Saturday, February 1, 2020

February 1

My husband and I had a short break before our winter guest took over our vacation home on Little Gasparilla, and were able to spent several days there relaxing and enjoying the water and the beach. It can be a bit of a chore going to and from the island, since there is no bridge; you must either take the pontoon ferry, or go by boat. In most cases we take our boat, so we are free to come and go on our own schedule. We were at the marina unloading, and getting ready to go home when Richard, my husband handed me the keys to the car; in all the commotion of trying to deal with the dogs, I lost the keys. I unloaded every bag I had, hoping that they had fallen into one of them, but that was not my luck, they were nowhere to be found, so we concluded that they had fallen into the water.

Richard, who is a brilliant man, asked the dock attendant if they had a large magnet. As  the attendant went to see if they had a magnet, Richard decided that he would get into the cold, dark water, and dive down. He made it down a couple of times with no luck, then the man came back with a magnet. After what seemed like just a few minutes of fishing with the magnet, Richard found the keys!! 

God’s provision comes in many ways, and one of his ways is to give wisdom to those who ask. In that one instance of wisdom, he provided us with the keys, a ride home, fellowship with the man who found the magnet, then a tip, and praise for that man. Don’t be quick to think that things are coincidental; when you trust in God, he is there to help.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him. James 1:5

Friday, January 31, 2020

January 31

If my husband is watching television, I will sometimes use my AirPods to listen to videos. Most of the time I only use one of them so I can also hear what’s going on around me. Somehow I misplaced the case with the other AirPod. I searched for two hours, turning the couch up-side-down, pulling out the cushions, then searched the rest of the house, and even the garbage. It was still nowhere to be found. I gave up the search. Later that evening, I noticed something inside my shirt! Low and behold, there it was, right next to my heart! Though the AirPods are nothing special, I still didn’t want to lose them. 

If you feel that you’ve lost sight of God, or can no longer hear him, do not worry yourself, he’s still with you. You may search, and search, and may even give up, but he never left you. Don’t be troubled, he’s right there next to your heart.

"teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”"  Mat 28:20

"You will seek me and find me, when you seek me with all your heart."  Jer 29:13

Thursday, January 30, 2020

January 30

Why did God go through all the trouble of coming to earth to save us from our sins? Why did he create statutes that would cause us to sin in the first place? First of all, we have free will, he didn’t make us robots with controls. Left to ourselves, we will sometimes choose sin over righteousness for the sheer pleasure of it. Throughout the Bible, anytime a person was brought before a king, he would have to clean up, and put on the proper garments. They were not allowed to appear before them in their work clothes, or covered in filth.

God is very clear that he should be exalted above all others. He is our King! He cannot look at you if you haven’t clothed yourself in righteousness. The slaughtering of animals offered a blood sacrifice, but would only cover the past sin, and so it had to be done again. Jesus, because he is God, came to give us a sacrifice that was holy, and acceptable, and would cover all of our filth, both past and future. He gave us the ability to appear before God properly clothed. Make a habit of asking for forgiveness, and remember who you are talking to when you pray.

Then Pharaoh sent and called Joseph, and they quickly brought him out of the pit. And when he had shaved himself and changed his clothes, he came in before Pharaoh. Genesis 41:14

Wednesday, January 29, 2020

January 29

An attorney decided that he didn’t like the use of certain apparatuses on the streets of a small town. He decided to put his spin on the law by distorting it to conform with his own thoughts, and to try and bully the townspeople into believing him. There were arguments, both for and against this man. One person rose up, a common citizen with no interest in the situation, and challenged this man, convincing many that he was putting more into his interpretation than what was intended by the ordinance.

This same type of thing happens when people try to include more into God’s law than he intended. I remember back in my childhood, where a certain denomination decided that dancing should not be allowed. I understand the reason this rule was made, because it gives you an extra step before you cross the line into the sin of fornication, or adultery, but dancing is not a sin. Be careful of your interpretation of God’s law, make sure you are not adding to it, so you don’t look like a bully to those who don’t know much about it. That’s when our relationship with Jesus crosses into religion. Don’t be religious.

They tie up heavy burdens, hard to bear, and lay them on people's shoulders, but they themselves are not willing to move them with their finger. Matthew 23:4

Tuesday, January 28, 2020

January 28

Reading the Old Testament has made me realize how important it is to write your story. Not just the good stuff, but all the details of betrayal, grief, and other actions that have taken place in your past. Many of the accounts written in Genesis, show the history of where the initial injury of the heart took place, and shows us why there are wars today. We, being a part of the future, are living with the consequences of the painful past hurt, and betrayal of many people groups. They are still lashing out for things that happened thousands of years ago! My point is, get the bottom of why you feel the way you do! Forgive, even though you weren’t offered an apology. Forgiveness helps you and those around you. Don’t hold a grudge, it takes away your peace, and does nothing to them, they can’t feel your grudge. Our lives are very short, why complicate it by living a life offended? Besides, we must forgive to be forgiven.

For if you forgive others their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you, but if you do not forgive others their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. Matthew 6:14-15

Monday, January 27, 2020

January 27

“Sticks and stones will break my bones, but words will never hurt me.” This is a lie that many still believe. With words, God created the earth and all that is in it. Jesus is called “The Word.” With words, Isaac blessed Jacob with overwhelming abundance, to the point that there were no more blessings left for Esau. Wrong words can cause fear, self doubt, hurt feelings, inferiority, and so on. Using uplifting words, can create confidence, self worth, love, and bring a person back from the depths. What if your words had power like that of God? Or like Abraham? How are we different from Abraham? We have the power of the Holy Spirit within us! Our words do have power, and we should never forget it, especially when blessing, and cursing others. Don’t take your words lightly; the things you spew from your mouth could be a nail in the coffin of someone else, and we are of Jesus, and should bless, not curse. Don’t speak words of hate, but fill your mouth with words of love. Your words matter, make them useful for the good of our fellow humans.

As soon as Esau heard the words of his father, he cried out with an exceedingly great and bitter cry and said to his father, “Bless me, even me also, O my father!” But he said, “Your brother came deceitfully, and he has taken away your blessing.” Genesis 27:34-35

From the same mouth come blessing and cursing. My brothers, these things ought not to be so. James 3:10

Sunday, January 26, 2020

January 26

The gathering of family and friends for a special occasion, does the heart good, and brings overwhelming joy. Good food, music, and fellowship, helped us celebrate the upcoming arrival of the newest member of our family. The crowd was mixed with people who were once foes, who set aside their past hurts, and differences to enjoy the day. Making peace with the past brings about restoration, and renewal. Sometimes old wounds are opened and your mind is flooded with memories that burn, but if you set aside your pain for a moment, you may find healing. Facing the past can be hard, but facing it with the guidance of the Lord eases the burden, and gives you a new form of freedom. Let your love overpower the strong arm of the enemy; he knows that if he can keep you defeated, your life will be miserable. Love always wins; hate is defeating. On this day, even though baby Ethan hasn’t drawn his first breath, he is bringing people together in love. It’s not worth it to hold onto the past, let it go and continue in your freedom.

A Maskil of Ethan the Ezrahite. I will sing of the steadfast love of the LORD, forever; with my mouth I will make known your faithfulness to all generations. For I said, “Steadfast love will be built up forever; in the heavens you will establish your faithfulness.” Psalms 89:1-2