Wednesday, June 20, 2018

Night Song

"Yet the Lord will command His lovingkindness in the day time, and in the night His song shall be with me, and my prayer unto the God of my life." Psalms 42:8

 No matter what time at night, from 8 PM to even 3 in the morning, there is a bird in my backyard that sings constantly! It would be annoying if the tunes weren't so beautiful! Upon research there are several species that actually serenade during the night: the Mockingbird, the Whippoorwill and the Thrush, just to name a few. I always knew that birds sing at the crack of dawn, but didn't realize there are birds that sing all through the night!

 One night as I waited on the back porch for my dogs to take a late night potty break outside, a bird in a nearby tree sung the loveliest of songs. It was pitch black outside but it sang its little heart out, so lovely that I sat and listened for a very long time in the dark, until my dogs protested and wanted to go inside for there bedtime treat. They had no concept of the peaceful, beautiful moment I was having, they spoiled it all! lol

 You probably already know where I am going with this. God gives us a song in the night too. When I think about coming through great trials, heartaches and loss, though it was devastating, He gave me a song. A particular time was after my husband had passed and as I leaned against the hospital brick wall after leaving the building, not knowing what to do... many songs came to me, but my favorite was the old hymn "Precious Lord". In times of anguish the song "Thou Art Worthy O Lord" presses past my lips to give Him praise and in times of not knowing what to do, the simple song "Yes, Jesus Loves me" brings encouragement and peace.

 Just as He promised in Matthew 6:26 that we should not worry, that if He takes care of the birds of the air, He will surely take care of us... He not only loves and cares for us in the day time, but He also gives us a song of comfort, peace and love during the night time too. Those times of seemingly darkness that find their way into our lives. Your night song may not be a hymn or worship song, it may just be a sigh or cry from your heart that you need Him. It is a "song" that He draws close to hear from your heart. He hastens to draw close to you...

 Father, I pray this morning for everyone reading this, that if they are having a "Night" experience that you will give them a song...Your song. Nighttime can be the hardest time, things look bigger, scarier, harder and unsolvable when it is dark. Father shine Your light on their hearts and Your promise that You will NEVER leave nor forsake us. Give them...give us Your comfort and Your peace. Just as the bird sings its night song in obedience to its nature from You, may we open our lips, even in difficult times, and sing our praises to you.

Friday, June 1, 2018

Complete us...

I started a project of cleaning and organizing my garage the day after returning from a short, but exhausting trip. I don't know why I felt I had to dive right into this project but I did. Guess I may have just been tired of the 3 boxes of stainless steel shelving I had sitting in the garage for over 6 months and felt the need to finally just assemble it and get it over with.

 Midway during my assembling, I became overwhelmed and felt like throwing up my hands and giving up. The project began to be too tedious, too burdensome. Just as I began to think about how far I had to go to get this thing completed, I suddenly remembered how far I HAD come in the process. After many months of just sitting, the materials were at least out of the boxes and partially put together, things I no longer needed had been set aside for the trash or GoodWill, and the things I wanted to keep were organized in bins waiting to go on the shelves once assembled. So even though I had much to still do, i realized that I also had accomplished much!

 Needless to say, I was encouraged and it gave me the boost that I need to finish and do a "well done" job. This made me think of how we are sometimes so distracted by what has to be done in our and our families lives, that we fail to see all the good that actually has already been done. We need to remind and encourage ourselves often that yes, though there is much to be desired...still God is ALWAYS working and does not give up... EVER.

As much as we may like to have instant answers for prayers, in reality most of the time it is a process. A process because God is working situations out for ALL that are involved, not just you. However just as He promised in the scripture below, He WILL complete us ! If we continue to go forward and not be overburdened by all we feel must be done, but rejoice in what has already been done, I believe that one day He will say to us "Well done, good and faithful servant..." Matthew 25:21

 So be encouraged today...

Father God, thank You today for Your strength to continue on this journey. Help us today to not get so bogged down with the tasks ahead that we forget how You have blessed us to get where we are now. Help us to go forward and run this race with endurance because we know that You are cheering us on. Complete us in YOU in Your time and at Your pace...Amen


Saturday, May 26, 2018

More Grace...

The refrain from this old hymn is flowing like a ribbon through my mind this morning:

 Grace, grace, God’s grace,
Grace that will pardon and cleanse within;
Grace, grace, God’s grace,
Grace that is greater than all our sin.

 Grace...God's free and unmerited favor (love) towards us. Grace that I could NEVER earn and yet as I truly submit myself, concerns, worries , anxieties to Him; as I willingly let it all go... sometimes without understanding the details...He will give us the necessities to navigate the journey and come out whole, matured, fulfilled and safe.

 I don't know about you, but I need His Grace, I need His favor, His love directing me, encouraging me, consoling me and assuring me that I will make it through. His ways are higher than ours (Isaiah 55:8)...

 When we hit a rough spot in life, we may think that the issue is with others, when it may just be about us. What is God trying to teach us, what is He trying to strengthen in us...what is He trying to develop in us that is for our good and His Glory? I believe He wants to reveal to us that HIS strength is made perfect even in our weakness. (2 Corinthians 12:8-10)

 Do you need His Grace today? Submit to Him and trust Him to see you through. "But He gives more grace. Therefore He says: God resists the proud, but gives grace to the humble. Therefore submit to God. Resist the devil and he will flee from you. Draw near to God and He will draw near to you." James 4:6-8

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

A Fa La La Day ?

I have a story to tell... a true one...and it's mine, or at least a chapter of my story :-)...

Yesterday morning when I reached into the cabinet to get a mug for my coffee, I was drawn to my "Fa La La" cup. Yeah I know it's not the season, but I felt like having a "Fa La La" day! What's a "Fa La La" day? Well to me it's a day when you let nothing get to you. An emotionally free day. ๐Ÿ˜There are no perfect days course, but I planned "Fa La La one.

 After doing some chores and errands, I decided to do something fun and for me that is a visit to the Antique Emporium. While perusing an aisle a woman passed me and said that she was looking for "canes". I had no idea what she was mumbling about but soon she found a container full of walking canes of which she chose an old wooden one. In her excitement of finding it, she turned to me and shared that she searches for these old wooden canes and refurbish them. At first I thought that she was a collector or that she sells them but that was not the case...

 She went on to explain that after a car accident, her injury caused her to have to use a walking cane for a period of time; and during that time the wooden canes were the best to use instead of the newer metal ones. So her mission is to "rescue" these old wooden canes,restore them and GIVE them to an elderly person in need. Her experience of being in a state of incapacity after her car accident, has given her more compassion for those in similar situations and she wants them to have the best cane that will help them.

 By now she REALLY has my attention and I say to her "You know, everyone in this world have a purpose and yours is to bless those people with those canes." Our eyes locked and begin to tear up and she says "I lost my 28 year old son a year ago, he died and I don't know the details of his death nor got the chance see the body or to tell him goodbye...God told me that when I work on these canes and give them to these people, it will help me to take my mind off losing my son." Her pain gave her more compassion, then by helping others in need, she is being helped and comforted. I gave her a big ol bear hug right there smack in the middle of all the antiques, 'cause we didn't care; all that mattered was that we both knew the hope and comfort of God who cares about every detail of our lives, even our sufferings.

 Wiping our tears, we each went our own ways, but I will remember her and pray for her as she walks her journey of restoration even as she restores her rescued walking canes and blesses those in need. My "Fa La La" didn't turn out like I thought, but what days do? But it was a very special day, one that taught me a great lesson from a very special woman...

 "Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God. For as the sufferings of Christ abound in us, so our consolation also abounds through Christ." II Corinthians 1:3-5

Monday, May 7, 2018

Light of the world...

“You are the light of the world. A city that is set on a hill cannot be hidden. Nor do they light a lamp and put it under a basket, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all who are in the house. Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works and glorify your Father in heaven. Matthew 5:14-16

 A few years ago when I saw these vintage wall sconces at a small yard sale, I was delighted. The metal leaves and glass candle holders was just the touch I wanted to add to a room for soft light at night. Light... no matter how softly it may glow, can be very comforting. The Bible says that for those that have submitted their lives to God, we are the light of the world. That we should not hide that
light; that we should allow that light to shine, so that people in this dark world will see and turn to Him.

 I often ask myself "Have I been a light today?" I confess that there have been times that I've blown it...was rude to uncaring customer service, short patience with someone being unprofessional, insensitive when I should have taken a closer look, quick to speak and slow to listen, etc. you get my drift. Someone is always watching and though that does not mean that we should be paranoid and chronic people pleasers; but it is so important that we are good stewards of the grace and responsibility given us in this world.

  A good friend of mine says "There is a difference between nice and kindness." So true...being nice is all about making yourself look good, but being kind comes from within, it 's not about you, but it's about doing good for and to others from the heart. Being a "light" is telling people about God's Word and salvation, but it is also about BEING the example of genuine kindness that will direct others to Christ. We shouldn't just talk the talk, but walk the walk. When the room is dark, and these old sconces are turned on, even the small, soft light that emanates from them get my attention and I enjoy the glow and the comfort it brings.

 Today let US be a light that gets the attention of those around us that are seeking an answer, that are seeking hope. Let our light shine to bring comfort and joy so that those around us will see God in us and turn to Him.

Saturday, May 5, 2018

Preparing the table...

"You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies..." Psalms 23:5

 Most of us reading this are familiar with the line in Psalms 23 about God preparing a table for us even in the presence of my enemies. I was so used to reciting that Psalm automatically, I confess that I never took the time to study what that passage meant...


Until I was preparing a table for my luncheon guests recently. I wanted it not to just be a time to eat,
but a time of fellowship; a time of sharing with each other from our hearts. I wanted it to be peaceful, relaxing and permeating with God's presence. I wanted them to feel welcomed and appreciated... God loves us so much that even in the presence of our "enemies", our trials, struggles and difficulties that are raging war against us, He wants us to feel welcomed to come and sit at His table and fellowship with Him...to feel free to share from our hearts, to feel at peace with Him and to relax in His Presence.


Today, if you are in a place of difficulty of whatever it may be, know that not only will He be your Shepherd leading you through the journey, but He has also set a table for you so that even in the midst of trouble, you can kick back with Him and feel welcomed to be at rest and peace.

Sunday, April 29, 2018

Worry...

“Worrying is carrying tomorrow's load with today's strength- carrying two days at once. It is moving into tomorrow ahead of time. Worrying doesn't empty tomorrow of its sorrow, it empties today of its strength.” -Corrie ten Boom

 Worry...something that we all are guilty of...some occasionally, some are masters at it. Though we all worry in different ways and about different things, there is one thing that is common...Worry saps/drains you emotionally, physically and spiritually. It is a distraction that keeps you from seeing the "brighter side" and takes away your hope of possibilities.

 We can lose so much time and energy by worrying about things that have not even happened and may never happen. Here is what Jesus has to say about it... “Therefore I say to you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink; nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air, for they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns; yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? Which of you by worrying can add one cubit to his stature?" Matthew 6:25-27

 Most of us reading this are familiar with what we call "The Lord's Prayer". The familiar line "...give us this day our DAILY bread...I wonder if we have really taken note of the word DAILY. In Matthew chapter 6, Jesus was teaching His disciples how to handle themselves as believers in the gospel and giving them a model/example of prayer. We should DAILY ask God for, physical and spiritual sustenance. So if He says we should ask for it each day, that means we should not try to use up the provision He has for us tomorrow on today.

 My prayer for you today is that you, along with myself, will learn not to worry, but to begin to trust that God in His infinite Wisdom and Who knows ALL things will take care of us as we make Him the Lord over our lives. Don't let your concerns turn into worries. Don't lose time that He has given to you to live and enjoy by worrying about what tomorrow might bring...don't lose a precious day...today...by worrying about tomorrow...

"Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about its own things. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble." Matthew 6:34

Monday, April 16, 2018

He IS the LIGHT !

"Again Jesus spoke to them, saying, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will not walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12

 Dark, rainy and dreary day early this morning. I seldom turn on these lamps because generally this area is always flooded with sunlight...but this morning I needed to turn them on. The golden light emanating from these small lamps turned the gloomy foyer once again into a welcoming, cheerful area...

 Amazing what light can do...not only drive out the darkness, but illuminate a perspective. Isn't that what happens when we invite Jesus in to a situation? If we allow it, He can and will drive away the darkness of depression, sadness or defeat AND give us a new,perspective on life. What seems dark, dreadful and foreboding CAN become full of hope with strength to move forward, as you allow HIS light to shine on you.

Invite Him in today, no matter the dark, HE is ALWAYS brighter.

How to WIND DOWN !

"Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things." Philippians 4:8 

Anticipating warmer weather, I put some of my plants on the back porch and it was good timing. It really is only a 3 season room, so when winter is over, it becomes a place to sit, read, relax and meditate.
 I am becoming the little old lady that dotes on her plants ๐Ÿ˜Š but really through the years I have learned how to take the day to day "drama" down several notches and just chill. So when I feel that the daily news becomes overwhelming, when what is going on in the world is nerve wracking I come aside, go out on the porch and "minister" to my plants. While watering, misting and trimming the leaves, I begin to think about the positive things in life. I admit sometimes it may take several minutes to refocus from the negative, but with instrumental music softly playing I soon begin to feel myself wind down and my perspective is refreshed, my hope is renewed and the peace that God promised is back.

 Your "tabernacle" doesn't have to be a back porch with plants, it can be anywhere! Someone I know sits in her swing in her backyard where she has placed many bird feeders and bird watch; another person who is fortunate to live near the ocean, goes to just sit early in the morning. Another person sits in their car for a few minutes before going in to a beloved but noisy household. You could sit in your bedroom for that matter, as long as it is a place where you can settle your heart, mind and spirit and get away from all the drama that seems to be escalating these days. I am seeing more and more people with such impatience, rage and intolerance. I believe that is what happens when we do not take the time to pull away from the negative that threatens to overtake our worlds.

Take time my friends, do yourself a big favor and pull away the best way that you can and allow yourself to meditate on things that ARE good, pure and righteous. You may say that to take time is a luxury, but aren't you worth that luxury? I assure you that you are...not only to yourself, but to others and most importantly God.

Father God, help us today to see our importance to You. Help us to realize that when we constantly feed on the negative, then we become the negative. Show us how to make time to come away and meditate on the good, so that we can become an effective instrument in Your Hands to reach those that feel they cannot rise above the negative drama that this world gives. Help us and we will be forever grateful

Sunday, April 8, 2018

Hope in God !

 I must admit, this morning I awoke thinking of all the things that I do not have in my life and the temptation was to go on over and start setting up for the grandest Pity Party on the East coast! I have learned that is when the enemy of my soul tries to get me; when I'm tired, weak, maybe not feeling well, emotionally and physically vulnerable.

This morning I was still partially in sleep land when all the things that make me sad came rushing in to my thoughts. It was tempting to just hop on and ride the waves of negativity that were calling me; but after a few tears, God in His faithfulness reminded me of all I do have...His Goodness, His Mercy, His Grace, His Protection, His Forgiveness, His Salvation...His Love... I have made a commitment to be as transparent as I can be in this life, I don't want to be a phone-y or fake, I really don't want to be, so that is why I spill my guts on social media I guess. There are many that are looking for someone to just be real about the trials and struggles in this life, but also to offer Hope...and there is Hope.

This morning, this beautiful morning, you may be going through something really tough, something that takes your breath away. You may feel overwhelmed with the burdens of others...there are so many needs and you wonder how will it ever get fixed. You may be hurting, so deeply and you wonder will things ever change, ever get better... There is Hope, you don't have to give up, you don't have to carry those burdens, it WILL be alright. Trust in God, believe in Him, HE is the health of your countenance, HE is strong to carry your burdens, HE is the Healer of your soul and mind...Trust Him, rely on Him.

Father God, this morning I pray for all that read this, that You will make Yourself known to them as never before. Touch their hearts, minds and spirits. Let them know that You are God and can be trusted for everything in their lives and that You are waiting...

Thursday, April 5, 2018

Waiting...?

"Wait on the Lord; Be of good courage, and He shall strengthen your heart; Wait, I say, on the Lord." Psalms 27:14

Some of you may be in what I call a "waiting season" and some may say, "Well I feel like I am ALWAYS waiting for something" LOL. I admit that could be the case, but in my experience, it is not so much about the "wait" as it is about what you're doing while you wait.

 Years ago while "waiting" to get a new job that I desperately wanted, I began to get impatient and honestly, I was annoyed that things weren't moving as fast as I thought they should. So on my way to work one morning I was complaining in my mind about my current job and the Lord interrupted my thoughts and spoke to my heart and said," I want you to do this job like you will be there for the next 25 years, but also be prepared to leave whenever I open a door."

 I knew what He meant...if I was going to be there for the next 25 years, I would want it to be as pleasant as possible, would want to get along with all my co-workers, have an productive work day and enjoy the whole work environment... period. I got it! So instead of complaining and going in to work miserable everyday, I turned it into a pleasant experience. I started being more friendly, listened to people, did a better job working with co-workers and customers and even brought goodies to put in the break room y'all! I actually started LIKING going to work!

 This went on for quite a while, several months in fact, until one day the new job that I had applied for called. I actually had almost forgotten about it and assumed that someone else had gotten it after all this time. Anyway, they said that if I still wanted the job it was mine! By this time my attitude was right to leave my old job reciprocating the many sincere well wishes and "I'm going to miss you" from co-workers instead of "Good riddance" on both our parts. I had gained not only a new attitude, but friends and a correct perspective on positive influence in a world that needs it so much! I then by God's grace, was able to enter into a new season with a new job with no regrets and great expectations!

 So the "wait" was certainly worth it and yours will be too! Wait on Him and be of good courage, He has a plan just for you. Relax and let Him direct you in the "wait" so that when the next door opens, you will be prepare to walk through it.



Thursday, March 29, 2018

Heal me...

"Heal me, O Lord, and I shall be healed; Save me, and I shall be saved, For You are my praise." Jeremiah 17:14

 So many times when we think of the word "healing", we think of physical healing, which certainly makes sense. I know that when my body is in pain, first thing I do is pray for healing; but there is another kind of healing that is just as important...

 The portion of scripture above was a prayer by the Prophet Jeremiah, sometimes referred to as the "weeping prophet." Why? Jeremiah loved his people the Hebrews, and it hurt him to see them suffer the consequences of their sin against God...it grieved him. As a prophet his job, if you will, was to convey to the Hebrews what God was saying to them. This was his prayer in intercession for them after hearing from YAH (God) what they had transgressed by trusting in man instead of God, by trusting in their flesh instead of the One who made the flesh. In this prayer Jeremiah is petitioning God to "Heal" us, heal us from our sin...Save us and we will surely be saved!

I firmly believe that all of us need healing, simply because as humans we carry baggage, some we were born into, some forced on us, some we may have innocently received and some unfortunately we created ourselves. Never the less, baggage is baggage and there is no discrepancy; in order to be rid of it and move on, it has to go through God's TSA process.

 I woke up this morning thinking of my own testimony. I have been in church just about all my life, received my salvation 40 years ago and to the best of my ability served the Lord with dedication and passion. But little did I know about the hidden baggage that I was carrying. I felt stagnated in life, feeling like there has to be something more. I tried all kind of "religious" things, thinking that would release me to my next step, but it wasn't until I totally submitted and literally fell at the feet of Yeshua Ha-Mashiach, Jesus the Messiah, and cried out to Him, that He began to reveal to me all my baggage. I remember crying so deeply that it felt as if it was coming from my most deepest being. Like Jeremiah I sobbed deeply when I saw my transgression of trusting man instead of the creator of man, I wailed deeply when I saw the consequences of my sin and I prayed "Heal me and I will be healed..."

God is so very faithful, layer by layer He not only showed me the baggage, but as I laid it down, He took it away. I will be honest, when you open up and allow the Lord to shine His Light on your life, it can be painful and embarrassing but it is so worth it and freeing. Hopefully we will all come to a point of desperation to have a full, free life that we are willing to submit to the process regardless of what it takes. We can trust God to keep and protect us in the process. He's a Good, Good Father.

 It's time y'all...time for us to get real, get submitted and allow the healing process to begin. Let's pray...

 Father God, thank You, thank You, for your unconditional Love, a love that receives us as we are, but doesn't want us to stay in our broken condition. You want to heal us, You want to do away with all our baggage that is causing us to not be whole. You want us whole in body, mind and spirit because then we can have "life and life more abundantly ". Help us to submit to You today, to fall at your feet and allow You to show us the error of our ways, even the deep hidden things. There is nothing too hard for You, and You desire to heal us. Help us trust You today.