Saturday, September 17, 2011

Three Things Recipe Example

find this personal worship tool recipe at Beggar Sharing Bread

Friday, September 16, 2011 – Matthew 6

1.     Am I effectively ministering to my discipleship group
2.     How do I best use my time this day?
3.     Feeling overwhelmed for Scott and all that is on his plate
4.     Overwhelmed by how next year will be so different as T starts school

Lord, I’m once again blown away by how Your Word truly is “living and active.” My Journey curriculum work is from Matthew 6, but I love how You knew that it was exactly the words I needed to read today to feed my soul.

I don’t even know where to begin; there were so many verses that ministered to me. The key verse that I am walking away with today is verse 33 – “But seek (I need to actively look for, not just passively wait for) FIRST (before anything else), the kingdom of God and HIS righteousness (not my prideful self-righteousness), and ALL these things (everything I need, not just some) will be added to you.

I’m convicted that saying I’m feeling overwhelmed is just a polite way of saying I’m feeling worried. Yet 25-33 reminds me of your deep love for me and your promise to take care of me. When I worry, I am calling you a liar and not believing in your promises or trusting in your character. You do not lie. You WILL take care of me, and as Jesus taught, worry doesn’t accomplish anything. I am being anxious about the future with Tal’s school and Scott’s schedules with work and graduate school, but Jesus you have commanded me very clearly in verse 34 – “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.” 

Forgive me, Lord, for my worry. And forgive me for how I will probably be worried about these same things all over again in the days to come. But thank you that Jesus you have already paid for ALL my sin, all my worry, past, present, and future. You love me, Father God, just as much as You love Your very own son, Jesus. You have freed me from the penalty of my sin; I can experience heaven and glory wit h You after I die – BUT you didn’t just come to save me upon my death, You also came to give me life and life to the full! You tell me not to worry, not because Your love for me is conditional upon rules and my obedience, but because You love me SO much, You want me to be set free and have true LIFE, not just in heaven, but on earth, too!

I love verses 8 and 32 – You know what I need; You know what I need before I even ask! You knew before You created me, exactly what I would need for this day  - Friday, September 16, 2011. If the creator and sustainer of the universe can speak this world into existence with just words, how much more are you able to take care of my life?! And not only are you able, you are desirous of it. You care for the birds of the air, but you say that I am of “more value than they” (verse 26). Thank You, God, for loving me perfectly and giving me this day. Lord, help me to walk in the power of Your Spirit today, laying aside the things that distract me from seeking Your kingdom first. There are only 24 hours in this day; please show me how to best use them to love You and to love others. May the truth that you have fed me with this morning sustain me throughout this day. Keep it fresh in my mind and heart, Holy Spirit. Thank you, Lord, for this precious time with You!

I Am a Beautiful Silver Platter

I have a dear friend, Christy K., with whom I have been reading through Scripture. We've had such fun sharing what God is teaching us, and it is so cool to see how God's Word is "living and active." We'll often read the same passage and be ministered to in totally different ways. Then, as "iron sharpens iron" sharing our thoughts, challenges, questions, and convictions grows our souls as well. It's also been great accountability to dig into God's Word daily. If you are struggling to find delight in Scripture, I highly encourage you to read through it with a friend!

Recently she passed along this analogy that I thought was so amazing it had to be shared! Now she would agree with me when I caution God's Word for yourself first. See what He has to teach you from 2 Timothy 2 and be blessed. But after you've chewed on some raw Bible for yourself, be encouraged by what He is sharing through my beautiful friend as well...

2 Timothy 2:20 Now in  a great house there are not only vessels of gold and silver but also of wood and clay,  some for honorable use, some for dishonorable. 21 Therefore,  if anyone cleanses himself from what is dishonorable,  he will be a vessel for honorable use, set apart as holy, useful to the master of the house,  ready for every good work.

OK, go with me on this one :) I read this verse in The Message and journaled about this and God gave me this picture. Here it is in The Message first...

2 Timothy 2:20-21 In a well-furnished kitchen there are not only crystal goblets and silver platters, but waste cans and compost buckets—some containers used to serve fine meals, others to take out the garbage. Become the kind of container God can use to present any and every kind of gift to his guests for their blessing.

I got the picture that He made me to be a beautiful silver platter. Beautiful because it is formed and shaped and etched by Him but also polished daily by His Son's grace. Have you ever seen a tarnished piece of silver? I used to clean my parents' house for extra $$. My dad has a silver cup from his fraternity in his office. It always looked old and ugly until one day I polished it, and it is beautiful! We need daily polishing from His Word and His forgiveness and grace poured over us! We are His creations made in His image, so of course we are going to be beautiful!

But I also like the analogy of being a silver PLATTER because our function is to be servants! We are to serve! Not be put up on a shelf and collect dust or even to be used as decoration! We are servants of the King! We are to be used to serve the King daily! And to serve His people in His kingdom and His guests!

And sometimes we are meant to do the dirty work and be garbage cans or disposals, but sometimes we get to be the silver platter :)

I know there is tons more packed into these verses, and tomorrow I could get something entirely different from this, and that's what is so cool about His Word :)
Anyways, I thought that was cool and wanted to share :)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

Dialoguing - Example

find this personal worship tool recipe at Beggar Sharing Bread

September 7, 2011 - Luke 4:1-14

Lord, I praise You for doing what I cannot do in my own strength - withstanding the temptations of sin and the devil. There is so much from this passage that stands out to me. First, your 40 days in the desert both began and ended with the Holy Spirit (verses 1 & 14). What an awesome reminder to me that temptation is strong, but the power that comes from You is stronger! However, I need to be diligent in wearing my spiritual armor and walking in the Spirit so that I can overcome temptation.

The Holy Spirit is still somewhat mysterious to me. Lord, would You please teach me more about this part of who You are? Often I see myself falling for the lies of the devil. I buy into his temptation that You will not meet my basic needs (verse 3) or I struggle with worshiping the pleasures of this world, not believing that You alone are worthy of worship (verses 6-7). You give Your children the gift of the Holy Spirit. Would You fill me with His power today and enable me to withstand the lies and temptations of Satan, particularly on this day where I will be tired since I didn't sleep well last night? I believe that nothing is impossible for You (Luke 1:37) and that You can fill me with supernatural energy and patience to get me through this day. Thank You, Lord!

Also, Jesus, I see how You fought every temptation of Satan with Scripture. Man truly does not live on bread alone, but on EVERY word that comes from You! (Matthew 4:4). I pray, Jesus, that You would enable me to memorize more of Your Word and to help my boys memorize it, too. Help me to be diligent in feeding not only their physical bodies, but more importantly, their spiritual bodies. I know, Lord, that I cannot feed them with what I do not have. Thank You for opening my eyes to the blessing of being in Your Word each day. I pray You will give my boys that desire as well. I pray Scott and I would set forth an example that reading and memorizing Scripture is a delight, not a burden and that what the boys see in us would be Your tool for opening their hearts to Your love letter as well.

Lord, I want to end my time with you with praise. You, Jesus, truly are God. No human could withstand 40 days without food, but You did because You are 100% God and 100% man. Thank You for doing what only You could do - paying for all my sin and reuniting my soul with my Creator. Praise you, thank you; it is in YOUR precious and powerful name I pray - the name of Jesus Christ my Lord and Savior. Amen!