Blog

Our Hope

Hello friends!

I hope this post finds you blessed, healthy and well on this Saturday!

To update you on the book/devotional, 100 Days with Jesus, I wasn’t able to figure out some codes I had to input so I wasn’t able to pick that up. I look forward to another opportunity as I figure out how the program works, ha ha.

In other news, I’m close to reaching a VIPKID teaching milestone – 1000 classes taught!

I made the picture above as a sweet reminder that in all things, whether family, health, career, relationship or simple thought, we find more value in seeking our Lord in them.

Because He. is. present.

 

Love, 

Jessica

Advertisements

When, Lord, we feel that we are under pressure from the unbelieving world …

Such a humble reminder that God is truly in control!

Learning From God's Word

“Contend, O Lord, with those who contend with me; fight against those who fight against me!” (Psalm 35:1). When, Lord, we feel that we are under pressure from the unbelieving world, help us to remember the words of Jesus: “In the world, you have tribulation; but be of good cheer, I have overcome the world” (John 16:33). Help us to rejoice in Your victory (Romans 8:31; 1 Corinthians 15:57). Help us to say, from our hearts, “I will thank Thee … I will praise Thee … all day long” (Psalm 35:18,2,8).

View original post

If you could spend 100 days with the most controversial and influential person in history…would you?

Who is this person who is still changing lives today?

Jesus Christ. Jesus. Our Lord.

If given the opportunity to just spend 100 days with this person who has personally turned my life around, I would drop everything!

Okay, I would pack my boys’ lunches first, and then drop everything. 😉

What an opportunity, we have, though because we can know Him here and now! I have an opportunity to study this book called 100 Days with Jesus: A Daily Glimpse into the Person of Christ.

91EqJAvhRpL

Each day visits a reference in Scripture that reveals Jesus in one way – one way that makes Him the voice we need and yet sometimes the voice we ignore.

Let me know if you’d like to join me on this journey to spend 100 days with Jesus by commenting on this post!

Love,

Jessica

Raging Waters Calming Seas Blog is being Extended! Read more!

When God calls you to do something, equips you and blesses you as you obey, you don’t neglect the calling just because of other responsibilities. Obedience to God is the key to happiness and the little things like writing a blog is no exception!

Whoever ends up reading this, thank you. I appreciate your eyes and heart!

I wanted to share that since it hard for me to carve out already spoken-for time to write posts about the things of God such as Bible studies or reflections, I am going to extend the content to include two major areas God has added to my life!

  1. Travel and future movesSAMSUNG CAMERA PICTURES
  2. Online teaching with VIPKIDprevip trial august 14th

If encouragement can be intertwined in those posts, all the better!

I hope these future posts can continue to be an encouragement to you and a place where you can relate and share!

 

Excited for this new venture,

Jessica

Did you know Obadiah…is a book in the Bible?

So there’s this book in the Bible called “Obadiah” and if you like short books, this one is for you. It’s not just short; it’s micro! Only one chapter!

But here’s the question: Why read it? If you’re a New Testament-loving Bible reader, there’s probably not one underlined verse in your Bible’s Obadiah. Am I wrong?

But just for fun, to say you did, read this book. 🙂

Yes, it’s a minor prophet writing about the condemnation of a nation but instead of focusing on the potential dryness of the accounts, focus instead on the Word of the Lord, how many times the word “Lord” is used, and what this book teaches you about the character of God.

Specifically, verse 3, is where we find what might have triggered this vision.

Let’s have fun. 🙂 Comment one word you think is what I’m describing and we’ll see what everyone finds!

Enjoy Obadiah!

Jessica

Ecclesiastes 12: Fear God Especially When No One’s Watching

If there’s any virtue of going through this study of Ecclesiastes, it’s been getting to know this chapter and many of the gems that lead to life and keep things in perspective. I’ve gotten so much from reading through studies and learning some vocabulary in it’s original language and I really hope you did too. I’ve been so blessed to hear different feedback from some of you and appreciate you catching these posts when you can. Let’s read the final chapter in this fantastic book here.

Many quote sayings that teach how small decisions, minor choices, behaviors when no one “important” is looking, really add up and lead to us getting what we really deserve, whether directly or indirectly…

-treating our spouses well
-speaking poorly of our boss
-choosing to eat less sweets
-a small lie to get out of a situation
-telling the clerk they undercharged you
-not giving God the first fruits of your gross income

Some of these examples, if repeated, will lead to breakdowns in relationships, sadness and constant financial struggles. Some of these examples, also if repeated, will lead to peace, joy, and constant favor.

“For God will bring every act to judgment, everything which is hidden, whether it is good or evil.” – Ecc. 12:13

Do you ever feel like someone’s watching you? Ha ha, I hope that wasn’t a creepy question.

I mean, don’t you do things and feel like if someone saw you, they’d think the worst…or maybe the best?

I know I often feel like God’s right there, watching me, interjecting some words at time which is very welcome in the moments when I also get small whispers of discouragement, fear, or rejection. I’m sure we’ve all been there!

When you read this, was it also apparent that Solomon wanted to end with a point that communicated, “If you get nothing else from this book, understand this!”?

This point, being that when no one is watching, when no one’s around to hear, when no one’s truly listening to the inner thoughts and decisions…know that God is and always will be.

And for that simple fact, fear Him. Not “Ah! He’s so scary!”. Not “Ah! What will He do now?!” Not, “I blew it. I’m awful to Him. I’m lost.” kind of fear.

Fear like…”You are a good Father. You know best. You know me best and still love me deeply. Of course I will trust You and follow You, honor You and adore You, with the things I say and do. And when I fail, I will be quick to confess and ask You to forgive me, because You love me.”

When Solomon used that word “fear”, it was meant to mean to encourage to “fear God, and fly from evil”, as interpreted by the Gesenius’ Hebrew-Chaldee Lexicon.

Dear friend, let’s take that away from this interesting book. Let’s be quick to honor God by removing ourselves from attitudes that dishonor Him. One day, maybe soon, you will be so glad you did.

Much love,

Jessica

Ecclesiastes 11: You Just Never Know

Are you a planner? Does it unsettle you when those plans change, outside of your control?

Are you a “Let’s just see how this day unfolds?” kind of person? Do you leave things for later, only to find time has run out?

Then this chapter has something for the both of you! Let’s read the short chapter 11 here!

I’ve talked to people who have saved things for years, to find out they needed it later that year. What a relief!

I’ve known people to purge things on a regular basis (me for one!) which makes room not only for blessings others but for being blessed.

What do we get from this chapter in Ecclesiastes? It’s wise not to assume you know what is going to happen…plan for what you desire and don’t wait for someone else to do it for you.

They never will.

While you have the energy, while you have the talent, while you have the ability, while you have the resource…assuming you have some, any or all of these…invest in doing good, working hard, and starting whatever it is God has placed in your heart to do.

What is something that needs your attention? Who can you think of blessing?

Please reflect and let me know your thoughts! And I hope you join me for the last chapter’s study next Thursday!

Jessica

 

Ecclesiastes 10: Decisions, decisions, decisions…

I feel like this chapter is a collection of different thoughts and observations, relative to Solomon’s time and day. So for that reason, it’s helpful to read it in a paraphrase translation, like NLT. Read chapter 10 here!

Are you non-decision maker? Like, do you see the good in so many of the options presented to you that you need three days to decide on something that should only take three minutes?

Who is your go-to person when you need feedback or help making important or unimportant decisions? Friend? Mom? Co-worker? Google?

Ecclesiastes 10 is telling us, through a series of different life examples, something about the decisions we make, moment by moment. It’s sharing observations of trends…

…certain people make certain decisions and those decisions lead them in certain directions.

…you can tell a person by the direction they’re going.

…you can tell a person by the decisions they make.

 

And the Bible is full of reminders of how important our decisions are, especially the small ones, in the grand scheme of our lives, especially when we own the banner of Christ-loving.

“He who is faithful in a very little thing is faithful also in much; and he who is unrighteous in a very little thing is unrighteous also in much.” Luke 16:10

In this short post, please take away the reminder and encouragement that in the small moments of your every day, push through the temptation to choose the unrighteous thing and choose the thing that will not only bless you but bless others, no matter who they are or what they’ve done.

Have a wonderful week!

Jessica

Ecclesiastes 9: Why Try?

What a seemingly sad chapter! If you’re having a sunny, delightful day, you can expect this chapter to bring by a rainy and dark, cloud. But, as always, there’s something more. Some hidden gems we can take away and sew into our lives, making our walk that much more secure in God. Read chapter 9 here!

Verses 1 to 9…yikes.

“Furthermore, the hearts of the sons of men are full of evil and insanity is in their hearts throughout their lives. Afterwards they go to the dead.” Ecclesiastes 9:3b

*Gulp*

It’s good though! The message thus far in this chapter has been that life is brief (we knew that), life is often unpredictable (we knew that too), and it’s good to enjoy what you have (thank God, we knew that one!).

But when it says, “It is the same for all. There is one fate for the righteous and for the wicked; for the good, for the clean and for the unclean; for the man (and woman) who offers a sacrifice and for the one who does not sacrifice…” (9:2) it feels like, “Hm. So, it’s all the same ending for everyone. Why try hard to be better? To do good? To be different from those who do wrong and indulge?”

We can see this is strong evidence that God is just; that He shows no special favoritism on any people group, gender, denomination, socio-economic status, etc.

“There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor free man, there is neither male nor female; for you are all one in Christ Jesus.” Galatians 3:28
“‘Is it not lawful for me to do what I wish with what is my own? Or is your eye envious because I am generous?”’ Matthew 20:15
We know God is urging to make the most of our time on Earth by choosing Him, by choosing to ask for wisdom (see chapter 8 of Ecclesiastes), and by making the most of every moment.
“Whatever your hand finds to do, do it with all your might;” Ecclesiastes 9:10
Jessica

 

Ecclesiastes 8: Pure and Powerful Wisdom

What is wisdom? Like, when you hear that word, what do you think it means? Intelligent? Smart? Careful? As you can see here, it means many of those things, and more! Ecclesiastes uses this word many times; half as many times as Proverbs, who share the same author, by the way. When he uses that word in either book, it also can mean many things, even though it’s the very same word. We’re going to see which meaning he’s referring to when he uses it five times in chapter 8, which you can so conveniently read here. 🙂

When I was studying this chapter, I found myself having to focus, in order to really summarize anything coherent. The one theme I found that seemed to be strung through every verse was this idea of wisdom:

wise (8:1, 5, 17)

wisdom (8:1, 16)

And then, of course, there’s the contrast to wisdom with words such as “wicked”, “evil”, and “futility”.

Sometimes, that’s how it goes when reading the Bible. You read one verse, chapter or book, and it’s easy to figure out; easy to understand and apply. Then there are other verses, chapters and books that have to be read over, and over and over…and then you try a different translation and then pick up a commentary and then you start to get the gist.

So I ask you this question – why should we want to have wisdom?

This chapter of Ecclesiastes tells us because it will cause us to fear God…which is a very good thing.

“…still I know that it will be well for those who fear God, who fear Him openly.” -Ecclesiastes 8:12b

In your mind, in your spirit, in your relationships, in your career, in your future, in your body…it…will…be…well.

You make a mistake? It will be well.
You fall and stumble? It will be well.
You suffer in your weakness? It will be well.
You doubt? It will be well.
You lose? It will be well.

You cannot go wrong striving for wisdom and asking God for it, so that He will be with you, to inspire you to fear Him and bless you so that it will be well with you!

“But if any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all generously and without reproach, and it will be given to him.” James 1:5
-Jessica