You can’t make someone do right for themselves.

Well. First off, as I was spending more time studying the Bible and in prayer I had things I was thinking about, working on understanding about the scripture, how God wants me to implement what I am learning, trying to see and understand what God wants of me and working to get closer to Christ in the process I came to realize somethings about me, one of which is I can process things better when I write; so, I shall write more. I don’t think I will write and post as often, but it is helpful to me and hopefully, as I had said long ago, something will hopefully be beneficial for someone else. And, with that being said…..

After Bible study last night I was speaking with the pastor and he mentioned someone that was sick so I asked if they had gone to the doctor yet and he said no. I commented that it seems they have been dealing with this issue for a while and asked if he had suggested they go to the doctor and he replied, “Yes, several times but even though we and they know they should go, you can’t make someone do the right thing for themselves.” And, I thought that while it was a simple statement and concept it was pretty darned profound.

As I thought about that, I considered times I have been he who would not help myself, whether that be getting help when I needed it, perhaps physical by not going to the doctor when I should have (yes, I am a doctor myself, but sometimes we aren’t good patients,) actual assistance with some sort of work I was doing, counseling when I was dealing with PTSD issues, or many other ways I could have benefited from getting help, one area I was bad about in past was seeking spiritual assistance when I needed it, maybe I didn’t talk to a pastor or fellow Christian that could have helped me some or maybe I didn’t study the Bible or pray about things. Thinking about ways I didn’t do it, I thought about people that sort of get help, but not really. Sometimes people come to the doctor, they need medications, the get the prescriptions and either don’t get them filled, only take it when they feel like it, take it incorrectly or don’t follow other suggestions like losing weight, stopping smoking or drinking or other medical advise. I also thought about a friend of mine who is a psychiatrist and he often would get frustrated with patients that had been listening to him, making fantastic progress and on the verge of a breakthrough when suddenly they relapse. They either quit talking about the true issue or they quit therapy. So close that he knew they were literally minutes away from getting to the point that they could actually start getting better.

I thought further about things, about times that I have seen people on the verge of doing exactly what they needed to do and just quit, give up on trying to make take the steps they need to take in order to reach that point they need to reach, almost there, but they stop short. That would be like an athlete in a marathon who is almost at the finish line and will finish and do well, but for some unknown reason just stop because they just can’t make it a little further. They were almost to break the tape and they give up and let someone else win.

How many, one way or another fall short of what God wants for them? We all fall short, but through Christ we are redeemed. I am not talking about the unsaved, but about Christians. How many fail to listen to God because they let other things interfere with their thoughts, prevent them from hearing or listening to God. Or, if they hear Him, they ignore Him. I will tell you the truth, I have been guilty of all of the above. And when I was, it was because I wouldn’t help myself by listening to Christ.

Of course, one reason to listen is to receive salvation. If we hear Christ’s call us and respond by asking forgiveness and confessing our sins and that He I the Son of God who died and was resurrected to defeat death, we can be saved.

14 I am the good shepherd, and know my sheep, and am known of mine.
15 As the Father knoweth me, even so know I the Father: and I lay down my life for the sheep.
16 And other sheep I have, which are not of this fold: them also I must bring, and they shall hear my voice; and there shall be one fold, and one shepherd.
17 Therefore doth my Father love me, because I lay down my life, that I might take it again.
18 No man taketh it from me, but I lay it down of myself. I have power to lay it down, and I have power to take it again. This commandment have I received of my Father.

John 10:14-18

and, not listening keeps us from God.

He that is of God heareth God’s words: ye therefore hear [them] not, because ye are not of God. John 8:47

Therefore we ought to give the more earnest heed to the things which we have heard, lest at any time we should let [them] slip.  Hebrews 2:1

15 While it is said, To day if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts, as in the provocation.
16 For some, when they had heard, did provoke: howbeit not all that came out of Egypt by Moses.

Hebrews 3:15-16

 

For unto us was the gospel preached, as well as unto them: but the word preached did not profit them, not being mixed with faith in them that heard [it].  Hebrews 4:2

 

But, what about not listening to God and missing out on the real blessings He has for us. I know I have been very bad about that.

Hear counsel, and receive instruction, that thou mayest be wise in thy latter end. Proverbs 19:20

So then faith [cometh] by hearing, and hearing by the word of God. Romans 10:17

5 A wise man will hear, and will increase learning; and a man of understanding shall attain unto wise counsels:
6 To understand a proverb, and the interpretation; the words of the wise, and their dark sayings.
7 The fear of the LORD is the beginning of knowledge: but fools despise wisdom and instruction.
Proverbs 1:5-7

 

He promises blessings to those who listen to Him.

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, [that] shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come.  John 16:13

But he said, Yea rather, blessed [are] they that hear the word of God, and keep it. Luke 11:28

For as many as are led by the Spirit of God, they are the sons of God. Romans 8:14

 

For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, ye received [it] not [as] the word of men, but as it is in truth, the word of God, which effectually worketh also in you that believe.         1 Thessalonians 2:13

 

And he answered and said unto them, My mother and my brethren are these which hear the word of God, and do it.  Luke 8:21

 

And he said unto them, Take heed what ye hear: with what measure ye mete, it shall be measured to you: and unto you that hear shall more be given.  Mark 4:24

 

1 And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the LORD thy God, to observe [and] to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the LORD thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth:
2 And all these blessings shall come on thee, and overtake thee, if thou shalt hearken unto the voice of the LORD thy God.

Deuteronomy 28:1-2

 

He tells us that He will bless us, make us His children if we listen, that He will lift us high above others because of our faith, that we listen to Him and obey Him. I know that in the past I have been given word from God. Through prayer, studying the scripture and at times He has used others to tell me. I have not always obeyed when I heard things. Because I did not listen or obey, at times I missed out on blessings, other times I heard but did not obey, until like Jonah, He gave me no real choice but to obey and when I did, He blessed me. Making me realize that my resistance to His voice delayed my blessings and thereby diminished them. No, we can’t make people do the right thing for themselves, we cannot make one listen and obey God. What we can do is listen to Him, obey His word and help ourselves. We can pray for those who need prayer, but one that I know who always needs prayer is me. That I know when to help myself by hearing, listening and obeying God.

 

Lord, I praise Your Holy Name and thank You for the blessings You have been gracious enough to give to me, even though I didn’t deserve them. I thank You for my salvation paid for by the blood of Jesus who died for me and was resurrect to defeat death on my behalf. I pray in the Name of Jesus that You work in me and help be better hear You when You speak to me, to know when I am given a message from You and to know to follow Your will for my life that I may receiving further blessings and more importantly learn to walk better with Christ. I pray that any who, like I have in the past, failed to listen, hear and obey You that they not harden their hearts to Your word and lose out on the blessings You have in store for them if they follow Your will. I pray that You draw my children and other loved ones closer to You that we may all rejoice together in Heaven in the future.

Amen.

 

Thank you all who make time to read the lessons God gives me. I hope someone else was blessed as well. Have a marvelous and blessed day and try to be a blessing to someone else.

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The Storms

dust-storm-010.jpg

I was driving today and one of the disc jockeys was talking about a conversation that she was having with some friends and one they knew had a lot of less than pleasant things going on in her life. They asked her about it and she gave them updates on things. Then, one of the women said something that is true, storms come before the seasons change. That the storms just have to be weathered and then better things are on the way. It made me think about in Iraq, how you could see a HUGE cloud of dust in the fall. We asked the locals that we were working with what was going on and they said that in 3 days, maybe 4 days, the dust storm would be there and last a couple weeks, but then they got excited and said that when it was gone, the rains would come. Seeing as it is the desert, water is important and the wells and cisterns would be filled.

They were excited to see the sand storm coming, not because they enjoyed it, as it was miserable. One could see only 20 feet or so and the wind was pretty intense, with the dust and sand blowing it stung! My experience was that the dust found its way into even the tiniest crack and everything was coated with dust. I had to start covering my cot and everything I did not want dust covered with plastic and some still got through. But, as miserable as the dust storm was, it was followed by the rains. The rain there was more of a drizzle, but it was nonstop for 2 months, then it got cold, for there at least but the wells and cisterns were filled, the crops could be irrigated when planting season came and they were all happy.

23 And when he was entered into a ship, his disciples followed him.
24 And, behold, there arose a great tempest in the sea, insomuch that the ship was covered with the waves: but he was asleep.
25 And his disciples came to [him], and awoke him, saying, Lord, save us: we perish.
26 And he saith unto them, Why are ye fearful, O ye of little faith? Then he arose, and rebuked the winds and the sea; and there was a great calm.
27 But the men marvelled, saying, What manner of man is this, that even the winds and the sea obey him!

Matthew 8:23-27

 

For thou hast been a strength to the poor, a strength to the needy in his distress, a refuge from the storm, a shadow from the heat, when the blast of the terrible ones [is] as a storm [against] the wall.

Isaiah 25:4

So, the advise that storms mean changes for the better are coming, one must be prepared to weather the storms and see them through. But, the glorious thing is that we need not weather the storms alone. I have had stormy times in my life. Sometimes I tried to get through them on my own and it was not good. A year or so ago I had some of the most horrendous storms I could have ever imagined and I was feeling a lot of despair, hopelessness and lost. However, in those storms I reached for the shelter of God and sought Jesus to help me through the storm and He did exactly as He promises, He carried me through those times, He gave me comfort and more than that, He gave me forgiveness of my sins. What an amazing God we serve.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.    1 John 1:9

He rescued me in my storm; He calmed the seas; He forgave me my sins and I was changed. I cannot begin to express the depth of thankfulness I have for all the grace and mercy He shows me. None of which I deserve, but He gives them to me anyway.

 

My Heavenly Father,   I praise You and thank You for not only helping me make it through the storms, but giving me a change in seasons, a change in me thanks to You as I did nothing to earn it or be worthy of what You did for me and I can’t thank You enough for the mercy and grace that allowed me to be forgiven and redeemed. In the name of Jesus I ask that You work in the hearts of loved ones that they may see Your glory and come to know you as their savior as well. I ask that You help us all see that in spite of the storms a new season awaits us and that leaning on You for protection and comfort in those troubling times will not only get us through those times, but make us better for having called out to You in those times.

Amen

 

I appreciate the time that you all take to ready my blog. I hope you all are blessed today and have a chance to bless someone else as well.

 

 

Should I continue?

So, I got a notice today that it is about time to renew my subscription for the blog and I am asking myself: “Should I continue with the blog?” I initially started it to have a venue to write my thoughts as writing them out and reading is helpful to me and I hoped it would be helpful to someone else. I didn’t start it to try to make money so I didn’t do any advertisements.

It did help me, still does, but I find myself at a point where I will not have as much time available due to some changes in my life. I didn’t make any money from it, no shock since, as I said, I don’t do advertising and that is where bloggers earn money from their blogs. It isn’t really expensive so it isn’t a huge financial burden to continue it. My concern is the time factor and so I question myself about that. I weigh the benefits and the costs in time and money and I wonder if I should persist with this.

It has always been a good outlet for my thoughts and an opportunity to read the Bible as I write to see what He has to tell me about the issue with which I am dealing at the time. But, I wonder if I would do better to simply study the scripture and spend the time in prayer as opposed to continuing the blog.

1 To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven:
2 A time to be born, and a time to die; a time to plant, and a time to pluck up that which is planted;
3 A time to kill, and a time to heal; a time to break down, and a time to build up;
4 A time to weep, and a time to laugh; a time to mourn, and a time to dance;
5 A time to cast away stones, and a time to gather stones together; a time to embrace, and a time to refrain from embracing;
6 A time to get, and a time to lose; a time to keep, and a time to cast away;
7 A time to rend, and a time to sew; a time to keep silence, and a time to speak;
8 A time to love, and a time to hate; a time of war, and a time of peace.

Ecclesiastes  3:1-9

I ask myself, has the time that He wants me to blog come to an end? Does He have better ways for me to seek Him? Am I writing things that others find a blessing?

Well, to answer those questions; I don’t know. So, on that issue I will pray, seek His counsel and guidance and let Him lead me on this issue. I have a little over a month, so between now and then, I will give that to the Lord and see what He has to tell me.

I will instruct thee and teach thee in the way which thou shalt go: I will guide thee with mine eye. Psalms 32:8

 

Howbeit when he, the Spirit of truth, is come, he will guide you into all truth: for he shall not speak of himself; but whatsoever he shall hear, [that] shall he speak: and he will shew you things to come. John 16:13

 

And thine ears shall hear a word behind thee, saying, This [is] the way, walk ye in it, when ye turn to the right hand, and when ye turn to the left.  Isaiah 30:21

 

5 If any of you lack wisdom, let him ask of God, that giveth to all [men] liberally, and upbraideth not; and it shall be given him.
6 But let him ask in faith, nothing wavering. For he that wavereth is like a wave of the sea driven with the wind and tossed.

James 1:5-6

 

So, I will seek Him and His guidance and in the next few weeks, I will see how He leads me.

Lord, Praise Your Holy Name. I thank You for the help You have given me through this blog. I ask in the name of Jesus that You help me to know Your will and way for me. If I should continue this blog or if You wish me to serve You in another way. I ask that You show me the path You have for me so that I take it. Thank You for the mercies You have shown me and thank You for the forgiveness and redemption from sin that Christ bought for me with His blood and suffering. I pray that loved ones be drawn to You and that You help them all to know where they should continue and where You want them to serve You. In their current paths or do You have different plans for them for their futures. Help us all to know You and Your will for us. Reach out Lord to my children and loved ones that they know You as their personal Savior so we can rejoice in Heaven together.

Amen.

 

Thank you all for your time today. I hope all have a blessed day and can be a blessing to someone else as well.

Challenges

 

 

I have had some challenging times and life being what it is I expect more challenges. In life, there are always challenges. One cannot escape the probability of challenges, we all have and will face any number of challenges and difficulties. Those challenges may be due to financial problems, job changes, marital, loss of family members due to death, health difficulties, difficulties with home repairs, automobile repairs, temptations, problems with completing school work or hard tests to take. There is always some sort of difficulty around the corner waiting for us. Some, so overwhelming that one cannot see how they could get past them, how they will be able to afford the cost, whether financial, emotional or physical. Facing challenges has costs that cannot be avoided. If facing a huge bill that they don’t have the money to pay. They see a pending loss of a loved one that they do not see any way they will be able to cope without that person in their life. I remember watching my parents as they slipped away from me. Praise the Lord, they are with Him now, but I faced those losses with such an emptiness that I could never have imagined being possible. There are some challenges that are smaller, less difficult to face and others so overwhelming that a way to overcome them is beyond the grasp of ones mind.

There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God [is] faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear [it].                   1 Corinthians 10:13

After facing all manner of challenges in my life, before and after my salvation, but since my salvation I find that even the difficult challenges are easier, the hard times less so. Praying to help me see how He would have me react in those times, to see what path He wants me to take and of course, letting Christ carry my burdens for me.

28 Come unto me, all [ye] that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.
29 Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.  Matthew 11:28-29

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  Philippians 4:6

I can do all things through Christ which strengtheneth me.  Philippians 4:13

So. As I face new challenges in life, because life is full of challenges some worse than others, sometimes more frequent but I will face more challenges. I have His strength to help me be strong. I have Christ to bear my burdens. I have a Lord that loves and protects me in difficult times.

 

But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle [you].  1 Peter 5:10

 

I will lean on Him in the challenges; seek His counsel when confused; ask or His comfort when dealing with troubling situations.

 

Lord, Praise You in all Your Glory. I thank You for the comfort You give in troubled times, for the strength to stay the course when I am facing struggles to continue on the course You have laid before me. I know that I will never be at a point that challenges do not come my way but I thank You for being there to help me through those times. I ask in the name of Jesus that others facing challenges, facing big decisions or difficult times, currently or in the future, be given the grace You have shown me and that You speak to their hearts and minds that they know that You are with them and give them guidance and understanding of their individual paths so they know what they need to do. Show them Your will in their lives and give them the peace when You speak to them so that they have the comfort only You can give. Thank You Lord for my salvation through the sacrifice of Your Son Christ.

Amen

Well, its cold in the Midwest and hopefully will warm up soon. I hope all have a blessed day and are able to be a blessing to someone else.

Hitch hiking.

hitchhiker

 

Well, not exactly but sort of, I was thinking about sometimes as one deals with the things life throws at them, they need a lift. Like a hitch hiker out in the middle of no where, thumb out and hoping for a ride to the next town, some place they can rest, get some nourishment and prepare for the next part of the journey. Maybe it is pouring rain and chilly, the hitcher is soaked, cold, and miserable. Waiting for a ride and a warm, dry place of shelter while getting to the desired destination. Maybe the last ride they had dropped them off at the wrong location and they are lost. Maybe it seems that there is no way to get to where they want to go from where they are currently.

Fear thou not; for I [am] with thee: be not dismayed; for I [am] thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness.  Isaiah 41:10

Come unto me, all [ye] that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.  Matthew 11:28

I don’t know about anyone else, but I know I get worn out dealing with various aspects of life, physically, mentally and emotionally exhausted. Life can be harsh and can drain a person. I’m not moaning about my life being horrible, it’s better than a lot have, but it’s not perfect. Who does have a perfect life? No person I know. We all have our own worries and challenges that take a toll on a person. We all have things that make us sad, tired, helpless or hopeless. We feel like we are out in a storm, life events dumping on us, we are drenched, cold, alone and may feel like we are at a hopeless location that we have no possibility of moving out of it. That can be a physical location, financial, emotional, spiritual or other type of situation, but regardless of the circumstances we need lifted out of that situation; we need some sort of shelter and protection; we need comforting.

Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.  Romans 15:13

But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, he shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you.   John 14:26

Fortunately, there is Someone to whom we can turn for that ride to our destinations. Someone that will protect us from the storms that have been beating us up spiritually with the winds and rains of whatever hardship with which we are dealing, to the point we are soaked to the core. Someone that will give us that warm, dry shelter, help us dry off, feed us spiritually, carry us to where we need to be, which may or not be where we think we should go. If we let Him, He will do all that we need.

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. 1 John 1:9

Unlike most drivers that see a hitchhiker and are worried about what possible dangers the hitchhiker may present, God doesn’t worry about that, He sees someone with their “thumb out” asking for help, asking for that lift, asking for that shelter and comfort and Christ pulls over, helps us into His vehicle and takes care of what we need. No matter how bad one may be, Jesus is more than ready to take them in, lift them up and carry them through the storms to His “truck stop” that gives us the comfort and spiritual nutrition we need. Regardless of where we think we need to go, if we allow Christ the control He will deliver us and be sure to get us to where we need to be for His glory.

For thou hast been a shelter for me, [and] a strong tower from the enemy.        Psalms 61:3

Our spiritual thumb is prayer and acknowledgement that Jesus is the son of God, if we confess that He is the Lord, that Christ is His Son who died for us. He will give us that ride we need, He will be our salvation and deliverance. What an amazing Lord He is!

9 That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.
10 For with the heart man believeth unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.
11 For the scripture saith, Whosoever believeth on him shall not be ashamed.    Romans 10:9-11

 

Lord, I praise You and thank You for the lifts You give me as I struggle through life. Lifting me out of sin and carrying me to forgiveness and salvation. I thank You for protecting me and comforting me in my times of need and for knowing where I need to go, regardless of where I want to go. For knowing better than I know what Your plans are for me. I pray in the name of Jesus that I remain sensitive to where You want to take me and not try to plan my own destinations and that I remember during the storms and hard times I remember to call out to You, to seek You for my deliverance and comfort. I ask that you draw my loved ones to You so they also seek Christ in times of need, when they feel lost so that He may carry them to the destination He knows that they need to reach. Teach them to be sensitive to what He tells them on ways they need to serve Jesus.

Amen

 

I hope all are well and that you are blessed today. Please, be a blessing to someone else today.

 

Is that what you want to be doing when Jesus comes?

 

 

I have heard this said in a variety of different ways since I was a child. Maybe phrased as: Would you want to meet Jesus doing that? How would you feel if Jesus saw you doing that? If Jesus came now would you be proud of how you are living? Or, any number of similar phrases uttered by my mother, grandmother and others. There was a time I would have not been proud of my life, of my actions and I would have been ashamed if Jesus had seen me that way. I am better now but sometimes, I slip a little, I get annoyed and irritated, I don’t always have as gentle of a heart and am not as quick to turn the other cheek as He wants, but I am working on that with His help. I want to be ready when He returns.

34 And take heed to yourselves, lest at any time your hearts be overcharged with surfeiting, and drunkenness, and cares of this life, and [so] that day come upon you unawares.
35 For as a snare shall it come on all them that dwell on the face of the whole earth.
36 Watch ye therefore, and pray always, that ye may be accounted worthy to escape all these things that shall come to pass, and to stand before the Son of man.         Luke 21:34-36

I posted about signs of His coming. I didn’t list all the signs but there are a lot of them in the scripture. While there are signs that the time is coming we don’t know exactly when He will come.  I always think about when there is talk of the end of the world, predictions made by people who interpret various hieroglyphs, the Mayan calendar and other ancient writings and then give specific dates for whatever apocalypse they say will cause the end of the world then suddenly, the date comes and no end of the world. Those are the ones that remind me that we will not know the time He is coming until He arrives. So we must always be ready for His return.

But of that day and hour knoweth no [man], no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.  Matthew 24:36

42 Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come.
43 But know this, that if the goodman of the house had known in what watch the thief would come, he would have watched, and would not have suffered his house to be broken up.
44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh.

Matthew 24:42-44

But of that day and [that] hour knoweth no man, no, not the angels which are in heaven, neither the Son, but the Father.  Mark 13:32

 

No, we don’t know when He is coming, but when He comes what a glorious time for those who believe in Him and are saved. I fear for the unsaved but praise Him for those who will not be on Earth for the tribulations that will follow.

15 For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep.
16 For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first:
17 Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord.                    1 Thessalonians 4:15-17

 

Lord,  Praise You and Your Holy Name. I thank You for my salvation. What a magnificent gift that is that You gave me. God, I both look forward to, and fear, the day that Christ returns. I look forward to rejoicing in Heaven with Jesus and worshipping at Your throne. But, I fear for those who continue in sin and who are not redeemed. I pray in the name of Jesus that You use me to help show others Your love and mercy that they may know the forgiveness and grace that await them if they confess Christ as Your son and ask for forgiveness of their sins. I pray that You help all know You and that You draw all my loved ones to You that they not be left behind when Christ returns.

Amen

 

Well, I hope something I said blesses someone, I would encourage all to take time and read about the signs of His return and what will occur when He does come. If you are not where you think you should be when He returns, then talk to God and get to where you feel Him lead you. Have a blessed day and try to be a blessing to someone else.

 

Signs of the times?

danger sign

2 And Jesus said unto them, See ye not all these things? verily I say unto you, There shall not be left here one stone upon another, that shall not be thrown down.
3 And as he sat upon the mount of Olives, the disciples came unto him privately, saying, Tell us, when shall these things be? and what shall be the sign of thy coming, and of the end of the world?
4 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Take heed that no man deceive you.
5 For many shall come in my name, saying, I am Christ; and shall deceive many.
6 And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet.
7 For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places.
8 All these are the beginning of sorrows.

Matthew 24:2-8

 

A friend and I were talking about the second coming of Christ. How some of the various signs that we were told to watch for seem to be occurring and that indicates the time is getting close. My grandfather said many years ago that the time was getting close; he talked about all the signs he was seeing that indicated Christ would return soon. Now, I can see that some of the signs that are in the Bible have occurred. Yet, there are a lot of other signs that have not yet occurred.

1 This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away. 2 Timothy 3:1-5

 

25 And there shall be signs in the sun, and in the moon, and in the stars; and upon the earth distress of nations, with perplexity; the sea and the waves roaring;
26 Men’s hearts failing them for fear, and for looking after those things which are coming on the earth: for the powers of heaven shall be shaken.
27 And then shall they see the Son of man coming in a cloud with power and great glory.
28 And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.                                                                         Luke 21:25-28

 

SO, when will He come? When will the Rapture happen? Well, THAT is something that we just cannot determine. In fact, He tells us that He will come when we don’t expect Him.

But of that day and hour knoweth no [man], no, not the angels of heaven, but my Father only.  Matthew 24:6

Remember therefore how thou hast received and heard, and hold fast, and repent. If therefore thou shalt not watch, I will come on thee as a thief, and thou shalt not know what hour I will come upon thee.  Revelation 3:3

What is undeniable is that regardless of exactly WHEN, that time is coming and is getting closer by the day. Will it be within a year? Two? Twenty? A hundred? A thousand? Well, as He warns us, we cannot determine when, but we must prepare as it will come. God’s concept of time as to what is soon is vastly different than ours, to God, an immortal, eternal being, time means nothing. A second, hour, day, year, millennia all are the same to Him. But, come He will and He will keep His promises to us.

8 But, beloved, be not ignorant of this one thing, that one day is with the Lord as a thousand years, and a thousand years as one day.
9 The Lord is not slack concerning his promise, as some men count slackness; but is longsuffering to us-ward, not willing that any should perish, but that all should come to repentance.
10 But the day of the Lord will come as a thief in the night; in the which the heavens shall pass away with a great noise, and the elements shall melt with fervent heat, the earth also and the works that are therein shall be burned up.                                    2 Peter 3:8-10

 

Oh, the times will be difficult, but for those who believe in Him and are following Him we will be spared much of that which is to come. I am not a Biblical Scholar so I didn’t and won’t try to “over interpret” all the signs that we will see before His coming. I will address the Rapture and other aspects of what He tells us will occur when Christ returns in the near future.

 

Lord, Praise Your Name, I thank You for the blessings You give me, for the assuredness that Christ will return. I pray in Jesus name that we be ready that no one need suffer through the tribulation after Your return and that You draw us closer to You. Make us ready for the day that Christ returns and calls us up. Help us to be diligent and faithful until that time. Thank You for the mercy, forgiveness and redemption that Jesus earned for me with His suffering and death on the cross.

Amen.

 

Thanks for the visit today. Another winter storm in our area today, for the rest of you that are also dealing with the snow and cold, I pray He keeps you all safe and blesses you today and everyday. AND, of course that you have a chance to bless others.

Oh, and to those readers in warmer climates, I am jealous and so ready for the warmer weather.

Signs of Hope

hope

“My scars are someone else’s signs of hope.”

 

I saw this statement a while back, somewhere on the internet and had it tucked away in my list of topics. In a conversation with a friend the other day we were talking about hope, salvation, how Christ provided us escape from our sins and hopes through His suffering, crucifixion, and resurrection. All that was to allow that we, the hopeless and undeserving, would have forgiveness and salvation. Through His nail scarred hands we are saved.

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.   Isaiah 53:5

Who his own self bare our sins in his own body on the tree, that we, being dead to sins, should live unto righteousness: by whose stripes ye were healed. 1 Peter 2:24

Now, I got spankings when I was a child. NO, I am not whining about how I was abused. It was punishment for wrong doings. I don’t hate my parents for spanking me. Children need disciplined and discipline needs to be sufficient to make sure a child remembers what they did, what the behavior brought and that they would rather avoid the punishment by not doing wrong in the future. BUT, this is not a blog about that, so as before I digress……let me get back on track………..

Yes, I did get spankings and they were painful. But that does not compare with the beatings Christ received when He was beaten before being crucified. The whips they used had bits of metal or bone imbedded in them so they not only stung, but cut and ripped flesh. He had nails driven into His hands and feet(still some debate on where the nails were actually placed during crucifixions, but this is not about the historical accuracy,) pounded through His feet and hoisted into the air to die a slow, painful death. All that suffering was so WE could have forgiveness. His suffering gives me hope.

I have had some tell me that when I write about hardships and difficult times they think I am whining. No, I have to admit, it isn’t always pleasant thinking about some things I have been through. There are not too many out there that enjoy thinking on unpleasant things, on difficulties I have endured. Talking or writing about them makes it even more unpleasant. BUT, God sometimes burdens me to share some things. Not to get other to pity me, not to moan and wail about poor little me. But, I was scarred; some are physical scars that are visible; others are emotional or spiritual scars. I had things I carried with me from my life experiences. Sadly, I allowed those things to become barriers between me and God. Instead of seeking Him I built walls to isolate myself emotionally. Yes, I had and have scars. But, as the quote above says, and the reason for some posts, is that my scars and difficult times, with the salvation and deliverance Christ bought for me is a sign of hope for others. Well, I hope so anyway. I hope that through this or that event in my life from which Jesus delivered me that others see some similarity and realize that if God will do that for me, He will do that for them as well. I hope that my scars show them that there is hope in Christ and that He is the only true hope for any of us.

12 Rejoicing in hope; patient in tribulation; continuing instant in prayer;
13 Distributing to the necessity of saints; given to hospitality.

Romans 12:12-13

Now the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that ye may abound in hope, through the power of the Holy Ghost.  Romans 15:13

I pray that seeing my trials and tribulations reminds them that we all have suffered in life but more importantly that there is cause for rejoicing thanks to the hope we have in Jesus. I know that all suffer, many far worse than I, but we do all suffer and because of that we all have our own scars. But, hopefully someone will see what I have endured and have hope that if God can do what He did for me, He can do similar for them. All they have to do is believe in Him.

That if thou shalt confess with thy mouth the Lord Jesus, and shalt believe in thine heart that God hath raised him from the dead, thou shalt be saved.  Romans 10:9

 

Lord, I praise You and thank You for the salvation that was paid for through Christ’s suffering, crucifixion and resurrection. I know that I am not worthy of that, but You gave it to me anyway. I see my hopes in the knowledge that He suffered to deliver me from sin through the stripes He took for me. I pray in the name of Jesus that You use me in some way to help others see that regardless of what scars they carry, You can heal their souls, forgive them their sins, give them salvation and give them hope of a blessed eternity with You. I pray that You draw each one of us closer to You that we may give hope to one another and help each other to find Your perfect peace and the true path and plan You have for each one of us.

Amen

 

I thank you all for your time today and I hope you each have a blessed day. And, as always, that you are able to be a blessing to at least one other person today.

Trials

trial

 

I was watching news and they had some coverage about a man being on trial. The talked about the charges against him and such. Wellllll…..my mind working as it does I had a couple different thoughts. One was that with all the evidence God has against me due to my human frailties and from that I have sinned. I am guilty and even though I am guilty with no defense, I was forgiven. The charges against me were dropped and my record expunged. Christ paid my “attorney fees and court costs” with His pain, suffering and death on the cross. He bought me my freedom, forgiveness and salvation and paid for my place in Heaven when He defeated death and was resurrected. I didn’t deserve it, but He did. I’ve said it before, what an amazing God!

But he was wounded for our transgressions, he was bruised for our iniquities: the chastisement of our peace was upon him; and with his stripes we are healed.   Isaiah 53:5

If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us [our] sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness.  1 John 1:9

The other thought was about trials. Not court cases but difficulties we deal with throughout our lives. Problems at work, with family or other relationships, financial, any number of trials. Sometimes people think those trials are punishment for our sins. But that isn’t the case for those who seek Christ and acknowledge He is the son of God who suffered and was crucified for us. If we do that and confess their sins, ask God to forgive us He does so. And the sin exists no more. God won’t punish us for something that doesn’t exist. We become new creatures who are blameless in His eyes.

Therefore if any man [be] in Christ, [he is] a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new.  2 Corinthians 5:17

He does allow us to go through, and sometimes puts us through trials. Not as punishment but as a means to improve our walk with Him; to help our faith grow, to teach us to lean on Jesus and not ourselves, to strengthen us spiritually so we are better able to withstands all the enemy throws at us. He rewards our faithfulness during those trials through spiritual growth. Oh, He rewards other ways at times but the most precious reward is the one that has no monetary value but pays tremendous dividends in Heaven.

3 And not only [so], but we glory in tribulations also: knowing that tribulation worketh patience;
4 And patience, experience; and experience, hope:
5 And hope maketh not ashamed; because the love of God is shed abroad in our hearts by the Holy Ghost which is given unto us.

Romans 5:3-5

But the God of all grace, who hath called us unto his eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after that ye have suffered a while, make you perfect, stablish, strengthen, settle [you].  1 Peter 5:10

12 Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you:
13 But rejoice, inasmuch as ye are partakers of Christ’s sufferings; that, when his glory shall be revealed, ye may be glad also with exceeding joy.

1 Peter 4:12-13

Lord, I come to you and ask again for the forgiveness You offer for my sins. Though I try to not sin I know that I fail at times. I praise Your name and thank You for the gift of Your own Son who suffered and died in my place and who arose and defeated the death I earned. I pray in the name of Jesus that people see the message You try to give us and that You draw them to You. I pray that those going through trials remember to look to You and seek You in the difficult times that You deliver them from their sins and strengthen their faith during the hardships. Bring us all closer to You that we may know Your true grace and mercy.

Amen.

I hope all are safe and God is with you as you go about your days. If you don’t think He is, look into your hearts to see that He is there, waiting for you to reach out to Him. I hope all are blessed and that you are able to be a blessing to someone else as well.

Sometimes all you can do is pray. (BUT…THAT is a lot!)

praying.png

 

I think we all know people that go through hard times. I deal with a lot of people: family, friends, patients and others. It seems I have always been one that people feel comfortable talking to about a lot of things that they wouldn’t talk to a lot of people about. People I barely know would tell me a lot of personal things. Usually it seemed they were sort of either just needing to talk to allow them to think through things themselves but other times they were looking for advice. I am not really fond of giving advice because if it doesn’t work as well as they like, I end up being blamed and even if not blamed, I don’t like thinking I did something that caused them hardships of some sort. But, as it goes, I do hear things that sometimes I don’t really have a way to help them….well, other than pray for them. And, as I see it, that is way better than giving advice or helping other ways. Prayer is a powerful thing. Oh, I will share some scripture if I can, but sometimes, whether I tell them or not, I pray for them. I always hope they will pray for themselves too.

Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.  Philippians 4:6

Likewise the Spirit also helpeth our infirmities: for we know not what we should pray for as we ought: but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered.  Romans 8:26

But thou, when thou prayest, enter into thy closet, and when thou hast shut thy door, pray to thy Father which is in secret; and thy Father which seeth in secret shall reward thee openly.  Matthew 6:6

Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.  Hebrews 4:16

 

Pray without ceasing.  1 Thessalonians 5:17

 

There are so many verses that talk about praying. Whether for financial, physical, emotional or any other hardship, prayer and earnestly seeking God will help. God will help.

 

Lord, I worship You and thank You that we can come to You in good times and bad. Praising You in good times and thanking You for the blessings, grace and mercy You give us. I praise You for being a God that helps in time of need also. Lord, I know there are so many people out there that are hurting: physically, emotionally, financially and in ways I cannot even imagine. But, You know their needs before they even speak of them. I know many people with so many different things that need Your hand in their lives. I know there are far more needs than I know about too. I pray in the name of Jesus that You reach those people and help them through the hard times they face. That You give them the peace of mind in knowing that You will help them. Help them find the strength they need to face the hardships and the strength and courage as You lead them through their hard times, showing them the way but not only the way out of the difficult times and situations but the way to salvation and the true richness of redemption and the blessings that are in store for them if they follow You and take the steps that You show them to take. Show them all the way to forgiveness, through the sacrifice Jesus made on the cross and paid for with His blood. Draw us all to You as You help us through life. Teach us how to pray as we should and how to be the people that You want us to be for Your Glory.

Amen

Well, I thank everyone who visits and I hope that something I say blesses you. Please, try to be a blessing to someone else as well.