Thursday, May 31, 2012

The Lord is near to all who call on Him, 
to all who call on Him in truth.

(Psalm 145:18)

He is near..... He hears..... He knows our heart.  Even in times when we don't see direct answers to prayer, keep trusting in the Lord to listen and answer in His timing.  Be patient, be trusting..... keep praying.

(Internet issues, so blogging has been sparse.)

Monday, May 28, 2012

Not my words today.  This came from Insight for Today and I wanted to pass it along.

May 28, 2012

A Memorial Day Prayer
by Charles R. Swindoll
There are certain scenes that when I come across I always pause and let the wonder in. When our children were very small and we were traveling back from a camp up in northern California, along the side of the road they saw something they didn't understand. On a windswept hillside there were literally thousands of white crosses in perfect rank and file. One of my little children said to me, "Daddy, what is that?" And it occurred to me that the younger generations can come and grow up and never even understand how they could have the freedom to drive along a highway or to sit without their home being invaded or to worship at a church we love . . . because those men and women under those crosses paid the ultimate price for our liberty. And so I took time to explain to them the significance of that hillside. I said, "All around the world there are places like that. None more beautiful than this one." And I quoted them from the British poet, "In Flanders field the poppies grow, / Between the crosses, row on row, / . . . And those birds still singing fly." And I couldn't even finish the work as I was moved to tears.
Today we honor those who are no longer among us. And we are grateful for each one and for you who have served your country and have survived them. I want you again, if you will, military veterans to please stand. (Long audience applause.) Remain standing please. You men and women have known the hardship and the responsibilities connected with serving in places that are lonely and often terribly uncomfortable. I'm confident some of you have known battle. And though others around you may never know your story, God never missed one minute of it. By His grace you made it through, having survived all those dangers. All of us today are in your debt. Thank you for saying "yes" to sacrifice. Thank you for being willing to do what you considered simply your duty, never expecting ever in your life to be applauded for it. But today we respect you and we honor you.
However, today the greater respect and honor go to those who have died in battle, in places around the world, having lived their self-forgetful lives in such a brave manner.
To the end of our lives, our Father, we will be grateful for those who have taken liberty seriously. For those who stepped away from family and home and the love of a mom and dad, a spouse and children, and stepped into the fight. Who wore the uniform proudly and to this day live grateful for the privilege of serving. We thank You for our training, for those strong-hearted men who got us into shape and prepared us for battle. Who with unswerving devotion determined that they had our good at heart and helped us understand what it means to live for others and if necessary, to die. Today we remember those who carry on the fight, whose presence would eclipse any one of ours. They are in those hard places today and they serve You in the air, on the land and at sea, and under the sea. Thank You for each one. Thank You for a country that lives in the legacy of such heroism.
Today, our Father, we acknowledge that there is evil in this world, but this world is still Yours. This is our Father's world. And You have privileged us to be born into this land, the greatest land in the world. We would fight for it and defend its liberty to our last day. We honor You, our Father, for giving us those of whom this world was not worthy. And we pray that You will encourage these who stand and many like them. May this Memorial Day be more than just a celebration of eating and relaxing with family and friends. May we on occasion come aside, pause, and reflect.
Thank You, our Father, for Your presence, Your sovereign hand, whether in war or in peace. Help us, Dear Lord, to survive these times in which we live.
Now we give You our lives and we do so with gratitude, because You have been so faithful to us. In the name of Jesus, we pray. Amen.

Copyright © 2010, 2012 by Charles R. Swindoll, Inc. All rights are reserved worldwide. Duplication of copyrighted material for commercial use is strictly prohibited.

© 2012 Insight for Living. All rights reserved worldwide.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

In Him and through faith in Him we may approach God with freedom and confidence.
(Ephesians 3:12)

And because I live in the United States of America, I am able to do this publicly, without fear of being punished for my faith.  Freedom is not free everywhere and I'm grateful that I can publish this blog, carry a Bible, or put a Christian bumper sticker on my car and know that the worst that can happen to me is a little criticism.  Praise the Lord!

Friday, May 25, 2012

If he comes suddenly, do not let him find you sleeping.
(Mark 13:36)

I think the word is "when" He comes suddenly.  The Bible tells us that we will not know the time, day, or season of Jesus' return so we need to always consider that it might be any second.  Am I awake and ready for His return or do I need to change some of my ways and tie up loose ends ......?  

Thursday, May 24, 2012

So neither the one who plants nor the one who waters is anything, but only God, who makes things grow.
(1 Corinthians 3:7)

We cannot take credit for our efforts, our work, our deeds, or our accomplishments.  The glory goes to God who enables us to be our best.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

“As long as the earth endures,
seed time and harvest,
cold and heat,
summer and winter,
day and night
will never cease.” 

(Genesis 8:22)

In these times of absolutely bizarre weather conditions, I find this scripture calming and reassuring that things are as they should be. 

Monday, May 21, 2012

Great are the works of the Lord;
they are pondered by all who delight in them.

(Psalm 111:2)

I've been blessed with some delightful sites in the past few days.  Little visual smiles, put right in front of me.  I don't know if they will continue, but for now, I'm simply enjoying the view.

Friday, May 18, 2012

Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.”
(1 Corinthians 15:33)

This scripture came in a daily devotion today and it's so true.  It's much harder to keep that smile on your face when someone you are with is down and frustrated.  Before you know it, you are joining the dismal mood, leaving your own uplifted mood far behind. 
I don't think "bad" is stronger than "good."  I just think it's easier to join the bad than to stand up for the good.  Keep that in mind the next time someone wants to mislead you or lead you astray.  Remember that the Holy Spirit will give you the strength and courage to keep your values intact, in spite of challenges or ridicule.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Watch your life and doctrine closely. Persevere in them, because if you do, you will save both yourself and your hearers.
(1 Peter 4:16)

The scripture above makes it clear that you should set a good example, as you never know who is watching and taking notes.  We aren't expected to soften someones' heart to God, but we are expected to live a life that may make someone draw near to us to ask us what our "secret" to a fulfilled life may be.  Plant the seed.... watch it grow.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012

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)

Endurance...... sometimes I feel as though I have no endurance what so ever.  The problem with this is that I'm relying on my own resources, not the power of the Holy Spirit.  God will give me the endurance that I need to glorify Him in all circumstances.  It's comforting to know that I don't have to muster the strength on my own, that He will fortify, restore, and build me up to tackle any challenge. 

Monday, May 14, 2012

Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it.  But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.
(Matthew 7:13-14

I think many people think that Heaven has many doors and many ways to enter.  Good deeds, good words, good thoughts, whatever.  The truth, which comes from the authority of the Bible, is that only one door will gain entry into Heaven and that door is "manned" by Jesus Christ.  Good works and being a kind and thoughtful person is absolutely wonderful, it just isn't the way to Heaven.  Jesus Christ holds the key to open the gate and He is longing to share that key with all who will follow Him.   

Friday, May 11, 2012

When my spirit grows faint within me,
it is you who watch over my way.
In the path where I walk
people have hidden a snare for me.

(Psalm 142:3)

It's easy (and natural, for me) to blame others for the obstacles in my life.  Traps lie everywhere in our lives, but God is watching over us and the Holy Spirit lives within us to guide us down the right path.  "All" we have to do is accept the help that is put before us and within us by our Heavenly Father.  Easy to write... hard to do. 

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Do not repay anyone evil for evil. Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everyone.    If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.   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.  On the contrary:
“If your enemy is hungry, feed him;
if he is thirsty, give him something to drink.
In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.” 
Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.

(Romans 12:17-21)

I read this..... I believe this...... yet, I can't seem to turn loose of evil thoughts of revenge and payback.  I get some comfort from the part that says "as far as it depends on you."  This tells me that if I'm doing my part to be peaceful, that's all that can be reasonably asked of me.  I can't do it on my own, try as I might.  It can only be accomplished with the help of the Holy Spirit.

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Teach me your way, Lord;
lead me in a straight path
because of my oppressors. 

(Psalm 27:11)

Although there are lots of outside oppressors, I may be most guilty of being my biggest oppressor.  "Oppress"-- to weigh heavily on the mind, spirits, etc. of: burden.  Yup.... that's just what I do to myself. 

Saturday, May 5, 2012

By wisdom the Lord laid the earth’s foundations,
by understanding he set the heavens in place;
 by his knowledge the watery depths were divided,
and the clouds let drop the dew.

(Proverbs 3:19-20)

God knows what this day will bring and what next week will bring.  His knowledge is infinite and perfect.  I'm praying for one drop of this knowledge as I struggle through life and the ups and downs of daily living.  All things are beyond my control and I have to trust God's timing in every circumstance.  Lord, please help me to relinquish all of my own agendas and submit to Yours, and Yours alone. 

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Today is the 61st National Day of Prayer.  Here's a link for the official site for information and background history.

National Day of Prayer

Prayer should be a daily event, not just for specified days.  I'm always humbled by Paul's devotion to prayer as a major part of his life.  There is power in prayer.  I know that I've personally experienced that amazing power and continue to offer daily prayer for God's blessings and guidance.

Don't know what to pray or how to pray? .....

In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans.
(Romans 8:26)