4th Sunday of Lent, A Time of Prayer and Praise

40 days is a long time and it is enough time to establish a habit, overcome an adversary or endure a trial.  Do you feel like you are enduring a trying time in your life this Lent?  Then, look to Daniel today and see God from His perspective. Daniel was a Jew who was taken from Jerusalem and deported to Babylon.  He and his friends were smart and resourceful and were a part of the king’s wise men.   The king had a dream and no one seemed to be able to tell him the meaning of it.  He got frustrated and ordered all the ‘wise’ men killed.  Daniel heard about this and ran to tell his friends, Hananiah, Mishael, Azariah.  He asked them to pray and ask God for mercy concerning this mystery.  During the night God revealed to Daniel the meaning of King Nebuchadnezzar’s dream.  Here is Daniel’s praise to God from Daniel 2:20-23.

“Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever;
    wisdom and power are his.
5067135-Charles-F-Stanley-Quote-As-children-of-a-sovereign-God-we-are21 He changes times and seasons;
    he deposes kings and raises up others.
He gives wisdom to the wise
    and knowledge to the discerning.
22 He reveals deep and hidden things;
    he knows what lies in darkness,
    and light dwells with him.
23 I thank and praise you, God of my ancestors:
    You have given me wisdom and power,
you have made known to me what we asked of you,
    you have made known to us the dream of the king.

Do you share Daniel’s high view of God? Daniel knew from first hand experience that God was sovereign, all powerful, eternal,  wise, light, and worthy of praise.  Where do you need strength or knowledge today?  Ask Him like Daniel did then praise Him even if-the-god-you-believe-in-is-not-a-sovereign-god-then-you-really-dont-believe-in-godbefore He answers.

Linda

Suggestion:  As you journey through this day, keep Daniel’s prayer of praise in your mind.  When you encounter difficulties, pray immediately and leave it to God.  Then wait expectantly for His answers.

A Christmas Hallelujah to You!

merry-christmas-john-1-16-550x320

It is fitting today we will conclude Advent with the Hallelujah Chorus.  Tradition calls for standing during this chorus but no one really knows the reason for this.  Some say it was when the King stood upon hearing this glorious chorus in 1743 at it’s premier because he was so moved.  When the king or queen stand, etiquette requires that everyone else stand and so the tradition continues to this day.  What ever the reason, the music is glorious and pays tribute to our God who Reigns forever.  The words were taken from Revelation 19:6, 11:15 and 19:16.  The facts of these verses are gloriously woven into this Chorus.

Blessings to you this Christmas and thanks for going with me on this journey through the Messiah.  I have seen prophesies that I had not realized before and heard them put to song in a marvelous way.  I pray it was a blessing to you and to our Savior.  I truly believe the sentiment of my Christmas Greeting given in John 1:16 “For from his fullness we have all received, grace upon grace.”  We are blessed by His marvelous Grace each day.  Hallelujah and Merry Christmas!

Linda

Revelation 19:6 speaks of the glorious gathering to celebrate the lamb of God, Jesus and His bride the church.  Then I heard what seemed to be the voice of a great multitude, like the roar of many waters and like the sound of mighty peals of thunder, crying out, “Hallelujah! For the Lord our God     the Almighty reigns.

Revelation 11:15 “Then the seventh angel blew his trumpet, and there were loud voices in heaven, saying, “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.”  This kingdom rule was foretold in Zechariah 14:9   “And the Lord will be king over all the earth. On that day the Lord will be one and his name one.”

Revelation 19:16  “On his robe and on his thigh he has a name written, King of Kings and Lord of Lords.”

 

Christmas Blessings as you listen!

 

Assurances of Our Shepherd

isaiah-40-11-1He tends his flock like a shepherd:
    He gathers the lambs in his arms
and carries them close to his heart;
    he gently leads those that have young.  Isaiah 40:11

This prophecy in Isaiah points to the coming Messiah as a shepherd who will tend His flock with care and love.   Jesus called himself the good shepherd, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep, John 10:11.  A few verses later in 10:14 He said, “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me”.  Some of the most tender and reassuring verses about Jesus’ love and care for us are John10 28found in John 10:27-28 “My sheep listen to my voice; I know them, and they follow me. 28 I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; no one will snatch them out of my hand.”   No one, nothing, nowhere and at no time can anyone or anything snatch us away from Jesus.  Once we belong to Him we are His eternally.  He is with us 24/7 and is always accessible instantaneously through prayer.

Let the assurances of the good shepherd carry you through this day and bring you comfort.

Linda

God is Worthy of All our Praises!

give thanksGive thanks to the Lord and proclaim his greatness.
    Let the whole world know what he has done.” 1 Chronicles 16:8

This is a great way to view the opportunities we have a Thanksgiving time to share with our family and friends the many things God has done for us during the year.  Going around the table and naming our thanks, putting words to what our hearts know gives glory to God as we praise Him.

Here is another verse to stimulate your thankfulness- Hebrews 12:28  “Since we are receiving a Kingdom that is unshakable, let us be thankful and please God by unshakableworshiping him with holy fear and awe.”   Spend time thinking about the unshakable kingdom we have access to through Jesus.  His kingdom is without end, holy and pure, a place of hope and security, a place of worship and love, unchanging and permanently held in place by God, ordered and governed by righteousness and presided over by Jesus.   Having head and heart knowledge of God’s glorious kingdom leads us to praise and worship that is filled with reverence and amazement.  I am always brought to my knees when I consider the power and greatness of my Savior.  His sacrifice was great so that I may know and experience His kingdom during my life now and into the future.  

640x1136 mobile phone wallpapers download - www.wallpaper-mobile.comAs we approach this wonderful holiday time, take time to put words and thoughts to your thanks both to your family and to God.  Thank Him for all He has done, is doing and will do for you.  He is an awesome God worthy of all our praises!

Blessings,

Linda

I AM the Eternal God

Everlasting GodGod revealed the attribute of His eternality to Abraham in Genesis 21:33 “Abraham planted a tamarisk tree in Beersheba, and there he called on the name of the Lord, the Eternal God.”   Abraham had just had a disagreement with Abimelech over a well Abimelech’s servants had seized that Abraham had previously dug.  They settled the disagreement with a treaty and peace offering made by Abraham.  After the incident Abraham planted a tree of remembrance and called on the Lord.  Abraham knew that God had given him the land as He had promised, Genesis 15 and 17.   He trusted in the eternal God to keep his never changing, everlasting promises.  

Here are some verses to reassure you about our Eternal, Everlasting God:

Deuteronomy 33:27 The eternal God is your refuge,  and underneath are the everlasting arms.  He will drive out your enemies before you,  saying, ‘Destroy them!’

Psalm 90:2Before the mountains were born or you brought forth the whole world,
    from everlasting to everlasting you are God.”

Psalm 102:27But you remain the same, and your years will never end.

Isaiah 40:28Do you not know?  Have you not heard?  The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.  He will not grow tired or weary,
    and his understanding no one can fathom.”

Isaiah 46:4Even to your old age and gray hairs  I am he, I am he who will sustain you.  I have made you and I will carry you;  I will sustain you and I will rescue you.”

Hebrews 13:8 “ Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”

2 Peter 3:8 But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day.”

Revelation 4:8-9Each of the four living creatures had six wings and was covered with eyes all around, even under its wings. Day and night they never stop saying:  “‘Holy, holy, holy is the Lord God Almighty,’  who was, and is, and is to come.”      Whenever the living creatures give glory, honor and thanks to him who sits on the throne and who lives for ever and ever,”

What an amazing eternal God we serve.  Be encouraged and filled with HOPE today because our sovereign, eternal God is watching over you and you can depend upon Him now and forever.

Linda 

 

I AM the Most High God

el elyonThe name Most High God is used frequently in  both the Old and New Testaments.  The Hebrew word is El Elyon.  Beginning in Genesis the mysterious priest Melchizedek recognizes that Abraham is blessed by the God Most High. and blessed be God Most High,  who has delivered your enemies into your hand!” Genesis 14:20   David frequently spoke of God as the Most High God in his Psalms.  He proclaims where God lives, His ability to hear him, that God was his redeemer and that there is no god greater than God.  Psalm 46:4 “There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,  the holy habitation of the Most High.  Psalm 57:2 “I cry out to God Most High,  to God who fulfills his purpose for me.”  Psalm 78:35 ” They remembered that God was their rock,  the Most High God their redeemer.”  Psalm 97:9 “For you, O Lord, are most high over all the earth;  you are exalted far above all gods.”    Daniel tells us that King Nebuchadnezzar was brought low and then restored when he acknowledged the power of the Most High God.  Daniel 5:21 “He was driven from among the children of mankind, and his mind was made like that of a beast, and his dwelling was with the wild donkeys. He was fed grass like an ox, and his body was wet with the dew of heaven, until he knew that the Most High God rules the kingdom of mankind and sets over it whom he will.”  

Son of most highIn the New Testament, the angel that appeared to Mary proclaimed the arrival of the Son of the Most High God, Luke 1:32 “He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High. And the Lord God will give to him the throne of his father David.”   The demons recognized Jesus’ deity and power calling him the Son of the Most High God in Luke 8:28 “When he saw Jesus, he cried out and fell down before him and said with a loud voice, “What have you to do with me, Jesus, Son of the Most High God? I beg you, do not torment me.”  In Acts the demon possessed girl that followed Paul and Silas recognized that the Most High God indwelt and spoke through them about salvation.  Acts 16:17 “She followed Paul and us, crying out, “These men are servants of the Most High God, who proclaim to you the way of salvation.”

What about me?  Do I proclaim that God is above all gods?  Do I believe He is indeed the God Most High?  Do you consider yourself a child of the Most High God?      Meditate on Psalm 84: 10-12Thank Him for being the God Most High in your life and for saving you to dwell with Him forever.                                                           

For a day in your courts is better
    than a thousand elsewhere.
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
    than dwell in the tents of wickedness.
11 For the Lord God is a sun and shield;
    the Lord bestows favor and honor.
No good thing does he withhold
    from those who walk uprightly.
12 Lord of hosts,
    blessed is the one who trusts in you!

Most High GodHave a blessed day as you walk with the Most High God!

Linda

A Transformed Heart is…filled with heavenly treasure

Jesus’ admonition on how to keep our heart storage in good shape or filled with good treasure is one of my favorite passages in Matthew.  In the Sermon on the Mount, Jesus spoke of how to correctly spend our energy.   “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal, 20 but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal. 21 For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also. Matthew 6:19-21  

Our hearts are depository places that hold our thoughts, ideas, motivations and actions of what we have done.  Jesus’ question looks to the heart and questions what things are we doing in our lives that have eternal value.  Only those things are imperishable and will be counted by God as lasting.  Jesus reminds us that those things are a refection of your heart for Him and what you truly value.   So these thoughts beg further thinking on our part- what am I doing that has eternal value?   Here are a few ideas to get you thinking about eternal value.   Time you spend in God’s Word has eternal value for your soul and knowledge of God.  Time you spend in worship, praise and prayer.  Time you spend with family showing them God’s love, taking care of your children and grandchildren, memorizing scripture and feeding the homeless, widows, orphans or others.  Time you spend taking a cup of cold water to someone in need-be it a meal, a note of encouragement, having a cup of tea and visiting or sending a card.  Time spent making a gift for someone and praying for them.    The list is endless but as you can see these things have no monetary value but are acts of kindness, hope and love done for others and yourself in relationship with God.

Paul talks about the eternal value of the things we do and exhorts us to be sure that our foundation is in Jesus. 1 Corinthians 3:12-15  Now if anyone builds on the foundation with gold, silver, precious stones, wood, hay, straw— 13 each one’s work will become manifest, for the Day will disclose it, because it will be revealed by fire, and the fire will test what sort of work each one has done. 14 If the work that anyone has built on the foundation survives, he will receive a reward. 15 If anyone’s work is burned up, he will suffer loss, though he himself will be saved, but only as through fire.”    So our question remains-are you and I doing things with our time that are based upon Jesus and are enduring or are we spending our time working on things that have no eternal value and will perish when God examines them?   Think on the things you do today and consider their eternal value.  Do they glorify God or you?   

hearttreasureJesus tells us that those things of eternal value are stored in the treasure room of our heart.  He desires that our treasure rooms be full to overflowing with His kindness, love and goodness.

Linda

An Absolute for Life

feed-on-the-wordIn Psalm 119:153-160 the psalmist proclaims God’s deliverance, salvation and compassion.  He has discovered these truths about God through his life’s experiences.  His conclusion in verse 160 is profound.  All your words are true;  all your righteous laws are eternal.”  He concludes that God’s Word, the Bible, is entirely true and the principles God provides within are everlasting and unchanging.   He does not have to worry about discrepancy, errors, half-truths, or changing attitudes to adapt to society.  Hebrews 13:8 tells us “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”  We do not need to worry that God will change His plans, change His mind about loving and forgiving us as He is unchangeable in all His ways.  That fact alone is comforting as it gives us something to hold onto when everything else in life seems to be swirling and changing.  The psalmist also understood the trans-formative power of God’s Word. Hebrews 4:12 “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”   God’s Word is alive and working in our lives.  His Word penetrates our thoughts and minds helping us to live like 2Corinthians 10:5 “We demolish arguments and every pretension that sets itself up against the knowledge of God, and we take captive every thought to make it obedient to Christ.

Gods-Word-brings-peace-1How about you?  Do you know for certain that you can rely upon God and His Word?  Is it an absolute in your life?  As you meditate today on these verses, allow God to speak to you and clarify, strengthen and reveal to you the truth of His Word.  I pray that you will arrive at the same conclusion the psalmist did about God and His Word:  All your words are true;  all your righteous laws are eternal.” 

Blessings today as you meditate upon the truth of God’s Word.

Linda

Comfort, can you find it?

Psalm 119-50 Your Word Has Revived Me brownIn today’s portion of Psalm 119:49-56, the Psalmist is proclaiming that God’s Word comforts him and guides him in all situations.  Are you making this claim for your life?  49 Remember your word to your servant,  for you have given me hope.   50 My comfort in my suffering is this:  Your promise preserves my life.  The psalmist goes on to explain that God’s Word has brought him comfort when he was being ridiculed by those around him (vs. 51-52) and with this own indignation over all the sin he sees in the world (53-54).  He clings to God’s Word day and night as his comfort (55-56).   

psalm 23 4Where does your comfort come from?   The Bible is filled with verses that tell us that comfort comes from God.  He is the God of all comfort.  David proclaimed God’s comfort in Psalm 23:4    Even though I walk  through the darkest valley,  I will fear no evil, for you are with me;  your rod and your staff,   they comfort me.   David knew that the things God provides for us bring protection and comfort.  Jesus speaks of God’s comfort when we mourn over our sin, Matthew 5:4  in the AMP  “Blessed [forgiven, refreshed by God’s grace] are those who mourn[over their sins and repent], for they will be comforted [when the burden of sin is lifted].”  Paul wrote in 2 Thessalonians 2:16-17 about Jesus who is our ultimate source of comfort.  “16 Now may our Lord Jesus Christ himself, and God our Father, who loved us and gave us eternal comfort and good hope through grace, 17 comfort your hearts and establish them in every good work and word.

Like the Psalmist we can proclaim that God brings comfort into our lives when we know Jesus, when we depend upon His indwelling Holy Spirit and we proclaim and cling to His Word.   God’s Word will guide us to Him day and night.  Jesus will bring comfort into our lives as we cling to His Word.  Cling to His Word today and you will be comforted.  God is faithful in all His promises.

comfort-from-god-2th2_16-17wpJesus my comforter,

Linda