Friday, September 24, 2010

Let not yours be the [merely] external adorning with [elaborate] interweaving and knotting of the hair, the wearing of jewelry, or changes of cloths;but let it be the inward adorning and beauty of the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible and unfading charm of a gentle and peaceful spirit, which [is not anxious or wrought up, but] is very precious in the sight of God. 1 Peter 3:2-3

Monday, March 22, 2010

Planted in the House of the Lord, they shall Flourish!

Psalm 92:12-15

12The [uncompromisingly] righteous

shall flourish

like the palm tree [be long-lived, stately, upright, useful, and fruitful];

they shall grow

like a cedar in Lebanon [majestic, stable, durable, and incorruptible].

13Planted in the house of the Lord,

they shall flourish in the courts of our God.

14[Growing in grace] they shall still bring forth fruit in old age;

they shall be full of sap [of spiritual vitality]

and [rich in the] verdure [of trust, love, and contentment].

15[They are living memorials] to show

that the Lord is upright

and faithful to His promises;

He is my Rock,

and there is no unrighteousness in Him.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Saint Patrick's Faith

Saint Patrick's statement of faith from about 450 AD

For there is no other God, nor ever was before, nor shall be hereafter, but God the Father, unbegotten and without beginning, in whom all things began, whose are all things, as we have been taught; and his son Jesus Christ, who manifestly always existed with the Father, before the beginning of time in the spirit with the Father, indescribably begotten before all things, and all things visible and invisible were made by him. He was made man, conquered death and was received into Heaven, to the Father who gave him all power over every name in Heaven and on Earth and in Hell, so that every tongue should confess that Jesus Christ is Lord and God, in whom we believe. And we look to his imminent coming again, the judge of the living and the dead, who will render to each according to his deeds. And he poured out his Holy Spirit on us in abundance, the gift and pledge of immortality, which makes the believers and the obedient into sons of God and co-heirs of Christ who is revealed, and we worship one God in the Trinity of holy name.

Monday, March 15, 2010

In Christ Alone

In Christ alone my hope is found
He is my light, my strength, my song
This Cornerstone, this solid ground
Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
What heights of love, what depths of peace
When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
My Comforter, my All in All
Here in the love of Christ I stand

In Christ alone, who took on flesh
Fullness of God in helpless babe
This gift of love and righteousness
Scorned by the ones He came to save
‘Til on that cross as Jesus died
The wrath of God was satisfied
For every sin on Him was laid
Here in the death of Christ I live

There in the ground His body lay
Light of the world by darkness slain
Then bursting forth in glorious Day
Up from the grave He rose again
And as He stands in victory
Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
For I am His and He is mine
Bought with the precious blood of Christ

No guilt in life, no fear in death
This is the power of Christ in me
From life’s first cry to final breath
Jesus commands my destiny
No power of hell, no scheme of man
Can ever pluck me from His hand
‘til He returns or calls me home
Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand

Written by the Newsboys

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Our Divine Romance

Divine Romance
Song Written by Phil Wickham

The fullness of Your grace is here with me
The richness of Your beauty’s all I see
The brightness of Your glory has arrived
In Your presence God, I’m completely satisfied

For You I sing I dance
Rejoice in this divine romance
Lift my heart and my hands
To show my love, to show my love

A deep deep flood, an Ocean flows from You
Of deep deep love, yeah it’s filling up the room
Your innocent blood, has washed my guilty life
In Your presence God I’m completely satisfied

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Enter His Presence

Enter His Presence
by Anne Graham Lotz
In olden days, entering into the presence of God would have been an unattainable privilege for a Gentile woman like myself. If I had stood on a desert sand dune that overlooked the Israelite camp in the wilderness following the exodus from Egypt, I would have seen a sea of tents that stretched out to the horizon of my vision. In the midst of the encampment, I would have noticed a much larger tent surrounded by a dazzling "wall" of linen that shimmered white in the scorching desert sun. If I had left my vantage point on the sand dune and slipped closer, I might have found a bystander who would have been willing to answer my questions.
"What is that big tent?"
"Don't you know? We are God's children, and that tent is the Tabernacle where God is said to dwell in our midst. "
"Can I go in?" I would have naively asked.
"Go in? Go inside the Tabernacle? You must be out of your mind! It's obvious you are not an Israelite and you're a woman. You could never go inside."
"Surely there must be some way I could enter. I would like to draw near to God, too. I long to be in His presence."
"Well, let me tell you something, lady. The only way you could ever enter into the presence of God is if you were totally born again!"
"What's inside those linen walls?"
"On the other side of the walls are the altar, the laver, and the Tabernacle itself."
"And what is in the Tabernacle?"
"The Tabernacle is divided into two rooms that are separated by a heavy curtain, or veil. I'm told that in the first room there is a lamp, a table with a loaf of bread on it, and an altar of incense. Beyond the veil in the second room is the Most Holy Place of God's presence where the Ark of the covenant rests."
"If only I had been born a man, if only I had been born an Israelite, then I would go into the Most Holy Place of God's presence five times a day!"
"Lady, you still don't get it, Israelite men cannot go inside the Tabernacle, either--only the priests are allowed inside. And even the priests can't go inside the Most Holy Place of God's presence. Only the high priest can go beyond the veil."
"Oh, how I wish I was an Israelite man who was also a high priest. Then I would go into God's presence every day. In fact, I would just stay there--I would live in God's presence!"
Perhaps with sympathetic softening to his eyes, this bystander would reply gently but with finality, "But the high priest himself can only enter within the veil once a year."
And I would be turned away, with no hope of ever entering into the Most Holy Place of God's presence.
Until Jesus came! Through His death the veil separating us from the presence of God was torn in two from top to bottom! God Himself opened up the way for us to enter into His holy presence---through prayer.
"Since we have confidence to enter the Most Holy Place by the blood of Jesus, by a new and living way opened for us through the curtain, that is, His body, and since we have a great high priest over the house of God, let us draw near to God with a sincere heart in full assurance of faith."
Through prayer, we are invited to come into His presence as children come to their father.

Thursday, March 4, 2010

A Prayer for my Heart

O LORD, I thank You that you care so much about my wayward heart. Thank you for Your grace and mercy towards me.

I pray that I remember all of the amazing things You have done for me; that more and more, I will learn to trust in You with all my heart and not lean on my own understanding.

Help me to love You with all of my heart, my soul, my strength, and my mind.

Teach me in Your way, O LORD, and I will walk in Your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear Your name.

Help me, LORD, to guard my heart and understand that it is the wellspring of life.

Please give me a singleness of heart and action, so that I will always fear You for my own good and the good of my children after me.

I need You LORD. Thank You for being my very precious treasure and making a way for my heart to dwell with You.

Proverbs 3:15, Psalm 119:10, Psalm 86:11, Proverbs, 4:23, Jeremiah 32:39, Matthew 6:21

Friday, February 26, 2010

Psalm 139:1-12

you have examined my heart
and know everything about me.
You know when I sit down or stand up.
You know my every thought when far away.
You chart the path ahead of me
and tell me where to stop and rest.
Every moment you know where I am.
You know what I am going to say
even before I say it, LORD.
You procede
and follow me.
You place your hand of blessing on my head.
Such knowledge is too wonderful for me,
too great for me to know!
I can never escape from your Spirit!
I can never get away from your presence!
If I go up to heaven,
you are there;
if I go down to the place of the dead,
you are there.
If I ride the wings of the morning,
if I dwell by the farthest oceans,
even there
your hand will guide me,
and your strength will support me.
I could ask the darkness to hid me
and the light to become night-
but even in darkness
I cannot hide from you.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Grandma's Prayers

Yesterday at Women's Bible Study,most of us shared a song that exalted our Lord declaring as David, God's awesome love, majesty and power. God had placed a different type of song on my heart, it reflected my burden and new found commitment to God's plan of:

"A new revival even as we pray and sing,
we're on our knees,
we're on our knees,
I see a generation raising up to take it's place,
the whole world sings,
the whole world sings,
Hosanna, Hosanna,
glory in the highest."

Last night only hours after I'd declared my faith in what I expected God was going to do, our phone rang...
"Hello! Hi grandma? High doll what's up?
Do you remember when I was really little, you and grandpa gave mom some Savings Bonds to hold for me until I was an adult? Yes of course. Well mom said I should call and tell you how I will be using them, that it would mean a lot to you.
The church is putting together a group for a missions trip to Africa in two months. Because they know how much I love children and how outgoing I am, they asked me to be part of the team and I am going to use the bonds to help fund the trip.
I really feel God has been calling me to maturity. There are some things I have really been wanting to buy for our home, but I distinctly knew the Lord was saying, remember those children in Africa who don't even have food? And you have so much! Do you really think you need that? I felt like it was a little spanking to help Him get through to me."
I said, "Sweetheart, He wasn't spanking you. He is only beginning what will turn into a life long class of lovingly teaching you."
She is 25 and the oldest grandchild. She uses FaceBook to display hundreds of photos taken of her, she has been desperate to be a photo model! Before that the photos were all of her partying with her friends, as though she was defying all the righteous truths she had ever been taught to embrace. The worst thing seemed to be her influence on our younger grandchildren, who were following her as if she were the Pied Piper and I thought my heart would break.

Of course she has NO idea what he is really doing, or how many ways He will use this trip. But I know Him! And I know He's up to something BIG, that's going to impact lives for eternity.
I can only sing, "Hosanna, hosanna, glory in the highest, glory in the highest!" I know He is mightily at work answering prayers!!!
Of course her mom is right, Grandpa and I could never have imagined that God would use the Savings Bonds for this!!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Lent and Contemplating the Cross

Today and every day, God the Father extends an invitation- to actors and mechanics, schoolteachers and bright-eyed children, preachers and bartenders, accountants and garbage collectors, gamblers and homemakers. It is an eternal and unchanging summons to kneel in the shadow of that cross, where He sacrificed His only Son, and make it our soul's home.

From Contemplating the Cross
By Tricia McCary Rhodes

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

One Thing

One thing I ask of the Lord....
this is what I seek...

Oh God, give me an undivided heart.

Teach me your way, O Lord, and I will walk in your truth;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.
I will praise You, O Lord my God,
with all my heart;
I will glorify your Name forever,
For great is your love toward me;
you have delivered my soul
from the depths of the grave.
Psalm 86:11-13

My heart says of you,
"Seek His face!"
Your face will I seek.

Teach me your way, O Lord;
lead me in a straight path.

One thing.

"For the eyes of the Lord range throughout the earth
to strengthen those whose hearts are fully committed to Him."
2 Chronicles 16:9

O Lord, help me to have one thing in mind.

Saturday, February 13, 2010

Step by Step

In God have I put my trust and confident reliance; I will not be afraid.
What can man do to me? Your vows are upon me, O God;
I will render praise to You and give You thank offerings.
For You have delivered my life from death,
yes and my feet from falling
that I may walk before God in the light of life and of the living.
Psalm 56:11-13

Jesus is the One God sent to banish the darkness. His light leads us from death to life. He is the One Who keeps our feet from falling that we may walk before God. He has made a way for us that is so complete and so good.

Your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.
Psalm 119:105

He gives us just enough light for us to see...the next step. Sometimes maybe a glimpse of a bit more, but for sure enough for us to see the path before us. This is how we walk with Him, step by step, following the light on the path. We do not have to fumble around in the darkness. He is the Word and He is the Light. He shows us the way to go.

I have come into the world as a light, so that no one who believes in me should stay in darkness.
John 12:46

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Take a Pen and Paper

Take a Pen and Paper
By Jill Briscoe
Taken from Jill's book
The Deep Place Where Nobody Goes

Try taking a pen and paper to the Deep Place where nobody goes. Then you can read His letters in the Golden Book and write a reply.

I write it out on paper and I think my thoughts out loud
I speak my heart's foreboding and I pray about the cloud
Of deep and dark depression and a sense of dread and doubt
So I write it out on paper and I get my feelings out.

Then I take it to the Throne Room and leave it there above
And I know that I am understood with sympathy and love
I wait a while in silence till the Spirit meets me there
And He takes my piece of paper and He turns it into a prayer.

I bring my tired believing and my faith that pants for power
And I lay it at the altar in this quiet, scared hour
And I ask for fire igniting weary faith and dying hope
And I cry for stern believing and I seek for power to cope.

Then I read the treasured Scripture that will lift my spirits high
Turn tears to precious laughter and kiss my fears goodbye
I wait until He clams me down and nerves me for the fight
And then He leads me upwards and onwards in the night.

So I revel in these moments in the shadow of the Throne
Where I hear the Father's voice like many waters falling down
There's freedom and forgiveness and unremitting love
So I hate to leave the Throne Room for the shallow place above!

Sleeping forgiven, waking to grace
Nightmares forgotten, things back in place
Coming close to His footstool in the Throne Room above
He settles my soul, and I listen to love.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Faithful High Priest

Hebrews 2:17-18

So it is evident that it was essential that He be made like His brethren in every respect, in order that He might become a merciful (sympathetic) and faithful High Priest in the things related to God, to make atonement and propitiation for the people's sins. For because He Himself [in His humanity] has suffered in being tempted (tested and tried), He is able [immediately] to run to the cry of (assist, relieve) those who are being tempted and tested and tried [and who therefore are being exposed to suffering].

I don't know why, but it is of such great comfort that Jesus knows what I go through. Not only that, but He comes to my rescue and makes a way for me to move past the trials and temptations of life. This version (amp) states that it was essential for Him to be like us in every respect (except without sin). I am so thankful that He really really knows and understands what it is like for us as we struggle. I am so thankful that I can cry out to One who can relate, One who hears and One who rescues. You and You alone, O LORD, are worthy of any and all worship and praise.