This is actually one of my favorite places on the island, to sit and meditate as the bright afternoon sun begins its setting trek to the west. I took this picture right after a little rain shower, just as the sunshine crystallized through a drop of water on the palm.
Do you believe prayer changes things?
I mean, do you really believe prayer changes things?
Do you have Faith that when you pray, God is listening, and not only listening, but that He will also answer you?
16 “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest prayer of a righteous person has great power and produces wonderful results.”
Don’t let the broken curves of your life defeat you! Take those twists, turns, breaks, curves, and pieces and let them form the stronger, wiser backbone of the amazing, life-filled person you are capable of being! You can do it!
Then triumph over those scars by putting them to GOOD use! – Use your experience in surviving your scars to help others get through their own broken curves and scars. God can and will help you make something good out of your life, no matter what is in your past, if you let Him.
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them. (Romans 8:28)
Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creature; the old things passed away; behold, new things have come.(2 Corinthians 5:17)
…but I focus on this one thing: Forgetting the past and looking forward to what lies ahead, I press on to reach the end of the race and receive the heavenly prize for which God, through Christ Jesus, is calling us. (Philippians 3:13-14)
Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us, fixing our eyes on Jesus, the pioneer and perfecter of faith. (Hebrews 12:1)
Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom also we have obtained our introduction by faith into this grace in which we stand; and [b]we exult in hope of the glory of God. And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.(Romans 5:1-5)
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.
If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. (James 1:2-6)
Have faith in the One who created you and planned for good things in and from your life – before you were even born! Just believe in Him and ask Him to help you and He will!
Then change your life for the good! I am cheering for you ❤
A beloved Psalm throughout the ages, Psalm 23 speaks of devotion from our Shepherd, peace and rest, and protection.
But do we really understand what these beautiful Words say?
And how do we meaningfully apply them to our lives?
Here is my take on these timelessly beautiful and peaceful Words. The Words in Burgandy are Scripture, with my interpretation and a little humor on how I have been applying – or NOT applying them to my life in green.
The Lord is my shepherd
(when I allow Him to be)
I shall not want.
(even though I do want – lots of things – I will try not to want unreasonably)
He makes me lie down in green pastures;
(even though often I don’t see them)
He leads me beside quiet waters.
(even though I tend to stir them up)
He restores my soul;
(time, after time, after time)
He guides me in the paths of righteousness For His name’s sake.
(This means He guides me when I seek Him. When I forget to seek Him, or ask for His help, more often than not, I end up on the wrong path!)
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death,
(Sorry God, I know that not having enough money for the things I think I need, is not actually the valley of the shadow of death, nor is having shoe and boot envy! – but I get what you mean here.)
I fear no evil, for You are with me;
(I know You are with me, God, but sometimes it’s so hard not to worry or be afraid. Bad things have happened in my life in the past, and I keep being afraid they will happen again. But I will try NOT to worry, and trust more that You know what You are doing.)
Your rod and your staff, they comfort me.
(Yes, God, I have to admit that in probably every tough lessen I have had to learn, I came out better for it. I don’t like tough lessens at all – as a matter of fact, I dread them, but there is comfort in knowing that once through the lesson I will be stronger and a better person for it. And when I let You lead me, my reward is always greater on Your path than my own. Yes, I have learned this.)
You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies;
(Sometimes I don’t get this one – but I know that when I’m around people I don’t know, or those I feel uncomfortable around, or a little scared of – if I just say a quick prayer to You to help me or keep me safe, I always feel reassured. I know from Your Word that You will bless me for my faithfulness and carry me through any danger.)
You have anointed my head with oil;
(and my feet with beautiful shoes)
My cup overflows.
(Yes, Lord, even though I like to “want,” I do realize that I have much more than many, many others. I have a non-leaking, heated and cooled roof over my head; I have a dependable car to get me where I need to go; I have ample and nutritious food in my tummy every day; and I have so much love and support in my life from family and friends – My cup does overflow!
I will be grateful!!
And during those times when the level in my cup begins to lower, yes even when it seems it will dry up – well, somehow just in the nick of time You seem to always fill it back up and then even overflow it again!
I will remember this! I will!)
Surely goodness and lovingkindness (and mercy) will follow me all the days of my life.
(This means God will take care of me, providing for my basic needs and love me forever. This does NOT mean I will always be trouble-free, carefree, or rich! But I promise I will try to remember this and be grateful, even in the tough times.)
And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever.
Thank You, God, that I have Your house and Your presence to dwell in, because I, and my house are sometimes a mess!
Thank You God for the Words You give me – that You give to everyone, to help me – us- make it through each and every day. God, please help me remember to start each day saying “hi” to You, and asking You to walk with me that day, and to be with me, no matter what. Show me who You are in my life, God. Give me faith to believe completely in You, and that You have a pre-made plan for me, because You loved me and formed me, and consecrated me even before I was born. Please help me remember this and be faithful. And in this season of Thanksgiving, please help me see and remember how much I have to be thankful for. I love you God – Amen ❤
Have you ever felt blessed?
Hmmm…consider these Words:
5 1-2 When Jesus saw his ministry drawing huge crowds, he climbed a hillside. Those who were apprenticed to him, the committed, climbed with him. Arriving at a quiet place, he sat down and taught his climbing companions. This is what he said:
3 “You’re blessed when you’re at the end of your rope. With less of you there is more of God and his rule.
4 “You’re blessed when you feel you’ve lost what is most dear to you. Only then can you be embraced by the One most dear to you.
5 “You’re blessed when you’re content with just who you are—no more, no less. That’s the moment you find yourselves proud owners of everything that can’t be bought.
6 “You’re blessed when you’ve worked up a good appetite for God. He’s food and drink in the best meal you’ll ever eat.
7 “You’re blessed when you care. At the moment of being ‘care-full,’ you find yourselves cared for.
8 “You’re blessed when you get your inside world—your mind and heart—put right. Then you can see God in the outside world.
9 “You’re blessed when you can show people how to cooperate instead of compete or fight. That’s when you discover who you really are, and your place in God’s family.
10 “You’re blessed when your commitment to God provokes persecution. The persecution drives you even deeper into God’s kingdom.
11-12 “Not only that—count yourselves blessed every time people put you down or throw you out or speak lies about you to discredit me. What it means is that the truth is too close for comfort and they are uncomfortable. You can be glad when that happens—give a cheer, even!—for though they don’t like it, I do! And all heaven applauds. And know that you are in good company. My prophets and witnesses have always gotten into this kind of trouble. Matthew 5 The Message (MSG)
Wow – these wonderful words tell me that
We all go through persecution of some kind or another.
We just need to choose if it’s for a bad or non-productive cause, or a good and life-changing one.
So, this morning, in contemplation of these verses and words – I feel a little silly and misguided in ever having a pity party. Yes, I get that there will be times when I feel overwhelmed and wonder “why me?” But that’s ok. Because it is those times that I will turn to God and ask Him why?
I will have conversation with God.
And He likes that
Because that is when we have relationship – a 2-way relationship ❤
Instead of me by myself or God by Himself.
Yes, I see that it takes conversation between us – me and God. And my heart being open and willing to hear His leading, and not my own stubborn will. Sometimes that means being empty, broken, harassed, lost, or torn. And if that’s when I find God most intimately and allow myself to feel His presence and love the most – then that’s ok.
Because therein lies my peace, my purpose, my life.
May you each find peace, purpose and an overflowing fountain of life in your day to day living.
And may you feel totally blessed indeed!
Love, peace and joy to you,
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