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2014 Pieces

I found my first “Pieces Journal,” dated January 22, 2014.  It seems so long ago, but it also shows me the walk I’ve taken along Jesus; is just a moment a time, and my faith has continued to grow; year after year.  I’d like to share with you some of the earlier “scraps of paper, devotions and musings” from my journal.  May you find your own special “pieces.”

It’s in the act of faith that courage becomes reality and the Lord’s grace rushes in to supply divine power.

Dear God, I want to be gracious and lovely in Your sight.  Open to receiving.  Take me away from the things that waste my time and rob me of meditative time with You.

I am encouraged by the mighty works of God.  “Prayer” has become a powerful word in my vocabulary, and one that gives meaning to my life.  I pray for HOPE, what a beautiful gift; and, it is free!!!  He walks with me in the garden of my life.  We talk, I learn, I am blessed to know Him as my Father, and Friend.

Keep your defense strong, trust in God.  Pray when anxiety seeps in.

Take it to God.  When you are low or upset, even when it feels contrary to do so; tell Him, share your heart.

I see so many parallels in my past and current life; except now I am grateful for all of it – the hard, hurtful times along with the peaceful.  I believe it’s more than ‘equal parts,’ rather how Jesus wants to live in me; “Grateful for all of the pieces.”  In this way, everything is a subject for witnessing.

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Impossible situations are opportunities for the Lord to teach us valuable lessons that we’d never learn any other way.

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Easter Blessings

This time of year brings a myriad of thoughts to Christians across the globe.  The great anguish our Lord suffered at the hands of ignorant men, the burial and the restoration.

Click on this link to YouTube for Chris Tomlin’s moving rendition of the old gospel tune: “At The Cross.”

May you be deeply blessed during this time of grief, sorrow and celebration.  JESUS IS LORD!!! 

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Icicles

Out my window I see a very large icicle, dripping.  It will likely be gone in a couple of hours, for today – the temp is heading to 40.  But it is winter here in the heartland and tonight it will get cold enough to freeze drips, turning them back into icicles.

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Icicles remind me of faith.  Two steps forward (complete melting) and one step back (hello, icicles)!  We often find ourselves on a roll of faith, everything is fine, we are filled with faith, believing strongly in God and all He brings to our life ….. and then BAM, “something” happens and now we are standing on shaky ground.  Our faith?  Sure, yah, I’ve got faith.  Faith that nothing will ever change.

We are troubled human beings.  People have lacked faith since the days of Moses.

Mark 16:14
Later Jesus appeared to the Eleven as they were eating; he rebuked them for their lack of faith and their stubborn refusal to believe those who had seen him after he had risen.

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We are always just a moment away from circumstances changing, so we must always stand firm on our faith.  We are not icicles, we will not melt and come back again the next day, we are human beings made in the image of Jesus, a strong, solid foundation.  May your faith be strengthened today and every day.

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God’s still small voice

When listening for God; He is in the still, small voice of your heart.  The more we share with Him, the lighter our burdens become, He wants to hear from us, He wants the heartache and grief, the anger and frustration, the pain, whatever we are feeling, He wants us to share it with Him.  He is ultimately, our Heavenly Father, but to me, He is my best friend.  Who better to share my restlessness with?

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Jesus is always available, we don’t have to summon or pray for His presence, because there is not a day or a minute or a second in our life that He is not here.  He wants us to seek Him, in order to strengthen our faith, and turn to Him every time we are fearful or filled with emotion.

May you hear the voice of God this week.

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When we get stuck

Have you felt “stuck” in your prayer life?   Sometimes we forget the more we lean on Christ, the less stuck we become, and the softer the place is to land.  But it’s hard “getting there” sometimes.  I was recently hospitalized.  I actually could not pull a decent prayer together in my head, I couldn’t express to God what I needed from Him, what I was grateful for or even my love for Him.  I was stuck.

My minister stopped in to visit, his prayer upon leaving was like a prayer on wings.

Sometimes we need intercessory prayer.  We all know that one person who is a “prayer warrior.”  Send them a text or make a quick call, let them know you need prayer on your behalf.   That’s all you have to say, no details necessary.

May you be deeply blessed in prayer this week.

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Agape Love

Webster defines “agape” as being in a state of wonder.  I often felt the meaning was to “love as Jesus loved,” it also involves faithfulness, commitment, and an act of the will. It is distinguished from the other types of love by its lofty moral nature and strong character. Agape love is beautifully described in 1 Corinthians 13:1 If I speak in the tongues of men or of angels, but do not have love, I am only a resounding gong or a clanging cymbal. 

A friend of mine, Unitarian minister, theologian and scholar and I, agree completely in this type of love.  It has little to do with “Christianity, the Christian church, a specific religion or belief,” and everything to do with loving as in caring for others without judgement.  WITHOUT JUDGMENT.  Can we do that?  What are the bylaws of our various religions?  Some say; well not the gay people, or not the terrorists, not the people that are different from us.  I say ALL PEOPLE.  We need to love and care for ALL PEOPLE.

Hebrews 10:24
And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds….
1 John 2:10
Anyone who loves their brother and sister lives in the light, and there is nothing in them to make them stumble.
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It Takes Time

We are a hurry-busy-fast society.  However, a hand has reached down often enough in my life that SLAMMED on the brakes, Jesus calls to me.  Take more time with Me, get into the Word, tomorrow is not promised, but today — it’s here, let’s move some mountains, let’s climb to the top instead of wallowing in the shadows.

I’ve experienced some heavy health issues the last two months.  I have slowed WAY down.  And yet, with all this free time, I am still selfish, not having committed my time with better intentions.

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Our relationship with God is our most important.  Jesus walked the earth for 33 years as a human being, we can bring to him all we’ve got.  He “gets” it.  Let the extra time in your days, be filled with prayer, conversation, servitude and love, all we are; and all we can be — can be received by the love of the Father.

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Deuteronomy 4:40
Keep his decrees and commands, which I am giving you today, so that it may go well with you and your children after you and that you may live long in the land theLord your God gives you for all time.
2 Timothy 2:22
Flee the evil desires of youth and pursue righteousness, faith, love and peace, along with those who call on the Lord out of a pure heart.