Saturday, May 26, 2018

May 26

We decided to spend some time at the beach for the Memorial holiday, even though it’s wet and soggy, and a tropical storm is traveling through the gulf! On our way over we had to wait for a break in the clouds before we could get in the boat to go over to the island. Once it stopped raining, we quickly loaded everything; we had about a week's worth of groceries just in case we couldn’t get off the island. We made it there, barely getting wet. Then, as we pulled into our slip, the clouds opened up and we got drenched! We were safe and my prayer was answered. Sometimes the things I’m praying are the things He’s saying, or maybe it was my lack of faith! As I was praying, it somehow changed to “as long as we get there safe, a little rain won’t hurt us”, and that’s what happened. God is faithful to protect, however, you may still have to deal with a trial, like the pouring rain that we encountered.

Blessed is the man who remains steadfast under trial, for when he has stood the test he will receive the crown of life, which God has promised to those who love him. James 1:12

Friday, May 25, 2018

May 25

There will be those who will be offended by you because of whose you are. Jesus, who is the cornerstone for our temple, is also a stumbling block for those who go against His word. When you’ve shared Jesus with someone, and they reject Him, He just became their stumbling block because they have heard the truth and disobey His word. It would have been better for them not to know because they now have to answer for their rejection of Him. In our society today, there is always someone offended by something! We have to stand our ground and continue to speak the truth about Jesus and what is right, whether it offends or not. Jesus said, “and blessed is the one who is not offended by me” So, consider yourself blessed, because you are!

and “A stone of stumbling, and a rock of offense.” They stumble because they disobey the word, as they were destined to do. 1 Peter 2:8

Thursday, May 24, 2018

May 24

Hurricane season begins in just a few days and preparation is well underway. Our home is surrounded by trees which could become a detriment during a storm. It’s important to survey their health and remove any dead or unhealthy branches to make sure they don’t end up through the roof. It also helps to remove some of the weight because they become extra heavy during the accompanying rainfall. Our mental health is very similar. After going through a stressful time, you feel like you’ve just been through a hurricane. In the same way you prepare your home for a storm, you should be preparing for life’s personal storms so that it takes a lot of effort on the part of the devil to rock you. Armor up with the Word of God, pray, forgive and seek forgiveness. Do a mental checklist to make sure you have handled any fear, unbelief, trauma, and rejection; because when the storms come, the weight of your past will come flooding back.

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God so that at the proper time he may exalt you, casting all your anxieties on him, because he cares for you. Be sober-minded; be watchful. Your adversary the devil prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour. 1 Peter 5:6-8

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

May 23

Have you ever watched a family of raccoons as they dottle around? The babies follow their mom around very closely and are almost in perfect step with her. My neighbor had a dead tree in her yard with a hole that I had seen some in at one time; I saw a video recently that reminded me of the family that lived in it. In the video, the babies had followed the mom up the tree to get back into their hole. They had no fear and they waited patiently for her to help them get back into their home. If they were having a hard time, she would grab them by the scruff of their neck and pull them in. It was their lack of fear that amazed me the most. They knew no different, it was the way they were raised. If we would follow Jesus as closely at these babies followed their mom, we would lose our fear of man. Jesus always has us and will grab us by the scruff of the neck when things get rough, and draw us close.

And do not fear those who kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather fear him who can destroy both soul and body in hell. Matthew 10:28

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

May 22

Earlier this year, I bought a few orchids that were in full bloom. After all the rain, I decided I needed to check on them. It turned out the pots they were in were full of water and the material they were potted in had begun to rot. I poured all the water out and decided to repot them in new material. After getting well into it, I decided that I should probably check the internet to see if it was safe to repot the ones still in bloom. It turned out that I shouldn’t because it might kill the plant. It was too late for one plant! How often do we set out to do well with little knowledge and end up causing more harm than good? My orchid is an example, but it’s just a plant. One little deviation from the word of God could cause death or destruction to the hearer. Pray for knowledge and wisdom, then seek to gain it by studying the Word. You never want to be responsible for someone heading in the wrong direction, it would be better for you and for them if you hadn’t said a word.

O Timothy, guard the deposit entrusted to you. Avoid the irreverent babble and contradictions of what is falsely called “knowledge,” for by professing it some have swerved from the faith. Grace be with you. 1 Timothy 6:20-21

Monday, May 21, 2018

May 21

After a break in the weather, I was able to get out on the beach for a long walk. I didn’t find any shells worthy of keeping, but the air was refreshing, there is nothing that cleanses my soul more than the gulf breezes. I took Rudy with me and it was his first time walking the entire two miles. He’s been with me before, but I’ve had to carry him for at least half of the walk. It’s probably been more than a year since the last time I took him so he’s matured considerably since then. When we go the distance with Jesus, it takes time for us to mature. There are times when we get tired and He carries us and other times we follow Him closely. It’s not always an easy walk; we encounter many things that try to keep us from going the distance, but if we stick with Him, He will refresh our soul like the gulf breezes. Do not grow weary, let His strength carry you down the treacherous path you are on, then walk when you are able.

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. 2 Corinthians 12:9

Sunday, May 20, 2018

May 20

The whole state of Florida is a soggy swamp right now because of all the rain and thunderstorms we’ve been getting. It just so happens that the next scripture in my daily reading is about Jesus calming the storm. This is one of my favorite stories because it reminds me that I’m not alone in my boat. When everything feels chaotic, sometimes it will get to you. No one knows what you are dealing with that causes your boat to rock or how powerful the storm is that is making you feel flooded or overwhelmed. There are well meaning people that may be bringing a funnel cloud with them, not realizing that your boat is taking on water. If you are feeling this way, it might be time for you to wake up Jesus and let Him calm that storm. He might rebuke you saying ‘where is your faith,’ but that may be all you need to hear to bring you back into His peace. Don’t let today’s trouble get to you. Ask yourself this, “Will this have an effect on my eternity?” When you hear the answer, take a deep breath and smile.

And they went and woke him, saying, “Save us, Lord; we are perishing.” And he said to them, “Why are you afraid, O you of little faith?” Then he rose and rebuked the winds and the sea, and there was a great calm. Matthew 8:25-26