Thursday, April 28, 2011

He is Good!

Open your mouth and taste, 
open your eyes and see —
how good God is.
Blessed are you who run to Him. 

Psalm 34:8 niv

"Call to Me and I will 
answer you and tell you
great and unsearchable things
you do not know."

Jeremiah 33:3 niv

I am blessed when I run to God 
and I am answered when I call to Him. 
He is good!

 He is so good that 
He even looks good and tastes good! 
He tells me to open my eyes 
and see that He is good. 
All around me must be evidence of His goodness. 

Thank you, Father! 
You are good! 
Help me to see Your goodness 
all around me today and to call to You 
as I go through this day.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Confessing the Word

"Ah, Sovereign Lord, 
You made the heavens and the earth 
by Your great power and outstretched arm. 
Nothing is too hard for You."

Jeremiah 32:17 niv

This week a passage from a fiction book I am reading
really jumped off the page at me. 

It made me take in a breath and say, "Oh!"

The truth of this passage 
really spoke to me
and showed me something that 
I want to apply in my life. 

The book I am reading is 
The Yada Yada Prayer Group Gets Down
by Neta Jackson.

Within the story, several of the main characters
experienced a very traumatic event together. 

This section comes a couple of weeks 
after the event, but is the first time 
the prayer group has gathered since it happened. 

Avis quickly discouraged simply rehashing the details. 
"We need to help each other move 
beyond the trauma to a place of faith."

"Uh-huh." Ruth considered that. 
"So spiritual, I'm not.
Exactly how do you do that?"

Stu snickered. "You sound like Yo-Yo."

Yo-Yo, sitting crossed-legged on the floor
and cleaning her fingernails with a pocketknife,
just grinned. 

Avis took the question seriously.
"By confessing the Word —"

"Avis! Plain English!" 
This time Yo-Yo did speak up.

"All right, plain English.  
But it's an important concept, so I'm going to break it down.
Confessing — it literally means 'to tell, to make known.' 
The Word, of course, is what God says in the Bible.
So, we can either go around confessing
'Oh, wasn't that awful' or, 'I'm so scared' or, 
'I'm so angry about what happened.' 
Or we can confess the Word:
'I'm created in the image of God.' 
'God knows and cares when even a sparrow falls
to the ground; how much more He cares about me!'
'All things work together for good for those who love Him
and are called according His purpose' —
to name just a few. 
That's what I call 'confessing the Word.'"

I knew I needed that kind of encouragement to actually
speak the Word. Say it out loud. 
Remind myself what God said about stuff 
that happens when my feelings 
are flying off in every direction.


"Stu, I don't mean to deny anyone's feelings. 
We all have natural feelings including me. 
Yes, I felt angry. Yes, I was upset. 
I don't think one day has gone by that I haven't cried
about Hoshi's pain, and I don't know how pretty bad.
But I do know that if I stay there in the natural,
focusing on all my feelings, Satan gets a foothold in my heart.
I begin to doubt God's love. My trust slips —
is God really in control? 
All I'm saying is, what I need to do is confess 
the promises of God, and I need to do it right away.
'Satan, you're a liar!' 
'God, Your ways are above my ways, so I trust You!" —
even if I don't feel like it. 
Because that's the only way I can keep my feet 
on solid ground and my heart from 
giving in to fear."

The Yada Yada Prayer Group Gets Down
by Neta Jackson
pg. 192-193, 194

Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, 
set your hearts on things above, 
where Christ is seated at the right hand of God. 
Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. 
For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God.

Colossians 3:1-3 niv

Thursday, April 21, 2011

He Never....

God's mercies are truly new every morning! 
I am praising and thanking Him today for that truth! 

I am so thankful that He NEVER changes, 
He NEVER fails, 
He NEVER leaves us nor forsakes us. 
He NEVER gets bored with us, 
He NEVER turns His back on us. 
He keeps no records of our wrongs. 
He ALWAYS loves us.

I had been feeling so dull and dry again. 
It covered every part of my life. 
Nothing bad or unusual was happening. 
But I was just feeling blah. 
My times with the Lord were fine, 
but that's just it...
they were FINE, 
not refreshing, full, overflowing, 
exciting, convicting, renewing... 
just Fine.

This morning, for some reason, the veil was lifted again.

I felt the connection.

I felt Him.

His love surrounded me and came trickling out of my eyes.

Joy bounced in my chest as I felt again.

My desire for the Lord had returned.

The mind governed by the flesh is death, 
but the mind governed by the Spirit is life and peace.  

Romans 8:6 niv

This is from my reading in Jesus Calling this morning:
"Let Me control your mind. 
The mind is the most restless, unruly part of mankind. 
Long after you have learned the discipline 
of holding your tongue, your thoughts defy your will 
and set themselves up against Me. 
Man is the pinnacle of My creation, 
and the human mind is wondrously complex. 
I risked all by granting you freedom to think for yourself. 
This is god-like privilege, 
forever setting you apart from animals and robots. 
I made you in My image, precariously close to deity."

"Though My blood has fully redeemed you, 
your mind is the last bastion of rebellion. 
Open yourself to My radiant Presence, 
letting My Light permeate your thinking. 
When My Spirit is controlling your mind, 
you are filled with Life and Peace."

I am so thankful that even when I am not "feeling it", 
when I am dry and just existing,
He is still with me.

He doesn't leave.

He still holds my future,

and He still holds my life in His hands.

Thursday, April 14, 2011

Even In the Midst of Mundane

 Look closely, you can see the yogurt smears on the table and bench...

When your words came, I ate them; 
they were my joy and my heart’s delight,
for I bear your name, LORD God Almighty. 

Jeremiah 15:16 niv

Life is good.

Nothing "bad" is happening.

No emergencies.
It is just rollin' along.

But when my focus gets off,

it can seem so bad.... so very, very bad.

The scene after the FULL pitcher of lemonade fell out of the fridge....

Messes happen all day long.

I live with imperfect people
(Shhhh... don't tell them I said that....)

I'm far from perfect myself.
(Ahem, again, don't tell them that, but, 
I'm sure they have come to realize that along the way.)

I focus on the mess,

the imperfections,
the less-thans.

And then I start thinking life is bad,

really bad.

When it is good,

really good.

Ruthie is finding her style... who needs pants, right? :-)

Once again, I have been feeling




He has showed me what He wants me to focus on.

Choosing thankfulness,

trusting Him,

talking to Him, instead of myself.

I am realizing that I thought
that just because I wanted these things 
to be a part of my life,
they would just happen --
like God would just wave a wand 
and zap! I'd be grateful! 

It just doesn't happen that way. 

I have to practice gratefulness.

I have to learn to trust Him.

I have to remember to talk to Him.

I have to repent.

I have to practice.

Teach me your decrees, O Lord;
      I will keep them to the end.
Give me understanding and I will obey your instructions;
      I will put them into practice with all my heart.
Make me walk along the path of your commands,
      for that is where my happiness is found.

Psalm 119:33-35 nlt

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine 
and puts them into practice 
is like a wise man who built his house on the rock."
Matthew 7:24 niv
But he who merely hears and does not practice doing 
My words is like a man who built a house 
on the ground without a foundation, 
against which the torrent burst, 
and immediately it collapsed and fell, 
and the breaking and ruin of that house was great.
Luke 6:39 amp
Practice and cultivate and meditate upon these duties; 
throw yourself wholly into them [as your ministry], 
so that your progress may be evident to everybody.    Look well to yourself [to your own personality] 
and to [your] teaching; persevere in these things [hold to them], 
for by so doing you will save both yourself and those who hear you.

1 Timothy 4:14-16 amp

Friday, April 1, 2011

Life on the Cluttered Plane

"I am calling you to a life of constant 
communion with Me. 
Basic training includes learning 
to live about your circumstances, 
even while interacting on that
cluttered plane of life.
You yearn for a simplified lifestyle,
so that your communication with Me
can be uninterrupted.
But I challenge you to 
relinquish the fantasy
of an uncluttered world.
Accept each day just as it comes,
and find Me in the midst of it all.
from Jesus Calling by Sarah Young

I can get so distracted 
by the clutter
and chaos
that fills my days.

I can easily blame 
the circumstances for 
the distance 
that I allow to come 
between us.

I long for 





 I think that there 
and only there can I find




But You are here.


In the midst.
Communion with You
is possible.
How much do I seek it?

Then you will call upon Me, 
and you will come and pray to Me, 
and I will hear and heed you.
Then you will seek Me, inquire for, 
and require Me [as a vital necessity] 
and find Me when 
you search for Me with all your heart.
I will be found by you, says the Lord.

Jeremiah 29:12-14a amp