later, she was still there. Again, I sat. Again, I loved her. This time, though I knew she couldn’t understand my human words, I spoke to her aloud about Jesus. And I know He heard me. And I trust Him to answer my prayer. All that lonely woman wanted was a friend to sit beside her. Little did she know she needed a forever friend, forever Savior, forever Lord, Jesus Christ. So she got a friend, a paralyzed dog, a bit of company, a picture of a heart, heard the name JESUS, and was prayed for in order to spend eternity with God. While we sat together the first time, two women and a small child came up to us. Turns out one of the women practiced a false religion. I lovingly warned her to be careful. We chatted a bit as the woman from India watched us speak without understanding. The woman from India patted the bench to invite the others to sit with her. They would not. They wanted to walk. Eventually, we all went our separate ways. Do you realize, my friend, throughout our lives, we are continually crossing paths with people we may or may not see again. God created each and every one of them. And the only way any of us will spend forever with God instead of forever in hell and the lake of fire is by receiving Jesus as Lord. By turning from our sins and believing He died on the cross to pay our sin penalty and was raised from the dead. By truly surrendering our lives to God and His ways. By living for Jesus. Friend, please as you go through your life day in and day out don’t miss your opportunities. That woman wanted company and fellowship because she clearly felt alone. My company was only for minutes. What we all need is the forever intimate fellowship of THE LORD JESUS CHRIST. May we surrender our lives to Him, and may we help others to do the same. Loving God. Loving them. Telling the world about Jesus. The only way to everlasting life. Jesus! Jesus! Jesus! AMEN! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE By this all will know that you are My disciples, if you have love for one another.”” John 13:35 The Lord used a beautiful sister in Christ to love, encourage, and pray for me one night. She sacrificed her time after a long work day. When a woman who knows of my ministry called shortly afterward for help, I really wanted to get the dogs ready for bed and go to sleep instead. But the Spirit of God brought conviction I needed to deny self, make the sacrifice, and love, encourage, and pray for the woman. When she thanked me, my answer was simple and direct. I could take no glory. ALL THE GLORY belonged to Jesus. My friend who helped me was merely being God’s vessel. I was merely doing the same with the woman who called me. When we make a sacrifice for others, no matter how big or little the sacrifice, the glory does not belong to us. THE GLORY BELONGS TO THE LORD! Three sisters in Christ. Three hearts. Three telephones. Two calls. One night. A little bit of sacrifice. ONE GLORIOUS GOD. Please be a vessel for the love of Christ for the glory of Christ, oh yes! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST Please pray for strength, stamina, perseverance, wisdom, discernment, clarity, absolutely anything the Lord places on your heart to pray for me for one ultimate goal – that I live and breathe day by day TO HELP BUILD THE KINGDOM OF GOD AND TO BRING GLORY TO THE LORD! The spiritual battle is so fiery right now, the exhaustion so great, the weariness so much, BUT I PRESS ON IN THE STRENGTH OF CHRIST FOR THE GLORY OF CHRIST. And I THANK YOU for your love & prayers! In His love, lara
Monday, June 3, 2019 TODAY’S LITTLE LETTER FROM LARA Dear friend, A dear friend when we pray together sometimes thanks the Lord for His mercy which is new every day. Have you ever considered this? That His mercy goes on forever?I don’t know about you, but I need mercy every breath I take. I fall so very far short of the glory of God, and I am thankful beyond description for His mercy for me. We aren’t just in need of Christ’s mercy, friend. We are in need of pouring it out upon others. But do we? I want to encourage you to be seriously sorry when you sin against God, to ever seek the Lord’s mercy, to receive it, to be thankful for it, AND TO BE MERCIFUL TO OTHERS! May the Lord’s mercy be ever flowing in and through our hearts and lives! Here is a verse for you and I to consider AND TO TAKE TO HEART AND INTO ACTION: “Blessed are the merciful, For they shall obtain mercy.” Mt. 5:7 Love in Jesus’ name, lara TODAY’S DAILY INSPIRATION Fresh & Free “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.” 1 John 1:9 “I feel fresh and free,” I thought delightedly as I lay back on my pillow for less than a minute before sitting back up as I knew I had a message to write. Why fresh and free? In the past 24 hours, I had been desperately seeking the Lord about something He had placed on my heart. I had cried out to Him, prayed with a friend, sought Him, gone to His Word, waited to hear from Him, then heard His answer. The Lord showed me something I had been doing for years that greatly displeased Him and that was holding me back from living in the fullness of His will for me in life and ministry. As soon as I repented, I felt fresh and free! Do you need to seek the Lord’s forgiveness for any sins? Please do! Be fresh and free in Christ! TODAY’S 365 BLESSINGS 365 BLESSINGS is a devotional book the Lord has led me to publish piece by piece even as I’m writing it rather than waiting until it’s in print to share it. Please join me & be blessed as I write my latest book…! Blessing #51 “I will remember the works of the Lord; Surely I will remember Your wonders of old. I will also meditate on all Your work, And talk of Your deeds.” Psalm 77:11-12 Three blessings jam-packed into two verses tucked lovingly into Psalm 77. REMEMBER. MEDITATE. TALK. How are they blessings? Forever wouldn’t be enough to thank the Lord for His awesomeness, His wonder, His majesty, His goodness, His glory, His salvation, and on and on! We could never love and thank the Lord enough for who He is, what He has done, what He is doing, and what He will do. But throughout our lifetime, we have the opportunity to REMEMBER all of His wondrous goodness and works through the years, to MEDITATE on Him and His Word and His greatness and works, and to TALK to others about Him and His splendor and glory and His testimony in our lives! REMEMBERING GOD, MEDITATING ON GOD, AND TALKING ABOUT GOD! Three fabulous ways to enjoy the graciousness, mercy, and wonderfulness of God almighty in Christ! TODAY’S THE CROSS DEVOTIONAL My Paralyzed Dog’s Closeness to Me “And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.” Col. 1:18 My paralyzed dog Mr. Simeon loves to be close to me. Not just a little but a whole lot. So much so, in fact, the enormous bed he shares with the other three special needs ministry dogs has to be shoved up right against my bed. But even that’s not always enough. If he looks up at me, and he’s oftentimes staring at me when he’s not snoozing, he makes it clear with his big beautiful brown eyes and his strong vocal chords that are almost talking, not to mention the restless movement of his front paws, that he wants to be even closer to me than he already is. He can’t move more than a few inches on his own, so sometimes I get down on the floor with him and move him closer to me on his bed. One time, I was in a hotel and came back to my hotel room only to find out he had dragged himself off the big shared dog bed and started dragging himself to the hotel room door as though he had wanted to chase after me. Of course, being paralyzed, he didn’t get very far. But still, he tried. His eyes. His voice. His physical location. Everything, it seems, is focused on being close to me. As close as he can be. What if you and I would be that way with the Lord, friend? What if He truly were our highest priority? What if above all else, our eyes, our hearts, our talking, and our physical position, what if everything about our hearts and lives more than anything else were focused on wanting to be near to Jesus? To be closer and closer to Him? Should it not be this way? Should Jesus not be our greatest desire? Our highest aim? Our most prominent need? Our deepest hunger? Our most obvious thirst? Should Jesus not be our number one? Our above all else? Oh, but we spend so much of our lives drawing close and closer to that which and whom our flesh craves! To satisfy our fleshly desires! But what if we made a conscious effort to make the Lord our number one priority in life? What if more than anything and anyone we desire to draw close and closer to, we make Him the one? Oh, may we draw closer to Jesus. And may He draw closer to us. And may intimacy with Christ be not just important to us. But may Jesus be most important of all! Jesus, Lord of Lords, King of Kings, sovereign God, Father who will reign forevermore! TODAY’S SERVING JESUS IN YOUR EVERYDAY LIFE Serving Jesus from a Hospital Bed “Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, in everything give thanks; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.” 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 Just minutes after a dear friend contacted me to let me know a prayer need as she lay in a hospital bed due to complications from her latest round of chemotherapy, I received a call from my ex-husband who was sitting in an emergency room waiting room having trouble breathing. Both of them were in extreme straits. Know what happened? My dear friend who was struggling greatly in one hospital right as she lay on her hospital bed prayed for my ex-husband. She loves the Lord Jesus Christ to no end, and in her mind serving Jesus doesn’t stop based on challenging circumstances. So she served Jesus from a hospital bed. Praying for someone else in a different hospital! There are endless ways to serve Jesus in our everyday lives no matter our circumstances. The starting place is to love Him and desire to serve Him. Then we need to be on the lookout for opportunities to do just that. With willing and thankful hearts. Willing to love and serve the Lord. Thankful to be given the privilege to do so. No matter your circumstances, no matter where you are, no matter who you are, no matter what, love Jesus. Serve Jesus. Be thankful for the blessing of serving the one who died on the cross to pay our sin penalty and was raised from the dead so all who turn from their sins, believing in Him as Lord, turning their lives over to God and His ways, are promised forever with Jesus, AMEN! LATEST MINISTRY UPDATE & PRAYER REQUEST My beloved sister in Christ, friend, and co-laborer Kim has laid down her life for me and this ministry, laboring constantly despite a very busy personal and family schedule to pray for me, encourage me, and minister to me continually and to print, cut, fold, staple, and ship thousands upon thousands of Gospel tracts and devotionals I write that go out to prisons, homeless shelters, rescue missions, onto the streets, to street preachers, individuals, and to people and places and groups around the country. No matter how much I have cried out to the Lord to send physical help to Kim and to send financial help to this ministry which is operating on a tiny budget despite enormous growth, my cries have not been answered as of yet. Please pray, pray, pray as the Lord so leads you! Thank you!