Dear brothers and sisters,
Good day to you and bless you for coming once more to Heartstrings.
Psalm 31:1-5 says, "In Thee, O Lord, do I put my trust and seek refuge; let me never be put to shame or [have my hope in You] disappointed; deliver me in Your righteousness!
Bow down Your ear to me, deliver me speedily! Be my Rock of refuge, a strong Fortress to save me!
Yes, You are my Rock and my Fortress; therefore for Your names sake lead me and guide me.
Draw me out of the net that they have laid secretly for me, for You are my Strength and my Stronghold.
Into Your hands I commit my spirit; You have redeemed me, O Lord, the God of truth and faithfulness."
I love this! As I watched a couple thousand people gather in a park to worship, I was seeing faces lifted up and hands raised in joyful expression to God...without masks.
The enemy, though near, could not interfere and I believe it is because when we worship with sincere hearts...he can't do anything. Like kryptonite to weaken Superman in the movies; so too is praise to weaken the enemy of our soul! So, let's just Praise the Lord! Everyday with every step.
We have God's unwavering promises. We are equipped with the armor of God. We are strengthened and made mighty warriors for the kingdom of God! The greatest force of action is our worship.
While the world seems to have gone crazy are you hiding in your home? Or, are you boldly proclaiming the Good News of Jesus Christ. Many got saved at the park that day and some went into the river for baptism. I pray that every seed planted will bear much fruit in Jesus name, amen. It is harvest time!
Read verse 19..."Oh, how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear, revere, and worhip You, goodness which You have wrought for those who trust and take refuge in You before the sons of men!"
What truth! We hear fake news everyday. But, we have the Good News, this Gospel to carve into our minds and hearts where nothing and no one can take from us. Are you glad?
More and more we are seeing a line drawn in the sand. There is coming a separation between Light and darkness like never before. Will you stand in the shadows or come out into the Light?
So, today, I pray you will know that the hand of the enemy cannot destroy what God has given. His gift of eternal life through His Son Jesus is our saving grace! Our bodies may die but not our life which is hidden in Christ. Will you put your trust in Jesus today?
I am praying for you. Stand firm and having done all else, bring the instrument of worship with you into the battle. Then, trust the Lord. He is Faithful and True. He is coming again! God bless.
Abundance is...worship when the fight is on
Dear family of God,
Thank you for joining me with Heartstrings. May God's perfect peace be yours today. Will you raise up an offering of praise before the Lord for the great things He has done? I think it a good time to pray.
Father, thank you for going to such extremes to gain my trust in You. I know without the blood of Jesus and without Him rising from the dead, I would be dead. You know how my flesh cries out to be clean before you.
I am so grateful Father, that even in my sin You gave me a way into bountiful blessings and a glorious heritage as Your child. My sins led to death both physically and spiritually. Now, I am free! Thank you Lord for this free gift!
Romans 7:18 says, "I know that nothing good dwells within me, that is, in my flesh. I can will what is right, but I cannot perform it, [I have the intention and urge to do what is right, but no power to carry it out.]"
Romans 8:1 says, "Therefore, [there is] now no condemnation (no adjudging guilty of wrong) for those who are in Christ Jesus, who live[ and] walk not after the dictates of the flesh, but after the dictates of the Spirit."
Romans 8:5-6 says, "...But those who are according to the flesh and are controlled by its unholy desires set their minds on and pursue those things which gratify the flesh, but those who are according to the Spirit and are controlled by the desires of the Spirit set their minds on and seek those things which gratify the [Holy] Spirit."
"Now the mind of the flesh [which is sense and reason without the Holy Spirit] is death [death that comprises all the miseries arising from sin, both here and herafter]. but the mind of the [Holy] Sprit is life and [soul] peace [both now and forever]." AMEN.
When I consider what God's Word says about sin, in regard to being discontent, I realize this too is sin. Why? Because when I am discontent then, my faith is weakened due to not fully trusting God.
Whatever He is working on, it is for our good and His glory. Already this day has turned corners I wasn't anticipating. Would it do any good to grumble? No. Would it do any good to tell God that He needs to recheck my appointments? No, of course not.
God is Holy. He is Righteous and True. We can depend on that! If we have commited our lives to Jesus Christ then, we can be guaranteed that He will accomplish what is best.
Does that mean I understand it all? No. But, I can have that soul peace the Word speaks about regardless of my circumstances. It is worth it to me to bring my mind back to what God says about my life. To rest in who I am through the work of Christ in conquering death.
Last time we met I mentioned Mary and how I believed the Lord was preparing her for the loss and the heartaches to follow. Right now I have a friend who is dying. She loves Jesus. At first I prayed Lord heal her...but He didn't. Then I prayed Lord take her home quickly...but He hasn't. Now, this morning I found myself praying Lord you see her. You know the effect on her family. You will take the best amount of time for the individuals involved. Maybe, others will be saved through this.
It is really something when I think about the changes in myself, my thinking and how I process thoughts in the Light of God's Word. So, I say, "Lord change me and make me more like You. Use the circumstances of my life to complete the work You began in me. I know you are with me and will never leave me."
Are you ready to put your trust in the One Who knows all about you; the path you are on and the ones you will embrace along the way? We leave a mark in their lives. WE either leave a stain of darkness by our example, or we leave a mark of true Light on the flesh of others. Does this make sense to you? I hope I am saying it right. My thoughts are traveling so fast right now.
By my confidence in Christ Jesus, by my trust in Him to take care of all my needs and by staying content with His ways...this is my witness. As I grow in faith, I leave a marked impression for good or evil.
My friend may have hours before she passes on, or she may be gone by the time I am done with writing this. Father knows best. I will be content with His timing. For He is perfect in every way. I do know that the mark my friend left on my life is so very good. I have been changed by her deep love of the Lord.
Romans 8:35 says, "Who shall ever separate us from Christ's love? Shall suffering and affliction and tribulation? Or calamity and distress? Or persecution or hunger or destitution or peril or sword?"
The answer to all our trouble and discontent is found in the Love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Finally and with much prayer I believe Romans 15:13 which says, "May the God of your hope so fill you with all joy and peace in believing [through the experience of your faith] that by the power of the Holy Spirit you may abound and be overflowing (bubbling over) with hope."
Good day to you and God bless you with a contented heart and mind in HIm. In the matchless name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Dear family and friends,
What would be your greatest desire today? In view of all your circumstances, right now, what would it be?
I love the 27th Psalm. David really reveals a tender heart toward God. He is so aware of the Father as his own. He goes through hard times but, he always comes back to that place where his one desire is to have God in the center, his Utmost and Highest.
Last time we met I talked about contentment. I do want to be content. When God becomes our total trust, we humbly accept our portion and our cup as in Psalm 16:5..."The Lord is my chosen and assigned portion, my cup; You hold and maintain my lot."
If I understand the Word right, I am thinking that because this is the day the Lord made, then without worry over tomorrow, I set out to allow HIm to write on the page of my life at this time. Twenty-four hours.
I accept what He has allowed in the past. And I give all my tomorrows to Him. He is truly the loving controller of all things! Giving to Him my all; all of my hours, into His keeping is my worship to Him. This is contentment. Well, I know in my heart it is true. Now to walk it out in faith.
Contentment isn't a woman twiddling her thumbs waiting for someone to knock on her door so she can have tea. It isn't a man sitting in front of a computer screen playing a game; hopeful that he will get a raise at work.
Contentment takes action really. By spending time in God's word and meditating on His goodness, mercy and life. Contentment is to me, waiting to hear the Lord say, "It is time to go see that person sitting alone in the corner of the cafe." From there I know, because I trust Him, that I will know just what to say to her.
To me contentment is trusting the flow of the Holy Spirits leading. Those appointments already set up on God's calendar for us to attend to. Everytime I ask God to make all my appointments for the day, something special happens. It is so freeing to give God my planner and give Him the pen to fill it in at the right times.
Our contentment doesn't depend on people, places, or possessions. We become the rare and beautiful jewel in the hands of the Lord when our hearts are crowned with contentment.
Remember what Jesus told Martha on that busy day? Mary was sititng at the feet of Jesus, listening and totally engrossed in His words. While Martha was running around with a growing, unhealthy attitude because Mary wasn't helping with preparations. What was the one thing that made the difference between the two ladies? Read the story.
Back to Psalm 27:4-6. I believe this is the heart that God desires for us to have on this particular day.
"One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek, inquire for, and [insistently] require; that I may dwell in the house of the Lord [in His presence] all the days of my life, to behold and gaze upon the beauty [the sweet attractiveness and the delightful loveliness] of the Lord and to meditate, consider, and inquire in His temple."
"For in the day of trouble He will hide me in His shelter; in the secret place of His tent will He hide me; He will set me high upon a rock."
"And now shall my head be lifted up above my enemies round about me; in His tent I will offer sacrifices and shouting of joy; I will sing, yes, I will sing praises to the Lord."
This is where we will find fresh life for all seasons! First though, we have to come to that place where we are content for however long the day, to be in His presence. It might not be today that we will see that miracle. It might only be a glimpse of answered prayer. It may well be that there is warfare in the heavens going on for you right now. He is Lord of Peace. He is Lord of the Battle.
The last verse of Psalm 27 says this..."Wait and hope for and expect the Lord; be brave and of good courage and let your heart be stout andenduring. Yes, wait for and hope for and expect the Lord."
Our position is to wait. His is to come. We can see by the way the world is going that to have hope in this day and age in our own strength won't get us very far, will it?
Habakkuk 3:17-19 says..."Though the fig tree does not blossom and there is no fruit on the vines, [though] the product of the olive fails and the fields yield no food, though the flock is cut off from the fold and there are no cattle in the stalls,"
"Yet I will rejoice int he Lord; I will exult in the [victorious] God of my salvation!"
"The Lord God is my Strength, my personal bravery, and my invincible army; He makes my feet like hind's feet and will make me to walk [not to stand still in terror, but to walk] and make [spiritual] progress upon my high places [of trouble, suffering, or responsibility]!"
What a picture! I haven't read this before in the Amplified version. I love God's Word! There is so much life for us when we take the time to content ourselves at His feet. To pull away from all the noise and distractions that surround us. Long enough to know without a doubt what our next steps should be.
Marys time at Jesus feet was in preparation for the day of her brothers death. Loss. Pain. A longing that if only Jesus were there Lazarus would not have died. But, Jesus had a deeper lesson for them to learn. What? That Jesus conquers death!
If you believe Jesus is the greatest love of your life then, I suspect you are already taking time with Him daily and often as you can. What I am learning is that no matter what I am called to or responsible for, I can be in touch with the Lord. It only takes one moment to speak His name that is above all others. Worship.
Thank you for spending time here at Heartstrings today. I sincerely hope and pray that as we journey together, our hearts will be one in Christ Jesus around the world. I am praying for you. God bless you in His matchless grace, amen.
Abundance is...He is my One Desire
Welcome friends and family,
It isn't often that I share from my personal journal but maybe, today, it will help someone else. Question. What are you under the influence of?
This morning I needed to go to the store. So much has changed. It really saddens my heart to hear someone speak so negatively. I was verbally attacked in the grocery store...is this the beginning of persecution for us? Such hatred. They are influenced by fearing words. They then, will speak fearing words. It is good to come home again.
The other night I sat to write in my journal and words just poured out from my heart through my pen. Although the subject makes me feel vulnerable I want to honestly just share it. If you will allow me now, here is what I wrote, minus editing.
"August 1...Sabbath Saturday. What kind of crazy person talks about being content when all around her are crazy people wearing masks of confusion & fear?
Well, contentment has been a signpost on much of my journey. A reminder. The what ifs are blown out of proportion like big balloons to bring to a pity party. I want to be content with whatever the Lord allows in my walk with Him.
There are struggles in each of our lives, I know. After 66 plus years of life on this planet it seems they just don't stop showing up alongside of me.
The very place that Jesus should be is beside me...not a spirit of discontent. Or pride or fear. Or pity because I'm thinking the grass is really greener on the other side of the boundaries God has brought me to. I need my Shepherd!
Do I have a sign on my back that reads, all 'friends' allowed? Available at any time?"
I wonder, how are you dealing with the if only disease? Discontentment, we read, began as far back as the Garden. The scenario hasn't changed. Even Jesus was tempted by this in the wilderness.
Remember Martha? She told Jesus, "If only you had been here. Jesus replied, "Did I not tell you that IF you believed, you would see the glory of God?" Ouch...did you hear that balloon pop?
You thought I forgot about the wanderers in the wilderness? God's chosen people. The had the if only disease real bad! They even referred to Egypt as a fond place to remember. Good grief...they were slaves! (Who are you enslaved to)? But, what about the miracles shown there before Pharoah? What about the time God opened the Red Sea for them to walk through? Not to mention, the armies of Pharoah dying that very day!
What is your situation, right now? Are you in pain? Has your spouse been unfaithful? Do you have children running the streets with evil? We all have the if only disease at some point I think.
Where are we to focus? How about starting with Psalm 77. Remember God's ways. His faithfulness. His Holiness.
Verses 11-14 says, "I will [earnestly] recall the deeds of the Lord; yes, I will [earnestly] remember the wonders [You performed for our fathers] of old. I will meditate also upon all Your works and consider all Your [mighty] deeds. Your way, O God, is in the sanctuary [in holiness, away from sin and guilt]. Who is a great God like our God? You are the God who does wonders; You have demonstrated Your power among the peoples."
Wow! This is not rambling is it? This is choosing! Consider, we are given this portion, this circumstance that our faith might be increased. So when our joy is stolen and our hearts become heavy with discontentment, ask God to pop those balloons before a pary happens and you are disabled, under the influence of self pity.
That pity party invitation is to be torn up at the door. Don't even bring it in! Rather, to be content with being uninvited! Oh, I'm speaking life to my own soul today!
After reading all of Psalm 77 did it occur to you that Gods unfailing love vanishes in trouble or does it rise up above it? David began his song having the disease of discontent but soon, charged by his new tune, he remembered what God has done.
That ladies and gentlemen is the key to contentment. Remember the Lord. God bless you and keep you right where He calls you. Letting go of those balloons with raised hands, surrender to God's perfect will. In the matchless name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Abundance is...freedom under His influence
Dear followers of The Way,
Good morning to a new day! My heart is rejoicing with you as we prepare to walk hand in hand with our Shepherd King. Having put on the whole armor of God, we now set out to serve Him. Strengthen another as God makes all our appointments. You are called to be the Bride of Christ.
Jesus is calling us home to Himself. His heart is ready to receive us one by one. He stands at the door and knocks.
My grandmother had a picture I remember so well as a child. It was framed, hanging on the wall of her little chapel. A picture of Jesus standing at the door of a pretty little cottage. His hand raised to knock. There was no door knob for Him to open. It took the person on the inside of the house to open it for Him, before He could enter.
Jesus is a gentleman and lets us decide whether or not to open the door of our hearts and invite Him in. He became the door as He says in John 10:7-9.
"So Jesus said again, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, that I Myself am the Door for the sheep. All others who came [as such] before Me are thieves and robbers, but the [true] sheep did not listen to and obey them. I am the Door; anyone who enters in through Me will be saved (will live). He will come in and he will go out [freely], and will find pasture."
Can you picture this? Someone else is at the door too. Can you guess who? Satan. He skulks in the dark and then just while you are sleeping soundly, he sneaks in. Best to keep that door locked! We live in evil times and yet if we invite the Lord into our heart; our home; our life, will be safe.
Way back in Genesis 4:7 tells us as He did to Cain, "if you do no do well, sin crouches at your door; its desire is for you, but you must master it." Interesting. A far place from the days of the Garden. Since then, we choose Who will be our Master, don't we?
A cry from David's heart in Psalm 141:3 says, "Set a guard, O Lord, before my mouth; keep watch at the door of my lips."
Consider the next verse..."Incline my heart not to submit or consent to any evil thing or to be occupied in deeds of wickedness with men who work iniquity; and let me not eat of their dainties."
I am going to follow this trail and trust the Holy Spirit to speak to us. So, we have gone from the door of our heart to the door of our lips. I think this is important. Whatever occupies our thoughts will turn out to be our works. Whatever we choose to indulge in; the decadence of the world or the Bread of Life, will turn out just as the Bible tells us.
When I invite Jesus to become Master of my house, my body; physically, emotionally and spiritually I am doing well. But, we live in this flesh that gets caught up with the noise of the worlds happenings around us. Especially with all the politics now.
Yet, we are told that to follow Christ is to obey and trust Him explicitly. I keep praying Psalm 139:23..."Search me [throughly], O God, and know my heart! Try me and know my thoughts!"
Tested and tried. I personally don't have fond memories of those words in my own life. But, when I look back and see how the Lord has deepened me through the process, my soul rejoices!
WE do have God's amazing grace. WE do have access into His glorious presence. WE do have unlimited counsel from His Spirit. Jesus was the One Who came to make this possible for us!
While we wait, we find patience a growing fruit. James 5:8-9 speaks of another door. "So you also must be patient. Establish your hearts [strengthen and confirm them in the final certainty], for the coming of the Lord is very near."
"Do not complain, brethren, against one another, so that you [yourselves] may not be judged. Look! The Judge is [already] standing at the very door."
Then in Revelation 3:7-8 says, "And to the angel (messenger) of the assembly of Philadelphia write; these are the words of the Holy One, the True One, He Who has the key of David, Who opens and no one shall shut, Who shuts and no one shall open; I know your [record of] works and what you are doing. See! I have set before you a door wide open which no one is able to shut; I know that you have but little power, and yet you have kept My Word and guarded My message and have not renounced or denied My name."
Glory to God for His wonderful encouragement to our hearts today! Are you encouraged or not? We are the Church. It might be good to take a good look at the door. It only swings one way, at your will. Jesus will not push it forcefully. He only wants to be invited! How about that cup of tea...before it grows cold?
You are in my prayers this weekend. Once again, I covet yours too. We can agree across the miles and understand how much God loves covers us far and wide. I long for the day when we will meet our Lord and King. I long for the day when we too will meet.
Be safe in His arms. Guard what is precious and throw away the worthless. Keep His Word. It is power! Rejoice always! Abide in Him and let His Word abide in you. You will stand! I pray this in the matchless name of Jesus Christ, amen.
Abundance is...Jesus is my Home