Tag Archives: Jesus

Truth, our moral compass

Psalm 33:4 NKJV — For the word of the LORD is right, And all His work is done in truth.

Everything, God has done has been in truth and until sin entered into His creation, it was all good.

Mankind’s choices have led us astray, far beyond the original truth of God.

Instead, we have tried to replace God’s truth with reason, science, and preference.

But scripture is full stories of what mankind’s rebellion brings, not only for the individual, but their families, and those who dwelt among them.

Scripture also shows, those who reside near the Lord and are not ignorant of His commands receive a stricter punishment.

Daniel 9:14 KJV — Therefore hath the LORD watched upon the evil, and brought it upon us: for the LORD our God is righteous in all his works which he doeth: for we obeyed not his voice.

How should we then live, that we might avoid evil?

We must cling to truth.

Not mankind’s ever changing standards, but the moral compass of God’s Word.

Jesus’s words in prayer for those who follow Him included:

John 17:13-17KJV — And now come I to thee; and these things I speak in the world, that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves. I have given them thy word; and the world hath hated them, because they are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. I pray not that thou shouldest take them out of the world, but that thou shouldest keep them from the evil. They are not of the world, even as I am not of the world. Sanctify them through thy truth: thy word is truth.

Through God’s Word we are sanctified by faith in Jesus Christ and we are able to walk in His ways by following His commands.

Psalm 119:66 KJV — Teach me good judgment and knowledge: for I have believed thy commandments.

Ecclesiastes 12:13 KJV — Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God, and keep his commandments: for this is the whole duty of man.

God has given us a vast treasure for our lives and our future in His Word.

It is full of wisdom, examples, and is the truth we must direct our perspective from.

When we place our trust in Jesus and choose to walk in His truth our future is safe, for God’s ways are best.

Deuteronomy 32:4 KJV — He is the Rock, his work is perfect: for all his ways are judgment: a God of truth and without iniquity, just and right is he.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. Thank You that we can go to scripture and find all we need for life. Lord, please open our minds to learning Your ways, to understanding Your truth. Lord, just like when You walked this earth people were following all kinds of false teachings, thinking they were obeying Your will. Lord, please remove anything in my heart or mind which is not accurate and doesn’t align with Your truth. Lord, spiritually we can be easily confused or misunderstand Your truth. Please continue to hone us into Your ways and help us to grow in Your truth daily. Lord, thank You for Your creation and how You created it all good in the beginning. Lord, thank You that You have always been good, righteous, and true. Thank You for all Your wonderous works. Amen.

A dry sponge

I’d known him and his wife since I was 14.

The man who spoke wasn’t preaching.

Rather, he was relating his own story.

The reason I’d met them was their service at church.

Although his wife was severely handicapped, due to a major stroke, she was the church greeter.

She’d smile and hand out bulletins.

Which was difficult, because she only had one hand which worked well.

By the time our kids were born her health had deteriorated to the point of requiring her to be in a motorized chair.

She still passed out bulletins and smiled at each person.

I’d always been impressed at how patient and helpful her husband was.

Due to the stroke and other health issues, the woman didn’t always understand what was going on around her.

More than once they would have to leave the service to accommodate her needs.

As I was listening to her husband, I cradled one of our children in my arms and kept an eye on her sister who was busy coloring.

I didn’t want to miss anything as he shared his own story.

They had not been married very long before she had the stroke and became a different person.

He’d been faithfully supporting and caring for her for many years.

He talked about how God got his attention to what he was like on the inside.

“You know a sponge, one that’s dry, can look clean and even unused from the outside. It’s only when it’s squeezed that you see what’s really inside the sponge. God taught me long ago, He uses hard things to show us what’s inside.

He’s right.

Difficult circumstances show us what our hearts are full of.

For this gentle man, his constant service to his handicapped wife have squeezed him daily.

He finished up his story by admitting at first what came out was anger, resentment, and self-pity, but as he surrendered to God he found the Lord steadily replacing those things with love, compassion, diligence, and long suffering.

His life was and is an inspiration to me and my husband.

The example of the dry sponge has come to mind many times throughout my life.

This morning included.

The Lord encourages my heart through the truth that difficult circumstances show us what’s inside.

I want to have God’s fruit be the things which flow out of this heart, especially when I’m squeezed.

Galatians 5:22-24 NKJV — But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, longsuffering, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, self-control. Against such there is no law. And those who are Christ’s have crucified the flesh with its passions and desires.

Galatians 5:25 NKJV — If we live in the Spirit, let us also walk in the Spirit.

May each of us who follow Christ Jesus find inspiration in difficult circumstances, for God is using each one to reveal the condition of our hearts.

1 Peter 4:12-13 NKJV — Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your truth. Thank You for squeezing me, to reveal my heart. Lord, I don’t want to be a hypocrite and I know if I am unaware of the condition of my heart I am one. Lord, please continue to replace those things which are not of You with the fruit of Your Spirit. Please continue to use things in life to make me more focused on You each day. Lord, thank You for reminding me of this dear man and his wife. Please continue to bless them and keep them. Thank You that we can rejoice even in the fiery trials. Amen.

The pie hutch

I’ve loved this from the first time I saw it.

It’s one of the “leftover” pieces from our used furniture business.

When we first saw the house we are moving to I noticed it didn’t have a pantry.

Handsome and I discussed it and he had a wonderful idea.

“What about the pie hutch?”

So, instead of flipping it, I painted it and we brought it inside.

I began shopping thrift stores for canisters.

You can see my collection in my white wood box.

They fit nicely on the bottom shelf and with some other glass canisters and baskets the pie hutch worked beautifully.

Then, we got the keys and realized we needed to gut the kitchen.

When, we had the plans for the kitchen done, I didn’t factor in my hutch.

I hadn’t forgotten it, but trying to work around it was going to cost us.

So, I left it out and told the Lord I’d do whatever He directed.

Last time our daughter and I walked the house we discussed the placement of my furniture.

Although, I feel I know where most things are going, I’ve continued to pray about the pie hutch.

Where should it go?

What should be it’s primary function?

I’d like it in the dining room, but will it fit?

As I was packing up the kitchen today I began to pray about the hutch again.

I began with telling the Lord it is His and I’m willing to do whatever He directs.

As I began to pack up our mugs a thought ran through my mind.

What about a beverage center?

I suddenly could see our mugs lined up on the top shelf and my husband’s mini coffee maker sitting on the shelf above the drawers.

I thought about the possibility of adding breakfast stuff, cereal and muffins would fit nicely in my glass containers…

Then, I stopped.

“Lord, whatever this ends up being used for, I thank You for it.”

In my heart I went on to praise God for His blessings in so many things throughout all of this.

I’m excited to see if this will work in our dining room.

Whether or not we use it for beverages and breakfast, I am thankful to God for His guidance.

I know He is leading us every step of the way.

Psalm 18:32 KJV — It is God that girdeth me with strength, and maketh my way perfect.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for using something as unimportant as furniture to encourage my heart, today. Lord, thank You for Your faithfulness and guidance as we walk each day with You. Lord, thank You for the strength to do things. Please give me the wisdom and discernment to know what things to use my energy on and how to go about the things which need to be done. Lord, all of this belongs to You. My life is Yours. Thank You for giving so much to us. I praise Your holy name, Jesus! Amen.

Battling fear

Fear is an old enemy of mine.

Thankfully, the Lord has taught me much through the years and many of the tricks of fear and doubt have become useless.

But I’m far from finished fighting.

Rather, I’m becoming more skilled a warrior.

Scripture is my best defense.

Faith is my protection.

Prayer is my weapon.

Ephesians 6:13-18 NKJV — Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;
above all, taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one. And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God; praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints—

The Lord, through His Word, has helped me to admit when I’m struggling, surrender myself before Him, and walk with humility through whatever circumstances are causing me to struggle with fear.

Yesterday, it was my health.

I had a “good” day suddenly turn bad through a migraine.

As I lay in bed, I was assaulted with “what if?” questions until I realized that wasn’t trusting God.

So, I prayed.

I told the Lord about my concerns and thanked Him for the opportunity to trust Him even though I had no idea what He was going to do.

Then, I worked on praising God for everything I could think of.

When I recall the goodness of God and His faithfulness, it is so much easier to trust Him.

Later in the afternoon, I had another struggle with fear.

I heard some news that brought concern about our house.

Frankly, I didn’t understand exactly what the information was, probably because of the migraine, which caused me to feel confused and frustrated.

2 Timothy 1:7 KJV — For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.

The Lord used scripture to remind me that He is in control.

I can rest in His love, place my thoughts into order by focusing on His Word, and have power over my emotions through self-control.

Because:

1 Corinthians 14:33 KJV — For God is not the author of confusion, but of peace, as in all churches of the saints.

This scripture was written to the church of Corinth, explaining the importance of orderly meetings so people could be taught from God’s Word.

When the Lord brought it to mind, I realized that allowing my emotions and thoughts to run wild would hinder my ability to learn from His Word through this circumstance.

I don’t want fear to rob my of an opportunity to grow closer to the Lord.

Placing my trust in Him has always brought me through whatever circumstances fear was using against me.

God is faithful and His Word is truth, in Him I have all I need.

This morning I don’t have a migraine and I’m praising God!

There are other circumstances in my schedule today I’m praying about, because I don’t want to give fear any opportunity in my heart or mind.

As for our house, I still don’t know what is happening there, but I am simply praying for my husband and our son-in-law.

I’m trusting the Lord to guide and direct them, because I am not the one doing the work, so I really don’t need to know what every detail is.

My job is to lift them up in prayer and to be diligent with the tasks at hand.

What a blessing that is!

It’s so wonderful to know God is working all things for our good as we trust daily in Him.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your love and faithfulness. Lord, thank You for continuing to teach me how to combat fear and doubt. Lord, on my own I’m unable to do anything. It is only through You and Your Spirit that I have the ability to fight fear and learn self-control. Thank You for Your patience with me. Thank You for walking with me through these unsettling circumstances. Lord, thank You for healing me from the migraine. Lord, I do humbly request You help those who know You, but are defeated by fear and doubt. Lord, help them find hope and comfort in You. Help them to realize that when we die to this life we gain so much more. Lord, please keep us from clinging to things of this world, but rather help us to see the blessings of eternity and the futility of temporary comfort. Thank You, Jesus for all You have done, are doing, and will do on our behalf. May Your name be glorified! Amen.

Not by bread alone…

Luke 4:1-3NKJV — Then Jesus, being filled with the Holy Spirit, returned from the Jordan and was led by the Spirit into the wilderness, being tempted for forty days by the devil. And in those days He ate nothing, and afterward, when they had ended, He was hungry. And the devil said to Him, “If You are the Son of God, command this stone to become bread.”

Our Lord and Savior walked this earth and gave us incredible insights into life.

Here we see a common snare of the enemy.

He takes a circumstance and he tempts Jesus to supply His own need, through attacking who Jesus is.

The enemy targets the very identity of Jesus and then basically says: “prove it”.

As followers of Christ we need to be guarded against both these things.

First, it’s very important we not allow the enemy to prick us into action to prove we are followers of Christ.

As those who are simply walking behind their Master we need not fall prey to the enemy compelling us to “do” or “be”.

Rather, we need to find our identity in our relationship with our Lord Jesus, not our activities for Him.

Which easily leads us to the other trick Satan tries.

He craftily is saying, “You have a need, You are God’s, get what you need.”

It is never good for us to try to supply what is lacking in our own strength.

Even Jesus, God’s Son, made it clear He didn’t act on His own, but was about the Father’s business.

John 5:19 NKJV — Then Jesus answered and said to them, “Most assuredly, I say to you, the Son can do nothing of Himself, but what He sees the Father do; for whatever He does, the Son also does in like manner.

As Jesus followed the Father so we should follow Jesus.

Because His life gives us a better understanding of God and His desired relationship with us.

So, what is the answer to the temptation to “prove yourself”, “provide for your needs”, or “fix the problem”?

Luke 4:4 NKJV — But Jesus answered him, saying, “It is written, ‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word of God.’ ”

We were never meant to live separate from God.

And although the breech is wide between us and God, due to sin, Jesus saves us.

His death and Resurrection made a way for us to be redeemed.

His Word provides us with the instruction on how to live and warns against those things which will hinder our relationship with Him.

His Word also teaches us about our enemy and his schemes, that we might know how to respond when faced with temptation.

For it is folly to assume the one who tempted Jesus in the wilderness for forty days wouldn’t also tempt us.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for Your Word. Thank You for Your example to us and Your instructions on life. Lord Jesus, thank You for walking daily with me and teaching me. Lord, please help us learn to be diligent to rest in You for all things, not to strive to supply our own needs. Lord, help us learn how to live by Your Word and not by bread alone. Lord, life is so much more than the food we eat. Please continue to teach us, to hone our hearts, to guide us in Your ways. Lord, help us, please, to be guarded against the snares of the enemy, to put off pride and anything else which would lead us astray. Thank You for Your faithfulness! Your ways are perfect and Your truth is incredible! Amen.

Adjusting

I took a photo of where I was thinking about putting our garden the last time I was at our new house and it wasn’t raining.

I didn’t take pictures of the inside, because I figured I’d get those after we move.

Which we still have yet to do.

Why?

Well, because God showed us things.

A consultation, concerning our kitchen, with our son-in-law, who is a contractor, made it obvious we needed to gut the kitchen.

I wasn’t excited, at least not immediately.

The Lord was so gracious and showed me He was providing, He also helped me trust Him with the unexpected and it’s turned into a wonderful blessing.

Handsome and I were able to discuss all the necessary changes and make decisions without any trouble.

We haven’t had a single argument or disagreement throughout.

Distance and my health kept me from being able to go pick out cabinets, so our daughter and son-in-law went and did the initial layout.

A few days later I was able to travel down and put the final touches on the plans.

My heart was so blessed that our daughter knows me so well.

She picked out everything I liked.

When I commented on that, she just smiled and said we have similar tastes, so it was easy.

That blessed my heart.

I traveled down yesterday and got to walk through the bare rooms.

The new paint looks wonderful and I’m really looking forward to being able to live there.

We only had one moment of concern.

When I walked into our bedroom my chest began to feel a little tight.

My husband was watching closely and asked me to walk into the attached bathroom.

It felt strange and I knew it was my body reacting to a trigger.

Thankfully, I felt better the moment I was out of the room and the door closed behind me.

“I was afraid of that,” Handsome said.

Then he explained he’d been smelling something and was worried it was going to bother me.

He went on to explain he would remove the cabinets and tear out the linoleum to see where the smell was coming from.

As I drove back to our rented house he called me.

“It’s only in one area, but I found mold under the flooring and we will have to replace the subfloor and part of the wall.”

I took a deep breath.

“Praise the Lord, you found it now.”

Because I am allergic to mold, we have been concerned about making sure the house was mold-free.

Although, finding something else which needs to be fixed isn’t fun, it’s important we adjust to God’s direction.

For He is answering our prayers by showing us in advance what needs to be taken care of.

As I focus on the tasks at hand, I am praising God for His faithfulness.

Yes, sometimes I have to work at being patient.

Sometimes, I have to spend extra time in prayer, asking God to help each one of us to be centered on Him, as I await each of the details which are required before we can move.

I’m not a patient person and I’m learning to adjust my wants and desires to align with God’s timing.

It has also been an opportunity to praise Him more.

Although waiting isn’t easy, it’s very important.

Rushing ahead of God or trying to force circumstances into my desires are both a refusal to wait on God and it’s a lack of trust.

I’ve done both those things and it wasn’t good nor did it help anyone.

I don’t want to live like that.

Thus, I’m thanking God for this time and season.

It’s another opportunity to learn a wonderful character trait: patience.

Psalm 123:2 KJV — Behold, as the eyes of servants look unto the hand of their masters, and as the eyes of a maiden unto the hand of her mistress; so our eyes wait upon the LORD our God, until that he have mercy upon us.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for another opportunity to learn to wait upon You. Lord, thank You for Your patience with me, I’m a slow learner. Lord, thank You for Your faithfulness, Your understanding, Your love. Lord, thank You for showing us what needs to be done each day and for sustaining us. Lord, thank You for walking us through this season of adjustment. May our lives glorify You. I love You, Lord! Amen.

November 8

Today’s prayer:

So I have looked for You in the sanctuary, To see Your power and Your glory. Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips shall praise You.
Psalms 63:2‭-‬3 NKJV

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your loving kindness. It is far better than life. Lord, our time on earth is short, but Your love is abundant. You have been faithful and just throughout the generations. Your truth, mercy, and grace are amazing. Lord Jesus, You are great and greatly to be praised. Lord, there is so much darkness through the world. Wars and plagues spread. Please let these times cause people to turn to You. Please help those who know You to live daily for You alone and to walk in truth wherever they are. Lord, please help us not to become entangled by the cares of this world but to be transformed by Your Holy Spirit that our lives might bring glory to Your name. My lips praise You, Jesus, for I have seen Your power and might. Lord, I have seen Your love and faithfulness. Lord, You are great and I worship You alone. Amen.

November 6

Today’s prayer:

Hear my cry, O God; Attend to my prayer. From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For You have been a shelter for me, A strong tower from the enemy. I will abide in Your tabernacle forever; I will trust in the shelter of Your wings. Selah
Psalms 61:1‭-‬4 NKJV

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You that we can find safety for our souls in Your salvation. Lord Jesus, please be the strong tower of protection for those who place their trust in You. Lord, thank You for Your faithfulness. Thank You for Your truth. Please help us to guard against those things which would hinder our relationship with You. Please help us to put off anger, fear that is not reverence of You, greed, pride, lust, evil speaking, lies, deceit, and wickedness. Lord, thank You for defeating sin and death. Thank You for proclaiming the captive set free, and hope to the hopeless. Lord Jesus, I love You. I trust You. I thank You for Your wonderous works and Your Word. May my life bring You glory. Amen.

November 5

Today’s prayer:

Ephesians 6:11-12 NKJV — Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil. For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.

Ephesians 4:27 KJV — Neither give place to the devil.

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Lord, please help each one of us to put on the armor of God. Lord, teach us how to live inside Your protection, Your gifts, to wear Your truth upon our hearts. Lord, please protect us from evil. Help us to cling to what is good, pure, righteous, true, holy, honorable, lovely, and brings You glory. Please show us how to put off those snares and pit falls of the enemy. Lord, please help us to put of pride, slander, evil speaking, hatred, envy, greed, lust of any kind, and selfish ambition. Lord, please do not allow us to walk in fear of anything, but that we would only revere You. Lord, please show us our hearts that we might be humble before You, willingly Your servants, dressed in Your garments and gladly awaiting Your return. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.

November 4

Today’s prayer:

James 1:5-7 NKJV — If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord;

Dear Lord Jesus,
Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for Your promises. Lord, please guide us today in Your wisdom. Lord, please make it clear what is right, true, and good. Please keep us from evil and shine Your Word into our hearts and minds. Lord, please let us not be double-minded, but rather focused upon You and Your Word. Lord, please guard us from those things which would lead us astray. Please help us to see past what “looks good” and into the truth. Lord, please, show us our sins, that we might repent quickly. Reveal the lies of the enemy, that we might cling to truth alone. Lord, please remove any idol we have set up in our hearts, for we know You will not share first place. Lord, You alone deserve to be first in our hearts, please help us to be humble before, casting out anything which would come between us and You. Nothing is worth losing our souls for, but often, Lord, we are like very young children, we cling to that which we don’t even realize we are holding on to. Lord, thank You for Your patience. Thank You for Your faithfulness. Thank You for Your love. I trust You. I love You. I praise Your holy name, Jesus! Amen.