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Becoming New

Wednesday, October 22nd, 2014

Read 2 Corinthians 5:11-21

View the Sept-Oct, 2014 Issue

If anyone is in Christ, that person is part of the new creation. The old things have gone away, and look, new things have arrived!

- 2 Corinthians 5:17 (CEB)

When I became a Christian at the age of 19, I thought I had to change my personality. I assumed a Christian should be quiet and reserved. For someone like me who was outgoing and loud it was a struggle. I felt that I was supposed to be someone else. But when I grew in age and in faith, I realized that the change I needed was actually a new outlook, focus, and vision of the life God had planned for me.

I discovered that God loves us both before and after we become Christians. God’s children come from all over the world: we look different; we speak different languages; we have different personalities. And that is part of God’s big, beautiful plan. When we decide to follow Christ, we know the new change within our hearts is one that comes with great blessing and the true meaning of life.

God made me with this outgoing personality, and that enables me to easily engage people and invite them to church or Bible study. God made each of us, and we can embrace who we are and confidently be ourselves in God’s name.

Read more from the author.

The Author

Cindy Garrard (Florida)

Thought for the Day

God loves us before and after we become Christians.


O God, we embrace our newfound life with comfort and joy. Amen.

Prayer focusNew Christians

Link to This Devotional


Comment by chris of Myerstown, PA

Hello Cindy, and welcome to the UR family room. Your devotion goes well with the previous devotion, on perspective. When we become a Christian, the world is the same as it always was, yet our perspective now focuses on hope in all areas of our lives. At first everything seems brighter and better, but if you don't use or exercise, your faith, you will return to the old thought habits. Jesus never promised a rose garden, well not without a great deal of weeding first.
 So many people become saved, but then what? Read the Bible and go to church. This is a good start, but what would really make a difference is if someone had pointed out:

Romans 12 New King James Version (NKJV)

Living Sacrifices to God
12 I beseech you therefore, brethren, by the mercies of God, that you present your bodies a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God, which is your reasonable service. 2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, that you may prove what is that good and acceptable and perfect will of God.
  God bless you, Cindy and your family!

Posted October 21, 2014 at 08:46PM CDT
Comment by Sarah of Berwyn, IL

Good morning, everyone! Thank you, Cindy, for your devotional this morning. When we accept the Lord Jesus as our Savior and are born-again, we don’t have to change our basic personality. God’s family has all types of people, which is good. If everyone was like me, extremely quiet and introverted, the church would be like a monastery from the Middle Ages! :)
We haven’t heard yet the results of Lucy’s algebra exam. She only has that class twice a week - on Monday and Wednesday afternoons. Hopefully she will hear back later today. All I care is that she just pass the class. She’ll never have to use this later in life. I struggled so hard with that class myself, and never once have I had to use algebra again.
JACKIE of San Antonio - I am praying for you and your husband, Mitchell, as you bear the sad news that your beloved cat, Roxy, has throat cancer. I pray that the Lord will uphold you with His deep love as you face this, and possibly having to put her to sleep so she isn’t in pain. I am also continuing to pray for your niece, Janelle, that she will do better in school, and that she won’t have so many responsibilities overwhelming her. I am also praying that the Lord will watch over and protect Victoria, the girl from your church, who has run away, and that she will come home safe and sound.
JUDY of Yalaha, FL. - I am praying for your concert this evening with the 4th and 5th graders, the first of the school year, that everything will go just fine, and that the Lord will calm any nerves and jitters with the children. * KATHY of Reading - I am continuing to pray for the situation at your job with the unpleasant co-worker. I pray that she will see the light of the Lord in you, and that the Holy Spirit will put a hunger for Him in her heart. I pray that He will open up an opportunity for you to witness to her, and that He will bring His peace to your workplace.
JULIE of Delray Beach, FL - I pray that you got back good results from your blood work and heart monitor test. I pray that that the Lord will bring you complete healing and give you a good report. * MATT - I am praying for your friend who has stage IV colon cancer. I pray that the Lord will give him a complete healing, and that, even at this stage, all treatments will be effective in destroying the cancer and bringing him renewed health.
DONNA of San Marcos, TX - I am praising the Lord with you that your back is feeling better, and that you got a good night’s sleep Monday evening. I am praying for your friend’s husband, who has Alzheimer’s, and cut off two of his fingers with a table saw, and now has gotten infected. I pray that the Lord will bring healing, and that antibiotics will rid all infection and no further complications. I pray, also, for your friend’s salvation, that she will turn to the Lord and accept Him as her personal Savior. * ALLISON of San Antonio - I am praying for you, that you might be accepted with this new clinical trial program for cancer, especially since your chemo treatments are now doing more harm than good. I pray that the Lord will give both you and your doctors wisdom to know the best course to take, and that He will bring you complete healing from this cancer.
CHERIE of Mena, AR - I am praying for both you and your husband, Ron, as you will be staying in Hot Springs for the couple of days that your landlord is overbooked. I pray the Lord will give you safety in travel, and that you both will have an enjoyable time while there. * SHEILA of Bryantsville, KY - I am praying for your friend who is grieving the loss of her pet to cancer over the weekend. I pray that the Lord will give her comfort and peace during this sad and difficult time.
CHARLES - I am praising the Lord with you for His healing of your lungs from the viral infection that the doctors had said would not get better, and that you do not need constant oxygen anymore. Thank you for sharing! * MARGARET of Randallstown, MD - I am praying for your friend, Glenda, who has intestinal cancer. I pray that the Lord will bring her complete healing, and that He will give her doctors wisdom to give her the best course of treatment for her condition.
MERRY of Poteau, OK - So good to see your posting yesterday! I am continuing to pray that the Lord will bring you healing and recovery from your broken hip. I pray that any physical therapy and exercises will be effective, and that the Lord will bring healing from the anemia, and strengthen you more each day.
Have a blessed day, everyone!

Posted October 21, 2014 at 10:17PM CDT
Comment by Jackie of San Antonio, TX

Hello UR family. Cindy thank you for sharing. Heavenly Father thank you for all of these wonderful people ho pray for one another. I ask that you would be with each person this day in Jesus name. Amen

Posted October 21, 2014 at 11:15PM CDT
Comment by Crystal of Maumee, OH

Cindy, thank you for your encouraging devotional today. I too accepted Jesus as my Savior at the age of 19. His continuous transformation in our lives is marvelous. I pray for wholeness of mind, body and spirit for you and your family! Have an awesome and peaceful week!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 01:48AM CDT
Comment by Lydia of Cumming, GA

Thanks, Cindy, for your devotional. The assurance that God loved us even before we loved him is amazing. His love is our strength. When we surrender to him we enjoy his presence in our life. The one whose eye is on the sparrow will take care of me.
Praising God for answered prayers. Joining in prayer for our cyber fellowship of believers. Have a wonderful day.
Why should I feel discouraged?
Why should the shadows come?
Why should my heart be lonely
And long for heaven and home
When Jesus is my portion?
My constant Friend is He:
His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
I sing because I'm happy,
I sing because I'm free;
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
"Let not your heart be troubled,"
His tender words I hear;
And resting on His goodness.
I lose my doubt and fear.
Though by the path He leadeth
But one step I may see:
His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
I sing because I'm happy,
I sing because I'm free;
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
Whenever I am tempted,
Whenever clouds arise,
When songs give place to sighing,
When hope within me dies,
I draw the closer to Him;
From care He sets me free:
His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.
by Civilla D. Martin, 1905 and Charles H. Gabriel, 1905. Public Domain.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 03:54AM CDT
Comment by monte of laughlintown, PA

 Cindy, what a powerful testimony. I especially appreciated your sharing in the blog. Great family picture!
Samuel (yesterday’s author)—“ When I fly, I can choose to focus on the beautiful views or on my cramped seating arrangement. Similarly, the way we handle trials determines how much we experience God’s triumphant grace in our lives.”
CHRIS—“Perspective allows one to view things from different vantage points, or the eyes of God and others.” And CHRIS follows up today, “Your devotion goes well with the previous devotion, on perspective. When we become a Christian, the world is the same as it always was, yet our perspective now focuses on hope in all areas of our lives.”—and Chris referred to two of my favorite verses, Romans 12:1-2—not conformed to the world, but transformed in mind
JACKIE—“Sometimes it's hard to see the forest for the trees.”—the challenge is to keep looking, with God’s help
TRAIAN—“the right perspective... We need it, especially during the trial or suffering times ; but it is useful even on the time of success and happiness to stick on the spiritual reality.”—perspective like love is an all-time part of who we are
DON—“Whoops, I hit the ‘post’ key with nothing to post.”—I wonder if that doesn’t happen far too often in our face-to-face interactions
KATHY—“I made a vegan chocolate chip cake last night for a friend of mine. It was good but when "vegan’ is mentioned, people are hesitant to try.”—when I went to serve a new church, the people wondered what they were going to do with a vegetarian pastor
RAYNARD—“I'm so glad that "Jesus doesn’t make our life "like the movie Groundhog Day ' or the episode of Star Trek where they got " caught in a time warp"until they figured it out' I digress.”—Amen!!
EDD—“..had a great day with Patti yesterday and I think she had a great day. Lunch, movie and dinner and a bunch of presents.”—Happy Birthday, Patti, belated!
SUSAN—“I've also noticed that my perspective improves if I pray for the people who happen to sit next to me, or for the cities, towns, farmhouse homes, communities, businesses that I'm flying over. Oh, I just had a fun thought - maybe I've actually prayed for some of you at one time or another, and never knew it was you! Wow! How cool is that!”—cool thoughts, all around!!
JANET—“He spoke about what would our world be if Jesus never existed. Think about it, definitely a different perspective.”—good to meditate on and then praise God from who all blessings flow for sending Jesus
JULIE—“The perspective from the sky fills me with awe and gratitude for all the beauty in the world. Many times I am focused on my own life that I do not see the bigger picture.”—keeping an eye on the big picture melts the little inconveniences away
LAURA—“It is the reason we experience the trials - so we can become fully mature spiritually - our perspective decides the outcome…”
DONNA—“Perspective has been a recent theme in my life and I hope I am making progress having a more Christian perspective about some things. You all help me do that by sharing your thoughts and faith.”—a reminder that, as the scripture for today reminds us, “We are all ambassadors for Christ.”—our unique perspectives and faith journeys edify one another
What a good one-two punch our last two devotional are—PERSPECTIVE and BECOMING NEW. May this be our journey for this day and each day.
Just read the devotional and out the door yesterday. Another day in Slippery Rock dealing with sewage issues. The final test on the system will come at the end of this week. I pray that the system will get a passing grade. A few prayers that we find one more good tenant would be appreciated. Round trips of 82 miles each way (yesterday a total of 210 miles), and a few hours work, zap this 76 year-old body.
Prayers for those who are dealing with much more pressing issues. For those who have health issues (I am blessed), those who need employment (I am blessed in retirement), those who struggle with relationships (I am blessed with Carolyn and many others), those who struggle with faith (I have Jesus).
God can and will use us as we are as we turn to him. An introvert pastor was not what many would choose, but God still used and uses me as I put myself in God’s hands and listen for the promptings of the Holy Spirit.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:13AM CDT
Comment by JK

"Confidently be ourselves in God's name" Hallelujah and amen! Thank you Cindy. Sarah praying for a good outcome for Lucy this afternoon when she finds out how she did on her exam. Praying for my daughter as well as she has mid-terms and some questions regarding a relationship with a young man whose girl friend recently moved away(back home more than likely) and how to proceed. Blessings to all this day. Monte praying for you on your round trips and that you will find another tenant worthy of your landlordship.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:22AM CDT
Comment by Harlan of Cullman, AL

please remember "Jeanette" my mom ,in prayers today , with the knee replacement surgery
Love and Prayers to all ...

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:24AM CDT
Comment by merry of Poteau, OK

"O God, we embrace our new found life with comfort and joy. Amen."...
Cindy...good morning in Florida. Thank you for your delightful devotional and your blog. What a beautiful family!
I became a Christian at 14, still growing and maturing!
UR Family...good morning. May you enjoy a blessed day. Remembering you in prayer.
Cherie...good morning in Mena AR. Thank you for your prayers and good wishes. Hope you and Ron are enjoying your mini vacation in Hot Springs. A delightful and beautiful town. We're enjoying nice fall weather and Poteau's Bloom Festival was huge success!
 Praying with you and Ron...
Yulia...good morning to you and Jesse. Thank you for your kind greetings and prayers. Keeping you and Jesse in prayer. Remembering your family and friends in Ukraine in prayer.
Sarah...good morning. Thank you for your faithful prayers. And your kindness in your concern for me.
Praying with you and Lucy for a good report today. May you enjoy a lovely fall day.
I'm progressing in recovering from my fall and broken hip. The myelodysplastic anemia is slowing my progress but I'm due for another shot today, which will help.
Thank you for your prayers.
"Father, thank You for Your love and care...amen"

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:28AM CDT
Comment by Harlan of Cullman, AL

@Monte , my nephew is also an introvert pastor

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:32AM CDT
Comment by Traian

Good Morning from Romania dear UR friends! Thank you CINDY for the wonderful good news: Our GOD is the only ONE who can renew all things, and , more than that, all the CREATURES who accept HIS powerful renewal! May the LORD give us today a new sense of joy and grace!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:37AM CDT
Comment by Dan of Summerfield, NC

Cindy, thank you for your devotion today; my story was much like yours, but occurred much later in life. I truly was involved in the church all my life, in the worship and committees, but had never let Him have all of me. My personality was completely reclusive and quiet. After I was led to Christ, and was broken, my whole world was different; I became extroverted beyond measure, and on fire for His Word and people. Emmaus was likewise important to me as it was to you, but I encountered it in the middle of my change.
It comes back to the old saying: Christ did not come to make bad men good, He came to make dead men live. We can never be good enough, in our own efforts, no matter how hard we try. I really like Matthew 6:33 (paraphrase): Seek first the Kingdom of God and His righteousness and yield your will to Him, and everything you will ever need will be provided in His way, in His time. Praise God!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:38AM CDT
Comment by Dan of Summerfield, NC

While I was circulating through part of the jail with the book cart yesterday, I ran into a special friend I had not seen in many years. I don't know why he is in jail, but he has a had a serious case of colitis for years, and much of his colon has been removed. He needs to be on disability and has a hearing to address this soon. I pray this will work out. He has always been so positive, and it was great to see him.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:44AM CDT
Comment by Edd of Ocala, FL

Good morning all a lot of people up early. Great day ahead because God said so. Praise the Lord!!! Cindy, thanks for the scripture and devotional. What a beautiful family. God is always there for us even before we know Him. He carries us through the bad and good times. The poem "Footprints in the Sand" remind me daily how God carries me throughout the day. When times aren't so good it is really nice to know God is right there with me making everything right. He can renew anything even a broken ole sailor who knows his life isn't much of anything without Jesus in it. The word says "I can do all things through Jesus Christ who strengthens me" and it is so true. Praying all the UR Family has a day filled with a renewed spirit and all the loving healing mercies only God can provide. God is Love!!! Edd of Ocala, FL.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 05:11AM CDT
Comment by Raynard of newark, DE

Good Morning U.R Family. Woke up to a cold rainy day. Reminds me of being in Germany this time of year.( Can I get away sing a Christmas song " It's the most wonderful time of the Year'( I never roasted chestnuts and "it's Jack Frost nipping at your nose called " frostbite? I digress. Thank you Cindy for your devotional. When I gave my life to Christ back in 1992., It reminded me of that game show"The Prices Right'.. While I " didnt have a name tag on or 'Spin that big wheel, and "Bob Barker didnt give me that speech about" neutering your animals blah blah blah yada yada yada.. I digress. It took more than a nice suit, a big bible and "a big smile on my face like'The Joker from Batman". Willing to learn, open to new ideas and " stepping out of the boat on faith". Even the best building plans sometimes take longer and" go over budget and" unecessary things dont alway make the final product..Prayers going out to each and every spoken and unspoken request. Be encouraged and blessed everyone a and have a good day

Posted October 22, 2014 at 05:29AM CDT
Comment by Matt

Cindy Garrard, thank you for todays reading. It is wonderful to share Jesus with others. How could I know the Father without His son Jesus? What a beautifully simple plan, Believe in Him (Jesus), repent of our sins and accept Him as Lord of our lives. Praise The Lord
Friends, thank you for the continued prayers, spoken & unspoken request and for my friends. Continued prayers for you, may we all abide in His peace today & throughout our lives, in Jesus Holy Name (above all others), Amen. Thank You Jesus, Praise God

Posted October 22, 2014 at 05:30AM CDT
Comment by Kathy of Reading, PA

Good Morning UR family, Cindy, thank you for your devotional and your blog was beautiful too. Sarah, I need to do better at putting God first. I let the "world" in to much and forget who is really in control. Chris, your comment hit the nail on the head this morning. Sarah, Thank you for your faithful prayers for me and for all of us. Merry, I am praying for your healing. Edd, I overslept. I wish I had been one of the early birds!!!! Dan, praying for your friend. Henry, I am keeping you in prayer regarding employment. Also Amanda and Ashley for strength and Mike for healing. Sarah, I pray for Lucy and her algebra class. Math was never my thing at all. Many blessings to all this morning. I need to walk my dog before it rains. Have a great day to all!!!!!!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 05:33AM CDT
Comment by Raynard of newark, DE

Traian, I just seen the video you post a few days ago. It reminded me of the 2 times I was stationed in Germany while in the military. The last time in 1985, I got the chance to live in a little town off base. My oldest daughter was born over there.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 05:36AM CDT
Comment by Don of Ozark, MO

Good morning my friends. Cindy Garrard, we welcome you to the UR family and thank you for devotional contribution. Each day brings each of us the opportunity to serve our Lord through our ministry to those around us and around the world. One does not have to be the leader (pastor) of a church to encourage others and to pray for the needs of ourselves and all of those around us. Sarah, I pray again for good results on the examination which Lucy took on Monday. May her financial aid continue and may she learn much as she prapares for her chosen career. I pray for you as well as you continue to struggle against the troubles that you have been facing. May the Lord richly bless you. Monte, I pray for you, and Carloyn that you may have brighter days ahead. As for being a tenant, I have lived on rental property for for the last 30 years or so. I live in a mobile home which is parked on a rented space in a mobile home park. The home is mine but the yard belongs to my landlord, as I tell people. All that he requires me to do is to pay my rent,behave myself, and keep the yard maintained. If I should happen to fall behind on my rent, he gives me plenty of time to catch up. I consider him and his family to be very close friends. I thank God for them. I thank you for your recaps of the of the previous day's postings. That helps me to stay aware of the needs of others. I also thank you, Sarah for your efforts on behalf of all of us and your prayers for each of us. May you, Lucy, and
Albert live in prosperity and love for our Lord. Any nibbles from prospective employers? Dan, I pray for your friends who is in jail and suffers from colitis, May he receive his disability payments and not have the authorities gobble it all up to pay for his incarceration as he will need something to start with once he is released. I also pray for your continued success in your ministry at the jail. Traian, my prayers continue for you and all in Romania. May all of you prosper and continue in your faith in our Lord. In closing, I pray for all of you today, that the Lord will meet your needs and that you will continue in your faith in Him. Let us all spread the word! Jesus Christ is Lord. Praise the Lord!!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 05:43AM CDT
Comment by julie of Delray Beach, FL

Good Morning UR family and Cindy thank you for the devotional. When I first became a Christian in my teens I was on fire for the Lord, witnessing to everyone even those not ready to listen. I thought that the more people I witnessed to the better what I did n't realize then but I do now is that it is not about how many but about the one person that needs to hear the news the most.
Thank you for all who prayed re the results of my cardiologist appointment.All went really well except she did tell me that when they did the heart sonogram they accidentally found that I have a small white cyst on my liver. Not I will be going for a sonogram of my liver on November 11. Please pray all is well when I do go.
Thank you!
Praying for the Ebola fears and for the victims of Ebola. Praying for a vaccine to cure it.
Merry=-praying for healing of your hip and that you will get relief from your pain.
Sarah- Praying that Lucy did well on her test and that the professor will soften his heart and start helping his students who are struggling in his algebra class.
Praying for all on the list spoken or not.
Have a great day UR family

Posted October 22, 2014 at 06:08AM CDT
Comment by Penny of Midland, NC

Goodmorning all. Cindy, great devotional. I can totally relate. I'm pretty outgoing myself, never meet a stranger and will carry on a conversation with just about anyone as though I've know them my whole life. My husband seems a little embarrassed about this. But loving the Lord doesn't mean you can't have a personality. Aren't we supposed to let our light shine? By being friendly and speaking a kind word to EVERYONE is 'shining'. Hope all have a great day!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 06:10AM CDT
Comment by kim of locust grove, OK

Father God , thank you for loving us just as we are. We don't have to put on a false front to please you. Likewise, we shouldn't put one on to please others. Yet we do become new in You, not because it is necessary for salvation, but because we freely choose to. Thank you for transforming our lives. Be with those today who stand in need of your grace. Open their hearts to accept you love which has been poured out for them through your son. Be with me as I get ready for chemo #2 tomorrow morning. So meant things to get done today. May all we do this day be pleasing to you. IJN. Amen .

Posted October 22, 2014 at 06:41AM CDT
Comment by chris of Myerstown, PA

Kim- 5 By faith Enoch was taken away so that he did not see death, “and was not found, because God had taken him”; [a] for before he was taken he had this testimony, that he pleased God. 6 But without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is, and that He is a rewarder of those who diligently seek Him.Hebrews 11

Posted October 22, 2014 at 06:52AM CDT
Comment by Jackie of San Antonio, TX

MONTE thank you for those words of encouragement. I'm feeling very challenged at the moment.

Asking for prayers for my niece Desiree who's trying to get financial aide to return to school. She's paying for it now but is having a hard time making ends meet.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 06:56AM CDT
Comment by Goldie

Thanks Cindy, good morning all. God made a diverse world so that we complement each other. Thank You Lord that we are not all made from one mold.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 07:10AM CDT
Comment by Terry of Dublin, OH

Thanks Cindy for your message and story of when you first opened your life to God in a meaningful way. I also enjoyed hearing the many stories of how others first walked through the door or took their first step along God s path. As stated before, I am not sure the exact time but cannot remember a time in my life when God was not a major part from early childhood. As also stated, it was my mother who spent many hours telling us about the Jesus and various meanings from the Bible that seemed to make the most impression and opened by life to God, which I tell her was the greatest gift she could have ever given me and for which I am eternally…….and I mean eternally grateful.
I pray for all who may be struggling with God’s presence in their lives. I pray they have the strength to take that step as mentioned by many above and open their lives to God. It is a step that will lead them to more joy, happiness and peace then they will ever know…..if there is any doubt, just read the many testimonies as stated above. I also pray for all who request assistance as stated above and mentioned in the many prayer request list

Posted October 22, 2014 at 07:15AM CDT
Comment by Bob of New York, NY

Prayers for all on this beautiful day. May God watch over each and every one of you. May all prayers spoken and unspoken be heard and may may each one of us raise to the path and potential that God has put before us. These next couple of days will be very important to me business and career wise so I ask for your prayers of guidance and support. Thy will be done, and the best I can do is try to stay out of the way as God leads me on the path that he has intended for me. May all in the UR have a blessed day of love.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 07:15AM CDT
Comment by Donna of San Marcos, TX

Good morning dear UR family! Cindy, thank you for this encouraging devotional. I was baptized as a child, but it wasn't until I was in my 30's that I understood the need to accept Christ as my Lord and Savior. And, yes, all things were new then. I continue to grow in my faith and observe how I am loved by God. The Walk to Emmaus was another type of renewal and deepening of my relationship with Christ. I am praying for all requests and concerns today. It was good to hear from ALLISON, continue prayer for her healing. Praise as news that people are recovering from Ebola and we are taking action to prepare for such a disease until a cure can be found. This is a testimony to the world that prayer is answered. Blessings to all this day!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 07:46AM CDT
Comment by Sandra of Summerville, SC

Good morning everyone! Thank you Cindy for your devotional. I know that God loves us before we were saved and he continues to love us after. I continue to pray that God will give me the strength not to be the old person and to renew my heart and to do the things that are pleasing in his sight. Prayers goes out to all today and have a blessed day!!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 07:48AM CDT
Comment by Marsha of Brownwood, TX

Good morning URF!
Each day God blesses us with a brand new day, and a chance to start anew! Praise God!
I am moving slowly this morning, achy and sore! I think my body is telling me to rest today. ;-)
Thank you for your prayers!
I am praying for you.
Have a blessed day!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 08:09AM CDT
Comment by Michele of Grove City, PA

Good morning, all! Cindy, thank you for both your devotional as well as sharing your personal story with us. It is comforting to realize that we are not alone in our struggles to live well! I am just the opposite from you in personality...I have always been a quiet, introverted person. Over the years, with church, college, and professional leadership opportunities, I have learned how to overcome my shyness and be a more confident, albeit still quiet, leader. There are still times, though, that I catch myself thinking, "I wish I could be more funny or more outgoing or more friendly...," because that seems to be the type of person that people want to be around. Then, I realize that the Lord made me the way that I am for a reason, and that there are people who cherish the "quieter ones" too! We are all special, and as you said, we are part of God's "big, beautiful plan."
God bless!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 08:15AM CDT
Comment by Bette of Westfield, IL

It's a beautiful day in East central Illinois. Cindy, thank you for your devotion this morning and for sharing your personal story. I am up earlier than usual and plan to return to Curves for exercise this morning. Haven't been for about three months due to my knee problems. We'll see how the "new" knee works today.
A couple days ago I fell and am so thankful I only have a bruised dignity and knee - the good one - as the result. Asking the Lord to bless all who post and those who just read. Blessings!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 08:36AM CDT
Comment by Joe

Great devotional, Cindy. And YES, you are right - 'God loves us both before and after we become Christians' and we come in all ages, sexes, colors, and with different talents and dispositions. Our common link is we love God and are loved by Him without measure. Therefore since we are so loved we must love all of God's creations as He loves us.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 08:43AM CDT
Comment by Brian of Amarillo, TX

Cindy thank you for the thoughtful devotional and for sharing in your blog. I was raised in the church, accepted Christ as my Savior as a young teen, but experienced a true rebirth after attending aWalk to Emmaus last year. I have since had regrets that I did not make that decision earlier in life; however, I know that God is using me for His perfect plan. I have had new opportunities to grow in faith and more importantly to share my faith that has a unique twist. I'm thankful that I can come here daily and eat the bread of life with my brothers and sisters in Christ who have strengthened my faith by sharing their faith journeys. My prayers for all needs spoken or unspoken. CHRIS, really appreciated your comment.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 08:53AM CDT
Comment by Jimmie of Chester, VA

Hello, everyone. Happy Wednesday! Happy birthday and anniversary to everyone celebrating today. Thank you so much for your devotional, Cindy. I am also thanking God for the needed rain in our area.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 08:54AM CDT
Comment by Mike of Seattle, WA

Cindy thanks for your devotional. Reminds me of the song-"Many gifts one spirit."
Monte-"an introverted pastor" kind of an oxymoron? Kind of like silent Stephen.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 08:56AM CDT
Comment by Sheila of Bryantsville, KY

Cindy Garrard (Florida), thank you for today's scripture and devotional. I was talking with a friend yesterday and quoted today's scripture focus but couldn't remember 'the address' for it. I shall remember now, 2 Cor 5:17. I am so glad Christ made it possible for us to receive His Spirit and be made into new creations. I am glad to not be who I once was, and glad the Papa God sees me in my completed form, even though I haven't arrived there yet... "He's still working on me... to make me what I ought to be, It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars, the Sun and the Earth and Jupiter and Mars. How loving and patient He must be... He's still working on me." Words and Music by Joe Hemphill;
We are so very blessed to know and BE IN relationship with The Father Who Created us while we were in our mother's womb, who knit even our personalities for us!
We are so very blessed to know The Christ, who came and took our sins to The Altar of The Cross so that we could be IN relationship with Him, The Father and have The Holy Spirit here to help us.
We are so very blessed to have access to devotionals that help us have a better understanding on scripture and spiritual concepts.
Cyber hugs and warm mugs to all who enter our cyber chapel. You are each loved with a love that never stops... a LOVE that has Him continually 'tweaking' us into who He already sees us as.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 09:02AM CDT
Comment by Linda of West Point, VA

Good morning to all and Cindy thank yourfor a meaningful devotion and blog. Also, you have a lovely family. Sarah, prayers for Lucy that she got a good passing grade on her algebra exam. Julie will be praying for you and with you for you sonogram on Nov, 11, maybe it wasn't accidential that the spot was found on your lliver, but God pointing it out to be taken care of soon. God is good and works wonders in our lives each day. My life would not be complete without God and side by side we journey through each day. Maay the peace and joy that comes from God fill our lives today and every day. "ASK"

Posted October 22, 2014 at 09:07AM CDT
Comment by cherie of mena, AR

Thank you, Cindy for the devotional. I know I have changed in my ways and pray to live a life pleasing to God. I find that I catch myself slipping back to old habits quickly now and try to turn around. I pray for all of the UR family's concerns and hope everyone has a beautiful day. Love and Light

Posted October 22, 2014 at 09:38AM CDT
Comment by Henry of Alexandria, VA

Thanks to Cindy and others for the devotional, scripture and comments emphasizing the importance of not only seeking and accepting the Lord, but accepting that we are a new person after being saved even if we are not certain of all the ways we are new -- God will reveal that in His time and His way if we just remain faithful and trusting in Him. And if we remember that God will give each person a different set of gifts according to God's plan for the person, we can not worry too much about whether it is important to be outgoing, energetic, quiet or whatever. If we seek Him, God will lead us each according to the plan God has for us. No one cookie cutter solution for all Christians -- all the different colors of the Christian rainbow are what makes it beautiful AND attractive to others! Joining all in prayers today for Cindy, Sarah, Monte and Carolyn, JK and daughter, Merry, Harlan and Jeanette, Dan and friend, Julie PTL!, Kim, Jackie and Desiree, Bo, Marsha, Better, Kathy Corey and families (and again thank you sweet friend for your always very personal and touching comments in support of my prayers for my family and friends -- you are so special, and know you are in my prayers and thoughts every day!), Cindy Lee Jer and families, Julia Matt and Jeff, Josie, Edd, me and others still seeking employment or better employment (Lord order our steps with your anointing and inspire energize and embolden us to walk those steps, IJN!), those with health relationship or grieving issues, those in life's storms of all kinds Ebola US southern border Iraq Syria Israel Palestine Ukraine storms fires plane crashes homeless as weather turns colder and more, granddaughter Ashley daughter Amanda friend Mike and families, ministers and ministries lay and ordained, and for all other spoken and unspoken praises and requests. God is able and is indeed love. Grace, peace and blessings.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 09:46AM CDT
Comment by Jayne of Maury City, TN

Cindy, great devotional, thanks for sharing the devotional and blog. As I mentioned in the blog., I am reading a very good testimonial book, "Getting Your Life On Target" written by, Steven J. Austin, if any of you get the opportunity to read it.
Harlan praying for your mother, Jeanette, that the knee replacement surgery goes good, and is successful. Praying for the doctors and nurses that are performing the surgery.
Praying for each name and each situation mentioned, as well as those on our hearts. Praying for a safe and blessed day for everyone.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 09:50AM CDT
Comment by Elias of La Palma, CA

Cindy Gerrard: Thank you for your devotional today. I'm glad that you are learning what it means to live your life with Faith in God. God IS Love, and although you did not use the word Love to describe some of your experiences with those you serve in church, I'm sure it is the basis for your motivation in wanting to help them when you put God first.
I'd like for you to consider a couple of points about your ministry from experiences I've learned in living a Life with Christ for over 52 years. First, instead of 'inviting' people to church, bring the CHURCH to them since you are one of God's BRANCHES wherever you are. The best way to do this is when WE Give To Those Around Us Without Requiring In Return. This is God's example of how He Loves us!
When we GIVE in this manner, we are helping to Reconcile the world to God.
I have known many Christians from around the world, as I'm sure you have to, and the distinguishing factor is always LOVE! 'Lifestyles' always vary, and Christians' behavior, because of their traditions, also differ, but the ACT of Love is always the same.
It is when WE learn to Love as God Loves, that a Renewing of our mind takes place mainly because we are no longer seeking to please ourselves first but instead seeking to please God by GIVING to others just as He does. As I'm sure you know, we cannot put God first unless we put those around us first as well; the two are intertwined.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 11:17AM CDT
Comment by Richard

Update on Gracie, 6th grader with leg cancer, who underwent surgery Monday, exploratory and posdible leg amputation. We are aware of her condition through one of our friends, so details are sketchy. This is cut and paste from my wife..."I think all went well and not sure if they even had to amputate - I was trying to see what people said on Facebook but it was all vague " Sounds encoraging! Praise GOD! Richard, Marietta, GA.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 11:17AM CDT
Comment by Donnie of Royston, GA

Cindy, thank you so much for this encouraging devotion and for your blog and beautiful photo today, also. I often need reminders that I can be a new person in Christ and yet still be the unique me God created.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 11:19AM CDT
Comment by Nell

Cindy, thank you for your devotional today. I appreciate it so much and that you are inviting others to church. I really enjoyed your additional comments and am so happy that you have a wonderful husband and two healthy children, and that you all are in church. Thanks to the pastor that had time for you when you needed it most and counseled with you for two months. Having a church family is so important. Go to church on Sunday, be the church wherever you go the rest of the week. In other words, live for Jesus all the time! I feel the calling to visit the shut-ins, those in nursing homes, etc , but I need to do better inviting others to church. I'm a radio listener if I'm at home, in the car and I thoroughly enjoy listening to American Family Radio based in Tupelo, MS. If you're looking for a good Christian radio station, check it out. It has grown through the years and has stations throughout the United States. Have a great day everyone!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 01:12PM CDT
Comment by Jonnie

Sheila of Bryantsville: Your "Cyber hugs and warm mugs" gave me joy this morning! What a way to start each day. Praise God from whom all blessings flow. And, a big cyber hug back at you!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 01:50PM CDT
Comment by Sheila of Bryantsville, KY

JONNIE, glad the morning hug blessed you this morning and thanks for the hug back. I collect hugs! :-)

Posted October 22, 2014 at 02:42PM CDT
Comment by Cherie of Harvey , LA

May God continue to bless you and your family always! And, may He continue to use you in being a blessing to others!

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:10PM CDT
Comment by Margaret of randallstown, MD

CINDY, thanks for your message todays.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:13PM CDT
Comment by Margaret of randallstown, MD

SARAH*****thank you for your love and prayer, My prayer for you is that God continue to use you and bless you in the work that you are doing for the LORD.

Posted October 22, 2014 at 04:18PM CDT
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