Monday, April 30, 2012

Very truly I tell you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life and will not be judged but has crossed over from death to life.
(John 5:24)

Death is conquered for believers!

Sunday, April 29, 2012

God made the wild animals according to their kinds, the livestock according to their kinds, and all the creatures that move along the ground according to their kinds. And God saw that it was good.
(Genesis 1:25)

And good, they are.  God has directed several animals into my life over the years and each one has given me joy and enriched my life in ways beyond measure .... each one as unique, precious, and fleeting as one of God's snowflakes. 

Thursday, April 26, 2012

They grumbled in their tents
and did not obey the LORD.

(Psalm 106:25)

Centuries later..... this is me.  I may not be in a tent, but otherwise it's the same scenario.  Grumble and disobey.  Even I get tired of listening to myself grumble.  I can't imagine the Lord listening to me (plus billions of others) without wanting to remind me (in a not-so-gentle way) of all of my blessings, all of which were given to me by God, Himself.     

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Yours, LORD, is the greatness and the power
and the glory and the majesty and the splendor,
for everything in heaven and earth is Yours.
Yours, LORD, is the kingdom;
You are exalted as head over all.
Wealth and honor come from You;
You are the ruler of all things.
In Your hands are strength and power
to exalt and give strength to all.
Now, our God, we give You thanks,
and praise Your glorious name.

(1 Chronicles 29:11-13)

I'm not very wordy today but chose this scripture because it speaks volumes without any insight or opinions from my feeble brain.

Glory be to God in Heaven!

Monday, April 23, 2012

But for you who revere my name, the sun of righteousness will rise with healing in its rays. And you will go out and frolic like well-fed calves.
(Malachi 4:2)

The heat of the sun, warming my body, is healing and therapeutic.  I can feel the heat....bone deep.  When I give the glory to God, the warmth also reaches my spirit.....soul deep. 

Sunday, April 22, 2012

The lot is cast into the lap,
but its every decision is from the LORD.

(Proverbs 16:23)

We may call it luck but it's God's will at work.  Everthing is under His control.

Saturday, April 21, 2012

God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways;
he does great things beyond our understanding.

(Job 37:5)

Job is such a trooper.  In spite of more difficulties than I could begin to handle, he still sees God around him and follows His ways.  I think God's "thunder" may often be soft and gentle, so soft and gentle that we need to make sure we are paying attention.  Other times, He knocks us out of our socks.  No matter how He speaks to us, we are only human and do not have the ability to fully understand the Lord of Creation.  That's OK.....just keep looking and listening!

Friday, April 20, 2012

Be wise in the way you act toward outsiders; make the most of every opportunity.
(Colossians 4:5)

It couldn't be more can never make a second impression.  It's easy to judge and criticize, especially someone outside of your usual crowd.  The last thing you want to do is turn someone away and lose the opportunity to show them the fellowship of a God-pleasing Christian.  Be gentle with your first impression.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

He replied, “You are talking like a foolish woman. Shall we accept good from God, and not trouble?”
In all this, Job did not sin in what he said.
(Job 2:10)

We can't pick and choose God's gifts and/or punishments.  We get what we get and God expects us to accept both the good times and the bad times with grace and trust.  Maybe it's a test.  If it is, I know that I often fail.  Are we really listening and obeying God's will for us?  Do we learn from the trials or continue on our merry (sinful) way?   Just food for thought today.  What I do know is that no matter what comes my way, God is right by my side.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful.
(Joshua 1:8)

This is not an easy command to obey.  I don't meditate on anything day and night.  I have the attention span of a flea.  Even so, God expects me to give it quality time.  Life gets in the way, but I have no life without God.  My life is His. I would have abundant time for Bible study if I just made the time available.  It's there.  I can find time for almost anything if I just prioritize my schedule.  I've got an excuse for just about everything but God knows the absolute truth...... I put His Word on the back burner and do other things first.  I can't seem to do this on my own.... I need the power of the Holy Spirit to help me focus. 
Note to self....publish post.... open Bible..... STUDY!

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Now God be prais'd that
to believing souls
Gives light in darkness,
comfort in despair!

William Shakespeare
(King Henry VI)

God is light!

Monday, April 16, 2012

I call on you, my God, for You will answer me;
turn Your ear to me and hear my prayer.

(Psalm 17:6)

The power of prayer is huge.  I know it can be discouraging when we don't see a quick answer to our prayers but it can also free us from worrying about the issue, knowing that God is listening and taking it under His wing.  Patience is usually required when we make a prayer request.  That patience may only be needed for a few minutes or it might be needed for a few decades.  It's God's timing...... remember?  Be patient.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Jesus said to the woman, “Your faith has saved you; go in peace.”
(Luke 7:50)

The woman mentioned in this scripture was considered trash.... a disposable person in her society, a person that would be ignored, perhaps stoned, certainly not someone  that "good" society would associate with.   Yet her humble, from the heart, treatment and worship of Jesus made such an impression on Him that he pardoned her past sins and she was given a fresh start. 

We can all have this forgiveness.  It's never too late and our sins are never too great to receive God's pardon.  We must, however, have the same heartfelt repentance and worship of Jesus Christ to receive this amazing gift.  The choice is ours.  Kind of a no-brainer.....don't you think?

Saturday, April 14, 2012

After this I looked, and there before me was a door standing open in heaven. And the voice I had first heard speaking to me like a trumpet said, “Come up here, and I will show you what must take place after this.”
(Revelation 4:1)

I don't understand the book of Revelation very well.  It's a bit cryptic for my thought processes.  There are, however, bits and pieces of it that I do understand and visions that I'm able to bring to mind.  I can see the door to heaven, welcoming me to enter.  Entering won't be easy.  There are consequences to pay and repentances to make but it will all be worth it.  Someday, I will walk through that door and my life on earth will be gone in a flash, along with all of the worldly trials and tribulations.  Open the door, please ...... I'm ready!

Friday, April 13, 2012

This is my 365th post.  I didn't quite squeeze them all into one year, I went a little over....I started this blog on April 9, 2011.  Life happened along the way to keep me from posting.

My original blogging intention was purely selfish.  I knew that I would be dropping out of Bible Study Fellowship after seven years of study and wanted some sort of accountability to keep myself in God's Word on a daily basis.  This blog did this for me.  Whether anyone was reading or not, it motivated me to blog.  My blogging certainly wasn't as difficult as a structured Bible study, but it still gave me support throughout the year.  My posts were not particularly eye opening or life changing, in fact, they were just simple observations.  Still, I feel like I have completed my goal.  As far as the future, I am planning on continuing this blog.  I may not be as dedicated as I was the first year, but I'm still in a situation where I need daily accountability and will blog when possible.  Hopefully, it will still be daily/frequently.

 And here is my judgment about what is best for you in this matter. Last year you were the first not only to give but also to have the desire to do so.  Now finish the work, so that your eager willingness to do it may be matched by your completion of it, according to your means.  For if the willingness is there, the gift is acceptable according to what one has, not according to what one does not have.
(2 Corinthians 8:10-12) 

Thursday, April 12, 2012

You provide a broad path for my feet,
so that my ankles do not give way.

(2 Samuel 22:37)

God doesn't give us a tightrope to try and balance on without falling.  He gives us great latitude to live a life pleasing to Him without making the path narrow and treacherous.  I still stray from that path, finding distractions along the way until God guides me back into His loving arms.  Being on God's path is not restrictive, it's liberating!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

Brothers and sisters, we do not want you to be uninformed about those who sleep in death, so that you do not grieve like the rest of mankind, who have no hope.
(1 Thessalonians 4:13)

Even as a Christian, I still grieve the loss of my loved ones.  I'm not necessarily grieving for them, I'm grieving selfishly for myself.  I miss them..... I'm lonely.....I don't understand why they are gone and I'm still here.  It's just hard, even though I know they are at peace.  On a positive note, I know that I will join them someday when God sends me home to their loving arms.  Meanwhile, I'm hanging in there, living off of memories and waiting for my reunion.
(I miss you everyday, TW)

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

They will wage war against the Lamb, but the Lamb will triumph over them because he is Lord of lords and King of kings—and with him will be his called, chosen and faithful followers.
(Revelation 17:14)

We have started a new sermon series at my church called "not a fan.", which is based on the book of the same title written by Kyle Idleman.  The link will give you more information.  Simply put, it's getting down to the basic question of "are you a fan or a follower?"   A fan is kind of like a fair weather friend.....when things get tough, they turn tail.  They seem to be a true friend, say the right things, even do the right things, but they have not given themselves completely.  A follower is a true believer and one who will stand up for Jesus and defend His honor in all circumstances.  I'm just beginning this book, but I can already see that I'm a follower/fan, not a true and complete follower.  I don't want to be a fan......I want to be a follower.

I recommend this book and I hope you will ask yourself the same question and answer honestly.  It will open your eyes to the truth.

Monday, April 9, 2012

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

(Psalm 6:2)

Rough day..... overdid things....pushed myself too far.....but God will restore my physical body, as well as my spiritual body. 

Sunday, April 8, 2012

1. Low in the grave He lay,
Jesus, my Savior!
Waiting the coming day,
Jesus, my Lord!

2. Vainly they watch His bed,
Jesus, my Savior!
Vainly they seal the dead,
Jesus my Lord!

3. Death cannot keep his prey,
Jesus, my Savior!
He tore the bars away,
Jesus my Lord!

Up from the grave He arose,
With a mighty triumph o'er His foes;
He arose a victor from the dark domain,
And He lives forever With His saints to reign.
He arose! He arose!
Hallelujah! Christ arose!
Written in 1874

Beautiful words!  We sang this timeless hymn in church this morning, along with other Easter-appropriate hymns.  The chorus was sung acappella and it was so beautiful and moving.

He is not here; he has risen, just as he said. Come and see the place where he lay.
(Matthew 28:6)

I hope your Easter was a grateful day of worship.  No matter who you are and what your life circumstances may be, you have the hope of a better life thanks to the sacrifice of Jesus Christ.  

Saturday, April 7, 2012

So give the order for the tomb to be made secure until the third day. Otherwise, his disciples may come and steal the body and tell the people that he has been raised from the dead. This last deception will be worse than the first.”
 “Take a guard,” Pilate answered. “Go, make the tomb as secure as you know how.”  So they went and made the tomb secure by putting a seal on the stone and posting the guard.
(Matthew 27:64-66)

It was not a trick.  The body wasn't stolen or misplaced.  There was no way for any mortal man to escape this tomb.  There was no way for anyone to enter or defile this tomb undetected, with or without help.  Only the living God could orchestrate this miracle as written in prophesy.  And so we wait..... for the morning of Jesus' Resurrection!

Friday, April 6, 2012

Good Friday Origins

There are two possible origins for the name "Good Friday". The first may have come from the Gallican Church in Gaul (modern-day France and Germany). The name "Gute Freitag" is Germanic in origin and literally means "good" or "holy" Friday. The second possibility is a variation on the name "God's Friday," where the word "good" was used to replace the word "God," which was often viewed as too holy to be spoken aloud.

Taken from
ShareFaith   (I looked at many sites, most had similar explanations.)

I knew why it was "Good Friday" for me, but I didn't know where the name originated.  "Good" is hardly a word that I'd use to describe the horrific ordeal that Jesus endured and I often find it difficult to even use "good" in my discussions or thought processes about this Holy day.  The Bible often replaces "God" with "good" in scripture and this explanation is one that makes the most sense to me.

Regardless of the name, we know this to be the day that Jesus gave up His life for all of the sins of the world.  How do you feel about taking the blame for something that you didn't do?  It's a rare day when I'll take the consequences for someone elses' bad behavior.  As with many of my posts, it's just hard for me to fathom the sacrifice that Jesus made for me....I'm unworthy of any such act of selfless love, yet I know that He died for me.  He died for you.  He died in order for all of mankind to receive the gift of eternal life.  I'm blessed....I'm blessed beyond understanding.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Show proper respect to everyone, love the family of believers, fear God, honor the emperor.
(1 Peter 2:17)

It's hard for us to respect others, especially those who are different from us.  We also must respect and honor our political leaders, regardless of our political views, and pray for their leadership decisions.  God loves us all and made each one of us different.  What a dull world this would be if we were all made with the same cookie cutter.  Love your neighbor....respect each other..... and learn to appreciate the differences. 

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

And being found in appearance as a man,
he humbled himself
by becoming obedient to death—
even death on a cross!

(Philippians 2:8)

Humility takes on a different picture when I think of Jesus humbling Himself to be human.  That's more humbling than me taking on the form of a flea.  And then to die when He could have turned them all into dust.  Dying on a cross....dying the death of a criminal.  All for me.....all for you..... all for the sinners of the world.  It's just hard for me to fathom that kind of humility, that kind of selflessness, that kind of sacrifice.  Thankfully, I don't have to fully understand, I only have to believe.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed; perplexed, but not in despair;  persecuted, but not abandoned; struck down, but not destroyed.
(2 Corinthians 4:8-9)

This scripture came in a daily devotion today and was inspiring to me.  Life is tough, at it's best.  I'm feeling a bit battered and bruised and know that no matter how rough my life may be at times, it's still rewarding and blessed beyond measure.  As long as I never give up on God, nothing has the power to conquer me or my life.

Monday, April 2, 2012

Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God.
(2 Corinthians 3:5)

There are days when I know that God has directed my every step.  On days when I'm unable to take the next step, He takes it for me.  He carries me.  Every breath I take comes from God and I thank Him for loving me enough to take good care of me.  And as far as competence goes, I'm nothing without Him!

Sunday, April 1, 2012

But you, dear friends, by building yourselves up in your most holy faith and praying in the Holy Spirit,  keep yourselves in God’s love as you wait for the mercy of our Lord Jesus Christ to bring you to eternal life.
(Jude 1:20-21)

Keeping myself in God's love..... what a wonderful place to be!