Tag Archives: love

We’ve Made Our Bed

As I am up and about this morning, Father, I am grateful for all of Your many blessings. May I live out my life this day as an expression of that gratitude. May my actions towards others be a reflection of Your love and care for me. Amen.

Matthew 2:16-23 (<<click the green)

What a horrific act on the part of King Herod, to feel so threatened by the possibility of a new “king” that he would call for the annihilation of all the boys two years old and younger in and around the area of Bethlehem! If there was ever a man that could be labeled as wicked it was Herod.

We live in difficult times for there are many “wicked” people throughout our world doing (or contemplating) many horrific things. We may need to run but we need not be immobilized by despair. The evil of sin has run rampant since the beginning of time but God will not be thwarted.

Lord, I surely don’t begin to understand why bad things happen to good people or good things happen to bad people for that matter. You said that the Father “sends rain on the just and the unjust alike.” (Matthew 5:45)

The old adage is true that we’ve made our bed, now we must lie in it. We have made the world what it is and we must live in it. We have been given free will to do as we please and on many fronts, we have made a mess of things but Your will will not be undone or held back.

Lord, I realize that this life will be full of hurt and pain but I also realize that I can be a catalyst for love and comfort. You can use me to accomplish Your will. I can be an instrument to thwart evil in the world around me.

The Apostle Peter shares these words of encouragement:

6So be truly glad. There is wonderful joy ahead, even though you must endure many trials for a little while. 7These trials will show that your faith is genuine. It is being tested as fire tests and purifies gold—though your faith is far more precious than mere gold. So when your faith remains strong through many trials, it will bring you much praise and glory and honor on the day when Jesus Christ is revealed to the whole world.

8You love him even though you have never seen him. Though you do not see him now, you trust him; and you rejoice with a glorious, inexpressible joy. 9The reward for trusting him will be the salvation of your souls. 1 Peter 1:6-9

Amen, so be it.

Sept 18th, Mon, 6:29 am

Grow Down

Father, forgive me for yielding to distraction…this is my time with You and Facebook should have no part in it. My phone is down and my attention is on You. Please help me hear and listen to what You have to say to me today.

Ephesians 3:14-21 (<<click the green)

Lord, help me to be “empowered…with inner strength through Your Spirit.” I know You have been doing a new work in me, accomplishing things that I could never do on my own (Praise Your Holy name! All the glory to You!) and I pray that I will cling to You. May my inner strength continue to be powered from Your “glorious, unlimited resources.”

This wonderful passage admonishes me to let my roots “grow down into Your love and keep me strong.”  Without You, I am surely weak and helpless! In my own strength, I fail. Only in You am I victorious. Thank you, Lord…

I am incomplete without Your love. Help me so that my overwhelming desire will be to “have the power to understand how WIDE, how LONG, how HIGH, and how DEEP Your love is”! May I “experience the love of Christ” – overwhelm me with Your love. May it gush and splash over on to all I meet!

And “through Your mighty power at work within me accomplish infinitely more than I might ask or [even] think”!

April 27th, 2015, Mon, 6:30 am

Love Is the Golden Rule

I sat down briefly this morning, Father, and other, out of the norm, responsibilities called, so now is the time I have come to sit…and listen…and write. Though of course, I’ve had a couple of things rattling around in my brain.

Yesterday I caught the tail end of a pastor’s sermon on the radio. He was speaking on another topic (a good one mind you) but something he said resonated within my heart. Now I can’t quote it word for word but here’s the gist of it. The pastor was speaking about Jesus telling his disciples in Mark 6:31,

“Let’s go off by ourselves to a quiet place and rest awhile.” He said this because there were so many people coming and going that Jesus and his apostles didn’t even have time to eat.

They were exhausted, so they boarded a boat to get away for a little while. But the crowds saw where they were headed and met them when they came ashore. So what did Jesus do? Did he barrel ahead with His original plan? After all, they were worn out! No…Jesus’ heart cried out more than His body did. Mark 6:34 tells us that “he had compassion on them because they were like sheep without a shepherd…”

Before all was said and done, he ended up feeding them all – over 5,000 of them (Mark 6:30-44)!

Lord, plain and simple…You loved them. And You want us to love each other, too. Not because it’s easy. Not just when it’s convenient. Not when it’s comfortable. Not just when we agree.

You said, “This is my commandment: Love each other in the same way I have loved you.” John 15:12

You said, “Do to others whatever you would like them to do to you.” Matthew 7:12

We refer to that one as the Golden Rule.

Lord, with my whole heart I believe that You cause things to intersect in our lives. This had been rattling around in my brain since yesterday but You dropped a video in my lap today. It’s a song by Dottie Rambo, inspired by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Its message is strong and so relevant for today. It may make you flinch a little bit but it is well worth watching it through.

Lord, may I live out “Love Is the Golden Rule” in all I am today and every day. Amen.

Aug 22nd, Tues, 6:00 pm

We Strive to Divide

With a meeting out of the area this morning, Father, I am just now sitting down to write. I am being distracted by many things. Help me to place my attention on You. Amen.

Revelation 5:6-10 (<<click the green)

Lord, You continue to show the Apostle John the sights of the throne room of heaven. There are many in attendance here and they are giving You the honor You rightly deserve. Verse 9 speaks to me.It speaks of Your worthiness to open the scroll, to break its seals. Yes, You are the Lion of Judah but You are also the Lamb of God. You willingly gave yourself to be slaughtered and “your blood has ransomed people for God” and here is what speaks volumes to me. “…your blood has ransomed people for God from every tribe and language and people and nation.”

Um…anyone left out there? …Nope! The word used there is “every”. Not one person is excluded! Because of what You have done, Lord, we have “become a Kingdom of priests for our God. And [we] (every single one of us who follow You) will reign on the earth.”

At this point in time (as well as many others I am sure) we are an absolute mess! We look for ways to segregate ourselves. We strive to divide ourselves. Much of humanity’s sole endeavor is to make sure we are broken down into camps of every imaginable disunion.

And even that is not enough! If we each crawled into our own holes that would be bad enough but, no, we must make sure that we express our hatred for whatever other unit that is not like ours or at the very least hatred for those who don’t agree with our viewpoint! It…is…insanity!

We scream for tolerance! …but there is no tolerance… We scream for acceptance and love! …but there is no acceptance or love… We clamor for peace! …but there will be no peace…

We will only find love and peace when we give ourselves over to You, Lord. Then, and only then, will that be the fruit of our labors. Oh, Lord, help us! May Your followers do everything we can to be like…You. I may cost us everything…but it is the only answer. Oh, Lord, help us….

Aug 17th, Thurs, 5:26 pm

I Need You

Good evening, Father. This weekend has been full. I am weary but it is important that I sit down with You. I am listening – may I hear what You would say to me. Amen.

I’ve begun a sermon series on the importance of the Holy Spirit playing an ever present role in our lives. As I preached through my sermon for the second time this morning, a closing paragraph grabbed my heart. I pray that those who hear what You lay upon my heart, Lord, are moved by You. Quite often I am moved in preparation and it is definitely not unusual that I am moved when I preach as well.

The paragraph, penned by Wes Humble when he was pastoring in Newark, Ohio some years ago, reads as follows:

“God I need you. I need you to keep changing me. I need you to make me more like you. I need you to help me love others like you. I need you to help me overcome my addiction. I need you to help me forgive. I need you to give me the right words to say at home, to my neighbor, to my friend. I need you to use me. I need you to work through me.”

The phrase “I need You…” occurs nine times in that short paragraph. I stressed to those listening this morning, that that concept is the crux of our walk with Christ. We lack the ability to walk alone. We will fail without You, Lord. We are utterly incapable of doing what we should do without You as a part of the equation.

As the week begins, Lord, I place myself squarely in line with You.  You state in Your Holy Word,

“Take my yoke upon you. Let me teach you, because I am humble and gentle at heart, and you will find rest for your souls.  For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”  Matthew 11:29-30

Holy Spirit, guide me, direct me, stop me, encourage me, use me. “I need You…”

Aug 13th, Sun, 9:29 pm