Three Things to Consider with our Speech

In my life, I am called of the Lord to be salt and light in this world. The greatest avenue for being that light is, obviously, through the written or spoken word. When I am declaring the truth of God, there are three things that I desire the Lord would help me with relating to communication.

  1. Discernment.

What God has given me to say will not always be accepted well. SURPRISE! Sometimes, discernment is needed to know when to speak, and when not to speak; what to say, and what not to say.

  1. Wisdom.

Wisdom to know the truth, and wisdom in how to relay that truth. How I say something is just as important as what I say, and I pray for the wisdom to say things that will accurately communicate truth while not giving offense. This wisdom can even be as simple as knowing certain things about the other person that will be unique to their situation that will cause feelings and emotions to be more easily hurt. Again, discernment comes in to play. Which leads also to the third…

  1. Grace

I pray that my speech will always be seasoned with graciousness. Consideration and kindness towards others go a long way in communicating with grace. Words may often be seasoned with salt, meaning they may sting with the conviction of the Holy Spirit as the Word of God is declared. But they may also be seasoned with grace in the method of declaration.

So may we always declare the truth of God as it lines up with His Word. And may we always seek to uplift others and draw them closer to the Savior with our speech and our lives.

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There is None Else

Isaiah 45:6 ~ “That they may know from the rising of the sun, and from the west, that there is none beside me. I am the LORD, and there is none else.”

Today I can take comfort in the fact that the God I serve is the One True God, and beside Him, there is none else. The One True God loves me, little ole me!

So some thoughts to meditate on today:

There is none else that gives me such peace
Psalm 29:11 ~ “The LORD will give strength unto his people; the LORD will bless his people with peace.”

There is none else that gives me such grace and mercy
Hebrews 4:16 ~ “Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.”

There is none else that gives me such joy
Psalm 16:11 ~ “Thou wilt shew me the path of life: in thy presence is fulness of joy; at thy right hand there are pleasures for evermore.”

There is none else that gives me such strength for the day
Isaiah 40:31~ “But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint.”

There is none else that gives me a love for others
Galatians 5:22 ~ “But the fruit of the Spirit is love…”

There is none else that gives me such blessings
Psalm 115:12 ~ “The LORD hath been mindful of us: he will bless us…”

There is none else that sustains me
Psalm 55:22 ~ “Cast thy burden upon the LORD, and he shall sustain thee: he shall never suffer the righteous to be moved.”

There is none else through whom I can gain my salvation
Acts 4:12 ~ “Neither is there salvation in any other: for there is none other name under heaven given among men, whereby we must be saved.”

There is none else who convicts and chastens me out of love
Hebrews 12:6,7 ~ “For whom the Lord loveth he chasteneth, and scourgeth every son whom he receiveth. If ye endure chastening, God dealeth with you as with sons; for what son is he whom the father chasteneth not?”

There is none else whose forgives compares to His forgiveness
Psalm 86:5 ~ “F or thou, Lord, art good, and ready to forgive; and plenteous in mercy unto all them that call upon thee.”

We serve an awesome God! He is ever faithful, and He deserves our praise every day. Serve the Lord with gladness today.

What else could you add to these? Leave a comment and let me know how the Lord is blessing you!

“There, But for the Grace of God, Go I.”

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“There, But for the Grace of God, Go I.”

My heart is grieved today.

Wait…It’s Christmas! Aren’t we supposed to be happy?!

Oh yes, for sure it is a season of thankfulness and rejoicing for what our Savior has done for us.

But I am also moved to tears.

Tears, for those who have forsaken the Lord. Grief, for those who did not stay the course. Sorrow, for those who did not endure to the end.

In a dream I had last night, I saw a friend who I knew years ago. I dreamed she came to see me for a visit, which caused me to think about her and pray for her in the night. She and I have taken very different paths, although our paths did cross for a few years. She is now studying for a career, and as far as I know is not faithful to church on a regular basis.

On Facebook, during phone conversations with family and friends, in the news, we are constantly hearing of Christians who have left the faith. A countless number of people every year choose the ways of the world in place of a relationship with Christ. Today, I saw another person who I know used to be in church, serving and worshipping the Lord, now serving her own desires and pleasures, and…

MY HEART IS GRIEVED

 

My heart is also humbled as I realize, that could just as easily have been me walking away from the Lord.

“There, but for the grace of God, go I.”

How easy it is to walk away! One little step can lead down the wrong path to a life ruined in sin’s mire. One wrong decision, one wrong thought, one wrong choice. It is not wrong to be tempted, even Christ was tempted. But when you choose to dwell on that temptation, you begin to think about it. If you do not choose to cast it down (2Corinthians 10:5), you will take the next step of action. And before you know it, as quick as a flash, you’re off the right path, and hurtling down a wrong path.

So I say to me, and I say to you: CHOOSE YOU THIS DAY WHOM YE WILL SERVE. (Joshua 24:15). The first step down the right path starts the same way as going down the wrong one – choice. Consciously choose the right path. Decide in your heart that you will follow God and His Word.

But all those people who ended up straying away from God first made that first choice also. So deciding to follow God is not enough. Sticking to that decision is an everyday battle. The life of following the Lord is a life of self-discipline as we consciously choose every day amid the hustle and bustle of life to glorify God and honor Him as our Holy, Heavenly Father. Paul struggled with this also. He said, “But I keep under my body, and bring it into subjection: lest that by any means, when I have preached to others, I myself should be a castaway.” – 1 Corinthians 9:27. Paul lived with self-control as he faced life. He recognized that there would be things that would cause him to want to forsake of a life of devotion to God. Daily, he had to die to self.

It’s a conscious choice. You either live for God, or you live for self, but you cannot serve both simultaneously.

So yes, today, even during this Christmas season, I am grieved. My heart is heavy as I think of many who did not choose to continue on the right path.

And our Father’s heart is grieved as He watches His children walk away to ruin their lives in the waste of this world’s pleasures. He knows all too well the results of such actions. He has watched it happen time and time and time again. He is sorrowed, grieved, and hurt. Yet His hand is stretched out still to all those who would return to Him.

Today, take stock of your life. Is there anything in your life that would hinder your walk with the Lord? Rid yourself of anything and everything that would hinder your walk with the Lord. Find out what is clouding your view of your heavenly Father. Seek Him in every aspect of your life. Look for Him in the small things, as well as the big things. Choose to serve Him only and every day keep choosing.

Or perhaps you are one of the ones who has strayed. A compromise of convictions, a laxity in Christian service or church attendance. Only you know where you are in the path of life. Psalm 105:4 – “Seek the LORD, and his strength: seek his face evermore.”

One last thought: remember, we do not only live our lives unto ourselves. Every decision we make will have an effect on those around us, whether we realize it or not.

Lord, today may I find grace in Your sight. Help me Lord to love You as I should. Help me to teach my children to have a love for You. And help me to stay faithful to the end. May my life point others to You and to Your Son. Instill in me a desire for You.

Today, please send the Holy Spirit again to speak to the hearts of those who have strayed from the right path. May they hear that inner voice, and turn to You again.

 

I’d Rather Have Jesus

I'd Rather Have Jesus

Just wanted to share a song today that has been a huge blessing to me lately.  It has helped me to stay focused on what is important in the Christian life, rather than being sidetracked by the things this world has to offer.  When the world offers fame and fortune, or false satisfaction, I remember that it is Jesus Christ that I serve, and I would rather have Him and His approval than anything else.

 

I’d Rather Have Jesus

             

(1) I’d rather have Jesus than silver or gold,

I’d rather be His than have riches untold;

I’d rather have Jesus than houses or lands,

I’d rather be led by His nail-pierced hand.

             

CHORUS:

Than to be the king of a vast domain

Or be held in sin’s dread sway;

I’d rather have Jesus than anything

This world affords today.

             

(2) I’d rather have Jesus than men’s applause,

I’d rather be faithful to His dear cause;

I’d rather have Jesus than world-wide fame,

I’d rather be true to His holy name.

             

(3) He’s fairer than lilies of rarest bloom,

He’s sweeter than honey from out the comb;

He’s all that my hungering spirit needs,

I’d rather have Jesus and let Him lead.

Quick thoughts on serving the Lord

I have been considering this question much lately:  Why as Christians are we embracing the sins of the world so readily and not taking a stand for righteousness and the truth of the Gospel?  Because all these things (premarital sex, adultery, homosexuality, abortion, lying, stealing, cheating…) are all portrayed in our media and our society as being good and acceptable, and as emotionally appealing.  Emotions – that part of you that always wants to feel good and make others feel good.  The world will say, “Take care of yourself, and do what you feel is right in your heart.”  THAT IS A GINORMOUS LIE!!!  Our heart can be deceived (Jeremiah 17:90)  We must recognize that standing for the truth and standing for righteousness will not always come with that emotional high of feeling good and making everyone happy.  We must acknowledge that when we do stand up for the truth and the right, God will bless our lives, and will be there to help us withstand.  But it will not always “feel good,” and rarely will we please the people that are around us.  That’s why our lives cannot be based on our feelings and emotions, but on the rock solid truth of God’s Word.  Accepting Christ comes with so many blessing – new life, forgiveness of sin, grace, mercy, the Love of the Father, freedom in Christ, and so many other things.  It also comes with other words we don’t like to think about – obedience, faithfulness, confession and repentance of sin, being dead to the world and alive unto good works, and servants to Jesus Christ.  We want the blessing without the sacrifice.  It doesn’t work that way.  

Choose you this day who you will serve, and serve without looking to the left or to the right, and without looking back.  Serve Faithfully and Joyously, regardless.  I like that word – regardless.  Regardless of who says I’m wrong, regardless of who tries to prevent me, regardless of what happens, I will still seek to promote Christ with my life. 

I used to live in a country that didn’t care if you were a Christian.  You could live your life and seek to tell others about Christ, and people wouldn’t get all up in arms over silly things.  Today we face the likelihood that we are going to offend others with our faith.  Soon, it won’t just be likely, it will be the reality.  Now is the time to make our decision firm and fixed in our minds that we will serve Christ – regardless.

The gospel of Christ Jesus

Verse to Meditate on

Verse to Meditate on

I have been seriously MIA lately! But I thought I’d share some verses that I have been reading today and thinking about. It is so important to learn the truth of God’s Word for ourselves, and to pass these truths along to our children and the next generation. I pray as a mother of two children, and one on the way, I can be aware of the need to teach and instruct my children in the Word of God.

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This second lesson from Ruth’s life comes from chapter 2 of the book of Ruth.  We can learn from Ruth’s life that she took no thought for herself while serving her mother-in-law.  Ruth was willing to consider Naomi’s need above her own, and she went beyond what would have been expected of her in order to do that.  Ruth humbled herself to the mean task of gleaning.  Gleaning was truly a tedious task.  The gleaners in the fields were essentially gathering in the leftovers and the castoffs of the harvest.  When the reapers went through, they were to leave that which was dropped for the poor and the unfortunate.  God had made provision for this when He gave the laws to Moses:

Leviticus 19:9, 10 ~ “And when ye reap the harvest of your land, thou shalt not wholly reap the corners of thy field, neither shalt thou gather the gleanings of thy harvest.  And thou shalt not glean thy vineyard, neither shalt thou gather every grape of thy vineyard; thou shalt leave them for the poor and stranger: I am the LORD your God.”

Those who did not have food for their own tables would come behind the reapers, and arduously pick up those few small kernels that were left on the ground.  It was the least praiseworthy job in all Israel.  And Ruth was willing to do it to help support her mother-in-law through their reduced circumstances. 

As a mother, I am often putting another’s needs before my own!  That’s kinda the understood duty of a mom. The kids need caring for and our of love and just sheer duty, we make sure they are cared for, fed, changed, bathed, etc.  But I wonder about other people, outside the home.  Are my eyes watching to be a helper?  An encourager?  A friend?  Am I willing to help others? 

Ruth did not consider going back to her life in Moab.  She didn’t consider trying to find someone else the help her out, she shouldered the task herself.  She didn’t take the easy way out.  She showed she was willing to do whatever it took to help her month-in-law.  Now we know the end of the story.  Boaz takes notice, watches our for her, falls in love, marries her, and they live happily ever after.  But Ruth didn’t know any of this. She didn’t know that by doing this menial task, she was paving her way out of poverty and into wealth.  All she knew was that she and Naomi had needs that weren’t going to be met unless she took action.  But we also see that in the end, God blesses her effort and her life is changed so much for the better!  But before we look into all the blessings, stay tuned for a couple more steps in Ruth’s life.  And watch as she stays faithful to God and faithful to Naomi.

Lessons on Ruth (#2)