Saturday, January 7, 2023

January 7, 2023

Some days I rush through the scriptures and then write a story, but then other days I linger a little longer because it’s like feasting on a delicious ribeye steak. Today was one of those days. I’ve skirted around Paul’s writings because I wanted to hear what the other apostles had to say with a clear mind, but I’ve covered all of them until today. I started Hebrews and the author is unknown but could be attributed to Paul. Whoever wrote it was very eloquent with their words because they made me stop in the middle of the first chapter and worship God and praise Jesus. What a great way to start a new week! 

He is the radiance of the glory of God and the exact imprint of his nature, and he upholds the universe by the word of his power. After making purification for sins, he sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, Hebrews 1:3

We know that Jesus is special, but expressing just how amazing he is using words, we don’t always do him justice. Chew on Hebrews 1:3 today, and let’s worship him together by remembering that he is the radiance of the glory of God.

Friday, January 6, 2023

January 6, 2023

I've been glued to C-Span for the last few days, watching the vote for the new Speaker of the House. Even though we don't know everything going on, it's intriguing seeing the drama unfolding. It's encouraging that some representatives are listening to their constituents and using their votes to help bring change to the rules for the good of the people. I watched a couple of them praying together, right in front of the camera; God will prevail, and his will be done! 

In another spotlight on God this week, we watched as a football player was hurt on the playing field and commentators praying right on camera. I was concerned that he wouldn't make it and they would blame God because he didn't answer their prayers, but like a hero in shining armor, he did, and the man is still alive. 

Even though these events are newsworthy, most people still miss how magnificent our God is because they don't know him. Bring him up in regular conversation; some people will ignore you and brush quickly over what you say, others will join in on your praise of him. Ultimately, seeds of goodness are planted.

But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ. To him be the glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen. 2 Peter 3:18

Thursday, January 5, 2023

January 5, 2023

One of the highlights of life as a grandparent is spending time with your grandchildren. Our youngest is not quite 3, but he has a mind of his own, and yesterday, though he loves to come to our house, he got pretty upset when his dad dropped him off. He began screaming and crying for him to return, and he did; what dad wouldn't return after hearing a heartbreaking cry? When you're a grandmother, you know they only cry for a minute when the parent leaves, so I encouraged him to leave quickly, like ripping off a bandage. Sure enough, he simmered down, and it didn't take long until he was back to being happy-go-lucky. I understand his sweet little heart; though we long for Jesus, we must continue our business until he returns. Can you imagine how it must feel seeing your children long for you, knowing it's not quite time for your return? He sees your heart and knows you love him, but we must persevere while living among the ungodly until the day of judgment and their destruction. Hold on to what you have! Jesus is coming back just as he promised.

The Lord is not slow to fulfill his promise as some count slowness, but is patient toward you, not wishing that any should perish, but that all should reach repentance. But the day of the Lord will come like a thief, and then the heavens will pass away with a roar, and the heavenly bodies will be burned up and dissolved, and the earth and the works that are done on it will be exposed.  2 Peter 3:9-10

Wednesday, January 4, 2023

January 4, 2023

After doing a quick word study on my word for the new year, persevere, I realized that it compliments the name God gave me years ago. When I worked at the crisis pregnancy center, my boss led a study and told us to ask God the name he would write on our stone, as Jesus mentions in Revelation.

I will give him a white stone, with a new name written on the stone that no one knows except the one who receives it.’ Revelation 2:17b

The name I heard was “conqueror.” Though my new name and my word of the year have different meanings, they go hand in hand. Together, they are words that every Christian must become familiar with because we are each called to persevere so we can conquer! It takes perseverance to hold onto our faith in Jesus; we must fight the urge to go back to our old ways; the way of sin is a much easier way to go because there is no resistance. Stand strong, mighty warriors! We must persevere to conquer!

For it would have been better for them never to have known the way of righteousness than after knowing it to turn back from the holy commandment delivered to them. What the true proverb says has happened to them: “The dog returns to its own vomit, and the sow, after washing herself, returns to wallow in the mire.” 2 Peter 2:21-22

Tuesday, January 3, 2023

January 3, 2023

Yesterday, I talked to God about a particular individual who hurts nearly everyone they contact. My prayer was, “when will you bring this person to justice?” I immediately got a vision of Satan dragging them into hell. The picture he gave me was so powerful that I had to change my attitude toward them and pray for them to accept Jesus as their Savior. As much as this individual has hurt my family, I don’t want to see them go to hell. Hell is permanent. Though this person deserves hell, so do I; we all do! Jesus paid the price for all of us and delivered our sins there. That’s why none of us can boast about our righteousness apart from Jesus; we don’t have any! We must forgive; it’s for our benefit. We must pray for the salvation of those who’ve hurt us; we don’t want to be stuck with the guilt of not doing our part to help, even if it is just praying. Find it in your heart to forgive those who’ve hurt you or those around you. Pray for their salvation, even though they don’t deserve it; who does? Don’t let someone get dragged into hell when you could have helped by praying for them. Doing this will prove that you have the Holy Spirit, which is proof that you have Jesus. 

For this very reason, make every effort to supplement your faith with virtue, and virtue with knowledge, and knowledge with self-control, and self-control with steadfastness, and steadfastness with godliness, and godliness with brotherly affection, and brotherly affection with love. 2 Peter 1:5-7

Monday, January 2, 2023

January 2, 2023

Every year, our family participates in an old southern tradition of having black-eyed peas on January 1st. I’m not fond of them, and most of my family isn’t either, but we do it anyway because it’s the one day of the year that I know what to cook. I have an old recipe called Hoppin’ John, and it adds a lot of different spices and a lot of fatty meats, which of course, I love. It changes the flavor, so you barely notice that it’s black-eyed peas. It’s supposed to give you good luck and lots of money, but we all know where our help comes from, and it’s not peas! The truth is that I will use any excuse necessary to have my family over, even though it can be a bit loud and obnoxious, especially in the small space we live in now, but I love them and like to be around them. Pull your families closer; this world is rapidly changing, and we need to form unbreakable bonds because we may have to lean on one another. What’s more, draw closer to Jesus; he is our hope for the future. Don’t be discouraged by what you see happening; these things must occur, and then the end will come. I don’t know about you, but I’m looking forward to seeing justice come to all who’ve participated in the evil that is taking place. Persevere in your faith, pray, and get ready for the next chapter to begin. 

but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. 1 Peter 4:5

Sunday, January 1, 2023

January 1, 2023

Today is a new beginning, a fresh start. Near the beginning of every year, I ask God to give me a word I can carry and refer back to throughout the year. Last year my word was “fire,” which was unusual, but then again, it was an unusual year, and I believe the word fire explains it well. My word for this year is “persevere.” I didn’t want that word and asked for a different one, but God made it clear that it would serve me well and assured me he would help me persevere. Take a moment today and ask God to give you a word; you will be surprised at how he will use it to teach you his ways. It could be a prophecy. 

Begin by asking God for a word; it will be the first word that pops into your head; you won’t be able to shake it; believe me, I tried. My word came before I even finished asking. See if it works for you. Then, take a moment and look it up in the Bible and find a verse that seems fitting, and remember that verse and word throughout this next year. I would love to hear the word he gave you. Keep me posted.

knowing this first of all, that no prophecy of Scripture comes from someone's own interpretation. For no prophecy was ever produced by the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit. 2 Peter 1:20-21