"But He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you..." 1 Corin. 12:9

Monday, November 23, 2009

How then should I act?

This morning I was reading my portion of Ezekiel, chapters 20-21.  I must confess that as I have been reading Ezekiel this past week or more I have been skimming it more than reading it.  It clearly announces God's impending judgement of Israel over and over and I began to tune out.  Not right, but truth.

Then this morning I asked the Lord to help me concentrate.  (I know He has a message for me no matter where I'm reading if I will ask Him to reveal it.)  So, I was reading along and BANG!

"I seriously considered inflicting My anger on them in force right there....Then I thought better of it.  I acted out of Who I was, NOT by how I felt.  And I acted in a way that would evoke honor, not blasphemy..."  (20:8b-9, 13b-14, 21b-22 The Message)
("But for the sake of My Name..." NIV)

What a clear revelation of how God acts in the face of strong emotion!!!  A hard act to follow, but isn't He always?

I have been learning a lot about how to walk by fact and God's Word, not by how I feel, over the past several years.  So it was great to see that laid out.  Plus that was attached to the idea of acting out of who I am in Christ, which is another thing I have been trying to grasp.  So often I act out of how I feel which doesn't look a thing like who I am in Christ.  In Ephesians 1, it says I am beloved, accepted, forgiven, adopted, favored, blessed, redeemed, holy, blameless, etc.  If I can get to where THAT is my guideline for behavior instead of my feelings or my false self-concepts or others opinions, WOW!!!

These two ideas are further clarified in these verses by making me think of the end result of my actions/thoughts/words-- honor or blasphemy.  That really stops me in my tracks!  That my behavior has that kind of weighty outcome is constraining.  It makes me want to be more intentional and less impulsive.  It brings to mind 1Corinthians 10:31:  "So whether you eat or drink or WHATEVER you do, do it all for the glory of God."  (NIV)

In addition to being a great summary of what God has already been teaching me and making me want to be more intentional in my actions, these verses are such an AWESOME picture of parenting!  I have felt just that way about my kids.  "I seriously considered inflicting my anger on them in FORCE right there....Then I thought better of it."  What a hoot!  What a GREAT comfort to me to see that the LORD God Almighty Himself has felt that way too!!!

Other tidbits from Ezekiel 20:
In addition to repeating the verses above 3 times, the LORD:
Proclaims He is Sovereign 13 times.
Declares "I AM the LORD your God." 3 times.
And says, "Then you will KNOW that I AM the LORD." 5 times.

And finally, once, in response to the People wanting Him to let them go be like everyone else, He says, "What you have in mind will never happen.  As surely as I live...I will rule over you."  Even when they thought they knew what was best for them and were faithless, He was determined to be faithful, first in discipline, then in redemption.

Friday, November 13, 2009

Get Grace, Give Grace

It wasn't so long ago that we ourselves were stupid and stubborn,
dupes of sin, ordered every which way by our glands,
going around with a chip on our shoulder,
hated and hating back.

But when God, our kind and loving Savior God,
stepped in, He saved us from all that.
It was all His doing;
we had nothing to do with it.

He gave us a good bath,
and we came out of it new people,
washed inside and out by the Holy Spirit.

Our Savior Jesus poured out new life so generously.
God's gift has restored our relationship with Him
and given us back our lives.

And there's more life to come---
an eternity of life!

You can count on this.

Titus 3:3-8 (The Message)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

God is the Blessed Controller of ALL things.

be to the
Name of God
forever and ever;
wisdom and power are His.
He changes times and seasons;
He sets up kings and deposes them.
He gives wisdom to the wise
and knowledge to the discerning.
He reveals deep and hidden things;
He knows what lies in darkness,
and light dwells with Him.
I thank and praise You, O God...
You have given me wisdom and power,
You have made known to me what we asked of You...
(Daniel 2:20-23 NIV)

Friday, November 6, 2009


So many awful things
are happening in this world.
On the news last night,
someone stole a little girl.
A bridge collaspsed, a tornado hit;
Life is so full of alarm.
It makes us feel like hiding
to keep away from harm.

But when I think about You
And Your Sovereignty,
The total lack of my control
makes me want to cling,
so I can sing.

People are seeking refuge,
courage for each new day.
And nothing I can say or do
will explain the bad away.
But the one thing that I know,
the thing I hold on to
is that You love Your people
and provide the way to You.

And when I think about You
and all You've done for me,
the way You've been right with me
throughout my whole journey,
I wanna sing!

When I was growing up,
I was a fearful child,
longing to be rescued
from each and every trial.
Then I chose to believe Your Word
proclaiming Jesus saves;
that anyone can come to You
by the route He's paved.

And when I think about You
and the blessings that You bring,
You're the blessing I love most
I wanna sing!

Today I'm feeling grateful
as I look around
at all the ways You've blessed me
with Your grace that DOES abound.
My children are playing in the yard.
The sun is shining warm.
Fun and laughter rings in the air,
holding so much charm.

I don't know why You've blessed me
in so many different ways
but Your faithful watchcare over me
causes me to praise.
You make me sing!

I could've lived me life
wondering, "What's the point?"
I could still be in misery
with my nose all out of joint.
But now that I am grown,
I live in liberty.
Nothing's really different
except You inside of me!

And when I think about You
and that You died for me
on a painful cross
to pay MY penalty,
I wanna weep.

A song I wrote in the Fall of 2007.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Today I'm just grateful. Grateful for: a beautiful day, a wonderful husband, awesome children, amazing friends, my home, the privilege of homeschooling my children, the fact that I can wear sweats to 'work', creativity, music, my 5 senses, good food, coffee (yes, definitely, coffee), babies, laughter, modern conveniences, and most especially, for the Lord and His gift of salvation, free for the taking!