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Showing posts from 2009

God with us

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“Now the birth of Jesus Christ was as follows: After His mother Mary was betrothed to Joseph, before they came together, she was found with child of the Holy Spirit. Then Joseph her husband, being a just man, and not wanting to make her a public example, was minded to put her away secretly. But while he thought about these things, behold, an angel of the Lord appeared to him in a dream, saying, “Joseph, son of David, do not be afraid to take to you Mary your wife, for that which is conceived in her is of the Holy Spirit. And she will bring forth a Son, and you shall call His name JESUS, for He will save His people from their sins.” So all this was done that it might be fulfilled which was spoken by the Lord through the prophet, saying:“Behold, the virgin shall be with child, and bear a Son, and they shall call His name Immanuel,” which is translated, “God with us.” Matthew 1:18-23 God with us, what a powerful truth! Sometimes it is so hard to comprehend that God Almighty, the Creator

Giving Thanks...

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“ For every beast of the forest are Mine, and the cattle on a thousand hills.I know all the birds of the mountains, and the wild beasts of the field are Mine. If I were hungry, I would not tell you; for the world is Mine, and all its fullness. Will I eat the flesh of bulls, or drink the blood of goats?Offer to God thanksgiving, and pay your vows to the Most High.Call upon Me in the day of trouble; I will deliver you, and you shall glorify Me.” Psalms 50:10-15 How many times have I heard the words quoted “The cattle on a thousand hills are God’s” when referring to someone believing that a financial blessing is coming their way? I think the meaning of it has somehow morphed to “When my ship comes in”. It’s a shame because when this scripture is read in its context it is so much deeper than believing for your (ahem) “ship to come in.” Most or all of the psalms were actually songs under the inspiration of the Holy Spirit and this one was sung if you will by Asaph who declares basically

Don't be anxious!

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Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus. Philippians 4:6-7 Anxiety, pressure, stress, and worry! We’ve all experienced these emotions and with them come a loss of peace and well being. Many of my friends and loved ones have lost a lot in the past years. In fact the world as a whole has been going through turmoil, loss of jobs, finances, homes and more importantly loved ones. There are more situations than I can mention that people are going through right now that is causing them to be anxious about their future, pressure to come up with an answer to the problem, stress under the grief of having lost someone or something very precious and worry about how this is all going to turn out. I like the way the Apostle Paul wrote it above, he said don’t be anxious about it, just pray about it and
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"The LORD All-Powerful will destroy the power of death and wipe away all tears..." Isaiah 25:8a “Are you watching one of those crying movies again?” that was my late husband teasing me. He had walked in again and caught me sniffin’ and snottin’ while watching, what is called a“Chick flick”. I love old classic movies, the ones that move me to tears, either happy or sad. I mean you have to be made of stone if it did not move you to tears when Bette Davis in “Dark Victory” is being brave even though she knows she is losing her sight and soon to leave this earth. And what about her in “Mr. Skeffington” when she loses her beauty but the husband she had ridiculed and mocked their whole marriage is there to take her back just as she is. (sigh) That’s a 2 box of tissues movie. My husband, knowing how I like these kinds of movies, even suggested one for me one time…go figure. He was home for a rare few days of R and R, and when I came in from work he said “There’s a movie coming on

Hidden Treasures

"Lord, all my desire is before You; and my sighing is not hidden from You." Psalms 38:9 "Look Dad!" my grandson said to his father as we were sight-seeing in the city. My grandson had found under a tree, almost blending in with the dirt and grass, a piece of Lego! Now grant it there were hundreds of people passing by this very spot (as it was some kind of festival going on in the park), but his eyes somehow zeroed in on this small piece of plastic just lying there. He grabbed it up and as he and his father were inspecting it, I was wondering what kind of germs were on it! After inspection it was decided, he had indeed found a treasure...something of value to him, something that he could use in his collection of many, many, many pieces of Lego. To me, not a Lego enthusiast, and to others passing by that very spot that day, it seemed to be an insignificant piece of plastic , if they even saw it at all. But to him, a very smart and bright kid with engineer tendenci

Our Father's Eyes...

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But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love. Psalms 33:18 Yesterday after being stuck at home waiting for a repairman, I clicked on the TV. It was rare for me to be at home that time of day so to pass the time I decided to take a look at what daytime TV had to offer. Flipping down the TV guide my eyes spotted “The Baby Story”. Hmmm I have not seen that in a while and I love watching those sweet little babies coming into the world. A sure pick me up on a sort of “down in the dumps” day. As I watched the show and listened to the interviews with the mother and father about the pregnancy, it gave background on both sides of the family (I love that kind of stuff). They also introduced their first born son who is as cute as a button and already knew that a new baby brother was sleeping in mommy’s tummy. What a nice family and what joy I began to feel just watching them prepare for the baby to come. As the show moves to the delivery sce

Change...

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But whenever someone turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. For the Lord is the Spirit, and wherever the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. So all of us who have had that veil removed can see and reflect the glory of the Lord. And the Lord—who is the Spirit—makes us more and more like Him as we are changed into His glorious image. Corinthians 3:16-18 Change…is a good thing. But why do so many of us fight and resist it? You can hear it in the grumbles and murmurs of people when you change something as simple as the aisles in the grocery store. “Aisle 2 has ALWAYS been soups and snacks, now why in heaven’s name did they change it?” And God forbid don’t change the parking spaces at work, it’s an all out war. “I’ve been parking in that space for 10 years grrrrr…” Never mind that the CHANGE is so that there can be better parking spaces for everyone. Human nature is crazy and at times nuts! And if I wasn’t a human I’d… Okay, here’s another one, at the gym where I’m a member, abou

Angels watchin' over me

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"For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways..." Psalms 91:11 How can I forget? It was August 1994 and I was just finishing up the song "My Tribute" at a small church in Philadelphia. I had visited there many times to sing, but that particular weekend was a very busy one. I remember, my late husband and I rushing to get there on time for the early morning service. After singing the song and going back to my seat, I had a sudden excruciating headache, this was followed my an immediate profusion of sweat. An usher that tried to assist me later told my husband that there were huge rivets of sweat dripping off my face. I of course don't remember this, because upon trying to make an exit from the church pew I collapsed. When I awoke I was on the floor surrounded by paramedics, my memory after that is in bits and pieces. From that point on everything was a blur as I was sent by ambulance to the first hospital where I was submitted

Why Worry?

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Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life? And why do you worry about clothes? See how the lilies of the field grow. They do not labor or spin. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was dressed like one of these. If that is how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and tomorrow is thrown into the fire, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith? So do not worry, saying, 'What shall we eat?' or 'What shall we drink?' or 'What shall we wear?' For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek f
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“Being confident of this very thing, that he who hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.” Philippians 1:6 “Lord don’t give up on me” that was my prayer this morning. I thought about David who wrote most of the book of Psalms and how so many times he cried out the very same thing to God, “Don’t pass me by”, “Don’t forget me”, “Don’t turn me over to my enemies”, etc, etc.. I understand him now. He knew that God His Father would never turn His back on him and only wanted the best for him. But David saw himself for what he really was, a mere man, with a heart to do good, but fell really short of ever being perfect. That’s what I like about David, he was transparent and what I call a REAL person. I think that’s maybe why God called him a man “after My Own heart”. David knew that he was nothing without God’s mercy and because of that he knew that he could come to God anytime he wanted, shortcomings and all. In today’s “church” world, you don’t see much
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You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah Psalms 32:7 One of the many things that I miss about my husband was his desire to always protect me. Always the protector, he would give me advice on how to be watchful when going places alone and would ask that I call if I would be running late. Even during his illness, one night as I was leaving his bedside at the hospital, as he was hooked up to all sorts of tubes and oxygen, he whispered, “Be very careful, do you have enough gas in the car?” Even in his weakness he was being strong for me. This morning as I was sitting on the porch, I began to reminisce how many years ago before his illness; he insisted that we have the porch enclosed. I argued that I could not see the need to have it done because I liked going out on the patio and being in the openness of nature. But he wanted to protect me from not only the elements of nature but also in case ever there was an unwelcome
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For the LORD will be your confidence; and will keep your foot from being snared. Proverbs 3:26 Ah! Such is life! LOL. I’m laughing because of how quickly I allow myself to be affected by words. It’s not a laughing matter, but better to laugh than to cry I always say (besides laughing makes you feel better). I consider myself a strong woman that has been walking with God for quite a few years now (never you mind how old am). Back to the point, after all these years you would think that I would not let something that someone says make my whole “world change in a second.” But it did and this is what happened… It’s a beautiful day, the sun is shining and I am outside enjoying my task at hand. My project is to trim the bushes that are against my house. While I’m working I am having a wonderful conversation with the Lord and reminiscing about how faithful He is to me. I even asked Him for a cool breeze and He obliged, we were on a roll my Father and I; I was working but having a great t

Lead me...Guide me...

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The Lord says, “I will guide you along the best pathway for your life. I will advise you and watch over you. Psalms 32:8 I can still hear me singing in my little girl voice the song “Lead me guide me along the way. For if you lead me I will not stray. Lord let walk each day with thee, lead me oh Lord lead me.” Attending summer Bible school was one of my favorite things to do as I child. It was a welcome distraction from the hot summer days. As much as I was happy to be out of school, I still looked forward to sitting outside under a large shade tree to hear Bible stories. How exciting it was to hear about David killing the Giant, Daniel in the Lion’s Den and Jonah in the belly of a Whale. I am so grateful to my now deceased parent for insisting that me and my siblings have a good foundation of the Word of God. They exposed us to God and the Bible at an early age, by taking us to Church and making sure we were involved in Bible based activities. So that even as a teen and young adul
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“Therefore I tell you, do not worry about your life, what you will eat or drink; or about your body, what you will wear. Is not life more important than food, and the body more important than clothes? Look at the birds of the air; they do not sow or reap or store away in barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not much more valuable than they? Who of you by worrying can add a single hour to his life?” Matthew 6:25-27 When I awaken this morning at about 4:45 am, outside my bedroom window I heard a bird singing its little heart out. I said to myself “Come on now, it’s not even 5:00 am; you can’t be THAT happy this time of morning!” As I dragged myself out of bed and made my way to the bathroom, I could hear it still singing. I have to admit the bird was giving it it’s all and all. And though I could not interpret what it was saying, I just knew that it was doing what God had created it to do. The bird was singing with such gusto that after a period of time I began to
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However, as it is written: No eye has seen, no ear has heard, no mind has conceived what God has prepared for those who love him” I Corinthians 2:9 A couple of weeks ago I took my car for an oil change. This was my first time back to the dealer since purchasing the car last November. When I purchased the car, I noticed that the sales men and staff were very cordial and accommodating, but I chalked this up as them wanting to make a sale. I mean after all they didn’t know me and probably did not care other than making that money. So upon returning to get the oil change, I expected the regular treatment you get at most dealerships and service stations. Not service with a smile but instead the usual treatment is with a bad attitude and little or no patience. And don’t ask the mechanic any questions! First they look at you like you’re nuts, then the smirk and the response is usually full of sarcasm as if to say “I’m the specialist here!!” But when I arrived at this dealership that happen
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Yet you are enthroned as the Holy One; you are the praise of Israel. In You our fathers put their trust; they trusted and You delivered them. They cried to You and were saved; in You they trusted and were not disappointed. Psalms 22:3-5 “You’ll never be disappointed”. That’s what I heard in my heart today as I talked to the Lord. Rejection and disappointment are two awful emotional feelings. Rejection can have long lasting effects on a person’s life. And if there is no healing there, the person can continuously carry that feeling of not being accepted or wanted. Then comes the disappointment, and feelings of not ever being able to “fit in”. The enemy of our souls can have a heyday with this weakness…if he is allow to. I have had my share of rejection and disappointments. Note* as I share this please know that I am not whining, but being transparent. So don't try to play "Dr. Phil"...I'm just being real. :) As far back as my early childhood, growing up a middle c

Simply...

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But whatever former things I had that might have been gains to me, I have come to consider as loss for Christ's sake. Yes, furthermore, I count everything as loss compared to the possession of the priceless privilege (the overwhelming preciousness, the surpassing worth, and supreme advantage) of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord and of progressively becoming more deeply and intimately acquainted with Him [of perceiving and recognizing and understanding Him more fully and clearly]. For His sake I have lost everything and consider it all to be mere rubbish (refuse, dregs), in order that I may win (gain) Christ (the Anointed One), Philippians 3:7-8 Simply said, I am nothing without Christ. It really is very simple, I mean without Him, I am absolutely nothing…NUTHIN’ HONEY! With all my so called accomplishments, they really aren’t worth a hill of beans in the light of what Christ has done for me. In the early morning hour before I dress for work, I get down on my face and declare before

My Light! My Salvation!

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The LORD is my light and my salvation, whom shall I fear? The LORD is the stronghold of my life, of whom shall I be afraid? For in the day of trouble He will keep me safe in His dwelling; He will hide me in the shelter of His tabernacle and set me high upon a rock. Psalms 27:1 and 5 In my Junior and Senior high school years, I was the "darling" of the regional sororities. For some reason these classy ladies felt that I had enough talent to compete in the Talent shows and perform at the Cotillions they sponsored. My music teacher, Mrs. Streater, was a lover of all types of music and her choices to teach me for the competitions were classical pieces. It was this wonderful woman that taught me the classical arrangement of "The Lord is my light". Even though I could hit every note and stay on perfect pitch, I did not know the power in the words I was singing at the time. Though the awards and accolades came, I still did not know what a declaration of faith I was sin
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"Create in me a pure heart, O God, and renew a steadfast spirit within me. " Psalms 51:10 With all the rain that we've had here in the past week, I would say that the earth has had a good washin'! I traveled south over the Easter break from school to visit relatives. And all down the east coast I was met with rain, in some cases torrential downpourings. Everything has a purpose, so I know that the rain is good for many things. I may not like the clouds, dark skies and muddy puddles that accompany it, but I am sure that the benefits of rain far exceed the complaints. Sometimes our hearts need a good washin'. No matter how many years that I have submitted my life to the Lord, there are still times that I need to take the time and really look into my heart to see if there are things that should not be there. I must admit most of the time that I check I always find something that has creeped in that I know would not be pleasing to God. Whether it be unforgiv

Trust in His Mercy

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But I am like a green olive tree in the house of God; I trust in the mercy of God forever and ever. I will praise You forever, because You have done it;And in the presence of Your saints I will wait on Your name, for it is good. Psalms 52:8-9 The Olive tree is mentioned so many times in the Bible, besides it growing in abundance in the Middle East, it has so many helpful uses. In some cultures the Olive leaf represents glory and peace. And then the fruit of the tree is good to eat and we know about all the healthful benefits of the oil. The Olive tree also has a long life span. It is reported that in Crete there is an Olive tree that is at least 2,000 years old. So to be like an Olive tree is a good thing; it means to me that I am useful, have many good benefits and longevity. This can also mean that I am stable and reliable. I am sure that if a tree can stand the test of time for 2,000 years, it has seen some storms; but the Olive tree has proven that it can persevere. With all th

Hosanna in the Highest

The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt, placed their cloaks on them, and Jesus sat on them. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, "Hosanna to the Son of David!" "Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!" "Hosanna in the highest!" When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, "Who is this?" The crowds answered, "This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee." Matthew 21:6-11 Today we recognize what we call "Palm Sunday". It was a day of Celebration when the people honored Jesus. Even though less than a week later some of those same people yelled "Crucify Him". We know that His crucifixtion was all for a reason, but still as I reflect on the series of events as written in the B

Rainy Day

"Sing to the LORD with thanksgiving; make music to our God on the harp. He covers the sky with clouds; He supplies the earth with rain and makes grass grow on the hills." Psalms 147:7-8 Today started off as a dreary, rainy day. Yuk! Now don't get me wrong I like the rain...sorta...I mean we need it for the flowers, grass and to replenish the rivers etc, etc. But getting wet by cold rain and a gray sky are not my most favorite things. I won't let the weather dictate my attitude today though. I will try my best to be bright and cheery. There was a song (Now I'm telling my age) that the group the Fifth Dimension used to sing back during the 70's called "Let the Sunshine In" and it went like this: "Let the sunshine, let the sunshine, the sunshine in." Now that tune will be going around and around in my head ALL DAY! It's going to be a great day!

A sign of the times...

I very seldom listen to the news on TV or read the newspaper, but with everything being on the Internet it's hard to miss it! Headlines about whole families being murdered, churches and nursing homes being invaded by crazed gunman...it's heart breaking! Am I the only one feeling like these incidents have escalated over the last couple of years or what? Just this morning as I traveled my regular route to work, I saw flashing blue and red lights and as I got closer I saw where the police had pulled someone over and it appeared they were in the process of handcuffing him! I mean I'm not a novice to seeing all this kind of stuff and am not ignorant to the fact that in this world "things happen", but it seems to me that it is happening more often than it used to. The Word of God tells us not to fear, that the Lord is with us. Psalms 22 talks about how our ancestors trusted in God and were NEVER disappointed. This is what I must keep in my mind and heart during th

Forgiven!

Then he turned toward the woman and said to Simon, "Do you see this woman? I came into your house. You did not give me any water for my feet, but she wet my feet with her tears and wiped them with her hair. You did not give me a kiss, but this woman, from the time I entered, has not stopped kissing my feet. You did not put oil on my head, but she has poured perfume on my feet. Therefore, I tell you, her many sins have been forgiven—for she loved much. But he who has been forgiven little loves little." Then Jesus said to her, "Your sins are forgiven." Luke 7:44-48 Many sermons have been preached about the woman in the Bible that bathe the feet of Jesus with her tears, anointed them with the contents of an alabaster box and dried them with her hair. A beautiful song has even been written about it. But it was this morning that I really understood the depth of her worship. You see I believe that this woman had been forgiven much because of her former lifestyle (it i

Sunrise

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"From the rising of the sun unto the going down of the same the LORD's name is to be praised. " Psalms 113:3 I LOVE music and it is how I start my day. Christian artist Alvin Slaughter's new CD "Overcomer" is in my CD player in the car and I worship with him as I travel on my way to work. One of the songs he sings has the lyrics of the psalms above; and it has been going over and over in my mind. I'm a morning person and no matter how tired I am or how many hours of sleep I've had (or NOT had), I am the most energetic in the morning. So seeing the sunrise is a celebration for me. If I knew that I would not get arrested, I would stand in the middle of a field and do a fancy dance when the sun comes up! I rejoice at seeing a new day AND that God has allowed me the opportunity to be His instrument to be His light in this world. I've seen the sun burst through the clouds causing them to shimmer like silver. This morning however it was cloudy and

Letting go

"You are only responsible for the choices that you make", these are the gentle words I heard in my heart several years ago as I laid prostrate on my living room floor. The weeks preceeding this gentle message from the Lord were filled with worry and concern over some decisions that a family member had made. In my desire to see them have what I felt was God's best, I panicked when I saw them making decisions that would not have positive consequences...or at least in my perspective. I cried out to God day by day asking Him to change their minds, put up a roadblock, open their eyes, etc, etc. I was allowing myself to get so worked up over the situation until I actually began to feel physically ill. You may read this and say, "Boy this chick has some real issues!" but for the sake of clarity and before you label me a lunatic or a manic depressant, let me explain. In a rapid sucession, I had lost one of my closest friends, my daughter-in-law's parents, both my p

Attitude

And whatever you do in word or deed, do all in the name of the Lord Jesus, giving thanks to God the Father through Him. Colossian 3:17 Whew! What a weekend this has been. Spring has sprung and my yard needed some TLC. I take full advantage of the mild sunny days here in the Northeast. A couple of weeks ago we were blessed with 60 degree weather and I pruned shrubbery. This past weekend the temperature skimmed the 60 degree mark and I worked on the grass. Boy! little did I know what hard work it would be! But once it was done I relished in knowing that my lawn was prepared for seeding and fertilizer. I had read in my devotional about having the right attitude. And how if you have the right attitude, no matter the situation, you can "bloom where you're planted". I thought of this while I was "planted" raking my front lawn. It was a tedious and tiring job, but as I began to turn my thoughts toward God and remember how far He has brought me, my attitude toward m

Choose you this day!

You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore. Psalms 16:11 In the Bible there are 242 scriptures with a reference to the word JOY. What that means to me is that JOY is very important to God. At the end of last year I felt like the Lord gave me a word (s) in my heart. “Restored Joy” is what resonated in my soul. My spiritual ears perked up like an eager puppy that hears its master calling. I so much need my joy restored. I know that I will never be the carefree young social butterfly that I was years ago, but my spirit had become weak and tattered from the trials of life. My smile was still intact but many times I passed a mirror and caught a glimpse of my face and saw that the smile was no longer there. My eyes that once were bright with enthusiasm now looked dull and tired and anyone could look into them to see that I saw the world and people in a different light. I understand better now why God was trying

Not to Worry!

Be still and know that I am God ! It is hard for me to listen to the news on TV/radio or read the newspaper without getting a feeling of fear or dread. Reports of the lives being lost both here in the domestic world as well as overseas, the economy steadily falling along with reports of global warming leave me feeling scared. I know that God does not want us to feel fear, but to be honest (and He knows that we are mere humans) it can be scary. Towards the end of last year I asked the Lord in my prayers to show me what was His “word” for me this coming year. Last year I felt that He whispered “Wisdom and Understanding” and indeed it was a year to gain wisdom AND understanding about a lot of things in my life. Though I know that I have not made the mark by any means and am ALWAYS learning with His gentle help; after prayer I felt that for this year the word for me is “Restoration of Joy.” Joy doesn’t mean being happy all the time, but it is an ever-abiding sense that God is in contr

Restored Joy!

“Let me hear joy and gladness; let the bones you have crushed rejoice;”… “Restore to me the joy of your salvation and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.” Psalms 51: 8, 13 David, the “apple of God’s eye” had sinned. He had allowed the cares of this life to distract him from his first love…God. After praying and fasting for his illegitimate child not to succumb to sickness, the child dies. David realizes from the words of a visiting prophet and from the conviction of his own heart that he had sinned against the God that he once worshipped and loved above all else. He cries out for forgiveness and restoration, because having once had intimacy with God, he knows that nothing else will satisfy his empty, vulnerable and bruised soul. To have something restored means to have something put back that was there before. David knew what joy felt like. The times when he was given victory over the enemy while watching the sheep of his earthly father as well as later while on the King’s ba