Tag Archive | Love

Still Small Voice:

1 Kings 19:11-14 (King James Version) Bible Gateway

11 And he said, Go forth, and stand upon the mount before the Lord. And, behold, the Lord passed by, and a great and strong wind rent the mountains, and brake in pieces the rocks before the Lord; but the Lord was not in the wind: and after the wind an earthquake; but the Lord was not in the earthquake:

12 And after the earthquake a fire; but the Lord was not in the fire: and after the fire a still small voice.

13 And it was so, when Elijah heard it, that he wrapped his face in his mantle, and went out, and stood in the entering in of the cave. And, behold, there came a voice unto him, and said, What doest thou here, Elijah?

Elijah was feeling alone. He was a prophet of God during the reign of an evil King and Queen.

Elijah was not alone. God was with him, and soon, “Elisha” would be a faithful companion.

When I read this verse, I think of ‘the still small voice’ of God, and how He wasn’t in the earthquake, or the great strong wind, or the fire.

Elijah heard that whisper of God, covered his face, and stood at the entrance of the cave he was in.

God asked Elijah what he was doing in the cave?

Then God gave Elijah some specific directions of things he should do.

He would anoint a king and a prophet. He was also told by God that there were 7,000 faithful people who had not bowed their knees to Baal, a false god.

Elijah obeyed God, and did as he was told.

I look for God in the miraculous events, but He is also in the every day events that whisper His presence. New birth, healing, restoration, deliverance, sometimes happen in uneventful ordinary ways over a period of time, unassuming.

The birth of Jesus is an example. He was born in a small stable to people who were not well known, and he chose common fishermen, and men of little renown, to carry His message to the world.

Look for God in the little whispers. Acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.

Thank You, God, for this passage of scripture. Help us to hear Your voice, listen, and follow Your commands. I know there are many people who love You, and I pray for Your protection and encouragement. I pray for Your help, and for Your will to be done. It is an encouragement to know that You are with us, and that You are the director of all men. Your purpose will prevail. Amen.

-Dawn-

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Broken Sea Glass:

mosaics416  Isaiah 53:4,5

Surely he hath borne our griefs, and carried our sorrows: yet we did esteem him stricken, smitten of God, and afflicted.

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.

I am back from a trip to the Pacific Coast, and from my son’s aviation camp.

It was an extraordinary time of reflection, fun, and new experiences.

I was able to walk the beach, enjoy sunsets, take my dog for walks, and look for treasures from the sea, among other things.

I wasn’t aware of ‘sea glass’, before this trip. Sea glass is broken shards of glass that are tossed and turned by the sea. They look ‘frosted’ and their edges are smooth. Their color is usually brought out by the constant abrasion of the sand, sun, and churning of the glass. Cobalt blues, emerald greens, soft whites, browns, and many other colors can be found. Some glass is from rare, old objects, and can be very valuable.

Crafty people make beautiful objects with this glass. Mosaics, mirrors, lights, and concrete are decorated with it.

How can brokenness be so beautiful?

At Communion, broken bread is eaten, in remembrance of the broken body of Jesus. He was ‘broken’ for us. He took our punishment, our sins, our iniquity, and His brokenness brought about something beautiful! — Our salvation and redemption.

Some of us are broken, and it is hard to see the beauty of God’s handiwork in this world. It is very possible that your brokenness is bringing about something very beautiful, and is being used for a greater purpose than you can imagine right now.

Maybe the colors of your tapestry include dark threads of a hard life. Those dark colors are needed, as well as the colorful ones, to bring about the beautiful life that God has planned. Darkness exposes the highlights in a picture. God is a great designer, creator, and builder, and can change brokenness into something beautiful!

Dear God, I thank You that You showed me that brokenness can be beautiful. Many people are broken and wounded, today, and You can sympathize with them, because Jesus was broken, wounded, and bruised too. You raised Jesus from the dead, and He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. He didn’t stay broken. He was resurrected, changed, and made immortal. Even the ugliness of death is made beautiful with Your promise that we will be raised up with Christ. Thank You for hope, comfort, and peace. Thank You for everything. Amen. In the Name of Jesus.

-Dawn-

Photo above is from: http://media.photobucket.com/user/tannalee/media/sea%20glass/mosaics416.jpg.html?filters[term]=sea%20glass&filters[primary]=images&filters[secondary]=videos&sort=1&o=23

Only a Season:

Heavens

My sister took this picture of the sky. I loved the light and color, and the one lone tree. This was a frosty landscape, in the winter, in the Midwestern United States.

I could relate to the tree, barren and cold, standing alone, in the face of the setting sun.

It stands against the harsh winds, and bitter cold. It knows that soon, spring will come. and its leaves will return, and it will be full of life again.

I am waiting for ‘spring’ too. God is preparing a place for His people. He has not abandoned us. As I view His beauty in His creation, I await for that heavenly home.– Heaven!

Like that tree, I have to live in the season I am experiencing, but there is hope and a future awaiting.

Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. 1 Thessalonians 4:17

Dear God, help me to stay focused on You. You will not leave me, nor forsake me. One day, I will be with You. Let me be a light in this world, an ambassador, and a worker, while there is time. Help people to repent and turn to You for salvation and help. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.

-Dawn-

A Christian’s Experience:

Fear none of those things which thou shalt suffer: behold, the devil shall cast some of you into prison, that ye may be tried; and ye shall have tribulation ten days: be thou faithful unto death, and I will give thee a crown of life. Revelation 5:10

These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world. John 16:33

This summer, I took a job at a convenience store, nearby, to earn extra money for my son to go to Missionary Aviation Training Academy.

On Friday, a woman’s car broke down on the freeway ramp, next to our gas station. She had her seven-year-old son with her. Some strong young boys helped push her car off the road into a dirt parking area near our store.

She came to our counter, and asked, with tears, if I knew of a local mechanic? I tried a few phone numbers, but couldn’t get an answer. I told her she could sit down, have a cup of ice water, and I would help her when I had a chance. I waited on customers in-between helping her find someone to look at her car.

A towing company that helped me when I had trouble once, helped her find a roadside mechanic.

This woman was so poor. Her husband was a migrant worker, who picked fruit in an orchard about two-hundred miles from where I live.

She was on her way back from another state, visiting her sick mother.

The family bought this broken down car, a month ago, with hopes that they would have dependable transportation. After the roadside mechanic looked at it, she found out that the car’s intake had been JB-Welded, and that it had given out, and the motor was damaged.

God spoke to me in that store, and told me to offer this woman a ride home.

I told her that I would get off work in the evening, and that I would drive her home. She took me up on the offer, and waited several hours for me to get off work.

Where I live, it is very remote, with limited services. She had the only car that the family owned, and no money, except the gas money she had to make it home. She had no credit cards.

I drove the woman, and her son, home, and the tow truck company, with a Christian who works there, told the woman he would keep her car for free for a week, and tow it to his yard, until they figured out what to do.

The mechanic, who looked like he could be in the movies, with his tan skin, wavy black hair, and sunglasses, was suppose to charge $60 for coming out to look at the car, and only charged her twenty dollars! He also told me after he looked at it, that he hated to see that happen, and it made him sorry that she bought a car that was bound to go out.

He offered to assist her with repairing it, and told her where she could get cheap parts.

She was so thankful! Her concerns about being in a strange place with her young son, were overwhelming. She was heart-broken, tired, and worried.

I got her home about midnight, and she really did live in poverty, exactly where she had stated. Her husband gave me a large bag of Ranier Cherries he had picked that day, to thank me. (I shared some with the towing company owner, and my boss.)

I got home a little after three in the morning, but had a few hours of sleep, before I had to go to work.

While I was writing my devotions, yesterday, my boss called. She advised me that the girls I worked with, didn’t like me helping out this lady, and that I should have just given her the phone book. — Strange thought.– Temperatures in the hundreds, a little seven year old, a woman with no money and no means, in a remote place where she didn’t know anyone? Maybe they could give her a phone book and look the other way, I couldn’t,

Persecution is bound to follow doing what you know is right. The store made money, as I bought seventy dollars in gas, to bring her home, and the job got done. No customers complained about their service, and the woman and her son were safely home.

If you are persecuted for doing the right thing, rejoice! I honestly felt good, even though the young girls refused to even speak to me, yesterday.

I saw a lot of kindness from the people who helped this woman, the boys who pushed her car, the mechanic, the towing company, all of them helped in ‘doing the right thing’. They showed me a slice of beauty and sacrifice in this self-absorbed world.

Dear God, there is so much opportunity in this world to put our faith in action. I pray that you would send workers for the harvest. Thank you for the people who are willing to make sacrifices that make this world a better place. I know that there will be persecution and tribulation in this world, but you have overcome the world! I pray for Your presence and protection and help, and for Your will to be done.

Thank You! In Jesus’s Wonder Name, Amen!

-Dawn-

Who knows that maybe God had me work at this store, for just this reason?

Real Men:

realmenlovejesusCan you imagine being the son of King David? Solomon was David’s son, not only that, but he was the child of Bathsheba. If you remember the story, she was the beautiful woman bathing on a roof top. She was married to Uriah, a great army commander, who was fighting for David’s Kingdom.  While Uriah was away, defending the Kingdom, David ‘took’ Uriah’s wife. Although this happened in secret, God saw. A prophet, Nathan, approached David with a sad story about a lamb that was killed for a rich man’s dinner. David thought that the rich man should be put to death. Nathan told David that the rich man was him. (2 Samuel 12)

David, when he knew that God saw his terrible sin, was so grieved. He repented, fasted, prayed, and refused to be comforted. David suffered the loss of his first baby with Bathsheba.

God used David’s sin for His good purpose though. God’s plan was that Solomon would be King of Israel. There is so much to this story!

When we think we have sinned too much for God’s forgiveness, we can see from the details of the life of David, that God has mercy. His love toward us is so great. David committed adultery. He had Bathsheba’s husband murdered. Real men are sinners. Real men, who have given their lives to Christ, are sinners who have repented and been forgiven by the greatest Father, ever!

Happy Father’s Day!

Proverbs 1 New International Version (NIV)

Purpose and Theme

The proverbs of Solomon son of David, king of Israel:

for gaining wisdom and instruction;
    for understanding words of insight;
for receiving instruction in prudent behavior,
    doing what is right and just and fair;
for giving prudence to those who are simple,[a]
    knowledge and discretion to the young—
let the wise listen and add to their learning,
    and let the discerning get guidance—
for understanding proverbs and parables,
    the sayings and riddles of the wise.[b]

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of knowledge,
    but fools[c] despise wisdom and instruction.

Dear God, thank You that You can use our past mistakes for Your good purpose! Thank You for Your forgiveness and great mercy! In the wonderful name of Jesus! Amen.

-Dawn-

Virtues Contrasted With Vices:

love with action

I have an old King James Bible. At the top of each page is a short phrase that is a summary of what topic is covered. Above Proverbs 10, is the phrase, “Virtues Contrasted With Vices” . Here are a few:

Proverbs 10 Easy-to-Read Version (ERV)

Solomon’s Proverbs

10 These are the proverbs of Solomon:

A wise son makes his father happy; a foolish one makes his mother sad.

Wealth gained by doing wrong will not really help you, but doing right will save you from death.

The Lord takes care of good people and gives them the food they need, but he keeps the wicked from getting what they want.

Lazy hands will make you poor; hard-working hands will make you rich.

A son who works hard while it is harvest time will be successful, but one who sleeps through the harvest is worthless.

People say good things about those who live right, but the words of the wicked only hide their violent plans.

Good people leave memories that bless us, but the wicked are soon forgotten.

The wise accept instruction, but fools argue and bring trouble on themselves.

Honest people can always feel secure, but lying cheaters will be caught.

10 If you fail to speak the truth, trouble will follow. If you speak openly, peace will come.[a]

Solomon, with the wisdom God gave him, communicates to us how we are blessed for doing the right thing.

Then, He tells us what will happen when we act unjustly, lazy, wickedly, and with evil intent. Those unjust actions are met with harsh rewards, like destruction, a short life, broken dreams, and loss of value.

Our actions are important. They affect other people and ourselves. As Christians, we want to make a difference for good.

Dear God, I pray for wisdom, like Solomon, that I might know how to live the right way, in a way that pleases You, and brings You glory. I pray for workers for the harvest. Fill me with Your Holy Spirit, with Your Power, and protect me from the evil one. In Jesus’s Name, Amen.

-Dawn-

Photo from Dr. Johnson Cherrian’s collection of free Christian Graphics.

How Far is Heaven?

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And he shewed me a pure river of water of life, clear as crystal, proceeding out of the throne of God and of the Lamb. In the midst of the street of it, and on either side of the river, was there the tree of life, which bare twelve manner of fruits, and yielded her fruit every month: and the leaves of the tree were for the healing of the nations. And there shall be no more curse: but the throne of God and of the Lamb shall be in it; and his servants shall serve him: and they shall see his face; and his name shall be in their foreheads. And there shall be no night there; and they need no candle, neither light of the sun; for the Lord God giveth them light: and they shall reign for ever and ever. Revelation 22:1-5

This weekend, a little boy, with his aunt, came into the store where I work. He wanted to tell me that our cups for the ‘Freezies’ didn’t have the right lids. When I showed him where the correct lids were, he hugged me and told me about his Grandma dying. He said he wasn’t with her when her brain was bleeding.

At first I was at a loss for what to say, and then, I hugged him back.

I told him that I lost people that I loved too, and said that I believed they were in a better place.

He said, “Do you mean heaven?”

I said, “Yes.”

Then he asked me how far it was to heaven. (He was about four years old.)

I told him that it was near, but yet, pretty far away.  It was near enough for us to talk to God, but too far to see the people we loved. I continued, “But, someday we will get to see them again.”

That seemed to satisfy the little boy, and the aunt thanked me for speaking with him.

This little boy and our conversation has been on my mind ever since. It is heart-breaking to be away from the ones we love, but someday we will be together with them, and with Jesus. We can look forward to His return! Jesus is coming, and His reward is with Him.

We will be raised up, incorruptible, immortal, healthy, whole, happy, and better than we can even imagine!

There will be no more crying, no pain, no sickness, no death! Our heavenly home is being prepared for us, and Jesus will return for us soon!

Thank you, God, for Your forgiveness, mercy, and love. Thank You that Jesus is preparing a place for us, and that You have a room in Your beautiful mansion for all who believe in Your gift of Salvation, — for those who love You, who are called according to Your purpose. Please direct my steps. Keep me from being deceived. Help me to acknowledge You in all my ways! I pray for this little boy, that You would give him comfort and help and guidance. I pray that Your presence would be with him and his family, that You would be a friend closer than a brother, and a help in their time of trouble.  In the Precious Name of Your Son, Jesus, Amen.

-Dawn-