Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Make My Blog Your Playlist!

Need some uplifting music while you're about your daily tasks?  Here's an idea: play my complete list of My Favorite Songs!

1.  Find "Categories" on the side bar and click on "My Favorite Songs."

2.  From there, click on the first song listed (which is, as of today, "A Place Called Hope").  Don't click on the title of the post, but the song name that has the play button beside it.  That will expand the Media Player.

3.  Now that A Place Called Hope is playing, click the part of the player that says "Playlist" and you'll see a whole bunch of songs!  Ta-da!  Now you can enjoy all of my personal favorites while you organize and clean.

Monday, November 29, 2010

A Place Called Hope

I love this song! It's the beautiful story of the prodigal in all of us experiencing God's amazing love and forgiveness.  God wants to restore fellowship with you, no matter how far you've wandered.  There is A Place Called Hope!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I Have Been Blessed

This simple song gets better and better with each verse.  My favorite is verse 6, but don't cheat... you have to read the first 5 verses first! =)  As we celebrate Thanksgiving, don't forget to slow down and consider how richly you have been blessed.

Verse 1:
When He moves among us all that He does
all of His mercy and all of His love
and the pen of the writer could write everyday
even this world could never contain
how I've been blessed

Verse 2:
The warmth in winter the flowers in spring
the laughter in summer and the changing of leaves
the food on my table a good place to sleep
clothes on my back and shoes on my feet
I have been blessed

I have been blessed God's so good to me
precious are His thoughts of you and me
no way I could count them there's not enough time
so I'll just thank Him for being so kind
God has been good so good
I have been blessed

Verse 3:
Arms that will raise a voice that can talk
hands that can touch and legs that can walk
ears that can listen eyes that can see
oh I've got to praise Him as long as I breathe
I have been blessed

Verse 4:
A father and mother who nurtured and raised
a brother and sister memories made
our pastor to lead us the altar to pray
stripes that can heal the blood that can save
I have been blessed

I have been blessed God's so good to me
precious are His thoughts of you and me
no way I could count them there's not enough time
so I'll just thank Him for being so kind
God has been good so good
I have been blessed

Verse 5:
We live in a country the greatest on earth
our flag stands for freedom and what it is worth
she stands in the harbor Miss Liberty calls
all have gave some but some have gave all
for me to be blessed

Verse 6:
He's my shoulder to lean on when I am down
the rock where He leads me when I'm overwhelmed
the place where He hides me under His wings
He's not just a song He's the reason I sing
I have been blessed

I have been blessed God's so good to me
precious are His thoughts of you and me
no way I could count them there's not enough time
so I'll just thank Him for being so kind
God has been good so good
I have been blessed

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Don't Hang Yourself... Hang Around

-Matthew 27:3-5

Consider for a moment the similarity between Peter and Judas.  Peter denied Christ, Judas betrayed him, but both of them were guilty of basically the same offense.  Peter did it to avoid embarrassment and possible persecution, and Judas did it for money.  Both men did despicable wrong against their Savior.

Now consider what makes them so different from each other.  When Judas saw that he had made a horrible mistake, he committed suicide.  The End.  Peter, on the other hand, had a talk with Jesus about it and received forgiveness, restored fellowship with the Lord, and the chance to preach at Pentecost.

There comes a time in every young person's life when you feel like you've really blown it.  At some point after you mess up, you ask yourself, "What was I thinking?!"  No doubt both Peter and Judas thought the same thing.  Now you have two options.  You can go out and ruin the rest of your life (Judas) or you can hang on long enough to get it straightened out with the Lord (Peter).

If you've had a "Peter moment," hang on a second!  Jesus is there for you, ready to help you out of that sin.  Just be humble enough to repent, submit and move on with life.  Even though Peter's denial must have hurt Jesus deeply, He looked past Peter's faults and saw Pentecost.  When we screw up, He doesn't say, "Look what you did!"  He says, "Serve Me!"

Judas didn't have to hang himself.  He could have talked it out with the Lord like Peter did in John 21.  Just think, we could have a book of Judas!  He could have lived the dream that Peter did!  But no... 

When the time comes that you feel like you've made the biggest mistake of your life, do what Peter did. Repent, submit, obey, press on, and move on.  You don't have to live a defeated Christian life just because of one mess up.  God has a future planned out for you.  Get back up, get it straight and keep on serving the Lord!

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

The Most Incredible Thing You'll Ever Do

You take your seat across from the counselor with whom you've planned all week to have a meeting.  You've carefully organized exactly what you're going to say; your thoughts are in perfect outline form.  In a matter of minutes you will have poured out all that is troubling you and she will respond with some deep, otherworldly wisdom.  

You begin to feel emotional as you recall everything that's been building up.  Nothing has gone right, and you have reacted to your circumstances in the only reasonable manner, which has actually made things worse.  You are on an emotional roller coaster ride, and you want off...now.  You finally begin to speak, but your counselor pops a question that stops you in your tracks.

"So, how have your personal devotions been going lately?"

Are you serious?  You're really asking me this? you think, the confusion showing vividly on your face.  She didn't even let me explain myself!  How does she expect to be able to help me if she doesn't even know my problem?

"I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing." John 15:5

Many souls in despair have been caught off guard by this same question.  With all the different possible variables going into your specific problem, what could personal devotions have anything to do with it?  Actually, they have everything to do with it.

So, how is your relationship with the Lord, for real?  Do you give Him the best part of your day (which for many is the first few minutes, since there's minimal distractions)?  Do you confess your sin and begin each day with a clean slate?  Do you ask Him to speak to you through His Word?  Do you give Him your undivided attention in prayer?  If not, then it's no wonder you have problems accumulating in your life.  God desires to have fellowship with you, and neglecting this privilege is not only grievous to the Lord, but it makes for a stagnant spiritual life.  

God is always ready, willing and able to guide us through whatever a day may bring.  He is a real person, and wants to talk to you.  However, we can't expect Him to guide us through every thought and action if we don't ask Him.  Developing a personal relationship with the Lord is immensely important for the sake of our reactions to circumstances, relations to others, and our standing with God.  Besides that, it's the most incredible thing you'll ever do.  There is nothing more awesome than talking one-on-one with the Creator of the universe, and feeling Him speak back.

So if you had to answer the question something like, "You know, it hasn't been what it could be," then you don't have to wait another minute.  If you could restore fellowship with your Heavenly Father and continue to deepen your friendship day by day, why wouldn't you?  He is the vine, you and I are the branches, and we are so dependent on Him that without His Hand guiding us daily, we're as helpless as can be.

If you're somewhat confused about how to start a daily walk with God, consider some of the following helps.  Biblos.com has several daily Bible reading schedules, a few of which I will list below.

-Evening and Morning
-Bible in a Year Reading Plan
-Chronological Bible Reading Plan

One of the easiest ways to get into a habit of personal devotions is to start out with Seven Minutes with God.  As you continue, you'll soon find it's impossible to spend only seven minutes with the Lord.

1.  Take the first half-minute to prepare your heart and mind for this encounter with God. Relax. Think about who God really is. Clear up any matters that are bothering your conscience. Confess sin.
2.  Then take four minutes for reading the Bible. Remember, this is God actually speaking. Just read a little bit and think on what you've read. Think how you can apply the verses to your actions this day.
3.  Now you have two and half minutes left to speak to God in prayer. Let this be spontaneous. Unburden some things, thank Him, praise Him, share your innermost thoughts with Him.  (from Seven Minutes Every Morning.)

Friday, November 5, 2010


I just found an eye-opening blog post on how self-centered our society really is, and how it infiltrates our thinking.  It is very convicting, so read if you dare!  Click here to read "We are living in a ME world."

This post is written by the Bobby Harjo Family, missionaries to the Native American Indians.  Here is a link to their blog: http://kjvindian.blogspot.com/

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