Father May I?

The mercy of our God is bigger than any sin you commit!  No matter how far you’ve strayed away from the Lord Jesus Christ, He is able to forgive and forget your transgressions IF you will ask Him.  You can be assured of salvation for eternity right now.  It’s not easy to follow Christ because you must take up His cross in your life.  Standing up for your faith and speaking your mind about your Christian beliefs is probably the most difficult thing one can do, but we have Christ by our side helping us every step of the way.

Will you trade your worries and cares for the Lord’s great mercy and grace?  You can experience His love, peace, and forgiveness of sins.  Just turn all the junk and your burdens over to Him.  Then give Him praise and glory because you have begun a brand new journey that is surrounded with faith in Christ Jesus!  God Bless you extra-special good as you start your new walk!

The word EVERYTHING is all-inclusive!  When God’s Word says everything, it leaves nothing out.  You could interchange the word WHATEVER because again, there is nothing excluded.  You can pray to the Lord about anything on your mind.  He wants to hear from you!

There is nothing that is off-limits with God.  He knows all about it to begin with, you know!  Even though He already knows, He still wants you to talk it over with Him.  Maybe you need advice.  Maybe you need forgiveness.  Maybe you just need to be heard without having something fixed.  He knows that too!

God, through His Son Jesus Christ, hears every prayer we pray.  He will lift every burden from you and act on your behalf.  He is not a disappointment.  He loves you so much!

Last week we were ready to put our spiritual chocolate chip cookies in the oven to bake.  You know, sometimes I get a little anxious when I am in the kitchen because I’m not what you’d call a cook that’s comfortable in the kitchen.  I’m awkward with a knife and I’ve peeled my own fingers with the potato peeler a few times.  I have other talents, but none of them are chef-related.  I’m not a chef – pampered or otherwise.  LOL!  

So as I put the spiritual chocolate chip cookies in the oven, I’m calling on my Father today, asking, “Father May I please use Your special timer so my cookies don’t burn?”

Dear Heavenly Father, I tend to get anxious and uptight when I’m expected to do things I’m uncomfortable doing.  I need Your timer to make sure these cookies do not get burned.  If I don’t have it, I could easily get distracted – especially when I put in the last batch.  I’m not sure why I always burn the last batch, except to say I do get tired by then.  I lose interest and if I don’t have a timer to remind me to get them out of the oven, pretty soon the smoke alarm does that job!  So, Lord please keep me focused on the task at hand.  I want my spiritual chocolate chip cookies to be pleasing to You!  Thank You in advance for helping me.  In Jesus’ Holy and matchless name I pray, Amen.

As we pray more and stress less, God will help us be our spiritual best!  His love has no limit and He wants to help us succeed in life.  We know that He has a place already prepared for His own in Heaven – so He’s seen to it that we are taken care of in the afterlife as well.  What is there to be anxious or upset about?  🙂

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A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

My mother used to tell me not to be such a worry wart.  I don’t hear that phrase used much these days.  Now people say “chill” or “no problem” to indicate they are not overly concerned about things.  Apparently, I am a worry wart.  Have you seen a wart?  They are not pretty, and we want to hide them.  Does it make a person ugly when they worry?  Does worry manifest itself in our appearance?  Does worry manifest itself in our health or lack thereof?

Maybe that’s why God wants us to have less fear and more faith.  He wants us to plan, but He wants us to include Him in the plan and rely on Him to guide us in the right direction.  We pray as we plan, trusting that He will help us in all ways.  Faith takes the pressure off of our shoulders – and lessens our fears.  When you pray instead of worry – what a difference it makes! 

In all matters – big and small – we seek God and trust His wisdom and His way to make things work out.  He’s so faithful to us every time.  Regardless of the problem, we know He will be there with us.  It’s been my experience that God’s way of working things out is so much more creative than anything I could think of.  So many times He has worked things out for me and I just smile and look up and say – “Lord…  I KNOW that was YOU!”  Don’t forget to thank Him and praise Him for all the great answers He comes up with!  ❤

God wants us to have JOY in HIM…  and if we spend our days worrying about things, it steals that joy!  Don’t worry about anything – pray instead because God is listening and He can be trusted to handle the issues in your life.  Trade your worries for His blessed peace.  🙂

Why worry?  If you’ve done the very best you can, worrying won’t make it any better.  – Walt Disney

Worry never robs tomorrow of its sorrow, it only saps today of its joy.  – Leo Buscaglia

I made this facebook cover.  If you want less fear and more faith, please feel free to snag it and put it on your facebook page!  Have a wonderful week!  🙂

 

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

Folks in our day and age don’t say the word TREAD much – we say walk more often than not; however, the word TREADMILL is not only familiar to most of us, but a regular part of healthy living.  I really hate using the treadmill at the gym – but it’s honestly not because I’m lazy!  The chronic sciatica I’ve suffered with for over 30 years has held me back – I have this thing about hurting…  I don’t dig it.  My leg burns from the moment I wake up in the morning until I blissfully go to sleep at night.  I’m very happy when I’m asleep.

Through the years I’ve done different things to make it better – right after the injury I was in physical therapy for several months – nearly a year.  I was on strong pain medications but as we all know, they have unwelcome side effects.  I decided they weren’t worth it – so I weaned myself off of them and tried to keep moving.  It hurts like crazy, but I have to keep moving.

Today I have no brain fog and other effects of strong pain meds have disappeared.  I have given the issue to God.  Don’t roll your eyes at me…  it’s true.  Now I take 2 Aleve in the morning and move as much as I can.  God’s helping me, but I had no doubt He would.

A pastor’s wife once told me, “Everybody has SOMETHING.”  At first, I thought that was her not so subtle way of telling me she didn’t want to hear about my issues (which I don’t recall sharing at the time anyway).  But I put a pin in the comment and stuck it in the back of my mind.  She’s right – we’re human and we get tired, weary, discouraged at times, and close to quitting.  Then – God steps in.  He never shows up early – but He steps in – just in time – His perfect time.  I’ve found that to be true and I’ve heard testimony after testimony that bears this out.

I can’t explain how my messed up back with a burning sciatic nerve has the ability to walk on the treadmill, ride the bike, and do other machines…  it’s all God – He has given me the strength and the GOD-bility to keep moving.  I praise Him for helping me every day!

God helps us do what we have to do – but even more exciting…  He helps us do what we like to do – and most writers would say…  what they absolutely must do!  God has put such a desire within us to write, and everybody knows…  a writer WRITES… about anything, anytime, anywhere.  Put me in an elevator by myself and shut the door.  If I have a pencil and some paper (or a napkin, preferably unused, but…) – I can come up with something – it could be about the color of the buttons…  lol.  Maybe there’s a fly in the elevator with me.  Hmm…  bonus!

If you’re feeling like you can’t tread…  or walk on the treadmill…  remember, with God and His strength – you can!  Climb those mountains like a deer!  🙂

 

 

 

A COMMENTARY FROM THE HEART

Why is there a music staff at the top of this design?  Well, I’m glad you asked…  because every time I read these verses, I SING THEM!  It’s one of many songs I learned as a child and I can’t shake it – not that I’d want to…  but earworms can be…  um – distracting.  Every teacher will tell you that memorizing Scripture is easier if it’s done with a tune – and it’s true.

I taught Sunday School for over 30 years…  I have a lot of Scripture earworms, but this one is my favorite.  I love that calypso beat – and imagined myself relaxing on a beach somewhere on particularly stressful days.  Hey – every child is not well-behaved, but for the most part I taught some sweet kids, I must say.

Just as Amazing Grace is a favorite hymn worldwide, this is without a doubt the favorite portion of Scripture for Christians everywhere!  Why?  Because it sums up the gospel of Jesus Christ and His sweet promise to those who will believe with their whole heart and mind.  We are promised eternal life with Him.  That’s quite a promise indeed!

Equally as exciting is that God didn’t send His Son to earth to condemn us – there is no condemnation.  For those who have accepted Christ into their hearts and lives…  there is only salvation!  We don’t even have to think about condemnation of any kind – and if that doesn’t make you happy in the Lord, I don’t know what would.

Why would God’s children want to suck lemons instead of drink sweet lemonade (sweetened with Splenda, of course)?  Christians have a great reason to smile…  we have a blessed HOPE.  So many times, though, we look a bit like…

I mean – unless you are Stonewall Jackson, who ate lemons (skin and all)…  there’s no reason to be sour.  Because lemons are so sour, they are to be used sparingly – a slice in your water or tea.  It improves your alkaline and rids your body of acid.  An acidic body tends to promote cancer.  Yet Stonewall Jackson died in spite of his lemon eating habit…  huh.

But… sour is not the reaction we expect when such good news is announced!

Praise God for His indescribable gift to you.  Words don’t do it justice…  ’nuff said.  🙂

 

 

JOB 1:21 ON 1/21

tl-1-21-job-1-21-on-1-21

“Naked I came from my mother’s womb, and naked I will depart.  The Lord gave and the Lord has taken away; may the name of the Lord be praised.” 

– Job 1:21

The Bible tells us that Job was upright and blameless.  He loved the Lord and shunned evil.  He was the most tested Christian of all time.  When we think we’re enduring a test from God, we naturally compare it to the test that Job went through.  Job never cursed God – his wife did, interestingly enough – but he did not.

thrown-upon-the-rock

What Job declares in the 21st verse of the first chapter is probably the most REAL statement anyone could make.  It’s a statement of fact to be sure – and some of us would do well to heed this humbling reminder.  From dust we are made – and to dust we will return – or at least this human body will.

We’re not deserving of anything just because we were born.  What a ridiculous notion to teach a child!  The world owes you nothing.  God owes you nothing – yet in spite of that, God gave His most precious gift – and we recently celebrated the birth of Christ.  At Easter we will celebrate the final part of salvation’s plan for fallen man – His death, burial and resurrection!   This is the hope of every born again Christian!  Life eternal with Him.  Praise God for His remarkable gift to us!the-give-and-take

We don’t know why He does some things – or why He doesn’t do other things.  We just have to say that He gives and He takes away – and praise Him no matter what.  He inhabits the praises of His people.  If we don’t praise Him, the rocks will cry out to praise Him!  We are tossed about in this life, but let’s run to Christ as a first response, not a last resort.

The toys you acquire while on this planet are not lasting.  You cannot take them with you when you die.  I know we don’t like to think about it, but it’s the truth.  God doesn’t mind us having nice things but keep in mind that He is a jealous God and will not have anything put before Him in your heart.  He must be in first place, or He will not be there at all.

The devil will try you, and God will test you, but remember it is to make you stronger and increase your faith.  The Lord giveth and the Lord taketh away, blessed be the name of the LORD.  You can take the King James away from the blogger, but you can’t get the blogger to forget the version she memorized.  Um…  something like that. 

Before I go, I want to emphasize the fact that the phrase THE LORD GIVETH does not mean that God gives things like sickness or death to you.  God gives good gifts to His children.  Job went through this trial because satan told God that he could get Job to curse Him.  God gave satan permission to try Job – and try him he did – to the max.  God told satan he could do anything except kill Job.

Job came through satan’s trial and never cursed God.  He just kept praising Him.  How cool is that?  I don’t know about you, but that gives me strengthened faith and hope for my Christian walk.  🙂

 

 

 

THIRD SUNDAY OF ADVENT

tl-12-1-adventToday is the third Sunday of ADVENT.

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth,
    burst into jubilant song with music;
make music to the Lord with the harp,
    with the harp and the sound of singing,
with trumpets and the blast of the ram’s horn—
    shout for joy before the Lord, the King.

Let the sea resound, and everything in it,
    the world, and all who live in it.
Let the rivers clap their hands,
    let the mountains sing together for joy;
let them sing before the Lord,
    for he comes to judge the earth.
He will judge the world in righteousness
    and the peoples with equity.  – Psalm 98:4-9

Though the arrangements of this familiar Christmas carol have changed through the years, the message is still crystal clear – THE LORD HAS COME – JOY TO THE WORLD!  Everyone from the Mormon Tabernacle Choir to Mariah Carey has recorded it…  and is it any wonder???  Everyone loves to sing about the hope and JOY that came down to earth on Christmas night.

Did you know that Watts actually wrote this song as a testament to the SECOND COMING of Christ – not His birth?  Ah – that puts a whole new spin on things, eh?  I know when I hear the lyrics in the future, I’ll think of them much differently.

Based on the last part of the 98th Psalm, English songwriter Isaac Watts wrote the lyrics to this uplifting carol.  It was first published in 1719 in Watts’ collection; The Psalms of David: Imitated in the language of the New Testament, and applied to the Christian state and worship.

The carol is called Joy TO the world…  but what about Joy FOR the world?  God came to earth incarnate…  FOR you and me.the-name-of-joy

joy-prayer

“The Bible talks plentifully about joy, but it nowhere talks about a “happy Christian.” Happiness depends on what happens; joy does not. Remember, Jesus Christ had joy, and He prays ‘that they might have my joy fulfilled in themselves.'” — Oswald Chambers

Try to find some time to reflect on all the blessings in your life.  As you seek joy this Christmas, consider that God sent His Son – joy incarnate – to the world – and for the world.  Praise God for His awesome gift.  Oh, and may I add…  praise God for His awesome gift that is yet to come!  🙂

 

PALM SUNDAY

TL PALM SUNDAYBEYOND THAT MOMENTFOR PALM SUNDAYHIS LAST WEEK ON EARTHWHO IS HE

HIS LAST SUPPER

Praise Him, Praise Him, all ye little children.  God is LOVE…  God is LOVE.  🙂