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Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of February 16, 2020

“The Lord bless you and keep you; The Lord make His face shine upon you, And be gracious to you; The Lord lift up His countenance upon you, And give you peace.”’ Numbers 6:24-26 (NKJV)

Have you ever felt your face light up when you come face to face with someone you love? What blessing and joy to to be loved like that and how awesome to know that when God sees us His face lights up, too! These verses were God’s instructions to Aaron, the first high priest, and his sons to pray over the people with the promise that He would then bless them (vs 27). As believers, we are a royal priesthood (1Peter 2:9) and we too can pray these words over our homes and loved ones. Our loving God longs to bless us with grace and His protection. His also lifts us up in His unmerited favor and He gives us peace. No matter what the future holds or what difficulties we may face tomorrow, fix your eyes on the Lord, knowing that you light up His face and He desires to extend blessings, grace, favor and peace upon you today.
By JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of February 9, 2020

“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the Lord, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior. Isaiah 43:1b-3a (NLT)

Are you feeling caught in raging rivers of difficulties or the consuming fires of oppression and afraid of being overcome? How wonderful to hear the Lord’s command at the beginning of these verses that we are not to be afraid because we belong to Him! Our God has already paid the exorbitant ransom price to set us free and He calls each of us by our name! The Lord declares that because we belong to Him we have nothing to fear. He will not allow any difficulty, oppression or consuming circumstance to destroy us and that He is with us no matter what we have to face in the days ahead. What an awesome truth that He is not only The Lord God Almighty and Creator of the Universe, but also chose to be our Savior through the blood of Jesus! Renew your trust in His loving care and protection by His saving grace today and rejoice that you no longer walk alone. Thank You, Lord!

By JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of February 2, 2020

 “Strengthen the weak hands, And make firm the feeble knees. Say to those who are fearful-hearted, “Be strong, do not fear! Behold, your God will come with vengeance, With the recompense of God; He will come and save you.”” Isaiah 35:3-4 NKJV

Have you ever been so weary in the battles of life with no strength left to take another step and not knowing what to do? Maybe even now, crippling fear and hopelessness has you feeling like there is nowhere to turn for help in the circumstances you are facing. Be encouraged in these verses that we have a Heavenly Father calling out to us, “Be strong, do not fear!”. What does it mean that He will come with vengeance and recompense? He is our LORD strong and mighty, The LORD mighty in battle. (Psalm 24:8) He extends His great strength to save and defend us; making amends to restore and to compensate us from injustice! Let us call upon the LORD our God with renewed hope and faith that He comes with His salvation to strengthen our hands and our knees to stand with us in the battles we face today and whatever lies ahead. Thank You, LORD!

By JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of January 26, 2020

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 3:20-24 (ESV)

Do you ever struggle to find your faith to trust God in the midst of overwhelming situations? It can be especially hard when it seems like the cries of your prayers bounce off the ceiling and all you hear is silence. In the verses before these scriptures, the Prophet Jeremiah describes in great detail his sufferings and that he feels like God caused it all. He was not afraid to talk to God about his disillusionment, frustrations and anguish. But, he then reminds himself of God’s love, mercies and faithfulness in the past. How amazing that even though the circumstances have not changed, Jeremiah is able to declare with renewed hope that the Lord is all he needs! Take your list of problems to God today and pour out your doubts, fears and sorrows. Then, be encouraged with new hope recalling all of the Lord’s unshakeable love, unending mercies and great faithfulness to you always. Selah! (Ponder and think on these things).
By JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of January 19, 2020

“I will lead the blind by ways they have not known, along unfamiliar paths I will guide them; I will turn the darkness into light before them and make the rough places smooth. These are the things I will do; I will not forsake them.” Isaiah 42:16 (NIV)

Have you ever been blinded by the sun or by a winter snow storm where you couldn’t see the road ahead or the next step in front of you? Sometimes we can feel so blindsided by sudden unexpected circumstances that we have no idea how to find our way out of lonely and fearful dark places. What comfort to find God’s promises to us that even when we are lost and can’t see, He will help us find the way. The Lord declares that He will turn the oppressive darkness into glorious light and that He will even make the rough places smooth before us. With such assurance that our God will never abandon us nor give up on us, be encouraged to call upon the Lord, reaching out to Him, to lead and guide you out of the fearful darkness into the light of His presence on the path of His peace that passes understanding. Yes, Lord!
By JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of January 12, 2020

But let him who glories glory in this, that he understands and knows Me, that I am the Lord, exercising lovingkindness, judgment, and righteousness in the earth. For in these I delight,” says the Lord. Jeremiah 9:24 (NKJV)

Have you launched into another new year seriously determined to accomplish some resolutions with the hope of patting yourself on the back at the end of this year? We often begin a new year evaluating our disappointments in ourselves; weight gained or unfulfilled expectations of the previous year. With good intentions we try setting new resolutions with goals to do better, to be better and to feel better about ourselves and our accomplishments in the days ahead. This scripture proposes a better option to focus our energy and efforts on the things that glorify God more than what might bring glory or praise to ourselves. By increasing our understanding and knowledge of God, His Word and His ways, we can hope to personally experience His lovingkindness, justice and goodness and then to also extend it to those in the world around us. What a joyous anticipation to know the blessing of God’s delight in us as we the pursue knowing and experiencing Him more in this next year!
By JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of January 5, 2020

“I have set the LORD continually before me; Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken. You will make known to me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; In Your right hand there are pleasures forever.” Psalms 16:8,11 (NASB)

Have you ever wondered how to have joy through any circumstance? Biblically joy goes beyond emotional happiness which is dependent on whatever makes us feel good and it is temporary. Joy is primarily a choice and is dependent upon trusting in the sovereign goodness of God, even when we don’t feel it, and knowing that He is Who He says He is as revealed to us in His Word. When this scripture mentions God’s place at the Psalmists right hand that implies giving Him the highest place of honor and absolute power in our lives. We learn in this scripture that when we choose to abide in His presence we can know the security of safety, overflowing joy and everlasting pleasure. HIs right hand holds all power and all authority in heaven and on earth to defend and provide for us. Lord, please go before us revealing the path of abundant life in Your presence and the fullness of joy we all long for. Amen.

By JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of December 29, 2019

Even when you are old, I (God) will be the same. Even when your hair has turned gray, I will take care of you. I made you and will take care of you. I will carry you and save you. Isaiah 46:4 (NCV)

As we face a new year and things unknown, do you ever have fear and worry about what the future may hold? The older we get the easier it is to focus on the uncertainties and possibilities for unexpected difficulties and disasters that may come. What encouraging promises from The Lord in this scripture. God declares two times that He will take care of us; that He will even carry us and be there to save us! Whatever we may face through changing circumstances, financial limitations, deteriorating health or the fear of old age, our Father God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow caring for us always. As surely as He gave us life, He is more than able to provide, carry and save us no matter what we may face in the future ahead. We can confidently place all our cares and all our hopes in our God. Thank You, Lord!
By JoBeth Kested

Scripture for Christmas Day by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for Christmas Day December 25, 2019

“Now after Jesus was born in Bethlehem of Judea in the days of Herod the king, magi from the east arrived in Jerusalem, saying, “Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him.” Matthew 2:1-2 (NASB)

Have you ever been on a scavenger hunt where you had to look for clues that help you seek and find a treasure? In this part of the Christmas story we are reminded of the wise men who came looking for a newborn King of the Jews, the promised Messiah, because they were following a star seen in the heavens. They first looked for Him in a palace, but he wasn’t there. When they followed the light of a star in the heavens they found the baby Jesus in a manger. They bowed down in worship and gave valuable treasures of gold, frankincense and myrrh. Maybe some of us are looking for life, hope, peace, love or faith in all the wrong places? This Christmas season, may we each follow the light of God’s glory to find the true reality of Jesus our Savior, Emmanuel – God with us. Wise men still seek Him. Let us join with the angels who sang, “Glory to God in the highest!”

JoBeth Kested

Scripture of the Week by JoBeth Kested

Scripture for the week of December 22, 2019

God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins. 1 John 4:9-10 (NLT)

Haven’t we all been captivated by stories of courage and bravery when we hear about someone giving their life to save a child, a friend or even a stranger? God sent Jesus, His only son, as a innocent baby. He would grow up to suffer death on the cross that we may live. No matter how hard we try, we are never able to work hard enough, to be good enough or to love God enough to deserve the sacrifice Jesus was willing to make for us. He paid the price for the forgiveness of our sins with hope for all eternity. He also gives us the gift of His comfort, peace and love through the joys and sorrows in this life. What an extravagant demonstration of His great love for us! In this Christmas season of shopping, parties and family gatherings for sharing gifts, let us not forget the reason for the season and the greatest gift of God’s love for us in Jesus. Glory to God in the highest!
By JoBeth Kested