I said the prayer of salvation back in 1992, but my life did not change for 9 years.
I believed the prayer of Salvation was a means to an end. I thought, “Hallelujah, I’m not going to hell” and continued living the same old way!
I did not know that accepting Jesus as my Savior is designed to kickstart a daily, intimate relationship with my Heavenly Father.
But in 2001, everything changed.
Knowing God as my Father
In 2001, I went to a Christian women’s retreat and had an encounter with the Lord that gave me a new revelation of who He is. The following scripture was the event’s theme:
The Lord your God in your midst, The Mighty One, will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness, He will quiet you with His love, He will rejoice over you with singing.”– Zephaniah 3:17 (NKJV)
Up until that point, I thought of God as a tough taskmaster. I felt that nothing I did was ever good enough.
I saw life as a series of hurdles I had to jump over to get approval from others, from God, and from myself. My natural father had abandoned my mother and me when I was just a baby. I never knew him.
What a life-changing revelation to learn that my Heavenly Father loved me just as I was and would never leave nor forsake me!
As a loving Father, He wanted to see me become all that He designed me to be. Don’t loving parents desire the best for their children?
God had a wonderful plan for my life and as I listened to His word, I could learn about that plan and most importantly, come to know Him.
The Meaning of Zephaniah 3:17
Let’s break down Zephaniah 3:17 and discover the relationship God wants to have with you. You are So precious to Him!
1. The Lord your God in your midst.
The Lord promises to be with you. Do you know how awesome that is?
That means that no matter where you go or what situations you face, the Lord is with you.
King David wrote about the intimate presence of God in Psalm 139:
Where can I go from Your Spirit? Or where can I flee from Your presence? If I ascend into heaven, You are there; If I make my bed in hell, behold, You are there. If I take the wings of the morning, And dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea, Even there Your hand shall lead me, And Your right hand shall hold me. If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me,” Even the night shall be light about me; Indeed, the darkness shall not hide from You, But the night shines as the day; The darkness and the light are both alike to You.”
Even if you go to a dark place, you can seek the Lord in the midst of that situation and He will shine light in that darkness.
2. The Mighty One, will save.
Are you facing any situations from which you need deliverance? Seek the Lord’s wisdom and His word will save you!
…through knowledge the righteous will be delivered (Proverbs 11:9).”
Through declaring Jesus as your Savior, you qualify for deliverance:
For He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him (2 Corinthians 5:21).”
3. He will rejoice over you with gladness.
This part of the scripture reminds me of the Father’s reaction when His prodigal son returned home (see Luke 15:11-32).
Was the father angry when his son returned? Did he lecture his son about his grave mistake?
No, instead the Bible records the father’s reaction:
“But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. And the son said to him, ‘Father, I have sinned against heaven and in your sight, and am no longer worthy to be called your son.’
But the father said to his servants, ‘Bring out the best robe and put it on him, and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry; for this my son was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’ And they began to be merry.”
I wonder how long the son stayed away from his father because he was afraid of how his father would react upon his return?
Me? I stayed away from God for 9 years! Even though I went to church occasionally, my heart was far from the Lord.
The only time I really thought of Him was when I was in trouble or I desired more material goods from the world.
But now I know the Lord is always glad to see us. He has an open door policy.
He loves it when we spend time with Him just because we love Him and want to be with Him.
4. He will quiet you with His love.
This brings up an image in my mind of a father holding his little girl in his arms after she’s had a hard day and comforting her, bringing her peace.
The good news for us is that the Lord is always there to comfort us. We often live so frantically, rushing from this place to that. But the Bible never records Jesus hurrying anywhere! Neither should we.
We should order our lives so that we have plenty of time to do what we need to do. Many times we are stressed because we are doing too many things that the Lord never called us to do.
Even in the midst of stress, we can seek the Lord and He promises to give us perfect peace according to Isaiah 26:3:
You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You, Because he trusts in You.
5. He will rejoice over you with singing.
This my favorite part! I love to hear men sing to the Lord, but I cannot imagine what the Lord Himself sounds like when He sings.
However He sounds, I imagine God’s singing voice must be wonderful!
The thought of Him singing over me gladdens my heart and makes me smile. There is so much pain in this world and I imagine the Lord singing over me to comfort me and let me know everything will be well, indeed is well.
Why? Because God rejoices over His children and has provided everything we need pertaining to life and godliness. Aw, Lord – how wonderful you are! Help us to gain more and more understanding of You every day.
When we stand before You, we want to know You so well that we all meet You in heaven, it is like a big family reunion!
Author of the Take Back Your Temple program
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I have spent a lifetime as an obese Christian. I thank God for you and this wonderful work you do! All the material so far has been helpful and healing. I have just begun on this new path, I’m looking forward to more life changing beliefs and actions.
Amen, Layla! Here is one thing to keep in mind: Our behavior will always line up with the PERSON we believe we are. So if your identity remains that of an obese person, then the natural tendency will be behaviors consistent with that identity. So even at your current size, then your mental identity will need to become a fit and healthy person right now, even without losing a pound yet. As you commit to learning new ways of thinking and acting, your behavior will begin to line up. It’s a beautiful, healing process and I praise God you are on that path. It is not always easy, but it is always worth it 🙂
So glad I’ve decided to join you guys!
Wonderful, Jossette – you’ve made a wise decision. May the Lord bless you on this wellness journey of transformation, day-by-day, step-by-step with God’s help!
Hello Layla, I am spending my walk with The Lord as obese also and I am also looking forward to allowing myself to walk through the doors of healing and peace that He is opening for me. So nice to be here!!!
God has often given me this scripture, but never really took the time to break it down like it is done here. Very powerful and insightful.
Glad it was helpful to you, Idella 🙂
Kim, thanks for these words of much encouragement. I so needed that this morning. The messages I read and study from you along with the scriptures are life changing. Thank you. Jackie
All praise to our God from whom all blessings flow, Jackie!
Thank you for this reminder Kimberley. I’m a fairly high strung, run constant low level anxiety person. I really needed this today. My favourite verse is ‘He will quiet you with His love.’ It fills me with such peace.
I love that line too, Char along with the part about the Lord singing over us!
Thank you so much for those words of encouragement,…Keeping our
mind on God at all time”s is essential in weight Loss, because that’s all that Satan wants us to do is get our mind off of God, and onto what we need and want…..Thank you Kim.
Glad that was a good reminder for you, Roberta!
What a lovely devotional this morning, thank you
I appreciate that confirmation, Sherry!
I was orphaned twice as a child. The only “parent “ I could count on was God my Father. Thanks for the reminder He has joy in my company, as I do His.
Thank you for sharing, Joy! While I am sorry for the loss of your natural parents, I am praising God for revealing Himself as your Heavenly Father. He is faithful!
Thank you for this reminder. I have struggled for years in my faith. I have so many self defeating thoughts and often feel as though I have lost my salvation. I have repented repeatedly and still feel estranged from God at times. This morning my prayer was “God if I’m going to be separated from you in the end and not know you then I might as well walk away today.” Sometimes you just get tired of the constant fights and feelings of inadequacy. You get tired of striving and feeling like you don’t or can never measure up. But of course I didn’t walk away and I’m not leaving. Where else can I go? I may not have all the answers and there may be days when my heart wants to revert back to works. But I’ll continue to fight until I’m called home. Kim I’m thankful you sent this email and I read the devotion. I have another nugget to carry me through when I’m tempted to waiver about how much I mean to God and how much He wants me to rest in Him.
Wow! I am praising the Lord for your message today, Yvonne. He always delivers the right word at the right time! Hold fast to your confession of the truth in God’s word. Hearing the word and obeying the word through the Holy Spirit will keep your mind stable and your heart fixed in the Lord’s love.
Thank you for this Word. I agree that God loves me and He is working in my life always. I struggle with my weight going up and down. I know what to do to get the weight off but I don’t keep it off. I am reading your book now. Hopefully I can understand where I am going wrong. I have been a Christian for years and I have run to God for every thing even my weight. Taking captive over this stronghold has not resulted in stability for me, but God is faithful. I’m waiting and know it will resonate soon.
Hi Teresa – I praise God for His word! The issue about being a disciple. Discipline and disciple come from the same word, which means “one who follows a path of instruction.” It implies having a teachable spirit – following the Holy Spirit’s leading even when it may be painful to do so.
The aim is about living as a healthy person and taking care of your body as God’s temple, whatever your size, whatever the scale says.
I believe this scripture may give you a Godly perspective about God and weight:
God bless you and may you draw closer to the Lord on your wellness journey!
Kim, what a wonderful word from the Lord! I read this post first thing this morning. Today is my birthday, what a great way to start my 50th year on this earth! I’m thanking God for your words of wisdom and encouragement.
Happy birthday, Rick – so glad I could give you an encouraging word on this special day! May you be filled with all joy and peace that surpasses all understanding to guard your heart and mind by Christ Jesus.
To God be the glory! It is most fascinating how the word of God is living and still powerful no matter the day or the time. Kimberly, thank you so much for allowing God to use you to bless others. These words you have shared have helped me on this day and hour. I am encouraged! I have been on a roller coaster with my fight against obesity for over thirty years! Yet, he still loves me! Wow! Today is a new day!
Amen, Jackie – this is a daily walk and the greatest benefit is knowing God better today than you did yesterday because of your dependency on Him. Take care of yourself because your body is going to need taking care of, no matter what weight you are. God bless you on this journey!
So beautiful Kim! Who can ever get tired of hearing how much our Father loves and cherishes us? Thank you, I needed this reminder today 🙂
Amen, Debra – communing with our Creator is the opportunity of a lifetime. I pray we all value it at such and grab hold of that opportunity every day!
Ah! So sweet and beautiful! I can just imagine hearing God sing to us!!! Oh isn’t eternity going to be wonderful? I’m so thankful you share His heart with us, it is healing…restoring…comforting. Bless you!
Thank you, Debra – I praise God that we are children of the Most High God. We are blessed!
What a beautiful reminder! Thank you and God bless.
You are welcome, Virginia – God bless you!
This Word truly blessed my heart (and soul) today!
Glad to hear it, Sandra – God is good!
Thank you for this reminder of God’s love for me. Sometimes all I’ve been seeing lately is how mean and self centered people are, but focusing on how much God loves us and quiets us and sings over us is awesome !
That is great Deb – a change in perspective makes all the difference!
Beautiful. I just stumbled across that scripture in Zephaniah. I too was struck by the awesomeness of God rejoicing over us.
Fantastic, Travis – glad this encouraged you today!
Kimberly, this is so very beautiful. Thank you for sharing. I will be meditating on what you have written.
Hi Judy – I am glad! That scripture is a beautiful one to meditate on. We are accepted in the Beloved 🙂
This was a Rhema word. I came home tonight with a heavy heart after having to leave my Mom in a nursing care facility for rehabilitation. She’s never known any illnesses that took her away from home for an extended period of time and she’s 90 years old. This word ministers hope and peace to my heart at a time when I need it most. Thank you for allowing God’s Holy Spirit to minister through you.
I have prayed for you and your mother, Brenda. So glad God gave you a word in due season to comfort and strengthen you during this season!
God promises a way of escape when we are tempted. You, my dear sister, are one of those ways of escape. When I think I can’t do this, you remind me I can in His Strength. And, because of His love, and singing over us! 🙂 Imagine in heaven, we will get to hear that, can you believe it? Wow, what a day. love ya, DD
Debra, I love that picture of us in Heaven getting to hear God sing! Thank you for sharing that image…it makes me smile. Love you too 🙂
Wow that is so beautiful, I’ve never really read through your writings, what a blessing
You are welcome, Guadalupe – God is good!
thank yu for being such a blessing to me today.
Blessed to be a blessing, JoAnn 🙂
Thankyou for always popping up in my inbox with something to remind me of our Gods love and grace for me. I never comment but this morning I felt the urge to thank you for the awesome gift of genuine love and compassion for all, and for giving us the tools we need to help us to see ourselves how God sees us and strive for balance and self control in everything we do.
I appreciate that, Michelle – your comment really touched my heart! May the Lord continue to bless you.
Hi I really appreciate your devotions they have been a life line and confirmation of a process that God is taking me through I’m really looking forward to joining your program vinaka
Praise the Lord, Liti! Looking forward to having you join us on the journey!
It’s wonderful to see you , my sister in Christ being taken to a new level of anointing as you minister to us. Today I am so overwhelmed with the love of my Savior that tears flowed freely as I read your teaching today. Thank you from the bottom of my heart. I read something I wrote several years ago, it said, ” you must be healed from the inside first before the outside healing will manifest.” My prayer today is ,Lord heal our inner self, the hurts and wounds so that our physical healing will be complete. Our weight, our habits, our addictions will come in line with Your divine purpose, in Jesus name amen.
I am touching and agreeing with you on that prayer, Sherry! Our God is so good in leading us in the way we should go. We are blessed people to be called the children of God!
Thanks Kim I needed this TODAY! Since starting the TBYT program in August I’ve discovered that I used food for comfort and I confessed God is my Heavenly Father, but I didn’t actually believe he could LOVE me because I felt I had to DO something (i.e. fast for long periods, pray more, read more, etc) to get him to love and accept me, Thanks for reminding me that God rejoices over me and he truly LOVES ME JUST AS I AM
Thanking GOD FOR YOU
I thank you for this beautiful message. I had read this before, but it laid on my heart this morning. Sometimes we overwhelm ourselves with worry, wondering if we ever do enough, but praise God for the Holy Spirit because he knows and sees all. I am a part of Take Back Your Temple, but I have to admit even though I read all your posts, I am not obedient to following. I am a diabetic and have been for many years. Now my body is beginning to showing all the signs of not taking care of myself when I was first diagnosed. But I have in my heart that I will continue to push forward and do better each day, knowing that the Lord is continuing to bless me. I’m a person who believes that with reading and hearing comes wisdom, and each day I’m striving closer to defeating all of this, because I will make the devil into a liar. Love you and God Bless.
GOOD DAY KIMBERLY what a blessing you are … I am in encouraged by your joy full spirit. even tho I am gone though a valley you brighten my day GOD is so good…. knowing God is sing over me makes me smile … Thank you Darlene keep the Joy coming…
Thank you again – I love reading what you write. A serious and frightening question – if you had died during the 9-year time frame between accepting Christ as savior and actually acknowledging Christ as savior, would you have gone to heaven?
Hi Michelle – I have often thought of that question. I’m glad I didn’t have to find out, but I believe that I would have because I did fulfill Romans 10:9: “that if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.” I did believe Jesus was the Son of God and saved me from my sins. I just did not know anything about the Holy Spirit and how He set me free free the POWER of sin. So it wasn’t willful rebellion – just ignorance. I thank God for His mercy!
Keep me overwhelmed in a good way, Lord. For the power of life and death is in the tongue. Thanks for the encouragement.
Thanks for such encouraging and inspirational words they have made my day and made me realise that God is ever near me no matter the health challenges I am facing .More anionting from your Creator in Jesus name amen
Praise God for your faithfulness in encouraging in the name of Christ! I have your books and receive your emails. But I need to become more committed to losing weight God’s way. Again, thank you!
Great lesson, I needed to hear that today ! I need to remember he is rejoicing over me even when I fail his love never does. thanks for always being so encouraging I’m grateful for your ministry .
I’ve been blessed by several of your books, and Scriptures, but the way you have been writing lately, is so spirit led, I can’t wait for the next one! Thank you for loving and serving Him. Debbie
What a wonderful devotion. Thank you so much for posting this today. Learning how to rest in GOD’S presence is an incredible thing.
This was so personal for me.. I found myself in tears… I often have to remind myself of the love that God has for me.
I know God is using you for such a time as this for people like me…pursuing health and wholeness.
much love and blessings to you.
Wonderful words of encouragement today!
A fortifying devotion and scripture. Thank you for the words of encouragement and hope. Peace and joy to you and your family.
I have followed your writings for several years. You have a gift and minister so beautifully to all of us who are struggling. I want to thank you for your faithfulness in ministry. You are such a supply of Gods love and compassion. Blessings to you
I just want to say amen to what Mary Lou has said. Although I have never joined the program as such, I SO appreciate your honestly and your perspectives. Please stay with it! Esly