and the One who walks with me on it.

Saturday, June 30, 2012

A Day of Thankfulness

Lord, I am so thankful today for so many things:
Thank You for taking care of my kids yesterday and protecting them from any harm during their surgeries.
Thank You, Lord for my hubby’s job that comes with benefits to cover most of the costs.
Thank You for medical science that helps us with medical problems and medicines to assist.
Thank You for our shelter, our food, and our conveniences that make life easier especially during days like today.

Thank You that You care for us no matter how distant we have been.
Thank You for never giving up on us or leaving us alone (Heb. 13:5).
Thank You for making a plan of salvation for us right from before creation (Rev. 13:8).
Thank You for Your mercies toward us in that the Lamb was slain for our sin and we can be saved because of what You- Jesus Christ have done
(Jh. ,26).

Thank You Lord for allowing everything in my life that you have, because each and every trial has brought me to this wonderful place in You, and that is worth more than life itself.

O give thanks unto the LORD, for he is good: for his mercy endureth for ever. 
Ps. 107:1; 118:1; 136:1
Giving thanks always for all things unto God and the Father in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;  
Eph. 5:20
In every thing give thanks: for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus concerning you. 

Friday, June 29, 2012


       Make three bowls of Jello, some pudding, have yogurt and ice cream available and don’t forget the frozen peas in two bags.  Odd preparations unless you know that my two teenagers are getting their wisdom teeth removed shortly.  (‘Cause they need less wisdom J )  So, soft foods will be the menu of the day, and the frozen bags of peas that conform to their faces better to help with the swelling, and we are all set.

       Some things in life just call for advance preparation- like camping.  We have a list, check it off as we pack, and then the next day pack up the vehicle to leave.  You can’t just wait until the last minute or things will be forgotten, or worse, you can’t leave until you find your passport.  There is a story in the Bible that talks about being prepared for the Lord’s return:

Then the kingdom of heaven shall be likened to ten virgins who took their lamps and went out to meet the bridegroom. Now five of them were wise, and five were foolish. Those who were foolish took their lamps and took no oil with them, but the wise took oil in their vessels with their lamps. But while the bridegroom was delayed, they all slumbered and slept.
“And at a cry was heard: ‘Behold, the bridegroom is coming; go out to meet him!’ Then all those virgins arose and trimmed their lamps. And the foolish said to the wise, ‘Give us some of your oil, for our lamps are going out.’ But the wise answered, saying, ‘No, lest there should not be enough for us and you; but go rather to those who sell, and buy for yourselves.’ And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came, and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding; and the door was shut.
“Afterward the other virgins came also, saying, ‘Lord, Lord, open to us!’ But he answered and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, I do not know you.’  “Watch therefore, for you know neither the day nor the hour in which the Son of Man is coming.  Mt. 25:1-13

       The wise virgins were ready and waiting for the bridegroom, but the unwise virgins probably thought they had all the time in the world to prepare.  After all, they were still so young.  There is always tomorrow, right?  By the time they realized their error, it was too late and they were shut out of the wedding feast.  If we don’t want to be shut out of the greatest experience of our lives- Heaven with God forever- then we need to prepare.  We should learn from this parable, and be ready for our Beloved to return. 

       We all need to make preparations for Jesus’ return.  He is assuredly coming back for us (1), but will He find us ready (2), ‘passport’ in hand, all packed and ready to leave, or will we have forgotten the basics: a new heart (Ez. 36:26), a renewed mind (Rom. 12:2), and a love for Him that will never die (Lk. 10:27).  When He returns, will He say, “I never knew you (3)”, or “I know you, well done my good and faithful servant”? (Mt. 25:21)

                                             *  *  *  *  * 

1. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 
1Th. ,17
2. So you, too, must be ready, because at an hour you are not expecting him the Son of Man will come."   
Mt. 24:44  ISV
3. So by their fruit you will know them." "Not everyone who keeps saying to me, 'Lord, Lord,' will get into the kingdom of heaven, but only the person who keeps doing the will of my Father in heaven.
Many will say to me on that day, 'Lord, Lord, we prophesied in your name, drove out demons in your name, and performed many miracles in your name, didn't we?' Then I will tell them plainly, 'I never knew you… 
Mt. 7:20-23  ISV

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Lopsided Friendships

       While I was growing up I had several close friendships, but I always wondered if they were a little lopsided.  From my perspective I was putting in more effort towards the friendship, making extra phone calls, arranging more meet times, riding my bike to see them more often, and listening more than sharing.  By the time I was in my late teens, it was a bit irritating, and by my late twenties, I had given up on some of the relationships feeling that if they really wanted to keep them going, the other person would begin to put in more effort.

       I began to wonder if they were even true friendships when they seemed so lopsided.  (Never thought about how much they had to put up with in me- that would have balanced it out!!!)  I began to question: did they not love me enough, or care enough to be there for me when I needed to talk?  Why were their problems always more important?  Anyway, it continued to bug me right through to my thirties when I began to accept people for their differences more.

       Of course lately I’ve been convicted of how lopsided my relationship has been with the Lord.  Seriously, how many years did I cry on His shoulders, vent my feelings, and expect Him to make the effort while I ignore Him when convenient for me?  How many times did I exclude Him from my plans and my life?  How many times have I neglected to listen to Him?  Ouch!  It hurts to think about how selfish I’ve been in this relationship.

And the LORD said, Shall I hide from Abraham that thing which I do; Seeing that Abraham shall surely become a great and mighty nation, and all the nations of the earth shall be blessed in him? For I know him  Gen. 18:19

       Notice, the Lord wondered if He should talk to Abraham about the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, or not.  He did.  It started a conversation between the two and allowed Abraham to intercede for the potential righteous in the cities.  They listened to each other.  God does not exhibit partiality (Acts ).  What He did with many of the Bible characters(ex. Moses, Elijah, Paul), He wants to do with us.

       What brought all this back to my attention was that, a couple weeks ago, the Lord told me something really difficult to hear, and my first response was, “Did You have to tell me that- I don’t want to know that.”  Immediately after I thought, “Wow, I just told Him I don’t want to hear what He wants to tell me- I don’t want to share what’s in His heart.  What kind of friend (John ) am I only listening to the things I want to hear?  Obviously I’m still being selfish in this relationship!”  Asking forgiveness came easy, but reflecting on my history with friends and God was more difficult.

       Now I need to make some changes.  I’ve got to put in more effort, arrange ‘to meet more times’, and start listening more instead of always making my problems more important than what He has to say.  Do I love Him enough to do that?  It’s a good thing the Lord has been longsuffering with me (Ps. 86:15) and never acted like me by abandoning (Dt. 31:6) our friendship just because it is lopsided  so grateful He’s not like me!

I am sorry Lord.  Please share Your life and heart with me.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Beauty in the Reflection

       Last night was fireworks night in the city.  For the first time I had the opportunity to enjoy them from a high rise, twenty seven stories up!  My friend pointed out how from our angle the colourful fireworks were reflecting off the windows of the 39 to 73 storied Renaissance Center.  After that, it was watching the reflections that most captured my attention.

       Now, the windows of the buildings are divided into sections, which means you don’t see the reflections fully all the way down the buildings, rather, the lights seem to quickly twinkle as they fall.  So while the colours exploded in front of me bursting out into varied shapes, the reflected lights in the windows twinkled quickly from the top down.  It was beautiful to behold such a wondrous thing.

       As children of God, we are not the Light.  Jesus is the Light of the world (John ) and the Lord enlightens our darkness (Ps. ).  If we follow the Lord as He wants us to (Lk. ) we begin to imitate Him (1Cor. 11:1) and His light will shine off of us (or in us) into the dark world, and that is how we become His lights in the world (Mt. 5:14).  Just as the reflecting lights drew my attention for their beauty and interesting display, so we shall draw attention to God, bringing glory to Him when people see His light reflecting in us.

Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven.  Mt. 5:16

       And if you are worried about your imperfections and failures, remember how I said the reflected lights were more interesting because of the twinkling effect of the divided windows?  Well, the people around us notice our dark times too, but then it makes their watching of us even more interesting.  They are drawn to see how we respond to the world and troubles around us, and when they see the love and peace of Jesus still strong in us through thick and thin, it will change their lives.  So let’s all clean our windows and stand still in the glorious Light of our Lord, so we can shine!

For ye were sometimes darkness,
but now are ye light in the Lord: walk as children of light:
(For the fruit of the Spirit is in all goodness and righteousness and truth;) 
         Eph. 5:8,9

Monday, June 25, 2012

His Heart in My Hands

       It was something like and I was sitting in the waiting room of the hospital holding a diagram of my husband’s heart.  The doctor who sat beside me explained the diagram which she had drawn upon to indicate the problems in his heart.  You see, he had a silent heart attack, and they performed a test to see about blockage and damage done.  He had two arteries 100% blocked, one a larger blockage than the other, and one artery 50% blocked.

       Because of the blood flow problems in his heart, he had suffered a heart attack which damaged a small portion of his heart.  I looked at the picture in disbelief thinking, how can this be, and how could we have had no warnings before now?  I was shocked as I considered my hubby to be fairly healthy and strong for his age, but the picture in my hands said differently.

       Restricted blood flow to the heart causes problems and possibly permanent damage, just like I imagine our restricting the Holy Spirit’s flow in our hearts (Strong’s G2588= thoughts, feelings) can cause us problems and damage.  How do we block His flow?  Speaking from experience, it is various personal issues in our lives that restrict His flow.  For me, that means fear of the unknown was a big restriction, probably like the large 100% blockage in hubby’s heart.  It took a lot of years to substantially clear it up.

       Then there was some anger blocking Him.  Every time He ‘let me down’ by not answering my prayers the way I wanted, it added a little more until I was completely blocked.  The Lord worked away at that one for a few years, and now it is gone.  Other blockages were ignorance, trying to maintain my own control, lack of discipline, judgmental or superior attitude, and on and on.  These things continued to block the Spirit’s flow to me, hindering my growth and maturation.  For too long I did not understand

But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.  1Cor.
Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.  Is. 26:3
Casting down imaginations, and every high thing that exalteth itself against the knowledge of God, and bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ;  2Cor. 10:5
Keep thy heart with all diligence; for out of it are the issues of life.  Pr. 4:23

       We are responsible for our hearts and must do what we can to keep them open to the Father, the Lord Jesus and the Holy Spirit.  That means casting down our thoughts that keep blocking Him from moving in our lives; keeping out bad blockages such as “bitterness, and wrath, and anger, and clamour, and evil speaking, …with all malice” (Eph. 4:31) so we do not grieve Him (v. 30).  The religious leaders were chastised for resisting the Holy Spirit (Acts ) because they were blocked up by pride, works, hypocrisy and legalism.

       Are you finding your life dull, your heart cold, your thoughts negative, or your maturity at a stand still?  What things are blocking your heart today?  Can you remove them, repent, ask forgiveness, or cast them down, or do you just need to get down on your knees and cry out to God for help?  Whatever it is, don’t give up.  Never give up.  Do what you can, and when that fails:

Sometimes prayer is the only way

     Break up the hardness in our hearts oh Lord!

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Straight Up Part 2

Why is it so important that we know the Word of God for ourselves instead of just listening to inspired teachers?  Because any man besides Jesus Christ is able to make errors.  I’ve made a few myself over the years.  How will we know the information is not correct?  By knowing the Word, by the Holy Spirit, and by checking it out after to ensure it is accurate.  False teaching is increasing every day because the enemy knows his time is short, so we must be prepared.

Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour:  Pt. 5:8
I know that when I'm gone savage wolves will come among you and not spare the flock. Indeed, some of your own men will come forward and distort the truth in order to lure the disciples into following them.
Acts ,30 ISV

Paul knew we were prone to deception because he said, “you are all too willing to listen.(2Cor. 11:3,4) and could be lured away from Christ.  Our human nature only wants to listen to the things which make us feel good about ourselves, or are easy on our ears, but it is the whole counsel of God that will transform our lives by the renewing of our minds (Rom. 12:2).

"We must realize that the way to deceive people with counterfeits is to imitate the genuine article as closely as possible. For example, if counterfeiters want to pass off fake one-hundred-dollar bills, they do not print Donald Duck’s picture on purple paper. Instead they attempt to duplicate a true bill,” said Craig Hawkins.  Deceiving teachers will come carrying a Bible, quoting Scripture and preaching a wonderful godly sounding message that will be very well received and popular.  believe them not, though they speak fair words unto thee.(Jer. 12:6)

Now the Spirit speaketh expressly, that in the latter times some shall depart from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits, and doctrines of devils; Speaking lies in hypocrisy 1Tm. 4:1,2
Dear friends, stop believing every spirit. Instead, test the spirits to see whether they are from God, because many false prophets have gone out into the world. 1John 4:1  ISV

For example, there are teachers who teach God will forgive us if we sin so we can leave sin in our lives and still go to heaven.  The Bible says:
Do not let anyone deceive you with meaningless words, for it is because of these things that God's wrath comes on those who are disobedient.  Eph. 5:6 ISV
some godless teachers have wormed their way in among you, saying that after we become Christians we can do just as we like without fear of God’s punishmentthey have turned againstJesus Christ. Jude 1:4  TLB

Don’t judge what you are hearing/ reading by the looks or reputation of the person (John ), or your perception of their skill or knowledge.  Be as the Bereans and check it out (1Cor. ; Acts ).  Follow the Spirit who helps you understand the Word, and will help you recall it (John ; ) when needed.


"Let no man deceive you by any means…"
        1Th. 2:3