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God is with us, always and forever.

16 Jun

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

 

 

God is with us, always and forever.

Reblogged June 16, 2018

“May I take that out of your way?”

S-L-O-W  S-L-O-W  S-L-O-W

I hate when the waitress asks that question. That means those with whom we’re having dinner have finished their meals, and it’s a sign for me to hurry. Tough to do because chances are I’m still munching away and have a half-filled plate of food still in front of me.

Why I eat so slowly is a mystery I’ll never figure out. Some tease saying it’s because I talk too much during meals. But I have tried eating in silence. It didn’t work.

I’m still the last one to finish, wa-a-a-ay after everyone has ordered dessert, cups of coffee, and run out of conversation.

I guess I can ask for a doggy bag…but they always end up in the trash.

Our friends are too polite to complain. And hubby never expresses impatience. Take that back…one day he did say he’d bring a book to read while he waits for me.

He Will Always Stick Around

But no matter what, I know he’ll stick around with me until the end. He always has and I’m confident he still will.

God is also like that. He’s with us till the end—whether we’re in the middle of a conflict, writing a book, dealing with broken relationships, or just figuring life out—He’s with us till the end.

Why?

“For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end” (Psalm 48:14).

So…if you’re wondering who’s going to stick by your side no matter what…here’s another promise for you:

“[God] In the beginning you laid the foundations of the earth, and the heavens are the work of your hands. They will perish, but you remain; they will all wear out like a garment. Like clothing you will change them and they will be discarded. But you remain the same, and your years will never end” (Psalm 102: 24-26).

Life changes, but He remains the same. People disappoint you, but His love still pulls you forward. Circumstances turn dark, but His light of hope still shines.

Let’s Pray

Father God, every one of us has felt alone at times…abandoned…without hope. But Praying you lean on Him till the end. But your Words to us through the Bible are clear: you are with us. You will be our guide to the end. May we lean on your promises to be with us always. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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.

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.

 

Source: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/god-is-with-us-always-and-forever.html

6 Steps to Bring Back Peace

9 Jun

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

 

6 Steps to Bring Back Peace

Reblogged on June 9, 2018

Very Carefully

New friends ask me, “Being blind, how do you put on your make-up?”

My answer is simple: I do it carefully.

After living with complete blindness for 33 years, I often forget my limitations. But trouble comes when getting ready to go out. I pry myself from endless tasks. At the last minute, I rush around like a crazy woman. I hop in the shower, slip on my robe and dash into my walk-in closet. Frantically, I slide hangers, looking for any outfit to wear.

How do I do this with no sight? It’s pretty simple. When I purchase an item, I store in my memory its characteristics—the texture, the shape of the neckline, buttons or length of sleeve. One light touch tells me what the item is. But when I’m in a hurry, trying to find the right outfit gets a bit tough. Not because I can’t see, but because I just have too many clothes. Way more than any blind gal should be allowed to have. The bar holding all those hangers is probably sagging from the weight.

A jammed-filled closet and a jammed-filled life.

Oh, how my jammed closet resembled my life—full of tasks of all kinds and sizes. Like a squirrel running from tree to tree, I’d dash from one task to another.

I had no choice—lots of people to please. Fueling that desire, even as a young girl, I tried to perform to win my parents’ and teachers’ approval. Later on, I wanted to please my family, my employer, and my friends. Phew! I thought that the only way to please myself was by pleasing them.

Have you been there? The pleasing craze explodes. We rush through life eager to make someone happy. And the level of stress and tension rises like the thermometer in Orlando’s summers.

So this season of our life, how about if we vow to cool off. God never meant us to live in the heat of tension. He gave one pretty refreshing directive: “Master, which is the greatest commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, you shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind” (Matthew 22:36-37).

The 6 Secrets

When life sags from the weight of countless tasks, obeying His greatest commandment is the key to peaceful success.  Early In the morning as we slide our feet into our slippers, this is what should play in our head: Loving God means receiving His peace. And when the world robs it, here are six secrets to bring it back:

  1. Inviting Him into our day.
  2. Drawing wisdom from His word to place the correct order to our priorities.
  3. Presenting Him with our to-do list for His approval.
  4. Giving thanks in advance for glitches as we know He will resolve.
  5. Invite into our day moments of silence in His presence to refuel our energy.
  6. Inhale the aroma of His reassurance for calmness.

Deviating from His ways equals burnout. But obeying His greatest commandment ushers wisdom: To arrange priorities; to press forth when fatigued; to bring clarity when confused; to be calm when overwhelmed; and to know the warmth of His love.

The love that sparks a desire to please Him. To receive His rest. And to know His peace because “It’s useless to rise early and go to bed late, and work your worried fingers to the bone. Don’t you know He enjoys giving rest to those He loves?” (Psalm 127:2, The Message Bible).

Let’s Pray

Father, the tension and stress of life are keeping me from experiencing your peace, which I so long for. I invite you into my day and look to you to bring the calmness and peace I seek. In Jesus’ name, amen.

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: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/6-steps-to-bring-back-peace.html

Three truths to hold on to when life stinks.

2 Jun

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

 

Three truths to hold on to when life stinks.

Reblogged June 2, 2018

“And you can now get mature manure,” the radio announcer said, “and you’ll have the greenest grass ever.”

Mature manure? Who ever heard of that? But as odd as its name, so was its effect.

It turns out that when you put this product on your grass, it protects it and produces a pretty nice-looking lawn.

Life can be stinky.

But don’t think for a minute that this kind of manure was limited to grass. That same material comes in by way of disappointment, sadness, self-pity, heartache, setbacks and even tragedy.

All are part of the manure of life. It stinks. It’s ugly. It’s unpleasant. And when spread over, the view isn’t pretty.

I know that first hand, trust me. When blindness set in when I was 31, my world stunk. And I sunk in the pit of smelly self-pity and discouragement. Hopelessness tried to cover me up.

Until one day, God poured grace, mercy and compassion upon my world. That’s when I knew that the mature manure of heartache produces a nice lawn of faith and strength.

Three Truths

Rather than sink in, I hung on to the rope that held three truths:

  1. In His ways, He will turn to me.
  2. In His timing, He will hear my cry.
  3. In His power, He will lift me up.

Instead of sorrow or grief, my soul sang: “I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth…” (Psalm 40:1-3).

Let’s Pray

Father, I do have the song of joy, the outlook of hope, and the eagerness to grow closer to you. In the lawn of life, I will not reject the pain or setbacks, but will know that you will use them to make my life better and richer. In Jesus’ name, amen.

  • What needs to be renewed in your life?
  • How often do you need to turn to God for help?
  • What do you need to stand on the solid rock of His Word?

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.

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 to do when facing impossibilities.

26 May

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

Reblogged May 27, 2018

 

What to do when facing impossibilities.

Memorial Day brings back memories of heroes as with gratitude, we recall their brave commitment to bring us victory.  But why do we forget the victory Christ has already won for us?

Do you remember this story?

One day the angels came to present themselves before the LORD, and Satan also came with them. The LORD said to Satan, “Where have you come from?”

Satan answered the LORD, “From roaming through the earth and going back and forth in it.” (Job 1:6-7)

Did he say the earth? Gulp. Friend, you and I are on that same earth on which he roams. And we need to watch out because:

 

“the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour” (1 Peter 5:8).

 

He’s probably licking his lips, staring at us.

And when we’re alone, seated on our bed of self-pity, surrounded by walls of gloom, lamenting our impossible situations, we become more appetizing. We’re more appealing because we’re weighed down by negativity. And we’re weakened by moments of hopelessness.

I’ve been there.

And unaware of what an inviting prey I was, I was soon to be his spiritual lunch.

The giant I faced towered over me, reminding me of my frailty, whispering I was defenseless.

That’s the place the enemy wants us, walking into defeat and deceived in thinking that victory will only come when the impossible problem would be removed.

But often that doesn’t happen. Not to us and not to David. Instead, like our struggles, the giant stood firm, relentless and threatening.

Poor David?

No! Although a boy, he was scrawny, a bit of a shy kid, the youngest of his brothers and probably voted the “least likely to succeed” in the senior class of the local shepherd high school, yet God was with him.

Success was at work. David stepped forward and the size of his opponent didn’t infuse fear, but injected boldness instead.

Unprepared to face giants, he probably smelled of sheep wool and with mud caked on his sandals, he stirred God’s power within him.

We’re like that, too; we’re walking with shoes caked with discouragement, and possibly smelling of hopelessness.

And like you and I, David probably had to shoo off the enemy’s lies: that problem is too big, destruction is inevitable, the pain will be fierce, or you are doomed to lose.

And as he does today, the enemy presented opposition from all sides. People doubted David’s abilities, King Saul scratched his head with bewilderment, and when Goliath saw David’s size, he laughed.

But God smiled …

…because he prompted David to shed the armor King Saul had given him. The metals and chains were way too cumbersome for his thin body. Instead, he tapped into the power of the Lord.

It was the same power he had used to bring down those ferocious bears and lions. He had the weapon—not a rifle, a shotgun, a knife or sword. And he didn’t trust in the smooth rocks in his sling either. He trusted in a greater and mightier weapon—the power of God.

Have you faced those giants that loom over you?

They mock your courage and laugh at your faith? The lies from the enemy that fuel your fear.

The lies that say your 2-inch faith is no match for the 9-foot giant of impossibilities. The deception that repeats you’ll never see relief, healing or triumph.

We’ve all faced that at one time or another. And in desperation we slip on that armor—our own abilities, wisdom, and solutions. But dragging ourselves toward the battlefield, we find that human armor hinders us. It’s too heavy with pride.

That’s when you and I do what David did.

We shed that wrong armor and pull out our best weapon instead. David was bold as we should be, he’s defiant like we have to be, and he’s truthful to declare to whom belongs the victory.

It’s not the giant that threatens, but it’s the gigantic love God has for us that must fuel our courage.

That’s why David said to the Philistine, “You come against me with sword and spear and javelin, but I come against you in the name of the LORD Almighty” (1 Samuel 17: 45).

Did you read that? The God David spoke about is not just any god, He’s the Lord almighty, creator of the universe, and immensely powerful.

Troubles can come from all sides bearing the sword of anguish, the spear of anxiety and the javelin of fear. But you and I come in the name of the Lord–with confidence, with resolve and trust that through Christ, the victory is already won.

And holding the smooth stones of faith, bearing the spiritual weapon of God’s faithfulness, we can face any giant of impossibility in the name of the Lord.

I had to make that choice.

In his devious craftiness, he lied to me when he said it would be impossible to find peace after my son was killed. But his lies are no match for God’s truth, to God’s power of restoring what was broken, to heal that which seared, and to defeat the giant who threatens our peace.

To the world, our problems seem gigantic, to God they are miniscule. They’re big when we see them with human eyes. They shrink when we see them through Christ’s eyes.

And as we gaze at our problem we have a choice: either to live hoping for blessings, or to bless the hope we already have in Christ.

 

Source: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/victory/what-to-do-when-facing-impossibilities.html

How to pray so God will answer.

19 May

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perea Eckles

 

 

His Way

 

 

 

 

How to pray so God will answer.

Reblogged May 19, 2018

 

What’s that smell?

Not long ago, an unidentified odor filled the front of our house. We tried and tried to find the source but failed. We cleaned, washed and sprayed air freshener. Nothing worked.

To make it worse, since I’m blind, my sense of smell is heightened. Ugh! There was only one thing to do—cover my mouth and nose.

So, I went to work, frantically searching for a cloth mask to cover my mouth and nose. I was sure I had put one away in a drawer somewhere.

I pulled out items; I ran my fingers all around. No mask. “Lord,” I prayed, “I know this is silly, but will you help me find that mask. You know where it is, will you help me?”

He didn’t.

Facing my defeat, I sat at my computer and worked for a few hours. Then I got up, walked around the house and, to my relief, the smell was gone, totally gone.

What came instead was a big lesson.

How often we ask for something specific, yet God is up to something bigger. We beg for a solution, but God has a mightier answer. And when we plead and plead for a specific outcome, He comes up with a different one, and one that solves a bigger problem.

That is what His promise is—to solve them His way. That’s why we can be reassured that although He listens to our prayers, He sees our heart. He often doesn’t give us what we want but grants us what we need.

And He gives the reason why in Isaiah 55:8-9: “’For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways’” declares the LORD. ‘As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.’”

Trusting in that promise…

  • I pray not just to see a better tomorrow, but to delight in the best of today.
  • I pray not just for a leap to triumph, but to take each step on firm ground.
  • I pray not just for triumph, but to know how to defeat fear.
  • I pray not to do great things without first knowing the greatness of God.
  • I pray not for a life of roses, but to remove the thorns of doubt.
  • I pray not for knowledge in a lifetime, but for enough wisdom in each defining moment.
  • I pray not for the abundance of my bank account, but to take into account my riches in the abundance of God.
  • I pray not for my own answer to every prayer, but for His every answer to fuel my faith.
  • I pray not for God to take away every trouble, but for me to take the trouble to see His way out.
  • I pray not just for a cure to my illness, but for the healing of my soul.
  • I pray not to trust in my success, but to succeed in trusting God.
  • I pray not to heal my loneliness, but to heed the truth that God alone is enough.

Let’s Pray

Father, thank you for your answers, your solutions and your victories. Grant me wisdom to wait and to trust that your thoughts and ways are above my own. In Jesus’ name, amen.

  • What have you been asking God lately?
  • Does your prayer align with His Word?

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.

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.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

How Can God Allow All This Pain?

12 May

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

 

How can God allow all this pain?

Reblogged with permission May 12, 2018

 

Bad news, hard news, violent news. All pile up on top of our personal conflicts…and eventually, like most, we might ask, “How can God allow all this pain?” For you, a post to give you hope.

Pamela’s Story

With Pamela’s permission, I share with you her private story. She relates:

I wrapped an old jacket around me and slammed the door of my dingy apartment. At four in the morning, it was safer and easier to hit the crack dealer on the corner.

I lived in a horrible home. Satan had taken my kids, my family, my home and my job.

I lived to find enough money for the next hit. And when high on whatever I smoked, I groaned and cried at God.

Where was He? Why did He leave me? Why did He allow so much pain?

I knew that answer. I wasn’t worth Him sticking around me—a drug addict, a loser and a sinner.

He’d left me. He’d gone from my home. I traveled looking for him. From state to state I went, but never found Him. Darkness was just about to choke me; I gave one more cry even when no more breath seemed to be in me. I had lost hope. I had nothing. No apartment and no family. I wonder why I still lived.

That’s when God touched my withered soul and said, “I never left you…been right here by your side.

We’ve all been there.

Pam’s question about the absence of God is not rare or uncommon. When despair hits, we assume He’s left us. The reasons are many. Maybe it’s not addiction to crack but a crack in our heart that begs to be healed, or sin, a hypocritical comment, or harsh admonishment. Or simply, bad choices.

Whatever the reason, in our despair, God seems to be a distant, an abstract image. But He’s not. He’s alive, vibrant and active! He’s still waiting, still calling, still loving and still hoping for us to come back.

There’s hope.

He’s hoping the child that ran away would ease back into His arms, nestle in His grace and listen to the truth: Humans are flawed, fickle, weak and often wrong. But God is forever loving, forgiving and forever our Father. He is also “…gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and rich in love. The LORD is good to all; he has compassion on all he has made.” (Psalm 144:7-9)

That compassion touched Pam. She left her destructive ways behind. She repented. And hope filled her once again. God restored her family. She now lives to serve Christ, declaring with boldness her pain soothed, and her peace renewed.

And with the gratitude that replaced her grief, she declares this verse with conviction and confidence:

But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions–it is by grace you have been saved. And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. (Ephesians 2:4-7)

Receiving His kindness, His riches shine brighter in dark times. He may allow pain, but He gives us peace. He may allow loss, but He gives back much gain. And He may let grief in, but He says joy will follow.

Let’s Pray

Father, how many times I wondered about the reality of your presence, doubted your power and questioned your healing. Show me, Lord, that crisis doesn’t separate you from me. Devastation doesn’t end your love, nor do troubles keep you away. You are with me as I run, escape or when I sob during sleepless nights, you are with me. In Jesus’ name I thank you!

  • What speaks to you I the midst of your pain?
  • How do you conquer fear and doubt?

I’d love to read your answers. Please send them by replying to this post in the comment section.

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: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/inspiration/how-can-god-allow-all-this-pain.html

The Move to America

5 May

 

Walking by Faith, Not by Sight

Janet Perez Eckles

 

 

 

 

7 Steps to Live With Confidence

Reblogged May 5, 2018

En Español: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog-espanol/seis-secretos-para-la-paz-interior.html

In 1964, my family and I left our hometown in Bolivia and arrived in St. Louis on a cold winter day. With expectations and excitement, we had packed our suitcases with hope for a glorious life in the United States. But the adjustment was bumpier than the airplane ride.

Two days after our arrival, my father looked at me and my brother across the kitchen table. “You have to go to school and learn English,” he said. “We’ll enroll you today.”

Although none of us spoke a word of English, the language of ridicule is universal. A group of sixth grade girls surrounded my desk. They pointed, whispered, and giggled.

It was my pierced ears!

Months later, I learned the reason why. What seemed strange to them was the fact I wore earrings. They stared at my pierced ears—a strange practice for American girls back in 1964.

They didn’t invite me to play with them and their giggles toward me continued. Oh, how I missed my friends back home in Bolivia. With each stare from American girls, I sunk in my seat, holding back tears. And my sense of worth and self-esteem sunk with me.

Destructive Lies

And that happened because of one reason and one reason only—I turned their rejection into destructive lies: You’re inferior. You don’t fit in. You’re strange. You’re unlovable. You don’t measure up. You’ll never be accepted.

Those lies pressed pain into my heart. The kind of pain that lingers for years. I was 12 when I believed them. And they remained until I was 22, 32 and beyond. Have you been there? We smile on the outside, but inside our heart aches, it’s tied up with lies.

And it continues until we make this important appointment.

We decide to visit Jesus, the divine counselor. He has the answer. And with confidence and trust, we step into the office of His unfailing love. As we pour out what’s in our heart, He listens. He washes over us with compassion. And with mercy. He offers the path. Each of these seven steps restores self-esteem, invites confidence back, and plants security for our days.

  1. Change our thoughts. Think about what is just, true, good, excellent and praise-worthy. (Philippians 4:8)
  2. God’s truth through His son Jesus set us free. (John 10:10)
  3. No matter how black the darkness, nothing can separate us from God’s power and His love. (Romans 5:38)
  4. We delete the past and embrace the new that God has planned. (Isaiah 43:18)
  5. Our feelings have no authority over God’s promises. (Isaiah 40:28-31)
  6. Recognize where lies come from. (John 8:44)
  7. Believe; truly believe that God will turn our sorrow to joy. (Psalm 30:11)

Victory comes when we choose to believe. Then with empowering confidence, we draw closer to Him where He embraces us with His arms of love, whispering: I know how beautiful you are. I know how I created you. I know what you’re worth. And I know you’re lovable—enough for me to die for you.

Let’s Pray

Father, grant me the ability to remember that only your opinion matters. Only your Word is true. And only you have the correct description of who I am. Thank you for granting me confidence to silence lies. In Jesus’ name, amen.

  • What lies fuel your sadness?
  • What truths fill your heart?
  • How much confidence do you have in God’s promises?

 

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.

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.

Please share: Feel free to share Janet’s posts with your friends.

 

Source: https://janetperezeckles.com/blog/7-steps-to-live-with-confidence.html

 

 

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