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Showing posts from May, 2012

Lesson in Gratefulness

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“Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; sing praises on the harp to our God, who covers the heavens with clouds, who prepares rain for the earth, who makes grass to grow on the mountains. He gives to the beast its food, and to the young ravens that cry. He does not delight in the strength of the horse; He takes no pleasure in the legs of a man. The Lord takes pleasure in those who fear Him, in those who hope in His mercy.” Psalm 147:7-11

This morning as I woke a bit before my alarm and had a wonderful prayer time, knowing the morning schedule would be a bit more relieved due to the rain last night and my not needing to water the gardens, I left the house to start my morning milking with a happy heart that everything was going so well for my schedule. But that happiness was not to last for long. When I turned on the pump for my milking machine and it failed to do what it usually does and hand-milking was the only option before me.

Up until now I had been wholeheartedly thankful for th…

What is Truth?

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Pilate said to Him, 'What is truth?'” John 18:38
As Pilate was questioning Jesus right before His sentencing and death on the cross, Jesus stated to Pilate, “Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice.” (John 18:37) It is then that Pilate questions Jesus and asks Him, “What is truth?”
Today many people ask that same question, “What is truth?” And they also have the same response as Pilate, they do not wait for an answer. In this world of relative thinking we live in, my truth does not have to be your truth. Actually, it can be commonly agreed upon that no truth exists at all. But what good does type of thinking do for our human condition which is constantly seeking for answers to the simplest but yet most relevant question we can ask, “What is truth?” The sad answer to that question is that if we do not find the truth we are looking for we are bound by the search for it or caught in a battle of trying to justify the half-truth we have settled for.
I looked up the word tr…

Redeeming Blood

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For the life of the flesh is in the blood, and I have given it to you upon the altar to make atonement for your souls; for it is the blood that makes atonement for the soul.” Leviticus 17:11

As I was reading last night, there was a page of verses in one of my devotionals that was completely dedicated to scripture about redeeming blood. I really felt the need to do a cross reference study off of those verses and see what else I could find to add to the list. The exercise ended up being good for me because even though none of the verses I found were new to me, it did help to see them together to gain a greater perspective of God's plan to redeem this lost and fallen world.
As you read through these scriptures, take the time to absorb what they are really saying and also realize the place in the history of the scriptures each were recorded. I pray the Holy Spirit may speak to your heart through these scriptures not only in showing you how precious you are to Him, but also of the p…

Jesus' Prayer for You and Me

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I do not pray for these alone, but also for those who will believe in Me through their word; that they all may be one, as You, Father, are in Me, and I in You; that they also may be one in Us, that the world may believe that You sent Me. And the glory which You gave Me I have given them, that they may be one just as We are one: I in them, and You in Me; that they may be made perfect in one, and that the world may know that You have sent Me, and have loved them as You have loved Me.”

Father, I desire that they also whom You gave Me may be with Me where I am, that they may behold My glory which You have given Me; for You loved Me before the foundation of the world. O righteous Father! The world has not known You, but I have known You; and these have known that You sent Me. And I have declared to them Your name, and will declare it, that the love with which You loved Me may be in them, and I in them.” John 17: 20-26

This morning part of my bible reading included John 17. It is unfortu…

God's Idea of a Blessed Life

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Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the man who trusts in Him!” Psalm 34:8
Trust is the cornerstone of peace. If we cannot trust in what the Lord has shown He has prepared for us then we tend to go off and try to make it happen on our own – take Abraham and Sarah as an example as they were waiting for the child the Lord said would come to them. And trying to make things happen in our own time usually adds obstacles and future problems to the path the Lord has predetermined for us.
A blessed life is more than one filled with material things. In reality the more stuff we acquire, the larger the work load we bring along with it. Living a truly blessed life has more to do with letting go of the material (and non-material) things in our lives. When we have no pressing demands upon us, except for those requirements the Lord sets before us each day to walk out in faith upon and to trust in His perfect will, then we experience a sense of blessedness the world is not accus…

Staying Diligent in the Summer

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But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night, in which the heavens will pass away with a great noise, and the elements will melt with fervent heat; both the earth and the works that are in it will be burned up. Therefore, since all these things will be dissolved, what manner of persons ought you to be in holy conduct and godliness, looking for and hastening the coming of the day of God, because of which the heavens will be dissolved, being on fire, and the elements will melt with fervent heat? Nevertheless we, according to His promise, look for new heavens and a new earth in which righteousness dwells. Therefore, beloved, looking forward to these things, be diligent to be found by Him in peace, without spot and blameless; and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation...beware lest you also fall from your own steadfastness, being led away with the error of the wicked; but grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.” 2 Peter 3:10-1…

The Victory is Ours

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...the ruler of this world...has no power over me...” John 14:30
Last night as I was pulling together some scripture passages for a friend who will be fighting a massive spiritual battle today, my thoughts went back to some really dark times in my life and the lessons God taught me in them about His ability to overcome and the powerless position the forces of evil hold in my life. 
Jesus has the ability to overcome anything, that is anything I am willing to set before Him. Over the years, my experiences of spiritual victory over darkness have shown me there is no limit in God's ability to heal and come forth victorious when I set my mind on trusting Him, believing all He says, and following His orders regarding my role in fighting the battle before me. I just have to be cautious, as we all do, in making sure to leave the rest of the battle that is His to Him.
I have a few verses below that I want you to read. But first, I want to point out an important fact. The fact is this: E…

No Despair When Focused on God

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My soul clings to the dust;
Revive me according to Your word.
I have declared my ways, and You answered me;
Teach me Your statutes.
Make me understand the way of Your precepts;
So shall I meditate on Your wonderful works.
My soul melts from heaviness;
Strengthen me according to Your word.
Remove from me the way of lying,
And grant me Your law graciously.
I have chosen the way of truth;
Your judgments I have laid before me.
I cling to Your testimonies;
O
Lord, do not put me to shame!
I will run the course of Your commandments,
For You shall enlarge my heart.”
Psalm 119: 25-32

Have you ever reached a point where it seems all hope is lost? The other day I had the opportunity to encourage a friend who was unable to see what God would have for her in the middle of her despair – and what a wonderful change God brought to her circumstances when she set her eyes on the Lord and His promises for her.
This morning as I was reading on in Psalm 119, it struck me that the advice I gave to this friend, to foc…

Praying the Word to Stay in the Word

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Blessed are the undefiled in the way, who walk in the law of the Lord!
Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, who seek Him with the whole heart!
They also do no iniquity; they walk in His ways.
You have commanded us to keep Your precepts diligently.
Oh, that my ways were directed to keep Your statutes!
Then I would not be ashamed, when I look into all Your commandments.
I will praise You with uprightness of heart, when I learn Your righteous judgments.
I will keep Your statutes; Oh, do not forsake me utterly!”
  Psalm 119: 1-8
Today as I was reading through Psalm 119, I felt the need to take the first stanza and turn it into a prayer. If you are not familiar with Psalm 119, it is the longest in the book of Psalms but it seems to be filled with repetitions around one specific topic – living a life centered around the law of the Lord. This writing was intentional and it is laid out in a manner that puts the text into sections which are ordered by the Hebrew alphabet.
Praying to ha…

A Race Filled with Peace

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Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.” John 14:27
Well today is the day I file to run for school board in the November election. You would think I would be anxious about the race and the outcome of the vote that will dictate the my personal schedule for the next 4 and a half years, but I am not. I have this overwhelming peace surrounding me because deep down I know that whatever the result is of my obedience, it will be in the perfect will of God.
But, that is not the case for many people today who are going into offices around our country to put their names on the ballot for the upcoming elections. For some, their reasons for running are for personal glory and for others it is a desire to bring about human justice and make personal strides to right the wrongs they see happening around them. There are also those career politicians who have made public service a positive f…

To Each His Own

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And the eye cannot say to the hand, “I have no need of you”; nor again the head to the feet, 'I have no need of you.' No, much rather, those members of the body which seem to be weaker are necessary.” 1 Corinthians 12:21-22
The other day, I was talking with a friend who has been battling menopause and all the hormonal imbalances that go with that process. I have to say I have a bit of empathy for her situation because I am just starting that process with some very uncomfortable side effects and I do not look forward to the day when my personal battle will intensify (I just pray the Lord will give me the resolve and patience of my friend to battle it with grace if that too is meant to be a difficulty I am to endure in my future.) But the main message I want to convey this morning doesn't specifically have to do with menopause and so I digress.
What I really want to talk about today is the way we as Christians compare ourselves with other Christians and how we sometimes fee…

A Day of Praise

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“Praise the Lord, all you Gentiles! Laud Him, all you peoples! For His merciful kindness is great toward us, and the truth of the Lordendures forever. Praise the Lord!” Psalm 117:1-2

What a wonderful day of worship, prayer, fellowship, and God's continuing provisions today has brought! I pray that your day was filled with many blessings and also you have been able to give Him the glory He is due through the following ways that Psalm 117:1-2 points out to worship God:
Through songs of praise that fill your mind with thoughts of Him and make you dwell on His greatness Through declaring His mighty works while talking to others about the ways you have seen Him at work in your lifeThrough recalling  the mercy He has given you and the many ways He was forgiven you for the sins you have committed - even just this weekThrough reminders of the truth of God as they has been a light onto your path and have kept you on the straight and narrow with your Lord and Savior
We have so much to g…

Who Does What?

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The Lord God has given Me the tongue of the learned, that I should know how to speak a word in season to him who is weary. He awakens Me morning by morning, He awakens My ear to hear as the learned. The Lord God has opened My ear; and I was not rebellious, nor did I turn away...For the Lord God will help Me; therefore I will not be disgraced; therefore I have set My face like a flint, and I know that I will not be ashamed...Who among you fears the Lord? Who obeys the voice of His Servant? Who walks in darkness and has no light? Let him trust in the name of the Lord and rely upon his God.” Isaiah 50:4,5,7,10
I thought I would introduce another way to dissect scripture that you may or may not have used in your study of the bible. I find for myself, this process helps me to distinguish two areas of scripture where roles are intertwined in a series of passages. In the scripture I have used today the two roles are God's and mine. Or more accurately, they describe what God says H…