Welcome to God's Lemonade Stand

It is my hope that by reading this daily you will grow in your walk with Christ and be set free from any struggles in your life that are weighing you down. Be blessed to be a blessing.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

LOVE CAN LIFT YOU HIGHER




Do you really love with God's love? This means all people. What about the rude store clerk? Perhaps the inattentive waitress? Maybe the tailgater that has followed you for miles? What about someone who sues you? Maybe a boss who expects 6 days of work in 5 days? Is there a friend who has decided they no longer want to be a friend? Let's say it is a mean neighbor who keeps being ugly.Whatever the case guess what? God still wants you to love them.

All I  know is The Bible tells  us to love. It does not just say on Sunday and to our church friends. It means love those hard to love. As I call it 'loving with the love of Jesus'. Jesus loves all of us and some of us are pretty unlovable at times. Just try to do it.

Romans 12:9 and 10 says "Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil and cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in love. Honor one another above yourselves."  Matthew 5:44 reminds us to "Love your enemies and pray for one who persecute you."  Next time you are angry at a person doing ugly things to you try praying for them. Yes you heard me right.  It does not matter who it is. They may be a total stranger or a family member. Ask God for the strength to be kind no matter what. You can not truly be like Jesus till you learn to love like him.

PRAYER: Lord God I confess there are times when I have not been a loving person. Help me to remember to be like you in my dealings with all people. Help me be especially kind to those in my family who sometimes are easy to hurt the most. Help me not lash back when spoken harshly to and keep my mouth from uttering things that would not bring glory to you. In Jesus name. Amen.

Note: Once again I have included a wonderful praise and worship song to lift your spirits. Click on link below and be blessed.
http://youtu.be/SOVF634y6-Y

Monday, July 30, 2012

LOVE DOESN'T JUDGE

If you love someone you want to be kind to them and give them the benefit of the doubt. You do not want to be behind someones back talking ugly about them to someone else or keep thinking wrong thoughts about them. If you have a tendency to condemn, back bite and judge others stop for a moment and ask yourself "who made me the judge" then quickly ask God to forgive you. God is the only judge.

 We can easily get caught up talking and criticizing others. Let  me tell you that a person with a judgmental, gossipy, condemning  spirit is not fun to be around.. Try to let pleasant thoughts fill your head and be careful to not say anything that you would not want God to hear. Guess what, He hears it all!

In 2 Corinthians 5:9-10 it says "So we make it our goal to please Him, whether we are at home in the body, or away from it. We all must appear before the judgment seat of Christ that each one may receive what is due him for the things done in the body,whether good or bad." Romans 13:8 also tells us "owe no man anything but to love one another for he that loves has fulfilled the law."

 PRAYER: Lord I love you and I want to be kind and loving to those in my path daily. It is easy to find fault or rush to judgment sometimes on things around me. Help me step back and just pray when I feel a critical spirit coming on. In Jesus  name. Amen.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

MERCIFUL GOD

What exactly is mercy? Webster's defines it as "compassion shown especially to an offender. A blessing that is an act of divine favor. Compassionate treatment of those in distress.".

Our  God is like that. Remember the woman caught in the act of adultery? In John 8:7-11 he tells people who are without sin to cast the first stone. Then Jesus tells her to go and sin no more. Basically the 'Becky paraphrase' of what he is saying is "Hey there, you think you are perfect and without fault? Well hey guess what? You are not."

Humans may treat people poorly and show rejection to sinners but we all have fallen short of the glory of God it says in Romans 3:23. It saddens me when a parent kicks a child out of the house for telling the parents they are pregnant out of wedlock or something deep like that. Parents are supposed to represent Christ and show love and mercy not tell their own flesh and blood to get out of their sight. They may not like what they did but they are to be there with open arms. Romans 2:4 reminds us that "kindness leads to repentance". Beating up on a person will not win them to the Lord.

Lamentations 3:23 is comforting as it says "Great is his faithfulness. His mercies begin afresh every morning." Luke 6:36 says "Be merciful just as your Father is merciful."  Finally in Ephesians 5:1 it tells us to "be imitators of God therefore as dearly loved children." You know what that means? Work on your mercy meter.

PRAYER: Give me your strength to show mercy and kindness to others. We all need mercy at times and Lord I am thankful you are merciful to us when we have messed up. Thank you. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link below to praise God in song. May his name be lifted higher.
http://youtu.be/-6GfXa5Ixhw

Saturday, July 28, 2012

BE LIKE JESUS. BUT HOW?

How do I become like Jesus? First is you need to spend time in the word of God then you will learn his character. Next ask yourself if the way you treat people is the way Jesus would treat them. After this when you sit down to watch TV and if Jesus were with you would you watch the same programs? Is the type of entertainment you enjoy something you would not be ashamed to take Jesus to as well? What about the people you hang out with? Well on this one Jesus would be there ministering to them and not judging them. Would Jesus say swear words? Ate you kind and merciful? Do you love your neighbor as yourself? Think about those things for a while.

Scripture says in 1 Peter 1:16 to "be holy for I am holy."  1 John 2:6 says " Whoever claims to live in Him must walk as Jesus did."

I heard a saying once that makes you think about what you are doing on a daily basis and it says " if you were arrested for being a Christian would there be enough evidence to convict you?" Think on that for a while. What would you say?
Let me leave you with this verse from 2 Timothy 2:19 and it says "never the less God's solid foundation stands sure sealed with the inscription, the Lord knows who are his. let everyone who. Makes the name of the lord depart from iniquity."

PRAYER: Thank you Lord for the Bible which teaches me how to walk as you would walk. The enemy will fill my head with lies and excuses to keep me away from the word Asa in it lies truth and freedom. I purpose to get up daily and open my bible and get to know you better. In Jesus name. Amen

Friday, July 27, 2012

I AM FREE TO WORSHIP GOD


I love freedom. In the United States we have religious freedom guaranteed by the First Amendment. It is a gift God gave us that evil men try to take away from us.
Many of our religious rights guaranteed by our First Amendment have been threatened in the past few years. Presently Vanderbilt University is in a battle to keep the freedoms for religious organizations that name the name of Jesus to remain there. A rally entitled Stand Up For Religious Freedom was held nationwide this past year primarily opposing the attacks on people of faith in the new healthcare legislation  but it is evident our country can not get along without the blessings of God.
The recent drought got me to thinking  about what it says  in the scripture Psalm 33:12 t. " Blessed is the nation whose God is the  Lord."  Perhaps God is trying to wake America up? Just something to think about.
We have definitely been blessed in America and freedom is a true gift from God. Galatians 5:1 says " It is for freedom that Christ has set us free. Stand from then and do not let yourselves be entangled again in a  yoke of bondage."
Do you take worshipping the Lord for granted? There could come a time if we do not pray and speak up that our churches are shuttered. Have you memorized scriptures to call on if your bible were taken away from you? Many communist nations do not have the freedom to have their Bibles  in public or they risk imprisonment.
Amos 8:11 says "The days are coming says the lord, when I will send a famine through the land. Not a famine for food or a thirst for water, but a famine of hearing the words of the Lord."
Do you take worshiping God for granted? Get serious about loving God and not just bought being religious. Get to know the promises in God's word and pick up that Bible and do not take it for granted.
PRAYER: Thank you Lord for the freedom I enjoy to attend a house of worship. Help me not do it out of routine but out of a love for Jesus. Forgive me Lord when I have not read the bible or had a quiet time with you. I know it is important for facing the day ahead. In Jesus name. Amen.
Click on link to worship the Lord in song:
http://youtu.be/_MbcYyOsF50

Thursday, July 26, 2012

BE SATURATED BY JESUS AND NOT YOUR PROBLEM

It is pretty easy to get down in the dumps and a real case of the blahs sometimes. When things are bothering you and you dwell on  them you can easily be drawn away from God and into a pattern of worry and despair. In order to walk in faith and not by sight(2 Corinthians 5:7) you have to be intentional about staying focused on the promises in God's word. Here are  just a few to lift you up today.
I will never leave you nor forsake you. Hebrews 13:5
I will never leave the righteous forsaken or their seed begging bread.  Psalm 37:25
 See the lilies of the field. They neither toil nor spin yet your heavenly father takes care of them. See Matthew 6:28-32
 My God shall supply all my need through his riches in glory in Christ Jesus. Phillipians  4:19
I can do all things through Christ who gives me strength.  Phillipians 4:13
His mercies are new every morning. Lamentations 3:23
Because he is at my right hand I shall not be moved. Psalm 16:8
You are our shelter and strength a very resent help in times of trouble. Psalm 46:1
He will keep in perfect peace he whose mind is stayed on thee. Isaiah 26:3
Train up a child in the way he should go and when he is old he will not depart from it.   Proverbs 22:6
 Seek first the kingdom of God and his righteous and all these things shall be added unto you. Matthew 6:33 All things work together for good to those who love the Lord and are called according to his purposes. Romans 8:28
Now to Him who is able to do immeasurably more than we think or ask ...Ephesians 3:20

You see if you stay focused on what God says in his word and less about the passing concerns of this world you will have a more joyful and fruitful life.

PRAYER: Lord help me resist listening to the enemy when he tries to get me down and discouraged. Help me Lord to run to you for you are my shelter and strength. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link to worship God in song: http://youtu.be/B0oZ6BZlQWk

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

WHY BE ANGRY EXCEPT AT EVIL?'

The Bible has much to say about anger. We all probably get mad or upset sometimes but we need to try to not let our emotions boil over and cause trouble.Anger hurts people and breaks things. None of us are perfect. Things make us mad. Traffic jams, rude drivers, slow waiters, litterbugs, tailgaters, people who lie, long check out lines, disrespectful children, and a myriad of other things. In Matthew 21:12 it says "Jesus entered the temple area and drove out all those who were buying and selling there. He overturned the tables of the money changers and the benches of those selling doves.My house shall be called a house of pray er but you have made it a den of robbers."  He had human emotions too but the thing is he was sinless. Hebrews 4:15 reminds us that "we do not have a high priest who is able to empathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been  tempted in every way yet did not sin." Psalm 7:11 says "God judges the righteous and is angry with the wicked every day." Men seem to be the most common with anger management problems. Not sure why that is but as a Christian man or woman anger,  needs to be handled differently. Some of the verses dealing with anger are as follows: Ephesians 4:26  In your anger do not sin. Do not let the sun go down on your anger. James 1:19  My dear brothers take note of this. Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to become angry. Ecclesiastes 7:9. Do not be eager in your heart to be angry for anger resides in the bosom of fools. Psalm 37:8 Refrain from anger  and forsake wrath. Fret not yourself, it tends only to evil Proverbs 15:18  A hot tempered man stirs up strife, but he who is slow to anger quiets contention. Proverbs 14:29 Whoever is slow to anger has great understanding but he who has a hasty temper exalts folly. Why not 'put off' an angry spirit and 'put on' love and peace instead?  If you are spoken to rudely by a friend, family member or stranger,  return kindness instead as it helps to defuse things. Some  people are unaware of how their words wound people. There are those out there who are guilty of verbal abuse which is indeed a form of anger. If you are spoken to harshly just walk away. Only God can straighten this person out and change their  heart. So do you want to be guilty  of being a 'fool' as the Bible calls angry people or do you want to be able to control your emotions and  have peace in your heart PRAYER: Lord forgive me when I  let my anger get the best of me. Help me Lord to choose my battles but help me to never be guilty of keeping a quarrel going. Help me strive for peace in all relationships. In Jesus name. Amen.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

UNCONDITIONAL LOVE


Do you love your spouse, your girlfriend, your boyfriend, your children, your relatives, your friends, and what about strangers? If you say you are a Christian you should show God's love around the clock. Think how many fights could  be avoided if people responded in love and forgiveness instead of with disappointment, shock, anger, hurt, or hatred.

Your mouth can get you into major trouble. Unless you have self control, the mouth can cause many disagreements. When you mess up be willing to acknowledge it and go say "Please forgive me". When you have a misunderstanding with a friend for instance and you are truly sorry and say so, hopefully the person will let you back into their life. In cases when they do not you have to just give the situation to Jesus and let it go even though you not understand. But as husband and wife learn to speak respectfully and with love and your marriage will get better as the days go on.


Colossians 4:6 says "Let your speech always be  with grace as though seasoned with salt, that you will know how you should respond to each person." For instance husbands and wives should always work to keep that 'newlywed' type of speech and you will have no problems with an ugly mouth. Treat others with Christian love. Ephesians 4:31 reminds us to "Let no unwholesome word proceed from your mouth, but only such a word as is good for edification according to the need of the moment, so that it will give grace to those who hear."


Be willing to forgive. Be willing to show mercy and grace. Be willing to show love.


I Corinthians 13 is known as the 'love chapter' and is frequently read at weddings but applies to all relationships. Let me end by with it.







If  I speak in the tongues of men and of angels, but have not love, I am a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. And if I have prophetic powers, and understand all mysteries and all knowledge, and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but have not love, I am nothing. If I give away all I have, and if I deliver up my body to be burned,but have not love, I gain nothing.
Love is patient and kind; love does not envy or boast; it is not arrogant or rude. It does not insist on its own way; it is not irritable or resentful; it does not rejoice at wrongdoing, but rejoices with the truth. Love bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things.
Love never ends. As for prophecies, they will pass away; as for tongues, they will cease; as for knowledge, it will pass away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part,but  when the perfect comes, the partial will pass away. When I was a child, I spoke like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I gave up childish ways. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know fully, even as I have been fully known.

So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love.

Remember God forgives you and doesn't say "Well he got drunk so I do not love him anymore". Aren't you glad God's love is unconditional? Shouldn't yours be also?

PRAYER: Lord I want to always be able to love no matter if I am hurt or humanly feel angry. Your love has no strings attached so that is how I want mine to be. Forgive me Lord when I have messed up and hurt someone with my actions or words. In Jesus name.Amen.

Monday, July 23, 2012

DADS ARE SPECIAL



Twenty years ago today, my father passed away at the age of only 71. It was a sad day and is anytime you lose a parent. Whether you expect it or not,  it still happens and sometimes you are unprepared.
Dads are special. Without dads we would not have children. Dads help build things into their children's lives.  Not only are they the bread winner in most cases, but the head of the home and the one who helps their children on their way to adult hood. Dad's sacrifice so their children can have things and go to college. Dads put off their own desires so they go watch little league and dance recitals instead.

For a Christian dad your most important duty should be the spiritual training of your little ones. That is more important than the scouts or playing video games. Help build into them a love for Jesus and the kingdom of God. (Look up Deuteronomy 6).

Some may be reading this that have very bad feelings about their biological or even adoptive or foster dad. Maybe they were cruel and hurt you or worse. Like the examples above, they certainly were not there for you or supporting you but more detached. Those holding onto bitter memories of a dead beat dad have to try to just let it go. Get counseling if necessary. Try to forgive your dad. You can only have true peace in your heart when you let go of pain and move on. You can not keep blaming and rehashing the past. It is over! Move on!  Some children were abandoned by their dads through divorce and this also leaves a deep hole and feeling of rejection.

For those of you with the dads around you love give them a big hug and tell them how much you love them and how much you are thankful to to them. For dads out there, love God first then love your wife. This is the best example for the child.

You know what? God is the best daddy of all. Scripture refers to Him as 'Abba Father' and our heavenly father. Earthly dads have a big responsibility to try be be like their heavenly father. We are God's children. In Galatians 4:6 it says "Because you are sons,  God sent the spirit of his Son into our hearts, the Spirit who calls out Abba Father." Translations  say Abba means daddy. Think of that, he is our daddy. Less formal than 'Father'.

Where are you at today? Do you feel like Jesus is your 'daddy'? He is ready for you to come to him with your problems. He isn't going to 'ground' you, take away your car keys, lecture you, or treat you harsh. You earthly daddies out there  need to try to be more merciful and kind and open so your children, whether small or grown, will not fear sharing things with you. Be like God and listen and do not condemn.

PRAYER: We thank you for fathers Lord. Help the men reading this strive to emulate Jesus in their fatherly actions or if not a dad to be like Jesus anyway. I know Lord you care for me and want me to talk to you daily. Your arms are always open wide. Thank you for being my daddy. In Jesus name. Amen.

Verses for further study: Psalm 128;Hebrews 12:9; Ephesians 6:4; Colossians 3:21.
Book suggestion: The Father Heart of God by Floyd McClung, Jr.

Click on link below for a song of praise and worship:
http://youtu.be/Ow_n7Pm3INc

Sunday, July 22, 2012

ANNIVERSARIES TO REMEMBER


Today is the one month anniversary of the wedding of my younger son and his new bride. I am still thankful to God for bringing them together and it is nice to say this is their one month anniversary.
 Anniversaries can bring joy or sadness. Remembering when you met your beloved, your first date, your first kiss are special. Anniversaries of a promotion are nice remembrances of an achievement met. Anniversaries of when you got job is nice if you like your job.

Anniversaries  also can bring tremendous sadness. Tomorrow is the anniversary of my fathers death as he has been gone for 20 years. An anniversary of a child's death is even more painful. Anniversaries of being fired or a break up are not nice memories. But anniversaries are part of life, good or bad.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 reminds us "There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven: a time to be born and a time to die, a time to plant and a time to uproot, a time to kill and a time to heal, a time to tear down and a time to build, a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance, a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain, a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away, a time to tear and a time to mend, a time to be silent and a time to speak, a time to love and a time to hate, a time for war and a time for peace."

 PRAYER: Lord thank you for all the moments of joy you bring into my life but help me to endure those times of sadness which are part of life as well. Help me rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep. Give me the ability to comfort those in mourning and give me the desire to celebrate the joys of friends and family. In Jesus Name. Amen.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

TRAGEDY UNEXPLAINED



After yesterdays horrific shooting spree in a suburban Denver theater I decided to change my topic for today. First my heart goes out to the parents of the shooter. You do not hear that on TV. When I was watching this unfold yesterday while working out at the gym, not one time did I hear anyone on television news broadcasts say "let's pray" but all I heard were things like "the government was working on it" and "mental health was there to help." They may have mentioned this after I left but not while I was there. If you  are a parent imagine the pain, blame and suffering they are going through and wondering about  the 'whys'. This young man's actions hurt and killed many but no one would have classified him, a doctoral student, as a mass murderer.Something was obviously troubling him.

 What causes this? My first guess is that we allow violent entertainment into our homes in the form of video games, television programs, music,  and allow children to go to movies like Dark Knight. Among the  deceased I heard was a 6 years old!  The Batman I grew up watching on television was harmless and fun. None of this glorified movie violence like you see today and sensuality. But 'cute' programs and movies apparently do not sit well with those in decision making positions who crank out this unnecessary violence people seem to crave. 

My opinion is if you are a Christian  man or woman you need to watch what you take into your brain. You have heard the saying 'garbage in, garbage out'. Some will say "well men like stuff like that" and I say "what was wrong with John Wayne and the action films we had in the 60's and 70's? Some older readers may totally identify with how movies have gotten pretty raunchy.

There will be lots of speculation about this in the days to come but the main thing that is needed is prayer.Do not be guilty of judging others.  Do not get fearful to go places. Violence happens everywhere so go on about your life. Above all be careful what you watch and parents ,use common sense when selecting a movie for your young child. I do not recommend adult themed movies for grade school children. This is not about guns but this is about the condition of the human heart.
 I will leave you with a couple Bible verses and the first  is Philippians 4:8 which says "Finally brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable, think on these things."  Finally remember what it says in Romans 3:23 and that is "all have sinned and fallen short of God's glory." In the meantime let's remember to pray for all involved in this horrible shooting and pray for the shooter as well. Let us remember to keep those affected by this in our prayers. Romans 12:15 says "Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep."


PRAYER: Lord God we cry out to you for the hurting families of this senseless tragedy in Colorado and even the family of the shooter. Father we ask for healing for the wounded and healing for their lives as well. Father help us be wise in what we choose to watch, listen to and read. Give us discipline in our lives so we know the right choices to make that please you.In Jesus name. Amen.

 For information on movie content from a Christian perspective check out www.pluggedin.com

Friday, July 20, 2012

ONE SMALL STEP FOR MAN


Forty three years ago today man walked on the moon for the first time ever. Quite a feat and accomplishment indeed with many intelligent and creative minds behind the scenes helping make it happen. Man indeed can accomplish anything he sets his mind to with God's help. God has given us abilities and talents and it is up to us to use them.


These men who landed on the surface of the moon in 1969 surely could see God's handiwork all around them. It would be rather difficult to walk on the surface of the moon gazing back miles away at the little ball where they live known as Earth. It would be awe inspiring and breath taking indeed. So this day was "one small step for man and one giant leap for mankind" as Astronaut Neil Armstrong said when stepping on the surface of the moon.

Our earth and solar system are indeed the handiwork of God our creator. How anyone would think otherwise is beyond my imagining but Satan can delude minds. Those who still think we just 'popped' into existence well I have one thing to say. It is something I saw  on a bumper sticker which read "Big Bang Theory: God spoke and bang it happened!"

Just look around you. Go outside at night and gaze into the starry sky which seems to go on forever. Hike out in the forest and just see the beauty of God's creation. Every part of the earth is so beautiful and wonderful in its' own unique way, God had a plan and He did good and when he created the earth remember He said "It is good" referring to His creation.

Psalm 24:1 says " The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it, the world, and all who live in it." 1 Corinthians 10:26 says "The earth is the Lord's, and everything in it." Genesis 1:9 says "And God said, "Let the water under the sky be gathered to one place, and let dry ground appear." And it was so." In Psalm 89:11 it says "The heavens are yours, and yours also the earth; you founded the world and all that is in it." God did make it all.



Do you take the beauty of creation for granted? Get out and about and turn off the TV and go explore God's creation. Take time while outside to give Him thanks and praise for all He has done for you.

PRAYER: Father God I thank you for the earth and your entire creation. The astronauts were blessed to get to see it from thousands of miles away. A tiny speck in the big universe but you have created it all. Help us Lord to always have thankful hearts for what you have done for us and forgive us if we take things you have blessed us with for granted. In Jesus Name. Amen.


Click on link for an awesome song:
http://youtu.be/byIpfEVxhs4

Thursday, July 19, 2012

GOD CAN HANDLE THAT



What has got you down or stressed out and worried today? It is easy to say " let the Lord handle it" but really what good does it do to worry, speculate, fret, and try to figure out something yourself? True , God does want you to have peace in your life. You are more effective for him when you are not anxious all the time.

 The Bible tells us in  1 Peter 5:7 to " Cast all your anxiety on Him for He cares for you". You pray so then trust God and attempt to let matters go. In Psalm 55:22 it also says "Cast your cares on the Lord and he will sustain you, He will never let the righteous fail."

It takes faith, trust, and belief. He is God and you have cried out to him to relax and let him do the work he has planned.  God is a big God and Nothing is impossible for Him.(See Luke 1:37).
Ephesians 3:20 has been one of the first verses the Lord used in my life as a single girl living in California and it simply says "Now to Him who is able to do far more abundantly than we ask or think according to the power that works within us."

What breakthrough or answer to prayer are you waiting for in your life or the life of a loved one? God is still working and the story is not over yet so just have faith and keep loving Jesus.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus I have faith that you can do all things and when I doubt things will change I nice then I am doubting your awesome control and proper. Forgive me for times I doubt and do my own thing. I truly want to give you the fears I have and trust you to answer in your time. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link to worship the Lord in song.
http://youtu.be/A9Ya7ryNob4

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

THE GOD OF COMFORT




Do you know someone who could use a little comfort right now? Maybe it is you. Are you able to comfort others when they are going through hard times? Sometimes and in some situations it is best to just be there and listen.

2 Corinthians 1:3-5 says " Blessed be the   God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and   God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our affliction, so that we may be able to comfort those who are in any affliction, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.  For as we share abundantly in   Christ's sufferings, so through Christ we share abundantly in comfort too."

What exactly does it mean to comfort? Webster's dictionary defines it as "to give strength and hope to and  to ease the grief or trouble of." You can comfort friends or strangers. I think of the scenes after the horrific national disaster on September 11, 2001 which left visual memories in our brains we can never erase. During this time strangers comforted strangers. Our president was on the scene giving comfort. Words, prayers, and acts of kindness were in abundance. But it should not take a tragedy of this magnitude to wake us up to the needs of those around us.

Romans 12:15 says "Rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep."  Perhaps worry less about our own problems and check into the lives of those around  you and see who needs a hug or just someone to talk too. Ask God for wisdom in how to help and what to say.

Who is it that you know who could use a word of comfort today?


PRAYER: Lord Jesus I desire to be able to reach out to a friend, family member, or stranger who needs comforted because they are emotionally or physically hurting. Help me to show your comfort to those around me. In Jesus name. Amen

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

WEEPING MAY LAST FOR A NIGHT....



 ....But joy comes  in the morning. Death is part of life but no one is really ready for it especially if it comes too early such as in the case of a baby,child, or teenager. In the past couple weeks a young lady I worked with a few years ago died at the age of 28. A friend of mine lost a work colleague who was in her thirties. Just a couple days ago my daughter in laws' 98 year old great grandma also passed away. No matter what the age or how it happens it is sad and leaves a hole in your life. It takes time to heal wounds and get beyond it and death anniversaries are particularly difficult. In the area I live in when someone dies in a vehicular accident at times some family or friends place a roadside cross with the name of the victim on the cross. This is a way to remember them and perhaps helps with the healing.

 For the believer there is hope of seeing your loved ones and friends in heaven some day. They are in a better place. Now do not go up to some one grieving and quote Romans 8:28 which many are familiar with. It says " All things work together for good to those who love the Lord and are called according to His purpose." Perhaps later on that is okay but it is not necessary to say anything. Just give a hug.

Psalm 116:15 is a good verse for this time and it says "Precious in the sight of the Lord is the death of his saints." A dear friend of mine died at the very young age of 44 several years ago and in her obituary in the newspaper it had the following verse from Philippians 1:21-24. It reads "For me to live is Christ and to die is gain.If I am to go on living in the body this will mean fruitful labor  for me. Yet what shall I choose? I do not know.I am torn between the two. I desire to depart and be with Christ which is better by far but is is more necessary for you that I remain in the body."


Many times the person is sick and getting up there in years and it is still hard to say goodbye. Once in heaven all the pain, sadness, sickness will end and your loved one will be seeing Jesus face to face in a glorious place. There have been accounts of those people who have died and been brought back to life and have spoken of the peacefulness they felt as they were entering heaven and on occasion some said they wished they could have stayed.

2 Corinthians 4:17 says " For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all."   We are on this earth such a short time compared to eternity.James 4:14 says "How do you know what your life will be like tomorrow? For your life is like the morning fog. It is here a little while then it is gone."

 I have heard this acronym for the word Bible which is good and useful. Bible could mean Basic Instruction Before Leaving Earth. Are you reading your instruction manual now? You never know when God will call you home. Be ready.

1 Corinthians 7:31 says "Those who use the things of the world should not become attached to them. For this world as we know it will soon pass away."  If you were to die today do you know for sure you will go to heaven? If not say this simple prayer. "Lord Jesus I want you to be Lord of my life. Come into my heart today and transform me. I want to live for you and serve you. Forgive me for my sins. Come into my heart now."

PRAYER: Lord I know life is short compared to eternity. Help me make the best use of each day living for you and serving you and help me not be scared to die. Thank you Lord for being my Saviour. Comfort those who have recently lost a loved one. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link to be comforted in song
http://youtu.be/LJTQPZuvAKo
Reference for title: Psalm 30:5

Monday, July 16, 2012

THE THREE PR's



This devotion is mainly geared for men but it won't hurt women to read it as well. The three PR's are 'Provide, Protect, and Pray'. These are the three main responsibilities for Christian husbands. The men of course are the breadwinner in the home even though the wife may work. Your responsibility is to provide for your family. 1 Timothy 5:8 says "Anyone who does not provide for his relatives and especially for his immediate family, has denied the faith and is worse than an unbeliever."

Next you are to watch over and protect your wife as she is the weaker vessel. Ladies I am not saying you can not take care of yourself, but make your man feel good and let him assume this God given role. Men this does not mean you lord over and boss your wife around and tell her what she can and cannot do because you are not her dad. The women's lib movement started to create men who did not want to lead or were afraid to because of domineering women. In an organization there has to be a final say after discussion usually made by a Company CEO or in the military the General or Admiral. Likewise in a family the man is the final authority. 1 Peter 3:17 says "Husbands in the same way, be considerate as you live with your wives,and treat them with respect as the weaker partner and as heirs with you of the gracious gift of life, so that nothing will hinder your prayers." There is nothing shameful about letting a man be a man and to care for his wife. Enjoy it ladies! Men, married or single, open that car door.

Thirdly, prayer is  probably the most important yet I am sure there are married men out there who forget to pray daily for their wives in their quiet time if they even bother to have time alone daily with God. Sure a husband and wife may say a standard prayer at meals but how many couples have a quiet time together and let the man be the spiritual head? It is something many women crave for yet do not get to partake in. If you are a lady reading this whose husband does nightly heartfelt prayer and a devotion with you be thankful. Men, if you don't what is stopping you? Ephesians 5:25-27 says to husbands "Husbands love your wives as Christ loved the church and gave himself up for her. To make her holy by cleansing her with the washing with water through the word.And to present her to himself as a radiant church, without stain or any other blemish, but holy and blameless."

Ladies if you have a good man but you don't think he is as spiritual as you are, you better zip your lip. Be a loving wife and not what Bible teacher Joyce Meyer refers to as 'Holy Spirit Junior'. It is not our job to change people. It is the Holy Spirit that brings conviction. Some Christian wives may be frustrated as they want this in their marriage but it has not happened. Don't nag just pray.
Men  thinking of possibly marrying that girl of your dreams someday make sure Christ is truly first in your life and hers. I did not say make sure you both are members of a church. You can be in church and not love Jesus with all your heart. Christ should truly be in the center of a good marriage.

PRAYER: Lord I know it is important to really be sold out to you. Help me Lord to concern myself with growing closer to you and keep in an attitude of prayer. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link below for a beautiful song:
http://youtu.be/nCf2PoTuh4Q

Sunday, July 15, 2012

ALL WE LIKE SHEEP


Things in your life may be pretty good right now or you may be going through an awful ordeal with yourself or a family member or perhaps a close friend. Lawsuits, divorces, alcoholism, drug addiction, same sex attraction, bankruptcy, inability to pay bills, a prodigal child, unwed pregnancy, loss of a job, abortion, estrangement from a family member who refuses to forgive, anger control, domestic abuse, and on the problems go. Stuff in life happens. Problems brought on by our own actions or problems out of our control. There is probably no one reading this that has not had one issue in their life that has been hard to go through.

We are God's sheep it says in Psalm 100:3."Know that the Lord is God. It is He who made us, and we are His. We are His people the sheep of his pasture." Now speaking of sheep who need a shepherd to guide them, sometimes the sheep get away from the shepherd. Scripture says in Isaiah 53:6 "We all are like sheep gone astray, each of us has turned to his own way, and the Lord has laid on him the iniquity of us all." When you follow the shepherd he will keep you safe and out of trouble.
God can forgive you if you have sinned and gotten away from Him and he can give you peace if you are waiting for a family member to be rescued and set free from something in their life.

 1 Peter 5:7 reminds us to "Cast your cares on Him for He cares for you." In closing 1 Peter 2:25 says "For you were like sheep going astray,but now you have returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your souls."

PRAYER: Lord I thank you for your comfort and your open arms of forgiveness. Help me to learn to be more like you and help those family members or friends who may be struggling with understanding why problems happen in life. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link to be blessed by a tremendous song of worship.
JESUS FRIEND OF SINNERS
http://youtu.be/DnhWExqyRRA

Saturday, July 14, 2012

FACES IN THE WAITING ROOM




 Several days ago as I sat in  my car dealer service waiting area with four other very quiet women.(Yes I can be quiet.) I started to possibly wonder what they are going through in their lives. Perhaps everything is great but more than likely there is pain, hurt, or loss of some sort.  When you walk through the mall and pass unknown faces most frown, but even an occasionally smiling face may have deep issues going on. We just don't know. Only God knows. Maybe they walk with God and are close to Him or maybe not.

 Problems are not happening exclusively to people who don't stay close to God but Satan is alive and attacking those close to God too. It is his speciality and the method he uses to get us to doubt God even cares. No one wants to hear that trials are good for you. Most people may think that once they give their heart to the Lord nothing bad will ever happen. Quite the contrary. Life goes on and sin is rampant and it does not leave the Christian family alone. It is how we choose to deal with our problems.

 Do we cave in and curse God? I am sad to say many well meaning Christians first reaction is anger at God or why did God allow this to happen. In life we are going to go through things. There is that word 'through'. If you are not equipped to handle them you may become upset.  To equip yourself as a believer you need to be into God's word. Many who need to do this won't even read this devotion or any others because they feel their one hour on Sunday is sufficient. Only the Holy Spirit will convict someone. Jamming Jesus down their throat will not. 1 Corinthians 1:18 says "For the message of the cross is foolishness to those who are perishing but to us who are being saved it is the power of God." In 1 Corinthians 2:14 it says "But the natural man does not receive the things of the spirit of God because they are foolishness to him and are spiritually discerned."

Just know in life there may be some bumps along the road but it is hanging on to God during these bumps that makes us stronger. I will end with a verse I have used frequently before and it is in James 1:13 it says "and you know that the testing of your faith elopes perseverance."
 PRAYER: Lord I want to believe and trust you will work things out and so when a bad situation arises help me hold on to you and not run from you. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click link below to listen to a powerful praise and worship song. Happy Saturday!
http://youtu.be/Lj2_kDyqzvE

Friday, July 13, 2012

TURN OFF THE DISTRACTIONS





This title came to me as I was sitting in a normally quiet coffee shop trying to do my writing when a group of very chatty women with babies came in and occupied three tables right beside me. They got stares from working people trying to do work on their laptops but they had a right to be there as much as others did. It was extremely distracting and I tried my best to tune them out in a polite way so I could concentrate on writing. This particular coffee shop has orchestra music playing in the background and it was drowned out by the loud conversation.


This made me think of distractions in the world each day that Christians have to contend with to stay on the path God intended for them. Temptations are all around us each and every day. The temptation to cheat, lie, steal and lust are ever present. It is very important to know the truth found in the word of God so you will be convicted of sinful behavior and ask God to help you stay on the path that leads to righteousness.


1 John 2:17 says "The world and its desires pass away, but the man who does the will of God lives forever." This world will tempt us with many things and the key thing to always ask yourself is "will this activity bring honor and glory to God" and if the answer is no perhaps it is good to not participate in. Titus 2:11-14 says "For the grace of God that brings salvation has appeared to all men. It teaches us to say “No” to ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright and godly lives in this present age, while we wait for the blessed hope—the glorious appearing of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all wickedness and to purify for himself a people that are his very own, eager to do what is good."
Many people define right and wrong differently but God says in Isaiah 5:20 "Whoa to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter."  James 4:17 says "Anyone then who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it, sins."

What is distracting you in your walk to be closer to Jesus? Are the temptations of this world just too great? Do you feel that one hour on Sunday is enough to equip you to face the battles in the week ahead?

Each and every day stay 'armed and ready' to face the distractions Satan will throw at you. Your 'weapon' is the 'sword of the Spirit' otherwise known as God's word. Pick it up and be prepared for battle.(See Ephesians 6:10-18).

PRAYER: Your word is powerful and what I need daily to combat the lies and tricks of the enemy. I know distractions will always be around trying to get me too busy to spend time with you Lord. I choose today to read your word each day and beamed for spiritual battles head of me. In Jesus name. Amen.
Click on link for a very powerful song of praise.
http://youtu.be/O4QOuGI3irI

Thursday, July 12, 2012

HELP LORD!! I CAN'T TAKE IT ANY LONGER!!


Have you ever been in a situation you just wish were over? A good example might be your work. Let's say you have an impossible boss and he or she demands way too much of you. Your job is no longer fun because of requirements by your employer that make no sense. You want to give your two week notice or simply feel like quitting and walking out. But is that really the best idea? Not really, especially if you have a family and bills to pay.

Have you ever wondered why the Lord is allowing you to suffer under the hands of an impossible boss? You  wonder where is God in all this. Maybe God is still very much there but you are in need of learning some valuable lessons.

 Now sure you do not tell someone who can not stand their job and can not see God in any of it that there is a 'big plan'. Hardly anyone likes to be preached at. In fact God may not cause a certain thing to occur but He can in fact use it to 'grow' a person into the image of Christ. That is more than likely what is occurring.

There are some Christians who would laugh at me for saying this and may mock me and say "yeah right. God is causing me to hate my job"! Tests and trials of life come in all shapes and sizes. We really never know what is around the corner so we need to be prepared to react in a Christlike fashion when things don't go your way or you feel your 'joy meter' running down.

Trials, tests,and hardships are not pleasant. I have discussed this subject a few times lately. Have you ever heard someone say "nothing good comes easy?" You have to work at things, persevere, stay positive, control the urge to spout off,  and just keep running the race of life to win.

Isaiah 55:8 says "For my thoughts are not your thoughts and my ways are not your ways."

 Whatever it is you are doing try to keep a good attitude. Colossians 3:23 reminds us "Whatever you do work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord and not for men.".

Wherever you are at today and feel like giving up hold onto Jesus. Ask Him to give you strength as well as a peaceful spirit to endure the challenges ahead.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus sometimes I do not understand why I have to go through certain things. Give me strength to accomplish my tasks as if you were beside me. Help me do all things remembering I represent you. In Jesus name. Amen.





Wednesday, July 11, 2012

INSTANT FIX

Have  you ever tried to explain to someone that the thing they are going through is for their good? For instance, are things not going well at work? Maybe your boss is impossible to deal with and you are just about at the end of your rope? Perhaps you are facing foreclosure or a lawsuit of some sort. Some things may be brought on by our own choices but still God can take horrible things and turn them around.   It is so hard to wait on things. There is a verse in Luke 18:1 that tells us to "Pray and NEVER give up" but how many of us pray a long time for something and see nothing happening? God has heard your prayers. He has  not forgotten you. Perhaps it is not time for the breakthrough yet and you are needing to learn to wait and be patient. God is not a genie in a bottle that grants you three wishes but unfortunately some folks treat Him like that. They feel if things are going poorly in their life they must have done something wrong as "I have prayed and God seems to not care".   My friend keep on keeping on. Do not grow weary. Do not give up on prayer. Todays' world wants no waiting and instant fixes. Too many people throw a marriage partner away at the first sign of trouble as they are not willing to seek counseling and work things out. Sometimes problems and trials take a period of patience, enduring, and waiting. In James 1:3 it says "because you know that the testing of your faith develops perseverance."   Two more great scriptures on waiting are Psalm 37:7 which says "Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him; do not fret when men succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes" and Psalm 27:14 which says "Wait patiently for the Lord. Be strong and take heart! Wait for the Lord!"    My friend, God loves you and he does care! Be patient.   PRAYER:Lord at times I am hasty and wanting things to happen right now. I know you have not forgotten me Lord but help me also while I wait to stay in prayer and in the word of God. In Jesus Name. Amen.   Click on link to be ministered to in song. http://youtu.be/Bb7TSGptd3Y

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

HELP IS ON THE WAY!!



What are you struggling with in life? Maybe whatever it is you feel rejected by God because you pray, but still don't see changes or anything positive. You may be mad at God wondering how he let a bad thing happen to you or your family member. You may feel like stopping your prayers and just letting the enemy get his wish and that is having you so upset with God you do not want church, Bible reading, and least of all prayer. You may think "well what good has it done me?" I think of a good example of the school shootings at Littleton, Colorado's Columbine high school where in one case the student killed had a praying mom in a moms prayer group yet he was killed anyway. She prayed for his safety didn't she? So what's up? Why didn't God intervene and stop these shooters? Then there was the Amish school shootings in Pennsylvania. Why on earth didn't God stop that? What about the infant that dies in childbirth after the parents have prayed diligently for a healthy safe delivery?

All I can say is I have been there and been in despair. I have listened to the enemies lies so much one time I nearly quit leading a prayer group and came close to stopping this devotional. Satan is like that. It says in scripture in Revelation 12:10 that he is 'the accuser of the brethern'.

It is hard to understand why people go through things and some seem worse than others but all know is God knows the big picture and if you study and believe His word and hang in there and keep your faith things will be okay and you will have victory.


Let me leave you with this verse in James 1:2-4 which says "Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds, because you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything."

What battle are you facing today? God is there and the story is not over yet.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus things happen sometimes in life and we wonder why but after we have had sufficient time we understand. Be with those reading this today who are perhaps struggling to come to grips with something overwhelming in their life. Perhaps they see no way out or feel you have abandoned them. Give comfort as only you can. In Jesus name. Amen!

Click on link to be ministered to in song.
http://youtu.be/GsjJmk7tdk4









Monday, July 9, 2012

SHHH! DON'T TALK SO MUCH.



Words, talking, thinking out loud can all get us into trouble. Can anyone out there relate to that? Perhaps reacting with our mouth or a quick email; before thinking things totally through. Waiting goes hand in hand with learning to control what we say and when we say it. Hasty words uttered that should have been left unsaid can have devastating consequences sometimes.

In Proverbs 17:28 is pretty blunt and it says "Even a fool is thought wise if he keeps silent and discerning if he holds his tongue." Wow! No one really likes to be called a fool. That is not necessarily a term of endearment. But how true it is that we can appear pretty foolish when we have not thought out what we are going to say and just let anything pop out of our mouth.

Proverbs 10:19 says "When words are many, sin is not absent, but he who holds his tongue is wise." It is best to listen more and talk less. This helps keep us out of trouble. James 1:19 is one of my favorites and it says "My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry," Commit that to memory and use that as the goal for your daily conversations and your life will have less problems.

Let me end with this wonderful scripture from Psalm 19:14 which says" May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, O LORD, my Rock and my Redeemer."

PRAYER: Father at times I do not think before I speak and may end up hurting someones feelings or getting myself into trouble. Help me to learn self control over my mouth and give me the strength to only say what is going to please you. In Jesus Name. Amen.

Click on link below for a song of praise and worship to start your day.
http://youtu.be/LvXB5gHBjec

Sunday, July 8, 2012

ARE YOU DISCIPLINED? REALLY?


Discipline is something I know lots about after a stint of six years in the US Army. You have to be disciplined to follow orders in the Armed Forces or you do not succeed. If you are not disciplined when you go in you surely will be when you get out or they will perhaps put you out earlier than expected.

 Discipline comes in many forms, You must be disciplined to wake up in the morning and get to work or you will get fired. You must be disciplined to control your emotions or words or you could get in serious trouble. You must have discipline to not eat too much or you will become overweight. You must be disciplined to work out to keep in shape. You must be disciplined to follow rules of society or you will get into big trouble.Your parents hopefully instilled discipline in you as a child that if you had children you passed on to them.

The best discipline that many seem to forget about or put off to the side is the discipline of staying in the word of God. I did not say 'going to church' which is important but disciplined to grow in Christ on a daily basis through prayer and reading the word of God. Maybe you have no desire to do something other than Sunday. Then I would ask you to examine your heart and see if you ever truly asked Jesus to be Lord of your life. When you love someone you want to be with them all the time. Do you feel that way about Jesus?

2 Timothy 2:15 says "Study to show thyself approved a workman that needs not be ashamed rightly dividing the word of truth."  Hebrews 12:11 says " No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace by those who have been trained by it."
If you are not disciplined and feel joyful about reading the Bible ask God to help you. Matthew 22:37 says " love the Lord your God with all your heart,soul, and mind."

PRAYER: Lord I know Satan would distract me from getting into the word and knowing you better. The things of this world may try to lure me away. Give me your strength to make daily Bible reading part of my every day life. In Jesus name. Amen.

Saturday, July 7, 2012

THE WHAT IFS....BUT GOD!!


 Wondering what is going to happen or what could have happened will likely drive you bonkers. Many like to speculate about the 'what ifs'. No one knows the future so this is wasted energy. You reason and guess and it causes a lack of peace. Do you fear the future and the unknown? The catastrophes that 'could be?' First the Bible says 'fear not' and to 'not fret because of evil doers' and 'that He will not let the righteous beg bread' and 'a single sparrow does not fall to the ground without heavenly father knowing it". So if we know all this what causes speculation and curiosity?

Do you trust God for the future? Wondering how or when you will die or what is going to happen tomorrow does not matter. The Bible says in Ecclesiastes 8:7 "Since no man knows the future, who can tell him what is to come?" 2 Chronicles 16:9 reminds us that "the eyes of The Lord search the whole earth in order to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him. " James 4:13-14 says "Now listen you who say today or tomorrow we will go to this or that city and spend a year there carry on business and make money. Why you don't even know what your life will be like tomorrow.What is your life? You are a mist that appears awhile and then vanishes."

Give any concerns about the days ahead to God. Relax and enjoy each day and trust God for your tomorrows.

PRAYER: Lord God I thank you for your word which guides me daily. When my anxious heart starts to wonder help me know that only you know the future. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link to worship the Lord in song. Happy Saturday!
http://youtu.be/ghC3gqNQJPQ





Friday, July 6, 2012

GOOD ASSOCIATIONS


Who do you call your friends? As a believer we are to show Christ's love to all those around us and be a friendly voice or smile to the lonely. If you have children it should be your desire that they choose their friends wisely. One wrong friend can really take you off the course of life and end up having devastating consequences. You can witness to someone without being thrown into unacceptable activities. Case in point would be the scenario of not necessarily going into a strip club to witness as you yourself might be tempted. Sure we have to "go out into all the world" (See Mark 16:15 ) but we are not to take on the character of a fallen world. We are to shine Jesus light and help win the lost to Christ.

 1 Corinthians 15:33 tells us "Do not be misled. Bad company corrupts morals."  Proverbs 22:24 reminds us "Do not make friends with a hot tempered man.Do not associate with one easily angered." Proverbs 13:20 says "He who walks with the wise is wise, but a companion of fools suffers harm."

 So it is good to witness to those around you who may not know Jesus but we too need to use discernment about what activities to participate in. Don't be 'holier than thou' condemning the person and acting better than them but show the the love of Christ wherever you are.

 Galatians 6:1 is a good reminder and it says "Brothers if someone is caught in a sin, you who are spiritual should restore him gently, but what yourself or you may also be tempted."

 PRAYER: Lord I thank you for the gift of friendship with both believers and non believers. Help me to remember to shine your light into the darkness of the world around me. Show me who needs a touch of your love and kindness today. Forgive me when I have been less than friendly or gone astray. Thank you for keeping me on the right path. In Jesus name. Amen.

Thursday, July 5, 2012

A PERFECT WORLD



Have you ever imagined what it would have been like if Eve had not been tempted by the serpent and disobeyed God? If Adam had not eaten the forbidden fruit then later played the first ever blame game when God spoke to him in the garden? We would be in a sin free world basically and maybe running around with no 'fig leaves' on.  Yikes.

Sometimes I think about the decision about 50 years ago to take prayer out of the public schools. Because there was a misinterpretation of the constitution about 'church and state' we end up almost with a Godless society. Imagine had judges in the Supreme Court not ruled against prayer in the schools. We would not now be over our heads in tolerance and political correctness but would be a nation that feared, loved, and respected God, the Bible, and the Ten Commandments. More than likely we would also not be a nation that condones and protects the right to kill babies in the mother's womb in the name of women's  rights. It is a sick world we live in when sin is readily accepted and Christian things are shunned or banned. The acceptance recently of two men or two women marrying is also against God's word. Many are confused and caught up in this sin. Satan has really done a number on many people and they are blinded to the truth or justifying what they are doing and do not see the harm in their actions or the actions of others. Yes indeed, we need God in America and in the world. He has not gone anywhere but sometimes he just let's you go about ignoring Him and suffer the consequences.

Romans 1:18-32 is long but bears copying here. It says "The wrath of God   is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of people, who suppress the truth by their wickedness,  since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them.    For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made,   so that people are without excuse. For although they knew God, they neither glorified him as God nor gave thanks to him, but their thinking became futile and their foolish hearts were darkened.   Although they claimed to be wise, they became fools   and exchanged the glory of the immortal God for images   made to look like a mortal human being and birds and animals and reptiles. Therefore God gave them over   in the sinful desires of their hearts to sexual impurity for the degrading of their bodies with one another.   They exchanged the truth about God for a lie,   and worshiped and served created things   rather than the Creator—who is forever praised.   Amen.  Because of this, God gave them over   to shameful lusts.   Even their women exchanged natural sexual relations for unnatural ones.   In the same way the men also abandoned natural relations with women and were inflamed with lust for one another. Men committed shameful acts with other men, and received in themselves the due penalty for their error.  Furthermore, just as they did not think it worthwhile to retain the knowledge of God, so God gave them over   to a depraved mind, so that they do what ought not to be done. They have become filled with every kind of wickedness, evil, greed and depravity. They are full of envy, murder, strife, deceit and malice. They are gossips,   slanderers, God-haters, insolent, arrogant and boastful; they invent ways of doing evil; they disobey their parents;   they have no understanding, no fidelity, no love,   no mercy.  Although they know God’s righteous decree that those who do such things deserve death,   they not only continue to do these very things but also approve   of those who practice them."

In 1 Peter 2:25 it says "But the word of the Lord remains forever.And that word is the Good News that was preached to you." It does not change to fit the 'times' or to make light of sinful behaviour. There is good and there is evil. Period. Remember in Romans 3:23 it says "We ALL have sinned and fallen short of God's glory" and that means ALL of us. Because in today's world many want to continue their sin making excuses for it and getting some within the church even confused there is only one answer. Sin is sin.

We are in Spiritual warfare and there is Satan or there is God. You either love Jesus and follow his word or you follow the lies of Satan who is the great liar and deceiver. Scripture calls human 'angel of light'(See 2 Corinthians 11:14). Satan will disguise himself and the sins he readily tricks Christian with and give you plenty of excuses to justify certain behavior. That does not change God's word.We must know the truth of God found in His word so we can combat the lies of the enemy and his attempts to get us to justify sin.

PRAYER: Lord thank you so much for the Word of God which is truth. Father I pray that I am never deceived by Satan to believe lies and justify sin. Keep me alert and in the battle for good and evil and run my race to win. In Jesus Name. Amen.


Click on link to worship God in song.
http://youtu.be/BX2ERXbdktQ

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

LONG MAY SHE WAVE!!


 Today in America we celebrate the birthday of our great unique nation. July 4th, 1776 we declared our independence from Great Britain and began a new nation that many flocked to for democracy, individualism, and freedom from tyranny and bondage and freedom of religion. We are, and have been a great nation, founded on God's word. When we obey God's word we remain blessed but when we stray from it doing out own thing we are in trouble.

 Psalm 33:12 tells us "Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord."  In the Ten Commandments found in Exodus Chapter 20 one of the commandments is "thou shalt have no other gods before me". God Almighty is supposed to be supreme. He knows men and women's hearts and He can tell when they are sincere and love Him or are lying. We are not accountable to a government but we are, in the end, ultimately accountable to God. Even our leaders, who take the oath of office with their hand on the Holy Bible, are accountable to the Lord.  If they happen to misuse their office, their power or hurt and lie to the people they are to lead then ultimately these individuals answer to God almighty.

Yes indeed, America has truly been a blessed nation and our freedom and prosperity have come because we have sincerely acknowledged God. As we see 'times changing' and 'political correctness' running amuck, keep in mind God has not changed and even when laws are made against the Bible, He has not gone anywhere and He has not edited the word of God to suit the times.

Hebrews 13:5 reminds us that "Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today, yes and forever." His word never changes, if he says a "man shall not lie with another man" (See Leviticus 19:29)it means for all time. If he says in His word to not commit adultery(See Romans 13:9) he does not provide exceptions to it. When God says to not tell lies( Exodus 20:16) this includes those little 'white' lies which are still lies. The laws, rules, and boundaries He has set forth in the word of God are not to put us in bondage but to give us freedom. When you do not follow God's word there are consequences to your sin.
So the real freedom we enjoy is a gift from the Lord Jesus Christ. Galatians 5:1 says "It is for freedom that Christ set us free. Stand firm then and do not allow yourselves to be entangled again with a yoke of bondage."

 Happy Birthday America. There will always be enemies to freedom even within our own country so be on your guard and keep on your knees in prayer thanking Him for this precious gift.

PRAYER: Lord Jesus I thank you so very much for the gift of freedom we have enjoyed. Help us Lord to not take it for granted and to speak up when we are threatened with tyranny in any form. God guide our steps and protect us from the enemy. In Jesus name. Amen.

Click on link for a wonderful patriotic song to start your day.
http://youtu.be/W1GEpg0c1fw

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

HUGS!!



 Recently I was in a coffee shop and observed two close female friends hugging as a greeting. This got me to thinking about when we go to heaven and get a  'God hug'. Handshakes are more formal and you see men mostly doing that or business associates but a hug is something special and shows intimacy between friends or family. God will be the greatest hugger ever. No formal handshaking for Him.

 In church and Bible study people often exchange hugs with dear friends but even at some churches I have attended you feel comfortable giving a 'God hug' to those around you during greeting time instead of the traditional handshake. There was allot of hugging going on a few days ago at our son and new daughter in law's wedding as people were happy to see each other and greeted by hugging.
 Think how neat a hug makes you feel from a loved one or a friend, then imagine those people out there that have no friends at all. There are people out there like that,extremely lonely folks who would give anything to be hugged. The saying goes "if you want to be a friend you have to show yourself friendly" so do not wait for someone to always make the first move. Talk to people and get to know them. I have made my friends in many neat 'God thing' ways. Think of ways you could be a friend to someone who needs one or if you are the one needing that friend why not make the first move.

Now back to that 'God hug' from God himself someday. God loves us with an everlasting love. He is ready to wrap His arms around you. In Matthew 11:28 it says "Come to me all you who are weary and heavy burdened and I will give you rest."  Mark 6:34 says "When Jesus arrived and saw a huge crowd he had compassion on them, because they were like sheep without a shepherd.So he began teaching them many things.
Are you in need of a touch from God today? God loves you. All you need do is call on Him.

 PRAYER: Lord God I thank you for the love and comfort only you can give. When I start feeling sorry for myself help me to learn to reach out to someone who seems lonely or to call a friend. Help me show God's love to those you put in my path daily. In Jesus name. Amen.

Further reading: Psalm 23

Monday, July 2, 2012

DELIGHTED



 What is delight? It is pure joy in my own definition. I felt great delight a few days ago as I watched my younger son get married to his soul mate and best friend who is also a beautiful  young lady inside and out. It gave me great delight and just tremendous pleasure to see them be joined as man and wife. I was DELIGHTED to say the least!

What brings you delight? On your list of things that are delightful is your love for Jesus one of them? Webster's dictionary defines delightful as 'greatly pleasing'.  Does the Lord please you?
Psalm 37:4 reminds us "Delight thyself in the Lord and He will give you the desires of your heart."
Do you find delight in God and His word or do you find Him boring? Do you do church things but really have no quality time to sit alone and get into the word of God? You can be in church on all sorts of committees, teaching classes, and doing service projects, but do you delight in Jesus? Something to think about.

When you are delighted by someone you want to give them your time. They excite you and bring you joy. This is hopefully how you feel about Jesus. Maybe it is time to reexamine your heart and see if God has first place in your heart.

Psalm 1:1-2 says "Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked, or stand in the way with sinners, or sit in the seat of mockery, but his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on His law he meditates both day and night."

PRAYER: Lord Jesus I am delighted in you and want to stay delighted. The world can throw stumbling blocks my way to get me to stray from the path of righteousness you want me to stay on. I choose to be delighted in your word and grow in the knowledge of Christ. In Jesus name. Amen.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

HOW IS YOUR OIL?


Do you do maintenance on your car you drive? Do you check your oil when you fill up with gas? Do you check fluid levels so car or truck does not overheat? There are little routine things you need to do to maintain your vehicle or it may decide to seize up on you and stop working. You can not just go every three or four months for an oil change and expect your car to be okay in between. The oil change is to get rid of dirty oil and replace it with clean fresh oil.

 In our spiritual life we need an 'oil change' and regular checkups as well. If you only pick up your Bible say 6 times a year you will become a weak, flabby Christian and be falling apart unable to cope with the storms of life that are sure to come about. When you do a 'spiritual oil change and maintenance' by getting into the word each day and praying your problems in life will diminish. Don't just run to God in problem times but make his word and Him part of your daily lifestyle. Excuses will come. Other things will seem more important. The enemy has many distractions. If you get into the word and start learning what it says you will have power to defeat Satan.

2 Timothy 2:15 says "Study to show thyself approved, a workman that need not be ashamed rightly dividing the word of truth."

PRAYER: I know that I need to 'maintain' my spiritual life and I know my 'spirit' can not be strong unless I read your word and study it. Help me Lord when I feel like I am too busy for you. I want to be strong to fight the spiritual battles that come my way. In Jesus name. Amen.