The Heart of God For You

The Heart of God For You

We spend a lot of our energy convincing others of the love of God. In fact, for the most part, we seem to be convinced of it for others— fully believing that the grace of God covers every sin of theirs and that their Heavenly Father profoundly loves them. For many of us who are familiar with church, it would be a simple thing to biblically prove that God loves His people. 

But sometimes we find ourselves distant, anxious, and unsteady in His presence. We know that Jesus makes it possible to be in His throne room and that He is sufficient to cover sins. We just don’t think God wants us there. 

I went to Him cautiously, thinking that He was accepting, but displeased. I went to Him reluctantly, convinced He rolled His eyes when I showed up. I went quietly, on my best behavior, not wanting to take up any space where I already felt unworthy. If you’ve ever felt like me, give the Bible a chance to convince you otherwise— His presence is the safest, most joyful place to be, and He really does want you there. 

First, it is commanded that we go to Him. He is the one who commands it. Matthew 11:28-30 starts with this: “Come to me, all…” This is an imperative command. A deliberate instruction. Jesus is commanding that all come to Him. He says the same thing in John 15, commanding us to abide in Him. But how can we come to Him? 

Second, we know the holiness of God, and that our sin makes it impossible to go to Him on our own. The Father knew that too. Since the beginning, He has been making ways for us. Establishing covenants, using men as mouthpieces, dwelling in tents made by human hands, leading in pillars of cloud and fire, honoring sacrifices, responding to prayers, and finally, coming down Himself. The story of the Bible is one of God constantly seeking broken people. He subjected Himself to human life and death—why? For His glory and our participation in it. That we might be called sons and daughters. So He commands that we come to Him, and He made it possible to come to Him. 

Third, it was the joy of Christ to hang on the cross on our behalf. Hebrews 12:2 says that Jesus went to the cross “for the joy set before Him.” The joy of bringing us to the Father was great enough to justify the torture of the cross. He called it “joy” to endure the cross when He saw our communion with Him on the other side. In fact, Hebrews calls Him the “author” of our faith in this sense. He chose the cross in order to choose you, and He wrote it that way. 

So we have a command to come to Christ, the path to Him accomplished by Christ, and a declaration that it was His joy to bring us to the Father. Maybe He does want us to come— and still, there’s more. 

Jesus “knows our frame; He remembers that we are dust.” (Psalm 103:14) He is not shocked by our weakness. 1 John says that “if anyone does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.” We are even told that His power is made perfect in our weakness. That we are hidden in Christ. Seated with Him in the heavenly places. So when the Father sees us, He sees the sufficiency of Christ. 

The deeper our need for forgiveness, the more the worthiness of Christ is put on display. His sacrifice was enough to accomplish not only our sinlessness before Christ, which is a miracle in itself, but it was enough to accomplish His delight in us as well. 

To go to Him anxiously believing that He is secretly disappointed is to reject the truth that the blood of Jesus is enough to cover your failures. This weight on our shoulders is enough to keep us from His presence, which is the very point of Jesus’ sacrifice in the first place. Why would He command you to come to Him, give His life to make it possible, call it joy to endure the cross, and then hide you in Christ and include your life in His glory if He didn’t want you in His presence? Even delight in your coming to Him? 

I’ll submit to you what I have been leaning on for life: The Father is greatly pleased when you trust the blood of Jesus enough to walk into His throne room with confidence. This confidence does not come from faith in yourself, but complete knowledge of your complete unworthiness, matched and exceeded by the sacrifice of Jesus on your behalf. He knows your frame. He knows your weakness. He knows your sinfulness— much better than you do, actually, for He felt the whole weight of it— and He has covered it to the uttermost, accomplishing not only your righteousness but joyful communion with your Father. I can personally testify to what a life lived with Jesus is like. Living this broken, messy, heartbreaking and difficult life can take a toll on any soul, no matter how resilient it might be. The Bible, and our Lord, does not diminish the difficulty of life. In fact, He often warns us about how hard it is. But if no one has ever held your hands and looked you in the eyes, and through tears promised you that He really means what He says, then let me be the first. There is nothing that compares to the embrace of Jesus. There is no sweetness like the Gospel. There is no freedom like His friendship. There is no greater joy than sitting at His feet. There is no Father who is tender like Him. I know this stuff can be hard to believe— trust me, I do. And I know that this life can harden hearts into believing that there is no ultimate good. But I can look at you with confidence and say that I believe Him. His Word truly is life, He really does love you, and He really does know what He is doing. He is trustworthy. His will is the greatest adventure you could ever know, friend. So here’s my final plea to you: go sit at His feet. Go to Him first, go to Him quickly, and go to Him often. He is so pleased when you do. 

Why Wisdom is Given Generously

“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubt, for the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind.” James 1:5-6

Have you ever read this verse and wondered why God chose wisdom as the guaranteed yes? When I read this verse, I was slightly frustrated. Why couldn’t the guaranteed yes be something more exciting than wisdom? We would prefer a promise for healing, a promise for a timely answer, or a promise for financial security—surely these things might provide more practical peace and fulfilling prayer than wisdom. Although wisdom may not sound like the ideal answer from the Lord, I think you & I have an improper view of the value of biblical wisdom. Once we search the Scriptures and understand what is promised to us by this verse, “wisdom” can become the most treasured guaranteed “yes” from our Father. 

The author of the book of James put together a book that seems like a miscellaneous collection of practical Christianity, with commands to remain steadfast, be impartial, watch your tongue & be mindful of how fleeting life is. But if you read this book with the wisdom literature of the Bible in mind (Proverbs and Ecclesiastes, mainly), it’s easy to see that James is teaching his readers to live in light of the “wisdom from above” that he defines as “first pure, then peaceable, gentle, open to reason, full of mercy and good fruits, impartial, and sincere” (James 3:17) and every “practical” point that he makes finds its roots in Old Testament wisdom principles. So, when James tells us in chapter one that this “wisdom from above” is given generously to all, what does that mean? Why can wisdom be so freely given? 

As James did, let’s look back at Old Testament wisdom in the book of Proverbs. Proverbs is a book of practical wisdom that is meant to teach readers how to “fear God, and turn away from evil” (Proverbs 3:7) and most of the chapters deal with day-to-day issues. However, just because the author of Proverbs is teaching us how to be wise doesn’t mean he isn’t teaching us about Jesus. In chapter 8, wisdom takes the stage and defines itself:

 “The Lord possessed me at the beginning of His work, the first of His acts of old. Ages ago I was set up, at the first, before the beginning of the earth…when He established the heavens, I was there; when He drew a circle on the face of the deep, when He made firm the skies above…when He marked out the foundations of the earth, I was beside Him, like a master workman, and I was daily His delight, rejoicing before him always, rejoicing in his inhabited world, and delighting in the children of man” (Proverbs 8:22-31). 

Who does that sound like to you? Who was, according to John 1, “in the beginning with God” who “all things were made through”? Who delights in the works of the Father, rejoicing in the world and the people He created? Jesus does. He holds all things together, He is before all things, and He is the fullness of God sent down to us.

Paul sees this in Scripture and includes it in his letter to the Corinthians. 1 Corinthians chapter 2 says this: “But we preach Christ crucified, a stumbling block to Jews and folly to Gentiles, but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God.” Wisdom describes Himself in Proverbs chapter 8 as standing next to the Father in creation. John tells us that Jesus was in the beginning with God, by whom He made all things (John 1). 1 Corinthians tells us that Christ is the power and wisdom of God. So, what is Biblical wisdom? The person of Jesus Christ! How AWESOME is the Bible? Jesus was the One who was with God in creation, He is the power of God, and He is God who put on flesh and dwelt among us. To know Jesus, then, is to know wisdom—He is wisdom itself!

James says that God gives wisdom generously to all without reproach. Why does God promise to give us wisdom when we ask? Because He gives His Son freely to all who ask! Because “all who call on the name of the Lord will be saved” (Romans 10:13). The Father has not withheld Jesus from us, and Christ is the “wisdom and power of God”, so if Christ is not withheld from us, then the wisdom found in Him isn’t either. When we accept the gift of salvation in Christ, the forgiveness, kindness, love, and grace of God are freely given to us. The Holy Spirit becomes a guide and a friend, as we walk through life seeking to know and honor Him. And, as we look to God for wisdom on how to live a life that brings glory to Him, He is always giving us more wisdom because He freely gives us Jesus.

When we ask God for more wisdom, He bursts at the seams to say yes because we are asking for more of Jesus—and that is a prayer He bled and died and rose again to say “yes” to. There is nothing in this world that can restrain His love toward His children. Let us seek wisdom with all of our heart, and rejoice in finding it at every turn as our Good Father answers “yes” to our every need for Him. 

My name is Sam Arp and I am a college student in Charleston studying writing!  I just really love studying and teaching the Bible & seeing people come to know Jesus for who He really is. 🙂 

To the Believer Who Feels Alone

To the Believer Who Feels Alone

The Bible tells you to expect hardships. Christians who know their Bible and examine our culture know that following Jesus is not meant to be easy, and the world certainly affirms that truth. There is little expectation for this life to be free of trouble, uncomplicated, or painless- but what we did not expect was to walk through all of that alone.

We, as a people, feel desperately alone. Especially those of us who live in places where people who follow Jesus are few to be found. Last week, I was taking a walk in the park right in the middle of a city, walking through swarms of people. People from all walks of life, from all kinds of ethnic backgrounds- and I was overwhelmed by it all. That was the second time I had that feeling.

The first time was last summer, when I was living in a different city in which the inhabitants were 80% unreached with the Gospel. I stood at a high point, looking over the city, and asked the same question that I asked last week: “Lord, is it only me here that knows you?” And, I know I’m not the only one who’s asked this. It’s the same for you who looks over your college campus, or your high school halls, or your family, or your city. The core of the question really is this: “Lord, have you forgotten us?”

Elijah asked the same question. It was a time of pagan worship under the reign of Ahab and Jezebel, and he felt like the only one left. He says this in 1 Kings 19:10, “I have been very jealous for the Lord of hosts. For the people of Israel have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword, and I, even I only, am left, and they seek my life, to take it away.”

Elijah tells the Lord that he is jealous for the glory of God among these people who don’t know Him. They have broken their covenant of faithfulness, they have worshipped idols, they have killed the other prophets, and now they want to kill Elijah. His despair is clear in his plea. He sees no hope, he’s alone, and he doesn’t know what God is doing. Does He not care that His people have forgotten Him?

To answer Elijah, the Lord asks him to go outside to the side of the mountain. The Lord Himself was going to meet Elijah.

A great wind tore through the mountain, so strong that it broke rocks into pieces, then an earthquake shook him where he stood, then fire swept through in front of him- but after all three of these massive demonstrations of power, the Bible says that “the Lord was not in the wind… the Lord was not in the earthquake…the Lord was not in the fire.” But don’t these show the power of God? He answered Elijah’s questions with rock-breaking wind, mountain shaking earthquake, and consuming fire-why didn’t God show up in those?

The Bible says that after these came the sound of a “low whisper.” And when Elijah heard it, he hid his face and walked out to meet God. The Lord was not in the wind, or the earthquake, or the fire- He was in the whisper. Why answer this way? Here, God was demonstrating to Elijah a truth about Himself.

Elijah was wondering why God didn’t use the same rock-breaking power to show Himself mighty to all of these people who rejected Him. After all, if everyone knew that Elijah believed in the true God, then he wouldn’t be alone. And Elijah knew the power of God- it had been demonstrated in the chapter before. But God didn’t show up that way. Not in magnificent demonstrations of power, but in a low whisper.

Isn’t that true of our Savior? He came, not as a king with a sword, but as a servant who washed feet. He had great power, yes, but Jesus was not interested in showing off His power to those who didn’t believe Him. Peter wanted Him to- when they came to get Him, to take Him to the cross, Peter grabbed a sword and started fighting. But Jesus emptied Himself, and became obedient to death on a cross. The disciples felt alone. Elijah felt alone. You and I, we feel alone. Why doesn’t God just send an earthquake to show all of our friends that we aren’t crazy to believe Him? Why didn’t God show Himself in the fire?

It’s because He has never been a God who seeks to win hearts this way. He’s much more powerful than that, friends. We understand power through great demonstrations because our view is so limited by our finiteness. The Lord has the earth as His footstool. He is sovereign over much more than the natural world- He is sovereign over every human heart.

God answers Elijah’s disbelief with this: “ Yet I have kept for myself seven thousand people in Israel, all the knees that have not bowed to Baal, and every mouth that has not kissed him.” He is able to raise up believers from the remnant of a people who want nothing to do with Him. That’s what it looks like to wield power and grace in the same hand. He is gentle, and patient, and able to see beyond your current loneliness to accomplish His greater, sweeter purposes. He is sovereign over the human heart, too.

Do you feel like you’re the only one? Do you feel like He has forgotten you? When Elijah felt that way, God reminded him that the Lord has much more in store for His people than we could ever imagine. He wanted to show Elijah that His ways were higher than Elijah’s ways. His thoughts are higher than ours, too. He is able to turn the hearts of men towards Him whenever He would like, and when we would despair, His is a gentle reminder that He is much bigger than we imagine, and His hand is not shortened to save. Maybe it’s time that our prayers were different- not that we forsake asking Him to move in a mighty way, because we should pray boldly, but also pray that He would change our eyes to see Him in the whisper instead of waiting on the earthquake. And who knows? Maybe He is raising a new 7000 from our midst, too.

Hi! My name is Samantha Arp and I am a sophomore in college. I am studying writing and theology and serve in the women’s and college ministry at my college. I have a passion for the Word of God and teaching our generation how to find joy in it! I love LO sis and I’m honored to share this today 🙂

Invited to the Table

Invited to the Table

Note from Team LO: We are SO excited to bring you this month’s post from our LO sister member, Samantha Arp! If you want to be a part of this incredible community, you can join today and get your first week FREE! Find out more about this online sisterhood HERE. And for more info about what LO sister is all about, visit our Instagram Page!

Now, enjoy today’s post from Sam 🙂 


“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies…”

Why would anyone choose to eat dinner while surrounded by their enemies?

An invitation to..

In Exodus 12, the Israelites are preparing to endure the tenth plague, the death of the firstborn. This plague meant that the Destroyer would pass through Egypt and kill all of the firstborn of the household. God provided a way for His people to avoid this by instituting the Passover. The Hebrew families would kill a one year old lamb, without blemish, and put the blood on the doorposts of the house as a sign that they belonged to God and the Destroyer would pass over that house, and spare it. They were instructed to eat this meal “in haste”, with their sandals and belt on, with staff in hand, to signify that their release from slavery could come at any moment. This was an institution to be held for generations to come to remember that they were spared and released from slavery into freedom.

This meal was a celebration of the faithfulness of God in salvation from slavery, right? But did they not eat this meal before this promise was fulfilled? They ate the first Passover at night, amidst the death of their enemies, wondering if they were next; they ate in haste, but these families hadn’t seen freedom in generations. They were celebrating salvation before they had seen it.

This is seen again in the New Testament. Jesus and His disciples are being faithful to Jewish law, preparing to eat the Passover at the proper time in the upper room. If they are eating it properly (which they most likely are, as the manifestation of the Passover eats among them) then they are eating in haste, with sandals and belt on and staff in hand. Then something new happens. John recounts that Jesus then stands, removes His robe, and wraps a towel around His waist and fills a basin with water. He then kneels at their feet and begins to wash them. They were supposed to have their sandals strapped on, ready to move into freedom, remembering the Exodus. Yet Jesus removes their sandals. No one can run to freedom barefoot. But they are not the ones achieving freedom. He is. As they remember their ancestors trusting God with their life and salvation, God Himself kneels at their feet, preparing to achieve freedom on their behalf. And who else sits at the table with Him? Judas does. The man who will turn the Messiah over to death. Surrounded by enemies, none but Jesus knowing what evil lies on the other side of this Passover turned to Lord’s supper, they eat in celebration of freedom. Again, evil had not been conquered. The work was not finished, salvation not yet accomplished, Judas still very much present, and yet, Jesus instituted a new meal of celebration. “Do this in remembrance of Me”, He says. A call to celebrate the salvation to come.

The next meal we see in the Bible is in Revelation 19, the Marriage Supper of the Lamb. In this meal, the Bride of Christ (the Church) is reunited with Christ in all of His fullness that was hidden from us until then. It is a long-awaited union of Christ and His Church, full of worship and the perfect communion our souls are meant for. This meal happens right before the rider on the white horse “called Faithful and True” destroys Death and Evil, throwing them into the Lake of Fire forever. After the promise that Jesus will be King, that He will have final victory, but before the victory is actually accomplished. They celebrate the victory that is not yet won.

There is a noticeable pattern here. All of these meals instituted by God happen right in the middle of the mess. They happen right in the middle of the death, darkness, war, pain, confusion, hopelessness, and hurt. And yet, God is still commanding His people to celebrate victory before they have seen it.

We can feast in celebration, and should, before the promise is answered. We should worship and rejoice before He has won the victory before our eyes. Celebrating this way is a radical act of faith, and an expression of confidence in our Savior. The Israelites ate, celebrating Canaan before they even left Egypt. The disciples ate the Lord’s Supper before their Savior breathed His last. We eat the Marriage Supper of the Lamb before our Victor destroys our enemies. We do this because there is no fear in the battle when the Lord over it dines with you. It is an impossible task to ask us to feast if the outcome of the battle is not certain. But, it is an act of worship to celebrate a victory before you have seen it.

When our Father shows up, there is no struggle for victory. Egypt was overcome by walls of the sea after they feasted. Death committed suicide on the cross, and went into the tomb when Jesus walked out of it. Satan and Evil beg for mercy when Jesus rides up on a white horse. There is no uncertainty when He walks in the room. Therefore, there is no greater expression of faith than to celebrate the Victory of Jesus at His table before the battle is won.

When He prepares a table before you in the presence of your enemies, when it makes no sense to rest or celebrate, before the battle is won; watch Him prepare a feast, pull out your chair, and invite you to rest. Worship, celebrate, count the battle as won, because of Who sits at the table with you.

Hi! My name is Sam and I am a sophomore in college at Charleston Southern! I just love Jesus and love talking about Him, what a sweet gift to even know Him!

Identity of a Daughter

Identity of a Daughter

Note from Team LO: We are SO excited to bring you this month’s post from our LO sister member, Samantha Arp! If you want to be a part of this incredible community, you can join today and your your first week FREE! Find out more about this online sisterhood HERE. And for more info about what LO sister is all about, visit our Instagram Page!

Now, enjoy today’s post from Samantha 🙂 


“Your beauty should not come from outward adornment, such as elaborate hairstyles and the wearing of gold jewelry or fine clothes. Rather, it should be that of your inner self, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is of great worth in God’s sight. 

 (1 Peter 3:3-6)

I think we need to talk about it.

These verses are not popular, especially today in a world where people are jumping on every opportunity to refute the Bible. In situations where Scripture does not easily align with what we see around us (which, by the way, is how it should be) Christians are accused of being outdated, close minded, or prejudiced. Yes, the Bible was written a long time ago to a radically different cultural atmosphere; but the true Author knew exactly who His audience would be. Passages like this are no accident.

If we love God and want to honor Him, then this is how He says to do it. Let’s not run from it or ignore it, but press into the controversy and wrestle with it as an opportunity to better understand the character of God.

Let’s understand a few things first, which are universally true when tackling hard truths in Scripture. One, the character of God is consistent. He does not change His mind like we do. His love and His mercy and His holiness hold as true today as they did two thousand years ago, and He will continue when everything else fades away. God did not decide on this day that He was going to change His nature. Two, God is very clearly an advocate and defender of women. One needs to look no further than the life of Jesus to understand that He was the loudest champion of women in a time period when they were regarded as little more than property. Never in Jesus’ life did He belittle, devalue, or silence a woman; rather, He stood in their defensepleaded their cause, and stood in the gap between them and men who overlooked their worth. And, as stated before, that reality did not change for these verses.

If this is true, then why is Jesus (through Peter) concerned with what you wear? This topic can generate a lot of heated conversation with Christians and non-Christians which is a very good thing. Let’s take a look.

In the beginning, when men and women were cursed by sin (as in, they chose sin over God on purpose) the way that sin affected them was different. For men, sin cursed their labor; everything that they would accomplish or receive in life would be received through work, and it would be a struggle. Therefore, men have to be careful that their worth does not come from what they accomplish, because that is how sin fell on men. Women were different, however. This is not to say that women don’t feel the weight of performance too (because that is a huge temptation for many, including me) but simply that sin would affect them in another area. For women, sin would pervert relationships. According to Genesis 3, God warns us that women are tempted to see their value in how others choose to see them and that this would be a constant balance. And as much as it is always a danger to generalize a large group of people, it is very clear in today’s world that women still deal with this.

So, in light of that, what point is Jesus making in this passage?

As a woman, we crave being valued. But sometimes we settle instead for being noticed. If we cannot get their value by who we are, we can usually get their attention by how we look.

Is this a command meant to restrict us? Absolutely not. I see nowhere in Scripture that Christ is concerned with exactly how much of your skin is showing or how expensive your clothes are. Rather, this is a lesson on identity.

You will be tempted to believe that the only way anyone will value you is to make sure people think you are beautiful. You will be told lies that your height, weight, hair texture, shape of your eyes or language you speak determines your worth. You will be told that your past, your sexual experience or lack thereof, the money you spend on clothing, or the amount of people who like you have a say on your value. Those are simply lies.

You are so much more than a body to be noticed. You are a soul to be valued. Some look to the body because that is their only hope, as it is when you do not know Him- but you are so much more than that. The truth is, you have eternity embedded in you. If you are in Christ, long after all of those things fade, the truly beautiful part of you will be rejoicing, healed and whole and completely free in the presence of true beauty, who is Christ.

Daughter of God, to look at only your outward beauty would be missing the best part. Stop letting yourself be treated like the part of you that fades. Be more than a body. Be more than a face. Be His instead.

“Those who look to Him are radiant, and their faces shall never be ashamed” Psalm 34:5

About Sadie & Live Original

Sadie Robertson Huff is well known for her engaging smile and energetic personality, but there is a lot more to the 25-year-old star of A&E’s Duck Dynasty and runner up on ABC’s Dancing With the Stars season 19


LO Sister App

We’re all about championing women to live out their purpose. Inside our app you’ll find prayer, workshops, book clubs and community. Join today for FREE!

Read the Blog

Sisters and friends from all over the world share their stories, advice, and encouramgent on our blog. Topics feature college advice, sisterhood, sadie’s messages and more.

LO Counseling

In Person / Individual Counseling

LO sister app

Virtual workshops on Relationships, Depression, Anxiety And More.

LO sister conference 2023

SEP 8-9 // 2023