A SUMMER OF PSALMS

Both the north and south poles can be reached by beginning travel in the opposite direction.  Talk about meeting yourself coming and going!  If you continue straight travel north long enough, you pass the pole and begin to go south.  So why, then, cannot one travel eastward and have it eventually become westward?  The answer has to do with the position of the earth on its axis.  It’s tilted 23 degrees, but the poles are still at the top and bottom – the north pole and south pole.  Our planet is spinning on the north/south axis.

This is another example of what I call MIRACLE SCRIPTURE PASSAGES because there’s no way folks in Bible times knew all the cool stuff we know about earth and its axis and all that – didn’t they think the earth was flat?  The Bible truly is the inspired Word of God – creator of everything and the One who knows how it’s all put together.

Which brings us to east and west.  These two never meet!  I’m so very happy to say that my God throws my sins into the sea of forgetfulness and they are remembered no more!  He throws them as far as the east is from the west, and that’s a long, LONG way!

Sin is what separates us from our kind and loving Heavenly Father.  When Christ came to earth to live as a human, and subsequently bleed and die on a cross for the sins of every man, woman, and child past, present, and future, God knew we were not going to tow the line, hit the mark, be perfect – because we are human beings – we are not little gods.  We needed and need a Savior.  We were and are in big trouble without One.  God doesn’t send anyone to hell – we were and are sending ourselves – but it doesn’t have to end that way.  If we place our faith and trust in God’s only begotten Son, Jesus – we can have eternal life with Him forever in Heaven when this life is over.

Being saved does not make you perfect.  Being saved does give you a blessed hope in a world that sure could use hope.  Jesus is the only hope for mankind.  We’re just flesh and blood and we need a Savior who is more than that.  Jesus is more and He sits at the right hand of the Father right now.  You know, He doesn’t even know when He’s going to get the nod from Father God to come back for His own.  God’s the only one who knows the appointed time.  Yes, we see the signs of end times – all around us every day!  We know it’s going to be soon.  I don’t want you to miss it.

Ask the Lord to forgive you of sins you’ve committed, and things you may have omitted as well.  Ask Him to live in your heart and mind today.  Make Heaven your eternal home.  Ease your heart and mind of burdens and the horrible guilt associated with them that you don’t have to carry for the rest of your life.  Believe in the only man who ever died for you.  Salvation is yours right now.  What are you waiting for?  When you are forgiven by God through the shed blood of Christ, it is the most freeing feeling!  God wants to take your sins away and throw them as far as the east is from the west.  🙂

 

ROMANS 8:1 ON 8/1

TL ROMANS 8 1 ON 8 1

Therefore there is now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus, because through Christ Jesus the law of the Spirit of life set me free from the law of sin and death.  – Romans 8:1-2

There is not a promise in God’s Word that encourages my heart more than this one.  There is no longer any condemnation!  Forgiveness of sins and the ability to finally let go of shame and regret means one thing – I am free!!!

FREEDOM

But why is this verse here?  It begins with the word therefore, so we need to back up and see what this verse is there for…  let’s look at the last part of Romans 7.

 So I find this law at work:  when I want to do good, evil is right there with me.  For in my inner being I delight in God’s law; but I see another law at work in the members of my body, waging war against the law of my mind and making me a prisoner of the law of sin at work within my members.  What a wretched man I am!  Who will rescue me from this body of death?  Thanks be to God – through Jesus Christ our Lord!  So then, I myself in my mind am a slave to God’s law, but in the sinful nature a slave to the law of sin.  – Romans 7:21-25

If we’re honest, we admit facing the same struggle – some days more than others.  Remember the cartoons with the angel on one shoulder and the devil on the other?  :-/

Here’s the deal…  if you continue living in sin, you are a slave to it.  No matter what type of sin it is – you’re bound to it.  The only real freedom you will ever experience in your life is through Jesus Christ.  He loves you and wants to set you free from the chains of sin.

Sin demands so much of you – it is not possible to get straightened out on your own.  It takes supernatural help.  I pray that you will find a quiet place and bow your head to talk with God, in Jesus’ name.  Let Him have everything that binds you today.  He can give you a whole new attitude and outlook about your life from this moment forward.

He worked a miracle in me – and I know He can work one in you too.  🙂

 

GENESIS 6:5 ON 6/5

GENESIS 6 5 ON 6 5

The Lord saw that the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually.  – Genesis 6:5

Why would I choose such a negative Scripture?  Well, because the story doesn’t end there!  Did the Lord just throw up His hands and give up on us?  No – of course not!

Does this statement sound familiar?  “I’m a good person.  I don’t hurt people on purpose.  I don’t cheat on my mate and I pay my taxes.”  There are folks who think being good is good enough.  The truth is, every human is born with a sin nature that no amount of “goodness” within us can erase.  Every intention of the thoughts of our hearts are evil.  We have a root of evil that is bent to sin.

What is the solution to the problem of sinful nature?  When we celebrate Christmas – we celebrate the glorious arrival of the one and only perfect One – Christ Jesus!  God sent Him to live on our planet, serve His Father here – and eventually take the sins of the world – past, present, future – on Himself.  He willingly gave His life because He was the only one perfect and spotless Lamb of God worthy to erase our sins.

Once we trust Christ as our personal Savior (I didn’t say anything about religion) – it’s a relationship – at that time, we are free of guilt and shame.  I think I even lost some weight…  I can’t prove it, but I sure felt a lot lighter – 😉

SO…  even though God looks at every one of us and sees wickedness and evilness, once we are covered with the precious blood of Christ – when God looks at us, He sees His Son, Christ Jesus!

That is what I call HOPE TO COPE!!!  It’s good news for sure.  The gospel of Jesus Christ is great news for everyone.  God loves you…  pass it on!  🙂

NATIONAL CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRY DAY

TL 1-3 NATIONAL CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRIES DAY

 

1-3 CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRY JOY

1-3 A YUMMY BLESSING

Today is NATIONAL CHOCOLATE COVERED CHERRY DAY!!!

If you are interested in making these decadent desserts, here’s a recipe:

 http://www.food.com/recipe/chocolate-covered-cherries-214787

Of all the candy I like chocolate covered cherries the most!  It’s only right that these melt-in-your-mouth beauties have a special day.

Chocolate covered raisins, cherries, orange slices & strawberries all count as fruit, so eat as many as you want.  – Author Unknown

Melissa Clark of the New York Times describes Tom Faglon’s recipe for these confections as sophisticated because he adds pomegranate seeds on the surface of dark chocolate.

 Research tells us fourteen out of any ten individuals likes chocolate.   – Sandra Boynton

Other variations include cherry cordials with liquid fillings, often including cherry liqueur, as well as chocolate covered candied cherries and chocolate covered dried cherries.

 Strength is the capacity to break a chocolate bar into four pieces with your bare hands — and then eat just one of the pieces.  – Judith Viorst

Chukar Cherries in central Washington state dries 250,000 pounds of cherries and creates a much richer taste.

Which brand is best?

If you’ve got melted chocolate all over your hands, you’re eating it too slowly.  You think Kentucky Fried Chicken is finger-lickin’ good???  There’s a Russell-Stover store a few miles from Abeline, Kansas.  We try to stop there close to holidays – and I always go to the chocolate covered cherries!  So – suffice to say, it’s good that we don’t always go there.  Moderation is a must when chocolate is around!  You can enjoy this treat with no guilt as long as you do not over-indulge.

 Abdicate, v.: to give up all hope of ever having a flat stomach.  – Author Unknown

Before we get carried away with the candy, let’s temper it with reality.  It’s to be enjoyed in moderation.  Let’s explore some other ways to enjoy the day with less guilt:

Here’s a great chocolate covered cherry nail look:

 Isn’t that pretty?

I wonder how that would look with gray eyes?  I might try it!

Here’s some chocolate covered cherry SOAP…  I’ll bet that smells really good!

And yeah – there’s a song.  It’s not my favorite type of music – but it’s called Chocolate Covered Cherry.  I couldn’t resist.

Enjoy the day with just a few chocolate covered cherries and have fun doing up your fingernails, makeup, making this amazing soap and listening to this very addictive song!  😀

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (16)PLEASE DON'T TELL GOD

Have you ever felt the need to hide things from God? I have. It’s futile and useless to try because let’s face it – He is God and He does know! Sometimes I approach the throne of God in much the same way I enter a church building:

SMILES, EVERYONE… SMILES!!! – Mr. Rourke (Fantasy Island)

You know, the truth is, there is nobody we can be more “real” with than God. God knows us better than we know ourselves. He made us and is aware of our weaknesses and shortcomings. We are always to strive to be more like Jesus, but God knows we are human and will be until the day we die. He made us to commune with Him and fellowship with Him – to worship Him. Jesus died as a sacrifice so we could have a relationship with God, through Him.

Tell God what’s on your heart and mind.  Don’t keep sweeping the pain under the rug – or scooping more ice cream into your bowl.  I know it sounds silly to want to hide my feelings from God, but for years that’s exactly what I did.  If I just ate then the pain would leave – but that is a short-term fix. It also wrecked my health and I’m in a mess with type 2 diabetes as well.

Being angry at God is not cool – but I was. I was mad at God because I saw the most irresponsible couples have babies, yet I was not allowed to have one. Isolated and jealous of parents everywhere, I sat and ate all day. Eventually I decided to go back to work, but I kept food at my desk. I was still trying to make myself feel better. Did it work? No.

If you have feelings of anger toward God, tell Him. He can take it! God loves us so much and if we would just stop being scared of making God mad at us, we would save ourselves a lot of unnecessary heartache and health problems in life.

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (17)

plead verb \ˈplēd\: to ask for something in a serious and emotional way: to try to prove (a case) in a court of law: to say in court that you are either guilty or not guilty of a crime: to make a plea

Are we guilty? Well, of course we are! That’s why the supreme sacrifice made by Christ had to happen. Does Christ make us righteous with the Father? Yes! So, do we have to beg and plead with our heavenly Father for showers of blessing on our lives? Well, according to the old hymn, “Showers of Blessing” we do. The mercy drops are falling all around us, but if we want the showers of blessing, we must plead.

I was raised on the old hymns and I love them. They have such depth and meaning in my life. I’ve read the background stories for most of the hymns and understand where the hymn writer was coming from – for the most part. A pianist in my former church challenged the lyrics of this hymn and it made me think. It was a question that had never occurred to me – I don’t know whether I was just being passive or I was just so used to hearing the hymn sung – and the words washed over me.

I couldn’t let it go. I kept asking myself, “How much does God expect me to plead for the showers of blessings on my life?” My friend disagreed with the idea so much that she refused to play the hymn for the congregation to sing it! I wasn’t to that point – yet. I’ve pondered the question and continue to think about it. To plead or not to plead… that is the question. Whether ’tis nobler to suffer the… um… anyway. Take a look at these words:

There shall be showers of blessing:
This is the promise of love;
There shall be seasons refreshing,
Sent from the Savior above.

Showers of blessing,
Showers of blessing we need;
Mercy-drops round us are falling,
But for the showers we plead.

There shall be showers of blessing—
Precious reviving again;
Over the hills and the valleys,
Sound of abundance of rain.

There shall be showers of blessing;
Send them upon us, O Lord!
Grant to us now a refreshing;
Come, and now honor Thy Word.

There shall be showers of blessing;
O that today they might fall,
Now as to God we’re confessing,
Now as on Jesus we call!

There shall be showers of blessing,
If we but trust and obey;
There shall be seasons refreshing,
If we let God have His way.

I must admit here and now, the words are beautiful – up to the point that we are to plead for the shower of blessing from God. I know we are to walk humbly with our God and seek Him in all things with a sincere heart. It’s certainly a line to be considered. I am guilty but made right under the blood of Christ. I humbly ask that God bless my life with showers of blessing, but I would not say it is necessary to actually plead. Yes we are to ask with a sincere and contrite spirit to be sure.

Mercy drops ’round us are falling, but for the showers we plead. Hmm… 😉

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (13)

LOOK AHEAD

The Apostle Paul… I look forward to meeting him one day in heaven! He is the one who wrote the great word pictures in the Bible. The life of a Christian is like a race, and there is a prize at the finish line. It almost makes me want to go out and try to run. Hey, I said almost!

It’s my guess that Paul was a fit person. I imagine he must have been a runner. He certainly knew how to get people excited and enthused about Christianity. He knew how to be a leader with diplomacy and tact. Even when he had to clamp down on some of the churches, he did so with the love of Christ in his heart. Every letter included Christian compassion and brotherly watch care.

We are encouraged to look ahead and leave our sorted past where it belongs – in the past. If we try to drag the past around with us it can only do one thing – weigh us down. We need to give the past to God. He knows what to do with it. He will throw it into the sea of forgetfulness and never remember it again. I wish I could forget my past as completely, don’t you?

If I could forgive and forget as well as God does, wouldn’t that be wonderful? How much faster would I run without the extra weight? How much further could I run if I didn’t get winded as easily? Would I be a better witness for Christ if I was free of the weight?

I’m encouraged by what Paul says and I will try to leave the past in the past and run with a renewed strength and purpose from my heavenly Father. Then one day, I can say along with Paul:

I have fought the good fight, I have finished the race, I have kept the faith.
– 2 Timothy 4:7

That’s really what it’s all about.  🙂