“Just as the children, the children of God…”

See God's Hand

As we journey, just as the children, the children of God,
who had been slaves – but after the blood was put on the door – the angel of death, passed over.
Everlasting life, life forever starting now and never ending…as we journey just as the children, the children of God.

The enemy is after us, just as the children, the children of God.
But the Red Sea is parted, time and time again, as we journey, just as the children, the children of God.

He leads us out and He feeds us His food, just as the children, the children of God – but they are thirsty on the way, yes, we are thirsty as we journey on, just as the children, the children of God.

But the Rock has been struck, yes the Rock has been struck and the living waters satisfied…but the next thing we know, as…

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A mama’s heart…

Oh children, oh children,
hear a mama’s cry.
This world with all its pressures, this world with all its lies –
pressing and crossing your path each day,
please children, I plea,
spend time with God each day.

You see labor is painful and labor can be long,
a mama will tell you, but child – you become a song!
A song as you grow, a song as you learn, the joys and the tears are all worth it, you know,
but the most important thing on this mama’s heart, in truth – is that you love Jesus, because He’s given everything for you.

You see, there is no One in the whole entire world that loves you like Jesus,
not even your mom. She doesn’t even come close.
He’s been through every trial and test there is. He knows about all your thoughts and your fears, He’s even collected in a bottle your tears.
And He is with you, if you just don’t turn your back. Don’t turn your back on the One, the One who loves you the most.

Do you have breath? Do you have family? Do you have provision? (though scarce at times), but it’s just so you become hungry – hungry for Him. Hungry and thirsty for His word, it replenishes – time and time again. You can’t say, “I’ve tried all that, and to no avail!” That’s only a lie, because God’s love NEVER fails. This is a mama’s heart,
this is how we pray, because we love our children, children are God’s gift for us each day!

You see, this mama would pray that you enter the House of the Lord, and you think you know why, but I don’t think you do. It’s not only to be stirred by the strings, or the words that are spoken – but to walk in that House as if it was just you and God alone. To thank Him for your breath, to thank HIM for Himself alone. That He gave you a mama that taught you the way Home!

You see, mamas don’t live forever here on the earth, but the one’s that have Jesus never see death –
But God, He’s got His eyes forever on you and He longs for and yearns for your heart to be His.
The song has been penned and God says for us to speak it, “Don’t be drunk with wine,…but be filled with the Spirit.” “Prone to wonder Lord I feel it, prone to leave this God I love, Here’s my heart lord, take and seal it, seal it for Thy courts above.”

Thank Him that He loves you, even if, and when, mama is gone. He loves you, He loves you, whether your walk is near or is far. “God is Love” you were taught, so go to His house and sit there alone, alone in a crowd even, and be there with Him. O children, O children, know that mama’s do pray, and for those that aren’t willing,  that you would be, one day.

You see, labor is painful and labor can be long, but children, to mama, you are always a song. She’ll love you forever, she’ll like you always. She’ll be praying forever, so thank God for that! This mama pens these thoughts from her heart, so tomorrow you can read them.
Even though mama missed the mark on so many things, she hit the target on what mattered most: She so badly wanted you to know that “Yes, Jesus loves me” and it was “the Bible that tells me so.”

Dear children, dear children, we live in the last days! Yield to God, yield to God and not your own thoughts, your own ways.You see Satan wants you to think that God wants to take everything away – don’t you see, He’s given you all you have and wants to bless you always! Turn to Him, He is good, He is gentle, and He cares. You can trust Him, He is able to break every yoke, every chain – He’s aware!

He’s the God who sees, He’s the God who loves, He’s the God who is able, He is the Father above. So humble yourself in the sight of the Lord, and dear children feed, feed on His faithfulness and drink of His life. Your mama did tell you, and in the end, dear ones, I bet you will all say, after all the of your ‘labor’, and you  go to the house of the Lord to give thanks,

you will feel so full, so happy and even at rest, you will say in your heart:
“my mama, she  was right!”

He must have had fear!

Abram, (later to receive the ‘new’ name of ‘Abraham), must have been afraid, because “…the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying “Fear not, Abram…” (Gen 15:1).

I keep reading over and over again, “the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying “Fear not, Abram.”  In a vision? “What does that look like? …the word of the LORD coming  in a vision?

All I know is, the only vision I have right now are the written words in front of my eyes, in this Holy Book, and the vision says:  “Fear not!”

“FEAR NOT”, God’s word says, but,  quite frankly, we become afraid! “Fear not, Toni.” “Fear not, Laurie.””Fear not, Amy.” “Fear not, Joe.” “Fear not, Jenny.” “Fear not, Paul.” etc, etc. I am not sure what ‘vision’ this could have possibly have been, but God’s word speaks, and if we take the time to open up His word, the words are right there in full view:  “Fear not!”

And what is fascinating-  ‘the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision’, it is told: “After these things…” (Gen. 15:1). After WHAT things?

Well,  #1, after courageous moves on the part of Abram,  he gathered trained servants from his own house to rescue his nephew Lot who was taken captive by foreign kings.  #2, Abram and his house courageously fought a ‘war’ to win back his ‘brother’ and succeeded! #3, Abram was met by Melchizedek king of Salem’ who ‘brought forth bread and wine’ and  then Melchizedek blessed Abram!  #4,  Abram payed him tithes and offerings. (Gen 14:18-20.) This was a huge victory! These were amazing ‘things’! So, it is after all of THIS,  that “the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Fear not Abram!”

Abram had great victory in His life, but now, the word  of the LORD for him is:”Fear not!”  Abram had fear! You and I become afraid, even after God has done amazing things in our life! But we can learn so much about God through the stories, and we can learn so much about Abram, and yes, ourselves as well…

“After these things…” There is even more! Before the courageous ‘war’ that Abram fought with the ‘army’ that he had put together, and the ‘blessing’ that he had received, Abram, #1,  let his nephew choose first from all of the land he was given by the Lord. Lot chose to pitch his tent toward Sodom. , Then #2, Abram chose to ‘come and dwell in the plain of Mamre, which is in Hebron, and,”  #3, “(he) built an altar to the LORD.'(Gen. 13: 18). Abram chose to dwell in Mamre which means a place of ‘fatness’ and Hebron which means ‘communion’, “…and #4, he built an altar to the LORD.” Gen.13:-8).

Abram was a worshiper of God. (There is no mention of Lot having devotion with God, but it is recorded more than once that Abram worshiped God.)  And NOW Abram has fear? I always wonder what the ‘faith and prosperity’ teachers do with these stories? Abram had fear, yet he was the father of faith. God was with him!

So, back to: “After these things the word of the LORD came to Abram in a vision, saying, “Do not be afraid, Abram. I am your shield, your exceeding great reward.”

Abram made choices of communion with God and worship. I am encouraged that this ‘father of faith’ needed encouragement not to fear: “Fear not Abram, I am your shield and exceedingly great reward.” (Gen 15:1).

God is so very patient with me and with you. How do I know? Because I can look at Abraham! His next words to the Lord were: “Lord GOD, what will you give me, seeing I go childless, and …”(then Abram let’s God know how he sees the situation). It’s almost as if he didn’t even hear the words, “I am your shield and exceedingly great reward.” I am like that as well, I am so focused on the situation, I can’t even ‘see’ what God’s word is saying!

But God…His ways are not our ways! The word is powerful, the word is transforming. Do you remember what God did for Abram? “He brought him outside and said, “Look now toward heaven, and count the stars if you are able to number them.” And He said to him, “So shall your descendants be.” (Gen. 15:5). God keeps His promises. God shares His story in the richest Book in the world for all eyes to see in full vision. And you know what Abram did next?“…And he believed in the LORD, and He accounted it to him for righteousness.” (Gen. 15:6).

“Lord, I have heard your word in a vision, yes, me, Your ‘fearful’ child.  I choose to believe You LORD. I will choose to believe what is true, that You provide for Your children, that You protect Your children, and that Your promises are true. Will You help my unbelief? Thank you Jesus, that Your love is patient and kind! I can ‘see’ it just in reading Your Book and watching Your people. Help me spend time in Your Word and ‘see’ in a vision Your voice speaking to me. In Jesus Name, Amen.” How about you? Is this your prayer too?

A song for the morning, and at noon, to help me ‘Be Still’ the evening through…

We who are fearful, we who are ill, we who are anxious – God says, “Be Still!”
In all the fury of thought, in all the moments of pain,
may we call on You, our Father, and proclaim, “Holy is Your Name.”

May we acknowledge You, our Shepherd,
Good and even Great, and cast our many cares on You, as You have ‘made us to lie down’… and wait.
Wait, and wait, and even wait more – Our heavenly Father, fill our fretful hearts with faith and trust that overflow, that overflow from our core.

Your Kingdom come, Your will be done; provide, protect, Your promises keep!                                                                       Satan knocks at the door of my every thought, denying all that You are, denying Your a God who keeps…

You ARE a God who provides. You ARE a Father who protects. Your promises are  true – forever, EVEN always! Help me not to listen to my own doubtful thoughts that lie  and scoff and bring me way down,their path, is not a ‘good report’, these thoughts simply are not sound!

“Think on these things,” Your word reminds us now, “things that are praiseworthy, noble and true”…Lord that is You, Lord that is You! We must think on YOU, morning and evening and remember how:

how You are a God who keeps His children through the night and throughout the day. You are a God who loves us, because YOU are love  – not because we are, YOU are the Way. We aren’t deserving of Your love, no, not one of us are! But You are so gracious and forgiving, bringing salvation to all, and to those who call on Your name – You become ‘our Father!’ Yes, You are!

I choose to believe You Lord, even in this pain. I will praise You out loud – I WILL praise Your Name! It’s in praising that my heart and mind are kept safe. It’s in praising and praise that you change my worry and fret to FAITH!”You are my God who provides. You are my Father who protects. You are my God who I wait on ’cause Your promises are true. You’ve led me ‘beside the still waters’, You’ve ‘restored my soul’, I will follow You Jesus -You make my heart new.

Make my heart new every morning, tune it throughout the day. O Lord in the evening, may I praise Your sweet grace. You know I will fail You, forgive my lack of trust. May I ‘strengthen my arms’ in ‘casting all my cares’ … please, take all my sorrows and fears and distress, that I may ‘Be Still’ and instead,  be found singing Your praise. Proclaiming aloud, proclaiming again, that ‘surely goodness and mercy shall follow me, and then,p>

 I will tell You, “I love you Lord Jesus,” and proclaim,  “I need You right now. To help me, to guide me, to show me Lord, how”,
May every breath I take, and all my actions prove, to be made in grace and  mercy – may this be how I’m known to move.
I don’t have the answers, but Lord, I know  that YOU do…so as I fix my eyes on Jesus… may Your all – sufficient – grace surround me, and may I sing this song in the morning, and find this song at noon, to help me to ‘Be Still’… yes, to help me to ‘Be Still’,  the whole evening through.

“Why are you fearful?”

‘But He said to them, “Why are you fearful? O you of little faith?” Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea. And there was a great calm. (Matthew 8:26).

 Jesus asks us, “Why are you fearful?”

God doesn’t want us to be fearful. But we are, so much of the time.
I don’t need to be afraid of future  plans, or future pain, and future challenges or sickness and future  changes and losses – because right now, In His presence He will keep you and me in perfect peace, if  we keep our mind on Him. (Is.26:3) Oh, but so much of the time…I am still afraid!
How about you?
Jesus has more to say,
“O you of little faith?” Then He arose and rebuked the winds and the sea. And there was a great calm. Matthew 8:26.
The disciples did one thing right- they cried out to the Lord. They were greatly afraid, but they called out to the Lord! And the Lord did it all!  Think about it: they certainly didn’t have great faith at this time! God didn’t need their faith to calm the sea, (good thing He didn’t need to wait for them to have it either!)
“And the men marveled, saying, “Who can this be, that even the winds and the sea obey Him?”

The men ‘cried out to the Lord’. There were huge waves! They thought they were going to die! They cried out to Jesus! That takes faith! And ‘without faith, it’s impossible to please the Lord’. That’s the 1st step!
So, for me, looking on and ‘witnessing’ this story, I will cry out as well, I will cry out, “Increase my faith Lord! Join me in this cry? “Increase our faith Lord! Increase our faith!”
So then we must remember, “What has God told us?
“Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,’ (and many times what we fear are just shadows) –
‘I will fear no evil, because You  are with me…”(Psalm 23). Praying, “increase our faith” means believing what God has told us:  “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.” (Is. 41:10)

‘When anxiety comes rolling on in, or anxiety comes flooding in – and it will – may we pray and talk to our Savior, and take the time to wait on Him to calm the sea, and keep breathing in the process! Praising Him that He is able!  So we pray, “Lord, increase our faith, as a little child. Help us remember when the dark clouds come rolling in Your words: “For you did not receive the spirit of bondage again to fear, but you received the Spirit of adoption by whom we cry out, “Abba, Father.”
You don’t want us to be afraid, “Abba, ‘daddy’, help us trust,  help us to wait and take the time to be still, …help us believe You are able to get us through this…help our unbelief!”

For Nothing is impossible for God, He is able to accomplish what concerns you and me today, He is our Shepherd and He will lead us beside the still waters…

HE WILL restore our souls.

I beg you today, will you hear His report?

I ‘beg you’ please, take time to read His very own report on how things began. The professors, the History channel, the National Geographic all claim their ideas, will you be willing to let Jesus speak?”I just don’t believe,” you might say. Or, “I don’t really have time for these things.” Or, “I need a lot more than ‘God’ right now.” These possibly could be your heart, but what if you just ‘don’t know?’ What if you’ve just ‘never heard’? What if your heart has ‘deceived’ you? Are you willing to hear the account of wisdom? Please taste and see, please take time to hear His own report. You will be touched by Him, I know…because He speaks with authority, He speaks in truth-

“The LORD possessed me at the beginning of His way, Before His works of old. “From everlasting I was established,From the beginning, from the earliest times of the earth. “When there were no depths I was brought forth,When there were no springs abounding with water. “Before the mountains were settled, Before the hills I was brought forth;

“While He had not made yet made the earth and the fields,
Nor the first dust of the world.
“When He established the heavens, I was there,
When He inscribed a circle on the face of the deep,
When He made firm the skies above,
When the springs of the deep became fixed,
When He set for the sea its boundary,
So that the water should not transgress His command,
When He marked out the foundations of the earth; Then I was beside Him, as a master workman;

And I was daily His delight,
Rejoicing always before Him,
Rejoicing in the world, His earth,
And having my delight in the sons of men.” (Proverbs 8:22-31). These are the words of wisdom, this is Jesus Himself!

“Who has believed our report? And to whom has the arm of the LORD been revealed?” Isaiah cries out in chapter 53 of his book. What report? This report:

“In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. The same was in the beginning with God…” (John 1:1,2). “All things were made by him; and without him was not any thing made that was made…” (John 1:3).   This report is that Jesus was there since the beginning and not only that, He was the Master craftsman! OK, so this requires ‘faith’ but so does believing that an amoeba transformed itself through eons of time to progress  into complexity, such as a hippo, which later through eons of time transformed and evolved into what we see as a horse!

This is the report: “The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth.” (John 1:14). You might believe it, you might not – but that will not change what is true! So we best be busy discovering for ourselves, and not relying on what ‘others’ say in our everyday – because the day is coming to an end and the sun is setting. There is no more time for delay or folly.

The report: Jesus came, Jesus died, Jesus rose again, and Jesus is COMING BACK! And this day is soon and very soon!

Please, ‘suffer’ (the King James term for allow), please ‘suffer’ to hear God’s account from His own mouth! The time is NOW that we must ‘suffer’ the message to come to our eyes, to hear with our ears! It’s not for me to be ‘right’ – NO, not at all- it’s for you to receive light and life and the Spirit of God, to have the joy of a child no matter what age, to have purpose, to have hope, and best of all power, power over sin and death because of the life that was given for you; the blood was shed on that horrible cross satisfied God in the debt that was owed…so, can I ask you to ‘suffer’ to hear His report:

“Counsel is mine and sound wisdom; I am understanding, power is mine. “By me kings reign, And rulers decree justice. “By me princes rule, and nobles, All who judge rightly.” (Proverbs 8:14,15).

This is the word of the Lord. Have you heard HIs report? ‘Suffer’ your eyes and your ears for just a bit more: “The fear of the LORD is to hate evil; Pride and arrogance and the evil way, And the perverted mouth, I hate… “I love those who love me; And those who diligently seek me will find me. “Riches and honor are with me, Enduring wealth and righteousness.” (Proverbs 13, 17,18). These are words from wisdom personified, this is God’s heart. We see evil going on, and we ‘hate’ evil! We understand this! We are created in the image of God. It is reported in God’s word:  “And God created man in His own image, in the image of God He created him; male and female He created them.”(Gen. 1:27).

Do you want to hear the Lord’s plea to you and to me? Will you ‘suffer’ some moments to hear the plea of the Lord who gave His very own life on the cross for your’s and my sin: “Now therefore, O sons, listen to me, For blessed are they who keep my ways. “Heed instruction and be wise, And do not neglect it. “Blessed is the man who listens to me, Watching daily at my gates, Waiting at my doorposts. “for he who finds me finds life, And obtains favor from the LORD. “But he who sins against me injures himself; All those who hate me love death.” (Proverbs 8:32-36).

Have you ever heard God’s plea for you and me? Or perhaps you knew it awhile back, but don’t be upset with yourself, just be thankful today that God is so persevering and graciously patient and He simply is LOVE, and He is who He is – and O HOW HE LOVES YOU AND ME! His report is good. His plans for you are good. Turn your ear to hear His plea, turn your eyes to seek His face! His report is complete and solid and sure, tried and true!

Time, time…there just isn’t time! And this is so true, there isn’t much time! Please children heed the voice of the Lord! Hear His report and STOP what you’re doing, and bow your head now and talk right to Him! He’s been waiting, so very long for this moment, so bow your head now and say, “God, I didn’t  know! I only heard lies, but Your report I’ve heard now;  how You’ve been here from the beginning, and You delight in me…I’ve been lied to for so long, and have so much to learn, but this I do know, that to You Lord, I will turn. Thank You for dying on the cross for my sin. Thank You for a new life TODAY I can live. Help me make time to ‘listen to You’, to ‘watch at Your gate, and ‘wait at Your door’. I do need blessing, O so bad, I do Lord. Thank You for waiting, ’cause I’m ‘present’ NOW. When You call my name, I will respond. But I might fail You, time and time again, but I’ve heard in Your report that You’ll never forsake me, so Lord I believe, because it’s TIME, today, I am Yours!”

“Hungry and thirsty, that’s what I am. Fill me with Your Spirit, so I can sing again…”

I guess I am a ‘beggar’- ‘begging’ for you to listen, but OH! HOW HAPPY are those when they finally HEAR!

Because I know what follows next, it’s celebration time! “The heavens are Yours, and Yours also the earth; You founded the world and all that is in it. You created the north and the south; Tabor and Hermon sing for joy at your name…Blessed are those who have learned to acclaim You, who walk in the light of Your presence, O LORD.” (Psalm 89:11,12,15).

“America, America, God shed His …” Mayday Mayday, there is an iceburg ahead!

Remember…Repent… Wake up America!

“America, America, God shed His …” Mayday Mayday, there is an iceburg ahead!

While reading through the book of Hosea in the Bible , I cannot stop thinking of God and America.
In this book,God loves His people,Israel and they turned away from Him, so He asked the Prophet Hosea to take as a wife an immoral woman of harlotry. Her name is Gomer, or’complete’. God commanded Hosea to love her,so he did. And she loved Hosea and seemed ‘complete, however,later she ran off and went back to her old ways. Hosea with his broken heart still loved Gomer and went after her again to bring her back home.

God opened a door for His people to come to these foreign lands and have freedoms- freedoms to worship God the way they believed the Bible taught them.It was like a happy marriage, America and God,(so to speak!)
There was a love for the Bible, God’s word.
Here are some quotes from some of Americas early leaders on their thoughts of the Bible, compiled in ‘The Rebirth of America’ published by The Arthur S. Demos Foundation,

John Quincy Adams, “The first and almost the only Book deserving of universal attention is the Bible.”

Abraham Lincoln,”All the good from the Saviour of the world is communicated through this Book; but for the Book we could not know right from wrong. All the things desirable to man are contained in it.”

Woodrow Wilson, “…the Bible…is the one supremem source of revelation of the meaning of life, the nature of God and spiritual nature and need of men. It is the only guide of life which really leads the spirit in the way of peace and salvation.

Calvin Coolidge,”The foundations of our society and our government rest so much on the teachings of the Bible that it would be difficult to support them if faith in these teachings would cease to be practically universal in our country.”

What happened? Our country, like Gomer, went after other loves. We’ve been deceived.
The deception came and America has believed the lie. It seems to be the very same lie that Eve believed in the garden, “…you shall be as gods, knowing (deciding for yourselves) good and evil. (Gen 3:5). “Why do we need God,( would be the mentality,) when, thoughts taught to our children in schools without God that: “Human reason is adequate”. “Man’s achievements prove mans greatness.” “Education and Science can now solve our problems.” “The government can take care of its people.”

We’ve been deceived. These are all lies!

Hosea 4:7, God’s word regarding His Nation Israel, “The more they increased, the more they sinned against Me. I will change their glory into shame.”

This makes me think of a tragedy exactly 100years ago. It was April, in 1812 that the most beautiful and exotic and enormous vessel set out on its maiden voyage. The British liner, Titanic.

It was considered ‘Unsinkable!’ And the greatness of this vessel caused the crew and passengers to feel confident and safe.Did you know that only 20 miles away from the Titanic was another vessel, the Californian? It could have come to the rescue in time but the radio operator of the Titanic had fallen asleep on duty!
Well our America is much like this amazing, gigantic, powerful, state of the art vessel. We need to heed the warnings and not fall asleep, (wait a minute, too late for that, we need to WAKE UP!)

Here are words of President Abraham Lincoln’s Proclamation for a National Day of Fasting Humiliation and Prayer on April 30 1863 (!):

“We have been the recipients of the choicest bounties of heaven. We have been preserved, these many years, in peace and prosperity. We have grown in numbers, wealth and power, as no other nation has ever grown. But we have forgotten God.

We have forgotten the gracious hand which preserved us in peace, and multiplied and enriched and strengthened us; and we have vainly imagined, in the deceitfulness of our hearts, that all these blessings were produced by some superior wisdom and virtue of our own.

Intoxicated with unbroken success, we have become too self-sufficient to feel the necessity of redeeming and preserving grace,

too proud to pray to the God that made us!

It behooves us, then to humble ourselves before the offended Power, to confess our national sins, and to pray for clemency and forgiveness.”

These words, were from 1863. These words are for 2015, today!

In Hosea 14,  we hear a plea from the prophet of God, (Vs. 1,2): ”O Israel, return to the LORD your God, For you have stumbled because of your iniquity; Take words with you,”… (perhaps Lincoln’s speech,) “…and return to the LORD.”

America must heed the voice crying in the wilderness, “Change your direction. Confess your sins and devote yourselves to follow God and please Him!” There is hope for each and every individual as well: heed the voices that are calling out as John the Baptist did so many years ago: Change your direction. Confess your sin. And walk with and follow God through Jesus Christ whom He has sent for us!

And this is hope, hope that only God can bring: Hosea 14:4,”I will heal their backsliding, I will love them freely,

For My anger has turned away from him…”

See God's Hand

While reading through the book of Hosea in the Bible , I cannot stop thinking of God and America.
In this book,God loves His people,Israel and they turned away from Him, so He asked the Prophet Hosea to take as a wife an immoral woman of harlotry. Her name is Gomer, or’complete’. God commanded Hosea to love her,so he did. And she loved Hosea and seemed ‘complete, however,later she ran off and went back to her old ways. Hosea with his broken heart still loved Gomer and went after her again to bring her back home.

God opened a door for His people to come to these foreign lands and have freedoms- freedoms to worship God the way they believed the Bible taught them.It was like a happy marriage, America and God,(so to speak!)
There was a love for the Bible, God’s word.
Here are some quotes from some of…

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Thoughts: “Oh, I know, I know…”

Are these your thoughts? “I know all the stories. I’ve heard it all before. I’m so bored with the church. And personally, I really need my rest.” These thoughts come in, (and God  does liken us as ‘sheep’), and we actually ‘believe’ these thoughts! They become our ‘truth!’

But God…Do you think of Him? You can’t see Him, but He’s there. He knows that men are imperfect! He knows that churches that even have sound doctrine and maintain to adhere to the word of God, the Bible, as their foundations, are imperfect! God knows all of this- but God, the Creator of heaven and earth, the worlds and all the universe, the One Who gives us each and every breath that we breathe, The One who faithfully provides us the sun to rise each morning and to set at the end of the day to give us rest…His thoughts… what are HIS THOUGHTS?  Do you remember, they are not like ours:

“For My thoughts are not your thoughts, Nor are your ways My ways,” says the LORD. “For as the heavens are higher than the earth, So are My ways higher than your ways, And my thoughts than your thoughts.” (Is. 55:8,9).

And He is so big, as you already ‘know’, but do you remember that it is also true:“…for the LORD searches all hearts and understands all the intent of the thoughts.” (1 Chronicles 28:9). Do you remember that when Adam and Eve ate the one and only forbidden fruit (in the midst of every other tree that was permissible), knowledgable now of their ‘nakedness’, that they thought to take care of it intelligently and industriously sewing itchy, uncomfortable coverings for themselves-But God didn’t wait for them to ‘think straight’, in fact, they were occupied in playing the ‘blame game’ when asked about their ‘fall’.(Gen. 3).

God knows our thoughts! God knows our ‘imperfectness’! God knows there is no help apart from Him. Do you remember what God did? OK, He told us the ‘curse’ that both the man and the woman would face, ‘the pain of childbirth’, the ‘sweat of the brow’ in work, and you ‘know all of this,’ (and best remember that this wasn’t God’s intention for man, this was the ‘fall of man’ NOT GOD!) HOWEVER, …

this isn’t just a story you’ve heard before, this is about you and me, today! We are His Adam, we are His Eve,(because we are all sons of Adam and Eve), and we try to ‘cover’ ourselves and all the ‘wrong’ with ‘itchy things’. Things that will never satisfy. Somehow, there’s always an ‘itch’ for MORE!

But God, “…for Adam and his wife the LORD God made tunics of skin, and clothed them.” (Gen 3:21). 

Please, Please, Please – STOP for ONE MINUTE and ‘LET GOD’ clothe you with His love. Do you ‘know’ that is what God desires? Do you remember His thoughts? “How precious also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How great is the sum of them! If I should count them, they would be more in number than the sand; …”(Ps. 139:17). 

OK, so you’ve ‘known’ this verse, “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. ” (Jer. 29:11). But have you ‘thought’ to stop and let God clothe YOU with this truth? This is not just a verse that you ‘know’. Do you ‘believe it’ ? What are you thoughts?

Get alone with God. Wrestle with Him. Give Him your thoughts, and allow Him again to enter His truth in yours.

Remind yourself again the things ‘you know’: “Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you. And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.” (Jer. 29:12).

Get alone with God. Wrestle with Him. Give Him your thoughts, and allow Him again to enter His truth in yours. You know that it is true: “Let no one deceive himself. If anyone among you seems to be wise in this age, let him become a fool that he may become wise. For the wisdom of this world is foolishness with God…” (1 Cor. 3:18,19).

“But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, the hidden wisdom which God ordained before the ages for our glory, which none of the rulers of this age knew; for had they known, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.”(1 Cor. 2:7).

Search out the mystery of Christ in God’s word and be clothed in God’s love and promises: “But as it is written: “Eye has not seen, nor ear heard, Nor have entered into the heart of man The things which God has prepared for those who love Him.” (1 Cor. 2:9).

Take off the ‘ol itchy garments of a ‘self propelled’ life apart from God’s grace and love. As John the Baptist shouted in the ‘desert place’ so long ago. Listen to his words. Today – yes – all us ‘imperfect people’: Change direction! Confess your failures, guilt and sin! Let God clothe you. Receive the Lamb. And start ‘knowing’ over and over again the same old truths in a new light each and every day.

Lamb’s skin instead of ‘itchy leaves’…“For you shall go out with joy, and be led out with peace; The mountains and the hills Shall break forth into singing before you, and all the trees of the field shall clap their clap their hands. Instead of the thorn shall come up the cypress tree, And instead of the brier shall come up the myrtle tree; And it shall be to the LORD for a name, For an everlasting sign that shall not be cut off.” (Is. 55:12,13).

Did you know all that? Get right with God. Remember what you ‘knew’ “Jesus loves me! This I know…”

Oh, and yes, that old song that we all know all too well, clothe yourself with this: Jesus loves me! Loves me still, Tho’ I’m very weak and ill; That i might from sin be free, Bled and died upon the tree…Jesus loves me! He will stay Close beside me all the way; Thou hast bled and died for me, I will hence-forth live for Thee…”

There is a friend…

Thanking God today…

See God's Hand

Our Father in heaven knows what we need. And there are times, when God knows that what we need is… a friend.
Some of my ‘friends’ I have never met, but they encourage me every day. One of them is Oswald Chambers. He wrote the infamous book entitled, “My Utmost for His Highest.”

Many times the words that God prompted him to write, were like the words of a best friend to help keep me on track. For instance, August 11, he writes,
“When you come to your wits’ end and feel inclined to panic – don’t!”
What great words from a friend!
But this  wisdom came a little late.  I have a friend or two that have seen me do just that – panic!

How beautiful of my Father in heaven to give me friends who will love me still, even after moments of panic. Moments when I forget…

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Evening, then the morning!

“In the beginning…And the evening and the morning were the first day.” (Gen. 1:5). Not all can agree with Gen. 1:1.”In the beginning God create the heavens and the earth.” However, I believe, most agree that darkness comes before the dawn. It is written: ‘God called the light Day, and the darkness He called Night. So the evening and the morning were the first day.” (Gen 1:5). 

‘Evening and the morning’ were the ‘first day’. God understands and He even told us Himself, in just the 5th verse of the whole of the Bible that ‘darkness comes before the dawn.’In God’s time keeping, There is evening, then there is morning! Darkness before the light. Night then the Day.

Every expectant mama understands these things.Think of the ‘little one’s’ in the womb, how dark and quiet it is…and then there is the ‘dawn’ of birth! The birthday! ‘So the evening and the morning were the first day!’ Yes, we understand this perfectly. And from that day, we learn quickly but we start with ‘darkness’ in understanding and we grow and learn and ‘light’ of knowledge is continually ours as we become increasingly educated.

But spiritually – are we still in the dark? Is it still night? Maybe there was no need for the light, you could see spiritually perfectly well in the dark. It was on a Friday, 4 years ago, and I was sitting in an infusion chair receiving some ‘Red Devil’ as my nurse called it, (Adriamiacyn and Taxol, to be exact, [with perhaps a spelling error]). So needless to say, physically, I wasn’t feeling so well. However, Stephanie came to join me that day as I had 5 lovely hours to sit and be loaded up with this ‘stuff’, (I will say not to offend the medical community, but we all know good and well, this ‘stuff’ is ‘death’ to hopefully some cancer cells, but also ALOT of good as well!)

I was there on a Friday by accident. I usually came in on Thursday to get my chemo. But there was need for me to come instead on the Friday, and Stephanie made effort to help me on Fridays. Well, Stephanie has a passion and it is God’s Word! And we were talking about something really exciting about God’s ‘covenant’ with us and that we are His Bride, and He is so faithful to love and to cherish us and there is no parting in death. And He faithfully ‘cut’ His covenant with us with much suffering and pain, just like we wear rings  around our fingers as a symbol of our ‘marriage covenants’, etc. And quite honestly, we were both as happy and excited as can be in our conversation as we were rejoicing in the LORD and talking of how great our God is. (So, you are wondering, “hmmm, did Toni get off track here? Why this story?”)

I will tell you ‘why’. Because across from me was seated a woman, maybe in her early 40’s, connected to ‘poisons’ as well. Her name was Lauren. She had battled colon cancer courageously and was a school teacher during her 3 year battle, but THIS DAY was her first day to receive chemo because of metastatic cancer.  You see, the cancer had now spread into the liver. This was a whole new fight. Her doctor informed her that the chances of  celebrating multiple birthdays was small.

Stephanie and I didn’t know any of this when Lauren had been listening to us talk about the Lord. So she broke in and said, “I need what you have. I have put this off and now it’s time. I need to know God.” She went on to tell us how she was from a Catholic background and faithfully showed up to church on the Holy-days, but, she said, “I don’t know what to do. I don’t know how to get where you are.”

“So the evening and the morning were the first day.”

Did we tell her she had to ‘go to church?’ No! When you are getting strong chemo, sometimes it’s hard to walk into a crowded church for fear of sickness while the immune system is being compromised. (But going to church is a place to be encouraged in His word and meet others who can pray with you, and best of all to ‘worship Him’) But for Lauren to ‘know God’, we just told her, “He’s right here, with you now.” “He can hear your voice, He knows your thoughts. Talk to Him right where you are, in a still and quiet place in your heart. Pour out your heart to Him.”

But then she spoke of some things she did ‘wrong’. Yes, we feel it deep inside. Each of us, we carry such a heavy burden of ‘sin’ and carry it and carry it, day in and day out.  (We are all sinners! Every single one of us!) But God is faithful, these are the words that we shared with Lauren, “If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.”     (1John 1:9). God forgives our sin when we pray and ask Him to.

Lauren wasn’t ready for ANY of this, until that ‘very dark’ news. But she was open and ready NOW! God knows how long your ‘Night’ will be, He is the “Alpha, the Omega, the Beginning and the End, the First and the Last. ” (Rev.22:13). “I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things in the churches. I am the Root and the Offspring of David, the Bright and Morning Star.” (Rev. 22:16).

We told Lauren that God was only a prayer away. That the debt she owed for all the wrongs she ever did were paid in full by Jesus. And on that day, Lauren learned that Jesus loved her –  the way she was, that He was with her – NOW and for all eternity. We told her to call on His name and pray. And dust off that Bible that she said she owned – and read the Psalms to learn how to cry out to God and the Book of John to get to know Jesus.

Lauren talked of limited time and how she just wanted her family to know how much she loved them! We never saw Lauren again. Stephanie and I pray, not knowing if she is still here physically on earth, but I believe in my heart, that she came to ‘know’ Jesus. This was a ‘new morning’ for her, she discovered the ‘Bright and Morning Star!’ Someday,  we will meet again!

I can honestly  say today, that I am so thankful to have been in that infusion chair on that special Friday with my friend Stephanie to have opportunity to be a part of Lauren’s ‘morning!’ Perhaps, physically, Lauren’s verdict was still on the dark side, but none of that matters anymore when spiritually you have awakened to the dawn. ‘And evening and morning were the FIRST DAY of the rest of her eternal life!

“And the Spirit and the bride say, “Come!” And let him who hears say, “Come!” And let him who thirsts come. And whoever desires, let him take the water of life freely.”(Revelation 22:17).

Receive the Lord Jesus in your life by simply talking to Him.Give Him your sin, He is the Only One who wants it and can wash it away in the power of His Blood on the cross. “If any man be in Christ, he is a new creation. Old things have passed away, behold all things have become new.”(2 Cor. 5:17). “

“The Lord is not slack concerning His promise, as some count slackness, but is longsuffering toward us, not willing that any should perish but that all should come to repentance.” (2 Peter 3:9).

It’s a whole new ‘birth’ day! …And the evening and the morning were the FIRST DAY!