Suffering


March 31
Reading through some definitions of suffer, the first one which read "to experience something unpleasant" just didn't quite equate for me.  Searching further, this one hit home more…"to submit to or be forced to endure."
While I'm still in shock mode and awaiting the funeral tomorrow of our friend, who took his own life last week, I know he must have been suffering greatly.  I'm spending a lot of time in prayer this week and most of the personal prayers for individuals relate to great suffering. One young mother underwent surgery yesterday to correct a heart condition in her unborn child and the child died.  My mind can't begin to grasp the depth of that loss.
If we listen to the sound of the whips which lashed across Jesus' back; if we feel the pricks of the thorns driving into his skull on that awful crown and if we allow our muscles to imagine the weight of the cross he had to drag uphill; then we can relate to the suffering Christ endured for us.

Isaiah 53:3-4 The Message takes us back at a look at the one who suffered for us.

The servant grew up before God-a scrawny seedling, a scrubby plant in a parched field.  There was nothing attractive about him, nothing to cause us to take a second look.  He was looked down on and passed over, a man who suffered, who know pain firsthand. One look at him and people turned away. We looked down on him, thought he was scum. But the fact is, it was our pains he carried-our disfigurements, all the things wrong with us. We thought he brought it on himself, that God was punishing him for his own failures.  But it was out sins that did that to him, that ripped and tore and crushed him-our sins!  He took the punishment, and that made us whole. Through his bruises we get healed. We're all like sheep who've wandered off and gotten lost. We've all done our own thing, gone our own way. And God has piled all our sins, everything we've done wrong on him, on him. 

Easter Treats

March 30
The pastel eggs, the jelly beans, the peeps and bunnies, while they say nothing about Jesus, are quite cute and a reminder that nature is springing back to life.  Brrr, you could have fooled me this past chilly weekend. (The backside of this jar would make you laugh.  My grandsons and I have been nibbling.)
What Jesus did for us on that cross was the ultimate, everlasting treat!  He treated us to an ongoing forgiveness of sin, which triumphs over any feat ever accomplished.

How? you ask.  In Christ. God put the wrong on him who never did anything wrong,
so we could be put right with God.
2 Corinthians 5:21 MSG 

But thanks be to God!
He gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.
1 Corinthians 15:57

Steeples

Love these country churches in Bath County

March 28-29
As a child, I loved Palm Sunday and getting to wave that branch!  I thought of it more of a "Everybody loves Jesus" time, than the reality statement Jesus was making and the "Doom to Boom" that would occur in the week to follow.  Oh, I can't wait to sing…"Up from the grave He arose!"

How can we be intentional to take up our cross this week and make Holy Week 2015 bring more glory to God than any other year?  Instead of standing silent on the Via Dolorosa, will we honor Christ and open our mouths to tell others how much Jesus' sacrifice means to us and that He adores them?   

This morning I read an excellent reflection by Fil Anderson:

"Jesus had previously rejected all attempts to make Him king.  However, this Passover was wildly different.  He'd instructed His disciples to secure a donkey for His ride into the city, indicating He was the king foretold by Zechariah (9:9).  From that moment on, there was  no turning back or away. After this very public demonstration, the religious elite would be forced to either accept Him or reject Him- to seat Him on the throne of their hearts or nail Him to a cross.

Jesus knew that before week's end, He'd endure the mockery of a kangaroo court, receive a merciless beating, and be forced to carry a cross through the stress of Jerusalem.  He knew there'd be no cheering crowds that day.  Yet this would be a week that changed the world.  He knew that after He was dead and gone, He would rise again.

Thinking of Jesus riding on a donkey toward a certain and cruel death, I wonder, What does this have to do with me on Palm Sunday 2015?  Then I recall the words, "Have this attitude in yourself, which was also in Christ Jesus," the one who said, "If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross daily and follow Me."  (Phil. 2:5; Luke 9:23)

Jesus did it all!  He's the gift that keeps on giving.
Give Jesus away this week!  Don't keep what He means to you a secret.

Stunned




March 27
Life is a lot!  We can go from elation to devastation in seconds. We've had a fabulous week with our daughter and grandsons, but no sooner had they gotten on the road yesterday than I received a phone call informing me a dear friend/neighbor/church member had taken his own life. I was standing in Target when the call came and I wanted to throw up.  Emotionally paralyzed, I didn't know whether to take my cart through check out or just leave it there and get to the car to bawl.  I had a list of friends I was supposed to call and I went through the motions, thanking God for each one of these friends who loves the Lord and many who have been in my life for 25-30 years.
Driving home I reflected on how God had placed this couple on my heart Tuesday night.  I wanted to have them to dinner, but knew he was in lots of physical pain and the drive would be difficult. Why didn't I call?  
This friend was a brilliant and immensely compassionate surgeon. He and his wife were partners in every since of the word.  He will be greatly missed.
Asking the Lord to direct me to a verse which would describe what I am feeling 2 Samuel 19:33 has David going through similar motions after learning his son, Absalom, had been killed. 
The king was stunned.  Heartbroken, he went up to the room over the gate and wept.
As he wept he cried out, O my son Absalom, my dear, dear son Absalom!
Why not me rather than you, my death and not yours, O Absalom, my dear, dear son!

When we love deeply, there is the risk of grieving deeply the passing of a person so dear.
Awakening from a restless night's sleep, with a headache, I knew the reason. It is so hard to lay our burdens down.  I opened my email to an online Bible study I am doing with a group of friends.  I'm posting the whole devotional from She Read's Truth, because it is excellent, but mainly because its timing speaks to why I know God is for real.  It was just what I needed to read this morning and God knew that.

Text Luke 23:26, Mark 15:21, Mathew 16:24-25
"I can't begin to count how many times I've taken what feels like the weight of the world on my shoulders.  I do  this in every area of life, from trying to control a situation or set of circumstances-like the stress of household finances or my child's grades and school performance-to taking on friends' hardships, ministry burdens, work projects, even justice issues as problems for me to solve.  But life doesn't work that way, does it?

We were never meant to carry the weight of the world on our shoulders. It cripples and disappoints creating discouragement, sleepless nights, and emotional turmoil.  Heaping this weight on ourselves bears anger, resentment, fear, anxiety, stress, comparison, and jealousy- and that awful feeling that we can't be everything to everyone, even through we try and try and try. I am tired and worn out just writing this!

This kind of heavy living is not the way of our Lord.  Jesus said this:
"Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."  Matthew 11:28-30

Jesus knew we would live under the daily weight of our idols of self-entitlement and our illusions of control, trying to play savior to ourselves and others. He knew the burdens of life would have crushing effects, so He taught and challenged His disciples to follow His lead, practicing the disciplines that keep us in relationship with God.

On that Friday after being beaten, judged, and sentenced to death, Jesus walked the dusty road to His crucifixion. Simon of Cyrene experienced a divine interruption when he was pulled from the crowd to carry the cross.  Jesus walked in front of him, and Simon kept his eyes on Jesus.  He was not taking Jesus' place; he was simply following Him.

To follow Jesus is to relinquish our attempts to be god and savior to others. It is trusting that God is in control and we are not. It is believing that Christ alone saves, and we, despite our best efforts, do not.  It is accepting-and expecting-Jesis to interrupt your day to bring your focus back to Him.  Friend, this is far easier to write than to live because it requires complete dependence, humility, trust in God and His Word.  To be a disciple means having a heart to follow, learn from, and love Jesus as He teaches, directs, and shapes our character and response to life circumstances.
We can fix our eyes on Jesus…
The BIble becomes the sustaining nourishment for living life.  Psalm 1:1-2
Interruptions become divine appointments.  John 4:1-26
Confession turns to freedom.  Isaiah 1:18
Quiet time restores the unsettled soul.  Psalm 46:10
Loving one another is not fixing each other, but pointing to the Savior who heals, redeems, and forgives.  1 John 4:7-12, Hebrews 12:1-17

The weight of life is transferred back to the only One who can bear the weight.
As we fix our eyes on Jesus, He will take on our heaviest burn dens and use them to transform us to be more like Him, and others will see and witness His redemptive glory.

"For is it the grace of Christ, and not our own virtue, that gives us the power to overcome the flesh and the world." Thomas a Kempis

The Path to the Cross

March 26

In the She Reads Truth Lenten study, I'm working on the third section which is titled:
"Remember the Path to the Cross."
Each day we are to journal a prayer.  One of mine began like this…
"Lord, we are heading into the part of the story where I want to turn my head.  I hate false accusations. I hate to see pain inflicted upon others.  I hate that my sin is part of what nailed you to the cross." 

Section Two was titled: REPENT.  I'm still doing that and must confess there have been days I've allowed the Spirit to bring to remembrance sins that have almost caused me to vomit.  After the repenting process there is always a relief that Christ would carry those away for me, but there is something else that occurs.  A realization, that I have no place to look in judgement at anyone else, brings me to a deeper love for others.

I thank God for this amazing study and for loving me in this sinful state.  I thank Christ for dragging the cross along that arduous path out of his love for you and me.

"He himself bore our sins "in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live 
for righteousness; "by his wounds you have been healed."
1 Peter 2:24

Samson, Oh, Samson

March 25
In my current read through the Bible program, I landed on the story of Samson yesterday and it has stayed with me.  After all the tests he gave Delilah on her trustworthiness, which she failed one after another, why did he finally give in and tell her the secret of his strength?  Wake up fellow! How could you have been so blind?  It cost you your sight and the position in which God had placed you.

God, where have I been that gullible? Immediately, God referenced multiple times I have allowed people to come into our home and steal from us again and again.  Sorry Samson, I was too quick to judge. Ha, he also clued me in to the years as a high school Sunday school teacher when I thought the girls liked to hang around me because they looked up to me…nope they were hoping to get a look at our five sons!

Going to Gotquestions.org, I wanted to see if there were other lessons to be learned.  Here are some great points…
"There are many valuable lessons we can glean from the story of Samson and Delilah.  Though born with unbelievable potential, Samson forfeit his life because of sin. The lesson for us is that , the deeper we allow ourselves to be influenced by the glamour and allurement of sin, the more blind we become.  We must heed the stern warning: 
"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life."  Proverbs 4:23

Praise God, Samson turned his heart back to God before he died. God forgave him and granted his final wish and went on to name in the Hall of Faith.  Hebrews 11:32

Open our eyes Lord to the traps laid before us.  Direct us away from destructive relationships. Keep us humble and remembering that our strength is in You.  In Jesus' Name, Amen

I Want to Live Like This


But blessed is the one who trusts in the Lord, whose confidence is in him.  They will be like a tree planted by the water that sends out its roots by the stream. It does not fear when heat comes' its leaves are always green.  It has no worries in a year of drought and never fails to bear fruit.
Jeremiah 17:7-8

March 24
When I read this verse I thought, I want to live like this.  Trusting in the Lord, living life knowing my confidence doesn't have to be in what I can do, but in what Jesus has done and will do for me.  I want to reach out to the streams of living water and never fear or worry, but live a life that bears much fruit for God!
All things are possible with God! He has a plan to do great things!

Clean UP

Create in me a clean heart, O God, And renew a steadfast spirit within me.
Psalm 51:10
March 23
Today was the second time I tried to post a very personal confession of a judgmental situation on my part. Neither time what I wrote showed up, so I am taking this as a sign from the Lord he didn't want me sharing this for some reason.
Most of the time, our confessions are only necessary to unfold before the Lord, so maybe that is the message he wants someone to hear.

A Lighthouse


March 21-22
Today's passage is so exciting to me.  Isaiah 42 is a wonderfully prophetic book.
Here is my servant, whom I uphold, my chosen one in whom I delight; I will put my Spirit on him and he will bring justice on the nations.  (v. 1)

A commentary from the NIV Women of Faith Bible states: "While Jewish scholars interpret the servant in this chapter to be Israel itself, Christians understand the servant to be Jesus (Mt 12:15-21), Savior of the Jews, but also a "light for the Gentiles." (Isaiah 42:6)

Wouldn't you have loved to be at the river that day when John baptized Jesus and the dove came down and the loud speaker from heaven spoke "This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased."
(Mt. 3:17)  Oh, how wonderful to have God look down at his children today and say…"These are my children with whom I am well pleased."

Enjoy this passage, Isaiah 42:5-9 in The Message. It's subtitle:
 The God Who Makes Us Alive with His Own Life
"God's Message, the God who created the cosmos, stretched out the skies, laid out the earth and all that grows from it, Who breathes life into earth's people, makes them alive with his own life: "I am God. I have called you to live right and well. I have taken responsibility for you, kept you safe. I have set you among my people to bind them to me, and provided you as a lighthouse to the nations. To make a start at bringing people into the open, into light: opening blind eyes, releasing prisoners from dungeons, emptying the dark prisons. I am God. That's my name. I don't franchise my glory, don't endorse the no-god idols. Take note: The earlier predictions of judgement have been fulfilled. I'm announcing the new salvation work.  Before it burst on the scene, I'm telling you about it.

Oh Great God, who hang each star in the sky and uniquely created each one of us out of love, please not only breathe life into us today, but make us spiritually alive as well.  A living reflection of You!
In Jesus' Name, Amen

S.O.A.R.


March 20
Here's a good acronym for soaring, while surviving life!
S.   Seek the Lord
O.   Obey the Lord
A. Ask of the Lord 
R. Rest in the Lord
         
The Lord looks down from heaven on all mankind to see if there are any who understand, 
any who seek God.   
Psalm 14:2 

And the people said to Joshua,
"We will serve the Lord our God and obey him."
Joshua 24:24

Don't bargain with God. Be direct. Ask for what you need.
This isn't a cat and mouse, hide-and-seek game we're in. 
If your child asks for bread, do you trick him with sawdust?
If he asks for fish, do you scare him with a live snake on his plate?
As bad as you are, you wouldn't think of such a thing.
You're at least decent to your own children.
So don't you think the God who conceived you in love will be even better?
Matthew 7:7-11

Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him.
Psalm 37:7

What great items for our daily "To Do" list.  

Come, Holy Spirit, come this day.  Stir our soul this morning to seek the Lord. Keep us tuned in all day, so that by faith and the power of Christ in us who call him Savior we may set forth in total obedience to the tasks at hand.  When the going gets rough and we do not understand help us remember it is not only ok, but wise to ask You, Lord, "What should we do?"  Illuminate the Word of God, so it will be a light unto our path.  Then each day may our obedience continue as we take time to rest in Your love!  In Jesus Name, Amen.

Portion

Ready for April showers.
March 19
A friend emailed this precious message, which sent me on a portion hunt!  She writes:
"I was praying this morning asking God to let me have a tiny piece of understanding of his sacrifice. He gave me the word PORTION!  Then I read SRT for today.  The author wrote: 'Jesus knew we would struggle to grasp the weight of his sacrifice and the fullness of forgiveness.'  Oh!  How I would love to get a deep understanding of His sacrifice.  Portion can be connected to so many things, one moment at a time, one day at a time, one sentence at a time, one word at a time, etc. Don't worry about tomorrow, for we have God to give us our portion to understand."

Being inspired by what God had placed on her heart, I  went to the dictionary. One of the definitions for portion was... a part of a whole.  Don't you love how that pertains to the Body of Christ!  We are a part of Him and a part of one another!

Praying for God to be our portion this day!
The Lord is my portion, therefore I wait for him.  Lamentations 3:24

Lord, you alone are my portion and my cup; you make my lot secure.  Psalm 16:5

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.  
Psalm 73:26

You are my portion, Lord; I have promised to obey your words.  Psalm 105:11

I cry to you, Lord, I say, "You are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living." Psalm 142:5

A Tangled Mess



March 18

I purchased a beautiful skein of skinny yarn in blue hues.  The sales lady at the yarn shop offered to wind the yarn into a ball for me, but I explained my ride was waiting and I needed to scurry out. Traveling this past weekend I thought the car ride would provide a good opportunity to wind the yard. Instead I've ended up with a tangled mess.
I've put over 28 hours so far into undoing this mess. Who knows what I could have created by now if I was knitting.
Sunday, I received calls and emails relaying heart wrenching  news concerning health issues three different friends are facing with their loved ones.  One was rushed into emergency surgery and the other two have major treatment decisions to make, while facing life threatening complications and fevers.
Picking my way through the yarn,  I kept praying for these friends.  As I'd get to one tight mess, I'd almost give up and toss the yarn away. Then I'd undo a knot and there would be a straight away and progress would be made, giving me hope to see this through to completion.  I know that is how these patients and their families must feel. They are hanging on to hope and calling out to God to heal them.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow,  for tomorrow will worry about itself.
Each day has enough trouble of its own.
Matthew 6:34

A Personal Savior

The green is for St Patrick's Day
March 17
If we confess our sins He is faithful and just
to forgive our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.
1 John 1:9

"He died not for men, but for each man.
If each man had been the only man made, He would have done no less."
C.S. Lewis

So what do we do with a personal Savior like that?  Where is His presence in our lives in relationship to others and other activities?  Does Jesus hold the seat of honor in our homes?

Praying the other morning, I was so thankful I could come to God so freely. Then I remembered that approach is only possible with Jesus, for Christ's shed blood makes the path clear.  I pictured myself holding Jesus' hand as we approached the throne of God and Jesus was speaking to God for me. Yup, Jesus was speaking on behalf of His beloved friend.  He wants to do that for everyone created, but we have to take the step to establish the friendship.

Forgive Continuosly

March 16
I just listened to this profound message on forgiveness this morning. Following the message I listened to Kari Jobe's song on the second link.  As she sang, I closed my eyes to pray and the first place God took me was to a remembrance of Jesus carrying the cross and it was laden with my sins.  Sins that I have committed again and again.
We are to offer to others, that which we desire to receive for ourselves.

http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=WZLKZLNX&utm_source=GodTube%20Today&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=03/16/2015

Song
http://www.godtube.com/watch/?v=0CJ10MNU&utm_source=GodTube%20Must-See%20-%20Mobile&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=03/16/2015

Shadowing

March 14-15
This surprise shadowing event by Disney to a shopping mall brought to mind the thought, as Christians, we should be shadowing Jesus!
http://features.aol.com/video/disney-characters-shadow-unsuspecting-shoppers?icid=maing-grid7%7Cmain5%7Cdl18%7Csec1_lnk3%26pLid%3D627360

Marvelous!


March 13
For the past two hours, I've been devouring Bible Study. It's coming at me faster than I can assimilate all I want to learn.  The big question is…What am I going to do with what I learn?  Will I live differently?  Oh, how I pray I do.

Presently, I'm involved in two studies. One is Beth Moore's Jesus the One and Only. Moore writes, "Walking with Christ is the greatest pleasure of my life. But even this sacred pleasure cannot be my goal.  Knowing and pleasing Christ must be my goal.  Distraction of all kinds is my biggest challenge in this pursuit."  Oh, girlfriend, do I relate!

She also expounded on a heartfelt personal petition to God; being that she would develop His taste.  "I want to grow to love what He loves, hate what He hates, and marvel at the things He finds marvelous."
What a powerful prayer for us all.

Moore established these longings after realizing in Luke 7:9 that Jesus marvels at the faith of people. In this chapter a centurion is wanting his servant healed.  (Which is a precious story in itself.)

Now when Jesus heard this, He marveled at him, and turned and said to the crowd that was following him, 'I say to you, not even in Israel have I found such a great faith,'" 

God, make us want what you want and give us a GIANT faith which believes your will will be done.
In Jesus' Name. Amen

Make Today the Day

March 12

There is an online exercise program which is advertised on TV and it's "Catch Phrase" is "Make today the Day."  Our pastor gave a sermon last week on Godly living in reference to watching for Christ's return. He used four Bible recommendations for daily living.
1) Be Alert-Be on guard! Be alert!  Mark 13:33
2) Be Self-controlled-So then, let us not be like others, who are asleep, but let us be alert and self-  
    controlled, 1 Thessalonians 5:6
3) Pray- The end of all things is near. Therefore be clear minded and self-controlled so that you can 
     pray.  1 Peter 4:7
4) Live Holy and Godly Lives- Since everything will be destroyed in this way, what kind of people 
    ought you to be?  You ought to live holy and godly lives as you look forward to the day of God.
    11 Peter 3:11-12
     
Let's make today the day, we live the way Christ lived!

Perfect Submission


March 11
Oh, it's double whammy day.  My fingers are slow to hit the keys with the vulnerability in which my pen flowed across my prayer journal to the Lord.  We don't want the world to see our sinfulness do we, yet God sees it all.  Ha, no fig leave big enough!  So here goes…

"Father, my heart goes back to the song, Blessed Assurance, and the two verses beginning with Perfect submission." May I have perfect submission to You, Lord. As I reflect back on recent days, since implanting that song in my heart, I can see hourly how many ways I need to do that.  In these last years of earthly marriage to my husband I want to be a totally submissive wife to my husband, who loves me so selflessly.  I regret and seek forgiveness for not being that kind of wife the last 36 years.  Mold me and make me better Lord.  In Jesus Name, Amen"

After writing in my journal, I opened some online devotionals I receive and there was Adrain Rogers (from the grave) writing on submission and placing Ephesians 5:21 before me.  I love God's confirmations even when they are uncomfortable.

Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.
Ephesians 5:21 

Purchased

March 10
Most of you have known me long enough now to know I love it when a word grabs me. Today the word is purchased. I'm needing to multi-task, so I will share briefly part of a prayer I wrote to God this morning from the She Reads Truth study journal, in which I am currently participating.

"Father…I desperately want to remember that you valued me enough to purchase me through the blood of your perfect Son.  Seldom do we buy something we do not want.  Thank You for wanting me!"

For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to your from your ancestors.  1 Peter 1:18

Dear friends, You are valuable to the Lord.  In all that we do today may we remember we were purchased for a purpose.  We are to bring glory to the One who give it all for us!  Amen!

Sweet Love

March 9
My husband officiated a wedding yesterday afternoon and  you could feel the sweetness of the commitment these two were making to one another.
If we stop long enough and reflect on the steadfast love of Christ, we can not only feel the sweetness, but we can give thanks for the sacrifice made on our behalf and the security of the promises made to us by God concerning that love.

My memory verse this week is from Lamentations 3:22-23. I told some of my Bible study gals, we should try using the first part as a greeting to others.  Instead of How are you?  Try….
The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases. 
His mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning!
Yup…Great is God's faithfulness.

My computer is struggling again.  It has no space left. If you don't see it a post, it has crashed and I will have to get to Greensboro to my Apple buddies.

Frustrated


March 7-8
Da-gone!  In my Chronological read through the Bible in a year, I've been stuck in the Mosaic law and totally frustrated!  I'm such a rule keeper that being an Israelite would have driven me bonkers!   There are promises to be blessed when you come in and when you go out, but the chances of being considered unclean, cursed or stoned to death are pretty high!
Praise God from whom all blessings flow for Jesus!

Investigate my life, O God, find out everything about me;
Cross-examine and test me get a clear picture of what I'm about;
See for yourself whether I've done anything wrong-
then guide me on the road to eternal life.
Psalm 139:23-24 

What Cha Thinkin Bout

March 6

"For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are 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 55:8-9

We will be driving along in silence and I'll turn to my husband and say, "What cha thinkin' bout?"  More often than not, we are thinking about earthly issues or desires, for we are not capable of calculating God sized thoughts.  It excites me that heaven is beyond our wildest imagination!

We've had a couple of our grandchildren here for the week and the oldest one had the privilege of attending kindergarten one day, where his Papa is the Head of School.  That day happened to be Career Day for the students and the kindergarteners were to dress up in a costume of what they want to be when they grow up.  While I have an extensive dress up inventory,  the life time dreams of begin Peter Pan or a dog, pirate, clown, Indian, cowboy, lobster, or butterfly were not very realistic.  The professional race car driver won out.  Our granddaughter stayed home with me and was content to be Tinker Bell.

May we all be "thinking' 'bout" being pleasing in God's sight and excited that our life long position of heir to The King, is yet to come!

These commandments that I give you today are to be on your hearts. 
Impress them on your children.  Talk about them when you sit at home 
and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up.  
Deuteronomy 6:6-7

After studying the Mosaic Law for several weeks, I must say I am elated to not have to "think bout" teaching my children and grandchildren all those laws!  Praise God for Jesus and the New Testament!

Trigger Thought




Creatures in our house!
March 5
Walking my way through a season of repentance, with Easter approaching, I awaken in the early morning hours before dawn.  No creature was stirring and the only sound was the hum of the heating unit, which is a comfort on a cold winter morning.

I think I told you I've been trying to go to bed with scripture the last thing on my mind.

Here is where my repentant thoughts took me.  I'll just give you the trigger thought and not the heart wrenching truths God and I are dealing with.  The question the Holy Spirit posed to me was...

"Where is your confidence?"

The honest answers related to externals in my life. Our confidence should be in Christ and come from the spiritual realm.

Such confidence we have through Christ toward God.  
Not that we are adequate in ourselves to consider anything as coming from ourselves, 
but our adequacy is from God.
2 Corinthians 3:4-5

Keep Moving

March 4

Driving home from being out of town for the day, there were a couple routes possible.  The two lane roads had heavier traffic, stop lights and what I felt was a greater possibility for construction and accidents causing slow downs, so I opted for the back roads.  The thought crossed my mind that I preferred to at least be moving forward, even at a slower past than sitting still in traffic.

Hmm, how does that realization process into my spiritual life.  I love the fact that a life with Christ is constantly growing.  Even if it is a slow daily process, it is continual!  I found the passage below in The Message translation and want to turn it into a poster for my grandchildren.

You're blessed when you stay on course, walking steadily on the road revealed by God.
You're blessed when you follow his directions, doing your best to find him.
That's right-you don't go off on your own; you walk straight along the road he set. 
You, God, prescribed the right way to live; now you expect us to live it.
Oh, that my steps might be steady, keeping to the course you set;
Then I'd never have any regrets in comparing my life with your counsel.
I thank you for speaking straight from your heart;
I learn the pattern of your righteous ways.
I'm going to do what you tell me to do; don't ever walk off and leave me.
Psalm 119:1-8 

Steady Temperature

March 3
Easy come, easy go, but steady diligence pays off.
Proverbs 13:11

Driving home from Augusta, GA, on Sunday, we had quite a day. We stopped to see friends in South Carolina, then headed north east through North Carolina to intercept a couple grandchildren and bring them home to Virginia.  So, a 7AM departure and 4PM arrival had an interesting documentation on our car's external thermometer. The temperature remained 34 degrees for over 8 hours throughout travel in four states!  Steady as she goes for sure!

Today, I thought back to being amazed as I glanced at that consistent temperature in varying terrain and precipitation. Hmm?  If only my reactions to life looked that consistent.  Always trusting in the Lord, no matter the storms that blow in or the mountains that have to be climbed. If my eyes are looking towards Christ my temperament should always remain the same…peaceful, trusting, kind.

And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  Philippians 4:7

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight. Proverbs 3:5-6

Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.
Ephesians 4:32  

Love the One You're With

 March 2
We attended a precious wedding this weekend and the pastor was a bit stumped when the couple selected Proverbs 3:5-6 for their ceremony verse. Not your typical love verse.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and 
do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.

He confessed after praying over this passage that it was a fabulous verse for marriage!  Marriage takes an enormous amount of trust and there certainly are times when we can not lean on our own understanding because we makes absolutely no sense to one another and we need to acknowledge the Lord and allow him to direct our paths!

So, if you are married, trust God and love the one you're with!  :-)