Friday, May 25, 2012

Drug Through the Dirt

Several months ago as I was pondering things, a picture came to my mind. It was a black and white photo. All I could see was the back of a barefoot little girl wearing a cotton dress with a cotton sash in back. The little girl was dragging a doll in the dirt, holding onto its hand with her own. Now the Lord said you know how much little girls love their dolls and they would never, ever harm them.... She loved that doll. Nevertheless the little doll was at the moment being drug through the dirt. Oh beloved, you are so loved! God is always holding onto your hand. Never will He let go. Occasionally you may feel that your life is being drug through the dirt. Always remember, regardless of your circumstances that God will never allow you to come to harm. Even when things are hard, He’s holding on to you. Hangeth thou in there beloved, for your day will come again. Just like that little girl was bound to stop and scoop up the doll in her arms and dust her off and wipe her face, so too, God will one day lift you out of these temporary circumstances, set you in His arms, wipe away all tears. You are loved, you are watched over, you are cared for and you are completely understood with mercy and grace by Your Heavenly Father. While you and I, beloved, often only feel the dust about us, when we look into His eyes, we see the eyes of Love and the dust settles around us. Cherished so much that everywhere we go we are held by Him, loved by Him, carried by Him. Oh beloved, don’t despair of your present circumstances, just know that He loves you and He’s for you and that’s all that really matters. Deuteronomy 31:8 Do not be afraid or discouraged, for the Lord will personally go ahead of you. He will be with you; he will neither fail you nor abandon you.” Psalm 55:22 Give your burdens to the Lord, and he will take care of you. He will not permit the godly to slip and fall.Isaiah 43:1-3 Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you. I have called you by name; you are mine. When you go through deep waters, I will be with you. When you go through rivers of difficulty, you will not drown. When you walk through the fire of oppression, you will not be burned up; the flames will not consume you. For I am the LORD, your God, the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Love Much!

came home yesterday to find Danny sitting in the living room looking out towards our neighbors house. As I sat down with him, it hit me too. The Harrington's have been our neighbors for 20 years. They watched all our kids learn to drive cars and motorcycles. We had 4th of July fireworks displays together. After our kids were grown us two couples had Christmas Eve together. Donald and Danny were buddies and mechanic buddies. Last year Mrs. Harrington passed away and he's been alone. So he's packing up and moving back home to Kentucky. All his possessions are going in a sale tomorrow. He's been a good neighbor and a good friend. We're just a little heart broken for ourselves, but excited for him. Things change. You cannot stop that. Kids grow up, neighbors pass away, friends move off. There's only one thing we can do that will last. Oh beloved, Love much. People will always ask for your money, beg for your time, need things from you. But the one thing you can give to everyone is love. Do it lavishly. Don't hold back. Express yourself because someday, when it's all said and done, you'll wish you had. Love is the greatest expression of Christ for the world. Love is the one thing God instructed husbands to give their wives. An entire book of Scripture was devoted to it. Go ahead, beloved, let yourself feel the wonderful passion of love that Christ feels for the world. It will cause you to deny yourself, take up your cross and follow Him. It will let you look at things from His perspective. This magnificent love will allow you to forgive the unforgiveable and love the unloveable. It will equip, encourage, reconcile and restore. It will change your life! When you look into His Book of Love and see how much He loves you, you can take that and pour it out into a world that is starving for it. And, while you're at it, tell someone about that wonderful love, because you never know when it's the last time you'll see them. God loves you, beloved, and He's totally for you and really in the end, that's all that matters!

I John 4:7 Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God; and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God. 1 John 4:12 No one has seen God at any time; if we love one another, God abides in us, and His love is perfected in us. 1 Peter 4:8 Above all, keep fervent in your love for one another, because love covers a multitude of sins. Isaiah 63:9 In all their affliction He was afflicted, And the angel of His presence saved them; In His love and in His mercy He redeemed them, And He lifted them and carried them all the days of old. 2 Thessalonians 3:5 May the Lord direct your hearts into the love of God and into the steadfastness of Christ. I Corinthians 13:1 If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. I Corinthians 13:13 But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Unreported History

Yesterday afternoon, about 5:30 pm Central Time, history was made. It didn’t get on the news, it won’t make it in the history books, but it happened. A group of concerned citizens stopped for a few moments, gathered together and prayed. The decision was made to ask God to come into the situation and help. On earth, we just saw a group of people gathered together with heads bowed. But in heaven! Th...e heavenly host sang hallelujah as the King of Kings and the Lord of Lords came down to earth and met with them. Because somebody asked for God’s divine guidance and help, in a situation that makes no sense and has hurt so bad, they made history! And because they asked Him to help, He will. It’s that simple and that historic. Oh beloved, are you wondering what’s going on this morning? Are you hurting because people have lied, distorted the truth, covered up the facts and don’t keep their word? Are you wondering if anything will ever be right again or if God really cares? Run to Him this morning and invite Him in! He knows your situation, He sees your plight, and He’s ready with His heavenly host to come and meet with you! Trust Him today, put Him first, seek Him continually. He always keeps His Word, so you can count on Him! He loves you, He’s for you, He answers prayers, He loves you beyond imagination and He will work all things together for your good! History in the making – that’s your life, hemmed in His Word, seeking His face! ““The LORD your God is in your midst, A victorious warrior. He will exult over you with joy, He will be quiet in His love, He will rejoice over you with shouts of joy.” Zephaniah 3:17 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you. Matthew 6:33 I love the LORD, because He hears My voice and my supplications. Because He has inclined His ear to me, Therefore I shall call upon Him as long as I live. Psalm 116:1-2

Monday, May 14, 2012

Live Well!

"Live Well. Laugh Often. Love Much." It's one of my favorite quotes and I have it on a pillow and hanging on the wall in our kitchen. In this economy, with these tough times and so many changes going on, how can a person live well? It's more than financial, it's more than possessions. To live well is to know each day that you are living according to His ways, trusting in His Word and walking in His precepts. Oh beloved, have you ever put your trust in Christ? Have you said yes to Him? Was there a time when you knew you were walking in newness of life? The air felt cleaner, the water tasted purer and your walk was lighter? Run back to His Word this morning and read what He says about you, what He says about living and what He says about your hope. He loves you more than anyone else could ever love you, His plans are better than anyone else's and His ways are absolutely more abundant than anything you could plan for yourself. Try Him and see! He's standing right there waiting for you to welcome Him in to your day! Psalm 91:1 He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High Will abide in the shadow of the Almighty. John 15:4 Abide in Me, and I in you. As the branch cannot bear fruit of itself unless it abides in the vine, so neither can you unless you abide in Me. Luke 12: 31 Seek the Kingdom of God above all else, and he will give you everything you need. 3 John 1:2 Beloved, I pray that in all respects you may prosper and be in good health, just as your soul prospers.

Sunday, May 13, 2012


Mother’s Day. A special day set aside to honor the women who have gone before us. The trail blazers. The pioneers. My mother was very special. Born when covered wagons were still rolling and buffalo roamed prairies, she learned stamina and persistence early on. Her life was hard yet she remained soft. She was always working, even when at home. She taught me the most valuable lessons of life. She taught me to laugh often, forgive quickly, love always. The greatest thing she taught me was to look to, trust in and rely on God. Oh beloved, what are you thinking this morning? Perhaps your mother wasn’t the role model you wish she’d been. Regardless, somewhere in your life a woman has made a difference in your life. While you may not be a mother, you too have made a difference in someone’s life. This day is set aside to honor women and I know wherever you are in your heart and mind on this day, Someone knew you before the foundation of the world. Someone had a plan for your life, a plan for good . Today may be hard. It could be a day of mourning, but because of the Lord, you can rejoice! Because of the Lord you can look up and give thanks! Things may not be the way you want them to be, but you can take this day and lay it before Him. He will make an ordinary day into something incredibly special. Why? How? Because beloved, He loves you, He cares for you, He defends you, He redeems you, He makes something beautiful out of any past. Not only will He redeem your past, He will make your future bright! Run to Him this morning and thank Him that somewhere a mother made a difference. Somehow you can make a difference. It’s Mother’s Day but it’s the Lord’s Day as well! How lavish, how perfect, how abundant is His love for you! Our Redeemer, the LORD of hosts is His name, The Holy One of Israel. Isaiah 47:4 “Charm is deceitful and beauty is vain, But a woman who fears the LORD, she shall be praised.” Proverbs 31:30 "Rejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, rejoice! ' Philippians 4:4

Saturday, May 12, 2012

The Hole in the Seat

May 12, 2012 When we purchased our present car, there was a small mark on the back left seat. Something had discolored and broke through the leather in a tiny spot. It was hardly noticeable so we thought nothing of it. Over the next couple of years though this spot grew. Beginning at barely seen, it became a gaping hole! Finally Danny figured out that the previous owner must have sat a battery in the seat and the battery acid had corroded it. Neutralizing the acid and repairing the leather was needed. Even though you could see no acid with your eyes, the fact that it was continuing to corrode led him to know that the acid was working to damage things behind the scenes. Once neutralized, the damage could go no further and with care the spot was restored. If it had been left not dealt with, eventually the foam in the seat would have been totally destroyed. There are things in our lives, unseen with the naked eye, yet working to our detriment in the background. Unforgiveness is like the battery acid. First there’s the decision not to forgive. Not seen by many, probably only your closest loved ones or friends. It festers and corrodes until little by little it becomes a wound for all to see. Unforgiveness breeds bitterness and hardness. Not forgiving someone is like pouring salt in your own wound and expecting someone else to be hurt. Oh beloved, who are you holding back on? Who have you decided does not deserve your forgiveness? Unforgiveness corrodes our lives and the lives of those around us. It’s the elephant in the room. Maybe they truly hurt you, maybe the offense was harsh. Maybe it’s justified. Regardless of the reason, left untended, it will keep corroding your life and the wound will get larger and larger. Run to the Lord today, let Him wash away the damage, let Him neutralize the situation and forgive! The choice today is yours. The results of forgiveness are restoration, peace and joy! I know it may be hard but you don’t want to end up bitter and resentful the rest of your life. You are so loved, so incredibly cared for that He will walk you through it all and create a clean heart and a right spirit in you! Never forget how much God forgives and how much He is a restorer of broken relationships. Let Him apply the neutralizer of His forgiveness to your situation today! He loves you and He’s for you, and that’s all that matters! Psalm 86:5 O Lord, you are so good, so ready to forgive, so full of unfailing love for all who ask for your help. Matthew 6:12 and forgive us our sins, as we have forgiven those who sin against us. Matthew 6:14 “If you forgive those who sin against you, your heavenly Father will forgive you. Colossians 3:13 Make allowance for each other’s faults, and forgive anyone who offends you. Remember, the Lord forgave you, so you must forgive others.

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Learning to Lean

When the young man picks you up for a date while he's on a motorcycle you pretty much know motorcycling is going to be a part of your life. Over the years we had all kinds of bikes. Some had passenger pegs, some had sissy bars, some had fairings. But all had to lean in the curves. I always said leaning was easy for Danny because he learned to ride in West Texas winds. Leaning was always harder for me. I found that while I trusted Danny I didn't always trust the motorcycle! I had to learn the principle that if you don't lean in the curves, you won't make them. As I discovered Danny knew what he was doing, I could relax and trust the person who knew far more about handling the road than I did. Some curves were so treacherous that I just had to close my eyes and hold on till it was over. Oh beloved, are you facing the curves of life? Are you wondering about the road ahead? Is the present just a little too hard to face? Lean on the Lord! Let him lead you through the present circumstances. While leaning on Him is essential the worst of roads won't last forever. Eventually the road will smooth out again and you'll be riding with ease. Just know that regardless of what is looming in your life, trusting Christ is the only way to get through it all. Not only will you get through it, but you'll find yourself enjoying the everyday ride better as well! He loves you, He can be trusted and He truly knows what He's doing! Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Psalm 9:10 And they who know Your name [who have experience and acquaintance with Your mercy] will lean on and confidently put their trust in You, for You, Lord, have not forsaken those who seek (inquire of and for) You [on the authority of God’s Word and the right of their necessity]. Psalm 62:8 Trust in, lean on, rely on, and have confidence in Him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts before Him. God is a refuge for us (a fortress and a high tower). Hebrews 10:23 Let us hold tightly without wavering to the hope we affirm, for God can be trusted to keep his promise.

Tuesday, May 08, 2012

May 8, 2012 When I was a kid, there was a little candy store right across from the school I attended. For a nickel you could pick out a good handful of candies. There were quite a few penny candies to choose from. The only problem I had was choosing which ones to buy. If I got the banana candies, then I might wish I had gotten the bubble gum. It became very important to choose the right one. Learning to make a candy decision and sticking with it was a valuable life lesson. Enjoy what you’ve got. Tomorrow you could choose another type of candy. We have spiritual delights we can partake of as well. Praise, worship, Scripture, prayer, faith, and more. Unlike the nickel’s worth of candies, we can partake of as much as our hearts desire. It’s laid out for us with no restrictions. No sign that says “Take One” or any mention of having enough money before you choose. While each one of the spiritual delights is priceless, we can lay hold of them without paying. Unlike everything else in this world, from penny candies to motorcycles, which have a cost, sometimes huge for the purchaser, the gifts of God come free to the seeker. About all it takes to truly enjoy the gifts of God is whole heartedness. Oh beloved, have you been seeking the Lord? Are you desiring more from Him? Have you seen His storehouse of blessings through the window but not gone in to partake? What’s holding you back? The Lord’s storehouse is full and every delight is for you! Not only that, but He never runs out, so that no matter how much you enjoy, there’s always plenty. Perhaps you’ve seen it in others, but are holding back for fear of what friends might think if you abandon everything else and just go for God’s blessings and gifts? Today is the only day we’ve been promised. Just like the candy decision, we have to make a decision for these 24 hours. But oh beloved, and you are so incredibly beloved, once you have tasted of His heavenly gifts and basked in the light of His love, there’s no going back. He will always provide for you, always delight in you and always be with you. His gifts never run out and His blessings never go away. Try Him today. Abandon yourself in Him and watch as you enter His storeroom of love! Psalm 34:8 Taste and see that the LORD is good. Oh, the joys of those who take refuge in him! Psalm 147:11 No, the LORD’s delight is in those who fear him, those who put their hope in his unfailing love. Psalm 103:1 Let all that I am praise the LORD; with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name. Isaiah 55:1 “Ho! Everyone who thirsts, come to the waters; And you who have no money come, buy and eat. Jeremiah 24:7 I will give them a heart to know Me, for I am the LORD; and they will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with their whole heart.

Sunday, May 06, 2012

Godly. We hear it spoken of often. He's a Godly man. She's a Godly woman. I have those people in my life who I consider just that. Godly. Often, though, I begin to think of Godly as something to work on, dig in about, crunch the numbers on. I find that Godly is hardly attainable as I try to reach. Picture this if you will. You are caught in a flood. The helicopter comes and the rescuers are there to pluck you from your certain death. What would happen if the helicopter hovered over the spot and the rescuers called out, get up here if you can. We're waiting. Here's a rope. You are going to try to get yourself out of the water, tie the rope around your tummy and then procede to climb it. The water is lapping, the wind from the helicopter's blades is whipping you around and your without the strength to climb that 100 feet into the air. Now picture the truth. The helicopter arrives and the rescuer comes down to where you are and sets you securely in the ropes, hugs you tightly and goes all the way with you to the waiting security of the helicopter. One instance you saved yourself. Other instance you were saved by others. We are Godly because we have been set into a place of privileged that is totaly undeserved by our own merit, ability and strength. Without a Rescuer who has done all the work for us, we are doomed. We can't bob just above water forever. Our own works cannot save us, for eventually our human weakness will betray us. But the Lord, Our Rescuer, is at hand! His mighty arm will reach down at just the right time to save you to the uttermost. And, if you are saved, His grace will keep you from drowning and set you upon the Rock. Oh beloved, run to Him - His arms are strong, His strength is complete and His love is everlasting. Whatever you've been going through, He will see you through it. Whatever you've been drowning in, He is able to take you out of it and dry you off and give you the grace to be the Godly person you are called to be. Let Him lift you this morning. Let Him be the Lord to you. Let Him show you that it is He who pronounces you godly and He who will see you safely home. 2 Peter 2:9 A if this is so, then the Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials.... Romans 3:22 We are made right with God by placing our faith in Jesus Christ. And this is true for everyone who believes, no matter who we are. 1 Corinthians 6:11 Some of you were once like that. But you were cleansed; you were made holy; you were made right with God by calling on the name of the Lord Jesus Christ and by the Spirit of our God. Jude 1:24 Now all glory to God, who is able to keep you from falling away and will bring you with great joy into his glorious presence without a single fault. Ephesians 2:8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;

Friday, May 04, 2012

Root or Shoot!

Root or shoot. Last night we went to a grandson's ballgame. Before the game he told me he wanted me to hoop and holler when he hit the ball. So, being the good grandmother I am, I did just that! Once he hit the ball so well that I hollered, Woo Hoo! Way to go Blakely! As he left home plate to run towards 1st base he turned to look at me with such glee in his eyes! He loved being rooted for! I thin...k he grew in stature a couple of inches. He was proud of himself and he knew that we all were proud of him. It can go differently for kids. Sometimes parents major on the minors. They critique to the point that instead of building their kids up they put them down. You see the outcome in various ways. low shoulders, shrugs, head down, and even taunting of other kids, eager to point out their mistakes. Oh beloved, perhaps you've been shot down. Instead of someone rooting for you, you feel you're being shot at! You try to dodge the bullets of anger, animosity, unforgiveness and fault finding. Maybe you've been the brunt of it so long you find yourself doing the same thing to others. Shooting always finds victims, but rooting always brings victory! I promise, on the authority of God's Word that He never shoots, He always roots. Even when His children are having problems, He's there in the stands whooping and waving you on to victory! He's walking with you into the dugout when the world says You're Out! He's holding your hand and telling you to hang in there beloved! He loves you, He has a wonderful plan for your life and He's nicknamed you Winner! Romans 15:4 Such things were written in the Scriptures long ago to teach us. And the Scriptures give us hope and encouragement as we wait patiently for God’s promises to be fulfilled. Ephesians 4:29 Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them. Philippians 2:1-2 Is there any encouragement from belonging to Christ? Any comfort from his love? Any fellowship together in the Spirit? Are your hearts tender and compassionate? Then make me truly happy by agreeing wholeheartedly with each other, loving one another, and working together with one mind and purpose. Isaiah 41:10 Don’t be afraid, for I am with you. Don’t be discouraged, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you. I will hold you up with my victorious right hand. Psalm 62:7 My victory and honor come from God alone. He is my refuge, a rock where no enemy can reach me.