Archive | October 2012

“Jesus wept.” (John 11:35)

Jesus wept. This is the shortest verse in the entire Bible. In the context of this scripture, Jesus was moved with great compassion because His friend had just died.  Since Jesus and God are the same, we can actually see the true heart of God towards His creation.Here we see how God loved and cared deeply while in His humanity on this earth.  God still cares even though He seems removed from this earth at this time. Physically He is not here. However, His Spirit is always here drawing those who are seeking after God to Himself at any time  One always has an opportunity to meet God.

This week I heard so many horrible things on TV-many senseless killings. So many innocent people dying because of other people’s sinful behavior.   Scripture says “For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord” (Romans 6:23) These incidents are not social or environmental issues, these are blatant choices of sin. We are not in a time or place where there is an act of war going on. These are ordinary people choosing to harm others because of their own anger, greed, envy, covetousness or, whatever. The breakdown of our society is frightening- not just for us at this present time, but even for all the generations that will follow. People are more and more desensitized to sin and are so much more unashamed by it. I am certain that God is weeping over His creation and what they are doing to one another. Believe it or not, it not a surprise to God when any of these occurrences happen.

You see, God is Sovereign which means nothing can happen without His knowing.  We will never understand why certain things occur. But, my hope is that even when it is something terrible, a person would run to God and not from Him. “The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him.” (Nahum 1:7)  Jesus really does feel the weight of this world. He understands because He experienced everything we go through-every emotion, every temptation. “But we do see Jesus, who was made lower than the angels for a little while, now crowned with glory and honor because he suffered death, so that by the grace of God he might taste death for everyone.”. (Hebrews.2:9) “He himself bore our sins” in his body on the cross, so that we might die to sins and live for righteousness; “by his wounds you have been healed.” (1 Peter 2:24)  Yes, Jesus understands our earthly sorrow. In my mind I would suppose that Jesus would even defend us in tears as He stands in between God and Satan.  Satan accuses and slanders us to God-and Jesus will say of those who belong to Him, “I paid their transgressions when I dies on the cross-they are forgiven!”

The heart of God is very real. He feels our pain as if it were His own.  He is even willing to carry it for us and to stand by us when we are going through the valley of the shadow of death. That’s why God says for us to “Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.”  (1 Peter 5:7)

Even when life has it’s seasons of  tragedy, we still have a choice as to how we will respond. God is always there waiting for us to call upon Him because He loves us and cares for is. “This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.” Deuteronomy 30:19

 

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.” (Matthew 11:28-29)

Last week I wanted Calgon to take me away, but this week I probably never would have gotten out the tub.  So many people told me this week they felt weighted down-like the weight of the worlds was on their shoulders. Many of the issues were just the normal concerns like rent coming due, car payment , credit card bills, school bills for the kids, hospital or doctor bills and so on.  Many people are thinking “now what?” “Where do I go from here?” ” How am I going to get through the next day?  It’s exhausting and a little depressing just thinking about it.

When life wears you down, where can one go to? I go to God. Believe me,. it is not always easy to humble myself and ask God to help me and to guide me.  I think I can handle it all.  My problems, my family problems, friends problems, co-workers problems, etc… Of course, there are those people who want to dump their problems on you so they can walk away and feel fine, but, you are the one with the upset stomach and the headache!  But, God actually wants to carry those burdens for us. He wants us to take the weight off our backs and give them to Him so He can carry it for us.  He hopes we will unload our cares and concerns on Him so He can give us rest.  He wants to give us peace in our spirit, soul and body.  Also, when we un-burden ourselves to God, we then have the opportunity to un-cloud our minds from all clamor that is rattling inside our heads.  Then we are able to learn and to glean from true wisdom that can only come from God Himself.

Scripture says “God is not human, that He should lie, not a human being, that He should change his mind. Does He speak and then not act? Does He promise and not fulfill?” (Numbers 23:19) In other words, He says what He means and He means what He says.  Sounds so simple doesn’t it?  Yet, it our own stubbornness and pride we do not ask Him His advice. He is meek and gentle in heart which means He is filled with humility and kindness.  How can we resist that type of unconditional love?  More importantly, why do we CHOOSE not to receive that type of love? Jesus says come-thats all.  He doesn’t say come and first you need to do this and that; then maybe we’ll talk. He says “come to Me and I will give you rest.” This is cause and effect. All one needs to do is to go to Jesus-as they are; and they automatically will receive true rest which can only be found in Jesus once they ask Him for forgiveness for their sins.  For the Bible says ” all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” (Romans 3:23)

Life is a challenge. There is no question about that. But, Jesus has asked for our burdens to carry so we do not have to.  He knows the frailty of our being.  Jesus is not the God of cookie cutter believers. He recognizes that we are all unique and may have differences with one another, but with Him and in Him, it all comes together and we pull from His strength and not our own.  “Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always.” (1Chronicles 16:11)

I hope you will come to the loving knowledge that is only found in Jesus both now and for all eternity. “The LORD is faithful to all His promises and loving toward all He has made.” (Psalm 145:13) I hope you too will walk every day with grace.

In His love,

Melody

 

“Praise the LORD, my soul; all my inmost being, praise His holy name. Praise the LORD, my soul, and forget not all His benefits-who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagles.” (Psalm 103:1-5 NIV))

Does anybody remember the commercial “Calgon, take me away”?  I don’t know about you, but, my week has been crazy!. Whether it’s people who are provoking me at work, traffic; all my  bills seemed to have come due on the same day, an unexpected  dental problem (root canal-for instance); and no matter who I spoke to, people were just being negative!  Who wants to deal with that everyday?  It’s too much pressure pushing down-how can one handle days (or weeks) like this?

You may know the saying “when things get tough, the tough get going?  Well, I will take some liberty and say when things get tough, the tough go to God! In spite of all the negativity I will praise God for all the good things He has done for me. I will make a conscious decision to thank Him for all his benefits! You may say, “WHAT benefits?  Let’s see…if you are reading this, then thank God you are alive.  If you feel well (except for some usual aches and pains) then you are healthy. God heals our diseases. I could have been super spiritual and prayed away my tooth ache but, God also gave me the wisdom to go to doctor/dentist when necessary. He healed my root canal-it was through a dentist, but, God still gets the credit. Can God heal a tooth? Absolutely! But that is not what He choose for me in this circumstance.

I know all of my sins-past, present and future were forgiven the day I accepted Jesus as my Lord and Savior. God made a covenant with me and He does not take back His Word or His gift.  He redeemed my life.  That means He bought it back from the pit of hell. My life is His and it was purchased with the blood He shed on the Cross at Calvary for all of mankind.  Even though He wore a crown of thorns, He choose to crown me with His love and compassion. Not just so He could love me, it is so that I can love others the way He loves. His compassion is unconditional.  I struggle with this at times. Sadly, there are more times than I care to admit that I struggle in this area with those closest to me (family/friends).  There are times I want to see or give justice; but His word says “Vengeance is mine says the LORD! I will repay!” I guess since God knows the final judgement of all of mankind is with Him and there are no secrets from Him. Therefore, He will judge righteously and accordingly. However, compassion usually is in low supply with us humans. Although scripture does say “Nothing is impossible with God.” (Luke 1:37) and since we are made in God’s image, then we have the capability to live like Him-especially when His Spirit came to live inside of us when we accepted Jesus into our hearts and into lives.

He satisfies our desires with good things. Desires aren’t always bad, but, many times they are selfish. When we have that relationship with Jesus, our desires becomes His desires.  That’s when our transformation from our old-selves start to imitate the character traits of God. The desires begin to reflect outwardly toward others (good things); or it can be something like a inward change of our behavior and attitude (also a good thing)  Either way the focus is not on ourselves, but on God and on others.

When we walk with the LORD, we seem to obtain the strength and vibrance we once had in our youth. It seems even as we age and as long as we keep our focus on God, we can be “youthful”.  Maybe it’s because His Spirit lives in us and He encourages us onward.  Maybe it’s because God’s children are ageless in His eyes. God does not have grandchildren either. Also know that there is no such thing as retirement in the kingdom of God. We will live on because He lives! Even when we finally close our eyes on this side of the grave, we will open them in Heaven and see Jesus face to face. He will welcome us with open arms, a big hug, and I believe he will say something like  “Hello, my child! I have been waiting for you to come home!”

Please know that once you ask Jesus into your life and repent from your sins, they are forgiven-past, present, and future. It is then you will fully understand all of His benefits that is given to all of His children.

My prayer is for those who visit this site and are looking for the redemptive love that can only come from Jesus.

In His Love,

Melody

 

 

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.” (Jeremiah 29:11 NKJ)

I don’t know about you, but, I believe change is in the air and it is making many people crazy! It is definitely in the atmosphere and it feels very unsettling.  I don’t know if it’s because we will have our election next month and the future of our country may bend toward socialism (God forbid!), or  it will go towards what the foundation of this country was built upon.  Either way, change is in the air and many people are anxious.

Keeping this in mind, I, too am trying to change things in my life.  Some things are easier to change and/or replace…some other things… not so much. But I am trying to be proactive and I am choosing to go forward. However, even though my intentions are good, I need to make sure they are godly.  I am so busy (especially in my mind) that I do not want to miss what God may have for me.  I know many decisions are born out of emotion. Emotion is what I think I should do.  When I go before the Lord and pray and ask for His guidance and listen, then I am able to obtain God’s peace.  It’s funny-emotions usually make one act hastily, but, when you enter God’s presence with prayer (which is just talking with God) then one may experience a stillness in spirit, soul and body.  That stillness is God’s peace.  His peace is amazing and it connects you to Him.

I have a couple of friends who are extremely self sufficient, so the thought of waiting on God seems almost silly to them because they are always figuring out what to do in their own circumstances. I was taught to wait on the Lord because you did not want to get ahead of Him.  The problem with that was people would then step in and tell you what they think you should do. I am not saying God can’t speak through somebody, but, it has been my experience that it can turn into a glorification of man’s will and God is not even entered in to the equation of your decision. Just recently I heard the most Godly practical advise from the Late Bob Cooke on Family Radio. He said “first we pray, then we plan, then we obey”. How fabulous was that?  I finally got it and I have been moving forward ever since. God may tell us to go, He may say wait .But the best part is the obedience because if we start to move in a direction that God does not want us to go, He will close that door.  Our responsibility is not to throw open the door once He closes it.  People have to realize that God does say “no”.  No is an answer.  Ever hear your parents or others in your life say no?  God is allowed to say “no” too.  We may not like it but, that’s ok.  I feel a thousand times better knowing God is in control and He has His best interest in my life.

How awesome is it to know that God has thoughts towards us and they are thoughts of good to give us a future and a hope?  Everyone needs hope. Therefore, we put our hope in God because we know He cares for us.  I don’t k now what my future holds; but, I do know God holds my future in His hands.  So, i will continue to pray, to plan, and to obey whatever His will is for me in my future.  I pray that you too will come to know God’s grace everyday for your life.

In His Love,

Melody