My son shared this song with me today and it really spoke to me. It is called Beautiful. This is for Spiritual Sunday
As I look into the stars Pondering how far away they are How You hold them in Your hands And still You know this man You know my inner most being, oh Even better than I know, than I know myself What a beautiful God What a beautiful God And what am I, that I might be called Your child What am I, what am I That You might know me, my King What am I, what am I, what am I As I look off into the distance Watching the sun roll on by Beautiful colors all around me, oh Painted all over the sky The same hands that created all of this They created you and I What a beautiful God What a beautiful God And what am I, that I might be called Your child What am I, what am I That You might know me, my King What am I, what am I That You might die, that I might live What am I, what am I, what am I, what am I What am I What am I What am I What am I What am I
THIS TIES IN WITH THE QUOTE BELOW THAT I HAVE BEEN REFLECTING ON THIS WEEK:
"There is only one place where your heart can be healed, restored, satisfied, and protected. ...It will only be filled, satisfied, and at rest when it is filled with the beauty of the Lord." Paul David Tripp
I have been reading Paul David Tripp's little book called -- A Shelter in the Time of Storm. It is a small study on Psalm 27:10
His book really speaks to me and he has just some 2-3 page little devotionals, but they are very thought provoking. Here is one of them--they are sometimes poems (don't worry this is short because of the short lines):
My father and my mother have forsaken me, but the LORD will take me in. Psalm 27:10
Unthinkable irrational impossible to conceive. The Trinity torn asunder. The Son wrenched from His Father. Salvation realized. I am the thief. I am the gossip. I am the rebel. I have wanted my own way in my own time at my appointed place. I have rebelled against Your law and I have set up my own. I deny Your kingship while building a kingdom of my own. I think my wisdom is wiser than You. I think my plan is better than Yours. I crave the sovereignty that only You should have. But You did the inconceivable; You accomplished the undoable. You stood in my place and You satisfied God's wrath. But in the process, the Three in One was torn in two. in the process, the Father did the most painful thing that has ever been done. He turned His back on You. You withstood this pain so that I would never have to. You took my rejection so that I would only ever have acceptance. So, I can rest assured, I can live in hope, I can enjoy true peace, because I know that You are always with me. For long ago on the cross Your rejection was for me the final rejection of rejection.
Take a Moment
1. In what ways would your practical, daily living change if you lived with a deep and lively sense of appreciation fr the horror of the rejection Jesus faced for You?
2. Where is God calling you to offer to others the same love and grace that you have been given?
I was feeling fearful about certain things and prayed about it and God let me read this:
The LORD is my light and my salvation; whom shall I fear? Psalm 27:1
In a world that is held In such deep darkness Where the light of truth Often seems more of a flicker Than a flame, In a world where Deceit Dishonesty Falsehood And foolishness Divert and distort The lives of so many, In times when a myriad Voices Say so Much About so many things, Where confusion seems readily available And clarity seems hard to find, In a world where opinions Rise to a place Where only truth should be, And every voice Seems to get an equal hearing, In the constant cacophony Of ten thousand Contradictory voices, It is a wonderful And amazing thing To be able to say With rest and confidence, The Lord is my Light! My heart has been lit By the illuminating And protective glory Of His Powerful and transforming grace, My mind has been renewed By the luminescent presence Of His truth-guiding Holy Spirit, And my life has been guided down straight paths By the ever-shining lamp Of His Word. I am not afraid, But it is not because I am strong Or wise. I am not afraid, But it is not because I have power Or position. I am not afraid, But it is not because I have health Or wealth. I am not afraid; But it is not because my circumstances Or relationships Are easy. I am not afraid For one glorious reason: I have been lit by the Lord of Light. In the darkness Of this fallen world, I no longer walk In the night, But I have been given The Light of Life. I am not afraid Because light lives in me. This one amazing reality Gives me rest; I have been rescued from Darkness And transported into the Light And I am not afraid.
I like what the Jews in old times would do---they had a bunch of short prayers for different things through out the day that would start with ,"Blessed is He".. . When you would open your eyes in the morning you could say, "Blessed is He who opens the eyes of the Blind". When you put on your clothes, " Blessed is he who clothes the naked" etc. I want to cultivate this. A book I am readying said to check out the following webpage--- jewishencyclopedia.com and to go to the benedictions. I think I shall check it.
God does cool things. I" happened" to run into someone by chance. It was someone that God has been teaching and showing Christ's truths concerning Christ's nature and the truths of Christianity. I "happened" to hear about this person a week or so ago, but had not met them. It was a neat providence to run into this person as they were speaking to another person about spiritual things (in a public place ).......cool when God does this.
My son Skipper has finished his degree work for college , except for one Math course which is required. He has been unable to pass the required course.....so he can not get his degree because of this one subject. The Sermon on Sunday, June 28, was so appropriate. ...even the illustrations applied to Him. It is amazing how personal God is in our lives.
Chris Heuertz has recently finished writing a book called Simple Spirituality, which has been released by InterVarsity Press July 28 .
The final chapter of the book is about brokenness. In it Chris writes,
"Our prayers, our worship, our praxis of living into a simple spirituality and a grounded theology are all, in a sense, attempts to tend to Christ’s open wounds. Unless we have the courage to put our hands into the hurting places of Christ’s body – the hurting places of the world – the world won’t have reason to trust that God is good … We can’t simply proclaim God’s love and sing about it. We need to simply live it."
Pastor Mark said (not a direct quote) :The forgiveness of a sinner is not contingent on their repentance, it is contingent upon Christ's Character. As Christians God has mercy not malice towards us. While still enemies Christ came as man for us.
CONCERNING HUMAN RELATIONSHIPS: We need to forgive everyone and entrust them to God's judgment. There can be forgiveness (humanly), without reconciliation. Reconciliation takes the action of both people, while forgiveness can be shown by just one. The one who forgives should not , continue enabling an unrepentant one to be abusive and should not be an enabler of their sin. They can forgive even when the other is unrepentant by entrusting that person to God's judgement. For there to be reconciliation the offending one needs to repent which will demonstrate itself in change. This changed life will also demonstrate that they are safe and trustworthy. Therefore reconciliation takes both people, while forgiveness can be shown by just one.
We are hypocrites if we receive his mercy and don't forgive. Sin is so bad God had to die for it--so forgiving does not mean approving. We have to keep on forgiving--it takes time to rebuild trust.
"Never pay back evil for evil to anyone. Respect what is right in the sight of all men. If possible, so far as it depends on you, be at peace with all men."1
"Following a series of Daily Encounters on "Forgiveness," a number of readers wanted to know if forgiving another person meant that we have to forget what has happened; or to love and stay with them if they are abusive; or to trust them?
"The answer is no, no, no! Let me explain further.
"When we have sinned, we need to be reconciled to God, but while reconciliation with others is the ideal, it isn't always possible—and sometimes not to be desired. Some teachers argue that forgiveness isn't possible unless the offending person admits what she/he has done and asks for forgiveness of the one they have hurt. If this were true, many of us would be stuck for life for the fact that many people do not, or will not, admit that they have done anything wrong, let alone apologize for it.
Forgiveness is dependent only on the person who has been hurt. Reconciliation is dependent on both the offended and the one who has offended.
One reader, whose husband was an alcoholic and physically abusive and dangerous when drunk, wanted to know if forgiving him meant loving and trusting him. Whew ... she was in quite a predicament. However, the most loving thing she could do, was to confront him and let him know that she was not going to tolerate his behavior any longer.
Furthermore, unless he got into recovery, and overcame his alcoholism and abusive behavior, she needs to separate herself and the children from him, and not return until his counselor could assure her that she and the children would be safe to live with him again. If she keeps tolerating his abusive and destructive behavior, she becomes part of his sickness.
In cases like this, the first thing victims need to do is to get professional counsel and help because some of these abusive husbands can become very dangerous.
And unless destructive and/or toxic, abusive people repent and change their ways, it is wise to avoid associating with them wherever possible. As the Bible indicates, it just isn't possible to live peaceably with all people.
Suggested prayer, "Dear God, in all my relationships, please help me to forgive all who have hurt me, to seek forgiveness where I have hurt others, and give me the wisdom to know when reconciliation is or isn't advisable or possible, and give me the courage to do what I need to do no matter how painful or frightening it may be. Thank you for hearing and answering my prayer. Gratefully, in Jesus' name, amen."1. Romans 12:17-18 (NASB).2. 2 Corinthians 5:20 (NIV). " END of QUOTE
"When God saves us, he forgives us and wipes our slate clean...as if we never sinned. However he does not "promote" us just quite yet. It takes time for him to build character in us. He starts off by giving us a small number of talents. Depending on how faithful we are, he gives us more (Matt 25:14-30). And so on. Little by little he builds character in us, until we get to the point where God could trust us with big things. The forgiveness was automatic. The trust had to be earned. Similarly, we must be quick to forgive and seek reconciliation, slow to give up on people. However trusting them takes time. Trust is not automatic. "
"I wouldn't want a serial rapist working around my house with my wife and kids anywhere nearby. I don't care how radically saved he is. He has to earn that trust. If someone's spouse cheats on them, it is their job, however hard it is, to forgive the person. However, if they feel they can no longer trust the unfaithful spouse, they are no longer bound to salvage the marriage. Marital unfaithfulness is an adequate grounds for divorce as far as God is concerned. If they feel, however, that they could work with the unfaithful spouse and build back the trust, that is also in order. But it is the forgiveness we are commanded to offer, not trust."
Well I didn't make any New Year's resolutions.......but perhaps I really should set some goals. I guess the main thing I want to focus on this year is controlling what I think. Letting my mind be more fully focused on God and not on worry. Focusing on trusting Him. Focusing on controlling thoughts in general.
A second thing I need to work on is my schedule. Somehow getting in the exercise, cleaning, cooking, visiting, reading, crocheting, studying, church stuff, etc.......I do not understand how I could be short on time when I am not working at a job outside of the home----Man!! I thought I would have lots of time. Weird.
A third thing I have been working on and still need to continue working on is organization.
A fourth thing is to continue to find good vegan recipes that we all like.
A fifth is to apply and practice stuff from the book Eowyn gave me (The Love Dare) and the one I shared with Chip called When Sinners Say "I do" .
A sixth is figuring out how to stop all of the neighbors cats from urinating on our doors, windows, and house---this problem has gotten out of hand --at first it was a nuisance, now it is becoming a stench!