OUR GOD SEES WHAT NO ONE ELSE CAN

December 5, 2016

James Cameron, an explorer and filmmaker for National Geographic, was the first human to make the 2 hour, 36 minute descent into the deepest part of the ocean in March of 2012. At the depth of 8.6 miles, he saw what you and I will never be able to see in the Mariana Trench…but God can see it. He created it.

Thousands of years ago, when choosing the successor to Israel’s King Saul, the prophet Samuel was sure it would be Jesse’s handsome oldest son Eliab. But the Lord chose the unlikely youngest son, and informed the prophet that he saw something in David that no one else could see; God saw David’s heart. He created it. 1st Samuel 16:7

Our God alone can see our heart, too. Think about your heart and meditate on what God says about it.

  • If you are brokenhearted, “He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds.” (Psalm 147:3)
  • If your heart is restless, “Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret…” (Psalm 37:7)
  • If your heart needs cleansed, pray “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me.” (Psalm 51:10)
  • If your heart is heavy, “Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you.” (Psalm 55:22)
  • If your heart is anxious, give Him your anxiety and “…the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Philippians 4:7)

Only God can see inside our heart. He created it. That’s why we can be open and honest with Him, and praise Him with David, who wrote: “I will praise You, for I am fearfully and wonderfully made.” (Psalm 139:14)

OUR GOD ALWAYS DESERVES THANKS

November 28, 2016

On Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Memorial Day and Veteran’s Day we honor very special people and express our gratitude for their love and sacrifice. They all have a special day…but shouldn’t we ALWAYS  be thankful for them?

We just celebrated Thanksgiving Day. Is one day enough to thank God for all He does for us and for all he gives us? Of course not! We all know that God deserves our thanks more than one day a year!

In Ephesians 5:20, the Apostle Paul wrote:  “…giving thanks always for all things to God the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ…” Reading that, and taking note of the word ALWAYS, I made a long “ALWAYS GIVE THANKS” list and would like to share some things with you. To give thanks always means…

  • When I feel thankful and when I don’t
  • When I understand ‘why’ and when I don’t
  • When God answers my prayers my way and when He answers them His way
  • When it seems as though God doesn’t even hear me
  • When I don’t see an end in sight
  • When I feel energized and when I’m tired
  • When I look at the past and when I look at the future

You get the idea. So as you dig for another recipe for leftover turkey, take a minute to make your own “ALWAYS GIVE THANKS” list. Let’s all expand our thanksgiving beyond the holiday and cultivate a thankful attitude every day, because our God ALWAYS deserves thanks!

Join me each Monday in 2016 to share more of what I’m finding on my quest to know God better.

OUR GOD DESERVES THANKS!

November 21, 2016

Most parents teach their children to say “Thank you” almost as soon as they start to talk. Even as adults, unfortunately, we still need to be reminded to say “Thank you.”

Psalm 136 is that perfect reminder. It starts with “Oh, give thanks to the Lord”, and continues with the fundamental reason: “for He is good! For His mercy (steadfast love) endures forever.” Then the Psalmist gives us a list of reasons to thank Him: He is the God of gods, supreme, powerful, wise, the Creator; He is perfect, the source of light; He has power over death and nature, He is our deliverer and He is victorious. God guides and protects us, and He is sovereign, the owner of everything. God is faithful to keep His word. He cares for us, is concerned about us and is our compassionate provider and Savior.

The one phrase that is repeated over and over is the core of it all: “For His mercy endures forever.”

Like Children, we need to be reminded to say “Thank you”. Take time to meditate of Psalm 136 and to make your personal list of all the kindness He shows you. Whatever your situation is, thank Him… “for He is good! For His mercy endures forever.”

OUR GOD IS NOT IN A HURRY

November 14, 2016

Who hasn’t felt the frustration of waiting for someone? A slowpoke on the highway, a child who’s dragging their feet; a coworker who has to finish their part of a project before we can start ours…we fidget and fume; we allow our wait to turn nightmarish.

Maybe you’re waiting for God to resolve a situation or answer a prayer. It seems that He’s not budging and your frustration mounts. God is not in a hurry.

What if you would let God turn your wait into a positive experience?

In His Word we are assured that “The Lord is good to those who wait for Him.” (Lamentations 3:25) Look for His goodness.

We also read that God “acts for the one who waits for Him.” (Isaiah 64:4) Believe that He’s working behind the scenes.

And just when you think you can’t wait much longer, our God promises renewed strength during the wait. (Isaiah 40:31) Trust Him for His strength.

Our God is not in a hurry. So if you’re waiting for Him now – or the next time you wait – ask Him to turn your wait into a positive experience. Then relax and let Him do what He promised to do. It will be well worth the wait!

OUR GOD OFFERS REST

November 7, 2016

Rest. It’s what a weary mom longs for after sleepless nights with a newborn and busy days with non-stop toddlers.

Rest. It’s what an athlete needs when physical exhaustion pushes him to the limit.

Rest. It’s what an overworked worker looks forward to when planning that long-anticipated and well-deserved vacation.

Rest. It’s what we all need, when stressed and burdened, we cry out to God, “I just can’t do this anymore!”

More than physical rest, we need rest for our souls.

When we are under pressure. When we are being bombarded with worry. When we can’t live up to someone else’s expectation. When we stagger under an unbearable burden. When we are trying to be good enough. When we can’t do it – whatever “it” is – anymore!

Oswald Chambers wrote: “…when the circumstances of the day seem too much to bear, we do well to recall that there is always an invitation to share the yoke with the One Whose strength never fails and the result is rest for our souls.”

Yes, our Father God offers rest for our souls in Christ’s invitation: “Come unto Me all you who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest….you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:28,29)

Do you want rest for your soul? Then give in; accept the invitation. RSVP “Yes, I’m coming, Lord.” Then rest in Him.

(Join me every Monday as I share more discoveries on my quest to know God better)

 

 

OUR GOD GIVES LIFE

October 31, 2016

In many parts of the world, “The Day of the Dead” begins on October 31. It’s a time to remember departed loved ones and to celebrate their lives.  Elaborate meals and exquisite treats are prepared to feed the souls of the dead, who supposedly return to join the celebration. Originating as a form of ancestor worship, this festivity is especially common in Latin American culture and is followed by “All Saints’ Day” and “All Souls’ Day”. In honor of the deceased, cemeteries come alive with colorful activity; superstition reigns.

Turning from the superstition of “The Day of the Dead” to the truth declared in the living Word of God, we find that we all are “dead in trespasses and sins” and that the “wages of sin is death.” (Ephesians 2:1 and Romans 6:23)

But …there is something amazing we can celebrate!

Our God offers life, and “this life is in His Son,” (1 John 5:11) We all deserve eternal death because of our sin, but Jesus took our punishment when He died on the cross. Acknowledging to God that we are, indeed, dead in sin, and believing that Jesus died and rose again to give us life, we receive God’s free gift of eternal life!  (Romans 6:23)

If you have eternal life already, celebrate it! If you haven’t received God’s gift, seriously and prayerfully consider it. Make today – and every day – a celebration of LIFE!

Join me every Monday of 2016 as I share more of my quest to know God better.

OUR GOD SURROUNDS US WITH FAVOR

October 24, 2016

What are we all surrounded by? Air. We can’t avoid it, run away from it or live without it; air sustains our lives. According to www.sciencealert.com, “The rule of 3 minutes without air is a good guideline. Hold your breath for longer, and you run the risk of brain damage.” We all agree that every human being depends on air.

If you are God’s child, you are not only surrounded by air; you are also surrounded by His favor. In Psalm 5:12 we read, “For You, O Lord, will bless the righteous; with favor You will surround him as with a shield.” That was also Job’s testimony, even while experiencing indescribable suffering. In a discourse marked by agony and complaints, Job acknowledged God’s favor: “You have granted me life and favor, and Your care has preserved my spirit.” (Job 10:12)

Whatever our circumstance today, (which probably isn’t comparable to Job’s suffering) let’s do what Job did. Let’s acknowledge God’s favor. He’s surrounding us with it today; and for that, He deserves our sincere thanks!

Please join me each Monday of 2016 as I share more of my quest to know God better.

OUR GOD ANSWERS US

October 17, 2016

Silence can be frustrating. No one answers the doorbell. No one answers the phone call. No one answers your question. No one responds.

The prophets of Baal discovered just how frustrating silence is. After hours of desperately crying out to their god, the prophets of Baal faced reality: “…there was no voice, no one answered, no one paid attention.” (1st Kings 18:29).

Just silence.

Moments later, God’s prophet Elijah prayed “Hear me, O Lord, hear me, that this people may know that You are the Lord God…” (1st Kings 18:37). Elijah’s God – our God who hears – answered, sending fire to consume the water-drenched altar, the sacrifice and the water in the trenches. As a result, the people acknowledged the Lord as the only true God.

That’s a perfect example of what our God does: He answers, just as He promised: “Call on me, and I will answer you…” (Jeremiah 33:3) Our God always answers us.

God may answer immediately, as in Elijah’s case, or He may delay; but He will answer us.

God may answer in an unexpected way, but He will answer us.

God may answer “No”. (Remember the Apostle Paul’s experience in 2nd Corinthians 12:7-10?) “No” is a valid answer, and with the “No”, God gives sufficient grace to deal with it…because He always answers us.

Whatever your situation, call on God, and trust Him. You won’t be frustrated by deafening silence, because…He promised to answer us!

(Join me each Monday of 2016 as I share my discoveries on my quest to know God better)

OUR GOD GIVES SWEET SLEEP

October 10, 2016

The sleep industry is growing exponentially. Because of our collective insomnia, the global sleep aids market was valued at 58.1 billion dollars in 2014, and is projected to reach 80.8 billion by the year 2020. (“Global Sleep Aids Market” www.globenewswire.com July 31, 2015) This profitable market includes medication, mattresses, pillows, sleep labs, music and ambient sounds, and therapy. Yes, sweet sleep eludes many;  millions of people suffer anxiety-induced insomnia.

That was not the case with the Apostle Peter! In Acts chapter 12 we read that King Herod had just beheaded James the Apostle, and Peter was next. The night prior to his scheduled execution, Peter was incarcerated under maximum security under the watchful eyes of 16 soldiers, chained to 2 of them. Five words in that account are worth noting: “That night Peter was sleeping.” (Acts 12:6)

Peter was sleeping…..zzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz

Let’s face it. Our circumstances may hardly be as difficult as those that Peter was living, yet sweet sleep often eludes us. Here’s a suggestion: Write this verse on a 3 x 5 card: “I will both lie down in peace and sleep; for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.” (Psalm 4:8) Memorize that truth and keep the card on your nightstand.

The next time you have anxiety or fear-induced insomnia, turn to the tried and proven best sleep aid – the same one Peter relied on: The Lord. Let our God give you sweet sleep! zzzzzzzzzz

(Join me each Monday of 2016 for more of my quest to know God better)

OUR GOD CAN CARRY OUR BURDENS

October 3, 2016

Walking down a country road, a traveler was struggling under the heavy load he was carrying on his back. When a kind farmer saw the man, he stopped and offered him a ride on his wagon. Both the farmer and his horse waited patiently while the traveler got settled. A few minutes later, the farmer looked back and noticed that the colossal bundle was still on the traveler’s back, and asked him, “Why are you still carrying that heavy load?” the burdened man answered, “I thought it would be too much for the wagon. I’ll carry it.” Unfortunately, the man didn’t get relief from his back-breaking load because he didn’t trust the wagon.

Sometimes we’re like that foolish man. Our cumbersome load may be impossible to carry; we stagger through our days under its weight. Maybe we even pray about it, but keep trying to shoulder it on our own. We find no relief. The Psalmist encourages us in Psalm 55:22: “Cast your burden on the Lord, and He shall sustain you.”

Let’s not be like the traveler on the wagon. Let’s lay our heavy burden down on the only One who is kind enough and strong enough to carry it. Our God CAN carry our burdens. Ahhh…what a relief!

(Join me every Monday of 2016 in my quest to know God better!)

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