Sunday, July 29, 2012

Let God Have His Way

One thing God has spoken,
    two things I have heard:
“Power belongs to you, God, 
12     and with you, Lord, is unfailing love”; 
and, “You reward everyone
    according to what they have done.”

Psalm 62:11-12

New International Version (NIV)

           Sometimes it is easy to forget what God can do and try to be overly self-reliant.  We may depend on government, friends, family, or the powers of this Earth.  In the end we are often let down, disappointed, and reminded of the frailty and failures of the ephemeral.

            I try to give it all to You, Lord, and then I forget.  Please keep reminding me.  I want to do the right things in Your eyes. Recognition by people is nice, but it means nothing if I have not pleased You, Lord.

 For this reason, ... continually ask God to fill you with the knowledge of his will through all the wisdom and understanding that the Spirit gives, so that you may live a life worthy of the Lord and please him in every way: bearing fruit in every good work, growing in the knowledge of God,  being strengthened with all power according to his glorious might so that you may have great endurance and patience,  and giving joyful thanks to the Father, who has qualified you to share in the inheritance of his holy people in the kingdom of light.

Colossians 1:9-12

New International Version (NIV)


Sunday, July 22, 2012

Consequences of Love

But for those who honor the Lord, his love lasts forever, 
      and his goodness endures for all generations

Psalm 103:17

Good News Translation (GNT)

          God's word tells us of His promises to His children.  Our God is a just God and an honorable God full of mercy and love for us.  We have a choice.  Do we accept God on His terms or reject Him on our terms?  Every choice has its consequences.   What do you choose?

If you love me, you will obey my commandments.

John 14:15

Good News Translation (GNT)

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Sunday, July 15, 2012


The Lord is my Good ShepherdThe Lord is my Good Shepherd (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The Lord is my shepherd;
    I have all that I need.

Psalm 23:1

New Living Translation (NLT)

        I'd like to find a steady assured source of income.   Good health for many more years would be nice.  I hope I can keep my home or something equivalent for the duration of my life.  Since my van may be on its last legs, I wouldn't mind having a new vehicle.

         My wish list is long, but they are not things that are necessary for my eternal salvation.  They are things that make life seem a little better by earthly standards.

         I've always managed to get by in my life and God has been faithful in providing my needs.  I can always think of something to add to my wish list, but I look forward to even better things.

I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.

Philippians 4:11

New International Version (NIV)

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Sunday, July 8, 2012

Fear + Honor = Love

English: "Honor thy father and thy mother... "Honor thy father and thy mother, that thy days may be long upon the land which the Lord thy God giveth thee." Exodus 20:12 (King James version), illustration from a Bible card published by the Providence Lithograph Company (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom;
A good understanding have all those who do His commandments.
His praise endures forever.

Psalm 111:10

New King James Version (NKJV)

        My friends were often afraid of my father because he could be very loud.  His booming voice could be mistaken for anger, but it was just the way he talked.   I too was afraid of him at times.  When he was angry, his anger was forceful.  I feared the potential of his wrath.

        My dad was a good father.  He was generous in his provision for his family and his openness to strangers.  He was a hard worker and a big dreamer.  His penchant for traveling and having a good time was evident in the good memories I've reaped in growing up with him.

        There were times when I did not show my father the respect he deserved, but down deep and in the long run I honored him and loved him.  He could be a tough taskmaster, but following his house rules and his sage advice paid off.   I am a better person because of who my father was and how I let him influence me.

        The analogy here should be obvious.   It's for good reason that "Honor thy parents" and "Honor God above all" take such a priority in the Ten Commandments.  These aren't rules made to hinder us in any way, but they are there to help us to be better people.

        God loves us and wants us to love Him back.  That love for God comes in the form of honor and fear.  Don't be afraid of who He is or what He can do, but be afraid of what you might do and the consequences of those actions.  God does not separate himself from us, we separate ourselves from Him in our rejection of His way and disobedience to Him.

 For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Live as children of light  (for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth) and find out what pleases the Lord.

Ephesians 5:8-10

New International Version (NIV)

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Sunday, July 1, 2012

Celebrate Freedom

Česky: Kříže - symbol utrpení Ježíše Krista a ... (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I will walk in freedom,
    for I have devoted myself to your commandments.

Psalm 119:45

New Living Translation (NLT)

        With July 4th coming this week, we in the United States will be hearing a lot about freedom.   Generally speaking, throughout the world people seem to have more freedom than ever before in history.  Greater access to the internet and other forms of communication has given people everywhere the ability to speak out and unite in order to form strong alliances against oppression.
          It is only an illusion.

         We are never truly free as long as we are confined to our physical bodies.  Governments have the power to make us believe we are free just as easily as they can take that freedom away from us.  We are reined in by jobs, economics, health, family responsibilities, and many other constraints.  

          Let's celebrate the symbolic freedom that we have as countries and citizens of those countries, but know the limitations of that freedom.   Know the truth of this world and realize there is a greater truth that extends beyond borders and physical bodies.

          There is a much greater freedom that we should celebrate and that is the freedom of our spirit when we have been liberated by our Lord Jesus Christ.   No person or government can take that freedom away from us.

Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.

John 8:32

New International Version (NIV)

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