Life in Stride Blog presented by Tri-State Bible College

There is nothing like talking to a friend and hearing her words echo something God is producing in your own life. It is so validating and confirms that God is at work--not that I should need confirmation, but sometimes, I really do. I spoke with a friend about some difficult circumstances in her life, specifically her child's health. I told her the verse that is my, "Truth I'm Standing On." She excitedly blurted out, "That's the song I've been praying! I just don't know what to pray anymore, so I've been praying that song." How cool is that! Something that seemed so casual and unrelated spoke boldly into both our lives at that moment. I had no idea how much that song meant to her and what an encouragement it would be to her that God is listening. What a great reminder that God is in every detail. He orchestrates and uses everything in...

"Until you give up the idea that happiness is somewhere else, it will never be where you are." Jim Carrey I got suckered into reading this on social media a few weeks ago, and it hasn't left my mind since. I was looking for a laugh (I mean, it's by Jim Carrey, after all), but instead got this little nugget to ponder.  What is my happiness anchored to? Most days, I haplessly try to anchor to my emotions which are fleeting.  But, if I'm truly following the Lord like I am called to, then my joy is anchored in Him, and I can claim His promises.  Promises like:  He will act. (Psalm 37:5) He will sustain you. (Psalm 55:22) He will strengthen you. (Isaiah 41:10) He gives perfect peace. (Isaiah 26:3) He goes before you. (Deuteronomy 31:8) He is with you. (Deuteronomy 31:8) He gives rest. (Matthew 11:28) Resting in the happiness of NOW comes from knowing God IS MY NOW and not just...

But this I call to mind, and therefore I have hope:  The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases;  His mercies never come to an end;  they are new every morning;  great is Your faithfulness.  "The Lord is my portion," says my soul,  "Therefore, I will hope in Him." Lamentations 3:21-24 God's mercies — His compassionate love and complete forgiveness — toward us — are NEW every morning.  He doesn't continually replay yesterday's faults. He doesn't avoid conversation or ghost you. His love doesn't vary.  He loves you as only He can. I don't take that lightly…but I do take it for granted.  I don't rest in the hope of His love like I should.  I don't walk gratefully into tomorrow with renewed strength and peace of mind and heart as I could.  If He doesn't think about yesterday…why should I?  If He loves unconditionally...

I think sometimes we get so set on living a life free of guilt, consequence, and pain, that we don't allow ourselves the grace to mess up And maybe we even get it into our thoughts that God doesn't allow for mess-ups either, so we live in fear of being zapped for stepping out of line. Well, guess what.  It's ok to mess up.  It's ok to make a wrong choice. There is a huge difference between making a mistake and acting in disobedience.  But, there is NO difference between acting in disobedience and NOT acting in what God is telling you to do (a missed-take) even if we think we have a good reason. Bad choices are not sinning…but bad choices provide an opportunity to sin. Don't be so afraid of messing up that you miss out on the great opportunities God has for you.  Trust Him with it.  Honor Him through it.  And rest in Him knowing He's got...

No matter how many times I tell myself that it's ok to say "no," I inevitably recite an exhaustive -- yet highly impressive -- list of excuses. This is especially true for spiritual decisions.  Whether it's stepping out of leadership, giving up my turn in the nursery, or leaving the church entirely, I just can't rest in the single declarative word -- no.  Truth: The only acceptable reason to start, stop, stay, or leave is God's leading. If He's leading you to say no, then you say no. Otherwise, change that diaper or lead that ministry to His glory. But...

One of the many appeals to making the city to country transition was fruit trees. We were so excited. I envisioned eating fruit straight off the vine, fresh-baked pies, jams, and sauces. We've lived on the farm for 15 years, and I have yet to make a pie and have eaten very few apples straight from the vine. Why? The trees had not been pruned in years (still haven't). Vines wined their way up the trunks of a few and choked out the fruit. On the "healthy" trees, blossoms get negated quickly by worms, birds, or a late spring frost. Turns out, it is more challenging to own fruit trees than we thought. The same can be true of our spiritual lives. Our relationship with Jesus is full of promise and hope, but the worries of the world work their way into our hearts and minds and choke out our fruitfulness. We allow negative...

An Important Message from Derek WithrowClick Here to Read Message
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