Blessings By Day

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Broken and Hopeful

We have been so broken for so long.  Illness has plagued us for years now and I have been in bed with my ailing husband caring for me for years.  This morning we received a word from our Pastor in California by way of his Christmas Newsletter.  He reminded us of the hope we have in Jesus Christ, his Covenant with us and ours with him.  As I read the message to Rob, I began to cry and then sob.  Why am I so broken, Lord I cried.  I begged his forgiveness for our lack of faith.  

As I prayed, slowly my hope returned.  My husband came back into the room and prayed with me.  We have had many troubles for many years and have buried ourselves in misery.  

The Lord doesn't want that for any of us!  The day we prayed to receive Him, we were forgiven of all our sins for all time!  Do you understand how wonderful that gift is?  We are His forever and ever and he said that he will never leave us or forsake us.  Do you believe this?  Search your heart to see for in Romans 3:3  “There is none righteous, no, not one; .  But in the instant you come to Him, His righteousness  is afforded to us.  

This day, this hour, this instant, I pray to Jesus to relieve the hopeless, the forgotten, the sinners; to give them new life in him to take away their sins, Oh Lord, give them all a new hope in you for it is not your will that any should be lost.  In Jesus Holy Name, Amen
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Monday, December 22, 2008

A Divine Appointment

"Do not be afraid, for behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy which shall be to all people. for there is born to you this day in the city of David a Savior, who is Christ the Lord." Luke 2:10, 11

This is the scene that started it all . . . Jesus Christ was born. It was a new beginning for all mankind. The story of Jesus' birth is related in all 4 gospels. I like the story best in Luke. Matthew has a lot of "begats" showing the lineage of Jesus. They are important, but I like getting down to the meat of Mary's conception, Joseph's vision, John leaping in Elizabeth's womb when Mary approached. I guess I'm the one who will always take the shortcut. Jesus didn't take the shortcut. He was born a baby. He could have appeared instantly as a man. God had a perfect plan for our salvation and that was that Jesus would be in all ways a man, from birth until His death and ressurection. The gospel of Luke, Chapter 1 and 2:1-40 speak of the miracles of that time and should be read often. As you read these chapters and other books in the Word (Bible) you will gain a knowledge and understanding of our Lord that will live in you forever.

This morning I had to go back to the dentist to have my new denture and gums checked. My upper teeth were pulled and denture placed Saturday morning. As Rob and I were waiting for them to open the door, we started a conversation with a well-tatooed man who was also waiting. He had a phrase around his neck ~ I was trying to read it, but couldn't see it all. So I asked. He said, "one day I will finally be released". Then we began to have an ordinary conversation, though it was intimate in many ways. Inside we signed in and when Billy was called in, I turned to Rob, gave him one of our forgiveness cards and asked him to chat with him. I was called in, had my check-up, set an appointment for 2 days and searched the waiting room for Rob. He was outside with Billy. The conversation was animated.

I stepped outside to hear Rob telling a story I've heard a hundred times. I shuttled in under his arm and looked at Billy. He had tears in his eyes. He couldn't take his eyes off Rob. Rob leaned to me and said, "He said the sinner's prayer". I felt so happy. I knew he was ready. when Rob finished his testimony, I hugged Billy and welcomed him into Jesus' family. Then I touched the word "released" on his neck and told him, "you've been released". I felt the presence of the Lord surrounding us. We traded phone numbers and asked him to call us with any questions, doubts, fears. We'll see him on Wednesday morning when we both go back to the dentist. What a divine appointment!

Just as on the day of our Lord's birth, there are many divine appointments. It's important that we don't step aside. We need to take the hand of the Lord, follow him and never be afraid. When we are afraid to speak out the name of God, speak His word, to step where He leads us, then the miracle can't happen. Billy and many others like him will miss their divine appointments. Nothing we said or quoted led him to pray, but the Holy Spirit gave utterance through us. Praise the Lord!

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Breathing Lessons

Rolling around in Ol' Betsy today with two girls and Rob, we began to sing some of our favorites. We started with "I Love You, Lord" and went down the line . . ."What a Mighty God We Serve" . . ."The Sacrifice of Praise" . . . we sang for some 30 minutes.  Then I began to share with the girls about the great pleasure God must feel while we are praising Him.  He doesn't hear the catch in our voices sometimes or the times we are off-key.  He hears the love we have for Him in each note.  I imagine that He inclines His head toward us and smiles ever so gently.  His children are singing.

Parents do that, you know.  When we hear our children sing or play, we tune in.  A smile creeps across our face and we hear sweet melody.  For a moment we stop what we are doing to listen to those sweet voices.  You know you've done it if you are a parent.  I can see our Father doing it as well.  He longs for us to praise Him, to communicate with Him. 

So many of the Psalms a dedicated to the praise of the Lord.  You can step into the Psalms at nearly any place and find King David singing His praises.  He even says the everything that has breath should praise the Lord.

Psa 150:6 Let every thing that has breath praise the LORD.

With every breath we breathe in, we need to breathe in His presence and every breathe out should be in praise for His lovingkindness.

It isn't always easy to remember to do that.  We get caught up in the business of the day, our likes and dislikes, the bit of anger we have at a loved one or co-worker and we forget Who is really in control.  Our peace and joy fly out the window.  When that happens, it's an easy matter to just take a breath.  Breathe in God and breathe out praise.

You can be back on track in an instant.  Your Father is waiting.  He loves to hear from His kids.

Be blessed in Him,



Sunday, September 25, 2005

Running from Offense

Have you ever been offended?  What happens to you?  When I am hurt or offended, my first thought is to get even.  I want to fight back against the injustice done to me.  I think about what I will say, then what they will say and how I will justify myself.  My last thought is how the Lord would handle it.  I'm human and letting go of resentment is not my strong suit.

Did you know however, that we already have an advocate in Jesus Christ?  If we remain silent, he will fight the battle for us. There are so many verses in the Bible about forgiveness and going to your neighbor to clear the slate.  We do our part and He does his.

An offense is the devil's snare for us.  He may even start out small, with those little, niggling things that bother us about a person.  Then he steps it up and we are in his trap.  We no longer look to Jesus, but to revenge for the thing that has happened.  We know we are right.  We can prove it.  A ball of bitterness forms inside us and all that we have learned about Jesus and His forgiveness is put to the back burner. 

If we have a good foundation in Christ, revenge will be difficult for us.  The Holy Spirit will speak to our heart, convicting us. We will begin to pray.  I usually pray for patience, then for forgiveness for my hardness of heart toward that person. I read again in Matthew Chapter 18 where Jesus reminds us not to live with unforgiveness in our hearts.

Why is it so important to forgive?  How can we move forward if we do not? Offense is a stumbling block to us (see what the Lord says about this in Isaiah 8:14) we fall over it and lose contact with He who judges justly. 

There was a time in my life when I had such hatred for a person that it nearly consumed me.  This person had hurt my child. I knew forgiveness was the answer, but I didn't have it in me to let go.  I would have done anything to change my feelings.  I wanted to hurt the person physically and mentally.  I had dreams about how I would accomplish it.  I had friends tell me to pray for this person.  I said I couldn't.  For seven years I suffered with that offense.  My offender was sleeping at night! 

Then the Lord brought a person to me who had been offended in much the same way.  Our conversation was personal, to say the least, but she had found forgiveness in her heart. I asked her HOW she could forgive such a thing?  She said it was easy - she wasn't guilty.  Oh, how simple that was! I fell to my knees and cried.

I went back to the altar of my Lord and asked forgiveness for my hardness of heart. Then I began to pray for the person who had offended, being willing to go to them when the opportunity arose, to clear my side of the street. 

The Bible tells us if we have aught against our brother, we need to leave our offering at the altar and go to our brother first, then come back and offer to God.  For 7 years, my love offerings to God were given with all the heart I had to give, but I had held back the best part of me because of offense.

Satan wants us to stumble and fall.  He goes right for our pride and ego. I heard in a preaching once that the word for offense or stumbling block in the greek was - skandalon (sp?) - it means the piece of bait that a trapper hangs in the cage to trap his prey. Can you see that?  Rotting meat ( a scandal?) hanging in the trap, drawing us near so that we will stumble in and fall prey to his wiles. 

To stay out of the trap, we must be aware that it's constantly set for us.  The Lord doesn't have such a trap - He has forgiveness waiting for us at every turn.  Even when we fall into the trap, He will forgive us and throw that sin as far as the deepest part of the ocean when we ask. 

So here's my question:  Has someone offended you?  Are you holding a grudge?  Do you want to be free?  Do it now!  Get willing to let go of the bait.  Bitterness never tastes very good anyway.  Pray first for willingness and then LET GO.

You give your very best to God when you are free of encumberments.  If someone has truly wronged you, then they will still have to answer to your Father, who will be more just than you or I could ever be. In the meantime you can be free to worship as the Lord wants.

Psa 100:1 A Psalm of praise. Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

Psa 100:2 Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing.

Psa 100:3 Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

Psa 100:4 Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name.

Psa 100:5 For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.

Sunday, September 4, 2005

My Blessing for Today

This is the first e-mail that my daughter Andrea has ever written and sent.  I'm so proud to be her mom.



Friday, September 2, 2005



My friend Val has a link in her journal with information about offering housing to the victims of Katrina.  I went to the link and looked it over, checking out how to do it.  We live in California and we have only a tiny 2-bedroom home, or you can bet I would be putting our name on the list.  I want to help my brethren in need. 

All over the Bible, the Lord tells us to look out for the widows and orphans.  At this time, the people in the south are just those persons.  They need what we have to offer, whether it be money or housing. Some of us have neither and we offer our heartfelt prayers.

I know from experience that it's not an easy task to take someone into your home for an undesignated period of time.  There are times when you do it that you wish you hadn't.  But there are other times when we reach out and offer our home and when it's all over we have such a feeling of satisfaction and we feel closer to the Lord as well.

How uncomfortable are you willing to get?  Is your home big enough to accept a stranger?  Is it easier for you NOT to do it?  I know it is.  But fear and faith can't live in the same home.  We as Christians need to set the tone for the rest of the world.  If what I read is true, you certainly have the option of not accepting an applicant if your "God sense" tells you not to - and you can withdraw your offer at any time.

Please, pray about this.  Open your home to someone if you possibly can. 

The LORD is the strength of my life . . . The LORD is . . . my strength, in whom I will trust. (Psa_27:1 and Psa_18:2)

Mat 25:40 And the King shall answer and say unto them, Verily I say unto you, Inasmuch as ye have done it unto one of the least of these my brethren, ye have done it unto me.

Sunday, August 28, 2005

A call to prayer

As we get ready this morning to go fellowship with the saints, I just want to say a quick prayer for those in the path of Hurricane Katrina:

Precious Father, we come to you in the name of Jesus and ask your protection for the poeple in the path of Katrina.  Lord, keep them safe as they leave their homes and possessions and put guardian angels around that area.  We pray that the damage done will be minimal and there will be no lives lost.  Hold your children in the palm of your hand, Lord.  We thank you for your love and compassion for us. In Jesus' name we pray, Amen

It's impossible for me to understand the devastation that can be caused by natural disasters, but even in the midst of this, the Lord can bring good from evil.  In the days ahead, we must look for God's blessings and pray for the people affected.  In this way, our light will shine.  A praying nation can bring nothing but good.  Let's all join cyber-hands and pray.