Posts Tagged With: Christ Jesus


Shandrivs’kyi Falls Photo by Vovavovk1

Good morning, friend,

Today begins a new week. A fresh week, a fresh start. What are you thankful for this day? How do you begin this day today?

I am so very thankful today to have caught a Matt Redman concert on KLOVE last night as I drove to pick up my son from youth group.

I am thankful for Upwards basketball, HRK basketball and the impact both are having in my children’s lives this year. What a gift.

I am thankful for our church, to see our pews filling, see our children worshipping, my eldest up with me playing his guitar…we, as a church, voted to financially support TWR missionaries Mike and Wendy Lambert yesterday. If you haven’t had a chance to see the work that Mike will be doing in Guam for TWR, please check out his website. The need for Mike is critical. Right now, they have only one engineer working on the equipment that serves a huge audience of nearly two billion people and to work effectively the station should have three technicians. Please be praying.

What I am chewing on today…

a song that I heard for the first time last night by Matt Redman…Mercy. You know I have to share it with you. :)

May I never lose the wonder of Your mercy…

Do I ever just pause and wonder at the amazing depth and beauty of His mercy?

11 As high as the ·sky [heaven] is above the earth,
so great is his ·love [loyalty] for those who ·respect [fear] him [Prov. 1:7].
12 He has taken our ·sins [transgressions] away from us
as far as the east is from west.
13 The Lord has ·mercy [compassion] on those who ·respect [fear] him [Prov. 1:7],
as a father has ·mercy [compassion] on his children. Psalm 103 EXB

What sparks my interest, what motivates me, what keeps me studying are phrases such as we find in these verses in Psalms.

As high as the sky is above the earth (picture that with me) so great is His love…now, I think, we like to stop there. We like to stop with His love. So great is His love. And it is great. It is magnificent. And there are A LOT of verses about His love. Last night, Chuck Swindoll was talking about the reality of hell. Can I just be honest with you and tell you how badly, in the quiet of my house, I wanted to turn off the preacher and turn on worship music? It’s uncomfortable. I don’t like thinking about it. However, if we are going to think about His great love, we also have to think about sharing that great love with those that need to hear it most desperately?

So great is His love for those who respect and fear Him…

7 The reverent and worshipful fear of the Lord is the beginning and the principal and choice part of knowledge [its starting point and its essence]; but fools despise skillful and godly Wisdom, instruction, and discipline. Proverbs 1:7 AMP

So, reverent, worshipful fear of the Lord, starting with an awe of Him, going back to the song that started this whole journey of mercy for me.

I will kneel in the dust, at the foot of the cross, where mercy paid for me.

That’s the start, that’s the beginning, the best part of this knowledge of the Lord that He loves. And the blessings just flow, my friends, we give Him this reverent fear. That’s where we need to be, covered in His dust. Covered in His mercy.

As you begin this day, His compassion, His mercy covers you. Now, who can you show compassion to this day? Who can see the grace and love of the Lord Jesus this day?

Pray on..pray on.


Categories: Bible teaching, Cara thoughts..., Music, Old Testament, Pictures from commons..., Thankfuls | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment


Island Archway on the Great Ocean Road in Victoria, Photo by DAVID ILIFF. License: CC-BY-SA 3.0

Good morning, beloved,

I think my favorite worship/praise/hymns have to be anthems. The songs begin slow, quietly and continue to build and with great feeling and emotion, crescendo. One hymn we taught our children early on, Battle Hymn of the Republic, rings in my ears.

In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me:
As He died to make men holy, let us live to make men free;
[originally …let us die to make men free]
While God is marching on.
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! Glory! Glory! Hallelujah!
Glory! Glory! Hallelujah! While God is marching on. Cyber Hymnal

Anthem: a rousing or uplifting song identified with a particular group, body, or cause. Hmmm, I need to be roused. To be lifted up by the truth, to remember this life, this time is so brief. All of it is a breath…I breathe in and realize I have stopped folding Sparky uniforms. I only have TNT jerseys (and up) to fold and give to children. This day, this family, this is my ministry. This is my day.

And you were dead in the trespasses and sins 2 in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— 3 among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body[a] and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. 4 But[b] God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, 5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved— 6 and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, 7 so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness towards us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, 9 not a result of works, so that no one may boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. Ephesians 2 ESVUK

Rise up, friends. What is before you? Where is your allegiance? His mercy reaches out. His great love calls to you, to me. You were dead. I was dead. Grace reached out. As I type I’m listening to Passion belt out a song. I am inspired, encouraged and moved to trust more, hope more..

Our minds are truly a battlefield. I sing to bring the truth to my mind. I sing to fight feelings. To fight fear, to remember, to state CLEARLY that the Lord Our God is faithful. Never failing. How can I doubt this? How can I wonder at what He is doing? Why do I forget to give thanks?

By grace we have been saved…

Grace…it’s all about Him. It’s not anything we have done. It’s all about what HE has done, is doing, and will continue to do. Save us.

So this day, as you walk through your day, as I walk through my day, let’s remember, it’s grace.

Once and for all times. We believe our God is Jesus. We believe He is Lord. We believe HE has saved us.

The power in His name..


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Good morning, beloved,

Slangkop Lighthouse, near Kommetjie, South Africa. .Photo by Dewet

I received a letter recently. I love receiving letters, handwritten. Isn’t there something just lifting to open the mailbox and receive something other than bills and advertisements? I try keep all my letters. I have a stack of letters in my closet from when I was in college. I remember when I was little being so excited to receive letters from my Grandma. She would send me cute little cards and for certain holidays like Valentine’s day I would get a dollar. That was cool. My brother, when he was very little, sent a card back to my Grandma with a dollar bill for her. He was so thankful for the money she had always sent him so he wanted to return the favor.

Thank you notes, invitations, love letters, newsletters, etc.,  all contain a stated purpose.  Notice, in each, you will find greetings. Maybe a small blessing upon you. Maybe a reminder of what you mean to the writer. As Paul opens his letter to the Ephesians, he begins with his hope for them, for you.

Ephesians 1: 2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Grace (charis), Paul craves for [his] readers the favor (grace) of God…to which all blessings, esp., spiritual are due. (Thayer’s Greek Lexicon, May I just share something with you? I long to know His grace, long to understand the favor bestowed upon me because of Jesus, I long to remember in times of great trial, He is the author of all blessings. Paul craves. Think about the last time you craved something. For me, there are times I crave time alone. Crave some food or dessert. It becomes a center focus. I think more about that craving than anything else. So Paul had a singular mind to guide the beloved to understand the grace extended. I wish I could say I crave things like this. How about you?

Peace (eirēnēof Christianity, the tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and content with its earthly lot, of whatsoever sort that is.

Remember that song, Peace Like A River? I’ve got peace like a river (repeat, repeat, repeat), in my soul. We would sing this with motions, but I don’t know that I ever connected, as a child, with the idea of His peace flowing through me like a river.

Elwy River, Cefn. Photo: Francis Bedford (1816-1894), 1860s.

Can you connect with the idea of His peace? His tranquility. Paul longed for his readers to grasp the peace available.

Ephesians 3: 4 ·If you read what I wrote then [or By reading this], you can see that I truly understand the ·secret [mystery] ·about [or revealed by; or that consists of; L of] ·Christ [or the Messiah].5 ·People [L The sons of men; C a Hebrew way of referring to people] who lived in other ·times[generations] were not told that secret. But now, through the Spirit, God has ·shown [revealed] that secret to his holy apostles and prophets. 6 This is that ·secret [mystery]: that through the ·Good News [Gospel] the Gentiles ·will share with the Jews in God’s blessing [L are co-heirs]. They belong to the same body, and they share together in the promise that God made in Christ Jesus.

Paul was revealing part of the mystery of Christ! Truly! We (the Gentiles, now Jews) share in God’s blessings. We are co-heirs. We are joined together because of the promise in Christ Jesus.

This is why we need to be on the floor praying diligently for our brothers and sisters in Israel.

Ephesians 4: 12 ·Christ gave those gifts to prepare [L …to equip]God’s holy people for the work of serving, to make the body of Christ stronger.

To equip, a fitting or preparing fully. We have been given all we need to encourage one another through serving. And why do we have these gifts? To bring glory to ourselves? Nah, we are to make the body of Christ stronger. Do you get the sense that Paul longs for unity among the believers? Why? I don’t think it is just to encourage and uplift one another, but to be a community that welcomes those who do not know Jesus. People would crave to know the grace and peace that lives in us!

Ephesians 6:19 Also pray for me that when I ·speak [L open my mouth], God will give me words so that I can tell the ·secret [mystery] of the ·Good News [Gospel] ·without fear [confidently; boldly]. 20 ·For this Good News […for which] I am an ambassador in ·prison [L chains; 3:1]. Pray that I will speak ·it [or for him;or in him] ·without fear [boldly; confidently], as I should.

This prayer that Paul asked to be prayed on his behalf? Yea, that needs to be our prayer. That when we open our mouths we will speak the Good News. Boldly.

Bold Peak, in the Chugach Range of Alaska, as seen from a hanging valley below Thunderbird Peak. Photo by Paxson Woelber

We run with endurance the race set before us! Thank God we have the letters of Paul! Thank God Paul was given this gift of letter writing. Each is precious to  our faith and hope. We can hold tight to the promises found in Ephesians and I look forward to continuing to unwrap Ephesians!


278. As I work through this book, I am following a book called Glorious Grace by Lara Williams. So thankful for her guidance.

279. Thankful for time by a lake yesterday with my friend.

280. Thankful that God give beauty for ashes.

Pray on. Pray on.



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A Panoramic View of Florence from Bellosguardo Painting by Thomas Patch (1725 – 1782)

Good morning, beloved!

13 I pray that the God who gives hope will fill you with ·much [L all] joy and peace ·while you trust[because you trust; through your faith] in him. Then your hope will overflow by the power of the Holy Spirit. Romans 15 EXB

I’m going to admit to you, dear reader, that today I need these verses. I need to cling to the God of hope today. I cannot make myself hope and have joy and peace. These promises are found in faith in Him and Him alone. So let’s look at some cross references for these verses from the Blue Letter Bible.

I pray that the God who gives hope…

May ·the patience and encouragement that come from God [Lthe God of patience and encouragement] ·allow you to live in harmony with each other the way Christ Jesus wants [or grant you the same attitude with each other that Christ Jesus had]. Romans 15 EXB

16 The Lord ·will roar like a lion from Jerusalem [L roars from Zion];
his loud voice will thunder from ·that city [L Jerusalem],
and the ·sky [heavens] and the earth will shake.
But the Lord will be a ·safe place [refuge] for his people,
a ·strong place of safety [stronghold] for the ·people [L sons; T children] of Israel. Joel 3 EXB

1 From Paul, an ·apostle [messenger] of Christ Jesus, by the command of God our Savior and Christ Jesus our hope. 1 Timothy 1 EXB

will fill you with ·much [L all] joy and peace ·while you trust[because you trust; through your faith] in him.

 Jesus said, “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. ·Trust [Believe] in God, and ·trust [believe] in me[or You trust/believe in God, trust/believe also in me]. John 14:1 EXB

27 “I leave you peace [C the Greek word for “peace” reflects the Hebrew shalom, a typical Hebrew farewell; but Jesus’ peace, in the sense of wholeness, is also a characteristic of the messianic kingdom]; my peace I give you. I do not give it to you as the world does. So don’t let your hearts be troubled or afraid. John 14 EXB

16 May our Lord Jesus Christ himself and God our Father, who loved us and through his grace gave us eternal ·comfort [encouragement] and a good hope, 17 ·encourage [comfort] you and strengthen you in every good thing you do and say. 2 Thessalonians 2 EXB

Then your hope will overflow by the power of the Holy Spirit.

And ·patience [endurance] produces[tested and proven] character, and [tested and proven] character produces hope. And this hope will never ·disappoint us [let us down; or put us to shame; dishonor us; C honor and shame were among the most important values in first century culture], because God has ·poured out his love to fill our hearts [or flooded our hearts with his love]. He gave us his love through the Holy Spirit, whom God has given to us. Romans 5 EXB

And God can ·give you more blessings than you need [L overflow/abound all grace to you]. Then ·you will always have plenty of everything [L in all things at all times you will have all you need]— ·enough to give to [abounding/overflowing in] every good work. 2 Corinthians 9 EXB

He is sufficient. He is more than enough.

So today, friends, as you face your day, remember, He is enough. He is worth living for, He is still more awesome than we can even imagine.  As trials come today, as encouragement comes..whatever you face today, face it knowing that He is more than enough.

My thankfuls:

220. My church family checking up on me, praying for me and loving me and my family.

221. For children who want to spend time with one another and with us.

222. Thankful for my Dad willing to do whatever he can to help.

Prayers for your Pastor and his wife:

Day 18 Pray that your pastor and his wife will be people of prayer and worship, and that they will lead by example—teaching the congregation how to walk in a close relationship with the Father. (1 Thess. 5:17; Acts 1:14a; Matt. 4:10; Mark 1:35; Luke 22:46) Revive Our Hearts

Pray on. Pray on.


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Separate? No way


Good morning, beloved,

Spruces in Twilight Photo by Axel Kristinsson

Where can you find peace in this day? As I write, I am praying for God to come and dwell. May His Holy Spirit fall fresh on this house. I love remembering these verses:

35 ·Can anything [or Who can] separate us from the love Christ has for us? Can ·troubles [trials; tribulations] or ·problems [distress; hardship] or ·sufferings [persecution] or ·hunger [famine] or ·nakedness [destitution] or danger or ·violent death [L sword]?36 As it is written in the Scriptures:

“For ·you [your sake] we are ·in danger of death [L being put to death] all the time.
·People think we are worth no more than [L We were considered like] sheep ·to be killed [about to be slaughtered;Ps. 44:22].”

37 But in all these things we are completely victorious through ·God [or Christ; L the One] who showed his love for us. 38 Yes, I am ·sure [convinced] that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor ·ruling spirits [or heavenly rulers; or demons; L rulers;T principalities], nothing ·now [in the present], nothing in the future, no ·powers [or spiritual powers/authorities], 39 ·nothing above us [or no powers in the sky], ·nothing below us [or nor powers in the depths], nor ·anything else in the whole world[any created thing] will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8 EXB

Nothing can remove His love for us. Nothing. I know a great lies that Satan likes to tell us. Oh, God could never forgive that. Oh, that sin? No way. You haven’t had a quality time with the Lord? No, don’t even try to come back because it is all about your quiet time with the Lord looking like this, this much time, this time of day.  You are plagued by fear? Yes, God could never forgive, could never love someone like you.

As I type those lies, maybe they are the lies whispered to you. Your lies may sound a little different, but these are the lies that we listen to, we believe and we ingest. Why is it easier to believe the evil one’s lies then believe God’s truth, God’s Word?
Mindy McCready believed the lies of the evil one last night. Her life was plagued by problems, by pain, by sadness. The whispers of the enemy..are powerful. Yet, they are no match for God’s love. I can imagine those last moments…I can imagine what life will be like for her two sweet boys she leaves behind. Anger, depression..
Yet God’s word says we can be completely victorious. Have you faced this? You, I, are loved. Satan’s lies cannot separate us. You may try to build a wall to Jesus but He is there. He is waiting. He is also whispering…
neither death,

The German military cemetery in La Cambe, Normandy. Picture taken in the summer of 2003. The cemetery is the resting place for about 20000 German soldiers. Photo by Bjarki Sigursveinsson.




Nor life,

A two minutes old newborn-baby girl with her midwife in a delivery-room in Jerusalem. Photo by משתמש כבד



















Nothing now! Nothing in the future!  No powers! Nothing above! Nothing below!

Nor anything else in the whole wide world!

His love is..

17 I pray that Christ will ·live [make his home] in your hearts by faith and that your life will be ·strong in love and be built on love[L rooted and grounded in love]. 18 And I pray that you and all ·God’s holy people [T the saints] will have the power to ·understand [comprehend; grasp] the greatness of Christ’s love—how wide and how long and how high and how deep that love is. 19 Christ’s love is ·greater than anyone can ever know [beyond comprehension/knowledge], but I pray that you will be able to know that love. ·Then [L …so that] you can be filled with the fullness of God. Ephesians 3 EXB

How do we do this? How do we grasp? We live in the truth. We hear the whispers of the enemy and we say NO.

We give thanks..

Ann Voskamp, Joy Dare: 3 gifts on paper:

184. Art work by my kids

185. Old valentines found from precious family

186. My Bible that has nearly 10 years of writing…

We pray for others, we focus less on ourselves and more on the hurting world around. We lift up our pastor and his wife!

Pray that your pastor will be a man of prayer and worship, and that he will lead by example—teaching the congregation how to walk in a close relationship with the Father. (1 Thess. 5:17; Acts 1:14a; Matt. 4:10; Mark 1:35; Luke 22:46)

Ask God to provide for the financial needs of your pastor and his family. Pray that your
pastor’s wife will be a wise steward in caring for her family and using funds entrusted to
her care. Pray that her heart will be turned away from selfish gain and worthless things.
(Phil. 4:19; Heb. 13:5; 1 Tim. 6:11; Ps. 37:25; 119:36-37) Revive Our Hearts

We keep His word in our minds to do battle! Notecards. Songs that extol His Word.

Pray on. Pray on.








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Rose Island Suspension Bridge Photo by Vaido Otsar

Good morning, beloved,

I followed Ann Voskamp’s 25 Point Manifesto for Sanity yesterday. It flows so very well with my other routines I have begun. One thing that was an amazing  reminder for me was a lit candle. Here’s her response:

Light a candle first thing in the morning.

So you remember: You are the light that is put on a stand so that it gives light to everyone in the house.

Now, I’m sure you don’t have anyone in your house that bends toward the dramatic. I have no idea where one in my household would view this type of personality. Ahem. One of my blessings woke up grumpy and it deteriorated from this point. I kept looking to the light. Remembering who lives in me and in this grumpy gus. I finally was pushed to the brink and I gave in. I went to hide in my room to calm down. and I remembered our verses we are memorizing. “He does not slander with his tongue…” and “Love is not ·rude [disrespectful], is not ·selfish [self-serving], and ·does not get upset with others [is not easily provoked/angered].”

And I walked back down into the chaos. The child came to me and asked for forgiveness. The frustration broke within me, within my blessing. We began anew, focused on the brightness of the flame. Remembering our verses, we started again.

Luke Manor Park by Valeo Otsar

And God’s peace, which ·is so great we cannot understand it [transcends/surpasses all comprehension], will ·keep [guard]your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

[L Finally; In conclusion; or Now then] Brothers and sisters, ·think about [focus your thoughts on; fill your minds with]things that are true and honorable and ·right [just] and pure and ·beautiful [lovely] and ·respected [commendable]. If there is anything that is ·good [morally excellent] and worthy of praise, ·think about [focus your thoughts on; fill your minds with]these things. Do what you learned and received and heard ·from [L in] me, and what you saw ·me do [L in me]. And the God ·who gives [L of] peace will be with you. (Philippians 4 EXB)

God’s peace. So great…surpasses all comprehension…

Rõuge Parish, Võru County, Estonia. by Valeo Ostar

We were watching an episode of Drive Thru History yesterday and my kids were struck by the costume, outfit of the Roman Soldier..

Roman soldier in lorica segmentata

God’s peace protects, guards, keeps your heart and mind in Christ Jesus. My heart. Your heart. My mind. Your mind. Look at the protection given to this soldier. God’s peace is better. His Son’s blood…gift.

When our minds begin to focus on our rights, (how dare he be human? why can’t she be perfect like me?) we have such a battle! We are in the midst of the battle. Fill our minds. Fill…powerful to remember love. Cry out for His peace.

A girl pouring cold water from a plastic bottle with a blue Clementia

Here’s the list. Fill our minds with:


…· 24become [put on; clothe yourself with] the new ·self [L person; or Man; C become like Christ]. That new person is created ·to be like God [or in God’s image; L according to God]—truly good and holy [or in the righteousness and holiness that comes from truth].

25 So you must stop telling lies. ·Tell each other the truth [L Let each one of you speak truthfully to his neighbor; Zech. 8:16], because we ·all belong to each other in the same body [L are members of one another]. Ephesians 4 EXB


18 Pray for us. We are ·sure [convinced] that we have a clear conscience, ·because [or and] we always want to ·do the right thing [act honorably]. 19 I especially ·beg [urge; exhort] you to pray so that ·God will send me back [L I may be restored] to you soon. Hebrews 13:18 EXB

right [just]:

7 The ·path [way] of life is level for ·those who are right with God [the righteous];
·Lord [or Upright One], you make the way of life ·smooth [straight; level] for those people. Isaiah 26:7


And all who have this hope in ·Christ [L him] keep themselves pure, just as ·Christ [L he] is pure. 1 John 3 EXB

beautiful [lovely]:

1 Corinthians 13

respected [commendable]:

Be wise in the way you ·act with [behave towards] people who are not believers, making the most of every opportunity.When you talk, you should always be ·kind [gracious] and ·pleasant [winsome; engaging; or wholesome; L seasoned with salt] so you will be able to answer everyone in the way you should. Colossians 4 EXB

worthy of praise:

So do not judge before the ·right [appointed] time; wait until the Lord comes. He will bring to light things that are now hidden in darkness, and will make known the secret ·purposes [motives] of people’s hearts. Then God will ·praise[give appropriate commendation to] each one of them. 1 Corinthians 4 EXB

Focus your minds. I think of this picture:

Canal tunnel

Where will your focus be as you travel through the tunnel? Will it be, as you are steering, to look back? To look up? To look to the sides? No way, we need to focus on what is ahead. The light. And as Christians, we place our focus on the Light. Focus on the truth that one day these trials, temptations will be aside and we will be forever in the Light.

My thankfuls:

A gift before dawn, at noon, after dark (Ann Voskamp, Joy Dare):

139. Waking up in the dark, watching the sun rise as I type away at my Bible study..thankful for sun rises.

140. Thankful for kitchen appliances that function and help me feed my blessings. Thankful.

141. Thankful for routines that set us all up to succeed the next day. Thankful for each child’s way of saying goodnight.

Pray on. Focus on Him. Pray on.

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Salvation thanksgiving

south west end of Lake Louise by Florian Fuchs

Good morning, beloved,

We are in the week of Thanksgiving. How did we get here? As I roam around Facebook, watch the news, read the news, I realize that the greatest thing I have to be thankful for this year and all the years in the past and the years to come is salvation.

When Satan comes prowling, I believe the lies I am most willing to accept are lies about my salvation. Stay with me here. ;) We know we have been saved by Jesus’ blood. Yet when we are in the midst of life, our problem is two-fold.

1. We gloss over the sin. Try to forget the sin. Hope God forgot too and shove it under the carpet. Somehow, we have convinced ourselves that certain sins are not really sin. We lie to ourselves, to others and we call it white lies. We judge so often we forget that is what God calls it. How we look at people, judge their character, discern things that we have no business meddling in. We want revenge, think it is just to think this way.  In essence, we ask God to move out of His spot in our lives and take over. Do we consciously do this? no.

2. We forgot the power of salvation and all that it includes. I’m going to include a chart from Precepts Ministries International that has been rocking my world. I’m thinking of tattooing it on my arm.

The Three Tenses of Salvation

(@ 2003 Precept Ministries International)
Tense Free From Sin’s When Doctrine of
Past I have been saved Penalty-by His death

Romans 3: 21-24

Dominion-by my death

Romans 6:3-7
When I receive Christ Justification
Present I am being saved Power-by indwelling Holy Spirit

Romans 8:2-14
As I walk in the Spirit Sanctification
Future I shall be saved Presence-by redemption of my body

  Romans 8;22-25
When I get a new body Glorification
What God begins, God finishes Romans 8:29-30

There is so much GIFT in this table. I love it! I’ve been staring at it for two days now, reveling. Let’s take it apart. :)

Tense   Free From Sin’s When Doctrine of
Past I have been saved Penalty-by His death

Romans 3: 21-24

Dominion-by my death

Romans 6:3-7

When I receive Christ Justification

In the past, you and I were saved from the penalty of sin by one death. One life.

Romans 3:

21 But now the righteousness of God has been revealed independently and altogether apart from the Law, although actually it is attested by the Law and the Prophets,

22 Namely, the righteousness of God which comes by believing with personal trust and confident reliance on Jesus Christ (the Messiah). [And it is meant] for all who believe. For there is no distinction,

23 Since all have sinned and are falling short of the honor and glory which God bestows and receives.

24 [All] are justified andmade upright and in right standing with God, freely and gratuitously by His grace (His unmerited favor and mercy), through the redemption which is [provided] in Christ Jesus,

God’s righteousness was your gift the moment you said. I believe. I trust. I am going to confidently rely on Him. We all fall short.

YET, here’s the beauty we are all made upright. We all are in right standing with God. Not because of anything we did but by His unmerited favor and mercy..thru  redemption ( a releasing effected by payment of ransom. ) Jesus payed our ransom. We are redeemed!

Tense   Free From Sin’s When Doctrine of
Present I am being saved Power-by indwelling Holy Spirit     Romans 8:2-14 As I walk in the Spirit Sanctification

Now, today, right now, breathing, we are being saved. Constantly, without fail, because of the gift of the Holy Spirit. His indwelling Spirit in our lives, as we walk in the Spirit, we are being saved.

Romans 8:

For the law of the Spirit of life [which is] in Christ Jesus [the law of our new being] has freed me from the law of sin and of death.

For God has done what the Law could not do, [its power] being weakened by the flesh [[a]the entire nature of man without the Holy Spirit]. Sending His own Son in the guise of sinful flesh and as an offering for sin, [God] condemned sin in the flesh [[b]subdued, overcame, [c]deprived it of its power over all who accept that sacrifice],

So that the righteous and just requirement of the Law might be fully met in us who live and move not in the ways of the flesh but in the ways of the Spirit [our lives governed not by the standards and according to the dictates of the flesh, but controlled by the Holy Spirit].

For those who are according to the flesh and are controlled by its unholy desires set their minds on and[d]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 [e]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 [f]comprises all the miseries arising from sin, both here and hereafter]. But the mind of the [Holy] Spirit is life and [soul] peace [both now and forever].

[That is] because the mind of the flesh [with its carnal thoughts and purposes] is hostile to God, for it does not submit itself to God’s Law; indeed it cannot.

So then those who are living the life of the flesh [catering to the appetites and impulses of their carnal nature] cannot please or satisfy God, or be acceptable to Him.

But you are not living the life of the flesh, you are living the life of the Spirit, if the [Holy] Spirit of God [really] dwells within you [directs and controls you]. But if anyone does not possess the [Holy] Spirit of Christ, he is none of His [he does not belong to Christ, is not truly a child of God].

10 But if Christ lives in you, [then although] your [natural] body is dead by reason of sin and guilt, the spirit is alive because of [the] righteousness [that He imputes to you].

11 And if the Spirit of Him Who raised up Jesus from the dead dwells in you, [then] He Who raised up Christ Jesus from the dead will also restore to life your mortal (short-lived, perishable) bodies through His Spirit Who dwells in you.

12 So then, brethren, we are debtors, but not to the flesh [we are not obligated to our carnal nature], to live [a life ruled by the standards set up by the dictates] of the flesh.

13 For if you live according to [the dictates of] the flesh, you will surely die. But if through the power of the [Holy] Spirit you are [habitually] putting to death (making extinct, deadening) the [evil] deeds prompted by the body, you shall [really and genuinely] live forever.

14 For all who are led by the Spirit of God are sons of God.

Receive that truth, friends. Thank You, Lord for this beautiful gift of the Spirit!

Tense   Free From Sin’s When Doctrine of
Future I shall be saved Presence-by redemption of my body   Romans 8;22-25 When I get a new body Glorification

What hope we have, no matter what our present circumstances, we also can look forward to the day when…

Romans 8:

22 We know that the whole creation [of irrational creatures] has been moaning together in the pains of labor until now.

23 And not only the creation, but we ourselves too, who have and enjoy the firstfruits of the [Holy] Spirit [a foretaste of the blissful things to come] groan inwardly as we wait for the redemption of our bodies [from sensuality and the grave, which will reveal] our adoption (our manifestation as God’s sons).

24 For in [this] hope we were saved. But hope [the object of] which is seen is not hope. For how can one hope for what he already sees?

25 But if we hope for what is still unseen by us, we wait for it with patience and composure.

Paul knew, this wasn’t the end of the story. Suffering, hard times, persecution..this wasn’t the end. No matter how bleak your circumstances appear, this is not the end of the story. We place our hope, our faith in what is to come.


Romans 8:

28 We are assured and know that [[j]God being a partner in their labor] all things work together and are [fitting into a plan] for good to and for those who love God and are called according to [His] design and purpose.

29 For those whom He foreknew [of whom He was [k]aware and[l]loved beforehand], He also destined from the beginning [foreordaining them] to be molded into the image of His Son [and share inwardly His likeness], that He might become the firstborn among many brethren.

30 And those whom He thus foreordained, He also called; and those whom He called, He also justified (acquitted, made righteous, putting them into right standing with Himself). And those whom He justified, He also glorified [raising them to a heavenly dignity and condition or state of being].

31 What then shall we say to [all] this? If God is for us, who [can be] against us? [Who can be our foe, if God is on our side?]

Let your faith arise. Let your hope swell. Lift up your hands and praise God, for He is faithful God. Always.

Pray on. Pray on.


Categories: Bible teaching, Music, New Testament | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Glad-hearted continually?

Watching Sunset, Salar de Uyuni, Bolivia. When is covered with water the Salar de Uyuni reflects sun light. Here as it looks like at sunset. Luca Galuzzi

Good evening, dear friends, Today has been a rough day, physically, for me. I woke up very early and began praying for all the prayer requests I could think of…I’m not sure why I didn’t think of this earlier! I do not ponder my own circumstances when I focus on the King and the concerns that have been shared with me. I am deeply honored to have someone divulge their requests. I then turn them over to my God of the Angel Armies. I have been so blessed by this song, I’m including it again. :)

Prayer is so powerful. We have such power to stand behind each word we utter in prayers to our loving God. Can you grasp it? You are stressed about your circumstances, your finances, your …. and someone shares their request with you and all of a sudden the focus is off yourself!! Hold onto the promises of God and pray them back to Him.

A storm at Pors-Loubous, Plogoff, Finistère, France by Henri Camus

“Be well balanced (temperate, sober of mind), be vigilant and cautious at all times; for that enemy of yours, the devil, roams around like a lion roaring [in fierce hunger], seeking someone to seize upon and devour. Withstand him; be firm in faith [against his onset—rooted, established, strong, immovable, and determined], knowing that the same (identical) sufferings are appointed to your brotherhood (the whole body of Christians) throughout the world.” 1 Peter 5:8-9 AMP

Friends, if you are praying on behalf of others and also for your own needs..what room can Satan have if you are in the throne room of God? If you are praying for the people in your life that drive crazy, steer yourself to the King. Lift up the election. Lift up the President. The leaders of our country. Your church. Your pastor, his wife..the persecuted church. In this season I am in, I finally understand this idea that Paul shares:

Be happy [in your faith] and rejoice and be glad-hearted continually (always);Be unceasing in prayer [praying perseveringly];Thank [God] in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you [who are] in Christ Jesus [the Revealer and Mediator of that will]. 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

Be happy in your faith…happy? For some reason that word, happy, makes me wonder so I looked it up in the Strongs Concordance..check this out..

1) to rejoice, be glad

2) to rejoice exceedingly

3) to be well, thrive

To be well, to thrive in your faith..think of a seedling, planted well, watered accurately, sun pours down…that plant is going to thrive! So how can we be thriving in our faith? Paul gives us some ideas.

Tuft or pencil of light rays are a phenomenon of atmospheric optics, which is caused by the occlusion of the sun by atmospheric böhringer friedrich

Have a glad heart me, this is a huge challenge when I hit days that are hard right now. And this is where Paul says, be unceasing in prayer. Pray perseveringly..what word is that? adialeiptōswithout intermission, incessantly, without ceasing..To me, that means, to have joy is to be in constant communication with our Father who art in heaven. That brings joy.

Another that brings joy, in everything, give thanks! Give thanks for this head stuff? Yes. Give thanks for the challenges? Yes, because ultimately it will work out for God’s glory and our joy. Does it make sense logically? Maybe not. Yet we are told this is God’s will for our lives. And God’s will put His Son on the cross, why? For our deliverance, our salvation, our joy..did God like doing this? Of course not, He doesn’t like to see His children suffer, but we see only part of the tapestry. He sees the whole.

Give thanks, He has the whole world in His hands. Remember that kids’ song? He has it all.

Jesus revealed that will in His life here on earth. We can be glad…we can pray…we can give thanks..and somehow our world doesn’t look so bleak.

So, beloved, pray on. Pray on.


Categories: Bible teaching, Cara thoughts..., Music, New Testament, Pictures from commons... | Tags: , , , , , , , | 4 Comments



w:Transit of Venus.The image was taken with a home-made solar filter from baader solar film. The camera was placed on a very steady tripod that is operated by using a remote control. A few consecutive shots were stacked, using freeware RegiStax 6 Never look at the sun directly. You may go blind. Here is a video of the transit made by NASA. Enjoy! Brocken Inaglory


Good morning, beloved,

So good to be here this morning! The sun is streaming through the trees, the trains are running smoothly (without the banging on horn), our kids are up, Noah is praising the Lord with loud music…giving thanks. Giving praise to God today. A theme through this whole week has been forgiveness and salvation. Every time I turn on Moody or turn on a podcast, it has been all about these two very, very important topics.

On Wednesday, as we drove we listened to Erwin Lutzer. The car was mesmerized. And I thought of people in my life who needed to hear the truth of this message. How can I be sure of my salvation? How can I know I am going to heaven? To tempt you even further to listen to this message, Mr. Lutzer actually says, “that rocks!” in a sentence. The kids had a good laugh. Find out how! :) Please listen, even if you are sure, you can be an encouragement to others. You can give hope and life to someone who desperately needs life everlasting.

Knowing for Sure pt 1

1 Peter flows with truth and wisdom for our daily life. As I mark out the key words in the text I am finding so much to live by. This first week of study, as I mentioned previously, is reading 1 Peter over and over.

To start off with, the verses of the day fit perfectly:

2 Corinthians 10:16-18

Amplified Bible (AMP)

16 So that [we may even] preach the Gospel in lands [lying] beyond you, without making a boast of work already done in another [man’s] sphere of activity [before we came on the scene].

17 However, let him who boasts and glories boast and glory in the Lord.

18 For [it is] not [the man] who praises and commends himself who is approved and accepted, but [it is the person] whom the Lord accredits and commends.

Our approach to the Lord always should be humble and without pride. We are His workmanship created in Christ Jesus to do good works..we are created. We are formed by a Master Hand. Pottery cannot make itself beautiful, it cannot shine, it must be crafted by a Master Potter. God be praised in all things. I have chips and cracks yet the Lord and I can look at each step in my life and know it is to His glory and every step I cry out and ask that I can look more like Jesus.

1 Peter 1:3-6

Amplified Bible (AMP)

Praised (honored, blessed) be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ (the Messiah)! By His boundless mercy we have been born again to an ever-living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead,

[Born anew] into an inheritance which is beyond the reach of change and decay [imperishable], unsullied and unfading, reserved in heaven for you,

Who are being guarded (garrisoned) by God’s power through [your] faith [till you fully inherit that final] salvation that is ready to be revealed [for you] in the last time.

[You should] be exceedingly glad on this account, though now for a little while you may be distressed by trials and suffer temptations..

Don’t keep your eyes on your circumstances. We can’t do this. Instead, His boundless mercy has been extended to us. If you have asked the Lord to be Lord in your life, then you have been born again to an ever-living hope! Think about that. Ever-living, always alive a hope! Jesus did it. If your past haunts you, and you have asked for His forgiveness, then do not allow Satan to taunt you with God could never forgive. He could never love a sinner like you. I think of that saying..when Satan reminds you of your past, remind him of his future. Call on Jesus! Call Him, His blood has garrisoned you and me. God’s power surrounds you. Whether you ‘feel’ it or not..trials and temptations haunt your life…claim His blood.

Well, please, please listen to this message. Pray on. Pray on.


Categories: 1 Peter, Bible teaching | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment




Godavari Bridge Image taken using Ramesh Ramaiah’s Samsung camera.

Good morning friends,

It has been one of those lazy mornings where I pray a neighbor doesn’t stop by cuz I’m still in me pjs. LOL. Course if they did stop by, my kids would open the door and welcome them in and they’d see me as I truly am so…bring it! (or maybe I’ll go get dressed…) Joshua and the two olders are helping over at Gages Lake  Bible Church. Luke, Ella and I have had a glorious morning of watching one of our favorite movies and cleaning up a bit. I was able to have time to talk to a dear friend who now lives in Texas. I love how the Lord times things exactly when I need them. I needed fellowship this morning. God knew how much…

I was wondering if you could be praying for my Mama? She has a terrible sinus infection and has not been sleeping for nearly a week now. I’m praying and praying for God to release rest and peace over her body. Would you join me? I would so appreciate that. I’m trying not to worry, but she’s my best friend…and the worry is a love transmitted into constant thought and prayer.

I think about that and wonder about God’s will in that suffering. Not sleeping is horrible. Not being able to breathe right…yuck. Where is the glory of God in suffering? His perspective is what I look for today. And the verses we are looking through are perfectly timed…

Matthew 7:

21 Not everyone who says to Me, Lord, Lord, will enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father Who is in heaven.

22 Many will say to Me on that day, Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name and driven out demons in Your name and done many mighty works in Your name?

23 And then I will say to them openly (publicly), I never knew you; depart from Me, you who act wickedly [disregarding My commands].(practice lawlessness..)

24 So everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts upon them [obeying them] will be like a sensible (prudent, practical, wise) man who built his house upon the rock.

25 And the rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock.

26 And everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not do them will be like a stupid (foolish) man who built his house upon the sand.

27 And the rain fell and the floods came and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell—and great and complete was the fall of it.

These verses are full of contrasts. Those who do the will of the Father and those who disregard His will. Those who listen and obey and those who do not…

 …he who does the will of My Father Who is in heaven. Let’s look for some more verses that “flesh” out the will of the Father..

Romans 12: Do not be conformed to this world (this age), [fashioned after and adapted to its external, superficial customs], but be transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of your mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude], so that you may prove [for yourselves] what is the good and acceptable and perfect will of God, even the thing which is good and acceptable and perfect [in His sight for you].

Which might be suffering, pain, loss…yet God’s will is eternal and our lives, if found in Christ, are eternal bound.

1 Thessalonians 4:For this is the will of God, that you should be consecrated (separated and set apart for pure and holy living): that you should abstain and shrink from all sexual vice,That each one of you should know how to possess (control, manage) his own body in consecration (purity, separated from things profane) and honor,Not [to be used] in the passion of lust like the heathen, who are ignorant of the true God and have no knowledge of His will,

1 Thessalonians 5: 18 Thank [God] in everything [no matter what the circumstances may be, be thankful and give thanks], for this is the will of God for you [who are] in Christ Jesus [the Revealer and Mediator of that will].

I give thanks that Mom can pray at all hours. I give thanks that she is with me and is so devoted to my family. I give thanks that she has been married to my Dad for forty some years. I give thanks that she can continue on, and that God will heal her, it may not be until she looks into the eyes of Jesus, but my Mom doesn’t complain. I’m amazed.  I’m pretty honed at the art of complaining and there will be days when I get off the phone with her and realize..I never asked how she was doing…sigh.

Hebrews 13:21 Strengthen (complete, perfect) and make you what you ought to be and equip you with everything good that you may carry out His will; [while He Himself] works in you and accomplishes that which is pleasing in His sight, through Jesus Christ (the Messiah); to Whom be the glory forever and ever (to the ages of the ages). Amen (so be it).

So we are getting what His will is, right? By no means a complete list, but a good start! :) Now let’s look in depth at “Practice lawlessness).

Practice (ergazomai): practice is in the present tense which denotes continual action. (p.115, SOTM, @Precept Int’l)

1) to work, labour, do work

2) to trade, to make gains by trading, “do business”

3) to do, work out

a) exercise, perform, commit

b) to cause to exist, produce

4) to work for, earn by working, to acquire

lawlessness (anomia)

1) the condition of without law

a) because ignorant of it

b) because of violating it

2) contempt and violation of law, iniquity, wickedness

To work for, work out contempt for the law, violating the law, to work for wickedness…gag.

I do not want to be known as a foolish woman. I want none of that, thank you very much. Lord, I want to build my house on the rock. I’ll ask the Lord…help me stand! Please listen to this song..I’ve included the lyrics:

 wake up to another day
I don’t know if I can face
All the fears, that is tearing me down
Yea, I’m trying to be brave
But I’m afraid, about to fade
I wanna stand but I don’t know how

I look up and all I see is Your love holding me
When I feel like giving up
When my heart is hurt too much
Feels like I’ve reached the end
No, I won’t turn and run
This battle will be won
When I’ve done all I can
I stand stand stand
I stand stand stand

Some days I lose my place
It’s a fight to keep my faith
But You are with me, I am not alone, no
But all around my work is late
Toss like an ocean wave
You are my rock and the storm clouds blow

I look up and all I see is Your love holding me
When I feel like giving up
When my heart is hurt too much
Feels like I’ve reached the end
No, I won’t turn and run
This battle will be won
When I’ve done all I can
I stand stand stand
I stand stand stand

On Your promise, I will stand
Oh look the ground is sinking sand
On Your promise, I will stand
Oh look the ground is sinking sand
Sinking sand oh who woooh
It’s sinking sinking, yea ye

When I feel like giving up
When my heart is hurt too much
Feels like I’ve reached the end
No, I won’t turn and run
This battle will be won, yea yea
So I’ll stand stand stand
I stand stand
I’ll stand stand stand

Let’s look at one more word as we finish this beautiful study by Precept Ministries International. How I thank God to finish this study! Such encouragement…lets look at this..the affect it had on the crowds…


1) to strike out, expel by a blow, drive out or away

2) to cast off by a blow, to drive out

a) commonly, to strike one out of self-possession, to strike with panic, shock, astonish

3) to be struck with amazement, astonished, amazed

Literally, the crowds were blown away! Astonished! How about you? How does it feel that you love the greatest Teacher EVER? The crowds were struck! You can be filled with the Spirit of God causing you to walk in wisdom and light and truth. How I wish I could hold your hand and show you what He has shown me over these past few years of pain and suffering that it was all worth it to know Him. And I don’t even pretend to know Him well…So imperfectly do I follow my King! Yet, His love is so powerful so filling!

Love you all, can’t wait to meet you in heaven…:) Pray on. Pray on. Oh, and btw, I’m starting up 1 Peter with Precepts on Monday..join me?


Categories: Bible teaching, Sermon on the Mount | Tags: , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

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