Faith & Reason ... a mystery

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

The lamp that screams... get out of the way!

 How many of you have ever tried to walk through your own house in the dark. It seems like it would be ok doesn’t it…after all you KNOW where things are, you know whether or not you cleaned up or not… you just know the lay of the land!

But what happens when we try to walk in the dark? Inevitably you stub your toe or bump your knee or step on something with your bare feet that you did not know was there…

I know I have hurt myself on SO many occasions walking by something that may have been just a bit out of place… thinking I had all the room in the world to make it and WHAM… it happened! I would bash my knee or stub my little toe or step on something that either hurt the bottom of my feet or worse, twisted my ankle!

We put ourselves through all this when all we had to do was turn on a light… because what happens when we turn on a light? I know this is going to sound overly simple, but when we turn on a light… WE CAN SEE. And when we can see… then our pathway is evident to us, we can know our direction and we can see any obstacles… but in the dark, it is all a guessing game!

Now put yourself in the spiritual realm with the same scenario… You know you need to move, you know something needs to be done, but you can’t see your way clear. You don’t know what direction to take and you don’t really know the lay of the land. You can begin to try on your own to ‘feel’ your way through with tentative and groping actions… but just what do you think is inevitable for those who take this route?

Do you think it is too harsh if I say that you will be stubbing your ‘spiritual’ toe? Or banging your ‘spiritual’ knee? Or twisting your ‘spiritual’ ankle? Or worse yet… falling into a spiritual pit where your vision is totally blocked and your spiritual direction comes to a halt and your walk in Christ is hurt!

Well this is the EXACT situation that the psalmist is addressing in this verse … Paul wrote in
Romans 13:12; “The night is nearly over; the day is almost here. So let us put aside the deeds of darkness and put on the armor of light.

You and I get so bogged down in our desires, our wants, our way of accomplishing things that we forget to turn on the light. We have the Word of God in written form, in the revealed form of Jesus and in the Holy Spirit working with in our hearts, minds and souls. What is holding your beliefs back? YOU ARE...you are in the way.

I need to get out of the way....you know I love ya, Don

Monday, October 28, 2013

A great place to get resource for energy!

 John describes Jesus as the Word...He writes: “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning.”

Jesus is called the Word or in the Greek, Logos. The written Word is also called the Logos.
God the Father wrote the Bible through the Holy Spirit for you and me. The Words of the Bible are full of life! These precious Words are a gift from God the Father to ALL who take hold of them.
The Words of God promise salvation, eternal life, righteousness, redemption, deliverance, protection, prosperity, healing and wholeness of spirit, soul and body.
In Hosea 4:6 God says that “My people perish for lack of knowledge.”
In order for you and I to take hold of the blessings of God and know His will for us, we need to read His instruction manual, called the Bible. In the Bible you will find Words that give you answers and will encourage your to be full of abundant life.
The Bible is God revealed...Jesus is God in the flesh...Thus, the Word (God revealed & the recorded life of Jesus) is a light and a lamp.

Jesus is the Word of God. The Gospel of John definitively declares that Jesus is God, what Jesus did from the foundations of the world, and that Jesus is the Word of God grants direction and wisdom on the path. It is the source and energy to say...”Get out of the way.” So, as you look at the path of your life you can look to the Word of God...Jesus...with direction.

1 Corinthians 3: 11 - For no one can lay any foundation other than the one already laid, which is Jesus Christ.

So, you're walking along the path and there is a pitfall ahead...what do you do? If you are in the the Word of God it will illuminate what's ahead and give light to how to proceed. The question is...do you know God's word? It is the source and energy to say...”Get out of the way!” to that which distracts us from the destination!

You know I love ya, Don

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

"Fall" or "Autumn" either way it is a blessing!

The autumn of life is a great time to focus on God’s wonderful blessings—family, friends, strength, shelter, provision, guidance, care, fruitful ministry, opportunities to serve, more time to pray and study His Word, and eternal life still to come. It is a time of transition and a time of change. Autumn also is a time that produces the harvest....Apples, Pumpkins, Persimmons, Sun Flowers, Walnuts, Acorns...

“Autumn” only occurs once in the Bible. In Jude 1:12, false teachers are compared to “autumn trees without fruit,” implying that autumn should be a fruitful season, the most abundant of the year. How can we take advantage of the “autumns of life”?

I suggest these two:

1. The autumn of life is a great time to focus on God’s wonderful blessings—family, friends, strength, shelter, provision, guidance, care, fruitful ministry, opportunities to serve, more time to pray and study His Word, and eternal life still to come.

2. Autumn is a good time to focus on your commitment to God. During life’s autumn, we have a richer perspective and can count more blessings than ever before.

Blessings and commitments drive us to a gracious God that is filled with love for each of us. Our intentional focus on blessings and commitments remind us to be strong in the coldest of winters and the hottest of summers.

You know I love ya, Don

Monday, October 21, 2013

The Master's Masterpiece of seasons....Autumn!

"...for the joy of the Lord is your strength." Nehemiah 8:10

I love this time of year. There is a certain energy when the seasons change, but the results of Autumn always warms my heart. Cathy Irvin wrote the following and it resonates with me:

Winter, spring, summer, and fall are God’s seasons. I have always been a big fan of summer and spring and not too fond of fall and winter. But lately I have changed. I think it is something about those leaves of red, orange, yellow, and burgundy that fall from the trees. I feel as if I have noticed them for the very first time.

I like taking a ride and watching people setting out pumpkins in the yard with hay bales and planting mums in the yard. I am looking forward to getting some lavender and yellow mums myself for my yard and a few pumpkins.

The other day, one of my friends and I went to visit a friend who has been ill, and in her neighborhood, we noticed many yards decorated for fall. I don’t remember seeing this too much in the past. Have I missed this season all these years, or is it just that as I get older I appreciate God’s world just a little more?

The latter is what I concluded. The Bible says, “This is day that the Lord hath made, and I will rejoice in it.” Each day He has given me beauty to enjoy, so I think I should sit back and take in this glorious creation.

God is the best artist in the world, for only He can create such different themes. We see many artists that try to capture the seasons on their canvases by painting what they see around them, and they do a wonderful job. However, neither picture nor paint could ever replace the real thing splashed across the sky and spilled over the earth like the Master’s display of His finest artwork. God’s creativity is unmatched, for every day is different, just like every snowflake in winter.

When people say there is no God, I know they do not see with eyes like mine. They must see a plain, white canvas or a black drop cloth and not the blue skies that fade into light pink in the evening. Nor do they see the flowers that no paint on any artist’s palate could attempt to match or the trees that were each given a certain color leaf to change into when autumn arrives. ‘No God,’ they say. It is just that they do not know the Master of the seasons, the One who has created such magnificent displays of perfect art.

Instead of always looking forward to the summer and springtime, I have decided to enjoy the Master’s autumn masterpiece for the rest of my life.

It is good to give thanks and especially for God's Masterpiece we call Autumn!. You know I love ya, Don

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

A season of plenty comes from a season of hardwork!

Julie Ackerman Link writes:
Outside my office window, the squirrels are in a race against winter to bury their acorns in a safe, accessible place. Their commotion amuses me. An entire herd of deer can go through our back yard and not make a sound, but one squirrel sounds like an invasion.

The two creatures are different in another way as well. Deer do not prepare for winter. When the snow comes they eat whatever they can find along the way (including ornamental shrubs in our yard). But squirrels would starve if they followed that example. They would be unable to find suitable food.
The deer and the squirrel represent ways that God cares for us. He enables us to work and save for the future, and He meets our need when resources are scarce. As the wisdom literature teaches, God gives us seasons of plenty so that we can prepare for seasons of need (Prov. 12:11). And as Psalm 23 says, the Lord leads us through perilous places to pleasant pastures.

Another way that God provides is by instructing those with plenty to share with those in need (Deut. 24:19). So when it comes to provision, the message of the Bible is this: Work while we can, save what we can, share what we can, and trust God to meet our needs.

Thank You, Lord, for the promise that You will
meet our needs. Help us not to fear or doubt.
We’re grateful that You’re watching over us
and that our cries for help reach Your ear.
 
Our needs will never exhaust God’s supply. You know I love ya...Don

Monday, October 14, 2013

Transformed by the Great Transformer!

David C. Casland wrote:
Chuck Colson, founder of Prison Fellowship, spent 40 years helping people hear and understand the gospel of Jesus Christ. When he died in April 2012, one newspaper article carried the headline, “Charles Colson, Nixon’s ‘dirty tricks’ man, dies at 80.” It seemed surprising that a man so transformed by faith should be identified with things he did as a politically ruthless presidential aide decades earlier before he knew the Savior.

The apostle Paul’s conversion and his early Christian witness were greeted with skepticism and fear. When he began preaching that Jesus is the Son of God, people said, “Is this not he who destroyed those who called on this name in Jerusalem, and has come here for that purpose?” (Acts 9:21). Later when Paul went to Jerusalem and tried to join the disciples, they were afraid of him (v.26). In years to come, Paul never ignored his past, but spoke of it as evidence of the mercy of God (1 Tim. 1:13-14).
Like Paul, we don’t need to parade our failures or to pretend they didn’t happen. Instead, we can thank the Lord that through His grace and power, our past is forgiven, our present is changed, and our future is bright with hope for all He has prepared for us.

Transformed by grace divine,
The glory shall be Thine;
To Thy most holy will, O Lord,
We now our all resign. —Burroughs
 
Only Jesus can transform our life. You Know I love ya...Don

Thursday, October 10, 2013

Fear disappears when we see the large wings!

"In the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge".... Psalm 57

Every felt a little scared? Maybe over the economy? or Work? or Family Relationships? or Sickness?...there are a great deal of things that can scare us in life. I found this story and it helps to encourage us in times of fear...

I was on a crowded plane about to take off in a raging thunderstorm. As we cruised down the runway, a bolt of lightning lit up the darkness, shining on the plane’s silver wing and on a memory from another trip.

My husband and I were on a second honeymoon to Bermuda.  On Sunday, we went to a small church near our motel. During the service,the minister introduced his mother who’d recently moved from the United States to live with him. He invited her to come forward and say a few words and sing a special song.

An elderly woman, frail and stooped, made her way slowly to the pulpit. I strained to hear her. “I’d never flown before I came here a few weeks ago,” she said in a thin, reedy voice. “But it was the only way I could be with my son and his family. When I boarded the plane, the kind stewardess helped buckle me into my seat. My heart pounded like it would burst. But then I looked out the window and saw this big silver wing. It called up the words of an old hymn, reminding me under Whose protection I was kept.”

And now, on this dark and stormy flight, with the plane feeling as fragile as a toy, I remembered:

Under His wings I am safely abiding.
Though the night deepens and tempests are wild,
still I will trust Him; I know He will keep me.
He has redeemed me and I am His child.
Under His wings, under His wings, who from His love can sever?
Under His wings, my soul shall abide, safely abide forever.

Almighty God, as I lift my eyes to You, I soar above the storm.
By Shari Smyth
God has big wings...may we never forget on whose wings we truly fly! You know I love ya, Don

Monday, October 7, 2013

New Carpet...some new cleansing!


12 Then Jesus went into the temple of God and drove out all those who bought and sold in the temple, and overturned the tables of the money changers and the seats of those who sold doves. 13 And He said to them, "It is written, 'My house shall be called a house of prayer,' but you have made it a 'den of thieves.' " 14 Then the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them.

New carpet at the 1341 Palm Ct. address this morning. It made me think of this scripture and I found this devotion...thought you would enjoy it as well.

Jesus cleansing the temple, we all love this story, because it shows Jesus getting busy and getting those darn thieves out of God's house.

You see these guys (and women) were overcharging God's people to worship Him.
Say a turtledove was sold for $5.00, but they would jack up the price to $10.00 because they would say that the one you bought was not good enough. So they would over charge you, take what they said was not good enough, then turn around and sell it to the next person for $10.00.

Jesus couldn't stand this any more, and drove these robbers out of the temple.
Then the cool part comes in verse 14: Then the blind and the lame came to Him in the temple, and He healed them.

These poor people could not afford to enter the temple, according to those who were robbing the people; therefore they were outcasts from the temple and being held back from God, in a sense.
Kind of makes you stop and wonder how we keep others out of the churches.

I remember a story of Chuck Smith of Calvary Chapel, who when he started, him and his wife would go down to the beach and witness to the surfers. He was a pastor of a small church as well. Eventually they got new carpet and pews for this church; the surfers would come in from the beach all wet and full of sand. The people didn't want these surfers in the church messing up their new carpet and pews. Chuck's response was to tear out the pews and carpet, because these material things meant nothing and the souls of these men and women meant everything to God. If you have ever heard of Calvary Chapel, you will find that there are hundreds of churches now throughout the USA and around the world. All because one man had the heart of God to see the more important things, which were the people and not the material that we tend to find more precious then the souls of men.

God makes all things new...you know I love ya, Don

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Is the world in crisis....or am I over-reacting?

Are things in a crisis? With all the politics taking place these last few days, I was think about a event that took place awhile back....stricter laws to protect people from questionable banking practices were issued. Banks had to change some of their policies to comply. To notify me of such changes, my bank sent me a letter. But when I got to the end I had more questions than answers. The use of phrases like “we may” and “at our discretion” certainly didn’t sound like anything I could depend on!

In contrast, the Old Testament quotes God as saying “I will” numerous times. God promises David: “I will set up your seed after you, who will come from your body, and I will establish his kingdom. He shall build a house for My name, and I will establish the throne of his kingdom forever” (2 Sam. 7:12-13). No uncertainty in those words. Recognizing God’s faithfulness to His promises, King Solomon says in his prayer of dedication for the temple: “You have kept what You promised Your servant David my father; You have both spoken with Your mouth and fulfilled it with Your hand” (2 Chron. 6:15). Centuries later, the apostle Paul said that all of God’s promises are “yes” in Christ (2 Cor. 1:20).

In a world of uncertainty, our trust is in a faithful God who will always keep His promises.
Whatever trouble may assail, 
Of this we can be sure: 
God’s promises can never fail, 
They always will endure. —Hess
As for me and my house, we will trust the Lord! I also know without doubt...strength will rise for those who wait on God. You know I love ya, Don