Hope’s Harbor

May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in Him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15:13

On a regular basis, we all need a healthy dose of hope, so thanks for joining me today at Hope’s Harbor, a weekly post devoted to encourage you in your daily walk… Tina

Here is a bit of encouragement for whatever situation you are in. God knows and He cares! With faith in that, we please Him. Here is a short analogy that helps me to understand the glorious light that comes from faith in Him:

Faith in God is like a lantern with fresh and full batteries. The batteries will shine light on our path for hours and days as we carry our lantern with us. When we go to God daily, He refreshes and refills the batteries, making us to see hope, even in the dark!

The LORD is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid? Psalm 27:1

Have a wonderful day and don’t forget to carry your lantern of faith:)…Tina

Lantern-Like Faith

 When Jesus spoke again to the people, he said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12

Theses are trying times aren’t they? It feels like one bad thing after another in the news, right? There does not seem to be enough positive news or answers to balance out the bad. At least that is what I had been thinking, until God corrected me. He showed me what I already knew, but desperately needed a refresher course on. We can still feel hopeful, despite our circumstances!

How can we do this? By going to the author of hope! Jesus knows what it is to feel the pangs of darkness, pain and even death, yet even HE resolved to trust His Father, our Father, and obey Him through His trial. Jesus, who knew much sorrow, understands our fears and emotions. He knows we are not immune to doubts and fears. Even as Christians, it is normal to be brought down a bit when surprisingly evil things are going on in the world.

But…can I tell you a secret? THIS is not our forever. We are here for a short time until our heavenly future starts! Jesus went to prepare a home for us! Just as Jesus endured the cross for a heavenly future, so can we bear our ‘crosses’ (trials) with hope.

As Christians, we KNOW our future. That calms my soul when I get stressed. I hope it helps you, too! Have a great Monday. May the Lord bless you with peace and light…Tina

Just a Thought…

Ape, Monkey, Primate, Animal, Mammal

 Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 NIV

Hey all:) I thought a note might be in order. Not to get too personal, but I wanted to put it out there that the reason I haven’t posted super consistently lately is I was dealing with life/health stuff. I am sure you have that stuff too, that makes you want to dive in, handle it and let everything else go on the back burner for awhile? My problem was, and is, I am independent and a planner, so when my plans go awry and life stuff happens, it throws me a bit. Well, honestly a lot!

Does that happen to you? I should not be surprised because, well, it’s a fact of life. Not all plans work out. Unfortunately, when they don’t it is a great time for the enemy to tell you to give up and give in to the stress. He LOVES it when we worry ourselves into inactivity. (He made me worry myself into not writing because I was so stressed. Grr…)

What he won’t tell you…is to praise God and have hope! Accept the changes, delays and winding path as an adventure. If our plans do not work out, I am convinced there is a reason for it. I will not begin to tell you what reason that is, because every situation is different and sometimes we never know the reason, right? That is sometime a hard pill to swallow for me. We have to accept that whatever God allows, He will take us through. That’s what I DO know for sure.

Dear Father God, Thank you for being my hope. When I get “sidetracked” into thinking that worrying will help me handle a trial, please nudge me to look up and see hope from you. It’s still hard for me to process that you are God and you love me, but I know you do! Thank you for your plans for me, whatever they may be. I love you! Amen.

Have a wonderful day. I am praying for you all to have peace in your trials and joy in your heart:)…Tina

Our Great Big God

Mountain, Landscape, Panoramic View

Today’s Verse:  But you, Lord, are a shield around me, my glory, the One who lifts my head high. I call out to the Lord, and he answers me from his holy mountain.  Psalm 3:3-4 NIV

My husband and I love to explore small towns. As we drove down Main Street in a small town recently, I absorbed the beauty of old houses made of brick and stone and logs.  These smallish homes were squeezed together, side by side down the narrow street. There was a small park at the end of the street, with a little bridge over a creek. Young kids were playing there. Everything was just so small, simple and pleasant. It was a nice change of pace from the big city where we lived.

Then, I glanced up and was struck by the beauty of a huge mountain right behind the row of houses! I hadn’t noticed it. That mountain probably kept many storms at bay, so the little town stayed safe. Instantly, I thought of how big God is and how He surrounds us little humans with His protection. I also thought of how I missed seeing Him when I needed help.

Like the mountain I almost missed, how many times has God been there for us and we didn’t see Him? How much He must love us, to stand and guard us from harm. We are small but He is big enough to handle any storm in life that we may face. How comforting to know that we are surrounded, much like a mountain of rock, by His love and care!

Today’s Takeaway: God is always there. He is our shield of protection!

Dear God, Thank You for Your mountainous love and protection. I feel surrounded and safe when I consider how big and strong and good you are. You truly are my solid rock. Please nudge me to look at you when I forget how close you are. Amen.

Have a wonderful day and don’t forget to look up today!…..Tina

God Has a Plan

God has a plan. He gets to choose
how flowers dress in rainbow hues.
One flower to the other said.
“How come I’m purple and you’re red?”
Red then replied,”I have no clue.”

They both decided, since confused,
to ask how colors were infused.
The robin heard and shook his head.
“God has a plan.”


He then explained and gave this news:
“God chose to make us diff’rent, use
the gifts and talents that He bred,
to help each other walk life’s tread.
Though we peruse,
God has a plan.

copyright2022christinacrute

May you have a great day, knowing God has a plan for you!…Tina

Trophies

If truth be told, my trophies gold glimmer in glory of self.
So highly praised are accolades
attracting dust on a shelf.

True, for a time, wins are sublime;
 it’s nice collecting awards.
Real treasures, though, our Lord bestows;
pure faith in Him He rewards.

Light for each day, joy all the way,
God takes good care of His own.
Faith’s a treasure, shines forever.
No need to go it alone.

Trophies are best, seen in context.

The Golden reason is this:

God’s only Son, forgiveness won;

So all of the glory is His.

copyright2021christinacrute

I had lots of trouble with the format so please excuse the inconsistent spacing:) Have a great day giving lots of glory to God for all He has done!….Tina

The Heart Chooses

Heart, Leaves, Foliage, Garden, Bush

I have chosen the way of faithfulness; I have set my heart on your laws. Psalm 119:30 NIV

Growing up with three siblings and not much money, us kids did not always get choices when it came to food or clothing. My parents both worked hard to buy whatever food or clothes were on sale and my siblings and I were happy to have them. Friends from church secretly left other needs in our car.

When I graduated high school, my mom’s friend asked me what I wanted for my gift. I was speechless. I got to choose! I chose pretty purple sheets for my bed. That was what I had my heart set on. It may seem silly now, but it was something that meant so much to me, that I both wanted and needed.

David, in the Bible, chose what he needed most, God. David, for a long period, was being pursued by enemies, so his choices were often about his own survival. He chose right. He knew who He needed. He chose whom his heart loved, God.

He could have doubted God because his life was in danger, but instead he chose to trust Him. God protected him, so David praised Him even more. He had his whole heart set on God’s laws.

Dear God, Sometimes I try to decide things for myself. When it comes to important decisions, like when I get frustrated or scared in a trial, my heart will always choose you. Thank you for being my best solution. Thank you for all you’ve done for me. Amen

Today’s Takeaway…God is faithful and always there for the choosing!

With love from the Father to you, I hope you feel God’s love and faithfulness in your life…..Tina

Lord Willing

Presentation, Statistic, Boy, Character

Why, you do not even know what will happen tomorrow. What is your life? You are a mist that appears for a little while and then vanishes. Instead, you ought to say, “If it is the Lord’s will, we will live and do this or that. James 4:14-15 NIV

Lord Willing…These are two words that belong together. I realized this while reading James last week and it is stuck in my head, so I figure the Lord wants me to remember it! What a powerful offering from our heart to God’s ears, telling Him we will move to His will, not ours.

When my children were in high school, my youngest daughter came to me. She was frustrated with her progress in her sport. Her older sister was “good at everything” she told me, while complaining that she could not achieve the same results.

My response was simple, because I knew she needed comfort. I reminded her that all we can do is our best and the rest is up to God. Well, that was not exactly what she wanted to hear but she at least considered it. I reminded her that she may ‘fail’ to meet her own goals, but those failures do not make HER a failure.

Then I added words that I didn’t know were going to come out of my mouth… “Do you really want something that is not God’s will?” Though she took offense at first, she acknowledged that the Lord’s will is most important. If we praise Him through the perceived failure or disappointment, then that glorifies Him. She taught ME something …..When we praise God during a disappointment, that glorifies Him.

We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose. Romans 8:28 NIV

Father God, I know you have plans for me so please help me to know your will. Thank you for comforting and guiding me when I go through a trial. Amen

Today’s Takeaway: Trials are opportunities to praise God for His will.

Have a terrific day, knowing God has a plan just for you!…..Tina

Many Sparrows

 Are not five sparrows sold for two pennies? Yet not one of them is forgotten by God. Indeed, the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Luke 12: 6-7 NIV

Have you ever felt worthless, maybe in a trial or when someone criticized you? I had that feeling and it was caused by someone’s words at school, many years ago. Those words still resonate in my head sometimes, but I remind myself that my identity is in Christ, not other people’s words. I am valued by God. You are valued by God. Even sparrows are valued by God!

See, sparrows, in Bible times, were offered as sacrifices at the temple, bought by those who could not afford a goat or a lamb. Five sparrows were sold for two pennies. That’s pretty cheap, right? Matthew records Jesus as saying sparrows are sold two for a penny. Still pretty cheap! So does that mean they are of little value? No.

Jesus is using the value of tiny sparrows to demonstrate how much God loves us. But sparrows are cheap, so why does Jesus compare US to THEM? Because sparrows, as cheap as they were back then, were not forgotten by God. They are worth remembering, to Him. They are never outside their Father’s care and neither are we. The Bible says so!

Are not two sparrows sold for a penny? Yet not one of them will fall to the ground outside your Father’s care. And even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. So don’t be afraid; you are worth more than many sparrows. Matthew 10:29-31

Dear God, I am not sure why you love me so. It baffles me because, well, you are GOD! Thank you for your constant love and care. Guide me with your Holy Spirit to share that love with others in your name. Amen

Today’s Take-away: God’s children are never outside His loving care.

God Made Them All

God looked at everything he had made, and it was very good. Evening passed, and morning came. This was the sixth day. Genesis 1:31 New Century Version

I recently wrote this poem for children. It has a message for all of us in it.

God Made Us All

Cats can’t talk, but they ‘meow.’
Cows can’t sing; they don’t know how.

Dogs can’t cook, but they can eat.
Birds can’t read. They’d rather ‘tweet.’

Whales can’t walk, but they can swim.
Frogs can’t walk; it’s hops for them.

God made them all to be themselves
And not to be somebody else.

He did the same for you and me.
He made us special, don’t you see?

And isn’t that so great to know,
How much He loves His creatures so?

Copyright 2021 Christina Crute

Dear Father, Thanks for making us. We are Your special creations and You love us. You are so good to us. Thank You for being with us every day. Amen

Have a wonderful day and know that God made you special!…..Tina