Bethany's BlogWords of Encouragement

Pray for Redding

Redding CA is in great danger right now as wild fires are burning.  Redding is a city of 90,000 people, and a huge evacuation is in process. 

May the Hand of God protect the citizens of Redding, and our friends. 

Pray for His mighty hand to stop the fires and for rain to pour from the heavens. Pray for safety and protection.

Pray for God's mercy to be with each citizen and for the abundance of life.

Keep praying with authority, strength, and love.

Do You Believe?



The story of Thomas, the guy who had to actually touch the wounds in the hands of Jesus and in His side before he could believe that Jesus was alive again, is a lot like me.  Except, sometimes I can touch, see, and still not believe! As I prayed for God to reveal truth to me, He has revealed to me that there are just some things that I simply do not want to believe! It can be right in front of my face, all the evidence right there, but my unbelief is stronger than my belief. So, my prayer is changing, and I am asking God to give me the Spirit of belief, and with that Spirit of belief, I too will heal the sick, raise the dead, and have the power of His Spirit in such a way that there will never be any unbelief!
Thomas believed as soon as he touched the wounds of Jesus, that's all it took! And, then Jesus said, "So, you believe because you've seen with your eyes. Even better blessings are in store for those who believe without seeing."
He closed my eyes last week and asked me to walk by faith. He asked me to believe! And, I have had to pray for Him to heal my unbelief! To believe, at all times, to be sightless and walk  along His path with my hand in His hand. His leading, His calling, His way. Only He can see the future, but I will believe it turns out well, for the outcome is eternal.

The Woman that Reached




She slipped in from behind and touched His robe. She was thinking to herself, "If I can put my finger on his robe, I will get well."  The moment she did it, the flow of blood dried up.  She could feel the change and knew her plague was over and done with.

Mark 5:27-29

The story of the woman that bled for twelve years, then reached out and touched Jesus is the story so many of us have.  I know I do. I have felt like I'm literally bleeding to death, emotionally, physically, and spiritually, just like this woman who I imagine felt like she was ready to give up due to the constant flow of blood she dealt with.  She was oozing with pain. In her culture, because of her condition, she was a reject. She was a desperate woman in need of a miracle.

I've been thinking about this story a lot this week. And, I want to ask you this: Where are you reaching?  Everyone has something, and everyone needs to reach for help, where is your reach aiming?  I've reached lots of places, all of them futile until I reached for Jesus. He fills the empty spaces, He heals the wounded and the bruised hearts, he gives the strength that is needed to walk the journey of life. In my desperation, He reached back. 

Today, don't be afraid to reach out, and notice the change.


The Pink Flamingo

The Holy Spirit put steel in your convictions.

1 Thessolians 1:5

Recently, I visited the zoo with my family. Near the end of our zoo trek, I stopped to take a closer look at the flamingos.  I've been to the zoo many times, but I've never actually taken the time to just watch the flamingos. As I gazed at these elegant birds one of the first things I noticed was their legs.  They look like rebar with big pink knee pads on them! Rebar is steel that is often used to add strength to concrete. Now, eventhough flamingos  are not a heavy bird, they only weigh between 4-8 pounds, their legs are a picture of steel. 

So, I did a little research on flamingos.  First of all, back in 1957, the plastic flamingo was introduced and started to show up in front yards.  For years I remember driving through neighborhoods and being intrigued as well as joking about the plastic flamingos.  Now, they are retro, and they've started popping up again.

Another interesting fact about flamingos, is they are only pink because of what they eat. They love shrimp!  They also love each other, and they stay in flocks of sometimes hundreds.  They like to talk to each other. They are individual enough to come up with their own version of the mating dance. Mates share the responsibility of laying on their egg and feeding their baby.

So now, maybe you know a little more about flamingos! My fascination was their rebar legs, which has made me consider the strength of my own legs, and my own convictions--are they as strong as steel? And, what about yours?  When the pressure is on, do you waver, or are you able to stand strong with the convictions the Spirit has given you?  

Also, I have asked myself about my color. Just like the flamingo who is born white or grey but turns pink due to it's food intake, I have pondered my intake and how it shows on the outside. Are my convictions firm enough to reflect my color?

And then, last but not least, do I dance with my community?  How do you reflect your individuality in your community? Are you standing strong and sharing equally, or taking on too much?

So, now I want a plastic pink flamingo in my yard! 

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