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Saturday, March 31, 2012

God's Voice

John 10:27 "My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me."


I am a firm believer that God builds each of my experiences on another. Each experience prepares me for the next one.


There are so many "voices" calling to us. The world is full of voices, yet if we are God's child we know His voice, and we know when He speaks. Sometimes He calls loudly through experiences, through another person, His Word. Sometimes it is a whisper in our spirit. He is not limited to the avenue He may use.


There is a family reunion scheduled in a couple of weeks. I am not big on reunions but this one I really was excited about. Plans were made, I hung up the phone, and immediately I knew in my spirit I was not to go. I battled for a day about this. I see no reason for me not going, but the answer was quite clear "you are not to go." I did say, "Yes, Lord." I called my sister and told her I won't be going. I don't know the "why" behind this. I just know I'm not to go.


Later in the day, I was reading books to Promise. Every story had to do with obedience. She chose the stories. She had no clue they were going to have a lesson on obedience. Smile. 


Yesterday I was talking to the Lord, and He reminded me of a verse I blogged a few days ago. "thy will be done on earth as it is in Heaven." I remember clearly deciding this meant to immediately obey without question. I think I have my answer. He gave me a test of obedience. I may never know if there is more to my not going to the reunion, but that is not important. My obedience is important.


Listen for His voice.


God bless you.







Thursday, March 29, 2012

God's Tenderness

Rev 7:17b "....and God will wipe away every tear from their eye." John 14:18 "I will not abandon you as orphans..."

There are those days that we wipe "endless"tears from the eyes of little ones. There are days when we encourage Promise in things that have happened in school. We hug the scrapes and bruises she gets on the playground. The other day she said, "Sometimes I do something to my friends that I don't mean to do, and even though I tell them I'm sorry they still tell the teacher." This then became a lesson on forgiveness. There are those hugs during the night when Daddy hugs the hurt away from Zion when he falls out of bed.

God does this for us. He cares when we are hurting, lonely, misunderstood, and needing answers. Just as we can't protect our children so much that they never get hurt again, but the comfort in the midst of pain is a blessing. I picture God wiping my tears with His Hand, but saying, "pain is but for a season, and you will learn valuable lessons."

I love the "mother" tenderness of God. He is often viewed as the disciplinarian of a father, a judge, and he is that, but He also is a loving and compassionate God.

God bless you

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Resting in His Shadow

Yesterday I wrote a little of hiding under His wings, a protection from the arrows of the day and terror of the night. 
Today there is another aspect of His wing, and that is His shadow...but His shadow can also be the shadow of Him. Zion is intrigued by shadows right now. When I think of resting in the shadow of a person it indicates a nearness of that one. We usually associate shade with protection from the sun.


Song of Solomon 2:3 "Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest, is my lover among the young men. I delight to sit in his shade, and his fruit is sweet to my taste."
This is a description of a love affair, but it is also a description of our relationship with the Lord. This gal loved sitting in the shade of her lover. She enjoyed his presence, his words, caressing.  We as well, need to dwell intimately with our Lord to enjoy His shade. That shade brings rest, enjoyment, intimacy, and protection. 

Closeness to the Lord will protect me from those things which would draw us away from the Lord. This will sound a bit humorous but I think it will give us a clear picture of how we are with our Lord at times. How would this lover in Song of Solomon felt if his "princess" came to him to rest in his shadow and all she could talk about is the fun she is having with other relationships? I'm afraid that is how we are.

We are God's children but it is easier to talk of sports, jobs, houses, etc to others than it is to tell them of His love. It is time to refocus...remember His goodness through the generations. Even if we are busy doing His work, we need to find rest in His Shade/shadow and relax and enjoy His goodness in the refreshing shade.

Recently my biggest struggle is dealing with gossip. Hearing it is one thing, but then having the strength not to pass it on is a bigger struggle. My thought is that if I am close to the Lord, then I will let gossip bounce off of me, and not even remember it, or tell the person, "Would you please not tell me the things that keeps me from loving someone."

Lord, help me to not be involved in the sin of gossip. 

God bless you


Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Under His Wings

Psalm 91  is a great Psalm that shows me I will have problems and trials, but God will cover me during those hard times. 
Verses 1-4 There are 3 phrases that promise me His protection: 
                     rest in the shadow of the Almighty.
              He will cover you with his feathers, 
               and under his wings you will find refuge; 

I think of wings being open and a wide wing span such as an eagle. But that wouldn't work as a protection because a bird would be above me with its wings open. Troubles are all around me, so to have wings above me wouldn't protect me.

Yet the wings of Almighty God, protect and cover me no matter where I am and even with the arrows flying by day and terror strong at night, His wings will cover me. His wings are a refuge.

The Psalm have so many word pictures, and I love it. I can imaging arrows flying by day, and terror by night which  I have experienced many times. Maybe not arrows, but certainly gunshots often by day and night.

The past couple days, I feel like I have been MIA (not Miami, but missing in action). God has given me a quietness and peace to relax, read, pray, play with the kids, and basically enjoy life. And I have. So when I read this Psalm this morning, it was a reassurance that I can rest in the Lord. I can soar to newer heights on His wings, and at the same time be protected under His wings.

I pray this gives you comfort tonight when you go to bed. 

God bless you


Monday, March 26, 2012

Quiet Day

It was a quiet day and is a quiet evening. Today was unusual in that I had no program...no plans, no schedule. I rested and read all day, and then helped with the kids. It was wonderful. Oh are there things I could have done, such as clean some things? Of course, but I didn't. I was ok with just doing nothing.

As always, I started thinking...why is it that in America people think they need to be busy doing something every day and every minute of every day? I wonder if we aren't trying to run from ourselves. Are we afraid we may need to deal with heart issues if we stay quiet and do nothing. Can I be content?

Thirty years ago, when I was in the village in Haiti, we had American visitors. After a few days, one of the ladies came to me and asked, "Why do these men just sit around playing dominoes? Why don't they get up and work? This seems a bit lazy to me?" So I asked her what they should be doing. They have no animals, no jobs are available, no rain therefore no garden, and no way to get food. In spite of their suffering,  they were having fun.

I know we need to work, so that we can eat. But I wonder if we are busier than God intended. When there is something that I know that needs to be done, but have no time to do it, then there is one of two things happening..either, God doesn't want me to do it, or I am doing something else that God hasn't asked me to do.

God will never give you a work to do and not provide the time to do it.

"Stand still and see what God will do."

God bless you

Friday, March 23, 2012

His Will in Heaven

Matthew 6:10 "Your will be done on earth, as it is in Heaven."

This prayer means so much more to me today than it ever has before. I am thinking many of you have already understood this a long time ago. I was reading one of Lynn Austin's books, and she wrote "The angels in heaven do not question God's commands, they just obey." How did this ever pass me by? And perhaps, just perhaps, this is the reason I'm reading this book. God wanted me to learn this truth.

This truth will only be learned if I obey and continue to obey. It doesn't matter what the command is. Jesus obeyed all the way to the cross. In Philippians 2:8 it says that he became obedient to death, even death on the cross. I am thinking he became obedient and died to self, then he was ready to die on the cross.

So why am I writing this to you, for one reason, so I don't forget this truth! I dare not forget! No wonder the world is in such a mess, we think we can choose what we want to obey. We try to justify our disobedience. And our disobedience should be fine, as long as society accepts it. Wrong!

As Christine Caine says, "We are not saved to be safe, but to be radical." Jesus was a radical. Let obedience take us to the cross and beyond!

Have a good weekend
God bless you

Morning Call

Psalm 90:14 "Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days."


When the phone rang at 7:00 this morning, I was surprised to hear my husband's voice. It was a nice surprise. He was excited as now there is internet in the village. What a blessing! Skype calls, emails, chat. This is a village that doesn't have electricity nor indoor plumbing, but now they have internet. A new cell phone company moved into Haiti and has put towers all over the country. It was so fun to start the day hearing his voice.


I was reminded that God loves to hear our voice in the morning. He loves to hear our praises. He loves to see our joy. It really is a great way to start the day. I believe if we give God our praise in the morning our days would be better, maybe not easier, but better. Our attitude of praise will take us through many trials throughout the day. We can be joyful in the midst of trials.


Sometimes it is a struggle to even have a phone connection with Patrick. That was frustrating, especially when I really needed him. Now that problem should be solved. But God's line is always open. Not only is His line open but He is waiting with open arms to receive us. His ears are open to our cries.


Call on God today...He will be happy to hear from you.


God bles you

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Unsung Songs

A friend of mine post the following on FaceBook this morning. I really felt it worthy to add it to my blog. I wanted to share it with my friends, but also know if I have it on my blog I can always go back and read it again and again.
It reminds me of all the missed opportunities in my life. Why did I back off, and not give that word of encouragement? Why didn't I make that phone call? Why didn't I share Jesus? Why didn't I write the love notes to my husband? Why did I live in the prison of my heart believing all those things that aren't true? Why didn't I....?
Sing God's praises and believe the negative no more!

Unsung Songs 

How many songs never sung,
poems never written, 
pictures never painted,
risks never taken,
bridges never crossed,
romantic words never spoken...
locked inside a lonely heart
the prison of another’s making...
are left unexpressed
because somebody
shamed us, abandoned us,
or perhaps silenced us
with a cruel word,
a thoughtless deed,
and said or just implied
we were not good enough,
and tragically
we believed them—
let this be the moment
we choose to believe them
no more...and sing, sing, sing



God bless you

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Be Radical

1 Corinthians 1:27 "But God hath chosen the foolish things of the world to confound the wise; and God hath chosen the weak things of the world to confound the things which are mighty.."


As I was listening to a message this afternoon, I was reminded again how very true this verse is. From Genesis to Revelation God has used the foolish by the world's standards to bring change in the world. Noah, had never seen rain, but was building an ark. Moses, held a stick before the Red Sea, but God parted the waters because of his obedience. The king of Egypt couldn't even save his army. God confounded the wise.


Haven't you often felt that you are just a "nobody" and can't do anything important. Give God a chance. He can use you and me to confound the wise. God is counting on us to shake His kingdom. In the days we are living in, we need to step up to the plate and make a home-run for the kingdom of God.


I am not a baseball fan, but I know many of you are. You get excited for the home-runs. Let's do it for God. There are so many hurting people all around us. So many neglected elderly people. If you aren't sure where to start. Ask God. If you are serious, I know God will start giving you a burning desire for the work He has for you.


Stop living safe for Jesus. Be Pro-Active in His Kingdom. I hear a lot of Christian marching for political reasons. What about for Jesus? Oh you may say, 'but we will get arrested if we mention Jesus." Ooops, so did Peter, James, John, and the list goes on.


Jesus didn't save us to be safe, He saved us to be radical! 


God bless you

Sunday, March 18, 2012

Weeping in the Night

Psalm 30:5b "...weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning"


Remember the song when you were a child, "ten little monkeys in the bed, one fell out and bumped his head." That was the beginning of a loud wail during the night when Zion fell out of bed and bumped his head. He wouldn't stop crying, at least it was more crying than previous tumbles out of bed.


Finally, Agape gave him some tylenol to ease the pain and bring quiet to the night. Thinking the problem was solved, Daddy returned to his bed. But soon the wailing started again, this time with a different problem.


He barely got to the room, and picked up Zion when he vomited on his bed, and heaven forbid, his blankie, on Agape, and the floor. The first thing Agape thought of was a concussion, but then remembered he gave him tylenol on an empty stomach, which is usually a wrong move with Zion.


Agape stripped the bed, towels, Zion's pj's, his own clothes. Now Zion was really upset, his blankie had to go in the washer. He spent the rest of the night in his daddy's bed.


This morning, Zion woke with a song on his lips, happy as a lark, as if nothing had happened. Well, that is until his daddy gave him a bath and happened to rub his head where he bumped it.


I thought of that verse, how often we go through a time of pain but then God gives us a song in the morning. We really can every day happenings to remember God's Word.


God bless you

Friday, March 16, 2012

I Love You Daddy

Last night it was time to get the kids to bed, Zion came to his daddy. Agape looked at him and said, "Daddy loves you." Zion looked in his eyes, and said "I love you too daddy." Almost brought tears. It was so precious.

This is our Father. He looks in our eyes, and says "I love you..." But how often do I respond to that love "I love you Father."

God's love is the central theme throughout the Bible. We are undone before Him. He is faithful and good. It is of utmost importance that we keep our eyes on Him in these last days. His love is all that will keep us when the going gets tougher. All of God's people need to stand together. The battle is on, but God is our Victor. I have been enjoying the song "The Lion of Judah" by Robin Mark. A powerful song. This song brings me into worship.

Look into the Father's eyes and tell Him you love Him. He loves us more than we can ever imagine.

Have a great and blessed weekend.
God bless you


Thursday, March 15, 2012

So They May Know

Psalm 78:4 & 7 "We will tell the next generation about the Lord’s praiseworthy acts, about his strength and the amazing things he has done....Then they will place their confidence in God. They will not forget the works of God, and they will obey  his commands."


Do you ever read a scripture and all of a sudden the "lights come on" and you wonder how you have missed it for so long a time?


That is what happened when I read Psalm 78 this morning. There is so much in this Psalm, but the command to tell the next generation of God's goodness, His faithfulness so that they will place their confidence in God and obey His commands, really hit home. What I see is that we as parents have failed miserably in telling our children the stories of the Bible. We teach our children sports, celebrities, cartoon characters, but the Word of God comes on Sunday. I hope this is not true of most of us. It is not ONLY the pastor's job to teach our children, we are responsible.


The other thing I noticed in this Psalm is that God used natural disasters to get people's attention. We'd better wake up. The tornadoes, earthquakes, floods, tsunamis, drought, fires....what more will it take for us to start shouting God's Name instead of cowering so we don't offend others?


God is faithful and Good. He has not failed us! He is an Awesome God to serve. Glory will reward us when we arrive in eternity.


God bless you


Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Becoming Sparkly

Psalm 51:8 "Create in me a clean heart, O God; and renew a right spirit within me."

We sing this verse, we memorize it but do we live it? Do I live it? It comes with a price. Giving up self. To have a right spirit within me is to give up the ugly thoughts, and justifying them, toward others. Can we justify not loving someone who has been a bit unfriendly towards us? Or perhaps has been hateful towards us? So if we do not love them in spite of their ugliness, we become like they are. This is not a right spirit nor a clean heart.

I was speaking with someone yesterday who is justifying rejecting someone because they haven't been "nice" to them. This is not a "right spirit," neither returning good for evil.

There is a phrase in Dee Brestin's book, A Woman of Worship, "Purity comes with a very high calling." Oh God help me. I need to always react to others with a loving spirit and a right attitude.

God is not interested in my "sacrifices" if I do not have the right spirit in giving them. A cup of water to a thirsty soul has its reward, but if given in a begrudging attitude, we lose the reward.

I think of Promise's excitement after a bath, "Look at me, I'm so sparkly!" And that is what we are when we allow God to wash us with His Word and create a new heart within us. We become sparkly clean, as white as snow.

Let's become "sparkly"
God bless you


Monday, March 12, 2012

Dropping our Nets

Home again. It was a wonderful weekend with great teaching, testimonies, meeting with friends and making new friends.

The theme of the conference was Beautiful Feet, those who share the gospel. One of the teaching was when Phillip left the revival in Jerusalem, and found the Ethiopian eunuch in the desert (Acts 8:27), and shared the scriptures with him and baptized him. Philip did not return to Jerusalem but went on to other places and continued sharing the gospel. It is easy to stay where others are sharing God's word, but is tremendously important to go out among the lost to bring them the Good News which is the Gospel.

Another teaching encouraged us to be ready to go when God calls us to go. We need to leave our nets, as Peter and Andrew did when Jesus called them to be His disciples. (Matthew 4:18-20) They immediately followed Jesus. Can we drop our nets, or are we entangled in them? Since Peter and Andrew were fisherman, fishing nets were an important part of their lives. They were still fisherman, but following Jesus put their work in a different perspective when Jesus was their Master. Is your job just for the money, or is it an avenue for serving God and being the light in your work area?

My next question would be, "Do we want to drop our nets? Do we want change?" Or is life so comfortable that we'd rather continue in our ways, and "let someone else share the Gospel?" God may not call you beyond your neighborhood. That is a mission field. You may be the only one that God has that can do the job.

When we give our lives to Jesus, we are then a "missionary," one who shares Jesus with others. Let's do our job. Let's drop our nets.

God bless you


Thursday, March 8, 2012

Insults

1 Peter 4:14 "If you are insulted for the name of Christ, you are blessed, because the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you."


I was insulted this morning...by someone who should know me...but obviously not! Almost as if that person was saying Patrick and I take advantage of people for our own comfort, but of course it is for "missions." I did what I shouldn't have done. I defended us. I hope I never will do that again. I'll let God take care of the situation. 


How we hate to be insulted! Our impulse is to start our defense. We want people to understand us and we want them to know why. If we are insulted for Christ, it is a blessing. We don't need to defend the Gospel.


But most of all, what we do is, keep quiet about our faith so that insults do not come. We quickly express our opinion in politics and other non-threatening issues. But let the Name of Jesus be proclaimed, we turn our heads, after all, "we wouldn't want to offend someone."


Enough said for now. 


I will not be blogging a few days...off for a weekend in a Mission conference. I hope you all have a wonderful weekend. 


God bless you

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Who Is My Teacher?

Today was one of those days upon reading some verses which I had highlighted in Isaiah 30:18-21, meaning I had read them before and obviously they spoke to my heart then. But this morning I was duly inspired again.

"The Lord will wait that He may be gracious to you..." wait for what? The verses prior to that are saying to me, He's waiting on me to return to Him. I'm probably off doing my "own thing," deciding that He needs a little help in answering my prayers. He will be exalted when HE is allowed to do it HIS way and not mine. But He graciously waits on me. That's what I need, to learn to graciously wait on others as God works in their lives. I need to be patient and allow them to grow in Him, in His time and not mine.

Then "the bread of adversity and the water of affliction"....oh that I know well. But the next word that jumps off the page is "teachers." God was showing me that my teachers are adversity and affliction. I learn more from suffering than from the sunshine. Sunshine is important, but so are the clouds. It is almost like adversity and affliction are a daily fare on our plates.

When the sun shines (life is easy) I find my prayers aren't of the same quality. But let the suffering come our cry is urgent, just like a child with an "oweeeeee!" Oh the pain.

The joy of all this is verse 21, in the midst of the suffering, we will hear a voice saying, "This is the way to go."
I'm making an "educated" guess, that I have learned more in the School of the Spirit and Suffering than I have from text books.

As a final thought, in verse 20 it is quite clear that adversity and affliction of given of the Lord. Maybe, just maybe, we are thinking it is all of satan, when in reality it is the graciousness of God teaching us!

God bless you

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Birth Day

A lot of memories today....26 years ago Rachel was born, our daughter. I remember when I first saw her, I couldn't believe how beautiful she was. Of course, all mothers see the beauty in their baby. According to Patrick she was supposed to be a boy. For a whole nine months, he knew she would be a boy. But she wasn't!

The mothering instinct is always in a mother's heart. I'm sure that is why we make good grandmothers. Smile. I must say, I enjoyed every stage of our children, yes, even the terrible two's, which I thought it was an adventure and not terrible. Maybe I was blinded?

I loved to watch them start to process life. Oh and the joy when they first cited their own prayer! First smiles, first words, first steps, first teeth. So many things.

I believe God takes as much, or more joy, when we as His children first come to Him. The Bible says there is rejoicing in Heaven when one of his little ones come to Him. What a party that must be! If it is such rejoicing when we give our lives to Him, what rejoicing it must be when He calls one of His own home to be with Him!

Just as mothers rejoice when we see our children share a toy, so also I believe God rejoices when one of His children shares a cup of water to a thirsty person. I believe He rejoices when He sees us comforting one another, just as a mother comforts her little one.

Too many times people see God as a harsh judge, but today let's see Him as a caring and loving "Mother"! He does love and care for us, even the details of our lives. He heals our broken hearts, He sees our wounds and bruises.

"He is the Lord, the Lord God, merciful and gracious, long-suffering and abounding in goodness and truth, keeping mercy for thousands, forgiving iniquity and transgression and sin, by no means clearing the guilty visiting the iniquity of the fathers upon the children and children's children to the third and the fourth generation." Ex 34:6-7

This is the God we serve
God bless you

Friday, March 2, 2012

Forgetting Those Things

This morning the start reality hit me that I forgot to blog yesterday. I also forgot to update the prayer calendar on our website. I forgot to write some emails (for those of you who are waiting...don't lose hope...I will get it done sooner or later).

The distraction was that my Patrick came home after 6 weeks away!! It is so good to have him home. How much easier it is to sit and talk rather than on a phone that will probably cut off communications before we are finished. He gets to rest for 2 weeks then it is off to the "battle front" again.

I was thinking about when we get to Heaven, and we will also forget...all the tears, pain, sorrow, suffering. All these things that are so much a part of our lives now, will be no more. I really can't even imagine it. I can't imagine the glory either, but to have glory and worship without interruption in our thoughts about something painful? What a homecoming!

But until then, I mustn't forget so many things. I'm trying to stay focused, but my mind seems to find it's own path for remembering. Those things I should forget, I can't and those things I remember aren't always so important. God knew my feeble mind.

But for the moment, I am so thankful to have Patrick home.

God bless you