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Showing posts from June, 2018

A Word of Encouragement

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He Showers Compassion

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Many years ago I had the privilege of going through the memorial to the victims of the OKC bombing which occurred in April of 1995. Little did I know that the experience would change my life forever. As part of the tour, I found myself in the middle of the room where the notes and personal items of the 168 people that lost their lives were located. The emotion of that moment was overwhelming. I began to break down and cry and felt as if I had known each one of these people personally as I read some of the notes and looked at the family pictures. Not only was I moved to tears, as most are, but I began to wonder why I felt so connected to these people that I had never met in my life. It was in seeking that answer that the Lord spoke to my heart and let me know that what I was experiencing was true compassion. Compassion is more than sympathy for someone else...its the feeling of being in their shoes (empathy) and going through something as if you are actually with them. It's feelin…

If You Fully Obey

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There is nothing more satisfying than knowing that everything you need is taken care of. It reminds me of the way that the Lord prepared the disciples for His departure and what was going to come. He was letting them know that no matter what they needed, He was going to make certain that they were able to receive it. How could this possibly happen? Obedience...full obedience. Sometimes people think that its what they do; the good things, the time spent, the money invested into what God is doing that brings the blessings. But the truth is that it is simple, pure obedience. When we fully obey we start going His way!
Deuteronomy 28 talks about this "full" obedience. When we fully obey we are blessed in every way! Blessed in the city and the country. Blessed coming and going. Our kids, our crops, our friends, our jobs, every part of our lives. Everything that is connected to us can receive His blessing because we choose to obey Him.
What's the Lord saying to you right now? …

The Carrot and the Horse

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Charles Spurgeon told a story how once upon a time in an old kingdom, there was a gardener who grew an enormous carrot in his garden. Now this man loved his sovereign (aka the king) so he came and presented the carrot to the king, saying, "This is the best carrot my garden will ever grow. Receive it as a token of my love." Now the king discerned his heart of love and devotion and saw that he wanted nothing in return. This moved the king and he then gave the gardener far more land than he currently had for his garden, so the man went home rejoicing. Now a nobleman at court overheard this conversation. He thought to himself, "If that is the response the lord makes to such a small gift, what will he give in response to a great one?” So the next day he brought the king a fine horse, saying, "This is the best horse my stables will ever grow. Receive it as a token of my love." But the King discerned the nobleman's heart, and in response he just received the hor…

God Wants to Bless You!

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Have you ever been moved up to the head of the line for no apparent reason? Perhaps you were in a restaurant and someone payed for your meal without you expecting it? When blessings occur that you have nothing to do with it’s called "favor". The favor of God surrounds the believer. That means good things will happen to you and come into your life that you did not make happen...God did! God wants to bless you! (Say that out loud!) I was once in a meeting where many people had gathered to hear the speaker. I arrived about10 minutes prior to the event with a friend of mine and we sat where the open seats were, all the way in the back! I did not mind, I wasn't grumbling, I was just happy to be there. In a few minutes someone that I had met one time many months previously, recognized me and came to say hi. Then they asked me to get up and follow them to the very front row and even gave me a bottle of water to drink! They happened to be on the staff of the person that was spe…

Attractive Conversation

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"Let your conversation be gracious and attractive so that you will have the right response for everyone." Colossians 4:6 NLT
Can you imagine having the right response at the right time for every person that you meet? It seems somewhat unattainable to me yet in reading this I see that by letting a little grace and beauty season my words, I become equipped and empowered to respond properly. That means I could have the right words at the right time to bring about the right result!  I thought about some of the conversations I have overheard others have in the coffee shop or in line at the grocery store. I have heard words with no grace and talk that was absolutely NOT attractive. Attractive conversation draws people to you. It creates an environment for growth, hope and encouragement. And that is what every one of us needs today. Imagine what would happen if followers of Christ starting talking differently than their Christ-less co-workers:) You and I should stand out! Beautif…

You

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'It’s so enjoyable to come before you with uncontainable praises spilling from our hearts! How we love to sing our praises over and over to you, to the matchless God, high and exalted over all! At each and every sunrise we will be thanking you for your kindness and your love. As the sun sets and all through the night, we will keep proclaiming, “You are so faithful!” Melodies of praise will fill the air as every musical instrument, joined with every heart, overflows with worship. No wonder I’m so glad; I can’t keep it in! Lord, I’m shouting with glee over all you’ve done, for all you’ve done for me! What mighty miracles and your power at work, just to name a few. Depths of purpose and layers of meaning saturate everything you do. Such amazing mysteries found within every miracle that nearly everyone seems to miss. Those with no discernment can never really discover the deep and glorious secrets hidden in your ways. It’s true the wicked flourish, but only for a moment, foolishly for…

MErcy Begins With ME

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“Blessed are the merciful for they will be shown mercy.  Matthew 5:7”
“Mercy is not simply having sympathy for someone. It implies an "active sense" of compassion or pity for someone suffering or in distress.
I am putting this mercy thing into practice. I am extending it to others so that it will come back to me! I am certain that there will be a time when I need mercy and if I do what God says, I will get it when I need it. I am also learning more about the Lord as I read through His Word this year. If you don't read it every day I encourage you to start. I came across Psalm 41:1-3 the other day and the first three verses really picked me up as I gleaned some insight on what God can and will do for us as we help others. It says...
Blessed is he who has regard for the weak; the LORD delivers him in times of trouble. The LORD will protect him and preserve his life; ..he will bless him in the land and not surrender him to the desire of his foes. The LORD will sustain him on his…

Commitment to Change

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“The Lord says, “Then I will heal you of your faithlessness; my love will know no bounds, for my anger will be gone forever. I will be to Israel like refreshing dew from heaven. Israel will blossom like the lily; it will send roots deep into the soil like the cedars in Lebanon. Its branches will spread out like beautiful olive trees, as fragrant as the cedars of Lebanon. My people will again live under my shade. They will flourish like grain and blossom like grapevines. They will be as fragrant as the wines of Lebanon.” Hosea 14:4-7‬NLT This scripture describes the beautiful restorative power of the Lord when true repentance takes place. Repentance is the activity of reviewing one's actions and feeling contrition or regret for past wrongs, which is accompanied by commitment to change for the better. (Wikipedia) It’s not simply enough to be sorry for the bad decisions and choices of the past. True repentance requires a commitment to change for the better.That commitment to change wi…

In a Little While?

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“So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.”  1 Peter 1:6-7  So the other day in our Staff Chapel at church, during the worship time as we were praying, the Lord brought this scripture to my mind. I like to go to any type of church service with an expectancy and a hope that God will speak to me. So when a verse comes to mind, I immediately look it up. This morning was special for me because I am in a season where I want (need) a WORD from God…maybe more like a PARAGRAPH! I want to know the future! Doesn’t everybody? As I read the first four words I was getting excited, “so be truly glad.” Add to this the …

Audacious Faith

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It takes "faith" to please God. Faith seems to come in all different sizes. Some people have great faith and believe for things that others believe could never happen. For many faith is used only when necessary and extends to the point of possibility in our own mind. And some people never step out of their own power into a dimension of "God power" or faith in motion. I am so grateful that God puts all of us, wherever we are on the faith spectrum, in the midst of the Body of Christ to learn and grow together. I want that kind of faith that makes people notice the awesome power of God and give Him glory. Faith that makes history. Audacious faith. Like Joshua. Joshua had audacious faith. Once when he was in battle the Lord told him to completely kill off the army: leave no one alive. Joshua understood that when the Lord tells you to do something, you should do it the way He says. Leave no one alive. The problem he had was that his battle was not over but the daylight…

The Run of the House

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"Let the peace of Christ keep you in tune with each other, in step with each other. None of this going off and doing your own thing. And cultivate thankfulness. Let the Word of Christ—the Message—have the run of the house. Give it plenty of room in your lives. Instruct and direct one another using good common sense. And sing, sing your hearts out to God! Let every detail in your lives—words, actions, whatever—be done in the name of the Master, Jesus, thanking God the Father every step of the way." Col 3:15-17 MSG There is a rhythm to life that is available to those that choose to utilize it. The challenge is that we all have a unique soundtrack and trying to get things to synchronize with others isn't always easy. Your ability to transpose and change pitch helps you stay in tune with people and bring harmony to all types of situations. It also allows you the ability to "cultivate" thankfulness which means thankfulness becomes a lifestyle for you.  So what's t…

Anxiety

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Phil 4:6Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.
Do NOT be anxious? Are you serious? Our company is going through a phase of cutbacks! My car needs work that our budget cannot support! The kids are sick! And the "to do" list is far longer than my office hours! All of these would seem valid reasons to let anxiousness into our lives. Still we are told to not be anxious about ANYTHING! Anything includes all of the reasons that you could come up with to stress out today. We get the word anxiety from this word. Anxiety leads to worry, stress and a variety of other toxic emotions. It diminished our health too. So how can we defeat this anxiety and do what we should to remain healthy?
Take your requests to God! In everything, keep up a daily dialogue with the Lord. It seems simple but as…