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Tuesday, January 31, 2006

The Master of the Wind

As I've said on here before, I LOVE to sing. It's a huge part of my life. Even before I became a Christian, singing was something I loved, but after I trusted in Christ, it became more important. See, singing became something I could do for Christ. It became a way I could worship Him and serve Him. It became a way I could minister to those around me.
My life belongs to Christ. Whatever He chooses to do through me is what I want to do. Sometimes the road is easy and other times its hard. But regardless of the path, Psalm 23 says I never walk alone. Jesus is always right by my side.
I learned this first-hand during one of the toughest times of my life. Last January 4, I had to have brain surgery. Now in the modern day of technology, these types of surgeries are becoming more and more common. But when you are a 22 year old young girl, its a scary thought. I prayed that God would give me another way. Before I went to meet the surgeon, I begged God to change my circumstances. He didn't change them, but from the moment I met the surgeon, I had a peace like I'd never known before. It was as if Jesus whispered in my ear and told me, "Everything's going to be alright."
After that point, I really had no qualms. I came through the surgery and recovered very quickly. And since that point I've had very few headaches.
I look back on that time in my life as one of the most precious memories because it was a time that drew me closer to God. Was it easy? No. But things that make you grow are rarely easy.
So remember, Jesus is with you no matter where you are. He'll whisper, "Peace, be still" to your heart. All you have to do is ask Him.
I'll leave you today with some words from one of my favorite songs:

My boat of life, sails on a troubled sea,
Ever there's a wind in my sail.
But I have a friend, who watches over me,
When the wind turns into a gale.

I know the Master of the Wind,
I know the Maker of the Rain.
He can calm the storm,
Make the sun shine again,
I know the Master of the Wind.

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Monday, January 30, 2006

I've Been Nominated

Well, I don't know what to think of this, but I've been nominated for the religious category of Best so Far, Jan 2006. I'm supposed to ask for votes, but I really don't know that I deserve it! There are so many other blogs out there that are so much better! Anyway, here's the link Go over there and vote for your favorite!!

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Miracle in Me

This week, I'm going to share a little bit of my testimony. Because I realized that I've never done that before on here. Today, I'm gonna share about my salvation.
I was born into a Christian home. My grandfather is a pastor of a Baptist Church. My father's a deacon in that church. From a very young age I heard about Jesus and what He did for me on the cross.
When I was five years old I was entered into a Christian school. At that school, I learned even more about Jesus. I even said a prayer once to ask Jesus into my heart, but I didn't really understand what I was doing. I just thought it was expected of me.
So I grew from the young age of five to the age of thirteen. I'd grown pretty good at "playing" the part of a Christian. I memorized all the verses. I had every Sunday School attendance pin and Bible School Attendance award. I even got brownie points for bringing my Bible to Sunday School.
But none of that changed the fact that I was still a sinner. I was a hypocrite. Deep down, I knew it. I knew that I didn't have what my parents had. I didn't have what my grandparents had. The joy I saw in them wasn't present in my life.
Finally, when I was thirteen, I decided I'd had enough of playing church. A preacher came to our church, and to this day I couldn't tell you what he preached about. But the Spirit convicted me that night by showing me how little I truly cared for the things of God. I often ignored the preaching, spending the service passing notes to my friends. I'd do anything to avoid listening. And God finally showed me why. He showed me that I didn't care about the things of Christ because I'd never accepted Him as my Savior.
So on that Friday night, March 31, 1995, as a thirteen year old girl, I went down to the front of the church and asked Jesus to be my Savior, for real. It wasn't very easy because everyone had thought I was a Christian already. I had a real fight with my pride, but it finally came to a point that I had to have Christ in my life.
He worked a miracle in my heart that day. He changed me completely. I'm not gonna say I've been perfect since that day. I've fallen multiple times, but I've never lost the assurance I gained that night.
There's a song that has often touched my heart since that time of my life. It talks about the miracle of salvation. See, the greatest miracle isn't that Jesus fed 5,000 or that He walked on water. The greatest miracle is that He loved us enough to save us all. Here's the chorus to that song:
I have never seen the thousands fed,
Or the blind made to see.
I have never watched Him raise the dead,
But I know when He lifted me.
There's a wonder right before my eyes,
Close enough to see.
And in my heart is where this wonder lies.
There's a miracle in me.
So remember, no matter where you are in your life, whether you're sitting on the church pews or a drunkard in the street, Christ can work that same miracle in you that He worked in me.

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Friday, January 27, 2006

If Only...

Regret. Its a painful part of life. One that overcomes many Christians. See, we are striving to live for a Holy God, and when we look back on the things we've done to disappoint Him, we feel unworthy.
Though we've asked God's forgiveness and received it, we allow the guilt of the past to overtake us, and we stop living in the present. So we are accomplishing nothing for God. Hours, days, and years are wasted in the land of "If Only."
We work our every scenario in our minds and tell ourselves, if only I'd done this differently or that differently. If only I hadn't dated that person. If only I hadn't gone to that party. If only I hadn't made this choice or that.
The problem is that no matter how much we think about these things, we can never go back and change them. Yesterday is gone, and good or bad, we can't live it again.
But we can change how we are living today. We can determine that everything we do will be for God's glory.
Psalm 103:12 tells us, "As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us."
When we ask God's forgiveness He removes our sin. Don't let a sin that God has forgiven rule your life. Acts 3:19 tells us that when we repent our sins are blotted out. God doesn't remember them anymore.
One of my favorite songs is called, "Forgiven, Forgotten, Forever." I'll leave you today to ponder the words of the chorus:

Forgiven, forgotten, forever
They're all under the blood
When we confess all our sins,
He will not remember them.
They're forgiven, forgotten, forever.

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Thursday, January 26, 2006

Keep Hands and Arms Inside the Vehicle

My brother-in-law got a huge laugh out of all of us last night when he put my five month old nephew, Trace, in his carrier and said, "Keep your hands and arms inside the ride at all times."
Of course being that he's an infant strapped into a carrier, Trace has little choice to do otherwise.
But the thought got me to thinking. As you may have guessed from my blog's title, I LOVE roller coasters. The faster the better. The only thing I hate is the five minute speech you get every time you ride one. You know the one that basically tells you, "Have some common sense!"
Of course in order for them to have to give this reminder everytime, probably means that at some point, someone has tried to put their arms or legs out of the vehicle, or actually tried to stand up while the ride was in motion.
It's very easy for me to see the stupidity of standing on a roller coaster. But how many times in life do I totally ignore God's rules? How many times do I disobey the laws He has set down just to protect me?
I can't begin to count the times. See, its easy to understand physical danger. We learn at an early age not to touch hot things because we'll get burnt. We learn to stay away from the mean dog that bites.
But spiritual danger is something we often forget completely about. We don't just touch the hot things, we live in the fire. Then suddenly one day we wonder what happened. And if we look back, it usually started with one small sin. Maybe just a little white lie. Maybe just one Sunday that we skipped church.
Obedience is important to God. Its important to Him because He wants whats best for us.
I Samuel 15:22 says, "to obey is better than sacrifice."
He'd rather have you obey than for you to give all that you own to the church.
So check your life today. See if there are little things between you and God. If there are, get rid of them. Because little things become big things in time.
Fortunately we have a God of second chances! (And third, and fourth, and hundredth!)

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Wednesday, January 25, 2006

I Gotta Dance

My niece, Raegan, loves to dance. When music plays she instinctively starts bobbing her head, waving her hands and stomping her feet. She just enjoys the music.
We get quite a few laughs watching her dance moves. It never fails to brighten my spirits.
I got to thinking the other day. God wants us to come to Him just like that. He wants us to come like a child. (Matthew 18:3) A child pays no mind to what they look like in front of others. They just take joy in the moment. They LIVE life.
Jesus said in John 10:10 that He came to bring us life more abundantly. So why do we sit back letting the joy pass us by?
Sure life isn't always going to be happy, but joy is something more than happiness. Joy is something that dwells within even during the hardest times in life.
Nehemiah 8:10 tells us, "for the joy of the LORD is your strength." So live in that joy. Don't be afraid to dance in His presence. Don't let pride hold you back.

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Tuesday, January 24, 2006

God Cares

Last night I got a rude awakening, literally. My car decided to go crazy in the middle of the night. The alarm went off, the radio blared, the lights flashed, and with all the noise my dogs decided to bark and go crazy. Mind you, this is all at 2 in the morning.
All of this taught me two things. First, that I need to learn a few things about cars, namely how to unplug a battery. Second, and more importantly, it reminded me that God cares even about the stupidest little things in our lives.
Now a electronically malfunctional car may not mean much to you, but at 2 this morning, I was praying very hard for wisdom on how to get the alarm to turn off. (Thank God for a nice neighbor who knew how to unplug a battery, and who didn't hate me when my alarm woke him up!)
See God wants to be involved in every aspect of our lives. He wants to know the things that frustrate us. He wants to know the things that hurt our feelings. He wants to know the things that make us jump for joy. He is a personal God.
One of my favorite passages in the Bible is found in Luke 12. Particularly verses 6 and 7.
6 Are not five sparrows sold for two farthings, and not one of them is forgotten before God? 7 But even the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Fear not therefore: ye are of more value than many sparrows.
See God even sees the smallest sparrow in the sky. Not one falls to the ground without Him knowing it.
Remember, we are more important to Him than many sparrows. He wants to know about everything going on. So the next time you get one of those "rude awakenings" take it to Him!

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Monday, January 23, 2006

No Room on the Sidelines

Have you ever watched the sidelines of a basketball game? There are a seemingly endless number of players sitting on the bench who never even take off their warm-up suits. I feel kind-of sorry for them. I mean they never get to play unless of course the team is up by 50 points, and the coach decides to let them play for maybe a minute at the end of the game.
But have you ever noticed, those bench-warmers celebrate the victory just as if they'd gained it on their own.
There are Christians just like that. Christians who do nothing more but sit on the pew. They listen to one obligatory sermon a week and feel they've done their part.
They don't sing. They don't preach. They do nothing for the shut-ins. They don't come to church clean-up day. They are nothing more than spectators.
Yet, when the church is praised, they speak up and say, "That's my church."
Christ didn't call us to sit on pews. He called us to work. He called us to build His kingdom.
Not everyone is going to be sent to the ends of the earth for missions. Your job may be as simple as greeting new people that come into your church, or picking up pieces gum paper that litter the pews after a service.
Christ simply asks that we have a servant's heart. A heart willing to do WHATEVER He asks of us. I want to be like the servant in Matthew 24, "44 Therefore be ye also ready: for in such an hour as ye think not the Son of man cometh. 45 Who then is a faithful and wise servant, whom his lord hath made ruler over his household, to give them meat in due season? 46 Blessed is that servant, whom his lord when he cometh shall find so doing."
I want to be found active in Christ's work when He returns. Being important in the world's standards is not my goal. Being found faithful in God's eyes is my sole desire.
How about you?

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Friday, January 20, 2006


Last night my Bible Study group met for the first time this year. This time its an all-ladies thing, so of course there was lots of chatter before-hand. But when things got serious, it was obvious that we were all there for the same goal. We each want to draw closer to God in our own personal walk with Him, and we all want to bring others closer to God through our witness. We all want to SHINE for Christ.

I heard a song this morning by the Newsboys that went along with that thought so well. It's called "Shine" Here's some of the words:

Shine, make them wonder what you've got.
Make them wish that they were not,
On the outside looking for,
Shine, let it shine before all men,
Let them see good works and then,
Let them glorify the Lord.

The words to this song pretty are based on Matthew 5:16, "Let your light so shine before men, that they may see your good works, and glorify your Father which is in heaven."
We were called by Christ to "Shine" We are to live the Christian life before the world so that they might want Christ for themselves. If we don't care enough about God to live for Him, why would others want what we have?
So SHINE your light to the world today. You never know who may be watching!!!

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Thursday, January 19, 2006

God-Shaped Hole

In my personal Bible study God has been sh0wing me one truth over and over. He's been showing me that its not about me. I'm not worthy of anything on my own. I can't do anything on my own.
In this modern day being self-sufficient and having it your way, that message seems archaic. But no matter how out-of-date the message may seem, its still true. You see God never changes, and God never lies. When He said, "Without me ye can do nothing" in John 15:5, He meant it.
We were created by God to fellowship with God. He WANTS a relationship with each and everyone of us. That relationship with Him is the ONLY thing that can fill the void in our lives.
Everyone is searching for something outside of themselves. Everyone needs something. Some seek it through riches, but no matter how much they get its never enough. Some seek it through drugs or alcohol, but a temporary high only leaves them wanting more and more. Some seek it by surrounding themselves with people, but a thousand friends in this world can't take away the loneliness you feel in your heart.
Only God can fill the emptiness of the soul. Only God can fill the God-shaped hole in your life. So if you are searching today, remember He loves you, and He wants you. All you have to do is come to Him!

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Wednesday, January 18, 2006

Be Strong

I think God is trying to remind of something lately. In all the reading I've been doing I keep seeing one phrase repeated: "Be Strong!"
This shows me that being strong is a choice we make. Even in life's hard times we can choose to be strong. I don't think this means that we are always going to know exactly what to do. It means that we should always have a strong faith in God so that when life happens, we won't crumble under the pressure.
The secret to strength is admitting that you can't do everything on your own. You must be willing to hand things to God and allow Him to handle them. Sometimes He will send other people your way to help you carry the load.
God's definition of strength is completely opposite of the world's definition. God says being strong is being willing to lay down your pride, while the world says that being strong is doing everything to protect your pride.
Proverbs 16:18 says, "Pride goeth before destruction, and an haughty spirit before a fall."
Having pride in ourselves and being unwilling to hand things over to God is asking for trouble.
So humble yourself today and as James 4:10 says, "He shall lift you up."

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Monday, January 16, 2006

My Prison Doors Flew Open Wide

Well you guys wanted to know how things went last night. One word describes it...awesome. Honestly I think Satan suspected how well it would go because he fought us on every side. 4 people got sick and couldn't go (Two of which had speaking parts, fortunately its just reader's theater). 5 people that went could hardly speak on Sunday morning. When we arrived the gate to the prison wouldn't open, so we couldn't drive in to setup the equipment.
But you know what, we walked the equipment in, one piece at a time. We wouldn't be stopped because we knew God wanted us there. I realized why when we sang the theme song to our cantata.
The song is called "Then Jesus Came." It talks about how Jesus came and set us free. You see, we were all prisoners. Prisoners to sin, and we had no way to free ourselves. Jesus was our only hope for freedom. When He came the doors to the prison of sin flew open wide.
I always thought the song was pretty, but I almost cried last night when I sang the line, "My prison doors flew open wide, and life has never been the same." There before us sat about 100 young men who truly knew what it meant to be locked in prison. They are seeking freedom, in more ways than one. So I finally realized what a message of hope that song was.
So that's my update about the prison. I went in to minister, and I got ministered to. God's just awesome that way!

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Friday, January 13, 2006

Its Almost Here

Well, the day is almost here. On Sunday night our church choir will be performing our Christmas Cantata in, get this, a prison. You read right. We are getting the opportunity to go into a young men's prison. Kinda puts captive audience in a whole new perspective.
Seriously, God has opened up so many doors for us to be able to do this, and I just know that He's going to do an awesome work while we are there.
Getting this opportunity is something I needed. Many times I make snap judgements. I'll say, "That person is too far gone. I shouldn't worry about them anymore." But then I'm reminded, over and over, that nothing is impossible with God. No one has ever sinned enough to extinguish God's love for them. Every person needs us to love them and do all that we can for them in order to win them to Christ.
This past Sunday morning we had an awesome experience at our church. A woman entered the church in the middle of the sermon. She walked directly to the front of the church and told my grandpa (the preacher) that she needed to be saved. She needed God.
This woman's sister goes to our church, and we've been praying for her for years. She has struggled with addictions and depression and countless problems in her lifetime. She's tried to handle these issues alone, but Sunday morning she finally realized she couldn't make it anymore on her own.
What if her sister hadn't cared enough to tell her about our church? What if someone hadn't cared enough to pray for her? What if grandpa hadn't cared enough to stop the service and help her?
This life is full of opportunities to be a witness. If we take them, God will do things in ways we never expected.
So never neglect an opportunity that comes your way. No one is past God's reach!

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Thursday, January 12, 2006

Life's Crazy Days

Okay, I'll admit it. I can't handle it. The stress is driving me crazy. The river of life is dragging me downstream, and the current is trying to take me under!
Well, maybe its not that bad, but yesterday and today have been totally hectic and stressful at work. Everyone wants everything yesterday. And I've been driven almost to the point of tears. But then I remembered something. I have someone to lean on. I have someone who will take control. Even when life is insane, and I can't handle it, there is someone I can go to who will take all of my problems.
Psalm 61 tells us that God is our rock, our shelter, our strongtower. So when I'm being swept under and find myself drowning in the river of the life, all I have to do is cling to the rock. He is my salvation, and if I'll just hand everything to Him, He'll take control.
So if your life is like mine right now, remember that there is one who can take your stress. Just trust Him.

***I have added a link to the sidebar for The Bible in 90 Days readings. This is a list you can print out. That way I won't have to worry about forgetting to post the readings (like I did yesterday!)***

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Wednesday, January 11, 2006

Just to Be With You

Some of the young ladies at my church have decided to start a weekly Bible Study by Beth Moore called "A Woman's Heart." Just the opening is awesome. The study itself is an in-depth study of the tabernacle. What the tabernacle was, what it consisted of, its purpose, and just why God had it constructed.
In its simplest form, the purpose of the tabernacle was for God to have a place to meet with His people. He wanted a relationship with them. He wanted to be their guide. The Lord of all wanted to commune with mortals.
Exodus 25:22 says, " And there I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat, from between the two cherubims which are upon the ark of the testimony..."
This awesome thought reminded me of a song I've always loved by Third Day called "Love Song." Here's the second verse and the chorus:

I've heard it said that a man would climb a mountain,
Just to be with the one he loves,
How many times has he broken that promise?
It has never been done.
I've never climbed the highest mountain,
But I've walked the hill of Calvary.

Just to be with you, I've done everything.
There's no price I did not pay, no.
Just to be with you, I'd gave everything.
Yes, I gave my life away.

The tabernacle was pointing to a sacrafice years later. A sacrafice that would ultimately bring man back into full communion with God. A sacrafice of God's only Son.
So think about that today. Someone gave up everything, just to be with you!

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Tuesday, January 10, 2006

For A Price

My reading has brought me to Leviticus. This is the part of the Bible where God gives the law to Moses. He explains things in depth. He tells the specific payment for sins. He tells what sacrafices should be made, and He gives details on just how to make those sacrafices. The sin offerings, the trespass offerings, the wave offerings. He tells about them all.
The basic concept behind these offerings is there is a price for our sin. Payment must be made for our wrongdoing. Fortunately today we don't have to go to a priest and offer a sacrafice. Jesus is our high priest, and He has already paid the price. His shed blood redeemed all sin for all time. All that we must do is accept His gift of redemption.
I don't know why He offered me such grace, but I'm glad He did. Read through Leviticus. Take a look at the law, and you'll realize how much Christ has done for you. We are no longer under the law because Christ fulfilled it.
Take some time today to thank Him for His grace and mercy!

Today's reading: Leviticus 14:33 - Leviticus 26:26

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Monday, January 09, 2006

Doing Things God's Way

In my readings yesterday and today, God is telling Moses the law. He told Moses just how to make the tabernacle and how to perform all the sacrafices. He even had people in mind to do these jobs, and He had already prepared their hearts and given them the strength. He had also prepared the hearts of all the people to give the materials that would be needed.
There are many things that need to be done for God in our day as well. He lays things on people's hearts that He wants to accomplished. He prepares the heart of each individual so that His will can be done.
So look to God today. Ask Him if there is something He would have you do. Always be prepared to do whatever He may ask. His work WILL be accomplished. Don't you want to be a part of it?

Today's Reading: Leviticus 1:1 - Leviticus 14:32

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Saturday, January 07, 2006

Readings for yesterday and today and tomorrow!

Yesterday I forgot to post the reading, so here's yesterday's reading, today's reading, and tomorrows reading:

Yesterday: Exodus 1:1 - Exodus 15:18
Today: Exodus 15:19 - Exodus 28:43
Tomorrow: Exodus 29:1 - Exodus 40:39

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Friday, January 06, 2006

Its Time to Grow Up!!

Okay, I have to share something that gave me a laugh last night. I was warming up a microwave pizza, and I looked on the back of the box it came in to see how long it should be warmed. Not only did I find how long it should be warmed. I got step by step instructions on:

1: How to remove the pizza from the box (well, I guess I passed that one)
2: How to remove the pizza from the plastic wrapping (check on that one too!)
3: How to discard the pizza box and all plastic (Duh!)
4: How to heat the pizza in the microwave (Finally, what I was looking for)
5: How to eat the pizza (Apparently I was supposed to enjoy)

I laughed a good while at this. I mean, for me they could've just put heat 5 minutes on the box, and I'd have been fine! Of course some people need step by step instructions like this. Some people never get past this point.
Sadly, some Christians never get past this point in their spiritual walk. They have to be told simple steps over and over. They never learn the simple things, so God can't show them greater things.
I Corinthians 3:2 says, "I have fed you with milk, and not with meat: for hitherto ye were not able to bear it, neither yet now are ye able."
Paul was disappointed that the Corinthians hadn't matured in their walk. He couldn't teach them the more important spiritual things because they still hadn't grasped the smaller things.
My desire for this year is to grow spiritually. I want to feed on the meat of God's Word. I want to learn all that He has for me, not just be satisfied with the small things!

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Thursday, January 05, 2006

Jesus Take the Wheel

One of my current favorite songs is Jesus Take the Wheel by Carrie Underwood. The words just says it all:

Jesus take the wheel, take it from my hands,
I can't do this on my own.

That's just it. We can't do anything on our own. My reading today finished the story of Joseph. Now if anyone ever gave control of his life over to God, it was Joseph. I don't know about you, but if I'd been sold into slavery by my brothers I'd probably have a bad attitude about it. I would've gone around angry and not done a very good job at what my master wanted me to do. Not Joseph. He worked to the best of his ability, and he was given a position of importance in Potiphar's house.
Of course Potiphar's wife lied about Joseph when he refused to lie with her, and he was thrown into prison. Right about that time I'd probably have been pretty hot. I mean he did what was right. He didn't sin against God, yet he was thrown into prison.
But did Joseph let that get him down? No, he continued to work for God. He continued to use all of the opportunities that God brought his way. He interpreted the dreams of the butler and the baker. Rather than sitting in his cell sulking, he helped out two other prisoners who were troubled by their dreams.
Because of what he did, the butler remembered Joseph when Pharoah was troubled by a dream. Joseph was brought out of prison and made second in command. Only the Pharoah was above him.
I'm sure when Joseph found himself bound on the back of a camel travelling to Egypt to be sold into slavery he never dreamed that he'd one day rule over all of Egypt. He never dreamed he'd save nations from starvation during a time of terrible famine. He never dreamed that the same brothers who had sold him into slavery would come to him in need. But that's just what happened.
Joseph kept his faith in God, and God accomplished great things through Joseph's life. So the next time you don't understand what's happening in your life remember to stay close to God. He has wonderful things in store for you if you just let Him take control.

Todays reading: Genesis 40:12 - Genesis 50:26

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Wednesday, January 04, 2006

Goals, Goals, Goals

That's it. I can't take the pressure anymore. It seems everyone is posting their goals for the year. Now to a writer goals are apparently supposed to be important, but they can be so scary. I mean, what if I fail? That's just my pride talking I guess. If I pray and stay in the center of God's will, I'll accomplish the goals that He wants me to accomplish. So here I am, stepping out in trepidation to share my goals with the world wide web.

Goal 1: I've already talked about this one, to read the Bible through in 90 days and to absorb lots of learning during this time of concentrated reading.
Goal 2: To spend more of each day in prayer
Goal 3: To keep my priorities straight, God above all else.
Goal 4: To write 2000 words a day, at least (on something other than my blog or e-mail)
Goal 5: To have fun on this journey
Goal 6: To be filled with God's love that I might help anyone that I can along the way (with both emotional and physical needs, to this end if you have a request leave one here. I'll be happy to pray for you or do anything that I can to help.)

Those are my big goals for the year. I've committed each of these things to God. I challenge each of you to make your own goals, if you haven't already. Pray about them. Ask God to guide your path.
Proverbs 3:5 tells us, "Trust in the LORD with all thine heart; and lean not unto thine own understanding."
So trust God, ask Him today what He would have you to do. Commit yourself to Him this year and as Paul tells us in Ephesians 3:20 He is, " to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us."
Follow God, and you'll be able to do things beyond your imagination!

Today's reading: Genesis 28:20 - Genesis 40:11

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Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Are You Up to the Test?

I've often wondered how strong my faith is. Am I strong enough to do whatever God asks of me? I mean sure, I can say in words that I'll go wherever He asks me to go and do whatever He asks me to do, but would I really do it.
My Bible reading today covered Genesis 22, where God tested Abraham by asking him to sacrafice Isaac. Abraham never questioned God on this. He willingly offered Isaac. Now we all know that God didn't actually let Abraham sacrafice Isaac. He provided a ram to be sacraficed instead. But through Abraham's willingness, God saw right where Abraham stood. Abraham put God as his first priority.
Could I do that? Could I sacrafice everything I love? I pray that I would be so willing. I think the thing is to stay close to God, to strive for a close relationship with Him. If we put God first in the small things, we will pass the big test when it comes. We can't be super-strong in the hard times, if we aren't strong enough to face the daily challenges. We must have a daily walk with God.
If we do follow God day by day, He will give us the grace we need when we need it. Paul talks about God's grace in II Corinthians 12:9, "And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me."
God's grace is sufficient for us. He will give us power, even when we think we are weak.
Abraham and Paul weren't perfect men. They were sinners resting in God's grace. They tried to walk with God daily. Sure they made mistakes, but they didn't let those failures keep them away from God, and when the ultimate test came, they passed.
So strive to walk with God. Get into His Word. Listen for what He is trying to teach you. Talk with Him through prayer. Have a relationship with Him, and like Abraham and Paul, you too will pass the test.

Today's reading is: Genesis 17:1 - Genesis 28:19.

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Monday, January 02, 2006

2006 Has Arrived!

I don't make resolutions on New Years. I know I'm not strong enough to keep them on my own! Thats why I make commitments. Commitments to God. The first commitment I made to God was to read through the Bible in 90 days. Now I know this isn't an impossible task. Lots of other people have done it, but I tend to be the type that gets stuck on one part of the Bible, and I forget that I'm supposed to be reading it through. I've prayed that God will help me to remain focused on this commitment. I started today, and I learned a lot. Now I know that reading through the Bible at this pace may not be for everyone, but if anyone wants to take the challenge with me, I'll be posting the day's chapters at the end of the post for everyday. Let me know if you take the challenge. I'd like to pray that we can all learn something together!

Today's reading is: Genesis 1:1 - Genesis 16:16