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The perfect guide to peace

21 Apr

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

The perfect guide to peace.

Reblogged April 21, 2018

 

Guide to the Appalachian Trail

I settled in the back seat of an Uber car the other day, folded my white cane, and stuffed it in my bag. As I usually do, I began a conversation with the driver.

As expected, we became friends. That’s because I ask questions that prompt them to share and keep sharing about their lives.

This last driver told me about his brother who wrote the guide for the Appalachian Hike. I learned this adventure can take from 5 months to 10 years to complete. Gulp.

But with his guide’s help, the hike is doable. In it, he details all the challenges, the best gear to bring, places to avoid, potential dangers, list of easier routes, best places to eat, how to find laundry mats, lodging, etc.

Whew! Sounds like more than I can handle.

The long hike called life.

But whether we like it or not, we’re all indeed, on a long hike called life. And the path is often filled with challenges, unexpected turns and obstacles.

The good news is that much like the guide for the Appalachian trail hike, God wrote the guide for us to follow and reach the destination called peace.

Not sure where you are on that hike? Or maybe peace is a foreign word in the midst of this world’s chaos?

Good news; the guide to find that peace is free, available and in the language any hiker can understand.

Let’s conquer obstacles.

With that guide in our hearts, we’re ready to conquer obstacles of any kind.

  1. We need a companion. We need encouragement. We need a comforting word. And desperately need someone to tell us that all will be okay. That’s why God’s peace comes through this truth: “For he will deliver the needy who cry out, the afflicted that have no one to help. He will take pity on the weak and the needy and save the needy from death.” (Psalm 72:12-13)
  2. Oh, those difficult and unexpected turns of heartache that barge in. Most are out of our control. Some crash in because of other’s sins. Yet, God knows the oppression against our soul, and right when we cry out for help “He will rescue them from oppression and violence, for precious is their blood in his sight. The LORD is a refuge for the oppressed, a stronghold in times of trouble.” (Psalm 9:9)
  3. Fear visits. We fear we won’t make it to the finish line. When we grumble about the sorry turn of events and the unfairness, when we long for His presence, peace fills us because “God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore, we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.” (Psalm 46:1-3)
  4. Gloom hovers over. When no one understands. When most cannot help, peace conquers sadness. “You are sad, I’m listening, and I will save you from your troubles.” (Psalm 34:6)
  5. Helplessness invades. But God offers His peace through this invitation: “hen clouds of grief try to overtake you, ask Me for consolation and relief. Cry out to Me in your times of trouble, and I will save you from your distress.” (paraphrased from Psalm 107:19).
  6. Frustration won’t let up. When we walk in circles around the same mountain of adversity, tears blur our vision; the path looks crooked and rough. That’s when His guide instructs to “Trust in the LORD with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your paths straight.” (Proverbs 3:5-6)

Better days are coming, hang on to the guide; The One who wrote it is with you. He never abandons or leaves you. And with Him by your side, there is no fear. There’s only strength for each step. Reassurance for every turn. And He ushers the peace that carries power.

Let’s pray.

Father, how often, with a restless heart, I’ve embarked on the hike with my own plans and my own map in hand. Forgive my prideful ways and grant me a heart of humility. Show me how to follow your steps, to allow your guide to lead me. And find peace as I learn to walk on the path you prepared for me. In Jesus name.

What guide are you using for your hike today?

Janet

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Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

 

Source https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/the-perfect-guide-to-peace.html

What you need to do in order to live secure.

14 Apr

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

What you need to do in order to live secure.
Reblogged with permission 4/14/18
Mom held a broken piece of metal in the air. “Look at this,” she said.

She and my Dad had gone to get their car washed. And when they returned home, they found the car door handle had been broken. Those responsible, rather than admit their guilt, had tossed the piece on the driver’s seat.

With broken piece in hand, we headed back to the car wash.

“We have to view the video cameras,” the manager said. “Unless we see it, we can’t’ take responsibility.

End of story. They glued the piece back. Cameras come in handy, don’t they?

Real Life

But in real life, we’re all also watched, closely and constantly. He who watches us is the loving Father, with care in His hart, compassion in his approach and forgiveness in His plan.

I’m glad He’s watching, aren’t you? This way, we don’t have to remind him of how hard the journey is. Or we don’t have to point out the areas that need fixing. He already knows, and as He closely watches us in action, we can rest and declare out loud that He has this.

And since He has all under control, working to bring the perfect solution, we, in our busy world, in our flawed ways, have an important task–to pay attention to our heart. What does it contain? Our heart is what holds the emotions that can either break us or the emotions that keep us running the race to victory.

5 Coaching Points

And since that race run is fueled by our heart’s content, here are five coaching points right from God’s Word:

  1. Empty your heart of sin, or wipe out junk that doesn’t please God or resentment from the past because “Blessed are the pure in heart, for they will see God” (Matthew 5:19).
  2. Let go the material stuff, the superficial longings and desires of what you think your life should be. Instead, “…store up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where moth and rust do not destroy, and where thieves do not break in and steal. For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also” (Matthew 6:20-21).
  3. Once dark emotions are tossed out, fill your heart with life-giving praises: “I will praise you, O LORD, with all my heart; I will tell of all your wonders. I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing praise to your name, O Most High” (Psalm 9:1-2).
  4. Though the darkest valley might cover your security, can you be bold enough to echo these words? “But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing to the LORD, for he has been good to me” (Psalm13:5-6).
  5. With unwavering faith, fill your heart with God’s truth and speak His promises upon your life. “LORD, you have assigned me my portion and my cup; you have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance” (Psalm: 16:5-6).

Complete security comes when we receive that delightful inheritance. And when our heart rejoices, the enemy retreats. When we search our heart, God speaks healing. When we guard our heart, evil flees. When we equip our heart with God’s Word, triumph is already there.

Let’s pray.

Father, thank you that right now, you’re watching my every move. You know well how often I let my heart be broken, shattered by adversity. But now I know that when it’s filled with what you tell me, my heart will not fear, my life will not be ruined. And my future will not be dim, but will be secure, hopeful and bright. In Jesus name.

Will you take time today and examine your heart?

Janet

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Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

 

Source  https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/inspiration/need-order-live-secure.html

Are You Sure You Will Go To Heaven?

31 Mar

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

Are you sure you’ll go to heaven?

Reblogged March 31, 2018

 

Class reunions are so much fun…not. “Wow, you didn’t change a bit,” I heard a friend say.

But how can one not change during decades?

Of course, we change.

But we say state the “politically correct” thing. After all, we’re reuniting with friends from our youth. Those friends that joined us in the silly antics. They shared the insecurities that we try so hard to hide. Those friends who, long ago, sparked envy, and others brought comfort.

Reuniting with them is, can we say “interesting.”

Don’t Miss This Reunion

But there is one reunion no one should want to miss. The reunion that holds the glorious life after we take our last breath. The reunion that opens the door to the place where no more tears are shed. No more pain. No more sorrow or fear.

That reunion with Jesus makes life on earth bearable, doable and possible.

But really? You might be like a friend who voiced her doubt to me recently. She said, “There are many ways to heaven. I’m a good person, I never hurt anyone intentionally and I do my best to live right.”

Hmmm…how good is good-enough? And living right is right-enough?

Did you ever ask that question? What is the level of “goodness” in a person that opens the door to heaven for eternity?

Here’s the Answer

God so longs to reunite with us. That’s a fact. But one day, He shook His head as He observed our feeble attempts to get it “right.” (My personal paraphrase.)

As you can guess, He saw that, on our own, we never could obtain that “good enough” level to gain entry to heaven. So, He did the most amazing thing. He said again that He loves us so much that He sent a Savior to save us from eternal death. He said His name would be Jesus.

There you have Him. Jesus, the Savior, the one in whom we put out hope for life eternal. For a future secure after we close our eyes for the last time. The one who resurrected and is alive. And the One, the only One who promised that when we open our eyes again, we’ll be by His side, walking on the streets of gold. Forever whole and complete, overflowing with joy.

What do you think?

Is it time to celebrate? Resurrection Sunday holds that promise: death has no power over us. Gloom has no significance. And fear has no grip.

Let’s hold on to this truth because the expectation of that reunion with Jesus should keep us dancing in celebration.

That’s precisely God’s will. And when we do His will, we find comfort in this admonishment:

Not everyone who says to me, “Lord, Lord,” will enter the kingdom of heaven, but only he who does the will of my Father who is in heaven. Many will say to me on that day, “Lord, Lord, did we not prophesy in your name, and in your name drive out demons and perform many miracles?” Then I will tell them plainly, “I never knew you. Away from me, you evildoers!” (Matthew 7:21-22)

My Prayer for You

I pray that you, friend, haven’t gotten lost in the busyness of life. And distracted, you’ve been lured by other stuff that you forgot about “that day.”

Instead, I hope that you’ve chosen to open your heart to Jesus and invited Him in. Then you can be certain that as you go through life on earth, you’ll be secure. And in the next life, the sweet reunion with Jesus happens.

Until that day, store this promise in your heart: “Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am” (John 14:1-3).

The guest list to enter that House has specific names …is yours included?

Let’s pray.

Father, I don’t know the number of my days; show me how to do your will and to know you through your Word. Grant me wisdom and diligence to fill my heart with truth from Scripture and fill my days with your instructions. I ask for the freedom to live a life rich with the security that heaven is guaranteed for me. In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

Questions to Ask Yourself

  • What has kept you from knowing Jesus in a personal way?
  • Where will your courage come from to choose to follow Jesus as He instructs?
  • What security do you have that heaven awaits you?

Janet

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Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

SOURCE: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/direction/are-you-sure-youll-go-to-heaven.html

Seven truths to hang on to when you feel attacked.

17 Mar

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

Why Does Life Have To Be Hard?

10 Mar

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

Why does life have to be so hard?

Reblogged March 10, 2018

During my recent visit to West Palm Beach, God had a wonderful surprise waiting for me. The lovely couple who hosted me quickly became my close friends. I learned an interesting fact about them.

“His closet is meticulously organized,” my friend said about her husband. “All hangers are spaced evenly and all is perfectly placed in the exact spot.

“And how about yours?” I asked her.

She confessed hers wasn’t quite the same. But that’s okay. In all relationships, each one brings unique habits, methods, approaches, and attitudes. But more importantly, each has a specific task assigned to them.

The same is true with God.

The same in our relationship with God. He has His role, and we have ours.

But do you think I learned that lesson well? Not yet. Lately, as my family faces another dark valley, that lesson had to be drilled in me. Though we face struggles, hardships and heartache, that’s ours to endure.

But God has His own role. In the midst of suffering, He has the serenity to calm our heart. In our struggles, He has the victory. In our heartache, He has the healing.

Here are five reasons why.

  1. He promised that what we face will be temporary. What we fear will be defeated and what we need to do is not fret, worry, be anxious…but simply be still. “Moses answered the people, ‘Do not be afraid. Stand firm and you will see the deliverance the LORD will bring you today. The Egyptians you see today you will never see again. The LORD will fight for you; you need only to be still’” (Exodus 14:13).
  2. He has a place for us where we can count on His favor. The favor that is enough for each moment. His favor to conquer all. And the favor that completely surrounds us. “For surely, O LORD, you bless the righteous; you surround them with your favor as with a shield” (Psalm 5:4).
  3. He provides the refuge. His protection is firm, constant and available. In fact, He said that we must dare to rejoice as we’re nestled under His refuge. “But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you” (Psalm 4:11).
  4. He knows the army of negative thoughts that attack. He sees the enemies of our soul that taunt us. And He’s aware of the weapons lifted against us. But He promised they have no power or means to harm us. He reassures: “No weapon forged against you will prevail…” (Isaiah 54:17).
  5. And finally, He repeats, that yes, He will be the one to help us, to make us strong, to hold us up. And He commands us not to fear. “Fear not; for I am with you: be not dismayed; for I am your God: I will strengthen you; yes, I will help you; yes, I will uphold you with my righteous right hand” (Isaiah 41:10).

Victory is sure.

When these promises wash our soul, the troubles seem smaller. The battle has an end. The victory is sure and the journey is bearable.

How about you? What battle are you facing? Are you giving the Lord room to fight for you? Are you counting on His victory? Are you anticipating triumph?

Janet

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

Looking for a speaker for your upcoming event? A great speaker makes the difference between a so-so event and one that shines with impact. I invite you to view one of my two-minute videos HERE.

What an honor it would be for me to delight those who attend your women’s gatherings, retreats, church congregation or corporate events. Here are some of the TOPICS you can choose from.

 

Source: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/why-does-life-have-to-be-so-hard.html

How do I calm my heartache?

17 Feb

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

 

 

How do I calm my heartache?

Reblogged February 17, 2018

Stop crying. That’s enough! It wasn’t that bad. Stop it now.

These are words others used to calm my little granddaughter’s cries after a scraped knee.

Have a Different Approach

Being the wise grandma I try to be, I have a different approach. I scoop her up in my arms. Hold her tight, and keep her close. Without saying a word, I rock her gently back and forth.  I don’t let her go. Her sobs subside. I still hold her tight, while back and forth I rock her. Her body relaxes and she settles in my arms, content as can be.

How do I know that approach works?

God Holds us Close

God did the same with me. When an unthinkable tragedy broke my heart and shook my world, He held me close. He didn’t give instructions. He just held me close. He didn’t command I stop my cries. He just held me close. Soon, His promises swept over me like a wave of warm water in a cold day.

Should more scrapes to my heart occur, I know to be still and let Him hold me because “The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18 ).

Let’s Pray

Father, how loving of you to care for us in such a tender way. Your comfort has no match. And your power to heal holds no conditions. When heartache invades my life, knowing You’re ready to hold me tight shines reassurance in me. In Jesus’ name, amen.

  • What hurts in you today?
  • How long will you hold on to the pain?
  • What will it take for you to be still and allow Him to hold you close and calm your heart?

Janet

Did you know I wrote a book filled with words of encouragement, uplifting thoughts and illustrations of real-life triumph to empower you? Its title, Trials of Today, Treasures for Tomorrow: Overcoming Adversities in Life. You can get it HERE.

CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

 

Source: http://janetperezeckles.com/blog/inspiration/how-do-i-calm-my-heartache.html

Three secrets to finding strength.

10 Feb

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

His Way

 

 

Three secrets to finding strength.

Reblogged February 10, 2018 with permission

 

All banks closed. too bad. Airport shut down, that’s life. No water or electricity, sorry!

That was our hometown in Bolivia each time a revolution exploded. Not far from us, only blocks from where we lived. Now, they are but ugly memories from the past.

 

No Way Back

But recently, my good friend was in the middle of a similar political unrest. Her mission trip ended. Airports closed. Electricity and public services minimized. And she had no way to get back home to the States.

Until, a miracle shone through. A travel agency found one flight available. She boarded the plane and the crowded aircraft had a surprise for her. They bumped her to first class. She’s now home safe and sound.

Isn’t that like life? We’re going through each day, minding our own business. Being good, not bothering anyone. When suddenly a revolution of anxiety explodes in us—a diagnosis, a financial setback, a devastating situation, a chronic illness—all threaten to shut down the airport to peace. The bank where we find strength and energy is closed. And the electricity supply that had brightened our days is now off.

Three Secrets

But when we least expect it, God has a flight waiting. One seat available in the first class of His love. Here are three secrets to find strength until we board that plane:

  1. Know that it’s not us but He who pilots the aircraft that takes us to healing, solutions, and answers
  2. Accept the situation with gratitude as He is aware of every need. He collects every tear. He understands every sigh. And pours the grace we need for each moment.
  3. Turn a deaf ear to the enemy’s lies that whisper hopelessness, defeat and gloom. His lies are shut down with God’s promises that have resonated with hope through the ages.

So if you find yourself I the middle of a revolution of fear, know the Lord’s wings will cover you. You’ll not be defeated, fall or sink because “…they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint” (Isaiah 40:31).

Let’s Pray

Father, I confess I feel defeated in face of tough moments, unforeseen setbacks and unexpected heartache. But now I know I can wait upon you. I can wait in expectation that you will grant me the strength I don’t have. Hold me when I want to faint. And renew my strength to face each moment. In Jesus’s name, amen.

  • What struggles keep you in the revolution of fear?
  • What keeps you from believing He has the flight of rescue waiting for you?
  • What will you do while you wait for God to renew your strength?

Hey friends, if you want more inspiration drawn from my latest book, Simply Salsa: Dancing Without Fear at God’s Fiesta, come visit me at: www.janetperezeckles.com.

Janet

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CLICK HERE for a one-minute inspirational video.

 

Hi friends, Janet is a gifted speaker who uses humor as she shares a message of hope and joy. She is a frequent speaker at women’s gatherings, retreats, church congregation or corporate events. Here are some of the TOPICS you can choose from.  If you are looking for a speaker for your Spring retreat, check out this video HERE.  You can also visit her home page. Janet Perez Eckles.comOnisha

-Source: Three secrets to finding strength. ~ Janet Perez Eckles

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