Tag Archives: Jesus

The True Vine

Focus Scriptures: John 15:1-2; 2 Peter 1:5-6


Greetings Purposeful Family!

We are connected to the True Vine! That connection gives us access to our Redeemer. We can talk directly to our God.

In today’s podcast I suggest taking one day and schedule each hour. It’s easy to lose focus of what is important. When we write down exactly what we do with our time it puts our lives into perspective. I pray that by performing this simple task, you find more time to do things of greater value.

~Torrie


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Our Given Purpose 

 

 

Low Key Faith?

Bible Reading: Matthew 14:22-33; Proverbs 16:1-9

Oh, social media…where would we be without it? Or more importantly, where are we with it? Over the last few months I have increased my “internet” presence and become more, uh..socially active???? I engage in conversations, give thumbs up to funny memes, react to heartfelt posts, and regularly post content as well. IT-IS-SO-HARD!!! God bless the people who do this for a living by managing profiles for others. The silver lining?….I’ve made connections with people from around the world, found Believers that share my theological views and even those who do not. I’ve been inspired by so many amazing artists, photographers, and writers. It really is a great big world out there. Proverbs 16:2


I become overwhelmed managing all the various outlets we have at our disposal and lose sight of God in the midst. (Matthew 14:30-31) However, I remember to remain calm and wait patiently for God’s will to be done. (Proverbs 16:3) I do have a few things that will quickly unnerve me. Confession: I feel most out of sorts when I’m the passenger in a vehicle. “Hello my name is Torrie and I am a side seat driver!” I will press on imaginary breaks, brace for impact if I believe a crash is imminent, or “talk” to other vehicles: telling them to slow down or speed up to merge into traffic. Yes!! I am an absolute joy to have as a passenger! 

Reading God’s Word showed me how I allow others to control how I react. As a believer in Christ and knowing that He has a plan, I should remain calm in stressful situations. I know to lean into God’s almighty, powerful omnipresence and not take my eyes off of God. I should be praying. I should not put my trust in the individuals behind the wheel but in God. This forces me to ask the question, “who or what is driving my thoughts and actions?”


Peter began to sink when He took His eyes off of Jesus. Where is my faith? Why do I give other “stuff” control over my emotions? Why do I doubt?…. Well because I’m human, we are all human. God knows our limitations. Yet, He will still stretch out His hand and guide us to safety. We are to be interdependent with Him, to do what is natural while He performs the supernatural. Let us all pray for our belief to be strengthened so that He our Father in Heaven can increase our Faith.

~ Torrie

© Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com; 2018-2048 Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Cut Cut Cut

Matthew 25:14-30 {The Parable of the 10 Talents}

Most of us have that one movie we will sit and watch even though we know the ending. I have a few, but one of my favorites is John Grisham’s The Rainmaker. I thoroughly enjoy Claire Danes, Matt Damon, and the sweet little grandmother of a woman played by Teresa Wright. This movie is filled with drama; it seeks justice for a family, two women, and pushes a man into his earthly purpose. There is one line that resonated and often comes to mind when I feel I need to change a bad habit. Miss Birdie (Teresa Wright) told Rudy the lawyer (Matt Damon) to “Cut, cut, cut.!!” She wanted her inheritance to go to an already wealthy minister and leave her children…. nothing. Of course, Rudy goes to bat for the children and the other “broken” characters throughout the movie. If you think this story line sounds familiar, you may have gone to Sunday School.


Cut! That one word is like an alarm. It signals action to stop in cinematic, stage, and musical performances. It severs, divides, or marks a need to be rid of a person or possession. God helps us prune away what we do not need to fulfill our purpose. (John 15:1-2) Let’s go to God in prayer and frequently ask what we need to CUT! CUT! CUT! Let’s be mindful of what we hold on to, although it may have begun as a blessing from God, His plan for its intended use can become a curse if we began to idolize it. 


After we have taken stock of what is truly important, how much clutter is left? Not just physical items but, emotional baggage that needs cutting off. What hinders our talents? Are we bogged down by the things we placed on top of the gifts we received? Should we maximize gifts by investing more time in them? Matthew 25:21 We will know we are on the right path when we invest our time wisely; the fruit of our works will be evident from our constant cutting. (Matthew 25:25) Let us not hide what we have because we fear acceptance. Walk boldly with scissors cutting out the chaos in our lives to usher in a fresh Godly perspective and direction. We have been given an opportunity to grow and flourish in this life, spreading the news of Christ’s salvation over us all. 

What are you hiding?

~Torrie

 

© Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography, and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com 2018-2048. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography, and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Indifferent to Persistence

Bible Reading: Luke 18:1-8

Indifference- the lack of interest, concern, or sympathy: apathy.


What are we indifferent to? Is it homelessness, hunger, child abuse, drug trafficking, money… perhaps our spiritual or academic lives? Are we indifferent to our social media presence, the forms of entertainment we enjoy, gossip we engage in? What are the things we don’t give a second thought of?


 The judge in Luke 18:1-8 showed no concern or sympathy to the widow’s need. He did not fear God nor respect his fellow man. (Luke 18:2) Through the widow’s persistence, he finally relented and gave her the justice she sought. (Luke 18:4-5) 

Applying the timeless lessons of God’s Word, we see ourselves in these parables. Every day we are given an opportunity to act justly, love mercy, and walk humbly with God. (Micah 6:8) How can we do that if we are so consumed with our selfish desires? We miss the sacrifices of those wanting to help us through their persistence. The widow was the one in need but, her persistence helped the judge and us see how we can serve God by serving each other. God is in control. (Luke 18:6-8)


I am struck by how many times I’ve had to learn the same lessons over again. The times I have let go of God’s hand and sought my own fleshly desires instead of His divine will; the feeling becomes uncomfortable. It’s as though I’m standing naked in the middle of a busy intersection allowing everyone to gawk at me. Although that feeling of utter embarrassment is overwhelming, I thank God through the Holy Spirit that I feel embarrassed rather than indifferent. It ushers in a fresh remorse and repentance for the things He has warned me against.


If we find ourselves feeling ashamed, embarrassed, or even humiliated we should quickly turn to God and thank Him for the awareness. The gentle discipline that comes from our emotions are far easier to grow and learn from than the complete destruction of judgement that awaits us for not heeding His warnings. Let us all have repenting hearts eager to act justly, and show kindness, because of His mercy.

Every faculty you have, your power of thinking or of moving your limbs from moment to moment, is given you by God. If you devoted every moment of your whole life exclusively to His service, you could not give Him anything that was not in a sense His own already. C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity

~ Torrie

© Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com, 2018-2048. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography, and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com, with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.

Prospect of Recovery

Bible Reading: Luke 15

Have you ever looked for something only to notice you were holding it in your hand? Or perhaps turned your car upside down looking for eyeglasses only to catch a glimpse of yourself in the rear view mirror and see them resting on top of your head?… I’ve actually looked for my cell phone then realized I was talking on it. (LOL!)

We lose things all the time.

There is a popular piece of text circulating on social media; which reads:

“I don’t always lose stuff, but when I do it’s because my wife moved it.”

My husband and I found this hysterically funny and for those of you in relationships, I’m sure you can relate. We often go to those we live with when something isn’t in its usual place. Living in a household with other people (or pets) we learn that items aren’t lost they have actually been moved.

We should ask ourselves:

What moves us to think or understand things differently? (Is it a person, a life event, or a desire for change?)

What moves us emotionally? (Is it a person, a life event, or desire for change?)

How useful is the source we gravitate towards when we feel lost? (Do we seek a person, the Bible, or other outlets such as television, social media, alcohol, shopping, or other addictions? What is our identity found in?)


 Luke 15:11-32

In the parable of the lost son, Jesus spoke of a father and his two sons. The younger was ready to go out on his own and take his inheritance. The older son stayed with the family. After a series of bad decisions and losing all of his money, the younger son decided to sell himself by working in a foreign country. However, once he came to his senses he realized he had sinned against Heaven and his father. He made the decision to go back to work for his family, to his father, but not as a son, as a servant. What happened next can only be described as mercy. Not only did his father welcome him with open arms he celebrated his return! Exclaiming that his son was no longer dead in sin!!

Just like the father in the parable, Jesus wants our souls to be united to Him. He is merciful to us when we are sincere and comes humbly to Him. We are owned by Christ, we are bought and paid for by the shedding of His blood. When we acknowledge His great love for us we will never be completely cut off from Him.

No matter how broken we are physically and emotionally God embraces us. It is time to put our trust in the one and true living God. His mercy and grace are everlasting and unconditional.

~Torrie

© Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography, and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com (Our Given Purpose trademark pending), 2018-2048. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Torrie Slaughter, Torrie Slaughter Photography, and http://www.ourgivenpurpose.com (Our Given Purpose) with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.