Saturday, May 22, 2010

Proverbs 1:7

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge, but fools despise wisdom and discipline. – Proverbs 1:7
When we know that God will ultimately judge all of His creation for how we use the resources that He provides for us, we have the fear of the Lord. That proper reverence is what causes us to tell the truth when no one cares, to act honorably when no one sees. This is the beginning of knowledge.

I have been that fool that despises wisdom and discipline, trying to fake my way through situations or just arguing with someone when I already knew they were right.  I look back now and wonder why I did that?!  Growth from that is the Lord teaching me and I either wish to learn the lesson or continue to be a fool. 

The beginning of wisdom is much better. :0)

Friday, May 21, 2010

Psalm 119:161-162

Rulers persecute me without cause, but my heart trembles at your word. I rejoice in your promise like one who finds great spoil. – Psalm 119:161-162
The demands of a workweek can cause us to think that our employers or clients are persecuting us without cause. This can cause huge amounts of stress we feel that we are trapped in a “job rut”. But the Psalmist reminds us that God is over our affairs and not our boss. God’s word puts our workweek in proper perspective and frees us to work unto God and not unto men. What a blessing!

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Psalm 119:147-148

I rise before dawn and cry for help; I have put my hope in your word. My eyes stay open through the watches of the night, that I may meditate on your promises. – Psalm 119:147-148
The Psalmist is speaking here of guarding our prayer time with God. There are many things that can keep us from the Father. Many times these distractions are not overtly bad. A job can get too busy. Needed rest turns into hours wasted in entertainment. But we need to make sure that we make appointments with God that we keep. Find out the best time that you can give God and put it in your schedule book. You’ll be glad that you did.

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Psalm 119:69-72

Though the arrogant have smeared me with lies, I keep your precepts with all my heart. Their hearts are callous and unfeeling, but I delight in your law. It was good for me to be afflicted so that I might learn your decrees. The law from your mouth is more precious to me than thousands of pieces of silver and gold. – Psalm 119:69-72
One of the surest ways to gauge our true spiritual condition is by how we react when we feel misunderstood. When we feel like people are lying about us, do we try to strike back or defend ourselves? God’s word keeps our hearts soft and sensitive when we feel that we are attacked. The Psalmist gives us a way through the attacks from outside and even from within.

This is an important verse in times of trouble and a comfort in between those times.  I do have a tendency to try to defend myself.  But, after practicing this a few times, I've found that leaning on him allows things to work out without me getting in God's way and of course, it's much better that way. 

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Acts 2:43

Everyone was filled with awe, and many wonders and miraculous signs were done by the apostles.- Acts 2:43
Do you feel awe in your faith? Are you confronted by wonders and miraculous signs that God is active in the world today? This was the earmark of the first Century church and it hasn’t stopped since.

We were made for the awesomeness of God. English writers of the 19th Century talked often of the awful God – which back then meant “full of awe”. It happens with every life that comes alive to God’s word, every heart that is healed from pain, every life that is NOT healed and yet, miraculously, sees their suffering as a glory to God.

We live in an awe filled world. May God open our eyes to see it, and let it fill us!

Proverbs 27:17

As iron sharpens iron, so one man sharpens another. – Proverbs 27:17
It takes iron to sharpen iron. Sharpening a knife requires iron at least as hard as the knife. Once sharpened, a knife is bright, sharp, and ready for much more productive service.

I'm "working" in the craft world right now and while it is not iron.... creativity sharpens creativity.  Your peers influence you.  Peer pressure does not stop when you're in school.  Your peers pressure you at work.  Your peers pressure you at church... etc.  So you want to choose what is going to sharpen you.  You will be shaped by one thing or another, don't you want to be a sharper grade of iron to be used for the productive service of God?  

Rom 9:21
Hath not the potter power over the clay, of the same lump to make one vessel unto honor, and another unto dishonor?

I want the Potter to be the power over how I am to be shaped and for what purpose he wants to use me.  To sharpen me as iron, to refine me as silver to shape me as clay. 

Thursday, May 13, 2010

1 Thessalonians 4:16

Knowing God
God is friendly. His track record proves it. In the beginning, he made
a garden. Not a cesspool, not a slum, not a crowded freeway, but a
garden, a nice place, where Adam’s every need was met. Adam
messed things up, not God. Adam got greedy. He wanted the one
thing he couldn’t have. Adam hid from God because of his own
character flaws. Even then, God came looking for him. God seeks us
long before we have the good sense to seek him.
Let the Bible form your image of God. He is bigger than the Bible,
but he uses it as one of the ways he reveals himself. Only, keep in
mind, the Bible is limited to words and God is not. Whatever you
imagine as you read Holy Scripture falls short of all that God is. He
is smarter than intelligence itself. Nothing can be done he cannot do.
Nothing exists he did not make. He can’t learn something new
because he knows all there is to know. He is not wiser today than he
was yesterday. Those omni words are so familiar to us they’ve lost
their capacity to amaze. God is omnipotent—all powerful.
Omniscient—all knowing. Omni-present—everywhere all the time
at the same time, in every place where it is possible to be. But you
probably won’t spot him in traffic. Not that he isn’t there, just that it
is too noisy. Eternal—beyond time. He lives in the past, present, and
future at the same moment.
God is other. Unique. Not like you and me. We strive to be like him.
He is the original. We are incomplete copies made in his image. God
is much more aware of the consequences of that reality than we are.
God seldom shouts. The day he does, creation won’t be able to
handle it. The world will end. For the Lord himself will come down
from heaven with a commanding shout, with the voice of the
archangel, and with the trumpet call of God. First, the Christians
who have died will rise from their graves. (1 Thessalonians 4:16
Greg Cummings

Psalm 23:1-2

Psalm 23:1-2 – The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want

The LORD is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters – Psalm 23:1-2
The imagery of God’s leadership contains green pastures and quiet waters. Even if those pastures are located in the shadow of the valley of death, true leadership can give peace even in overwhelming circumstances.

It is the job of the shepherd to encourage – or instill courage – into the sheep to go down paths that seem treacherous.

Unlike the cattle driver, the shepherd leads from the front, going before his flock to assure them that they can make it. This is the type of leadership that inspires people and even empowers them to go places they would not go to on their own.

Today’s commentary by:
Dave Whitehead, Senior Pastor,

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Luke 6:39-40

He also told them this parable: “Can a blind man lead a blind man? Will they not both fall into a pit? A student is not above his teacher, but everyone who is fully trained will be like his teacher.” – Luke 6:39-40
Teens get in trouble by not using this verse.  Teens leading teens are equal to no experience leading no experience.  The wise teen seeks someone a little older to give guidance.  Someone who has been there.

The wise adult seeks someone who has been there.  Someone who has experience.  Otherwise, they fall into the ditch and climbing back up is harder for both.

Jesus came to earth to live this life and he is experienced all things as was common to man.  So, he is the one we can look to for guidance.  He also has provided Godly men and women for us to look to for guidance here on earth.  Those who have had experiences and can walk beside us.  (God with skin on).  We just need to ask.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Romans 12:6-8

We have different gifts, according to the grace given us. If a man’s gift is prophesying, let him use it in proportion to his faith. If it is serving, let him serve; if it is teaching, let him teach; if it is encouraging, let him encourage; if it is contributing to the needs of others, let him give generously; if it is leadership, let him govern diligently; if it is showing mercy, let him do it cheerfully. – Romans 12:6-8
In today's world full of leadership books, where everyone should become some kind of leader or some kind of teacher, the other gifts get lost.  They are no less important just lost in what the world says is valuable.

I happen to have the gift of encouragement.  It is a blessing and I'm pretty sure I get it from the way my mother raised me.  A good friend of mine just wrote a book on being a good follower.  Not everyone can lead, someone has to follow.  Someone has to show mercy.  Someone has to encourage the leader.   Someone has to teach and if someone teaches, there have to be listeners.  In all of the talents and work to be done there have to be those who receive it, there have to be those who give it.  One without the other is nothing.  

There is no MORE important talent than the other, all are needed.  I think the most important part of this verse though is in proportion to his faith.  As our faith grows, so do our talents.  I don't have the same amount of faith I had when I was younger.  I have more.  I am more compassionate and can show mercy far more cheerfully now than I did when I was young and trying to keep "laws" and "rules."  I understand the growth process better. I understand the need to be an encourager and not try to be what the world thinks is more important.  I want to do what God thinks is important in me. 

Monday, May 10, 2010

Proverbs 31:28-29

Her children stand and bless her. Her husband praises her: “There are many virtuous and capable women in the world, but you surpass them all!” – Proverbs 31:28-29
"In a recent survey of what makes marriages last, one of the main factors was that each participant had a higher opinion of their spouse than the spouse did of themselves. This was part of the goal of the writer of the proverbs 31 woman. A woman could read this passage and wither under the comparison, but to look through the lens of the writer is to stand and bless them."

The person who wrote that totally gets it.  My husband does think highly of me, much higher than I think of myself.  I think very highly of my husband, I don't know how he feels about himself, but I suspect I think higher of him than he does of himself, because I think he's perfect.

I want to be a virtuous woman for God, my husband and my children.  I think I am.  I try.  All my children blessed me yesterday for mother's day.  God blessed me even more.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Proverbs 29:15

To discipline a child produces wisdom, but a mother is disgraced by an undisciplined child. – Proverbs 29:15
There is lot packed into this proverb. The first is that, left to their own, a child will not go toward wisdom naturally. They must be mentored through boundaries that teach them the wisdom needed to function well with others. The second is that a child who is not lovingly but firmly raised with boundaries brings many uncomfortable and even damaging moments for their parents and those around them. Whether we were raised with many or few of these boundaries, celebrate with your mother the wisdom that she helped you to learn. You will be blessed if you do.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Matthew 7:24-29

Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock. But everyone who hears these words of mine and does not put them into practice is like a foolish man who built his house on sand. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house, and it fell with a great crash.” When Jesus had finished saying these things, the crowds were amazed at his teaching, because he taught as one who had authority, and not as their teachers of the law. – Matthew 7:24-29

Ever drive through a subdivision where every house looked exactly the same except for the colors. Every third house is yellow, every other one is white.  But the one in the middle was crumbling and looked like it was falling apart, with large cracks up the sides.  The water seeped below the surface and cracked the foundation and there was no fixing the house without fixing the foundation.

Foundation is important.  Who are you building on?  What are you building on?  I am grateful that I had a good foundation as a child, but what if I didn't have that? I know the wind and rain comes.  I ask myself all the time, what do people do when storms come in their life and they don't have Jesus?  Where do they turn?  

I don't want Jesus just to be my foundation though, I want him to be my walls, my windows, my roof, my doors.  I want  him to be everything, I want to live like he is everything.  I want to be wise.

You know how they say don't pray for patience because you'll get problems to be patient through.  If you pray for wisdom, you'll get problems that test where you turn for wisdom and how you exhibit it.  May my foundation be strong, may I lean upon it for wisdom !

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Proverbs 3:5 & 6

"Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding. In all thy ways acknowledge him, and he shall direct thy paths." Proverbs 3:5 & 6 
We do get in trouble when we start trying to rationalize what God might want for us.  Examples of Sarah and Hagai, King Saul, even Peter.  When we are looking at him and always offering up that we want to do his will, his will becomes clearer and clearer.  It doesn't remove our free will, but He wants our free will to be His will.  Us to choose him.  I woke up with a song on my heart this morning of Holy, Holy, Holy. and I was thinking of how in Revelation the beasts are flying about always singing, "Holy, Holy, Holy is our God Almighty, who is and was and is to come."  Revelation 4:8

With those words on my heart, Trusting in the Lord and not leaning on my own understanding seems easy. In fact, it seems like I would never wonder and never doubt.  But then, satan loves to have me doubt, question, try to lean on my own understanding.  Which is faulty unless I am looking at him. 

The last few entries have been about wisdom which comes from the experiences we have both those that we learn from overcoming temptations and those we learn from when we fail.  Letting him direct my path and not trying to make my own is the far better route to wisdom.

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

- Proverbs 2:1-5

My son, if you accept my words
and store up my commands within you,

turning your ear to wisdom
and applying your heart to understanding,

and if you call out for insight
and cry aloud for understanding,

and if you look for it as for silver
and search for it as for hidden treasure,

then you will understand the fear of the LORD
and find the knowledge of God.

- Proverbs 2:1-5

What a great prophecy.  Since we have to go through a trial that teaches us something to become wise about it.  It is this wisdom that will get you through it.  Turn and listen to wisdom.  Know where it is around you.  Know the steps to take to the treasurer.  They are right there before you and a precious spirit  What a joy this versre gives, and hope.


Monday, May 3, 2010

Proverbs 1:23

If you had responded to my rebuke, I would have poured out my heart to you and made my thoughts known to you. – Proverbs 1:23
This proverb is referring to the role of wisdom in our lives. It brilliantly captures how we learn: first we don’t know what we don’t know, then we realize that we don’t know, this begins the quest for knowledge, then we actually learn. Responding to correction is the doorway to wisdom pouring it’s heart to us and making it’s thoughts known. To allow correction in our lives is the pathway to wisdom.
Today’s commentary by:
Dave Whitehead, Senior Pastor,

I usually try to come up with my own commentary to a verse, but this is almost exactly what I would have written.  We can't hide from rebuke.  We need to own up so that God can use our mistake and make us more like him.  I want to be more like him.  Wisdom in our lives is His blessing.  

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Jeremiah 1:4-5

The word of the LORD came to me, saying, “Before I formed you in the womb I knew you, before you were born I set you apart; I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” – Jeremiah 1:4-5
God knows our purpose on this earth before we were ever born. In an age of options the God of creation made us for a specific reason.  Oh and a joy that He does.  I find such peace knowing that He knows for what he has intended me.   If I have given my life over to him, I need not fear, only trust.