Just like Jesus

Finally, all of you, be like-minded, be sympathetic, love one another, be compassionate and humble. – 1 Peter 3:8

 

There’s nothing like bringing the community together to practice the attributes of Jesus. Actually, it gives us opportunity to be Jesus to each other. My church had a community festival that went on for two days. There were representations from many cultures (love salsa music) and sharing of talents. Tae Kwon Do, dance, break dancing, cotton candy, hot dogs, large inflatable slides to play on, farm critters were on display and more. I think everyone had a great time and enjoyed the celebratory spirit of the event.

 

Any time that we are in contact with others is another opportunity to show the difference Jesus makes in our life. We could say it in words, but it wouldn’t make the impact as someone experiencing it when they connect with us. Jesus brings us to a whole new level of the spiritual gifts than we could do for ourselves. We are empowered to be like Christ … if we choose to be.

 

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for the great plans you have for me today … more than likely it will include relating to someone. I pray for your eyes to see that I can be like your son, Jesus, in all I say and do. Amen

 

Faith Tip: Choose now before you go out how you will relate with others … like Christ or not.

 

You’ve been surrounded

As the mountains surround Jerusalem, so the Lord surrounds his people, from this time forth and forevermore. – Psalm 125:2

There is comfort and encouragement in being surrounded. I know I feel that way when I am surrounded by friends or a quilt on a cold morning. Last night, I and a few other Word Weavers had an opportunity to surround Judy and Jerry Doctor, who lead a workshop based on how God uses dreams. They wrote a book on this subject entitled “Dream Treasure, Learning the Language of Heaven.”

God surrounds us. That’s a great fact to know as we go through our days … we do not walk alone. Mountains are a symbol of strength and stability. They protect and are always there during this life. God is the same in that his love and protection are always with us. I know that brings up a lot of “why” questions, but we need to trust in the mountain of God. Wrap the truth of this around you like a favorite sweater experiencing the comfort and encouragement of his faithfulness.

Prayer: Lord, knowing you are always with me give great comfort and encouragement. I do not have to climb the mountain to receive your love. You have already brought it to me. Thank you. Amen

Faith Tip: Go through your day today with the knowledge and confidence of God surrounding you and live that truth out.

Gifts galore

Pile of gorgeous gifts

Pile of gorgeous gifts (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Follow the way of love and eagerly desire gifts of the Spirit, especially prophecy.  For anyone who speaks in a tongue does not speak to people but to God. Indeed, no one understands them; they utter mysteries by the Spirit.  But the one who prophesies speaks to people for their strengthening, encouraging and comfort. – 1 Corinthians 14:1-3

In spiritual assessment tests, I have many times had the gift of prophecy be included in my top three gifts. Does this mean I can tell the future? No. I think a clearer understanding may be found in the dictionary. Merriam-Webster defines prophecy as: 1) an inspired utterance of a prophet; 2) the function or vocation of a prophet; specifically: the inspired declaration of divine will and purpose; and 3) a prediction of something to come. I connect more with “an inspired utterance” or “the inspired declaration” and this can be seen and heard in my writing and speaking.

The important part though is finding our gifts and using them. God gave them to us with a purpose for his kingdom. Following God means to use our gifts … I think it is sin not to use them … a sin of omission. Of course, it all rests on the condition of our hearts. Do we go grudgingly to find out and use the gift God has given us or do we run free towards the gift like on Christmas morning?

Prayer: Dear Lord, I thank you for the gifts you have given me and the opportunities to use them. I pray that I do not take them for granted. Amen

Faith Tip: If you do not know what your special gift from God is yet, seek it out today. God gave it to you with a purpose. You are blessed to be a blessing.

 

Dylan rocks, but God’s paper covers it

Bob Dylan performing at St. Lawrence Universit...

Bob Dylan performing at St. Lawrence University in New York. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

 

Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change. Of his own will he brought us forth by the word of truth, that we should be a kind of firstfruits of his creatures. – James 1:17-18

 

Tomorrow is my husband’s birthday. I always have a hard time knowing what gift to give him that he will really like. I gave it to him already, so I’m safe sharing it on here. He is a big fan of Bob Dylan and I came across a set of DVD’s with a book on his tour in 1965. John loves the classics and really was enthusiastic about the set opening it up and looking through the book … talking about his friend, who is also an enthusiast, being jealous (kids and their toys).

 

Perfect gifts are not a problem for God. He knows exactly what we need and when. One of his best gifts is the Bible. He shares truth that is perfect for everyone. We can open it up with expectant hearts and delve into the pages of life written just for us. No one needs to be jealous for it is available for all.

 

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for my husband. He is a perfect gift for me. Your truth is the one gift that keeps on giving … throughout eternity. Amen

 

Faith Tip: Relive the excitement of opening God’s message for you today … he has something to say to you.

 

Quick fixes

big stretch

big stretch (Photo credit: pixieclipx)

…if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. – 2 Chronicles 7:14

I knew as soon as I did it that I shouldn’t have done it. I was practicing a drama and forgot to stretch beforehand. As soon as I twisted I knew I was going to pay. My back has a history of being strained over the smallest things. Once it is hurting, it seems to take forever to feel good again … about 2-3 weeks. Being the impatient person I am, I try the quick fixes to feel good like heating pad, ice, Tylenol … but it takes time and rest.

There is a lot of healing needed in this world and if we need to look closer, our country, our state, our community, ourselves. We look for what will fix the situation … what can we do to make it right? We spend a lot of time, money and energy attempting to control situations, but it takes God to make it happen. God’s answer seems impractical to simply humble ourselves, pray and seek God, and make a commitment to turn from the ways of the world, and then God will heal our land. Can we do it?

Pray: Lord, forgive me when I do not even attempt to do what you call me to do. I pray that my eyes, heart, mind and soul are obedient to you at all times. Amen

Faith Tip: What are you willing to do to heal?

Your plan for today.

Right Brain Planning {elements}

Right Brain Planning {elements} (Photo credit: stargardener)

Unless the Lord builds the house,
    the builders labor in vain.
Unless the Lord watches over the city,
    the guards stand watch in vain. – Psalm 127:1

I am planning for my day what I am going to do. The day includes meetings, writing, preparing food for a gathering tonight, and a late night telephone meeting. These are all good things, but unless I know God is there and empowering and directing me, it has no value. I have come to realize that every part of my life is being built on for God’s purpose … not mine.

All of us make plans each day and for the future. We need to discern the ultimate goal of our plans and look through spiritual eyes what God has in mind. His plans are so much bigger than ours. Without the Lord, our plans are futile.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for today. I pray that I walk in obedience in the plans you have set for me today. Amen

Faith Tip: Pray for God’s enlightenment as you plan your day for him.

Help!

English: Brooding Mountain Top Ben Ledi at 879...

English: Brooding Mountain Top Ben Ledi at 879 metres watches over the River Teith. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I lift up my eyes to the mountains—
    where does my help come from?
My help comes from the Lord,
    the Maker of heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot slip—
    he who watches over you will not slumber;
indeed, he who watches over Israel
    will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord watches over you—
    the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
    nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all harm 
    he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
    both now and forevermore. – Psalm 121

These promises from God refreshed my soul this morning. I have been putting in a lot of late nights at the computer trying to keep up with the deluge of work recently put on my plate. Please don’t think I am complaining, because I am not for I love the work I do. But there are times when I wonder, and I have been there before, how am I going to do all of this?

God has walked me through these types of days before and I am sure he has done the same for you. He is faithful. Knowing that at all times God is watching over me and protecting me gives me great peace.

We can go forth in this day knowing that the times we don’t know which end is up that we can look up to the mountains as the psalmist says and know without a doubt where our help comes from.

Prayer: Lord, thank you for the daily plan you have laid out for me and helping me to accomplish all that you would like me to do. I pray that I lean into you during those times when life gets busy. Amen

Faith Tip: Lots to do today? Keep this psalm in mind as you go throughout your day.