Thursday, March 26, 2009

Rule in my heart

Colossians 3:15a - And let the peace that comes from Christ rule in your hearts.

I've thought about this verse all day. The peace that comes from Christ - perfect, true, joyful, trustworthy, undeniable, everlasting, fulfilling. Letting that peace rule my heart. How do I do it?

Everything, every thought, every action should bring honor to Christ. He should rule my heart. Telling my heart what to do and how to act. Every thought, word, action should run thru Christ as a measuring stick.

Saturday, March 21, 2009


Revelation 3:14-21 - “Write this letter to the angel of the church in Laodicea. This is the message from the one who is the Amen—the faithful and true witness, the beginning[e] of God’s new creation:
15 “I know all the things you do, that you are neither hot nor cold. I wish that you were one or the other! 16 But since you are like lukewarm water, neither hot nor cold, I will spit you out of my mouth! 17 You say, ‘I am rich. I have everything I want. I don’t need a thing!’ And you don’t realize that you are wretched and miserable and poor and blind and naked. 18 So I advise you to buy gold from me—gold that has been purified by fire. Then you will be rich. Also buy white garments from me so you will not be shamed by your nakedness, and ointment for your eyes so you will be able to see. 19 I correct and discipline everyone I love. So be diligent and turn from your indifference.
20 “Look! I stand at the door and knock. If you hear my voice and open the door, I will come in, and we will share a meal together as friends. 21 Those who are victorious will sit with me on my throne, just as I was victorious and sat with my Father on his throne.

Tuesday, March 17, 2009

God's Word is Awesome!

Numbers 9:15 On the day the tabernacle, the Tent of the Testimony, was set up, the cloud covered it. From evening till morning the cloud above the tabernacle looked like fire. 16 That is how it continued to be; the cloud covered it, and at night it looked like fire. 17 Whenever the cloud lifted from above the Tent, the Israelites set out; wherever the cloud settled, the Israelites encamped. 18 At the LORD's command the Israelites set out, and at his command they encamped. As long as the cloud stayed over the tabernacle, they remained in camp. 19 When the cloud remained over the tabernacle a long time, the Israelites obeyed the LORD's order and did not set out. 20 Sometimes the cloud was over the tabernacle only a few days; at the LORD's command they would encamp, and then at his command they would set out. 21 Sometimes the cloud stayed only from evening till morning, and when it lifted in the morning, they set out. Whether by day or by night, whenever the cloud lifted, they set out. 22 Whether the cloud stayed over the tabernacle for two days or a month or a year, the Israelites would remain in camp and not set out; but when it lifted, they would set out.

Look at verse 23 - awesome:
23 At the LORD's command they encamped, and at the LORD's command they set out. They obeyed the LORD's order, in accordance with his command through Moses.

Oh, that we would be so obedient.

Restraining Grace

From my Turning Point devotion:
For the mystery of lawlessness is already at work; only He who now restrains will do so until He is taken out of the way. 2 Thessalonians 2:7

Mary Mapes Dodge was an American who wrote the story of the little Dutch boy who saved Holland by sticking his finger in a hole in the dike, thereby keeping the ocean from breaking through and flooding the low-lying country.

The little boy's finger was a restraining device against a powerful ocean. There is another restraining "device" at work in our world today against a powerful ocean of evil ready to flood the world. That restrainer is the Holy Spirit, who lives in this world in the life of every born-again follower of Christ. It is the Holy Spirit who empowers Christians to be salt and light in the world today, holding back darkness. At the Rapture of the Church, when believers are removed from the earth, the Holy Spirit will be removed as well, and lawlessness will be a mystery no longer.

Don't quench (1 Thessalonians 5:19) or grieve (Ephesians 4:30) the Holy Spirit. Rather, live in submission to Him and in His power. He not only protects this world from evil, He protects you as well.

We need restraining grace as well as saving grace. William Tiptaft

Sometimes I want to "kick" my conscience because I don't want to be reminded that my thoughts or motives are unpure. But that would be grieving the Holy Spirit. How desparate we'd be (and pathetic) if we had to live life without the Holy Spirit talking to us.

As confirmation, here is a verse I read this morning that I was going to blog about: Deut 30:19-20 - Today I have given you the choice between life and death, between blessings and curses. Now I call on heaven and earth to witness the choice you make. Oh, that you would choose life, so that you and your descendants might live! You can make this choice by loving the Lord your God, obeying Him, and committing yourself firmly to Him. This is the key to your life. And if you love and obey the Lord, you will live long in the land the Lord swore to give your ancestors Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob.

Thank you Father for giving me the restraining grace as well as saving grace. Thank you Holy Spirit for loving me enough to tell me when I've moved away from Father's will. Thank you for desiring that I obey you and choose life.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Cleaning the Clutter

1 Cor 6:12-20 - Do you need to clean out the clutter? The devotion today likened our mind to the garage. Sometimes my garage gets so cluttered that I don't want to openthe door - I'm embarrassed to let my neighbors see. Sometimes my mind gets that way. Cluttered with bitterness, my own wants, work, temptations, offenses - whatever takes my mind off God.

How does God feel having to live among all that junk - probably the same way I do about my garage. Just like spring cleaning, we need to make sure we clean out the things in our mind that take our focus from God.

My guys are out looking at trucks this morning. David got a thought in his head and it won't go away! Although I think he found a great deal. We'll see. He is much like Brad and me - if he test drives something he's sure to buy (that's why Brad and I don't go looking for fun)!

Have a great day.

P.S., the other devotion I read (Turning Point) talked about taking our dog to obedience school. It goes on to say...The Lord offers a similar program for His sheep. As the Lamb of God was obedient to the Father, so we're to obey the Good Shepherd. It's important to ask ourselves: Have I been guilty of biting comments? Have I been barking up an unhealthy tree? Have I been digging into things I should avoid? Have I been running away from a clean conscience? Have I been messing up?
We're understudies of His obedience as we hear His voice and follow Him.

It is awesome how God will bring all this together for me!!

Thursday, March 12, 2009

How do I love YOU?

Mark 12:30:30 Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength.

Mark 12:33 To love him with all your heart, with all your understanding and with all your strength, and to love your neighbor as yourself is more important than all burnt offerings and sacrifices."

Psalm 48:9-14 - 9 Within your temple, O God, we meditate on your unfailing love.
10 Like your name, O God, your praise reaches to the ends of the earth; your right
hand is filled with righteousness.
11 Mount Zion rejoices, the villages of Judah are glad because of your judgments.
12 Walk about Zion, go around her, count her towers,
13 consider well her ramparts, view her citadels, that you may tell of them to the
next generation.
14 For this God is our God for ever and ever; he will be our guide even to the end.

I was reading my Bible reading and these two sets of verses spoke to me. In Mark we read that the greatest commandment is to love God with everything. But I like how the religious teacher repeated it back - love God with all your understanding. Understanding. How do we love God with our understanding? This, of course, is our mind. But I intellectually I love God because I get how great and wonderful He is.

To love God with my understanding, I need to know Him. Not know about Him but really know Him. Talk to Him, listen to Him, read about Him, allow Him to become apart of me and me to become apart of Him.

Then I read Psalms and it speaks to how to know Him. V.9: mediate on unfailing love; v.10: praise Him, recognize His being throughout creation; v.12-13: walk around Him and get to see Him as He is; v.14: allow Him to be my guide.

When I go on vacation, I take alot of pictures so I can capture the memories and have something to go back and look at. I love seeing pictures of the Neuschwanstein Casatle in Germany (the one that Disney copied) because it reminds me of the time I spent there - it is "rememory". How am I going to remember God or tell about Him to my grandkids if I don't capture Him in my mind (and my heart). I need to study Him so that in the dark times I can remember His personality, His goodness, His promises, His fulfilled promises!

Then I read Phillipians 1:9: And this is my prayer: that your love may abound more and more in knowledge and depth of insight

Father, I want to KNOW You - but more than that, I want to experience You. I want You to infiltrate my life completely...but only I can allow that. You won't force Yourself or push Yourself on me. I must be open and active in letting You fill me.

You are so good, so perfect, so holy, so big and yet so personal.

Monday, March 9, 2009

Taxes :(

At last I have the tax stuff together and ready for the accountant. Can't wait til my life is simpler and I can file my own taxes! I hope we don't owe good ole Uncle Sam (or Uncle Ted) this year.

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Why do you believe that?

2 Tim 4:1-8 - Is what you believe based on the Truth or is it a compilation of what you want to believe? Paul warned Timothy that a time was coming when people would not want the deep teaching of the Truth. With so much messed up doctrine, I believe we are in that time.

Everything you hear or read MUST line up with the Word or it is not the Truth. Read the Word, seek wisdom (God will gladly give it to those who ask in earnest), test everything.

It is time for Christians to return to the Truth of God's Word and stop listening to man's ideas.

Friday, March 6, 2009

The Rock

My Turning Point devotion based on Psalm 90:2b said: It isn't Gibraltar, but Jehovah who gives us unshakable strength and unfailing hope. Our lives find stability when we get a piece of the Rock.

He who trusts in God's unchanging love builds on a Rock that none can move.
Georg Neumark, Hymnist

Then I get in the car and The River thought for the day is: It is more important the size of your faith than the size of your problem.

God is our Rock and He is a solid foundation. The size of the problem doesn't matter when you look at the size of God. Our faith should be in Him and not in our own ability to handle the situation.

Have a blessed day and STAND ON THE ROCK!

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Who are you?

Reading my Turning Point devotion, a few sentences really spoke to me:
But hiding one's identity from God is a futile endeavor. He knows the heart and desires of every person. When we are trying to be someone we're not, we fool no one but ourselves. Instead of being someone you're not, be the person God knows you are. Better yet, be the person He created you to be—one who brings honor and glory to Him.

My challenge for myself (and anyone reading this) is to be who God created you to be - stop trying to hide from Him (it simply does not work). Is He proud of me? Shamefully, I'd have to say no. But I want to change. I want to be all I'm supposed to be. Pray for me.

On another note, I was leaving for work today and while in the laundry room, the light from the window caught the rhinestones in my snowflake pin. It was so beautiful and God spoke to my heart and said: Jesus should shine out from you like this.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

God's love - too... but just right

Ephesians 3:18-19: And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep His love is. May you experience the love of Christ, though it is too great to understand fully. Then you will be made complete with all the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Psalm 37:39-40: The Lord rescues the godly; He is their fortress in times of trouble. The Lord helps them, rescuing them from the wicked. He saves them, and they find shelter in Him.

These verses were from two different readings this morning but they fit so well together. The love of God is too wide, too long, too deep, too high for my understanding and yet He is always there to give it. His love is what provides the shelter for me.

God is good all the time...all the time God is good.