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“For a man’s ways are in full view of the LORD, and he examines all his paths.” (Proverbs 5:21)

IMG_0493Hello! How are you? How is your week? Mine has been a very long week-life happens and circumstances occur that affect one’s family. So of course, when things happen people may think “where is God in all of this?” “I didn’t see anything like this coming…so how can God allow this to happen?” “Didn’t He know?” “Doesn’t He care?” Well, the truth of the matter is this…Yes! God does see specifically what is occurring in one’s life. He doesn’t get distracted and He is able to listen-regardless of how many people are on the planet. God’s part is not new and it has not changed. He is still sitting on the throne  because NOTHING and NO ONE  can remove Him from it.“I lift up my eyes to the mountains— where does my help come from? My help comes from the Lord, the Maker of heaven and earth. He will not let your foot slip— he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep. The Lord watches over you— the Lord is your shade at your right hand; the sun will not harm you by day, nor the moon by night. The Lord will keep you from all harm— he will watch over your life; the Lord will watch over your coming and going both now and forevermore. (Psalm 121)

Believe it or not, God has a plan and a purpose for your life. It could be something big like an Astronaut; maybe a scientist who discovers a cure; maybe the purpose is to be a Pastor or a leader of a congregation who truly has a Godly influence. It could be a “celebrity,” but, I’m a little hesitant to use that term because people tend to idolize people who have somewhat of a public face-even within some religious organizations. Anyway, one’s purpose could also be a mother  or grandmother who teaches and raises children to love and obey God; or to care for a sick child. It could be a faithful father, who works three jobs to support his family and to put food on the table and goes to church and worship together as a family. I know many today, do not have a family situation like this, but the family (father, mother, children) was God’s perfect design-for a purpose and with a purpose. The family relationship is something tangible that God uses for us to identify with Him. The purpose: “to be fruitful and multiply.” Then God said, “Let Us make man in Our image, according to Our likeness; let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over the cattle, over all the earth and over every creeping thing that creeps on the earth.” So God created man in His own image; in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them. 28 Then God blessed them, and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply; fill the earth and subdue it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, over the birds of the air, and over every living thing that moves on the earth.” (Genesis 1:26-28) Please do not confuse having a family or a large family for that matter as breeding. I know there are people who cannot comprehend having more than “2.5” children in the United States, but God distinctly says that children are a gift and a heritage from the LORD.  “Behold, children are a heritage from the Lord, The fruit of the womb is a reward. Like arrows in the hand of a warrior, So are the children of one’s youth. Happy is the man who has his quiver full of them” (Psalm 127:3-5) So what else am I saying?  We have choices in our decisions; no matter what they are-the good, the bad, and the ugly.  Some choices may be clear cut; some may be difficult; and still-some may be confusing; and God sees how we choose-especially since He gave us free will. ‘For [God’s] eyes are upon the ways of a man, and He sees all his steps.” (Job 34:21 Amplified) “Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land; for I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.” (Genesis 28:15)

God is there for us no matter what-even we go through bad or sad times. You know those times when it feels like the world is closing in on you and you feel all alone and you don’t think you can go on. “And He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore most gladly I will rather boast in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong.” (2 Corinthians 12:9-10) We should take comfort that God is there for us whether we need to make a decision or if we enter into trials; either way, He is there. “My brethren, count it all joy when you fall into various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces patience. But let patience have its perfect work, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking nothing. 5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him. But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea driven and tossed by the wind. For let not that man suppose that he will receive anything from the Lord; he is a double-minded man, unstable in all his ways.  (James 1: 2-8)

As you walk Every Day With Grace, know that everything comes from God. “Do not be deceived, my beloved brethren.  Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, and comes down from the Father of lights, with whom there is no variation or shadow of turning.  Of His own will He brought us forth by the word of truth, that we might be a kind of firstfruits of His creatures. (James 1:16-18) As we get to know God and His Word, we need to apply what He is teaching us and learn to be more Christ minded instead of earthly (or fleshly minded). “My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. Therefore, get rid of( all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do. Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world.” (James 1:19-27)

In His Love,

Melody

“From everyone who has been given much, much will be required, and from the one who has been entrusted with much, even more will be asked.” (Luke 12:48)

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Hello. How are you? Can you believe that it is August?  All I can say is “WOW!” You know what that means, don’t you? Christmas is only four months away! (Please don’t yell at me!)  Anyway, life is moving on and it’s moving fast. I personally view this year as a year of change. Interestingly, I notice a lot of “endings”  this year. Hopefully. 2015 will be filled with new beginnings in the best sense for all of us.

I kept “hearing” the above scripture this week, so, that’s why I chose it. It also provokes my thinking as to what God expects from us I believe it comes down to accountability and responsibility for whatever God has given to us. In other words, we need to be good stewards of our possessions and even look after the people who are in our lives.  That may very well include, mothers, fathers, children, siblings, coworkers, bosses, church members, etc… What’s my point? My point is this-have you ever noticed how some people only seem to care when others are watching? Or, “When the cat’s away, the mice will play”?  Do you notice how much more lax we become and “bend” the rules because we think no one is watching? You know…one may get to work a little later, come back from lunch later, or leave 5 minutes earlier than you’re supposed to, talk on the phone at work, etc…Sound familiar? Have you ever been guilty of any of that? Sadly, I know I have and that grieves God’s heart. It’s not what we do we we are seen that matters, it matters how we conduct ourselves when NO ONE sees. Either way, God sees all the time. He will not let your foot slip—he who watches over you will not slumber; indeed, he who watches over Israel will neither slumber nor sleep.” (Psalm 121: 3-40) He is not “too busy” not to notice how His children conduct themselves. I think it is horrible when a non-believers doesn’t see any difference in someone who calls themselves a Christian. As believers, we are to be “set apart” because we belong to Christ…“We have been set apart as holy because Jesus Christ did what God wanted him to do by sacrificing his body once and for all.” (Hebrews 10:10) We should not conduct ourselves in ungodly ways because we think Jesus hasn’t returned yet so there’s still time to continue to act like every one else. I don’t want to be caught with my “hair down” and not be ready for Jesus’ return. I want to be ready and unashamed when He comes back. I would want Him to find me in prayer, or reading His Word, or doing something genuine in His name.

For those of us who are Born-Again believers, God has entrusted us with His name and to spread the “Good News” which is salvation through Grace through Jesus Christ. He is our mediator between God and mankind.  We have a tremendous responsibility before God since we bear His name.  It is true that our name goes before us-which means there is an association attached to our name-which in essence will reveal our character. For example, when you hear of someone’s name you may think, “he/she is compassionate, or generous, or funny.” Or you might think ,”Oh, no! Here comes trouble!” Or, “He/she is so insensitive and mean and cheap.” I know when some people hear my name, they think I’m funny; but, I am also known as someone who is “black and white with no grey” in my viewpoint. As believers, we need to be ready for Jesus’s return every moment of every day.  For God “a day is like a thousand years and a thousand years is like a day.”  But do not forget this one thing, dear friends: With the Lord a day is like a thousand years, and a thousand years are like a day. The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:8-9) That kind of time is a luxury we do not have.

As you Walk Every Day With Grace, I would like to encourage you to be ready for Jesus since we do not know His arrival “But of that day and hour no one knows, not even the angels of heaven, but My Father only.” (Matthew  24: 36-37)know that we will stand before God and we will give an account for what God has entrusted us with.  So, I would ask that you would be the best parent, child, sibling, employee, boss, teacher, student, minister, pastor, doctor, nurse, lawyer, construction worker, police officer, butcher, baker, whatever it is that God has entrusted to you in your life at this time. Redeem your time and keep watch because the Son of Man (Jesus) is coming back for His own.

In His Love,

Melody’

“Be ready for action, and have your lamps burning. 36 Be like servants waiting to open the door at their master’s knock when he returns from a wedding. Blessed are those servants whom the master finds awake when he comes. I can guarantee this truth: He will change his clothes, make them sit down at the table, and serve them. They will be blessed if he comes in the middle of the night or toward morning and finds them awake. “Of course, you realize that if the homeowner had known at what hour the thief was coming, he would not have let him break into his house. Be ready, because the Son of Man will return when you least expect him.” Peter asked, “Lord, did you use this illustration just for us or for everyone?” The Lord asked, “Who, then, is the faithful, skilled manager that the master will put in charge of giving the other servants their share of food at the right time?  That servant will be blessed if his master finds him doing this job when he comes. I can guarantee this truth: He will put that servant in charge of all his property.  On the other hand, that servant may think that his master is taking a long time to come home. The servant may begin to beat the other servants and to eat, drink, and get drunk. His master will return at an unexpected time. Then his master will punish him severely and assign him a place with unfaithful people. “The servant who knew what his master wanted but didn’t get ready to do it will receive a hard beating.  But the servant who didn’t know what his master wanted and did things for which he deserved punishment will receive a light beating. A lot will be expected from everyone who has been given a lot. More will be demanded from everyone who has been entrusted with a lot.” (Luke 12:35-48)

“As He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying,“Tell us, when will these things happen, and what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered and said to them, “See to it that no one misleads you. For many will come in My name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will mislead many. You will be hearing of wars and rumors of wars. See that you are not frightened, for those things must take place, but that is not yet the end. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and in various places there will be famines and earthquakes. But all these things are merely the beginning of birth pangs.” (Matthew 24

IMG_0867 Hello!  How have you been? It is almost August! Where is the time going? It seemed like yesterday when I was complaining about the snow and now summer is half over! The hours may seem to drag; but, the days are flying for sure! Does it seem like the world is going crazy or what? The turmoil in the world is just getting out of hand! If one is a believer in God, how can they not think about the end times; and if one is NOT a believer, what could they possibly be thinking about the world that we live in? “But mark this: There will be terrible times in the last days. 2 People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— having a form of godliness but denying its power. Have nothing to do with such people. (2 Timothy 3:1-5)

I notice there seems to be more and more commercials for apocalyptic movies. Some of them are really frightening. I don’t want to name them because I don’t want to promote them.  Are people thinking about the inevitable? Or, is it just all about fear and money?  That’s why one needs to know where they stand with God-not in 1, 5, 10, 50 years from now, but right now. We are not guaranteed tomorrow. When we wake in the morning, I assure you, that is God’s gift to you because His mercies are new every morning. I understand what it’s like to wake  up and think “I just cannot take another day like this!”  But, I also understand what the alternative is also…death. “As God’s co-workers we urge you not to receive God’s grace in vain. For he says, “In the time of my favor I heard you, and in the day of salvation I helped you.” I tell you, now is the time of God’s favor, now is the day of salvation.”  (2 Corinthians 6:1-2) God is very gracious to His own children and creation-and He doesn’t have to be because He is God, Almighty and He does not OWE us anything.  The attitude of entitlement is nothing more than laziness and ungratefulness and is completely against the Word of God. Actually we, humans truly deserve hell and death-and that is because of our sinful, un-repented nature because sin separates us from God. And since God dwells in heaven I know He doesn’t need to visit Hell.  Hell was not meant for mankind. Hell was created for the devil and His fallen angels. However, since so much of the human race has renounced God and Jesus, that is where they will spend all eternity.  We do not know what tomorrow may bring, but, eventually we will all meet our Maker. “Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment, so Christ was sacrificed once to take away the sins of many; and he will appear a second time, not to bear sin, but to bring salvation to those who are waiting for him. (Hebrews 9:27-28)  “Nevertheless, God’s solid foundation stands firm, sealed with this inscription: “The Lord knows those who are his,” and, “Everyone who confesses the name of the Lord must turn away from wickedness. In a large house there are articles not only of gold and silver, but also of wood and clay; some are for special purposes and some for common use.  Those who cleanse themselves from the latter will be instruments for special purposes, made holy, useful to the Master and prepared to do any good work. Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart. Don’t have anything to do with foolish and stupid arguments, because you know they produce quarrels.  And the Lord’s servant must not be quarrelsome but must be kind to everyone, able to teach, not resentful. Opponents must be gently instructed, in the hope that God will grant them repentance leading them to a knowledge of the truth, and that they will come to their senses and escape from the trap of the devil, who has taken them captive to do his will.” (2 Timothy 19-26)

You  need to understand that God is a Holy God and sin cannot be in His presence. That’s why Jesus died for all of mankind-so that He could bridge the gap between God and man. When we become Born Again, the spirit of God enters our body, soul and spirit. Prior to that ,we are just body and soul. Flesh and emotions without a built in moral compass. I am not saying there are not “good” people out there. As a matter of fact many are good or appear “good” in a human point of view. However, that does make them godly because they do good things.  (sheep and goats/ rich young ruler) As my very good friend Amy always says, ” There are goods things we  ca do and there are godly things we can do.” At one in society, I can understand why this would be similar.  However the “good” standard has changed in today’s world, but the godly standard has not, “For I am the Lord, I do not change; therefore you, O sons of Jacob, [l]are not consumed. (Malachi 3:6)

The moral compass has changed greatly in the United States; and it is a reflection of the sign of the times. (Woe to those who call evil good, and good evil; Who [a]substitute darkness for light and light for darkness; Who [b]substitute bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!)  (Isaiah 5:20) (2 Timothy  This could be the reason why people are concerned listening to the news and thinking about where they might be in eternity.  “The truth is this: hey replied, Believe in the Lord Jesus, and you will be saved–you and your household.” (Acts 16;310)

As you Walk Every Day with Grace, I want you to know that God’s promises are waiting for you to embrace and it will not cost you one cent. Salvation is a free gift Why worry about tomorrow and all of it’s turmoil when you can have the peace and assurance of eternity through Jesus Christ today? God loves you and is waiting for you to become a member of His family. The end of the age is coming.  Why wait for the closing act  to arrive when you already know how it will end? Mankind cannot change the mind of God. He has written it down for us as a stern warning for those who will not believe and as a loving exhortation to those who do. ”

The Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let the one who hears say, “Come!” Let the one who is thirsty come; and let the one who wishes take the free gift of the water of life.” (Revelation 22:17)

In His Love,

Melody

 

 

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: May they prosper who love you. May peace be within your walls, and prosperity within your palaces. For the sake of my brothers and my friends, I will now say, May peace be within you. For the sake of the house of the Lord our God, I will seek your good.” (Psalm 122:6-9)

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Hello! How are you? How have you been? I missed writing last week after being away for a few days and then time just seemed to have slipped away because of all the “catch up” one does upon their return.

In any event, I have been listening to the news and everything that is happening in the Middle East and it saddens me. It is so unfortunate there is so much turmoil there. For that matter, there is so much brutality here in the United States. Many people believe in a “god”. However, they truly need to submit to God, Himself, who is Jesus Christ. The very nature of mankind is sinful. “Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me. “ (Psalm 51:5) If nobody has told you about your human nature, I’m sorry to inform you of that but truth is what it is. This is not my opinion…this is what the Word of God says so if you have any disputes, you need to take it up with Him directly.
God is Holy and God has always made Himself and His ways available to His creation. (I say creation because mankind is God’s creation; but, not all of mankind are His children.) “So man will be brought low and mankind humbled, the eyes of the arrogant humbled. But the LORD Almighty will be exalted by His justice, and the holy God by His righteousness.” (Isaiah 5:15-16)
As a matter of fact, He has always has warned His people regarding their sinful behavior and He continues to do so today. God (and His ways) do not change. “For I the Lord do not change; therefore you, O children of Jacob, are not consumed.” (Malachi 3:6) “Woe to those who draw sin along cords of deceit, and wickedness as with cart ropes, to those who say Let God hurry, let him hasten his work so we may see it. Let it approach, let the plan of the Holy One of Israel come, so we may know it. Woe, to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter. Woe to those who are wise in their own eyes and clever in their own sight.” (Isaiah 5:18-20)

There are no excuses regarding any acts of violence. However, I do believe in defending oneself and more often than not, defense comes with an extreme price. As Americans, we have changed our outlook and opinion of right and wrong, defense and justice ever since our government removed the Ten Commandments from public view. People seem to have had more of a conscience when reminded that not only God had set up His standard, they were accountable to them as well and that was understood and not up for debate.  Now, people seem to not even take a stand for God’s point of view because the “popular opinion” is to be neutral and to observe tolerance to those who do not have “traditional” views. Amazingly, the same respect is not reciprocated and expected. I completely understand Israel’s decision to protect their own people and land and NOT tolerate any actions of war or terrorism against them. They will let everyone know that they are a peaceful people, but when threatened-will defend itself. They also believe and acknowledge that their land is from God and their forefathers when they were brought out of Egypt.  They take their position as God’s Chosen People seriously and cherish their inheritance from God. God gave the people of Israel a land that was once desolate and now it is prosperous and filled with life.  That could only exist with the help of God. What the world does not realize either is that when Jesus comes to redeem His people, He will return to Jerusalem on the Mount of Olives. God has a purpose and a plan for Israel.  He also has a purpose and a plan for those who have been engrafted into His Covenant through His Son, Jesus Christ (Yeshua Ha-mashiach). As believers, we need to keep our eyes on Israel and support because of the Biblical promises God has given to her and to us.  God will deal with His rebellious children of Israel who have not recognized Him as the Messiah in due time and that is His business. Until then, I will love and support Israel knowing that it the homeland of my Savior. “Those who trust in the Lord are as Mount Zion, which cannot be moved but abides forever. As the mountains surround Jerusalem, So the Lord surrounds His people From this time forth and forever.” Those who trust in, lean on, and confidently hope in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be moved but abides and stands fast forever. As the mountains are round about Jerusalem, so the Lord is round about His people from this time forth and forever.” (Psalm 125 Amplified)

There is so much to say about this topic, but I just can’t do it all it one  blog. So, as you walk Every Day With Grace, pray for the peace of Jerusalem and think about where Jesus Himself comes from and read your Bible for yourself to see what God says.  I don’t expect you to take my word for it.

In His Love,

Melody

But now, thus says the Lord, who created you, O Jacob, And He who formed you, O Israel: Fear not, for I have redeemed you; I have called you by your name; You are Mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow you. When you walk through the fire, you shall not be burned, Nor shall the flame scorch you. For I am the Lord your God, The Holy One of Israel, your Savior;vI gave Egypt for your ransom, Ethiopia and Seba in your place. Since you were precious in My sight, You have been honored,and I have loved you; Therefore I will give men for you, and people for your life. Fear not, for I am with you; I will bring your descendants from the east, and gather you from the west; I will say to the north, ‘Give them up! and to the south, ‘Do not keep them back!’ Bring My sons from afar, and My daughters from the ends of the earth—Everyone who is called by My name, Whom I have created for My glory; I have formed him, yes, I have made him. Bring out the blind people who have eyes, and the deaf who have ears. Let all the nations be gathered together, and let the people be assembled. Who among them can declare this, and show us former things? Let them bring out their witnesses, that they may be justified; Or let them hear and say, “It is truth. “You are My witnesses,” says the Lord, and My servant whom I have chosen, That you may know and believe Me, And understand that I am He. Before Me there was no God formed, Nor shall there be after Me. I, even I, am the Lord, and besides Me there is no savior. I have declared and saved, I have proclaimed, and there was no foreign god among you; Therefore you are My witnesses,” says the Lord, “that I am God. Indeed before the day was, I am He; and there is no one who can deliver out of My hand.I work, and who will reverse it?” Thus says the Lord, your Redeemer, The Holy One of Israel: For your sake I will send to Babylon, And bring them all down as fugitives—The Chaldeans, who rejoice in their ships. I am the Lord, your Holy One, Creator of Israel, your King.”Thus says the Lord, who makes a way in the sea And a path through the mighty waters, Who brings forth the chariot and horse, The army and the power (They shall lie down together, they shall not rise; They are extinguished, they are quenched like a wick):  “Do not remember the former things, Nor consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing, Now it shall spring forth; Shall you not know it? I will even make a road in the wilderness And rivers in the desert. The beast of the field will honor Me, The jackals and the ostriches, Because I give waters in the wilderness And rivers in the desert, To give drink to My people, My chosen. This people I have formed for Myself; They shall declare My praise. (Isaiah 43:1-21)

“Blessed is the nation whose God is the Lord.” (Psalm 33:12)

5592_pd73758full Hello and Happy Independence Day!  Those of us who live in the United States of America are celebrating the 238th birthday of our country. It is indeed a privilege to live in this country because of the freedom it provides to it’s citizens. This inheritance is from the blood, sacrifice, and vision of our forefathers so that we could have a government by the people and for the people; and not be under any one ruler or dictatorship. Our forefathers who wrote our Constitution were men who strongly believed in God and Jesus Christ.  They actually revered God -and that played such an active role in their guidance for our country and how it should exist long after they were gone. In other words, their integrity was woven into our Constitution.  It amazes me that such interpretation of our Constitution is used for sin and for evil. It provided “rights” for the people…not entitlement and that is where the confusion lies.

I don’t when the feeling or thinking of entitlement crept into the American way of thinking, but that mentality seemed to have spread severely since World War II. Maybe because there have been other wars which have brought loss to families, but, if it wasn’t for those who believed in something greater than themselves, we would still be under England’s Regime. Our founding fathers sought God in prayer-privately and corporately for God to guide them as they created a new nation.  They envisioned a new nation under God Almighty as their right to freely serve Him-not to have a misguided interpretation of God so as to be separate from Him.

In scripture, all nations had a human ruler-except for the Jewish people. God was their ruler until they asked for a human king.  Then the problems really started.  Mankind was created by God-therefore, it cannot truly function without God.  Communism and socialism are governments that do not believe in God and will arrest people (and kill them) if they confess to believing in God-especially Jesus Christ.  America was a nation founded on God and Biblical beliefs. Entitlement is a socialist mentality.  Nobody owes us anything.  To live in the United States is a privilege to obtain all access of what it offers, like freedom of religion, free enterprise, freedom of speech, and freedom to WORK! Many countries do not have employment opportunities-but, we do. And, yes, working is a privilege.  The Bible states “if you don’t work, you do not eat” “Now we command you, brethren, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, that you keep away from every brother who leads an unruly life and not according to the tradition which you received from us. For you yourselves know how you ought to follow our example, because we did not act in an undisciplined manner among you, nor did we eat anyone’s bread without paying for it, but with labor and hardship we kept working night and day so that we would not be a burden to any of you; not because we do not have the right to this, but in order to offer ourselves as a model for you, so that you would follow our example. For even when we were with you, we used to give you this order: if anyone is not willing to work, then he is not to eat, either.” (2 Thessalonians 3:6-10)

I am Blessed to call America my home. I absolutely will support my troops, salute my flag,sing the Star Spangled Banner, and take part in the blessings it has to offer.  I will continue to pray with like-minded believers and continually ask God to look out for our nation and to Bless America.  I am grateful that my nation has not turned its  back on God.

As you Walk Every Day With Grace,  I challenge you to truly count your blessings as One Nation Under God and join me as I celebrate my Independence with Jesus as Lord.

In His Love,

Melody

The Pledge of Allegiance

I Pledge Allegiance to the flag of the United States of America and to the Republic for which it stands, one Nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.

National Anthem of the United States of America,  Lyrics by Francis Scott Key :

First Verse

Oh, say, can you see, by the dawn’s early light,
What so proudly we hail’d at the twilight’s last gleaming?
Whose broad stripes and bright stars, thro’ the perilous fight,
O’er the ramparts we watch’d, were so gallantly streaming?
And the rocket’s red glare, the bombs bursting in air
Gave proof thro’ the night that our flag was still there.
Oh, say, does that Star-Spangled Banner yet wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave?

Second Verse

On the shore, dimly seen thro’ the mists of the deep,
Where the foe’s haughty host in dread silence reposes,
What is that which the breeze, o’er the towering steep,
As it fitfully blows half conceals, half discloses?
Now it catches the gleam of the morning’s first beam,
In full glory reflected now shines in the stream;
‘Tis the Star-Spangled Banner, O long may it wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave.

Third Verse

Oh, thus be it ever when free men shall stand
Between their loved homes and the war’s desolation!
Blest with vict’ry and peace, may the heav’n rescued land
Praise the Pow’r that hath made and preserved us a nation!
Then conquer we must, when our cause it is just,
And this be our motto, “In God is our trust”
And the Star-Spangled Banner in triumph shall wave
O’er the land of the free and the home of the brave!
 Battle Hymm of the Republic, by Julia Ward Howe

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of his terrible swift sword:
His truth is marching on.
Glory Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
His truth is marching on.
I have seen him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps;
They have builded him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
I can read his righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps;
His day is marching on.
Glory Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
His day is marching on.
I have read a fiery gospel, writ in burnished rows of steel:
“As ye deal with my contemners, so with you my grace shall deal;
Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with his heel,
Since God is marching on.”
Glory Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
Since God is marching on.”
He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat;
He is sifting out the hearts of men before his judgment-seat;
Oh, be swift, my soul, to answer him! be jubilant, my feet!
Our God is marching on.
Glory Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
Our God is marching on.
In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in his bosom that transfigures you and me:
As he died to make men holy, let us die to make men free,
While God is marching on.
Glory Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
Glory, Glory Hallelujah,
While God is marching on.

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America, the Beautiful

O beautiful for spacious skies,
For amber waves of grain,
For purple mountain majesties
Above the fruited plain.
America! America! God shed His grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood
From sea to shining sea.
O beautiful for pilgrim feet,
Whose stern impassion’d stress
A thoroughfare for freedom beat
Across the wilderness.
America! America! God men thine ev’ry flaw,
Confirm thy soul in self-control,
Thy liberty in law.
O beautiful for heroes prov’d
In liberating strife,
Who more than self their country loved,
And mercy more than life.
America! America! May God thy gold refine
Till all success be nobleness,
And ev’ry grain divine.
O Beautiful for patriot dream
that sees beyond the years.
Thine alabaster cities gleam,
Undimmed by human tears.
America! America! God shed his grace on thee,
And crown thy good with brotherhood,
From sea to shining sea.
Verse 1-3 Contributed by: Cecilia Farkas Last verse Contributed by: Joe Blasius

 

“Owe no one anything except to love one another….” (Romans 13:8)

image001Hello! How is everyone? How are you enjoying this warm weather? Are you able to go out and soak up all that Vitamin D from the sun? I love the fresh air and being in the sun (a little)…I just can’t lay out in it for too long when it’s very hot-it drives me crazy.  🙁  The nice thing about going outside in the sun is that it shouldn’t cost you anything. Yet somehow we wind up spending money. Why? Because we all want (or maybe love) money!  What is the verse to the Beatles song “Money”…”the best things in life are free, but, you can keep them for the birds and bees. Now give me money (that’s what I want)”

The problem is we always want what we see! It doesn’t matter what it is or if we need it…we just want it! Of course there are some logical and self-controlled people out there who would rationalize and count the cost for an item; but, unfortunately… many do not. “Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it? For if you lay the foundation and are not able to finish it, everyone who sees it will ridicule you, saying, This person began to build and wasn’t able to finish.” (Luke 14:28-30)  I am guilty of that.  How many times have I said to myself “I gotta have it-(then don’t use it). Or, justify myself by saying “If I get this now, then I don’t have to (fill in the blanks) later. Better yet…I can’t afford it all now, so I’ll buy it on “flex pay”!  Does this sound familiar to anyone?  Can anyone relate?  The problem is we cannot pay for something outright, then we OWE that person/company, etc… What does that mean? It means that become a servant to the lender. “The rich rule over the poor, and the borrower is slave to the lender.” (Proverbs 22:7)

It’s almost humorous how we willingly get ourselves indebted to another with our eyes wide open and not even try to avoid it.  This is a little something that God says about this matter:”Give to everyone what you owe them: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law. (Romans 8:6-8) So you see, the only true allowable thing we can owe is love towards one another.

One of the keys for having this loving attitude is contentment.  As human beings we have to realize that our lives do in fact have limitations. And we have to realize the void we may feel cannot be filled with “stuff” of any kind.  To be sure we cannot take anything we accumulate with us.  No one has ever seen a U-haul at the back of a hearse.  “[And it is, indeed, a source of immense profit, for] godliness accompanied with contentment (that contentment which is a sense of [a]inward sufficiency) is great and abundant gain. For we brought nothing into the world, and obviously we cannot take anything out of the world; But if we have food and clothing, with these we shall be content (satisfied).But those who crave to be rich fall into temptation and a snare and into many foolish (useless, godless) and hurtful desires that plunge men into ruin and destruction and miserable perishing. For the love of money is a root of all evils; it is through this craving that some have been led astray and have wandered from the faith and pierced themselves through with many acute [mental] pangs. But as for you, O man of God, flee from all these things; aim at and pursue righteousness (right standing with God and true goodness), godliness (which is the loving fear of God and being Christlike), faith, love, steadfastness (patience), and gentleness of heart.” (1Timothy 6:6-11)

We need to accept the grace of God in all of our circumstances because we were all bought with a price (Do you not know that your body is the temple (the very sanctuary) of the Holy Spirit Who lives within you, Whom you have received [as a Gift] from God? You are not your own, You were bought with a price [purchased with a preciousness and paid for, made His own]. So then, honor God and bring glory to Him in your body. (1 Corinthians 6:19-20 Amplified)

As you walk Every Day with Grace, I ask that you join me in our journey to “owe no man anything except to love one another.

In His Love,

Melody

” I and My Father are one.” (John 10:30)

images-3Hello! How are you? How is your week going?  Are you enjoying the nicer weather?  Are you gearing up for summer since schools are mostly out and graduations and vacations are just beginning?  Do you have plans for Father’s Day? Will you be sharing it with your father or with a positive male role model-perhaps at a barbecue? Maybe you will be fishing? That also seems to be a popular thing to do on Father’s Day.  For those who have the opportunity to share a special day with your father, you are blessed and I hope you continue to make happy memories that you can pass down to your children.

Now, what about those of us who do not have fathers, or do not have a good relationship with their father? Then what?  Well, I am here to tell y9u that God is a Father to the fatherless. My father was not the best role model and then he died when I was a young teenager. We were not very close, but the loss was still made an impact.  It wasn’t until I was 23 yrs old when I met Jesus and found out that I now had a “heavenly Father” who accepted me and called me “daughter”. It was a little confusing at first to learn about God as my Father and what the Bible says about His love as a father.  As a matter of fact, there are many, many scripture references as God as our Father and what His expectations are from His children. It’s sort of amusing how tangible God makes Himself known to us.  Most of us were raised in a family and in that family there were expectations from the parents to their children. Makes sense doesn’t it? It also makes God so much more real than a far away “Godly Being”  As a Father, God is our ultimate protector and provider.

Many people are not sure how to approach God, so they respond to Him the way they do with their earthly father. That can be good…or bad.  If you had a great or loving relationship with your earthly father, then you probably approach God thinking that He loves you more than life itself.  However, if you had a poor relationship with your father; or if he abandoned you and your family, your opinion may be very distrusting of God.  You very possibly may not believe the promises God has for in His Word.  For example, His Word says“He will never leave you never will I forsake you.”  (Hebrews 13:5 ) Or, “The Lord appeared to him from afar, saying, I have loved you with an everlasting love; Therefore I have drawn you with lovingkindness.” (Jeremiah 31:3) God also understands about sacrifice for His own…”For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that whosoever would believe on Him would not perish but have everlasting life. (John3:16)

Whatever type of relationship you have or had with your earthly father, know that you have a Heavenly Father that is waiting with open arms to love you. However, the only way to meet your heavenly Father is through Jesus. “Do not let your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you.  If I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself, that where I am, there you may be also.  And you know the way where I am going.” Thomas *said to Him, “Lord, we do not know where You are going, how do we know the way?” Jesus *said to him, “I am the way, and the truth, and the life; no one comes to the Father but through me. (John 14:1-6)

As you walk Every Day With Grace, I hope that you have a wonderful Father’s Day no matter what you do and know that you are not alone and that your Heavenly Father is just a prayer a way.

In His Love,

Melody