Tag Archives: sin

Accusing God

Now the chief priests, the elders, and all the council sought false testimony against Jesus to put Him to death, but found none. Even though many false witnesses came forward, they found none. But at last two false witnesses came forward and said, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and to build it in three days.’ ” Matthew 26:59‭-‬61 NKJV https://bible.com/bible/114/mat.26.59-61.NKJV

Here is the most embarrassing moment in all of history.

From the time of the serpent in the Garden, lies have been spoken about God.

Genesis 3:1 NKJV — Now the serpent was more cunning than any beast of the field which the LORD God had made. And he said to the woman, “Has God indeed said, ‘You shall not eat of every tree of the garden’?”

Genesis 3:2 NKJV — And the woman said to the serpent, “We may eat the fruit of the trees of the garden; but of the fruit of the tree which is in the midst of the garden, God has said, ‘You shall not eat it, nor shall you touch it, lest you die.’ ”

Then the serpent said to the woman, “You will not surely die.
Genesis 3:4 NKJV

And so entered sin into humanity with the taking of the fruit.

Many heinous and deplorable acts of wickedness have occurred since that moment.

Yet, this trial of Jesus is the lowest point of mankind.

The creation was prosecuting their own Creator.

But lies wouldn’t stand, they couldn’t condemn Him on falsehood, no matter how much they tried.

So, instead they accused and convicted Him on the truth.

But Jesus kept silent. And the high priest answered and said to Him, “I put You under oath by the living God: Tell us if You are the Christ, the Son of God!” Jesus said to him, “ It is as you said. Nevertheless, I say to you, hereafter you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Power, and coming on the clouds of heaven.”
Matthew 26:63‭-‬64 NKJV https://bible.com/bible/114/mat.26.63-64.NKJV

How ironic, God’s own creation, plotted and schemed, to accuse and convict God for being Himself.

Why?

For God knows that in the day you eat of it your eyes will be opened, and you will be like God, knowing good and evil.”
Genesis 3:5 NKJV
https://bible.com/bible/114/gen.3.5.NKJV

Because our sinful nature wants to be God ourselves.

And they said, “Come, let us build ourselves a city, and a tower whose top is in the heavens; let us make a name for ourselves, lest we be scattered abroad over the face of the whole earth.”
Genesis 11:4 NKJV https://bible.com/bible/114/gen.11.4.NKJV

Mankind wants to make a name for themselves, instead of being called by God’s.

People want to live lives unto their own desires.

Thus, when faced with God in flesh, mankind choose to crucify Him.

If one is honest with themselves, and observant of others, we can easily see the accusations and falsehoods have not stopped.

“If God is so loving why all these wars, famine, and death?”

“If there is a God, He must not care about anyone, look at the mess we are in!”

“If God is truly all knowing and all powerful why didn’t He stop that?!

Since the beginning, we have blamed God for our sin.

Then the man said, “The woman whom You gave to  be with me, she gave me of the tree, and I ate.”
Genesis 3:12 NKJV https://bible.com/bible/114/gen.3.12.NKJV

But the incredible thing about this is what God did through the accusations.

Jesus allowed Himself to be convicted and punished for being Himself.

Then, after dieing for all sin, He rose again and gave us a way to be saved.

Genesis 50:20 NKJV — “But as for you, you meant evil against me; but God meant it for good, in order to bring it about as it is this day, to save many people alive.”

What a wonderful holy God, Who loves in such a way!

To turn lies aside and use the truth to set us free from sin and death!

2 Timothy 1:9 NKJV — who has saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to His own purpose and grace which was given to us in Christ Jesus before time began,

Romans 8:28 NKJV — And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for being the Son of God. Thank You for Your sacrifice and for using our accusations to show us Who You are. Lord, too often our pride and rebellion towards You causes us pain, confusion, and misunderstanding. Lord, please help us to humble ourselves, confess our sins and be made new. Please help us to relinquish our own ideas, our desires, even our dreams into Your hands, that we might follow Your perfect will as the bond servants we are called to be. Lord, please help us to discern lies from the truth. Help us to walk with You daily in humility and in surrender. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.

Psalm 12

To the Chief Musician. On an eight-stringed harp.[fn] A Psalm of David.

Help, LORD, for the godly man ceases!
For the faithful disappear from among the sons of men.

They speak idly everyone with his neighbor;
With flattering lips and a double heart they speak.

May the LORD cut off all flattering lips,
And the tongue that speaks proud things,

Who have said,
“With our tongue we will prevail;
Our lips are our own;
Who is lord over us?”

“For the oppression of the poor, for the sighing of the needy,
Now I will arise,” says the LORD;
“I will set him in the safety for which he yearns.”

The words of the LORD are pure words,
Like silver tried in a furnace of earth,
Purified seven times.

You shall keep them, O LORD,
You shall preserve them from this generation forever.

The wicked prowl on every side,
When vileness is exalted among the sons of men.

Psalm 12 NKJV

It is easy to think the times we are in are unique, never before seen.

In many ways this is a unique time, but it is not never before seen.

God has seen the ways of mankind from the very beginning and although we may be coming up with new ways of doing old things, the heart of man is the same as of old.

Wickedness and evil are still here.

The poor and the needy are still here.

There are oppressions, slaves, and wrong doing happening around the world.

It happened in David’s day, our day, and all the days in between.

But God…

He knew at the fall of Adam and Eve that sin would wreck His good creation and He promised at that point in history to provide a way for us to be saved.

After these things I looked, and behold, a great multitude which no one could number, of all nations, tribes, peoples, and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, clothed with white robes, with palm branches in their hands, and crying out with a loud voice, saying, “Salvation belongs to our God who sits on the throne, and to the Lamb!” Revelation 7:9-10 NKJV

Although, these days are unique to history in the way people are suffering and striving, but God knew this would be the consequence of our stiff-necked rebellion and He loves us so much He saves us from these things.

Our God is Mighty and able to save.

He came Himself as a humble man to endure suffering and to walk among those who strive to bring hope, peace, and salvation.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for all You have done and all You are doing each day. Lord, thank You that these things we are seeing and experiencing are not outside Your abilities. Thank You that You have already brought us salvation and now we are able to rest in You, knowing our soul is safe when we believe upon Your name and what You have done. Thank You for all Your compassion, mercy, and long suffering. Thank You for reaching out to each sinner, loving us before we loved You. Please help us to be devoted to You in all things. To walk in the paths You have given that we might bring glory and honor to Your name. I love You, Jesus. Amen.

Dealing with sin

Then the woman in her wisdom went to all the people. And they cut off the head of Sheba the son of Bichri, and threw it out to Joab. Then he blew a trumpet, and they withdrew from the city, every man to his tent. So Joab returned to the king at Jerusalem.
II Samuel 20:22 NKJV

If one is unfamiliar with this story, it seems harsh and gruesome.

The backstory is where we find out this wise woman who acted quickly, saved many lives.

King David’s son, Absalom, took matters into his own hands.

First, he planned the assassination of his brother Amnon. (2 Samuel 13:23-36)

Amnon deserved severe punishment, but it wasn’t Absalom’s place to meet it out. (2 Samuel 13:1-22)

After having his brother killed Absalom fled to another country. (2 Samuel 13:37-38)

Through the work of Joab, King David allowed him to return to the country, but obviously Absalom’s heart was far from repentant, for he began to steal the hearts of the people for himself by slandering his own father. (2 Samuel 15:1-6)

Then he lied to his father the king and went to Hebron to be anointed as king, where he then turned around to return and wipe out his father and all who supported King David. (2 Samuel 15:7-12)

2 Samuel 15-18 records who supported King David and how Absalom was defeated.

It also records the tribe of Judah escorting the king and his people back across the Jordan.

Just then all the men of Israel came to the king, and said to the king, “Why have our brethren, the men of Judah, stolen you away and brought the king, his household, and all David’s men with him across the Jordan?”
II Samuel 19:41 NKJV

An argument between the people of Judah and the people of the other tribes of Israel begin shouting at one another over who has more right to escort the king back to Jerusalem.

Which is where Sheba comes on the scene.

And there happened to be there a rebel, whose name was Sheba the son of Bichri, a Benjamite. And he blew a trumpet, and said: “We have no share in David, Nor do we have inheritance in the son of Jesse; Every man to his tents, O Israel!”
II Samuel 20:1 NKJV

The people of Israel leave:

So every man of Israel deserted David, and followed Sheba the son of Bichri. But the men of Judah, from the Jordan as far as Jerusalem, remained loyal to their king.
II Samuel 20:2 NKJV

King David returns to Jerusalem to put all things in order.

He sent the army out to deal with Sheba.

This wise woman knew the stakes were high.

The kingdom had just gone through a civil war brought on by a young man who had no regards for what was right.

Absalom did as he thought best and suffered the consequences.

Sheba comes on the heels of this painful and splintered time, and by all accounts his treachery could further splinter and shatter the kingdom.

But for this wise woman.

She saw danger.

She found the source of the sin.

She acted in quick response to what would deal with it quickly.

Unfortunately, Sheba had signed his own death warrant by his actions.

But there is so much to learn from this story.

Sin causes pain, violence, and destruction.

It needs to be dealt with, quickly and completely.

There is no record of King David punishing Amnon for his sin against Tamar.

King David’s own son, Absalom, was a murderer and yet the king did not punish him.

We will never know what would have been different if the king had dealt with the sins of his sons.

But he didn’t let Sheba’s sin slide and neither did this wise woman.

Evidently the king had learned much from his previous error and the results are far different.

In this case only the one who committed the sin paid for it, Sheba.

Because of Jesus’s payment for sin we no longer have to die eternal death to pay for our sins, but we still must be wise.

The New Testament tells believers to put away sin.

2 Timothy 2:22 KJV — Flee also youthful lusts: but follow righteousness, faith, charity, peace, with them that call on the Lord out of a pure heart.

No one is immune to sin, therefore the Word of God gives us instruction.

James 5:16 NKJV — Confess your trespasses to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The effective, fervent prayer of a righteous man avails much.

1 John 1:9 NKJV — If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

As this year comes to a close and a new year begins, let us be honest about the sin within our walls and deal with it as the wise woman did.

For Jesus cleanses us from all unrighteousness!

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. Thank You for the example we see in scripture. Please Lord Jesus, do not allow any sin to hide inside my heart, but reveal it that it might be dealt with completely. Lord, thank You for Your faithfulness in continually showing me the way I should walk daily. Please continue to shine Your truth into my heart and mind. Lord, You alone have all that I need and Your Word is my guide. Please continue to hone my heart. Thank You. Amen.

Past

I love this old photograph of my father and his sister.

What lies in the past?

1 Corinthians 6:9-10 NKJV — Do you not know that the unrighteous will not inherit the kingdom of God? Do not be deceived. Neither fornicators, nor idolaters, nor adulterers, nor homosexuals, nor sodomites, nor thieves, nor covetous, nor drunkards, nor revilers, nor extortioners will inherit the kingdom of God.

Often, it holds regret, shame, and always sin.

“It’s only a white lie…”

“Well, it was just a one time thing…”

“I’m only hurting myself…”

Sin hides beneath falsehood.

Marring each person’s heart.

And sin never hurts only one person.

Instead sin causes a rippling of consequences which can cause harm for generations.

Jesus bore every painful bitter sin upon the cross.

Your sin.

My sin.

1 Peter 2:24 NKJV — who Himself bore our sins in His own body on the tree, that we, having died to sins, might live for righteousness—by whose stripes you were healed.

But He did it, that we might live for righteousness.

Because the list of those who won’t inherit the kingdom of heaven is only part of the truth.

1 Corinthians 6:11 NKJV And such were some of you. But you were washed, but you were sanctified, but you were justified in the name of the Lord Jesus and by the Spirit of our God.

Jesus is the only One Who can cleanse our past and heal our hurt.

Because sin always brings pain.

But Jesus brings salvation.

Whatever your past might hold, relinquish it into the hands of the Lord Jesus and let His truth set you free.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your sacrifice. Thank You for going through the pain and suffering of the cross to provide freedom from sin and eternal separation from You. Lord, there are so many ways we try to forget or hide from the past, when You paid for it already. Lord, please heal those who are hurting. Let forgiveness and trust replace shame and fear. Lord, let our hearts be humble before You that we might freely lift up those things which cause us anxiety, pain, grief, and suffering. Lord, thank You for loving each one of us. Thank You for being our salvation. Thank You for paying the price. I love You, Lord. Amen.

Rest

Matthew 11:28 KJV — Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

What weighs down the soul?

What things cause hearts to be heavy and burdened?

Grief, fear, pain, loss, need,…sin.

Behind most things, which weigh like lead upon the soul, is sin.

Other’s sin or our own, cause such pain, such hurt, such damage.

It doesn’t take much sin nor does it take generations of sin to wreck the peace of a heart.

Look at Adam and Eve.

Their own sin drove them out of the Garden and separated them from all that God had provided for them there.

Their son’s sin caused them to be the first parents to lose a son.

And one really can’t find a worse way to lose a child, he was murdered by his brother.

They literally lost both sons in one day, one moment of sin.

Which cultivated the broken and hurting sin filled world.

The sin at the Garden, the sin of Adam and Eve, the sin of every person, Jesus came to save.

“Come to Me, all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.”
Matthew 11:28‭-‬30 NKJV

True rest is found in Christ Jesus alone.

When our soul is safe in the cleansing blood of Christ we find no need to fear.

Peace, joy, security, goodness, kindness, faith, love, and so much more is in the gift of salvation.

Yes, there are still the daily struggles with our flesh which wars against the Spirit.

Yes, there are still continually trials and tribulations from the enemy.

Yes, there is still the pain, grief, loss, need, and all the other consequences to sin all around us, but even in it all we have hope.

Jesus promises to return.

He will deal with sin and the enemy.

Jesus is preparing a place for us.

This world is not our home, but merely a journey.

And while we travel we have the privilege to share the Good News of the blessed rest we have in Christ.

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You so much for salvation. Thank You that we need not strive and labor to earn our way into Your presence, because we could never do it. Thank You for making the way, for bridging the gap, for paving the road. Lord, sometimes I forget that I need not strive and struggle. Sometimes I think I have to do this or that. I forget to lean on You, to seek You when it’s difficult, to rest in Your ways when I’m frightened or disappointed. Lord Jesus, thank You for loving me. Thank You for saving me. Please help me to rest in You each and every day. I praise Your holy name, Jesus! Amen.

Dealing with pride

It hadn’t seemed like a big deal.

Yet, I knew something was off.

As I prayed the certainty grew.

Something was wrong.

And that something was within.

“Lord, please show me my sin that I might repent. Please cleanse me within.”

Pride.

Yikes!

“Lord, please forgive me! Where have I let pride in?”

And as gently as a mother removing a bandage which has been on too long, the Lord revealed my sin.

Underneath a patch of “doing what is expected” was hiding the real motive.

pride.

Uhg.

With the revealed heart motivation came a clear picture of some other areas.

Off and on for a couple of weeks I’ve been feeling emotionally prickly.

Unable to place it before, I simply tried to ignore it.

Obviously, a poor choice.

It’s a bit embarrassing to look upon one’s sin and to realize it had been left undetected by me.

Yet, I’d rather see my sin than allow it to linger and grow.

Because just like all sin, it begins to taint all areas.

Before long the heart can be overcome with bitterness, envy, strife, unforgiveness, and a host of other things.

All through one spot of sin ignored and therefore allowed.

Praise God for His mercy!

What a blessed gift to be shown the danger within and to have my Savior deal with it!

How great is His loving kindness!

-sigh-

smile

Until the day when my LORD calls me home, I will need to be cleansed by Jesus of the sins I commit.

No, I don’t do it on purpose.

Yes, I study His Word that I might be aware of His commandments and do my best to follow them.

No, I’m not able to make it even a single day without falling into sin.

Yes, I keep as short account of those things as possible.

Yes, He truly does love me enough to forgive me and continue to hone my heart that I might not sin against Him.

It’s a beautiful daily walk with Christ.

My Lord and Savior who cleanses me.

As I seek Him this morning, I’m so very thankful for His dealing with my heart yesterday.

For each of us, who are called by His name, may we never walk with hidden sin, but instead confess and become cleansed daily.

1 John 1:9 KJV — If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for loving me so deeply. Thank You for freeing my heart from the pride I had allowed. Lord Jesus, I don’t want to do that again and I am ashamed for doing it, thank You for forgiving me. Please protect me from that in the future. Protect my eyes, my heart, and my mind that I might not sin against You. Please keep me from looking at worthless things, but instead let me focus on You. Lord, thank You so much for Your mercy and grace. I am humbled by Your love. Amen.

Lost his voice

Circumstances can crowd in upon someone before they realize.

The consequences of behavior can begin to hide the heart.

And yet those things are a direct result of the choices made.

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, that he will also reap.
Galatians 6:7 NKJV

Recently, as I shared with another, the brokenness of my past relationship with my father, I was able to see the truth in a crystalized phrase.

“He had lost his voice with me by the way he used anger.”

From my perspective, he was always angry and therefore I didn’t want to hear anything he had to say.

In reflection, after God’s healing me, I can see I missed a lot of things he was trying to say, but he had already lost his voice with me.

Our conversation continued and we each reflected upon times when our own voice was lost.

Although all three of the circumstances and choices were different, we each had lost the privilege of sharing truth because of our misuse of our words, actions, or attitudes.

But it didn’t end there.

Jesus had redeemed each of us.

It was humbling and uplifting to realize how Jesus had used these sins in our lives to hone us, to teach us, and to change us.

And before I thought it I spoke.

“I really hope God will help me to teach this truth. I want to pass on the value of guarding one’s actions, attitudes, and words so they might not lose their voice.”

Of course Jesus already spoke so clearly upon these truths, all I’m responsible for is sharing them with others and walking in them myself.

No, I don’t have it down perfect, but I’ve learned that when I sin it’s my responsibility to repent and ask for forgiveness, both from God and those I’ve sinned against.

I’m also on my guard about making allowances.

“Well, I just reacted that way, because I’m hungry and I didn’t sleep well and I…”

Nope!

Refusing to accept the truth that I sinned is as damaging as the sin.

Trying to down play my responsibility in the sin is as deadly as approval of the sin.

Blaming anything rather than repenting of my sin is wickedness, for what I’m doing in my heart is refusing to admit that I’ve transgressed before the Lord.

Humility before God and then others is the best choice.

1 Peter 5:5 KJV — Likewise, ye younger, submit yourselves unto the elder. Yea, all of you be subject one to another, and be clothed with humility: for God resisteth the proud, and giveth grace to the humble.

If you have allowed your voice to be lost through sin, it’s not too late to humble yourself before God and those around you.

If you are walking in the path of restoration, praise God for His mercy and grace. Pass on the knowledge of God’s truth.

Galatians 6:10 NKJV — Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all, especially to those who are of the household of faith.

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for Your Word. It is so full of all we need! Thank You for teaching me how to be careful of my words and how to continually humble myself before You and others. Please continue to teach me and to guide me along Your paths. Jesus, I want to be quick to listen, slow to speak, and full of Your wisdom. Please help me to sow truth, love, humility, and righteousness daily. Please place a guard over my heart and my mouth, that I might not sin. Thank You, Jesus. Amen.

Blessing and lessons

Mother’s day tea!

It was so sweet and I was truly blessed.

It placed a beautiful memory in my heart.

The tea party was lovely and I was so thankful to God for my family.

As the day came to a close, I realized I needed to get by myself and pray.

There had been an underlying something bothering me.

It was an unsettling, almost fidgety emotion, but I couldn’t figure out what it was.

Before the Lord, it became clear.

This fidgety unsettling feeling was simply my old nemesis: fear.

Uhg!

Where did that creep in?!

Yet, I knew it had to be confessed and submitted to the Lord, rather than worried over.

So, I began, with the Lord, unraveling the balled up mess of fear.

One strand at a time, until I came to the center, hurt.

Something I thought was way back in my past and long since dealt with was the center of this.

My heart hurt and I had to confess this hurt and choose again to forgive, to place it in Jesus’s understanding hands, and to ask Him to fill my hurt with healing and love.

Because when I’m full of love for the ones who hurt me, then I’m no longer afraid the hurt will come again.

Crazy thing about this circumstance, I know it was not intended, nor were they ever aware of it.

Sometimes hurt happens, and just like someone accidentally dropping something on my foot, when they dropped something on my heart I can feel the pain and realize it wasn’t on purpose.

I can walk in forgiveness.

Which was the lesson for my evening.

Although, I didn’t really like having to deal with this sin (because fear of any person but God is sin) I was thankful the Lord showed it to me.

When I first began my “Good morning” chat with the Lord, He pointed out another sin.

My feet hadn’t hit the floor, I hadn’t really done more than roll over and greet the Lord, when He unveiled my heart to me.

This time it was discontent.

Uhg, uhg!

It didn’t take more than a moment for God to show me my error.

I immediately recognized my need to repent and return to a place of contentment.

Which I did.

My sorrow lingered, after all I don’t like having sin creep into my life.

It’s disgusting, it hinders my walk with the Lord and my family, it’s a cancer which eats away at my relationships.

I truly appreciate God’s mercy and grace in showing me my heart that I might turn away from sin and choose what is right.

How I long for the day when I no longer struggle in the mire of my own sin and can be completely at rest in Christ.

But I would not shorten my time God has given.

That too would be sin.

Instead, I must continue to learn humility before my Lord and my fellow man.

To keep my heart daily before God, that His light of truth and love may hone me.

Although it was uncomfortable, I feel so much peace now.

To look at my sin and repent, to be washed by Jesus’s love and forgiveness is so refreshing and beautiful.

I know Jesus will continue to walk with me into today and I’m so thankful He loves me enough to deal with my sin.

Praise the Lord!

Dear Lord Jesus,

Thank You for walking daily with me. Lord, thank You for dealing with both discontentment and fear in my heart. Please help me to place guards in my actions, my attitudes, and my activities that I might not slip back into either of these sins. Lord, if You would have me speak to someone in more detail so they might hold me accountable on these, I am willing. Lord, I want to live with a pure heart, and You alone are the only One who can create that in me. Please continue to polish my heart, no matter how uncomfortable it is. Thank You for all Your love, mercy, grace, and truth! You are incredible! Thank You for forgiving me. I love You, Jesus!

Allowing circumstances to teach

Beautiful Christmas gift with an excellent reminder.

It had been happening all weekend.

I’d find myself yearning.

Not all the time and not often enough to pay attention to.

Just little bits, little bites out of my day, slowly consuming my thankfulness.

It was yesterday, during the quiet.

I realized the yearning had a name: discontent.

“Uhg! Lord, what have I done to allow this to creep in? I want to be thankful for each day, not waste my blessings in longing for those of someone else.

Lord, please forgive me! I have so much! I am so blessed by You. Please help me to throw out this enemy to peace and joy. Help me to see where I’ve stopped being thankful.”

God is faithful.

He showed me several little things which had all crept up and robbed me of my contentment.

It’s embarrassing, but the two main areas where my guard had fallen were covetousness and self-pity.

It’s difficult to even write that.

To look upon the ugliness of either is repulsive to my soul.

But the truth was brought through by Jesus shining into my heart and I have repented.

I’m now rebuilding the guards which had fallen.

I’m being much more careful what I allow myself to look at online.

It’s easy to “get creative ideas” and fall into “want my house to look like that, it only takes…”.

Or, “I’m only looking for tips on house keeping” and find a list of items you need to keep your home up to par.

What I look at really does get into me in ways I don’t always realize at the time.

So, instead of searching the internet for an idea to an organization issue, or a creative boost, I’m praying.

The self-pity thing is all about what thoughts I allow to linger in my brain.

When I see the stain on the couch cushions what do I think?

Today, and as often as possible, I’m purposing to think:

“Praise God for this couch! It has been such a blessing and a perfect fit to our needs. Lord, thank You for blessing us with this!”

Or something very like it.

Because that couch was and is a blessing from God.

I got it used for $25 and after arranging to buy it realized I couldn’t go pick it up. It’s 7′ long. Even healthy I can’t move it.

My husband was away on a business trip and wouldn’t be home in time.

I prayed.

God placed a name in my heart. I called my dear friend.

Her husband borrowed his father’s trailer, drove the twenty plus minutes to get it. He and their son loaded it. Drove across the road to pick up the bed I’d purchased and then drove back to our place and set it all up.

That was a couple years ago, but I’ve not forgotten how much God blessed me through all of it.

But I had allowed the stains and blemishes of discontent to tarnish the gift.

All because I’d not been on my guard about my thoughts.

After the Lord revealed the reason for my yearning, threw His light upon my sin, and I repeat, I made sure to tell my family.

I asked for their forgiveness for allowing this into my heart.

I also asked them to hold me accountable.

This Monday morning I’m purposing to live a simple content life in Jesus.

There are so many more important things for me to pray for than stains on the couch or my inabilities to organize.

Yes, I want to be a good steward of the things God has given me, but they don’t have the right to draw my attention away from the things which really matter, nor to steal my joy.

I’m so grateful to God for not allowing me to slide further down the slope of self-pity and covetousness.

O Lord , You have searched me and known me. You know my sitting down and my rising up; You understand my thought afar off. You comprehend my path and my lying down, And are acquainted with all my ways.
Psalms 139:1‭-‬3 NKJV

Praise the Lord!

He is so faithful and generous to use circumstances to teach me!

Waves

image

The ocean is beautiful.

At least I never grow tired of looking at it, even if it is only a picture.

But it is not a safe thing.

At times it can shift and drown you or tow you out to sea.

The constant change of tides and ever moving water is always rearranging the sand, rocks, seaweed, and shells.

Nothing is left motionless.

Nothing is “finished” and the work stopped.

The waves are ever going in and out.

And so is life.

The waves of sin and temptation can seem to be retreating before you,  faster than you can run after
and you feel safe from them.

But turn your back for a moment and suddenly they are sucking at your ankles, threatening to smother.

The stress daily wears, and worry can smooth off the bumps of joy and happiness.

But it doesn’t have to be that way.

We build a jetty to hold back the tide.
Each piece carved out of God’s Word.

We can lift our minds from the tossing and rolling of the cares by remembering this is not our home.

We can reach out a helping hand to those who are being sucked down into sin by prayer, encouragement, and being willing to ask the tough questions.

Our life isn’t to be focused on ourselves, our struggles, our worries,  and we don’t have to have all the answers.

Instead we need to lay them at the feet of the Father in prayer and patience. Knowing He has the answer.

We simply need to trust
and
obey.

Isaiah 49:4 NLT
“I replied, ‘But my work seems so useless! I have spent my strength for nothing and to no purpose, Yet I leave it all in the LORD ‘ s hand, I will trust God for my reward. ‘”