You know how some words sound funny when you hear them or when you speak them. Yeah, I know I am from the south and a lot of my words sound funny to those around me now here in the midwest but do you have those words that you over enunciate because they are fun to say. Linda Hill has challenged us to day with Stream of Consciousness Saturday to use a word we had to look up.
For me, one of those is in scripture and while it may sound different, it has a powerful meaning – propitiation. That’s a 5 syllable word, at least it is in the south. It’s a word that has tripped me up a bit because for a long time I didn’t really understand its significance. A devotion I read the other day with Oswald Chambers spoke about it in 1 John 2:2.
Webster’s defines propitiation “1 – the act of gaining the favor or goodwill for someone or something, something that appeases; 2 – an atoning sacrifice.”
An atoning sacrifice, that is a phrase I fully understand. Jesus sacrificed himself to satisfy the wrath of God so that we would not have to. Wow. Intellectually I understand that but my humanness asks the age old question…“WHY”.
That’s why. It is a gift of grace. Something we don’t deserve or have the ability to earn.
His love for us can not be shaken, destroyed or matched.
There are some of us who are hurting today in some form or fashion, or we have family or friends who are hurting and scared. I encourage you today to hang on to His outstretched hand. The road you are on is hard, bumpy and filled with holes but God’s love for you is strong, smooth and everlasting. And remember, it’s only temporary and He is always walking right beside you.
So feel His love and surrounding peace today. I promise the Holy Spirit inside of you knows exactly how you feel and He is letting God know even when you can’t tell Him. Take a deep breath of His love and relax in His grace. And as you go along your journey, remember to always be kind. It is a reflection of Christ in your inner being.
Good evening family. I sincerely pray you are doing well, even those who are really struggling, I pray you can find joy and peace in His presence. I read something last week and caught myself needing it today so I had to check myself. In Jesus Calling, Sarah Young made the comment of how easy it is to become negative when life explodes around us. We all have those moments where we just vent before exploding and we jump on the negative train as it starts to barrel down the mountain. If we don’t stop the train quickly it will spiral downward gaining momentum and darkening our perspective and possibly ending in an ugly mess at the bottom.
It is hard to not be negative when nothing seems to be going right around us but God tells us to trust him. He has a plan and He has got you in His hand.
When we “go all in” with trusting the Lord, a sense of hope surrounds us and transforms the negatives into positives creating an anchor of inner peace.
God stands ever ready in every storm of our life to turn those hopeless situations into victories. We may not see the victory at first but with trust in Him we know it will eventually rise to the top.
So, I encourage you tonight to trust Him and feel His love, hope and inner peace lift you with calm reassurance as He holds firmly to your hand.
Have a blessed evening and great day tomorrow and remember to always be kind.
I missed church yesterday. Bummer. I walked out to the car, got in, drove to the corner and noticed it didn’t feel right. THEN I noticed the light was on telling me I had tire pressure issues. We get so intent on our task sometimes, we totally miss the warning signs given us. Sure enough, when I got out and looked I saw the driver side front tire was flat. So I drove around to the alley and parked in the driveway to change the tire(which in itself was a nightmare). I usually park out front because that keeps me on one level with no stairs. Stairs and I are not good friends anymore, due to that thing we call aging. So today I took the tire to Blain’s for review because I have road hazard insurance with them since that is where I bought those tires. A great thing to have by the way as I got a new $139 tire for $15. While there I found out that the hole was in the sidewall. How in the world did that happen so I asked to see it. This is what it looked like. The angle of the cut was …well…
My daughter says I was having a conspiracy theorist moment thinking why someone would do that on one tire. But after the spray paint issue of last year, yeah I believe it. Then when I get home, my neighbor has the auto club changing their drivers side front tire. Coincidence?? Maybe…but here is what I do know. It really doesn’t matter because God is in full control and He is good all the time. I was safe in my home and not on the road when this hole suddenly appeared.
We have life exploding all around us and a lot of it we don’t even see in our visual realm.
But John reminds us we have someone who is ever watchful in all we do; protecting, loving and nurturing.
The bible is filled with encouragement to help us when we get scared and unsure of what is happening. He is always reminding us that He is close by.
To think that He sings over me. How awesome is that. So we can be ASSURED of His love and it strengthens us with faith and hope.
I think that sometimes we get so consumed with what is going on around us, we forget WHO lives in us. Even when things are going good, we forget that. So let us close our eyes in grateful praise to Him above who is mindful of everything that comes our way.
And remember to allow the goodness we feel to shine outward to those who need a taste of it and be kind. Kindness has a beauty all its own.
Happy Saturday Friends. I want to share some encouragement with you as we all need encouraging from time to time. Today I want us to think about how encouraging compassion can be for those who receive it as well as those who give it. It is a key component I believe of Christians, yet those who don’t really know Christ have the ability to have compassion as well. It is a gift from God. I saw a video this morning that showed true care and compassion towards animals. For encouragement to our church family, my pastor’s has a daily devotion online since some are still on lockdown. This week he has been going through creation and how as creation was done, it was methodical. Each part of creation was essential to the next part of creation. For example the sun, moon and stars were created before much else was to establish the ability to mark time, and to give us light – a separation from all darkness. Plant life, which needed the light that was earlier created, was then created to sustain life that came after it as food supply and for the air we breathe. We breathe in oxygen and exhale carbon dioxide, plant life breathes in carbon dioxide and exhales oxygen. It is all important for survival. We support each other. And later animals were created right before man and man was created to care for the animals. Of course that changed with the fall but the intent was care, compassion…and mutual love.
While Genesis 1:26 reminds us that we have dominion over animals, Proverbs 12:10 reminds us to do it with compassion.
I am always encouraged when I see people going above and beyond in caring for animals who find themselves in a no win situation. The video below shows the compassion of a group of men who found a dolphin that had been washed up by Hurricane Laura landing the dolphin in a pond 9 miles away from the ocean. They came together to safely capture the dolphin and take it back to the ocean. It was most encouraging.
God made us all with compassionate hearts towards His creation, not only to the nature side but also to the human side. Where would any of us be without the compassion from others. WE all have struggles. The definition of compassion is a strong deep feeling of sympathy and sorrow for anyone or any creature who is hurting in any fashion. Jesus is our greatest example for us to learn by, as Hewas compassion for us and taught us how to have compassion and use it to further His kingdom.
When we think of the compassion God always has towards us, we should embody that compassion for others. We should always be on the alert to share His love in any encounter we may face. We all know many friends or family members right now who are fighting health issues, hurting emotionally, scared, wondering what’s next and we should always be ready to reach out to all of them to let them know we are here ready to help in any way we can and that we are to fervently pray for them. Tonight, I lift my heart out to all who are hurting in any way and hope this prayer below brings you a moment of encouraging peace and compassion.
And as sad or hopeless you may feel, know there is always kindness out there for you to receive and share wherever you can. Sometimes it needs to start from you first and then blossom to a beauty you didn’t know existed.
A Monarch Task The warmth awakens me but I am tightly bound. I can’t move. My lifeblood is pulsing through my veins, waiting to explode. My head is pounding and screaming to break free of this dungeon. Yet, I can’t move. A crack appears at the top of the cell, bright light is filtering in. […]
The word NEVER is an absolute value even though it has nothing to do with math. And when we hear the word never we think of negative actions like “I will never”. In math, a true absolute value removes any negative sign in front of a number making it a positive value. I could not wrap my head around that when I was in college 50 years ago so I surely can’t do it now but…it makes perfect sense when we think of Jesus.
He will NEVER leave you…that is about as positive as you can get. It was so important for God’s people to understand this idea that so He said it again 2 verses later.
Even as far back as Genesis, God reminded us that He would always take care of us. He always honors His promises.
The writer of Hebrews reminds us again….
All through the Bible, we are reminded that he will never leave us – Joshua 1:5, Psalms 94:14, Isaiah 41:10, Matthew 28:20, Revelation 3:10, just to name a few. It is important we do not lose hope when the world blows up around us. He is there, sometimes carrying us when we don’t realize it. There is a new song on the radio that when it comes on, I sing it out loud and raise my hand out the car window. It was written by Zach Williams and Dolly Parton sings a duet with him. I will post it at the end if you care to listen but I wanted you to read a few of the words because the song talks about us straying as we do sometimes …but even then He never leaves us.
There Was Jesus
Every time I try to make it on my own Every time I try to stand, I start to fall And all those lonely roads that I have traveled on There was Jesus
In the waiting, in the searching In the healing, in the hurting Like a blessing buried in the broken pieces Every minute, every moment Where I’ve been or where I’m going Even when I didn’t know it Or couldn’t see it There was Jesus
No, I never walk alone Never walk alone You’re always there
We are defined not by what happens to us but by how we react to what happens to us.
In a Oswald Chambers’ devotion, he made a statement that I knew but he shed a different light on it that I had not thought about before now.
“Our Lord’s temptations and ours are in different realms until we are born again and become His brothers. The temptations of Jesus are not those of a mere man, but the temptations of God as Man.” Oswald Chambers
When I look at it that way it makes me go – WOW. Temptation to me is an inner draw toward something we think we need but know in the end, if we really think about it, it will not be good for us. It’s a trial, as it were, of free will in being faithful or unfaithful in a choice that affects you and possibly others. But James 1:13-18 reminds us that while temptations give into sin and sin gives birth to death, God’s perfect gift from above still shows how much he loves us…even when we fail.
But the statement that Oswald made that made a lightbulb come for me was this…
“satan does not tempt us just to make us do wrong things— he tempts us to make us lose what God has put into us through regeneration, namely, the possibility of being of value to God. He does not come to us on the premise of tempting us to sin, but on the premise of shifting our point of view, and only the Spirit of God can detect this as a temptation of the devil.” Oswald Chambers
But we can take courage in whatever we face because of what Jesus did for us on the cross…
WE just have to remember that and stand firm…knowing at times we will fail…but God also knew we would fail, yet still He gave us a chance for eternal life.
It reminds me of the TV show years ago called Mission Impossible and the opening statement of each show saying – “If you choose to accept this mission”. Following Christ to me is very much a mission and we are in a mission field. Sometimes we win, sometimes we lose but we are always loved…and saved. So come on everyone…
And he does not care if you can sing or not, it’s all joyful noise to Him.
Ans as always we close with reminders of Kindness. Kindness definitely defines who you are by how you react, so be kind.
The images I use are random pictures from the internet when I type in scripture verses or themes.
Good evening. Tonight I had a Zoom Bible study meeting. It makes me acutely aware of how much I miss Sunday School. And it’s not just Sunday School but how I miss seeing everyone, seeing how they are doing, getting hugs and all the loving things we do as a church family. I miss the family but I am ever so thankful for today’s technology helping us stay as connected as much as we can. In the late 90s, Tim LaHay and Jerry Jenkins wrote a series about the end times called the Left Behind Series. I thought this series was great and I ended up with the entire series, except for the two they wrote after the series was complete that talked about what was going on before being left behind. I bring this series up because when it was written 25 years ago, technology was not what it is today and the people in these books were able to connect with each other worldwide through satellites – well, that was fiction then but true life today. Our world has become very small with the abilities of computers today. But even though the world is changing around us – God and His promises never change.
The bible reminds us over 20 times through old and new testament that not only do His purposes never change, He himself does not change.
And in a world that sometimes seems crazy and scary with it’s fast changes, we have the security of knowing HE NEVER CHANGES. John starts off his book reminding us who God was, what the Word was and who Jesus was.
Then later when chaos was everywhere and fear was running rampant, the writer of Hebrews reminded the people of Jesus being God and He never changes.
That gives us great relief, courage, faith and hope in understanding that no matter how bad it may get, whether it be from a virus, conflicts or the sheer feeling of hopelessness, God is always there. I love the footprint message that reminds us how much He loves us.
So remember that He is always by your side, just reach up and He will grab your hand.
And as always, I remind you the value and power of kindness as it reflects the living expression of God’s love.
This morning is another beautiful day. I walk around my small yard and thoroughly enjoy the peace God put there for me to see.
Especially after a night of police chases down our quiet street…twice. Proof that satan is busy all around us and now more than ever we need the rest and peace of Christ. Sarah Young reminds us this morning in her devotional Jesus Calling of the importance of resting in Him. Through the quiet restful time devoted to God we find His peace and love. He wants us to know how very much he loves us and it breaks his heart when we feel unworthy of His love. He said we were worth it and that we should never feel that we are not.
I think we sometimes gets caught up in idea that we need to earn our love from Him but with Him His love is boundless. And He loved us long before we started doing any type of work.
So I encourage you today to take joy in His love for you and let His light warm your soul.
I leave you with some more beauty from my yard to enjoy Cee’sFlower of the Day. Flowers do make me smile and remind me of God’s love for us. And if they are fragrant, that is even better.
And as always, I remind you of the beauty and magic of kindness.
Tonight I release a little bit more. A little more pain, a little more hurt, and gain a little more courage and a little more self worth. Its been a long journey and I pour out a little more of my soul with the help of my computer to continue my journey in healing. Tonight I watched again, the movie “I Can Only Imagine”. Fabulous movie and the song is probably my favorite all time song. If you haven’t seen it, or heard the song, you need to.
This true story of pain and courage from an abusive home and the hope from its story’s journey has been a huge inspiration to me to remind me there is life after abuse. There is hope after abuse. And there are dreams after abuse.
While I did not come from a physically abusive home towards me when growing up, there were the occasional drunken brawls of abuse between my parents. And what so many do not understand is that there are many forms of abuse other than physical and all of them are detrimental to children of the home.
Colossians 3 reminds us of correct rules for Christian homes reminding parents that they are to love each other as Christ loves them and to not discourage and embitter the children. When children become discouraged from abuse in the home, it sets a standard for their understanding and let me just tell you – No one…No one…and I say it again…No one should be allowed to harm another person with physical action or with words, whether they are family, friend or a total stranger.
Because a lot of times it creates a cycle and it takes a lot of courage and effort to break that cycle. I was not strong enough to do that. Off and on for twenty years I stayed in an abusive marriage. It took two divorces from the same man for me to finally break free of this pattern. And it took another ten for me to gain strength and courage to survive on my own, with three children. Then it took another ten for me to find a new life of courage and self worth with new dreams. Life is hard and I don’t know how anyone can survive this life without Jesus Christ, its hard enough for those of us who do follow him.
My revisited dream of being a writer is actually coming to the front. Will I be a best seller, no, but my second book is in process of being printed and I am hoping it will be out in October. It is a sequel of my first book…about dogs. God instills in us survival techniques that sometimes can come out in various art forms. Some people turn to music, some to painting but I turned to writing. Dogs were a big part of my survival so I turned them into people and wrote about them. It was fun and encouraging for me as I still fight with self worth. When you are told for many years how worthless you are, it takes a while to flush that all down the toilet. I am enclosing one of the first poems I ever place of WordPress. I was inspired by a fellow blogger’s photo and it shows how even now I struggle with self worth in Christ knowing full well to him I am precious. Never forget how much God loves you and that he always has a plan for you. Grab hold of his hand and hang on.
I see and maintain it still is not fair,
I have nothing to lay at the top of the stair.
It’s not my fault, I did nothing wrong,
Well, maybe I did, it’s just been so long.
How long has it been since I climbed to the top,
I remember its relief, why did I stop?
How can a symbol of such astounding grief,
Be given to us to bring us this relief?
With love so amazing, to the cross did He die,
To flood us with gratitude that still makes us cry.
The burdens we carry don’t always seem fair,
Always we can lay them at the top of the stair.
The first step looks brittle, can it carry my weight?
This burden is heavy and may seal my fate.
As I touch each step and climb ever higher,
Is this what I should do, is this really my desire?
As I clear the last step, the cross is before me,
I question my worth, did He also die for me?
As my knees get bent, I’m smothered by His grace,
And I lay all my burdens at the accepting cross base.
Probably the reason I push kindness like I do is because I fully understand its benefits, it value and how easily it can spread. besides it is one of the fruits of the spirit. So I remind you as always the utmost value of kindness. Please be kind.