Every one loves a good quote. Back when I was a teenager I used to collect them. I had a Word-document with around 400 of them; one- or two-liners with something profound to say, or something that touched my heart. And I am not the only one. You see them everywhere now. On Posters and billboards… Pinterest is full of them.
On one level bible verses can do the same thing. We can even make them into the same beautiful photo’s. Since I became a Christian I have started to collect bible verses, just like I used to collect quotes.
Just like I had favourite quotes, I have favourite verses. Ones that inspire me, but mostly ones that lift my spirits when I face hard times; hopeful ones full of promise.
Here are some* of my favourites and why I like them:
I can do all things through Christ, who gives me strength.
I like to read this one when I have to do something I find hard, or when I feel like I cannot get something done. This verse doesn’t just say that anything is possible, but that I can do anything. I have been given the power to make things happen. It emphasises my own ability, if I trust in Jesus.
For the Lord your God is living in you. He is a mighty Savior. He delights in you with gladness. With His love, He will calm all your fears.
I wouldn’t say I have anxiety by any means, but I am a worrier. My worries can hijack my thoughts and spin me in a downward spiral. In moments like that verses like this are literally a God-send. To know that God will calm my fears is so… calming (forgive me my pun, for I know not what I do). But more than that, to know that God is pleased with me. Better yet, He delights in me. To know that gives me so much courage and hope, especially in a world where we’re constantly bombarded with images and super high standards that only a few can actually achieve. God delights in me! Even if I don’t have the right shoes or deliver the best work.
So be strong and courageous! Do not be afraid and do not panic. For the Lord your God will personally go ahead of you. He will neither fail you nor abandon you!
This is one of the few verses out of the OT that really capture me, other than the Psalms. There is so much power and promise in it that I have it set as my wallpaper on my phone. I love looking at it in troubled times. But even when I am feeling well seeing this just makes my heart swell with love and trust.
My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in your weakness.
2 Corinthians 12:9
When I get tired of my own need to control things, this verse gives me the push I need to let go. I get to not be perfect, and let that be ok. Me constant need for striving and pleasing is released on this verse.
I have loved you with an everlasting love.
For somebody like me who always fears of not being good enough and not being able to be fully loved, this comforts me. It shows me I am loved, always! And not just by anyone. By a God who saves me, redeems me, and gives me refuge from the storm.
We can rejoice, too, when we run into problems and trials, for we know that they help up develop endurance. Endurance develops strength of character, and character strengthens our confident hope of salvation.
What I like about this verse is that it does not try to make the bad times seem less bad. It just acknowledges it and highlights that storms and trials can serve a purpose. They give the best opportunity for growth; growth closer to God and growth in character.
No wonder my heart is glad and I rejoice. My body rests in safety.
Oh, the simple things! I realise that most verses I have are to give me courage or strength in difficult circumstances. In a world where trouble is all around us and we see so many bad news reports, simple gratitude can be healing as well. Simple daily gratitude has the power to change your outlook and make it more powerful. Focussing on the good rather than on the bad will have that effect!
*This list is by no means complete. So stay tuned for another post!
Ps: I still have my quote collection from back then. I see potential in a post where I take a favourite regular quote and link it to a biblical one. Please let me know in the comments if you would like that!