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Faith, Intentional Living

Are We Really Making Room for Jesus?


In this season I find that I am in a constant battle, a battle within myself I find that my need to be productive is at war with my need to simply be. When was the last time that you allowed yourself to just be, no restrictions, no demands, but just to be and to be with God. I am being reminded now, once again of lessons I learned in my depression. There is an important element of work and play, a balance to be maintained in every life. It is essential that we become intentional in making time for rest and recreation. More importantly we must be intentional about sitting quietly before God. We have to approach God out of love and reverence. For no agenda, no reason, simply to sit and rest in His presence and think on things of life.


Today is the day for all that I have been working on to be revealed.  Join me over at the New site for the rest of this post, and an Amazing giveaway!!!!  Please be sure to sign up to follow the blog there as there will be no new posts on this blog.  If you don’t sign up, you may miss some really good posts.


In Christ

In Christ I Am Accepted



So I wrote the other day about the importance of knowing your identity in Christ.  A verse that is one of my favorites and reminds me about the importance of how we think is Romans 12:1-2.  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. And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.

As you can see it is important that we constantly renew our minds according to the word.  The first thing we need to know about our identity in Christ is that we are accepted. Some verses that show us this are

Romans 15:7

Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God.

Romans 15:15-16

Yet I have written you quite boldly on some points to remind you of them again, because of the grace God gave me 16 to be a minister of Christ Jesus to the Gentiles. He gave me the priestly duty of proclaiming the gospel of God, so that the Gentiles might become an offering acceptable to God, sanctified by the Holy Spirit.

Christ has accepted us and because of that we should be able to accept ourselves and others.  There is another verse that says to love your neighbors as yourself which goes along with this.  When we can’t accept ourselves, then we can’t love ourselves that in turn hinders us from loving others as God calls for us to do.

If a Holy and Perfect God can call us acceptable in His sight because of Christ, then who are we to argue?  God can not lie, and He does not change.  When Christ died for our sins He made us acceptable to God.  So then should we not begin to walk in this truth?

Practical Actions

Now that we know this is true, how do we walk it out?  Well for starters when the lies of the Devil began to ring in our ears that we are rejected we need to acknowledge that perhaps the world does reject us, but God never does.  We need to confront the lies with scripture truths about ourselves.  I have some verses that someone had personalized that I use for this…..however you can personalize any verses you may enjoy.  You can insert your name on the blanks.

I anointed you,                                , set My seal of ownership on you, and put My spirit in your heart as a deposit, guaranteeing what is to come.  2 Corinthians 1:21b-22

Since you are in Christ,                             , I have made you an heir of all My promises. Galatians 3:29

Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate you,                           , from my love that is in Christ Jesus.  Romans 8:39

Because of Jesus, you,                                 , are free from all condemnation.  Romans 8:1

My plans for your future,                               , is filled with hope.  Jeremiah 29:11

I will take hold of your hand,                                  to keep you from falling.  Psalm 37:24

My power will rest on you,                                      , when you are weak.  2 Corinthians 12:9

In Christ, you, are a new creation,                               .  The old has gone, the new is here!  2 Corinthians 5:17

Cast all your worries on Me,                             , for I really care about you.  1 Peter 5:7

It is for freedom that Christ has set you free,                          .  Do not let yourself be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.  Galatians 5:1

My love for you,                                    , will persevere through every situation.  Corinthians 13:4-7

Not one of my promises will ever fail you,                               Joshua 23:14

For you are My handiwork,                               , created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which I prepared in advance for you to do.  Ephesians 2:10

Trust in me will all your heart,                                  , and I will guide you.  Proverbs 3:5-6

I will give you peace,                                 , at all times and in every situation  2 Thessalonians 3:16

Now in Christ Jesus you,                            , who once was far away have been brought near by the blood of Christ.  Ephesians 2:13

Call on me,                                   , when you are in trouble and I will rescue you  Psalm 91:15

My peace which transcends all understanding, will guard your heart and your mind in Christ Jesus,                        .  Philippians 4:7

I will keep you safe,                                  , because no one can snatch you out of My hand.  John 10:29

I will meet all your needs,                       , according to the riches of My glory in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:19

You can know and depend on the love that I have for you,                                     .  John 4:16

You can trust in Me,                                     , for I will never forsake you.  Psalm 9:10

Though the mountains vanish, My unending love will never leave you,                                  .  Isaiah 54:10

My grace was poured out on you abundantly,                                   , along with the faith and love that are in Christ Jesus.  1 Timothy 1:14

I see all your hardships,                                         , and I care about your suffering.  Psalm 31:7

I will protect and carry you,                                    , all the days of your life.  Isaiah 46:4

I made you alive in Jesus simply because I love you,                                         .  Ephesians 2:4-5

You can know and depend on the love that I have for you,                                 .  1 John 4:16

Reaching Out

Now that we know how to apply this to our lives, I want you to do something a bit more.  It is time to reach out to others that we know may feel beat up and rejected and encourage them.  We need to share with them the truth that they are accepted also, accepted by us and by God.

Please share this post with those who may need some encouragement today.  Also I will create a printable towards the end of this series of these verses to personalize for anyone who feels like they will benefit from it. Please let me know if you find this helpful, and perhaps if I have left out something that has worked for you.

SignatureBarbie Swihart


Do You Know Who You Are In Christ?

In Christ

I have committed to be more intentional with my blogging.  Yet, it is all about Grace, right?  I will post twice a week, but I can’t promise that they will all be posted for you first thing in the morning.  I am still trying to work on doing less and allowing for my need for rest with my health concerns.  For the latest updates on that you can read here.

Who I Am in Christ

One thing that has really helped me to get to where I am today in my Christian walk has been really getting to know who I am in Christ.  Many of us have heard this saying before, but what does it really mean and how can we wrap our heads around it?  Well if you are anything like me the constant tapes that run through your head have been shaped by our circumstances and the things we have learned in this world.  If we turn to scripture it can often be hard to believe the things that God says about us, especially if we have been programmed to believe other things before we ever heard it.

So I want to take some time to discuss what the bible says we are in Christ, in hopes that perhaps it will help some of you as it has helped me to gain a revelation of this.  Does this mean that I have achieved this perfectly? Not nearly, and I often need to remind myself of these truths.  A book that helped me to begin this was Who I Am in Christ by Neil T. Anderson.  I also learned this from my own studies in the Word.

So taking a look at this lets start with Ephesians 1:3-12

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love, having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will, to the praise of the glory of His grace, by which He made us accepted in the Beloved.

In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, 10 that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him. 

And 1 Peter 2:9

But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light;

You can see that from just these verses that we are chosen, holy, blameless, adopted, accepted, royalty, a holy nation, His own.  God’s word does not lie, and yet it can often be hard to consider ourselves to be these things.  I have a list of things that we are in Christ and I am going to blog on each one in the coming days. I encourage you to join me as I blog through these.


Faith, Intentional Living, Sharing

When The New Year is Not Bright and Shiny


Sometimes the new year just doesn’t come in bright and shiny.While this is not what we hope for, this is perfectly alright. It is not a horrible thing if you do not get excited about the new year. Normally I am excited about the possibilities, but I have to admit that this year, I’m just not feeling it. Sometimes the new year, it is more of a deep breath, head down kind of thing.

There are times when the new year shows with more of your shortcomings, instead of new possibilities.  You may wonder how the world will get through another year.  How you will get through another year? Pour all your concerns out to Jesus, and then dry your eyes, take a deep and shaky breath and surrender.  It takes a lot of trust and you have to step forward one step of faith at a time.

Maybe you have no idea where you are seeking to go in the new year.  Perhaps you no longer even know what to hope for.  I get it. My only focus for 2015 is being.  This was the One Word focus that God has laid on my heart.  To be honest at this point I have no idea what this looks like.  I’m not sure what goals I will be able to make with this word.  I was trying to find someone to link up with for monthly accountability and I could not find a link-up, so an online friend suggested that I host a link-up myself and some bloggers from a group actually said they would be interested in linking up once a month. So on the 20th of every month one word will take over the blog and you will get a chance to watch everyone’s progress with their word.

Here is what I do know about my word, I am often caught up in the doing of things.  I get caught up in the busyness of life and I forget about just being who I was created by God to be.  I can get caught up in my to-do lists, and the things that others expect me to do and I forget to simply enjoy life as it was meant to be enjoyed.  So there is lots of room for growth in Being.

Traci Michele has nicely created me a button for my word.


Intentional Living

2014 Wrap Up and Talking About Vision


So I will admit that when I did not link up monthly on my word, I took away a lot of the focus.  Mission, while not being as intentional I don’t think it was a total failure.  I did manage to stay more God focused.  I started out blogging more effectively, until I started working and then got sick.  I did not really make writing a priority though. I did serve joyfully and I started reading through the books on my shelf.

Overall I was not as intentional so I decided that this year I will be finding a monthly link-up so that I am more intentional again.

I’ve done a lot of reflecting and planning for the new year.  I am going to go back to being more intentional on my posting.  That said I believe that the posting schedule I was using before posting 3 times a week will not be possible to maintain for the long haul.  I plan to cut the number of weekly posts, although I will continue to post consistently.  I appreciate that you have stayed with me and I feel like this will help me to give you higher quality content and still be able to enjoy life.  I am thinking 2 posts a week, and then only as God inspires so some weeks may be an extra post.

Very soon this site will move to the new address and there will be so many great additions to this site.  I just have to get the finishing touches on it.  I am hoping that you will enjoy the new site as much as I think you will.

RYU sig resized

Intentional Living, Sharing



One thing to know about me is that I have lots of great ideas. I’m just not always great at following through. Lately I find my ideas are getting bigger and bigger…many are more than I could ever expect to do on my own.

Some  ideas after a while get pushed aside and forgotten. Others get neglected because of my lack of time management. Then there are some that refuse to die or be diminished no matter how much I try.  These are the ideas that I find were never mine to begin with, but they are Gods ideas. Over time they come to life with the barest of efforts on my behalf. Usually just a stepping out in faith. It seems that as one thing comes to life and is finished it is lately replaced by an even bigger thing that is hard for me  to picture, except for in my wildest imagination.


I have two different book ideas. I still haven’t written the devotional book I wanted to do although I did help collaborate on Groove (paperback)(for Kindle), (For All Others).  Now with two different book ideas and one I hope to make into a free e-book for subscribers. That doesn’t even count my fictional writing.

Groove: Stories to Refresh The Way We Think and Feel about our Mental Illnesses

I never set out to write, and when I began blogging I never thought that I would ever write to be published. Yet God has allowed me to have some writing published in two different books now.  My hope is that in 2015 I will be able to make daily writing a priority in my life, and to see that writing grow.

Leading, Rest, and Waiting

God is also placing within my heart a greater pull toward leading bible studies. I have to admit this isn’t something I expected but I am excited to see what the new year will bring. At the same time there is still that sense of rest. My health problems are ongoing, and for this season I am in a forced rest. Yet I am learning anew how to be still before Jesus in a whole new way. I am learning the importance of rest and maybe I will be able to share with you in time.

I am also learning about waiting. So while things may have settled externally in my life, I find I am still growing and learning in my spirit. It has been a strange season in some ways, but I believe it will be essential for my growth.

RYU sig resized