Wondering what single moms are saying my new book, Quiet My Soul – Devotionals for the Single Mom?
Here’s a testimony from one single momma:
“This devotional has been such an encouragement to me that I decided to turn one of its lessons into a family Bible study lesson. Thank you Juliana Boudreaux for being an encouraging light to my ENTIRE family!! If you haven’t gotten this devotional yet, WHAT ARE YOU WAITING FOR??” -Danielle J.
Don’t wait any longer to get your copy! Available on Amazon here.
The other day I went to the local dollar store to pickup some last minute gift bags. I was super pleased when I sound an adorable set of 3 for the bargain price of $1.00. One of the bags was cute with a plaid design and said “It’s the most wonderful time of the year.” Perhaps when you hear that pharse it brings a certain Christmas song to mind, but what God quickened in my spirit as I read that bag is that the holidays are not the most wonderful time of the year for everybody. During the holidays this year the Father has called to my mind so many people I personally know who have lost a loved one this year, or who continue to grieve a loved one or a broken marriage.
Romans 12:15 tells us to rejoice with those who rejoice and to weep with those who weep. My prayer is that I don’t get so caught up in enjoying Christmas with my own family that I forget the many who are weeping during this time. As we go about our family traditions let’s stop and pray for those who are having their first holiday without their precious loved one. Let’s take a break from the busyness of the mad dash to get it all done and reach out to those around us who are hurting. God’s word says that the world will know we are Christians by our love. We need to ask ourselves how we are putting love on display not only throughout the holidays but everyday.
To the man or woman mourning the loss of a spouse and longing for just one more time to hear their voice or be in their arms, you are not forgotten. To the child remembering a parent, you are not alone. To the parent weeping for your child, God is with you. To the single parent doing the job of two parents, God sees you. To all those who are separated from a loved one due to deployment or incarcertion, don’t lose hope. God is near to each of you (Psalm 34:18).
My prayer for all those that feel like this may not be the most wonderful time of the year is that Father God would give you beauty for ashes (Isaiah 61:3), and that you would crawl into the loving arms of the Father and find comfort there (Matthew 5:4). God bless you and keep you always.
As I reflect on the disciples I can’t help but be in awe of Jesus. Peter denied knowing Jesus. Thomas doubted Christ’s resurrection. Judas was a thief and a traitor, and yet Jesus allowed each of these men to sit at the same table with him. He knew all their faults and how they would stumble and fail, and yet He loved them, taught them and did life with them. The Father is always willing to meet people where they’re at, are we?
I’m challenged as I think about how Jesus treated Judas no different than the other disciples. I’d like to think I could love and be kind to someone who I knew was going to betray me the way our Savior did, but could I really? I know that’s the standard we are called to, but it certainly isn’t always easy to do. When I think of how difficult it can be at times to love someone where they are I think of how the Father did that for me. I recall to memory how He looked down from heaven and loved me in my sin. He is patient with me so I too must be patient with others. 1 Peter 4:8 (ESV) reads, “Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since love covers a multitude of sins.” God bears with us. Let us bear with one another and show love, kindness, and mercy always.
Lord, help each of us be excessively kind. Help us to love others the way You love us. Help us to meet others where they’re at and to speak truth in love to them. Let us seek justice, love mercy and walk humbly with You. Amen.
I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord. Psalms 27:13-14 (NASB)
Wait for the Lord. That isn’t always easy. Believing that we will see the goodness of God here on Earth requires that we be strong and have courage. I think of the lyrics of a worship song by Bethel when I read the above verses. They say, “Take courage my heart. Stay steadfast my soul. He’s in the waiting. He’s in the waiting. Hold on to your hope as your triumph unfolds. He’s never failing. He’s never failing.” Oh child of God, Yashua Himself is right there with you in your season of waiting. Your triumph is unfolding. God never sleeps nor slumbers. He is working on your behalf. Refuse to fall into despair and instead cling to hope. Romans 5:3-5 says, “And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.” God is with you. He is for you and He will never forsake you!
So when I started this blog months ago I was in the process of completing editing of my first book. Can I be candid? I’ve let fear keep me from publishing sooner. My pastor preached a message a week ago today about finding your war cry, which could best be summed up with the phrase, “Not today satan.” That message really resonated with me. So much so that when I woke up this past Wednesday on my 38th birthday I decided to kick the enemy in the face and do two things I’ve been letting fear keep me from doing. One was launching an online Christian themed t-shirt business and the other was taking the final steps to publish my book. The book is entitled “Quiet My Soul- Devotionals for the Single Mom” and is available on Amazon. In all my nervousness to step out, God reminded me that sometimes being obedient to Him means doing things afraid. We need to do them anyway!
What is the enemy using to keep you from doing something the Father has called you to do? Is it fear, anxiety, or not feeling worthy enough? Maybe it’s a lie of the enemy you’ve bought into, and you’ve believed the lie so long you don’t even know how to stop. Memorize scripture that combats that lie with truth. Deliver a 1, 2 punch to the enemy by doing what God has called you to…even if that means doing it afraid! 2 Timothy 1:7 tells us that Father God doesn’t give us a spirit of fear. Y’all we have to remember who we are and whose we are. The enemy has already been DEFEATED. Let’s walk in victory by walking in obedience even when being obedient is uncomfortable.
I wait quietly before God, for my victory comes from him. He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken. Psalms 62:1-2 NLT
Sometimes when we go through things in life we forget who Our Rock is and allow anxiety, fear and worry to take ahold of us. At all times, especially in times of trouble, we must remember who our help comes from. Lord, help us to remain steadfast in Your peace and Your presence when life comes like a flood.
Philippians 4:6-7 tells us, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” Father God help us to guard our minds and hearts from anything not of you. Help us to fall before You with a posture of gratitude for all that You are and all our many blessings even in the midst of our trials. He is worthy to be praised in every season!