Tag Archives: death

Why Me? Will It Ever Stop?!

Father, today has been a good day. I am so grateful for everything You do for me.  Helping me to focus…especially to focus on You…helps me to keep myself on the straight and narrow, which is the only place to be. All praise to You!

Philippians 4:7 (<<click here)

To worry less – pray more! Lord, doing this will bring about a peace found only in You and as the old translation reads, it will be a “peace that passes all understanding”– from the world’s perspective, it makes no sense!

Something has been rattling around in my head for some time – as Your children, how do we respond to the absolutely horrific thing’s this life thrust upon us? Death, disease, heartache, financial woes, loss, and rejection – the list goes on and on. We cry out, “Why me!?” “Will it ever stop?!”

Now Your Word tells us in Romans 8:28 that “… in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.”  So the question we deal with then is, how does all of this gel? If You love us why do we experience so much pain in life? And how does pain which is included in the “all things” of Romans 8:28 work for our good? Again going to Your Word tells us in order to stress less we must pray more and that will bring about a peace that is beyond comprehension.

First of all, You do not bring about the pain. We, the whole of humanity, have brought that upon ourselves. Eve’s yielding to sin started it and every one of us since has perpetuated that sin – our depravity knows no end. Our great propensity for wondrous creativity from being created in Your likeness has been pushed to all limits by our perversion and wickedness. We have so polluted the world with our rebellion that inevitably we encounter pain.

Secondly, because You love us so much – which is proven by the fact of how far You went to bring us back into right relationship with You – the giving of yourself to the point of a horrific death at our hands – because You love us so much You can take all that is ugly and revolting about ourselves and our lives and make it good! The impossible becomes possible!

Lord, most of us would have no problem acknowledging these two points through most of the ebb and flow of life. But when those times of pain and suffering are so intense that we feel like we are going down for the count, is the answer to worry (which seems like an awfully small word in this context) less and pray more? ‘That’s it?’ we yell? ‘With all Your power and might and “love”, that’s all You have to offer?’ And Your answer is…a resounding ‘YES!!’

We absolutely cannot wrap our minds around it, but giving ourselves over to You and praying in place of worrying brings us peace – not peace of the world which is shallow and, oh so temporary, but Your peace. Your peace is deep, and rich and most importantly – never ending!!

Miraculously, You take the absolute worst of our lives and bring the absolute best out of it! From a worldly perspective – it makes no sense at all, but Your peace is not of this world. Being Your children, whom You love, You give it to us freely and in abundance!! Lord, all the praise goes to You for this awesomely overwhelming gift!! In the midst of the hurricanes of life – You are there – solid and strong- FOR US!!

Help us, Lord, to trust in You – to throw ourselves into Your mighty arms. Give us Your peace we plea! When we do so the glory will be given to You! Others will ask how we do it and we can proclaim that it’s only because of You!! You are our only answer to everything this old world has to throw at us!  Even if death is what is thrown our way, yes, even death, You are the answer – being escorted into Your presence, what could be better?

Praise You, Lord!! Strengthen us!  Enable us!  Empower us!! Use us through all of life to hold our lights high, showing the world that there is HOPE and LIFE found only in You! AMEN!

June 2nd, Tues, 8:07 am

Location, Location, Location!

You have been speaking to me, Father, and You know that my heart’s desire is to clearly hear what You have for me. Give me a burning desire to draw closer to You, to spend time with You in prayer. My relationship with You must be the most important thing in my life – everything else will fall into place when You, Father, are at the center. Amen.

Matthew 4:12-17 (<<click the green)

As I have sat here pondering this passage, Lord, I was curious to see where all these places were. I recognize the names of them but I really didn’t know if they were close together or far apart.

After looking at one of the maps in the back of my Bible, I figured out that Judea is a region of Israel where Jerusalem and Bethlehem were. The wilderness where You were tempted was here as well. So putting that all together, You probably had to travel approximately 45 miles to get to Galilee, where Nazareth and Capernaum were located. That’s about a 15-hour walk! But where You chose to center Your ministry was of extreme importance. Many important things would take place in Judea but equally important was what would take place in Galilee.

As is the case today, You are always in the right place at the right time. For the third time in four chapters, Matthew refers to a proclamation of the prophet Isaiah. Yes, it’s important to realize Your relocation fulfilled prophecy but it also put You in a place where there would be many people who needed You on so many levels.

Lord, You go where You are needed. In Galilee, there were many Jews but there were many Gentiles there as well. Isaiah refers to the people in this area as those “who sat in darkness” and “those who lived in the land where death casts its shadow”. For those with no true hope, Hope has come. For those in darkness, “a light has shined.”

I know You are always with me, Lord, but I would pray that You would shine brightly through me. I am in a land of darkness – a land where “death casts its shadow”. Use me to touch the lives of those in my location. May I bring Hope. Amen.

Oct 4th, Wed, 6:22 am

You Cannot Do It

Oh my goodness, Father, my eyes are having a hard time staying open this morning! Help me to see what You have for me today. “Make me a blessing to someone today.”

Matthew 1:20-25 (<<click the green)

From a very early age, most of us don’t like being told that we cannot do something. It gets us into all kinds of trouble either doing (or trying to do) it anyway or throwing a fit because we can’t. For that matter that’s what got Adam and Eve into trouble at the outset of time. They were told they could eat from every tree…except one. And of course which tree did they eat from? The one from which they were forbidden, bringing condemnation on the entirety of humanity for the rest of time.

Yet today we fight against being told we can’t do certain things. We continue to be ravaged by sin – it is a constant battle for us all. But one thing we can’t do? We cannot save ourselves from the onslaught of sin and its repercussions.

Romans 6:23 tells us that, the wages of sin is death…” We cannot save ourselves from the ramifications of sin. We are condemned to death. We, in and of ourselves, can do absolutely nothing about it. We can try all sorts of things to conquer sin but all of them fail. We are doomed.

But…that is where God steps in. In our passage today the angle of the Lord explains to Joseph all that is going on with Mary. The son she carried “was conceived by the Holy Spirit” and Joseph was to “name him Jesus, for he will save his people from their sins.” The name Jesus means, “The Lord saves”.

Romans 6:23 begins with, “For the wages of sin is death…” but the last portion of the verse exclaims “but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.”

I love the phrase in my study Bible* that says, “Jesus didn’t come to help people save themselves; he came to be their Savior from the power and penalty of sin.” (emphasis mine)

Thank You, Lord, for the salvation You freely extend to us all. We may not like to hear it but we cannot save ourselves. As the meaning of Your name proclaims “The Lord saves.” I am so grateful that You do, for I surely cannot.

*Life Application Study Bible New Living Translation

Sept 12th, Tues, 6:44 am

Life…but a Prelude to Eternity

Good evening, Father. Sleeping in a little this morning makes for a time of writing tonight. Thank You for Your guiding hand in all that was accomplished today – most everything is ready for Sunday. Thank You, too, for bringing everything together to be able to enjoy a drum and bugle corps rehearsal at the local football stadium tonight. It was a lot of fun!

Revelation 2:10-11 (<<click green)

Lord, reading through this verse again makes me think of death. Many in our world have this mindset that death is the end. We have to live this life to the fullest because it’s the only one we get. But the older I get and the more time I spend with You, I realize that this life is but a prelude and a short one at that.

Death…it is inevitable. We cannot avoid it. Most of us will not know when it will arrive but we know it undoubtedly will. And though we know these things, will we be ready? Verse 10 states that “…if [we] remain faithful even when facing death, [You] will give [us] the crown of life.”

Verse 11 then goes on to say that, “Anyone with ears to hear must listen to the Spirit and understand what he is saying to the churches. Whoever is victorious will not be harmed by the second death.”

What is this “second death”? It is an eternal separation from God.

Each person will have their chance to accept Your generous offer of forgiveness. Scripture seems pretty clear that our opportunity to do so lies in this lifetime alone. Hebrews 9:27 states that “each person is destined to die once and after that comes judgment…” Then we will stand before You. We will have no other choice. Romans 14:11 states, “‘As surely as I live,’ says the Lord, ‘every knee will bend to me, and every tongue will declare allegiance to God.’”

Lord, may I be diligent in declaring Your Word to those in my realm of influence. Time is short. Our prelude to eternity will only last so long. And then we all will stand before You and we all will be called upon to give an answer of what we did with You. Enable me to be faithful to the end of my days. Amen.

July 6th, Thurs, 9:35 am

He Holds the Keys!

Father, it has been as very full, last couple of days but I know that I need to sit down and have some time with You. May I hear what You have for me through Your word. Amen.

Revelation 1:17-18 (<<click green)

Every time I read Your word, Lord, I am prepared to read several verses but quite often something in a short passage makes me pause…and I paused on verses 17 & 18.

When I saw him, I fell at his feet as if I were dead. But he laid his right hand on me and said, “Don’t be afraid! I am the First and the Last. I am the living one. I died, but look—I am alive forever and ever! And I hold the keys of death and the grave.

As You showed me last I read, You were not what John (or I) expected and all of that might and power literally knocked him out! But as You had said before “Don’t be afraid!” (Matthew 14:22-33) As it was then it is now with John – You’ve got absolutely everything under control!

And I just can’t get it out of my head – I picture You bursting with joy! You are excited and You just can’t wait to get the words out to John. You’ve got absolutely everything under control! You always have but we are slow learners. People die all around us, one nightly news program and we hear way more about death than we ever wanted to hear. In our own circles, loved ones succumb to death. We can’t avoid it. It is inevitable. You died as well…but it was by no means the end!

You said, “I died, but look – I am alive forever and ever!” And here’s the kicker for us, “And I hold the keys of death and the grave.” You conquered death and the grave and because You did, we too can! We have nothing to fear! You’ve got absolutely everything under control! Nothing is outside of the all-encompassing statement!

And if we are Your children and have placed our faith in You, then You joyously extend to us the spoils of Your victory – victory over death and the grave! Thank You, Lord. May we live without fear for victory is found in You!

June 19th, Mon, 11:09 pm