Anniversary

#fmf

Anniversary, that’s a day of celebration!  Whatever it is you’re celebrating.  Usually it’s thought of a wedding anniversary or it could be the anniversary of starting a new job or putting down that drug of choice.  These are all special times and times worthy of celebrating.

But we could also think of an anniversary as a milestone, worthy of celebration!  We have many milestones in our lives.  When we started walking, said our 1st word,  cut our first tooth, started school, started driving, went on our 1st date, graduated high school, accepted into college, finished college, got our 1st “real” job, first promotion, got married, had a baby and our 1st grandchild.  And the list could literally go on and on with many in between.  All worthy of great celebration!

Our 1st celebration was the celebration of our birth. Obviously we don’t remember all the joy that surrounded that moment but it was the moment that started the movement towards all the other celebrations, milestones and anniversaries.   At this moment, this child was knit together by a Father that would walk with us through the rest of our celebrations.  We may not acknowledge His presence but that doesn’t mean He is not there.  We may not see His impact on our daily lives because we may not be looking for it. But the day we do, the day we accept Him as our Father, the day we accept Jesus into our heart and the day we allow the Holy Spirit to work in our walk is the 2nd greatest celebration, milestone and anniversary.  If I’m being honest and I usually am, I didn’t grasp that great anniversary when it came.  It has taken me almost 40 years to truly understand the reason for that celebration.  But now that I do understand it my mind goes directly to the greatest anniversary I can imagine.  The celebration, milestone and anniversary of the greatest day in my life that will ever be.  The day the Lord calls me home.   I know that is usually a day of great sadness for people, particularly if the circumstances surrounding that day were not joyous, but for me, I will be celebrating that great anniversary.

1 Thessalonians 4:16

For the Lord himself will descend from heaven with a cry of command, with the voice of an archangel, and with the sound of the trumpet of God. And the dead in Christ will rise first.

Many of us living and walking this earth do not know of most of these reasons for celebration.  Many have suffered great, either by the hand of others or by their own choices.  We all have the opportunity to hear His call.  We simply have to be listening.   But you may say, some don’t know, some aren’t hearing.  To that I say, for those of us who have celebrated, had the milestone and reached the anniversary of accepting Him into our hearts, that is where we come in!  We must pave the way for those who don’t know of the reason for celebration.   Show them the way to hear Him call.

Lord, Wow!  You amaze me and make me joyous !  You have provided for me a path that leads to the greatest anniversary there could ever be.  Help me Lord be brave enough to show others.  Amen!

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1 CORINTHIAN 13

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1 Corinthians 13 (click here)

Only if we all would live by these standards.

Lord help me love even when love is not being shown.  Help me love as you love.  Help me show the love that Paul writes about in Corinthians.

LOVE IS

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Way

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As a child I was told how I should act, where to go and who I was to be with. I aged and there became more freedoms of the way I would go.  What friends I would hang out with, what I would do with those friends and how I would treat them.  I definitely didn’t choose the right “way” all the time.

Luke 15:24

For this my son was dead, and is alive again; he was lost, and is found.’ And they began to celebrate.

Then my I found Jesus but I was accustom to finding my own way.  I met the man of my dreams, married him, had 2 children and began building a life and that life was stripped away from me.  I had to find a new “way”.

I began searching for God’s way but I still held on to those freedoms of choosing my own “way”.  I remarried too quickly, without consult from my FATHER and my way was proving to be the hard way.  Twelve years later I find myself seeking the way again.  Not because it had been stripped away but because my way wasn’t working.  I prayed, I waited, I cried, I got angry, I was sad but I stayed steadfast in my seeking His way.

John 14:1-31

“Let not your hearts be troubled. Believe in God; believe also in me. In my Father’s house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you? And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again and will take you to myself, that where I am you may be also. And you know the way to where I am going.” Thomas said to him, “Lord, we do not know where you are going. How can we know the way?” …

I had to find that place, that place where I could give way to my way and let it be His.  He was patient with me.  He was full of grace and compassion and love.  He showed me how to have the same.  He showed me that He is never too far from me and if I seek He will show me the way.

Acts 17:27

That they should seek God, in the hope that they might feel their way toward him and find him. Yet he is actually not far from each one of us,

Lord, there is no way that I can show You how grateful I am.  But I will surely try all of my days.  Amen!

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DONE

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When we are using the word done, it denotes finality.

In Genesis when God created the heavens and the earth, the light and the dark, the water and the land, and all living creatures then Adam and Eve, then on the 6th day he said, “It is Good”.  He was done and he rested on the 7th.

There has been many times that I have used the word “done” to denote finality with something I was doing.  Way too many to count, some of them had happy endings and some were a sorrowful new start but regardless, I was “done”.

I’m grateful that God is never done with me.  And I have given Him plenty of reason why He should be.

2 John 1:2

because of the truth, which lives in us and will be with us forever

I’m grateful that I can wake up, mess up and start again everyday and He will never be done with me as long as I continue to seek Him.  Walking each day striving to be all that He made me to be.  So I can look forward to one day saying “it is Done” and joining Him at His right hand in Heaven.

Thank You Lord for never being done with me.  Amen!

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Vacation

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When we scroll through social media these days or listen to people in our surrounding social groups, we realize that most perfect ideal vacations are extravagance.  It’s, let’s go big or go home!  But not me! A trip to a nice quiet lake is my ideal vacation.  With serenity all around you.   The house may be full of laughter and children screaming.  There may be people moving all around me but something about looking over that rippling water with the sun either coming up or going down just calms me.   And I’m grateful!  I’m grateful because He created all this for me.  So I could find peace and stillness in Him.

Genesis 1 [Full Chapter]

The Beginning ] In the beginning God created the heavens and the earth. Now the earth was formless and empty, darkness was over the surface of the deep, and the Spirit of God was hovering over the waters. And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. …
He says, “Bestill, and know that I am God; I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
I can find that calmness in many places without even going anywhere.  Can that be called mini-vacations?  Simply sitting on my porch and watching the butterflies flutter calms me.    A nice serene ride down a mountain path, following a gently flowing stream also takes me there.  And I think, “God is so Good”.
We live in such a busy, hustle and bustle world that we need time to just be still but do most take that time?  We don’t need to go big or go home, in fact we need to go simple.  Take the time to be still and just draw Him in.
Take a vacation that is focused on being still and seeking Him.  You might just choose to let that be  your perfect ideal vacation.
Lord, I’m grateful!  For me I see you most in the ripples.  In the ripples of the water and in the ripples of my life.  You provide and you make beautiful.  Amen!
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If

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The word “IF” has all sorts of possibilities. I know in my life I have used it to finagle my words so that my mind or the person I was talking to would understand which direction I wanted to go.  What the end result would be!

“IF” it wasn’t for the the use of the word “IF” would a man be standing on the moon.  “I know it hasn’t ever been done but if………………………..”. What would the tomorrows be without “IF”

 

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Then there’s the “IF only”s .  Thinking back!  “IF only” I’d made a different choice.  “IF only” he’d been more committed. We use it to question our past or reminisce about the possibilities or out comes.

But “IF” I use the word “IF” today.

If I believed I was truly a child of God…….

John 1:12

But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God,

If I understood the love HE has for me…………

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!

If I grasped HIS unconditional love………….

John 3:16

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Romans 5:8

But God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

If I trusted HIM……………..

Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding.

Psalm 28:7

The Lord is my strength and my shield; in him my heart trusts, and I am helped; my heart exults, and with my song I give thanks to him.

Jeremiah 29:11

For I know the plans I have for you, declares the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.

Matthew 6:25

“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

 

If I walked my day knowing that the ONE who got me through yesterday is the same ONE that will get me through tomorrow and will also help me through today.

Hebrews 13:8

Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

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Lord, I’m going to use the word “if” to draw me closer to you.  And I pray Lord that “if” I write these words someone else would also draw closer.   Help me believe, understand, grasp, trust and walk in You. Amen!

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Restore

Oh how He will Restore!

#fmf

When I thought of restore, my mind immediately went to my flower garden behind my house and next to my porch.  It has always been full of beautiful things and I was looking forward to the spring when green would start popping up from the earth.  But then………… we were doing some work around the house and had to run a water line from the house to the back of the property.  The plumbers were specifically told NOT to go through the flower bed but when I came home there was a 2ft wide, 2ft deep trench dug all the way through my bed and my fountain was just thrown over on it’s side.  I had to stop and take a deep breath before I reacted.  I knew this was work that had to be done and if anyway possible for it to be done without this painful process and the up rooting of things, I knew it would happen.  But there wasn’t anyway to accomplish what was needed without working through the ugly first.  So I breathed deep and I did the work necessary to restore my flower beds.  Thankfully it wasn’t really that much because most everything in there were perennials and the digging wasn’t as painful for them as it was for me.

Then the thought jumped to myself.  The restoration process of myself hasn’t been that easy.  I had to dig through some pretty tough roots and clean away some pretty thick weeds to find restoration.

Acts 3:19-21

Repent therefore, and turn again, that your sins may be blotted out, that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord, and that he may send the Christ appointed for you, Jesus, whom heaven must receive until the time for restoring all the things about which God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets long ago.

He did that for me. He gave me the strength to keep digging. Raking away the old and filling in with the new.

Psalm 51:12

Restore to me the joy of your salvation, and uphold me with a willing spirit.

Believing in His restoring power, I trusted, I waited and I believed it would come.

Matthew 6:33

But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Hosea 6:1

“Come, let us return to the Lord; for he has torn us, that he may heal us; he has struck us down, and he will bind us up.

When we set out to restore something, it’s not always to make it like it was before.  I find that comforting.  I’m able to take old, unusable things and make them useful and beautiful again.

Jesus did the same with me.  He restored me to a new me.  A better me.  A happier me.  A more grateful me.  A more confident me.  A more willing me.  He restored me into a me who was more like Him.  I’m not perfect and will not be until the day I sit by His side but until that day He will continue the restoration process in me.

Lord without You my life would not be as beautiful. I am so thankful that You never gave up on me.  I know that you had to take some very deep breaths at times but You waited until that perfect moment, You allowed me to drudge through hard stuff and heal.  You are my strength and my shield forever.  Amen!

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Fly

I not only want to fly away at times, I also want to soar!

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We find many ways of flying.  Getting that feeling of being higher than others.  The feeling of being free, faster, better and more equipped.  We do that in many fashions.

Excelling in our schooling, careers and positions

Abusing drugs, sex and alcohol

Placing ourselves at a higher status level with bigger homes, expensive cars and elaborate things

We miss use or abuse the things that are here on earth to elevate ourselves to fly high out of our heads or over the heads of others, we are heading for a crash that we may not survive.

If only we would realize that the only way to really fly and soar with great power is to allow God to provide our strength and endurance, our honor and our might.  He will show us if we trust how to fly with integrity and might, being able to bring others to Him and give grace and mercy, preparing others to fly.

but those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint.
Then there will be allowed time for rest.
I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest.
Lord, let me lean on You and You alone.  Amen!
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Return

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For anyone that has a prodigal return to them will understand the joy and love that is in abundance within them.  I for one have had that! When you have had a parent, spouse, child or friend so far away from you that your heart hurts and the fear is strong, you get it!

Same goes for the parable in the bible where the son was lost.  Did he say things that were hurtful?  Did he do things that were harmful?  Did he suffer?  Did those he left behind cry out? Yes is the answer to all those questions.

Luke 15:11-32 (Read for yourself)

Yes, he was wrong but the love the father has for him was stronger than any wrong that he could do.

God has that same love for us!

Some may not understand that love, they may question your allegiance to them.  But until they understand that unconditional love, they can never give it.

Luke 15:31-32  “‘My son,’ the father said, ‘you are always with me, and everything I have is yours. 32 But we had to celebrate and be glad, because this brother of yours was dead and is alive again; he was lost and is found.’”

God’s love is so great that we can leave Him and do unimaginable things but when we return to Him with a heart of repentance His love is still great!

“But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” Rom. 5:8

As the water always returns to the shore, may we go through ours days and sleep through our nights, let us wake each morning and return to Him.

Lord, help me remember Your love for me each day.  Never wandering too far!  Help me show others the love You have and if it’s the first time they have met You or a time to return to You, let them know Your love.  Amen!

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Pause

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When would you like to just pause?

1 John 4:1

Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are from God, for many false prophets have gone out into the world.

From the moment our feet hit the floor, most of use have schedules to follow, places to be, people to see and things to do.  Do we ever take the time to just pause?

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Pause to listen to the trees wrestling

Pause to smell the flowers on the side of the road

Pause to skip a rock across the water

Pause to hug a child

Pause to watch the butterfly move gently from flower to flower

Pause to see the bee drink up the sweetness

Pause to breath deeply

Pause to consider the words before the leave the mouth

Pause to give a smile of encourgement

Pause to look at someone in the eyes so they know you truly see them

Pause to make funny faces

Pause to reminder yourself of your blessings

Pause to consider your next step

Pause to be in the moment

Pause to hear the heart of another

Pause to read a poem

Pause to jump in a puddle

Pause to play with a rollie pollie and remember your childhood

Pause to see what He has placed before you and jump at the opportunity

Pause to the voice of God and soak in His guidance

Pause to ask for His forgiveness

Pause to accept His grace

Pause to remember His mercies

Pause to give Him the Glory

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I do not pause enough. Do you?

Lord help me pause today.  Help me to recognize the pause moments you give me.  Help me disconnect enough from “me” so I can pause and see others. Lord help me pause. Amen!

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