Wednesday, October 30, 2013

UTurns Permitted in God's Plan of Grace

The local primary school has volunteers and assistants who walk children from the car drop off points to the school.  This makes for safety because there are many parents driving through in 3 lanes each morning. 

Dropping off one of my grandsons at school yesterday morning, we were so busy talking I passed right by! We had to make a large block to get back to where we were supposed to be.  Once we arrived, it was just as the bell was going to ring.  We were not the only ones running late as I looked behind me to see at least a couple dozen cars waiting to let their youngsters out. I was amazed that, even though there were many children yet to walk across the lot to the building, the volunteers all walked away and inside, leaving many kids to fend for themselves to get inside the building. I worried as to whether I should get out and walk my grandson across the way, but a mother with her child in tow motioned for him to follow. Thankful that someone was there to help out, I drove on to work.

There are times in the walk of a believer when we get distracted by life and forget to turn in when God says turn. We must make a block, sometimes a huge block, to get back to where we should have been. Although it may feel like it takes forever, we can be assured that even our desire to turn around means that God is still speaking to us and if He’s speaking to our hearts then He’s still leading us.

We can find courage that even when we’re late He’s always waiting on us. He will never let us walk alone, no matter what time of “day” it is.  Our walk with Him is always in the power and care of the Holy Spirit, so that no matter what we can have peace and comfort in His presence.

God speaks to our hearts:  Precious one.  Two things you worry about. Missing My direction and Missing My protection. There’s no failure in turning around to get back to Me. There’s no danger, even when you think it’s too late. You never walk alone no matter what. I promised in My word to be with you always and I AM not a man that I should lie or tell you half-truths. I AM God. There is no other. I am the One who is calling you back to Me. I am the One Who puts it on your heart to make a change. I am the One who calls you by name and gives you grace and mercy. You can stop and turn around today and give Me your heart, your problems and your desires and I will graciously forgive you and renew your faith in Me. I will not only walk with you until you get back to the spot I called you, I will walk you all the way to your final Home. Unlike friends who may walk out of your life or enemies who may strike at the very core of your life, I AM All loving, All seeing, All caring, All redeeming.  You can walk confident because you never have to feel condemned.

Oh beloved, aren’t we blessed? Our God is not a God who is unapproachable! He is the Great I AM and yet He is our Abba Father! Respect, glory and honor belong to Him alone but He is always there to help us.  No matter what you are going through, no matter what mistakes you think you have made, no matter who has said you’re done for, done in or done – God says follow Me, continue with Me, trust Me.

God loves you always and He’s for you continually and that’s why you can always return to Him, walk with Him and keep moving forward with Him.

I Timothy 1:14 Oh, how generous and gracious our Lord was! He filled me with the faith and love that come from Christ Jesus.

Lamentations 3:40 Instead, let us test and examine our ways. Let us turn back to the Lord.

Isaiah 30:18 Therefore the Lord longs to be gracious to you, and therefore He waits on high to have compassion on you. For the Lord is a God of justice; How blessed are all those who long for Him.

Psalm 13:5-6 But I trust in Your unfailing love.  I will rejoice because you have rescued me.  I will sing to the Lord because He is good to me.


Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Time to Go Mining for the Depths of God's Word

We watched a show yesterday afternoon about prospecting for gemstones. It was pretty exciting to watch them dig and dig through what seemed like only rocks and dirt just to observe their excitement upon finding the “mother lode”. One moment they’d be lamenting their loss and wouldn’t know how they’d recover their expenses. But with one more turn of the spade they’d spy a trophy stone. From pauper to riches!

I told Danny that maybe we could take a month off and go digging ourselves! Thousands of dollars a day was a nice salary for digging. We both laughed. Mostly because Danny has worked pretty hard all his life and he recognized just what they were doing. They weren’t sifting through nice garden soil. No, they were sledge hammering rocks and using a pick ax to dismantle large boulders. One scene showed one of the partners laying on his back holding a huge boulder up with his feet so the other fellow could reach underneath for stones!

Their work netted great results for them. But it was work. And although we watched a 30 minute program with all the highlights, we didn’t have time to watch their entire search. It could have been days, months or years they spent looking for just what they really needed. Surface work would never have netted the prize. It took digging and time and more digging. Searching for true riches can be a lifelong endeavor.

We believers are miners of sorts. We have riches that we often never even try to mine for. We want the easy pickings, the things that are on the surface. We want salvation and justification and a pain free life. We want all the things we can have from Christ. But we aren’t really into sacrificing our time, our finances, our plans for His direction.

But the most beautiful and priceless gifts of the Spirit are found much deeper in our Christian life. If we are going to have all that Christ has provided for us we’re going to have to work for it. We’re going to have to take the time to dig for it. Often we never bother until we are truly in the arid places of life. Those are our most profound moments – those times we realize we must have more of Jesus to get us through it all. We see it as a desert time, but God sees it as a time of mining for His jewels. We get upset and worried and troubled about it all, but God sees it as the perfect opportunity to let Him increase in our lives.

God speaks to our hearts: Precious child. You have been so content to take the easy road. But your heart has been yearning for more of Me. It’s time for you to follow me into the mountains as together we will learn to mine for pure gold and precious stones. Every precious jewel found in Me is available to you but they are not found in the meadows, in the casual, in the easy places. Time spent with Me is where you reap your greatest reward. In My presence you will find everything you’ve ever wanted and oh, so much more! In My Presence you will find rare jewels of the life of faith: abiding peace, everlasting joy, contentment, gratitude, wisdom, perseverance and hope, among others. Everything you need is found in Me as you spend time with Me digging deeper in sacrifice of your own plans.

Oh beloved, run to the Lord this morning and ask Him to take you mining through His Word! God loves you and He’s for you, so that all you have to do is spend plenty of time with Him to have a rich and rewarding life. Let other things go, but don’t neglect your life In Christ, for that’s what really matters and that’s where you will find your true calling as you follow after Him.

Ephesians 1:18 I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened, so that you will know what is the hope of His calling, what are the riches of the glory of His inheritance in the saints,

Romans 11:33 Oh, the depth of the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are His judgments and unfathomable His ways!

Psalm 19:9-11 The fear of the LORD is clean, enduring forever; The judgments of the LORD are true; they are righteous altogether. They are more desirable than gold, yes, than much fine gold; Sweeter also than honey and the drippings of the honeycomb. Moreover, by them Your servant is warned; In keeping them there is great reward.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Your Roots Grow Strong When You're on the Rock

As the leaves begin to change colors and fall from the trees, the cragginess of the local mountains is exposed. Much of what we see is almost pure rock. I am amazed at how a tree can grow in such rocky conditions. Its roots are often exposed and there seems to be no visible soil to give it sustenance to grow. Yet grow it does. The roots extend out over chasms and appear from under jutting boulders.... There’s not much outward difference in the upper part of the tree as the leaves grow and fruit and nuts are produced, even on the evergreens as they produce their seed cones. You have to wonder if the seed from a tree growing in these conditions makes for stronger progeny.

What we don’t see is that the tree has found energy to thrive somewhere between the crags. The strength of the tree is not found in the branches but rather in the roots. The tenaciousness of the will to live is seen in a tree. It does not consider the stark conditions of its life but hangs on to life itself. Not only does it hang on, it thrives. It becomes an oasis as birds and animals alike find rest in the boughs. While trees in the valley are often taken down by the winds and storms, the trees whose roots are twined through the rocks hold fast, no matter the conditions.

God speaks to our hearts: Precious child – many times in your life you have found yourself in the starkest of conditions. Nothing but rocks of trouble, boulders of trials, crevices of hardship abound all around you. You feel as you have nothing to hold onto, nothing to cling to and nowhere to live. It is then that you can find your greatest growth. For where you find nothing, you find Me. I AM enough. I AM your portion for living water and good soil. Cling not to the circumstances of your life. But rather cling to Me. I will keep you secure from the dangers of unbelief. I will give you growth even in these hard times; I will give you hope and purpose to put your roots down deeper and make them stronger. You are beloved to me and not a single thing in your life is wasted. While the valleys may feel like they are where your abundance is, it is in the high mountains that you find Me the strongest on your behalf. In the storms of life you will remain strong for your roots are grown around the Rock. Not only will I keep you and cause you to thrive, but your testimony and your stamina will be a source of comfort and strength to others as they observe you hanging tightly to Me.

Oh beloved, cling to the Lord! Put your roots down strong into the Word of God. Look to the Name of the Lord for your reason to live. God loves you right where you are and He’s never going to let you lose your footing as long as you cling to Him alone!

Colossians 2:7 Let your roots grow down into Him, and let your lives be built on Him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.

2 Peter 3:18 Rather, you must grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. All glory to Him, both now and forever! Amen.

Psalm 62:2 He alone is my rock and my salvation, my fortress where I will never be shaken.

Ephesians 3:17 Then Christ will make His home in your hearts as you trust in Him. Your roots will grow down into God’s love and keep you strong.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Don't Venture Out into Your Troubles Alone

We had five wonderful visitors spend the night with us last night. From the age of 15 down to 2, they were delightful. Once they were all asleep I was ready to relax myself. Some were in the bed upstairs, some were on pallets and one was on the loveseat. After a while I decided to sleep on the couch where I could relax and yet hear every grandchild in the house.

We know that Caleb has already gone home in the night before, leaving the front door of my house wide open and walking through the night across the street to his parents’ house. So Danny installed a chain lock high on the front door as an added measure of safety. About 1:30 I woke up and saw Caleb walking around the living room whimpering slightly. I told him to come lay down with me on the couch. Well, after he was back asleep I got up and sat in another chair and to my horror the front door was open! He had tried to escape again, this time into a rainy, very cold night. As I walked to the door I saw that the chain had indeed kept him inside. I whispered a prayer of thanks to the Lord and my husband for putting that extra measure of protection for Caleb. None of the others have ever tried to go outside or go to their house but it was worth the trouble just for Caleb. We sure do love that boy.

God speaks to my heart about His extreme love and care. He wants to speak to your heart as well: Precious child, I am well aware that you are wide awake in the middle of the night at times, rehearsing your problems, resisting your calling, remembering your past or reliving  some rejection.  You may be in a stormy, dark situation at this very moment. Whatever you do, don’t walk away from My care. Don’t try to fix things yourself. Don’t wander but pick up My book of Truth and read about all My promises. I am here for you always. I am protecting you completely. I am working all those things out for My glory and your good. Stay inside the warmth of my love and wait until morning, for things will change for you in a moment, at just the right time.  

Lord, don’t let me walk out into the stormy night alone. Keep your chain of love secured and keep me locked in your presence. I don’t want to make decisions based on my own feelings. I may long for things I don’t need, but as long as you hold me tightly I won’t forget your extreme loving care. I may try to venture out in the dark but only You can protect me, guide me, and keep me safe all the days of my life.

God loves you beloved and He’s for you so you can trust Him to get you through the rainy nights as He works everything out perfectly just for you.

Isaiah 31:5 The LORD of Heaven's Armies will hover over Jerusalem and protect it like a bird protecting its nest. He will defend and save the city; He will pass over it and rescue it.

Psalm 57:1 Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy! I look to you for protection. I will hide beneath the shadow of your wings until the danger passes by.

Psalm 5:11 But let all who take refuge in you rejoice; let them sing joyful praises forever. Spread your protection over them, that all who love your name may be filled with joy.

Psalm 4:8 In peace I will lie down and sleep, for you alone, O Lord, will keep me safe.


Saturday, October 26, 2013

Rest Area Ahead - Please Pull Over

With a smart phone, which most people have now, you can do just about everything. You can order a meal, buy an outfit, listen to music, keep in contact with friends, take pictures, work from home, type a letter, talk to friends and family, read the Bible and check the news and weather. Pretty amazing. Amazing more, you can walk around and never even talk face to face with another person and get all this done!  I’m not making fun of smart phones, I have one and so does my husband. We find them to be very convenient. With my car the phone connects to a speaker and I have hands free use while driving.

Just about everything in our lives is instant. But there’s a cost to it all. We now pay more for our phones than we paid for our entire month’s bills when we were first married.  We now struggle when we’re in a “dead zone” for fear someone might try to reach us or we might need to reach out to someone else or check the weather, etc.

Although smart phones have given us instant access to so much information and so many people, we haven’t really found more time. Just like other time savers, it has caused us to become even busier. Our lives are hectic, harried and fast paced. Often we find that the very things that were meant to help us have actually hindered us. We get frustrated when the microwave goes for 30 seconds!

God speaks to my heart: It is in quietness and time alone that you will find your most needed connection and that is with Me. I AM the answer to all your problems, but you must take time to spend it with Me. I know your situation, I know your time constraints and I know your heart. If you will stop and carve out time in My presence I will slow your racing heart, calm your racing mind and give you peace – real peace. As you spend time with Me you will find real answers that you have been anxiously searching for and you will be able to relax and rest. The more you take time to spend with Me, the more you will hear from Me. I will help you, I will guide you, I will speak to your heart about every other thing that is going on in your life. In My presence you will find out how to make it all work, put it all together and have time to do what you have to do. And My presence causes you to have more time because I redeem and bless time spent with Me.

Oh beloved, maybe it’s time to pull over. Take a rest stop from the frantic pace of life. Enjoy time with God. Although everything you do is important to your life, it is also very important that you slow down and rest - Rest in His presence - Rest in His grace - Rest in His power. God never hurries. There are no deadlines against which He must work. His life saving plans are found in His Word and they will sustain you wherever you must go, whatever you must do.

God loves you and He’s for you and that’s what gives you rest and peace for your busy life.   

Matthew 11:28 Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy-laden and overburdened, and I will cause you to rest. [I will ease and relieve and refresh your souls.] AMP

Philippians 4:6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God, which surpasses all comprehension , will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. NAS

Isaiah 30:15 This is what the Sovereign Lord, the Holy One of Israel, says: “Only in returning to me and resting in me will you be saved. In quietness and confidence is your strength…

Matthew 6:33 But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Friday, October 25, 2013

You Are on God's Team - You can Go the Distance!

A carload of us went to watch my 11 year old grandson play football this week. As soon as the sun went down it got quite chilly! I admit I don’t know a whole lot about the game but I did learn a lot just because I wanted to know what my grandson’s position was and what he did in the game to help his team. One time he managed to tackle the runner in the opposing team and take him out of bounds right in front of us! Talk about exciting! I’m so proud of him.  My dad was a football fanatic and I know he would love to watch a grandchild play his favorite game.

He plays wide receiver and does a real good job at it. These positions are given to the boys who are usually the fastest pass catchers. I watched him set up to do that as well. Several times there were flags thrown and of course both teams got their share of flags. One on the opposing team was for pass interference which is a penalty that occurs when a player interferes with the other team’s receiver’s attempt to catch a forward pass. Pass interference may include tripping, pushing, pulling, or cutting in front of the receiver or pulling on the receiver's arms.

I will admit I don’t understand a lot about the game of football. But I know there are times I feel like my life has been penalized because of pass interference. I was going strong, going long and enjoying the catch when someone or some situation interfered with my play. I got knocked to the ground or pushed out of the way or got cut in front of. It’s no fun to be tackled or to be slammed out of the playing field altogether. Injury comes to my heart and my mind. If I’m not careful I will stay injured and quit the game altogether.

God speaks to our hearts: Give thanks because you are on My team! No one can snatch you out of the playing field of My life. No one can permanently damage your ability to go the distance with Me. Neither your sins, your regrets, your mistakes nor your enemies can make you a loser. No one, nothing, not a single detail of your life is without My loving care. I am full of mercy so that when an unfair play is called on your life I AM there to step in as Referee and I will have My way in your life. Team players need to know that I AM consistent, merciful, forgiving, redeeming, and more. I am not just the referee, I am the coach and the team owner. As long as you keep your eyes on Me I will give you touchdown after touchdown. Just don’t quit running, don’t leave the playing field and don’t get discouraged. Together we are in a Win Win situation –for My ways are the way of a champion. Look at My play book and take in the Truth about you, about the game of life and most of all about Me. I AM the Great I AM and all My plans will prosper that I planned for you before the foundation of the world.

Oh beloved, don’t stay down! Grab God’s hand and get up and keep running! Forget about the opposing team and just keep looking to Jesus for He runs ahead of you to block everything that is not of His will. God loves you and He’s for you and that’s what makes you a winner no matter what!

Psalm 3:1-4  Lord, I have so many enemies; so many are against me. So many are saying, “God will never rescue him!” But you, O Lord, are a shield around me; you are my glory, the one who holds my head high. I cried out to the Lord, and He answered me from His holy mountain.

Proverbs 24:16 The godly may trip seven times, but they will get up again. But one disaster is enough to overthrow the wicked.

Psalm 37:23-24 The Lord directs the steps of the godly. He delights in every detail of their lives.  Though they stumble, they will never fall, for the Lord holds them by the hand.

Psalm 119: 173 Let Your hand be ready to help me, For I have chosen Your precepts. (NAS)

I Corinthians 15:58 So, my dear brothers and sisters, be strong and immovable. Always work enthusiastically for the Lord, for you know that nothing you do for the Lord is ever useless.



Thursday, October 24, 2013

Let God Shift Your Plans for His Best

I had forgotten something at my office the other night and didn’t realize it until 9:30 pm. I asked my daughter living across the street if she wanted to go with me. She agreed and I even let her drive my car. I don’t see well at night, so it was a big help!

As she pushed the start button and then looked at the gear knob, she stopped for a moment. “This car is backwards! You should have to pull it down to go backwards and push it up to go forwards.” We laughed about it as we pulled out of my driveway.

This morning I was thinking about how the drive of faith can be a lot like the gears in a car. Sometimes it seems we are going backwards when we’re really going forward. A change in gears is often seen as a setback or a wrong direction. We don’t like change. We don’t want to change gears, change houses, change directions or change our plans. We’re creatures of familiarity. We like feeling at home, settling in and remaining for the long haul.

But just like buying a new car and having to learn the nuances of it, we too must keep our faith fresh and new. We must say yes to God no matter where He puts us. We must drive away into the unknown, sometimes without knowing where we’re heading, and trust Him to teach us how to go there. We can sit and fumble with the direction of our life, just like my daughter fumbled with the gear shift, or we can say “Lord, teach me”. We can’t keep driving the new direction with our old plan for it will not work in the same way. We must leave behind what we loved in order to find His best for us.

God speaks to our hearts: You’ve been driving in the same direction and it’s been good. You know the ropes, you know the plans, you know the talk. But you are now faced with an entirely new plan. I know you’re unsure of the new because you were so familiar with the old – comfortable, good at it and willing to stay the course no matter what. But I AM taking you out of your comfort zone and into a new thing. No one took your plans away because I AM in charge of your life – every single detail. So even if it looks like you have been left stranded on the side of the road without a vehicle to drive forward, you have Me. Even if the change was unexpected, unwarranted or unbelievable, I AM guiding you. And I will put you on firm footing and get you right where I want you. You may feel like you’ve been set back, put in reverse or sitting idle, but as you look at Me instead of the circumstances you will see that I AM the one who is driving you forward and keeping you right in the center of my will. No thought of man, no scheme of flesh, no plan of the enemy can get you off course as you let Me steer you into new horizons and over new ground.  It may seem uncomfortable at first, but when you see where I am taking you, you will love it for it is My will that over rides any gear you feel stuck in.

Oh beloved, stop stripping gears over changed plans! God is with you, God is Sovereign and God has His plan for you! Get in gear with the Lord and ride on with Him! It’s a tailor made journey, with all the right gears, the right vehicle and the right mode. You can trust Him because He loves you and He’s for you – no matter what– He is with you all the days of your life.

Genesis 19:16 When Lot still hesitated, the angels seized his hand and the hands of his wife and two daughters and rushed them to safety outside the city, for the LORD was merciful.

Isaiah 43:19 Behold, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs forth; do you not perceive and know it and will you not give heed to it? I will even make a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert. (Amplified)

Psalm 33:11 But the Lord’s plans stand firm forever; His intentions can never be shaken.

Ephesians 1:11 Furthermore, because we are united with Christ, we have received an inheritance from God, for He chose us in advance, and He makes everything work out according to His plan.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Learning Experiences Disguised as Near Fatal Blows

Tuesday October 22, 2013 Devotional -

I’ll never forget the day in 1962 when I was hit in the cheek with a golf club. I was 6 years old and was being given “lessons” by a friend’s grandson. As the blow swiped me off my feet I remember seeing my mother in a distant lawn chair. Her hands flew to her mouth in horror as she leaped to her feet to come to my aid. As I think of her reaction my eyes well with tears at just how much she always loved me.

What I didn’t know was that my mother thought he had hit me in the eye. Blood was everywhere. She was frantic. It could have been disfiguring. It could have been a very intensive situation. I didn’t know what had happened for a moment. All I knew was one moment I was standing behind the “teacher” and the next moment I was down and out.

We went to Wadley Hospital where I was promptly stitched up. The boy who caused the accident came into the room to tell me he was sorry. Of course he didn’t do it with malice. We just collided as I stood too close behind him as he swung the metal club. Afterwards I got to drop a penny in the fountain outside the hospital.

To this day I bear the scar on my left cheek. Most people never notice it. Although it looked like something much worse had happened I’m happy to say it is barely perceptible now. I do remember not to stand too close behind someone who is wielding a golf club!

God speaks to my heart: My precious child. Life is full of learning experiences that come disguised as near fatal blows. Often you have been totally down and out due to a swiping hit. Sometimes it has come from another; sometimes it was by accident; other times quite on purpose. You have felt rejected, injured, bleeding. At times you just knew you would die. Although it seemed so severe, My hand was holding back the lethalness. My hand was keeping you from being totally ruined, disfigured or disabled. Each time you recovered it was My Spirit that built you up, renewed you and increased your faith. Don’t look in the mirror of your own past or your own fears or your own hurts, but rather look into the mirror of My Word. As you reflect on the heart healing I give you, you will lay aside the hurts and anguish. As you reflect on the Truth, you will be able to quench the lies the enemy will try to speak into your heart. Not only will you learn more about Me you will be able to tell others that their injuries can be healed as they too learn to Trust in My Word.

Oh beloved, ultimately there is only one thing that will keep you from losing your life and that is the Truth that God loves you and He’s for you so He will watch over you, guide you and keep you safe all the days of your life.

Psalm 146:5 But joyful are those who have the God of Israel as their helper, whose hope is in the Lord their God.

Hebrews 13:6 So we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper, so I will have no fear. What can mere people do to me?”

Habakkuk 3:18 yet I will rejoice in the Lord! I will be joyful in the God of my salvation!

At Some Point You Will Have to Trust God

My dad was a whole lot of fun. But at the same time he was a no nonsense father. When I asked him for something or permission to go somewhere he would give it fair thought. But once he said no that was it. There was no going further with the discussion. No pleading, begging, whining or cajoling would work on him. It only served to get me in trouble. A no was a no. And that was that.

That’s a real tough thing for a kid who always wants to know “why”. I find that I am still one who wants to know why. I even ask my husband “why”? I don’t mind going, doing, following, I don’t mind a change in direction, but I just love to know why.

Recently I was having a conversation with my Heavenly Father. In fact I had been conversing with Him for days about something. I kept asking Him the same question over and over – “Why?” Each and every day I would ask Him the same thing. No answer would come.

Finally, one morning just a few days ago He responded. I heard Him speak to my heart: “Don’t ever ask Me why again.” And then the Scripture came to mind: “In the fullness of time…”  Okay, I heard my Daddy God and that was that.  Either I would listen to Him and move on or I would continue to ask why and stay upset, wondering, trying to figure out the answer.

This morning during my quiet time I realized that as I had quit asking why I also had quit whining about it. I discovered that the more we ask why, the more we will whine. And the more we whine the more we are stuck in that situation, that problem, that turmoil, that feeling. I realized that why is short for whine!

God speaks to our hearts: At some point in time you will have to trust Me. The situation might get bleak, the days might get dark, the hurts will come and the doubts will fly around your head like a whole lot of gnats. You can swat at the problems, beg Me for answers and whine, whine, whine. But you will have to trust Me. Nothing can happen that I am not aware of. Nothing that surprises you surprises Me at all. No condition of your life is impossible, no situation of peril is unfixable, no power on earth nor power of man can move you from My will for your life – as long as you trust Me.  I AM the Lord. There is no other. It is I Who govern lives, countries, rulers and subjects. You are My child and because you are My child you can rest in My promises, relax in My decisions and rejoice in My direction.  Behold precious child, I AM about to take you beyond yourself. I AM about to move in your life in such a direction that the heavenly host is already singing Hallelujah. Stop asking Me why and start asking Me why not? Lock arms in faith with Me and let Me walk you out of the present familiarity and into the unknown future that I have created just for you.

Oh beloved, leave it all at the Father’s feet. Hang a “No whining” sign on your heart. Open the Book of Love, Peace, Prosperity, Thankfulness and Trust and rehearse His Truth!!! You are more than the sum of your “why’s”. As you leave the why’s behind, you will discover even more intimately how much God loves you and how passionately He is for you.  And then you will discover that God is all that really matters as you travel under His direction, His sovereignty and His authority all the days of your life.

Job 40:2 Then the Lord said to Job, “Do you still want to argue with the Almighty? You are God’s critic, but do you have the answers?”

Proverbs 3:5 Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.

Proverbs 22:19 I am teaching you today--yes, you--so you will trust in the LORD.

Proverbs 8:32 And so, my children, listen to me, for all who follow My ways are joyful.

Deuteronomy 13:4 Serve only the Lord your God and fear Him alone. Obey His commands, listen to His voice, and cling to Him.

Monday, October 21, 2013

Does Life Feel LIke a Maze?

I love the fall. The beautiful colors changing in the hardwood trees, the pots of colorful mums, pumpkins and harvest festivals are a sight to behold. Around our area there are several corn mazes. These mazes are intended to be loads of fun for the entire family. Corn mazes appear in many different designs. Some mazes are even created to tell stories or to portray a particular theme. Most have a path, which goes all around the whole pattern, either to end in the middle or to come back out again. It’s generally intended to be hard enough that you have to retrace some of your steps or try a new direction in order to get through it.

When you enter a maze you have no way of seeing the pattern of the route. It’s obscured because you are at ground level and the corn stalks are generally head high or taller. You just have to feel your way around, walk carefully and remember where you’ve been. It can get a little scary because it’s hard to know if you’re near the end of it or if you have circled back to the beginning. Some of the haunted mazes have characters hiding along the way to scare people and to make them scream.

Life is a lot like a maze. We find our faith walk’s beginning and the focal point is Christ, the Entrance to real life. We begin walking and encounter lots of twists and turns along the way. Some of them are filled with dangers, dread and trouble. We get confused and turned around. We can’t see where our life is going, we can’t plan every step, we try to keep walking in belief. We wonder sometimes if God is asking us to go back or if He’s asking us to have faith and keep going.

God speaks to our hearts: My precious child. You may see life as a maze that’s impossible to traverse. The view from your flesh is only as far as your eye can see. But My view is complete. I know the exact path of your life. I know the twists and turns that are simply part of the bigger picture of your entire life. I am the creator of all you cannot see and all you are going to accomplish through it all. I am the finisher of the maze and I will keep you heading in the right direction all the days of your life. And even if you get off track, you only have to come to Me for redirection. Even if someone else tries to confuse you and upset you with their lack of planning or their purposeful misdirection I am your Guide all the way through. I will never leave you to meet your fears alone, I will never let someone else take you where I don’t want you to go and I will always lead you with love!

Oh beloved, you can trust the Lord to guide you by His light and His Word. Everything you need to know how to live, where to go and how to navigate through life’s troubles is written out for you by the Holy Spirit.  Ultimately no one can send you through a maze that God Himself has not allowed. Ultimately even a twist or turn that was meant to harm you or get you lost from His plan will be used for His glory and your good. God will turn it all around, get you through the darkness and set you on High with Him. His Word is your map through all you encounter so that you are no longer the victim of rejection, misdirection or your own will. Reach out to God’s Word, reject the enemy’s lies, walk forward with faith and remember that God will not let you stay confused, lose your way, or remain lost for His path for your life is confirmed in heaven.

God loves you and He’s for you and He’s all you need to get through this life and get to the next life where you will live with Him forever!

Jeremiah 14:9 Are you also confused? Is our champion helpless to save us? You are right here among us, Lord. We are known as Your people. Please don’t abandon us now!

Psalm 139:23-24 Search me, O God, and know my heart; test me and know my anxious thoughts.
Point out anything in me that offends You, and lead me along the path of everlasting life.

Psalm 143:11 For the glory of Your name, O Lord, preserve my life. Because of Your faithfulness, bring me out of this distress.

Psalm 16:7 I will bless the Lord who guides me; even at night my heart instructs me.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

It's Time to Release the Moorings!

We’ve had a couple of boats through the years. One was a bass boat and the other one was a ski boat. We spent a lot of time keeping both running. We found out after the bass boat that fishing was just work – not much fun. Eventually we gave up bass fishing altogether and went for another motorcycle.

I was reminded today of the old slapstick comedies, both movies and cartoons where the boats were tied to the dock. Invariably someone would try to make a quick getaway from the shore and inevitably there would be an accident because someone forgot to untie the rope from the dock. Either the cartoon cat driving the boat would be catapulted beyond the horizon or the movie actor would end up sinking in a boat broken in half.

Everyone who buys a boat intends to use it in the water. They have every intention of setting sail. Nobody wants to keep their boat always docked. It’s the drive across the water that is so appealing. Imagine never leaving shore. Imagine sitting in your boat and just thinking about pulling away. Imagine yet pulling away from the shore only to find that you are still connected with the dock! You won’t get far. And you’ll find that either the boat or you or both will have damage.

In my life, as I set out for new horizons I occasionally find that something seems attached to the shore. I want to move on but there are ropes holding me back. Can you relate? The ropes may be job security, age, natural ability, or family. Other ropes may be fear, unforgiveness, worry, bitterness, anger. It could just be the rope of familiarity – the one that says that’s where we’ve always been moored. Familiarity is the death knell of the future. None of us can set sail while holding onto the shore. It could be that someone has told you that you aren’t fit to be loose from the dock, but they aren’t God.

Oh beloved, are you looking at new horizons? Are you dreaming of moving out into the deep with the Lord but wondering if you’ll sink? Are you hearing God speak new things into your life but you just hate to cut the ropes that seem so comforting? What will you do if you let go of familiar things? What will you do if you let go of what is good? Who will go with you across the way? How will you make it in unknown water?

God speaks to my heart: Precious child. You cannot go on with Me if you hold onto the shore. It’s time to let go of everything else but Me. It may seem rather scary but I AM the only one who can keep you from sinking. Even if the water gets choppy, I AM there. Even if no one goes with you I AM with you. My desire for you is that you learn to trust Me completely so that I can speak freedom into your life. The shore is simply a launching pad for deeper things with Me. Hang on, untie the ropes and let’s go beyond where you’ve ever been before. It will all be good because I will be the Captain of your vessel and My plans are absolutely perfect and best for you.

Oh beloved, The Captain of Your Salvation indeed knows best because He loves you and He’s for you and that’s worth letting go to sail on with Him.

Psalm 37:4 Take delight in the Lord, and He will give you your heart’s desires.

Romans 12:2 Don’t copy the behavior and customs of this world, but let God transform you into a new person by changing the way you think. Then you will learn to know God’s will for you, which is good and pleasing and perfect.

Zechariah 10:12 By My power I will make My people strong, and by My authority they will go wherever they wish. I, the Lord, have spoken!

Malachi 4:2 But for you who fear My name, the Sun of Righteousness will rise with healing in His wings. And you will go free, leaping with joy like calves let out to pasture.

Isaiah 55:12 For you will go out with joy And be led forth with peace; The mountains and the hills will break forth into shouts of joy before you, And all the trees of the field will clap their hands.

Thursday, October 17, 2013

Are You Keeping Him Close Until He Returns?

My daughter sent us a photo of the 6 year old grandson last night. He was lying in his bed with a photo of me and his grandfather. She said he told her he wanted to sleep with it “in case he missed us”. Of course that melted my heart. She said he has been counting the days till they come and stay at the rally too. Isn’t it wonderful to know he wants to keep us close – even if it’s through a photo?

There are times we must be separated from ones we love. Sometimes it’s by design – we have things to do that take us away from home. We get that longing for family and home if we’re gone long.

There are other times when someone leaves because they’ve decided its time to go. When it’s a young adult member of the family, you sorrow because they’re gone, but you relish the thought that you raised them to have roots and wings. You want them grown and gone on their own. Bittersweet though it is, you keep their room just so for a long while. You put their photo where you can see it. You pray they will stay safe and on the road of life.

Sometimes the leaving is done with malice and forethought. The perpetrator may even ask you to leave. The separation comes and although it’s full of anxiety on your part, the one who rejected your fellowship and love goes on, content to do their own thing, or go their own way. Rejection is hard to deal with. No one wants to hold anything about the rejector close to look at over and over again. It could be a spouse, a family member, or someone you considered close. It hurts and there’s nothing you can do about it.

Don’t we wish we could build a fortress and keep those we love close? Don’t we think at times it would be great to stay in a compound and keep the world out? A photo won’t do – we want them in the flesh. We want them with us. We need them close.
The apostles knew that feeling. They had walked with Jesus for 3 years. When they were with Him on the mountain they were ready to build a monument there and live with Jesus forever on earth. They were soon to be left behind as Jesus returned to the Father. He had tried to tell them He was going to have to leave, but He would come back to get them. But they didn’t want that. They wanted Him. How were they going to live without Jesus?

Our precious grandson will be with us tonight. This is his countdown day and he knows he will see us. He’s been waiting, he’s been counting, he’s been excited for this day. While we’ve been apart he has kept us close by our photo. But today we are going to be reunited.

God speaks to my heart: My precious child. Have you been watching and waiting for Me? Are you keeping My Word close so that you remember My words of love to you? Are you walking the way I would have you walk – in forgiveness, in love, in fellowship? Are you keeping My Words alive in your heart? Are you growing in My grace and knowledge of My Word? It won’t be long until I return for you, for I promised to come again so that where I am you may also be. Keep your eyes on Me, keep your heart turned in My direction. Keep your faith strong. There has been many things that have tried to get your eyes off of Me and My Words to you. I see the problems you encounter, the hurts you endure and the rejection you could not avoid. Do not fear! Although the world will tell you to give up and give in, I am saying to you that I have your face in my view, I am praying for you at the Father’s right hand and I am keeping you close to my heart until we are reunited forever in heaven.

Oh beloved, rejoice! Although people walk away, Jesus will never walk away. He has given you His Word that He will always love you, always care for you and He will reunite with you again one day. Stay close to the Lord, stay in communion with Him, keep His Word always on your heart. He will fulfil His purpose in your life and He will make things right when they go wrong. He can be trusted as you rely on Him for everything you need for life and godliness.

He loves you and He’s for you and that will keep you safe, blessed and free until He returns again.

Psalm 119:37-38 Turn my eyes from worthless things, and give me life through Your word. Reassure me of Your promise, which is for those who honor You.

Romans 8:28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose.

Psalm 119:15-16 I will study your commandments and reflect on your ways. I will delight in Your decrees and not forget Your word.

Mark 13:35 You, too, must keep watch! For you don’t know when the Master of the household will return—in the evening, at midnight, before dawn, or at daybreak.

Isaiah 26:3 You will keep in perfect peace all who trust in You, all whose thoughts are fixed on You!

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

God Will Set Your Course as You Thank Him

We found a restaurant yesterday. Actually, it’s been in Mena a long while. But it’s been bought by someone new and they’ve renamed it and done some extensive changes inside and out. When I walked inside with friends I felt such a calm peaceful atmosphere.

Once we sat down a woman came and shared some information about the restaurant. We were intrigued to meet “Sophie”. We were expecting an elderly woman! Much to our surprise we were greeted at our table by a beautiful woman from Cambodia. She looked like she was in her 30’s. Youthful and radiant with a smile to match. She told us a little about her life in Cambodia.

We prayed together, our group and Sophie. First we prayed for her. Then she prayed for us. Then she thanked the Lord for the rain. It was sweet, simple and God breathed.

We did not set out looking for a divine appointment. We just got in the car, talked about eating and then Danny drove to the little café. We also thought this divine appointment was us to her. But no it was reciprocal at least if not entirely about her to us.

Most, if not all of us, have either been through something rough, are going through it or will go through hard times. For those of us camping on Iron Mountain in Mena Arkansas, 48 hours plus of rain is a hard time. We’re sick of it! We’re mildewed. We’re wet. We’re penned up and chilly. That’s our hard place.
And then you meet someone like Sophie, who as a young child survived the Cambodian Death March, losing family members and having to be grown up at such a young age. Then she thanked God for the rain! And we grumble at the very thing she gives thanks for.

All of us are going to go through things. We’re going to have hard times, hard places and hard decisions. We may not have to walk a horrendous death march, but we’re going to have to travel to the valley of the shadow of death. We will have to let something go we loved or let someone go we cherished. Will we thank God for the rain? Will we smile a heavenly smile because we know that God is getting us through it? Will we let anger, resentment, unforgiveness all go and embrace the truth that God is with us? More so, can we say God even has purpose in it? Will we stick with Him even when we don’t see anything good in sight?

Oh beloved, God knows. He really does. No one else on earth may know the extent of your situation, but God knows. And because He knows, you can know that He is with you. And because He is with you you can rest in His promises, rely on His wisdom and live in the light of His love. If you will let Him, He will take your darkest hours and make them shine like the sun. You may not see His purpose now, but it’s there. And when you get through this to the other side and you are right in the center of His perfect will, don’t forget to look back and thank Him for the rain.

God loves you and He’s for you. And that, beloved, will give you a thankful heart as you learn to lean on Him and let Him set the course of your life to live for His glory alone.

Psalm 71:7-8 My life is an example to many, because You have been my strength and protection.
That is why I can never stop praising You; I declare Your glory all day long!

1 Thessalonians 5:18 Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
Colossians 4:2 Devote yourselves to prayer with an alert mind and a thankful heart.

Psalm 116:16-17 O LORD, I am Your servant; yes, I am Your servant, born into Your household; You have freed me from my chains. I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving and call on the name of the LORD.

Monday, October 14, 2013

Feeling a little weak? Get Connected!

Danny and I love coffee. He actually loved it before I did. Back when we were first married he drank it every day but I had no desire to even try it. After about 10 years, he finally talked me into it. What I liked about coffee the most was that it gave us time together. We had that in common and drinking coffee together especially in the morning gives us time to visit and discuss the day’s plans and talk together about God’s plans for our day.

We’ve gotten to like coffee so much that we’ve even begun to try gourmet coffees from various countries. We finally bought a more expensive coffee maker so that we could get hotter coffee quicker!

I got up yesterday morning to make coffee and the machine ran through a pot of coffee but when I went to pour a cup I found just colored water and it wasn’t even hot. I was concerned that our newest more expensive maker had already bit the dust. I tried everything. I carried it from plug to plug and yet no power. No light came on and no sizzle could be heard. Quickly, because we have to have our coffee you know, I told Danny something was wrong. He asked me if I’d checked everything and I said I had. But when he came downstairs to check it, he reached to the back and flipped a small switch. I had forgotten all about that switch. Sure enough with the main switch on the machine then lit up and began heating the reservoir so we could have our coffee!

How often do we take our life for granted? We just assume things are going to work well and instantly get things done when we need it. We flip a switch and we’re ready to go. Headlong we enter into every day, enjoying everything we can. We get busy and we start to leave things out. No time for things that are important to our life. We find that we start feeling powerless and the things that once gave us enjoyment don’t seem to be working anymore.

Without taking time to make sure that the power is on we are going to find ourselves disconnected and weak, just like that pot of coffee. We’ll get frustrated, confused and fearful. Where’s the power? Where’s the connection? Why isn’t my life working the way it’s supposed to?

You have a life that is full of wonder and delight. You probably can go on your own steam for the good days – at least we think so don’t we? You and I both, if we admit it, try to make it on our own power when things are going good. We don’t even check the connection we just go on our merry way.

Unfortunately life also has those times when we’re not sure how we’re going to make it. Troubles come in, problems arise and we feel as though we’ve thrown a breaker. We’re powerless and we are frantic. What will we do? Where will we go? Who’s going to fix it for us?

Oh beloved, today before you leave the house , take a moment to make sure the power switch is on. You could run on your own steam temporarily, but it’s much better when you’re connected to the Lord first thing, every day. If the connection has already been established, through the Word and prayer, then when a problem arises you’ll remember the connection and run right to the source of your power. You won’t have to scramble to find out what’s happened, you’ll keep brewing your life of faith even in the hard times.

God promises, because He loves you, that He will give you His wisdom, power and might. He’s always full of His power and always ready to pour out His Word to meet your every need. He’s never confined to the world’s power grid – He is ALL Power! He won’t turn you away, He won’t limit your use and you won’t go away wishing for something else.

God loves you and He’s for you and that’s the power you need to make each day flavorful, robust and fruitful all the days of your life!

Ephesians 6:10 10 A final word: Be strong in the Lord and in His mighty power.

Matthew 22:29 Jesus replied, “Your mistake is that you don’t know the Scriptures, and you don’t know the power of God.”

2 Corinthians 12:9 Each time He said, “My grace is all you need. My power works best in weakness.” So now I am glad to boast about my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ can work through me.

1 Corinthians 1:24 But to those called by God to salvation, both Jews and Gentiles, Christ is the power of God and the wisdom of God.

Saturday, October 12, 2013

It's Time to Come In...

It’s a great time of year for kids and adults to play outside.  It’s damp in the afternoons and the thick blanket of leaves are becoming a haven for jumping feet. The smell of smoke is beginning to work through the air. Fireplaces are revving up and final yard work is being attended to.

When kids play outside they get dirty. Grubby. Filthy. Usually their feet are the grubbiest. Who’d think that someone with shoes and socks on could have dirt between their toes and yet kids do.  They’re covered but even the spots that are covered get dirty.

When kids are playing outside they rarely ever want to come in. Even as the dark of the fall evenings creeps into the yards, they want to stay out. They want to play forever. But eventually it’s time to insist they come inside. Mothers across the world whistle and call their children. After much calling, those playing kids drag in one by one.  First thing is a nice warm bath. They resist. They’d rather keep playing.

Somewhere between shedding dirty clothes and scrubbing behind the ears kids have an epiphany. They suddenly realize the bath is good! Getting clean feels great! Supper tastes better and beds feel better when a kiddo is clean as a whistle.  They end up crying because they have to leave the very tub they fought against just a few minutes earlier.

We are a lot like those kids – we believers. We enjoy our freedom in Christ. We play and enjoy and before we notice it we’ve gotten grubby. Even though we’re covered by the Blood of the Lamb, we’ve got dirt between our heart and His. We’ve been busy and we don’t hear the Father calling us into fellowship with Him. We don’t take time to keep in the Word. Finally we hear the Father calling, “Son come home”, “Daughter return to my fellowship”.  We drag ourselves in, we see the dirt on our hearts and yet we resist.  But as we go into sweet fellowship with the Father we find that we feel lighter, cleaner and refreshed. The washing of the water with the Word begins to do what only God can do – it makes us feel renewed. We will find that our meal will taste better and our rest will be sweeter.

God speaks to my heart: God is calling you. He’s calling me. And it’s a wonderful call into sweet communion with Him. He is such a wonderful Father that He has cleaned us thoroughly from sin’s penalty. But He loves us so much that He continually cleanses us from sin’s power. And one day we will be with Him and we will be totally liberated from sin’s presence. Oh what a wonderful day that will be.

If you are one who has ignored the call for a long, long time it’s not too late. Even if it’s grown quite dark and you aren’t sure if you will ever clean up again, God is ready and waiting with open arms and an Agape heart.  Return, precious child, and watch as He renews your faith and restores your commitment to Him alone.

Maybe you’ve decided that you have to live with the soiled situation of your life. You tried to be a people pleaser, a good egg, a team player, a giver. You put others first, you worked hard, you gave it all and still you find yourself dealing with the dirt of life. You might have hung out with the wrong crowd (bad company, bad thinking, bad decisions) or loved someone who didn’t treat you with respect and honor. You may feel you have been left out in the dark to try to clean yourself up so you can go home.  You’re hurt, you feel grimy and you’re not sure if you can return home. The load you carry is getting heavier and heavier and you don’t know if you can even make it. But God is calling you. The light is on and He’s waiting at the door to let you in. He’s held the door open for you all the while you’ve been out and He’s kept His eye on you all the time.

Oh beloved, run to the Word! Step inside the Father’s heart and read! His clean-up is gentle and His restoration is perfect – for your heart and your mind and your spirit.  He is calling you in Love and His desire is to care for you all the rest of your days. Trust Him and walk with Him and watch as He renews everything for His glory in you! As you learn to seek His face every day you will find that your outlook is refreshed, your heart is renewed and your rest gets sweeter and sweeter.

God loves you and He’s for you and that’s why you’re accepted in His beloved forever.

Isaiah 44:22 I have swept away your sins like a cloud. I have scattered your offenses like the morning mist. Oh, return to Me, for I have paid the price to set you free.

Isaiah 50:4 The Sovereign Lord has given me His words of wisdom, so that I know how to comfort the weary. Morning by morning He wakens me and opens my understanding to His will.

Exodus 15:13 With Your unfailing love You lead the people You have redeemed. In Your might, You guide them to Your sacred home.

Psalm 84:4 What joy for those who can live in Your house, always singing Your praises.





Friday, October 11, 2013

You Are Created to do what only You Can Do

As Danny left early one morning for work I noticed a small brown smudge on the storm door.  As we prayed for one another at the door and he walked out he turned and bent down to inspect the smudge.  Turns out it was a little snail! An amazing little creature of God’s earth climbing on the clear glass. He was not afraid nor was he stopping.  He was a living animal, created by God’s pleasure to do what only a snail can do.

We are a lot like that little snail. At times other people we encounter seem only like a smudge. We give little thought to them or their lives. They seem so small to us, so insignificant, so useless. At times we appear as only a smudge. I mean really, we feel useless don’t we? We see ourselves as little slugs with a shell we can recoil into when life gets rough and we tend to recoil a lot. Sometimes people pronounce us as slugs. We are useless to them. We have become just a smudge on their horizon and in their view we are in the way. We may be flicked away like so much dirt.  We may have flicked others away like such a nuisance.

God speaks to my heart:  Things will happen. Little dots of trouble, trials, nuisances will show up in your view along the way. It is only upon closer inspection that you will find My purpose in that smudge.  While you just want to flick your trials away, I want to use them to further My glory in you.  While you too may feel like a snail on glass, you are actually a beautiful creation meant for My purpose alone and I have you steady in My hand as you travel My plan for your life. And even if you are flicked away by people or circumstances, I will not let you be crushed! You will not lose your strength or your covering for I AM your all in all.  Every single time you feel humiliated, harassed or rejected, I AM growing you to be more like Me, so that I can use you in even greater capacity.

Oh beloved, Trust God! Rejoice in what He says about you! Rest in His promises!  And thank Him that you are more than because He is a More Than God!  All things are in His hands, including you and your life and your calling. Don’t despair but look into the Lord’s wonderful face, where the things of earth grow strangely dim in the light of His glory and grace!

God loves you, and He’s for you and that’s enough to give you purpose and peace.

Isaiah 25:1 O Lord, I will honor and praise Your name, for You are my God. You do such wonderful things! You planned them long ago, and now You have accomplished them.

Psalm 57:2  I cry out to God Most High, to God who will fulfill His purpose for me.

Psalm 70:4 But may all who search for You be filled with joy and gladness in You. May those who love Your salvation repeatedly shout, “God is great!”

Psalm 138:8 The Lord will work out His plans for my life— for Your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever. Don’t abandon me, for You made me.

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Let Go of that Doorknob!

Our house is built in such a way that if we’re not careful when we close our door it really slams and it slams loudly! But it seems you can’t be careful enough, because although it’s happened before, I never remember it’s going to slam. So if I grab it quickly it booms as though the entire neighborhood can hear it. Every time it happens I look back at the door and ask myself, “how could that happen?”

I am reminded of a saying that is often used: “When God closes a door, He opens a window.” Problem is that some doors sure seem to be slammed. It’s sudden and with no warning it’s jerked from our grasp and banged shut! We didn’t shut the door, but someone did. We didn’t plan it, but someone did. We weren’t looking for open windows but the door is shut nonetheless.

We could keep looking at the door. It’s closed. It’s shut. We could wish we could go back through. We could pray it would reopen. We could whine. We could go get a key and open it back up. We could refuse to let it stay shut. We could remain immovable and continue to stare at the shut door.

But what would happen to the open window? Would it remain there? Would it be available? Would we have to decide between the closed door and the next opening? 

God speaks to my heart: Oh precious one. In My realm one door must be closed before another can open. It’s in that closed door time of life that you will feel vacated, left out, unsure and useless. But if you will trust Me when one door closes, I will open another door for you – this one will be better than the one before because I AM the door. And because I AM who I AM, the door I open can never be closed by any other person on earth. Nothing in all creation can stop my plans for you except you. My will is that you Trust Me, that you wait on Me and that you keep in the Word and rest in My promises. I have the very best in mind for you, even when things look so impossible. Even when you may feel shut out. Ultimately I AM the only one who can close the door and ultimately I AM the only one who can open the window of opportunity where you belong. This time of waiting is a time of preparation and together we will go forth in My glory, My will and My promises.

Oh beloved, hold onto the promises of God and let go of the door knob! Even though you can’t see what’s ahead, you are destined for God’s open door of blessings when you realize that He loves you and He’s for you and He goes ahead to prepare the way for you! Don’t mourn the closed doors of life, rather rejoice in the open doors you cannot see for that’s where the Lord is and that’s where you want to be – with the Lord underneath His care and presence, walking in His anointing and following Him always!

Joshua 22:5 …Love the Lord your God, walk in all His ways, obey His commands, hold firmly to Him, and serve Him with all your heart and all your soul.

John 8:12 Jesus spoke to the people once more and said, “I AM the light of the world. If you follow Me, you won’t have to walk in darkness, because you will have the light that leads to life.”

John 10:9 I AM the door; if anyone enters through Me, he will be saved, and will go in and out and find pasture.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding. Seek His will in all you do, and He will show you which path to take.

Wednesday, October 09, 2013

Wash Me Clean...

I love it when I find something profound "by accident".  Today I did just that. God orchestrates my life in such a way that I am blessed.  For my friends who may need a soothing reminder of God's wonderfulness here goes -   Enjoy!!!!

Someone Stealing From You?

Today's Post  -

In these troubled times the news is full of stories of robbery. It reminds me of when I was a child and my best friend and I went to the store with my mother. There was always a carousel of little packaged games and toys by the checkouts. They were very inexpensive. Well, my friend who was about 7 (I was 4) told me we could have one of those toys. Then she told me that we should go to the car and play with them. We did just that.

Then my mother came to the car with her groceries. She asked us where we got the toys. I told her the truth. I didn’t realize we had stolen anything; I had just followed the lead of a friend. Because I didn’t realize it was stolen, I didn’t know to lie about it either. Of course my mother marched us into the store where I had to apologize to the store manager. I don’t remember anything else, but I will always remember learning the lesson. Stealing was wrong. I always could see my mother’s face and her grave disappointment. She loved me enough to tell me the truth and to insist I tell the truth as well. That lesson has served me well over the years.

We are children, each one of us. If we are born again through the Gospel of Jesus Christ, we are set into a very special place. We are born again into the family of God –we are joint heirs with Jesus – we are children of the Heavenly King. Because of this most favored status, given to us freely by nothing we have earned on our own – we have certain rights as the King’s child.

One of the greatest rights we have is that we no longer have to live like an unbeliever. The Word tells us how to live in Ephesians 4. Among the words are “let him who steals steal no more”. We are changed BY Christ because we are now IN Christ! Let us who used to _____________ do that no more! We don’t have to! Yay God!

Another wonderful “right” as a believer is that no one can steal things from us that are ours IN Christ! No one – absolutely no one – not even the devil himself – can steal your anointing, your calling, your standing, your position, your prayers, your faith, your gifts, your honor. All these things are yours by virtue of your position IN Christ!

God speaks to my heart: Who has been stealing from you? Where is your joy? Who has taken your peace? Who stole your trust in Me? I AM the one who has given you these rich and wonderful gifts – they are yours. But there is an enemy, and he whispers lies into your heart. Don’t let him take anything from you. He is a liar and the father of all lies. I AM the one who saved you, who keeps you, and who gives every good and perfect gift to you! I AM truth personified. I do nothing by secret, underhandedly, or through trickery. If you have lost anything that belongs to you because you are my child, I tell you today, TAKE IT BACK! You are IN ME and I AM IN YOU, so you don’t have to believe any of the lies that are being whispered into your mind and heart.

God has not left you defenseless against the thief who comes to kill steal and destroy. He has given you the whole armor of God, He has given you His promises, He has filled you with His Spirit, He has sealed you for the day of Redemption, He has covered you, redeemed you, and blessed you. Pick up the magnificent Word of God this morning and read the TRUTH.

Rejoice, beloved! God loves you (He gave His love to you) and He’s for you (His angels keep guard over you) and that’s what gives you strength and purpose against anyone who tried to steal your life IN Christ in the days ahead.

2 Timothy 3:16-17 Every Scripture is God-breathed (given by His inspiration) and profitable for instruction, for reproof and conviction of sin, for correction of error and discipline in obedience, [and] for training in righteousness (in holy living, in conformity to God’s will in thought, purpose, and action), so that the man of God may be complete and proficient, well fitted and thoroughly equipped for every good work. AMP

John 10:10 The thief comes only in order to steal and kill and destroy. I came that they may have and enjoy life, and have it in abundance (to the full, till it overflows). AMP

John 1:16 For out of His fullness (abundance) we have all received [all had a share and we were all supplied with] one grace after another and spiritual blessing upon spiritual blessing and even favor upon favor and gift [heaped] upon gift. AMP

2 Corinthians 1:20 For as many as are the promises of God, in Him they are yes; therefore also through Him is our Amen to the glory of God through us. NAS

Psalm 23:1 The Lord is my Shepherd [to feed, guide, and shield me], I shall not lack.