Thursday, August 27, 2009

Blessed Be the Name

Blessed be the name of the Lord, blessed be your glorious name! I am on my way out the door to work and heard this song. What a beautiful thought! Living in an abundant land... streams flowing... everything going great! It is so easy to praise God when things are going great. We know all our blessings come from Him and it is easy to praise God for it.

What about when the darkness closes in? Is it still that easy? Do you still praise God? This morning I am not going to take much time, but I want you to think that even in "the road that is marked with suffering" there is "blessing in the offering!" God is a mighty God!

Yes, maybe he has taken some things from you today.. your job, a loved one, an ideal of the perfect mate... whatever it is! Let's make this vow together today. We are going to sing God's praises today. Let us CHOOSE to say today... blessed be the name of the Lord!

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Why Choose the RIGHT Path?

I've been going through a bit of a pity party lately. It isn't anything new. It is that kind of party you wait to have until no one is available to come. You use all your energy planning, cooking, decorating... knowing full well no one will show up and you are going to be disappointed anyway. Why even throw the party in the first place... maybe it is so you have an EXCUSE to feel bad.

Anyway, things just seem to aggravate me. Nothing seems fair. It seems whether I try to do the right thing or not, something goes wrong and I ALWAYS seem to get hurt through it. I have been here before. Many times. Have you been there? Have you had those times where you just throw your hands up and say, "Why even try?"

The concept of "RIGHT" has really been on my mind lately. Unfortunately we are living in a day and age where "right" is a relative term. We choose the definition of right to be based on our own ideas and perspectives rather than it's true definition of "something true, correct, a fact". I am working on a project at work that is just an amazing grassroots initiative to improve global morality... what a job! But it has really had me thinking about why we choose to do right.

In my struggles lately, I have once again began to question God. "JESUS!!! Why choose to do right when I get hurt either way? If doing what is right feels like this.... I know doing wrong will hurt eventually too.. but at least I can enjoy a few moments of feeling good for a change." I tell the Lord, "I love you God. I want to do what is right. But it just HURTS SO BAD right now."

Now I know, from my past experiences, that doing wrong can feel WONDERFUL in the moment... but I also know the results are often MORE painful than I ever imagined. Have you ever noticed how pain is only an "in the moment" experience? Ladies, think about childbirth. We all know the pain! (Unless of course you had such a good epidural like me that you slept through the entire thing. SIDE NOTE: That was only with one child... I full well know the pain.) Anyway.. in the moment.. the pain is almost unbearable! But the result.. OH THE JOY OF THE RESULT!

I am maybe getting a bit off track today, but what I want you to see is something that God showed me yesterday when reading a VERY familiar scripture. Read Psalm 23. Verse 3 really hit me, "...he leadeth me in paths of righteousness for HIS name's sake." Why do we live a righteous life? Why do we chose what is right... EVEN when the moment of pain seems to great to bear? We do it for HIS name's sake!!! If there were ever a cause to promote, isn't it the name of Jesus? If childbirth is worth it for our own "name's sake".. our children.... then shouldn't we be able to bear this moment of pain for the one who gave His very life for us?

You know.. even Jesus wanted to avoid the pain. He spent hours in prayer, on His face before God, asking to have "this cup taken from me". He even said, "Father, Why have thou forsaken me?" It is okay to have the feelings you are having right now. IF JESUS in His Holiness had feelings like that, then why wouldn't you? BUT.... remember.... the pain is FOR HIS NAME SAKE!!!

(If you are interested in finding out more about choosing RIGHT and living a MORAL life. Look for information on MOMENT FOR MORALITY at Facebook.)

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Back to School... with Plenty to Learn

I don't know about you, but today is the first day back to school for the kids around here. Buses are lighting up the streets with their blue flashing lights and kids are sporting new shoes and crisp uniforms. It is a time for a fresh start for many starting their first day of high school or Kindergarten. Excitement and anticipation seems to fill the air like the humidity before the first spring shower.

As I started a new schedule with the kids this morning, I decided that they aren't the only ones with plenty to learn this year. Those of you following my blog... as sporadic as it has been.. know that consistency is not my strong suit. The 90 day reading challenge pretty much turned into a flop for me. In general, I feel like I let not only myself down, but everyone (or THE one) that actually read.

I am listening to a song as I write called "Daily Bread." The words are saying, "My hands are meant to serve you, my voice to sing your praises." It is time that I learn to let God be my DAILY bread. Obviously you can see from my blog that I have not been letting God's Word be my DAILY bread. I think as my kids start their new schedules and have plenty to learn, I need to learn as well.

Take a few minutes this morning and ask God what it is that you need to learn. There is SO much we just overlook. I have no excuse for not keeping up with at least a regular posting to this ministry blog. I may not do it every day, but there shouldn't be weeks and months between posts. IF this is the ministry God has told me it needs to be, then I need to show up. I would throw a fit if my kids missed turning in an assignment, like I miss my assignments from God.

Think about your daily time with God as well. As you expect your kids to attend classes every day so that they can learn as much as possible to better themselves... how much MORE important is it that we show up to class with God. We need to show up EVERY day to get our daily bread from Him. We need to "study to show ourselves approved"! Maybe reading through the Bible in 90 days is beyond your ability, but it isn't the quantity of the education, but the quality... RIGHT?

As each of us start this new school year, let's try to think of some ways to be more accountable in our own education opportunities. When you ask your kids in the evening if they have finished their homework...HAVE YOU FINISHED YOUR HOMEWORK... time with God? When we expect them to get up in time to have breakfast before they catch the bus... HAVE YOU ATE YOUR DAILY BREAD AND READ GOD'S WORD? Think of the expectations you have on your children... and ponder... WHAT DOES GOD EXPECT OF YOU... and ME?

I have PLENTY to learn... How about you?