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I LOVE my friends who cause me to think. Following yesterday's post on fear, I received this text. "How do we distinguish fear from wisdom?" Let's all jump into the deep end, Friends!
God has given us wisdom to know when we should not engage in risky behavior. When pondering hiking a trail, I take into consideration the danger involved. Based upon the degree of difficulty, my physical abilities, and a little bit of good sense, I decide whether or not I should trek that trail. OH, for sure, when I decline a trail and all the others come back unscathed and proclaiming the wonders of what I missed, I am distressed. BUT, I also know you should always listen to your inner voice of reason and good judgment. JUST BECAUSE the others made the trail with no problem, does not mean I would have. I was not operating out of fear, but instead was relying upon wisdom.
FEAR--is another thing altogether. I find myself occasionally fearful over my future. The "What If's" invade my thoughts. What if I need constant care, what if the economy fails, what if I break a bone~~~ I can take off down that rabbit trail and end up in the briar patch before you can blink an eye. I am fearful over something I have little or absolutely NO control over. THAT is when fear is an issue. The enemy has crept in and pushed my buttons--KNOWING all those things which will cause me anxiety. NOW--WHO am I going to listen to in this scenario~ The old sneaky deceiver or the Truth God has given us. This is when fear becomes the ruler of our lives and takes our minds away from those things of eternal importance. HERE is the truth--God intends for us to live in peace because of the truth of His promises. "Peace does not refer to the absence of chaos, but rather to an overall, deeply entrenched sense of harmony, health, and wholeness in the midst of chaos." Priscilla Shirer God's promises are the foundation which crumble the high wall of What If's. We know the plans He has for us--so let's live without fear and in the certainty of hope.
“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”
There is ALWAYS one who gobbles up life with gusto in every family! This one~
captured his personality perfectly in this selfie.
He came strolling through the kitchen at around 9:00 AM Easter morning with only one ear left on his recently acquired chocolate Easter Bunny. He conveniently forgot to ask permission to eat an entire chocolate bunny for breakfast. The first one in the pool, the one who became stuck while climbing the fireplace wall, the one who bears keeping an eye on at all times--he is not leaving anything untried. No fear and always open to a dare, he jumps in the deep end first with no hesitation. He is going to enjoy life to the utmost and never back down when challenged. He does not know the meaning of fear. Yesterday's post on giving it all to God brought a comment which set the wheels to turning. Why don't we give it all? My response was we fear the unknown and will chose the known path--even when we know it is stinky --rather than take the risk of the path we have not traveled before. Fear is a powerful motivator and can cause us to miss some of the best moments if we do not conquer it. My hiking trips have morphed into tales of avoiding danger when possible. I am fearful of breaking a bone ~which would be life changing at this point. This causes me to miss some of the summits, hesitate on the rock strewn trail, and generally avoid risky treks. I am cautious to a fault and carefully pick my steps to avoid falling. The spirit of fear has become an hindrance to going for the gusto. I am missing some of the best out of an abundance of caution for fear of what might happen. God does not want us to live in fear. What might happen around the bend can cause such paralysis that I become frozen and unwilling to even glance around the corner. He has taught me through experience, than even when the worst happens, I can keep moving forward. Fear, in many cases, is worse than what we fear happening.
I fell and sprained my ankle while hiking in the Grand Canyon. I would have never seen some of the beauty I experienced if I had stayed in camp and not taken the hike because of fear of injury. I was injured, but that did not take away from what I saw that day. The injury healed and the memory of the grandeur was a wonderful reward for conquering the fear. So leave the fear behind of giving Him it all. Live life to the fullest in His care. His plan may not be my plan--but it is always the best plan. Cast your fears upon Him and live life abundantly--to the fullest--in His presence.
Easter was absolutely fabulous this year! Having just returned from a quick Birthday/Easter celebration, I am still filled with the warmth of a wonderful weekend. #3 Grand celebrated his 10th birthday on Easter Sunday-those double digits are an important milestone in our trek through this life. The reoccurring theme for Easter Sunday seemed to be "Water".
We attended the early service to begin our Easter celebration. There were six baptisms during this service and twelve more to come in the next two services. The six baptisms we were blessed to witness ranged in age from teens to old as me (Think of the age of dirt). Each person gave a short testimony of why they were seeking baptism. The stories varied as we are all different, but each story was beautiful in its own way. One of the ladies came up from the less than warm water with a gasp. Most of us are not fans of cold water. We then headed West to the other Grandparent's beautiful home for Easter lunch. The grands and a couple of the braver adults all jumped in the pool~
The water temperature was a brisk 68 degrees. NO THANK YOU! It is always interesting to see how different personalities approach getting their feet wet when daring the frigid water. The little princess eases in from the steps. The adults and big boys take the plunge by diving in. A quick submersion, which brings them surfacing with a gasp. Both adults agreed it took your breath away.
One of the testimonies we heard Sunday morning involved taking the plunge to complete commitment to God. I believe her words were "Giving it all to God." Exactly what I have been asking myself for a few months now, "Am I holding anything back?" It is man's propensity to hold on to those areas of our life which we think we need to maintain control. Frankly it is a little (perhaps a lot) alarming to release total control. I am a planner from WAY BACK and like to know what is going to happen and how as I trek along the trail. Those surprises around the bend are not my friend. WHY I seem to believe I have any real control is beyond me, but I keep a tight grip on a few areas of my life. That has worked well for me--NOT! What does it look like and how are we able to give it all to God? I suspect it closely resembles jumping into the deep end of a cold pool. It takes your breath away. Slowly though, everyone who took the plunge became acclimated and settled in to enjoying the water. The initial plunge was heart gripping, but the reward was thrilling.
7So give yourselves completely to God.
Stand against the devil, and the devil will run from you.
The BIG news story of the week has been the fire at the historic Notre Dame Cathedral~
I remember as a child the saw mill in my hometown burning. As the crow flies it was about a mile from my house~with a forest of trees between. The entire night sky was glowing orange, and the smell of smoke drifted through the woods for days. Entire trees and the remnants of other trees were burned that night--along with mountains of sawdust. The heat was so intense, the firefighters had a difficult time getting near the mill. I can only imagine the same scenerio--but MUCH larger in the middle of a city. Fire is a destructive force like no other found in nature.
The ashes had barely cooled before the city was vowing to reconstruct the iconic land mark to man's need for God. Hundred of millions of Euros have been pledged to rebuild this centuries old House of God. How telling to see that man quickly runs to the aid of rebuilding this historic House of Worship. I began to wonder where does this quick response originate from. Does man feel a need to recreate the tourist mecca of one of the continent's most important cities or is man seeking to honor God by the rebuilding of His House?
My first thought after seeing the report of the fire was God is not there. It would seem there has been a wholesale turning from God around the world. I was wrong--God is omnipresent--eternally. God is with us. We may turn our backs to Him, but He is still ever present. God is there and here and everywhere~God's presence permeates the darkest night. Nothing can keep Him away--fire, flood, earthquake---any disaster- God is ever present. Good for the French for rebuilding this historic monument. God can use whatever the reason for His good and glory. Many have and will continue to visit to see the ancient treasures, the amazing art, the astounding architecture~the relics from the past. All who enter those hallowed doors will be amazed by what they see. AND you will still feel the presence of The Almighty--the quiet reverence will still swirl around you like a cloud of incense, you will be still and KNOW there is a God. From the ashes--comes beauty. How telling this Holy Week. Did God allow this to happen at this particular time was a poignant reminder of the beauty which rose from the ugliness of death, this very week? I choose to believe He is at work---He is calling us back---He wants to raise us from the ashes of the mess we have made of our lives. He wants to rebuild the beauty He originally intended. From the ashes~~~can come great beauty and new life.
So I gave my attention to the Lord God to seek Him by prayer
and supplications, with fasting, sackcloth and ashes.
Am I the only one who has a friend who seems determined to keep me humble? No matter what the circumstance, just as I begin to think PERHAPS this is all working out okay and I am not really so bad after all--
they sneak up behind me or come in swinging from the side and the next thing I know--GOT YOU! Some disparaging remark hits me blindsided. The ZINGER leaves me shaking my head and wondering, "Did they just REALLY say that?" I am left rolling the remark around in the gray matter for days to come. WHAT did I do to deserve that???
How about just when you those around you seem to think you have your act together and all is right with the world. Perhaps some recognition has come your way, but at a minimum you can enter a room filled with people and goodwill flows all around you. You love the world and the world seems to love you. WHAM--something occurs--perhaps even out of your control--and the tide turns. Now when you enter the room, eyes turn away, and perhaps vicious gossip swirls all around. The crowd has turned from adoration to a mob bent upon vicious attacks. Can anything be more painful than rejection by those you thought loved you~or at the least tolerated you. Life can change in a second--one day respect and the next condemnation.
As I have contemplated Holy Week and all it held, it has rung true that Jesus experienced this very thing. A triumphant parade celebrating the Messiah~who had come to save ~began this week. It begins to escalate with the pharisees stirring the pot, determined to get rid of the threat to their good business. One day a parade and another a banquet and the next a call for crucifixion. Rejection by the very crowd who cheered his entry into the city destined to be the place he dies. The world turned from praise to scorn with the final complete betrayal in one short week. How must He have felt to know He had been abandoned, scorned, betrayed, and headed for great pain and ultimate death--through no fault of His own?
I pray you stop this week and contemplate all that happened in one short week and the ultimate victory for us all that came from it. When I stop to think of all Jesus did for me that I might live eternally, it absolutely is beyond my comprehension. What a GREAT Savior we worship! Thank You, Jesus!
And many spread their cloaks on the road,
and others spread leafy branches that they had cut from the fields.
And those who went before and those who followed were shouting,
"Hosanna! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!
Blessed is the coming kingdom of our father David!
I have decided to try a yoga class--chair yoga (whatever that is). At this point, any and all stretching is needed. My tendons and ligaments are beginning to feel as tight as an old rooster~too tough to even put in the cook pot. I still have the desire to strut around, but the strut has turned into a stumble. A good friend, who is in the class, told me to bring my own yoga mat. Why, OF COURSE, I have my own yoga mat! The only problem was locating said mat and wiping the dust off once I did.
Over the years I have had more exercise equipment than a well supplied gym. Most of it I have given away after I grew bored or maybe gave up. Fads come and fads go. I have owned a couple of bicycles and all the stuff that goes with them. I still have a drawer full of biking clothes, a pump, a lock, and a repair kit. For what purpose I kept those fragments from the past, I have no idea. I have had boxing gloves and pads, all kinds of jump ropes, weights, straps, balls, treadmill, ski machine, leotards (for my one failed class in ballet), tapes, and videos to name a few.
I would never dare attend a class unless I had on "the outfit". Recently my exercise buds told me I had a bicycling coat on when we were walking and I could not do that. I told them to call the Bike Police and arrest me. My trainer told me I should get a special kind of shoes to do my squats in for maximum results. I AM NOT buying another pair of $150 shoes in which to do squats! Why even hiking requires the right kind of hiking uniform and equipment. One hiking buddy recently told me she had purchased ANOTHER backpack~I believe she told me this is her fourth or fifth. Various sizes and designs~it pays to be prepared. Of course we need hiking poles, hiking shoes (walking shoes will not do), water bottles, hats, netting (flies can be horrendous), and on and on. Walk through even a Wal Mart and look at all the equipment available for purchase to take a few miles walk through the woods. Why REI has an entire section of said equipment--rows upon rows.
One must always have the correct equipment and clothing before embarking on any exercise regime. We would not DARE step into the gym in our PJ's or, heaven help us, our blue jeans. I was actually at the gym when a blue jean wearing macho man was told to change or leave. The right equipment is essential for the war against time and atrophy with Mother Nature. The BIG SECRET the trainers and gurus do not tell you is, "SHE WINS IN THE LONG HAUL!"
There is a war going on--right now--all around us. The enemy is seeking to kill, steal, and destroy every moment of every day. WHY THEN, would we walk out the door without the benefit of our armor? God has provided the tools and all we have to do is put them on at the beginning of everyday. It is well worth the effort. We all know who wins the war, but why suffer temporary defeats when victory can be ours with the tools He provides? Why spend a moment in defeat, with God as our Commander and Chief? Dust off the equipment and strap it on-Victory is yours~with God's help.
Our pastor told a wonderful story this past Sunday that bears repeating. He was with his 8 year old son saying evening prayers. When they finished he asked the boy if he prayed other times than when they prayed together. As only an 8 year old can be, he was totally honest and told his father, "No." The dad questioned him further and asked, "Why?" The boy looked at his father and said, "He doesn't talk back."
What is not to love about this story? Out of the mouth of babes come severe truths and hard to answer questions. I will never forget one of my children looking at my huge belly when I was close to delivering one of their siblings and asking, "How's that baby going to get out of there?" G U L P! God's Word is filled with examples of those who do not feel they are hearing from God. David, the man after God's own heart, laments in the Psalms, "How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?" Psalm 13:1 The Book of Job would have you believing that God had turned from Job, in God's own words, "A blameless and upright man." The silence of God can be deafening when we are in our lowest moments. The question becomes, "Does God speak to us?" As I have thought this story of not hearing from God over, I was reminded of what we have discussed in Small Group during our study of this book,
One of sections speaks on the four parts of our soul~
If we are God's creation, it stands to reason, this is also how he created our soul. Does God not use our soul as his pipeline to communicate with us? He sent His Holy Spirit to be our comforter. Does it come and go--if we are not "feeling" comforted? Are those conscience nudging moments coming from us? Does the song of praise which brings tears of joy flow from our human emotion? Without a soul, we would be a vast chasm with no individual thought. A body with a brain for the computer--no mind.
God does speak--volumes--as in His Inspired Word--our Guide Book--Instruction Manual. God does speak--in the marvel of His creation as evidenced all around us--God does speak in that quiet small voice. The voice in our mind that only we can hear. The voice with which God uses His Holy Spirit to speak, guide and direct.
Yes, He does talk back. The question is "Are we listening?" Not to say that there are not periods of silence, but Why?" If we are missing His message, is it through fault of our own? God has spoken to me---NOT in a booming deep God like voice, but with a soft gentle whisper. I need to be listening, drown out the noise of the world, and expect Him to speak. Stop, look, and listen should be our mantra when we are seeking God's Voice. He is faithfully with us~Always~even in the silence.
I am thankful for being prompted to write yesterday's parable. It was great fun and flowed easily once I was given the idea. God uses many things to prompt my muses including a request for a parable. My most common reoccurring theme in writing has always been analogies. As I thought this over, it dawned on me that often these analogies can move easily into parables. After all is not most of life filled with lessons gleamed from experience? You might wonder how, but it stands to reason that if Jesus taught us by using parables based upon day to day life, God might continue to teach us today with day to day experiences while traveling along the path.
A few days ago I began to think about the movie, "Cast Away". Almost 20 years old now, Tom Hanks did a splendid job of portraying a plane crash survivor washed ashore on a deserted island. If you think it over, there were several lessons to be learned in the movie, but today I will hone in on only one. After the initial shock of discovering he had been the only survivor and he was indeed alone on the island, Chuck began to concentrate on survival and his day to day provision. His hard driven successful past was indeed, now a thing of the past. If he was going to survive, he had to concentrate on today and what it would take to meet his immediate needs. Fire, shelter, food, clothing, and water were essential for life. Why, Chuck even met the need for contact with other beings by making, "Wilson", the volleyball with a hand print for a face his new best friend.
What had once consumed him, the need to succeed, had become a faint dream of the past. The corporate world was absent from this deserted island, and the reality of meeting basic needs became his new driving force. Along the way, Chuck determined he would never be rescued ~since he was out of the well traveled shipping channels. He could not swim or float away from the island because of the surrounding reefs. For all practical purpose, he was doomed to die alone, a prisoner, in the best sense of the word on the island that had saved him, unless he discovered a way to get across the reef.
You know the story, but his rescue is not the point. Chuck did not give up in despair, but instead chose to make the most of the circumstances in which he found himself. Life certainly did not look the way he thought it should, but for the time being, there was no changing it. He made the best of what life had dealt and planned for the future and the return to home. In our Small Group Study, Priscilla Shirer addresses making the most of what God has given you for the day---well I might say for this season. Life may not look the way we thought it should. We have two choices--mourn for what should have been and live in the past, or make the most of where we find ourselves. We can live in the meager restraints of the past or we can cash in on the blessings of today and live life to the fullest--even when it does not look like we want. What a waste of time to become stuck in the "If Only's" and "What If's". Instead we should dwell on the "Why Not's" and the "How To's". Chuck returned to the "Real World" a celebrated hero, but his life did not return to the place it was when he left. The world had gone on, thinking him dead. He said his goodbyes to what had been and in the final scene is looking forward to the next chapter. He gained the strength to do this, by learning from his experience of surviving the deserted island. He had found the way to continue to live life and live it to the fullest--in any circumstance. A wonderful lesson in a movie meant to only entertain us. A modern day parable about a man named Chuck.
Look carefully then how you walk, not as unwise but as wise,
I had a good friend and faithful reader ask me yesterday for a parable. It rang something along the line of~ enough deep theology--give me a parable. Be careful what you ask for--here is my feeble attempt~
There was a man (in Biblical times it was always a man) who was aboard a cruise ship. A few days after leaving port, there was nothing to be seen but miles upon miles of ocean in every direction. The sailing was smooth and the ocean sparkled with the reflection of the sun on the rolling waves. The blue sky quickly and unexpectedly turned dark gray and a sudden storm filled the skies. As the ship began to roll with the waves of trouble, suddenly the man was swept overboard into the angry sea. The deep water was of concern enough, but the ocean was also filled with sharks and other dangerous creatures from the dark underbelly lurking under the surface. Thankfully his friends on the deck all saw what happened and began to discuss how they could save him. As the man bobbed over wave upon wave, they began to throw life rings his way. Ring after ring was tossed in the vast ocean. The man would see a ring and swim over and grasp it for dear life. Slowly the ring would began to deflate. Before you knew it, the man would once again be in the boiling ocean with nothing to help him. Another ring of a different color would appear and he would swim over the next wave with the hope this would be his life saver. Once again the ring would deflate and he would be left to struggle. Wave after wave would reveal another ring tossed by his well meaning friends, but all of them were fatally flawed and would not continue to hold the air necessary to save his life. At best, they kept his head above water for only a brief period of time. Suddenly a large wave swept the man higher than ever and he made an amazing discovery. A few feet away was a man in a life boat--an easy swim away. The man had been so busy grasping at the temporary fixes close by, that he did not realize safety and the man in the life boat were right by him the entire time. In his panic and short sight, the man had missed seeing the permanent way out of the dangers of the sea while lunging toward the flawed rings. The territory along the path we trek while passing through this world is often filled with life threatening dangers and temporary snares. While traveling along, man will throw you all kinds of "must haves and life savers" in an effort to help you have a happy and fulfilled life. He will try to save you from the storms with temporary and leaky fixes. Meanwhile, the true life saver and boat are only a few short strokes away. It only takes looking beyond the quick and temporary fixes to discover the short route to a saved life. The life boat and its rower are all well within reach and waiting for you to turn their way and put your hand out for rescue. You must look beyond that directly in front of you and examine all around. The rescuer is just beyond the temporary fix and ready to haul you into the boat.
He reached down from on high and took hold of me; he drew me out of deep waters.
My Sunday School class is taught by four men--a dean, a doctor, an engineer, and a lawyer. To say we are digging deep into The Word is an understatement. A couple of weeks ago, we were to study about 15 verses. We never got past the second verse. "God is love" was the stopping off point for a deep and challenging discussion on a Biblical theory I somehow had missed for all these years ~The Simplicity of God. Before you run screaming to the theology police, I have decided the theory should perhaps be the Complex Simplicity of God. NO ONE is saying God is simple! We cannot begin to wrap our finite human brains around the deepness of Who God is. Oh, we can make a stab at it by studying His Word, observing His Universe, and seeking Him, but we are simply not capable of understanding the unique complexity of God. These four men stand before us Sunday after Sunday and give it their best shot to give us brief glimpses, but as much as they have studied--it is an unobtainable goal. I have spent hours pondering what I heard that Sunday and could spend years of back porch discussions debating Who God is. I am vastly inadequate when it comes to explaining the minute details of what I know. Let me leave you with excerpts from the handout that Sunday. I would love to hear your thoughts. "The oldest of the doctrinal standards of the Reformed churches, the Belgic Confession (1561) begins with the declaration 'that there is a single and simple spiritual being, whom we call God.' The simplicity of God is an important truth. By simple, we do not mean God is slow. Nor do we mean that God is easy to understand. Simple as a divine attribute is the opposite of compound. The simplicity of God means God is not made up of his attributes. He does consist of goodness, mercy, justice, and power. He is goodness, mercy, justice and power. Every attribute of God is identical with His essence. (Kevin Deyoung) Divine simplicity is the concept that God does not exist in parts but is wholly unified, with no distinct attributes, and whose existence is synonymous with His essence. As Christians, we believe in a God who is simple and not made up of parts. God is not one part sovereign, one part just, one part immutable, one part omniscient, one part eternal, and one part loving. Rather, He is all of His attributes at all times. To understand any single attribute, we must understand it in relation to all His other attributes. The love of God is eternal and sovereign. The love of God is immutable and holy. We treat all of His other attributes in the same way, God's justice is loving and eternal. His holiness is loving and omniscient. Our concept of God will stay on track only as we understand His love in relationship to His other attributes. (R.C. Sproul)."
Wrap your thinking around that! When trying to digest this concept this week, I thought of my high school chemistry class (wish I had paid more attention). There are the basic elements which cannot be further simplified--compare those to the attributes of God. Then there are mixtures and compounds which are combinations of these simple elements. Mixtures can be separated into the basic elements again, but solutions, especially those with created by chemical reactions are a whole new deal. They cannot be separated and are now a substance which is the combination of the elements. That was the best analogy based upon the finite human mind I could come up with. So often we hear "God is good" stated when some really great thing has happened. God is good---but His goodness is also wrapped around all the other attributes of God. Now you understand why we got bogged down on "God is love." I have come to believe this point of theology is difficult to comprehend because of the duplicity of man. Our attributes are greatly influenced by the circumstances we are facing. Sadly my love can be conditional, my mercy is not applied evenly, my justice is not even handed, and on and on. The attributes of whom I am are not consistent, and never applied evenly. God can not change who He is and that is dependent upon His attributes. No one attribute has any prevalence over the other. They operate not dependently but instead they are inter-dependent. They are Who God is. So--yes-God is love--but His love is just, merciful, everlasting, and on and on. After over a week of chewing upon this, I do agree God is a God of Simplicity--an extremely complex simplicity that poor man has no ability to really understand--including me! What a Great God we serve and the depths of Who He is is startling and yet comforting. Seeking Him-Always Seeking Him.
Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God;
and everyone who loves is born of God and knows God.
PREFACE-I have been missing in action in the blogasphere world recently. I have been doing some soul searching. When you begin to question your motivation for writing, it is time to step back and mull over the real reasons for daily muses. This blog will not be a daily occurrence anymore. It has created a forced writing when my intent has always been to write what is impressed upon me. If you are not following by email (right side of the blog page), and are interested in seeing when I do post, signing up will ensure you know when blogs do appear. No one sees who is receiving these emails, and your email address is not shared in anyway. Facebook has become a very unreliable method of sharing new posts, since you never know what may appear on your news feed. I am not offended if you are not interested, I don't read everything that comes across the WWW either. I am very thankful for all that do read and especially those who have taken the time to comment over the years. Bless you for taking the time to let me know you are hearing what I am saying. I do have a couple of blogs I have been mulling over--so read on for today's offering. ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
It is a woman's prerogative to change her mind. Don't believe me--live with a woman for a while. My problem is not so much changing my mind, but making up my mind. I can analyze and over analyze any decision--it comes with thinking a lot. The flooring in my home needs replacing. I have a sweet young decorator friend who came over and had a look at my style (or lack thereof). When she left, I asked that she give me three choices. If I walk into their store and see rooms full of choices, I am ready to run~ not walk to the nearest exit. I did not pick one of her three samples, but saw another sample I loved immediately,when returning her samples. I would have been intimated and overwhelmed with the choices, if I had walked in with no idea of a direction, but she helped me make a decision by narrowing my choices.
Speaking of making decisions, does ANYONE know where they want to eat when a group is going out for a meal together? My standard reply is, "It doesn't matter." Truthfully I eat almost anything, so am not picky, What I don't enjoy is going down the list of local offerings and trying to come up with a restaurant that speaks to everyone. Why even when there are only two of us, PLEASE make the decision. I cannot make up my mind~ I LIKE FOOD! I have on occasion changed my mind on a variety of subjects--points of theology, politics, financial decisions,--even people. My thoughts can be pointed in one direction and with the presentation of other facts make a sharp turn in another direction. We all make snap judgments (don't deny it or I will have to prove you wrong) based upon the superficial only to determine, with time, we were completely wrong. Our mind and our thoughts are changed with circumstance and evidence. Who and what we should allow to influence how we think is a BIG DEAL! We are nearing the end of our study of this book~
It has been a wonderful study and has opened my eyes to the truth of who I am allowing to influence my thoughts. If we are told certain things about who we are over and over, we begin to believe it. Rather than examining the evidence of our daily lives, we chose to believe the comments of others. Pick out some negative comment from your past, and think about how it has stuck with you and shaped your opinion of who you are. We believe the whispers in our ears instead of the Truth of God. Our minds are filled with every negative word spoken to us and the good and affirming is cast aside as flattery. We become conditioned to mull over the negative and discount the positive.
The Word tells us to take every thought captive and to think on that which God has told us--Truth. Cast aside the whispers of the enemy and change our minds to the Truth of God. God loves us--just as we are--He cares for us--in
spite of who we are. We are fearfully and wonderfully made and are precious in His sight. God does NOT make mistakes~ and make no mistake about it--we are not a mistake~we are HIS handiwork. SO the next time those negative thoughts concerning yourself sneak up behind you and infiltrate your thoughts--remind them what the Truth is--and change your mind to what God says-