Friday, October 31, 2008
I can see two types of darkness. There is a darkness that is totally and completely full of sin. This darkness is devoid of any understanding of God. Here the enemy has rule.
There is also a darkness that is full of God. Though our eyes are darkened and we do not understand what is going on around us, God is there. His presence may seem far away to us, however, He is there with us. God, thankfully, is so overwhelming and all powerful our minds cannot comprehend His ways. Yet for God even the darkness is light. It is in this darkness God rules and those of us who choose to learn to trust.
The greatest truth is that God reigns over all. I looked up definitions to rule and reign. The first definition I found for rule was the principle governing conduct, control. So you see where the enemy rules his principles govern the conduct of those under him. They have chosen to be controlled by him. Where God rules, those who chose Him are governed by His principles.
The definition for reign was to have sovereign power. No matter what you choose, God reigns over all. That is so comforting to me. No matter what, God is sovereign over everything. His word and His will is what stands firm forever. I will choose God's rule in the dark any day.
"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither your ways my ways, declares the Lord. As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts." Isaiah 55:8
Wednesday, October 29, 2008
Sunday, October 26, 2008
Friday, October 24, 2008
I read these words yesterday and thought how true. My life has been comparatively easy. I have been blessed with a wonderful husband and six beautiful children. But there have been struggles along the way - financial disaster, a challenging strong-willed child, continual rejections and self-confidence issues, the list could go on but you get the picture. However, through it all my faith and belief in my Lord has only grown stronger. He is more real to me today that the day before. It is not because of anything I have done really, it is ALL JESUS!! His grace and mercies that are new every morning. Apart from His strength I would have turned to a crying mush years ago.
I am so glad we have a God who leaves us words of encouragement and a foundation to stand on "I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world." John 16:38 Isn't God good to let us know ahead of time - you will have trouble. And He doesn't leave us hanging there - He lets us know that it is okay. He has overcome the world so we can take heart and not let fear or frustration rule over us.
When all else fails I heartily join Peter in saying , "Lord, to whom shall we go? You have the words of eternal life. We believe and know that you are the Holy One of God."
May we daily go to the One who has the words of eternal life and listen to His voice. May we receive encouragement and strength for the journey ahead.
Wednesday, October 22, 2008
Broken pieces, distorted images,
My life in shambles around my feet.
Healing words, clarifying pictures,
Spirit of God putting chaos in order.
Creating a vessel for His use, His glory.
Jesus - thank you that because of Your righteousness we are vessels of honor for the Father's glory. May we be filled up and poured out for Your pleasure.
"Remove impurities from the silver and the silversmith can craft a fine chalic."
Proverbs 25:4a (The Message)
"Isn't it obvious that a potter has a perfect right to shape one lump of clay into a vase for holding flowers and another a pot for cooking beans? If God needs one style of pottery designed to show His angry displeasure and another style to show His generous goodness, isn't that all right?" Romans 9:21 (The Message)
Monday, October 20, 2008
Sunday, October 19, 2008
Wednesday, October 15, 2008
Bread of Life
Dew, settling and gone,
“Thin flakes like frost on the desert floor”
Manna, bread for today.
A morning long ago,
Thin flakes of flayed skin on the chilling soil
Manna, bread of life
Provision today and an eternity of
(from Exodus 16:14, John 6:35)
Tuesday, October 14, 2008
God Desires Me to:
Monday, October 13, 2008
"Now there was a famine in the land, and Abraham..." (Gen. 12:10-20). What? Did he pray? Seek direction from the One who had appeared to him? Trust God to provide....No. In the face of crisis Abraham panicked, forgot God, figured out his own solution, and headed to Egypt.
Difficult situations don't necessarily mean we're out of God's will. His goal is to develop our faith. To do this, He will sometimes allow famine to touch our lives, as He did with Abraham.
The famine - is a God-permitted time of need. Whenever you face a situation you're powerless to do anything about, your in a famine. "There's a famine in my life": a job layoff or a big problem at work, a family or church conflict, a frightening diagnosis or chronic illness, a painful loss...You're drying up inside for lack of life and soul-sustaining nourishment....You wonder God, why? What are you doing?
Whatever form famines take, God uses them, not to punish, but to push us forward. He didn't cause the famine, but He allowed it in order to build Abraham's trust - and He permits them in our lives for the same reason.
In addition to deepening our trust, a famine reminds us of how much we need God day by day. Only when famine strikes do we relearn: God alone can provide for our deepest needs.
Few of us go through life without confronting some seemingly real fears: How can we stretch our income to cover the bills? Is my marriage going to survive? What kinds of choices will our kids make - and how can I cope with the choices they've already made?
When our mind locks on these kinds of fears, what happens? Do we feel joy, peace, and trust in God? Hardly. We become caught in the grip of worry, don't we often react like Abraham, forgetting God and figuring out our own solutions?
Worry is the termite of the soul, tunneling its way into the very support beams of our lives.
As a result of worry, we can...
Forget God. Here we have an opportunity to remember God's promises and develop faith muscles. Spiritually, we blank out.
Lose Faith. Like helium in a balloon, as soon as Abraham forgot God, his faith fizzled to nothing.
Experience Fear. By leaving God out, fear takes over. Add a fertile imagination, and Abraham could see his whole household and animals slowly starving. When a famine hits, you can't sit around waiting for God to do something unheard of like dropping manna from the sky...could you?
Feel Insecure. Fear breeds insecurity. "What's going to happen?" Thoughts of waiting on God for His wisdom fly out the window. Too often we act impulsively because of emotional pressure bearing down on us.
Behave Selfishly. Panic and insecurity crowd out everything but self-preservation. Abraham arrives on Egypt's border and thought," Now what am I going to do? Sarah is so beautiful...the Egyptian king will kill me for her." Notice, no thought is given to Sarah's feelings or safety. Abraham's thoughts were "What about ME?"
Act Hypocritically. Where is our true character seen? "Character is who we are under pressure." Abraham's household looked to him to be the spiritual leader. Even though his faith didn't go as deep as the situation demanded, God was at work.
Receive a Rebuke. If we neglect to seek God's direction He doesn't necessarily stop us from going our own way. Nor does He always shield us from the consequences of our actions. Receiving a sharp rebuke can be a painful reminder to turn to God early on the next time.
The Lord did rescue both Sarah and Abraham with a plague on Pharaoh's household. Needless to say, Pharaoh wasn't too happy about this. Confronting an ashamed man of faith, Pharaoh told Abraham to go. So much for being a blessing.
When we don't trust God under pressure, testings, we spiral downward. It's as if we've entered a spiritual war zone blindfolded. God's desire is to use whatever troubles us to draw us closer to Himself. At the same time our spiritual enemy whats to trip us up, ensnare us.
Confusing, worrisome situation always confront us with spiritual choices. Can I trust God?...At times the battle to trust can be exhausting and seem never-ending - but it must be fought over and over again. Matthew 6:25-34 Jesus referred 5 times to worry. "Don't worry" Jesus commands - and gives two solid reasons why:
1. You have a Heavenly Father who lives and values you. He will provide for you (v.26)
2. Worry cannot change your circumstances. (v.27)
God can change our circumstances if it is His will, but worry will not. The blunt truth is, worry amounts to disobedience, which is sin. Ouch!...What does my worry really reveal?
In Philippians 4, Paul gives us clear instructions: Figure out what is worrying you, tell God all about it, make your requests known, and thank Him for his power to provide what's needed. (v6-7)
Okay so I have been long worded today and I really must get my day going. Tomorrow I will cover to me the most encouraging part - two outcomes from testings, difficulties, and pressures and the path to trust. I pray you have hung in there and will join me again.
Sunday, October 12, 2008
Saturday, October 11, 2008
Praise relates to blessings from God: "I praise you Lord for helping me."
Friday, October 10, 2008
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Monday, October 6, 2008
This is how I feel about all the noise surrounding us right now. Between hearing and reading about the economy and the election, I am exhausted. How we need truth to shine through. And the only real truth comes from God on high. He is truly "all that I long for."
So while the commentators and pundits go on and on I will be satisfied to rest in the light of God's Word. Knowing that He is in control of every day, every situation.
"..I the Lord speak the truth; I declare what is right." Isaiah 45:19
Father may we walk in the light of your truth, listening for your voice above the cacophony that surrounds us.
Sunday, October 5, 2008
Saturday, October 4, 2008