today's encouragement

Welcome to Today’s Encouragement. If you need some encouragement for today, we’re here to help with devotionals and encouraging Scripture for today. Life can be hard. It’s not always easy to live out our faith in ways that glorify and honor Jesus. We get it because we struggle sometimes, too, so we hope these tiny snippets of encouragement from our daily inspirational quotes and daily Scripture quotes will help you embrace truth and live a little more like Jesus today. today's encouragement

Today’s Encouragement: Hide His Word in Your Heart

todays encouragement scripture memory

Powerful prayers start with the Word of God.  It’s why Scripturememorization is so important. When we know God’s promises and His ways, we can pray accordingly and, when we pray what God’s promised, we can be sure He will do it. Promise prayers are a great way to gain answered prayers. 

What prayer promise are you praying today?

Want to learn more about Scripture memorization? We have great articles to help. Check them out here:

How to Memorize Scripture: 3 Easy Steps

Why Scripture Memorization Matters

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: Teach Us to Pray

 

 

Today’s Encouragement: Don’t Stop Praying

todays encouragement Don't stop praying

God doesn’t promise the quick, one-time prayer will accomplish much but the fervent, effectual prayer. What kind of prayers do you pray?

Are you praying about something near and dear to your heart? It’s not time to quit praying, no matter how long you’ve been at it. Pray big and don’t quit.

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: Who Will Go?

today's encouragement

Our topic this week is missions. How have you been involved in missions? Would you like to do more? We have lots of opportunities and would love to connect with you. Contact us for more information. Click here to connect.

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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  5. Join our Faith Lived Out Loud FB group to learn about more ways to love and serve.

Today’s Encouragement: God’s Power

today's encouragement

Today’s Encouragement:

today's encouragement

Waiting isn’t easy, especially in a culture of entitlement such as our American culture. We want what we want when we want it, don’t we? Scripture, however, shows us a different path. We find great blessing in waiting as we learn to look to and lean on our Lord. 

Today’s Encouragement: My Hope is in You

my hope is in you

Our world is loaded with places to put our truth and hope…anything from material wealth to personal strength…but those are all doomed to fail. Only when we put our trust in God can we be assured it is well placed for He will never leave us nor forsake us. (Hebrews 13:5,6) Our God loves and helps us in our time of need. 

Today’s Encouragement: Hope does not disappoint

hope does not disappoint

Our topic this week is HOPE and today’s verse comes from Romans 5. “And not only this, but we also exult In our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance, and perseverance, proven character, and proven character, hope, and hope does not disappoint because the love of God is poured out within our hearts.” Romans 5:3-5

Most of us love the part about hope. Because of the love of God poured out in our hearts, hope in Him does not disappoint. The two verses before Romans 5:5 are a hard dose to swallow though, aren’t they? We want hope without the hard, but that’s not what God promises. He offers hope IN the hard. 

Are you in a season of hard? If so, experience the love of God in a fresh way today. Dig into Scripture, find a promise of God, and hold to it. Let it see you through.

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: The Fruit of Joy

fruit of spirit joy

Joy. We sometimes consider joy one of the fruitS of the Spirit but “fruit” includes everything listed in Galatians 5:22,23. Love. Joy. Peace. Patience. Kindness. Goodness. Faithfulness. Gentleness. Self-control. When we belong to Jesus and choose His ways rather than our own, we can have all the fruit. For today, let’s focus on all the joy and ponder how embracing joy might give us a more abundant life. No matter our circumstances. Choose joy.

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: Consider it all joy

count it all joy

Our first response to a difficult trial is not to rejoice, is it? James’ passage about trials is surprising, however. He says we should rejoice when we encounter various trials because they are, in reality, opportunities to become more like Jesus. Trials test our faith, which produces endurance. The “perfect result” of endurance makes us “perfect and complete,” or mature. 

Hard times help us grow up in faith and make us more like Jesus and that is cause for rejoicing. Are you going through a hard time? Take a moment to thank God for using the hard time to make you more like Him. 

Today’s Encouragement: The Joy of the Lord is Your Strength

the joy of the Lord is your strength

Here’s a bit of a paradox. We tend to think our strength likes in physical, military, or financial power. Instead, Scripture tells us real strength comes from the joy of the Lord in our hearts. Wondering how this is possible? When we find our joy in Him, rather than the ways of the world, we are strengthened to make wiser choices and live in more godly ways. The joy of the Lord gives us strength of character and that strength infuses everything part of our lives. The joy of the Lord really is our strength.

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: Choose Joy!

choose joy

Joy doesn’t just happen, especially when life is hard. It comes as a result of a choice we make and is a fruit of that choice. When we follow Jesus and allow the work of the Spirit in our lives, He produces joy as one of the fruit. Our first choice is to follow Jesus. As we follow, we also choose joy, no matter our circumstances. What about your circumstances? Will you take your focus on the circumstances, place your focus on Jesus, and choose joy today?

Today’s Encouragement: Walk in the Light

Scripture tells us Jesus is the light that shines in the darkness of this world. No matter how hard the darkness of evil tries, it cannot overcome it. The light of Christ illuminates our hearts and our lives and makes us “children of the light.” As followers of Jesus, we no longer walk in darkness. We must walk in the light.

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: God’s Word Lights Your Way

When we face a difficult decision and don’t know what to do, we need to look no further than God’s Word for answers. The Psalmist tells us God’s Word is like a lamp in a dark place. It illuminates the path and helps us take the next step. 

Do you need answers today? God’s Word has them. Dig in and keep reading until you find His answer for you today and His light for your path.

Today’s Encouragement: Let Your Light Shine

Today’s Encouragement: Love Lives in Light

Scripture makes a clear distinction between light and darkness. God is light and in Him is no darkness at all. His love is light and we should be, too. Unfortunately, darkness holds an appeals to us, but we can’t have it both ways. We can’t walk in the darkness and live in the light. It’s a choice we all must make. Which will you choose? A bit of darkness or the glorious light of God’s love?

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: God is Light

God is light

Today’s Encouragement: You are loved

you are loved

You are loved. It’s a truth most of us will take a lifetime to understand and is not contingent upon whether or not we feel loved. God loves you. It’s that simple. He loves you in ways you may not fully comprehend, but His love is steadfast, sure, and unconditional. 
How have you seen the love of God at work in your life this week? We’d love to hear from you so reach out through our connect link.
“See what kind of love the Father has given to us, that we should be called children of God; and so we are.” (1 John 3:1) #faithlivedoutloud #praybig

Want to know more? Check out this article: What Does God Is Love mean?

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: Scripture memorization is worth it

scripture memory

Among all the spiritual disciplines, there may be none more important than Scripture memorization. God speaks to us through Scripture and, when we hide His Word in our hearts, the Holy Spirit will remind us of the truth we need when we face trials or temptation. Learn more here: Why Does Scripture Memorization Matter?

While you’re here, check out these blog posts:

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance

Promises of God Fulfilled

What Does it Mean to Be Beloved?

What Does it Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?

Why We Should Choose Humility and Let Go of Pride

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Today’s Encouragement: How to Prepare for Eternity

today's encouragement the last days

We hear this question a lot: Are we living in the last days? The answer is pretty simple. We’re a lot closer to the last day than we were when Jesus ascended into heaven but no one knows when He’s coming back except Father God. In the meanwhile, we can prepare for eternity with two simple and basic steps: Study the Bible. Do what it says. 

Want to learn more? Read this article:

The Last Days

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Today’s Encouragement: Listen for the Gentle Whisper 

today's encouragement

How well do you hear the still, small voice of God? Want to learn to hear Him clearly? Join us for this year’s Whisper Gathering, October 20-22, 2022. We’ve helped hundreds of women learn to listen for His Gentle Whisper. Learn more here: https://www.whispergathering.com/upcoming-events.html

Today’s Encouragement: Love your enemies…

today's encouragement love your enemies

We’re confronting an uncomfortable truth today. When Jesus said, “love your enemies and pray,” He wasn’t kidding. It wasn’t a suggestion. It’s a command. Obedience brings some surprising truths…
– When we pray for our enemies, we may find they’re not actually enemies after all.
– Prayer takes us into the presence of the One who IS love.
– Prayer is the key that unlocks love, even when it’s hard.
– Loving our enemies changes us in powerful ways. It’s worth it.

Who do you consider an enemy? Why not take a few moments to pray for them and choose to bless them with the love of God. Pray big, even when it’s hard.

We’d love to pray for you. Send your prayer requests via our connect form HERE.

Want to read more? Keep reading or check out these blog posts:

Harbinger of Hope: Springtime Daffodils 

Promises of God Fulfilled

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Today’s Encouragement: The Light Still Shines

today's encouragement

One of the most beautiful descriptions of Jesus in Scripture is found in John 1. We’re especially fond of these words:

“In Him was life, and the life was the light of men.

And the light shines in the darkness and the darkness did not overcome it.” John 1:4,5 

The word translated as “overcome” is sometimes translated as “understand.” We believe both are accurate as darkness doesn’t understand light, neither its beauty nor its power. It’s the darkness in us that causes us to miss the beautiful light and power of Christ. Once that beautiful life-giving light enters our hearts, however, it changes everything. Light. Life. Love. Power. 

How have you experienced the life-giving light of Christ? In what areas of your life do you need more light? More power?

We’d love to pray for you. Send your prayer requests via our connect form HERE.

Want to read more? Keep reading or check out these blog posts:

Harbinger of Hope: Springtime Daffodils 

Promises of God Fulfilled

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Don’t Stop Praying:

today's encouragement don't stop prayingOur ministry partners near Ukraine relentlessly provide care and provisions for those still in their war-torn nation as well as for refugees who have fled. They need our prayers even more now than they did when the war began. Today, let’s pray big and without ceasing. Pray does make a difference. #praybig #faithlivedoutloud

Check out our “How to Pray for Ukraine and Eastern Europe” prayer guide.

Want more information on how to pray? Check out…

How to Pray the News

Prayer Resource Center

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Today’s Encouragement: God’s paths are best

Today's encouragement: God's paths are best

The word translated as “path” in Psalm 24:4 suggests a well-traveled road. When we walk the path of God, we’re not the first and we certainly won’t be the last.

Scripture tells us God’s path is the path of life, uprightness, and righteousness. It is both attended and directed by God Himself. In His presence is joy and pleasures forever, and we can expect joy on His path as well.

“But the path of the righteous is like the light of dawn that shines brighter and brighter until the full day.” Proverbs 4:18

The path of God is like the light of dawn. Ponder the light of dawn for a moment.

The first glimmer of light as the sun begins to rise grows brighter with time until it’s a shining orb in the sky, giving light to all within its rays.

The path of God is the same. Our first step onto the path may seem like a step into a dark and uncertain way and as if we have only enough light for the first step. As our journey progresses and we learn God’s ways, we move into more and more light. When we know His ways, it’s easier to recognize the next step on His path and why discipleship is so important. The more we study, the more we learn of Him, the greater the light of understanding and the easier it is to follow. 

What about you? How have you experienced the path of God? We’d love to hear from you. You can connect here: Connect with us.

Want to read more? Check out these resources and articles:

Discipleship Resources for Living the Christian Life

How to Make a Fresh Start

How to Trust God in Hard Times

The Benefits of Repentance and Why Repentance Matters

Today’s Encouragement: You are known, seen, and loved

known, seen, loved

We’re savoring this truth today: We are all fearfully and wonderfully made by the One who knew us before we were formed, sees us still, and loves us anyway. Today’s a good day to read Psalm 139 and bask in the love of our Father.

You can read it from the link but here are a few of our favorite verses from Psalm 139:

Lord, You have searched me and known me…
 when I sit down and when I get up, You understand my thought from far away…scrutinize my path and my lying down,
And are acquainted with all my ways.  Psalm 139:1-3

For You created my innermost parts,
You wove me in my mother’s womb.
I will give thanks to You, because I am awesomely and wonderfully made;
Wonderful are Your works,
And my soul knows it very well. Psalm 139:13

Your eyes have seen my formless substance;
And in Your book were written
All the days that were ordained for me,
When as yet there was not one of them.

How precious also are Your thoughts for me, God! How vast is the sum of them!
Were I to count them, they would outnumber the sand.
When I awake, I am still with You. Psalm 139:16-18

~~~~~~

Want to read more? Check out these posts: 

What does God is love mean?

The Gift of God’s Love

On Being Beloved

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A Safe Refuge

A safe haven

Psalm 91:4 is one of our favorite verses. “He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge. His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.” Just as a mama bird covers her babies to protect and shelter them from any danger that comes their way, so too our Lord covers and protects His own.

We can count on Him to be a safe place, to protect and cover us. Nothing gets past His powerful shield unless He allows it and He can be trusted to do what’s best.

We wonder, though…can He count on us to be a safe place for the vulnerable, to protect and cover those in need of shelter and safety? This world is a dark and hard place for many. Today, let’s thank God for His protection and strive to give the same protection to those who need it most.

Thanks for sharing your time with us today. Before you go…

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Today’s Encouragement: Look at the Birds…

today's encouragement birds of the air

If you struggle with knowing whether or not God cares for you, you’re not alone. We hear from lots of people who feel disconnected from God. They often ask, “Does God care about me?” 

Scripture tells us we need to look no further than the wildflowers and the little sparrows to see how generously He cares for all His creation. If He cares for birds, the Bible tells, and He does, He also cares for you. 

James 4:8 tells us to “Draw near to God and He will draw near to you.” In order words, if we do what it takes to be close to God, (praise/thanksgiving/repentance) we will soon find He is closer to us than ever before. God’s care, however, is not dependent upon how we feel. We know He cares for us because He says He does and He does not lie.

God cares for you. It’s a truth you can depend on today.

How have you seen God’s tender care? We’d love to hear from you. Use the contact form to share your story.

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He Cares for You

He cares for you

He cares for you. Ponder the implication of that profound truth for a moment. The Creator of the Universe, Lord of Lords, King of Kings, Savior of all who will come, knows and cares for you. You are loved by God and He cares about the things that concern you.

Your dwindling finances? He cares. Your strained relationships? He cares.Uncertainty about decisions or next steps? He cares. 

You can throw all your worries, fears, and anxieties His direction and He will not only catch them, He’ll help you through them and deal with them–because He is not only our King, He’s also our loving Father. 

He cares for you and that care makes all the difference. Why not unload your anxieties at the cross and leave them with the One who has the power to intervene, no matter the situation. 

He cares for you and it changes everything.

Want to read more?

Check out these articles:

What Does God is Love Mean?

The Gift of God’s Love

On Being Beloved

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Today’s Encouragement: Ready for Change?

how to make a fresh start

Need a fresh start? Ready to live an abundant life? Today’s Encouragement can help. Check out this blog post for more information: How to Make A Fresh Start

While you’re here, we’d love for you to sign up for our free Clean Heart Bible study and our twice-monthly email

Persevere in Prayer prayer is doing something

When we consider how long WWI and WWII lasted (four years and six years respectively) the war in Ukraine hasn’t lasted long. To those in the midst of battle, however, it’s been forever. For those who are refugees or caring for refugees, it probably feels like an eternity. They need our prayers more than ever. If you can give, do. If you can go to help in person, do. One thing we can all do is pray, so pray big. Here’s a prayer guide to help you as you pray for Ukraine.

How to Pray Scripture for Ukraine and Eastern Europe

The Secret of Renewed Youth

Secret of renewed youthWe found the secret of renewed youth and it’s probably not what you expect. No injections, surgery, or uncomfortable treatments. Instead, renewed youth is one of the twelve benefits of repentance. Want a fresh feel? A younger look? We don’t promise you’ll look years younger, but “He renews our youth like an eagle” sounds pretty good to us. Check out this blog post for more information on The Benefits of Repentance and Why Repentance Matters.

While you’re here, we’d love for you to sign up for our free Clean Heart Bible study and our twice-monthly email

Today’s Encouragement: Love with Abandon

today's encouragement: love your neighbor

When Jesus said, “love your neighbor as you love yourself,” He didn’t add any qualifiers. No “love if’s…” Whether you like your neighbor, understand his or her life choices, or enjoy their company. Love anyway–because that’s how God loves us. 

Want to know more? Check out:

Should You Love your Neighbor if you don’t like him?

Discipleship: Doing what Jesus Did

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Freedom in Christ

freedom in Christ

The empty tomb is more than an unoccupied space. It’s a symbol of Jesus’ victory over sin and death and His power to grant freedom from the tyranny of sin in our lives. His freedom is ours for the asking, but we must choose victory over defeat, righteousness over sin, His ways over those of the world. Will we be free? We must decide.

Want to read a little more? Here are a few articles you might enjoy…

What Does Freedom in Christ Mean + How to Be Set Free From Sin

Should you love your neighbor if you don’t like him?

What Does He Must Increase and I Must Decrease Mean?

While you’re here, sign up for our free Clean Heart Bible study and our twice-monthly email.

Easter Weekend Devotionals

Easter weekend devotionals

 

What’s good about Good Friday? The cross wasn’t the end. To read more, check out our blog posts and our Easter Weekend Devotionals for Good Friday, Silent Saturday, and Resurrection Sunday. How can our team pray for you today? Feel free to contact us.
https://leannahollis.com/whats-good-about-good-friday/
https://leannahollis.com/easter-weekend-devotionals/ 

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Today’s Encouragement

today's encouragement

Our goal for today: Less of me. More of Him. His will and His way. Today’s Holy Week post is about the Judas rock and how easily the path of the betrayer can touch us all. To keep reading, click here: How Are We Like Judas?

Want to read a little more? Here are a few articles you might enjoy…

Should you love your neighbor if you don’t like him?

What Does He Must Increase and I Must Decrease Mean?

Discipleship: Doing what Jesus did

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What does Freedom in Christ Mean?

freedom in Christ and abundant life

The third article in our Holy Week series answers two questions:

  1. What does freedom in Christ mean?
  2. How can we be set free from sin?

Jesus broke the power of sin with His death and resurrection. We can be free but we must choose to be free and take the steps necessary to stay free. You can read more about freedom in Christ and the steps to help you stay free here: What Does Freedom in Christ Mean and How to Be Set Free from Sin?

Today’s Encouragement: Share the Love of Jesus 

today's encouragement

Come as you are. That’s how we came to Jesus but He loved us too much to leave us as we were. Instead, He washed our sins white as snow, forgave us, loved us, and taught us how to love and serve as He does. 

Because He loves the world and everyone in it and is not willing for any to perish (2 Peter 3:9), we should love and care in the same way–toward everyone. Even those people we don’t like or think are beyond hope. No one is beyond the love of God. Not even the worst of us.

Scripture tells us there is rejoicing in heaven over one sinner who repents. (Luke 15:7) Imagine the celebration in heaven when someone gives up their sin and embraces God’s righteousness. Yeah. Big fun. Want to help throw a “rejoicing party” for those already in heaven? Tell someone about Jesus and all He’s done for you today.

The church word is evangelism, but we prefer the idea of one beggar telling another beggar where to find the bread of life. Want to know how? We can help with this helpful guide to evangelism when it’s hard or uncomfortable: Seven Evangelism Truths Every Christian Needs to Know

Want more? Sign up for our free Clean Heart Bible study and our twice-monthly email.

Make a Difference Today: Pray Big

pray and change the world

If we understood the difference our prayers could make, we’d likely pray bigger. With more fervor. More faithfulness. We’d expect more and watch with anticipation for God to move.

James, the half-brother of Jesus, wrote wise words about intercession. “The prayer of a righteous person has great power as it is working.” (James 5:16) We can make a difference, and we must. 

  • In the war in Ukraine
  • For the lives of refugees
  • As people struggle to help those who have lost so much

Make a difference today. Pray big and pray with anticipation. God still answers prayers.

Whiter than snow…

clean heart

If we understood how precious it is to have our sins forgiven and our hearts cleansed, we’d rush to repentance and long to be whiter than snow. 

Want to know more about repentance? We have a free 5-day email Bible study focused on Psalm 51. You can sign up for the study and our e-newsletter here: Clean Heart Study

The Disciple Life:

 
If you struggle with understanding how to be a disciple of Christ, our Today’s Encouragement can help. The Disciple Life is so simple. Do what Jesus did. Love. Serve. Obey. It’s sometimes hard, too, but always worth it. You can read more about being a disciple here: What Does It Mean to Be a Disciple of Jesus?
While you’re there, be sure to check out a few other blog posts.
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Today’s Encouragement: Pray BIG

today's encouragement

James, the half-brother of Jesus, grew up watching his older brother live out the reality of a sinless life, wholly dedicated to God. He knew how to talk with God because he literally talked with the God-Man Jesus every day of his young life. 

When James finally recognized Jesus as Messiah and Lord, he was all-in. He didn’t waste time with doubt because he knew with certainty who Jesus was and what He could do. James understood the Father because he knew the son so well.

We need not bother with the futility of doubt because we serve a God who loves us enough to die for us. He is able to answer every prayer we pray and meet every need. 

Are you struggling today? Take it to God in faith and watch with anticipation as He answers when you pray. #faithlivedoutloud #praybig

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Want to know more about prayer? Check out all our prayer resources

Vines and Branches:

vine and branches

Branches and vines. It may seem an odd topic for the last few hours of Jesus’ time with His disciples. Events on the night He was betrayed and arrested began with the Passover meal during which He wrapped Himself in the white apron of a servant and washed the feet of His disciples. It was an act of supreme humility and scandalous work for the King of Kings and Lord of Lords. After the meal, Jesus reminded his disciples of the hard truth they didn’t want to know. Things were about to change. Death and separation waited for him a few hours ahead.

“Arise, let us go from here,” Jesus said, (John 14:31) and He and His disciples headed toward Gethsemane. Their walking journey took them past the temple doors, plated with gold and adorned with elaborate golden vines and fruit. He likely pointed to the beautiful golden vines as He said these words:

“I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser… every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it, that it may bear more fruit….You are the branches; He who abides in Me, and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me, you can do nothing.” John 15:1, 5

Fruit doesn’t happen by accident.

Whether the branch is an actual branch attached to a grapevine or a metaphorical branch attached to the vine of Jesus, care is required. Pruning, plant nutrients, and sunlight are only the beginning for the vinedresser who wants to grow lush grapes.

For the disciple who wants to bear lush fruit, repentance, time in God’s Word, prayer, and God-directed service are the starting point.

Want to be the best branch you can be today? Slow down. Evaluate your heart and repent where needed. Spend time in His Word. Do what He says. Share His love in word and deed.

—*—*—

We’re glad you stopped by. While you’re here, take a moment to sign up for our twice-monthly email. You’ll receive exclusive stories, freebies, and more.

Want to read a little more? Here are a few articles you might enjoy…

Should you love your neighbor if you don’t like him?

What Does He Must Increase and I Must Decrease Mean?

Discipleship: Doing what Jesus did

A Good Day to Rejoice:

Encouragement for today

Let’s celebrate today as if it is a gift from God—because it is! This is the day the Lord has made. We can rejoice and be glad today, no matter what our circumstances. 
 
Are you burdened with a load of care? Suffering? Overwhelmed with the needs and pressure of life? Brokenhearted? We have good news and reason to hope.
 
No matter what we face or how dismal the future seems, we can take heart in the truth of this verse. God made this day. It’s a gift we decide how to use. May we use it to praise Him and thank Him for His many blessings–even when life seems too dark and hard to see those blessings.
 
How? Start with thank you…
 
How can we pray for you today We’d love to hear from you. Comment or message us here: Let’s connect!
 
While you’re here, why not sign up for our twice-a-month email to receive exclusive stories, devotionals, freebies, and more.
 
If you enjoyed this bit of encouragement, check out: 

Encouraging Scripture for Today:

Encouraging Scripture for today

Prayer.

It’s not a recitation of a set of proscribed words but a conversation with God, the One who knows us and loves us anyway. Conversation requires interaction from both parties. We hear from God and we speak with God. Our words are not the most important part.

Prayer, at its best, begins with God. How? The Bible, God’s Word, is a significant piece of God’s part of the conversation. We begin in the Bible and ask God to speak to us through His Word as we read and ponder. 

Our part is simple. We come to Him as we are and ask God to make us more like Him. (The “church lingo words” are confession and repentance.) Next, we tell Him our concerns and our needs. (The church word here is petition.) God knows our needs already, but He wants us to bring them to Him, partly because, in telling Him about our needs and asking Him to help, we choose to trust Him with them.

Trust.

The word translated as “trust” in the Bible means to “throw down.” The word picture is that of throwing ourselves (or someone) on the ground, on our back. Imagine that for a moment. It’s a vulnerable, helpless position, isn’t it?

When we trust God with our troubles, we, in a way, throw them down, on their back, at the feet of God. It’s a way of saying, “I’m done with this, God. You take it. I trust you to do something with this. Something good.”

Hope.

Hope is both a noun and a verb. It’s the expectation and anticipation of a positive and desired outcome. When we pray and give our concerns to God in trust, we also hope for a desired and favorable outcome.

Here’s good news: Trust in God is well placed. Scripture tells us He will not disappoint us or put us to shame. He may not do things the way we want them done, but He will do them the best way and accomplish His plan for us. 

Pray. Trust. Hope. We can move from desperation to peace in three quick steps if we seek God, trust Him with all that concerns us, and put our hope in Him.

“In You our fathers trusted; they trusted, and You delivered them. To You they cried and were rescued; in You they trusted and were not put to shame.” Psalm 22:4,5 esv

How can we pray for you today? We’re glad you visited us for today’s encouragement and we’d love to hear from you. Comment or message us here: Let’s connect!

Want to know more about trusting God? Check out this article: How to Trust God in Hard Times

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Today’s Encouragement: 

today's encouragement

In a time when hope is often in short supply, here’s some good news. God has a plan and it’s not only a good plan, it’s full of hope. 

This verse was written to people who were captured by an invading army and now lived in exile far from home. Life was nothing like what they wanted or hoped. You can probably imagine how they felt. Dejected. Forgotten. Afraid. Alone. 

Now imagine what these words, delivered by the prophet Jeremiah, meant to them. They weren’t forgotten. God had a plan and it was good. What they experienced today was not the end. Their future might not look like it yet, but hope and blessing waited on the other side.

Do you feel like the exiles did?

Dejected? Forgotten? Afraid? Alone? Take hope in God’s truth. Today is not the end. He has a plan and it’s good. You can have the beautiful future He designed when you put your trust in Him.

How can we pray for you today? We’d love to hear from you. Comment or message us here: Let’s connect!

Want to know more about God’s plan for your life? How to Have a Blessed Life

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Encouragement for today:

encouragement for today

“Keep me as the apple of Your eye. Hide me in the shelter of Your wings… Psalm 17:8

The word translated as “keep” means considerably more than to store something for later use. The picture this word conveys is that of a gardener tending a beloved garden or a shepherd “keeping” or caring for his flock. It implies close attention to every detail, protection, and tender, loving care.

When we ask God to “keep us as the apple of His eye,” we ask Him to watch over us, provide for our needs, protect us, and care for us both tenderly and carefully.

Have you ever seen a mother hen with her chicks? If she senses danger, she gathers her chicks and hides them under her wings. They are enclosed, close to her heart, sheltered by her wings, safe from the enemy. So, too, we ask God to enclose us with the shelter of His wings. Protect us from all our enemies, whether from our own struggles or those who would wish to harm us. Keep us close to His heart and near to Him.

Hidden and safe

As the wild violet is hidden in the leaf litter of the forest, so our lives can be kept and hidden in the shelter of His wings where we are loved, cared for, and safe.

For those who struggle with dangers both within and without, who bear unimaginable burdens today, we pray for shelter under the wings of the Almighty, for peace, hope, and a profound sense of how loved you are.

We’re glad you stopped to check out our encouraging Scripture for today. How can we pray for you today? We’d love to hear from you. Comment or message us here: Let’s connect!

Want to know more about God’s love? Start here: What Does God is Love Mean?

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Moldable in the Master’s Hand:

encouraging scripture for today

This verse spoke to us during our first pottery lesson more than twenty years ago. The miraculous process of whirling clay on a wheel, pressed and pulled as it spun, transformed into vessels of beauty stunned us. 

When we tried our hand, it didn’t go so well and we soon learned the difference between a master potter and a novice. The master potter knows how much pressure is needed to accomplish his plan. The novice is as apt to send clay flying across the room as to actually form something usable.

It’s the same in life. God molds us in exactly the right way at exactly the right time to transform mere lumps of human clay into vessels of beauty designed to glorify and honor God.

The process isn’t usually fun and we seldom appreciate it in the midst of the molding, but how sweet it is when the work is done. (Personal experience speaking here. It took a lot of molding to get us where we are today…and He’s not done yet.) 

What about you?

How have you seen God at work, molding your heart and life into what He intended? Are you in the midst of the process? Take heart. It doesn’t last forever. If you’re on the other side of the molding, celebrate the work of God and the vessel you’ve become.

We’d love to hear from you. Comment or message us here: Let’s connect! 

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Don’t leave without checking out our How to Pray Scripture for Ukraine and Eastern Europe prayer guide and our blog page.

Today’s Encouragement:

Today's Encouragement

“Some trust in chariots, and some in horses; but we will boast in the name of the LORD, our God.” Psalm 20:7

Psalm 20, a prayer for the king, was written by David and reads almost as if David answered the question, “how can I pray for you?” with a psalm. Some commentators believe it was written in anticipation of an upcoming battle. The preceding verses ask God for protection and for His presence as well as for victory.

David’s response is one of affirmation and adoration. He understood the battle was not His, but God’s when he fought and defeated Goliath and he still understands it, years later. Some men put their trust in worldly weapons of war but David’s trust is in God alone.

Where David described the weapons of war as horses and chariots, we might list nuclear weapons, chemical weapons, hired mercenaries, and assassins, or tanks and missiles. If we are to paraphrase this verse for today’s circumstances, we might say, “Some men put their trust in the advanced weaponry of the 21st century but we will put our trust and boast in the name of the Lord, our God.”

Pause to ponder…

Consider the words of Psalm 20 for a moment. Our trust is not in the things of this world but in God. If so, our expectations must not be those of the world, either. Instead, we seek heavenly assistance and intervention to yield a heavenly deliverance. Rather than focus on brick and mortar, our focus is on the hearts and lives of men, women, and children involved in this mortal battle.

As we pray for those involved in the war in Ukraine, let us focus our prayers on protection for those who remain in danger, peace and healing for those who have fled, and clear direction for those who have not yet found a resting place. May our goal be more than a fragile peace; instead, may we seek the lasting peace of heart and soul only God’s grace and mercy can give.

Let us also pray for those involved in non-military struggles, whether it be a single mother in rural America who struggles to provide for her children or an addict who battles addiction and longs to be free.

How can we pray for you today? Feel free to send us a prayer request.

Here’s a guide to help you pray powerful prayers for Ukraine and Eastern Europe

For additional assistance with prayer, check out our Prayer Resource Page where you’ll find information on how to pray, how to become a Christian, how to set up prayer stations, blogs on prayer, and more.

You might also enjoy reading How to Pray the News

If you enjoy Today’s Encouragement, please consider joining our twice-monthly newsletter group to receive exclusive stories and more. #faithlivedoutloud #praybig

Encouragement for Today:

Encouragement for today

For those who put their trust in God, hope is more than a good feeling or a positive vibe. Hope is the rock-solid expectation and anticipation of God at work in our lives and in the circumstances which concern us. We may wish for worldly things, but at its best, hope anticipates and expects God’s will and His ways. We hope for whatever He deems best.

Our verse today comes from a hard but encouraging passage in Romans 5. When we’re justified by faith, we receive peace with God. As a result, we hope in the glory of God. In a way, we keep our hope fixed on eternity and, at the same time, on the circumstances of life, including those circumstances in which we suffer. 

We do more than hope, however.

We rejoice in suffering because hard times teach us endurance, which produces character. In the agony of suffering, we learn to hope in God as we experience His love poured out in our hearts, along with His peace, provision, protection, and joy. 

Faith. Endurance. Character. Hope. Love. We may not like suffering, but how precious are the results when we let God do His beautiful work in us.

Today many people are suffering, both in the United States and around the world. Whether they suffer as a result of war, sickness, poverty, or personal conflict,  it can bring about endurance, character, and hope. How? When we allow God’s love to work in us, He changes beauty to ashes and makes all things new.

For most of us, today is not how our story ends but how we respond to today’s events can impact our tomorrow in significant ways. No matter what we face, let’s approach it with faith in God, confidence in His ways, and hope in His good plan. #faithlivedoutloud

Encouraging Scripture for today:

encouraging scripture for today

We may look at the destruction of stone and mortar and wonder about the provision of God, the protection of God. His promises, though, are not for mortar and stone but for flesh and blood people. His people.

We see God’s provision in the many aid workers at the borders, ready to welcome refugees to safety, the donations pouring in to provide for them, and the homes open to strangers. God’s beautiful provision is personal and delivered individually. One terrorized child, distraught mama, and exhausted defender at a time. 

Today, let’s move our focus from the piles of rubble to the pervading peace and provision poured out in so many ways.  If we seek Him first, He’ll take care of all the rest.

Here’s a prayer guide for Ukraine and a few blog posts you might also enjoy: 

Prayer guide for Ukraine

Beautiful Redemption

Repentance and Generosity

Today, choose peace:

today's encouragement

If you feel torn, frustrated, confused, angry, and heartbroken about the devastation in Ukraine, we get it. If images of refugees desperate to make their way out of cities reduced to piles of rubble break your heart, we’re right there with you. Evil is real, ugly, and mean and it forces us to grapple with the big questions of life. Keep reading, though, because we have encouragement for today.

Where is God in all these atrocities?

He’s right there. We see him in the gentle hands of volunteers greeting refugees as they stumble across the border. In the generosity of people on the other side of the world sending funds to purchase basic supplies for those who have lost everything. God is evident in the millions of people on their knees, on their faces, praying with all their might.

Why does He allow war?

God allows us the free will to choose our actions. We decide if they will be godly or wicked actions. He may not like our decisions, but God allows us the choice we make, knowing there will be consequences and they will sometimes be hurtful to others.

He is present and active both in peacetime and in war. Nothing in the last few decades has forced us to our knees more than the war in Ukraine. God didn’t cause this war but He has used it to draw us back to Him in a deeper way. He’s brought comfort and peace to mothers running for their lives with their children while their husbands stay behind to fight. God positioned relief organizations close enough to the border to be there when the first desperate people made their way across. He’s there.

Why can’t we have peace?

Peace is an internal attribute and cannot be conveyed by an executive edict or a legislative decision. Peace comes from the firm assurance in the truth of God’s Word and the faithfulness of His promises…

Thanks for sharing some of your time with Today’s Encouragement. We’re glad you’re here.

Click on these links to read more about the Promises of God and How to Trust God in Hard Times

Encouragement for Today:

encouragement for today

When our wisdom and our plans fail, God remains. Sovereign. True. Faithful. The turning point often comes when we finally reach the place of desperation and surrender. Those I’m-not-in-charge-but-God-is places lift the burden of responsibility for a problem too big for us to solve. Often, they’re the beginning of the solution we hoped to find in our own resources because we come to the end of ourselves and cry out, “Not my will, but Yours be done, O God.”

In what areas are you desperate for relief? Maybe It’s time to pray the prayer that never fails…”Your will and your way, O God.”

Thanks for stopping by Today’s Encouragement. You might also want to read: How to Trust God in Hard Times

What Does He Must Increase and I Must Decrease Mean?

How to Have a Blessed Life

Today’s Scripture Encouragement:

today's scripture encouragement

Hospitality to strangers. It sounds hard (and maybe outside our comfort zones) but many in Eastern Europe are showing us the beauty of hospitality. As mothers and children escape the war in Ukraine with little more than the clothes on their backs, we’ve watched with amazement as citizens of surrounding countries welcome them in, give them food and shelter, and either help them to their next destination or help them settle where they’ve landed. We’ve seen open-hearted love in action, and it’s a beautiful sight.”Do not neglect to show” might also be said: “do it and don’t stop.” Soon, these same refugees will need more permanent housing, jobs, and community. Rebuilding Ukraine will take years, if not decades. The refugees will need to build new lives in their new locations. May they be as welcome a year from now as they are today.

We have to wonder…would we be as welcoming as those in Eastern Europe have been? Would we open our homes with unconditional hospitality and love? Based on our verse for today, Hebrews 13:2, we also wonder…has our lack of hospitality in the past caused us to miss entertaining angels?

 How can we show hospitality to a stranger today? What do you think? You can use our contact page to send us your thoughts. We’d love to hear from you… 

Today’s Encouragement:today's encouragement

May your weekend be filled with hope, joy, and peace as well as confidence in the God who hears and answers our prayers. 

If you need a little extra hope today, here are a couple of blogs to help:

Daffodils: Harbingers of Hope

Hope: God With Us

When the Hand of God Restored My Hope

Encouragement for today:encouragement for today

We’re enjoying beautiful spring weather this week (and we should) but let’s not forget those mothers, children, and elderly 5,000 miles away who flee for their lives as bullets fly and bombs fall. Pray, too, for the husbands and fathers who remain behind.

While you’re here, check out this post: How to Trust God in Hard Times

Seven Truths You Need to Survive Hard Times

Encouraging Scripture for today:encouraging scripture for today

As bombs fall, refugees flee, and people suffer throughout Eastern Europe and all over the world, let us not forget this truth: Prayer IS doing something and it makes a bigger difference than we will know this side of eternity. Please continue to lift up all those In harm’s way and who are suffering horrors they never imagined were possible.

We’re glad you stopped by Today’s Encouragement. Check this out while you’re here:
How to Wrestle With God When the Answer to Your Prayer is Delayed

Today’s Encouragement:today's encouragement

Yesterday was our quarterly day of solitude. Completely unplugged and still. We took a step back, read Scripture, pondered, prayed, and pondered some more. Repented a bit. Hiked a little. Watched the lake. Snuggled pups. There’s great strength in silence, as well as great peace. If you don’t have an intentional day of solitude, we encourage you to schedule one soon. We found balm for our troubled heart and rest for our soul.

Having trouble being still? These posts may help:

What Four Day of Digital Silence Taught Me About Myself

Four Reasons We Should Honor Sabbath Rest

Today’s Encouragement:today's encouragement

“The JOY of the Lord is your strength…” Nehemiah spoke these words to people who heard the law for the first time, saw their sin as God saw it, and went face down on the ground, tears of repentance muddy in the dust.
The joy of the Lord is our strength and it comes from a right relationship with the Lord, regardless of the circumstances we face.
Join us as we pray for those who suffer, mourn, and struggle today. May they find a bit of God’s joy in the midst of their loss.
 

Encouragement for Today:encouragement for today

Breathtakingly beautiful spring days remind us to look up and see the glory of God…to remember it even when the sky is gray and filled with clouds. We’re holding to the truth we know today, even though loss, grief, war, and fear fill our world and clouds fill the skies. God Is good and His glory fills the earth. We’re praying He reveals His glory in recognizable ways today.

When times are hard, it’s helpful to remember this truth: God keeps His promises. Here’s a post to check out:

The Promises of God Fulfilled

Encouraging Scripture for today:encouraging scripture for today

“Those who mourn will be comforted.” We’re clinging to that promise right now because our world is filled with mourning.
Wars are horrific not merely because of the guns, tanks, and bullets involved, nor only because of the physical injuries. Wars leave soul-deep wounds in those who experience It first-hand, especially the children. Those little ones who heard explosions, saw the destruction of their homeland, and experienced the fear of a desperate escape with nothing but what they and their families could carry now suffer the wounds of this trauma. Nightmares, fear at unexpected noises, grief for all they’ve lost, hopelessness for the future. They grieve, as do their mothers beside them and the fathers/husbands left behind. Still, they fight for their survival, even as they mourn.
Please join us as we pray for the comfort only God can give, and the deep healing only He can bring, for those little ones and their families so devastated by the war in Ukraine. 
Need powerful prayer help? Check our our Scripture prayer guide for Ukraine and Eastern Europe here:

Today’s Encouragement:today's encouragement

“Blessed are the poor in spirit for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.” We wondered what it means to be poor in spirit, so maybe you did, too.

The Message paraphrase puts it in easy-to-understand language. “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you, there is more of God and His rule.” (Matthew 5:3 MSG) Less of me, more of Him. It’s a game-changing strategy for living our faith out loud.

May we live as those who understand one basic truth. When God is all you have, you soon find He is all you need. Today, join us as we strive to have more Jesus in our words, our actions, our thoughts. Less me and more Jesus. It’s a good way to start the day.

Check out these blog posts about how God provided in an “end of the rope” moment:

Miracles Still Happen: Miracle in the Middle Drawer

Miracles Still Happen: The $100 Miracle

Encouragement for today:encouragement for today

If God’s gentleness displayed to us and His gentleness in us makes us great, perhaps greatness is truly evident only in gentleness. We’re praying today’s inspirational quote will help you (and us) as we seek and attempt to display the gentleness of God today.

Encouraging Scripture for today:encouraging Scripture for today

We serve a prayer-answering God. Let’s pray like we believe it. 

How to Pray Scripture for Ukraine and Eastern Europe

Today’s Encouragement:today's encouragement

No matter the circumstance, whether want or plenty, good times or hard, we can rejoice, pray, and give thanks, not because we are unrealistic but because our reality is rooted In the One who holds the heavens and the earth in His loving, no-slip grip.

Check out our Prayer Resource Center for more help with praying powerful prayers.

Encouragement for today:encouragement for today

Do you find praying without ceasing harder than expected? We get it. Let’s take hope in our daily Scripture quote from Psalm 30:5 today. Even the worst trial is temporary. The morning will come again, and along with it, joy. Let’s keep praying for the people of Ukraine and those who are helping them. Prayer may seem a mighty small offering, but remember the One to whom we pray. Pray IS doing something and it makes a bigger difference than we can yet see.

Encouraging Scripture for Today:encouraging scripture for today

Let us not grow weary In prayer and support for those who are suffering and in such danger as well as for those who are opening their hearts and homes to strangers in need…

What Does God is Love Mean…

Today’s Encouragement:today's encouragement

As current events escalate from bad to worse, we find ourselves hungry for daily inspirational quotes to cling to throughout the day. Today’s verse from Romans 8 gives us great hope. Please join us as we continue to lift up the people and the nation of Ukraine to the only One who can save them.

Encouragement for today:encouragement for today

As events unfold in Ukraine, daily Scripture quotes can help us focus our attention on God’s promises and direct our prayers. Ephesians 3:20 reminds us God can do more than we can ask or think. This truth prompts us to pray big, expect big, and rejoice in our God who does more than we can imagine. Why pray a little prayer when we can pray big?

How to Pray Scripture For Ukraine

Prayer IS doing something:encouraging scripture for today

As we continue to pray for Ukraine and peace in Eastern Europe, we wait with anticipation for God to move. Ephesians 3:16 reminds us that prayer is essential in support of our brothers and sisters on the front lines. Prayer IS doing something, so pray big, friends.

Thanks for stopping by Today’s Encouragement. Check back weekdays for new devotionals and encouragement. We’re glad you’re here and have a twice- a-month e-newsletter with exclusive stories, freebies, and more. You can sign up HERE.

Encouragement for Today:encouragement for today

Here’s a strong bit of encouragement for today. No matter how helpless we feel, prayer IS doing something. Here’s a prayer guide with suggestions for how to use powerful Scripture to pray for Ukraine and Eastern Europe.  LINK TO PRAYER GUIDE

Today’s Encouragement:today's encouragement

Remember this today: His perfect love casts out fear. No matter what’s happening in the world today, He is still in control. Want to know more about God’s love? Click here: What Does God Is Love Mean?

Encouraging Scripture for Today:encouraging scripture for today

Are you worn out and feel weary down to your bones? There’s hope and help in our inspirational quote of the day. “Come to Me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy, and my burden is light.” Matthew 11:28-30

You are loved:encouragement for today

Today’s inspirational quote of the day comes with good news for everyone. You are loved, friends. Fully and eternally loved. Want to know more about God’s love for you? Click here to read “What Does God is Love Mean?”

Today’s Encouragement:

today's encouragement
love one another

We’re a little obsessed with posts about love this month, so here’s another one. “It’s not enough to love a little…” Love big.

We’re writing about love, too. Specifically God’s love. Check out this blog post: What does God Is love mean?