“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, He guides me in paths of righteousness through the valley of the shadow of death You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; Surely goodness and love will follow me and I will dwell in the house of the Lord The Lord has led our sister-in-Christ home. May she dance in His presence and rest beside still waters, praising His name forever. Share: Share what you have enjoyed.
Spring breathes her beauty in the pastel floral colors that dot the earthen pots. With gentle wispy breezes, she carries through the air the lighthearted, airy feel of hope, anticipation, and promises fulfilled.
For this new season, I thank the Lord:
510) for an exciting basketball season, even though our team did not jump into the Final Four
511) for the joys of friendship mixed with rest and beauty 512) for snatches of time to clean the house~it feels so orderly, at least for me 513) for hubby returning safely from a business trip 514) for hubby’s nightly calls while away and our whispered prayers over the lines 515) for coffee with a sweet friend, sharing and learning more about each other’s lives, building new bonds, and kindling our love for writing 516) for time to write and catch up with online friends 517) for spring blossoms, bunnies, and quails~even some citrus blossoms scattered on a neighbor’s trees 518) for our body of believers gathering to comfort each other as we struggle over the loss of a dear sister 519) for the dove nesting in our leafy orange tree (picture later) 520) for sprinklers working and Sweet Sixteen tee shirts, for trips to the University with youngest (the Lord is so good), for deli sandwiches stacked high with corned beef on a Reuben delight 521) for homemade blueberry muffins sprinkled with streusel
522) and for apricot chicken (recipe on Friday).
“We will tell the next generation the praise worthy deeds of the Lord, his power, and the wonders he has done.” Psalm 78: 4 NIV
What praise worthy deeds of the Lord will you proclaim this week?
Linking with other Gratitude Givers at Ann Voskamp’s Multitude Monday Share: Share what you have enjoyed.
“Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.” Psalm 90:14 NIV
Receive each day as a special gift from the Lord. A special occasion.
Live in the “Sacred Present.”
These thoughts from Cynthia Heald, author of Becoming A Woman of Simplicity, have impacted my life each morning since I heard them. During the week before Spring Break, I awoke each morning thinking to myself, “This is a special occasion. A special day.” With that mindset, my heart overflowed with gratitude at the joyful surprises the Lord had planned for my day. New vision had been given to my spiritual eyes. And on the days when my circumstances were less than favorable, I reminded myself that this was a special occasion from the Lord. It encouraged me to value each moment of the day, to live in the present, to believe every tick of the day was sacred to God, and to begin to number my days with wisdom (Psalm 90:12). My renewed thinking allowed me to enter Spring Break with a lighthearted attitude. However, half way through the vacation, my life suffered the loss of a precious sister-in-the-Lord. I forgot about the day being special or a gift from the Lord. It became a nightmare to survive. But as I reviewed last week’s Bible Study, I realized how much emphasis had been placed on numbering our days. Living as if each moment could be our last. Examining how we spend our time. Do we evaluate what we are going to say to someone in light of having just this moment? Do we soak ourselves in the richness of God’s presence and His Word? My sister-in-the-Lord was immersed in God’s presence and passed on nuggets of His wisdom to encourage and enlighten others. Every moment was sacred to her. And every day valued as a treasure in God’s eyes.
Remembering this has soothed the pain of her loss and moved me again to say, “Lord, show me your unfailing love each day and let me sing for joy all of my days.”
How do you live in the present and treasure each moment as a special occasion from the Lord?
Joining other inspirational thoughts at Spiritual Sundays and a Scripture and a Snapshot
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When I first started making plans for Spring Break, I realized my family and I did not have a break at the same time. This break would not be an opportunity to pack up and vacate for even a few days. I was not overly disappointed, however, because hubby and I have some special summer plans that are developing.
So I immersed myself in Plan B with a cleaning schedule to rival the power of the “white tornado.” (For all of you youngsters out there, Ajax ran a commercial in the 1970s about its scouring power equaling that of a white tornado.) For one week, I would accomplish the unlikely if not impossible in the field of cleaning. Not only would I do the usual spring cleaning: dusting blinds, vacuuming draperies, dusting fans and ceiling lights, washing baseboards, etc., but I would clean out our bedroom closet and reline the kitchen pantry as well. Just thinking about all that work, now that spring break is in its twilight hours, leaves me exhausted. No wonder I lacked enthusiasm for this school vacation and was dreading two more months of work until summer.
As I flipped open my planner to schedule the chores for each day, I felt the Holy Spirit urge me to write down at the head of my weekly planner: “Spend the week with friends.”
Well, that was luxury, I thought. But I could feel the pull in my heart to make room for that face to face with some friends amidst the face to dirt that I had planned.
I wrote my list of tasks, divided the work into days, and then realized that it really would be okay if I did not accomplish everything on my list. Picking up the phone, I called a friend to discuss some details for an event, when I discovered she suddenly had some free time in her schedule that week. We made luncheon plans for our favorite tea house.
From the moment I pulled my van into the tea house parking lot, I could feel the relaxation and emotional release seep into my pores~slowly. Slowly was the key. With every step, every glance, my hurried spirit uncoiled another link of a tightly wound spring. Roses greeted us at the hostess desk and my eyes drunk in the delicate touches surrounding me~dainty patterned teacups, white crocheted table coverings, flowing floor length pink tablecloths, silk floral centerpieces whispering a welcome, and a white porcelain plaque with scrolled handwriting inviting us to recline at the table. We asked our hostess if we could dine on the floral lined patio in the still pleasant spring desert air.
Here in this “girly heaven,” as my friend and I nicknamed the tea house, I experienced the emotional rest and true peace the Lord had planned for my spring break. Face to face, in friendship, we chatted and laughed. We allowed time to pass, never looking at our watches, as we soaked up the beauty of a softly cascading waterfall and meandering stream bordered by fuchsia and purple petunias.
I could not tell you what we talked about, just that our already precious friendship grew even deeper that day as the Holy Spirit delighted us with refreshment, joy, relaxation, and the beauty of the Lord’s creation. If I had cleaned every nook and cranny of our home, checked off every task on my list as done, I would not have experienced the peace and sense of true accomplishment that I knew that day in the light of our friendship shared over tea amongst God’s beauty.
I have found that rest does not come from having a completed “to do list” but from a lasting friendship with those who love the Lord.
“Do not forsake your own friend or your father’s friend;” Proverbs 27:10 NASB
“A friend is–a push when you’ve stopped; a word when you’re lonely; a guide when you’re searching; a smile when you’re sad; a song when you’re glad.” Charlie “T” Jones
And a rest when you’re overburdened.
Praying that you find His true rest for you this day.
Linking with Restoring Emotional Rest at Faith Barista and Slow Down-Fast at Ann Kroeker’s Share: Share what you have enjoyed.
|He has made the earth by His power|
“But the Lord is the TRUE God; he is the living God, the eternal King…Tell them this: ‘These gods, who did not make the heavens and the earth, will perish from the earth and from under the heavens’
“But God made the earth by his power; he founded the world by his wisdom and stretched out the heavens by his understanding.” Jeremiah 10: 10a, 11, 12 NIV
God alone is the true, living God. The only God. The Maker of all things. He is the Creator. The only One who spun the world into being, hung the stars in space, positioned the moon to light by night and the sun by day. In His graciousness, He has given us glimpses of His glory as seen in the Super Moon last weekend. The sunset reflects His majesty in regal color. And when the earth groans and shakes and the ocean lashes with 30 foot destructive waves, He is the God of mercy and compassion. He shares His compassion and comfort through us as we reach out to help others in distress.
He alone is True.
How do you see the True God?
May your week be filled with the nearness of God and a heart of compassion and help for those in Japan.
Linking with Word-Filled-Wednesday at the Internet Cafe and 3 From Here and There with the topic, “True”
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A believer in Christ, my heart is given to Him and shared with my husband, our two adult sons, family, and friends. I’m a people person with a passion to encourage and inspire Christian women and others. I write from my heart, sharing my experiences, goals, and vision for living a life centered in God.
I hope you’ll join me on these adventures and follow along as we discover the Lord’s plans for our lives and His whispers to our hearts.