Posts Tagged ‘Faith’

SHIELD OF FAITH

October 17, 2017

photo credit: archer10 (Dennis) 104M Views <a href=”http://www.flickr.com/photos/22490717@N02/31179560976″>Poland-00767 – Mermaid Legend</a> via <a href=”http://photopin.com”>photopin</a&gt; <a href=”https://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/2.0/”>(license)</a&gt;

Raise your shield of faith!

“O Israel, trust in the Lord;
He is their help and their shield.
O house of Aaron, trust in the Lord;
He is their help and their shield.
You who fear the Lord, trust in the Lord;
He is their help and their shield (Psalm 115:9-11 NKJV).”

The LORD God shields His children.

“Finally, my brethren, be strong in the Lord and in the power of His might.  Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the wiles of the devil.  For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against principalities, against powers, against the rulers of the darkness of this age, against spiritual hosts of wickedness in the heavenly places.  Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand.

 Stand therefore, having girded your waist with truth, having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace;  above all, taking the shield of faith (Emphasis mine) with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.  And take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God;  praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit, being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints— (Ephesians 6:10-18 NKJV).”

 

 

 

 

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Written in Stone

October 27, 2016

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Remember the popular ‘Que Sera, Sera’ (Whatever will be, will be) by Doris Day?

The classic is a favorite by one of my favorite female singers.

Que Sera, Sera…

Is that the attitude of a fatalist?

Is destiny set in stone?

A strained relationship between King Saul and David unfolds in a dramatic scene. 

The jealous and paranoid King was relentless in his attempts to kill David.

Given the perfect opportunity, to take the life of the mortal enemy, David declines. He would not be victor by vengeance.

Though in a crisis, David was not a fatalist; he was a man of deep faith.

Yet, some things are written in stone. King Saul, in a lucid moment, foretold the reign of David.

Que Sera, Sera.

“So it was, when David had finished speaking these words to Saul, that Saul said, ‘Is this your voice, my son David?’ And Saul lifted up his voice and wept. Then he said to David: ‘You are more righteous than I; for you have rewarded me with good, whereas I have rewarded you with evil. And you have shown this day how you have dealt well with me; for when the Lord delivered me into your hand, you did not kill me.  For if a man finds his enemy, will he let him get away safely? Therefore may the Lord reward you with good for what you have done to me this day. And now I know indeed that you shall surely be king, and that the kingdom of Israel shall be established in your hand. Therefore swear now to me by the Lord that you will not cut off my descendants after me, and that you will not destroy my name from my father’s house.’

So David swore to Saul. And Saul went home, but David and his men went up to the stronghold (1 Samuel 24:16-22 NKJV).”

 

 

 

True Greatness…

June 22, 2016

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Great, not second-rate…

“Now the LORD had said to Abram:
‘Get out of your country,
From your family
And from your father’s house,
To a land that I will show you.
I will make you a great nation;
I will bless you
And make your name great;
And you shall be a blessing.
I will bless those who bless you,
And I will curse him who curses you;
And in you all the families of the earth shall be blessed (Genesis 12:1-3 NKJ).”

Easier said than done?

When God speaks, it is done already. He is eternal and all powerful. It will happen.

True greatness is not easily recognized in our me generation.

“At that time the disciples came to Jesus, saying, ‘Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?’ Then Jesus called a little child to Him, set him in the midst of them, and said, ‘Assuredly, I say to you, unless you are converted and become as little children, you will by no means enter the kingdom of heaven. Therefore whoever humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the kingdom of heaven. Whoever receives one little child like this in My name receives Me (Matthew 18:1-5 NKJ).”

The family of God is blessed through the humility and faith of Abraham (Abram). 

Yes indeed, God made his name great.

I Confess

February 5, 2016

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‘I confess.’

Words of someone ready to admit their guilt.

He or she is ready to come clean.

‘I confess.’

Words of one who confesses Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior. Seeking Him, and His forgiveness; they are ready to receive His cleansing.

“He said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ Simon Peter answered and said, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:15-16 NKJ).”

‘I confess. ‘

“Therefore whoever confesses Me before men, him I will also confess before My Father who is in heaven (Matthew 10:32 NKJ).”         12471528_10204979913689110_9211174592249462285_o

FAITH PLUS

June 5, 2015

A faith plus works salvation standard always subtracts…SEPTEMBER 2014 002

“Some men came down from Judea and began teaching the brethren, ‘Unless you are circumcised according to the custom of Moses, you cannot be saved.’ / ‘But we believe that we are saved through the grace of the Lord Jesus, in the same way as they also are (Acts 15:1, 11 NAS).”

If we add works to faith, in order to receive salvation, we err from scripture.

“For by grace you have been saved through faith; and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; not as a result of works, so that no one may boast (Ephesians 2:8-9 NAS).”

Validity of Divinity

May 27, 2013

 

CROPPED NOVEMBER 2012 PROFILE PICTURE

We are touchy-feel folk. We like to see a car with our own eyes, grip the steering wheel with both hands, and take it for a test drive around the block. Then, after exiting the sale model we firmly close the door, step aside and kick the tires. Seeing is believing. In faith, we believe before we see…

Doubting Thomas sets a clear example of setting feelings aside as validity of divinity. (John 20:19-29) “Jesus was standing among them and greeting them. Then he said to Thomas, ‘Put your finger into my hands. Don’t be faithless any longer. Believe!’ ‘My Lord and my God!’ Thomas said (John 20:26b-28 Living Bible).”  

Swinging Lesson

April 25, 2012

One of my fondest childhood memories is swinging. Let your mind wander back to those early years…

From a child’s eye view, a swing is big and exciting. You sit on the swing and grip tightly the chains or ropes securing the swing to the tree or swing-set. It looks so easy, but how can you get up high like the other children you have envied? You try, but the swing just twirls around in a circle. Your feet drag against the ground; this is not much fun.

Soon, you see your father coming and you yell out, “Daddy, give me a push!” He steps behind you and gives a strong push, followed by several more. You begin to soar! It’s wonderful while it lasts! You seem to be as high as rustling leaves atop the trees. Gradually, the swing slows down and you drift closer and closer to the ground. Feeling safe, you jump from the swing and run off to play on the slide, monkey bars and seesaw.

Later, you notice older children on the swing set. Nobody is pushing them; yet, they swing higher and higher. They really hold your attention. When one finishes you ask, “Can you teach me how to swing?” He laughs and replies, “It’s easy. You just sit down on the swing and swing!” He walks away and you feel very small and just plain dumb.

Each time you return to the playground memories resurface. Oh, how you would love to learn how to swing… You want so much to learn how to swing all by yourself. One afternoon your father goes along and after he gives you a good start on the swing you turn to him with imploring eyes asking, “Daddy, will you teach me how to swing?”

He grins and tenderly replies, “Yes, little lady. I think you are ready for a lesson! Hang on tightly to your ropes and just push your feet forward, then back, forward-back, forward-back, again and again. See, you are starting to go higher! Do you feel muscles in the back of your legs hurting? It’s hard work I know, but you are getting higher. The more you push, the easier it will be, forward-back, forward-back.” The lesson ends and you walk home hand-in-hand with your hero. You feel dizzy and short of breath but very proud of yourself. You have learned how to swing!

Days, weeks and months pass quickly by. Now, swinging is so easy you take it for granted and only faintly remember a time when you could not swing without assistance. One evening, just before sunset, your father tousles your hair and says, “Let’s go swing!” You eagerly accept the opportunity to have his undivided attention. Arriving at the swings, you remember how things were before, when you could not swing by yourself.

“Daddy, will you push me?” Quietly, he moves directly behind you. You cannot see him; you only feel his hands placed against the top of your back. His hands are gentle, yet firm. You expect him to give one strong push, maybe two and then you will do the rest of the work. He surprises you saying, “Relax. Don’t pump your legs forward and back. Let me push you.” It’s incredible! You go higher and higher, reaching such a height that if you did not trust your father, you would beg him to stop.

You walk back home with little chatting; suddenly he stops just before reaching the house. “Daughter, your life ahead will be like swinging. Sometimes problems will seem so big and hard to handle. Friends may not be much help. They may even laugh at you as you ask for help. God will be there to give you the push you need. You will work your muscles of faith, forward-back, forward-back…,  learning lessons of how to walk in faith. The more you exercise your faith, the easier it will be to follow His directions. Like a swings ropes or chains, He is our lifeline. Hang on tight! He will invite you to relax and let Him take over.”

As an adult I welcome the helpful hands of my heavenly Father.

“Be still, and know that I am God (Psalms 46:10a NKJ)

He alone strengthens me and allows me to soar!

“But those who wait on the Lord

Shall renew their strength;

They shall mount up with wings like eagles,

They shall run and not be weary,

They shall walk and not faint (Isaiah 40:31 NKJ).”

You are never too old to learn how to swing. Can’t you just sense His hands upon your back?

 

 

Don’t Look Down

September 2, 2010

GUEST WRITER: EMILY SWANSON

Matthew 14: 24-30

When Jesus invited Peter to join Him on the water of the sea, Peter was hoping to meet the challenge. With great faith, Peter stepped out of the boat. He was full of confidence as he faced the Master. I think Peter’s feet were quite dry as long as his eyes were on Jesus.

I can almost hear Jesus calling out with urgency, “don’t look down, Peter. Don’t look down.”

The Big Fisherman made that very mistake. He looked down into the murky waters. His confidence in himself waned. His faith in Jesus wavered. After all, walking on water was impossible.

It is extremely easy to criticize Peter for his failure. Yet it is true of us all. The walk-of-faith is remarkable as long as one’s eyes are on the Master. When one’s gaze wanders into the world, we get swept up by waves of doubt.

Peter was not too proud to cry out, “Master, save me!”

Like Peter of old, we must “Turn Our Eyes Upon Jesus”. “Look full in His wonderful face“. It becomes easy to sink into the swirling waters of discouragement. One’s attention can become fixed on the problem rather than the Problem Solver. Discouragement can pull us down into a never-ending whirlpool of despair.

I can almost hear Jesus calling out with urgency, “don’t look down. Don’t look down!”

We, too, must cry out, “Master, save me”.

 
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