Monday, September 29, 2014

Goodies...From a Known Source

Pumpkin roll, Banana Nut bread (or zucchini), Coconut Cream pie, Caramel Corn, Peanut Butter cookies, etc.  Why is it that we so easily turn to a cookbook and pull a recipe, prepare it, then sit down to enjoy it; yet, we hesitate to pull something from the Bible, apply it, then enjoy the results?  Is it not just as simple to apply God's principles to our lives?  Still at times, we make it out to be the absolute hardest thing ever to accomplish!  (I said "we"!)  It's been said many times before that the Bible is our "road map" to Heaven and the things of God...but why is it that we turn to other things instead?  Think about it...a recipe, whether obtained from a cookbook, online, or from a relative - it probably came from Mrs. Suzy Homemaker who lives somewhere in the hills of some little unheard of town.  How is it that we'll use her (someone we don't even know!) recipe to satisfy our craving for Pumpkin Cheesecake but not trust God's (who we DO know) way of working out our situations?  Am I making it clear for you?  Hello!!!  Pull out God's Word, get some Godly counseling from the RIGHT sources...don't chance your salvation and questions to someone you don't even know.  You are not their priority!  Trust God and those people He's placed in your life to watch over your soul.  Just a thought!  Ok...that's let me go enjoy some goodies!

Saturday, September 27, 2014

He's Still Working On Me...Big Kids Version

"Hammer, saw...pass me the level now, please." So, I'm finishing up my Sunday School lesson for the kids this week...and I'm sitting here so very thankful that even as one of God's "bigger kids" - HE'S STILL WORKING ON ME! :)  My heart is grateful that He has a perfect plan for us in His mind and He doesn't give up on us easily.  Luke 1:37 "For with God NOTHING shall be impossible."  He has His own personalized toolbox and knows just what it takes to make whatever He wants.  Master Carpenter, mind you.  How comforting to know that regardless of how many times we "mess up" or what shape our life is presently in, God is faithful to continue working on us if we'll be on His team ("with God!") and be willing to be submissive to His ways.  Can somebody say it with me...NOTHING SHALL BE IMPOSSIBLE!!!  In the hands of a loving God who made a perfect world in just seven days, if He can do that I'd say that's glorious news for me and you today...even if some of us are "bigger kids".  Work on, Jesus!

Tuesday, September 16, 2014

Once Upon A Time...Retold

Once upon a time…remember those words?  Cinderella, Little Red Riding-Hood, or maybe it was a more “modern” story.  No matter which story you remember, we all have stories in our own lives.  There are also times when we all need to be reminded that the hero will step in and save the day.  There are moments when we ask questions.  How will this work out?  What will happen if this happens?  How will we make it if such and such takes place?  How is this need going to be met?  How is God going to work this one out?  You know the million questions that our minds can produce in the matter of seconds after realizing we’re in need of a miracle. 
We know our hope and rest comes from the Lord (our ultimate HERO!) who knows all – including every detail of our lives.  We know He is our healer, protector and our provider- our Savior and deliverer.  We know nothing escapes His attention and awareness.  Yet sometimes He has to place us upon His knee just like a child and tell us a story once again.  Who doesn’t need reminded at one time or another?
Just the other night, the Lord took me upon his knee… “Once upon a time…”.   Yes, I needed to be reminded of the story how He protected me even before I can really remember when I fell off of a slide at the park.  Then He told me the story again of how He healed me of a tumor behind my eye when I was only 4 years old.  He reminded me how He brought me through toxemia after my darling little girl was born.  He reminded me how He provided food on my table and clothes to wear.  All kinds of different times, situations and circumstances…trying times in my life…times when I asked questions…but He always came through and His will was always done.  My Hero!  The Knight in shining armor who stepped in and saved the day!
If you’re questioning today, if you need your faith strengthened, ask Him to take you upon His knee and read your story to you once again.  Yes, I say sometimes we just need to be reminded that He knows where we’re at and that He’s writing our Once Upon A Time…and as His Word says…He has an expected end.  He’s ready to turn the page for you.  Are you ready to listen?

Friday, September 5, 2014

Flannel Boards & Paper Figures

Go with me, if you will.  To a Sunday school class years ago.  I can see a baby-blue covered flannel display board and the hands of a dedicated teacher as she holds up two paper figures between her fingers.  The story comes to life and quickly becomes one of my favorites - the story of Ruth & Naomi.  Loyalty, growth, friendship.  Such wonderful lessons I learned and took to heart. Today's lesson - God's ways are not our ways!  He thinks way differently from me!  Not only does He do things His way, it's ALWAYS the best for me when it boils right down to it.  God showed me this today...yes, I'm still learning after all these years removed from that class. :)
You most likely know the story too.  Naomi came home from the land of Moab with her daughter-in-law, Ruth.   She had lost much in the land of Moab and upon returning to her home place, she told the people to no longer call her Naomi, but to call her Mara.  So, that was that.  There's theology behind it all, I know, but this was the simple thought God gave me:  it didn't matter what Naomi decided she should be called at that point in her life, at the end of the book -   Ruth 4:17 says,  "And the women her neighbours gave it a name, saying, There is a son born to Naomi;"  The name "Mara" is only mentioned once in the Bible...when Naomi mentioned it.  How Naomi described herself at that point in her life was NOT what God saw or thought about her.  He raised her up and showed her His blessings anew.
Sometimes we look at our circumstances and name (call) it what we want, but that's not necessarily what God calls it.  What we may call a disappointment may just be God's appointment.  That vehicle with a blown-up motor might be called something else entirely.  The sickness your experiencing may not be that at all.  If you think God can no longer use you, if you think you've made too many mistakes or if you're feeling emptiness inside...that's most likely probably not what God says about you.  Again, I remind you, His ways are not our ways and He thinks differently too!!!  Hang on and know that at the end of this book, there is a perfect name for you and your situation.  There is a flannel board with your story on it...and you're the paper figure in Jesus' hands.  No safer place to be!  Have faith...God has great plans for you in His Kingdom.
Ruth 1:16  "And Ruth said, Intreat me not to leave thee, or to return from following after thee: for whither thou goest, I will go; and where thou lodgest, I will lodge: thy people shall be my people, and thy God my God:"