Psalm 103: 103 ·All that I am [T O my soul], ·praise [bless] the Lord;
·everything in me [L all my inward parts], ·praise [bless] his holy name.
2 ·My whole being [T O my soul], ·praise [bless] the Lord
and do not forget all his ·kindnesses [gifts; benefits].
3 He forgives all ·my [or your] ·sins [iniquity]
and heals all ·my [or your] ·diseases [ills].
4 He ·saves [redeems] ·my [or your] life from the ·grave [L pit]
and ·loads [or crowns] ·me [or you] with ·love [loyalty] and ·mercy [compassion].
5 He satisfies ·me [or you] with good things [L as long as you live; or according to your desires]
and ·makes me young again [L renews your youth], like the eagle [Is. 40:31].
Praise. Bless. (3x repeat in 2 verses) What part of me is involved in worship?
All that I am. My soul.
Everything in me.
All my inward parts.
My whole being.
I wonder what that looks like. Hmmm….
2 Samuel 6: 14 Then David danced with all his might before the Lord. He had on a holy linen ·vest [ephod; Ex. 28:6–14]. 15 David and all the Israelite shouted with joy and blew the ·trumpets [ram’s horns] as they brought the Ark of the Lord to the city.
I wonder how often we worry more about what other people think about our worship than what our God thinks of our hearts in worship. If we were to worship God with everything in us, what would that look like?
Forget NOT His benefits…
Verbs found in these five verses:
Forgives– The primary idea here is a lightness, a lifting up. To be merciful, to pardon, to shew oneself to be gentle. And how much does He forgive? all. Isn’t that a lovely word? All. Not some. Not a little. Not most. ALL.
Heals- All. Totality. Encompassing every disease.
Redeems- On this weekend, especially, these two words are everything to me. Jesus paid the price to cover my sin. Your sin. Forever. It is a debt we could never cover. It is freedom. It is our deliverance.
Crowns– Surrounds for protection
These are all gifts from our God. Ponder that. Hold on to this in the dark moments. When it seems there are no answers. Our Answer crowns! He will satisfy. So that? Our youth is renewed like the eagle’s. We are made young again.
I watch my children ride their bikes. All day. Seriously. I cannot imagine riding my bike all day. Running all day. They constantly are in motion.
There is a lightness to their childhood. Their worries are small. Their joys are HUGE. Their cares are light.
They run with energy for they have a child’s load of woes. They are not weighed down by financial concerns. They do not ache with the worries and concerns that adulthood brings. Do you ever notice when a person is depressed their entire countenance droops? They appear to be laden with packages and bags.
However, if we allow the Lord to crown us, satisfy us and make us, could we begin to run like youths? Dance like David?
As I sat in this waiting room yesterday, the entire room was filled with people drooped by cares. I can’t say I was much different. A couple sat with a chair between them waiting for their son. A woman played games on her phone, her face creased with concern. A blind man came in with his daughter carrying all sorts of papers stuck in different directions. The receptionists were downtrodden. They answered the phones with a near disdain. Yet a couple came in, the news, I could tell, was not fantastic. However, they smiled. They had joy.
Now that gave me pause. How do I react as the cares of the world threaten to overwhelm? Oh, I cannot say that yesterday there was much joy. I forget.
I forget that our blessings far outweigh the cares in our life.
They always do.
So I begin my day. I begin with…
246. Thankful for friends who sit and carry.
247. Thankful for phone calls at just the right time.
248. Thankful for a new day.
Pray on. Pray on.
I have decided these are my new favorite birds. They eat bees! How fabulous is that! I think we should, as Americans, raise a petition. Bring these birds here! Especially to Illinois. We, okay, I, need these birds, instead of these woodpeckers that keep trying to build there homes in our siding of our house. They are so cute. They bang the stinger out of the bees and then eat them. Maybe we could train them to eat mosquitoes too. I’d be willing to pay them. Seriously.
Yesterday, we spent the afternoon watching the second round of the Bible brought to you by Wal-Mart, and the History Channel, and Mark Burnett. I can’t say I was as thrilled with the second portion as I was the first. No spoilers, I promise, but I found myself wishing I had my Bible with me. I kept thinking and saying out loud, really, was it like that? Did it happen that way? Yet, friends, what I was left with, what I needed to remind myself of, the Bible is coming alive, especially the Old Testament. How many of us as children (if we went to church) were taught the events of the Old Testament outside of the regular Sunday School stories? It’s amazing to see His Word outside of my imagination or flannel graphs!
As David walked among the Israelites, he was speaking the Word to himself, as he faced off with Goliath, he was fearless.
Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death…
I will fear no evil…
For You are with me…
Your rod and Your staff, they comfort me…
Of course, this is Psalm 23. All of the my kids memorized this Psalm, so I had plenty of practice but even if I didn’t, this is an incredibly popular Psalm. It was powerful watching David chose to walk towards this man/beast. As Goliath disparaged the one true God, on David walked. The entire army parted ways to bring David to this man. He saw David and threw aside his helmet. Powerful. He was not afraid of a little kid. And that proved to be his demise.
I am told, time and time again. Do not be afraid. Cease striving. Cease the constant conversation of fear. Yet to watch the men of the Old Testament face their demons, sometimes they failed, which to me, is a good reminder. They were men. Men whom God used. (Women too..) Pictures in my mind are helpful. Remembering this scene in my mind, I know, I know my God, our God, our faithful, true God will never, ever forsake His children. We can walk through the valleys. We can be without fear.
This is not the story of men. This is the love story of our God dwelling among us.
He fights for us.
Pray on. Pray on.
Good morning, beloved,
I wake up now in complete darkness. Joshua and I are on week three of changing routines for our whole family. One of them for us is devotions and time with the Lord early. Routines are, for me, never easy to begin. Now looking back, I’m grateful we began. Last night I called Danny ready to remind him and he came trotting in saying, Mom, I know what you are going to say. I’ve already laid out my clothes and I know I need my meds. Thanks. Mom.
Open. Close Mouth.
Complete darkness in the morning? Here I come. I know daylight is coming.
We long for light. Our bodies cannot function, well, without the light. We stumble, we get depressed, we stub our toes, we fumble..it’s not pretty. I have to share this with you.
Light therapy might be as simple as getting up early and walking outside on a bright winter morning, Rosenthal tells WebMD. “You can also increase light in your home,” he says “Make one room a sun room.”
A technique called “dawn simulation” — in which a light is programmed to turn on early in the morning in your bedroom — can also help, Rosenthal says.
Light boxes are widely sold over the Internet and exposure to them can help. When buying one, get advice from your doctor and choose bigger ones — one that is at least 1 foot by 1.5 feet, Rosenthal says. These larger boxes have more supporting research, he says.
Patients sit in front of the light boxes daily for a specified amount of time. “Using light in the morning for a half hour to an hour is very effective,” says Stephen Josephson, PhD, a psychologist in New York City and associate professor at Cornell University Medical School and Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, New York. (Fending off Depression Symptoms in Winter, Kathleen Doheny, WebMd)
Light therapy. Our bodies crave light.
Dawn simulation. One of my favorite, favorite names of Jesus is the Bright and Morning Star.
16 “I, Jesus, have sent my angel to ·tell you [testify/witness to] these things for the churches. I am the ·descendant from the family of David [root and descendant/offspring of David; C a messianic title applied to Jesus; 5:4; Is. 11:10], and I am the bright morning star [2:28; Num. 24:17; C a messianic title].” Revelation 22 EXB
Have to share with you Numbers 24:17:
I see someone ·who will come someday [L but not now],
·someone who will come, but not soon [L I see him, but not near].
A star will come from Jacob;
a ·ruler [L scepter] will rise from Israel [C Saul, then David and his descendants, including the Messiah].
He will crush the heads of the Moabites
and smash the skulls of the sons of Sheth [C identity uncertain].
I’m suggesting to you…in addition to sitting in front of a light box, getting fresh sunlight, how about adding a regime of kneeling in front of the Light of the universe?
Where would I be without the Bright and Morning Star?
Oh friends, I don’t even want to dwell on that one. Look at Peter’s response to Jesus…
66 After Jesus said this, many of his ·followers [disciples] ·left him [L turned back to previous things] and ·stopped following[L no longer walked with] him.
67 Jesus asked ·the twelve followers [the Twelve], “Do you want to leave, too?”
I ache with these words. How often have I turned my back? How many times have I worked on building my own kingdoms (only to realize they are sandcastles..)? Barf. Gag.
Peter! Peter! He’s got it. Where would we go? It’s wild. It’s encouraging. It’s heartening.
Friends, Peter did go. Peter did deny Him. You remember that. When you turn your back, you start building your own kingdoms, you remember Peter.
Peter didn’t go anywhere Jesus couldn’t find him. Rescue him. Jesus rescues. That’s His business. Next time you see the light brimming over the dashboard. Rising over the houses. Setting over the soccer fields. You remember: He’s the light.
And He’s in the business of rescuing YOU.
A gift wrinkled, smoothed, unfolded (Ann Voskamp, Joy Dare):
130. My family three years ago, newly moved in here.
131. My family, the past year…smoothing…
132. My family…today. Thankful.
Pray on. Pray on.
Good morning, beloved,
1 I will bless the Lord at all times; His praise shall continually be in my mouth.
2 My life makes its boast in the Lord; let the humble andafflicted hear and be glad.
3 O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt His name together.
4 I sought (inquired of) the Lord and required Him [of necessity and on the authority of His Word], and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.
5 They looked to Him and were radiant; their faces shall never blush for shame or be confused.
6 This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles
8 O taste and see that the Lord [our God] is good! Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man who trusts and takes refuge in Him.
9 O fear the Lord, you His saints [revere and worship Him]! For there is no want to those who truly revere and worship Him with godly fear.
15 The eyes of the Lord are toward the [uncompromisingly] righteous and His ears are open to their cry.
16 The face of the Lord is against those who do evil, to cut off the remembrance of them from the earth.
17 When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears, and delivers them out of all their distress and troubles.
18 The Lord is close to those who are of a broken heart and saves such as are crushed with sorrow for sin and are humblyand thoroughly penitent.
Psalm 34: 22 The Lord redeems the lives of His servants, and none of those who take refuge and trust in Him shall be condemned or held guilty.
Worship Him today. Or to steal my Pastor’s status:
The devil will say you’re too tired. He’ll say the music is loud and the donuts are stale. Kick him in the pants and go to church anyway. Dan Darling
Pray on. Pray on.
- Psalms 34. In Praise Of God’s Goodness. The Happiness Of Those Who Trust In God (bummyla.wordpress.com)
- Psalm 34 | Bible Resources (spiceofyourlife.wordpress.com)
- Psalms 34-36 (mybiblereadingplan.wordpress.com)
- Bless the Lord (brendataggart.wordpress.com)
- God Hears Your Cry! by Elaine Davenport October 29, 2012 (faithcenter.wordpress.com)
Good morning, beloved,
In the night, I listened to a new program for me with Susie Larson called, Live the Promise. I get posts from Susie frequently on Facebook, loving her morning and evening prayers. In the mail yesterday, I received a package from a dear friend, which included four wonderful CDS..one was Aaron Shust‘s latest. Her program featured an interview with him. It was not lost on me the coincidence.
What resonated so strongly with me was the reminder, faith that is based on our feelings can never be trusted. Faith built on what we know to be true, i.e., God‘s Word, is our firm and solid foundation.
Our feelings change, what we think, what we see…I am reminded that is not our basis of truth.
Light, space, zest—
So, with him on my side I’m fearless,
afraid of no one and nothing.
2 When vandal hordes ride down
ready to eat me alive,
Those bullies and toughs
fall flat on their faces.
3 When besieged,
I’m calm as a baby.
When all hell breaks loose,
I’m collected and cool.
4 I’m asking God for one thing,
only one thing:
To live with him in his house
my whole life long.
I’ll contemplate his beauty;
I’ll study at his feet.
5 That’s the only quiet, secure place
in a noisy world,
The perfect getaway,
far from the buzz of traffic.
6 God holds my head and shoulders
above all who try to pull me down.
I’m headed for his place to offer anthems
that will raise the roof!
Already I’m singing God-songs;
I’m making music to God.
7-9 Listen, God, I’m calling at the top of my lungs:
“Be good to me! Answer me!”
When my heart whispered, “Seek God,”
my whole being replied,
“I’m seeking him!”
Don’t hide from me now!
9-10 You’ve always been right there for me;
don’t turn your back on me now.
Don’t throw me out, don’t abandon me;
you’ve always kept the door open.
My father and mother walked out and left me,
but God took me in.
11-12 Point me down your highway, God;
direct me along a well-lighted street;
show my enemies whose side you’re on.
Don’t throw me to the dogs,
those liars who are out to get me,
filling the air with their threats.
13-14 I’m sure now I’ll see God’s goodness
in the exuberant earth.
Stay with God!
Take heart. Don’t quit.
I’ll say it again:
Stay with God.
Do you think David saw God? Visibly saw God? Or perhaps was David holding onto the truth that His God was near. His God was protecting him. Keeping him. Holding him, therefore, he could be fearless. Even though he is surrounded by enemies, he is calm. Friends, that does not come from looking at the world through our own eyes. It is putting on the lense of truth and declaring, I am not afraid because God is with me!
No matter how noisy life can be, peace can be found. No matter how busy, God can be found. He sings praises to his God. We can sing praises! We can look to God for our present and future and know that we can…
Stay with God. I can think I know what is going to happen. I can think on how I will react to getting my head shaved for surgery. Or what the epileptologist will say on behalf of Danny today. These thoughts do not bring peace. However, if I work with the understanding of Scripture, peace.
So I encourage you, no matter how bleak things appear, hope is here. God is here. Immanuel…God with us.
Pray on, pray on…
- Psalm 27. A Prayer Of Praise And Of Faith (bummyla.wordpress.com)
- He Is (1woman2women.wordpress.com)
- Are You Listening? (terry1954.wordpress.com)
- Words of Comfort… (150knots.org)
- Give Me Words To Speak (amorycannon.com)
- Free Downloads from Focus on the Family (faithfulprovisions.com)
good afternoon, friends,
We had a party this afternoon and now we are home, fans blowing, enjoying air conditioning and I’m thinking about this study. Kids are playing with toys, reading books…some quiet in the house. God knew how much we needed to be at a church that could be community for us and He brought us to a new church. I’m reflecting on the lightness it has brought my spirit to come home. Watching my kids run around a church like I used to do at their age, pitching in to clean and help feels as natural as being at home, watching Joshua settle in with the men, these are all gifts to my heart and mind. Going to a mega church was wonderful for many reasons. I listed so many during my time on this blog but what J and I realized was how much we missed community at church.
God knows what we need. He cares for every single one.
This afternoon, as I look at the next day of Precepts, this day is a full concentration on light. Would you like to come along? Pshaw, of course you would!
15 Nor do men light a lamp and put it under a peck measure, but on a lampstand, and it gives light to all in the house.
16 Let your light so shine before men that they may see your moral excellence and your praiseworthy, noble, and good deeds and recognize and honor and praise and glorify your Father Who is in heaven.
- light of the world: me, you, us. (your witness for God)
- lamps don’t go under tn Or “a bowl”; this refers to any container for dry material of about eight liters (two gallons) capacity. It could be translated “basket, box, bowl” (L&N 6.151).: they go on stands (candlestick) and give light (to shine) to the house
- our light needs to shine before men (Light requires an organ adapted for its reception (Mat 6:22). Where the eye is absent, or where it has become impaired from any cause, light is useless. Man, naturally, is incapable of receiving spiritual light inasmuch as he lacks the capacity for spiritual things, 1Cr 2:14. Hence believers are called ‘sons of light,’Luk 16:8, not merely because they have received a revelation from God, but because in the New Birth they have received the spiritual capacity for it.)
1Kings 11:36 Yet to his son I will give one tribe, that David My servant may always have a light before Me in Jerusalem, the city where I have chosen to put My Name. Well, light in this instance God has blessed David with the knowledge that he will never be without an heir on the throne in Jerusalem. This word light used here actually means tillable or untilled or fallow ground. Interesting, isn’t it? God is saying this ground will always have the roots of David.Psalm 27: 1 The Lord is my Light and my Salvation—whom shall I fear or dread? The Lord is the Refuge and Stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid? This word, light: light of day, light of heavenly luminaries (moon, sun, stars),day-break, dawn, morning light, light of life, Jehovah as Israel‘s light. This is beautiful, isn’t it? God is our light, our morning light, our light. My breathing gets easier just thinking of this.Psalm 119:105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. God’s Word, declare it, friends! Make this your day that His Word shall become your lamp to your feet..and a light to your path..check out this picture. May His light, His Word guide you home.
Well, I’d better get on. I now have a girl watching a Barbie movie. A boy in front of Narnia…so to dinner prep I go. Blessings and light…Pray on.
Good morning, beloved of God,
These last two days have been a bit “sludgey”. Drudgey. And as I reflect on the busyness of the last few days, more and more I see glimpses of God’s perfect care for me. Ashes. Coffee. Sitting quietly alone. Conversation with old friend. Food made: yogurt, dehydrated apples..Coming home last night in the snow storm..no problem. Getting to the doctor 1/2 hour late because of the snow..their response? only for you..God’s grace. Mercy. People responding to my pleas for prayer. His kindness.. Noah’s response to surgery? Okay, Mom.
My heart could handle so much more with this perspective. It’s a God perspective. It’s His strength. It’s His hope. It’s His Spirit. Last night, He gave me a book as well by Carol Kent. And I was able to just laugh last night in the pitch black with only my cellphone flashlight and this book. She shared a Scripture that just blessed the socks off me. Allow me to share with you! Maybe this sounds a bit corny or strange but I think that when God wrote this Scripture through David‘s pen, He thought of the day when I would need to hear it.
4I sought (inquired of) the Lord and required Him [of necessity and on the authority of His Word], and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.(A)
5They looked to Him and were radiant; their faces shall never blush for shame or be confused.
6This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him, and saved him out of all his troubles.
8O taste and see that the Lord [our God] is good! Blessed (happy, fortunate, to be envied) is the man who trusts and takes refuge in Him.(C)
Did you need to hear that? Listen to His word! Every promise kept! Every need YOU’VE met! Faithful God!! I’m not going to beg God to remove my circumstances. He has me here for a reason and it’s GOOD!! Why? I’m not alone. Never alone. Each step is grace and hope. The darkness is dispelled and light pierces my heart. Love that will not let me go.
And guess what? When I opened Biblegateway today, the verses were put there for me. Were they put there for you too?😉
10For thus says the Lord, When seventy years are completed for Babylon, I will visit you and keep My good promise to you, causing you to return to this place.
11For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome.
12Then you will call upon Me, and you will come and pray to Me, and I will hear and heed you.
13Then you will seek Me, inquire for, and require Me [as a vital necessity] and find Me when you search for Me with all your heart.(A)
14I will be found by you, says the Lord, and I will release you from captivity and gather you from all the nations and all the places to which I have driven you, says the Lord, and I will bring you back to the place from which I caused you to be carried away captive.
Pray on, friend. Pray on.