Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for December, 2010

The Top 10

Carols are in the air and the one I keep singing is Angels We Have Heard on High.  Gloria, Gloria, Gloria in Excelsis Deo! Glory to God in the Highest.

When I hear those words I think God is excellent.  I know that’s not a literal translation but in my heart I’m singing God is great.  He does all things with excellence.

I can’t believe we only have 10 days until Christmas and and 15 days left in our 40 Day Virtual Thanksgiving Feast.  Maybe you didn’t join up or haven’t participated.  It’s not too late.  As we look toward celebrating His birth, we are going to run down a top 10 things we appreciate about God.  Just post a comment here or on the facebook Moms on Mission page.  I bet we come up with more than 10.

Don’t just make a list.  Take some time to think about God, who He truly is, and what He has done.  What has that meant in your life?

The Top 10 Things I’m Grateful for about God.

#10–His Creative Nature.  He did excellent work in creating the universe, the earth, and us.  He is above all who have ever created anything.  This whole thing was His idea and He did it well.  And in His words, ” It is good.”

What does that mean to me?  (and you) God’s hand is reflected in all of creation and if I look, I will see.  It also means I am good.  God created me in His image and God is in me.  I have all I need for life and right living inside of me, because Christ is in me.

It also means that because God is a creator and I am made in His image, I am creative.  Creativity is not about being “arts and crafty.” It’s about designing and building something.  I can design and build my life in such a way that it reflects God and influences my family, friends, community, and my world.  Now that puts a smile on my face and a humble gratitude in my heart!

It’s your turn.  What is your #10?

Read Full Post »

Living God

Day 24 Virtual Thanksgiving Feast

“The Lord lives!  Blessed be my Rock: and let the God of my salvation be exalted!”  Psalm 18:46

Whoot!  Now that’s something to be thankful for.  The Lord lives!  Of all the world’s religious philosophies, considered prophets, or great men only one can say Our God lives!

What does that mean?  Our God still works in the hearts and minds of men.  Our God is eternal.  Our God is real.  I can’t imagine basing my faith or spirituality on a someone who is no longer around.  Or praying to a mass of stone or wood or some object in nature.

I am thankful that our God listens when we pray and answers.  I can depend on Him in every situation.  He shares in my joy and pain, my laughter and tears.  He has a good plan for me.  He takes all that is past and turns it to good for me.  He takes all that is today and orders the steps I take.  He takes all that is future and prepares it for me.

I am blessed.  I have a relationship with the one true, living God.

Read Full Post »

Dealt A Good Hand

I love playing games but I hate it when I’m playing cards and I get a crappy hand.  That usually means the other person wins and I don’t like losing!

Sometimes in life we feel like we’ve been dealt a crappy hand too.  Our challenges and situations seem out of our control, unfair, or insurmountable. It’s easy to slip into a negative attitude.  For some of us, we continue to look at all that is wrong so long we begin to really believe all is hopeless and stop focusing on what is good and only see what is wrong in our life.

Any time we believe something that isn’t true, we will not live our best life.

Psalms 13:6 says, “I will sing to the Lord because He has dealt bountifully with me.”  (Amplified)  I love that word bountifully. I looked it up in the Hebrew and this is what I found according to Strong’s Concordance.  This word indicates how we are treated as people.  Strongs uses words like benefit, ripen, bestow on, do good, reward, serve, yield.

That is God’s heart for us.  The question is will we recognize and accept it?

Especially in America we have so much to be grateful for.  This may sound harsh, but I honestly believe we have no reason to complain.  Our poor are richer than most of the world.  We are not controlled by a dictator.  We can choose our faith, speak freely, and have opportunities to grow and learn on a daily basis.

We have several moms who have special needs kids or difficult situations.  I’ve watched so many of our moms who deal with challenges every day, stay positive and give sacrificially.  Most of them maintain an attitude of gratefulness even when it’s tough.

Even when things are not looking good there is always something to be grateful for.  There’s an old hymn we use to sing in church.  “Count your blessings, name them one by one.  And it will surprise you what the Lord has done.”

Will you join me in making a list of your blessings today?  How has God dealt bountiful with you?

Read Full Post »

Half or Whole?

Can you remember a time when you were so excited about something that you felt it in every fiber of your being?  Maybe it was when you got married, or the birth of your child, or  perhaps you won the lottery!

On the other hand, can you think of a time when you were less than enthusiastic about something but you knew you had to show appreciation so you gave half-hearted applause or a cheer?

When we are  really grateful for something it’s because we understand the impact it has or the difference it will make for us or someone else.

When I think about the full impact of all God has done and His love for us, it is hard to believe that there are times when I don’t praise Him with my whole heart.

Maybe I’m tired.  Maybe I’m unfocused.  Maybe I’m forgetful.  Maybe I’m walking by my momentary feelings rather than what I know to be true.  But it’s true.  I blow it!

Will you join me in recommitting to “praise You, O Lord, with my whole heart,” as it says in Psalm 9:1? Will you commit to telling others what God has done, rather than keeping it to yourself?

His marvelous works and wonderful deeds are worth showing and telling!

Read Full Post »

The Most High

Remember the process of picking out your child’s name?  Finding just the right one is fun and important.  After all, they are stuck with it and the generations that follow will trace their roots back based on it.

Today’s verse is Psalm 7:17: “I will give to the Lord the thanks due to His rightness and justice, and I will sing praise to the name of the Lord Most High.” (Amplified)

Why Most High?  The answer seems obvious, but lets unpack it a little.

In other versions the word for rightness and justice is righteousness.  I don’t know about you but that word conjures up pictures of perfection and feelings of unattainably. The word righteousness in the Hebrew means moral and legal right, equity, and that which is all together.  No wonder that seems unattainable.

Of course, we aren’t righteous in ourselves, but we have inherited it as children of God.  Our God is truly the Most High!  There is no other who is absolutely righteous and has moral and legal authority to administer true justice.  Nothing or no one else can be considered all together or completely complete.

Gratefully,  Jesus came, lived, died, and was resurrected, our connection to God’s righteousness and justice is firmly in place.  If God’s brand of righteousness and justice depended solely on what we did, we would be doomed.

I could not begin to explain God’s rightness or justice.  All I know is His character is consistent and He does not change.  He is all good.  He hates injustice and his view of justice is beyond anything we can comprehend.

Like most if not all of us,  I’ve experienced injustice. Other than sharing the details, the best way I can define injustice is it takes place anytime someone is in a situation when their character and who they are is falsely attacked.  Injustice is when someone’s identity is compromised or life adversely affected by someone else’s decision or action.

Today I am so grateful that I am the recipient of God’s righteousness and justice.  Everything I have and all He brings to me is because of His “rightness.”  His justice is in full force in my life because regardless of what comes my way, He will work it for my good and eventually bring true justice to pass.

The profound nature of God is absolutely above what words can express.  Since I have been truly blessed with God’s righteousness and justice, I would be remiss if I didn’t live in God’s character and help bring justice into unjust situations.

How has your life changed because of the Most High God?

What could you do this season to bring  rightness and justice on the earth?

Read Full Post »

I’m Covered!

I love this season!  There are lights everywhere, and music in the air.  Most people are in high spirits as they anticipate family, friends, and gifts.

Most of us wish we could bottle the joy of the holiday season to last the whole year.  When times are tough or we face difficult situations, we could open our bottle and find relief.

As Christ followers we have so much to be thankful for, one of which is the refuge, defense, and covering of God over us.  I experienced how deep and precious this gift is several years ago when we went through the most traumatic thing we’d ever faced.

It was one of those times when there was nothing we could do but walk ahead one step at a time and put our trust and run to God. It was a season of injustice, suffering, and uncertainty.  During this time, we continued to go to Jesus and even when things were not working out the way we envisioned we knew He was there.

I’m still amazed when I look back on that time and see how much he covered us with His love, His grace, and His defense.  It was as if  there was a literal shield around us that caused the arrows to bounce off and fall to the floor.  Though we shed many tears our spirits were still high and we could still find things to celebrate and be joyful about.

“Let all those who take refuge and put their trust in You rejoice, let them ever sing and shout for joy, because You make a covering over them and defend them; let those also who love Your name be joyful in You and be in high spirits.” Psalm 5:11 (Amplified)

When and if you go through a difficult season it’s possible to have high spirits and be thankful.  And why wouldn’t we when we know that Jesus has made a covering for us to protect us? We’ll face difficulties, attacks from men, and challenges but we are promised that those things will not prosper and that God will cover us and see us through it!

 

Read Full Post »

For Others

Today on our Virtual Thanksgiving Feast we’ll focus on giving thanks for others.

I Thessalonians 3:9 and I Timothy 2:1 both speak to the importance of prayer and thanksgiving being offered for others.

In, 1 Thessalonians Paul talks offering thanksgiving for the joy and delight he is experiencing because of the church and his  ministry with the people, perfecting their faith.

There are people in all our lives that we influence and minister to.  Our families, our neighbors, our communities, etc.

Timothy admonishes us to pray, intercede, and give thanks for all men, including those in governmental leadership.

When we give thanks for them, it can be so much more than the mere mention of their name before God.   There have been times when instead of focusing on what I didn’t like about someone, I recounted the gifts and good things I saw in them before God. As I thanked God for them I began to bless them and declare that God’s work in them would be complete.  When I’ve done that, my own attitude and perception of them improves dramatically.  Sometimes I’ve even seen an immediate change in them.

Thanksgiving is a powerful weapon for change.  How many times have we complained or spoken badly of the president, some ruler in the world, or someone in authority?  I know I have!  And it has done nothing to improve the situation.  Instead I just feel frustrated, upset, and sometimes even fearful about the future.

Timothy gives us the benefit of giving thanks for all men.  “that we might lead a quiet and peaceable life in all godliness and reverence.” Giving thanks for those in leadership in this country, along with our prayers and intercession can change the course and bring the blessing of God to the people.  We can also give thanks for God’s kingdom plan for all the nations of the world and declare His goodness and faithfulness over it.  Part of thanksgiving is offering ourselves in service.  If we serve because we are grateful to live in a land like ours, we will have influence because men will see our good works and thank God as well.

I hope you’ll join us today as we give thanks for those in our lives and for our leaders.  Let me be the first to thank God for you and the opportunity to encourage you in life, faith, and your calling!

Read Full Post »

Exchange Anxiety

The holiday season is so magical.  All the festivities, beautiful lights, music, and decor can bring so much joy and excitement.  But for some, probably most of us, it can be very stressful.

This isn’t the only time of year that causes anxiety in our lives.  Today’s economy has given many people something to fret about.  Unemployment, round the clock bad news reports, and uncertainty about the world’s future has struck a lot of fear in people’s hearts.

Philippians 4:5 is familiar to most believers.  “Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petitition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God.”  (Amplified)

We will always have cares and concerns in this life.  The good news is that we don’t have to let anxiousness and worry consume us.  God listens when we bring our prayers and requests to Him with a thankful heart.

Thanksgiving is a key component of getting rid of worry because an attitude of gratitude creates expectancy.

How?

When we are thankful we are acknowledging the goodness of God which reinforces our belief that God is good! When we believe God is good, we expect good things from Him.  When we expect God to do good things, our faith is strong and our hearts and hands are open to receive.

Thanksgiving is not just the words thank you.  It is a recounting of what God has done and who He is and what He has promised.

When we count the blessings of God today’s concerns will fade.  He has met our needs before and will do so again.  He is Jehovah Jireh, our provider.  That is His name and His character and He does not change.

God doesn’t always say yes or work things out the way we imagined or wanted but HE ALWAYS WORKS THINGS FOR OUR GOOD.  He is for us! And if God is for us, what are we anxious about? When worry consumes us and keeps us from moving forward we can be sure those feelings are rooted in wrong beliefs about God which cause us to not trust Him.

What are you anxious about?  What do you have to be thankful for?  What could happen if you let go of your worries by asking God for what you need with a grateful heart?

The best gift you could give yourself and those around you this season is to exchange your worries for thankfulness.

Read Full Post »

All You Gotta Do Is Call

Psalm 116:17:  “I will offer to You the sacrifice of thanksgiving and will call on the name of the Lord.”

 

VTF, Day 14–Today I am thankful for being able to call on Jesus.  There is not much else to say because this song says it all.  He’s always there.  He’s all powerful.  He is the source of all we need.

All things are possible when we call on Him!

Read Full Post »

Shout and Sing

When is the last time you cheered out loud for your favorite team or reality show star?  Or sang a song to someone telling them how special they are to you?

I have one of those natural cheer leader personalities.  Watching sports is boring if I can’t cheer vocally for my favorite team. My husband on the other hand, though a sports enthusiast, can sit for hours watching a game and never say much.   A few times I think I’ve embarrassed him with my enthusiasm.

I know every one is not like me, but I gotta say if you’ve never given a shout for joy or sang a song from the depth of your soul, you are missing out.  You can do it in private if you are more comfortable but I urge you to try it, just once.

Psalm 107:22 says, “And let them sacrifice the sacrifices of thanksgiving and rehearse His deeds with shouts of joy and singing.”  (Amplified)

What has God done in your life that is worth a shout of joy or a song?

There is something that happens down deep in our soul and spirit when we declare something with emotion.  I’ve never researched it from a scientific perspective but I’ve experienced it.  Not only is it a way of expressing pleasure and joy, I’ve felt the release of joy throughout my entire body when I’ve enthusiastically praised or declared God’s work.

Try it for yourself.  Think about something God has done for you.  What has it showed you about God–His faithfulness, His goodness, His loving kindness, His mercy, His provision?

You will probably feel silly but just try shouting, “God I declare that you are ____________!”  Fill in the blank with an attribute of His character that you have experienced.    Do it a few more times as enthusiastically as you can.  Notice what happens on inside.

Like laughter, shouting and singing for joy is good for the soul. And whenever we declare something out loud it stamps it in our brains.  We are in effect making the record permanent.

This reminds me it’s been awhile since I’ve spent some time singing before the Lord.  Will you join me in laying aside a few minutes right now to sing and shout to the Lord who is above all others worthy of our praise?

Read Full Post »

« Newer Posts - Older Posts »