Praying Through

Learning to Pray

Prayer is something so easy to do, yet I fail over and over and over again to sustain prayer in my life. I know I am not alone in this, but lately God has been gifting me with verses that I need to risk more in my prayers, I need to praise the answers before they come and write my history before it happens (from Mark Batterson). The way to do this is through prayer.

God is challenging me now to learn how to pray, to seek time with him in prayer, the pray boldly for the future, and to have complete faith that he will answer in his own time and way. Honestly, I know he seeking me to seek him in prayer and he knows that I need a deeper relationship with him, and I firmly believe he wants to show me how great he is when he answers my prayers. I know I forget sometimes that he already knows what my prayers will be, but I still need to ask. I still need to pray.

Jesus tells us how to pray in the Sermon on the Mount in Matthew chapter 6 verses 5-13. Jesus begins by telling us not to pray where others can hear so you are seen but to find a quiet place to be with the Father. So I should pray alone and unseen. Jesus also says not to babble with so many words, definitely something I need to work on, but to keep it simple because God already knows what we need. We just need to trust in him and ask. Finally, Jesus provides us with an example of how to pray which is the Lord’s prayer:

“Our Father in Heaven,

hallowed be your name,

your kingdom come,

your will be done,

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread.

And forgive us our debts,

as we also have forgiven our debtors.

And lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil. (the evil one)

A simple outline, praise God, Ask that his will be done just as 1 John 5:14-15 states, “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us. And if we know that he hears us – whatever we ask – we know that we have what we asked of him.” Ask for our needs and forgiveness of our sins and a reminder to forgive others who have sinned against us. Why do we make praying so hard?

God and Me

God is seeking a relationship with me through prayer, but the only way this can really happen is that I have to have Faith. Faith in my prayers, Faith he will answers prayers, and Faith to be bold in my prayers and prayer time. If I have faith the rest of the relationship will be easy. The hard part is I get in the way instead of getting out of the way for God to work. Hebrews 11:1 defines Faith, “Now faith is confidence in what we hope for and assurance about what we do not see.” Hope for = Pray for. God even helps me see that sometimes my little faith can do big things like the comparison to the mustard seed in Matthew 17:20, “He replied, ‘Because you have so little faith. Truly I tell you, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed, you can say to this mountain, ‘Move from here to there,’ and it will move. Nothing will be impossible for you.'” When I read verses like this, I feel the urge to get down on my knees before the Lord and lift it all up in prayer, cast my burdens, and walk out in his light. I want to see the mountains move. I need to seek relationship and prayer with the Lord to build my faith and trust in the path the Lord wants for me. To close this section on God and I and our prayer relationship, I find myself reading Proverbs 3: 5-6 which seems fitting, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.” Stop leaning on myself and start leaning only on the Lord who has the answers if I will just seek him and ask because He tells me in Numbers 11:23 when he asking Moses whether he believes, “The Lord answered Moses, ‘Is the Lord’s arm too short? Now you will see whether or not what I say will come true for you.'” He delivered the quail in great numbers to the Israelites, so he will deliver answers to my prayers if I pray and ask.

Praying For

What and Why should I be praying. First, the bible is clear that the flesh makes us weak and leads us astray. Jesus even rebuked his own disciples about praying so they would not fall to temptation through the flesh. Matthew 26: 40-41 reads, “The he returned to his disciples and found them sleeping. ‘Couldn’t you men keep watch with me for one hour:’ he asked Peter. ‘Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.'” I read these lines and see myself and the disciples as human. I want to pray and my spirit is so willing, but how easily flesh can win and I don’t fall on our knees and pray the prayers I know I should. How many times have I failed to ask the Lord when I know he was calling me to pray and pray harder. When will I circle the prayer and believe that I must ask to receive. Matthew 7:7 plainly tell me this, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you.” But my human nature just fails. Mark 11:24 goes even deeper, “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” Oh “…you of little faith” Matthew 6:30. That is me too many times. God has been so good, yet I have little faith. I need to start realizing how important my relationship and faith is with the Lord. Instead of holding on, I need to be letting go and giving it to to Him who wants to show me his power if only I would ask. 1 Peter 5:7 provides this promise, “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” The good and the bad he wants it all.

Maybe the hardest thing I find in scripture about what I should pray for is found in Luke 6:28, “bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” This seems so hard, but why we love all people and life effects everyone differently as they walk through it each day. I have the Lord and no worries or cares. I read recently that praying for those who persecute and mistreat you will bring God out to do even great work. I am going to pray harder for those victories. Even though, I know as Daniel did you have to sometimes pray for something a long time and wait for answers to our prayers. I can do it like Daniel in Daniel 10:12, “The he continued, “Do not be afraid, Daniel. Since the first day that you set your mind to gain understanding and to humble yourself before your God, your words were heard, and I have come to response in them.” Pray for the hard stuff, and for the bold stuff, most importantly pray.

My Prayer Spot

Above I mentioned Matthew 6, but now I want to specifically look at verse 6, “But when you pray, go into your room, close the door, and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you.” Jesus teaches that wIshould find a quiet place to pray where prying eyes are not watching. Prayer is personal and intimate and not for the world to share in. I don’t believe it has to be in my room, but the quiet place where I make room for God in my life and give him my burdens and joys and share with him my deepest secrets. Jesus is our example, as Luke 5:16 reads, “But Jesus often withdrew to lonely places and prayed.” Am I afraid to be alone with God? Am I afraid of what he will see? I know he already sees but sometimes it is hard to lay it before the perfect sacrifice when I am covered in so many blemishes, yet I know he loves me.

I like the quietness of morning with a cup of coffee and the darkness of the evening to dig myself into the Word and prayer with my Father. Even better is the sound of water by the sea, on the sea, surrounded by the sea and I can find myself in his arms and sheltered in prayer. This is where I find my peace from the world to pray.

Prayer Time

When should I pray? That question plagues me because of the scripture in 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18, “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” The rejoicing is the easy part of this verse the pray without ceasing is the difficult part. This is a human failure. Our minds wonder and our focus wanes, but God calls us to stay the course and pray in all circumstances. This leads me to Philippians 4:6, which sounds a similar to the verse above as we are called to pray and give it all to the Lord. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.”

I believe my human nature drives me to prayer when things look down, and scripture calls me to not be anxious or worry. Scripture is very clear about this in Matthew 6:25-27: “Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Can any one of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” I am called to relinquish it all to God to approach his throne in my time of need, “Let us then approach God’s throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need.” Hebrews 4:16.

Oh to be bold with prayer like Elijah who called down the power of the Lord to bring fire and burn up his sacrifice to turn the heart’s of God’s people back to the Lord. Elijah stood in that miracle and prayed again for rain. He was bold and he believed. May I be bold like Elijah in prayer and stand on miracles to pray even bolder prayers. Elijah is still like us that even after seeing God’s answers to his prayer he fled from Jezebel, but God as usual has a plan. Read about Elijah in 1 Kings 17-19. Dig Deep! While reading these chapters, remember James 5:17-18, “Elijah was a human being even as we are. He prayed earnestly that it would not rain, and it did not rain on the land for three and a half years. Again he prayed, and the heavens gave rain, and the earth produced crops.” It was a great reminder to revisit Elijah and his bold prayers that I must stand in my faith when I pray and not my human flesh. Because “….with God all things are possible.” Matthew 19:26.

Heavenly Wisdom

My prayer is seek his wisdom in my life and live in that wisdom described in James 3:17-18, “But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.” I seek wisdom and peace which I can only find when I pray with bold faith. So I “humble yourselves before the Lord, and he will lift you up.” James 4:10. Amen.

I Do Not Understand

Why do I do the things that I do not want to do and can not seem to be able to do the things that I want? What is the road block inside of me? Sometimes I wonder what is wrong with me and then I read this scripture and know that my sinful nature is winning over my desire to do what I feel called to do. Why am I letting Satan inside my heart.

Romans 7:15-20 – 15 For I do not understand my own actions. For I do not do what I want, but I do the very thing I hate. 16 Now if I do what I do not want, I agree with the law, that it is good. 17 So now it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me. 18 For I know that nothing good dwells in me, that is, in my flesh. For I have the desire to do what is right, but not the ability to carry it out. 19 For I do not do the good I want, but the evil I do not want is what I keep on doing. 20 Now if I do what I do not want, it is no longer I who do it, but sin that dwells within me.

These scriptures are a reminder to me that sin dwells in me just as in others. I am no better than anyone else. The only Hope that I have is God, but I must be willing to voice the sin and do the hard work to pull it from my heart. If I keep my sin hidden it only continues to hurt others and my relationship with God because he can see all that is happening inside of me. God knows when I am hiding my sinful nature, so I must always seek God and be public in asking for forgiveness from God and others that my sin affects.

If I fail to acknowledge my sin then I am deceiving myself, and Satan who is the author of deception begins to control my path. I am warned in Galatians 6:7, “Do not be deceived: God is not mocked, for whatever one sows, that will he also reap.” Hiding from sin will only cause me to reap a more sinful nature and do the things that I do not want to do. Hiding will push me further from God and his path for me. No matter how hard it is to confront my sin, I can only find peace by facing my sin and asking for forgiveness from God and others hurt by my actions.

Our world today is full of deception. As a Christian I have to examine what I believe or I will be deceived by what I think I know to be truth instead of what is truth. The world is full of deceit and deception. I see people who fiercely believe because they have been deceived by the world for so long that they can not see the truth that God has laid before us. What do my rose colored glasses see that is not the truth? Christians must examine more carefully through the lens of God and become examples for others to see truths.

Jeremiah 17:9 – “The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately wicked; who can know it?” (NIV). “The heart is deceitful above all things and desperately sick; who can understand it?” (ESV).

I wrote about this verse and the heart years ago. Here is a link to that blog post “Searching for a New Heart. This was a multi-part exploration if you would like to walk back in time with me.

Part 2: Searching for a New Heart Part 2

Part 3: Searching for a New Heart Part 3

Final: Searching for a New Heart

As I read this verse again and think about my sinful nature, I am thankful that vs 9 is followed by vs 10. “I the Lord search the heart and test the mind, to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his deeds.” May God search my heart and provide the spirit of discernment to overcome evil with good. I pray that my fruits be worthy of God. I pray that I am example of a Christian who walks her path and discerns truths as God sees and not as I see.

I will close with this verse from the New Testament –

1 Corinthians 10:9-14 – “We must not put Christ to the test, as some of them did and were destroyed by serpents, nor grumble, as some of them did and were destroyed by the Destroyer. Now these things happened to them as an example, but they were written down for our instruction, on whom the end of the ages has come. Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall. No temptation has overtaken you that is not common to man. God is faithful, and he will not let you be tempted beyond your ability, but with the temptation he will also provide the way of escape, that you may be able to endure it. Therefore, my beloved, flee from idolatry.”

I pray for escape from temptation and flee from the things of this world, may God always provide the way out and may I always seek his way. I push myself to learn and understand why I sin and how to live a life more Christ like in the eyes of those around me, in the eyes of those watching me.

I know that I am a sinner and will always be as I walk on this earth, but may others see a person striving to walk the path that God has laid before me and an example when temptation and sin fall into my life. May I extend the grace God gives me to others. I know that is not what others may see at this moment but may God help me walk more firmly on his path. May God show me my path more clearly as I strive to walk with him.

 Ephesians 2:10 “For we are His creation, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared ahead of time so that we should walk in them.”

God’s Way, Not Mine

Soar Like an Eagle

Proverbs 16:2 – “All a person’s ways seem pure to them, but motives are weighed by the Lord.” NIV

Proverbs 16:2 – ” All the ways of a man are pure in his own eyes, but the Lord weighs the spirit.” ESV

My Soul Weeps

Oh, how this verse hurts down deep inside my soul. I am that person who wants to believe my actions and motives are right in the moment, but am I really able to examine my heart and find the real truth in the motives of my actions? Yes, the sinful part of me feels capable of knowing what my actions mean, but what does my heart reveal to my Heavenly Father. A Father who reveals the real truths behind my ways causes me to cry as Isaiah did in chapter 6. “Woe to me…” I am not worthy of his love and grace, yet he continues to call me his own. Thankfully, I am a child of God no matter the mistakes I make and the destruction I leave in my wake. He will graciously forgive me if I ask and know that my ways are wrong. Do others see this in me?

Although, I feel my actions and words are good, I have to realize that I am a sinner and that those actions and words may not feel so good to those around me who receive my words and actions. Sometimes, I need to weigh my heart by the Lord and not lean on or into others to carry my burdens which they are not meant to carry. Do I need to be right and justify my behavior which may lead to shaming others which is toxic? Do I reach for self-justification for my actions? If God is my defender then I do not need to justify myself. Again, sinful nature at work just like Saul in 1 Samuel 13: 8-12. Saul made decisions he was not suppose to make and then justified those decision by blaming Samuel. How many times have I made a decision that leads God to say, “What have you done?” 1 Samuel 13:11.

I don’t want to reach for Self-Justification because it is:

  • Weakness that mask itself as a strength
  • impatience
  • Shuts down any discussion
  • Arrogant
  • Lazy

These are things that I do not want to see in myself or others to see in me, and I know that sometimes my sinful pride shows off with self-justification. I pray Lord for your wisdom and strength!

Soar like an Eagle

Lord, I want to soar on your wings. I want to walk the path you designed for me. I want so much more from my life. I read this verse and feel that I have missed something that God wants from me. I want to stop and listen for his voice, so that I may soar on his wings! “but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.” Isaiah 40:31 (NIV). Lord, I place my hope and strength in you. Show me how to soar on wings like an eagle, how to run and not grow weary, and how to walk and not grow faint. Show me how to walk in the path designed for me.

Sometimes the Rocky Path is the Way

Final Thoughts

Prayer: Lord, I need you to show me a clear path and give me wisdom in my actions especially around others. Thank you for this verse, the impact is weighty and immense. What am I missing? Amen.

Romans 7:15 – “I do not understand what I do. For what I want to do I do not do, but what I hate I do.”

God is Calling Me

God’s Beauty is Everywhere

Where have I been for the past 4 years?  I believe my last post was September 2019.  During 2019 my posting was sparse, and I finally let it go for another endeavor which I will share here.  At the beginning of 2019, I retired from my job of 28 years which I loved so much.  It was a hard decision but my husband and I purchased a Power Catamaran in April, 2018 and we made plans to travel through the Caribbean.  We spend 2019 getting to know our boat, selling our home, and putting minimal into storage.  By the end of 2019 we were ready to go!  We headed to the Bahamas first.  So beautiful, so special, and I could see God’s beauty and love all around me.  As we traveled I began another blog and video blog of our travels.  All of this can be found on our website www.solmatesjourney.com. This was a huge project and I stayed behind.  But family and friends wanted to see what we were doing.  

Covid hit, early 2020 and kept us from going any further, so back to the US we came.  We spend the next year around Florida and the Keys.  We became grandparents and then the world slowly began to open in 2022 but the islands were just too irregular to start that way, so I am in Mexico!  I have been working really hard to catch up on the travel videos and blog ( which I am not but getting so close)  so I am going to try and take back a little piece of my passion which was writing and sharing how God continues to bless me.  I feel God calling my back to this.  I will not post weekly but will try to be more consistent to get back in this groove.  God has blessed me beyond what I deserve and I feel his tug. As I look back I have a few drafts that I saved, so I will revisit those and hopefully get these up as he speaks. God Bless

May God have all the Glory, Always.

May I learn to be fishers of men

Bible Verse: “How Sweet are your words to my taste, sweeter than honey to my mouth!” Psalm 119:103

Two things combined have me deeper and closer to him right now and is drawing me back to his word and this blog once again.  

First, My daughter gave me the study of Elijah by Priscilla Shirer for Christmas, and finally I was able to get started.  I am moving through the book slower than laid out but it is causing so much deep thinking about my life and the world around me.  I am digging into His word and hearing the words as they connect to this world.  One it scares me some, but two I am driven to learn and dig deeper knowing that I must walk to a different beat than the world and that may not always be easy, but Abba will walk with me.  I am not finished yet, but this walk with Elijah is teaching me so much not just about me and Elijah but others in the Bible and their walk.  Connections that I have not made in scripture before are being made and opening my eyes.  I am sure that I will write ever more about Elijah as I walk through may own Cherith and Zarphath.  (1 Kings 17)

Second,   I started watching the series The Chosen about Christ.  Some may not approve of the liberties taken to create this series, but I like it and yes I have questions, but seeing the stories and connection to the old testament as well as how Jesus changed the world as help to connect me once again to his word.  The absurdity watching the Pharisees care so much about rules and laws but not people.  But, I have to remember that not all Pharisees were this way. How did God’s people come to this?  How did those of such importance to God at one time become so selfish and rich and chose to care so little for what was happening in the world around them.  It is so hard to believe, but then the series takes me back and I see that God’s people are usually one to two generations away from leaving God behind for the world and other gods.  This again scares me, but I know that I must walk even stronger and closer to my Abba and love all people so that my light for him will shine to others. The Chosen has challenged me to dig even deeper into the Gospels and what lies there and how they were written.  How did Jesus choose to call his disciples and go where he went.  His time was short but purposeful and planned by his Abba.  

So I will close with the prayer I prayed this morning which is from scripture:

“We acknowledge our wickedness, O Lord, and the iniquity of our fathers, for we have sinned against you. Do not spurn us, for your name’s sake; do not dishonor your glorious throne; remember and do not break your covenant with us. Are there any among the false gods of the nations that can bring rain? or can the heavens give showers? Are you not he, O Lord our God? We set our hope on you, for you do all these things.” Jeremiah 14: 20-22

Amen

There Is A Man I Admire

And that Man is Jesus.  

My heart is filled with so much hope and love.  I can walk day to day knowing that Jesus is by my side.  When I read of his life, I wonder how I get to have the life I have and Jesus had to sacrifice so much.  He loved, yet was betrayed by his own people.  “And as they were eating, he said, “Truly, I say to you, one of you will betray me.”” Matthew 26:21.  He trusted, yet those close turned against him.  With all of this he still forgave and opened the door for mankind to walk into the presence of this Father one day cleansed by his blood.  Why?  That is a deep and longing love for man.  “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.” John 3:16.   That is a heart that I long for to walk like Jesus.  Jesus walked the earth among the sinners he loved and always searched for the good.  He taught us to find the good in others and to love others just as Christ has loved us. One of my favorite stories of Jesus’s love is found In John 8:1-11. 

but Jesus went to the Mount of Olives. Early in the morning he came again to the temple. All the people came to him, and he sat down and taught them. The scribes and the Pharisees brought a woman who had been caught in adultery, and placing her in the midst they said to him, “Teacher, this woman has been caught in the act of adultery. Now in the Law, Moses commanded us to stone such women. So what do you say?” This they said to test him, that they might have some charge to bring against him. Jesus bent down and wrote with his finger on the ground. And as they continued to ask him, he stood up and said to them, “Let him who is without sin among you be the first to throw a stone at her.” And once more he bent down and wrote on the ground. But when they heard it, they went away one by one, beginning with the older ones, and Jesus was left alone with the woman standing before him. 10 Jesus stood up and said to her, “Woman, where are they? Has no one condemned you?” 11 She said, “No one, Lord.” And Jesus said, “Neither do I condemn you; go, and from now on sin no more.”

John 8:1-11.

I love that Jesus showed true forgiveness in this story and such an example for us all.  

Finding Jesus 

Finding Jesus in man today can be hard.  We are a self-centered people, who long to be right, be better than others, and find fault.  We protect ourselves from our own lives no matter the cost.  This is a hard world to live in and find Jesus.  “For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God, “ Romans 3:23.  Sometimes it seems like genuine Christians are few and far between.  Christians forget who they are and what they stand for sometimes as we walk through this secular world of sin.  God warns us of this world. “Do not love the world or the things in the world. If anyone loves the world, the love of the Father is not in him. For all that is in the world—the desires of the flesh and the desires of the eyes and pride in possessions—is not from the Father but is from the world.” 1 John 2:15-16.  Yet, even I find myself sometimes lost in the sins of this world.  It can be very confusing to watch Christians live in this world today.  I encourage us all to guard our hearts.  “Turn my eyes from looking at worthless things; and give me life in your ways.” Psalm 119:37.

There is a Man I Admire

I do live with a man that I see Jesus in everyday.  He loves, forgives, and challenges me to be a better person.  He has been filled with so much pain, yet smiles and lives life to the fullest each day.  Sometimes I wonder how so many people around him can cause so much hurt and leave so much pain.  “He himself bore our sins in his body on the tree, that we might die to sin and live to righteousness. By his wounds you have been healed.” 1 Peter 2:24.  I know Christ died for their sins just as he died for mine, so I pray.  I pray for healing, I pray for answers, I pray for forgiveness – I Just Pray!.  “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” Mark 11:24.  Jesus left us with a new commandment and my husband lives this commandment each day.  I am challenged to do the same by watching his example.  Love your neighbor.  “A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another. By this all people will know that you are my disciples, if you have love for one another.”  John 13: 34-35.

Closing Verse:  Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. John 14:6

Challenge:  Seek to be like Jesus and not the world.

Believing in God Through the Water

June 30, 2017

Back in June of 2017, I wrote a post about Water(link).  This post grew out of walking along the The Riverwalk in San Antonio, Texas.  Since this post, I have spent so much time in on the water, but tonight as I looked out at this sunset near Cedar Key, Florida.  I was flooded with the peacefulness of water in God’s creation.  

Sunset on the Water

Sunsets are my favorite, but whether it is sunset or sunrise over the water it always takes my breath away.  This evening in Cedar Key was no different, but tonight my thoughts drifted to God’s creation.  The beauty of the water rippling under the sunset is a perfect example of why I believe there is a God.  Romans 1:20 reminds us that God has left no doubt in why we should believe in Him, “For his invisible attributes, namely, his eternal power and divine nature, have been clearly perceived, ever since the creation of the world, in the things that have been made.  So they are without excuse.”  Man is without excuse, yet today we busy ourselves with the hustle and bustle that allows our lives to slip through our fingers and then is gone.  Did we see God?  Did we find God? Did we stop and smell the flowers?  Watch Sunsets?  Listen to the Water?  In a blink it is all gone.  So stop and listen to God.  Proverbs 3:6 reassures us, ” In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”

Sunset Challenge

If you are reading this my challenge to you is to stop reading now.  Pray.  And start looking beyond your day to day life and what you normally see and search for God in your surroundings.  Look deeper into the Water.  

Closing Verse:  “ O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.”  Psalm 63:1

Challenge:  Find God in his creation ~ Don’t Miss Out!

The Sinner in Me

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Who Am I?

I have been writing for over a year now, but today I find myself in deep examination of who I am.  God has placed me between two verses of scripture.  I have had a glimpse into the darkness and ugliness inside of me, and I fear I am a hypocrite.  I study His Word and share His Love in my life, yet I hid from others.  I lie about who I am, I lie to those close to me by pretending I am someone I am not.

I Am a Sinner

Yes, I am a sinner and have always known that but when God placed this verse he fully reminded me of my sinfulness before I had to face my sins.

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Funny, I shared this verse out of social media because it touched me and had lots of responses and reactions to it which now is just a reminder to me of our sinful nature and how haunting it is just as God opened my eyes and exposed my own.  I am thankful and grateful for his love in opening my eyes, but I so struggle with the Why?  Why? am I hiding my sins knowing the pain it could cause.  How did I let this happen?

A Simple Prayer

I pray that God will some how bless these words from a sinner.  I don’t usually stop and pray in my writing, but I feel strongly that I need to stop and pray now.

Father, give me the wisdom and strength to shine light on my sinful nature, my lies, and the pain I have caused.  Bless these words that from within healing will come and that the truth will cleanse and make whole that which is broken through your grace and love.  Amen

Saying this prayer brings the verse that God brought to me today:

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I cling to this verse now as a goal for my life.  I am headed toward this cleansing by publicly and personally committing to cleaning myself of my flesh and moving toward more holiness.  A path I should have already taken in my life.  I will walk to this scripture knowing that God promises in Romans 8:28, “We know that God is always at work for the good of everyone who loves him.  They are the ones God has chosen for his purpose,”  I cling to these words that I am a child of God and long for Christ in my heart.

Ethics

Oh the irony of sitting in a class on Ethics and reading this quote today by George Santayana, “Those who do not remember the past are condemned to repeat it.”  A stabbing reminder of my ethical sins.  As I become overwhelmed and humbled by my unworthiness, I can only fall before the throne and beg for forgiveness for my reckless sins and the hurt these have caused.  I am hiding behind God instead of him living within me.  The irony continues to drip in this class as I examine my own ethics. How have I been fraudulent to those around me?  The words are painful but necessary.  I see a sinner and liar in the mirror today but tomorrow I want to see Christ.  The only way to see Christ is to seek the truth.  As I close I want to share something I really learned in this class today and that is not to just apply the Golden Rule from Matthew 7:12, “Treat others as you want them to treat you.”  but maybe just maybe we should treat others the way they need to be treated in that moment.  I need to stop and see how my sins affect others around me.  Then maybe then I can truly call myself a Christian and feel like one.  Sin is hard to bear.

Closing:  (Prayer)  My Father, may you place the words of truth on my lips and guide me to share my sin of not choosing to follow you but my flesh.  Cleanse me and bring Your Glory.  In Jesus Name I pray.  Amen

Challenge:  When the devil and the angel sit on your shoulders, listen to the angel – Listen to God.

The Tongue & Apologies

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Rotten Fruit

How many times have my words cut someone down?  I can honestly say that I am not sure I really want to know the result of my tongue and the lack of my apologies.  Sometimes it is hard to stop and think about the wrongs I have done until I feel the impact of someone’s tongue toward me.  When I eat the fruits of someone else’s tongue, I only taste the fruit of my own.  I have to stop and linger over the rotten fruit that I have produced from my own lips.  “Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruits.” Proverbs 18:21.

The Tongue

I believe my biggest sins sometime come straight out of my mouth.  The tongue is such a work of evil that I pray constantly for the Lord to help me bring mine under control.    The Word tells me the only way to keep my tongue in check and I know that I alone can not do that without God working in me, so that my tongue brings more glorification than hurt to those around me.  “Whoever keeps his mouth and his tongue keeps himself out of trouble.” Proverbs 21:23.

Apologies

I want my tongue to bring healing and not hurt.  I want my tongue to spread God’s Love not the Devil’s hate.  I want my tongue to show love in all that comes forth, but I fail at this everyday.  When I fail I must sow the seeds of forgiveness by asking for forgiveness and giving it when I am hurt.  I must apologize and bring healing with my tongue when I bring hurt with my words are swords of hurt.  “There is one whose rash words are like sword thrusts, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.” Proverbs 12:18.  As I pray and seek God’s word to help keep my tongue in check, I turn my eyes to Jesus and know that following his example is the way to the Father.  “Jesus said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.” John 14:6.

 

 

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Closing Verse:  “For “Whoever desires to love life and see good days, let him keep his tongue from evil and his lips from speaking deceit;”  1 Peter 3:10.

Challenge: Seek the Lord in your words.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Good Morning, Lord

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Mornings

Recently, I read a blog post from IBelieve.com about praying before getting your day started and before getting caught up in the day.  Making that connection with the Father first thing in the morning.  After reading this blog, I thought about my mornings because I try to connect with the Lord before I start each day.  I strongly feel taking this time makes me a better overall person, wife, mother, friend, and employee because I started  my day working on my relationship with my Lord and Savior.

How does my morning begin?  I start each morning not just with a workout and walking my dog, but by spending time in God’s Word.  I open my day with devotion and prayer.  I stop and thank him for all the good he has given me in my life.  I count my blessings.  I find joy in the morning which carries me through the rest of my day.  This time lifts me up for the rest of my day. “Let me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust. Make me know the way I should go, for to you I lift up my soul.”  Psalm 143:8.  As I was writing this blog post, I ran across this picture on Facebook.  This is another reminder of why we should begin our day with the Lord and thank him for his blessings.

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Spreading Love

My mornings have changed over the years, sometimes I have been real exact in my time and other times I let the Lord lead the way.  There have been times when I focused on others in prayer and times when I have focused on my needs from the Lord.  There have been times where my devotions have been guided and other times where I just opened his word.  I have always tried to find his love for my life and then spread his love to others.  The only way I have found to make this impactful in my life is to begin the day with Him.  “Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days” Psalm 90:14.

 

Closing Verse:  Lamentations 3:22-23

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Challenge: How do you begin your day?  Consider beginning your day with the Lord. and see the way he will bless you.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Eye of the Storm

Peace in the midst of the Storm

Today, I sit and wait on Florence to arrive at my home. She has ravaged the NC coastline and kept me in the dark for days about my daughters well-being.  Today, though, I received good news for a change.  All is well where she is and her home is still standing with minimal damage.  Praise God!  Watching the rain and wind now brings me little anxiety as compared to the past few days.  God has answered prayer.  “Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.” Mark 11:24.  As I praised God this morning, I just felt this song in my heart.  I needed to hear it and sing it.  The emotions of the last few days are wrapped up in these words by Ryan Stevenson.

When the solid ground is falling out
From underneath my feet
Between the black skies and my red eyes
I can barely see
When I realize I’ve been let down by my friends and my family
I can hear the rain reminding me

In the eye of the storm, You remain in control
In the middle of the war, You guard my soul
You alone are the anchor, when my sails are torn
Your love surrounds, me in the eye of the storm

I know that as I watched, waited, and cried these last few days, God was with me and he comforted me and cared for me.  “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.” Psalm 23:4.  He loved me like no one could in such circumstances.  He was my rock and anchor when I felt like everything was out of control.   He provided my solid ground.

Faith in the midst of the Storm

This past week when I felt out of control and helpless, it was my faith that kept me going through the storm.  “Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.” Hebrews 11:1.  Walking in my faith has been the strength God has provided as I waited and waited for word of the storms impact.

When my hopes and dreams are far from me
And I’m running out of faith
I see the future I pictured slowly fade away
And when the tears of pain and heartache are pouring down my face
I find my peace in Jesus’ name

In the eye of the storm, You remain in control
In the middle of the war, You guard my soul
You alone are the anchor, when my sails are torn
Your love surrounds me, in the eye of the storm

Faith is all that can bring peace in the midst of storms in life.  Whether the storm is real or just storms of life the only peace can be found in faith.  “Therefore, since we have been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.”  Romans 5:1.  Guard your soul with the word of God.

Trust in the Lord

So this storm has taught me to trust more in the Lord.  To give my worries to him and stand in his strength and faith.  He is my protector.  “He will cover you with his pinions, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness is a shield and buckler.” Psalm 91:4.  I will hid under his wings through the storm.


When they let me go and I just don’t know
How I’m gonna make ends meet
I did my best
Now I’m scared to death
That we might lose everything

And when a sickness takes my child away
And there’s nothing I can do
My only hope is to trust You
I trust You LORD

In the eye of the storm, You remain in control
In the middle of the war, You guard my soul
You alone are the anchor, when my sails are torn
Your love surrounds me, in the eye of the storm

In the eye of the storm, You remain in control
In the middle of the war, You guard my soul
You alone are the anchor when my sails are torn
Your love surrounds me in the eye of the storm

Closing Verse:  “Now may the Lord of peace himself give you peace at all times in every way. The Lord be with you all.”  2 Thessalonians 3:16.

Challenge: Find refuge and peace in the eye of the storm under your Father’s wings where peace and faith live.

 

 

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