Devotional: This Changes Everything

What would you say is your life purpose? Or the true meaning of your life? If you’d ask me that a year ago I would have given you a completely different answer than I would today. Actually, I probably wouldn’t have really known what my life purpose was beyond things like be a good mother, live an honest life, do the right things, etc. But now, after walking through a spiritual battle for the first half of this year–filled with feelings of anxiety, depression, discouragement and fear, I would say my #1 goal in life is to walk daily with God in the kind of relationship that changes everything. I want to experience a close, intimate relationship with Him–one that fills my mind with peace, joy, and confidence. The purpose of my life is to love Him with every cell of my body.

I’ve realized this year that I have lived the majority of my adult life with only a fraction of the power available to me through Jesus Christ. I talked about this in a devotional a few weeks ago, but I can’t stop thinking about it. And as much as I hate to admit this, I have not lived with a mindset that reflects the power of God’s truth. Sure, I’ve tried my best. But looking back I can see that I’ve been easily discouraged. Easily worried. Easily bothered by trivial things like the weather. I’ve been quick to assume the worst or look at things with a negative perspective. And I’ve let fear tell me all kinds of lies. I’d be willing to guess that many of you might do this too. But here’s the thing–we are missing out on a whole different way of living. And the enemy doesn’t want you to realize that–he doesn’t want us to see or understand that we are actually punishing ourselves by living that way.

“The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give life in all its fullness.” John 10:10

Jesus gives life in the best way. One where you wake up each day full of light and hope. Trusting that His power is in you, which means you can handle whatever the day holds. I don’t know about you, but I really want that. I want peace of mind that surpasses all understanding (Philippians 4:7). I want to be immune to those old ways of thinking. I don’t want to complain about trivial things or be negative. I want to let every fear, discouragement, or lie from the enemy pass right on by like a leaf in the wind.

I don’t know why it’s taken me so long to really get it, but I feel like the fog has slowly been lifted and I’m finally starting to figure out how to truly walk through each day with Christ’s power in me. I’m still learning and I have SO much to learn, but I am fascinated by Jesus and all He offers us. I’m fascinated by the Bible And now when I feel myself getting discouraged or thinking a negative thought, I’m getting better and better about replacing that thought with God’s truth. It takes time and effort, but all I want is to get closer to Him each day.

Three things have really helped me in my spiritual journey this year:

1: prayer–diligently seeking time with the Lord in prayer has been life changing for me. I’m talking sprawled out on the floor in my bedroom, with no distractions and just pouring my heart out to God. It’s not rushed. It’s intentional. And I’m telling you, nothing in this world compares to that time with just Him and I. It’s truly the best part of my day. Afterwards I always feel lighter, happier, and empowered.

2: memorizing scripture and creating power statements

This simple practice has also been huge for me. If I find a verse or passage in the Bible that really speaks to me, I will write it on a notecard and carry it around with it so I can memorize it. I’ll also write my own power statements based on passages from Psalms and repeat those to myself out loud many times throughout the day–especially right before falling asleep. I’ve found that doing this helps those truths to take root in my mind and heart. Here’s a power statement I wrote based on Psalm 18:

The Lord brings light to my life. He is my shield, my fortress and my strength. God is renewing my mind and spirit every day. A new horizon is here and great things are coming. God鈥檚 love surrounds me and consumes me. The Lord hears my prayers and I am full of power with Him by my side. He holds my hand, guiding me along each day, teaching me, and strengthening me to face any challenge.

3: reading the Bible

In the past I’ve spent a lot of time watching sermons, reading faith-based books, listening to podcasts on faith, etc. And while all that can be really helpful, I realized that I was reaching for those things more than I was reading my Bible. I was looking to other things to teach me about God instead of actually experiencing God on my own. And now I can’t imagine going one day without reading the word of God. It’s best way to charge my batteries for the day ahead. (if you need a good Bible I highly recommend this one. I’ve had it since I was in high school and I love the translation).

With Him, we are changed on the inside. We are empowered to deal with challenges and struggles from His perspective and not our own. We walk in His strength and not our own. When we realize that fact, it truly changes everything.

 

“I am leaving you with a gift–peace of mind and heart. And the peace I give isn’t like the peace the world gives. So don’t be troubled or afraid.” John 15:1

“Don’t worry about anything, instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need and thank Him for all He has done. If you do this, you will experience God’s peace, which is far more wonderful than the human mind can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and mind as you live in Christ Jesus.”
Philippians 4:6-7

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The Comments

  • Shela
    November 8, 2023

    Thanks for these tips. I’m going to try repeating verses out loud. I know it will calm my mind as I fall asleep.

    • Sarah
      > Shela
      November 9, 2023

      Yes, give it a try Shela. It really does help!

  • Carol
    November 8, 2023

    Simply thank you Sarah馃檹馃徎

    For touching on all the points I struggle with each day. You truly have a gift!

    God bless and please don鈥檛 stop these devotionals. You are touching so many lives

    • Sarah
      > Carol
      November 9, 2023

      I appreciate that so much, thank you Carol!

  • montanagoose
    November 8, 2023

    ”I was looking to other things to teach me about God instead of actually learning about God on my own. And I had no idea what I was missing out on. I鈥檓 fascinated by the Bible. And now I can鈥檛 imagine going one day without reading the word of God.”

    Absolutely! There is so much in His Word. And there is even more in the Hebrew. Even the best translations miss out on all of the word play and double entendres. It can’t be helped, these are just lost in translation.

    Sometimes even the basics get lost. For example, the Ten Commandments are more literally translated as the Ten Words. The Hebrew word for ‘word’ is dabar (讚讘专) and ‘words’ is devarim (讚讘专讬诐). The Hebrew word for ‘commandment’ is mitzvah (诪爪讜讛) and ‘commandments’ is mitzvoth (诪爪讜转).

    In case anyone is interested, here is the First Word in Hebrew:
    :讗指谞止讻执讬 讬职讛讜指讛 讗直诇止讛侄讬讱指, 讗植砖侄讈专 讛讜止爪值讗转执讬讱指 诪值讗侄专侄抓 诪执爪职专址讬执诐 诪执讘值旨讬转 注植讘指讚执讬诐
    鈥榓noki YHVH 鈥楨loheyak 鈥榓sher hotse鈥檛hik me鈥檈rets Mits鈥檙ayim mibeyth `abadim
    I am YHVH your God who brought you out of the land of Egypt out of the house of slavery.

    Note: This is how the Ten Words have always been numbered in the Hebrew. Catholics omit the first word and split the tenth into two. Protestants omit the first word and split the second into two. But I have no idea why.

    • Sarah
      > montanagoose
      November 9, 2023

      This is so interesting, thank you for taking the time to share!

  • Brandi J.
    November 9, 2023

    It鈥檚 like you鈥檝e gotten into my head and spoken exactly how I feel. I love following you and especially your devotions. Keep them coming!!

    • Sarah
      > Brandi J.
      November 9, 2023

      thank you so much Brandi!! xo

  • Tina Vatsvog
    November 9, 2023

    I absolutely LOVE LOVE LOVE all the devotionals that you write. I feel like they speak to me a lot. I am starting my own journey and trying to have a relationship with god, and this is very new for me. i was not raised as anything. I read the bible and find it hard to understand and i cant remember what i just read most of the time. When you write this all out, it makes a lot more sense and very much inspires me to go and read the passages that you have listed. Thank you for posting all the things you have been going through and these devotionals. It is greatly helping me and i very much appreciate that. I’m so happy for you that you are finding a peace. I cant wait until i find mine. =) I hope you have an amazing day today. Just know that you are a ray of sunshine to me and i think you have found your calling…….

    • Sarah
      > Tina Vatsvog
      November 9, 2023

      Ah Tina, thank you so much for taking the time to leave your comment. I’m so happy these devotionals have been helpful to you. The Bible can definitely be hard to understand. Maybe start with things like Psalms 23, Psalms 18, Psalms 91. Those are a few of my favorites! And then try the books of Mark, Luke, Matthew and John. Those are all about Jesus’ life and they are SO fascinating. Also my Bible translation is the New Living Translation and it’s just beautiful and so easy to understand! xo

  • Belinda
    November 9, 2023

    This really touched my heart. Oh how sweet and precious is my time spent in the word and my time with The Lord, yet, I neglect that and replace it like you mentioned, with faith based books and podcasts etc.!

    Thank you so very much for this gentle reminder of getting back on the path to true peace and joy.

    Thank you God for putting Sarah鈥檚 beautiful lesson in front of me as a gentle nudge.

    • Sarah
      > Belinda
      November 9, 2023

      So so true, Belinda. That time with the Lord should be our priority over everything. Yet I’m guilting of looking to other things/books/podcasts to teach me about God instead of experiencing Him for myself. So glad this touched your heart, thanks you so so much for taking the time to read it. xoxo

  • Kathleen
    November 11, 2023

    Exactly what I needed thus year too! Thank you, and God bless you! Kl

  • Sharon
    November 14, 2023

    Thank you so much for sharing! I loved this! I can relate to all you said. Basically every word. When we pray for the Holy Spirit to come upon us, to live in us it changes everything. Praying In the Spirit is a peace that surpasses all understanding. There is nothing like it. I recent started to pray in my spirit language. Worshiping God this way is everything. I love the verses you shared in Psalms. Another one to pray over yourself and your family is Psalm 91. Especially as such a time as this. God Bless you! 馃挄

  • Jodi Albertson
    November 15, 2023

    Thank you Sarah Joy. I need to get back to reading my bible. I am longing for that passion for Jesus. Jesus is my Lord and Savior, I have accepted him years ago but I need to get deeper into his word and experience his love for me. I struggle with anxiety, panic attacks and being very nervous which I know is not from God. Like you stated you used to reach for books written by Pastors and listen to podcasts and sermons. I love your podcast by the way. But I need to submerse my self in the Word. Thank you for your devotionals. You are a blessing to me.

  • Heather
    November 16, 2023

    This is so good. I thank you for this posting and all of your devotionals. So glad you have been led in this direction so you can spread what you have been learning.

  • Donna Warren
    November 18, 2023

    YOUR GROWTH OF SPIRITUAL DEVELOPMENT IS VERY INSPIRING TO ME. THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART.

    I PRAY FOR GOD TO CONTINUE TO BLESS YOU AND YOUR FAMILY WITH HIS GOODNESS, GRACE AND LOVINGKINDNESS.