Saturday, December 31, 2011

Your beginnings will seem humble,
so prosperous will your future be.

(Job 8:7)

Another new year on the horizon.  I always have mixed emotions about new years.  I don't make official resolutions, but I do try to better myself each year, and if nothing else, learn from my past mistakes. 
God continues to give me fresh starts...not just in the new year, but every day of my life.  Do-overs are handed out generously ..... handed out daily, if not hourly, always giving me the benefit of the doubt, forgiveness, and patience beyond measure.
For my part, I continue to fail in spite of good intentions.  I'm thankful that I love a God of infinite do-overs, who will forgive me and give me another chance to please Him.... and another chance.....and another.....

Friday, December 30, 2011

The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
He makes me lie down in green pastures,
He leads me beside quiet waters,
He refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
for His name’s sake. 

Even though I walk
through the darkest valley,
I will fear no evil,
for You are with me;
Your rod and your staff,
they comfort me.

You prepare a table before me
in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
my cup overflows.
Surely Your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

(Psalm 23)

For my friend, Elsie, who is almost home.  May God take you softly and gently into your eternal rest.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

The lions may grow weak and hungry,
but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.

(Psalm 34:10)

Although I believe this scripture, I'm far from content 24/7.  I have my times of pity, of despair, of thinking life just isn't fair.  Well, life isn't fair, but with God by my side, it's still a rewarding, wonderful, blessed life and I'm grateful, in spite of my spiritual weaknesses. 

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

That is why, for Christ’s sake, I delight in weaknesses, in insults, in hardships, in persecutions, in difficulties. For when I am weak, then I am strong.
(2 Corinthians 12:10)

I understand the message that this scripture is sending....... I just can't use the word "delight" to describe the way I feel during these tough times.  It's a lack of faith on my side, not a lack of support on God's side.

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

The seed falling among the thorns refers to someone who hears the word, but the worries of this life and the deceitfulness of wealth choke the word, making it unfruitful.
(Matthew 13:22)

Even though I believe in Jesus Christ as my Savior, I still have thorns in my life that distract me from spreading the Word of the Lord.  Call them excuses, if you must.  Whenever we give anything else top priority, we are cheating ourselves along with dishonoring God.  The one thing that you never want to be greedy with is God's Word. 

Monday, December 26, 2011

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
(Colossians 3:15)

I'm feeling blessed and grateful as another Christmas comes and goes.  Christmas is over but the peace of the season remains throughout the year if Christ remains a focal point in our daily lives.  Let peace reign!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas Prayer
by Robert Louis Stevenson (1850–1894]

Loving Father, help us remember the birth of Jesus, that we may share in the song of the angels, the gladness of the shepherds and the wisdom of the wise men.

Close the door of hate and open the door of love all over the world. Let kindness come with every gift and good desires with every greeting.

Deliver us from evil by the blessing which Christ brings, and teach us to be merry with clean hearts.

May the Christmas morning make us happy to be Thy children and the Christmas evening bring us to our beds with grateful thoughts, forgiving and forgiven, for Jesus’ sake.

“Glory to God in the highest heaven,
and on earth peace to those on whom his favor rests.”

(Luke 2:14)

As the Christmas season winds down, please keep the spirit of  Christ the Savior alive and active in your daily life.  Be good to one another.  Remember Jesus every day of the year and rejoice in the gift of eternal life to all who believe.  Praise be to the Lord!
Merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Hark The Herald Angels Sing (last verse)

Hail the heav'n-born Prince of Peace!
Hail the Son of Righteousness!
Light and life to all He brings
Ris'n with healing in His wings
Mild He lays His glory by
Born that man no more may die
Born to raise the sons of earth
Born to give them second birth
Hark! The herald angels sing
"Glory to the newborn King!"

Written by Charles Wesley

We often know the first verse of many of our popular Christmas hymns but fail to memorize the latter verses.  I have a couple of hymn books and enjoy reading the lyrics,  many times not even knowing the tune.  (I don't read notes.)  As you sing some of your favorite Christmas hymns this season, focus on the words of the song which, to me, sound like prayers set to music.  Let the music and the words touch your heart and soul.

Have a blessed Christmas Eve!

Friday, December 23, 2011

This will be a sign to you: You will find a baby wrapped in cloths and lying in a manger.”
(Luke 2:12)

It came to pass exactly as prophesied......God's will be done.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

In my alarm I said,
“I am cut off from your sight!”
Yet you heard my cry for mercy
when I called to you for help.

(Psalm 31:32)

We may not see a quick response to prayer, yet that does not mean that God has not heard our plea.  Regardless of whether we see a resolution or not, God is listening and responds in His own way in His own timing.  We may not see Him......but He always sees us.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

They will have no fear of bad news;
their hearts are steadfast, trusting in the LORD.

(Psalm 112:7)

I can often fear the worst....even before it happens, IF it happens.  When I behave this way, I'm not trusting the Lord for my protection, courage, and accepting His will for me.  Going it alone simply doesn't work.

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Remember this: Whoever sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and whoever sows generously will also reap generously.
(2 Corinthians 9:6)

In other reap what you get what you give.  And I'll's better to give than receive. 

Giving doesn't have to be expensive.  We can give our time, a phone call, a Christmas card with a note, a visit, etc.  It truly is the thought that counts so don't get overwhelmed if you are financially challenged.  It's not about money, it's about giving of yourself.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Do not seek revenge or bear a grudge against anyone among your people, but love your neighbor as yourself. I am the LORD.
(Leviticus 19:18)

I'm sure I've used this scripture before, or at least one that is similar in meaning.  My neighbors are "challenging" to say the least and I struggle with my attitude toward them.  I continue to work on my tolerance and patience, relying on the Holy Spirit to give me a boost in the right direction.  I also remind myself that one day, there will be NO problems in my life at all!

Sunday, December 18, 2011

This is how we know what love is: Jesus Christ laid down his life for us. And we ought to lay down our lives for our brothers and sisters.
(1 John 3:16)

We are all familiar with John 3:16, but 1 John 3:16 adds another dimension of thought for OUR life for others.  There are only a select few that I would willingly give my life for.  Jesus did not pick and choose.  He gave His life for all who believe with no thought of His own suffering.  This act of unselfishness is beyond my understanding and comprehension.  I can only continue to humble myself and work toward being a better person, knowing that I will never measure up to the example set by Christ.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

I trust in You;
do not let me be put to shame,
nor let my enemies triumph over me.

(Psalm 25:2)

It may not happen in this earthly world, but someday, my enemies will be far behind me.  They will not, and cannot have victory over the Lord's will for me.

Friday, December 16, 2011

Blessed are those who mourn,
for they will be comforted.

(Matthew 5:4)

Many will approach the Christmas season with the loss of a loved one, the loss is a job, a way of life, or a multitude of other types of loss.  Christmas will not be the same, but it should still be a celebration of the birth of our Lord, the true meaning of Christmas.  It's not about your's about Jesus.  Make new traditions..... be grateful for the small things and rejoice in the great promise of eternal life.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Do nothing out of selfish ambition or vain conceit. Rather, in humility value others above yourselves,  not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.
(Philippians 2:3-4)

Am I able to say, from my heart of hearts, that I value others above myself?  Do I put others first?  There are many, many people that I can truly make that statement about, however, there are more that I would not.  And the truth is humbling, embarrassing, and eye opening. 

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.
(James 3:17)

I believe that this is true with all of my heart, yet I often fail to heed the words of wisdom sent directly from God and head off in my own direction.  You'd think I'd learn...........

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

“The time has come,” he said. “The kingdom of God has come near. Repent and believe the good news!”
(Mark 1:15)

Don't wait for tomorrow to ask for forgiveness from the Lord.... tomorrow could easily become today!

Monday, December 12, 2011

Does not Scripture say that the Messiah will come from David’s descendants and from Bethlehem, the town where David lived?”
(John 7:42)

I've been doing a brief study of the life of David, which has been very interesting.  David, just like all of us, made many mistakes, and some were extremely sinful and displeasing to God.  Thanks to the grace and forgiveness of God, partnered with David's sincere and heartfelt repentance, the lineage of Jesus remained intact and completed God's plan.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
(Hebrews 4:16)

Our confidence can waver a bit when times are tough, when we don't feel like God is showing us mercy in our times of trouble, when things seem too much to handle.  These are the times when we really need to focus on God's grace and mercy.  He does care...He does know what we are going through.....and He will comfort us through anything and everything if we trust and obey His will for our lives.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

A generous person will prosper;
whoever refreshes others will be refreshed.

(Proverbs 11:25)

It's all about the giving....not the getting.

Friday, December 9, 2011

This is what the LORD says,
 He who appoints the sun
to shine by day,
who decrees the moon and stars
to shine by night,
who stirs up the sea
so that its waves roar—
the LORD Almighty is His name:

(Jeremiah 31:35)

I love the winter skies.  It seems like the stars shine brighter in the winter, especially if there is a layer of white snow to reflect their sparkle.  Cold, crisp, quiet, and full of God's beauty, winter nights are breathtaking.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

Do not withhold your mercy from me, LORD;
may your love and faithfulness always protect me.

(Psalm 40:11)

I certainly don't deserve the Lord's mercy, yet I'm blessed to receive it anyway.  Just another priceless gift, given out of unconditional love.  Thank you!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Do not take revenge, my dear friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.
(Romans 12:19)

But I want revenge.....and I want it now!  I'm trying to pray for wisdom and control of my emotions and trust that God will take care of the situation, one way or another.  This is hard for me, as I want the satisfaction of being heard and acknowledged.  It helps me to isolate the situation and compare it to how difficult things could pales in comparison to past experiences. 

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

God also testified to it by signs, wonders and various miracles, and by gifts of the Holy Spirit distributed according to his will.
(Hebrews 2:4)

In this misguided season of gift giving, I'm grateful that God has already given me my gift.....the best gift of all, and the one that will last throughout eternity. 

Monday, December 5, 2011

but those who hope in the LORD
will renew their strength.
They will soar on wings like eagles;
they will run and not grow weary,
they will walk and not be faint.

(Isaiah 40:31)

Our hope gives us strength.  It's tangible, it's real, and it's God given.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

As for God, His way is perfect:
The LORD’s word is flawless;
He shields all who take refuge in Him.

(2 Samuel 22:31)

Yet we still go off on our own tangents, guided by our own  will power.  Futility at it's best.....

Saturday, December 3, 2011

"He has more mercy than you have misery."

(From Charles Swindoll, Insight for Today)

Sometimes we think the deck is stacked against us, but that simply isn't true.  God's mercy is endless, my misery is finite. 

Friday, December 2, 2011

And this is love: that we walk in obedience to his commands. As you have heard from the beginning, his command is that you walk in love.
(2 John 1:6)

As the anniversary of Jesus' birth approaches, I hope that we can look at others with eyes of love, not contempt and judgement.  Be patient with one another....celebrate your differences.......treat each other with respect.  God expects this from us everyday not just during the Christmas season, so....... please......  "Walk in love."

Thursday, December 1, 2011

He has made everything beautiful in its time. He has also set eternity in the human heart; yet no one can fathom what God has done from beginning to end.
(Ecclesiastes 3:11)

I found this scripture today and really love the images that it evokes in my mind.  My limited mind, of course, cannot even begin to imagine all of the things that the Lord has done, or has yet to do. 

I love the statement that everything is beautiful in its time.....that's so true!  And everything has beauty, although you may have to search a little to find and recognize it. 

God gives us little glimpses of eternity, little nuggets of understanding, and lots of beauty to inspire and give us a tiny taste of what He has planned for our future.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

It was You who set all the boundaries of the earth;
You made both summer and winter.

(Psalm 74:17)

Our first snow arrived last night.  It falls silently and softens the world around me.  As many times as I've seen the snow fall, it continues to bring a childlike joy and amazement.  Thank you, God, for each special flake.  :-)

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Though you have made me see troubles,
many and bitter,
you will restore my life again;
from the depths of the earth
you will again bring me up.

(Psalm 71:20)

Snow is falling right now, giving the world a bright, fresh face, restoring the beauty that has been lost in the clouds.

Monday, November 28, 2011

For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,  while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,
(Titus 2:11-13)

Isn't this a beautiful and hopeful scripture?  Our worldly passions will fade away and have no worth so don't give them undeserved value, especially as we enter the season of Christmas.

Sunday, November 27, 2011

Now the day on which Jesus had made the mud and opened the man’s eyes was a Sabbath.
(John 9:14)

We learn through scripture, that although the Sabbath is a holy day and a day of rest, we should still use our common sense as to what is acceptable behavior on the Sabbath.  Jesus "worked" on the Sabbath in the above scripture, but He was helping a man to restore his eyesight.  I think that if your action is God-pleasing, it really doesn't matter if it's done on the Sabbath as long as it glorifies God.  As always, it goes back to the heart of the deed and the motive behind your action.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.
(Romans 13:8)

Watching all of the shoppers on TV this weekend just amazes me.  I guess I'm just too old..... maybe I'm wiser too.... but I can't see myself waiting in line to spend money that I really don't have anyway.  The rush of a good deal will come to halt with the arrival of the credit card bills next month.  

One debt that will remain with me forever is the debt to my Savior and there is no way I can repay that debt.  Thankfully, He doesn't expect repayment, but He does expect me to trust and obey.  This sounds easy enough in theory, but it's sure difficult for me to maintain with any consistency.  I'll keep's the least (truly the least) I can do.

Friday, November 25, 2011

Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.
(Hebrews 4:16)

Confidence during times of difficulty is difficult for me to maintain.  I have to keep my faith strong, knowing that God is merciful and has a specific plan for my life.

Thursday, November 24, 2011

A psalm. For giving grateful praise.

Shout for joy to the LORD, all the earth.
Worship the LORD with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the LORD is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

(Psalm 100:1-3)

Happy Thanksgiving!  Regardless of your circumstances today, there is reason to be grateful and praise the Lord.  He is with us through thick and thin, the ultimate support today and beyond.  Thank you, Lord.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.
(Colossians 3:16)

God loves to hear our songs of gratitude and praise.  We are blessed in more ways than we even realize and a little song of praise is music to God's ears.

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

My comfort in my suffering is this:
Your promise preserves my life.

(Psalm 119:50)

These words stand out for me today after a rough night.  I knew that I wasn't alone though..... the Lord was there to comfort me.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Gracious words are a honeycomb,
sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.

(Proverbs 16:24)

Even the word "honeycomb" brings peaceful visions to my mind while imagining the bees miraculously building their honeycomb in perfect hexagons.  Only God could have orchestrated such a work of nature.  This word, and of course, a million more along these lines, brings a calmness to the soul that is truly healing. 

Sunday, November 20, 2011

For of this you can be sure: No immoral, impure or greedy person—such a person is an idolater—has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and of God.
(Ephesians 5:5)

I had a little wrestle with my conscious this morning..... while tithing and picking out a recipient from the Angel tree...... I was concerned about my finances.  Being greedy and not relying on God's provisions is definitely sinful.  It's prioritizing money, which is making money an idol.......and it's all wrong, wrong, wrong.

Saturday, November 19, 2011

The eyes of the arrogant will be humbled
and human pride brought low;
the LORD alone will be exalted in that day.

(Isaiah 2:11)

Pride is very difficult for me to control.  God hates for us to be prideful, yet I want credit for things I have done, recognition for deeds, whatever.  As long as I keep pride in my life, I dishonor God and displease Him.  Just one more sin (of many) for me to work on taming.......

Friday, November 18, 2011

In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood.
(Hebrews 12:4)

I can't imagine shedding one drop of my blood resisting sin.  First of all, I live in a country and in an age where this probably will not be an issue.  Secondly, I'm your basic coward.  Thirdly, Jesus has already shed His blood, knowing that I will always struggle with sin and can't be successful on my own.  His blood was shed for me...instead of mine......and in spite of my own sins and weaknesses. 

Thursday, November 17, 2011

A happy heart makes the face cheerful,
but heartache crushes the spirit.

(Proverbs 15:13)

That happy heart comes from the peace of knowing God.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

All these were fighting men who volunteered to serve in the ranks.
(1 Chronicles 12:38a)

RIP Kevin....

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

I will bless her with abundant provisions;
her poor I will satisfy with food.

(Psalm 132:15)

Just feeling extra blessed today.  Went grocery shopping today (senior day discounts!) and I'm just feeling very fortunate to be able to have enough food to sustain me (and then some) and enough money to buy provisions. 

Monday, November 14, 2011

All the prophets testify about Him that everyone who believes in Him receives forgiveness of sins through His name.
(Acts 10:43)

The prophets knew, the disciples knew, and now we have the privilege of knowing too.......that Jesus Christ forgives our sins and the only "catch" is that we believe in Him, a very small price to pay.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
(Deuteronomy 31:6)

I guess we can't hear this enough.  "Be strong and courageous" is in the Bible twelve times, yet we often falter in our faith.  I'm not exactly strong and courageous, but I become stronger and more courageous in direct correlation with how much I turn my life over to God.

Saturday, November 12, 2011

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
(Romans 15:4)

I continue to work on memorizing scripture.  My mind just isn't what it used to be, that's for sure.  It took me almost 3 weeks to memorize my most recent scripture.  One day I didn't know it, then next day, I did.  Poof....just like that.  God keeps us from giving up and rewards us for our effort.  I feel blessed.  On to the next scripture......

Friday, November 11, 2011

Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us?”
And I said, “Here am I. Send me!”
(Isaiah 6:8)

This scripture is engraved on the tombstone of my friend that was killed in Afghanistan last November.  A true servant.  Thank you to all of the military, past and present, who keep us safe at the risk of their own lives.  

Thursday, November 10, 2011

The desire of the righteous ends only in good,
but the hope of the wicked only in wrath.

(Proverbs 11:23)

In other words....there is no hope for the wicked.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Do not say, “Why were the old days better than these?”
For it is not wise to ask such questions.

(Ecclesiastes 7:10)

The past is just that.....the past.  We tend to romanticise and even forget the truth of the past.  The pain of the past softens, while the pain of the present is strong and vivid.  Receive each day as a gift from God and glorify Him in your thoughts and actions.  Learn from your past but be grateful for the joy of new beginnings.  It's a new day........

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.

(Proverbs 31:25)

For little baby Madison......who sets the bar for bravery, strength, and endurance.

Monday, November 7, 2011

Fall leaves,
Jesus doesn't!

(As seen on a church marquee today.)

Sunday, November 6, 2011

So I turned to the Lord God and pleaded with him in prayer and petition, in fasting, and in sackcloth and ashes.
(Daniel 9:3)

The sermon today was about fasting....mostly the way and the motives behind the fasting, not the actual act.  And it doesn't have to be can fast from anything that takes you away from God.....everything from Internet use to watching TV.  I'll be fasting soon.....but it will be between my God and me, no one else.

Friday, November 4, 2011

May the grace of the Lord Jesus Christ, and the love of God, and the fellowship of the Holy Spirit be with you all.
(2 Corinthians 13:14)

All of this is ours to receive.  We aren't worthy of these gifts, which makes it all the more amazing.  What a blessing!

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Walk with the wise and become wise,
 for a companion of fools suffers harm.

(Proverbs 13:20)

I walked with my wise companions today and had a blessed, blessed day!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011

So he got up and ate and drank. Strengthened by that food, he traveled forty days and forty nights until he reached Horeb, the mountain of God.
(1 Kings 19:8)

Talk about travel mercies!  One meal from God to give you the strength and endurance to travel 40 days.  Amazing!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had,  so that with one mind and one voice you may glorify the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ.
(Romans 15:5-6)

I pray for endurance, patience, and an attitude that will glorify a merciful, gracious God.

Monday, October 31, 2011

But who can discern their own errors?
Forgive my hidden faults.

(Psalm 19:12)

Somehow it's much easier to see someone else's faults and overlook our own. None of us are free from faults which should make it easier to forgive and forget the faults of others.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

How then can I dispute with him?
How can I find words to argue with him?

(Job 9:14)

Where are the words when you need them....?

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.
(Colossians 3:15)

Such an easy recipe for us to peaceful and thankful.....yet, almost impossible (no, it IS impossible) for human beings to achieve with any consistency.  Still, this is no reason not to try.....and try...... and try again.

Friday, October 28, 2011

He will yet fill your mouth with laughter
and your lips with shouts of joy.

(Job 8:21)

"Yet"...... if it hasn't already happened, it will happen.  Hope abounds.

Thursday, October 27, 2011

The cedars in the garden of God
could not rival it,
nor could the junipers
equal its boughs,
nor could the plane trees
compare with its branches—
no tree in the garden of God
could match its beauty.

(Ezekiel 31:8)

This may not be Eden, but the fall season in Indiana brings out leaf colors that could only have been created by God.....they actually glow from within when the sun shines through them.   Spectacular! 

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Why spend money on what is not bread,
and your labor on what does not satisfy?
Listen, listen to me, and eat what is good,
and you will delight in the richest of fare.

(Isaiah 55:2)

I sure did enjoy that ice cream today, but it didn't fill my nutritional needs.  Money spent on empty calories.  This scripture really makes a point with me.  I spend a fair amount of money on things that are not good for me or simply not needed.  I also spend time doing things that are not particularly productive....there is a lot of wheel spinning.  Scripture, written centuries ago, hits the center of the target, once again.

Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Not to us, LORD, not to us but to your name be the glory, because of your love and faithfulness.
(Psalm 115:1)

If you are a hymn lover like me, you sometimes overlook the contemporary songs.  The scripture above is featured in the song below and many, many of the contemporary songs take their inspiration and lyrics directly from the pages of the Bible.

"Not To Us"

The cross before me the world behind
No turning back, raise the banner high
It's not for me, it's all for You

Let the heavens shake and split the sky
Let the people clap their hands and cry
It's not for us, it's all for You

Not to us, but to Your Name be the glory
Not to us, but to Your Name be the glory

Our hearts unfold before Your throne
The only place for those who know
It's not for us, It's all for You

Send Your holy fire on this offering
Let our worship burn for the world to see
It's not for us, It's all for You


The earth is shaking, the mountains shouting
It's all for You
The waves are crashing, the sun is raging
It's all for You
The universe spinning and singing
It's all for You
The children dancing, dancing, dancing
It's all for You, It's all for You

My all for You
Not to us, but to Your Name be the glory
My all for You
Not to us, but to Your Name be the glory
My all for You
Not to us, but to Your Name be the glory

Monday, October 24, 2011

Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,
(1 Peter 1:3)

Today is my birthday, although my ultimate birthday was when I accepted Jesus Christ into my life.  Both days are special to me, but my new birth comes with hope and eternal life...... a priceless gift!

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Do not withhold your mercy from me, LORD;
may your love and faithfulness always protect me.

(Psalm 40:11)

You've got my back, Lord, and I know that, even though there are times when I feel very exposed and vulnerable. 

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Know that the LORD is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.

(Psalm 100:3)

They say that sheep aren't the smartest of animals, yet they know that their shepherd will take care of them, keeping them safe from harm.  We have that same promise if we choose God as our Lord and Shepherd.  Are we smart enough to take advantage of that promise!?

Friday, October 21, 2011

In peace I will lie down and sleep,
for you alone, LORD,
make me dwell in safety.

(Psalm 4:8)

How fortunate am I to be able to rest at, snug, and warm.  I know that many (millions, in fact) do not have that simple pleasure and I do not take it for granted.  It's just one of the many blessings that God has given me and I truly am grateful.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

He made the moon to mark the seasons,
and the sun knows when to go down.

(Psalm 104:19)

The seasons are amazing, each displaying their own beauty.  In Indiana, we are heading into fall with chilly rains and falling leaves.  I love it!  The days are getting shorter and we will soon turn our clocks back to the natural time that God created.  The world makes sense only when it runs on God's timing and we should leave it alone.  God knew what He was doing when He made the seasons and divided night and day.  Who are we to mess with God's plan!?

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

You will surely forget your trouble,
recalling it only as waters gone by.

(Job 11:16)

When we are in the midst of trials it can be very difficult to see beyond our current situation.  Somehow, with God's help and support, we get through the trials and live to see another day.  The trial passes and we go on.  Thankfully, when we look back, the memory of the trouble has softened and we have gained endurance, wisdom, and strength. 

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Land that drinks in the rain often falling on it and that produces a crop useful to those for whom it is farmed receives the blessing of God.
(Hebrews 6:7)

The soft rain is falling down today, quietly soaking into the ground.  I love Autumn rains....chilly outside....dry and warm inside.  Every season has it's own beauty but Autumn and Winter are my favorites.  Slippers on, hot chocolate in hand......thank you, God.

Monday, October 17, 2011

I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of My hand.
(John 10:28)

It's possible for me to be snatched from this earthly world (can't wait!) but I will never be taken from the hand of God.  Nothing can take that promise away from me.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Peter and the other apostles replied: “We must obey God rather than human beings!
(Acts 5:29)

Peer pressure...not wanting to be persecuted....trying to blend into the crowd.....  All excuses to follow the wrong path, the wrong people, in the wrong direction.  If it isn't in God's shouldn't be in your agenda.  Stand up and be strong enough to obey God and no one else.  

Saturday, October 15, 2011

But our citizenship is in heaven. And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.
(Philippians 3:20-21)

Perfect last, Jeff.

Friday, October 14, 2011

Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said,
“Never will I leave you;
never will I forsake you.”

(Hebrews 13:5)

I found myself a little disturbed because of a financial issue and found this scripture to help me focus on what is truly worthwhile and valuable.....God's promise to never forsake me.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Now let the fear of the LORD be on you. Judge carefully, for with the LORD our God there is no injustice or partiality or bribery.”
(2 Chronicles 19:7)

I do fear being judged by God.  But along with that fear is the knowledge and comfort that He will add grace to His justice.  I will be judged fairly and the Lord will know, even better than I know myself, why I sinned and disobeyed.  It won't be pleasant to be judged....but it will be just, and fair....far more than I deserve.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Jesus replied, “You are in error because you do not know the Scriptures or the power of God.
(Matthew 22:29)

My memory is not what it used to be....or maybe I just don't remember what my memory used to be like. ;)  Whatever the case, I am unable to quote scripture from memory.  I'm starting a little notebook with scriptures that are meaningful to me....and I am going to memorize them.  One scripture a week.... a short scripture.....and see how I do.  It's good mental training and it's wonderful to have scriptures at the ready.  I'm starting with the scripture above to give me motivation from Jesus' own words.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

I will tell of the kindnesses of the LORD,
the deeds for which He is to be praised,
according to all the LORD has done for us—
yes, the many good things
He has done for Israel,
according to His compassion and many kindnesses.

(Isaiah 63:7)

Isaiah was a true servant.  He always gave every bit of glory to God and humbled himself before the Lord.  I truly admire Isaiah and his servant's heart.  He was an ordinary man who became extraordinary with God's guidance and support.  We should all have Isaiah's willingness to questions asked, just total obedience.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Each of you should give what you have decided in your heart to give, not reluctantly or under compulsion, for God loves a cheerful giver.
(2 Corinthians 9:7)

Do I give cheerfully?.......not always.  Do I give reluctantly?....... sometimes.  Whatever my outward appearance may look like, God knows exactly what my heartfelt motives are and will judge me accordingly.

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for He who promised is faithful.
(Hebrews 10:23)

It's pretty easy to be hopeful when things are going our is pretty good, tomorrow looks promising....but when today is rough and tomorrow looks like more of the same or worse, it's harder to hold on to that hope.  No matter what, we have to remain faithful and hold on tight to the promises made to us by God.  He is there for us every day and every minute.  Keep your focus on God's promises and keep your hope strong and alive.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

I said, “Have mercy on me, LORD;
heal me, for I have sinned against you.

(Psalm 41:4)

Please heal me, Dear Lord.  If it's in Your will, please heal me.

Friday, October 7, 2011

The whole assembly bowed in worship, while the musicians played and the trumpets sounded. All this continued until the sacrifice of the burnt offering was completed.
(2 Chronicles 29:28)

I love the worship songs that we sing in my church.  The service that I attend features the older, traditional hymns.....the hymns of my youth, the hymns that bring sweet memories.  As much as I love the older hymns, I also love many of the modern, contemporary Christian worship songs.  It's not about the year the song was written, it's about the words and the message in the song.   Be open to the open to the message.... and receive the blessings of the song. 

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Even in darkness light dawns for the upright,
for those who are gracious and compassionate and righteous.

(Psalm 112:4)

There IS an end to the darkness.  There IS a light at the end of the tunnel.  There IS hope for all who believe. 

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

For the grace of God has appeared that offers salvation to all people.  It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age,  while we wait for the blessed hope—the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ,
(Titus 2:11-13)

Having the Holy Spirit indwelling us gives us the upper hand in the world we live in.  We have a live-in conscience that helps us make better choices.  I'm not saying that I don't sin and lose control from time to time....OK, often...... but I am saying that the Holy Spirit helps me keep on track and also helps me 
recognize when I jump the track.  The world's a tough place but I have  extra insurance, knowledge, and protection given to me by the Holy Spirit.  And you can have it the grace of God!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Do you know how God controls the clouds
and makes his lightning flash?

(Job 37:15)

None of us have the answer.  God's power is beyond our knowledge and imagination.  Our brains cannot comprehend the endless and unlimited power that God possesses.  I only know.....with confidence.... that He does control all of nature and everything else in the entire universe.  And when things seem out of control, I still have the confidence to know that God knows what He's doing and I need to trust that it's all part of His plan and will.  God is in control of everything.  Period.

Monday, October 3, 2011

I cling to you;
your right hand upholds me.

(Psalm 63:8)

And when I turn loose of Your hand, I fall and fail miserably.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

When Moses’ hands grew tired, they took a stone and put it under him and he sat on it. Aaron and Hur held his hands up—one on one side, one on the other—so that his hands remained steady till sunset.
(Exodus 17:12)

This is for you, Betsy.  We can't do it alone and we are fortunate that God puts people in our lives to help carry the load and support us when we are weak.  Be strong, but don't be hesitant to accept all the help that God sends to you!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Therefore, as God’s chosen people, holy and dearly loved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience.
(Colossians 3:12)

Can you imagine what the world would be like if we all clothed ourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness and patience?!  Truthfully, I can't imagine that the world I live in will ever display all of these traits.  I can't even do this myself on a 24/7 basis, even though I try to behave this way as much as possible.  No.....I won't be able to do this or live in a world with all others that are behaving this way until I reach the perfect afterlife in Heaven.  Bliss.......

Friday, September 30, 2011

Praise be to God,
who has not rejected my prayer
or withheld his love from me!

(Psalm 66:20)

I'm always amazed that God loves each and every one of us, warts, sins, and all.  His capacity for loving the unlovable is far beyond my comprehension, yet I know it's true.  And He hears each and every prayer.  He may not answer it on my terms or in my time frame, but He does hear and He does answer.  I'm grateful that I'm not rejected by the Holiest of all, my heavenly Father!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

It is God who arms me with strength and keeps my way secure.
(2 Samuel 22:33)

I am nothing without the power of the Lord. 

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.
(Philippians 4:6)

I'm anxious today.  I have no reason to be anxious because God has it all under control.  This is one of my favorite scriptures because it is very basic and to the point, yet so full of comfort and promises, as well.  It also brings out my failure to trust God because I am feeling worried in the first place.  Prayer and petition.....God does hear me and He does care. 

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

; and everything that does not come from faith is sin.
(Romans 14:23b)

This scripture came from a devotional this morning.  The words were bold and almost shocking to me.  Brutally truthful!

Monday, September 26, 2011

And may your hearts be fully committed to the LORD our God, to live by his decrees and obey his commands, as at this time.”
(1 Kings 8:61)

I'm wrestling with some commitments right now and have been praying for resolution.  I think I have finally made my decision and I think I will have God's blessing.  I don't ever want my commitment to God to be anything but number one on my list and I pray that the Holy Spirit will keep me on track in honoring that priority.

Sunday, September 25, 2011

Act according to whatever they teach you and the decisions they give you. Do not turn aside from what they tell you, to the right or to the left.
(Deuteronomy 17:11)

Decisions......I'm taking this scripture out of context, but the bottom line is that our decisions should be based on the Lord's directions, not our own will.  Our focus should be on the Lord's path, and none other.

Saturday, September 24, 2011

Dear friends, let us love one another, for love comes from God. Everyone who loves has been born of God and knows God.
(1 John 4:7)

My friends are special gifts from God.  True friends love you when you aren't very lovable.  For this, I'm very humbled and grateful.

Friday, September 23, 2011

We wait in hope for the LORD;
he is our help and our shield.

(Psalm 33:20)

Hope keeps us going....hope gives us a reason to live.....hope gets it's foundation from the Lord, therefore,  hope is something I can count on through thick and thin.  Hope is hopeful!  ;)

Thursday, September 22, 2011

The human spirit can endure in sickness,
but a crushed spirit who can bear?

(Proverbs 18:14)

It's difficult to be sick.  None of us like to be sick, but it's pretty inevitable that we will all be sick at one point or another.  When we do face illness, if we turn to God for support, hope, and strength, it eases our suffering, whether it takes away the illness or not.  On the other hand, if our spirit is ill, what hope do we have?

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the LORD your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
(Deuteronomy 31:6)

I've quoted this scripture before, but it's one that I return to often.  Today is just one of those days.......

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Grace, mercy and peace from God the Father and from Jesus Christ, the Father’s Son, will be with us in truth and love.
(2 John 1:3)

How beautiful is this!?  Nothing could be more true, more pure, more comforting. 

Monday, September 19, 2011

"The school of life offers some difficult courses, but it is in the difficult class that one learns the most."
~ Corrie ten Boom

God never promised an easy life.  I haven't had an easy life, although I hesitate to complain too much, as I certainly know people that have had more trials in their lives than I've had in mine.  If I hadn't had trials placed before me, I would never have had the appreciation for smoother days.  I would have missed the joy of a resolved trial.  I wouldn't have learned squat if life had been presented to me on a silver platter.  Would I like life to be easier? bet..... but truly, my life is richer because of the hardships.  I'm a stronger and more compassionate person because of the trials, troubles, and hardships and I thank God for every day that He gives me.....good and bad.

Sunday, September 18, 2011

From my Pastor's sermon this morning;

"What I don't fully understand, I will fully accept."  From this statement, he went on to read from Proverbs 3:6.... Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding:

It was a convicting sermon for me, as I often rely on my own judgement when I'm having trouble figuring out the way that God would have me choose.  I just need to trust and accept that it's OK to not understand, but it isn't OK for me to charge off in my own direction.  Slow obey.

Saturday, September 17, 2011

But you will have a son who will be a man of peace and rest, and I will give him rest from all his enemies on every side. His name will be Solomon, and I will grant Israel peace and quiet during his reign.
(1 Chronicles 22:9)

Peace and on every side......this would be perfect!

Friday, September 16, 2011

You shall not give false testimony against your neighbor.
(Exodus 20:16)

My newest neighbors are moving in as I write fifth set of neighbors in less than one year.  It's wears me down and I try to keep "love thy neighbor" in my heart in the midst of chaos.  Please God, give me patience and wisdom!

Thursday, September 15, 2011

The LORD reigns forever;
he has established his throne for judgment.

(Psalm 9:7)

God judges me everyday, not just at my life's end.  That's a little sobering, but it gives me accountability in everything that I think, do, or say. 

Wednesday, September 14, 2011

I give you sound learning,
so do not forsake my teaching.

(Proverbs 4:2)

God has given us His incredible Word to help us live our lives.  I started my 8th year of BSF (Bible Study Fellowship) today, still trying to learn God's word, and more importantly, apply it to my life.  BSF is in most states and many countries, so check it out and see if there is a class near you.  You will abundantly blessed!

Tuesday, September 13, 2011

When he saw the crowds, he had compassion on them, because they were harassed and helpless, like sheep without a shepherd.
(Matthew 9:36)

I have a shepherd.......if I would only follow and believe, I wouldn't be harassed and helpless.  

Monday, September 12, 2011

He told them, ‘You also go and work in my vineyard, and I will pay you whatever is right.’
(Matthew 20:4)

Pay your workers a fair wage.  Their help should be valued and respected.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

There is no wisdom, no insight, no plan
that can succeed against the LORD.

The horse is made ready for the day of battle,
but victory rests with the LORD.

(Proverbs 21:30-31)

On this 10th anniversary of 9/11, I find comfort in this scripture.  Nothing and no one can succeed against the Lord!

Saturday, September 10, 2011

As for God, his way is perfect:
The LORD’s word is flawless;
he shields all who take refuge in him.

(2 Samuel 22:31)

Tomorrow and Wednesday, I start two new Bible studies.  One at church, one at BSF.  I'm hoping that I will be able to keep up with both studies, giving them the time and energy that they deserve.  The rewards of Bible study are priceless to me and well worth the effort.  It's the very least that I can do for a God that gives me EVERYTHING!

Friday, September 9, 2011

God cannot give us happiness and peace apart from Himself, because it is not there. There is no such thing.

C. S. Lewis

(From Today's Turning Point)

Thursday, September 8, 2011

 In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth.
(Genesis 1:1)

Once in awhile,  I need to take myself back to those first words in the Bible.  There is nothing without God.  I'm nothing without God.  

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Your kingdom is an everlasting kingdom,
and Your dominion endures through all generations.

The LORD is trustworthy in all He promises
and faithful in all He does.

(Psalm 145:13)

He IS faithful.....He IS trustworthy.....He KEEPS His promises!  Sometimes I let what is going on around me discourage me and push me off of the path of righteousness.  Thankfully, the Lord and those He puts on that path with me, set me straight and get me moving back in the right direction.  Life is rough, life isn't fair, but WITH God and His loving support, I can conquer anything.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

If a fire breaks out and spreads into thorn bushes so that it burns shocks of grain or standing grain or the whole field, the one who started the fire must make restitution.
(Exodus 22:6)

"Fire" is used hundreds of times in the Bible.  It has many meanings and uses, some good, some bad.  Today, I'm reminded of the fires that are destroying homes, land, animals, and even people in Texas.  The fires that have been started by natural causes are one thing, but a fire caused by a dropped cigarette or misuse of fire is inexcusable.  Please use the common sense that God gave you!

Monday, September 5, 2011

But when you ask, you must believe and not doubt, because the one who doubts is like a wave of the sea, blown and tossed by the wind.
(James 1:6)

Doubts just make us vulnerable to outside influences, good and bad.  Doubt your doubts and you'll be OK.

Sunday, September 4, 2011

Immediately Jesus reached out his hand and caught him. “You of little faith,” he said, “why did you doubt?
(Matthew 14:31)

The last 24 hours have not been the best for me and left me having moments of doubt.  Major doubts....the heavy stuff...why me.....why other people.....why bother.....etc.  I won't go into details, but I wasn't proud of myself for feeling this way.  Thankfully, due to the support of some wonderful friends, some topical Bible study, and a great day at church, my doubts have subsided greatly and I feel recharged.  Thank you to those who helped ease my fears and doubts!

Saturday, September 3, 2011

As we encounter the inhumanity, suffering, and sin that wreak havoc in our world, how do we respond? If the heart of Christ breaks over the broken condition of our world, shouldn’t ours? And shouldn’t we then do everything we can to make a difference for those in need, both spiritually and physically? —Bill Crowder

Lord, when I learn that someone is hurting,
Help me know what to do and to say;
Speak to my heart and give me compassion,
Let Your great love flow through me today. —K. De Haan
(From today's Daily Bread)

Friday, September 2, 2011

The LORD has established his throne in heaven,
and his kingdom rules over all.

(Psalm 103:19)

This scripture arrived in the mail yesterday on one side of a bookmark.  (From In Touch Ministries)  On the other side of the bookmark were these words;

"as children of a sovereign God, we are never victims of our circumstances"

I've talked about it many times....being a Christian does not come with a guarantee for smooth sailing but it does come with the support of a loving God.  Priceless.....

Thursday, September 1, 2011

But may the righteous be glad
and rejoice before God;
may they be happy and joyful.
(Psalm 68:3)

Generally an optimistic person, I do find that I have days where joy seems to escape me.  When I'm feeling this way, I have to remember that the Lord is watching over me and is overflowing with joy that He wants to share with me.

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

My salvation and my honor depend on God;
he is my mighty rock, my refuge.

(Psalm 62:7)

Everything depends on God....from my salvation to the events of my day. 

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

I thought I'd throw in a book recommendation today.  It's called The Story, and it's a chronological account of the Bible.  The text is from the NIV (New International Version) translation and the idea is that it's "The Bible as one continuing story of God and His people", (from the front cover).  My church will be taking nine months to study this book and I'm hoping for a different perspective than some of the studies I've already completed.  This sounds like a great way to read the major accounts in the Bible in the order that they happened, making it less confusing.  It would also be a study that could be done by yourself if no group was available.  I'll report back sometime in the future to let you know what I think about the study after I've completed a few lessons.

Monday, August 29, 2011

For Ezra had devoted himself to the study and observance of the Law of the LORD, and to teaching its decrees and laws in Israel.
(Ezra 7:10)

I normally spend about 30-40 minutes a day studying the Bible, writing this blog, and reading devotionals.  Some days......I spend more time.....some days..... less time.  No matter how much time I spend in study, there is still so much to learn....much more than my brain can absorb.  I sometimes find it frustrating that I need to read things twice and maybe even write things down to remember and absorb bits and pieces of God's Word.  Maybe it's my age, maybe it's just lack of concentration.  The one thing I do know is that God will make sure that I retain whatever it is that He wants me to learn.  
Chill, Jeanie.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

One of those days Jesus went out to a mountainside to pray, and spent the night praying to God.
(Luke 6:12)

"Spent the night praying".....that's serious prayer time!

My prayer time has been very busy lately.  So many people needing prayer support.  If you're like me, as much as I love these people, I sometimes forget a prayer request.  I actually keep a little notebook to help remind me of the prayer requests so that I don't miss one.  I send up little prayer requests throughout the day, but when I get down on my knees and really want to "cover my bases" and spend serious prayer time with God, this little notebook helps.  Another nice thing about keeping a prayer request notebook is that you also see all of the prayers that are answered when you look back over the past requests.  I'm a list maker, so this little notebook fits my personality and it lets me relax and not worry about forgetting an important prayer request.  Might not be your style, but if it is, give it a try.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Jesus said, “Let the little children come to me, and do not hinder them, for the kingdom of heaven belongs to such as these.”
(Matthew 19:14)

We can learn a lot from the children.  They have an innocence that it priceless.  Often children say things so bluntly that it takes us by surprise, but usually, it's exactly what we were afraid to say ourselves. 
Don't just assume that because someone is very young that they don't know what's going on......they usually do understand and have an unbiased viewpoint that is worth paying attention to.  Bless the little children!

Friday, August 26, 2011

Because of the service by which you have proved yourselves, others will praise God for the obedience that accompanies your confession of the gospel of Christ, and for your generosity in sharing with them and with everyone else.
(2  Corinthians 9:13)

We are supposed to share with others.  Along with sharing our services and deeds, we are to share the gospel and material goods.  Sometimes it's hard to part with the goods and difficult to bring up the gospel.  I'm blessed to have some wonderful Christian friends who generously give all of these things (and more) and set a wonderful example for me to follow.

Thursday, August 25, 2011

But since we belong to the day, let us be sober, putting on faith and love as a breastplate, and the hope of salvation as a helmet.
(1 Thessalonians 5:8)

Faith and hope.....all the armor that I need to keep me sane in a crazy world!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Have mercy on me, LORD, for I am faint;
heal me, LORD, for my bones are in agony.

(Psalms 6:2)

A continuation from yesterday.  Our health can fluctuate from day to day, even minute to minute.  It's a roller coaster for many of us, but God is at the center of it all.  Trust, pray, and rely on God, knowing that no matter what happens, He loves us as His own children and wants the best for us, according to His will.

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Then your light will break forth like the dawn,
and your healing will quickly appear;
then your righteousness will go before you,
and the glory of the LORD will be your rear guard.

(Isaiah 58:8)

This is dedicated to several of my friends, both near and far, who are experiencing some terrible health issues and death, in several cases. 

Illness is difficult to deal with and trusting in God's will can be even more difficult.  I'm feeling helpless right now, knowing that all I can do is pray, yet I also realize that prayer is a powerful weapon.  I'd love to see complete healing in all of these people, but I know that may not happen.  I know that God already has a plan for everyone and that plan may be polar opposite of what I would like.  I'll continue to pray, I'll continue to hope for complete healing, and I'll continue to trust that God will comfort and support those in need. 

Monday, August 22, 2011

My people will live in peaceful dwelling places,
in secure homes,
in undisturbed places of rest.

(Isaiah 32:18)

This scripture is on my screen saver right now, which also shows a welcoming log bench placed under an Autumn tree, all shrouded in fog.  Just looking at the scene brings a sense of peace and makes me want to take a seat on the bench and become part of the quietness.  And someday.....I'll be living in that scene......:)

Sunday, August 21, 2011

Thus you will walk in the ways of the good
and keep to the paths of the righteous.

(Proverbs 2:20)

At church this morning, we were asked to donate the shoes that we were wearing to Soles 4 Souls.  Take off your shoes.....right then......on the spot......donate them......and go home barefoot.  Fortunately, we were given the opportunity to take a rain check and bring in shoes next week if we couldn't give our shoes today.  I had on a pair of white, flimsy sandals and didn't think they would be  great shoes to donate so I'll be going through my shoes and picking out several pairs that would be better, more useful, and versatile shoes to pass along.  We are to bring them back to the church next Sunday.  Many, many, people did donate their shoes this morning.    And seeing the ushers pass out communion in their sock feet brought a smile to my face!  During the service, the rain was pouring outside, so the people without shoes were jumping over (and in) puddles while heading to their cars.  I'm sure they were jumping for joy!

We are so spoiled that very few of us lack for a pair of shoes.  Imagine not having even one pair.  I'm not even sure how many pairs of shoes are in my closets. 

I used "walk" in a literal sense today.  These donated shoes will help those less fortunate physically walk from point A to point B.  The shoes will protect and comfort their feet.  But even better for me, donating shoes will help enrich my walk with God.

Saturday, August 20, 2011

The fear of the LORD leads to life;
then one rests content, untouched by trouble.

(Proverbs 19:23)

This scripture is so encouraging as we face what seems to be, trouble after trouble.  I'm learning that the more I turn my life over to God, the less insurmountable my troubles become.  I'll always have troubles in my life, God does not guarantee smooth sailing, but when I enter the New Earth my troubles will be a distant memory.

Friday, August 19, 2011

The righteous care for the needs of their animals,
(Proverbs 12:10)

Of all the wonderous gifts that God has given me, my pets rate right up there near the top.  I love all animals, but the pets that have shared my home over the years will always reside in a special part of my heart.  God expects us to take good care of our pets, fulfilling their physical needs and offering tender care, but frankly, they give me much more than I could possibly give them.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Teach me, and I will be quiet;
show me where I have been wrong.

(Job 6:24)

Or in my situation, just the reverse...... help me to be quiet in order for You to teach me where I have been wrong.  My mind needs to be calm, quiet, and focused in order to receive direction from God.

Wednesday, August 17, 2011

Whoever loves money never has enough;
whoever loves wealth is never satisfied with their income.
This too is meaningless.
(Ecclesiastes 5:10)

Money can surely cause trouble in our lives.  We really do need money for basic living needs, plus, it's nice to have a little extra for a little treat once in awhile.  The trouble lies in loving money, in making money an idol in your life.  Although I live with little monies, my life is full and blessed.  God gives me what I need, when I need it.  A little trust, like a little money, goes a long way.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.
(Luke 5:16)

Even Jesus required quiet, alone time with His Father.  While He was on earth in human form, He needed to "keep in touch" with His Father.  We too, need to keep in touch with our Heavenly Father.  Through prayer, we are able to have an intimate conversation and relationship with God.  Even on our busiest days, we must make time for an uninterrupted conversation with God.  Schedule it in your appointment book if that's what it takes to save some quality time for God!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Two are better than one,
because they have a good return for their labor:

(Ecclesiastes 4:9)

I worked outside for several hours today, trying to get my yard in respectable shape.  I got the work done, but I would surely have enjoyed it more and finished it more quickly if I would have had some help.  Still, I was grateful for cooperative health and ability to do the work and even more grateful for a cool shower afterward to refresh my tired body.  And I really wasn't alone....God was there to watch over me and give me strength.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

I will be fully satisfied as with the richest of foods;
with singing lips my mouth will praise you.

(Psalm 63:5)

I love singing the older hymns on Sunday mornings.  I also enjoy many of the newer Christian songs that are sung today, but the classic, older hymns bring back sweet memories of days long past.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Now, our God, we give You thanks,
and praise Your glorious name.

(1 Chronicles 29:13)

Thank you for a delightful day to witness Your blessings and glory!

Friday, August 12, 2011

He made the moon to mark the seasons,
and the sun knows when to go down.
You bring darkness, it becomes night,
and all the beasts of the forest prowl.

(Psalm 104:19-20)

I had the opportunity to commune with nature today and it never ceases to amaze and humble me.  I'm delighted with the beauty, both the complexity and simplicity of nature, and it's miraculous workings.  Only God could orchestrate this miracle!

Thursday, August 11, 2011

These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts.  Impress them on your children. Talk about them when you sit at home and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.
(Deuteronomy 6:6-7)

The commandments were not just for Moses and the people of his day.  They were meant for all time, for all people.  They apply today, just as they did centuries past.  It seems to me that I don't hear enough about the commandments and their applications today, which means that we aren't doing our job of talking about them and teaching them to those who may not be familiar with them.  Take the time to reread them occasionally and think of ways that the commandments are misused, misinterpreted, and ignored and put them back into the forefront of your mindset.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

But with You there is forgiveness, so that we can, with reverence, serve You.
(Psalm 130:4)

In Bible study today, we spoke of forgiveness and how difficult it is to completely forgive someone.  God forgives the unforgivable, so I should be able to forgive those who have wronged me and release the heavy baggage that rests on my shoulders, not on the shoulders of the person that wronged me.  Not only is it the right thing to do, it's the God pleasing thing to do and it will set me free from this burden, giving me peace and rest.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.
(Romans 15:4)

I'm short on endurance today and know that I can find the encouragement boost that I need in the pages of my Bible.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Create in me a pure heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.

(Psalm 51:10)

I love the word "steadfast".  I can't completely claim this word for my own spirit yet, but I know that God is helping to guide me toward steadfast and it's true meaning. 

Sunday, August 7, 2011

When I said, “My foot is slipping,”
your unfailing love, LORD, supported me.

(Psalm 94:18)

It's not unusual for me to slip, both in a physical sense and in a spiritual sense.  There have been times when I know I would have fallen if left to my own resources.  Fortunately, God was there to watch over me and give me sure footing.  When I do fall, I also know that God will be there to pick me up, dust me off, and give me the strength to keep going on the right path...... His path.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

For great is your love, higher than the heavens;
your faithfulness reaches to the skies.

(Psalm 108:4)

My blessings are endless and boundless...........

Friday, August 5, 2011

Surely your goodness and love will follow me
all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the LORD

(Psalm 23:6)

We all love the 23rd Psalm.  I can't really fathom what the house of the Lord will be like, but I love thinking about it and imagining it's majesty.