Jessica Hurtado – Jessica Hurtado

Salt and Light

Taste and see that the Lord is good. (Psalm 34:8a) Have you ever heard or used the expression, “That left a bad taste in my mouth”? Except you weren’t referring to food, but to an individual or an experience you encountered. ‘Taste and see that the Lord is good’ is not referring to a literal palate taste that is produced by the flavoring of food. It’s referring to an encounter with one of the characteristics of God; His goodness. As a believer, there are many ways to experience the goodness of God. Through His word, grace, mercy, peace, joy, favor,...

Seek Out the Good

“He who earnestly seeks good finds favor, but trouble will come to him who seeks evil.” (Proverbs 11:27 NKJV) In this scripture, we see that this Proverb is not exclusive to any one group of people. You don’t have to qualify based on your income, have a certain level of education, hold a certain status within the community, or be of a certain age group or ethnic background. It is for, “He who earnestly seeks…”. This statement makes it very inclusive to all who carry it out. Earnestly in Hebrew means to look early or diligently. Isn’t it interesting that...

Authority in Jesus

"And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction." (Matthew 10:1 ESV) Right before this passage of scripture takes place, Jesus traveled through many towns and villages in the area teaching the Good News. He was keenly aware crowds of people followed everywhere he went, noting they seemed as lost sheep in need of a shepherd (Matt.9:35-36). “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to send...

Be Intentional and Inspire

"And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near." (Hebrews 10: 24-25 ESV) Have you ever wanted to do something, but somehow lacked the motivation to do it? Motivation can be described as a desire to do something. You have an inner drive that moves you toward an anticipated outcome. Many of us have goals and dreams we want to reach, but at times lack the desire to...

Power and Authority

“And he called to him his twelve disciples and gave them authority over unclean spirits, to cast them out, and to heal every disease and every affliction.” (Matthew 10:1 ESV) Right before this passage of scripture takes place, Jesus traveled through many towns and villages in the area teaching about the Good News. He was keenly aware crowds of people followed everywhere he went, noting they seemed as lost sheep in need of a shepherd (Matt.9:35-36). “The harvest is great, but the workers are few. So pray to the Lord who is in charge of the harvest; ask him to...

Fear of Man

“The fear of man lays a snare, but whoever trust in the Lord is safe.” (Proverbs 29:25 ESV) A snare in Hebrew (in the context of this scripture) means to lure or set a bait. If you set a bait you are likely trying to catch something. You don’t go fishing without bait to attract your prey but notice the scripture states that the bait is set by an action we choose to engage in - fear of man. When you choose the fear of man over the trust of God, you are making yourself the prey the trap is...

Through The Noise…Encourage

“When we arrived in Macedonia, there was no rest for us. We faced conflict from every direction, with battles on the outside and fear on the inside. But God, who encourages those who are discouraged, encouraged us by the arrival of Titus.” (2 Corinthians 7:5-6 NLT). Paul has endured “troubles and hardships and calamities of every kind. [has] been beaten, been put in prison, faced angry mobs, worked to exhaustion, endured sleepless nights, and gone without food” (2 Cor. 6:5). In our focus scripture, Paul is speaking of external and internal battles and feeling discouraged. (Who can blame him, right?)...

Double For Your Trouble

For the Scripture says, “Everyone who believes in him will not be put to shame.” (Romans 10:11 ESV) Shame is a powerful negative emotion that can be brought on by different things. It can be caused by rejection instead of acceptance, punishment instead of discipline, criticism instead of praise, neglect instead of love, etc. These different forms of rejection can cause feelings of worthlessness, less than, damaged goods, ultimately causing a low self-image of yourself; devalued from your true priceless worth. How do we let go of shame? How do we get free from this oppressive destructive emotion? The freedom...

Shackled and Chained? Worship!

“Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening. Suddenly, there was a massive earthquake, and the prison was shaken to its foundation. All the doors immediately flew open, and the chains of every prisoner fell off!” (Acts 16:25-26 NLT) Have you ever felt shackled, chained, or imprisoned by your circumstances? You are in a dead-end job, you are enslaved to debt, you are a prisoner of your past, you can’t seem to shake the trauma off. Or perhaps you can’t seem to break that addiction, you’ve tried everything, but you...

Spirit of Excellence

In his grace, God has given us different gifts for doing certain things well. So, if God has given you the ability to prophesy, speak out with as much faith as God has given you. If your gift is serving others, serve them well. If you are a teacher, teach well. If your gift is to encourage others, be encouraging. If it is giving, give generously. If God has given you leadership ability, take the responsibility seriously. And if you have a gift for showing kindness to others, do it gladly. (Romans 12:6-8 NLT) A gift is something we receive...