McGuffey’s 6th Grade Reader – God Is Everywhere

Lee, at leesbirdbb4kids.com, shares a great poem by Joseph Hutton. This piece expresses such majesty and beauty: this is the kind of writing I could wish to emulate.

Birds of the Bible For Kids

Rainbow Across Yellowstone Lake ©David Grimes

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth.” (Genesis 1:1 KJV)

XXXVII. GOD IS EVERYWHERE. (161)

   Oh! show me where is He,
The high and holy One,
To whom thou bend’st the knee,
And prayest, “Thy will be done!”
I hear thy song of praise,
And lo! no form is near:
Thine eyes I see thee raise,
But where doth God appear?
Oh! teach me who is God, and where his glories shine,
That I may kneel and pray, and call thy Father mine.

   “Gaze on that arch above:
The glittering vault admire.
Who taught those orbs to move?
Who lit their ceaseless fire?
Who guides the moon to run
In silence through the skies?
Who bids that dawning sun
In strength and beauty rise?
There view immensity! behold! my God is there:
The sun, the moon, the stars, his majesty declare.

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Breast Cancer Information Links

There is a webinar coming up concerning breast cancer. I got this notification from Dr. Eric Zelinski, the “essential oils guru:” https://naturallivingfamily.com/hope-for-breast-cancer/

And (not a webinar, but another natural health site dedicated to breast and ovarian cancer) from Dr. Josh Axe (his mother went through breast cancer twice): https://uniteforher.org/

I will mention that both these natural health doctors do not support the pharmacies behind the October Breast Cancer Awareness campaign, as they are based on toxic measures and too often do not consider diet changes and natural paths to health.

From Dr. Z’s newsletter, regarding the webinar:

Most doctors are only trained in (and therefore only comfortable) following the medical “standard of care” (chemo, radiation, surgery, immunotherapy) without even considering customizing an integrative approach for their patients that uses an “outside the box” approach.

But… there are options.

That is why it’s SO important to hear from the people who have made choices; who’ve taken decisions and seen the impact of those choices and decisions in their fight against cancer.

Forgive Yourself? Rethinking It

ForgiveYourselfRethinkingIt

I sometimes hear or read of the notion of forgiving yourself: “You need to forgive yourself.” “I need to forgive myself.” And it rattles me – shakes my core, unsettles my spirit. I kept wondering why it bothered me so. I searched Scripture, and found my answer.

The words, the concept, the idea of forgiving yourself is not in Scripture. It is nowhere mentioned in God’s Word that we should or need to forgive ourselves.

God’s Word is our guide. If it’s not in there, there’s good reason. In Revelation 22.18, 19, John admonishes us not to add to or take away from God’s Word.

God’s Word carries power; human words do not.

God’s Way works, ours does not. He will not give resources to do that which is not His will. If God does not tell us to do something, He will not provide the strength, the time, the peace, the joy, the comfort, the venue, or the closure to do it.

Forgiving yourself – where does this come from? Do people mean to forgive themselves as they forgive others? Again, God did not direct us to do this. Forgiving others is crucial: we do not forgive their sin (only God can do that), we simply acknowledge that their sin (against us or against someone else) is between them and God, and God will handle consequences. We are to give that over to God and recognize that we are in the same boat as the sinner; but it is not our sin, and doesn’t belong to us.

Maybe it’s just verbiage. Maybe folks, when they talk about forgiving oneself, really mean accepting God’s forgiveness. Maybe I’m being a stickler about what God says: I want to be clear to myself and others, and speak only what God says. If I am to speak to others about God and His ways, I want to be sure to use His Words.

Forgiving yourself: it concerns me that there’s a subtle connotation that forgiveness from God isn’t enough – that we need to complete it somehow. It scares me to think that people might believe that they need to do anything else than what God has done for them; that we need to improve what God said;  that there’s a way they can talk themselves into being okay.

We’re not okay. We are all sinners. We do awful things. Really awful.

Do not expect that you can live a clean life – you can’t. You will sin

  • Psalms 14.3 They are all gone aside, they are alltogether become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one.
  • Romans 3.23 For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God.
  • 1 John 1.8 If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us.

We need to take each sin before God and confess and repent. Then God forgives. (1John 1.9 If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.)

Look up those great men who have sinned and bowed themselves before God, and received pardon – none have any mention of “forgiving themselves.”

  • Moses – murder, disobedience to God’s command
  • Aaron – building the golden calf
  • David – adultery, murder, disobedience to God’s command
  • Peter – denied Jesus
  • Paul (who was good at debasing himself, but only telling it like it is: Phil 3.13, 14; 2Cor 12.2-4; Eph 3.8) – stood by at the murder of Stephen, rounded up Christians for persecution
  • Isaiah 6.5 Then I said: “Woe is me, for I am ruined, because I am a man of unclean lips dwelling among a people of unclean lips; for my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of Hosts.”

All received forgiveness from God, and exulted in His peace.

Before God, they all recognized their human, fleshly sinfulness, as they ought to have done. It’s who we are, and it is right for us to acknowledge our faults.

The whole idea of forgiveness (God forgiving you) is finding peace with God.

Important note: Jesus is our peace. Finding peace with God can only be done through Jesus Christ. Have you claimed Jesus as your Savior?

What sin?

So I gossiped. Does that make me a bad person? Yes. Yes, it does.

James 2.10  For whosoever shall keep the whole law, and yet offend in one point, he is guilty of all

Murder? Matthew 5.21, 22 Ye have heard that it was said by them of old time, Thou shalt not kill; and whosoever shall kill shall be in danger of the judgment: But I say unto you, That whosoever is angry with his brother without a cause shall be in danger of the judgment: and whosoever shall say to his brother, Raca, shall be in danger of the council: but whosoever shall say, Thou fool, shall be in danger of hell fire.

Adultery? Matthew 5.28 But I say unto you, That whosoever looketh on a woman to lust after her hath committed adultery with her already in his heart.

Stealing? – a pencil, money, someone’s reputation or moment or joy or virtue?

Maybe you try to excuse your sin. Or maybe you think it was so bad you can never be forgiven. “Oh, but what I did was awful. It was worse than anyone ever did. I’m a horrible person.” First, yes, you’re a horrible person. I’m a horrible person. Everyone is. You are no different than others. Romans 7.18 For I know that in me (that is, in my flesh,) dwelleth no good thing: for to will is present with me; but how to perform that which is good I find not. No good thing in my flesh refers to all people.

Sin is not something that we compare to other people. None of us can say that we did anything worse than anyone else. That’s human thinking. God is our plumb line, and it is against His law, His morality, His purity, His holiness, that we sin.

You have sinned. Anyone who is reading this: you have sinned.

Romans 3.10 As it is written, There is none righteous, no, not one.

It was your sin that put Jesus up on the cross, it was for you He died.

Think you can’t get over your sin? You’re not supposed to. You can’t handle this by yourself. Only God can forgive sin (In Mark 2.7, The Pharisees knew that only God can forgive sin: “Who can forgive sins but God alone?” Jesus replied (v 10), But so that you may know that the Son of Man has authority on earth to forgive sins...”)

Receive the gifts God offers so abundantly. He offers forgiveness, and you can live a joyous, loving life through the power of His Holy Spirit.

Steps to being cleansed from all unrighteousness, and to living in joyous freedom:

  1. Own your sin
    1. Confess that you sinned.
    2. Specifically name your sin (I stole ____. I murdered ____. I fell in love with a married man, and we had an affair. I gossiped about someone, and ruined a reputation.)
    3. If you can, name the root of your sin. (I was greedy. I was selfish. I wanted power. I was prideful. I was jealous. I was playing God.)
    4. Own that you are responsible for your sin. No one else controls your thoughts, your actions, your emotions, your speech, your will. You always have a choice. You chose sin. Take responsibility.
    5. It will help if you can find a Bible verse that specifies your sin. The Ten Commandments, found in Exodus Chapter 20 and Deuteronomy Chapter 5, are a good place to start.
  2. Confess that you are unrighteous before a righteous God.
    1. Humble yourself.
    2. Acknowledge that you can do nothing to cover up or erase or justify your sin. You stand naked before an all-seeing God. (Hebrews 4.13 And there is no creature hidden from His sight, but all things are naked and open to the eyes of Him to whom we must give)
    3. Acknowledge that your sin is deserving of death. Acknowledge that your sin, indeed, is already killing you.
    4. Acknowledge your need for God Almighty. Bow before Him.
      1. It often helps to place yourself in a position of subservience (physically bow, kneel, or prostrate yourself on the ground), evidence to yourself that you are humbling your heart and baring your soul to God. (Revelation 1.17 When I saw Him, I fell at His feet like a dead man. But He placed His right hand on me and said, “Do not be afraid. I am the First and the Last)
  3. Cry to God for mercy through the blood of His Son, Jesus Christ.
    1. Claim God’s promise: He sent His Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Yes, for YOUR sins. You are no different, no exception to anyone else.
    2. Acknowledge that you are eligible for redemption.
      1. 1 John 4.14 And we have seen and do testify that the Father sent the Son to be the Saviour of the world.
      2. John 3.16 For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.
      3. Romans 3.25 Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past, through the forbearance of God;
      4. 1 John 2.2 And he is the propitiation for our sins: and not for ours only, but also for the sins of the whole world.
      5. 1 John 4.10 Herein is love, not that we loved God, but that he loved us, and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins.
      6. Psalms 130. 3, 4 If You, O LORD, kept track of iniquities, then who, O Lord, could stand? But with You there is forgiveness, so that You may be feared.
      7. Romans 3.22 Even the righteousness of God which is by faith of Jesus Christ unto all and upon all them that believe: for there is no difference
  1. Receive God’s forgiveness
    1. Do not fall into unbelief: do not think that it can’t be true, that you are an exception. Really, truly, this is God’s unadulterated, pure promise to you. You are allowed, encouraged, to receive this gift.
      1. Isaiah 44.22 I have blotted out your transgressions like a cloud, and your sins like a mist. Return to Me, for I have redeemed you.
      2. Zephaniah 3.17 The LORD your God is among you; He is mighty to save. He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you with His love; He will rejoice over you with singing.
    2. Base your condition of forgiveness on God’s Word, not on your feelings.
      1. This is a big one: DO NOT BASE YOUR FORGIVENESS ON HOW YOU FEEL. Base your forgiveness on the truth of God’s Word. If your feelings tell you that you are not forgiven, then your feelings are lies that you must rebuke.
        1. Jeremiah 17.9 The heart is deceitful above all things, And desperately wicked; Who can know it?
    3. If doubts assail you, return to the truth of God’s Word. He will never let you down, He will never leave you nor forsake you. Deuteronomy 31.8 And the LORD, he it is that doth go before thee; he will be with thee, he will not fail thee, neither forsake thee: fear not, neither be dismayed.
  2. Don’t beat yourself up.
    1. Don’t pick it back up. If God removed your sin as far as the east is from the west, you have no business going after it. King David knew how to sin. He also knew how to access and live in the peace that God offered him through forgiveness.
      1. Psalm 103.8-16: The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.

He will not always chide: neither will he keep his anger for ever.

He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.

For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.

As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.

Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him.

For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.

As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth.

For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more.

(See also Psalm 51.)

2.Do you mourn over your sin? Absolutely! We have regrets. Mourning over consequences of our sin is not the same as continuing to live in it. When we sin, something died. We grieve. Mourning washes over us, strongly at first. But we do not live in mourning for a lifetime. Psalm 30.5, 11, 12 For his anger endureth but a moment; in his favour is life: weeping may endure for a night, but joy cometh in the morning. …Thou hast turned for me my mourning into dancing: thou hast put off my sackcloth, and girded me with gladness; To the end that my glory may sing praise to thee, and not be silent. O LORD my God, I will give thanks unto thee for ever.

3. Do you need to make restitution? If you have stolen something, pay it back. If you have offended someone, ask for their forgiveness. If you lied, confess the truth. If opportunity to make restitution is passed, and no longer available, make your peace with God. All things occur within His timing.

4. When your sin comes back to haunt you, and this is more than mourning, take it to God. Receive His comfort. Read His Words. 1 John 3.20 For if our heart condemn us, God is greater than our heart, and knoweth all things.

5. Romans 8.15 For you did not receive a spirit of slavery that returns you to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”

6. Psalms 69.32 The humble shall see this, and be glad: and your heart shall live that seek God.

7. If Jesus is Lord of your life, make Him Lord: live and believe like He is your Lord. Embrace His truth and walk in His freedom, peace, and joy.

  1. Don’t let Satan pick on you.
    1. In yourself, you have no power over Satan. He is your enemy, and he seeks to destroy you or weaken you.
    2. God has already defeated Satan. God will always be more powerful than you or Satan.
    3. Claim your position as a child of God.
    4. Call upon God to intervene for you. Let Satan know he has nothing on you.
      1. John 10.10 The thief cometh not, but for to steal, and to kill, and to destroy: I am come that they might have life, and that they might have it more abundantly.
      2. Revelation 12.10, 11 And I heard a loud voice saying in heaven, Now is come salvation, and strength, and the kingdom of our God, and the power of his Christ: for the accuser of our brethren is cast down, which accused them before our God day and night. And they overcame him by the blood of the Lamb, and by the word of their testimony; and they loved not their lives unto the death.
      3. 1 Peter 5.8, 9 Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: Whom resist stedfast in the faith, knowing that the same afflictions are accomplished in your brethren that are in the world.
  1. Walk in peace, and share God’s peace with the world.
    1. 1 John 5.4, 5 For whatsoever is born of God overcometh the world: and this is the victory that overcometh the world, even our faith. Who is he that overcometh the world, but he that believeth that Jesus is the Son of God?
    2. 1 Corinthians 15.55-58 O death, where is thy sting? O grave, where is thy victory? The sting of death is sin; and the strength of sin is the law. But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye stedfast, unmoveable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labour is not in vain in the Lord.
    3. Philippians 1.6 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ.
    4. Walk in the freedom that God created for you.
      1. John 8.34-36 Jesus answered them, Verily, verily, I say unto you, Whosoever committeth sin is the servant of sin. And the servant abideth not in the house for ever: but the Son abideth ever. If the Son therefore shall make you free, ye shall be free indeed.

If you feel resistance to repentance because you feel you don’t deserve forgiveness, confess that sin right away! That is the sin of unbelief. Go back and read the verses listed above. And there are a whole bunch more promises God made for YOU in the Bible. Read them!

My prayer for you:

Ephesians 3.14-19 ..I bow my knees before the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I ask that out of the riches of His glory He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. Then you, being rooted and grounded in love, will have power, together with all the saints, to comprehend the length and width and height and depth of His love, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge, that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.

One Year of Maggie’s Blog

Maggie One Year

Well! It’s been one year that I’ve been blogging! In honor of this auspicious occasion, I plan to re-post some of my past writings from the very beginning and up through a few. Here is my first post (and, I believe, my longest):

An Overview: One Approach to Reading the Bible

The Whole Bible:

God says, in 1 Corinthians 2.12-14: Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teacheth, but which the Holy Ghost teacheth; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned.

So, when we read the Bible (God’s Word), we must understand that we cannot discern the meaning of God unless His Holy Spirit reveals it to us. Therefore, the first step in reading the Bible is to pray and ask God to show you what He wants you to understand. It’s like having the Holy Spirit at your shoulder, explaining to you what you read. The Bible is a book we can read at any stage of life, for any purpose. Even when we read the same passages again and again, they take on new meaning, along with the perspectives we morph into as we grow in God’s wisdom. And it’s still all true.

Keep in mind that God is giving us, in His Word, as clear an explanation as is possible for human minds to grasp, even with the Spirit’s guidance. His ways are not our ways. Isaiah 55.8, 9 says, For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith 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. God is always right. If we have a disagreement with Him, we know Who is right, every time. If there’s something that doesn’t sit right with you, ask God about it. He longs to sit with you and reveal Himself. He already knows you intimately; He’d like this relationship to go both ways. God never forces Himself on us. But it pleases Him to no end when we seek Him out, when we mindfully sit with Him to commune (as Mary did in Luke 10). He loves it when we obey the promptings of His Spirit and take heed.

The Old Testament:

God gave us the whole Bible, and says of it in 2 Timothy 3.16, 17: All scripture is given by inspiration of God, and is profitable for doctrine, for reproof, for correction, for instruction in righteousness: That the man of God may be perfect, thoroughly furnished unto all good works.

All Scripture includes the Old Testament, so that means the Old Testament is richly useful for us. Why is the Old Testament still relevant today? Because neither human nature nor God’s nature changes. He remains the same yesterday, today, and tomorrow. Humans will always have the same nature, and we will always need God.

The book of Genesis, all in one book, tells the story of

  • creation
  • God’s power and might and love
  • God’s desire for relationship with man
  • God’s pursuit of man in order to have that relationship
  • man’s inability to live a sinless life
  • man’s inability to seek a relationship with God (because man loves himself first)
  • man’s need for salvation
  • man’s need for God, and a relationship with Him
    • God created us. He knows the hairs on our heads. Before we were knit together in our mother’s womb, He knew us. He had a specific design in mind for each of His children. One part of that design is a desire for intimacy with our Creator. Man may try many and various ways and means to fill that need, that void, but the only thing that fits is God Himself.
    • 1 Chronicles 16.11: Seek the LORD and his strength, seek his face continually.
  • God’s promise to make a way for a holy God to have a relationship with sinful man
  • our unique make-up, the way God created us to long for relationship, to long for meaning, and the way He created us to find joy and peace and meaning
  • our inability to find joy or peace or meaning in our own efforts
  • God’s choices:
    • His chosen people, to show the world what a beautiful thing relationship and obedience to God can look like,
    • and those whom God does not choose – the evil ones who will end up in the pit of fire.

God so loved the world that He created man and woman in order to have a relationship and share His love. He created His beings with the ability to choose: love is not love, of course, if one is programmed for it and unable to choose love. He created angels with this ability, and some chose to be their own gods. He created man and woman (and all people who came after) with this ability, but, alas, none of the people were able to choose God in and of themselves (Psalm 14.1b – 3: They are corrupt, they have done abominable works, there is none that doeth good. The LORD looked down from heaven upon the children of men, to see if there were any that did understand, and seek God. They are all gone aside, they are all together become filthy: there is none that doeth good, no, not one. John 15.5: I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. And Romans 3.23: For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God) While it’s easy to become huffy and counter with our own goodness, God shows us in the Garden of Eden that our goodness is not the same as His goodness. Adam and Eve ate of the fruit of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil. They chose for themselves the ability to make their own plumb lines. They chose to make themselves gods, instead of relying implicitly and completely on God. They willfully turned from obedience to God, and broke the total unity they had with Him. [Just to be clear, we cannot place all the blame for our fallen state upon Adam and Eve, since any of us would have done the same thing (see Psalm 14.1b-3, above). Even with God among us, even with abundant evidence of His goodness and presence and love, even with our created design of desiring Him, we still choose our own way.]

God is a holy god. He will not tolerate sin. He cast Adam and Eve out of the Garden. In His love, He did not allow them to eat of the Tree of Life, for eternity on man’s own terms would be intolerable.

Out of the world, God chose Abraham as the Father of His people. God’s Chosen. This is a picture of what a people look like when God chooses them and showers His blessings on them. He is clear that He is making a covenant with them: He has a plan for their lives, He created them for this plan, and they will find their greatest joy and peace and meaning if they follow this plan. He will bless those who obey Him. God cannot bless disobedience. Even as parents we understand discipline. We do not reward our children for disobedience; we understand what will be good for them, and we nurture them in that direction. We parent imperfectly, but God parents perfectly.

God desired to give all the people of the world a picture of what living with God looks like. Even the pagans understood the power of God and His protection of His people. (Ex, in Joshua 2.9 – 11, Rahab explains the terror all the people have. This is one example of many.) God chose the location of Israel for His people, not only because it was a land flowing with milk and honey, but because it was a crossroads of all civilizations, and His people would be able to spread God abroad from the comfort and safety of their own land.

The Temple in Jerusalem was a physical place where people could come together to worship God Almighty. Because they were human and finite, they needed something they could go to and look at and touch. God gave His people explicit instructions for the construction of the traveling temple (when Moses led the Israelites) and of Solomon’s temple. People needed to have a visual of the awe and majesty of God’s presence. This was just one way God could show us the discrepancy between His holy presence and our sinfulness, and show us our need for Him.

For a long time, Israel lived in abundance and obedience to God. Oftentimes they deviated and went their own way, and God would allow the consequences of their actions to fall on them; He would take away His protection. Then His people would remember Him and return to Him.

But again and again, the Israelites chose their own ways above God. Even though they knew Who God was, knew His power and His love and protection, man always chose evil, always chose to be their own gods (like Lucifer did). God always provided a remnant, though, people whose hearts were knit with God, like David, like the prophets. But the Israelites, God’s chosen people, had fleshly hearts, just like all people that God created.

Because God so loved the world, and because He always did want a relationship with us for eternity, He provided a way, since before the world began, to restore us to Himself permanently.

God represents Himself to us as Three in One. In the Old and New Testaments, God reveals Himself as Father, Son/Word/flesh, and Spirit. His presence as Father / Protector / Provider and Lover of our Souls is prevalent throughout the Old Testament. His presence as The Son / The Word / God Among Us / God in the Flesh is revealed when He sits to eat with Abraham, when He wrestles with Joshua, and other incidences as He manifests Himself in the flesh (foreshadowing His birth and life among the people in the New Testament). And His presence with us as Spirit is oft mentioned when His Spirit rested on David, Saul, the prophets, and others, as well as the Spirit that dwells in believers in the New Testament.

As God the Father, He sent His only Son, Jesus, to be the propitiation for our sins. Sin is what separates us from God, and He so desired one-ness with us that He paid for our sins with the blood of His Son. And, so that we were not left destitute without His personal presence, He sent His Spirit to live within us after Jesus went back to Heaven. This same Spirit comforts us, directs us, convicts us, and pleads before the Father for us.

The New Testament

The angels could not contain themselves. God’s plan for salvation was culminating in Bethlehem, and they rejoiced in praise.

The four Gospels relate the story of Jesus’ life, death, and resurrection. If you’re reading a Bible that provides cross-references, you can trace much of what is happening to Old Testament prophecies.

The Epistles are letters written by various disciples of Jesus, outlining what it means to be saved by grace, and how to walk in that grace; how to receive forgiveness, and how to give it; and how to walk with God and receive the joy that comes with His walk. It teaches us more about God’s love, and gives us a peek into Heaven. As believers, we are God’s chosen people. Again, cross-references trace back to Old Testament passages pointing the way.

*           *           *           *           *

In the Old Testament, God’s chosen people were the Israelites. His chosen location was Israel, and the temple in Jerusalem. Through the Israelites, the world learned about God – they were a living testament for Him; through the Israelites, God sent His Son to be the Savior of the world. In Acts, Jesus commanded us to go and tell the world about Him (Acts 1.8). Also in Acts, God sent His Spirit to live within us (Ch. 2). We are now the temple of God (1 Corinthians 3.16). We are fearfully and wonderfully made to His exact specifications.

*           *           *           *           *

The genius of God’s moral code is that everything He requires of us is for our own good. When we violate His code of life, we suffer harmful consequences. – Quiet Walk, May 1, 2015

But without faith it is impossible to please him: for he that cometh to God must believe that he is, and that he is a rewarder of them that diligently seek him.    Hebrews 11.6

It’s not that God hates us when we disobey Him. It’s that He designed us to be in perfect peace when we walk in His ways; and He loves us so much that He wants us always to walk with Him and have that peace. We cannot walk with Him if we don’t know Him. One way to get to know Him better is to read His Word. Another is to commune with His Holy Spirit. Another is to listen to Godly preaching and teaching of His Word. And another is to congregate with His children, talk about Him, encourage one another.

A Christmas Story: The Man And The Birds

Enjoy this beautiful Christmas story, and the beautiful slide show. Thank you. Lee!

(Click to view the original post to see the video.)

Birds of the Bible For Kids

This is the 1965 recording of Paul Harvey’s Christmas story classic titled The Man and the Birds. Christmas Day in 2013 I spent the morning putting it all together with a picture slideshow to illustrate the story. I hope you enjoy it. Please share with others.Merry Christmas to all, and to all a good night!

“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 KJV)

ABC’s of the Gospel

The Wordless Book

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3-2-1 Quote Me Challenge: Freedom

Stuart, I like this one because it’s quick and easy! Thank you so much for thinking of me to participate in the 3-2-1 Quote Me Challenge.

The Rules Of This Challenge Are As Follows:

• Thank the Selector

• Post 2 quotes for the dedicated topic of the day

• Select 3 bloggers to take part in ‘3.2.1 Quote Me!’

• And give them a topic/word

The topic Stuart gave me was Freedom.

 Thank you again, Stuart. My nominees are

Wendi https://simplychronicallyill.com/

Vickie https://vicklea.com/

Savannah https://rejoicinginhope1212.wordpress.com/

And my word for you is Justice

Note: Although this is the topic for today there is no specific deadline to it, meaning you can answer when you choose; of course, you are under no obligation.  😊

Thanksgiving Tag

ThanksgivingTag

First, a big Thank You to Christy for tagging me for this fun go-around. Please visit Christy’s blog for informative, thought-provoking reading.

I am thankful for…

A – Abba Father, agape love

B – Bountiful love

C – Counting my blessings

D – Delighting in the Lord, and He gives me the desires of my heart

E – Edification of the saints

F – Father, I adore You, You offer forgiveness freely

G – Going to Heaven some day

H – Holy, holy, holy is our Lord God Almighty

I – In Christ is our righteousness

J – Jesus is my Lord and Savior

K – Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ

L – Loving others, even as I am loved

M – Man is like a breath; his days are like a passing shadow.

N – No one comes to the Father but by the Son

O – One God and Father

P – Perfect love, perfect salvation

Q – Quieting my heart before my Lord

R – Resting in His love

S – Satisfying my soul in Christ

T – Taking all He has to give me

U – Unquenchable fire of God’s anger

V – Variety of spiritual gifts

W – Winnowing of the wheat from the chaff

X – eXceptional grace and mercy from our Lord

Y – Yea, Lord we greet Thee

Z – Zealously pursuing God

This Tag was started by Moon Child Nova

RULES:

List your thankful ABC.

Add one theme clip art to your post.

Tag 3 people you hope would participate.

I tag Stuart, Ana, and Amy 😊

Awesome Impact

awesome impact award

Thanks, Stuart, for the nomination! I think you’re pretty awesome.

This award was created by Rad Gamer as a means for us to share a special moment in our lives that impacted us in a positive manner

The Rules —

  1. Tag the person who nominated you.
  2. Take “The Awesome Impact Award” Picture and add that in your post.
  3. Talk about an incident that impacted your life in a really positive way.
  4. Nominate 10 other awesome bloggers for this award.

The Mead Family in Gladwin, Michigan had an awesome impact on my life. The patriarch and matriarch, Bill & Pat Mead, raised 10 kids in the Lord. Dave Mead married Beulah, and Beulah is my very best friend in the whole world. God intersected our lives when I was a new Christian (in fact, God used Pat & Bill Mead to bring me to Himself). I studied under Dave and Beulah, and my friendship with Beulah was ordained and blessed by our Lord. They had an enormous influence on my growth in Christ. They infused me with His truth, the importance of reading God’s Word, of rightly dividing God’s Word (using God’s Word to interpret), the importance of a clean conscience, confession, and forgiveness. They live what they preach, are living examples of Jesus’ love and compassion.

Pat has gone on to be with her Heavenly Father. Bill, God bless you.

Thank you, Dave and Beulah! I love you.

Dave and Beulah Jan 2015

A Humble Heart

James 4.10: Humble yourselves in the sight of the Lord, and he shall lift you up.

In 2 Kings 5, a man named Naaman, “captain of the host of the king of Syria,” had leprosy. Even while struggling with this health (and social) issue, he was a mighty servant of his king. When Naaman heard about a prophet in Israel who could cure him, he asked permission of his king to go and be healed. His king obviously regarded him highly, as he told him to go to, and sent with him silver, gold, and fine raiment with which to pay.

When Naaman found the prophet, he had high expectations. Naaman, even with a humbling health issue, thought himself worthy of great honor. He figured the great prophet would come out and call down power from his god above, and Naaman would be miraculously and stupendously healed – and he would have a great story to spread abroad about how important he was.

1 Samuel 16.7 …  for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.

Lord looks on the heart

But God knows the heart of man, and He knew the heart of this man, Naaman.

Instead Elisha, the prophet, sent his servant to deliver the instructions to Naaman: “Go and wash in Jordan seven times, and thy flesh shall come again to thee, and thou shalt be clean.”

Naaman was quite put out. He wanted nothing to do with a puny servant, he was important enough that the great prophet himself should come to him, he had brought awesome gifts to give for his healing, and that old Jordan was icky, anyway.

God must have given Naaman’s servant an inkling of the potential meekness in his master’s heart, for he begged of Naaman to reconsider. Surely Naaman would have done some mighty act of courage to clear his leprosy; he might as well do this simple thing.

Even if Naaman went into the Jordan with a stiff neck, God blessed him. God not only cleansed him from his leprosy, He also scoured out his pride. Naaman returned to Elisha’s house a changed man. He humbled himself. He acknowledged the Lord God as God of all the earth, he vowed to serve only the Lord God, and begged pardon for instances when he would have to bow with his master in the house of Rimmon.

God does not ask hard things of us. He asks obedience, and He blesses abundantly. Humble yourself, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, and see what He does.