The Place God Has Prepared for Us

Exodus 23:20-22(NLT)
“20 See, I am sending an angel before you to protect you on your journey and lead you safely to the place I have prepared for you. 21 Pay close attention to him and obey his instructions. Do not rebel against him, for he is my representative, and he will not forgive your rebellion. 22 But if you are careful to obey him, following all my instructions, then I will be an enemy to your enemies, and I will oppose those who oppose you.”

“Sometimes I just want to give up! Nothing in my life is easy! Every time I turn around, there’s another hurdle to jump through.”


Can you sense the frustration and disappointment in the statement above? Sometimes, the Christian journey isn’t easy. There can be jubilant highs and gut-wrenching lows. There are hurdles to jump through, and many trials and tribulations to overcome. These are all a part of life’s journey. But somehow, many individuals think that believers in the Lord Jesus Christ are exempt from challenges and adversities. We are not. The difference between those that have made Jesus Christ their personal Lord and Savior and those that have not is the victory that he offers us through our faith! 1John 5:4(NLT) declares this! It states, “For every child of God defeats this evil world, and we achieve this victory through our faith.”

You may feel as though you’re on the losing side, but this is where faith comes in. We must trust that God set up our journeys in Christ to be victorious and triumphant, not downtrodden and powerless. When we’re struggling to believe this, God commands us to renew our minds so that feelings of defeat and sadness are not our go-to emotions. He wants us to replace these with faith and confidence in Him.

Our struggle begins when we believe that we must strive to be good enough and that we must force ourselves to have confidence. Jesus Christ tells us in John 6:63(NLT), “The Spirit alone gives eternal life. Human effort accomplishes nothing. And the very words I have spoken to you are spirit and life.” He’s teaching us the difference between the realm of the flesh and the realm of the Spirit. You and I didn’t save ourselves from the bondage of death and darkness, there was no way we could have possibly done this. Jesus Christ is our Savior and Redeemer. Through the finished work of his sacrifice and resurrection, God has set us free through His beloved and powerful Son.

He tells us Galatians 5:1(NIV), “It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand firm, then, and do not let yourselves be burdened again by a yoke of slavery.” This means that we’re to abandon the mindset of trying to make ourselves right and lay hold of the mindset of accepting God’s way of making us right through Jesus Christ. We are spiritual beings, and our new way of responding to God and life is through His Spirit.

God teaches us many spiritual lessons about His provision, protection, and power through the Children of Israel in the Old Testament. We see His faithfulness and His desire for a family. And we also see how God expects us to behave as members of His family. He is our Heavenly Father, and He commands us to lean totally and completely on Him for everything. In Proverbs 3:5-6(NLT), He instructs, “Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. 6 Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.” So, even in our emotions and feelings, Heavenly Father expects us to make them submissive to our faith in Him.

We can learn a lot in the Old Testament from the mistakes His people made when they didn’t trust Him. They witnessed God part the Red Sea to rescue them from slavery under the Egyptians. He rained manna from heaven to feed them, and when they complained about the manna, He caused a wind to bring quails to them from the sea. In the wilderness, He split open rocks and caused water to burst forth like a spring. The miracles God showed them were too numerous to count, but even with all His miraculous works, they still did not remain faithful. With everything that Heavenly Father did for them, they were not totally convinced of His love and power.

You and I can be assured that witnessing God’s miracles doesn’t necessarily cause our minds and hearts to change towards Him. This is a tremendous lesson for us to learn. Jesus Christ commands us in Mark 12:30 to love God with all our hearts, souls, minds, and strength. This means that we are to love our Heavenly Father with all that we are. This kind of love comes from Jesus Christ, and it is not dependent on the wonderful things that God does; it is dependent on the reality of who God is. We must love Him because He is the ‘Great I Am!’ He’s holy beyond holiness, brilliance beyond brilliant, perfect beyond perfection, and majestic beyond majesty. He is worthy to be praised because He is who He is. This is the truth on which our faith must be anchored.

This race that you and I are running in life is the race that God has set before us. We didn’t set it, He did. Our lives belong to Him. He knows every detail, experience, and encounter in our lives before these things occur. In Exodus 23:20, God shows us that He will even send His angels ahead of us to protect us, and He will keep our feet from falling while we’re running this race of life, but we must trust Him and He will not force us to do so. Everything we do, think, feel, and say is completely up to us. We are the ones to determine whether we will walk in the victory of Christ based on the choices and decisions we make. God desires that we choose Him and His Word every time. He desires us to walk in the victory of Christ so that we will not be defeated by the tricks of the enemy. He wants us to know that we will outsmart the devil by thinking, speaking, and behaving like Christ, and having the kind of faith that Christ has.

Notice also in Exodus 23:20 that God tells His people that He had prepared a place for them. When He told them this thousands of years ago, He was referring to the Promised Land. But because of what God accomplished for us in Christ, we can walk in the Promised Land every day because God has set us free!  We need to focus on the reality of who God is more than we focus on our emotions and feelings. We should never want it said about us that we value our emotions and feelings more than we value the truth of God’s Word.

It’s a mistake to think that God can’t relate to the troubling times we face on earth as His Children. He absolutely does, and He tells us in Romans 8:37 that He’s made us more than conquerors over those things through Christ Jesus, our Lord. Many of us have a pattern of relying on how we feel, and we allow this to govern us, but feeling low, sad, and defeated is not the place God has prepared for us. He wants us to put all our trust on the reality of who He is. He is faithful and has all power in His hands. When we trust in the totality of His goodness, grace, and mercy, He will go before us and lead us every step of the way. He will handle those that talk about us and try to cause us trouble, as we have confidence that victory in Christ will always be our destination when we continue to place all our trust in God.■

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

“The Place God Has Prepared for Us”, written for DomesticAbuseAwareness.Org ©2022. All rights reserved. All done to the glory of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord!

Be Aware of the Consequences

Galatians 6:7(NLT)
“Don’t be misled – you cannot mock the justice of God.  You will always harvest what you plant.”

“I know actions have consequences, but I didn’t know it would be like this.”

It’s not an easy pill to swallow when we finally understand how the circumstances and conditions of our lives fit into the Law of Cause and Effect. In simple terms, this law means that for every action there is a re-action or response. This is the way our Heavenly Father designed the universe to operate. Whatever we put out there is going to boomerang back to us. In other words, whether it is good or bad, there’s a consequence for every action. We’re going to reap what we sow.  

Jesus Christ teaches us in Matthew 12:35(NLT), “A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart.” Our Master Jesus defines a good person as one who has a heart that wants to please God and to bless others. When this is our motivation, we will see positive consequences and blessings reflected in our lives. But there’s a flip side to this, and that’s the side we should try our very best to always avoid.

When there’s ugliness in our hearts like bitterness, anger, arrogance, jealousy, selfishness, and resentment, it’s going to come out of us and be expressed through our words and actions. The boomerang of our negative actions and words will often surprise us, because the consequences are far worse than our initial poor behavior. God doesn’t want these remnants of darkness in our hearts because they injure our relationship with Him and keep us from being who He wants us to be. He tells us in Ephesians 4:22 to “throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of life, which is corrupted by lust and deception.” He has commanded us to rid ourselves of those thoughts, attitudes, feelings, and words that do not represent His Kingdom. We are children of His light, and we have the privilege and responsibility to represent His goodness in the earth.

2Timothy 1:7(ESV) states, “for God gave us a spirit not of fear but of power and love and self-control.” God has empowered us through the Spirit of Christ to have self-control. This means that we don’t let people and situations determine who we are going to be and how we are going to act. We should know that our identity is in Christ, and we can and should walk in his love continually. If we don’t do this, we are setting ourselves up for consequences that we will not like.

The truth is that no one escapes the consequences of their actions. We sometimes think this, but it isn’t true. God said in Revelation 2:23(NLT), “I will strike her children dead. Then all the churches will know that I am the one who searches out the thoughts and intentions of every person. And I will give to each of you whatever you deserve.” God is telling us this because He wants us to understand His laws and how they work. He is a God of order, not confusion. Everything He does has order, and as His children, He wants us to follow His Word because He blesses His Word.

He has given us free-will to live our lives the way we choose. His love doesn’t shove or push. He doesn’t force us to love Him but hopes that we will. When we turn away from God’s love through our actions, our lives begin to deteriorate, and unless we recognize this, our lives will continue to spiral downward. We can change this, and we should.    

You might ask, “Why does God want people to suffer?” John 3:16(NLT) tells us, “For God loved the world so much that he gave his one and only Son, so that everyone who believes in him will not perish but have eternal life.” Our Heavenly Father has shown us how much He loves us by giving His one and only Son, Jesus Christ, as a sacrifice for our sins. He did this when we were at our worst. We were lost and without hope, but God rescued us through Jesus Christ and redeemed us from the curse of sin and death. Now, we can walk in the victory of Christ every moment of our lives, but this is a choice we all must make.

Consequences can be devastating, but God doesn’t cause pain and suffering. However, He will allow them whenever and wherever there is disobedience and sin. He’s equipped and empowered us in Christ to live in love. This means we have the privilege and honor to line up all that we do, think, and say with the reality of who God has made us through Christ. The time is out for excuses. Now is the time to come to God with humbled hearts and made up minds to serve and honor Him. He will forgive our sins and transform our lives to such a degree that we will produce good things from the treasury of a good heart. When we put on our new nature in Christ the way God commands, we will love others through Him, and our lives will overflow with His goodness.■

English Standard Version (ESV), The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.

Scripture quotations marked (NLT) are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright © 1996. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189. All rights reserved.

“Be Aware of the Consequences” written by Kyada for DomesticAbuseAwareness.Org ©2022. All rights reserved. All done to the glory of God through Jesus Christ, our Lord!