A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART1

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.  – Proverbs 3:5&6

proverbs-3-56

This is one of my favorite Proverbs because it reminds me that I serve a God who can be trusted completely.  When we lean on God and His wisdom when we need to make good choices, His power when we feel so powerless, and His goodness when we feel as though nobody in our lives is good to us, it teaches us how to fully rest in Him.

trust-for-straight-pathsGod’s promises never fail and His provision is complete.  If we need direction in life, we know God is faithful to guide us in the best direction.  He wants to help us in our daily life and keep us from harm.  We don’t know the future, but our Heavenly Father does, and wants to guide and bless our journey along the way.

While some may put confidence in physical strength, wealth, or friendships, children of God know that these things can disappear.  Acknowledge His sovereignty, His wisdom, power and goodness, being careful to praise and glorify His name.  In return, God will direct our steps.  That is how we stay safe and happy in life.

We read the phrase “my son” in the book of Proverbs.  It’s like the father offering wise advice to the son.  There are uncertainties in the young son’s future, and the father just wants to save the son from learning lessons the hard way.  Of course, the son is getting bad advice in his other ear from his worldly friends – so the dad is diligent about emphasizing the importance of making wise choices in life.

By yielding the decisions of life to God, the son is saved from heartache.  He’s encouraged to trust in God with all his heart – and give God all his heart, not withholding any area of his life from the Lord.

It’s not okay to just forsake a few things that are unwise – make good choices across the board and please your God.  He wants your whole heart.  Be humble enough to understand that you are not wise enough to be your own guide.  God cares about us and our welfare.  He knows that life is challenging sometimes, but He can be trusted to guide us in the right direction and face every challenge that comes along.  🙂

 

Advertisements

JEREMIAH 6:16 ON 6/16

TL 6-16 JEREMIAH 6-16 ON 6-16

This is what the Lord says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls. But you said, ‘We will not walk in it.’   – Jeremiah 6:16

If you travel much, you probably do a little planning ahead of time.  A few weeks before we head out, I see my husband studying his big Rand-McNally map.  The prophet says that the Lord wants us to ask where the good way is and walk in it.  It just makes common sense to choose a good way.  I’m sure my husband is not looking at the cow paths that will take us where we need to go.  He’s mapping out a route using interstate highways and byways.YOUR WAYS

So many in the world today are saying they will not walk in that good way.  They are so wrapped up in their rights, they are overlooking the wonderful benefits that follow when they submit to the God of the universe through Christ Jesus.

Jeremiah brings us words from God Himself, yet we still don’t heed them.  How do we find rest for our souls apart from walking the good way provided by God?  We can’t.  We think we can.

Oh – maybe we can find it in making lots of money.  Yeah – that must be the way.  Have you ever met someone who won the lottery?  I have.

We were going to a little church in a small community near our city.  My husband and I took care of the flower garden in the spring and summer months.  One Saturday, we were working in the garden when we heard some people driving by and they were just honking and waving and being crazy.  We knew what they were thinking – they thought we were the couple that won the lottery – but we weren’t.  The guy who did the lawn for the church about a block away had just won the lottery!  The last I heard, he had to sell his house, move without leaving a forwarding address, as I understand it he ended up divorced and basically miserable, wishing he had never played the lotto.  I’m guessing that money doesn’t buy happiness or rest for the soul.

I’ve heard people say that they feel wonderful when they are eating yummy scrumptious food.  Hmm…  this is a path I’ve trod.  The food you eat tastes so good, I’m the first to admit it.  You chew for about 30 seconds, then swallow.  You swap 30 seconds of wonderful for a lifetime of weight (fat, let’s face it) on your body.  Eventually, eating and overeating will catch up with you.  As little as two pounds of extra weight on your knees can do a number on them and a knee replacement is needed.  Disease such as type 2 diabetes can result from being overweight.  I’m guessing food won’t bring rest to our souls.  It’s not even an effective way to deal with anxiety or fear.  Stress eating doesn’t take stress away – it just makes it worse.

How about working out and making our bodies look perfect?  Yeah – surely exercise would bring rest to our souls!  Yeah – let’s just go to the gym every day and become gym rats.  We can get really fit and spend hours looking at our own reflection in the mirror.  Well, yes that’s going to help get weight off and yes that will make our health and overall outlook on life better, but that’s not what brings rest to our souls.  God does want us to take care of our one and only body – but no, it’s still the wrong path to receive rest for our souls.

See where this is going?  People turn to alcohol, drugs, sex, and all sorts of addictive behavior to find satisfaction for the flesh and a way to escape the stresses of life – but it’s not going to give rest for the soul.  It’s only when we get on the right path – God’s path and His ways that we find peace, joy, Agape love (God’s kind of love), and yes, rest for our souls.  🙂

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (23)

Wichita_Heights_High_School_Main_Entrance_2013

Formula for success…  rise early, work hard and strike oil!  – Unknown

At 7:00 pm, the Wichita Heights High School commencement ceremony will be held at Koch Arena on the Wichita State University Campus.  While I doubt if anyone from the 2016 graduating class reads this blog (I’d be very surprised), I want to wish graduates everywhere the very best wishes and say God bless you as you move on with your life.  🙂

Here are just a few positive affirmations and blessings to take with you as you go out into the world to make your way.

There is a good reason they call these ceremonies “commencement exercises.”  Graduation is not the end; it’s the beginning.  – Orrin Hatch

I PRAYED FOR YOUR FUTURE

 

Don’t live down to expectations.  Go out there and do something remarkable.  – Wendy Wasserstein

I was a Falcon at Heights – class of ’79!  I know…  I know – that’s a really LOOOOONG time ago.  But some things never change.  When I graduated it was so amazing because it felt like I had accomplished something important.  So many people don’t get to finish school – I feel blessed to have that diploma (yes, it is discolored a bit now – LOL!) 

Things turn out best for the people who make the best out of the way things turn out.  – Art Linkletter

One thing I will tell you is that you are not finished learning yet.  You will never be finished learning, so keep an open mind when you enter the workplace.  Even if you took every class in high school to prepare yourself for your chosen field, always respect and listen carefully to the folks who have worked in the field for years.  No amount of classroom exposure can prepare you for the real life experience you will gain in the workplace.

Always be a first-rate version of yourself, instead of a second-rate version of somebody else.  – Judy Garland

God made you an individual, unlike anyone else.  Take your unique version of shine into the workplace with you.  Others will appreciate your contribution and your good attitude.  Don’t be the one who drags yourself in to work and starts complaining about everything from the moment you walk in the door.  Nobody really wants to be there, but everyone wants to gravitate toward the person with the most shine in their aura, so to speak.  Be the shiny one with the bright attitude and quick wit.

Do not follow where the path may lead.  Go, instead, where there is no path and leave a trail.  – Ralph Waldo Emerson

You have been given one life by your Creator.  Make the most of it whether it seems you are a success or a failure.  It’s not easy to fail, but most of us have to learn lessons the hard way.  It’s not getting knocked down that matters, but it’s not getting back up that matters.  Don’t let life keep you down for long.

It is not the mountain we conquer, but ourselves.  – Edmond Hillary

Once you have learned the basics of your chosen field, look for ways to improve or enhance it.  I’m not necessarily suggesting that you find shortcuts, but if there is a better way to do something, speak up and let your ideas be heard.  Just because doing things one way has been the status quo doesn’t mean it’s the only way to do it.

There are no shortcuts to any place worth going.  – Beverly Sills

You are the key to the future.  The class of ’79 is starting to retire now.  We have worked hard and are ready to enjoy life and sleep in – lol.  It’s your turn now.  It’s time for you to find your wings and follow your dreams.

High expectations are the key to everything.  – Sam Walton

I pray for you as you go out into the world to serve others.  May God richly bless your life from this moment on.  🙂

ROMANS 10:8 ON 10/8

TL ROMANS 10 8 ON 10 8

https://youtu.be/T2nJ69YktX8

But what does it say? “The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart” (that is, the word of faith that we proclaim)…  – Romans 10:8

When life is difficult and the stress level is almost too much to bear, this is the truth we need to lean on.  God’s Word, the Bible – the infallible, unchanging, reliable Promises of our Lord.  The word of faith that we proclaim…  yes!

God and His Word are near to us – and we feel a comfort that is not understood by the world.  He loves us so much and wants us to know He is with us to sustain us through bad times – and He is also there for our good times.  He sends us angels often as well to help as well.

Angels are God’s messengers whose chief business is to carry out his orders in the world. He has given them an ambassadorial charge. He has designated and empowered them as holy deputies to perform works of righteousness. In this way they assist him as their creator while he sovereignly controls the universe. So he has given them the capacity to bring holy enterprises to a successful conclusion.  – Billy Graham

I’ve noticed a trend in recent years of angel worship.  Here’s the thing about angels…  they are real, but they are not to be worshipped or prayed to.  God and His Son, Christ Jesus are to be worshipped and prayed to.  Angels are God’s secret messengers – secret agents.  Created by God to help Him help us.  They have a role but are never to be put in a higher priority than God or Jesus.  They are not that high – they are higher than we are – i.e. they can fight Satan when we, by ourselves – cannot.  Always call for help before taking Satan on…  humans can’t fight him without supernatural reinforcements.

If we had open spiritual eyes we would see not only a world filled with evil spirits and powers―but also powerful angels with drawn swords, set for our defense.  – Billy Graham

I have Billy Graham’s book about angels.  He explains their role in the spiritual realm with great precision.

Click image to enlarge

We catch ourselves referring to our loved ones who have gone to heaven (especially children) as angels.  They are not.  Angels are created by God – they are created to be angels.  They are to help God, but it’s not because God cannot be everywhere at once.  Let’s remember that our God is omnipresent!  People ask me all the time – If God is omnipresent, why does He need help from angels?  My favorite answer is – Because He wanted to. 

We each have a guardian angel.  Have you seen yours in action?  I believe I have watched my guardian angel in action on more than one occasion.  There have been a few times when the prayer for traveling mercies were answered – and I believe my guardian angel interceded just in time!  I also believe that my guardian angel once had beautiful black hair, but now has gray hair.  He or she earned each one of them!

I have a stepping stone in my garden that says ANGEL LANDING ZONE.  I invite them to land at my house and stay close to me and my family.  I don’t worship them – I worship the same One they worship – God.  By faith, I proclaim that He is near me.  His Holy Spirit is near me.  His Word is near me.  His angels are close to me and I know no matter what happens, God, Jesus and the angels will never leave me.  It’s going to be alright.  🙂

 

ROMANS 8:8 ON 8/8

TL ROMANS 8 8 ON 8 8

Those who are in the realm of the flesh cannot please God.  – Romans 8:8

DON'T GET STUCK

This portion of Scripture is fairly straight forward.  In order to honor God, we have to embrace His Word and His Way of living.  God’s Holy Word – every bit of it.

I was reading about how important it is to have proper lighting surround you when you are chatting on Skype.  It’s not a simple fix, but you can look lovely if you put forth some effort, they say.  The article went on to explain that if you position your light directly behind your gadget’s camera and place a sheet of white paper on the table, directly below your chin (which will bounce a soft glow onto your face) – then you will look really good!

How much effort are we willing to make to look good for our Heavenly Father?  Do we care if He is pleased?  Does it matter if He sees us in a flattering light?  Will we put more effort into looking good on Skype than we do in being godly?

Is anyone else saying OUCH… ???

We do tend to spend a lot of time on the external, don’t we?  If Christians (I’m pointing to myself too) would spend half the time working on the internal, how great would that be?  That’s why daily devotionals and Bible study classes are so important.  We need to have that head knowledge of God’s Word to make us wise.  We need to have that heart knowledge of God’s Word to make us strong.

Let’s have the proper lighting on board as we walk in God’s Way…  God Himself.  Before you step out into the world today, don’t forget to pray.  Ask the Lord to light your way and point you in the right direction.  Ask Him to keep you safe from harm and hold you closely.  He will honor that heart-felt prayer and protect you along life’s way.  Why?  Because He loves you, silly!  🙂

 

 

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

TL A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART (23)

FACE TEMPTATION
We face temptations daily – and that’s the bad news.  The good news is, we do NOT face temptations alone – or at least we don’t have to.  Temptation does not come from Christ, but from Satan.  When you read “fall into temptation” you automatically think it’s about what you do wrong – but it’s not necessarily limited to that.  It can refer to anything that puts our faith to the test, not just temptations to sin.

 Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.  When tempted, no one should say, “God is tempting me.” For God cannot be tempted by evil, nor does he tempt anyone;  but each person is tempted when they are dragged away by their own evil desire and enticed.  – James 1:12-14

Some commentaries refer to the character of those who persevere as patient or constant.  You know how blunt I am.  My description of the Christian who perseveres through the trials and tribulations in life – is stubborn!  Oh, you know a stubborn Christian, don’t you?  Sometimes they make you crazy because they seem to be so immovable.

We know that the road is narrow and a crown of life is promised to us if we have the love of Christ reigning in our hearts.  If we truly love God, we will strive to endure in His name.  His love is perfect and if we have that same love along with stubborn determination and call on God’s Holy Spirit to guide us, we’ll have a crown to cast at Jesus’ feet one day in heaven.

Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did.  – Newt Gingrich

A mind that has single and prevailing regard to its spiritual and eternal interest, and that keeps steady in its purposes for God, will grow wise by afflictions, will continue fervent in devotion, and rise above trials and oppositions.

There’s something to be said for being a stubborn Christian.  Not like donkey stubborn because God is love.  Ready, set, GO!!!