Peace

Colossians 3:15 Let the peace that Christ gives rule in your hearts. As parts of one body, you were appointed to live in peace. And be thankful.

I was appointed to live in peace. That is the state Jesus wants for me. That is the state into which I have been called for it is in Him who gives peace that I live and move and have my being.
Acts 17:28
‘For in him we live and move and have our being. ’ As some of your own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring. ’

Jesus is peace. He bought our peace. In Him we have peace, not as the world gives, but a supernatural abiding peace.

When Peace Like A River Hymn

When peace, like a river, attendeth my way,
when sorrows like sea billows roll;
whatever my lot, thou hast taught me to say,
It is well, it is well with my soul.

Refrain:
It is well with my soul,
it is well, it is well with my soul.

Though Satan should buffet, though trials should come,
let this blest assurance control,
that Christ has regarded my helpless estate,
and hath shed his own blood for my soul.
(Refrain)

My sin, oh, the bliss of this glorious thought!
My sin, not in part but the whole,
is nailed to the cross, and I bear it no more,
praise the Lord, praise the Lord, O my soul!
(Refrain)

And, Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
the clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
the trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
even so, it is well with my soul.
(Refrain)

John 16:33
New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)
33 “I have told you these things, so that you can have peace because of me. In this world you will have trouble. But cheer up! I have won the battle over the world.”

Go into the day living and moving in His peace, bringing peace into each moment, because in Him you live, move and have your being. He has won! He bought our peace. We are His!

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The Key

The Key

Matthew 16:19
New Life Version (NLV)
19 I will give you the keys of the holy nation of heaven. Whatever you do not allow on earth will not have been allowed in heaven. Whatever you allow on earth will have been allowed in heaven.”

Revelation 3:7
New Life Version (NLV)
Words to the Church in Philadelphia

7 “Write this to the angel of the church in the city of Philadelphia: ‘He Who is holy and true, Who holds the key of David, Who opens and no man can shut, Who shuts and no man can open, says this:

Isaiah 22:22
New Life Version (NLV)
22 Then I will put on his shoulder the rule of the family of David. What he opens, no one will shut. What he shuts, no one will open.

Jesus holds the key to my destiny. He IS the KEY. He opens and shuts doors in accordance to His glorious will for our lives, in accordance with His good pleasure to bring Him glory and honor. Blessed be The Lord! Blessed be His Name – the Name above all names!

He will fulfill His purpose for me!

Psalm 138:8
New Life Version (NLV)
8 The Lord will finish the work He started for me. O Lord, Your loving-kindness lasts forever. Do not turn away from the works of Your hands.

Ephesians 1:7-14
New Life Version (NLV)
7 Because of the blood of Christ, we are bought and made free from the punishment of sin. And because of His blood, our sins are forgiven. His loving-favor to us is so rich. 8 He was so willing to give all of this to us. He did this with wisdom and understanding. 9 God told us the secret of what He wanted to do. It is this: In loving thought He planned long ago to send Christ into the world. 10 The plan was for Christ to gather us all together at the right time. If we are in heaven or still on earth, He will bring us together and will be head over all.

11 We were already chosen to be God’s own children by Christ. This was done just like the plan He had. 12 We who were the first to put our trust in Christ should thank Him for His greatness. 13 The truth is the Good News. When you heard the truth, you put your trust in Christ. Then God marked you by giving you His Holy Spirit as a promise. 14 The Holy Spirit was given to us as a promise that we will receive everything God has for us. God’s Spirit will be with us until God finishes His work of making us complete. God does this to show His shining-greatness.

Ephesians 1:7-14
New King James Version (NKJV)
7 In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of His grace 8 which He made to abound toward us in all wisdom and prudence, 9 having made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He purposed in Himself, 10 that in the dispensation of the fullness of the times He might gather together in one all things in Christ, both[a] which are in heaven and which are on earth—in Him. 11 In Him also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestined according to the purpose of Him who works all things according to the counsel of His will, 12 that we who first trusted in Christ should be to the praise of His glory.

13 In Him you also trusted, after you heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation; in whom also, having believed, you were sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise, 14 who[b] is the guarantee of our inheritance until the redemption of the purchased possession, to the praise of His glory.

Philippians 2:12-14
New Life Version (NLV)
12 My Christian friends, you have obeyed me when I was with you. You have obeyed even more when I have been away. You must keep on working to show you have been saved from the punishment of sin. Be afraid that you may not please God. 13 He is working in you. God is helping you obey Him. God is doing what He wants done in you. 14 Be glad you can do the things you should be doing. Do all things without arguing and talking about how you wish you did not have to do them.

2 Thessalonians 1:10-12
New King James Version (NKJV)
10 when He comes, in that Day, to be glorified in His saints and to be admired among all those who believe,[a] because our testimony among you was believed.

11 Therefore we also pray always for you that our God would count you worthy of this calling, and fulfill all the good pleasure of His goodness and the work of faith with power, 12 that the name of our Lord Jesus Christ may be glorified in you, and you in Him, according to the grace of our God and the Lord Jesus Christ.

2 Thessalonians 1:10-12
New Living Translation (NLT)
10 When he comes on that day, he will receive glory from his holy people—praise from all who believe. And this includes you, for you believed what we told you about him.

11 So we keep on praying for you, asking our God to enable you to live a life worthy of his call. May he give you the power to accomplish all the good things your faith prompts you to do. 12 Then the name of our Lord Jesus will be honored because of the way you live, and you will be honored along with him. This is all made possible because of the grace of our God and Lord, Jesus Christ.[a]

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Carefree

Key Verses: 1 Peter 5:7, Jeremiah 29:11, Hosea 11:4, Matthew 11:29-30, John 10:10

1 Peter 5:7
The Message (MSG)
6-7 So be content with who you are, and don’t put on airs. God’s strong hand is on you; he’ll promote you at the right time. Live carefree before God; he is most careful with you.

1 Peter 5:7
New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)
7 Turn all your worries over to him. He cares about you.

His Eye Is on the Sparrow

Why should I feel discouraged, why should the shadows come,
Why should my heart be lonely, and long for heaven and home,
When Jesus is my portion? My constant friend is He:
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.
Refrain

I sing because I’m happy,
I sing because I’m free,
For His eye is on the sparrow,
And I know He watches me.

“Let not your heart be troubled,” His tender word I hear,
And resting on His goodness, I lose my doubts and fears;
Though by the path He leadeth, but one step I may see;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Refrain

Whenever I am tempted, whenever clouds arise,
When songs give place to sighing, when hope within me dies,
I draw the closer to Him, from care He sets me free;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me;
His eye is on the sparrow, and I know He watches me.

Jeremiah 29:11
New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)
11 “I know the plans I have for you,” announces the Lord. “I want you to enjoy success. I do not plan to harm you. I will give you hope for the years to come.

Jeremiah 29:11
The Message (MSG)
10-11 This is God’s Word on the subject: “As soon as Babylon’s seventy years are up and not a day before, I’ll show up and take care of you as I promised and bring you back home. I know what I’m doing. I have it all planned out—plans to take care of you, not abandon you, plans to give you the future you hope for.

God’s promises are as true today as they were centuries ago. He cares for us! He loves us with an unfailing love! He draws us to Himself with cords of loving kindness. Jesus tells us to take His yoke. It is not burdensome. It is light!

Hosea 11:4
New International Version (NIV)
4 I led them with cords of human kindness,
with ties of love.
To them I was like one who lifts
a little child to the cheek,
and I bent down to feed them.

Hosea 11:4
New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)
4 I led them with kindness and love.
I did not lead them with ropes.
I lifted the heavy loads from their shoulders.
I bent down and fed them.

Matthew 11:29-30
New International Version (NIV)
29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Matthew 11:29-30
New International Reader’s Version (NIRV)
29 Become my servants and learn from me. I am gentle and free of pride. You will find rest for your souls. 30 Serving me is easy, and my load is light.”

Matthew 11:29-30
The Message (MSG)
28-30 “Are you tired? Worn out? Burned out on religion? Come to me. Get away with me and you’ll recover your life. I’ll show you how to take a real rest. Walk with me and work with me—watch how I do it. Learn the unforced rhythms of grace. I won’t lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you’ll learn to live freely and lightly.”

Matthew 11:29-30
New Living Translation (NLT)
29 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. 30 For my yoke is easy to bear, and the burden I give you is light.”

Step into the Life planned for you for His glory and your joy! (John 10:10)

John 10:10
New Living Translation (NLT)
10 The thief’s purpose is to steal and kill and destroy. My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.

John 10:10
The Message (MSG)
6-10 Jesus told this simple story, but they had no idea what he was talking about. So he tried again. “I’ll be explicit, then. I am the Gate for the sheep. All those others are up to no good—sheep stealers, every one of them. But the sheep didn’t listen to them. I am the Gate. Anyone who goes through me will be cared for—will freely go in and out, and find pasture. A thief is only there to steal and kill and destroy. I came so they can have real and eternal life, more and better life than they ever dreamed of.

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Spitting Image

They say that I am the spitting image of my earthly father. I could walk down the street, and people would say, “That’s Walter’s daughter. ” I used to take pride in having his imprint on me. There was no doubt who I belonged too and whose I was. Now, fully grown, I’m still much like his physical image, and I’m very much his daughter in many ways.

However, all this brings to mind my Heavenly Father. Do people easily recognize the family resemblance? Do I portray His Image? These are the questions of my soul this day. Am I a breath of Heaven to the dying world? When they see me, do they see Jesus?

Verses to Consider

Genesis 1:27
New International Version (NIV)
27 So God created mankind in his own image,
in the image of God he created them;
male and female he created them.

Acts 17:28
New Living Translation (NLT)
28 For in him we live and move and exist. As some of your[a] own poets have said, ‘We are his offspring.’

Colossians 1:15
New International Version (NIV)
The Supremacy of the Son of God

15 The Son is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.

Romans 7:21
New International Version (NIV)
21 So I find this law at work: Although I want to do good, evil is right there with me.

Ephesians 2:10
New International Version (NIV)
10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

Galatians 3:26-27
New International Version (NIV)
26 So in Christ Jesus you are all children of God through faith, 27 for all of you who were baptized into Christ have clothed yourselves with Christ.

Philippians 1:6
New International Version (NIV)
6 being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus.

Philippians 2:13
New International Version (NIV)
13 for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.

Psalm 138:8
New Living Translation (NLT)
8 The Lord will work out his plans for my life—
for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever.
Don’t abandon me, for you made me.

I am His, and He is completing His work. I bear His image, and He will accomplish His purpose! I will be transformed into the image of Christ! Hallelujah! I am not who I was and not yet who I will be! Through faith (which includes obedience), I can answer the questions I posed in the affirmative. I need to trust, obey and listen.

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Thanksgiving 2012

Count Your Blessings

Words: John­son Oat­man, Jr., in Songs for Young Peo­ple, by Ed­win Ex­cell (Chi­ca­go, Il­li­nois: 1897).

Music: Edwin O. Excell

When upon life’s billows you are tempest tossed,
When you are discouraged, thinking all is lost,
Count your many blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Refrain

Count your blessings, name them one by one,
Count your blessings, see what God hath done!
Count your blessings, name them one by one,
And it will surprise you what the Lord hath done.

Are you ever burdened with a load of care?
Does the cross seem heavy you are called to bear?
Count your many blessings, every doubt will fly,
And you will keep singing as the days go by.

Refrain

When you look at others with their lands and gold,
Think that Christ has promised you His wealth untold;
Count your many blessings. Wealth can never buy
Your reward in heaven, nor your home on high.

Refrain

So, amid the conflict whether great or small,
Do not be disheartened, God is over all;
Count your many blessings, angels will attend,
Help and comfort give you to your journey’s end.

Refrain

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His Story

My story, which is really His Story, is one of a journey from head knowledge to heart knowledge.  I grew up knowing about Jesus and attending church.  If you asked me, I said that I was a Christian.  I had done all the “right” things, but I knew something was missing.  As a teenager, I felt God calling.  The Holy Spirit was softening my heart.  Through Billy Graham movies and attending a Bible camp, I moved closer to God, but I was still in the intellectual mode.  In college, I was not faithful, but I could still feel the urging of the Holy Spirit.  Fast forward to my twenties and marriage to a wonderful Christian man.  We were in full time Christian service at a home for abandoned, abused and neglected children when I knew that I could not hide any longer.  God was calling, and He would not be avoided.  I had to make a decision.  Would I really answer His call or would I continue to play Christian?  I said, “Yes, Lord, I come.”  This was in the privacy of my bedroom, but I made it public in church that week.  The change was real.  I had a change of heart and now over 30 years later, He is still leading, wooing and conforming me into His image.  I am not where I will be but I know as Philippians 1:6 asserts that He who has begun a good work in me will bring it to completion in Christ Jesus.  With David in Psalm 138, I can say, “You will do everything you have promised; Lord, your love is eternal.  Complete the work that you have begun.”  Glory to God for His gift, Jesus Christ!

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Attitude of Gratitude – Musings

Gratitude to God should be unconditional. We have been given so much in Christ. The gift of grace is more than enough. However, we forget how much we have been blessed and focus on all the circumstances. We need to move beyond the mundane to the glory by focusing on the One who gives us our being.

Hebrews 12:2-3
2 Let us keep our eyes fixed on Jesus, on whom our faith depends from beginning to end. He did not give up because of the cross! On the contrary, because of the joy that was waiting for him, he thought nothing of the disgrace of dying on the cross, and he is now seated at the right side of God’s throne.

3 Think of what he went through; how he put up with so much hatred from sinners! So do not let yourselves become discouraged and give up.

Those who know me know that I do not sing much out loud. A former student once asked me to please hush when as a class we were singing carols. That being said, I am hesitant to sing out. However, the gratitude I have for the One who loves me unconditionally makes my heart sing. As you read below, you will see some of the songs “He keeps me singing, as I go.”

Give Thanks :
Give thanks with a grateful heart
Give thanks to the holy one
Give thanks for he has given
Jesus christ his son

And now let the weak say I am strong
Let the poor say I am rich
Because of what the lord has done for us
Give thanks

And now let the weak say I am strong
Let the poor say I am rich
Because of what the lord has done for us
Give thanks

Give thanks
Give thanks…

It is an enjoyment – enjoying The Lord, in whom we have our being.

Acts 17: 24 “God, who made the world and everything in it, since He is Lord of heaven and earth, does not dwell in temples made with hands. 25 Nor is He worshiped with men’s hands, as though He needed anything, since He gives to all life, breath, and all things. 26 And He has made from one blood[c] every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, 27 so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; 28 for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’ 29 Therefore, since we are the offspring of God, we ought not to think that the Divine Nature is like gold or silver or stone, something shaped by art and man’s devising. 30 Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, 31 because He has appointed a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has ordained. He has given assurance of this to all by raising Him from the dead.”

Enjoying The Lord for who He is, not just for His deeds, is my goal. The unfathomable God of the universe wants me to adore and enjoy Him! That is something so profound that I cannot fully grasp it all!

Psalm 16:11
New King James Version (NKJV)
11 You will show me the path of life;
In Your presence is fullness of joy;
At Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Can you fathom this?

Zephaniah 3:17
New King James Version (NKJV)
17 The Lord your God in your midst,
The Mighty One, will save;
He will rejoice over you with gladness,
He will quiet you with His love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”

He, my Creator, rejoices in song over me! How awesome is that! Oh, happy day!

Beyond that revelation, is this – He became one of us! In every detail, except sin, He was like us. We can adore Him as Emanuel, God with us! Sovereign of sovereigns became one with humanity so that we might become one with Him. Awesome beyond contemplation is the thought!

John 1:14
New King James Version (NKJV)
The Word Becomes Flesh

14 And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we beheld His glory, the glory as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.

How can I remain ungrateful when I have been given so much? How can I keep from singing and making melody in my heart?

Oh happy day
Oh happy day
Oh happy happy day;
Oh happy dayWhen Jesus washed
Oh when he washed
When Jesus washed
He washed my sins away!
Oh happy day
Oh happy day
Oh happy day
Oh happy day
When Jesus washed
Oh when he washed
When Jesus washed
He washed my sins away!
Oh happy day
Oh happy day

He taught me how
He taught me
Taught me how to watch
He taught me how to watch
and fight and pray
fight and pray
yes, fight and pray

And he’ll rejoice
and He’ll, and He’ll
rejoice in things we say
and He’ll rejoicein things we say
things we say
yes, things we say

Oh happy day, Oh happy day
Oh happy day, Oh happy day
Oh happy day
Oh happy day

Oh happy day, Oh happy day
When Jesus washed
Oh when he washed
He washed my sins awayHe tought me how
to watch, fight and pray
fight and pray
Oh happy day, Oh happy day
When Jesus washed
Oh when he washed
He washed my sins awayWe´ll live rejoicing
ev´ry day, ev´ry day
Oh happy day, Oh happy day
When Jesus washed
Oh when he washed
He washed my sins away

1 John 4:19
New King James Version (NKJV)
19 We love Him because He first loved us.

Hillsong
Our God Is Love lyrics

Verse 1:
Every soul every beating heart
Every nation and every tongue
Come find hope in the love of the Father

Verse 2:
All creation will bow as one
Lift their eyes to the risen Son
Jesus Savior forever and after

Chorus:
This is love
Jesus came and died and gave His life for us
Let our voices rise and sing for all He’s done
Our fear is overcome
Our God is love
Our God is love

Verse 3:
Every distant and broken heart
Every prayer every outstretched arm
Finding hope in the love of the Father

Verse 4:
Age to age let His praises rise
All the glory for all of time
Jesus Savior forever and after

Bridge:
Age to age we will be singing
In the light of all He’s done
All the earth everyone singing
In the wonder of His love

Praise Him

Praise Him, praise Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.
Praise Him, praise Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.

Know Him, know Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.
Know Him, know Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.

Love Him, love Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.
Love Him, love Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.

Serve Him, serve Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.
Serve Him, serve Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.

Crown Him, crown Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.
Crown Him, Crown Him,
All you little children,
God is love, God is love.

Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good;
His love endures forever. Psalm 106:1

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