The Lover of Our Soul

Love this shadow photo!

October 19
For a week, I was with thrilled to be with a couple of our grandsons as their parents traveled and house hunted for an upcoming move.  It's always strange to enter the stillness of the house after the grands leave. (I'm usually pretty exhausted and sleep hard though.)  
The void that appears in these "be on the alert for little ones" times is my quiet time with the Lord.

October 13th, had I picked up Jesus Always, I would have found a blessing and nudge to be quiet and pray.

"Excessive noise and visual stimulation make it hard for you to find Me in the midst of your moments.  Yet, I am always nearby-as near as a whispered prayer.
People who are in love yearn to be alone together so they can concentrate intently on each other. I am the Lover of your soul, and I long for you to spend time alone with Me.  When you shut out distractions to focus on Me, I awaken your soul to the Joy of my Presence! This increases your love for Me and helps you stay spiritually alert. Praying becomes easier when you're aware of My radiant Presence.  Praying not only bless you but provides an avenue for serving Me. Rejoice that you can collaborate with Me through prayer as I establish My kingdom on earth."

We are three parts mind, body and spirit.  Being with the Lover of our soul is one of the best things we can do to maintain a healthy spirit!

We are the bride of Christ.
"Come with me from Lebanon, my bride. Leave Lebanon behind and come. Leave your high mountain hideaway. Abandon your wilderness seclusion, where you keep company with lions and panthers guard your safety. You've captured my heat, dear friend. You looked at me, and I fell in love.  One look my way and I was hopelessly in love."  Song of Solomon 4:8-10

"So this is my prayer: that your love will flourish and that you will not only love much but well.  Learn to love appropriately.  You need to use your head and test your feelings so that your love is sincere and intelligent, not sentimental gush.  Live a lover's life, circumspect and exemplary, a life Jesus will be proud of: bountiful in fruits from the soul, making Jesus Christ attractive to all, getting everyone involved in the glory and praise of God."  Philippians 1:9-11

I Need Help.



October 18
Last week our daughter and I accompanied her boys on a hay ride and s'more roast! Personally, I find the marshmallow roasting to be the best part of making s'mores! While in multitasking mode, roasting marshmallows, taking pictures, laying out supplies and wiping sticky fingers, a gentleman interrupted me to acknowledge I was about to put a flaming marshmallow on a graham cracker! That could have literally been a hot mess! His input was greatly appreciated!

Sunday, as I was walking the boys to their Sunday school classrooms, I heard our children's director explain to her daughter, who had just asked her if she could help...

"I know I need help, I just don't know when or where!"

Isn't that profound?  We are all going to need help at some point and in some capacity! Whether it's to keep us from placing flaming marshmallows in our mouths or onto a graham cracker, telling us to watch the speed limit, or stepping in to help in a larger capacity, we need one another!

The help we need comes from the Lord! Whether he sends that assistance in human form or through directing us by His Holy Spirit, He's the One ready to meet our needs.

"My help comes from the Lord, Who made heaven and earth."
Psalm 121:2

"The secret of the Lord is for those who fear Him, and He will make them know His covenant.
My eyes are continually toward the Lord, for He will pluck my feet out of the net."
Psalm 25:14-15

One Thousand Walnuts


October 17
Last week my husband picked up 1,000 walnuts from our yard!!! No, we are not harvesting them.

We were allowing a group to use Shiloh and it was an outdoor event, so my husband was on yard duty and literally gathered 1,000 walnuts off the ground and hauled them to the woods.  I was on window washing, de-spidering and outdoor furniture wipe down patrol and my offering hospitality without grumbling attitude was quickly seeping away before I was hardly underway.  Even with praise music penetrating my soul, my joy wavered.  Just as I pulled out some table cloths, a scripture card fell to the floor.

"whoever wishes to become great among you shall be your servant, and whoever wishes to be first among you shall be your slave; just as the Son of Man did not come to be served,  but to serve, and to give His life as a ransom for many."  Matthew 20:26-28

Whew! God's Word can be a switch to my hinny and bring about an instant attitude adjustment!  Can't tell me He isn't constantly watching and fully aware of the attitudes of our hearts and every thought we have!

Be Strong and Keep Your Bible Open!



Sorry about Friday's post. I was traveling and for some reason the script did not come through. I redid it this morning.
 
October 15th tubing!



October 16
Another beautiful Fall day found us out on the water taking our grandsons and some friends tubing; and then we hosted a double baptism.  Two young brothers, who had made professions of their faith, wanted a lake baptism.  Our pastor wore a t-shirt which said, "I have decided."  What a great open ended conversation starter!

The passage our pastor selected for these young men was powerful and filled with wisdom.
Joshua 1: 7 and 9

"In the same way I was with Moses, I'll be with you. I won't give up on you; I won't leave you.
Strength! Courage!...Don't get off track, either left or right, so as to make sure you get to where you're going.  And don't for a minute let this Book of The Revelation be out of mind.  Ponder and meditate on it day and night, making sure you practice everything written in it.  Then you'll get where you're going; then you'll succeed.  Haven't I commanded you?  Strength! Courage! Don't be timid; don't get discouraged. God, your God, is with you every step you take." 

May we take these words to heart ourselves today.
1) Be strong and remember God is with us.
2) Open our Bibles and ponder and meditate what it has to say.

Dwell

I could dwell here in a heartbeat!

October 13
 "Behold, how good and how pleasant it is for brothers to dwell together in unity." Psalm 133:1

The word stick in my mind...dwell.."Linger, think, speak or write about at length."
What do we dwell upon?
What if we shifted gears and lingered thinking about things of the Lord which are true, honorable, right, pure, lovely, of good report, excellent or praise worthy?  I bet our day would look a lot different!

"Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good report, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things."  Philippians 4:8

"Surely goodness and lovingkindness will follow me all the days of my lie, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever."  Psalm 23:6 

Connect




October 12

One of my husband's new jobs is heading up the small group ministry at our church. They are called Connect Groups.  Our group meets once a week in our home.  The encouragement, love, insight and accountability being part of a group like this brings to life is truly valuable.  So many people walk into church Sunday, fill themselves up and walk out, never connecting with the Body of Christ.
That isn't how God intended the church to operate.

Ephesians 4:12-16
"...for the equipping of the saints for the work of service, to the building up of the body of Christ,
 until we all attain to the unity of the faith, and of the knowledge of the Son of God, to a mature man, to the measure of the stature which belongs to the fullness of Christ.  As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ, from whom the whole body, being fitted and held together by what every joint supplies, according to the proper working of each individual part, causes the growth of the body for the building up of itself in love."

Let's evaluate the six days between Sundays and how we exhibit these actions with other individuals (outside our household) who are part of our church.
1) Help equip them for service
2) Build them up, encourage them in some way
3) Have a discussion and be unified over our faith as believers at a time when our world is not like    minded.
4) Impart some knowledge we've unlocked about God in our studying or quiet time.
5) Speak the truth in love to someone discouraged/unable to stand strong or drifting away from their faith.
6) Affirm the spiritual growth we've seen in them.
7) Join forces together in a work for the Lord
8) Make another member of the Body of Christ feel loved and appreciated.



Repaint

Who knows where this is?
October 11

As I was thinking about fall and the need for our sinfulness to fall away the word repent came to mind and then immediately the word repaint!  The best paint jobs (on old items, which I consider myself to be) occur after there has been some prep work of scraping and sanding.  Getting rid of the old!
Repenting isn't painless.  It's a process of honesty before God. It is allowing God to go deep into the surface of our hearts and reveal the ugliness. It's a process we'd rather not have to admit is necessary.  The exposure of my sin makes my stomach hurt, as if I want to throw up the sin I've committed and flush it away! Jesus is the only one who can dispose of it.

Currently, I'm enrolled in Bible Study Fellowship where we are studying the book of Romans.  Paul doesn't mince words in Chapter 1 about the pigpen of sin we can allow ourselves to waller in.  It makes it clear that none of us are without sin and thus we all have a need to repent and turn from our nasty ways.

"But if the wicked man turns from all his sins which he has committed and observes all My statures and practices justice an righteousness, he shall surely live; he shall not die."  Ezekiel 18:21

"In awe of God's Glory

That is our daughter in law out on that ledge!
She captioned this photo "In awe of God's glory!" 

Splendor and majesty are before him; strength and glory are in his sanctuary. 
—Psalm 96:6
October 10
Whew! I struggle with seasonal vertigo, so you wouldn't find me out on that ledge!   There have been times I've been driving and gone around a bend to a magnificent view and literally pulled off the road, gotten out of the car and just gazed at God's glory! Some of the greatest blessings in life are ahead of us, but we need to be able to follow the Lord in faith to get to those points. 

The image of this photo is amazing.  Just one of God's small, beautiful, creations standing in His grandeur realizing how HUGE he is and how loved she is by Him.  In one of her posts she wrote encouraging everyone to take time to get away with God out in nature in and rejoice in His Presence!
His creation alone, speaks to who He is!

As Americans, we are so blessed to live in a country with such diverse topography/geography.  From the mountains to the oceans...we see God's majesty and our hearts are stirred to want to know more about God. God was intentional in creating us to desire relationship. To yearn to connect with Him and with one another.

Fall and the changes it brings is such a visual picture of how God is continually at work.  Just as the leaves are falling from the trees, we need attitudes/opinions to fall away from our hearts and accept Christ's cleansing power and allow God do a "new thing" in our hearts!

Let's take time today to stand in awe of God's glory!



Face Tomorrow

The road ahead is an unknown path...
October 9
Being a few days behind in my Jesus Always reading, I went back to last week and was blown away by what I saw on the page.
"I want you to have no FEAR of bad news. The only way to accomplish this feat is to have a steadfast heart, trusting in Me...While things around you or in the world seem to be spinning out of control, come to Me and pour out your heart. Instead of fretting and fuming, put your energy into praying."

"His heat is steadfast, trusting in the Lord."
Psalm 112:7


...but we can face all the obstacles with a smile, because we do not walk alone.

He's SO Big!



God—you’re my God! I can’t get enough of you! 
I’ve worked up such hunger and thirst for God, 
traveling across dry and weary deserts. 

October 7-8
There are so many other things I should be doing, but I've just realized...Bible Study is my favorite thing! Walking 1/2 mile up our mountain to the main road to get the mail, I was so happy being outside on such a gorgeous day! Looking up amongst the tall pines, oaks and poplars I said, "God you are so big!"  Just then I looked back down at the gravel road I was walking on there lay the most enormous leaf I've ever seen.  There wasn't another one like it on the entire road.  Beside the leaf were two small leaves.  It was as if God was saying, "Yup! I'm ginormous girl. You can't even imagine!"
Then I came home and opened Jesus Always and there Sarah Young had written these words:
"Train your mind to think great thoughts of Me...Don't let troubles become your primary focus. Remind yourself that I am with you and I have overcome the world. I am nearer than the air your breathe."

Singing "Breathe" with Michael W Smith

Delayed Obedience


If this one had delayed obeying her parents by jumping into this pumpkin it may have 
become a sticky rotten mess.

October 6
While out washing windows on a gorgeous fall day, listening to praise music on The Journey FM,
a great idea devotional idea came to mind.  Instead of dropping my rags and going inside to jot down the idea, I washed a few more windows and the idea was gone!  All I remembered was that it had three parts.  Crying out, "Lord, help this old brain!" What I was trying to recall did not surface, but a lesson in delayed obedience did reverberate,
Some ideas/promptings have to be enacted at that moment or the opportunity is lost.  The skill is learning to determine God's voice, being quick to listen, and quick to recognize His timing. I'm learning to use the "notes" app on my phone and when a thought/idea comes, I try to jot down what I'm hearing.

"But everyone must be quick to hear..."
James 1:19

Today vs Tomorrow


Let the Son Shine Way Up High
These two adventurers of ours made the most of today at Yosemite National Park.

October 5
The victims of the Las Vegas shooting and their families had no idea what that evening held.
Years ago I had the privilege of sharing the Gospel with a friend here at the lake, doing a one on one eight week Bible study with her and giving her a Bible.  Our children were the same ages and I was so excited about this new friendship.  The next month I was called to the ER. While driving carpool, she had been killed just a few miles from our house.


"Do not boast about tomorrow, 
for you do not know what a day may bring forth."
Proverbs 27:1 


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

"And now I have a word for you who brashly announce, 'Today-at the latest, tomorrow-we're off to such and such a city for the year. We're going to start a business and make a lot of money.'
You don't know the first things about tomorrow.
You're nothing but a wisp of fog, catching a brief bit of sun before disappearing.
Instead, make it a habit to say, "If the Master wills it and we're still alive, we'll do this or that."
James 4:13-15

Last year Major Dan Rooney, a Fighter Pilot and professional golfer was interview on Fox News about a project he initiated to provide collage scholarships for the children of fallen soldiers. In the interview he was questioned about wisdom he imparts to his own children.

"When my kids wake up everyday I ask them what today is. I say, “It’s the best day of my life.” 
They ask “Why?” I say,  “Because its the only one I got and I can and I will.”

Also, I've asked them "Which way does an airplane take off?”
They know it's "Into the wind. This prepares for the resistance in life…it’s required for our dreams to take flight, but its never going to be easy, so embrace those headwinds, because it’s Gods way to lift you up."

May we be like the wind and lift others up as well by sharing the gospel, speaking words of encouragement and meeting the needs of others!

I'll Take a Miracle

Five inches of September Snow in Park City, Utah was unexpected

These two built a snowman to celebrate their birthdays.
She loved the snow!
October 4
What have you ordered up recently?  A meal at a restaurant, something from the grocery store deli, an item online, a ticket to the theatre?
When was the last time you said, "I'll take...."

Somewhere in the past week, I can't remember where, I heard someone say, "I"ll take a miracle!"
What great faith!  We've been facing some family crisis that only God can handle, so I've said to God, "I'll take a miracle! You sure know how to hand them out!"

"And He sid to her,
'Daughter, your faith has made you well; go in peace ad be healed of your affliction.'" Mark 5:34

Looking back to the end of January when one of our grandsons showed up prematurely, I have to laugh at the miracle God has done.  At his 6 month check up the doctor had the nurses measure him three times, because they said it wasn't possible for him to have grown that much!  He is swamping his little girlfriend his age in this picture!

"...with God all things are possible."
Matthew 19:26

What miracle is just waiting to be received today?

Darkness Becomes Light


October 3

We flew into Salt Lake City last week,  just as night fell across the land. It was strange to go to sleep not having a clue what my eyes would behold the next morning.  I reflected on all our houseguest who have arrived at Shiloh at night over the years having no idea what their eyes would behold the next morning.  As I lay in the darkness of our hotel room I thought about the moment our eyes behold heaven!

Sarah Young wrote: "Your brightest moment on earth will one day look very dark in comparison with the Glory-Light of heaven!  There you will see My Face in its brilliant splendor, an you will be satisfied with endless oceans of Love."

"For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever 
believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life."
John 3:16

Father, we pray that those who lost their lives Sunday night know You and are with You.  We pray for many who don't know You to open their hearts at this time and welcome You in as Savior and Friend.
In Jesus' Name, Amen

No Fear

He will have no fear of bad news; his heart is steadfast, trusting in the LORD." 
—PSALM 112:7

October 2
Up early, I had to head out of town for the day and forgot to post a devotional the night before.  On our way out of town my husband shared the horrific news out of Las Vegas.  Such terror stops you in your tracks and mellows out your mode.  I've found myself praying continually throughout the day for random situations.

Father, we cry out to You in this time of devastation.  An act of evil we cannot comprehend.  Our prayers for comfort and healing for the survivors and all the families related to the event, as well as all those responding to the needs of others. They need strength, comfort and wisdom as well.  In Jesus' Name, Amen

Love One Another

Happy Birthday to Miss Dimples today!



I'm going to miss this one!

September 29
Four years ago today my sweet Daddy died at 93 years old. It's amazing how much I still miss him.
Three years ago today, God gave us this precious granddaughter.  My daddy would have adored her and she would have loved loving on him.  

"Dear friends, since God so loved us, we also ought to love one another." 1 John 4:11

Everywhere I went with this little one, she walked right up to strangers and inquired, "What's your name?"  Each time the individual chuckled because number one, she's so cute, but number two because it felt good to be noticed and valued by this child.  Whether it was Bob, the construction worker,  Missy, stocking shelves in Michaels, Ally, the restaurant hostess or Shana, our waitress at dinner, they all answered her inquiry and then engaged her in conversation.  She noticed so many people I would have walked right by.

There is someone God is going to place in our path today who needs to be noticed, valued and loved.
Let's be different from the world around us and boldly love others.

Adrenaline

Olympic Park 
September 28
Coming across Hebrews 12:2-3 in The Message really fired up my faith the other day!  "We'd better get on with it!"  Whew.  Just chew on this "He (Jesus) never lost sight of where he was headed-that exhilarating finish in and with God-he could put up with anything along the way."

Read this passage and get fired up!


 "Do you see what this means—all these pioneers who blazed the way, all these veterans cheering us on? It means we’d better get on with it. Strip down, start running—and never quit! No extra spiritual fat, no parasitic sins. Keep your eyes on Jesus, who both began and finished this race we’re in. Study how he did it. Because he never lost sight of where he was headed—that exhilarating finish in and with God—he could put up with anything along the way: Cross, shame, whatever. And now he’s there, in the place of honor, right alongside God. When you find yourselves flagging in your faith, go over that story again, item by item, that long litany of hostility he plowed through. That will shoot adrenaline into your souls!"
Hebrews 12:2-3

My husband and I have just come from the mecca of adrenaline shots. Visiting our son and granddaughter for their birthdays in Park City, Utah was an eye opener to action sports.  Skiing, biking, alpine sledding, zip lining, the Olympic training center...whew!  Fast action!

It's also a place where people of the Mormon faith are proud to talk about their faith, throw out LDS, (as a term one should be familiar with) and point out their Brigham Young College rings if they are wearing one.

My adrenaline for Christ needs to shoot through my soul and shine out of my life in such a vibrant fashion.



Celebrations



We are still experiencing new highs with God!  He is amazing.

September 27
Saturday was our 39th wedding anniversary!  I thank God for giving me a man who has loved me well and prayed us through all those years. One of our children graciously offered to treat us to an anniversary dinner, but I said, "Save your pennies, we don't really celebrate anniversaries."   Three of our children have September/October birthdays and my husband was a college football player, so fall weekends are focused on Saturday football games. We just never made time to celebrate.

That had me thinking about celebrations in the Bible. Off the top of your head do you recall any anniversary or birthday parties in the Bible?

Pharaoh had a birthday party where he had the head baker's head impaled on a post and Herodias's daughter danced her way into Herod's favor at a birthday celebration in a fashion that cost John the Baptist his head. Not such nice parties.

Most celebrations were focused on feasts that focused on God!  The best celebrations are yet to come!

"Celebrate God all day, every day.  I mean, revel in him! Make it as clear as you can to all you meet that you're on their side, working with them and not against them.  Help them see that the Master is about to arrive.  He could show up any minute!"  Philippians 4:4-5

"O Heaven, celebrate!"  Revelation 18:20

"Then I heard the sound of massed choirs, the sound of a mighty cataract, the sound of strong thunder: Hallelujah!  The Master reigns, our God, the Sovereign-Strong!  Let us celebrate, let us rejoice, let us give him the glory!"  Revelation 19:6-7

A friend and faithful Boojoyful reader emailed me yesterday and it gave me such an incredible reason to celebrate. Her joy brought tears to my eyes.

She wrote: 
"I am always talking to Jesus- sharing my thoughts, seeking His guidance, telling Him how thankful I am He has my heart and my life, praying for people, places, things that are happening, asking Him to keep pulling me in the direction He wants me to walk, thanking Him for blessings, praying that the adversity and rocky roads in our life will be used to glorify Him, etc.  (You get all that.) 😉

Then, I started thinking today about how often every day I am telling my husband and children and grandchildren how much I love them (which is a lot) and I paused, thinking in that moment I wasn't sure I had ever spoken those exact words, in that way, to Jesus.  I immediately said, "I love you Jesus", and instantly I had an overwhelming, all encompassing, emotional  moment with tears uncontrollably welling up in my eyes.  I know He filled me up with His Spirit, acknowledging He heard me.  It was an awesome and special moment.  Needless to say I will be telling Jesus I love Him multiple times every day as well!"


My Baby with His Baby


September 26
There is an intense joy which comes from watching our children enjoy places which hold sweet memories for us. My father received such joy when he would take his children to PA and show us his old stomping grounds.  That may have been usurped by the joy of taking us to attend VA Tech sporting events and hearing the stories of his days in the Corps of Cadets just before WWII.  He could describe the dances in detail, right down to the names of the bands and the songs he danced to.

Now we have the privilege of watching our children bring their children back to the Lake and pass on such a heritage.  My husband and I grew up here too, so we have tales of our own to tell.

"Behold, children are a gift of the Lord, the fruit of the womb is a reward."
Psalm 127:3.

Jesus has left us stories rich in heritage.

"But when the time arrived that was set by God the Father, God sent his Son, born among us of a woman, born under the conditions of the law so that he might redeem those of us who have been kidnapped by the law.  Thus we have been set free to experience our rightful heritage. You can tell for sure that you are now fully adopted as his own children because God sent the Spirit of his Son into ur lives crying out, 'Papa! Father!' Doesn't that privilege of intimate conversation with God make it plain that you are not a slave, but a child?  And if you are a child, you're also an heir, with complete access to the inheritance."
Galatians 4:4-7

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There Will Be Alligator!

This one face timed the other day and we all laughed until the tears ran down our cheeks.
I have to share his church experience that week.

September 25
Laughter is so good for the soul and I thank God for the sense of humor our children have and how they like to share their "funnies" with us.  This one lives in New Orleans and he and his wife moved to a new neighborhood and decided to try out a neighborhood church.  He said there were only about 20 people in attendance and a lady was giving the announcements.
Her message made them chuckle out loud.
"You know we have a fish fry coming up and there will be plenty of fish. And Carl's son (Carl interrupts and says, "Grandson") just caught a 12 foot alligator, so we will have plenty of alligator too!"  Then our son's wife looked down at the bulletin and the title of the sermon for the day was "One Big Tuna."  He didn't say whether they were going to go to the fish fry, but I certainly would!

"For where two or three have gathered together in My name, I am there in their midst."
Matthew 18:20

Where's the Focus?

Sitting on our beach under what we call our umbrella tree.
It protects us from the sun and the rain.

The wrong focus.

September 22
Here at Shiloh, there is a private little beach and shallow cove area. It's the perfect respite spot and even comes with an umbrella tree for shade and protection from unexpected drizzles. Invariably, when I go there, click on the pause music and seek the Lord, the enemy distracts me by having me focus on the dead limbs that need pruning.

The other day while gazing up at these limbs, I was reminded of how quickly we are to find the small faults in people instead of focusing on all their attributes.  LOL.  The other day my husband and I were sharing about our day and we had both encountered people we described as "a little different."  After our third person who was "a little different" I laughed and said, "Possibly, we are the ones who aren't normal!" As we look at people today, let's zoom in on how perfectly God wove them together and imagine the plans He has for them.  Plans for good!  Plans that possibly aren't in our realm of normal!

"Here's what I want you to do.  
Find a quiet, secluded place so you won't be tempted to role-play before God.  
Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage.  
The focus will shirt from you to God and you will begin to sense his grace."  
Matthew 6:6

Make it Work

We are 60!

September 21

We used to live blocks away from each other and could walk everyday after we got our children off to school. Now we live in different towns, she's back working full-time, and it's a juggling act to get together.  Monday ended up to be the best day for us and we were meeting at our regular halfway point restaurant, when she had the brains to call and see if they were open and Mondays. They were not. I had the brains to grab a picnic basket and we found a park and had a most delightful lunch by a pond!

We choose what we want to make work and what/who is of value.
Where does Jesus rate in our "make time with someone special" scale?

"Who is the man who fears the Lord?  He will instruct him in the way he should choose."
Psalm 25:12 

You Know You're Old...


This gorgeous creature brightened my day by sharing where he and God were hanging out.

September 20

You know you're old when your children start ministering to you!
Our son sent this to jump start my day.

Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. 
Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. 
Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. 
I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. 
Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.””
‭‭Matthew‬ ‭11:28-30‬ ‭MSG‬‬


Such Godly advice.

Things that Make Me Know

 

September 19
Walking alongside someone in a painful situation, I was encouraged as this text pinged across my phone Sunday morning while I was setting up post at our church welcome desk. The thing that blew me away was the fact our praise band was practicing and singing "You make all things work together for my good" at that very moment. I was able to video them and send the recording right back to the person who had texted me!  Amazing!  These are the things that make me know God is aware of every detail, every moment of our lives.

Wish I could figure out how to post the video, but here's a youtube of the song.  You have to go to 3:28 to hear the chorus, but the whole song is amazing.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VIIN3EiEZec

I'm praying right now that as each person is reading this they are aware that God is up to good and working on the details of their lives! Love you!

He Walks With Me

This grandson's smile makes me smile!

September 18
Bible Study Fellowship has just kicked off its study on Romans.  Whew!  So much meat in that book!
As I read Paul's intro to this book about Good News,  it made me happy! 

"Dear friends in Rome: This letter is from Paul, Jesus Christ’s slave, chosen to be a missionary, and sent out to preach God’s Good News. This Good News was promised long ago by God’s prophets in the Old Testament. It is the Good News about his Son, Jesus Christ our Lord, who came as a human baby, born into King David’s royal family line; and by being raised from the dead he was proved to be the mighty Son of God, with the holy nature of God himself.
And now, through Christ, all the kindness of God has been poured out upon us undeserving sinners; and now he is sending us out around the world to tell all people everywhere the great things God has done for them, so that they, too, will believe and obey him.
And you, dear friends in Rome, are among those he dearly loves; you, too, are invited by Jesus Christ to be God’s very own—yes, his holy people. May all God’s mercies and peace be yours from God our Father and from Jesus Christ our Lord." Romans 1:1-7
 Lifting my nose out of my Bible I said to Jesus, "I love you because you walk with me, you talk with me and you tell me that I am Your own!" 


Jesus' Chair

This was Jesus' chair.

September 15
The other day I made a date with Jesus. We went on a lovely walk through the woods with praise songs playing on my phone and the sun shining through the trees. Then we came down to the river and sat quietly, so I could listen to Him.

"The one thing I want from God, the thing I seek most of all, is the privilege of meditating in his Temple, living in his presence every day of my life, delighting in his incomparable perfections and glory.  There I'll be when troubles come.  He will hide me. He will set me on a high rock out of reach of all my enemies.  Then I will bring him sacrifices and sing his praises with much joy."
Psalm 27:4-6 (TLB)

Pull out your calendar and schedule your date with Jesus today!

Wondering Why?

This little one is wondering why we've put him in this uncomfortable contraption.

He lives in Tampa and just road out hurricane Irma with his mama and Florida grandparents.
His Daddy is working in Israel this month.
Bet he did some wondering about all of that!

September 14
Revelation 4:11 says, "You are worthy, our Lord and God, to receive glory and honor and power, 
for you created all things, and by your will they were created and have their being."

Do you ever wonder, "Why did God create us?"
Sometimes I think, "We've got to be a headache for Him. Who needs the hassle?"

"When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers...what is man that you are mindful of him, the son go man that you care for him?" Psalm 8:3-4

He didn't do it because he was lonely.  He had company with his Son and the Holy Spirit.
He didn't do it to establish a peer group. "The Lord is God, besides him there is no other." Deut.4:35
He didn't do it because he needed us.
"The God who made the world and all things in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth...nor is He served by human hands, as though He needed anything, since He Himself gives to all people life and breath and all thing;"  Acts 17:24-25

God definitely was aware of what he was getting into.  Like an artist He enjoys creating.
Colossians 1:16 says:
"For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities-all things have been created through Him and for Him."

So, He created us for his pleasure.  Not like puppets to be manipulated, but as children/friends in His image to have relationship with Him.  Are we doing that?  Are we investing in the relationship?

"For the Lord takes pleasure in His people..." Psalm 149:4

Stop and reflect on the people you genuinely take pleasure in being in their presence.
The ones you can't wait to welcome in and hug their necks.
Do we allow God the time to take pleasure in being with us?

"We are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."  Ephesians 2:10

We can't get our marching orders without listening to His game plan.

"Whether you eat or drink or whatever you do, do all to the glory of God."  1 Corinthians 10:31

So, let's scurry away now to a quiet place and whisper to our Creator, "I love YOU!  I am here to worship You and learn from You."

Every Hour We Need Him

You can't say no, no matter the weather when people ask to be baptized!!!!
This grandmother in the center asked to be baptized and then
her granddaughter wanted to follow in her footsteps. Sweet family affair.
What an incredible blessing Monday afternoon was after 2 weeks of hurricane heartache.
September 13

I'm having some aggravating health issues and have had some awful sleepless nights Four people were baptized here at Shiloh Monday, so I think my pain is Devil dart related. While crying out to Jesus, there was the realization that there are mighty lessons to be learned through the pain. Lately, I've had a boatload of prayer needs for family members. Like the Dead Sea, I recognized I've been in a one way flow to God. All my requests have been going out, but I haven't been sitting listening to God's plans within and what he wants me to pour back out.

We did go with His flow hosting this baptism!

Sitting with God yesterday, He showed me how there are times he has to allow "the overload" in my life to get me to lay my burdens down and look to him.
We need to remember..."Every hour we need Him!"

Be blessed by Matt Maher  https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e37m3I5eH8g

"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."  
Matthew 11:29 

Touch, Trust, and Tenderness!


Together...granddaughter and her Papa.

September 12

While I personally love these two deeply, seeing them walking hand in hand thrills my heart!
Touch, trust, and tenderness!
Touch-God created our bodies to respond to physical touch.   Hold someone's hand today!
Trust-"firm belief in the reliability, truth, ability or strength of someone or something."
          Trust is the best security blanket around.  Who totally trusts you?
Tenderness-Isn't there an old song "Just show a little tenderness." 
                    Tenderness, kindness and gentleness are soothing balms to our souls.

"Jesus reached out his hand and touched the man."  
Matthew 8:3


More to come tomorrow on some lessons learned recently, but in the midst of the recent battle Erin O'Donnell's song "Hold onto Jesus, He's holding on to you," came to mind.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oe4ucy9c7rY

"Do not quench the Spirit. Do not treat prophecies with contempt, but test them all; hold on to what is good, reject every kind of evil.  May God himself, the God of peace, sanctify you through and through. May your whole spirit, soul and body be kept blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it."  1 Thessalonians 19:24