From the Manger to the Cross: Finding True Identity

There is a deep love for you and me and a God who sent His Son to earth as a tiny baby so we could understand it. In seeking His face from the manger to the cross, we can understand our true identity.

{Guest Post at www.LoriSchumaker.com}

I looked into those precious baby blue eyes. They seemed to peer right into my soul. We had just come home from the hospital, and I was having my first few moments alone with my sweet baby girl. I just couldn’t quit looking into her face, and as her eyes were searching mine, they seemed to be looking straight into my soul. I felt something I had never felt before, a love deeper than I had ever known, something that cannot be put into words. As I rocked her back and forth, I remember wondering at a love like that. It came to me at that moment, just a little whisp of a thought that flickered through my mind, “This must be how God loves me. I understand it better now.”

That was over 20 years ago. In most of those 20 years as I raced through the responsibilities of being a mother and wife in those child-raising years, the joy and wonder of the kind of love that God wanted me to understand became dulled until I could barely see it.

But one day I heard the Lord calling me back…..

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Give Hope to the Hurting – Share Your Scars

Your story has a purpose, and sharing it will make a difference in ways you can not imagine! Click through to find courage and hope for you and others in a story only you can tell!

{Guest Post by Lori Schumaker}

The other night I sat across the table of a group of women. Remarkable women.

All beautiful and all with scars.

These are real everyday kind of women. The kind that smile and give you hugs when you see them. The kind that laugh at the funny stuff, shake their heads at the nonsense, sit with a friend in need, and love their people like crazy. They are also the kind that push themselves each day, run late, miss deadlines, yell at their kids, get irritated behind the wheel, and cry.

Real everyday kind of women.

Each of them have a story uniquely theirs. In each there is much good, yet in each there is pain.

Pain

… from loss and from gain.

… from lack and from abundance.

Pain that comes simply from the fallout of the sin and brokenness of our world.

Each has a story and each has hope.

*Click below to read more of this guest post by Lori Schumaker. Find hope and purpose in your own story!!!

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A New Kind of Peace

There’s a peace waiting just for you. It’s so full and rich and beyond what you can imagine. Join me today to find out more.

I sat in the stillness of the early morning with a new kind of peace. It came from deep inside, quiet, strong and sure.

It was a long time coming, this new kind of peace. It had always been there waiting for me, but every time it tried to come out of its hiding place, it was beaten back into the recesses of my heart by an enemy bent on blinding me to it.

My new kind of peace was strong though. It was patient and knew how to wait for me. My new kind of peace never gave up and was steady, not changing with the ebb and flow of my emotions. My new kind of peace understood me better than I understood myself. And it accepted the other one and felt their pain. My new kind of peace was not mine at all. It was His.

It was all about my identity.

Over the years I had found my identity in all sorts of things, good grades, awards and activities, my jobs, my relationships, being a wife and mother, and sadly, even in my mistakes and failures. The ups and downs associated with any of those things tended to dictate my level of peace and happiness. The truth was, the messiness of the ebb and flow of my emotions left me feeling at a loss most of the time. And very much far away from the peace I was seeking.

But that fact was conveniently folded away like an unnecessary piece of paperwork, tucked away into a sliver of a place where my heart could not dwell on it but always felt its presence. I didn’t want anyone to know. And it weighed on me.

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A Grace that Defines

Perfectionism can make it hard to receive His grace, and this issue holds us back in ways we often don’t see. Read to find out more.

We’ve been talking about grace for the past few weeks.

• We’ve talked about how God’s grace was available for us before the foundation of the world.
• We’ve talked about how God gives us grace each day in just the right amount for what we need for that particular day.
• And we’ve talked about how grace sets us free.

Today we’ll continue or conversations about grace by looking at an insight that might help us, especially if we struggle with perfectionism.

A huge issue in perfectionism is understanding God’s grace. Our perfectionism can make it hard to receive His grace, and this issue holds us back in ways we often don’t see. Even if we do not struggle with perfectionism, this grace issue is one that many of us face at one time or another in our lives.

There can be many reasons why we find it hard to receive God’s grace, but one particular hindrance to receiving grace is the issue of our own expectations.

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A Grace that Sets You Free

There is a grace that will set you free. It’s a gift waiting for you. Read more here about what the Bible tells us about that freedom. {Free printable bookmark!}

Freedom. It’s a powerful word. It is a gift given through the most costly of circumstances.

When I think of freedom, I think of God’s grace. It’s a deep, deep love, wrapped up in a gift created for each one of us. If we will reach out and take that gift and experience the freedoms wrapped up inside it, we can move forward into a better place.

Here is what grace can do.

Read more by clicking below and find a {FREE PRINTABLE BOOKMARK} too!

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A Grace Just for You

When discouragement strikes, remember God’s grace. It’s a gift created with you in mind. It’s just enough at just the right time. Find out more here!

But to each one of us grace was given according to the measure of Christ’s gift. Ephesians 4:7 (NKJV)

It had been a rough day. I was tired, the house was dirty, and I needed to figure out what to fix for supper. My two little children were still very young and dependent on me, and I felt like I didn’t have what it took to be a good mother to them. I was upset about other things that have since left my memory and the whirlwind of discouraging thoughts I was having felt like more than I could handle.

Have you ever had a day like that? When discouragement strikes, remember God’s grace. It’s a gift created with you in mind. It’s just enough at just the right time. Find out more here!

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A Grace that Sees

Sometimes we feel unseen and the truth of how we feel inside is hidden from others. But there is a grace that sees and a grace that understands. It comes straight from the heart of God. Join me here today as we begin a series of discussions that will take a look at the depth of the love that God has for us.

I see you.

• I see you when you wear a bright smile, but you feel a strain of sadness inside.
• I see you when your life is full of good things, but you feel empty.
• I see you when your activities paint a picture of confidence, but insecurity fills you inside.
• I see you when you feel like you never measure up and when you feel invisible and inadequate.

These things are hidden in the fast pace of your everyday life. Sometimes you can ignore them because you always keep going. You always keep giving. You always keep doing more.

But other times, it wells up and you feel overwhelmed. It leaves you feeling utterly exhausted.

Yet, in the midst of all of that, there are truths that you know.

• You know that God is kind and merciful and full of love.
• You know the Bible contains the truth, and you believe what it says.
• You love Jesus, and you know God as your Father. Most importantly, you know that because of all Jesus has done for you there is forgiveness and new life.

But sometimes it’s hard to feel the security those things should to bring you. To understand this sort of love deep down inside takes something you just haven’t quite been able to grab on to yet.

I see these things because I’ve been there, too. Even in a life surrounded by people that loved and cared for me, a life full of good things and God’s provisions, I still felt all of the things I just described to you.

So I want you to know I see you, and grace does too.

And because of His grace, there are answers for you.

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Wildflowers in the Garden – Guest Interview

oin me as I take a walk with my friend, Sarah, in the garden. We’ll talk about spiritual lessons to be learned from the wildflowers.

There are a lot of lessons to be learned in a garden, even in the gardens that you don’t plant yourself.

I hope you will join me today as I meet up with my friend, Sarah Geringer. Sarah is doing a series on her blog called Meeting God in the Garden. Sarah and I both love flower gardens, and today the two of us will be talking together about spiritual lessons we can take away from a walk in a wildflower garden. You can find links to her website where you can read the interview when you click READ MORE below!

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What God Thinks About You Changes Everything! {free printables!}

What we think about ourselves is so very important! It is absolutely essential that we realize the truth about who we are. And because of that, the enemy is going to try to feed us lies and attack us in many different ways to mislead us about our identity, value and worth. But friends, we are so very, very loved and valuable to God. If we can get that truth deep into our hearts where we can begin to believe it, that changes everything! Read more to find out how He feels about YOU! {Free Printables!}

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