Thursday, September 24, 2009
Teach me your way, O Lord, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name." Psalm 86:11 (NIV)
by Lysa Terkeurst
It is very early in the morning. Not many people are stirring yet.
Though my body begs me just to roll over and go back to sleep, my soul is stirring to get up and go sit with Jesus.
Though I can't physically see Him, I know He is present.
I decide to open my Bible to the Psalms and use the verses I read as prayers to start my day. And the more I pray those verses out loud the less I hear all the nagging things of the world. A beautiful melody of truth starts to rise up and suddenly my worries fade in the light of God's truth.
His perspective on things that are troubling me starts to overshadow my anxiety. Like shade on a hot summer's day, I feel relief in His presence.
I know that He is preparing me for what I will need throughout this day. He is already standing in every minute of my day and He sees what I will face. So, He's equipping me to be able to handle what is ahead of me with His gentle boldness, quiet strength, and loving grace.
In Psalm 81:10b, God instructs me, "Open wide your mouth and I will fill it." He will give me what to say today. What to say in happy moments. What to say in aggravating moments. What to say in moments where I feel insecure and what to say when I feel completely confident. What to say in disappointing moments. What to say in response to questions.
He also reminds me that sometimes it is good to keep my mouth closed and say nothing at all.
All the words that rumble about in my brain and those that will proceed out of my mouth, Lord, You be the author of those.
Psalm 84:1 reminds me that God's dwelling place is lovely. So, I ask God to dwell in me richly. I want Him to be what radiates about me. I want Him to be my pretty today.
Not my hair. Not my outfit. Not my efforts. But simply Him and His spirit dancing invisibly about me... shifting a wrong attitude, guarding my words, and whispering constant truths into my heart.
Psalm 86:11 is what I ask the Lord to give me. "Teach me your way, O Lord, and I will walk in your truth; give me an undivided heart..."
Lord, may nothing separate me from You today. Teach me how to choose only Your way today so each step will lead me closer to You. Help me walk by the truth and not my feelings.
Help me to keep my heart pure and undivided. Protect me from my own careless thoughts, words and actions. And keep me from being distracted by MY wants, MY desires, MY thoughts on how things should be.
Help me to embrace what comes my way as an opportunity...rather than a personal inconvenience.
And finally, help me to rest in the truth of Psalm 86:13a, "Great is your love toward me."
You already see all the many ways I will surely fall short and mess up. But right now, I consciously tuck Your whisper of absolute love for me into the deepest part of my heart. I recognize Your love for me is not based on my performance. You love me warts and all.
Have mercy, that's amazing.
But what's most amazing is that the God of the Universe, the Savior of the world, would desire a few minutes with me this morning. Lord, help me to forever remember what a gift it is to sit with You like this.
Dear Lord, I love You. All that I have read here is the desire of my heart. I know and confess that sometimes my actions and reactions betray my love for You. Please forgive me. Thank You for Your grace that is able to recognize this new day as a new chance to walk closer with You. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Tuesday, August 25, 2009
.....here is a quickie post .....i stayed up late last nite trying to get rid of my SPRING background, being ever so disgusted with myself to have let it stay so long...and i seemingly have ruined my entire blog! i can't seem to get anywhere with it now...at least the basic history of the blog has been saved...so here is my announcement...i shall keep this blog, of course...but as soon as i get a chance...i am going to start a new blog!!! it will be titled: Sandi Lou's Musings II....this current blog is plain white, now do you think i can possibly live with a plain white blog??? uh...i don't think so, girlfriend....
...so when it is up and running...i will leave the address here!!!.....adios, for now!!
Wednesday, August 19, 2009
Saturday, July 25, 2009
1. She was in the bathroom, putting on her makeup, under t he watchful eyes of her young granddaughter, as she'd done many times before. After she applied her lipstick and started to leave, the little one said, "But Gramma, you forgot to kiss the toilet paper good-bye!" I will probably never put lipstick on again without thinking about kissing the toilet paper good-bye...
Wednesday, July 8, 2009
"They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the Lord their God for a quarter of the day, and spent another quarter in confession and in worshiping the Lord their God." Nehemiah 9:3 (NIV)
A new addiction slipped into my life recently - Facebook. Internet social networking slid in quietly and unobtrusively. Each day I found myself reading and posting a bit more. I learned how to create my visual bookshelf, so my "friends" could check out what I was reading. I linked my blog. My time seeped into Facebook like grains of sand slide through the hourglass.
My addiction soon took a turn for the worst. I began to put off my personal quiet time with God until after I had Facebooked. Sadly, scripture seemed boring next to my friends' postings. Strangely, the mundane posts intrigued me. I had fallen under the spell of social networking.
Then one day, I dragged myself away from my laptop. I had Bible study that night and needed to finish my lesson. The lesson pointed us to the book of Nehemiah. I read, "They stood where they were and read from the Book of the Law of the Lord their God for a quarter of the day, and spent another quarter in confession and in worshiping the Lord their God." (Nehemiah 9:3, NIV).
Yikes! They read God's Word for a quarter of the day, then spent another quarter of the day in confession and worshiping? These words haunted me the rest of the afternoon. When was the last time I spent that much time with God? How much time did I spend on the Internet? I felt a deep conviction about my Facebook addiction.
I determined that day to read my Bible, my FaithBook, before I turned on my computer each day. I would network with God, before networking with my friends. When I made this decision, I saw scripture jump back to life. God's Word spoke to me with a freshness that seemed as if He had just posted it Himself.
The addiction stopped. Oh, I still enjoy Facebook and other social networks, but I have learned to keep them in proper perspective. Psalm 119:59-60 sums up my new intent: "I pondered the direction of my life, and I turned to follow your laws. I will hurry, without delay, to obey your commands" (NLT).
Will you join me in the commitment to spending time in God's Word before time spent on Facebook?
Dear Lord, I recognize that I spend too much time on the computer. Forgive my inattention to Your Word. Help me each day to place You first in my life. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Wednesday, June 24, 2009
-by David Ryser.
A number of years ago, I had the privilege of teaching at a school
of ministry. My students were hungry for God, and I was constantly
searching for ways to challenge them to fall more in love with
Jesus and to become voices for revival in the Church. I came across
a quote attributed most often to Rev. Sam Pascoe. It is a short
version of the history of Christianity, and it goes like this:
Christianity started in
and became a philosophy; it moved to
it moved to Europe and became a culture; it came to
became an enterprise.
Some of the students were only 18 or 19 years old--barely out of diapers--and I wanted them to understand and appreciate the import of the last line, so I clarified it by adding,
"An enterprise. That's a business."
After a few moments Martha, the youngest student in the class, raised her hand. I could not imagine what her question might be. I thought the little vignette was self-explanatory, and that I had performed it brilliantly. Nevertheless,
I acknowledged Martha's raised hand, "Yes, Martha."
She asked such a simple question, "A business? But isn't it supposed to be
I could not envision where this line of questioning was going,
and the only response I could think of was, "Yes."
She continued, "But when a body becomes a business, isn't that a prostitute?"
The room went dead silent. For several seconds no one moved or
spoke. We were stunned, afraid to make a sound because the
presence of God had flooded into the room, and we knew we were
on holy ground. All I could think in those sacred moments was,
"Wow, I wish I'd thought of that." I didn't dare express that thought
aloud. God had taken over the class.
Martha's question changed my life. For six months, I thought about
her question at least once every day. "When a body becomes a
business, isn't that a prostitute?" There is only one answer to her
question. The answer is "Yes." The
, tragically, American Church
is heavily populated by people who do not love God. How can we
love Him? We don't even know Him; and I mean really know Him.
I stand by my statement that most American Christians do not
know God--much less love Him. The root of this condition originates
in how we came to God. Most of us came to Him because of what
we were told He would do for us. We were promised that He would
bless us in life and take us to heaven after death. We married Him
for His money, and we don't care if He lives or dies as long as we
can get His stuff. We have made the
into a business, Kingdomof God
merchandising His anointing. This should not be. We are commanded
to love God, and are called to be the Bride of Christ--that's pretty
intimate stuff. We are supposed to be His lovers. How can we love
someone we don't even know? And even if we do know someone,
is that a guarantee that we truly love them? Are we lovers or
I was pondering Martha's question again one day, and considered
the question, "What's the difference between a lover and a prostitute?"
I realized that both do many of the same things, but a lover does
what she does because she loves. A prostitute pretends to love, but
only as long as you pay. Then I asked the question, "What would
happen if God stopped paying me?"
For the next several months, I allowed God to search me to uncover
my motives for loving and serving Him. Was I really a true lover of
God? What would happen if He stopped blessing me? What if He
never did another thing for me? Would I still love Him? Please
understand, I believe in the promises and blessings of God. The
issue here is not whether God blesses His children; the issue is
the condition of my heart. Why do I serve Him? Are His blessings
in my life the gifts of a loving Father, or are they a wage that I have
earned or a bribe/payment to love Him? Do I love God without any
conditions? It took several months to work through these questions.
Even now I wonder if my desire to love God is always matched by
my attitude and behavior. I still catch myself being disappointed
with God and angry that He has not met some perceived need in
my life. I suspect this is something which is never fully resolved,
but I want more than anything else to be a true lover of God.
So what is it going to be? Which are we, lover or prostitute?
There are no prostitutes in heaven, or in the
for Kingdomof God
that matter, but there are plenty of former prostitutes in both
places. Take it from a recovering prostitute when I say there is no
substitute or unconditional, intimate relationship with God. And I
mean there is no palatable substitute available to us (take another
look at Matthew 7:21-23 sometime). We must choose.
-Dr. David Ryser.
Friday, May 22, 2009
Judge not, and you shall not be judged. Condemn not, and you shall not be condemned. —Luke 6:37
My friend Ria admires the great blue heron’s amazing 6-foot spread of wings and marvels at his majestic appearance. She welcomes the sight of him gliding in for a landing on a small island in the middle of the pond near her home.
Now, I can appreciate that the heron is a marvelous and unique creature. But I don’t ever want to spot him in my backyard! That’s because I know he won’t be there just to admire the garden. No, this not-so-fine-feathered version of persona non grata (someone not welcome) will be checking out our pond for a take-out fish dinner!
So, am I right? Or is Ria? Why can’t we agree? Different personalities, history, or knowledge can color people’s views. It doesn’t mean that one person is right and the other wrong, yet sometimes we can be unkind, rigid, and judgmental if there is not agreement. I’m not talking about sin—but just a difference in opinion or perspective. We need to take care in judging others’ thinking, motives, and actions because we too desire that kind of benefit of the doubt (Luke 6:37).
Can we learn from someone who sees things with a different perspective? Do we need to practice a little patience and love? I’m so grateful that God is abundantly patient and loving with me. —Cindy Hess Kasper
You’ve been so patient with us, Lord,Though we are slow to hear;Give us the grace to show such loveTo those we hold so dear. —K. De Haan
A little love can make a big difference.
Tuesday, May 19, 2009
Monday, May 4, 2009
White House Staffer: Two Million Red Envelopes Came to Obama Against Abortion
by Steven ErteltLifeNews.com EditorApril 7, 2009
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Washington, DC (LifeNews.com) -- A White House mailroom staffer has confirmed that nearly 2.5 million red envelopes have made their way to President Barack Obama to protest his pro-abortion record. The staff member says the campaign is one of the largest efforts he can recall in his 35 years working at the White House.
The mailroom worker, identified in a WorldNetDaily interview as Steve, helps oversee the mail destined for the president.
Asked if he had seen a deluge of red envelopes in recent weeks, Steve responded: "Uh, yes. Believe me, they made it here."
"Quite frankly, there was definitely a deluge of mail coming through," he laughed. "I had to handle them all."
Though President Obama is in Europe on a foreign trip, the White House worker said the Obama administration has noticed the flood of red envelopes against abortion.
"I've been here 35 years, so I've seen presidents come and go," he told WND. "This campaign ranks up there with the big ones."
Inspired during a prayer, Massachusetts resident Christ Otto came up with the idea of sending red envelopes to President Barack Obama to protest his pro-abortion policies.
As he told LifeNews.com back in February, what started out as an email request to 120 of his ministry friends and supporters turned into a nationwide phenomenon that saw others ask pro-life advocates to coordinate sending their red envelopes to Obama this week.
"We are trying to change the president's heart," Otto says. "This is a message to a man that God hears the cry of innocent blood. It is not a political stunt, although I hope it changes policy in Washington."
"If the capital is flooded with so many letters that no one can deny it, I am hoping the image will be burned into Barack Obama's mind that this is about human blood, and that he lies awake at night until he cannot resist doing something about it," he continued.
A Texas man named Brian Potter set March 31 as the date for sending the red envelopes and that coordination appeared evident in the comments from the White House mailroom employee.
Several web sites have been set up in support of the project and the people who have responded saying they sent or will send envelopes has reached over 1.5 million, though not everyone has registered with the web sites.
"For me, this has been a living parable of my philosophy of life and ministry, : 'Listen to the Lord, and do what He tells you,'" Otto tells LifeNews.com. "I was not expecting such a dramatic outcome."
Related web sites:Red Envelope Project - http://www.redenvelopeproject.org/Send a Red Envelope - http://SendARedEnvelope.orgRed Envelopes for Life - http://redenvelopesforlife.org/
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