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This I Believe

I don’t know whether what I’m about to say is right, or true. But I’ve come to a place where I don’t know how it couldn’t be.

Many of us believe the Bible is inspired, a gift from God, containing words that give us meaning and hope, important for every moment in life—and yet subject to so many— often completely different interpretations, applications, or implications.

Almost any “proof text” can be read in ways that allow different groups to explain it in light of their own shared beliefs and assumptions.

From the first words of Genesis to the last chapter of Revelation such differences extend from how we understand the “days” of creation—to what Jesus means when he says, “I warn everyone who hears the words of the prophecy of this book: if anyone adds to them, God will add to that person the plagues described in this book; if anyone takes away from the words of the book of this prophecy, God will take away that person’s share in the tree of life and in the holy city, which are described in this book. The one who testifies to these things says, “Surely I am coming soon.”

I don’t know how to explain those words.

But here’s what I’m thinking, can no longer avoid, and want so much to believe. The reason even a child can love Jesus as much if not more than a group of scholars who disagree about what he or the Bible says and means, is that even a child can trust the heart of Someone who, as The Story goes, does the kinds of things Jesus did.

P.S. This, I believe, is why it is so important to imagine and then consider a range of possible interpretations that might surface one that is— or many that are— true to the God who bears the weight of our wrongs to bring us to himself. 

 


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216 Responses to “This I Believe”

  1. SFDBWV says:

    Matt and I got up at 3 this morning, he was restless and awake and so sleep was out of the question.

    After breakfast, his routines and mine accomplished, we have been enjoying that wonderful activity of napping and just being in that “zone”.

    When I got up to send in the weather report at 7 I seen Mart had posted a new comment.

    I almost seems as though he and I are at the same place in life, tired of all the words and debates over what the Bible says and just wanting to rest in that this man Jesus lived and that he did these things which make us not only believe in Him, but make us want to believe in Him.

    Especially His promise that things will eventually be better, even better than we know or can imagine.

    Steve

  2. Mart DeHaan says:

    Good morning, Steve, I agree that waking up at 3:00 with the care of others on our hearts is part of a wake-up call to what matters.

  3. poohpity says:

    I Believe! I believe in the goodness and love of God! I believe that He answers my prayers in a way that is in the best interest of all who pray and are who are prayed for.

    I do not believe that the bible is an academic exercise but what one does after they have found “DELIGHT” in the Lord, a means to the end, that end is a personal close relationship with Him. Not to argue over interpretations but to have an example to follow in how Jesus lived and interacted with people. To show the care and concern that God has for ALL people not just those who are easy to love or to return love. He loved in spite of whether it would ever be returned and forgave when no one deserved it.

    Yes I agree that if the care and concern for/of others is what is in our hearts isn’t that what the Lord taught us in a nut shell and John said it clearly not left to interpretation in 1 John 4;

    “God showed how much he loved us by sending his one and only Son into the world so that we might have eternal life through him. 10 This is real love—not that we loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son as a sacrifice to take away our sins.

    11 Dear friends, since God loved us that much, we surely ought to love each other. 12 No one has ever seen God. But if we love each other, God lives in us, and his love is brought to full expression in us.”

    Even if God never answers another prayer the way I think He ought to answer it, I believe that He is good, just, right and loving. There must be a very good reason for what He does or does not do. I believe!

  4. Beloved says:

    Steve you and Mart are likeminded men of God. I just read your post on Imagine and thought it very very good also. As for reading books, I too have ordered many many books through the years and read every one on the local library under the theology section although not all turned out to be Christ centered. Now I download or find them at Good Will. Actually thrilled to find Collected Works on Prayer by Andrew Murray-7 books in one! For 50cents! But one in transit to my mailbox is very exciting, “God is Always Better Than We Can Imagine” a 31 day devotional guide by Ian Wright from Banner of Truth ministry.

    Learning more about God helps to dispel the evil I’m surrounded by here where I live. He also teaches me, like you have learned Mart, that Jesus bore the weight of ALL the sins of every person I encounter daily, to be concerned for them as God was for me, no matter how difficult they are. I’ve got a ways to go as you all found out yesterday with my blogging. But I’m in the process on the right road. Same as we all are. Just so long as my “stumbling” doesn’t become a “stumbling block” to the needs of others, that greatest need being Christ Himself. Ha ha sermonette ended. Have a day blessed in Jesus love and faithfulness and power! Amen

  5. Beloved says:

    Mart said: Almost any “proof text” can be read in ways that allow different groups to explain it in light of their own shared beliefs and assumptions.

    I don’t see a problem with this, as discussed yesterday, as long as the shared beliefs and assumptions are predicated on the cross as the centrality of our shared conviction. The problem comes when one “group” (or individual) feels they are the only ones that have all the Truth and poo-poo’s the rest of the Body–yes the Body of Christ because they don’t exactly believe the same “interpretations” of scripture. This has been an issue ongoing here for years and years! Glad you are addressing this Mart, in your gentle and peace-loving way. Hopefully we all can rethink our faith and what God’s purpose is, to love Him and love others. Quite simple but so hard to do. Yes it is.

  6. foreverblessed says:

    “This I believe”

    “And Imagine”

    Even a child can do that, Mart writes.

    What I got last week in a discussion with a roman cathlic, was that she could not explain what the Eucharist was, and why it was so much cherished by catholics, she said: You need a lot of education to be a priest. It is a high level of intellectuality. You must understand Greek and Latin, so if you are not on A-level, as the British would call the higher classes, you cannot be a priest. What she added, was that you also need to know about the history of the catholic church, to understand why the ritual is as it is.

    Neither could she explain what the transubstiation was, “ask a priest” she said.

    And Mart writes: even a child can follow Jesus.

    Imagine, look at His life on earth, read the Gospels and meditate upon them.

  7. foreverblessed says:

    What I do get too, is that Jesus says: that if we love Him we will oabey Him.

    The result of the love is that we obey, not that we obey and then He loves us. But the other way around.
    When we obey, the Spirit reveals more truth, but if there is a thing we do nnot obey, the Spirit does not reveal more of the depth of His truths.
    (what would the scripture refence be to this statement I made?)

    So there is a difference in understanding, due to a lack of obedience.

    For instance, revenge….
    or forgiveness, and giving the case to God. Leave the revenge to God.

    And God gave His Son to accept all the revenge that could be poured out on us because of our iniquities.
    Jesus absorbs them, and then we stand clean in His shield, in His Presence, when we have faith in Jesus.

    “That counts for you”, as my pastor would say: “and for your greatest enemy.”

  8. foreverblessed says:

    I do post here, and then my comment does not appear.

    But I should have written: Love and obey
    (typos, and not proof reading before posting, sorry)

    First believe,
    understand the depth of the Love Jesus has for us,
    the love He has for me
    then do what He says,
    and more truths will be revealed.

  9. foreverblessed says:

    I don’t see a problem with this, as discussed yesterday, as long as the shared beliefs and assumptions are predicated on the cross…

    I learned a new word today:
    predicated:

    1-state, affirm, or assert (something) about the subject of a sentence or an argument of a proposition.
    2-found or base something on.

    I built on nothing less, than Christ and His righteousness
    says a song
    But these are my own wording.
    righteousness, as being made right through the Cross.

    I shall look up the song, and here it is:

    “My Hope is Built on Nothing Less”
    by Edward Mote, 1797-1874

    1. My hope is built on nothing less
    Than Jesus’ blood and righteousness;
    I dare not trust the sweetest frame,
    But wholly lean on Jesus’ name.
    On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
    All other ground is sinking sand.

    2. When darkness veils His lovely face,
    I rest on His unchanging grace;
    In every high and stormy gale
    My anchor holds within the veil.
    On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
    All other ground is sinking sand.

    3. His oath, His covenant, and blood
    Support me in the whelming flood;
    When every earthly prop gives way,
    He then is all my Hope and Stay.
    On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
    All other ground is sinking sand.

    4. When He shall come with trumpet sound,
    Oh, may I then in Him be found,
    Clothed in His righteousness alone,
    Faultless to stand before the throne!
    On Christ, the solid Rock, I stand;
    All other ground is sinking sand.

    Hymn #370
    The Lutheran Hymnal
    Text: 1 Timothy 1:1
    Author: Edward Mote, c. 1834, cento
    Composer: John Stainer, 1873, arr.
    Tune: “Magdalen”

  10. Beloved says:

    Is this what you are thinking of forever?
    John 13:17 (ESV)
    17 If you know these things, blessed are you if you do them.

  11. Beloved says:

    I had to remind myself what “proof texting” means:

    Theopedia

    Proof texting
    Proof texting is the method by which a person appeals to a biblical text to prove or justify a theological position without regard for the context of the passage they are citing. At its worst, for example, “theologian A claims to have a more ‘biblical’ theology than theologian B, based upon counting up verse in parentheses (on a random page from each work) and claiming to have three times as many.” ^[1]^ The result can be that certain portions of Scripture are more heavily treated than others (e.g. Pauline texts). Yet, while the method of proof texting can be problematic, nevertheless theology must still maintain a thoroughly biblical character.

  12. street says:

    proof text is Spirit on paper, to be alive in a human heart. not happening without a new birth.

    was thinking again of Spirit and Truth, how it is scripture is less quoted after the Gospels. was thinking of pauls ministry to the gentiles? why would you quote scripture to some one who doesn’t even know what you are talking about? not that i would say we don’t need the Bible, it is my bread from heaven, even paul found ways of speaking into a gentile world in which some responded. the approach would be different then a jewish audience. seems to me we need to put the bread jar on the bottom shelf. sure, top shelf in my heart, bottom shelf for others. consider the cost?

  13. street says:

    proof text

    Isaiah 55:11
    so shall my word be that goes out from my mouth; it shall not return to me empty, but it shall accomplish that which I purpose, and shall succeed in the thing for which I sent it.

  14. foreverblessed says:

    Thanks Beloved, yes, that is a good one,
    The blessign follows when we do what He says, Like as we start to forgive our offenders.
    Start, or say to GOd; I want to forgive, help me to be able to do that.

    but there are more…

    “You are my friends if you do what I command”

    Is that not also one of them?

    If you are allergic to the word: Command,
    as I was for a long time, then this verse is hard.
    Command, I should read it as: urges you.

  15. street says:

    Many of us believe the Bible is inspired, a gift from God, containing words that give us meaning and hope, important for every moment in life—and yet subject to so many— often completely different interpretations, applications, or implications.

    i think it comes down to whether we are subjects to God or God is subject to us.

    the fun part is different body parts and how they respond.

    thinking of the wolves in yellow stone

  16. Beloved says:

    Wolves in yellowstone? What do YOU mean, I can think of several inferences. All of which are probably wrong.

  17. bubbles says:

    Mart, the photograph you included in this topic reminds me of many “country roads” here, where Steve, Glenna, Matt, and I live. We’ve yet to see the trees change, perhaps due to the drought, perhaps due to the blazing hot weather we’ve had. I don’t know; it’s a mystery.

    Mart, I understand your thoughts and agree with them. I, too, have been guilty of arguments that I have regretted over interpretation of Scripture. We are told to not argue over doctrine; I suppose we do it because it’s a topic we are passionate about and care about the other person who we perceive as being “wrong.” I’m seeing it’s best to let them think the way they want and ask to get clarification because sometimes what we think we hear is something different from what they are saying. Proverbs tells us to be quick to listen and slow to anger. The one thing I think is important to surely protect is the teaching of salvation, that it is by grace alone and not of works and in that the diety of Christ Himself.

    I was thinking of all those here this morning and how much all of you mean to me. I’m thankful for all of you. Take care this evening.

  18. street says:

    wolves and ecosystem designed by God.

    Wolf Reintroduction Changes Ecosystem in Yellowstone

    you should be able to see a video of how adversity strengthens and diversify the Glory of God.

    yes even the animal kingdom is subjected to futility, yet in hope too.

    in the end the wolves changed the coarse of rivers running through yellow stone also making a more diversified and robust ecosystem.

    thinking of Hebrews 11

  19. poohpity says:

    Luke 11:28 NLT Jesus replied, “But even more blessed are all who hear the word of God and put it into practice.”

    Insight (ODB)

    In the Bible, various metaphors are used to describe the truth of the Scriptures: a mirror (James 1:23); fire and a hammer (Jeremiah 23:29), a lamp (Psalm 119:105), water (Ephesians 5:26), a seed (1 Peter 1:23), food (Job 23:12), and milk (1 Peter 2:2). Scripture reveals, consumes, breaks, illuminates, purifies, convicts, regenerates, satisfies, and nourishes the believer. It’s not enough to know the Bible; we need to obey it (James 1:22–25 NIV).

    James 1:22-25 NIV Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. 23 Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror 24 and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. 25 But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

  20. poohpity says:

    When a child is shown love they learn to love. The command of Jesus is this; “I have told you these things so that My joy may be in you and your joy may be complete. 12This is My commandment, that you love one another as I have loved you.”

  21. Beloved says:

    Street thank you so much. I had just heard recently that the wolves came from my state, MN. Someone said they were traded for mountain lions which show up here from time to time. But rarely. Interesting.

  22. street says:

    John 1:3
    All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.

    John 15:5
    Jesus said, “I am the vine, you are the branches; he who abides in Me and I in him, he bears much fruit, for apart from Me you can do nothing.”

  23. street says:

    Romans 15:4 “For whatever was written in earlier times was written for our instruction, so that through perseverance and the encouragement of the scriptures we might have hope.”

  24. Beloved says:

    It is in the sphere of humiliation that we find our true worth to God, that is where our faithfulness is revealed.

    Oswald Chambers

  25. foreverblessed says:

    Interesting that two verses from John together:

    John 1:1 and John 15:5

    Anything that was made within me is made by Jesus, anything =that is of eternal value.

    But that more spiritual truths, deeper meaning is revealed when we obey. If we obey a call/command, later more truths are revealed.

    Thank you Bubbles for your love!

    And so good to ask questions! It means that you give room for the Holy Spirit to do the work.

    In a devotion from twolisteners I once read about Philip: John 1:43-51 (i cont fint it right now)

    Philip introduces Nathanael to Jesus, Philip stops talking and lets Jesus talk to him personally.

    Then the devotion went on to say: There is so much talking in the chrisitian world. So much speaking, and use of many many words. And the Spirit is pushed away, the Spirit talking personally to a soul.

    I had read that part of the Gospel many times, but I had not seen yet, that the clue of this was that Philip led his friend to Jesus, and then left him alone with Jesus.

    O, that we would trust Jesus more. He is very very capable of instructing.

    O that we would listen to the Holy Spirit more, when to talk, when to pray, and when to be silent.

  26. foreverblessed says:

    Talking about a lion: God will be like a lion to Ephraim adn like a great lion to Judah, Hosea 5:14

    God lets Ephraim alone, and they get sored, but instead of going to God they go to Assyria.

    But God still waits, v 15

    That is what is called: God waits till a person comes to the end of himself:

    Hosea 5:13-15
    “When Ephraim saw his sickness,
    and Judah his sores,
    then Ephraim turned to Assyria,
    and sent to the great king for help.
    But he is not able to cure you,
    not able to heal your sores.
    14
    For I will be like a lion to Ephraim,
    like a great lion to Judah.
    I will tear them to pieces and go away;
    I will carry them off, with no one to rescue them.
    15
    Then I will return to my place
    until they admit their guilt
    and seek my face—
    in their misery
    they will earnestly seek me.”

    And then comes the most baffling part of all this prophecy: Hosea 6:1-2

    The people say: God has torn us to pieces, after two days He will reivie us, and after three days he will restore us

    And this is the Passion of Jesus:

    “Come, let us return to the Lord.
    He has torn us to pieces
    but he will heal us;
    he has injured us
    but he will bind up our wounds.
    2
    After two days he will revive us;
    on the third day he will restore us,
    that we may live in his presence.
    Hosea 6:1-2

    That what God said He would do to Israel, (Ephraim and Judah) that is exactly what He will do to Jesus.

    It is Jesus who takes the blows that we should have gotten.

    It is Jesus who saves

  27. poohpity says:

    Everybody has opinions, assumptions, interpretations, applications, or implications but without the love of Christ in us it is nothing but noise. James writes, “Understand this, my dear brothers and sisters: You must all be quick to listen, slow to speak, and slow to get angry. Human anger does not produce the righteousness God desires.”

    “If I could speak all the languages of earth and of angels, but didn’t love others, I would only be a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. 2If I had the gift of prophecy, and if I understood all of God’s secret plans and possessed all knowledge, and if I had such faith that I could move mountains, but didn’t love others, I would be nothing. 3If I gave everything I have to the poor and even sacrificed my body, I could boast about it; but if I didn’t love others, I would have gained nothing.

    4Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud 5or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. 6It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. 7Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

    8Prophecy and speaking in unknown languages and special knowledge will become useless. But love will last forever! 9Now our knowledge is partial and incomplete, and even the gift of prophecy reveals only part of the whole picture! 10But when the time of perfection comes, these partial things will become useless.

    11When I was a child, I spoke and thought and reasoned as a child. But when I grew up, I put away childish things. 12Now we see things imperfectly, like puzzling reflections in a mirror, but then we will see everything with perfect clarity. All that I know now is partial and incomplete, but then I will know everything completely, just as God now knows me completely.

    13Three things will last forever—faith, hope, and love—and the greatest of these is love.

    Jesus came to reveal the love of the Father and if everything I read or learn does not revolved around that then it is pretty much useless and of no value. If a child could see by the actions of Jesus the love he has for mankind and be drawn to Him because of them, then even His very words will not matter much to them.

  28. Beloved says:

    It is Jesus that takes the blows we should have gotten. Indeed! Good to remember that His blows to our stubborn ego, our self, our pride are loving compared to His pain. Imagine someone completely sinless and pure taking into his mind and body the sins of mankind! We have no idea what He went through. Sure we occasionally suffer from the hurt of others but it’s nothing really. The command to forgive is easily done in the shadows of sinless God hanging willingly for our afflictions, our sins of commission and omission. Thank you Forever for pointing me toward Jesus this morning. As you always do.

    And yes, thank you Bubbles for your sacrifice of a loving gesture toward me. It is greatly appreciated. I love you and all here also. In fact I cherish all of you in my heart, even on the bad days!

  29. Beloved says:

    I just read this from Spurgeon:

    Testing Our Faith
    Why have you dealt ill with your servant?
    Numbers 11:11

    Our heavenly Father sends us frequent troubles to test our faith. If our faith is worth anything, it will stand the test. Gilt is afraid of fire, but gold is not: The imitation gem dreads being touched by the diamond, but the true jewel fears no test. It is a poor faith that can only trust God when friends are true, the body is healthy, and the business profitable; but it is true faith that rests in the Lord’s faithfulness when friends are gone, the body is ailing, spirits are depressed, and the light of our Father’s face is hidden. A faith that can say, in the deepest trouble, “Though he slay me, I will hope in him”1 is heaven-born faith.

    The Lord afflicts His servants to glorify Himself, for He is greatly glorified in the graces of His people, who are His own handiwork. When “suffering produces endurance, endurance produces character, and character produces hope,”2 the Lord is honored by these growing virtues. We would never know the music of the harp if the strings were left untouched, nor enjoy the juice of the grape if it were not trodden in the winepress, nor discover the sweet perfume of cinnamon if it were not pressed and beaten, nor feel the warmth of fire if the coals were not completely consumed. The wisdom and power of God are discovered by the trials through which His children are permitted to pass.

    Present afflictions tend also to heighten future joy. There must be shade in the picture to bring out the beauty of the light. Could we be so supremely blessed in heaven if we had not known the curse of sin and the sorrow of earth? Will peace not be sweeter after conflict, and rest more welcome after labor? Will the recollection of past sufferings not serve to enhance the bliss of the glorified?

    There are many other comfortable answers to the question with which we opened our brief meditation; let us think upon it all day long.

    1) Job 13:15
    2) Romans 5:3-4

  30. street says:

    here’s what I’m thinking, can no longer avoid, and want so much to believe. The reason even a child can love Jesus as much if not more than a group of scholars who disagree about what he or the Bible says and means, is that even a child can trust the heart of Someone who, as The Story goes, does the kinds of things Jesus did.

    sounds to me the child has received a new heart supernaturally. it is sad to know that some came to Jesus, but rejected Him because of the Words He Spoke. John 6

    thinking further Law=Word=Spirit=Truth=Love=Mercy=Grace=Judgment=Wrath

    summed up in faith. God centered, is Love centered, not self centered.

    thinking of the prophets who spoke the truth at great personal cost to self because of love for God and the ones they spoke to.

    thinking we are to be conformed to the image of Christ.
    Jesus is a priest prophet and king. we lost authority the truth and closeness to God at the fall.

    it is a great hope that all the children of God will be functioning perfectly in incorruptible body in the future. till then we bear our cross. restored in Christ. it’s the remodeling that is difficult. yes we long to be finished too. to see His Face. yet the whole earth is filled with His Glory.

  31. Beloved says:

    It takes a “supernatural” grace to give a child with no one to trust for anything good to believe and trust that Jesus is so different. Soooo good! Yes He is.

  32. poohpity says:

    No child trusts anyone who says they love them yet the actions of the person saying those words shows something all together different by their behavior, the words mean nothing but words. Love is an action word. Jesus proved His love without saying those words. Actions speak so much LOUDER than meaningless words without any actions. Love is seeking the highest good of the one’s loved which is what Jesus lived out.

  33. street says:

    words have weight and power. power to kill or give life. power to comfort or injure. the power to condemn or pardon.

    1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. 4 In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. 5 The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it.

    to say words will never hurt me is a famous lie from a nursery-rhyme.

    satan deceived man into believing he could be God, a greater good than he had considered before? we find out later, God is good, satan a lier and man in rebellion against God.

    Deuteronomy 32:39
    ‘See now that I, I am He,
    And there is no god besides Me;
    It is I who put to death and give life.
    I have wounded and it is I who heal,
    And there is no one who can deliver from My hand.

    Jesus is the only One Who’s Words and Action were in perfect harmony with God / sinless. credited to those who have faith in Him.

    44 And Jesus cried out and said, “He who believes in Me, does not believe in Me but in Him who sent Me. 45 He who sees Me sees the One who sent Me.

    13 Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, He was asking His disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”
    14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; but still others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.” 15 He *said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven.

    knowledge of God originates with God.

    people become disappointed in other people, God was disappointed in man so much He sent His Son. in other words the disappointment was so bad that only His Son could correct the problem. ok ok He loved the elect.

    He made Him who knew no sin to be sin for us, that we might become the righteousness of God in Him. —2 Corinthians 5:21

  34. street says:

    16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His [e]only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

    thinking about this differently tonite. it says world not man? the world is the place man lives. thinking cosmos but in the end, no sun and moon. some things made new, some things done away with. eternal life!, in a changing world. some how i understand life is not very far from Jesus.

  35. Beloved says:

    John 1:14And the Word became flesh and dwelt among us, and we have seen his glory, glory as of the only Son from the Father, full of grace and truth.

  36. Beloved says:

    It still shocks me that God became flesh to show us the Way out of the world. Shocking.

  37. street says:

    it shocking that a sinner can be made the righteousness of God! just WOW! think about that, eternal righteousness!
    in a mortal body! my head hurts and my heart rejoices!

    the righteous shall live by faith.

  38. foreverblessed says:

    Jeff, how are you doing? You are in my prayers!
    And so is Steve, with Matt and Glenna.

    John 1:1-18
    Is so beautiful, hard to grasp the depth of the meaning.

    “You have prepared a body for me”
    Psalm 40:6 Septuagint

    In my bible I have written Isaiah 40:5 written next to John 1:14

  39. SFDBWV says:

    Thank you Foreveblessed for you thoughts and concerns.

    “This I believe”

    “Though I speak with tongues of men and of angels, and have not love, I am become as sounding brass or a tinkling cymbal.”

    In support of the subject matter of Marts thoughts, all the words, debates, arguments and views of Scripture are just noise if we don’t have love.

    And that love is the base of all the things that matter.

    Life isn’t easy and in our life we have the choice of either making someone else’s life a little easier or a little more difficult. Something that simple shows love or a lack of it.

    We have had rain now for two days a welcome relief to a very dry September and start to October.

    Blessings to all today.

    Steve

  40. poohpity says:

    I am missing Viv too! As well as Chris and bratimus!
    **************************************
    I do not believe that disagreeing with anyone is a sign that they are not loved in fact it gives an opening to expand our minds to thinking outside of the box we so often find ourselves in. However it is how we do it. We can call names and accuse someone of things we know nothing about OR take the high road and just share how we differ in respectful and considerate conversation. No need to take differences as personal insults when they are not meant to be. There will always be someone who knows more than I do but isn’t that a wonderful thing so we can learn and grow.

    When Jesus came He showed people a different way but it was those who thought they knew it all, like the religious leaders, that took offense to what He taught that insulted Him, called Him names and sought to kill Him. Their ego’s and pride seemed to get damaged but not all some came to find out more, those who were really searching after God. Those found out that being born again brought in a whole different way of thinking, seeing and acting than what they had learned by living in the flesh. They were transformed into the spiritual realm by a spiritual rebirth which was all new to them and hard to understand at that.

  41. poohpity says:

    I forgot to mention Bruce as well. It is always nice for Mart to pop in every now and again too, he is always good for a different way of looking at things.

  42. poohpity says:

    Moses asked God which it would be nice if that was all of our prayer, “If you are pleased with me, teach me your ways so I may know you and continue to find favor with you.”.

  43. mtman says:

    Pooh: I drop in to read comments and such but don’t have much to say. I find the lingering drama a distraction. Besides here in the mountains there is a lot to do to prepare for winter before the snow flies. At my age it takes longer to accomplish the same tasks required. Coupled with living in the burn scar of the wildfire last year the work is much harder and takes longer so I don’t get on here as much as I would like. I do still visit when time allows though.

  44. Beloved says:

    Street I know! Only God could do that!!!

  45. jeff1 says:

    I am just back from England where I was visiting my son and girlfriend. Had a very stressful return journey and just getting settled again.

    It’s about agreeing with God (and not others) and not expecting Him to agree with me and that can get complicated in the greater scheme of things i.e. wars everyone says God is on their side when as I see it there are two sides to every story and then there is the truth.

    Its a complex world and as I get older I don’t find it gets any easier and so I find trusting God comes easier because I cannot find anyone else to trust better so its win, win for a believer as I have a peace even when I lack understanding as to what God is doing in the world.

    The uncertainty in this world speaks of just how I can mess up when I do not consider God and then comes the certainty of me passing the buck around rather than agreeing with God
    ‘I have played my part’ in creating chaos instead of harmony.

    It is so much easier to see how others mess up than it is to see my own failings or that is what I am learning.

    It seems God does reveal to me a lot more about myself when I thought He would reveal a lot more about Himself.

  46. bratimus says:

    I’m still here, I read more then I comment that is how I roll or walk.

    I will mention this, when I read the Bible and even I my walk through life, I try to keep it Christ centered, after the Bible has Christ all through it.

    Keeping it Christ centered and know Christ is our way back to God, it will Keep you on the right path.

    As far as all the prophecies go I’m sure when God wants you to know something it will become clear as day.

    So once you surrender to the ways of God through Christ, and realize your life is not your own. Here is the twist to that, God will tell you “okay now go live your life, for you are the one taking the steps.”

    In Christ name

    Bratimus

  47. street says:

    P.S. This, I believe, is why it is so important to imagine and then consider a range of possible interpretations that might surface one that is— or many that are— true to the God who bears the weight of our wrongs to bring us to himself.

    20 Then He began to denounce the cities in which most of His miracles were done, because they did not repent. 21 “Woe to you, Chorazin! Woe to you, Bethsaida! For if the miracles had occurred in Tyre and Sidon which occurred in you, they would have repented long ago in sackcloth and ashes. 22 Nevertheless I say to you, it will be more tolerable for Tyre and Sidon in the day of judgment than for you. 23 And you, Capernaum, will not be exalted to heaven, will you? You will descend to Hades; for if the miracles had occurred in Sodom which occurred in you, it would have remained to this day. 24 Nevertheless I say to you that it will be more tolerable for the land of Sodom in the day of judgment, than for you.”

    25 At that time Jesus said, “I praise You, Father, Lord of heaven and earth, that You have hidden these things from the wise and intelligent and have revealed them to infants. 26 Yes, Father, for this way was well-pleasing in Your sight. 27 All things have been handed over to Me by My Father; and no one knows the Son except the Father; nor does anyone know the Father except the Son, and anyone to whom the Son wills to reveal Him.

    was thinking about the saying nature abhors a vacuum. adding to or taking away from scripture is a way of filling the void. people rush in where angles fear to tread. thinking love cast out fear at the cross.

    7 Do not be amazed that I said to you, ‘You must be born again.’ 8 The wind blows where it wishes and you hear the sound of it, but do not know where it comes from and where it is going; so is everyone who is born of the Spirit.”

    living by faith, a living hope, love comes from God too. the most difficult thing for me to grasp.

    20 And Isaiah is very bold and says,

    “I was found by those who did not seek Me,
    I became manifest to those who did not ask for Me.”

    21 But as for Israel He says, “All the day long I have stretched out My hands to a disobedient and obstinate people.”

    thinking of those first 3 years of the disciples.
    His mercy and grace are indeed Great.

    Luke 12:32
    Do not be afraid, little flock, for your Father has chosen gladly to give you the kingdom.

    John 15:16
    You did not choose Me but I chose you, and appointed you that you would go and bear fruit, and that your fruit would remain, so that whatever you ask of the Father in My name He may give to you.

  48. foreverblessed says:

    Please pray for Britain, Ireland and Europe. It is going to be tense!

    The problem with Nothern Ireland having to go out of the union, and Ireland that will stay in. How can you not have border checks? It seems insolvable.

    For my country it will have a very great impact if there wil be no deal. All the fresh food that is grown here and exported to England, Truckloads full. If they have to stop and be checked that will give trouble.

    England is our third trade partner, after Germany adn Belgium,

    And all the tariffs that will appear again. Britian has been part of the custom union for more than 40 years, so we are quite intertwined.

    England does not have the lawyers to make new trade deals, Making trade deals takes years and years It is not simply done in a month. Britain had a common wealth, but since 1974 the trade with these areas diminished since England traded more with Europe. You cannot have these deals back in a minute, or in a month.

    Pray for England.

    (THe rest what I write is extra information, just skip it…if you do not feel like reading it)
    When I was young I was very much against the Roman Empire, , till I came to the insight, that God had ordained that:
    The vision of the Statue of the dream God gave to Nebuchadnezzar Daniel 2:1-49
    Without that Empire, Europe would have been a lot worse. Chaos with invading tribes, raiding and killing and destroying whole cities. The Roman Empire gave some stability, good roads, safety against incoming tribes, (by the roman the armies), so that the Gospel could be spread.
    There was stability in England during roman times, when the Empire fell, in 410 AD, invading tribes came and gave chaos. THe Anglo and Saxons from Germany, and the Jutes rom Danmark. It was a setback for the christian church as well.
    These tribes did not leave England, they remained and mixed with the original people.
    ( On wikipedia you can read about the history of these countries, I find that very interesting.)

    The remnant of the European Empire might very well be the European Union, I don’t know for sure. But it looks very much like a mixture of iron and clay to me.

    Some chrisitans think that we have to get out of it.

    THen I have to think about Jeremiah:

    The first empire of the Statue of Mebuchadnezzar was Babylon, the golden head of the statue.
    And yet Judah had to go to Babylon, that was the message Jeremiah had for Judah.

    The Roman Empire is the last one, the Iron part, Which were the legs, ending in the feet, who were of iron and clay. Daniel 2

    I really like the humility of Daniel, Daniel 2:26-27 he gives the credit to God, who is revealing mysteries.

    Think of it, Jeremiah had to tell the people that they had to go to Babylon, the enemy, that God would bless them if they did. You can easily see that he could be viewed as a traitor.

    I do not know what God would say today, but that we as christians have to refrain from telling lies, that is for sure. Living an honost life, not cheating, not getting a high position for yourself through lies. Caring for the weakest in society. Taking care of the earth in a healthy way.

  49. Beloved says:

    Forever that was a very interesting post, I learned a lot! But our faith will survive whatever turmoil is created (allowed) and prayer is so very very important now today more than yesterday it feels like, for our leaders as well. I will not say anything negative about Trump for obvious reasons on here. But I think we all are in for one heck of a ride should Jesus tarry. Not to mention our children and grandchildren. Pray for them daily.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

    Viv so glad you got to spend face to face time with your son!!

  50. Beloved says:

    Prayer request: I’m having a terrible time stopping the antidepressant medication I’ve been on for about 10 years. They say the longer you’ve been on it the harder it is to get out of your system. Dizziness, hard to concentrate, vision problems; driving is difficult so short trips only. Been stopped completely for about 2 weeks after tapering for 3. So that’s where I’m at. I appreciate your prayers so much, thank you.

  51. foreverblessed says:

    Dear Beloved, I am praying for you!

    Delight yourself in the Lord
    and He will give you the desires of your heart
    Commit your way to the Lord, trust in Him and He will do this:
    He will make your righteousness shine like the dawn,
    the justice of your cause like the noonday sun.
    Psalm 37:4-5

  52. jeff1 says:

    I Believe

    I believe for every drop of rain that falls
    A flower grows
    I believe that somewhere in the darkest night
    A candle glows
    I believe for everyone that goes astray
    Someone will come to show the way
    I believe
    I believe
    I believe above the storm the smallest prayer
    Will still be heard
    I believe that someone in the great somewhere
    Hears every word
    Every time I hear a newborn baby cry
    Or touch a leaf
    Or see the sky
    Then I know why
    I believe
    Every time I hear a newborn baby cry
    Or touch a leaf
    Or see the sky
    Then I know why
    I believe (Why I believe)

  53. poohpity says:

    The example and teaching of Jesus;

    “If you love only those who love you, why should you get credit for that? Even sinners love those who love them! 33 And if you do good only to those who do good to you, why should you get credit? Even sinners do that much!……

    “Love your enemies! Do good to them. Lend to them without expecting to be repaid. Then your reward from heaven will be very great, and you will truly be acting as children of the Most High, for he is kind to those who are unthankful and wicked. 36 You must be compassionate, just as your Father is compassionate”….

    “A good tree can’t produce bad fruit, and a bad tree can’t produce good fruit. 44 A tree is identified by its fruit. Figs are never gathered from thornbushes, and grapes are not picked from bramble bushes. 45 A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. What you say flows from what is in your heart.”…….

    “So why do you keep calling me ‘Lord, Lord!’ when you don’t do what I say? 47 I will show you what it’s like when someone comes to me, listens to my teaching, and then follows it. 48 It is like a person building a house who digs deep and lays the foundation on solid rock. When the floodwaters rise and break against that house, it stands firm because it is well built. 49 But anyone who hears and doesn’t obey is like a person who builds a house right on the ground, without a foundation. When the floods sweep down against that house, it will collapse into a heap of ruins.”

    There are some scriptures that are hard to understand and people try to use scripture to prove their point but one has to know scripture in the first place in context of the times it was written, to whom it was written and the culture it was written in to understand what it is that the Lord wants us to understand on how to live in relationship with Him and those around us to make this world a better place and bring honor to Him above all else. If one believes what stops them from having a heart that searches for God and His ways? “To show mercy, doing what is right and just and by walking humbly with God.”

  54. poohpity says:

    mtman, My aunt lives in Montana and they have had already three foot of snow and are expecting more. I sure understand the getting old and the daily chores seem to be harder than they used to be and take longer as well.

    In August before I took a trip to NC while passing by my bed packing I hit the corner of the metal bed frame with my leg and took a big divot out of it the night before my flight early the next morning it took 12 stitches to sew it up. To make a long story short I ended up having to have the skin they sewed cut off and the hole debreaded and I am still working on healing. That happened in August 15th and because of my age and poor circulation it is still an issue. I could not understand how continually scraping off the wound and making it look worse could make it get better.

    I think that is like what God does for us continually cutting off the old to make room for the new and it is painful at times. Sad you have to go through all that prep work to get ready for coming season with an aged body. Getting old is sure not for sissies.

  55. poohpity says:

    It seems every good story has some drama, some comedy and most importantly some love.

  56. SFDBWV says:

    Taking a mid-morning break from mowing the grass (for the last time I hope) got Matt settled in to his pre-dinner posture (Kicked back with his mirror and some TV) while I have a cup of coffee and check out the things on the computer.

    Marts statement, “I don’t know how to explain those words.” stood out to me and made me smile.

    There are a great many verses of Scripture that that statement applies for me.

    I groan under the weight of people who think they can.

    However I share with you all this mornings “Days of Praise”.

    Everything Beautiful in His Time
    “He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.” (Ecclesiastes 3:11)

    In verses 2–8 of Ecclesiastes 3 appears a remarkable listing of 28 “times,” arranged in 14 pairs of opposites (e.g., “a time to be born, and a time to die,” v. 2). The entire section is introduced by God’s definitive statement: “To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven” (v. 1). It is then climaxed by His remarkable assurance in the words of our text for the day. Everything that God has made is beautiful in its appropriate time—even death and war, killing and hating, and all the other “negatives” in the list, as well as the 14 “positives”—healing and loving, building and planting, and many others.

    The pronoun (implied) could be either “its” or “His,” and since all our “times” are “in thy hand” (Psalm 31:15), it is fitting to recognize that the appropriate time for “every purpose under heaven” is His time—God’s time.

    Thus, everything that God has made is, in fact, beautiful when accomplished in His own time, in His way, as set forth in His Word. We may not understand many things in our time, for “no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.” Nevertheless, when God made us, He “set the world in [our hearts],” so that the very deepest roots of our nature assure us that God exists and cares. The Hebrew word for “world” means, literally, that “world without end” (compare Ephesians 3:21). Thus, all that happens to us, if accepted and applied according to God’s Word, becomes beautiful, and “we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose” (Romans 8:28). HMM

    I hope you are blessed by it.

    Steve

  57. Beloved says:

    “I don’t know how to explain those words.”

    I was thinking about this statement before I read your post steve. My thought is I don’t – can’t even begin to explain all of God’s ways except that He being a jealous God demands certain things of his followers. There are parameters to be observed or we may fall into a dangerous Universalist approach to faith in God where obedience and love is reduced to a feeling. Just some thoughts from a foggy mind.

    Thank you Forever for your support. It means a lot to me. At Bible study they prayed for me also. Feeling pretty rough today but home resting now for the day.

  58. Beloved says:

    Very good devotion steve. We have 2 ladies struggling with losing independence because of their age so we tried to encourage them to trust God for a good outcome. Even the strongest faith eventually gets challenged but we also agreed that it’s good we can still learn more about God as we age. As I said after 4 years of Bible school and still believe even more today the more I learn about God the less I know, He’s so much more than I can even begin to imagine! But good, always!

  59. bratimus says:

    I am very aware that all things are to God’s purpose, might not understand them all.

    Let me just state this, over the years I have read Steve comments they have brought joy and inspiration to me.

    When Steve mention Mathew in his struggles and things Mathew has achieved I get inspire to want to work towards God’s purpose more for whatever God can use me for.

    so things all do work toward God’s purpose God’s will.

    In Christ name

    Bratimus

  60. Beloved says:

    That is so good to hear Bratimus. How we encourage each other is so good.

  61. SFDBWV says:

    Bratimus I want to personally thank you for your encouraging words for Matthew. I read them to him this morning and it blessed him tremendously to hear that someone is inspired by his efforts.

    You have blessed him and me Bratimus, thank you.

    Steve

  62. jeff1 says:

    If I were to look at this world today without faith in God I would despair and indeed many do as suicide is on the increase here such are the times we live in.

    Having lived with mental illness (brother from teenager suffered from schizophrenia) and became mentally unstable myself I can understand despair all too well and if it were not for being surrounded by friends who have prayed or talked me through God’s love for me I may not be as well as I am.

    If it were not for a dad who cared for me the way Steve cares for Matthew (my mum died before I became unwell) and those friends prayers and encouragement I don’t believe my faith would be in tact today.

    I have not come through this world unscathed nor do I see too many who have as I attended a funeral yesterday of a man whose character was such that his family were divided and two of his children did not attend his funeral.

    The Rector was concerned as to how he should present the eulogy such was the man’s relationship with the family who did attend.

    It seems that reputation is everything in this life but my mum would say that when you get the name of being an early riser you can lie till dawn as she was not one to measure another by their reputation.

    The Rector did well in giving thanksgiving for the life of the deceased without causing undue hurt to the family.

    I thought of how sometimes it is only God who can forgive such is the complexity of the relationships.

    This was one of the hymns which I always associate with the sinking of the Titanic.

    Nearer My God To Thee

    Nearer, my God, to Thee,
    Nearer to Thee;
    E’en though it be a cross
    That raiseth me;
    Still all my song would be,
    Nearer, my God, to Thee,
    Nearer to Thee.

    Though like a wanderer,
    The sun gone down,
    Darkness comes over me,
    My rest a stone;
    Yet in my dreams I’d be
    Nearer my God to Thee,
    Nearer to Thee.

    Then, with my waking thoughts
    Bright with Thy praise,
    Out of my my stony griefs
    Bethel I’ll raise;
    So by my woes to be
    Nearer, my God, to Thee,
    Nearer to Thee.

    Or if on joyful wing
    Cleaving the sky,
    Sun, moon and stars forgot,
    Upwards I fly,
    Still all my song shall be,
    Nearer, my God, to Thee,
    Nearer to Thee.

  63. SFDBWV says:

    When I was a boy growing up here in town one of Glenna’s and my neighbors was an elderly lady who suffered from some mental disability I never actually knew exactly what.

    She was widowed and lived with her daughter and son in law and we shared an alley between us.

    Every so often Mrs. Mullenex would get out of the house and wander down the alley talking to herself and cussing her dead husband like a drunken sailor.

    As quick as she could, her daughter Gaynell would come and walk her back to her house. All the while her mother would curse and argue with Gaynell every step of the way.

    We who lived there as neighbors seen and heard this many times.

    What was remarkable about this was the fact that Gaynell, Mrs. Mullenex’s daughter never once raised her voice or lost her temper with her mother.

    My mother in law Crick, was their next door neighbor and often when she and I talked about such memories she would also remark how all the years that Gaynell took care of her mother that she “Crick” never heard Gaynell say a cross word to her mother.

    Often people who know us here will say to me that they don’t know how I do it, taking care of Matt. My answer is always the same, “love will make you do many of things.”

    I am privileged to know a lot of people and a lot about their life stories. Their examples, their victories and failures as well as my own have helped me be where I am today.

    The one thing though that comes through loud and clear is that God anoints us to be able to carry our own crosses and follow after Him.

    He will always make a way in spite of the circumstances we face.

    Tough day.

    Steve

  64. Beloved says:

    Still thinking about Bratimus post earlier: honor

    “The word love is also sometimes synonymous for honor. Paul commands us to “be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves” (Romans 12:10). Honoring others, however, goes against our natural instinct, which is to honor and value ourselves. It is only by being imbued with humility by the power of the Holy Spirit that we can esteem and honor our fellow man more than ourselves (Romans 12:3; Philippians 2:3)”

    Goes against our natural instincts, how true. But God! His Holy Spirit enables us to do what pleases Him.

  65. Beloved says:

    Steve praying for you today.

  66. jeff1 says:

    God Will Make a Way

    God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me
    And rivers in the desert will I see
    Heaven and Earth will fade but His word will still remain
    And He will do something new today

    Oh, God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    By a roadway in the wilderness, He’ll lead me
    And rivers in the desert will I see
    Heaven and Earth will fade but His word will still remain
    And He will do something new today

    Oh, God will make a way
    Where there seems to be no way
    He works in ways we cannot see
    He will make a way for me

    He will be my guide
    Hold me closely to His side
    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

    With love and strength for each new day
    He will make a way, He will make a way

  67. foreverblessed says:

    Your thanks to Bratimus is heart-warming, Steve!
    This morning again, I pray for Matt.
    That Jeff’s song may ring in his heart!

    This morning my bible opened on Isaiah 40
    “All men are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field….
    The grass withers and the flowers fall,
    but the word of our God stands forever.

    When I get older, the meaning gets more real, indeed, the body “withers”. This human body will not last. It is hard to imagine when you are 20. Strong bodies, big ambitions.
    At that time I believed this bible passage, but now it gets more real!
    But so is the Word of God.
    We can stand on His promises, no matter how long it takes!
    And I pray that for Matt!
    Isaiah 40:9-11
    You who bring good news to Zion,
    go up on a high mountain.
    You who bring good news to Jerusalem,
    lift up your voice with a shout,
    lift it up, do not be afraid;
    say to the towns of Judah,
    “Here is your God!”
    10
    See, the Sovereign Lord comes with power,
    and he rules with a mighty arm.
    See, his reward is with him,
    and his recompense accompanies him.
    11
    He tends his flock like a shepherd:
    He gathers the lambs in his arms
    and carries them close to his heart;
    he gently leads those that have young.

  68. foreverblessed says:

    Isaiah 40:26-31
    Lift up your eyes and look to the heavens:
    Who created all these?
    He who brings out the starry host one by one
    and calls forth each of them by name.
    Because of his great power and mighty strength,
    not one of them is missing.

    27
    Why do you complain, Jacob?
    Why do you say, Israel,
    “My way is hidden from the Lord;
    my cause is disregarded by my God”?
    28
    Do you not know?
    Have you not heard?
    The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
    He will not grow tired or weary,
    and his understanding no one can fathom.
    29
    He gives strength to the weary
    and increases the power of the weak.
    30
    Even youths grow tired and weary,
    and young men stumble and fall;
    31
    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.

  69. Beloved says:

    Yesterday I opened an email from my clinic and was shocked to find a bill for over $500! These were all for a Medicare covered expense which I had contested months ago, but they decided I’m still responsible. Dismayed I decided to go back and look at all the expenses one by one which took me about 2 hours to do——but before I started I checked into BTA and there was Vivs lovely encouragement, God will make a way! That gave me such peace, and in the end I sent them an email saying I disagreed according to Medicare standards and asked them Kindly to take a look at it again with the plea that I am unable to work. Unfortunately this is quite common practice here with only one medical system available. Unless you want to drive a ways but driving is hard for me. I have complete and total peace in Gods ability to make a way through this, even though the corrupt healthcare system is in place. Corruption is rampant wherever money is involved; thinking government here also. But God will make a way because Truth faith hope and love prevail! Oh He’s so good, bless the Holy name of Jesus!

    I know that whatever the outcome I have nothing to worry about, because God is my LORD, not Caesar.

  70. mtman says:

    Mart said: P.S. This, I believe, is why it is so important to imagine and then consider a range of possible interpretations that might surface one that is— or many that are— true to the God who bears the weight of our wrongs to bring us to himself.

    I have read through the bible many times and use it as my life guide every day. For me to interpret it or imagine what it means seems much like a dog or cat chasing its tail. When I come across a verse/s that speak clearly to me I take them to heart. When I find verses that I don’t understand I leave them be and simply ask God to reveal the meaning to me when/if appropriate.

    When two or more people debate the meaning or intent of a verse I let them waste their time because there is so much in the bible there is no way any one person can know it all. The scholars may all sound persuasive but they may all be wrong. To me spending time on what I don’t know (it is inspired you know) is frustrating and a waste of time. Spending time on what I do know is reassuring.

    Take the shortest verse in the bible for instance: “Jesus wept” John:11:35. Bible scholars have several reasons why Jesus wept but all the bible says is Jesus wept. There is no clear consensus of why and the bible doesn’t say why. If scholars can’t agree on why for the shortest verse in the bible the ‘why’ may not really be that important.

    The more people who question the ‘why’ the more opinions and the further it distracts from what it says. Whether it was to show His humanity, His compassion or His love for Lazarus we don’t know. I have my opinion but it would be senseless to debate it because no one really knows.

    My ‘opinion’ for the record is that He knew what He was going to bring Lazarus back to life and also where Lazarus was had no turmoil, strife etc. and by bringing him back he would be taking his friend from paradise into a troubled world with its daily problems. No one really knows the why so any opinion is equal to its opposing opinion.

    In has been my experience that in time a verse/s I don’t understand may later become clear to me. So not spending time on it or debating it just takes me away from verses that do matter to me personally and keep me close to Jesus. It is like that old farmers saying that says – life is easier if you plow around the stump. One day the stump will decompose and you can plow over it.

    If something is clear to me it is because the Holy Spirit has revealed the meaning to me and to fret about what I don’t know just draws or distracts me away from what I do know and keeps me focused.

  71. bubbles says:

    As a caretaker of a loved one, my help is constantly rejected. I get things for them, and they don’t use them or want them. Yet I am to do all these things. My car will be worn out soon just by running constant errands for them. I am exhausted. So love isn’t helping me be patient. All of this has angered me greatly because they are doing everything in their power to make things as difficult as possible for me. They refuse help and will not get help on from other sources. I cannot do this all myself. I have prayed and prayed and prayed for forgiveness and to have help being what I should be and I blew it this evening.

  72. SFDBWV says:

    Dear gentle friend Bubbles, don’t beat yourself up over trying to do more than you can.

    Or make yourself sick trying to.

    Others with good intentions sometimes think they know what would work better for me with Matt, but they just aren’t as close to the situation as I am.

    I am certain the same applies for you.

    I wish I could do more to help you, for now I pray every morning for you along with my prayers for my family and myself. You have my sympathies and the love from me and my family.

    Steve, Matt and Glenna

  73. jeff1 says:

    When I worked for the Red Cross I remember a volunteer telling us of how some of her clients would take advantage and she had to be firm with them and told them she was not their at their beck and call but rather to assist them in their needs.

    You may need to be firmer with your loved one and let them know you will assist in their care but they must try to help themselves as you are doing them or yourself no favours by allowing them to play on your generosity and becoming exhausted yourself in the process.

    If they won’t take help from others then you should approach others yourself for help and let them know that you are exhausted and the loved one is showing you no consideration.

    It is not wrong to consider your own well being as if you become over exhausted then you will be of no use to yourself or your loved one which is not what God would want for you.

    Just my thinking as I have overloaded myself with work because I have an ardent work ethic and that has got me into all kinds of trouble as others will stand back and let you do the work if you are willing to and so you must realise your own limitations and let others know you have them.

    Just my experiences and not trying to be judgemental but my health has suffered because I have often not known my limitations.

  74. mtman says:

    Bubbles: As I sit here looking out at a magnificent bright orange sunrise I am praying for you and a solution for your dilemma. This has gone on for a long time and you must be near exhaustion and at the end of your rope.
    As sure as the beautiful sunrise originates in the East and will settle in the west there is a solution to your dilemma and I’m praying that God reveal that answer to you according to his plan. God Bless you my friend …..

  75. Beloved says:

    Abide with me; fast falls the eventide;
    The darkness deepens; Lord, with me abide;
    When other helpers fail and comforts flee,
    Help of the helpless, oh, abide with me.
    Swift to its close ebbs out life’s little day;
    Earth’s joys grow dim, its glories pass away;
    Change and decay in all around I see—
    O Thou who changest not, abide with me.
    I need Thy presence every passing hour;
    What but Thy grace can foil the tempter’s pow’r?
    Who, like Thyself, my guide and stay can be?
    Through cloud and sunshine, Lord, abide with me.
    I fear no foe, with Thee at hand to bless;
    Ills have no weight, and tears no bitterness;
    Where is death’s sting? Where, grave, thy victory?
    I triumph still, if Thou abide with me.
    Hold Thou Thy cross before my closing eyes;
    Shine through the gloom and point me to the skies;
    Heav’n’s morning breaks, and earth’s vain shadows flee;
    In life, in death, O Lord, abide with me.

  76. poohpity says:

    This I believe; those who want advice will ask for it and asking a person, “How can I help?” are the best ways I have found to approach anyone in need otherwise rejection is sure to follow. Jesus asked what is it you want me to do for you knowing that many just want to stay as they are and may not be interested in growth or change. John 5:6

    It seems that not many really trust God as you do Bruce from your Oct 11 @ 10:26 am comment to guide and give wisdom about scripture but it does happen exactly that way. It seems when we are open to learning and really desire to know, God will reveal. If we can as Mart said in that paragraph come to a point of what is true to God’s character we can leave it in His hands knowing that He treats all mankind in a loving manner as was shown by bearing our wrongs on the Cross. Now that is love knowing we will never be perfect or sinless.

  77. Beloved says:

    Abide in me, or abide with me? In my reading on prayer by Andrew Murray today he says abiding in Jesus is a daily discipline. Blessings only come when we abide in Him. Daily. Be blessed all, today. In Jesus.

  78. poohpity says:

    Once when Jesus was talking about the religious leaders who thought themselves compared to those who really wanted to follow Him and actually admitted their need for forgiveness, He said, “At that time Jesus prayed this prayer: “O Father, Lord of heaven and earth, thank you for hiding these things from those who think themselves wise and clever, and for revealing them to the childlike. 26 Yes, Father, it pleased you to do it this way!”

    27 “My Father has entrusted everything to me. No one truly knows the Son except the Father, and no one truly knows the Father except the Son and those to whom the Son chooses to reveal him.”

    28 Then Jesus said, “Come to me, all of you who are weary and carry heavy burdens, and I will give you rest. 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.”

  79. Beloved says:

    “Let each consciousness of failure only give new urgency to the command (Take My yoke upon you and learn of Me; Abide in Me.”) and teach us to listen more earnestly than ever until the Spirit again allows us to hear the voice of Jesus saying, with a love and authority that inspire both hope and obedience, “Child, abide in me.”
    It is the peace of God, the great calm of the eternal world, that passes all understanding, and that keeps the heart and mind Phil. 4:7. With this grace secured, we have strength for every duty, courage for every struggle, a blessing in every cross, and the joy of life eternal in death itself. “ Murray

  80. jeff1 says:

    Why me Lord?
    What have I ever done
    To deserve even one
    Of the pleasure I’ve known
    Tell me Lord
    What did I ever do
    That was worth lovin’ you
    For the kindness you’ve shown

    Lord help me Jesus
    I’ve wasted it so help me Jesus
    I know what I am
    But now that I know
    That I needed you so help me Jesus
    My souls in your hand

    Try me Lord
    If you think there’s a way
    I can try to repay
    All I’ve takin’ from you
    Maybe Lord
    I can show someone else
    What I’ve been through myself
    On my way back to you

    Lord help me Jesus
    I’ve wasted it so help me Jesus
    I know what I am
    But now that I know
    That I needed you so help me Jesus
    My souls in your hand

  81. poohpity says:

    Jesus explains why He uses parables to talk to people;

    “You are permitted to understand the secrets of the Kingdom of Heaven, but others are not. 12 To those who listen to my teaching, more understanding will be given, and they will have an abundance of knowledge. But for those who are not listening, even what little understanding they have will be taken away from them. 13 That is why I use these parables,

    For they look, but they don’t really see.
    They hear, but they don’t really listen or understand.

    14 This fulfills the prophecy of Isaiah that says,

    ‘When you hear what I say,
    you will not understand.
    When you see what I do,
    you will not comprehend.
    15
    For the hearts of these people are hardened,
    and their ears cannot hear,
    and they have closed their eyes—
    so their eyes cannot see,
    and their ears cannot hear,
    and their hearts cannot understand,
    and they cannot turn to me
    and let me heal them.’

  82. Beloved says:

    Ponder the Things of God
    Truth For Life
    DAILY DEVOTIONAL OCTOBER 12, 2019

    Ponder the Things of God
    I will meditate on your precepts.
    Psalm 119:15

    There are times when solitude is better than company, and silence is wiser than speech. We would be better Christians if we were alone more often, waiting on God and gathering through meditation on His Word spiritual strength for service in His kingdom. We ought to ponder the things of God, because that is how we get the real nutriment out of them.

  83. jeff1 says:

    It is safe to tell the pure in heart that they shall see God, for only the pure in heart want to. … C.S. Lewis

  84. poohpity says:

    “Trust His Heart”

    All things work for our good
    Though sometimes we can’t see how they could
    Struggles that break our hearts in two
    Sometimes blind us to the truth
    Our Father knows what’s best for us
    His ways are not our own
    So when your pathway grows dim
    And you just can’t see Him
    Remember, He’s still on the throne

    God is too wise to be mistaken
    God is too good to be unkind
    So when you don’t understand
    When don’t see His plan
    When you can’t trace His hand
    Trust His Heart

    He sees the masterplan
    He holds our future in His hands
    So don’t live as those who have no hope
    All our hope is found in Him
    We walk in present knowledge
    But He sees the first and the last
    And like a tapestry, He’s weaving you and me
    To someday be just like Him, oh…

    God is too wise to be mistaken
    God is too good to be unkind
    So when you don’t understand
    When don’t see His plan
    When you can’t trace His hand
    Trust His Heart, oh…

    He alone is faithful and true
    He alone knows what is best for you, oh…

    God is too wise to be mistaken
    God is too good to be unkind
    (Lord knows He is so kind)
    So when you don’t understand
    When don’t see His plan
    When you can’t trace His hand
    Trust His Heart
    When you can’t trace His hand
    Trust His Heart

  85. Beloved says:

    Truth For Life

    DAILY DEVOTIONAL OCTOBER 14, 2019
    What is Spiritual Knowledge?
    I count everything as loss because of the surpassing worth of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.
    Philippians 3:8

    Spiritual knowledge of Christ will be a personal knowledge. I cannot know Jesus through another person’s acquaintance with Him. I must know Him myself; I must know Him on my own account.

    It will be an intelligent knowledge–I must know Him not as in the visionary dreams of Him, but as the Word reveals Him. I must know His natures, divine and human. I must know His offices (Prophet, Priest and King)–His attributes–His works–His shame–His glory. I must meditate upon Him until I “comprehend with all the saints what is the breadth and length and height and depth, and to know the love of Christ that surpasses knowledge.”1

    It will be an affectionate knowledge of Him; indeed, if I know Him at all, I must love Him. An ounce of heart knowledge is worth a ton of head learning. Our knowledge of Him will be a satisfying knowledge. When I know my Savior, my mind will be full to the brim–I will feel that I have that which my spirit longs for. This is the bread that satisfies all hunger.

    At the same time it will be an exciting knowledge; the more I know of my Beloved, the more I will want to know. The higher I climb, the loftier will be the summits that invite my eager footsteps. I shall want more as I get more. Like the miser’s treasure, my gold will make me covet more.

    To conclude, this knowledge of Christ Jesus will be a most happy one; in fact, so elevating that sometimes it will completely lift me above all trials and doubts and sorrows; and it will, while I enjoy it, make me something more than “Man . . . born of a woman . . . few of days and full of trouble,” for it will throw about me the immortality of the ever-living Savior and cover me with the golden cloak of His eternal joy. Come, my soul, sit at Jesus’ feet, and learn of Him all this day.

    1) Ephesians 3:18-19

  86. Beloved says:

    Thinking about knowing God and about the commands of God. Someone pointed out to me that every time Jesus said something directly to someone that He was commanding them. I guess I’d never thought of Jesus’ words as commands, just suggestions mostly for how to follow Him; who by the way said He and the Father were One. Oh how hearing every word spoken and obeyed draws us closer to Him. Obedience to His words as written are life.

    Matt 4:4 But he answered, “It is written, “‘Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God.’

  87. street says:

    dear bubbles, i know the frustration of helping….lol. the difficulty is knowing what to do and what they can do. Jesus always insisted we do things we can do, like rolling the stone way. it is in doing that the heart is revealed. just like a jury trial. the juries responsibility is to determine motive. guilt or innocent. what was Jesus motive in washing feet or going to the cross? people can give you different answers and they will reveal what is in their heart. the goal is the heart of a foot washer or as paul spoke, being poured out like a drink offering. a world rarely sees this. yet God does it. we love because He first loved us.

  88. poohpity says:

    street, Where did Jesus insist we do things we can do? Just curious what brought you to that conclusion since he never said that.

  89. Beloved says:

    Web results
    1 Corinthians 15:58 Therefore, my beloved brothers, be steadfast …
    Always give yourselves fully to the work of the Lord, because you know that your labor in the Lord is not in vain.

  90. Beloved says:

    @3:55p was in response to streets very kind post.

  91. jeff1 says:

    Though passing through this darkened world,
    We’re children of the Light.
    Though pressured and rejected here,
    We’re precious in Your sight.

    Refrain
    We walk below with hearts above,
    The captives of eternal love.
    But by Your Spirit show us how
    To love You fully here and now.

    The fruit of all Your life and love
    Will come to those who reap.
    With joy, my Lord, we gladly sow
    The lives we cannot keep.

    Through pain and sorrow, grief and death
    We more than overcome.
    We fix our eyes on Jesus Christ,
    Your risen, reigning Son!

  92. poohpity says:

    Philippians 2:13 NLT For God is working in you, giving you the desire and the power to do what pleases him. 1 Cor 12:6, 15:10.

    As street always reminds us doing things in our own power is not dying to self but depending on self more than on God. It seems God, just as He has done many times in the past, will let people continue to think everything depends on their own strength and will until nothing really works out that is when we fall to our knees and ask for help from the Lord.

  93. Beloved says:

    Pooh for once I agree with you, glad you are learning from Street, he is very close to God. Suffering brings us closer to God when we find nothing else relieves our suffering. I was just reading this which was very comforting for me.

    Lamentations 3:31-33 New International Version (NIV)

    31 For no one is cast off
    by the Lord forever.
    32 Though he brings grief, he will show compassion,
    so great is his unfailing love.
    33 For he does not willingly bring affliction
    or grief to anyone.

  94. Beloved says:

    God hears our prayers, I am rejoicing this evening!

  95. street says:

    35 On the next day he took out two denarii and gave them to the innkeeper and said, ‘Take care of him; and whatever more you spend, when I return I will repay you.’

    He said He would repay on His RETURN!

    whatever you did to the least of my brethren you did it to ME.

  96. jeff1 says:

    Love Divine, All Love Excelling

    Love divine, all love excelling,
    Joy of heaven, to earth come down!
    Fix in us thy humble dwelling,
    All thy faithful mercies crown.
    Jesus, thou art all compassion,
    Pure, unbounded love thou art;
    Visit us with thy salvation,
    Enter every trembling heart.

    Breathe, oh, breathe thy loving spirit
    Into every troubled breast;
    Let us all in thee inherit;
    Let us find thy promised rest.
    Take away the love of sinning;
    Alpha and Omega be;
    End of faith, as its beginning,
    Set our hearts at liberty.

    Come, Almighty, to deliver;
    Let us all thy life receive;
    Suddenly return, and never,
    Nevermore thy temples leave.
    Thee we would be always blessing,
    Serve thee as thy hosts above,
    Pray and praise thee without ceasing,
    Glory in thy perfect love.

    Finish then thy new creation,
    Pure and spotless let us be;
    Let us see thy great salvation
    Perfectly restored in thee,
    Changed from glory into glory,
    Till in heaven we take our place,
    Till we cast our crowns before thee,
    Lost in wonder, love, and praise.

  97. Beloved says:

    Good morning as the LORD woke me up earlier than usual. I’m reading William Law about a devout and holy life. With that on my mind I happened upon an article from ChristianityToday written 3 years ago I found extremely important and a wake-up call for believer/ followers of Christ Jesus. I won’t post the whole article but here is the reference you can look up if you so choose. I like Andy Crouch writings, I believe he’s retired?

    VIEWS | WHERE WE STAND
    Speak Truth to Trump
    Evangelicals, of all people, should not be silent about Donald Trump’s blatant immorality.
    ANDY CROUCH
    OCTOBER 10, 2016

  98. Beloved says:

    Sadly, though, if any Christian confronted this *brother* they would be fired or may even end up like John the Baptist, figuratively speaking.

  99. poohpity says:

    Beloved, did street teach me something or does he not believe what he teaches? I thought you were not going to read or respond to the things I write? As far as Andy Crouch I bet he has no idea or has never met Pres Trump because his comment about the immorality of then candidate Trump was solely based on media propaganda. If someone were to write about me or any of us before we came to know Christ they probably would have said the same thing that I was immoral and it would have been true but where is the signs of immorality since he married his current wife. We all have a past so Crouch was speaking his truth not the truth God was speaking of. I do not look to Trump to be my Savior because I already have one and if so called Christians spent as much time praying for our President and working with him as they do tearing him apart then something may be getting done in Congress besides HATE.

  100. jeff1 says:

    I believe that Donald Trump does not see himself as any worse than any other politician and why then should we.

    He is doing what he believes is right for his country just as our Prime Minister here is doing the same.

    Does anyone really know what is right as we only learn from our mistakes or do we as that often seems to elude us.

    When my Rector voted for Brexit his comment to me was I wonder does God agree with it.

    Do I understand the implications of Brexit? No, other than I see that being part of the European Union is not good for Britain and I live here so it makes sense for me to vote for what I think is best for this country but that doesn’t make me right but as a voter I have to make a choice and so having weighed up the pros and cons I come to my decision.

    I have to trust my leaders that they are conscientious and soul searching when it comes to their decisions otherwise I would be best not voting at all and God will have His way of levelling the playing ground for all such are His goodness and mercies and justice.

  101. poohpity says:

    Amen Viv!

    All I do know is that the reason 85% of Christians vote for Pres Trump is because he stands on the freedom of religion while the opposite party is trying to take away our rights to worship when and how each person wants and standing for our beliefs. He believes that babies are people and should not be harmed in the womb or killed just after they are born. He does love this country. He listens to all sides before he makes decisions and he is not our moral compass and chief but our Commander and Chief. I do not agree with all he says or does but I do believe that God put him in the place he now serves and while in office I will pray for him to have wisdom to govern that is how a true Christian should respond not continually showing hate against him and spreading lies.

  102. Beloved says:

    I thought you were not going to read or respond to the things I write?

    By God’s grace only. He turned my anger and hate into a deeper love for Him. And the things of earth more dim. Including wars, scandals and silly arguments based on human thinking pride and lusts. I am, by the grace of God alone, becoming more charitable toward all. Even my enemies. I have a lot more to learn about His ways. Not that I don’t still sin toward God and others, but merciful God keeps me in His loving care. Of that I am sure and secure.
    Bless Jesus, oh my soul.

  103. poohpity says:

    He was not a politician but a business man and that alone was a reason I voted for him to stir up the corruption in DC and start to clear the swamp of people who had their own interest in mind not the good or welfare of the people they say they represent. There is the primary reason that so many want to get rid of him because he is pulling the covers off all that goes on in Washington and shining the light on them so of course by any means possible they want to get rid of him and have been trying to since the day he took office.

  104. Beloved says:

    Thankful for knowing you, pooh. God is using you here.

  105. Beloved says:

    prov 27:17
    International Standard Version

    Iron sharpens iron; so a man sharpens a friend’s character.

  106. jeff1 says:

    President Trump is a shrewd man and in his role I imagine that would be desirable.

    I think people wanted to get away from the ‘status quo’ and with him they have certainly done that.

    I think other politicians should take note of the fact that many are discouraged with politics this especially applies to my own country where we have had no leaders for 1000 days and people are saying it isn’t much odds because they were not agreeing to disagree so nothing was getting done anyway.

    The Civil Servants seems to be doing as good a job so I think politicians need to up their game to win back the confidence of people and I don’t see any move on their part to do that as when you are getting a substantial salary for doing nothing I expect there is not much of an incentive to do otherwise.

  107. poohpity says:

    Yes so true.

  108. poohpity says:

    I was thinking today of how many time we pray to God to do what we think is in people’s best interest and the way we want Him to work in them when what I should be praying for is for them to know God. It is God who works in peoples lives and His desire more than anything is for them to know Him. Hosea 6:3 NLT

  109. poohpity says:

    This is an excerpt from the values conference of Christians and shows regard for Pres Trump.

    President Trump spoke at the Values Voter Summit in Washington DC Saturday night, despite concern by Christians over his decision to pull troops out of Syria, leaving US allies and Christians in the region without protection.

    Pastor Andrew Brunson was also recognized at the event, where he was honored with the Cost of Discipleship Award. Brunson was falsely imprisoned for two years in Turkey for his faith.

    President Trump helped free Pastor Brunson from captivity in Turkey where he was a missionary for 24 years.

    Pastor Brunson began the ceremony by praying for President Trump:

    Father God, I ask now for an impartation of your Holy Spirit, may the fullness of the spirit of Jesus rest upon President Trump that he be anointed with wisdom and understanding with your counsel and might with knowledge and fear of the Lord and accordingly may President Trump not judge by what he sees with his eyes or decide by what he hears with his ears or lean on his own understanding but may he recognize your prompting and move according to your guidance.

    I ask that you give the president supernatural discernment to know who is trustworthy and who is not. Bring into the light all deception and intrigue, expose and reverse the plans of those who would harm President Trump and this nation. In the name of Jesus, I break off all voices and influences that do not come from you father God. May your truth and peace surround and reign in the White House.

    God, you have raised President Trump to govern at a time when there is a resurgence of oppression. Only you Lord Jesus Christ can anoint him to have victories over strongholds and to establish justice for the needy. Give him strength and courage to persevere in the constant battle that surrounds him and refresh him.

    Father God, I see that you have such a tender heart for President Trump. Draw him close to you. I ask now for an impartation of hunger for you so that he may love you with all his heart, soul, mind and strength and delight in knowing you. And if he came and whispered your name, may he go forward shouting your name. In Jesus name, the name of my king, I bless you.

    “I want to thank you for that beautiful prayer, it means a lot,” Trump said. “Our rights come from God Almighty and they can never be taken away. Together we will protect those God-given rights.”

  110. Beloved says:

    The words that come out of our very own mouths condemn us, or not. Whether a president or a welfare recipient words do matter. That said, God gives and God takes away. God will “protect” or not. He is sovereign, only. God uses whoever He pleases and placed everyone where they should be, today. Whether we follow Him, as Jesus did, depends on our level of commitment to Him, not any ideology or religious “group”(yes even evangelical Christians whom our president relies on.). The whole new Testament shows us how to live as Christians. That is our guide for Christian behavior. When we fail to live up to those standards, and we will because our hearts ARE corrupted by sin, we hope someone loves us enough to correct us, whether we have billions of dollars or just enough to survive on. (I do for sure).

    We can all do something good some of the time, but this is not the test of righteousness. (All our works are as filthy rags). All have sinned. All. Jesus is our righteousness.

    I would love to hear any world leader say “Jesus is Lord”! But they won’t because it’s all about money and power. Jesus said that the LOVE of money is the root of ALL evil. Quite obvious, isn’t it, especially when we look at Jesus life here along with His followers. Jesus said hard things to them and is still speaking to us today. God does not change.

    Been thinking. Yet I know my words/thoughts are meaningless, as Solomon noted. Only God is perfect. :-)

  111. jeff1 says:

    Beloved, we are hidden in Christ for reasons that only God knows so I don’t think it matters to God whether any world leader affirms Him as Lord and I think we have to consider the times we live in to see that we are aliens in this world which is what God said we would become so why so surprised when it happens.

    God exists and reveals Himself and I cannot know to whom or when He does that but I have had glimpses of Him so I know I can trust Him when I cannot understand all He is doing.

  112. poohpity says:

    Beloved, the welfare I was speaking of is NOT the welfare system that the government supplies doling out money but as in the welfare or good of the people or a nation.

  113. Beloved says:

    I was thinking of the poorest to the richest in my comments.

  114. Beloved says:

    Words matter whether rich or poor. Is that clear as mud, lol.

  115. Beloved says:

    Out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks. Only Jesus can change/fix a broken (depraved, sinful) heart.

  116. Beloved says:

    Colossians 3:1-3

    Put On the New Self
    3 If then you have been raised with Christ, seek the things that are above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. 2 Set your minds on things that are above, not on things that are on earth. 3 For you have died, and your life is hidden with Christ in God.

  117. jeff1 says:

    The work is done, His gift complete,
    For Jesus Christ is all we need.
    He lives the life we long to lead,
    And He is ours and all we need.
    His holy heart now beats within.
    We live and move and love in Him.
    His life is everlasting seed,
    And faith in Christ is all we need.

    When weakness seems our sure defeat,
    Lord Jesus Christ is all we need.
    His sovereign will is power indeed.
    We come to Him for all we need.
    His promise stands forever sure.
    Our Rock is firm, our Hope secure.
    His death and life have guaranteed
    That faith in Christ is all we need.

    This world began, its end will be
    In Him whose Word is all we need.
    He calls His own to just believe
    That Jesus Christ is all we need.
    This world will soon go up in flame.
    Our confidence will be the same,
    For God Himself will be our creed,
    And He is all, and all we need.

  118. foreverblessed says:

    Dear Bubbles, I am praying for you!
    On discover the Word, it is about people in the bible who come to the end of oneself.
    Eliijah… Moses… Naomi and Ruth…

    Reading about Elijah, in 1 Kings 18.
    The story of Ahab gives new sense now. Whoever is against Ahab is considered an enemy by Ahab:
    1 Kings 18:16
    Ahab calls Elijah the trouble maker of Israel.
    1 Kings 22:18
    And about Micaiah too.

    These big words that are used: “enemies”, “they hate him”.

    Ahab does what he wants, 1 Kings 16:29-34
    And the prophets of God he calls trouble makers.
    Ahab turns everything around.
    1 Kings 18:18
    Elijah answers him very straightforward:
    I have not brought trouble to Israel, but you and your father’s family have.

  119. poohpity says:

    Has what God has done over the centuries caused you to love Him and desire Him above all else? Has God made such a difference in your life that you want to shout about it and share Him with everyone? Are people drawn to you because there is just something different that shines out? Do people know you are a Christ follower even if you never say a word about Him? Do people seek you out to pray for them, comfort them, listen to them or maybe just get a hug and a smile? Do people want to know Christ because they met you?

  120. Beloved says:

    18 And he answered, “I have not troubled Israel, but you have, and your father’s house, because you have abandoned the commandments of the Lord and followed the Baals.

    Such an important reminder Forever. So many idols to follow. Yesterday was my friends birthday. One who died in March. I ran into two other friends of hers shopping so it was so good to see and talk with them as she did not have a funeral, (which she had planned and chosen favorite hymns for but suddenly cancelled in her last days.) It was bittersweet though because I remembered how she had turned to a medium a year before she died and brought something home with her. I pleaded with her to remove it and renounce the relationship. She never said if she did, but saw her begin rejecting other Christian friends besides me the last few months of her life. I loved her so much but could not love her to God. It’s very sad to see someone “fall from grace”. Someone you love.

    My mother also. She became a Christian at a very late age and even taught adult Sunday school for several years before getting cancer. Toward the end she returned to her spiritist practices and announced she did not want to go to heaven if my father was there. She stopped going to church even though her new life was very Christ like as Pooh mentioned it should look like to others. Charisma is always a draw, along with Christianese ( the lingo) which we quickly pick up on.

    Well, that verse is very stunning to me as I have witnessed the consequences of returning to Baal. It’s a solemn warning as we grow old to not forsake our first love, Jesus Christ. Be still, the LORD is on our side. He will fight for us as long as we stay with Him, worshipping in spirit and truth.

  121. Beloved says:

    Wondering how your friend is doing? Does she have a lot of pain?

  122. Beloved says:

    Pooh is your leg healing?

  123. Beloved says:

    Pooh @7:26 post I’ve been pondering. What comes to mind is in Isaiah53

    He had no stately form or majesty to attract us,
    no beauty that we should desire Him.
    3He was despised and rejected by men,
    a man of sorrows, acquainted with grief.
    Like one from whom men hide their faces,
    He was despised, and we esteemed Him not.

  124. poohpity says:

    I strongly believe that once you have come to believe and received the Holy Spirit unlike the days of Isaiah but like the days since the Resurrection that just like those who died before Jesus came, God is faithful even when we may not be to take us home to be with Him.

    If I believe that Jesus died for the sins of the world how can anyone fall from His grace? Then it was never grace to begin with, it was about us and our actions not about what Jesus did. If we lost our salvation each time we sin how would we ever have assurance that it was finished at the Cross? Not saying to make it a practice of sinning because that would make our time on earth miserable not full of joy or peace. We would be basing our salvation on us not on God’s unmerited and undeserved love and for those who believe they never sin again after accepting Christ that is only delusion and the truth is not in them.

    Isaiah 53 was a prophecy about what the Messiah would be like.

    *************************************
    Beloved yes my leg is healing slowly. I really do not know how after each week getting it debrided which is getting on my last nerve to say the least and my bandage goes from my knee to my toes now which is also irritating. I go to get it changed 2 times a week but only on Mondays do they debride it.
    *************************************

    There was a saying that many Christians believe to be true; that God only helps those who help themselves and nothing could be further from the truth because God helps those who can not help themselves and realize they need help because God does not seem to push His help on anyone who thinks they can do everything on their own until they come to the point of finally realizing they need Him. (dying to self)

  125. poohpity says:

    The world still suffers needlessly from those who took matters into their own hands rather than trusting God. One example of this is what is happening now in the middle East. Abraham and Sarah took matters into their own hands rather than waiting on the Lord to fulfill what He said He was going to do and Ishmael was born. Genesis 16:12 NLT

  126. poohpity says:

    Ishmael was the ancestor of the Islam religion.

  127. jeff1 says:

    There was a saying that many Christians believe to be true; that God only helps those who help themselves and nothing could be further from the truth because God helps those who can not help themselves and realize they need help because God does not seem to push His help on anyone who thinks they can do everything on their own until they come to the point of finally realizing they need Him. (dying to self)

    I would agree Pooh as I grew up with christians who think like this and therefor see others weaknesses as that of their own doing.

    To that way of thinking it is black and white i.e. he chooses to drink so he gets his comeuppance i.e. his sin has brought about his own destruction.

    You can’t really argue with that as it is partially true but it is not the whole truth but it is enough to satisfy a christian who is of the belief that in their own life they are superior to the lowly drunken who made his bed and must lie in it.

    Christians are very ignorant of God today because religions and politics have got in the way of the truth and so we have partial truths that satisfy our beliefs but they are far from God’s truths.

    I see now why my dad focused on Jesus because he knew that it was necessary to walk in God’s light and not by his own understanding.

    He never offered me any other explanation to the suffering in the world other than ‘Jesus Suffered’ and that is because he kept that uppermost in his mind when he did not understand his own or the suffering of others.

    To him to walk with God was to expect suffering and I believe that is because he believed you could not ‘follow Jesus’ and not suffer in this life as for him it went with the territory.

  128. SFDBWV says:

    “Surely I am coming soon.”

    “I don’t know how to explain those words.”

    I read yesterday of a family in Holland I believe that had hid themselves away in the basement of a farm house awaiting the end of the world.

    I myself somewhat selfishly pray for the same thing the Rapture or the return of Christ and the rescue of my family and all I love from an ever darkening world and from all the things we suffer.

    It hurts me to see people suffering from cancer, especially little children. The same being said of those crippled and disabled, physically and mentally.

    The hungry and the poor.

    We all await Jesus’ return with expectations of all of those things being wiped away.

    I suppose “soon” is a relative term.

    The best wartime reading is from those at the front lines where the action is.

    It is there in those battles we are engaged in that faith is strengthened and hope carried high.

    It is there also that we encourage, support and carry the weak and wounded in the heat of battle.

    Do something good for someone today, and be blessed for it.

    Steve

  129. Beloved says:

    So sad about your leg Pooh, I’ll bet that is frustrating. Praying…

    Call me Ishmael, also, but for the grace of God! So much easier to pray for others knowing the Savior and obeying Him. Love God love your enemies. God is stirring things up in the Middle East. It will be God who ultimately gets the credit for lives turned to Christ. I had to be shaken up to be made aware of my sinfulness and need for a Savior. I know there are many many Christians in the Middle East who are praying fervently for their neighbors with joy! Because they know what God has done for all!

    Pray for those involved in Gods harvest. Many have and will lose their lives but go to their Rewarder (oh how I envy those who are gone some days but love being a harvester also). Greater is He that is in us all than he who is in the world. Though we may be in the minority (narrow is the way).

    Being a Gentile I need to remember that because of Gods great mercy I was grafted in to the Vine. Just as Ishmael’s descendants were. ( if I remember right.). Pity the stranger to God, I was once one also. Yet He called me to Himself. Praise His Holy name.

    All news media is secular so I’m really limiting my watch time. I will fix my eyes on Jesus, the author and finisher of my faith.

  130. Beloved says:

    I just remembered that Adam and Eve were the first to be disobedient to God, but he promised and sent a savior to become our righteousness. To God we are perfect if Christ is our redeemer.

  131. jeff1 says:

    Amazing Grace

    Amazing Grace! How sweet the sound
    That saved a wretch like me!
    I once was lost, but now am found
    Was blind, but now I see.

    ‘Twas Grace that taught my heart to fear,
    And Grace my fears relieved.
    How precious did that Grace appear
    The hour I first believed.

    Through many dangers, toils, and snares
    I have already come.
    ‘Tis Grace hath brought me safe thus far
    And Grace will lead me home.

    The Lord has promised good to me.
    His Word my hope secures.
    He will my shield and portion be
    As long as life endures.

    When we’ve been there ten thousand years
    Bright shining as the sun,
    We’ve no less days to sing God’s praise
    Than when we’d first begun.

  132. Beloved says:

    Samuelwhitefield. com has an article on Ishmael and the promises of God. I learned a lot. He explains Gen16-21 and things happening now. I’ve never been very good about understanding stories in the Bible because I can’t keep characters straight to put them together as one story. He does it so I can understand. (Why I don’t read novels, although Grisham I used to enjoy)

  133. bratimus says:

    There are days that I can’t tell how much I longer for Heaven and to go home. But I still have to live a life of faith through this world no matter how dark it gets. I also have to be will to serve at God’s will if He’ll have me, so whether I stay or go as long as God is there for me I’m good with whatever. All this is done through Christ Jesus.

    In Christ name

    Bratimus (or Christopher)

  134. jeff1 says:

    Life is brief and full of trouble.
    God is good and full of love.
    Life is grief and pain and shadow.
    Life is light and leads above.

    Like a flower, all is blooming.
    Like a leaf, now dead and dry;
    Rich and green and full of promise,
    Then cut down, not knowing why.

    Chained by need and bound in weakness,
    Yet my every fear He knows.
    Soon He’ll call, and I will answer.
    Death will come, and I will go,

    Go to God, my Love, my Father,
    Turned from all but Him alone,
    Freed to love and live and worship,
    Cleansed, renewed, and all His own.

  135. Beloved says:

    I am Still in withdrawal from the antidepressant and having severe brain fog but reading Iain Wright tonight “God is Always Better Than We Can Imagine he puts a whole different interpretation on Ishmael’s birth by saying that Sarai, being frustrated that she could not seem to become pregnant, tries to “help God out“ by giving her servant Hagar to Abraham so the promise would be fulfilled. Interesting. Not a word about being “disobedient” in the text. Interesting. That Ishmael was blessed greatly by God which he was, although Isaac was to be the one through whom the new covenant would be fulfilled. Reading this gives me a different way of thinking about Islam. They are not the cursed offspring I’d always thought. God had a plan and carried it out. It makes my heart more tender knowing this. Are all Jews saved by birthright alone? No, Christ alone, only. Gods chosen, yes. But all fall short of the glory of God and are in need of a Savior. All.
    I’m blessed by God to understand this today. He’s so much better than I can imagine!

  136. foreverblessed says:

    What a wonderful sesries on discover the word, on the old song: Holy Holy Holy

    Very comforting words, God is Holy, we are holey (full of holes) and God makes us wholy (whole again)

    It is so good to hear the words of the Gospel, in these worrisome times.

    That family that was found hiding, there is more to the story then just waiting for the return of jesus.

    O dear, I pray for these people! May God have mercy on them.

    My old church was very much focussed on the return of Jesus, more so than the importance of His first coming:

    The Cross and His resurrection

    And the enormous impact that has on us.

    We were all lost.

    But Jesus was chosen before the creation of the world 1 Peter 17-24

    God’s solution was this one: All the sins of the whole world were laid on Jesus, and He died on the Cross, throwing our sins in the ocean of God’s Mercy, for those who repent and believe in Jesus.

    I try to remain positive, that is to say, I cry out to God, please give me Joy, Your Everlasting Joy, and as Bratimus writes: “I also have to be willing to serve at God’s will if He’ll have me..”

    Is that not called: redeeming the time?

  137. jeff1 says:

    Now we cannot…discover our failure to keep God’s law except by trying our very hardest (and then failing). Unless we really try, whatever we say there will always be at the back of our minds the idea that if we try harder next time we shall succeed in being completely good. Thus, in one sense, the road back to God is a road of moral effort, of trying harder and harder. But in another sense it is not trying that is ever going to bring us home. All this trying leads up to the vital moment at which you turn to God and say, “You must do this. I can’t.”
    ― C.S. Lewis

    “I seemed to hear God saying, “Put down your gun and we’ll talk.”
    ― C.S. Lewis

    Experience: that most brutal of teachers. But you learn, my God do you learn.
    – C.S. Lewis

    I have learned now that while those who speak about one’s miseries usually hurt, those who keep silence hurt more.
    – C.S. Lewis

    What you see and what you hear depends a great deal on where you are standing. It also depends on what sort of person you are.
    – C.S. Lewis

  138. SFDBWV says:

    I often think of Joan of Arc and her devotion to obeying what she considered the voice of God and how when starved and then burned to death her last words were “Jesus, Jesus, Jesus”.

    Tortured to death by men who also believed they were doing the work of that same God.

    Some of you may understand how children instinctively feel a comfort or safety with certain people and with others shy away from or hide behind their mothers in a protected posture.

    It is easy for me to understand, reading Scripture, how children would be drawn instinctively to Jesus. Even how some see Jesus in some of us today and are instinctively drawn into a place of safety.

    Who or how is it that children learn about Jesus today?

    Mom and dad, other children, Sunday school, church?

    From their earliest age who is it that they (children) believe? Are they not taught about Jesus at that age when trust hasn’t yet been betrayed?

    What expectations then are etched upon their little hearts and what then happens when those expectations do not materialize?

    Are they then to blame for having perhaps misguided expectations and believing? Or do they then begin to doubt what they have been taught to believe? Even blame God for letting them down.

    In reference to Mart’s comments concerning that even a child can trust the heart of Jesus who did the things He did.

    No child today has seen those things as given in Scripture, so who is it they trust? Is it not us who carry the burden of showing Jesus by our own words, actions and deeds?

    What happens then when a child’s expectations are not met? Are we prepared to take the brunt of disappointment from unmet expectations connected to what we have taught them?

    There is still a child in all of us and like Joan of Arc we still cry out to Jesus for rescue in a mixture of both puzzlement and desperation.

    And why not to whom else can we go? To whom else can we hope?

    Steve

  139. jeff1 says:

    Just like I lead my life believing in God and a better world to come their are many who live alongside of me who do not.

    Faith is a gift as I see it because it is much easier to live this life trusting God’s promise then it is to despair and accept evil will win.

    If I didn’t believe God was superior to I then I wouldn’t put my trust in Him but I do believe He is superior and so is working in ways that are not normal to mine but He has helped me in he past and so I look to Him for the future and I believe that is not without assurances from Him that it is for my good in accordance with His will.

    God has proven to me that He is good all the time while in my shortcomings I see I am not.

  140. jeff1 says:

    Just like I live not lead.

  141. poohpity says:

    Is it childish to expect God to answer prayers the way one would like and how one would like then we can not see what, how He actually has answered them.

    A storm descends on a small town, and the downpour soon turns into a flood. As the waters rise, the local preacher kneels in prayer on the church porch, surrounded by water. By and by, one of the townsfolk comes up the street in a canoe.

    “Better get in, Preacher. The waters are rising fast.”

    “No,” says the preacher. “I have faith in the Lord. He will save me.”

    Still the waters rise. Now the preacher is up on the balcony, wringing his hands in supplication, when another guy zips up in a motorboat.

    “Come on, Preacher. We need to get you out of here. The levee’s gonna break any minute.”

    Once again, the preacher is unmoved. “I shall remain. The Lord will see me through.”

    After a while the levee breaks, and the flood rushes over the church until only the steeple remains above water. The preacher is up there, clinging to the cross, when a helicopter descends out of the clouds, and a state trooper calls down to him through a megaphone.

    “Grab the ladder, Preacher. This is your last chance.”

    Once again, the preacher insists the Lord will deliver him.

    And, predictably, he drowns.

    A pious man, the preacher goes to heaven. After a while he gets an interview with God, and he asks the Almighty, “Lord, I had unwavering faith in you. Why didn’t you deliver me from that flood?”

    God shakes his head. “What did you want from me? I sent you two boats and a helicopter.”

    Sometimes God sends us the answers to prayers and if it does not happen as we think it should then we are disappointed and walk away from God thinking He has let us down when all the while He has sent people to us to help but we refused the help sent.

  142. Beloved says:

    1
    Jesus loves me, this I know,
    For the Bible tells me so;
    Little ones to Him belong;
    They are weak, but He is strong.
    Yes, Jesus loves me,
    Yes, Jesus loves me,
    Yes, Jesus loves me,
    The Bible tells me so.
    2
    Jesus, take this heart of mine;
    Make it pure and wholly Thine.
    Thou hast bled and died for me;
    I will live henceforth for Thee.
    Yes, I love Jesus.
    Yes, I love Jesus.
    Yes, I love Jesus.
    In prayer I tell Him so.

  143. foreverblessed says:

    Pray for Britain just now!
    With the vote in Parliament for the withdrawal deal.
    May God be with all the christians that they:
    Pray for workers in the field

  144. jeff1 says:

    We plow the fields, and scatter
    the good seed on the land,
    but it is fed and watered
    by God’s almighty hand;
    he sends the snow in winter,
    the warmth to swell the grain,
    the breezes and the sunshine,
    and soft refreshing rain.
    Refrain:
    All good gifts around us
    are sent from heaven above,
    then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord
    for all his love.

    He only is the Maker
    of all things near and far;
    he paints the wayside flower,
    he lights the evening star;
    the winds and waves obey him,
    by him the birds are fed;
    much more to us, his children,
    he gives our daily bread.
    Refrain:
    All good gifts around us
    are sent from heaven above,
    then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord
    for all his love.

    We thank thee, then, O Father,
    for all things bright and good,
    the seed time and the harvest,
    our life, our health, and food;
    no gifts have we to offer,
    for all thy love imparts,
    and, what thou most desirest,
    our humble, thankful hearts.
    Refrain:
    All good gifts around us
    are sent from heaven above,
    then thank the Lord, O thank the Lord
    for all his love.

  145. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning Foreverblessed. Long ago I learned a hard lesson that still wants to rise up in me from time to time.

    Not to worry about things I have no control over.

    “This I Believe” is quite a mouthful for an opening commentary as many things can follow such a title.

    If I were to compress what I believe into a short version with regards to our faith I suppose it would go something like this…

    I believe in the God of the Bible, in Jesus of Nazareth as the Son of God, I believe in the Triune Being of God as the Father, the Son, and the Holy Spirit.

    I believe that all events are under God’s control, whether large or small and I believe that His will always comes ahead of mine.

    I believe in and cling to the hope that trusting God provides for a troubled life or heart.

    And surrender my will, sometimes with heartache, to God’s always.

    I met two people yesterday who don’t believe in a “Rapture”. Each is working desperately to prepare for surviving the coming tribulation.

    To whom have they put their trust in? Themselves or in God?

    I ask God Foreverblessed that you have peace and that your prayers are answered and that He bless you in every way possible.

    Steve

  146. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you very much Steve, for your blessing!
    That peace from God may be in my heart, despite what happens in the world.

    Thanks.

    Reading in the Old Testament brought also peace:
    God has sent in old Israel, when they had left God, He did send a lying spirit many times.
    The lying spirit is not something new.
    God has used it in the past to bring back His people to Himself.
    It is true that God’s will stands, but God usea forces as the heart of the people require Him to do so.
    I guess God would rather not use lying spirits.
    So that must be His heartache too!

  147. poohpity says:

    I believe that even unclean spirits that would lead us to doubt the goodness and love of God know His identity. Luke 4:33-34 NLT “Once when he was in the synagogue, a man possessed by a demon—an evil spirit—cried out, shouting, 34“Go away! Why are you interfering with us, Jesus of Nazareth? Have you come to destroy us? I know who you are—the Holy One of God!”

    Since the first action of the evil one in the garden it was to lead people away from God also even when Jesus was tempted in the wilderness by pride, self reliance and idol worship which are the areas we can also be tempted even though we know who Jesus is, it is still a battle we are faced with everyday. Praise God that He has given us His spirit to overcome that battle.

    When we are faced every morning with reading the paper or God’s word, going to church or staying home, listening to secular music or worship music, having peace because we trust in God or having confusion, worry and hate because we don’t. We are faced daily with who we will listen to and who will be first in our hearts, minds and souls.

    If the evil one came as someone we could readily identify it may easy to turn from but he does not, sometimes he comes dressed as an angel of light but his actions seem to be always the same; to lead us away from God by doubting His goodness and love.

  148. poohpity says:

    ODB for today Bill Crowder stated; “Only one person in all history perfectly balanced strength and gentleness, power and compassion. That man is Jesus Christ. In John 8, when confronted by the religious leaders to condemn a guilty woman, Jesus displayed both steel and velvet. He showed steel by withstanding the demands of a bloodthirsty mob, instead turning their critical eyes upon themselves. He said to them, “Let any one of you who is without sin be the first to throw a stone at her”. Then Jesus modeled the velvet of compassion by telling the woman, “Neither do I condemn you . . . . Go now and leave your life of sin” .

    Do we lead a mob to attack people and totally avoid looking at the areas in ourselves that need to be healed? Our evil nature would have us point our fingers at others and neglect the many areas in our own lives that fall short. Do you lead a mob to condemn and criticize or to show mercy and compassion?

    Wouldn’t that truly show who we believe in and who we are living our lives for?

  149. poohpity says:

    Matthew 15:8 NLT

  150. Beloved says:

    Nobody does everything Jesus showed us to do perfectly or all of the time. We are sanctified yet still being sanctified through Christ. Waiting for others to live up to Jesus’s standards so I can be happy Is crazy. But we have our hope in God, always.
    Psalm27

  151. Beloved says:

    When there is a “mob” determined to not like us the wise thing to do is to move on. We are not going to change them; that’s Gods job, in His time. If I keep putting myself in their path then who’s fault is that? Joan of Arc is dead long ago isn’t she. Let’s not pretend to be Joan, or John or Peter or Paul.

  152. bratimus says:

    As far as worrying about what governments are doing I try not to. First of all even if I could warn them that what they are doing might be a mistake, would they even listen.
    So I leave that stuff in God’s hands.

    As far as what I believe I’m pretty much I step with Steve on that.

    The Rapture I do believe will happen it’s just the how, when and where, that my opinion might differ from some. I’m not going to go into that it open up a whole other can of worms.

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratimus

  153. poohpity says:

    Beloved, well just act how you want! Is going along with a mob to harm someone being loving and compassionate or hateful and self righteous? It will be like the 5 virgins that did not have enough oil for their lamps when the wedding feast of the Lamb(rapture) comes although they were waiting for it and believed it was coming, they will not be allowed to go in.

  154. Beloved says:

    I don’t understand you, Pooh. Who is trying to harm you?

  155. Beloved says:

    Once a person is saved Jesus says, now go and sin no more. Paul’s letters are full of ways to help each other in our walk as well as James and Peters. Building up the church. If the majority of Christians are in agreement about the misbehavior of someone then of course you would feel all are against you and therefore a mob of unregenerate dummies hell bent on destroying you with their stones. For many years here you say you are a believer yet refuse to accept admonishment or exhortation, then use scripture to excuse yourself from properly submitting to other Believers as “better than yourself “ and trusting God for how He is working in and through the Body with the gifts He gave us.

    We can and do disagree on things of the Bible which is fine. There is much we all don’t know and won’t until we see Him in heaven. But you seem to excuse yourself from the process God uses for sanctification by putting up an imaginary wall between yourself and many here, particularly Steve who has had enough trying to help you out so he no longer reads, which is wise with the many burdens/crosses he already carries. And you slander him by ridiculing “the things he teaches here” . How arrogant you are.

    I don’t hate you, I love you more as God has removed the ugly thoughts/ feelings I’ve had about you, I am humbled as I asked Him to do that for His sake. I admonish you because I love you and others have stopped trying. Understandable. As I said, you created the schism here and I might add I find it very troubling that you use a good teacher like Bill Crowder to justify it. Poor Pooh, right? Activist political and religious indeed. Yet holiness has no part in either.

    Well, I hope you can hear this with the spirit of love it is written in.

    Just thinking.

  156. poohpity says:

    Beloved thank you for all that love. I am overflowing with gratitude and feel such a sense of joy for your kind, compassionate and loving words. They have encouraged me greatly.

  157. Beloved says:

    Gods love is real, not like cake and ice cream. Honest.

  158. poohpity says:

    Joyce, I have experienced the real love of God and nothing you said even faintly resembles that in anyway. What you said was not in the spirit of love but from a heart bent on evil intent, slander and lies which does not come from God but from His enemy. Jesus never spoke like that to anyone and He said we would know the heart of a person by what comes out of their mouth and the ugliness in your heart was plain to see.

  159. Beloved says:

    Well, you are right; I am not Jesus and my heart is filthy for sure. But I care because Jesus abides in me by the Holy Spirit and His love, not my feeble useless attempts at love, which compels me to speak the truth. Whether it’s accepted or not. I am praying for your acceptance here, a work only the Holy Spirit can accomplish to Gods glory. Greater is He that is in me than he (Satan) that is in the world. The Devil has no hold over us anymore.
    Self-deception is the greater problem.

  160. SFDBWV says:

    I am seldom surprised and almost always amused at how our mind fills in the blank of something we don’t quite yet understand.

    Last evening just before dark an old (95) friend of mine called me and said he had went up to the spring to get water and then took a drive through the cemetery to just look around.

    To his amazement there in a certain area just above the flagpole he thought someone had dumped a load of dead grass.

    He nor I could just not imagine why anyone would do such a thing and both of us agreed that this is just a different world then either he or I have known.

    However it wasn’t dark yet so I took my truck threw in a rake, a pitchfork and a flat shovel to go have a look and clean up the mess.

    When I got there what I found did indeed look like someone had strewn clumps of grass over an area of about 12 square feet, but upon further examination I could see smaller areas in several other locations there in the center of the cemetery that looked just like dumped out clumps of grass.

    So taking a closer look what I discovered was not an act of vandalism, but rather the evidence of a hungry bear who had pawed up the sod looking for grubs or ants or insects to eat.

    No question about it our vandal was just a hungry bear.

    I was relieved that it was the bear rather than a wayward person and had a good laugh about it. I called George and we both had a good laugh.

    Although if he/she sticks around they sometimes overturn tombstones just like they would a rock looking for the same kind of meal and so we will have to keep an eye out for it.

    The lesson here being that things just aren’t always as they seem at first and sometimes the truth is far more surprising then we can imagine.

    Especially what we have come to believe or what our mind tells us in trying to fill in a mystery with an answer so we can feel content.

    Steve

  161. SFDBWV says:

    Foreverblessed, how did the “Brexit” vote go yesterday in England for you? To be honest I didn’t understand exactly what the vote meant.

    Steve

  162. poohpity says:

    The Brexit vote did not pass parliament although the people of the UK had voted for it. Brexit is an attempt to exit from the European Union “EU” for the UK to be a sovereign nation not ruled by a group of other countries dictating how each country should govern.

    Beloved if you know you are not Jesus then what makes you think you know what is truth about me, someone you have never met or know nothing about but speak as if you do? Your truth is from the mind of someone who is flawed but think you can see past your own failures to point out the failures in someone else. Didn’t Jesus say, ““And why worry about a speck in your friend’s eye when you have a log in your own? 4 How can you think of saying to your friend, ‘Let me help you get rid of that speck in your eye,’ when you can’t see past the log in your own eye? 5 Hypocrite! First get rid of the log in your own eye; then you will see well enough to deal with the speck in your friend’s eye.”

    In other words leave the judgement and criticism to God who can do something about it because we have no room to talk about anyone else and God deals with our faults, failures, short comings and sin with a gentle, loving touch and by even laying down His own life for us. He knows and has taught that the garbage we see in others is something most often we are guilty of ourselves and are blinded by that. Your truth Beloved is not truth at all but a jaded, uninformed opinion of someone you know nothing about which is not truth at all but lies. Jesus is Truth!

  163. Beloved says:

    Good morning all. As Pooh struggles pray for her. I just read this from Truth for Life:

    Are You Growing?
    We are to grow up in every way into him.
    Ephesians 4:15

    Many Christians remain stunted and limited in spiritual things and never seem to make progress from year to year. No surge of growth and spiritual interest is seen in them. They exist but do not “grow up in every way into him.”

    Should we be content with being in the green blade when we might advance to the ear and eventually ripen into the full corn in the ear? Should we be satisfied to believe in Christ and to say, “I am safe” without wishing to know in our own experience more of the fullness that is to be found in Him?

    It ought not to be so; we should long as good traders in heaven’s market to be enriched in the knowledge of Jesus. It is all very well to keep other men’s vineyards, but we must not neglect our own spiritual growth and ripening. Why should it always be wintertime in our hearts? We must have our seedtime, it is true, but oh, for a springtime–yes, a summer season that will give promise of an early harvest.

    If we would ripen in grace, we must live near to Jesus–in His presence–ripened by the sunshine of His smiles. We must hold sweet communion with Him. We must leave the distant view of His face and come near, as John did, and rest our head upon His shoulder; then we will find ourselves advancing in holiness, in love, in faith, in hope–in every precious gift. As the sun rises first on mountaintops and gilds them with its light and presents one of the most charming sights to the traveler’s eye, so is it one of the most delightful contemplations in the world to observe a spiritual glow on the head of some saint who has risen in stature, like Saul, above his fellows until, like a mighty snow-capped Alp, he reflects among the chosen the beams of the Sun of Righteousness and bears the glow of His radiance high for all to see, and seeing it, to glorify his Father who is in heaven.

  164. mtman says:

    I recall taking a college course on creative photography many years ago. It required a written research paper and I chose the topic teaching children early on not to see. The example is little Johnny looks out the classroom window and sees a tree. He draws a lollipop tree and then sees a bird in the tree. He draws a bird half the size of the tree.

    His teacher points out to little Johnny that his bird is disproportionate in size to the tree and to re-draw the picture. In essence the teacher reconstructs Johnny’s mind to conform with an adult version and his thinking is altered.

    Children are drawn to Jesus because they have open minds and are trusting and open to His goodness. Once they have been conformed to think like everyone else they have lost their innocence and open minded view of things. They then have more conformity and critical thinking.

    Now days we train young minds to be skeptical and critical and because of the moral decline we have we train them at very early stages to not trust strangers and flee from them.

    Children now days don’t have a chance to focus on a little red bird in a lollipop tree and see it larger than it is because it stands out to them and size has no perspective to them. They are taught to conform early and hence lose their innocence before they ever have a chance to enjoy being an open minded child or to trust pure goodness in someone. They just face to many dangers these days and whose fault it that?

  165. poohpity says:

    Bruce that reminded me of what Jesus said to Peter, ““Get away from me, Satan! You are a dangerous trap to me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.”

    Teaching children to see things from an adult point of view instead of allowing them the wonder of imagination which to me is a gift from God. Innocence lost but can be born again in us with new birth with new eyes that see things with wonder and amazement.

  166. SFDBWV says:

    I so enjoyed your comments Bruce.
    In the past when Matt’s friends Mere (Meredith) and Jennifer would come to visit with their then young children we would set them up with coloring books and artists pads so they could entertain themselves.

    It was very interesting that the little boy’s would both draw pictures of cars and trucks and sometimes monsters while little Alyvia would almost always draw flowers and scenery and her dog.

    We always tacked them up on a door so they could see them when they came and then they would always try to outdo themselves again.

    Those kids are now teenagers and we seldom see them.

    However a new family has moved to town and we have already a new gallery started from the little girl (Pearl). She drew a very articulate accurate mountain scenery and an apple tree complete with proper sized apples.

    Knowing how these children had been and are being raised I can see the difference shows up in their imaginations in the pictures they draw.

    That is a good call Bruce how innocence is taken away from children so that they are only allowed to see the world as their adult mentor’s insist.

    In fact you have jogged a memory loose from my own youth when I was in art class in school and was surprised to learn that artistic expression had to conform to accepted standards in order to get a good grade.

    Thanks Bruce for the memories.

    Steve

  167. mtman says:

    A child’s innocence is pure and un-defiled in a sin filled world. Even though we are reborn when we accept Jesus we have and are still in the world that has already influenced us. The pureness is not as pure as that of a child.

    Innocence is stripped from children at a very early age and while we are born anew and we see things differently as Christians we don’t seem to ever recapture that pure innocence that comes with a child.

    We draw that bird in the tree to actual size even though we are reborn new by becoming a new person in Christ. Taking away that pure innocence of a child is a terrible thing in my opinion…

  168. Beloved says:

    Psalm51
    New International Version
    Surely I was sinful at birth, sinful from the time my mother conceived me.

    New Living Translation
    For I was born a sinner— yes, from the moment my mother conceived me.

    English Standard Version
    Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, and in sin did my mother conceive me.

    Berean Study Bible
    Surely I was brought forth in iniquity; I was sinful when my mother conceived me.

    New American Standard Bible
    Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me.

    King James Bible
    Behold, I was shapen in iniquity; and in sin did my mother conceive me.

  169. foreverblessed says:

    Dear Steve, your question brought great joy in my heart.
    I was wondering how that was, it was as if God was saying:
    “I am really looking forward to the prayers of my children for the world”

    As if God is pleased with how the outcome will be of our discussion of the situation in the world around us.
    God is well-pleased!

    This vote yesterday was not on the Brexit deal.
    That has been postponed to Tuesday.
    Because of the outcome of the vote yesterday on an amandment.
    It is getting complecated, I must admit.
    That amandment was about voting for the brexit deal when all specifics are known. While as if they voted for the deal now, many details could still be filled in later.

    This was to prevent hard-line brexit.

    It is complecated, as I said. It is not that easy to step out of a trade relation for over 40 years. Most parliament members don’t want to crash out. As Boris wants to, deal or no deal, out on October 31.
    Last night Boris Johnson had to ask for a delay.
    That was because of another amandment the Parliament voted for a few weeks ago. (When there would be no brexit deal on October 19, a delay had to be asked for.)
    (In Britain power is to the Parliament, not to a president.
    Prime minister is not a President.)

  170. foreverblessed says:

    Truth for life, 8.29 am was wonderful!

    Over the mountains
    Over the seas
    Here you come running
    My Lover to me
    ( Song of Solomon)

    (I am praying, Beloved.
    “With God all things are possible”
    )

  171. poohpity says:

    Can’t the Queen dissolve the Parliament and actually has the final say when bills are presented to her for approval? So the final power is to the Queen, right?

  172. poohpity says:

    The office of the Queen or the monarchy is not voted in by the people it is a long established reign.

    Children can be innocent if they are guided by loving and caring parents who protect them but left to their own can go in many directions some of which are not good especially if they are abused and are taught that is how love is. Then they learn to abuse because that is what they have learned. I do believe that after people are born again they can have a whole new out look on life even with scars from their past they can learn to look at things with a new heart and the past slowly dwindles away in their relationship with the Lord they can learn to stop and think before they act on the old nature and choose the new.

  173. bratimus says:

    Well going to what mtman said about striping away a child’s innocence.

    Jesus did warn “That if anyone makes one of these little stumble, it would be better to throw themselves in the sea.”

    God through Christ and the Holy Spirit watch over children.

    In Christ Jesus name

    Bratimus

  174. bratimus says:

    little ones*

  175. jeff1 says:

    From our Harvest Thanksgiving Service today.

    1 Holy is the seed-time, when the buried grain
    Sinks to sleep in darkness, but to wake again.
    Holy is the springtime, when the living corn,
    Bursting from its prison, riseth like the morn.

    2 Holy is the harvest, when each ripened ear,
    Bending to the sickle, crowns the golden year;
    Store them in our garners; winnow them with care;
    Give to God the glory in our praise and prayer.

    3 Holy seed our Master soweth in His field;
    Be the harvest holy which our hearts shall yield;
    Be our bodies holy, resting in the clay,
    Till the Resurrection summons them away.

    4 Glory to the Father, who beheld our need;
    Glory to the Savior, who hath sown the seed;
    Glory to the Spirit, giving the increase;
    Glory, as it has been, is, and ne’er shall cease!

  176. Beloved says:

    Secular:
    Innocence dictionary definition |
    The definition of innocence is the state of being free from wrongdoing or corruption, or naive. An example of innocence is someone who did not do something illegal. An example of innocence is a small child who has done nothing wrong.

    Biblical:
    The Bible says: “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.” Children need a Savior. If We intentionally keep them from knowing Jesus get ready to swim.

  177. Beloved says:

    Wrong on my commentary, here’s what it says: Mark 9:42 42″If anyone causes one of these little ones-those who believe in me-to stumble, it would be better for them if a large millstone were hung around their neck and they were thrown into the sea.

    Those who believe in me— wow.

  178. Beloved says:

    God really watches out for His “little ones”. Cool. Very cool.

  179. Beloved says:

    This applies to preachers, teachers especially who cause believers to sin. I find it very comforting as I have been mislead in the past, somehow feeling it was my fault. Like usual. Thank you LORD for bringing the issue of innocence up today.

  180. Beloved says:

    Evidently the Jews were terrified of water so this was an especially meaningful warning. Jesus can be very forceful in His commands. Not always gentle.

  181. Beloved says:

    The Shepherd Struck

    7 “Awake, O sword, against my shepherd,

    against the man who stands next to me,”

    declares the Lord of hosts.
    “Strike the shepherd, and the sheep will be scattered;

    I will turn my hand against the little ones.

    8 In the whole land, declares the Lord,

    two thirds shall be cut off and perish,

    and one third shall be left alive.

    9 And I will put this third into the fire,

    and refine them as one refines silver,

    and test them as gold is tested.

    They will call upon my name,

    and I will answer them.

    I will say, ‘They are my people’;

    and they will say, ‘The Lord is my God.’

  182. jeff1 says:

    God is working his purpose out
    as year succeeds to year:
    God is working his purpose out,
    and the time is drawing near;
    nearer and nearer draws the time,
    the time that shall surely be,
    when the earth shall be filled
    with the glory of God
    as the waters cover the sea.

    From utmost east to utmost west,
    wherever foot hath trod,
    by the mouth of many messengers
    goes forth the voice of God;
    give ear to me, ye continents,
    ye isles, give ear to me,
    that earth may filled
    with the glory of God
    as the waters cover the sea.

    What can we do to work God’s work,
    to prosper and increase
    the brotherhood of all mankind–
    the reign of the Prince of Peace?
    What can we do to hasten the time–
    the time that shall surely be,
    when the earth shall be filled
    with the glory of God
    as the waters cover the sea.

    March we forth in the strength of God,
    with the banner of Christ unfurled,
    that the light of the glorious gospel of truth
    may shine throughout the world:
    fight we the fight with sorrow and sin
    to set their captives free,
    that earth may filled
    with the glory of God
    as the waters cover the sea.

    All we can do is nothing worth
    unless God blessed the deed;
    vainly we hope for the harvest-tide
    till God gives life to the seed;
    yet nearer and nearer draws the time,
    the time that shall surely be,
    when the earth shall be filled
    with the glory of God
    as the waters cover the sea.

  183. Beloved says:

    Isaiah 2:11

    The haughty looks of man shall be brought low, and the lofty pride of men shall be humbled, and the Lord alone will be exalted in that day.

  184. jeff1 says:

    Extract from newspaper this morning.

    STREETS OF SIN Lost Roman ‘holy road’ built by Pontius Pilate ‘who crucified Jesus’ is unearthed in Jerusalem
    PICTURED
    Sean Keach, Digital Technology and Science Editor
    21 Oct 2019, 10:22 Updated: 21 Oct 2019, 10:59

    AN ANCIENT walkway built by a Biblical villain blamed for ordering the crucifixion of Jesus Christ has been uncovered in Jerusalem.

    The lost 2,000-year-old street was created under the rule of Roman governor Pontius Pilate, and may have been used by Jewish worshippers on a pilgrimage.

    Archaeologists have been excavating a hidden road beneath a Palestinian neighbourhood of 20,000 people for the past six years.

    And they’ve unearthed a new section of street that stretches 220 metres from the Pool of Siloam in the south right through to Temple Mount.

    This walkway was “most likely” used by pilgrims making their way to worship at the Temple Mount.

    Temple Mount is a holy site venerated by Christians, Jews and Muslims, so the road would have had huge cultural importance.

    An excavation revealed more than 100 coins trapped beneath the paving stones.

    These coins were dated to as late as 17 to 31 CE, suggesting that the work was begun and completed under Pilate’s rule.

    “Dating using coins is very exact,” said Dr Donald T. Ariel, an archaeologist with the Israel Antiquities Authority.

    “As some coins have the year in which they were minted on them, what that means is that if a coin with the date 30CE on it is found beneath the street, the street had to be built in the same year, or after that coin had been minted. So any time after 30CE.

    “However our study goes further, because statistically, coins minted some 10 years later are the most common coins in Jerusalem.

    “So not having them beneath the street means the street was built before their appearance.

    “In other words, only in the time of Pilate.”

    The entire street would’ve been around 600 metres long and eight metres wide.

    It was paved with large stone slabs, which was a hallmark of Roman road design through the Roman Empire.

    Estimates suggest that around 10,000 tons of quarried limestone rock was used in its construction.

    This “opulent and grand” design and the fact that it connects two of Jerusalem’s most important sites is strong evidence that it was a holy road.

    “If this was a simple walkway connecting point A to point B, there would be no need to build such a grand street,” said Dr Joe Uziel, who co-authored the study.

    “At its minimum it is 8 metres wide.

    “This, coupled with its finely carved stone and ornate ‘furnishings like a stepped podium along the street, all indicate that this was a special street.”

    Study author Nahshon Szanton added: “Part of it may have been to appease the residents of Jerusalem,” said .

    “Part of it may have been about the way Jerusalem would fit in the Roman world.

    “And part of it may have been to aggrandise his name through major building projects.”

    In other news, archaeologists recently claimed to have found the lost Biblical town where Jesus was “resurrected”.

    The lost Biblical city of Ziklag home to ‘Goliath-killing’ King David 3,200 years ago may have been discovered in Israel.

  185. Beloved says:

    Viv that’s interesting news indeed. Discovery is always exciting. I was looking at Marts picture and hadn’t noticed before how the road seems to disappear amongst the trees. Yet we assume it’s there and leads to a good outcome not a mountaintop cliff. Why a good outcome and not a cliff? Because we have learned or are in the process of learning that as the true saying goes “all roads lead to Rome”, which in biblical times was a great city and still is for that matter. The road Jesus shared with us 2000 years ago was and still is full of troubles and potholes yet with the guiding hand of the Holy Spirit we know what’s at the end of the road–a Greater City where Gods presence fills every nook and cranny! There is nothing to fear when our beloved Jesus is near. And we have everything we need as we ask our Abba for help and resources.

    May Jesus fill your every need today. And especially pooh on her weekly trip to the doctor. Praying it would not be painful (debriding) and healing would be increased overall. In Jesus name, Amen

  186. Beloved says:

    I am reminded that when I am hard to love that God is still loving me. He’s an ever present help in my potholes of trouble and despair even. And when I am at my worst He says to me “What do you have that you have not received”. Those are a hand up from the deepest pothole.

    Holy! Holy! Holy! is the LORD, the whole earth is full of His glory.

  187. SFDBWV says:

    Good morning Viv. Thank you for the news story that has sparked your interest. I too always enjoy such “discoveries”. Smile and laugh at how the world always tries to hide the truth, but how the truth eventually comes out.

    If it weren’t for the Crusades much of Christian heritage would have been buried by the darkness of Islam long ago. That is in my opinion, as to be politically correct today we must think of the Crusades as something evil.

    At the closing hours of WWII General Eisenhower so prophetically and clearly seen that the world would want to erase the memory of the holocaust that he ordered documentation by photograph and all means possible, because he understood people would want to deny it.

    Only these 70 plus years have passed and entire nations officially and their religions deny its ever having taken place. Including segments of our own society who hate the Jewish people.

    It is written that Satan is the author of confusion, whereas I don’t think he is responsible for all the confusion in the world I do see where he and his allies distort, pervert and outright lie about history so as to cause doubt about the Bible, God, Jesus and anything related to our faith.

    Simply attend any college science class and bring up Biblical history or creation and see what happens.

    One of the most profound science stories in recent history is the discovery of dinosaur bones being found with soft tissue, even blood remnants.

    However that doesn’t alter what is taught in school about dinosaurs being extinct for hundreds of millions of years.

    It is just ignored.

    Thank you Viv for the little mental exercise.

    Steve

  188. jeff1 says:

    Yes, Steve, I find discoveries like this are reassuring and insightful and hope is renewed.

    Time cannot erase the truth because as my mum would say it will not stay buried.

    It’s comforting to know that in a world so confused.

  189. poohpity says:

    WOW Viv thank you for sharing about that awesome discovery.

    Thank you Beloved for caring about my wound. Yes today was another debriding, ouchie but the wound has healed 25% even tho they rip it up every Monday, lol. It always reminds me of how it can be so painful when God prunes the old away but then the new comes, it is simply amazing how that works. A lot of pruning in my heart and mind as well as on my leg, lol!

  190. Beloved says:

    On my heart and mind also. Hurts so good:-)

  191. poohpity says:

    Sorry but I do not like the pain of either, so not good to me while it is happening however the results seem to be always good.

  192. Beloved says:

    Fixing our eyes on Jesus
    Mother Teresa’s Anyway Poem

    People are often unreasonable, illogical and self centered;
    Forgive them anyway.

    If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives;
    Be kind anyway.

    If you are successful, you will win some false friends and some true enemies;
    Succeed anyway.

    If you are honest and frank, people may cheat you;
    Be honest and frank anyway.

    What you spend years building, someone could destroy overnight;
    Build anyway.

    If you find serenity and happiness, they may be jealous;
    Be happy anyway.

    The good you do today, people will often forget tomorrow;
    Do good anyway.

    Give the world the best you have, and it may never be enough;
    Give the world the best you’ve got anyway.

    You see, in the final analysis, it is between you and your God;
    It was never between you and them anyway.

  193. Beloved says:

    Pooh, how has God been working in you lately?

  194. foreverblessed says:

    What a good words of mother Theresa!
    The sermon on the mount.

    In Christ we can do that.
    Stopping our own old inclinations is an active thing we can do.

    Dear Beloved, a very tiny suggestion from a fellow traveler on this blog: Leave Pooh alone, she is in God’s hands.

    May God bless us all today!

  195. foreverblessed says:

    Thank you so much Jeff, for telling about that old Pelgrims way in Jerusalem.

    I was working on a painting, people walking up a mountain, with a painting of Jeroen Bosch as example, how to paint a mountain with a wide landscape around it.
    On top of the mountain a city.
    And people walking up, pelgrims.

    I wanted tot paint the people facing is, like as if they are singing, a choir bringing praise to God.
    But somehow I decided that they walk up the mountain, facing the city of God.
    And from the top water flows, it flows through thema people going up, and from them flowing to the earth.
    So instead of a beautiful landscale painted as Jeroen Bosch did, the accent is more on the water that flows.

    Song of Ascents
    Psalm 120-Psalm 134

    And what is the reading of the midday prayer today in the town Church?

    Psalm 121
    1 Sam 5:6-16 David building Jerusalem!

    But I think of a heavenly Jerusalem Gal 2:25-27

  196. foreverblessed says:

    Sorry for not proofreading well enough.
    I lost the english auto correct on my phone.
    Thema = the
    Landscale = landscape

    Pelgrims walking up the mountain, facing the Heavenl city.
    It might look as if we turn our backs to our local people.
    But if we have our eyes fixed on Jesus, which is the same as facing the mountain,
    We can trust Jesus that His Love flows through us, changing our hearts, so that we can pray heartfelt prayers for the people, and God’s love flows to our fellow country men ( and women).

  197. poohpity says:

    Beloved, as Jesus once pointed out to Peter about John, “What concern is that of yours? You just follow me.” Is it really any concern of what the Lord is doing in the life of another which is totally taking our eyes off of what the Lord may be doing in our own lives. So maybe the better question would be Joyce what is the Lord working on in your life? You once told me that you had the gift of mercy where is that lived out in relation to me. If one has a gift they use that gift towards all and especially those we do not feel deserve it just like was shown to us by Jesus.

    The Lord works in my life everyday to show mercy and grace to those who may never return it and to those who are very hard to love yet to love them anyway. To forgive those who are hard to forgive or may never see the harm they cause, forgive anyway. Jesus works on not letting bitterness and anger well up inside me and always to remember the things in my life that He has wiped my slate clean of and to live in the newness of life that He has blessed me with as a forgiven, much loved child of God. He cleans off my mirror so I do not forget what I look like so that I can embrace the grace I was shown by the perfect for the imperfect.

  198. poohpity says:

    Beloved in other words the Lord is working on me listening and acting on the leading of His Spirit and not the reactions of the flesh.

  199. Beloved says:

    Good morning! I love hearing testimonies of how God is at work in peoples lives!

  200. Beloved says:

    Praising and thanking God for healing in poohs leg! Will keep praying. His will be done. In Jesus’s name.

  201. Beloved says:

    “Dear Beloved, a very tiny suggestion from a fellow traveler on this blog: Leave Pooh alone, she is in God’s hands.“ Forever
    Are we not all in Gods hands? I’m not surprised you and she misunderstood my question as an insult; my heart has been changed though toward her through nothing I’ve done. I’m grieved over the fighting and bickering on this blog. As is the Holy Spirit I’m sure.

    “If one has a gift they use that gift towards all and especially those we do not feel deserve it just like was shown to us by Jesus.” Pooh

    None of us deserves mercy, none. It is a gift. As for spiritual gifts they grow over time. Along with our sanctification. Please be patient with me as God is patient but always working in us all. I had no right to ask you how God is working in your life, I am sorry, truly. I did not mean to offend anyone here. Still too much flesh at work in me. Ugh

  202. Beloved says:

    I am learning very very slowly that stillness before God is my only hope of attaining anything worth giving away.

  203. Beloved says:

    And yes, it was very selfish of me (prideful) to seek to be edified through another’s experience with God. Discernment I need and will ask for before I let the flesh go again along its merry way.

  204. street says:

    The reason even a child can love Jesus as much if not more than a group of scholars who disagree about what he or the Bible says and means, is that even a child can trust the heart of Someone who, as The Story goes, does the kinds of things Jesus did.

    we love because he first loved us. we love because love is from God. the preeminence of Jesus is all things pertaining to sinful man. Jesus the light life love righteousness grace mercy joy peace patience kindness goodness faithfulness gentleness self control of mankind.

    thinking of creation and work of Christ made man central or linked/bounded to God. should this make man prideful arrogant or haughty? no! it humbles them and conforms them to the image of His Son. what of boldness courage and strength ? of man or of Christ? trusting the LORD of circumstance and Redeemer of creation?

    15 But to this day whenever Moses is read, a veil lies over their heart; 16 but whenever a person turns to the Lord, the veil is taken away. 17 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty. 18 But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit.

    26 But you do not believe because you are not of My sheep. 27 My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me; 28 and I give eternal life to them, and they will never perish; and no one will snatch them out of My hand.

    the will of God, to trust Jesus and follow Him to the end. our work is to believe in the One He sent. seems we are working out our salvation in Christ Jesus, not in each other. truth strength power life faithfulness come from Jesus, not fallen man.

    strange thought today a party of ONE. thou prepares a table before me in the presents of my enemies. then there is this verse, “Go….”

  205. Beloved says:

    Helpful street, thanks.

  206. foreverblessed says:

    Sorry, Beloved, as you state it I could mean evil intent on your side. I actually meant it in another way, I hope you understand.

    This was in the wisdom box, of Utmost:

    Am I getting nobler, better, more helpful, more humble, as I get older? Am I exhibiting the life that men take knowledge of as having been with Jesus, or am I getting more self-assertive, more deliberately determined to have my own way? It is a great thing to tell yourself the truth.
    The Place of Help, Oswald Chambers

    Maybe in retrospect of what Street said:

    seems we are working out our salvation in Christ Jesus, not in each other. truth strength power life faithfulness come from Jesus, not fallen man..

    We can ask Jesus what/where we miss out on.

  207. jeff1 says:

    In Christ Alone

    In Christ alone my hope is found
    He is my light, my strength, my song
    This Cornerstone, this solid ground
    Firm through the fiercest drought and storm
    What heights of love, what depths of peace
    When fears are stilled, when strivings cease
    My Comforter, my All in All
    Here in the love of Christ I stand

    In Christ alone, who took on flesh
    Fullness of God in helpless babe
    This gift of love and righteousness
    Scorned by the ones He came to save
    ‘Til on that cross as Jesus died
    The wrath of God was satisfied
    For every sin on Him was laid
    Here in the death of Christ I live, I live

    There in the ground His body lay
    Light of the world by darkness slain
    Then bursting forth in glorious Day
    Up from the grave He rose again
    And as He stands in victory
    Sin’s curse has lost its grip on me
    For I am His and He is mine
    Bought with the precious blood of Christ

    No guilt in life, no fear in death
    This is the power of Christ in me
    From life’s first cry to final breath
    Jesus commands my destiny
    No power of hell, no scheme of man
    Can ever pluck me from His hand
    Till He returns or calls me home
    Here in the power of Christ I’ll stand

    I will stand
    I will stand, all other ground is sinking sand
    All other ground, all other ground
    Is sinking sand, is sinking sand
    So I’ll stand

  208. Beloved says:

    Forever what I was trying to say- which I was having trouble getting across- was that because of my history of bad behavior toward Pooh I knew it would be difficult to trust me and the turn around in my thoughts toward her and what I wrote. It doesn’t matter. Who am I? The LORD is my Shepherd. It is between me and Him, anyway.

  209. Beloved says:

    PS,
    If anyone thinks that by shunning anybody they will suddenly see the “error” of their ways and become easier to love— well, forget it. But if this blog is going to continue to operate as the typical cult does— based on behavior and commitment to the majority rule — then its time to shake off the dust for me. Gods mercy is so wide and so high it almost takes my breath away. It kills me; the old self, that is. Dead to sin and alive to Christ. We are precious in His sight.

  210. street says:

    trusting in Jesus sounds better and better each day simply because of darkness ignorance and blind spots.

    He truly is the Light of the World.

    did i mention sin debt and righteousness?

  211. foreverblessed says:

    Dear Beloved, shunning is not what is the main issue, leaving it in God’s Hands is.
    Done in loving hearts, trusting hearts, trusting in Jesus.
    He has overcome!

    But if you have to go, you have to go. Find peace and rest in Jesus.
    Because it is disturbing…

    The first Psalm of the Pelgrimage is:
    Psalm 120

    A song of ascents.

    1
    I call on the Lord in my distress,
    and he answers me.
    2
    Save me, Lord,
    from lying lips
    and from deceitful tongues.

    3
    What will he do to you,
    and what more besides,
    you deceitful tongue?
    4
    He will punish you with a warrior’s sharp arrows,
    with burning coals of the broom bush.

    5
    Woe to me that I dwell in Meshek,
    that I live among the tents of Kedar!
    6
    Too long have I lived
    among those who hate peace.
    7
    I am for peace;
    but when I speak, they are for war.

  212. jeff1 says:

    I would agree with Forever, Beloved, as our Rector is taking a week’s holiday over Halloween because it is so widely celebrated here and that includes members of his own congregation and he cannot find peace so he is retreating to where he will find the rest he longs for.

    I have for too long allowed my peace to be disturbed with things that were outside my control and so I see the wisdom in what Forever says.

    It is in God’s hands but what is disturbing to one is not to another so while it is right for one to retreat to find peace and rest it is not so for others.

    Know yourself is what I am saying and do what is necessary for the latter.

  213. Beloved says:

    Leaving it in Gods hands doesn’t mean that as Christians we withhold LOVE. You can still love an angry bitter person even antisocial person and have peace from God. It comes with the trials. He’s always present, even in the darkest hour. Social skills are taught and some just don’t have them. Those who do need to be patient and understanding, as God has always been with us. If we don’t agree with someone sometimes, yes, the wise thing to do is to be quiet. But to not talk to them at all? Ever? LORD. have. mercy.

    If God keeps bringing someone I don’t like into my life that I have a hard time being with then I’ve learned that God does not make mistakes. He is using that person to change me into a more Christ-like character. It’s such a blessing when you figure that out! Every good and perfect gift comes from God; sometimes the gift is just packaged differently than you would expect.

    God just taught me this at Bible study this morning.

  214. Beloved says:

    Under the new covenant where did Jesus tell others to stay away from difficult people? In the passages about early church discipline they were told how to deal with blatant sin. However even Paul in a loving gesture said that a certain opposer ( Alexander the Coppersmith I believe) should be turned over to Satan for destruction of the flesh so the soul would be saved! Paul was on a mission so extremely important and mandated directly by Jesus Himself that an extreme measure had to be taken.

    Oh the psalms come in handy when we want vengeance from God; been there myself, many times. But as Mart alludes to often there’s far more goodness mercy and love from God than we can understand. But we keep on searching. The promise is real; seek and you shall find.

  215. foreverblessed says:

    I can’t comment in the latest topic this morning, so I am directed here.
    There are some unsolved issues here.

    I am sorry what I said, about leaving Pooh alone.

    Wait for God. I believe that with God all things are possible.

  216. Beloved says:

    Dearest Forever, I think this is one of the hardest things in the Bible to understand and do. God bless you and me also with this wonderful truth so that we may be more like Jesus:
    Philippians 2:3-10
    3 Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. 4 Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others. 5 Have this mind among yourselves, which is yours in Christ Jesus,[a] 6 who, though he was in the form of God, did not count equality with God a thing to be grasped,[b] 7 but emptied himself, by taking the form of a servant,[c] being born in the likeness of men. 8 And being found in human form, he humbled himself by becoming obedient to the point of death, even death on a cross

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