Be to me a sheltering rock where I may always go. Give the command to save me— for You are my rock and my fortress. Psalm 71:3

When our lives progress according to our plans, we feel confident and secure. We value our independence and sense of control. This sense of security dissipates when we face trials, difficulty, or loss. Instead of feeling secure, we become acutely aware of our vulnerability. As our plans unravel, we realize the limitation of our control and power. As followers of Messiah, we may wish for an exemption from suffering, but this was never promised to us. In the midst of our insecurity, we have a choice.

“You made me see many troubles and evils —You will revive me again— from the depths of the earth You will bring me up again. You will increase my greatness, and comfort me once again.” Psalm 71:20 – 21

We can be like trees whose roots grow deep into the ground to withstand the winds shaking them, or we can allow the circumstances to separate us from God, our strength and foundation.

God is the only one who can provide the power and peace we need to survive trials. The security offered by other sources is temporary. God alone is steadfast and constant. That is why it’s all about God and the Messiah!

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Seasons of Spiritual Dryness – Part 2

Are you experiencing a season of spiritual apathy or dryness?  You know you should show love and have joy but those wells within you seem empty?  See if the following may be true of you…

Seasons of Personal tragedy or reversal

During times of personal tragedy it is hard for us to see the bigger picture of God’s plan.  Spiritual dryness comes when we do not understand things that are happening to us.  It is ok to ask God to help our understanding but instead of “pressing” into God, we tend to try and assuage our own pain and leave the disciplines of a healthy spiritual life (communion / relationship with God, prayer, worship, Bible reading and study, alone and with others and a life of pouring out love…) Many times the pain in our life from the broken world can drive our actions in the flesh.  Often, the very first to be tossed out of our lives, is the dynamic relationship we have with God.  Paul warns us in Romans 8 about walking in the flesh:

Romans 8:5-6- 5 For those who live according to the flesh set their minds on the things of the flesh, but those who live according to the Ruach set their minds on the things of the Ruach. 6 For the mindset of the flesh is death, but the mindset of the Ruach is life and shalom.

We walk in the flesh when we attempt to cure our wounding’s on our own.  Only when we walk according to the Spirit is there any hope of God to heal our wounds of loneliness, depression, immorality, abuse, rejection, feelings of worthlessness etc.  When we attempt to do what only God can do we end up in spiritual dryness.

Feeding ourselves at a sensory physical level and not a spiritual level.

Sometimes we invite spiritual dryness into our lives by trying to get away from it all.  With all the distractions we have in our modern world it is our relationship with God that becomes less than routine.  Again, we attempt to recharge ourselves outside of this relationship.  Our God-relationship through Yeshua needs to be more than routine but it needs to be in our routine.  Our breaks from our routines need to be accomplished through our God-relationship, taking a “break” from “God” or our spiritual disciplines, is like taking a break from breathing!  It does not sustain us or offer any refreshing to our soul but it will lead to spiritual dryness at best and spiritual death at worst.

If you have been in a period of spiritual dryness or apathy consider James 4:7-8

“7 therefore submit to God. But resist the devil and he will flee from you.

8 Draw near to God, and He will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded!”

And also Isaiah 55:6-7

“6 Seek Adonai while He may be found, call on Him while He is near. 7 Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous one his thoughts, let him return to Adonai, so He may have compassion on him, and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon.”



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Seasons of Spiritual Dryness – Part 1

Seasons of Spiritual Dryness – Part 1

Are you experiencing a season of spiritual apathy or dryness?  You know you should show love and have joy but those wells within you seem empty?  See if the following may be true of you…

Are you in a season of sustained work or ministry to others without taking a break?  You can find yourself giving and pouring out over and over again without taking a break.  There is a reason why the scripture tells to “not grow weary in well doing” (Galatians 6:9).  Well doing is everything we do in the spirit implicating our moral, ethical, and relational activities.  Now, you need not ever take a break from our moral or ethical activities and how do you break from relating to others on a daily basis?  You need to remember that when pouring out yourself for others be it family, friends, community or philanthropy, your flesh grows weary and physical and mental exhaustion sets in and eventually you reach a burnout stage.  This life, as short as it is, is not a sprint, it is a long distance run and you have to allow yourself to slow down, take a break and allow God to refresh you.

Seasons of unrelenting temptation

Being bombarded by our enemy “the accuser” (HaSatan), himself, can cause spiritual dryness.  Just as a soldier grows weary from the battle, so too we can grow weary when working out our salvation through battling unrelenting sin. We know this comes from woundings and anti-biblical thinking but it is the power of Messiah within you that gives you the ability to fight against it.  Jacob speaks of this in the B’rit Hadasha (New Testament) in Jacob (James) 1:12 “Blessed is the man that endureth temptation: for when he is tried, he shall receive the crown of life, which the Lord hath promised to them that love him.”  Temptation and sin are to be overcome, in other words, expect it and expect it to be a hard fight.  Yet, it is these battles that can and often do cause spiritual dryness and this is when you press into the presence of God and allow his presence and his word to penetrate you so you can see your issues in your life the way that he sees them.  Then you can allow his forgiveness and your overcoming to propel you to victory through Messiah thereby, bringing refreshing to your spirit and your soul.

2 Corinthians 6:14 “…what communion hath light with darkness?”  Sin cannot remain in the light of God’s word nor in his manifested presence.

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Praying the Bible



Matthew 21:22

Whatever you ask in prayer, trusting, you shall receive.”


Submit to God:

Romans 12:1 – 2

By Your mercies God, I present my body as a living sacrifice—holy, acceptable to You, God—which is my spiritual service. I will not be conformed to this world but be transformed by the renewing of my mind, so that I may discern what is the will of You, God—what is good and acceptable and perfect.


I submit myself to Your will, my God.


Worship and Thanksgiving!


Psalms 145:1 – 9

I will exalt You, my God, my King, and I will bless Your Name forever and ever.

Every day I will bless You, and praise Your Name forever and ever! Great are You Adonai, and greatly to be praised —Your greatness is unsearchable.

One generation will praise Your works to another and declare Your mighty acts.

I will meditate on the glorious splendor of Your majesty and Your wonders.

I will speak of the might of Your awesome deeds, and I will proclaim Your greatness.

I will pour out the renown of Your great goodness, and sing joyfully of Your righteousness.

Adonai, You are gracious and compassionate, slow to anger and great in lovingkindness.

Adonai, You are good to all. You have compassion on all Your creatures.


For Who You are

and what You have done

accept my praise, my Lord!


Psalms 28:6 – 7

Blessed be You, Adonai, for You have heard the sound of my supplications.

Adonai, You are my strength and my shield. My heart trusts in You, and I was helped. Therefore my heart leaps for joy, and I will praise You with my song.


For Who You are

and what You have done

accept my thanks, my Lord!

Personal Examination:

Psalms 139:23 – 24

Search me, O God, and know my heart. Examine me, and know my anxious thoughts,

and see if there be any offensive way within me, and lead me in the way everlasting


Holy Spirit, search my heart and reveal to me any unconfessed sin.




1 John: 1: 9

If I confess my sins, You are faithful and righteous to forgive my sins and purify me from all unrighteousness.


Master, I thank you for forgiving me.

I will endeavor to do better today.


My identity in Messiah:


Galatians 2:20

It is no longer I who live, but Messiah lives in me. And the life I now live in the body, I live by trusting in Ben-Elohim—You loved me and gave Yourself up for me.


Help me focus on this reality.

My identity is in You and through You!


Colossians 2:11 – 12

In You I was circumcised with a circumcision done not by hand, in the stripping away of the body of my flesh through the circumcision of Messiah.

I was buried along with You in immersion, through which I was also raised with You by trusting in the working of God, who raised You from the dead.


I have freedom from the power of sin because of Your sacrifice, Messiah!


Philippians 1:21 – 22

For to me, to live is Messiah and to die is gain.

But if to live on in the body means fruit from my work, what shall I choose? I do not know.


Because You live in me I have fulfillment for this day.


2 Corinthians 2:14

But thanks be to You, God, who in Messiah always leads me in triumphal procession, and through me reveals everywhere the aroma of the knowledge of Yourself.


By faith, Yeshua, I will allow You to manifest Your life through me today.


Be filled with the Holy Spirit:


Ephesians 5:8 – 10

Once I was darkness, but now in union with the You, Lord, I am light. I will walk as a child of light (for the fruit of light is in all goodness and righteousness and truth),

I will try to learn what is pleasing to You Lord.


Galatians 5:25

Since I live by the Ruach, let me also walk by the Ruach.


Galatians 5:16 – 18

As I walk by You, Ruach, help me not carry out the desires of my flesh.

For my flesh sets its desire against You, Ruach, but You, Ruach set Your desire against my flesh—for these are in opposition to one another, so that I cannot do what I want.

But if I am led by You, Ruach, I am not under law.


Holy Spirit, fill me and help me focus through You today.


Fruit of the Spirit:


John 15:8

I want to glorify You, My Father, by bearing much fruit and so prove to be Your disciple.


Galatians 5:22 – 23

Your fruit Ruach is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control—against such things there is no law.


Holy Spirit, may Your fruit grow in me.


Purpose in life:


Matthew 6:33

I will seek first Your kingdom God and Your righteousness,


Deuteronomy 6:5

I will love You Adonai my God with all my heart and with all my soul and with all my strength.


Leviticus 19:18

I will not take vengeance, nor bear any grudge against the children of your people, but I will love my neighbor as myself. You are Adonai.


1 Corinthians 13:4 – 7

Yeshua, the love You give us: is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not brag, it is not puffed up, it does not behave inappropriately, it does not seek its own way, it is not provoked, it keeps no account of wrong, it does not rejoice over injustice but rejoices in the truth; it bears all things, it believes all things, it hopes all things, it endures all things.


May Your purpose be fulfilled

in my life today.

To love you completely.

To love myself correctly.

And to love others compassionately.


Circumstances I will face today:


Romans 8:28 – 29

Now I know that all things work together for good for those who love You, God, who are called according to Your purpose.

Because you knew me in advance, You also predestined me to be conformed to the image of Your Son, so that He might be the firstborn among many brothers and sisters.


I commit this day to You, my God.


Proverbs 3:5 – 6

I will Trust in You, Adonai with all my heart, and lean not on my own understanding.

In all my ways I will acknowledge You, and You will make my path straight.


I will endeavor to obey You today and trust You for all my needs.


Spiritual Warfare:


Colossians 3:1 – 2

Therefore, I have been raised up with You, Messiah, and I will keep seeking the things above – where You, Messiah, are sitting at the right hand of God.

I will focus my mind on things above, not on things on the earth.


Philippians 4:6 – 8

I will not be anxious about anything—but in everything, by prayer and petition with thanksgiving, I will let my requests be made known to You, God.

And Your shalom God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard my heart and my mind in Messiah Yeshua.

I will focus on whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is commendable—if there is any virtue and if there is anything worthy of praise— I dwell on these things.


Messiah, guard my heart against weakness and the temptations of the world

and renew my heart and Spirit.


Romans 6:6 – 7

Father, I know my old man was crucified with Yeshua so that my sinful body might be done away with, so I no longer serve sin.

For if I died I have been set free from sin.

Romans 6:12 – 13

I will not let sin rule in my mortal body so that I obey its desires.

And I will not keep yielding my body parts to sin as tools of wickedness; but yield myself to You God as one alive from the dead, and my body parts as tools of righteousness to You God.


Please guard my heart from the attacks of the Adversary and give me strength to resist him.


Jacob 4:7

I will submit to You God. But resist the devil and he will flee from me.

1 Peter 5:8 – 9

I will stay alert! I will watch out! My adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, searching for someone to devour.

I will stand up against him, firm in my faith, knowing that the same kinds of suffering are being laid upon my brothers and sisters throughout the world.


Ephesians 6:13 – 18

I will take up the full armor of God, so that I may be able to resist when the times are evil, and after I have done everything, to stand firm.

I will stand firm then! Buckle the belt of truth around my waist, and put on the breastplate of righteousness.

Strap up my feet in readiness with the Good News of shalom.

Above all, I will take up the shield of faith with which I will be able to extinguish all the flaming arrows of the evil one.

And take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.

I will pray in the Ruach on every occasion, with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, I will keep alert with perseverance and supplication for all the kedoshim.


Keeping in Eternal Kingdom Perspective:


Matthew 6:10

May Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.


Romans 8:18

I consider the sufferings of this present time not worthy to be compared with the coming glory to be revealed to me.


2 Corinthians 4:16 – 18

I will not lose heart. Though my outward man is decaying, yet my inward man is renewed day by day.

For my trouble, light and momentary, is producing for me an eternal weight of glory far beyond all comparison,

I look not at what can be seen but at what cannot be seen. For what can be seen is temporary, but what cannot be seen is eternal.


Philippians 3:20

My citizenship is in heaven, and from there I eagerly wait for my Savior, my Lord Yeshua the Messiah.

Revelations 22:20

You have said: “I am coming soon!” Amen! Come, Lord Yeshua!



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Lumps of Clay

Oy, to one who quarrels with his Maker, like a pot among the pots of the earth! Shall the clay say to the potter, “What have you made?” Or does your work say, “It has no handles.” Isaiah 45:9

Imagine a clay pot complaining about the potter who created it! The thought is absurd. The lump of clay is nothing. In fact, it’s completely worthless unless the potter skillfully molded into whatever he desires.

In Biblical imagery, the potter usually refers to God, and the clay to mankind. Yet, people always complain about God. In fact, many deny He even exists.

How strange that people today tell the Potter what He should do or how He should think. More ridiculous still is the “clay” denying the Potter even has hands. Yet, the world is filled with people who claim God does not exist.

“Your perversity! Should the potter be regarded the same as the clay? Should the thing made say to its maker, “You did not make me”? Or the thing formed say of its former, “You have no understanding cf. Rom. 9:20. ?”   Isaiah 29:16

“A potter shapes a soft clay with his hands into any shape he desires. “But now, ADONAI, You are our Father. We are the clay and You are our potter, we are all the work of Your hand.”  Isaiah 64:7. God is sovereign. He does as He wishes. He creates and shapes each individual for His own purposes. “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter does?” declares ADONAI. “Behold, as the clay in the potter’s hand, so are you in My hand, O house of Israel.”  Jeremiah 18:6  “But who in the world are you, O man, who talks back to God? Will what is formed say to the one who formed it, “Why did you make me like this Isa. 29:16(LXX); 45:9. ?”

Does the potter have no right over the clay, to make from the same lump one vessel for honor and another for common use? Romans 9:20 – 21

It is up to us to do His will – not the other way around.

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Is G-d Right?

“If you diligently listen to the voice of ADONAI your God, do what is right in His eyes, pay attention to His mitzvot, and keep all His decrees, I will put none of the diseases on you which I have put on the Egyptians. For I am ADONAI who heals you.” Exodus 15:26

In many ways, our modern culture is like the ancient society of Israel.  Everyone is doing what is right in his or her own eyes.  In pluralistic cultures, where tolerance is the highest values, people hold dear their rights to do whatever they want.  Indeed, United States citizens have their rights (up to appoint).  But it’s the consequences that arise over time that people don’t like.

When God brought us out of Egypt, He directed us to listen to Him and walk in obedience.  This was a Covenant agreement that we entered into, God promising to bless us for our willingness, in essence, to set aside what we thought was right and do what God said is right. “Why do you call Me ‘Master, Master’ and do not do what I say?  Everyone who comes to Me and hears My words and does them, I will show you what he is like. He is like a man building a house, who dug deep and laid a foundation on the rock. And when a flood came, the torrent burst against that house but could not shake it, because it had been well built. “But the one who hears yet does not do is like a man who built a house upon land without a foundation. When the torrent burst against it, immediately it collapsed—and the destruction of that house was great!” Luke 6:46 – 49

However, our commitment didn’t last long. “In those days there was no king in Israel; every man did what was right in his own eyes.” Judges 17:6

By the time Solomon became king he identified as fools those who do what is right in their own eyes. “A fool’s way is right in his own eyes, but the wise listen to advice.” Probers 12:15 and “All a man’s ways seem right in his own eyes, but ADONAI weighs the heart.” Proverbs 41:2.

Wise are the people who are willing to believe that what God says is right, is right for them.

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Yom Kippur

Yom Kippur

“ADONAI spoke to Moses saying: However, the tenth day of this seventh month is Yom Kippur, a holy convocation to you, so you are to afflict yourselves. You are to bring an offering made by fire to ADONAI. You are not to do any kind of work on that set day, for it is Yom Kippur, to make atonement for you before ADONAI your God. For anyone who does not deny himself on that day must be cut off from his people. Anyone who does any kind of work on that day, that person I will destroy from among his people.

You should do no kind of work. It is a statute forever throughout your generations in all your dwellings. It is to be a Shabbat of solemn rest for you, and you are to humble your souls. On the ninth day of the month in the evening—from evening until evening—you are to keep your Shabbat.”  Leviticus 23:26-32

Yom-Kippur takes place next week, Friday & Saturday, Oct. 3-4. It is the most revered Holy Day in the Jewish community. Synagogues are filled to capacity with worshipers. Even marginally religious Jews will attend services on this day. It is a day marked by repentance. Rabbinic Judaism teaches: “At this time, when the Temple no longer exists, and we have no atonement altar, nothing is left but repentance. Repentance atones for all transgressions. Even if a man was wicked throughout his life and repented at the end, we must not mention anything about his wickedness to him, as it is written, “You, son of man, say to the children of your people: ‘The righteousness of the righteous person will not deliver him in the day of his transgression. Nor will the wickedness of the wicked person make him stumble in it on the day he turns away from his wickedness. Nor will the righteous person be able to live by it on the day he sins.” (Ezekiel 33:12) Yom Kippur itself atones for those who repent, as it is written, “It is to be a statute to you forever, that in the seventh month, on the tenth day of the month, you are to afflict your souls, and do no kind of work—both the native-born and the outsider dwelling among you. For on this day atonement will be made for you, to cleanse you. From all your sins you will be clean before ADONAI.” (Leviticus 16:29-30) Moses Maimonides, Mishneh Torah, Laws of Repentance, 1:3, 2:1, 9–10.

We who are Messianic do not have to wonder whether our repentance has been through and our good works adequate, because our Salvation, finally and forever, rests not on our own performance, but on the finished work of Messiah. “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were yet sinners, Messiah died for us.  How much more then, having now been set right by His blood, shall we be saved from God’s wrath through Him!” Romans 5:8-9. Salvation is God’s gift to the believing heart. On Yom Kippur we follow Yeshua our Messiah. “But on the other hand, the One who does remain forever has a permanent priesthood. Therefore He is also able to save completely those who draw near to God through Him, always living to make intercession for them.” Hebrews 7:24-26.

As Yeshua intercedes on behalf of the People of Israel, so do we plead with God to forgive, restore and bless our People. May they soon find the truth of Messiah and True Atonement. “I, I am ADONAI—and there is no savior beside Me.” Isaiah 43:11

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Moadim (The Appointed Times)

Moadim (The Appointed Times)

 God called the light “day,” and the darkness He called “night.” Genesis 1:5

G-d created time.  The natural beauty of the world declares the glory of G-d.  “The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky shows His handiwork.” Psalms 19:1.  G-d’s will is that we follow His directions.  “Your kingdom come, Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” Matthew 6:10.  The High Holy Days are a part of G-d’s plans for us as community.  “Speak to Bnei-Yisrael, and tell them: These are the appointed moadim of ADONAI, which you are to proclaim to be holy convocations—My moadim (designated times).”  Leviticus 23:2.  The High Holy Days should not be viewed from our perspective as having to do with our performance.  As we all know “it’s all about G-d and the Messiah”, so we approach this season in His freedom and love.  G-d is the Lord of time, since He created it.  He knows best how we should use our time.  “Make the most of your time because the days are evil.”

Ephesians 5:16.

It is imperative that we come into the High Holy Days with an attitude of appreciation and freedom that we have in the Messiah.  “Therefore, do not let anyone pass judgment on you in matters of food or drink, or in respect to a festival or new moon or Shabbat. These are a foreshadowing of things to come, but the reality is Messiah” Colossians 2:16-17.  It is appropriate, therefore, that we celebrate these festivals in a way that is consistent with our Messianic faith and exalts the Person of Yeshua.  The Moadim (Appointed Times) all find their fulfillment in Messiah.  “Do not think that I came to abolish the Torah or the Prophets! I did not come to abolish, but to fulfill.   Amen, I tell you, until heaven and earth pass away, not the smallest letter or serif shall ever pass away from the Torah until all things come to pass.”  Matthew 5:17.

G-d’s Moadim (Appointed Times) remind us that He is Lord of the calendar, the King of creation, and that He is to be worshiped every day.  G-d’s Appointed Times have a great deal to teach all who have crowned Him Lord of their lives.

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Freedom “To”

2 Corinthians 3:17- Now the Lord is the Spirit and where the Ruach Adonai is, there is freedom.

This freedom in the Spirit is more than just freedom from something, it is freedom “to” something.  In the Spirit we have the freedom “from”!  The freedom from sin, the freedom from death, the freedom from the flesh and certainly the freedom from our enemy.  However, we also have the freedom “to”!  The freedom to follow after the Spirit, the freedom to be in a relationship with God as well as the freedom to be transformed and conformed into the image of Messiah Yeshua.  We also have the freedom to view and understand God without the tainted perspectives that sin and immoral living place upon us (be it our own misdeeds or the misdeeds of others that affect us).  In other words, we have the freedom to be who Messiah Yeshua has called us to be.

Romans 8:1 tells us that there is no condemnation for those who are in this conforming process of “freedom to” in Messiah.  As we are “conforming” and being “conformed” (Romans 12:2) we need to remember that we do not ever need to be condemned in the struggle to be free “to” the Spirit of God.  Our Spirit-formed life is not a life of things “to do” for God; it is a life “being to” God.

We are free to “become” what God designed us to be in spite of any circumstances or “natural wirings” we think we may have.  Being conformed “to” the Ruach means that we engage in a conversation with the Holy Spirit where our reality is challenged and God’s reality is revealed.  So, choose today your conformation “to” by living and focusing on God’s reality through the scriptures, personal and/or corporate worship, intimate prayer and spiritual gifting’s operating in you.  Let the Ruach lead you into God’s reality and “be free” to leave personal distortions behind that hinder your relationship with God.

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Are You Stubborn?

Listen to Me, you stubborn-hearted, who are far from righteousness: I bring My justice near, it is not far off. So My salvation will not delay. I put salvation in Zion, My glory in Israel. Isaiah 46:12-13

Are you stubborn?  If so, is your stubbornness a good quality or bad one?  When our stubbornness means dogged determination to do the will of god to, it’s good.  Perhaps a better term would be perseverance –a quality the Bible upholds at the core of its character.  “And not only that, but we also boast in suffering—knowing that suffering produces perseverance;  and perseverance, character; and character, hope.”Romans 5: 3-4

But when stubbornness is another word for self-will, it’s a destructive force.  “For rebellion is like the sin of divination and stubbornness is like iniquity and idolatry.” 1 Samuel 15:23.

There is a fine line between stubborn self-will and godly perseverance; and often the Lord uses crisis in our lives to move us from one to the other.  Take our Patriarch Jacob for example.  His story in the book of Genesis is filled with selfish and stubborn choices, which caused pain to himself and others.  But by the end of the story, God used a series of crisis in his life to turn his stubbornness into sanctified perseverance.  (Read Isaiah 46)

We cannot avoid pressure in life, but we should always remember that whenever a crisis we face is God’s way of reshaping our stubborn hearts into models of perseverance and character.

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