Safe in His Arms

It was my son’s second semester away at Bible College. I was still adjusting to the idea of him being out of the house, and as we wrapped up our phone conversation, my son shared that he felt the Lord might be leading him to spend a semester abroad, in Israel. Wow, I thought to myself… my boy may soon be living on the other side of the world.

Sure enough, as the weeks rolled by, an application was submitted and my son was accepted into the program to spend a semester abroad studying and touring the Holy Land. I was thrilled, yet, obviously concerned as mothers instinctively are towards their children. Even though this was uncharted territory, I knew if the Lord was calling my son to Israel then he must go. The Lord’s way is always best and I wanted that for my son. He was 18 years old at that time.

The Lord was so kind and graceful. Weeks prior to my son’s departure, He gave my son a confirmation scripture that was passed on to me. This proved to be the promise that I hung to ever so tightly as my reassure from the Lord. The Scripture found it’s place on my refrigerator, and was a constant reminder to me. I had complete peace that surpassed all understanding.

It was interesting the reactions and feedback we would receive upon sharing my son’s plans to live in the Middle East. Some were extremely excited and supportive, and yet others just seemed to shake their heads in disbelief. In their minds, this idea was completely ludicrous due to the element of danger they believe it involved. However, when that happened, I was able to confidently share with them that the Lord was taking care of my son. He had given me a promise.

There had been much talk in the news about dangerous situations occurring in Israel, such as suicide bombers and missile attacks; a commonplace in that faraway land. To some, Israel seemed riddled with deadly terrorist attacks and eminent danger. And there I was, not only sending my eldest son off to live there, but being totally behind him and supportive in his endeavor.

Just prior to my son’s departure, a strange thing happened. It had been a wet February. The ground was saturated from the heavy rainfall. The kids and I had been cozy in our little home, tucked amongst the tall pines. Although the storm raged outside, we felt safe in our warm beds that night. However, in the morning, upon waking, I pulled up the blind that had covered my window throughout the night. To my shock, as we slept, an enormous pine tree had fallen. There was a gigantic hole and the tree roots stood tall. Following the tree trunk led us to the road below, which was now blocked by this towering giant that had uprooted in the night.

What was truly amazing was, had the tree fallen towards our house instead of away, we would have been crushed under its weight as it would have smashed directly onto our home. It was as if one of the Lord’s angels had pushed it away from us, keeping us safe from all harm. And, THAT, resonated deeply within me.

To me, it was the Lord’s way of telling me that HE is our Protector from ALL harmful situations. We aren’t at risk of being in harm’s way because we are in a more volatile area in the world. That really doesn’t matter. The Lord is the One who keeps us safe. We don’t need to leave the country to be in danger. There are dangers while right in the safety and comfort of our own happy homes! Thinking we are safe just because we are in a familiar place, is a false sense of security. Where is our security found? It is only found in the Lord! Psalm 18:2 tells us, “The Lord is my protector; he is my strong fortress. My God is my protection, and with him I am safe.”

So, when the missiles rained down on Israel and the terrorist did attack while my son was living in Israel, I was okay. I had complete peace that the Lord was my son’s Protector. I trusted Him with my son’s life. He gave me a promise through His Word and then backed it up with a visual right on my own property. Every morning, when I lifted that shade from my window, there was the fallen pine tree, a constant reminder to me of the Lord’s goodness and faithfulness in keeping the kids and I safe from ALL harm.

Psalm 121

“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 not 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.”

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Leap of Faith

Leap-of-Faith-Square-1024x1024[1]Looking down from my vantage point I saw the side of the hard stone edge of the rock. Beyond that, the deep turquoise water that seemed so far away. My legs felt weak, not only because I was afraid, but due to the physical stress and exhaustion I had already been through, getting to the river. People had gathered around to watch this mama bear as she stood, frozen, peering down into the depths below. My teenage son stood confidently at my side to encourage me.

As I stood towering over the side of the cliff-like rock, I had asked Jesus to help me. I kept saying out loud, “I can do this. I can do this.” But, in spite of this, my feet seemed to be glued to the granite beneath them. My son had already jumped in several times to show me just how simple it was. Dripping wet, he stood patiently to my left with his toothy grin and dancing eyes. “Mom,” he said, if you have faith as small as a mustard seed… It’s a leap of faith.” With those words, I took hold of what he was saying. He was right. There was just no way I could make this jump into the water below on my own doing. It had to be a leap of faith. And so, I asked the Lord to catch me, and I jumped into His loving arms there in the dark water below me.

I remember the feeling of crashing into the water and going down, down, down. It was a strange sensation of being completely out of control in the utter darkness. Then, up, up, up I went until, pop! As soon as I surfaced I heard people cheering! Victory! I had done it. What a great feeling!

I followed my son, who had jumped in before me. We swam to the river’s edge and I tiredly pulled myself up the slippery craggy rocks. It was then that I realized we were on the same big outcropping of rocks I had just come from. He wanted me to jump again! Realizing this, I once again went to the river’s edge high upon the rock. As I looked down into the water, I had a realization. I was back right where I started, my feet once again firmly planted beneath me and not moving.

One leap of faith does not make the next jump necessarily any easier. Yes, we have that memory of success and remembrance that we were victorious in Christ, BUT, each faith jump is in its entirety it’s own faith moment. We are required  to trust, obey, overcome fear of the unknown, and relinquish control of the situation and outcome to the Lord our God. However, the natural tendency of most individuals is not that of surrender.

There may be times of darkness in our faith walk. However, we are not really in the dark. It only feels that way to us. When I jumped into the river, darkness surrounded me, but it was only my perspective, and, it was temporary. It was just a matter of time before I was back into the light. Scripture tells us, “Surely the darkness will hide me and the light become night around me,” even the darkness will not be dark to you; the night will shine like the day, for darkness is as light to you.” Psalm 139:11-12 Where the spirit of the Lord is, there is no darkness.

Our human tendency is a desire to control, influence, or direct people’s behavior, or the course of events. Having authority over our lives sounds like it should be a good thing. However, there is no way of actually managing our world, even if we wanted to. Life happens. Sometimes good things happen. Sometimes bad things take place. But, ultimately God is the one in control of this world. “For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” Isaiah 55:8-9

We all have things in our life that hold us back. Fear and insecurity can paralyze us to a point of not being able to move at all. It is during these times that we must jump right into our Savior’s loving arms. When we do, we will be victorious in Christ. He will never fail us. God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” Hebrews 13:5. With faith as small as a mustard seed, we can take whatever leap of faith that is called for in our walk with the Lord. Do not be afraid. The Lord is waiting with His arms outstretched for you!

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A Sweet Aroma

300c9a5444b41c5b05ca3bf18ef12516[1]The scent of pine needles on a warm summer day brings me back to days of trout fishing with my family when I was a child. The smell of creosol reminds me of the newly built fence that housed my horse as a kid. The smell of a skunk triggers a memory of the time I drove through its spray as a teenager, in my 1965 VW Bug, only to arrive home and be ushered quickly out the back door and told to drop those stinky clothes! All these memories are attached to a certain scent. It is interesting how our sense of smell can trigger memories from our past and even influence our outlook on life. We each have a fragrance that permeates our lives.

One day, I came in from a run. Although I was very hot and sweaty, I ended up dinking around in the kitchen before showering. I was doing some dishes when I picked up a strong stench of what I thought was rotting meat. I figured it was coming from our trash can. Moments later, my son walked into the kitchen and asked, “What stinks mom?” I told him I couldn’t pinpoint it, but acknowledged it sure smelled terrible. As I drew closer to my son he shrieked back exclaiming, “It is you!” Mortified, I realized, he was right! I have since learned that eating large quantities of asparagus can result in stinky sweat smelling like sulfur.

Just as the food we eat oozes out from us, so also will other influences, experiences, and memories we hold in our heart. As a result, we can emit anger or joy, selfishness or sacrifice, cruelty or kindness, hate or love, judgment or compassion. What happens to us during our lifetime will certainly effect who we are. This is why it is so important we fill our minds with the truth of God’s word.

By filling our minds with the inerrant word of God, our hardened hearts can be softened and our minds can be healed. Hurt, pain, and sorrow can be released. The root of anger, hate, and bitterness can be plucked out and replaced by the seed of forgiveness and new life. “All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.” 2 Timothy 3:16-17

For those who are dealing with some stinky situations in life, be encouraged. Isaiah 43:19 says, “See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland.” With Christ, we can work through the stench that comes from hurt, pain, disappointment, anger, hate, and bitterness. As we continue on our path of healing with the Lord, the odors that once permeated our life will begin to lessen. 2 Corinthians 2:15 tells us, “For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing.” As we draw closer to Christ, we will begin to pick up the sweet fragrance that comes from walking closely with Him.

Ephesians 5:2 tells us we are to, “Live a life filled with love, following the example of Christ. He loved us and offered himself as a sacrifice for us, a pleasing aroma to God.” Even though we may get hurt in this life, we have the hope of Christ to release us from negative thoughts and behavior, restore our relationship with the Lord and others, heal our minds and bodies, and make new again our very lives! Jeremiah 29:11 is a promise of that. It says, “For I know the plans for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” We are to fill our minds with the truth found in God’s word. When we are doing this, we will see changes in the very fragrance or our lives. “And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.” John 8:32

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Rest in the Lord

rest-in-the-lord-hammock-550x320[1]

Just Relax…

Just Rest…

Just Breathe…

This is what I felt the Lord was telling me.

Do you ever feel like you go from issue to issue, stress to stress, problem to problem? I sure do. Sometimes I wish I could just STOP THINKING. I find myself going in circles in my head reviewing possible plans and options and asking the Lord to show me His way. But, sometimes, He wants us to STOP THINKING and quietly wait upon Him for His perfect timing and answer.

I often FEEL overwhelmed when trying to make decisions and hope I am doing right before the Lord. It certainly is not easy. It is definitely uncomfortable. But, it is actually a good place to be as it stretches our faith. And that, my friend, is ALWAYS a good thing.

Do you ever FEAR taking a wrong turn in life? I do, especially when it comes to parenting my kids. I want the very best for them. Just as we want the best for our children, how much more the Lord wants that for us. 1 John 3:1 says, “The Father has loved us so much that we are called children of God.” He wants us to live lives grounded in the peace that surpasses all understanding, which only comes from walking closely with the Lord.

Do you remember a time, maybe when you were a child, when you did not have to concern yourself about the worries and many choices of life? Having someone provide a way for you is a freeing experience. Just as parents carry the burdens for a child, so the Lord can carry our burdens. Matthew 11:30 tells us, “For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” When we live lives yoked to the Lord, we will experience His peace as we stay in step with Him. He leads. He guides. He provides a way. He is strong and will get us through the tough times even when we feel the load is just too heavy.

If the answer we are seeking is not formulating, then sometimes the Lord is telling us to WAIT. But, not just wait, but wait on Him. We are to keep praising Him and thanking Him for what He is doing. We are to patiently anticipate His plan and timing of it, to be revealed to us. We must keep the faith. “Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God.” Philippians 4:6

It is not simple. Sometimes we want THAT answer so badly. It is a challenge to not keep hashing things over. However, if we rest in Him, He will be our peace. In due time, He will speak into our hearts and minds the answer to the questions we have unwearyingly waited for.

In the meantime…

Just relax…

Just rest…

Just breathe…

“May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.” Romans 15:13

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We CAN Make a Difference

1f4161e8b426d5767fbb679c31371e82“You didn’t do anything to help, mom?” My teenage son’s question hung in the air as we drove. I had been telling him about an employee that fell at a store I had been shopping at. The guy had fallen hard, and as the sound of him hitting the floor rang out, my head quickly turned to see what had happened.

There on the floor lay a middle-aged man. He held his hand to his nose and was not getting up. People quickly crowded around him, as a co-worker ran to the back room for help. A passer-by shouted out, “He needs an ice-pack,” and kept shopping. I knew he needed much more than an ice-pack, as he was not getting up and continued to groan and keep a hand up to his head. I thought to myself. What can I do? And with that thought, I did the only thing I knew to do. I prayed for him and his healing, and quietly slipped out the door.

All that day that fellow lying on the floor kept coming to my mind. And, with each remembrance, I lifted him up in prayer. However, as the day progressed and after my son’s shocked response, I began to question myself. Perhaps I could have done something more. And so, I began praying… Lord, how could I have been of assistance? What should I do if I am once again in a similar situation? What are trying to teach me?

I am not typically a take charge type of person, especially in a crisis situation. I am more the soft spoken type who would wait for someone else to jump into action. As I prayed and mulled this over, I realized the Lord was telling me that I am actually very capable of helping. I could have called 911 or sat by his side and offered words of encouragement.  I could have prayed with him. How often do we walk away from a situation due to feelings of inadequacy, believing we have nothing to offer?

As believers and followers of Jesus Christ, we can make a difference. We have the Holy Spirit within us. He will provide wisdom and discernment. If we listen, we can help others even when we feel insufficient. “Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God.” 2 Corinthians 3:5. However, it takes willingness on our part to take the risk of stepping out in faith. We need to put ourselves out there and be vulnerable to make a difference in the lives of those the Lord puts in our path.  “Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9.

We can pray for healing but, there time could be up. As a believer we must realize in an emergency situation lifting someone up in prayer could mean the difference of someone living or dying. And, ultimatley, their eternal destination of going to heaven or hell could be at stake. So, we must choose to be proactive in our Christian walk and faith. We should be alert and ready to be called into action. “Then I heard the voice of the Lord saying, “Whom shall I send? And who will go for us? And I said, “Here I am. Send me!”  Isaiah 6:8.

It is easy to cop out during a crisis situation. It is much harder to step out in faith and get involved. It comes down to this. Do we want to make a difference in the lives we touch in our daily walk? If so, we should be active in our faith and living boldly. 1 Thessalonians 2:12 says, “We remember before our God and Father your work produced by faith, your labor prompted by love, and your endurance inspired by hope in our Lord Jesus Christ.” We are to be encouraging, comforting, and live lives worthy of the Lord our God.

Since this emergency situation had such an impact upon me I couldn’t help asking about the employee’s condition upon my return visit, the following day. His co-worker told me he was in the hospital with a concussion, a broken nose, and a broken arm. He suffered some serious injuries, but thankfully he will recover in a matter of time. To God be ALL the glory!

 

 

Press on Toward the Goal

pigpen-color[1]I was under siege. I felt like Pig-Pen, but instead of a cloud of dirt surrounding me I had a black cloud of gnats around my head, dive bombing my face and buzzing my ears. I began flailing and waving my hands in an effort to swat them away however, it only seemed to makes matters worse as if it egged them on to attack me all the more. The gnats were so distracting I was having a hard time focusing on my run, and that is when the Lord began speaking to my heart.

I had run this particular trail three times a week for over a year and never had this problem. But, the last few times out, the gnats would overtake me and cause me to bat my arms in the air completely throwing off my running focus. After miles of dealing with this, I would eventually tire. I found that if the gnats landed on my face they would succumb to their death by getting stuck in a pool of sweat and then they would get wiped out permanently, as I brushed their lifeless bodies off my face. I also realized that if I could remain focused on the run, I could actually temporarily outrun them by speeding up. However, inevitably, I would begin to slow down without the constant barrage of gnats pestering me. They would then return to me and continue in their harassment. It seemed the more I focused on them, the worse they got, which is what seems to happen when we focus on the problems in our life.

This brings me to what the Lord was teaching me. Gnats are incredibly DISTRACTING. Gnats are like the distractions we face in life. When we focus on a problem instead of Christ, we will begin to slow down, flail, and ultimately lose our focus, which can be quite costly in this thing we live call LIFE. We must NOT allow ourselves to fall into this trap. Thinking continually about a life issue will only make our head spin in circles and cause massive unproductivity and misery. We must stop pondering and focusing on problematic issues and resist the why is this happening thought pattern. The Lord does not call us to understand all that happens to us in life, but He does call us to trust in Him. Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

The funny thing is, before I was able to put the finishing touches on this post, I went on another run and encountered more gnats! As I mentioned before, I found that if I would just run with the gnats, peacefully without flailing or swatting at them, which by the way is an extremely difficult thing to do, the gnats would land on my saturated sweaty face and I could just calmly wipe them away. This expends much less energy on my part, saving it for the run! And, so it is in life. Giving in, submitting to the way life is, tolerating it, embracing it, and keeping a focus on pushing forward with Christ is the answer and I believe, the way to go! And, so it is with our distractions in life. If we can keep our focus on the Lord, He will take care of our problems. He will wipe them away as we trust in Him to take care of us. Isaiah 26:3 tells us, “You will keep in perfect peace those whose minds are steadfast, because they trust in you.”

Instead of us focusing on our problems and negativity in life, we are called to a higher purpose in Christ. We must run fast and hard in life, staying focused on Christ, not slowing down for distractions or allowing ourselves to become overrun by them. We must keep our eyes on Christ, trusting Him completely in all things. If we do this, the gnats, the distractions in our life, will dissipate as the everlasting faithful love of our Father in Heaven floods our minds with His perfect peace. Keep running with the Lord and that distraction in life will soon be a thing of the past as the Lord faithfully puts it behind you. Philippians 3:12 tells us, “Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.”

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There is Power in that Music

a-dark-prairie-storm-c2a9-2011-christopher-martin[1]It was a tumultuous time. The genre of country music seemed a refreshing change from the secular rock and pop I was used to. But, listening to it produced  an attitude of melancholy. It seemed like life was being consumed by storm clouds.

I began filling my head and home with as much of God as I could. I was going to church, Bible study, reading books by Christian authors, listening to preachers on the radio, and clinging onto my Bible as a life-preserver that kept me from sinking into the depths of despair. In fact, I would not even leave home without it, as within its pages were my Hope and Security.

It was then that I rediscovered Christian radio. What a God send! Truly! Flooding my head and home with Christian music was powerful. I found that it truly lifted my spirit. As I began to sing along, the depression I was feeling would lift. As I sang praises to the Lord, my soul would rejoice! I began to feel the freedom and victory I had in knowing Christ and that He would see me through this. The joy of the Lord became my strength.

As I continued to choose the genre of Christian music, I realized the power of it. There, embedded within the lyrics of song were Scripture, God’s Word! No wonder listening to Christian music chased my blues away.The-Bright-Sun-Blue-Sky-Clouds-940x587[1] I was infusing my head with the Truth, receiving renewed life and strength for my spirit. It was so simple, and yet, so incredibly powerful!

That was three years ago and I have not stopped listening yet! For me, Christian music is a way of life. It is good input into my soul. It renews my strength. It speaks life and Truth into my mind. It puts my focus on Christ and others, not my selfish self. The Scripture floods my mind with the perfect peace and rest that only comes from knowing our Savior.

I thank the Lord for His redemptive love and the giving up of Himself on the cross for me and my sin, and for all of humanity. I love the choice I have made in my genre of Christian music. It ministers to my soul, lifts my spirit, speaks truth into my heart and mind, and, cultivates the worship of my loving Savior. “Rejoice in the Lord always, and again, I say rejoice!” Philippians 4:4

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Copyright 2015 Goldie

 

Do Not Be Shaken!

long trainOff in the distance, I could hear its roar. I encountered it often on my morning runs. I was breathing heavy as I had started up a hill that now led directly up to the tracks. There, I would meet it face to face, as it would stop me from continuing on my planned course. Being so close to the train always triggered a sense of fear, as years ago the train had actually derailed in this very area. As much as I wanted to, I could not dismiss the thoughts of it possibly derailing and crushing me under its weight as a crazy or paranoid thought.

trainsAs the train approached, it was clanking along loudly and rhythmically. It was moving at a rapid pace. The ground seemed to be shaking. Yet, there I stood watching it go by, car after car. I was not going to be afraid. It was a long train and as I stood staring at it, my mind moved onto the spiritual parallels of this train. I knew the Lord was with me and I did not need to be fearful, as a scripture came to my mind. Psalm 16:8 says, “I know the LORD is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me.”

TRAINS CAN BE…

Loud

Unexpected

Scary

Trains can be likened to the trials we face in life.

amtrakcountrysideThere are the rapid moving Amtrak trains, the lengthier box car trains, and the train that comes to town and just stops and sits on the tracks with its engines running. It does not come and go quickly, but it stays and waits, until given the green light to pull out and move on. Sometimes, these are the most annoying because they are in the path blocking the way and continuing on cannot happened until they move on by. Just as these trains come down the tracks, so do life’s hardships.

Sickness

Financial crisis

Divorce

Loss of a loved one

And, all the smaller miscellaneous things that just happen, like the family dog getting hit by a car, empty cupboards, behavior challenges with the children, paying that inflated energy bill, and the unending consequences of a lost marriage, that can add up to a heavy burden for one to carry alone. But, just as that train, they all have a beginning and an end. And the Lord never gives us more than we can handle.

What are we to do when these trains of life come barreling into our own lives? God’s Word says, “Surely he will never be shaken.” Psalm 112:6. We are to stand firm in our faith, trusting the Lord and resting in Him as the train either comes and goes quickly, lingers on car after car, or sits at a dead stop. We are not to fear nor be disturbed. Isaiah 41:10 says, “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.” That is an AWESOME promise to us, from the Lord, the Creator of the Universe!

Psalm 16 8

When hardships in life feel as though they may crush us by their weight, we are not to fear. We are not to be overcome. We are not to be shaken. The Lord God, Creator of the Universe, is to be our Strength. We are to keep our eyes fixed on Him, trusting in Him, and standing firm in our faith that He will get us through the hard times. When we stand firmly grounded in the Truth of God’s word, we will stand the duration, trusting in our Savior to work things out for our best good and holding onto the promise found in Romans 8:28,” And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”

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Rings of Life

skipping rocksAs I sat quietly watching my children throw stones into the river, I began reflecting upon my own life. As I watched the rings that were spreading out from the rocks as they sunk to the bottom of the river, I wondered… what effect am I having on the lives of those around me? Are the rings of my life spreading the love of Christ?

1 Thessalonians 4:11-12 tells us, “To aspire to live quietly, to mind your own affairs, and to work with your hands, as we instructed you, so that you may walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one.” Let’s look at these a little closer.

When I think of living a quiet life, I first picture a home that is peaceful. It is a place of order, not chaos. It is a place of refuge and comfort. I also think of relationships that are healthy and kind. The home is quiet and the neighbors observe peaceful living with family members and others within the neighborhood, having a positive influence on family, friends, and even strangers.

Minding our own affairs is something that may sound easy, but when it comes right down to it, simply isn’t. How easy it is to spout-off our opinions about someone or a certain situation. Instead of being judgmental and harsh towards others, we should be compassionate, encouraging, and loving. Before ever confronting an individual we should first pray for that person and their situation, quietly lifting them up before the Lord. We can release the situation to God, trusting in Him, and He will be the One to correct and restore, if needed.

Working with our hands embraces life itself and God’s daily plans for us. Being a mom or grandparent, going to the office or school, being that caretaker… just being about the Father’s business every day. We are to keep our focus on Christ, diligently seeking Him in all we do. Working with our hands also permeates thoughts of wholesome hard work which is admirable and worthy of respect. After all, Jesus… the Son of God, our Lord and Savior and the King of Kings was himself a Carpenter.

water ringsIf we can live by these three principles, we will walk properly before outsiders and be dependent on no one. The Lord will provide all your needs when you are living closely with Him and trusting Him in His provision. By living a quiet life, minding our own affairs, and working with our hands, others will experience the love of Christ, as our lives touch those around us.

 

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Joy Comes in the Morning

morning sunrisePsalm 30:5 says, “Weeping may endure for a night, but joy comes in the morning.” What a beautiful promise given to us by our Creator.

Why did God create day and night? I believe one important purpose is to give us an end to our day. Sometimes, this is just the mental relief we need to keep on keeping on! As we live our fast paced lives and trials challenge our faith walk, it is reassuring to know we can shut down, allow the Lord to renew our strength, and start fresh again in the morning.

How great it is at the end of a wonderful day to drift off to sleep peacefully rejoicing in the Lord for such a blessed day. On the other hand, if it has been a particularly difficult day, being able to close our eyes and end that day is also a great relief. Whether it has been a good day or bad day, it is refreshing to anticipate a new day. Instead of being overwhelmed or perplexed by an unresolved situation, we can choose to hand it over to the Lord, and trust in Him to help us. He will provide the peace we so desperately need along with new strategies of dealing with things. With each new day we are given the breath of life, we are privileged with the opportunity to do things differently and with perhaps a change of attitude and renewed hope.

Luke 1:37 says, “For nothing is impossible with God.” With our Hope in Him, we are free to live victorious lives with a fresh beginning and clean slate every single day. I am so thankful the Lord gives us new beginnings! Because of the Lord’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. Lamentations 3:22-23.

This article, “Joy Comes in the Morning” is protected by copyright. You are free to share the link via social media, but this article may not be copy and pasted in its entirety to be republished and redistributed elsewhere without permission (this includes pasting entire story to Facebook, Pinterest, email, etc.).

Protect Your Love Ones from Pornography

Overcoming Porn by God's GraceProtect your family from the harmful effects of pornography, ads, and dangerous content that can flippantly appear on the computer screen with the accidental touch of a button. The internet is a volatile place filled with worldly temptation. For testimonials click here.

We need to be proactive! Let’s do what we can to lessen the chances of our family falling into the online trap of pornography. Covenant Eyes provides a filter that blocks out the chances of obscene and offensive sexual content. For more information on how to subscribe, please click here.

Kimberly’s Story of Healing~ Cancer

Kimberly’s Story of Healing~

Lord heals This testimony was written by a close friend of mine and sister in Christ. I remember the day she went to the hospital, the grueling surgery that followed, the phone call that floored me when she told me she was diagnosed with cancer, and feeling the fear of it all. During my visits with her in the hospital, what stands out in my mind was how strong and determined she was… Most of us know someone who has had cancer. As you know, having cancer can put a halt to almost every part of life. I remember the day my life came to a jolting halt. It was Father’s Day, June 17, 2001. I had been suffering from digestive problems for years, but the severe weakness and flu-like symptoms had gotten worse. Just days before, I had been to the urgent care and was diagnosed with Hepatitis. But, that Sunday morning, I still ended up going to the emergency room with jaundice, weakness, and dehydration. I was so used to nothing happening that I was surprised at how fast paced it all went. I was taken to get an ultra sound, as well as a urine and blood test, and then left to wait for the results. I was told I was being transported to Santa Barbra to have a kidney stone removed from my small intestine. Continue Reading

Just Keep Walking!

keepwalkingWhen you feel you have no more strength … just keep walking.

When your body aches with pain… just keep walking.

When the climb before you appears just too steep… just keep walking.

When you don’t understand why… just keep walking.

When you feel numb… just keep walking.

When you can’t see a purpose… just keep walking.

I have found that when I am feeling like I just cannot take another step… if I just put that foot forward and ask the Lord to renew my strength, provide healing, give meaning, and I put my trust in Him… amazing things happen! God has a reason. God has a purpose. He does not reveal why, but He has a plan and He knows what is best for us. We must trust Him always, in all things, no matter what. Submit to His leading and the situation, whatever it may be. Trust and rest in Him. The climb is so much sweeter when we faithfully trudge on with the Savior!

“But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles. They shall run and not be weary. They shall walk and not faint.” -Isaiah 40:31

 

COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER

This article, “Just Keep Walking” is protected by copyright. You are free to share the link via social media, but this article may not be copy and pasted in its entirety to be republished and redistributed elsewhere without permission (this includes pasting entire story to Facebook, Pinterest, email, etc.).

Copyright 2014 Goldie

Habakkuk 3:19

Hindsfeet“The Lord God is my strength, and he will make my feet like Hind’s Feet, and he will make me to walk upon mine High Places.”   ~Habakkuk 3:19.

In order to follow our Good Shepherd, we must follow Him and His ways, not our ways. We may think a certain decision seems logical or right, but after speaking with our Heavenly Father and perhaps struggling and even stating our case, we find that we must deny ourselves and our will in order to follow our Good Shepherd. His path may not seem safe or even right, but we must Trust Him and His leading as He knows best the way in which we should go.

His path is always right even though it may seem difficult, painful, lonely, or just too steep of a climb. We must continue to trust Him and as we do, we will soon see that His way is showered with joy and blessing as we rest and trust in His unfailing love for us. When we are traveling with the Lord, He makes our paths straight. Matthew 11:30 says, “For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.” I have found this to be true in my own life. When I stop fighting for myself and rely on the Lord, life is much easier. Resting in Him, when achieved, is a wonderful place to be. When we can’t make sense of life and we can’t fix what we perceive to be a bad or hurtful situation, trusting in Jesus will bring us the peace we need to continue the climb and path our Good Shepherd has set before us.

As we continue to climb with our Shepherd we will begin seeing the beauty that is all around us on our journey. We will begin to see things from His perspective, through joyful eyes. There could be no better place to be than with our Good Shepherd resting and rejoicing with Him in the High Places, safe, secure, and at peace. Look to the Good Shepherd and ask Him to take you to the High Places. “…weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning.” Psalm 30:5

Hinds_Feet_Blackstone_large[1]Hinds Feet on High Places by Hannah Hurnard, available on audio book. Free download here!

COPYRIGHT DISCLAIMER

This article, “Habakkuk 3:19” is protected by copyright. You are free to share the link via social media, but this article may not be copy and pasted in its entirety to be republished and redistributed elsewhere without permission (this includes pasting entire story to Facebook, Pinterest, email, etc.).

Copyright 2014 Goldie

Nothing is Impossible for the Lord our God

Habbukkuk 3:17-19

DSCN5610“Though the fig tree does not bud and there are no grapes on the vines, though the olive crop fails and the fields produce no food, though there are no sheep in the pen and no cattle in the stalls,  yet I will rejoice in the Lord, I will be joyful in God my Savior. The Sovereign Lord is my strength; he makes my feet like the feet of a deer, he enables me to tread on the heights.” I thank the Lord because He is God and He is Great and nothing is impossible for the Lord our God. Great and Mighty is He! Thank you Jesus I rejoice in You! You make my paths straight and offer blessing even when it is undeserved.