Thursday, December 31, 2015

Joy journey is continuing in earnest



Tomorrow is a new year!  Duh Debbie...is that what you are saying?  Well, that's okay, because I think this journey I am on is showing me so many things that are obvious. Yet I know God must say sometimes duh Debbie.  Yet, even if He did say that - He does it with love because He wants so much more for me than I grasp!

A journey of joy in 2016 is exciting.  I am thrilled, filled with a little anticipation, yet yearning to see what God shows me in this new year with my new word I truly believe He gave me to grow me more.  So I will write some days and not some days...some days will be just between God and me and others will be between all of us.

These words spoke to me this morning from 1 John.  Remember John is writing this to all of us now, but at the time it's not known for sure who he was writing other than they were Christ believers, people that he knew and they were hearing false teaching.  So this fits us right now big time.  We believe in Christ.  We know Him and we are hearing false teaching all around us.

Listen to these words from 1 John 1:3 - 4
Again I say, we are telling you about what we ourselves have actually seen and heard, so that you may share the fellowship and the joys we have with the Father and with Jesus Christ his son.  And if you as I say in this letter, then you, too, will be full of joy, and so we will.


Share your stories about what God is doing in your life and feel the joy that only He provides.  Christ completes us!  

Joy a simple, short word filled with huge meaning.  

Truths I learn that God teaches me I will share along the journey!

Happy New Year!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Wednesday, December 30, 2015

Secret of the Christian



"Joy, which was the small publicity of the pagan, is the gigantic secret of the Christian."
G. K. Chesterton

What do you think this quote means?

Ann Voskamp in her book on advent wrote that the gigantic gift that He gives and we unwrap, that we never stop unwrapping-we who were barren now graced with the Child who lets us laugh with relief for all eternity.  There is nothing left to want.  There is nothing left to fear:  "All fear is but the notion that God's love never ends." And His for you never will.  So loosen up, because the chains have been loosed, and laugh the laughter of the freed!  I had to share her beautiful words from "The Greatest Gift".

Isn't it true?

When we finally realize we are free because of God's love and His actions we have immense joy that only He provides.  He provides it all!  Joy only comes from Christ and with Christ!

I truly believe this beautiful quote because of my own journey.  Only with Christ do I understand what joy is...

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

P.S.  If you haven't read Ann Voskamp's books give yourself a gift and purchase them!  She is truly an amazing writer!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

I bring you...



Joyful news!

What is it you bring with you today?  Is it happiness?  Is it gloom?  Is it frustration?  Is it laughter?  Is it dread?  Seriously, when you walk up to a group today, which feeling are you bringing with you?

Listen to these words from Luke 2:10 ~
...but the angel reassured them. "Don't be afraid!"  he said.  "I bring you the most joyful news ever announced, and it is for everyone!

We know the news is about Jesus that the angel is sharing, but read these verses and be reminded of the joy brought into this world.  The joy meant for you and me right now!  Jesus is for all of us and it is Him that this season is all about not the frustration of the last minute shopping, the grocery store lines, that one relative that absolutely gets on your last nerve, or any of the other stuff...no it is about Jesus and the most joyful news ever...and it is for everyone!  No one left out!  Jesus is for every last one of us!

Today and everyday, remember the gift of Jesus!  Share the joyful news of His amazing birth into this world to walk among us, to share our pains, but most of all to save each and every one of us!  A gift that none of us deserve, but one that He wanted to provide!  

Indeed, very joyful news!  Also, if you get the Shreveport Times read Maggie Martin's story today about being a Good Samaritan.  It's a wonderful reminder of what Christmas truly should be all about and it's not the presents under the tree!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Friday, December 18, 2015

Put on your make-up



I love this quote by Anne Lomott ~
"Joy is the best makeup".

It is so true.  So today, pick joy ~  just like you pick your lip color, your eye color, you hair color...pick joy!

We decide how we are going to react to life by bitterness or joy, by laughter or ....., we choose how we respond to whatever life throws at us!  So pick joy!

Philippians 4:4 (NLT) says it like this...
Always be full of joy in the Lord.  I say it again-rejoice!

Be full of joy in the Lord!  Know He is with you every step you take, every choice you make!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Monday, December 14, 2015

Simple joys



Thanking God for the simple joy of a lap puppy!  

When one goes to select the newest member of the family, you are never sure what you might be getting and well I am blessed that Cassie is a very loving, lap puppy...but she is also very full of herself and very curious!

Life is good!

Thanking God for sweet Cassie and the joy she brings to our home!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Saturday, December 12, 2015

Joy complete



What do you think joy being complete in us looks like?

Ponder that for a moment and then read this scripture from Philippians 2:2 ~
then make my joy complete by being like minded, having the same love, being one in spirit and in mind.

What would our world looked like, if we were living the scripture above?

Read it from the Message now
If you've gotten anything at all out of following Christ, if his love has made any difference in your life, if being in a community of the spirit means anything to you, if you have a heart, if you care-then do me a favor:  Agree with each other, love each other, be deep-spirited friends.  Don't push your way to the front; don't sweet-talk your way to the top.  Put yourself aside, and help others get ahead.  Don't be obsessed with getting your own advantage.  Forget yourselves long enough to lend a helping hand.

OUCH!  OUCH!

How many of these are you able to check off?  Are you perhaps like me and need more work?  I know I am a work in progress and this scripture hit me between the eyes and I don't think I'm alone.  Division in this world, in this country, in this state, in this city...is rampant!  If we are living these words division will decrease, so let it begin with me...

How does the words to the old song go "Let there be peace on earth and let it begin with me"  sound familiar?  Perhaps when we all get it together and are living this verse the picture will happen and it will be beautiful!

Let's start it today!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie




Friday, December 11, 2015

Sing



It is the season to celebrate Our Lord's Birth!

It is so funny and sad at the same time to walk around in the shopping venues and look at people's faces...even better listen to their tones.  We are not really showing a lot of joy during this busy season.  Oh a few do...laughter amongst the seriously inappropriate!

It is fun to people watch, but not a great testament for some of us.  We forget what the season is about...it's not about the gifts.  It's not about the shopping.  It's not about going into debt up to our eyeballs.  It's about Jesus and He sometimes gets lost not from His lack of trying to be there for us, but because we don't include Him!

Today, remember it is about Jesus!  Share the joy, share the laughter, share Jesus...

Psalm 33:3
Sing to him a new song; play skillfully and shout for joy.

Today and everyday let's be shouting for joy!

Share your funny sights you've witnessed this Christmas so far.

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Thursday, December 10, 2015

What is robbing our joy?



I read a really good illustration about allowing our joy to be taken from us that was given by Kent Crockett.  Kent stated that his wife pulled into a service station to get gas.  She didn't realize she pulled into the full service line and well her gas cost an additional 50 cents a gallon at the time.  He got very angry thinking of all the laws that had to have been broken by this over charge just by the people pumping the gas.  

During the time his mind was going gonkers over the injustice God reminded him the story of Esau.  You know the story where Esau gives away his birthright for a bowl of stew.  God showed him that the additional $7.00 he paid was robbing him of his joy!  He was exchanging joy for injustice just like Esau exhanged his birthright for stew.  Neither one makes much sense, but we all do this in some form.

What are we allowing to steal our joy?  Is it worry with family?  illness? finances?  All of the above?  The list goes on and on and what does the worry provide other than more worry?  

We allow things to steal our joy because we take our eyes off Jesus!  We all do it whether it is the price of gas or the price of milk...something steals our joy!

Today, be proactive don't allow anything to steal your joy!  Look at the gas station that you drive by that provides both services and honk!  It will remind you that absolutely nothing will steal your joy and the people working at the station will think you are being friendly!  Two good things will happen!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Wednesday, December 9, 2015

Happy Joy



Thanks Frankie for my "Happy Joy"!

Sunday after church the two of us went to see the movie about Mother Teresa and it was a wow movie!  Now it was heartbreaking, touching, and beautiful well worth your time in my humble opinion, but before it started and with maybe 3 or so minutes left...it was just Frankie and I sitting in this huge movie theater.  ( more showed up right on time.  we are always early birds.) We were giggling like little girls and it was a happy time of joy!

Have your moments that you share with your friends, your family, and strangers that bring joy ~ joy moments that you will treasure forever.

Thanks Frankie for my happy present you purchased at the Do Good store before I arrived at the Boardwalk!  I love it and it hangs proudly in my kitchen to remind me of my joy journey!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Cartwheels of joy!



I found this scripture from Habakkuk 3 in the Message that I love...

...Though the sheep pens are sheepless and the cattle barns empty, I'm singing  joyful praise to God.  I'm turning cartwheels of joy to my Savior God.  Counting on God's Rule to prevail, I take heart and gain strength.  I run like a deer.  I feel like I'm king of the mountain!

Don't you love this?  I do.  Even though things are really tough.  No sheep in the pen, no cattle in the barn everything is empty the writer still knows who God truly is...

Trust and know who God is...

Turn cartwheels today!  Well, not literally, if you are like me you might not walk afterwards, but turn cartwheels of joy in your own way!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

The NIV version reads this way ~
Yet I will rejoice in the LORD, I will joyful in God my Savior.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Joy in the morning!



...weeping may stay for the night, but rejoicing comes in the morning.  
Psalm 30:5

How many of us know this so well?  Nights are difficult at times.  Mornings bring the Light we all so desperately need!  

Now I am going to share with you a little thing that was going on with me this weekend and in the big scope of life it really is little, but it helps to be real and honest with my friends.

(it really is little, but it works for an example)

Friday evening my television system all went out.  So all weekend, I've had nothing, but my sounds and the doggies sounds.  Quiet and let me tell you the nights are long when they start at 5:15 or so until 6:00 a.m. with nothing but you and the doggies!  I love my doggies, but a little distraction helps.  I read and it makes me sleep and then the dogs wake me up.  I look at my ipad my puppy doesn't like my ipad, so she gets between me and the ipad and lays down on it.  In other words, I was a very happy girl when the dawn happened this Monday morning for the repair man to be able to come to my house!!!  A sad truth that the noise of the tv around my house is missed.

Seriously, the scripture above is about death and eternal life.  Truly a gift that Jesus provided each of us by His surrender to the cross.  We should remember and celebrate with each dawn of a new morning the gift from Jesus. 

I like the Anchor Bible version of this scripture as well ~
In the evening one falls asleep crying, but at dawn there are shouts of joy.

Every morning shout for joy at the awesome gift of Jesus.  We are celebrating His birth during this season, but let's just celebrate Jesus always!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie


Sunday, December 6, 2015

The Lord Your God is with You!



Who reading this today needed a reminder of how very much you matter to all of us, but to the Lord?

Well, the scripture above is a beautiful reminder from Zephaniah 3:17 of who God truly is and how He feels about you!  He takes great delight in you!  He is with you!  He will save!  He settles you in His amazing love and He sings praises over you!  Now tell me how cool is that?

God is proclaiming His gladness over you!  

I took the time and the joy in coloring this scripture yesterday for those of you that needed this very colorful reminder of You are not alone and that You are loved!  
Claim it!  Believe it!  Share it with someone you know needs to hear these words today!

Another wonderful message on joy provided by Our Amazing Father!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Saturday, December 5, 2015

Today it's spinning for joy!



God is teaching me some really cool things about joy!  I am loving this current path I am on.

Making a choice daily to have an attitude of joy that is my current path.  I believe that is what God is showing me and I am experiencing some pretty enlightening moments.

Psalm 118:24

This is the day the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Every day when your eyes open, whether conscious or unconscious each of us decide our attitudes.  We choose whether we will hope, whether we will laugh, whether we will rejoice...the list goes on and on.  Difficult circumstances will come, but it is how we are in the circumstances that we get to decide how to respond. 

While I was studying this verse I looked up how many times the word "joy" or "rejoice" were in the bible and the answer is more than 300 times.  It (joy) must be pretty important to God because it is mentioned a lot.  The Hebrew word for "rejoice" is gawl, and it means to "to spin round; be glad, be joyful.  I want to ask you a question when was the last time you did a little spinning?  I know some of you probably take a spinning exercise class and it's not spinning in circles it is on a exercise bicycle of some sort.  When I typed in spinning those pictures came up the most...well I loved the little girl spinning in the flowers myself. The feeling of being in the moment so much you are lost to the rest of stuff happening.  You really let go and let God moments!

Spinning makes you dizzy.  Yes, it does dizzy with Jesus is a good thing!

Everyday is a gift from God.  Every moment is a gift.  We decide when we unwrap each moment whether we will enjoy each moment or not.  Will we rejoice with the moment or continue the rat race of chasing the next dream?  Dreams aren't bad, but we might be missing a very special spinning moment with the Lord right now!

Rejoice and Be glad in each moment!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Friday, December 4, 2015

Leaps for joy



The world we reside in makes it difficult at times to show joy.  So, how do we do it?

The last couple of days I've pondered how do I answer the terrible situations in the world and still write about joy.  Only God.  Some may say corny...that's okay, but it is truth!

Turning on the television with the absolute horrible real situations around us that hate fills people up so much that they are able to walk into a building and kill innocent people absolutely blows my mind.  I don't understand this evil.  I don't understand how anyone is able to respond to their belief in such a horrible manner.  The only answer is evil that takes over their mind, so I will not allow such evil into me or my world.  I keep focused on the Light of the World and that only He is able to conquer!

A verse that helps me is found in Psalm 28:7 ~
The Lord is my strength and my shield; my heart trust in him, and I am helped.
My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him in song.

I believe this verse with all my heart.

I believe to the fullest that God conquers evil and the ugly, bad things of this world.  I believe with all my heart that He hears my cries, He will answer my cry, and that He indeed will save me!

It is my prayer that you to trust and believe this verse and we are still leaping for joy knowing He indeed wins!

Claim this verse today and everyday!  Share it with friends that are struggling and He will provide His persuasion to triumph all fears!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

P. S.  Sorry I don't have anybody here to get the photo of me leaping...imagine it and it will bring laughter to your mind!  Debbie leaping...Debbie falling...Debbie filled with joy for the Lord!

Thursday, December 3, 2015

Sing for joy



Psalm 5:11
But let all who take refuge in you be glad;
let them ever sing for joy...

Do you ever watch the children run to see Santa and the whispers as they share with Santa their wishes for Christmas?  Now I know some are running quickly away from Santa, but the ones that go share their heartfelt desires with the man in the red suit?  The little ones wall away with a little pep in their step believing that their wish will come true.

Well, this verse to me tells us a little about our relationship with God.  Let's take a look at it together.  The word refuge here in Hebrew is hsw and it means to seek refuge, to put trust in God, confide or hope in God.  We are to confide in God and we too will walk away with a pep in our step.  Now we aren't to be crazy about this and believe all our prayers are answered the way we desire, because well that will not happen.  But we give our hearts to God and we are filled with hope because of who He is...We trust in Him...We know He protects us and knows the best for each of us.  Now it may look different than we picture it, but He knows best.

So next time you see a child whispering in Santa's ear remember that we need to crawl on Our Father's lap and confide in Him the one that provided the way for each of us!  We will indeed sing for joy knowing His truth in our hearts forever.

I love the image of whispering in Jesus ear or resting in His Arms.  I drew this photo several years ago and I'm not an artist, but that's not what matters it is the meaning it held for me and hopefully for you.


Do you see the smile?  Do you see the protection I feel?  Do you see the love?
I do and I know it with every step that I take!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie


Wednesday, December 2, 2015

Complete Joy!



Joy!  

Don't you love this little girl completed with all that Christ gives each of us?  We are made new and we are all princesses, when we allow Christ to make us new.

I love how the Holy Spirit works.  I love the moments that without a doubt it's God showing up and rocking your world.  Don't you?  Truly amazing and beyond words moments, but i am going to try.

I told you that joy was my word given for the new year and how joy keeps showing up, but what I didn't tell you is that (some of you know) I review books and studies.  Well I received one in the mail to begin work on and it's on Philippians.  The book where Paul mentions joy a lot!  Which is a really cool moment for me that this study came when all these other things are happening and I know it is God doing something amazing in my journey.  Thank you Lord!

Today, I want each of you to ponder this verse on joy.

John 15:11 ( Jesus is speaking)

I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.

Please take a few moments and read it aloud several times and see which words speaks to you.  In this process complete jumped out at me.  So I looked up the original greek word and it is plhrwgh which means to make full, to fill up, to complete.  (ladies that gave comments yesterday well this fits in all of your responses)  It is like filling a pitcher up and it just overflows.  Jesus wants to fill us up so that we are full of Him.  Is this not the coolest?  He doesn't want us to want for anything.  He wants to fill all those holes that are inside of us that we think we might be filled with stuff, people, or whatever only He completes us!

So to be full of joy we need Jesus!  Who doesn't want Jesus?  Well, some people say they don't, but they just don't know what that yearning deep inside is, but if our joy is overflowing they question what it is that we have that they don't and the process begins.  Is our lack of joy holding back the kingdom building?

In the study, that I will review on the blog in a few months the wonderful author, Sue Edwards spoke of a beautiful illustration of a snowflake in another text, but it works beautifully here.  You know how a single snowflake is just beautiful, but together it does powerful stuff? It can bring down trees and such. Well, if all of us put our joy together we are able to do some pretty amazing things because Jesus is working through us!

What are we going to allow to complete us?

Will it be stuff that still leaves us yearning or will it be Jesus?

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

P. S. Please share what word from the scripture spoke to you with me in the comments.


Tuesday, December 1, 2015

How do you define joy?



The official definition of joy according to dictionary.com is the emotion of delight, a happiness caused by  something exceptionally good or state of happiness.  Do you agree?

Well, when I looked up photos for joy and happiness to go with this post the chalkboard showed up.  It got me to thinking every morning we wake up and we get to decide our focus for the day.  Will we focus on the good, the bad, or the ugly?  Sorry I just had to write that, but it's true.  We decide are we going to allow the bad stuff to just take us over and zap all the joy right out of us?  It truly is our choice, sometimes a difficult one to pick joy with all that might be coming at you, but still a choice we make.

I've been touched by the pictures of Joey and Rory Feek with their battle of cancer.  The last time Rory got out of bed to walk she danced with Joey and she still chooses to show joy while facing a terrible reality.  She chooses to focus on the time left by sharing joy with her loved ones.  It may be a very difficult choice, but she is making beautiful memories with every moment.  Google them and read his amazing posts.

Today, pick joy!

In your spare time today take a look at the book of Nehemiah especially chapter 8.  The people of God once again celebrated with joy after returning from exile.  Celebrate with joy from whatever exile you might be returning from as well.  It truly is a choice we must make everyday.

Join me on the journey of joy for the next year!

Where do you find your joy?

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Monday, November 30, 2015

Joy is my word for the new season and the new year!



It is my proclamation that by the end of 2016 this will be me!  Pure Joy exuding from me...the last few years I've allowed the things of the world to drag me down and you know what???

I am okay!  I am blessed!  I am loved!  God provides all that I need!

I am in the process of a study found at Time Warp Wife.com that is really good about quieting ourselves for the holidays and it is teaching me already!  Teaching me with reminders that I need at this moment in time.  Reminders that God provides for the birds, so why not me!  Simple enough, but we humans tend to forget God's teachings rather than claiming them and plowing ahead!

I believe, so I am going to proclaim it.

The past few months I watched Bindi Irwin on Dancing with the Stars just embrace life and light up the world.  Each and everyone of us are provided the same resources to provide for our part of the world and if we each provide for our little section it will turn the world around!  Let's embrace God's Words, Let's believe God's Word, and Let's Walk the Talk of God's Words!  Together, we will change the world!

I was reminded in the study of this quote that is truth and truly is fabulous ~
"Look for Christ and you will find Him.  And with Him everything else."  C. S. Lewis

Look today and everyday and let's find Christ together changing the world in the process.

Sweet blessings,
Debbie


Friday, November 20, 2015

Psalm 36:6 fills me with hope



Three weeks ago today I lost my baby.  Annie was the sweetest, most loving girl.  She was truly the fulfillment of the old saying "man's best friend" (woman).  She thought I was the stuff and I thought she was.  Annie was the one that while JJ was still with us would sit back and let him be JJ.  She loved him in spite of him.  It didn't matter how he treated her, she just loved him.  She was the same with Kenny, Sadie, or me!  She saw us at our worst and still loved us!

I looked at Kenny the next day after Annie left us and ask the most important question to me at the moment.  Do you think we will see Annie in heaven?  He stated well of course.  I know he didn't and doesn't know, but I had a friend (Amanda thanks) that sent me this scripture and it healed my heart and brought me such amazing hope.  It is found in Psalm 36:6 ~ Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the great deep. O Lord, you preserve both man and beast.  

God once again provided hope for my broken heart through a friend that responded to the Holy Spirit's nudge by providing me with this beautiful scripture that I was too heart broken to even look for...sometimes we must step up for those that are hurting and provide the word needed.  Follow the Spirit's guidance and be the one that acts!

We are in a broken world and hope is definitely needed and only God provides for the big holes in all of us!  Today, who could you provide hope?  Today, who could you provide the answer?  Do you know someone that needs the gift of God's Word then go and provide.  Perhaps purchase a Bible or write down a scripture that might be the answer they need to hear.  God will use you, if you let Him!  Let Him today!

Thanks Amanda for being the one that helped me through a very difficult day!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Tuesday, November 3, 2015

Truth



Truth

How many times recently have you heard something along these lines?  

I am just being true to myself.

I am just being my real self.

I am just being true to myself.

Well, if you are like me it's all the time now.  Now before you jump on me, please hear me out.  It's fine, if you don't agree with me...but I believe Jesus and His Words.

Words from today's reading in John 18 that Jesus spoke ~
"You say I am a king.  Actually, I was born and came into the world to testify to the truth.  All who love the truth recognize that what I say is true."

Jesus is the truth and that is truly truth!  He came so that our truths or should I say sin are made okay.  I'm not separating anybody including myself from this statement.  All of us are sinners and Jesus saves every one of us!  We just claim our sins and say it's the true me and that's okay, but unless we call it what it truly is well it's not okay!  I am not judging with this statement because I am guilty along with every human being on this earth.  We must realize who Jesus truly is which is found in John 14:6 ~
I am the way, the truth, and the life.  No one comes to the Father except through me.

Jesus is the way, the truth, and the life!  

Know who and what truth truly is...

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Monday, November 2, 2015

Fascinating 5 star book!



Fabulous Read!

When Bethany House sent the list out of books to review, I knew I had to read this book!  I love the story of Nehemiah and the rebuilding of the wall.  The book was given to me for my heartfelt, honest review and well it is 5 stars or more!  

I was afraid when I signed up that well it might not be all I wanted it to be, because of my love of this story.  I was not disappointed the people just jumped off the page with their hearts, their honesty, their love for the One True God, their authenticity, their life surrounding the rebuilding of the wall.  

Nehemiah was tough, yet lovable.  I loved the unraveling of the man (Nehemiah) the older brother, the cup-bearer, the leader, the believer, the man trying to do the right thing (whatever the cost).  He was even at times amusing with his exchanges with Chana.  

Chana and her family are the family that Lynn created from Nehemiah 3:12.  A family that you grow to love and feel like they are your neighbors.  Chana was especially endearing with her relationship with Nehemiah.  The way they stood their ground with each other and the way they each felt their role must be done.  Chana was a woman you loved and hoped would find her hope through the building of the wall.  She succeeds much like each of us succeed believing God and His Words! 

I really felt these words from page 293 spoke to my heart and probably would to a lot of you ~
(Nehemiah is speaking with one of his brothers and these words are exchanged)
Nehemiah speaks to his brother "hanani...have you ever figured out why God sometimes allows evil to win?
"Are you thinking of our parents?"
"I am."
"I've thought about that a lot over the years,...and the only conclusion I've come to is that in some instances, we're incapable of understanding the Almighty One's reasons.  We just have to trust that He has a plan, even if we can't see it."  "That's the difficult part-trusting".

Such honesty is throughout this wonderful book!

It is definitely worth your time and it will touch your heart!

You may purchase this book at Amazon.com, Christian book.com or your local book store and you will not regret it!

I was given this book to review by Bethany House and it definitely did not disappoint ~ in fact, it renewed my hope!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Friday, October 30, 2015

Before the rooster crows



Luke 22: 31-38

Reading the news headlines around the world I often ask myself "how would I respond" or "what would I do".  I want to believe never ever would I deny, but none of us know until the situation is presented to us.  It is horrible what is happening to Christians around the world and we must not sit with our heads in the sand believing it will never happen here.  I pray none of us ever face it, but we might.  Would we be like Peter?

Peter the rock.  The man that traveled with Jesus.  The man that walked on water until he took his eyes off the Lord.  The man who in Luke 22 we read will deny the Lord 3 times before the rooster crowed the next morning.  A man who knew, but still feared.

In the beginning of the reading Simon's name is repeated which is an expression of love, but stated with warning the commentaries tell me.  I love that Jesus is still reassuring the disciples of his love even when He is warning them of danger. Think back to your childhood when your parent or loved one would say your name more than once and with a warning about something.  You felt their love.  You felt their concern.  Jesus loved and was concerned for Peter.

In John 14: 1- 14, we hear these loving words that Jesus spoke to the disciples, but also to us for such a time as this:

"Don't let your hearts be troubled.  Trust in God, and trust also in me.  There is more than enough room in my Father's home.  If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?  When everything is ready, I will come and get you, so that you will always be with me where I am.  And you know the way to where I am going."

Claim these verses!  Trust!  Believe!  Know in your heart that there is enough room for all of us in Our Father's Home!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Whose example are we following?



John 13: 1 - 17

Please read this passage today!

Powerful reminder of who Jesus truly is...

The words that struck me this morning were found in verse 15 ~

I have give you an example to follow.  Do as I have done to you.  Words Jesus spoke to his disciples and to us.

Who are we following?

Our world seems to be caught up in things money is able to buy, places it is able to take us, people that it puts us in contact with and quite honestly once we get the next great thing does it fill the void?  Does the place you think you must be seen?  Or what about that person you just want to be seen at the party with does it fill the emptiness deep inside?

Jesus is the only answer and He is definitely the example that all of us need to follow!

Please read this passage and be reminded of how much Jesus loves each of us today!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Narrow door



Luke 13:22-30

Well, today I am focusing on this part of the reading...the part about this scripture ~
Someone asked him, "Lord, will only a few be saved?"  He replied, "Work hard to enter, the narrow door to God's Kingdom, for many will try to enter but will fail.  When the master of the house has locked the door, it will be too late.  You will stand outside knocking and pleading, 'Lord, open the door for us!  But he will reply, 'I don't know you or where you come from.'

Tough words, but words from Jesus.  Words telling us that the door will be narrow it will not be wide and everyone will not be walking through.  We need to know the Lord.  We need to spend time with Him.  

I believe in God's Word.

Many will try to enter, but fail is very powerful.  Also, check out John 10: 1- 21 with the writing about the Good Shepherd and His Sheep.  I love this verse ~ ...and they follow him because they know his voice.  Also, My purpose is to give them a rich and satisfying life.  I am the good shepherd.  The good shepherd sacrifices his life for the sheep.  Another, I am the good shepherd; I know my own sheep, and they know me, just as my Father knows me and I know the Father.

Really the verses all speak volumes.  Volumes that we need to be turning the volume up on!

We need to know Jesus!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Be dressed and ready!



Luke 12:35 - 48

Take a moment to read these passages.

"Be dressed for service and keep your lamps burning, as though you were waiting for your master to return from the wedding feast.  Then you will be ready to open the door and let him in the moment he arrives and knocks.

Today's reading was filled with powerful words for all of us.  Be ready, the words talk about division, repentance, healing, mustard seeds, and reminder of who Jesus is...Jesus shares very important directions for all of us in todays words. 

Please take a moment to read them for yourself they are Luke 12:35-59, Luke 13: 1- 21, and John 
9:1 - 41

In John 9, Jesus ask the man important questions that He also ask each of us.
Are you able to answer with the same words that this man spoke?
"Yes, Lord I believe!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Friday, October 16, 2015

As though a floodlight were filling you with light



I love the verses from Luke 11 about "the light."  I am a visual person and this is so good!

"No one lights a lamp and then hides it or puts it under a basket.  Instead, a lamp is placed on a stand, where its light can be seen by all who enter the house.
"Your eye is a lamp that provides light for your body.  When your eye is good, your whole body is filled with light.  But when it is bad, you body is billed with darkness.  Make sure that the light you think you have is not actually darkness.  If you are filled with light, with no dark corners, then your whole life will be radiant, as though a floodlight were filling you with light."

Don't you love this "radiant as though a floodlight were filling you with light?  That is a lot of light!  Think on that today!

Along with so many other goodies today...food for thought on the Pharisees, which we might think about with our leaders or anyone else too...
Luke 11:39 - 41 ~ Then the Lord said to him, "You Pharisees are so careful to clean the outside of the cup and the dish, but inside you are filthy-full of greed and wickedness! Fools!  Didn't God make the inside as well as the outside?  So clean the inside by giving gifts to the poor, and you will be clean all over.  Lots to unpack in these verses and think about!

Also, the verses from Luke 12 are always special!  
Verse 25 ~ Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?  And if worry can't accomplish a little think like that, what's the use of worrying over bigger things?  
Well, this makes a lot of sense.  Anybody need to work on this with me?

And I love verse 34 ~
"Wherever your treasure is, there the desires of your heart will also be."

Lots and lots to unpack in the scripture reading today!  Let me know which spoke to you and I hope you have a great day.  

Let your light shine!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie


Thursday, October 15, 2015

Hey, you in the mirror...



I am going to get a little off our reading today, because I felt lead to remind you that you are special!  Someone reading today needs to be reminded that the person looking back at you in the mirror is special!

I want you to try a little practice placing your name in scripture.  It is from Luke where Gabriel appears to Mary and tells her these special words ~ "Greetings, you who are highly favored!  The Lord is with you."  Now I want you to say these words to yourself and look in a mirror and repeat them over and over...Greetings, (your name) you are highly favored!  The Lord is with you!  Repeat it over and over until you remember that indeed you are so very special to the Lord!  He loves you!  He is with you!  

You might even go a little further in Luke with these verses and place your name in the blank...
"Do not be afraid, Mary, (place your name here), you have found favor with God.  God wants each of us to know and claim He loves us!

Our reading today was so good too...
The reminder of love our neighbor as ourselves and The Good Samaritan story.  Wonderful reminders of who we are suppose to be and how we are suppose to act.

I leave you with these words today...
You are special!
You are loved!
You are never alone!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Writing in the sand




John 8: 1- 11

The story of the woman caught in adultery always touches my heart.  

Imagine the scene we are told Jesus is back at the temple teaching.  A crowd gathered soon to listen.  Jesus sat down to teach when suddenly the Pharisees brought a woman into the crowd and put her in front of everyone.  The men explained this woman was caught in adultery and that the law states she must be stoned.  They are trying to catch Jesus in how he will respond to this situation.  He knows the law and yet he knows that no here is without sin.

What does he do?  He bends and begins writing in the sand.  Many wonder what Jesus began to write in the sand.  Some think it was the sins of people in the crowd and that they demanded an answer.  He stood and ask them that whoever was without sin throw the stone.  Again, he stooped down and began writing in the sand.

Imagine the sounds in the crowd.  Was it quiet?  Was it loud?  Was it busy with movement to get away from this scene?  Was it shock?  Was it compassion?  Was it tense?  Did anyone care about this poor woman that was standing in front of all of them?

We are told that they each stepped away one by one beginning with the oldest until it was just Jesus and this woman.  How do you think they left the scene?  Hanging heads?  Anger?  Disbelief?  Do you think anyone realized their own sin?  

The woman left alone with Jesus.  How do you think she was feeling at this moment?  I think she felt loved.  I think she saw a heart drawn in the sand by Jesus even if it was sins of others it was also Jesus love shown to all.  Showing that He knew and He loved her.  He sent her away encouraging her to go and sin no more.  

Indeed, Jesus loves each of us!  He knows our sins and paid the ultimate price for each of us, but we must admit our sins.  No pointed fingers from Jesus only love drawn in the sand.  Powerful story of Jesus amazing love!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Found



Today, I want to share with you these words from Matthew 18 ~ If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them wanders away, what will he do?  Won't he leave the ninety-nine others on the hills and go out and search for the one that is lost?  And if he finds it, I tell you the truth, he will rejoice over it more than over the ninety-nine that didn't wander away!  In the same way, it is not my heavenly Father's will that even one of these little ones should perish.

God desires all of us to have eternal life with Him!  He pursues us!  He looks for us!  He allows us to choose Him!  Did you pick up on that key word  (choose)?  He doesn't make us pick Him, no it is our choice.  When we do He rejoices over us! 

I don't remember how many years ago now, but probably 18 or so I began to walker closer with the LORD.  I believed from an early age, I knew Jesus came and died for me, but I did not have the relationship with the Lord.  The personal relationship with Him that fills that hole inside of each of us that only He is able to fill.  I knew there was more, but I couldn't quite grasp it and I also felt like someone was trying to provide it.  Someone was searching for me.  Someone was trying to find me.

God's Word gave me the answer to that hole.  It's Jesus and how He desires to know more and more about me.  I walked through the days before not understanding what it was, but finally it was like the light bulb went on or the cup was overflowing when I opened up His words and knew He was speaking to me.  It is real.  It is awesome!  It is simply beyond words!

I try to share about God's Words with others, because of the change it made in my life and still makes daily.  I am a different person because of who Jesus is and not because of me.  He changed me by showing me the steps to take and that I am never alone on this journey.  He shows me that it doesn't matter what I face it will all be okay.  I know it and I believe it!  I only want all my friends, loved ones, and strangers to have this same peace that is beyond my understanding ~ a peace that only God is able to provide.

I think the amazing love God shows allowing us the choice is again beyond my understanding.  He wants us to love Him and He lets us decide.  He doesn't make us and He could.  No it is simply beyond my little brain to figure it all out.  I don't have to.  I trust the One who knows it ALL and I love that I serve a Savior that loves me so very much that He looked for me and He looks for you!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Monday, October 12, 2015

Listen to him




Mark 8: 22 - 9:13, Matthew 16: 13 - 17:13, Luke 9: 18 - 27

I love the story of the transfiguration!  The beautiful amazing scene that is shared in Mark 9:2 - 13,  Matthew 17: 1- 13,  Luke 9:28 -36.

These words from the story told in three different gospels struck a chord with me ~
Listen to him.  God spoke to the disciples these words after Peter was looking for something to say and just blurted out what came to his mind.  Imagine it.  Don't judge.  After all, what if standing before you were Moses, Elijah and Jesus talking; you might blurt out something less than stellar too!  God immediately spoke to them reminding them who Jesus was and is and to listen to Him.

Who do we all listen to?  

God is giving us very important instructions here.  Remember who Jesus is and to then take action by listening to His directions!

Listen today and every day!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Scraps/Crumbs



Mark 7:24 - 8:21, Matthew 15: 29 - 16:12, 

The story of the gentile woman and her faith is touching and disturbing at first glance.  To understand you must look a little deeper, so I did a little digging.  Do you know that the Jewish referred to Gentiles as dogs?  Well, that is important in this story as well as the fact that Jesus knew her faith already before He ask her the question about shouldn't He take care of his own first.  

The woman knew her heart.  The woman knew her position in life as very low in social ranking.  The woman knew who Jesus was so she realized that just a few crumbs would heal her daughter.  Just a little bit of Jesus would heal her daughter.  She believed it with all her heart who Jesus truly was.  She understood that the table belonged to God not the people.  

I loved these words Jesus spoke to the woman in Mark 7:29 ~
"Good answer!"  he said.  "Now go home, for the demon has left your daughter."  And when she arrived home, she found her little girl lying quietly in bed and the demon was gone.

It's a difficult story at first glance.  You must look deeper to see that Jesus wasn't being mean as much as he was testing all witnessing the happenings and the woman to see how much she really believed.  She really believed!  Understanding that just a little bit of Jesus was better than none of Jesus!  She would take what ever He offered and she believed it would take care of her problems!

Do we believe? Don't we want Jesus to respond to us with encouragement of Good answer now go and see!

Believe today and everyday that we all need a whole lot of Jesus!

Sweet blessings,
Debbie