Category Archives: Count on God

Death

I wrote this devotional six years ago. And once again, this devotional is much needed. Please share with family and friends who are experiencing the lost of a loved one. Also, please keep the following families lifted up in prayer: Flores, Fisher, Revis, Dues, Wilson, Murchison, and all those who may be grieving. Our words may not give much comfort, but God’s words surely will comfort the hurting.


We make plans about what we will do tomorrow, next week, next month, and the next year. But death has a way of changing things. Death has a way of knocking us back to reality, knocking us back to the here, the now. Death has a way of making us reflect on our lives. Death, somehow, has a way of reminding us that life on this earth is but a vapor. We’re here today, but we may be gone tomorrow. Tomorrow is not promised. So, we have to live each day that God gives us to the fullest.

How can we live each day to the fullest?

Appreciate each day. Each day that God gives us has to be appreciated. With thanksgiving in our hearts, we have to appreciate everything that God sends.  We have to appreciate the trials as well as the triumphs that each day holds.

See each day as a blessing. Since tomorrow is not promised to us, we have to see each day as a blessing. Each day is a gift. We can’t spend our day grumbling and complaining. We don’t want to miss seeing the worth and the beauty of each day that the Lord gives us. (Phil.2:13-15; Col.3:15b)

F.O.C.U.S. on today. If God has given us a new day, let’s focus on today. Let’s make the best out of today. Let’s do what we can do on today. Let’s not worry about tomorrow’s troubles. If God grants us tomorrow, tomorrow will be taken care of. He will take care of all tomorrow’s troubles and He will meet every need. (Phil. 4:19; Matt. 6:3)

Live every moment like it’s our last time! Say I love you before we walk out the door. Give love ones a big and long hugs (I love strong hugs). Say I’m sorry and really mean it. Let bygones be bygones. Cherish every moment we have with our love ones. Love with all our might! Forgive! Forgive and forgive again! Don’t put it off any longer! Take advantage of every opportunity that God gives us because that opportunity may not be here tomorrow.

Sister, death has a way of knocking us back to reality and gripping us with the reminder that life is too short. Death has a way of reminding us that we are just traveling through. This is not our home. So, while we’re still here, let’s live each day to the fullest!

 

LET’S WALK IN FREEDOM & IMPACT THE WORLD TOGETHER!


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You Think You Know

Happy Friday! Shoutouts and a great welcome to our new Freedom Walkers and all of you who have been our companion on this exciting journey!
It’s been a tough week, but thank God it’s Friday! I pray that you take the opportunity to join other like Believers in worship this weekend. Whatever you do, make your way to church! Not only that but don’t forget make time for you.

May today’s Walking in Freedom! Devotional encourage you to remember this: God is perfect and so are His ways.

Happy Friday and have a fantastic weekend!

Let’s walk in freedom keeping our trust in Jesus Christ!

your sis,
Rhovonda

P.S. For your reading pleasure the devotional series, “The Week He Changed Everything” will be available in an eBook format. More details to come!

You Think You Know
Written by Rhovonda L. Brown
Originally posted 11/26/12

Martha and Mary knew Jesus. They knew who Jesus was because they spent so much time with Him. They knew He healed many. They knew He opened blinded eyes. They knew He caused the lame to walk, the dumb to speak and the deaf to hear.

They knew Jesus healed all manner of diseases. They knew Jesus forgave sins and made the stormy seas be quiet and obey. They knew He walked on water; clothed a deranged man and put him in his right mind.

Martha and Mary heard His teaching and preaching; both knew the Word and that the Word had come to save. Jesus was the Messiah and they knew it! These sisters knew Jesus. Well, they thought they did.

So when they sent out their stress call (John 11:3), they knew that the Healer would come. They knew the Compassionate Christ would show up. They had no doubt that the One who healed others, the One who answered others’ prayers would arrive and arrive on time. They were confident and sure that Jesus would make it to their brother’s sick bed before it got worse.

Of course Jesus would come; He loved them. He was their friend. But Jesus didn’t come, not like they thought He would (John 11:1-6).

“When Martha got word that Jesus was coming, she went to meet him. But Mary stayed in the house. Martha said to Jesus, ‘Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died. But even now I know that God will give you whatever you ask.'” (John 11:20-22, NLT)

“When Mary arrived and saw Jesus, she fell at his feet and said, ‘Lord, if only you had been here, my brother would not have died.'” (John 11:32, NLT)

Deep sorrow and agony can be felt as we read these passages. When Jesus finally arrived, you can feel the pain and sadness from Martha and Mary. They were experiencing the death of a loved one, a tragedy that can’t be described. Their brother was dead.

Isn’t that just like God?!

When we think we know Him. When we think we have Him all figured out. When we think we know what He’s going to do, He flips the script! When we think we know God’s plan, He comes and does a 360 on us! He does the unthinkable, the unimaginable, and the indescribable! As their brother’s body lay lifeless in a grave, Jesus arrives on the scene — 4 days later — and does the impossible!

“Jesus said, ‘Take away the stone.’ Martha, the sister of him who was dead, said to Him, ‘Lord, by this time there is a stench, for he has been dead four days.’
 
Jesus said to her, ‘Did I not say to you that if you would believe you would see the glory of God?’ Then they took away the stone from the place where the dead man was lying. 
 
And Jesus lifted up His eyes and said, ‘Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. And I know that You always hear Me, but because of the people who are standing by I said this, that they may believe that You sent Me.’
 
Now when He had said these things, He cried with a loud voice, ‘Lazarus, come forth!’ And he who had died came out bound hand and foot with graveclothes, and his face was wrapped with a cloth. Jesus said to them, ‘Loose him, and let him go.'” (John 11:39-44, NKJV)
Martha and Mary thought they knew Jesus, but they really didn’t know Him, nor did they really believe. But soon, these sisters, the mourners, the people from the town of Bethany, and everyone else would see that Jesus is Lord over the grave and over death. He’s the Resurrection and the Life! Soon, Martha, Mary, and Lazarus would believe.

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts,
Nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD.
“For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
So are My ways higher than your ways,
And My thoughts than your thoughts.”
(Is. 55:9, NKJV)

So, you think you know what God is doing?
So, you think you have Him all figured out?
You think you know what He’s planning?

Well, sisters, we don’t. We don’t even have a clue what God is up to, but believe me when I tell you that it’s something great! We can’t figure out His plan, but we can be sure that God’s plan for us is ultimately the best plan!!

“How precious are your thoughts about me, O God.
They cannot be numbered!” (Ps. 139:17, NLT)
During your quiet time MEDITATE on today’s scriptures. Be encouraged in knowing God answers prayers, His ways are perfect and His thoughts for you are beautiful!

LET’S WALK IN FREEDOM TOGETHER & IMPACT THE WORLD!

Copyright ©2010-2016. Rhovonda L. Brown. All Rights Reserved.
No portion of Martha & Mary Ministries, Walking in Freedom!™ Devotionals may be reproduced, stored in any electronic system, or transmitted in any form or by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording, or otherwise, without the written permission from the author. Brief quotations may be used in literary reviews.

Tuesday Morning Prayer

Happy LOVE & Black History Month!
Greetings and welcome new Freedom Walkers! Shout outs to all of you!

We are making preparations for our Prayer Breakfast this Saturday. Yes! The excitement is in the air! To help us get mentally, spiritually and emotionally ready for what God will do on that great day, I’ll be sharing some of my past devotional prayers. These prayers will also be included in my upcoming book, Tuesday Morning Prayer. Look at God!!

I pray today’s Walking in Freedom! Devotional prayer will motivate and inspire you to press your way into the presence of the Lord.

Happy Tuesday!
If you haven’t had a chance to register for Saturday’s event, no worries. You still have time! Use the link below to register online or you may register at the door on the day of the event between 9:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.

 

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Prayer Breakfast

 


 

Tuesday Morning Prayer

“But the LORD watches over those who fear him,
those who rely on his unfailing love.
He rescues them from death
and keeps them alive in times of famine.”
(Ps. 33:18-19, NLT)

Most precious and loving Father, in the name of Jesus, we come before Your presence with thanksgiving and praise. We want to thank You and praise You for allowing us to see a brand new day and a brand New Year. We praise You and thank You for Your many, many blessings! We praise and thank You for what You’re already doing in 20136

God, on day 23 of February 2016, You’re already showing up and showing out!! Lord, we thank You!! Not only that, but we praise You for Jesus Christ! Thank You for allowing Him to live in our hearts! He’s the reason why we live, move, and have our being! He’s the reason why we’re clothed and in our right mind! Father, we’re so grateful for Your Son! We know that without Jesus, we’d be lost like a ship lost out at sea, with no destination, no sense of purpose, being carried away, tossed to and fro upon the waves of destruction. Thank You, Jesus, for finding us! We praise You, Jesus, for keeping us!

Father, we appreciate all that You do. You do wonderful and great things for us. You protect us, look after us, care for us, and love us! As a Loving Father, You never give up on us. You continue to show us Your Great Love, and Your Great Mercy. Thank You for Mercy and thank You for Grace! Lord, we thank You for being so patient with us and always giving us another chance. Over and over again, You forgive us! We thank You for never getting tired of our mess. God, we thank You for knowing us, but still loving us. We thank You for the thoughts You have toward us! You think good thoughts about us, not evil. Father, we love You! We appreciate Your amazing love! Your unfailing love never runs out!

Lord, we make our petition unto You. Lord, we need You today and every day! Lord, we need You to lead us. Be our guide, Father. Lead the way. Lord, crucify our flesh today and Holy Spirit reign over us. Be Lord over our lives. Father, we ask that You would help us allow the Spirit Man to govern our walk today and every day. Lord, help us to surrender our will to Your Will. Help us to walk not according to our flesh, but according to Your Spirit. Lord, we yield to the fruit of the Spirit. We yield and surrender to love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control (Gal. 5:22-23).

Loving Father, we asked that You would crucify our flesh and let Your love abide. Crucify our flesh and help us to celebrate the joy of just knowing You. Crucify our flesh and let the Prince of Peace fill our hearts and mind. Master, give us patience to wait on You; give us patience with ourselves and with others. Father, show us how to be kind toward everyone we come in contact with. Lord, fill us up with Your goodness so that others may see You in us. Lord God, we ask that You would increase our faith, help us to be more committed to You, committed to Your work and to Your ministry. Help us to have faith in You, never doubting Your Word.

Merciful God, show us how to show mercy to others. Give us the spirit of humility, and teach us how to be selfless. We don’t want to live a selfish life anymore. Perfect God, give us that quiet spirit that will cause us to think before we speak and think before we act. Show us how to have self-restraint and be disciplined in our Christian walk. Father, we live for You and not for ourselves. Father, we crucify our flesh so that we can please You.

Heavenly Father, show us how to live a life that’s filled with praise, worship, and thanksgiving unto You. Strengthen our prayer life so that we may commune with You daily. Father God, we ask that You would bless us indeed! Expand our territory. Please be with us in all that we do, and keep us from evil, from all trouble and pain.

Now, Father, we continue to be thankful and be hopeful for what You’re doing and what You’re about to do. We thank You for what’s to come in 2016! In every situation that we face today, may we see the good in it and not the bad. May we not complain, whine, or find fault, but may we remain thankful and hopeful in You. For You are a loving Father who causes all things to work for our good (Rom 8:28). Lord, this is our petition, and we pray that You’ll grant us our request just like You did for Jabez (1 Chron. 4:9-10).

We ask it all in Jesus’ name, we pray. Amen.

“We put our hope in the LORD.
He is our help and our shield.
In him our hearts rejoice,
for we trust in his holy name.
Let your unfailing love surround us, LORD,
for our hope is in you alone.”
(Ps. 33:20-22, NLT)
During your quiet time MEDITATE on today’s scriptures. Be motivated by today’s VIDEO. Allow all these things to encourage you to walk in freedom!
LET’S WALK IN FREEDOM TOGETHER & IMPACT THE WORLD!
Rhovonda L. Brown is speaker and author of two bestsellers, Walking in Freedom!: A Thirty-Day Devotional Journey for Women and At Least Say, “Thank You!”: An 8-Day Devotional Plan for a Grateful Heart.

Copyright ©2010-2016. Rhovonda L. Brown. All Rights Reserved.

Image Credit: graur razvan ionut via FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Bees!

My daughter does not like bugs. In fact, she hates bees! I’m wondering if she has a phobia about them because every time she sees a bee, she gets terrified. (I know, not good.) She blames me for her fear of bees. When she was a little girl, she saw me get stung by a bee while trying to shield her from it. She claims that I made a big deal over it; however, from my recollection, I did no such thing. Well, maybe I did react in a manner that could have been quite scary to a 4 year old. According to my daughter, I ranted, screamed and made a big deal, but I don’t remember doing any of that. Anyway, whenever there’s a bee or bug, she reminds me that I’m the reason for her fear of them. And worse, her fear of bugs may have trickled down to my son, but he tries not to show his fear. (Being a man.)

The other day, my son saw a bee in his window and came downstairs to announce it to everyone in the house. “There’s a big bee in my window!” Of course this scared my daughter. Then, she was too afraid to go back up stairs. I told them to be brave, get the spray and kill it. I gave them a few pointers on how to kill it, and encouraged them to go back upstairs and conquer their fears. My husband was in the kitchen making breakfast and I was on the computer. We encouraged them to get pass their fear, be each other’s support, and to kill the bee! A minute later, both of them came running down the stairs asking. “Mommy can you come? Daddy, will you please come kill the bee? Daddy, just come see it.” Kaleb said. “I can do it if you would come with me,” They did this on several occasions.

After about 15 minutes of my children asking for help, creeping up stairs with the spray can in hand and running back down, their daddy finally stopped what he was doing. “Where is it?” and he led them back upstairs. I, on the other hand, waited at the bottom of the stairs just in case the bee tried to fly away. At last, my husband took care of the bee, which was actually a wasp!

That little episode, made me think about several things. First, sometimes, because of fear, we won’t do certain things. We won’t even try. Because we are so afraid, we won’t say or go where God is telling us to go. Instead, we ask others to do, to say and go in our place. We look for other people to do what God has called us to do. Moses, for example, feeling inadequate and afraid of the huge task God had assigned him to do, asked if someone else could do it for him. Moses wanted someone else to do what God had chosen him to do (Exodus 3 & 4:1-17).

Secondly, that ordeal with the bee also showed me that even when we are so afraid, God is always there. After consistently asking for help, my husband stopped what he was doing and took care of the bee. Like my children who asked their dad for help, so can we. All we have to say is, “Daddy!” and God will come to our rescue. He did it for Peter when he began to be swallowed up by the strong waves (Matt. 14:28-31), and He’ll do it for us. Every time we ask for help, our Heavenly Father comes strong on our behalf. We can always depend on Him.

My sister, has God given you a job that seems insurmountable? Have you been trying to pass that assignment over to someone else because you feel inadequate and afraid? Are you being overtaken by the flood – is your back against the wall? Has God told you to move, but you’re still stuck in that same place, that same position because you’re too afraid to move?

Well, it’s Wednesday! Hump Day! Here’s our Biblical principle to get us moving over the hump.

“Be strong and very courageous… Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” (Josh. 1:7a, 9, NIV)

LET’S WALK IN FREEDOM TOGETHER & IMPACT THE WORLD!

Originally posted: 9/11/13

God Can Do Anything!

Our God is incredible! Our God is magnificent! He has all power!! He’s a mighty God! He can do anything that He wants to do!!! He owns the cattle on a thousand hills. He owns everything (Psalm 50:10-12). The earth is the Lord and the fullness there of (1 Cor. 10:26). He created everything. He made everything. Everything belongs to Him. The earth is His. The sky is His. The seas belong to Him. The moon and stars, they are all His. Surely, He can do anything!

He took a coin out of the mouth of a fish to pay taxes (Matt. 17:27). Surely, He can pay all our bills! He clothes the lilies in the field, feed the birds. Surely, He will take care of all our necessities (Luke 12:22-31)! He healed a man who was demon possessed (Matt. 8:28-32). Surely, He can heal tormented minds and give them peace! He heals all manner of diseases. He forgives all sins. He delivers and set free those who are held captive. Most, surely, God can do anything!

Since God can do anything, why do we doubt? Why so little faith? Why do we worry? We doubt and worry because we turn our attention away from God. We do what Peter did in Matthew chapter 14. We look at our storms, we see the waves, and we listen to the negativity from others. Then, we begin to hesitate, become anxious, and turn our focus away from the Master.

Let us keep our mind on the One who can do anything. Let us keep our eyes and focus on the One who can do exceedingly great and glorious things!

“God can do anything, you know-far more than you could ever imagine or guess or request in your wildest dreams!” (Eph. 3:20)

Wondering if your situation is too hard for God? Wondering if your mountain is too big for Him to move? Troubled if you will get out of the mess you’re in? Worrying if you’re going to make it? Here’s what I want you to do. Declare it in your mind and in your spirit that God can do anything! Open up your mouth! Shout it out into air! Proclaim it to the devil! 

Our God can do anything and there’s nothing too hard for God!!

“Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul? 
      Why are you crying the blues? 
   Fix my eyes on God- 
      soon I’ll be praising again. 
   He puts a smile on my face. 

      He’s my God. 

When my soul is in the dumps,

I rehearse everything I know of you…..”

(Psalm 42:5-6b, MSG)

During your Quiet Time, meditate on today’s scriptures and allow God’s Word to brighten your day.

LET’S WALK IN FREEDOM TOGETHER & IMPACT THE WORLD! 

*Originally posted 5/6/12.   

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LEARN ABOUT RHOVONDA’S DEVOTIONAL: MINISTRY, MARTHA & MARY MINISTRIES, WALKING IN FREEDOM!™

Rhovonda L. Brown is speaker and author of two bestsellers, Walking in Freedom!: A Thirty-Day Devotional Journey for Women and At Least Say, “Thank You!”: An 8-Day Devotional Plan for a Grateful Heart. 

Copyright ©2010-2016. Rhovonda L. Brown. All Rights Reserved.

A Challenge

You know it’s so easy to look at the bad things that are happening in our lives. It’s very easy to focus on what’s not going right. It is easy to complain about what we don’t have or what we need. It’s so easy to look at the things that are going so wrong, how the bills are due, how the kids are misbehaving, what our husbands are not doing, the sickness that we have, the jobs that don’t pay enough. It’s easy to focus on how things are really looking bad right now. Yes, it’s easy to see and focus on those negative things.

But today, I have a challenge for you and I’m challenging myself as well. There may be things not going so well in our lives. Right now, things might be looking pretty bad. Our lives may look like a tornado has blown threw our city and we need to assess the damages. Maybe the wind is blowing hard and the rain is still pouring down. But today, let’s not look at the chaos that’s going on. Today, let’s not survey the damages. Today, let’s not look at how horrible things have gotten. Let’s not focus on the disorder, the confusion, or the turmoil. No, let’s focus on something else. Let’s turn our eyes and attention to someone else.

Today, my sister, I’m challenging you to focus on the One who is still in the “working it out” business. I’m challenging myself to keep my mind on the One who knows what to do and how to do it. I’m focusing on the One who knows what’s best for me. Today, I’m challenging you to do the same. Keep your attention on the One who has it all under control. God can and God will take care of everything. He has everything in place just the way He wants it. Things that are going on in our lives are no accidents; they are no mishaps, and no mistakes. These things are not by chance. No, God foreknew all of this would happen. That’s why He’s sovereign.

Therefore, today let us bring everything to the Lord. All of our worries, all of our confusion, all of our disappointments, all of our health issues. Let us bring all of our concerns to the One who can handle everything. For if we bring all our cares to Him, that’s when He will give us peace.

Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God. And God’s peace [shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus. (Phil. 4:6-7, AMP)

Let’s Pray: Father, we thank You for being a God who can and who will take care of everything. Father, forgive us for not bringing all our cares to You. Lord, You said You would bear our burdens, You would lift our heavy loads. But You want us to bring all of them to You. So, Father we bring them to You and we leave them there. Father, give us faith to trust and believe that You will work everything out for our good. Father, help us to focus on You and only You because You are all we need and You have everything under control. Lord, we love You and we thank You. In Jesus name, we pray. Amen.

“Praise be to the Lord, to God our Savior, who daily bears our burdens. Our God is a God who saves; from the Sovereign LORD comes escape from death.” (Psalm 68:19-20, NIV)

Encouraging You to Walk in Freedom! ™

Were you encouraged by this devotional? Purchase my new devotional book, Walking in Freedom!. It’s has 30 thought-provoking devotionals that will intensify your walk with Christ. Take the 30-Day Challenge!

Originally posted April 27, 2011.

 

For By Him We Can

With your help I can defeat an army. If my God is with me, I can climb over enemy walls. (Psalm 18:29, ERV)

Today I am embarking on something new. Well, actually it’s a familiar territory, but I am doing it in a new way. Over a year ago, I attempted to accomplish a certain goal. It started off great! I dived right into it and to be honest, I was doing very well. I was on my way to accomplishing that goal that I set out to do. However, as the months went by, I begin to get discouraged. I was discouraged because I did not see the changes that I thought I should have seen. As a result, I begin slacking off. I begin to allow obstacles and distractions to pull me off track. Eventually, the goal that started off as being most essential to me became less important. Soon, that achievable goal was sitting back on the shelf collecting dust.

Recently, I begin to wonder what went wrong. Why did that goal that was so significant to me at the beginning, became less urgent? How did the drive and fire that I initially possess go away? Well, I realize I had been doing a lot of things wrong.

I started off trying to accomplish this huge task, this huge goal on my own. I relied on my own strength and wisdom. Then, I enlisted a little help from others, but I failed to rely on the most important person. I didn’t rely on God. Yes, I had help and the support of family and friends. I received expert advice; however, I did not utilize the supernatural support and the supernatural expertise from the Creator. I needed supernatural power, supernatural wisdom, and supernatural guidance, which only comes from God, in order to accomplish that challenging goal. I needed my Heavenly Father’s help.

So, today, I am trying it again. I’m embarking on a familiar territory, but I’m doing it in a new way. I’m determined to accomplish that goal that I started over a year ago. I’m going to continue to use the support of my family and friends, because it’s good to have the support of others. But God will be the ultimate decision maker. When stumbling blocks and diversions come, I will make petitions to my faithful Father. I will look to Him for the help and support that’s needed to accomplish any goal.

Sister, we have supernatural support waiting for us to ask for His help. For by Him, we can achieve anything.

Christ is the one who gives me the strength I need to do whatever I must do. (Phil. 4:13 ERV)

MEDITATION AND QUIET TIME

ENCOURAGING YOU TO WALK IN FREEDOM!
Copyright ©2010-2014. Rhovonda Brown. All Rights Reserved.

Originally posted on my Walking in Freedom! website http://www.rhovondalbrown.com

My debut book, Walking in Freedom!, is ready for your enjoyment. You may purchase it from Amazon| Barnes & Noble| Books A Million | iBooks | Google Play | Nook | Apple | Kindle | Kobo …. Just to name a few. It’s available Now: http://m.barnesandnoble.com/s/walking-in-freedom-a-thirty-day-devotional-journey-for-women