Saturday, January 28, 2012

One God, and He is MY God!

There is only one God, and I adore You.  One God who reigns over all!  My heart cries out for Your touch! The wind blows Your voice across the earth. The sun radiates the warmth You placed in it.

I am so passionately in love with the One true God!  Jesus, I worship You.  I love You!  I give You the glory and I thank You for living in my heart and keeping me alive!  You are Majesty, You are Awesome and Holy!  All the universe is Yours, and lays in the span of Your mighty hand, and yet You are here, sitting in the chair across from me!  You are in my heart filling my life with joy and dependence!

You are everywhere, inside me, outside me, all around me!  In my breath, my will, in the very essence of my being!  You made me, You formed me in my mother's womb.  I was fearfully and wonderfully made! 

You are the only God, You are Sovereign!  You are Lord!  You are MY God!!!!  I run into Your arms, feeling You protect me.  The smile that spreads across my face brings with it tears of joy and peace!  I LOVE YOU JESUS!!!  I LOVE YOU!!!

"I delight greatly in the Lord; my soul rejoices in my God. For He has clothed me with garments of salvation and arrayed me in a robe of righteousness, as a bridegroom adorns his head like a priest, and as a bride adorns herself with her jewels."  Isaiah 61:10

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Friday, January 20, 2012

Let Him Hold You in Your Sorrows

There are many times in our lives where we suffer loss.  There are the physical losses of life and property through war, fire, earthquakes or tornadoes; there are the emotional losses from losing the one we love through death, divorce, or separation; and there are the spiritual losses when we walk away from our Savior because the hurt is so enormous.  We will suffer many losses in our lifetime, but in every loss there is a constant.  Jesus is there holding you.  He will never let you go! 

If you are suffering and feel like the only way out is death or seclusion, quickly reel yourself back in!  Gather all the strength that you can muster and rebuke the enemy!  Death or hurting yourself is not the answer.  It won't bring back the things or the people you lost.  Only Jesus can bring us back to peace and His divine grace can bring hope back into our lives.  Open your arms and your heart to HIM!  He is there!  He is willing to carry you!  Just cry out His name and let Him bear your burden.  He doesn't break His promises.  God bless you.

Allow yourself to know what it is like to be held by the hands of the Savior!

"Let us lift our hearts and hands to God in heaven."  Lamentations 3:41

 "You have also given me the shield of Your salvation; Your right hand has held me up, Your gentleness has made me great."  Psalm 18:35

"The LORD lift up His countenance upon you, and give you peace.” Numbers 6:26

"Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning, for in You do I trust; cause me to know the way in which I should walk, for I lift up my soul to You."  Psalm 143:8

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Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Vision of the Storm

I see myself up close (waist up) in a terrible storm.  The wind is blowing the rain sideways, making it look silver.  I am wearing my blue windbreaker, and it is stuck to my body.  My hair is plastered to my forehead, and I have a huge smile on my face.

It is night, but there is a light coming from my upper right.  I know that Jesus is holding me close to Him, the light I see is from Him.  I don’t see His face, but His nearness makes me so happy.  He is taller than me.

Lord, what does it mean?

I am with you in the storm. During the storm I am holding you. I am protecting you.  You are not afraid, are you?

No, I’m not, I’m actually fascinated!  We are okay.  I am comfortable and at peace.  I would like to get out of the storm, but I’m okay because You are shielding me.

That’s the way it always is!  I want you to keep that picture in your mind when you are going through trials. You are not alone in the storm.  My love for you is great, and My love will see you through, even though you feel like if I wasn’t holding you , you would fly away in the wind.  Hold that thought!  That is the truth!  Without Me you have no anchor.  You can be in the middle of any trial or storm, any attack of the enemy, and I have wrapped My arm around you and am keeping you safe.  You can feel at peace in the most difficult of situations if you will draw on that vision and hold it in your heart.

I promise you I will not leave you nor forsake you.  You are my child.  Remember that!  I will always be by your side.  Listen to me and learn from me.  I love you. 

I lift up my eyes to the hills, where does my help come from?  My help comes from the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth."  Psalm 121:1-2

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Monday, January 16, 2012

What Kind of Tree Are You?

Look where this tree is growing!  It is surrounded by rock.  Except for the couple standing in its shade, it is the only thing in the picture that looks alive and thriving.  In the middle of nowhere! How is that?  How deep its roots must be to find enough water to keep it alive!  We are likened to trees many times in the Bible. 

I want to be like this terebinth tree.  I want to stay connected to the living water that runs through my roots and gives me life.  John 7:38 says:  “Whoever believes in me, as Scripture has said, rivers of living water will flow from within them.”

 I want to be strong and give shade and peace to the weary traveler.  I want to stand out as life in a world of death and dying and suffering.  I want to remain supple when the environment is cruel and rigid.  Psalm 28:8 says: ‘The LORD is the strength of his people,” and I know that as long as I keep seeking God and stay rooted in Him, that He is with me and breathing life into me, supplying my every need, that I shall continue to grow and bear good fruit.  I want to be what He has always desired for me to be.

I want to always know that God is my sustenance.  That the outside world does not control who I am or what I have.  I want to always know that if all around me is empty and desolate, that if I am the only one standing, that I stand because my God has fed me.  Let me remember, Lord, that although the world may be dying, I am prospering and growing stronger every day that I spend in Your presence.  "He shall be like a tree planted by the rivers of water, that brings forth its fruit in its season, whose leaf also shall not wither; and whatever he does shall prosper." Psalm 1:3

What kind of tree are you?  Do you blow away in the wind or snap in the gale?  Are your roots weak and superficial, or are they deep and thriving on the word of the Lord?  Do you bear fruit?  There is no reason why we can’t all be like the great terebinth tree, bearing fruit and shading the weary soul.  Give more of yourself today, spend some time in the Word and feel yourself grow stronger and stronger.  There is nothing that can touch us when we are focused on the Lord.  Romans 8:31 says, “If God is for us, who can be against us?” Feed on Him, drink of His living water, lets all be like the terebinth tree!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Coming Back

We have all been there, stunned that things aren't exactly what we thought.  Everything seemed to be alright and then the world came crashing down around us.  Someone we love left.   

They had to have had a reason to leave or they wouldn't have in the first place.  Now the question comes, "What could I have done differently?" but all the reasoning in the world doesn't change things.  They left.  You are alone and lonely and so sorry for all the things you didn't know you could have fixed.  You would do anything at all for that one you so desperately love.  You want to say 'Please come back!' but you are afraid they will say no.  You want to say, "I will do anything you ask, I'm different now, I have finally found my way, I'm sorry that I made you leave."  But you are afraid they won't believe you.  Being on this end is so hard.

But the one that left must live alone too.  You don't just walk out of a relationship and not look back.  There are memories of so many good times as well as the bad.  But you feel safer loving from a distance, the hurt is not right in your face.  If you want to you can change the channel on your mind and not think about it.  You can refuse calls, return mail, and not answer emails.  The new land that you are in looks nicer, and there are new people to talk to, but there is no one here that knows you like the ones you left behind.  You may think that life is rosy here, but it's not at all familiar, and not really where you want to be.  Being on this end is so hard.  It isn't all fun like they think it must be.  But it's risky thinking about coming back.  What if it starts all over again?  What if all I gained is lost?  What about when people talk?  You think it may be easier just staying here so you don't have to go through all that.

The one constant, dear Reader, in both sides of this one situation is that Jesus is there with you.  He is never far away.  He wants you to run to Him, not walk!  Like a child, run with arms open and jump into His loving embrace!  Squeeze your arms around His neck and laugh and cry and just hang on!  He doesn't want you to feel like you have done too many things that can't be forgiven.  He will forgive, He says so.  All you have to do is ask, and then show Him that you mean it.  Don't ever feel like you don't know how to go to Him.  It really isn't so hard to find a brother or sister in Christ to go to.  Sometimes it is just a phone call away, sometimes it takes going to church, either way, help and comfort is there wherever you are.

The struggle to find our one true love is difficult.  We search and go through sorrow, happiness, doubt, and expectations.  But when we first begin a relationship that we want to last we are hopeful.  It is like that when we find Jesus.  We hear it will be wonderful, but will it last?  Are we ready to come to Him with all the sin in our heart and ask for forgiveness?  We start to feel undeserving because of the things we have done or are doing.  We realize we became too much like the world and although we forgot that it would disappoint Him we remember that now. 

Living in God's will is not easy.  It is not filled with joy every moment.  Being a good Christian is the hardest thing anyone will ever do.  It is a commitment to Him.  It is saying that we are ready to go through the furnace knowing that He is in there with us, even when the heat is turned up (see Daniel chapter 3).  It is willing to do what you know is right even though the flesh is screaming "No!  Don't submit yourself to that again!"  If you have seen the Almighty work in the one you left behind, and you know that it will be different, go back.  There is nothing for you where you are.  But go with Jesus in your heart.  Don't expect things to be different without that.  No changes in you or them will happen without God in your life. 

If you haven't yet found Jesus and surrounded yourself with His love and forgiveness, you need to.  As long as there is a tugging in your heart that draws you back, you need to get on your knees and make it right with Him first.  Don't put it off.  He really is your one true love.

There needs to be welcome arms like Jesus has for the one who returns.  Just feast and celebration, no questions, just like the Lost Son's father (see Nov 11 entry in this blog) had for him.  There will be time for remembering and sharing later.  But there should be only love, on both sides.  We are all part of the father and part of the son in that parable, but forgiveness and asking for forgiveness changes our world.  Of course the father is God, who we try to emulate, and the son is all of us.

Keep steady, dear Reader, do as He tells you; when He tells you to move, then move!  Throw away your fears and rest in the love and strength of Jesus.  Be willing to be humble.  He will carry you through!

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Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Let Him Help You Today

Are you one of the many people who don't know how to be thankful because you suffered a great deal of pain at the hands of someone much bigger or stronger than you?  Perhaps you grew to be cynical and untrusting.  Maybe you went through times in your life when the one person who was supposed to protect you and defend you and understand you instead abandoned you.  How heartbreaking that you feel you have nothing to be thankful for!  How very sad when someone loses so much faith in the one they loved so much!  How sad that they reached a point where they built walls around themselves all the way to sky so that person or anyone else couldn't hurt them again. 

Then perhaps the loneliness set in.  The thought of finding someone else to ease the burden seems foolish but you take a chance anyway.  Happiness seems to evade you no matter where you go.  You find that you are stuck in a chasm with hope on one side and despair on the other.  Of course you want to climb the mountain of hope, but it is so high and steep and rocky, it looks impossible to travel!  The other side, the complacent side, is much easier to navigate, so time after time you choose that road.  When will you learn that that road is a circle road?  It only takes you back to that unforgiving chasm.

Although the road of hope looks endless and impossible to travel in your weary state, if you look closely, if you focus, you will see that there is a light there, and a well worn path that many before you have gone.  The ground is really smooth and the way is actually easier than you imagine.  There is refreshment and places to rest.  This is the road that you should take.  The road best traveled. 

Do not give up, dear Reader, do not begin to think that your prayers are in vain!  God hears every single one of your prayers, and He hears them immediately.  He is the Beginning and the End!  He is Love!  He will heal your broken heart.  It begins with forgiveness.  As hard as it is to forgive the unjust or the unfaithful or the cruel, those are exactly the ones that Jesus died for!  He didn't only die for you or me, He died for every single one of us!  The murderers, the rapists, the lewd, the thieves, the haters.  All of us.  We all have the same thing in common--none of us are so bad that He can't forgive us.

Place yourself in His charge today, let His light shine on you.  Let Him direct your paths and bring you refreshment.  He is the Source of all things good and holy and righteous.  Don't be afraid of the outcome, it is deliciously sweet!  And if you need to forgive yourself for something, start there.  Ask for His help, He will take your burden gladly, for He said in Matthew 11:29-30, "Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."

"God is our Salvation and Strength, a very present help in trouble." Psalm 46:1

May you seek Him with a determination that you will finally remove the unforgiveness and the burden that is strangling you.  I pray that you find peace, sweet and restful peace in the arms of the Almighty.  Rest, He will hold you close to His breast and ease your pain.  He loves you!  His passion for you is unequaled and will never change.  To Him you are the most important thing ever!  Go ahead, fall into His arms.

May God bless you today, dear Reader with peace and reassurance of His love for you.  It is there for the taking, so please go to Him now. 

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Run to Him

When all is lost, remember that there is life in Jesus!  Reach for Him, feel Him, know He is there!  Follow Him!  He is God!  He is Lord!  He is ours!  Take refuge in His love and feel His love wrap around you!  Come broken, leave whole once again.  Only He can do that!  Jesus is your answer!  Come and eat and drink of Him!

"Blessed are those who mourn for they shall be comforted."  Matt 5:4 NKJ

Tell Him that you love Him!  Let Him fill you with His holiness and love!  God bless you today, dear Reader!  I pray you leave with a smile this morning and a heart yearning to know Him more intimately!  Go to church this morning and fellowship.  Learn more about the King of kings!  Give Him your heart today!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Joy Fills My Heart!

"The ransomed of the Lord will return.  They will enter Zion with singing; everlasting joy will crown their heads.  Gladness and joy will overtake them, and sorrow and sighing will flee away."  Isaiah 51:11 NIV

I am no longer held captive by those traits that had worn me down.  I left them in the waters of the baptismal pool last night.  I feel wonderfully hopeful about the future, and my heart is filled with joy!  I know that the enemy will try to dump all the same old junk on me, but I won't be biting this time.  He'd be better off just going away...forever!

I know that I will slip and fall on occasion, but I am consciously aware now of those things that I wish to be rid of.  "Do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven." Luke 10:20 NIV

My name is written in heaven!  Father God catches our tears in a jar, and has our faces etched on His hand!  I am a child of the Almighty God, and a joint heir to the throne with Jesus Christ, my Brother!  My heart sings with joy!

Dear Reader, 1 Thessalonians 5:16 tells us to "Be joyful always."  Find something beautiful today, whether it be the sun, the rain, the wind, the child, the dog, the cat, the dinner, whatever; and give thanks to the Lord for it, after all, His glory is all around you!  Let Him know how absolutely awesome He is!  Tell Him that your life is His!  Sing a song of joy!

Father in Heaven, thank You for the emotion of joy, which is so much more fulfilling than happiness.  Thank you that there are so many beautiful things to see and hear that come only from knowing you, things that I used to overlook, but now fascinate me.  Thank You that Your power and majesty is evident in all the world around me!  I adore You!  Amen.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

What a Glorious Day it is Today!

Good morning, dear Reader!  I hope that you are pleased that you are alive today!  Thank God for His kindness in letting you pull breath through the night and open your eyes to another brand new day!  As a new man or woman in Christ you have a wonderful opportunity to start all over and correct the mistakes you made yesterday!  Start with asking for forgiveness of our Lord, and then act the way that shows you are in penance. 

"Look on my affliction and my pain, and forgive all my sins." Psalm 25:18 NKJ 
"For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive, and abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You." Psalm 86:5 NKJ

Then forgive those that you harbor a grudge against for whatever reason.  Maybe they hurt you in the past, maybe they don't act the way you want them to, maybe they are self-serving and egotistical.  Jesus is not a respector of persons, and neither should we be.  Jesus tells us to forgive always, and He tells us why we should.  We can't expect God to forgive us without us first forgiving others. 

“And whenever you stand praying, if you have anything against anyone, forgive him, that your Father in heaven may also forgive you your trespasses.  But if you do not forgive, neither will your Father in heaven forgive your trespasses.” Mark 11:25-26

When you forgive, you will feel free of the bonds that hold you back!  Smile as you face the day, and know that your soul is cleansed!  Feel His love around you!

I am so excited today!  I am getting baptized this evening, and I can hardly wait!  I was baptized was as a child because that was the law of the religion that my parents belonged to.  Almost five years ago, on March 28, 2007 I was baptized for what I consider the first time.  It was a life-changing event for me.  I can't even begin to explain all that it did for me!  I stopped cussing and cursing without even knowing it, and my attitude about many things changed.  I became insatiable in my desire to know God and Jesus better and to live a righteous life. 

Tonight I have things that I am consciously leaving behind.  I am making a stand against my anger, doubt, fear, and self-loathing.  I am leaving them behind and breaking through with peace, trust, and confidence in God and myself!  The trust is the most important thing though.  I want so much to stop relying on me and trust Jesus with all my heart.  There are too many circumstances in my life where I don't put my trust in Him.  Instead I try to take care of the situation myself and even though I am doomed for failure and I know it, I do it anyway. 

I want more control in my life than I had before.  I don't want to take control from God, instead I want to acknowledge that the control belongs to God.  I want to exert the authority Jesus won back for me over Satan.  Does that make sense?  I want to know that God is totally in charge of my life.  I want to be submissive to His guidance and direction.  I believe that with submission comes wisdom.  And I want the devil to know exactly who is in authority in my life, and it sure isn’t him!

I pray that your day is beautiful and exciting and that God shows you many things today.  Perhaps you will see or hear of some miracle that will reinforce your love for Him.  Praise Him!  Be a blessing to Him!  He is Awesome! 

Tuesday, January 3, 2012

Words of Peace for 2012

"Be anxious for nothing, but in all things, by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, make your requests known to God.  And the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding will guard your heart and mind in Christ Jesus."  Philipians 4:6-7

"Jesus said, 'Peace I leave you; my peace I give you.  I do not give to you as the world gives.  Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid."  John 14:27

"Lord, You establish peace for us; all that we have accomplished You have done for us."  Isaiah 26:12

"Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace."  Colossians 3:15

"I will lie down and sleep in peace, for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety."  Psalm 4:8

"The Lord gives strength to His people; the Lord blesses His people with peace."  Psalm 29:11

"You will keep in perfect peace him whose mind is steadfast, because he trusts in You."  Isaiah 26:3

"The meek will inherit the land and enjoy great peace."  Psalm 37:11

"Great peace have they who love Your law, and nothing can make them stumble."  Psalm 119:165

"Aim for perfection, listen to my appeal, be of one mind, live in peace.  And the God of love and peace will be with you."  2 Corinthians 13:11

"Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace."  Ephesians 4:3

"The God of peace be with you."  Philippians 4:9

"If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone."  Romans 12:18

"The wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere.  Peacemakers who sow in peace raise a harvest of righteousness."  James 3:17-18

Dear Reader, as the world is getting full of turmoil and the economy all over the world is taking a beating, remember that in God's Kingdom the rules are different.  Do not let the things of this world control you, remember that Jesus gave us the authority over all of it.  As we look to Him this new year, put peace in your heart.  Let not your heart be troubled, as He said more than once, he will not leave nor forsake you.  Take hold of that and find that serene comfort and peace that is abundant in His presence.  Get our your bible and spend a little time in the word.  Breathe deep and capture His love in your heart. 

Don't worry about the bills, the marriage, or the broken toe today.  Worrying will not fix it.  God will.  Find His peace and stay there until you're sure you can trust Him to get you through it all.  Be blessed my friends!

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!

May God bless you and yours this wonderful new day and new year!  Look to Him for guidance, and leave all your cares and woes behind.  This is a new time to get to know Jesus and all He has for you. 

I am getting re-baptized this week because I have things that I want to consciously leave behind in the waters of baptism.  Things like anger and fear and self-loathing.  I want to be a better steward of all that He has given me.  I want to be a better servant.  I am very excited about my future.  No more crying over spilt milk, I can't get it all back in the bottle anyway, right?  May as well give those old hurts and pains over to God and do what I can to have a better attitude and be a blessing!

"The blessing of the Lord makes one rich, and He adds no sorrow with it."  Proverbs 10:22 KJV