Some of my stories are published in:
A Cup of Comfort Devotional for Mothers and Daughters (Adams Media, 2009)
Chicken Soup: What I Learned from the Dog (2009)
Love is a Flame (Bethany House, 2010)
Extraordinary answers to Prayer (Guideposts, 2010)
Love is a Verb (Bethany House, 2011)
Big Dreams from Small Spaces (Group Publishing, 2012)
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Well, it could actually be a step in the wrong direction. But I prefer to think of one of those "kicks" as something that propels me further along my journey.
And if you're trusting God and praying for His will, then a kick in the pants may be just what you need to:
Correct your course: Revelation 3:19 "Those whom I love I rebuke and discipline."
Motivate toward further action: 1Thess. 5:14 "And we urge you, brothers, warn those who are idle, encourage the timid, help the weak, be patient with everyone."
Grow in wisdom: Proverbs 12:1 "Whoever loves discipline loves knowledge."
Keep learning from your "kicks," my friend. They happen because God loves you!
Monday, July 26, 2010
And while it's true that every prudent citizen should be considering how to survive should our country go bankrupt, even our physical survival isn't the ultimate state of well-being.
The Bible contains many passages about money and treasures and inheritance. God wants us to work hard, invest wisely, save with discipline. But in spite of all our careful living, God is our supreme bank account.
"Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In His great mercy He has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead, and into an inheritance that can never perish, spoil or fade (italics mine) -- kept in heaven for you, who through faith are shielded by God's power until the coming of the salvation that is ready to be revealed in the last time." (1 Peter 1:3-5)
No change in tax law, no change in administration, no calamity, no demise of country can ever take your inheritance away if you belong to Jesus Christ. What you have --what God has given you -- will never "perish, spoil or fade."
What a comfort in uncertain times.
"Praise God from Whom all blessings flow,
Praise God, all creatures here below,
Praise Him above, ye heavenly hosts,
Praise Father, Son, and Holy Ghost.
Thursday, July 22, 2010
No more disease
No more death
No more crying and wailing
No more hate
no more racism
no more poverty.
Our current president thinks he can legislate his idea of a perfect world, a utopian society where everything is fair. Enough laws, enough government control and this society will be just perfect.
No! Won't happen. Can't. Impossible.
No man can make the world perfect. How presumptious, how arrogant.
Note the scripture above. We don't ususally think of water that flows through a city as clean, let alone clear as crystal. But where does the water of the river of life come from?
And the tree, God's tree, is for the healing of the nations.
Obama can keep on deceiving himself and anyone else who will listen.
But only GOD can heal the nations.
And one day every knee, including Barack Obama's, "will kneel and confess that Jesus Christ is Lord, to the glory of God the Father." (Phil. 2:11)
Maranatha! Come, Lord Jesus!
"Behold, I am coming soon! My reward is with me, and I will give to everyone according to what he has done." (Rev. 22: 12)
Monday, July 19, 2010
"A misty morning does not signify a cloudy day."
I grew up in and around San Francisco. In the morning, the sea air sometimes contained so much moisture that it'd make you cough when you took your first outdoor breath. But some San Francisco mornings commence to spectacular. afternoons. (See the above picture.)
San Diego, where my daughter and son-in-law live is similar. The day begins with sea fog, then burns off to become a beautiful 70ish day.
There's another way you can think about this proverb, obviously. If your day, your week, your year begins as dark and cloudy, does that necessarily mean that it must continue, even end that way?
How can you get out from under that oppressive cloud?
Is the cloud of your own making? Are you holding on to negative feelings? Anger, unforgiveness, bitterness, worry?
"Bear with each other, and forgive whatever grievances you may have against one another. Forgive as the Lord forgave you." (Col. 3:13)
Are you focusing on inconsequential things? Have you forgotten to thank God for big and little things surrounding you?
"Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name. Praise the Lord, O my soul and forget not all His benefits." (Ps.103: 1,2)
Are you struggling with a great burden? Seek the Lord, seek His Word, seek trusted counsel.
"First seek the counsel of the Lord." (2 Ch. 18:4)
"I will praise the Lord who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I have set the Lord always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken." (Ps. 16:7)
Answers to why we live under a dark cloud are seldom simple. But God's word is always a good place to start. And sometimes the dark cloud lifts when we:
repent. . . or thank Him. . . or seek Him.
Have a great day!
Thursday, July 15, 2010
- I walk up to a CUSTOMER service counter at some major store and wait for a long time, unacknowledged, while the CUSTOMER service employee does some kind of paperwork.
- Or, I have a question and I walk up to two store employees who ignore me while they finish their non-store-related conversation.
- One afternoon I was nearly bowled over when ten area managers rumbled through a narrow store aisle and stopped to talk, blocking the way. They ignored my polite attempts to roll my cart through their midst and out of their way. The subject of their converstion? They were actually talking about being more aware of customer needs.
Seems to me there was a similar Customer Service problem in Jesus' day:
- Jesus spending time with children. The disciples response: "But the disciples rebuked them who brought them." (Matt. 19:14)
- Jesus hears the blind man calling to Him. The people's response: "Many rebuked him and told him to be quiet." (Mk.10:48)
- Jesus heals a woman on the Sabbath. The synogogue ruler's response: "There are six days for work. So come and be healed on those days, not on the Sabbath. (Luke 13:14)
I am just like those Customer Service employees and the people in Jesus's day. How many times do I put "work" and my personal agenda ahead of "customers?" Recently God has been bringing my selfishness to my attention by thwarting my daily plans, then bringing scriptures into my brain just like the ones above.
Jesus summed up His purpose on earth: "For the Son of man came to seek and save what was lost." (Luke 19:10)
As Christians, let's imitate Christ in putting "Customers" ahead of our own personal agendas. Let's not forget that our work here on earth is all about people. People whom Christ loves with an indescribably wonderful love.
Let's be good Customer Servants.