His will

2 Thessalonians 2:11-12  So God will cause them to be greatly deceived, and they will believe these lies.  Then they will be condemned for enjoying evil rather than believing the truth.

I have spent a few days thinking of this scripture, allowing it to tug at my heart.  God would cause them to be greatly deceived?

But God isn’t causing them or anyone to be deceived.  God’s permitting us to be deceived when we want to be.  He’s never going to force His will upon us.

If our desire is to be gods, like a god, then God will allow that.  If our desire is to be God’s children then he will lead us.

He is a God of order and compassion.

trusting

Psalm 100
A psalm. For giving grateful praise.
1Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth.
2Worship the Lord with gladness;
come before him with joyful songs.
3Know that the Lord is God.
It is he who made us, and we are his ;
we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
4Enter his gates with thanksgiving
and his courts with praise;
give thanks to him and praise his name.
5For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.

Reading through 1 Kings 11-13 has given me cause for deeper thought today.  Reading over and over I hear God telling these men what great things He is going to do for them.  He’s making them Kings, securing a kingdom not only for them but for their children as well.  They have nothing to worry about.  This is coming from God.  This is great!

But I don’t see them relying on God, trusting God.  They are getting caught up in power, status, and fear.  Afraid of losing what God has said would be theirs.  Instead of listening to God, obeying Him, giving their hearts to Him, they start relying on themselves to maintain that position of power.  And it’s not pretty.

I think about the times I have done the same.  It’s never turned out good for me.  I’m left with no joy, no calm, no peace.

May every day I look towards God and know that I can put my trust in Him without falling into sin with being impatient, afraid, untrusting.  May my heart always be turned towards God.  Giving thanks to Him.  Praising His name.  Enjoying His faithfulness!

marriage

1 Kings 11:1-3  King Solomon loved many foreign women in addition to Pharaoh’s daughter:  Moabite, Ammonite, Edomite, Sidonian, and Hittite women from the nations that the Lord had told the Israelites about, “Do not intermarry with them, and they must not intermarry with you, because they will turn you away from Me to their gods.”  Solomon was deeply attached to these women and loved them. He had 700 wives who were princesses and 300 concubines, and they turned his heart away from the Lord

My sons and I have been talking about how the people you hang out with and the person you marry can influence your relationship with God.

All three of them have very firm ideas on the type of the woman they want to marry or not marry and when we came to this scripture their hearts were listening and left them thinking.

I have friends who have married someone of a different faith or lack of faith and I have seen their struggles.  Some of them make it work and some don’t.

My thinking is that marriage is hard enough.  My sons see that marriage is messy just like any close relationship they will ever have but I pray they are thoughtful enough to consider this scripture when they consider marriage.

as each day requires

My oldest son came to me yesterday and said that he wished our move would hurry up and come.  Either we move now or we just didn’t move because he didn’t know what to do tomorrow.  I tried to help him understand that we wouldn’t know anything definite for the next few weeks.  But I understand how he feels.  It’s hard to make plans when you just don’t know.

1 Kings 8:54-61  When Solomon finished praying this entire prayer and petition to the Lord, he got up from kneeling before the altar of the Lord, with his hands spread out toward heaven, and he stood and blessed the whole congregation of Israel with a loud voice:  “May the Lord be praised! He has given rest to His people Israel according to all He has said. Not one of all the good promises He made through His servant Moses has failed.  May the Lord our God be with us as He was with our ancestors. May He not abandon us or leave us so that He causes us to be devoted to Him, to walk in all His ways, and to keep His commands, statutes, and ordinances, which He commanded our ancestors.  May my words I have made my petition with before the Lord be near the Lord our God day and night, so that He may uphold His servant’s cause and the cause of His people Israel, as each day requires, and so that all the peoples of the earth may know that Yahweh is God. There is no other!   Let your heart be completely devoted to the Lord our God  to walk in His statutes and to keep His commands, as it is today.”

I love a great blessing!  I love to know that someone is saying good things about me or asking God for good things for me.  My heart also longs to know that God will always be with me and never abandon me or my family.

What made me pause and go yes, today, yes?  Towards the end of verse 59 – 60 “as each day requires”.  The older NIV version reads “according to each day’s need”.   So that all of the heart may know that the Lord is God and there is no other.  That everyone may know that Yahweh is God.  As it is today.

He is going to make sure that I and my family have exactly what we need for today, then tomorrow He’ll take care of tomorrow.  I can trust in that because I know that God is like no other and no one, nothing, will ever be like God.  That means I can live for today.

We are still looking at moving and I do need to make preparations to get ready for this move but I can relax and know that we can plan for just what today requires.  And I can continue to teach my children to relax, as it is today.

baptism

Mark 16:16  Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved,

This morning my middle was baptized!  I couldn’t be happier.  I have watched my young man struggle with his faith, with scripture, with his heart, for over a year.  He wanted to get baptized, I wanted the child to get baptized, but he told me a year ago that his head knew why he needed to get baptized but his heart wasn’t there.

My husband and I have the mindset that we don’t bring it up, we don’t push our faith onto our sons.  We allow them to come to their own faith and when they start asking to be baptized the we will talk about it with them with scriptures.  This is their faith, their decision and we want them to make the decision but when they are ready.

I have to tell you though, it was hard to sit back and watch him go through this struggle.  He deals with pride.  He struggles with accepting help.  I knew if I interfered with his struggle then his faith wouldn’t be his own.  He wouldn’t mature spiritually, either with this decision or with future struggles.  My prayer is for my sons to become men who go after God’s heart.

Today is AWESOME!

i am so mad

I am so mad.

I have watched several people that I love in tears over the past few months.  Feeling like they are tossed aside.  They’ve asked me to not say anything and that is so hard!  I love these people.  They have inspired me.  They have brought me to tears in worship watching their hearts as they praise God.  They have called me higher in my own worship.  I feel like God isn’t protecting them.  I feel like no one who should be overseeing things care.

I did something.  It was juvenile.  My heart is broken not because of what I did, which was trivial but still an act of rage, sin, and won’t change the situations for my brothers and sisters in Christ.  To see the tears, my heart is broken and I want to shout.  I want to pound my fists for them.  But I can’t shout at the person I want to shout at.

I’ve been in tears today.  So mad.  My heart wrenched inside me pleading with God to intervene.

Is the person I’m mad at someone anointed by God?  I don’t know.  I know that I have said that I wouldn’t say anything.  I know it’s not my place to say anything.

My prayer today is for them, those who are hurting.

Romans 12:12 Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

Psalm 81:1-2, 16  Sing for joy to God our strength; out aloud to the God of Jacob!  Begin the music, strike the tambourine, play the melodious harp and lyre….But you would be fed with the finest of wheat; with honey from the rock I would satisfy you.

John 20 (HCSB)

The Empty Tomb
On the first day of the week Mary Magdalene came to the tomb early, while it was still dark. She saw that the stone had been removed from the tomb. So she ran to Simon Peter and to the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said to them, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put Him! ”
At that, Peter and the other disciple went out, heading for the tomb. The two were running together, but the other disciple outran Peter and got to the tomb first. Stooping down, he saw the linen cloths lying there, yet he did not go in. Then, following him, Simon Peter came also. He entered the tomb and saw the linen cloths lying there. The wrapping that had been on His head was not lying with the linen cloths but was folded up in a separate place by itself. The other disciple, who had reached the tomb first, then entered the tomb, saw, and believed. 9For they still did not understand the Scripture that He must rise from the dead. Then the disciples went home again.
 
Mary Magdalene Sees the Risen Lord
But Mary stood outside facing the tomb, crying. As she was crying, she stooped to look into the tomb. She saw two angels in white sitting there, one at the head and one at the feet, where Jesus’ body had been lying. They said to her, “Woman, why are you crying? ”
“Because they’ve taken away my Lord,” she told them, “and I don’t know where they’ve put Him.” Having said this, she turned around and saw Jesus standing there, though she did not know it was Jesus.
“Woman,” Jesus said to her, “why are you crying? Who is it you are looking for? ”
Supposing He was the gardener, she replied, “Sir, if you’ve removed Him, tell me where you’ve put Him, and I will take Him away.”
Jesus said, “Mary.” Turning around, she said to Him in Hebrew, “Rabbouni!” — which means “Teacher.”
“Don’t cling to Me,” Jesus told her, “for I have not yet ascended to the Father. But go to My brothers and tell them that I am ascending to My Father and your Father — to My God and your God.”
Mary Magdalene went and announced to the disciples, “I have seen the Lord! ” And she told them what He had said to her.
 
The Disciples Commissioned
In the evening of that first day of the week, the disciples were gathered together with the doors locked because of their fear of the Jews. Then Jesus came, stood among them, and said to them, “Peace to you! ”
Having said this, He showed them His hands and His side. So the disciples rejoiced when they saw the Lord.
Jesus said to them again, “Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” After saying this, He breathed on them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit. If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”
Thomas Sees and Believes
But one of the Twelve, Thomas (called “Twin”), was not with them when Jesus came. So the other disciples kept telling him, “We have seen the Lord! ”
But he said to them, “If I don’t see the mark of the nails in His hands, put my finger into the mark of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will never believe! ”
After eight days His disciples were indoors again, and Thomas was with them. Even though the doors were locked, Jesus came and stood among them. He said, “Peace to you!”
Then He said to Thomas, “Put your finger here and observe My hands. Reach out your hand and put it into My side. Don’t be an unbeliever, but a believer.”
Thomas responded to Him, “My Lord and my God! ”
Jesus said, “Because you have seen Me, you have believed. Those who believe without seeing are blessed.”
 
The Purpose of This Gospel
Jesus performed many other signs in the presence of His disciples that are not written in this book. But these are written so that you may believe Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of God, and by believing you may have life in His name.