Magnifying Faith : Old Things, New!

MAGNIFYING FAITH: This is the upcoming name change for this blog. The change of name reflects the change in presentation.

“Therefore, if any man is in Christ, he is a new creature: old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new. So that if any one is in Christ, he is a new creature: the old state of things has passed away; a new state of things has come into existence.”
2 Cor. 5:17 ‘MAGNIFYING FAITH’ is a ‘new creature’!

MAGNIFYING FAITH is a new creation formed out of the old. The old state of things has passed away!
“Old things have passed away, behold all things have become new.”

Angst > ‘Eureka!’ > ‘MAGNIFYING FAITH’

DEAR Friends, I have made a discovery! The bad news is that I feel like I’ve wasted time. The good news is, feelings aren’t always reality and in this case, my feelings are wrong. In short, my discovery is that I was on the right path (thank God!), but I was walking side-ways. I was approaching the path in a manner that I was finding very uncomfortable for me. Ruth Soukup’s ‘pep talks’ at Elite Blog Academy, (where I take courses to improve my business/on-line tech. and blogging/writing skills), warns of feeling uncomfortable. She warns that the courses at EBA will be extremely challenging and baby, she’s right!

However, my discomfort was to a degree that I was having trouble sleeping and found my heart beating weirdly at different points throughout the day. I found myself praying for direction almost the entire time I was working. I was practicing deep breathing, which helped, but only as a bandage. And then two days ago, I had an ‘epiphany’ moment!

My Crab-Walking Error

Faith Magnified sprouted from the realization that I was 'crab-walking'. I needed to walk in my style, not someone else's!
We should save the crab-walking for the crabs! ‘Faith Magnified’ will be a place of natural learning from real-life, true events!

I was walking sideways.

I was on the right path and making progress, but crab-walking isn’t sustainable. Being of a mind that doesn’t rest just to know I was doing something uncomfortable for my personal make-up, I needed to know, what about what I was doing made me so uncomfortable?

The answer came as I was writing my ‘About Me’ page. I was having the time of my life! There were the words and thoughts, flowing with ease and sometimes, humor. Nothing about it felt forced. I didn’t even realize how much fun I was having until towards the end, and that’s when it hit me…I honestly believe God was speaking to my heart, answering my prayers…

THIS is what you should be doing! You are not a theologian, you are a story-teller!

My approach needs to be straight and natural.
My approach needs to be straight and natural.

I realized that it’s time to correct my gait.

‘Magnifying Faith’: Lessons from a Different Angle

The revelation was so right! My husband is the theology guy, able to set me straight when I’m off track. But personally, I respond so much more to lessons taught through stories! Everything in how I was created, compounded by childhood environment, meshed together to form a storyteller. This is the style of writing that suits me best and comes across most naturally. My inner turmoil was caused by uncertainty. At my core, I knew. This Scripture came repeatedly to my mind when I wrote posts as a ‘crab-walker’: “Not many of you should become teachers, my fellow believers, because you know that we who teach will be judged more strictly.” -James 3:1. I interpret ‘teachers’ here as ‘theologians’ and my insecurity caused me to look up and ponder repeatedly, afraid of passing along something I shouldn’t. I never want to be anyone’s stumbling block!

The good news in that is, because of my fear, you’re probably safe with what has been presented so far. I do trust God to speak to my heart and I was very careful, but folks, walking side-ways was wearing my hind-parts and brain-parts out! So, things here are going to change: The lessons will come as an organic branch growing from the trunk of a true story. I am SO excited!

Sharing Pieces

'Magnifying Faith' will rev up your faith, piece by piece!

As I have today, I’ll share true excerpts of my life and the lives of others. Additionally, these shared pieces will have the prequalification of being transparent and real, making it easier for you to relate. Through the stories, you’ll find your hope e rising and your faith soaring! If you’ve been through or are going through mental, emotional or physical, or financial hardships, you’ll find someone here who has been there.

This is not to take from Jesus, because he knew every pain man knows. And for you gals who immediately thought, “Well, he never knew childbirth!” (Haha-caughtcha, didn’t I?), I have something to say about that. He didn’t know childbirth, but he did know the ‘cat-of-nine-tails’, the nails, the whipping, the beating, the betrayal of those closest to him, sadness and loneliness… In one form or another, Jesus felt the depth of every pain known to mankind. This is the reason we have no need of any other mediator. Once again, the pieces of life shared here are not to take glory away from God, but rather, to point to him.

At Magnifying Faith we see that Jesus Knows

Gleaning from Joanna Weaver, let me briefly give Scriptures that show us that Jesus experienced the hurts we experience: Grief: John 11:35; Temptation: Mark 1:13; Poverty: Matt. 8:20; Frustration: John 2:15-16; Weariness: John 4:6; Disappointment: Luke 13:34; Rejection: John6:66; Sorrow: Matt. 26:38; Ridicule: Mark 15:19; Loneliness: Matt. 27:46

These are only the ‘tip of the iceberg’ and no one here is attempting to take Jesus’ place. Who in their right mind would want such responsibility!?Instead, the effort is to show the same Spirit that motivated, carried and worked through Jesus Christ lives today in all his followers and I have stories stored up to illustrate that fact!(Rom. 8:11) Be encouraged! He has overcome the world! (John 16:33)

May your Faith be Magnified!

T

Today, I’m tossing the crab-walk out the window and replacing it with a firm and forward gait. Let the fun and inspiration begin and let your faith be magnified!


For we do not have a high priest who is unable to sympathize with our weaknesses, but we have one who has been tempted in every way, just as we are—yet was without sin. HEBREWS 4:15

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Moving Mountains: A Job for Super Heroes?

Other pages are still under construction, but you can check out the ‘A New Name…’ page to learn more about recent changes here.

Psalm 23 is about moving mountains?

It wouldn’t seem so, would it? But today, as we finish looking at the valley (or ‘dark and scary places’) of Psalm 23:4a, we see that mountains do enter into the picture because they surround the valleys. Let’s look:

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

A brief review

In my last post, we considered the low places, or valleys of our lives. Such places are surrounded by mountains and the one we pictured was a place from which there seemed no escape. But today, I want us to be careful about our concept of the word, ‘escape’ because it can come in many forms, not only physical. While personal experience has taught me how chronic pain blurs the mind from much beyond finding relief, I am reminded of Jesus’ experiences. He knows where we’re coming from and he made a way for us! Part of that way is found in the preparation I spoke of in my last post.

Relief can be found in setting aside time to slow ourselves and in welcoming the presence of Jesus. Then we are in a place where we can converse with him as if he is exactly who he says he is…Our friend. Rest comes with being mindful of the marvels of his creation, aware of the smallest evidences of his love and doing so with thanksgiving. As spoken in other posts, we can add more life to our ‘Christian Stew’ through the addition of spice. Uplifting music is one of the spices I like to recommend.

Preparation for relief in the valleys comes as we take these times, put them in words or pictures and store them safely for our ‘rainy days’ of need. However, while all these help to see us through the dark and scary lowlands, there’s another way of escape that goes beyond temporary relief.

In moving mountains, recognize counterfeits

Counterfeits flood in when the enemy knows you're intent on moving mountains. Pray for discernment!

Escape has many faces and when we are very desperate for it, we may find ourselves diving into the shallow end of the pool, breaking our neck in the process. I won’t go into the thousands of ways we can be misled into believing a path skirting Jesus is the right path. I think an entirely new blog would have to be created for that subject and that’s not where I choose to pitch my tent! Suffice it to say that any way that doesn’t keep Jesus at it’s center is a dive into the shallows.

I think of Facebook when I talk about ‘the faces’ of escape. Most of us understand that Facebook is about…face. What we see there is mostly about the outside, or surface. But we don’t want a Facebook experience in our escape, we want the real deal…we want it to be as real as the spirit of our being is real. Be careful not to settle for counterfeit claims! Pray for discernment and remember, there are no ‘super-heroes’ in Christianity!

Moving mountains requires a means of escape

Moving mountains requires a means of escape.

Jesus told us that he is the way, the truth and the life. (John 14:6) Then in John 1:1, we see Jesus with the title of ‘the Word’. There are theologians much more studied than I who teach in depth on Jesus as the Word and Jesus as God (John 10: 30). For now, I want to look more closely at the Word. When I spoke in the last section about Jesus giving us a way of escape, I was thinking of escape through the Word, that mighty weapon of the Spirit described in Eph. 6: 17! We are given an entire arsenal of weapons but all the other weapons are defensive. The sword, however is made for attack.

There are times when we are surrounded and we are using all the other weapons. They keep us alive and safe, even in the shadowy valley places. But they don’t necessarily get us out. We understand that in it’s original context, when Jesus said, “I am the way…” he said so in referencing himself as the only way to the Father. What I am saying here doesn’t lessen that in the least.

I am suggesting that we consider Jesus as not only the only way in to God, but the only way out of our dilemmas. And if Jesus is the Word as the Word says, then the Word must be our way out of the dark and scary places! Further, if the Sword of the Spirit, our only offensive spiritual weapon, is the Word of God, then it is by this sword that we escape! And remember, we only need to take on one of the mountains, not the whole range! Which one? Take your pick!

When moving mountains, we first move the mouth

For moving mountains, we must have mouths filled with God's Word.

Today, we’d say he’s crazy, just like they did in the day he walked this earth as a man. You see, Jesus did some pretty bizarre things like ordering trees and wind, diseases and demons around…out loud. But a lot of people held their tongues and their judgements when they saw that all those things he spoke to did the even crazier act of obeying him! Then is was like a fight to get in line so he could say something out loud to me, too!

Today, if you walk up to a tree and tell it to die, folks are gonna talk. And it won’t die because your motive can’t be the same as Jesus’ motive was at the time! But he has given us the same spirit that raised him from the dead. This is Father and Son living right inside our spirts by means of the Holy Spirit! For this reason, we can “fear no evil, for you are with me!” We have the authority of God’s Spirit. (Luke 10:19) We have the supernatural power of his Word. And we have a mouth to speak it aloud, just like Jesus did, so it will not return without results! ( Is. 55:11)

Moving Mountains requires a specific Spirit

Mark 1:12-13, Luke 4:1-13, Matt. 4:1-11

"The same Spirit that raised Christ..." Romans 8:11 for moving mountains

Again, how did Jesus do battle with the Sword of the Spirit? By speaking it. He even got rid of the devil in the desert by speaking it. Do you think because he was Jesus, the devil left? Think again! Jesus was also fully man and he wasn’t using anything we can’t use in his desert battle. He used the Word and that was it. Other than his hours on the Cross, this was likely his weakest time….forty days without food or water in the desert! Satan came at him time and again, each time defeated by the spoken Word. Do you think it’s safe to say that hot, dry and sun-drenched desert was Jesus’ form of our dark and scary lowland places? I do.

Jesus spoke his way out of that battle, and so can you. The same Spirit that raised Christ from the dead dwells in YOU. (Romans 8:11) So follow his lead and use the same Sword Jesus used. The Word of God is your escape.

Ministering Angels

After moving mountains, we need to accept the care of others.

After Jesus defeated satan he was not without wounds, so ministering angels came to his aid. (Matt. 4:11)It is so important that we see and understand this. Smashing mountains is no easy task and we may need angels ourselves once the battle’s over!

I think this is where a lot of Christians go wrong. We want everything to be ‘back to normal’ and we jump ahead, rushing back to ‘our place in line’. Girl, you’ve just done mighty battle and you need to recover from your wounds! It wasn’t beneath the creator of the angels to let the angels minister to him. It wasn’t beneath the Creator of all mankind to let a prostitute clean his dirty feet. Who are we to disallow ministry to our escaped, yet broken bodies and the emotions entwined within?

Our winning the battle doesn’t mean we are super heroes whose wounds bind themselves. We need help. Don’t let pride be the current that pulls you back into the dark and scary lowlands. Be patient and humble, accepting the heart-felt help of others. Just as Jesus didn’t and you don’t, these human angels won’t come to you in masks and capes. But you can bet God is working through their hands.

2 gifts to help you in moving mountains!

1) ‘STAND ON ME’ Scriptures for speaking ALOUD Matt 17:20, Matt 21:21-22, Luke 10:19, Mark 11:23, Nahum 1:5, Habakkuk 3:6 I strongly recommend you copy and keep in a convenient place. I also recommend you do a study to find others and add them to this list!

2A) Healing Music for comfort, recovery and healing -Don Moen

2B) Healing Music – ‘Soaking’ Music with gentle Healing Scripture Readings

If you have never looked into ‘Soaking’ music for Christians, I would like to encourage you to try this ‘spice’. It is beautiful, effective and God-centered.



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The Dark and Scary Places

The Dark and Scary Lowlands. This is the journey no one wants to embark upon. It’s the place where the waters flow down slick mountainsides and flash floods are normal occurrences. The lowland valley is completely surrounded by mountains and constantly shadowed in darkness. It is cold here and escape-proof…or so we think.

Before moving on: Other pages are still under construction, but you can check out the About Me page to learn more about recent changes here.

Arriving in the dark and scary lowlands

We find ourselves in these lowlands, often quite suddenly. Perhaps our self-confidence was soaring as we walked along the mountain peaks. Perhaps in that confidence, we waded too deeply into a side stream only to become caught in its current. Tossed and thrown against the rocks, we nearly drowned in waters over our head. We tumulted down and down, landing finally, in the lowland. At first, we rejoiced at being alive…until we realized our surroundings.

For such a time as this

Today, we’ll take a brief look at Psalms 23:4, the first half only. It is highlighted below. I am going to share some photos taken during our mini-rest that I spoke of in yesterday’s post. In fact, the rest was so good that I didn’t do my usual ‘stay-up-’til 1 or 2 am’ thing in order to get this post ready by 12am today. No…it’s about noon on Sunday as I write to you and I am, for once in a long while, not feeling like I absolutely MUST have a nap within the next hour or so! Take a look at the highlighted verse and then I’ll leave you with some of my thoughts about it.

Don’t tremble! He’s in the lowlands, too!

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

The dark and scary lowlands don’t have to be…

quite so dark and scary. We may not always be able to avoid the undertow, but once there, we can position ourselves in the rare places that feel the sun. The jagged mountains surrounding us can be rounded out and in time, flattened by our preparation in God’s Word. We can also train ourselves in the awareness of God’s presence, kicking fear out the door as faith grows. There may not be a way out, but there is a way to cast mountains into the sea. I know it’s so, because the Word says so and because I’ve lived it. We’ll get into ‘casting’ in my next post.

My exhortation to you today, however, is two-fold: 1) As emphasized yesterday, take time to rest in God! 2) Whether away from home or at home, determine to be aware of every little thing around you that God has placed in this world for your benefit. Command your soul to see those benefits and as it obeys, thank God for them. This is a great opportunity to practice awareness. Take note of, capture and throw out toxic thoughts as they try to enter. Recognize that this is the enemy at work and slam the door in his face! If you suddenly become aware that you are thinking sourly, give yourself a stern, “NO!” Consider planning ahead by creating a written list of songs to sing or calming verses of Scriptures to say aloud (or think about), in case of such emergencies!

Store up defenses against the dark and scary

Today, I leave you with encouragement to take times of rest in whatever form (acceptable to God) that you can find. We can shore up reserves of strength to be ‘at the ready’ in these times of battle just by being in his Word daily. Daily Word is daily rest! Even if our bodies and minds don’t immediately recognize this, our spirits do! Another way to arm ourselves for upcoming battles is through those mini-rests I spoke of yesterday. Such days are earmarked, not only for getting away from our stresses but for zoning in on God, specifically in our thoughts. It’s a time to meditate on God’s care and love for us; to acknowledge and appreciate his countless thoughts towards us through a heart of gratefulness.

Your rest days don’t need to be just like our mini-vacation to Chincoteague island. In many folks’ eyes, this is the tip of the iceberg regarding vacations. To as many others, however, it is beyond what is ‘doable’ regarding time or finances. I understand because in our 42-year marriage, we have been on every side of that coin. So find what works, but don’t just read this and give up because your vacay isn’t like mine! Put your mind and prayers to it, and God will be faithful in helping you come to an answer that works for you. He is a personal God and never puts any of us in a mold!

Document your rest times

Finally, whatever God brings to you, journal (write about) or take pictures once you ‘go for it’. It doesn’t matter how simple your time of rest is, document whatever your spirit prompts you to be grateful about. There is so much right under our noses that we don’t appreciate every day…this is the time for that appreciation! And this is one way we can store up and prepare our defenses for that day when we suddenly realize a flood has washed us into the dark and scary lowlands. Think of it as ‘saving for a rainy day. The documentation of God’s faithfulness to you today may keep you faithful to him in the future.

REST in your rest-times!!!!

Refrain from heavy planning for your rest times! This is of utter importance! Have you ever been ‘on vacation’ with people who don’t know how to vacation? They absolutely must be doing something every minute possible and then come home as tired and unrefreshed as they left. Hmmm… it’s possible ‘they’ have been ‘me’ in the past! All this said, keep in mind that we’re discussing times of rest specifically purposed for closeness to God and ‘soul rest’. You wouldn’t plan this kind of rest in conjunction with a trip to Disney!

When we schedule this special time of rest, we need to remember the focus. Not disciplining ourselves to slow down and breathe in God can be just as damaging as not taking rests in the first place. When you take your mini-rest, don’t forget to factor in rest as the biggest part of your time. Push back suggestions from the enemy that you tour every nook and cranny of your environment. Don’t cave to thinking you’re wasting time by not discovering all there is to know about where you are. DO think you’re wasting time by rushing past the nuggets of discovery God would have you notice!

I’m reminded of an old song….It’s my gift to you today! <3
https://youtu.be/So0ZrTwf8vI

Photo-journal of our Chincoteague ‘Mini-Rest’.

Mini-rests bring light to our dark and scary places!

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This Mini-Rest: A Pause that Refreshes

Other pages are still under construction, but you can check out the About Me page to learn more about recent changes here.B

Revisiting ‘rest and refreshing’ in Psalms 23:1-3

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.

This mini-rest begins tonight!

This mini-rest on Chincoteague Island is a refreshing pause from 'the same old' cycle!

Have you ever been excited to do NOTHING? Doing nothing excites me so much because doing nothing is actually doing something very healthy for the whole person. Tonight, Jim and I begin this mini-rest at the Hampton Inn on Chincoteague Island. (I highly recommend BOTH.) And, yes! This is the famous home of the “Misty of Chincoteague” book series!

This mini-rest seems perfectly timed to coincide with our observation of Psalm 23, one of the most restful passages of the Bible. We’ve been taking our time, discussing rest all week in verses 1-3. As it happens, my hubby and I have become very aware of our need of rest. With grateful hearts at lacking nothing we need, we are choosing to lie down in ‘green pastures’ (the Hampton Inn bed). We are being led beside still waters, (the Chincoteague Bay just outside our door) and our souls already feel refreshing as we follow this right path. God is glorified through it because he’s the one who made it possible financially and who brought this destination to mind. I speak these truths publicly here and his reputation is upheld yet again, through testimony. This is Psalms 23: 1-3 ‘fleshed out’.

3 Ways you can have this mini-rest

Today is Saturday! So it’s a day of action. Today, we add spice to our stew through something physical and I’m going to recommend you do one of three things:

1) Get away.

Go somewhere different, even if it’s only for a few hours of the day. And even if it’s just fishing or shell collecting at a local beach. Do it away from your normal people. If you have children at home, I’m not saying to ditch them, not in the least! But get yourself away from other adult responsibilities and have your kids do likewise with their peers. Then you can rest together, as a family, with no one else’s demands or expectations taking up the space between your family relationships.

2) Plan to get away.

I know, it’s hard to just ‘up and go’, especially when children are involved. For us, it just worked out that we could and so we jumped at the opportunity. Still, even with our eagerness to put distance between ourselves and our ‘normal’ people and routines, actually making it happen almost didn’t happen because of job demands. So, plan ahead and stick to the plan. You can use today to start the plan!

3) Whatever you do, make it different.

Breaking out of ‘normal’ cycle releases creativity and energy we forget we have! So, if the weather’s nice, get out in it! If not, make your own indoor fun…consider a family ‘paint party’, Game Day or Night, individual pizza, waffle or sundae contest, or a family-cooked dinner with a family-friendly movie. This applies to families, young couples, and grandparents alike. I have no children living at home, but find myself busier than ever! Breaking the ‘same ol’ ‘ cycle always helps me come back to the ‘same ol’ ,(but necessary) routine with more zeal.

This mini-rest is good for everyone!

Everyone in every walk of life and at every stage, needs refreshing. It doesn’t have to be a grandiose vacation, mini’s work too. You could discover that several small vacations over the course of a year may be more satisfying to the soul than the once/year vacation that gets everyone stressed with unreasonably high expectations.



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Does God Need, “For His Name’s Sake”?

Before We Begin… Other pages are still under construction, but you can check out the About Mepage to learn more about recent changes here.

Does God need ‘Right Paths’?

Ps. 23:3b
he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake.

Right paths are pretty self-explanatory.

‘Right paths’ is pretty self-explanatory. The opposite would be ‘wrong paths’, which very few take intentionally. We can surmise that ‘right paths’ lead to ‘right endings’, although in these upside-down times, it often doesn’t appear so! Still, God’s Word tells us that God has our best in mind and we’re encouraged regularly to put our trust in him. While the processes we endure don’t always lend itself to patience, trusting God translates into trusting his process. If we call ourselves Christians and mean it, we know we have great need for knowing where the right paths are. For our sake, he has a plan in place and it is good!
For I know the plans I have for you, ” delcares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.” -Jer. 29:11

So, no, God has no need for a ‘right path’, since he makes both plan and path.

Does God need me to take right paths ‘for his sake’?

Does God need me to take a right path for his name’s sake?” At first glance and answer, we probably answer, “Of course not.” But wait, if God doesn’t need, who does? Why was this phrase inserted into a Psalm speaking so much about the benefits of being part of God’s Kingdom? What is he pointing out here, just as we’re rolling along so well? Surely God is able to handle our response to his name without our help!

Does God need me to keep his reputation clean?

We often seek a clean reputation for the wrong reasons...but God's bigger than that!
Image by Arek Socha from Pixabay

Why is name important to us? If I were to do something for the ‘sake of my name’, what would be the purpose? Ah! I remember conversation with a pastor several years ago when accused of taking something and not returning it. The accusation stung and honestly, I was quite concerned about my reputation. (Yep, see, I am real!) He assured me my reputation was in tact before the conversation ended. He was speaking, of course, of my name. ‘Name’ and ‘Reputation’ are synonymous! In my case, I wanted a clean rep for my sake… I wasn’t thinking of another soul with my desire. It was a long time before I saw the err of my heart. But, God doesn’t make mistakes and he doesn’t think selfishly, does he?

“May the glory of the Lord continue forever!”

The verses of Psalm 23 speak so much of the benefits of ‘being in God’s camp’ that another verse came to mind as I meditated on it: “Bless the Lord, oh my soul, and forget not all his benefits!” -Psalm 103:2. However, I wanted to see the point behind the benefits listed after that verse, so I moved beyond the rest of the “Forget not all his benefits” passage, memorized years ago. This took me to the next, next and next verses… I had to go all the way into the next chapter before the list of the great God does, has done and has created concluded. Psalm 104: 31 at last states: “May the glory of the Lord continue forever! The Lord takes pleasure in all he has made!” It is in ‘part A’ of this verse that we get insight to today’s ‘part B’ of Psalm 23:3.

So it is about God’s reputation! He has a reputation of greatness, goodness, mercy, faithfulness, but rather than my going on and on, let’s just say if you could write a list of every good thing in the universe, God’s got a reputation for being everything on it! Yet, because he is perfectly good, we know he is not vain, puffed up or in any other way, conceited. God doesn’t want glory for his sake- in fact the thought is laughable! No, he only wants glory for his name’s sake and there is a humongous difference! Let’s chew on that a bit…

The benefactor of God’s glorified name

If God wanted glory for his personal sake, that would be vanity. But that’s not his goal, is it? He certainly doesn’t need it! God is self-contained in his needs, and therefore, complete without anything we can give him. I have read from others that ‘part B’ of Ps. 23:3 is written so we can know it’s ‘not about us’, but who benefits from God’s reputation being of no reproof? Who benefits from his image being one of splendor and beyond-this-world ability? We do.

We will place confident trust in the glorified reputation of God. His reputation is what causes our faith to skyrocket. The “life more abundantly” Jesus spoke of comes closer and this is one desire he has for us. He also wants us to join him forever in Eternity. Our choosing God through Jesus keeps us safe from false gods that lead to spiritual demise. No one’s more concerned with our spiritual safety than our Creator. After all, he knew my spirit before a body was attached! (Psalm 139:13-16) The more we see, understand and believe the magnificence of his glory, the safer our souls are. “For the sake of his name” means ‘for the sake of our souls’. God doesn’t need additional glory… He already has all there is to have! But he wants the ultimate best for each of us and knows it only comes through him.

Friday Spice

A- Read Psalms 103:2 -104: 30 and then, Psalms 139: 13-16 Revel in what you read.

Does God need anything? Umm...NO. Just get out there and get into God!

B- Get out into God’s Creation and acknowledge his glory in it. This can be via watching the sunset, listening to birds as they start the day, walking along a water’s edge, taking in the sunset, listening to rain…There are as many ways as there are people to read this. So, just get out and get into God.

Jesus was funny.

C- It’s Friday and I want to encourage you to have fun because fun is as necessary to life as salt is to stew! Here’s a link to a video about the HUMOR OF JESUS. And another with some pretty corny Christian jokes...Funny for families and nerdy friends, alike!

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Right Paths for His Name

"Right paths for his name's sake."

Before We Begin, you may want to check out the About Me page to learn more about recent changes here. Then I’ll introduce you to tomorrow’s study on ‘right paths for his name’s sake.’

Right Paths for his name to resume Friday.

Until then, take a look at Verse 3, part B only. Consider what we mean when we say anything is for someone else’s sake. Does God need anything done ‘for his sake’? Hmmm… I think it takes more than a surface glance or first understanding to really understand! We’ll look into it a bit on Friday.

And because I love you, value your efforts at being here and want to be faithful to you, I’ll add some spicy suggestions to flavor our stew as we always do on Fridays and Saturdays!

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

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Refreshing My Soul – It’s God’s Work

Before moving on in our Refreshing My Soul discussion: Other pages are still under construction, but you can check out the About Me page to learn more about recent changes here.

Today’s Target: Refreshing my Soul, Psalm 23:3(a)

Refreshing my soul beside the still waters, within his green pastures.

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

How do I go about refreshing my soul?

Aha! Therein lies the ‘Point of First Mistake’! How do I refresh my soul?? I don’t! Let’s start our rest right here! I do not refresh my soul because I am incapable of that kind of ‘magic’! Refreshment of soul is a supernatural power that belongs to God! The great news about that is we guilt-ridden goofs can get off the guilt-mobile right here. The power of refreshment and regeneration lie in the very capable hands of our Savior. (“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest -Matt 11:28,
[emph. mine.] Take a peek also at this in the book of Acts: “that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord…[emph. mine]-(Acts 3:20). We’ll talk about that in just a bit.

So while we do bear some responsibility, by comparison our part is the easier part. I’m not going to take us on a trip through the Bible for this point. The two verses given above are enough. Notice that Jesus started by saying, “Come unto me,” and in just these three words, we are given two instructions.

Refreshing my soul requires movement

For refreshing my soul, there is a target.

To gain the refreshment we need and seek, we do have to take some action. We have to first, “come”, or move to/toward. Secondly, there is a specific target of our movement. We can’t just jump off the couch and run around the block! (Although that could bring bodily refreshment.) For spiritual refreshment (which leads to refreshment of the whole), our target is Jesus and I say so only because he says so, right there in Matt. 11:28!

In refreshing my soul, I must intentionally move toward Jesus. Remembering that “he is not a man that he should lie…”( Numbers 23:19a), I’ll look at what he promises will happen as I approach him… Oh, wow, I must go ‘far’ to find it! Haha! -All the way to the end of the verse! What’s that he said? “and I will give you rest.” [emphasis, mine.] And just to cement the understanding that we don’t earn that rest, look at the 4th word of that segment: “give”. He’s not paying us for a job well done. On the contrary, he’s giving us a gift. The only requirement is that we be at the party to receive it!

Refreshing my soul according to Acts 3: 19 & 20

We can refresh our bodies through pampering, diet and exercise. Doing so can bring some relief to our mind, will and emotions (soul). But without ministering to the core of my being, the relief is like…Facebook! Everyone knows the bulk of FB is about FACE. It’s a surface thing that shows only what we want shown. I’m not saying that’s a bad or good thing, I’m saying it’s not totally real. But when we’re talking about our personal refreshment, however, I think it’s safe to surmise we want our relief to be from something concrete. Does that seem a contradiction to you, to consider God as ‘concrete’ and not put so much stock into these things we can see?

Well, let me tell you something completely aside from this study (or maybe not so ‘completely’!) -This world that we see everyday is less concrete than the realm of God. Now, that’s where the reality of the universe is found. Reality lies within the spirit. That’s why the weapons of Christian warfare are not carnal. (2 Cor. 10:4) We just need to readjust our thinking of the term ‘concrete’ when discussing God. He’s as concrete as it gets.

Refreshing my soul comes with a prerequisite

Refreshing my soul comes with a prerequisite.

Looking to Acts 3:20, we see again that refreshing doesn’t come from ourselves, but from the presence of the Lord. However, I’m convicted to go back and redirect our thoughts to the verse before Acts 3:20, for the sake of keeping conclusions within the context of God’s Word. It’s important that we understand that having the presence of the Lord hinges on repentance.
1Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out, 20 that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord,” [emphasis, mine.]

The ‘R’-word must have for refreshing my soul

Oh! I said that big, bad, ‘R’-word, didn’t I? No apologies. I have stated on this blog (somewhere!) that although I am open-minded about many things, I try not to compromise the truth of God’s Word by ignoring what it actually says. And since we’re talking about rearranging our thinking, we may as well stumble into the veggies (See the analogy HERE) that we don’t like…namely that infamous ‘veggie’ of repentance.

What is your favorite vegetable? I hope to lead you closer to the revelation that repentance is that veggie! What is your least-liked veggie? Honey, repentance is NOT that veggie! So, here’s how to change your thinking: Look at the benefitrepentance brings to our spiritual health. But even before that, we have to remember that salvation comes on the wings of repentance. It’s why we needed John the Baptist before Jesus entered the scene. You can’t accept salvation or the one who brings it without first accepting the fact that you need saving. We don’t turn away from our wrong ways if we won’t believe our wrong ways are wrong, right?

****Discover Benefits of Repentance HERE in the Bible and at this Spreading the Fame blog post. ****

Life is less without refreshment in God

For so many, this is scary, scary territory, so deep that I’m afraid we’ll have to leave full discussion to a later date. I don’t know why it’s so easy for me to believe I’m doomed without Jesus and I don’t know why it’s so hard for others to ‘fess up’ to it. That’s not pride talking. It’s grass-roots concern and dismay. My lack of understanding, however, does not mean there is a lack of love. It is my heart that every person alive would desire Jesus, know him and not have to suffer for the lack of him in their lives right now and in the future. I know many fear that folks like me are only concerned with getting more people ‘on their team’. But it’s not about that. It’s about getting people to understand how much spicier life is with Jesus as captain of your team!

It’s about what God does

Refreshing my soul is God's work. I just make sure to be available, looking up to him for its provision.

The short and skinny of this verse is that it means just what it says, “he restores my soul…” That’s it in a nutshell, friend! All I do is acknowledge my falling short and my need for him to cover my back, and in he comes, refreshing, restoring and making me whole. We acknowledge our need. We acknowledge his authority and power to meet that need. Then we sigh with relief as our Shepherd faithfully gives us the rest we desperately need.


 

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Still Waters on Tuesday

Before we begin ‘Still Waters’ discussion… Other pages are still under construction, but you can check out the About Me page to learn more about recent changes here.

No rush, but still waters await

It’s Tuesday, which isn’t Monday, so I expect things are looking up for you a bit today? I hope so! If you’d like to catch up, just follow this link to yesterday’s post. From that post, if you want to go further back, just click on the arrows at the top of the blog post. Although I don’t want to rush through the study, I do want to respect your time, so let’s get right to those ‘still waters’. We’ll be looking at in Ps. 23:2.

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

Discovering still waters right where you are

There is something uniquely divine about stillness. I often use videos available through YouTube to bring an atmosphere of peace to our home through our TV screen. I always use it for my granddaughter’s nap time, to take her from the Realm of Wide Awake to the Land of Nod. If she is resistant, I sometimes will take her closer to the screen so she can see it, and hum in harmony with the music being played. (It’s slow music so finding the harmony part is usually pretty easy.) I confess, it’s a bit like ‘tricking’ her to sleep, but it works.

Once I take her to her crib and turn on the ‘ocean’ to drown out outside noise, I return to the rest of the house to work on house duties (or I come here so I can get a start on my next post, EBA course, or assignment. Regardless of where I go in the house, one thing goes with me, my ‘walkie-talkie’, a.k.a: baby monitor. Because the ocean is playing in her room, the sound coming through the monitor is an ongoing roar-ish kind of sound and from here, the ocean sound doesn’t sound so much like an ocean.

Polluted airwaves: Turn ’em off!

One of the monitors is usually settled in the living room and one thing I’ve noticed about it is that it would likely send me to sleep pretty fast were I playing it in my bedroom. But in the open-eyed remainder of the house, that little box is quite the aggravation! I have to work pretty hard to ignore the raspy noise and focus on whatever task is at hand!

After naptime, one of the first things I do as I bring ‘Baby-cakes’ back into the Realm of Wide Awake, is turn the box off. Immediately, my brain says, “Ahhhh!” I sit for a moment, savoring the peace. Sometimes, this is the kick-off to additional study and prayer. This same sensation comes after 30 minutes of watching a toddler’s educational TV channel. It even comes after several hours of having ‘soothing’ music play in the background! Why is that? Because after a while, it all turns into pollution.

Still waters: Like the calm after a storm

Still waters are like the calm after the storm.
Still waters are like the calm afterthe storm!

World to world

My husband and I can give an even better analogy, however. We live near VA Beach, VA. It’s the most densely populated city in Virginia. That means lots of traffic. As a Coast Guard military family, we were stationed a few times on the Eastern Shore, accessible via the Chesapeake Bay-Bridge Tunnel, from Virginia Beach. After returning to ‘this side of the water’ upon retirement, we became occasional tourists to that ‘other world’ called the Eastern Shore.

Chaos to peace

The difference in the atmosphere when we emerge on the Eastern Shore side of the CBBT is almost unbelievable! Along Rt. 13, north of the CBBT, the extreme traffic and the noise that goes with it, is gone. The only time this may not be truth is summer week-ends and holidays. So every, single time we go over, my husband and I breathe a huge sigh of relief when we hit ‘The Shore’.

That’s what I was tryin’ to say!

And THAT is what stillness with God is like. When we get really alone and really still with him, the atmosphere changes and folks, these illustrations are the absolute best I can do at describing the feeling that comes with his Presence. There is a feeling of anticipation coupled with a feeling of relief. And gratefulness is there, too. You are so grateful to have his Presence with you that it’s hard to think of anything else. Lastly, there is this feeling of thickness…not heaviness or oppressiveness, but a feeling as if you could almost reach out and touch him!

We reflect best from still waters

Still waters promote reflection.

I shared earlier that I often have background videos playing in my home. Sometimes the music is lifting, others, it’s lilting. At times I use cheerful music for morning wake-up. Other times, it’s Christian music to help me learn a new song for our praise and worship team at church, or because I need the extra boost music lends to Scripture to help it ‘get in there’! This afternoon, because the baby was a wee bit cranky, I selected a peaceful, ‘Tim Janis’ music video and the scenery was mind-blowing! There was one that was particularly amazing: A snow-covered mountain with a lake at its base. The background to the mountain was that deep blue everyone loves to have in their camera shots. The lake in the foreground was the most amazing part, however.

The lake was so still, it gave a perfect…absolutely perfect, reflection…a mirror image of the mountain! And tonight as I ponder the glory of that mountain in the picture, I’m reminded that this is what it’s like when we meet with God intentionally and keep still. He will use our still time to plant his image within us. We won’t be God, but we will reflect him. I believe the more time we spend, the smaller our image of self will be and the clearer his image will become.

A simple challenge: Find God in your still waters

Today, I challenge you to take the time to notice God’s presence with you. I will give you a link to a video that will be helpful. Listen to it for 30 minutes to an hour. No need to try and ’empty’ your thoughts, just turn them over to Jesus as they arrive.(1 Peter 5:7) After the time limit you set, turn off the video. Now, get yourself still in a room away from others. If you have young children with you, wait until nap time. Settle yourself and wait. It’s good to have your Bible on hand in case the Holy Spirit whispers a scripture for you to contemplate. When you feel the change in the room, thank him. The Holy Spirit comes at times like this and brings to mind the words we need. He will also remind of people or issues you need to pray about!

When we consider the stillness of a body of water, we understand that although nothing is showing on the outside, there is all manner of movement taking place beneath the surface. Likewise, God is also working beneath the surface of our lives.


Philippians 2:13, (NIV)for it is God who works in you to will and to act in order to fulfill his good purpose.”

“Mountain Wonder” by Tim Janis


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Green Pastures (Bone Broth Monday)

Before moving on in our Green Pastures discussion: Other pages are still under construction, but you can check out the About Me page to learn more about recent changes here.

Psalm 23

Green Pastures, Quiet Waters

1 The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

Let’s take our time in green pastures

This is a passage well worth taking time over. The picture given is one of peacefulness, therefore, I’ll try to keep this study peaceful, too. No rushing here.

We’ll start with a glimpse at it’s Verse 1 introduction: “The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing. “David, who knows shepherding better than many, starts with the main topic: The Lord as his shepherd. Shepherds are protectors. A good shepherd will guide his sheep to good places where they can eat well. We are also told the Lord gives him everything he needs in this world.

Now David begins to explain what he means by ‘lacking nothing’ in verse two: “He makes me lie down in green pastures…” We know this isn’t the end of it, but it is all we will cover today. And so, let’s begin.

Where are Green Pastures on Mondays?

It’s MONday and it’s not the day we generally call, ‘Funday’, is it? We jump out of bed, run for the shower, spin in circles and out the door…or to the hamper for dirty clothes…or to that diaper that needs changing. We adjust our speed from week-end to week-day, plowing through like an angry bull after a red cape. Monday’s are all about, ‘Get ‘er done! We’re catching up or starting all over. Today, yesterday’s rest is a thing of the past and all but forgotten. We feel lucky to make it through the day sane, and actually many of us consider it to be a miracle to make it through without yelling at someone we love. It’s Monday and it’s about as far removed from pastures and waters as North is from South.

What the world needs now is green, sweet green!

You know what we need, right? Yes, we’ll look at those Green Pastures. But first, let’s break it down. We’ll start with… green! I learned long ago that green is a calming color, but realized as preparing for this post that I don’t know where I learned it, so should do some research. I want to know more about these pastures, for sure, but I want to know that what I know holds water. Why was green important enough to use in this Scripture description…why not just say, ‘pastures’?

My search revealed many positive statements about the color green; however, some statements were disappointingly negative. Yet, everything spoke of the color green as a peaceful or calming color. More than one reference called green, ‘refreshing’ and at least one used the word, ‘restoring’ to describe green. This is a term that pops up again in the passage, itself!

Reference was given, in some accounts, to the ‘Green Room’ created for guests on television shows. This is where they go to ‘wait their turn’. The room is painted green to help guests calm down if they’re feeling nervous. Green is also used in other places that make us nervous, like doctors’ and dentists’ offices. Isn’t it delightful that our God created our brains to respond this way upon seeing green? Have you ever looked up through the leaves of a tree in the spring or summer and taken in all that green, glorious green? How did it make you feel? I know green in the outdoor world makes me feel joyous and peaceful. I am a died-in-the-wool green lover!

Green pasture vs. green pastures…

Let’s move on past green, although I dislike doing so. Look at the second part of the phrase: ‘pastures’. What do you notice? It occurs to me that this is written in the plural, not the singular. That seems significant. One green pasture would be delightful, but more than one? In my mind’s eye, I see green pastures that roll endlessly over hills – as far as I can see. Truthfully, I think God had it written that way on purpose. It’s an illustration of his abundance towards us. His endless thoughts and love roll on like seas of grass rippling in the breezes. The grass this fearfully and wonderfully brain creates is organic and bug-free, with no form of creeping, crawling critters in it. I would lay down, roll around and press my face into grass such as this! Yes, I would watch the clouds roll by, notice the coolness of the carpet beneath me, and surely, take a nap.

Breathe and see that the Lord is good…

Let’s close here today. It’s Monday, after all and how wonderful to sip this Bone Broth slowly as we pause for refreshment. Whatever time of day it is when you read this, I suggest that you take a few minutes to arrange…or rearrange…your thinking. This is how:

Start with Deep Breathing. I spoke of this HERE, in this post. It’s easy.

Add visualization. It’s easy, it’s not ‘hoo-doo’ and it’s effective! Trust me for just a few minutes and shut your eyes. Well, no, don’t shut your eyes! Read this first, then shut your eyes, and ‘see, smell, hear and feel’ the following…

First, think green. Remember, it’s a calming color. If thinking about green isn’t easy, find something in a green shade you really like (Crayola, anyone?) and look at that. Now, think rolling hills covered with green grass. You are barefoot and the grass is damp with dew (per last Saturday’s post). The sun is shining brightly and the cool grass soothes your soles. There is a patch just ahead that grows shorter, so it’s dry. A small tree grows from it’s midst and offers shade.

You walk to the tree and the grassy ground below your feet feels so soft, you sink down into it. Staying here forever would be easy and you roll to your back to look up, knowing you’re safe because the unseen Shepherd is standing watch. The green leaves of the tree dance playfully in the whispering breeze. Their color mixes with the sun and the spring-green brings you inexplicable joy. The little tree’s branches hold an uncanny amount of small birds and their soft singing is sweet to your ears.

Then, just before you trust yourself entirely to sleep, you whisper back to the Master of breezes, “Thank you”. Your Father hears and smiles as he brushes that wisp of hair away from your eyes with his breath.

Good-Monday, little girl. I’ll meet you again tomorrow, beside the still waters. <3

******************************

For more study:

The Shepherd defined





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Rest in God’s Love. (This Week’s Recipe)

Before moving on to ‘Rest in God’s Love’…you may want to check out the ‘A New Name…’ page to learn more about recent changes.

Rest in God's love...Green pastures, still waters...this is our spiritual heaven on earth!

Before we begin…

If you’re just joining me, you may wonder about the title, “Bone Broth and Word Stew” and why you aren’t finding information about bone broth, or even a recipe! Well, the day will come for both, I suspect. In the meantime, know you’re visiting my Christian encouragement blog. We take a few days to look into Scripture, a day to talk about how to apply what we learn and a few days to add Spice…things that will help reinforce what we’ve learned and add some spice to our Christian Walk! Before moving on to this ‘different spices’ post, please look at this page to learn more about the analogies of ‘Bone Broth and Word Stew’!

Rest in God’s Love

It’s Sunday! And it is my day of rest. I won’t argue that for some, their rest day is Saturday. In fact, I see that we are to have a ‘Sabbath’…a day to rest and honor our Lord…but which day? The choice is ours, but once made, follow through with consistency because God set us up from the beginning on a 7 day cycle of rest. Like I said yesterday, I believe God’s way is the best way. When I say that, it’s from the standpoint of trust. I trust him to have what’s best for me in mind because he tells me in his Word that he does! (Jer. 29:11, Luke 11:11, Matt 7:10) Following through is easier when done within a tribe. So find your tribe, pick a day, stop overthinking and rest in God’s love.

Maybe your tribe meets on Saturdays. Perhaps Sundays. Possibly another day of the week. If this seems strange to you, let it go. Don’t be dogmatic about what day you rest and celebrate your place in God’s kingdom. Stop overthinking about how to go about honoring God that day, too. If you’re in doubt as to how much he’s okay with your ideas, ask him and refuse thinking that leads to anxiety. This is a danger zone because his Word says to “be anxious for nothing.” And don’t judge others if they honor the day differently than you. Let. It. Go. Rest in God’s love regarding your decision; leave other’s decisions alone.

The Sabbath: made for man to rest in God’s love

-Not the other way around. “Got Questions”, reports 39 categories of rules involved with observation of the Sabbath in the Old Testament! Yet, David, in a foreshadowing of Jesus, ate food set apart for priests only. What’s more, the priest ‘on duty’ gave him the bread! Jesus used the incident to teach, adding that, “The Son of Man is lord of the Sabbath.” Jesus healed a man with a withered hand on the Sabbath, knowing he was being judged by the religious leaders of the time. Yep, he stood right there in front of them and did his thing. I know at least one person that day who was glad Jesus was shaking things up! Jesus wanted humanity to understand once and for all that this walk with him is not about our doing, doing, doing! We can’t do enough to be good enough to be right with God!

But we can rest in God’s love…the love he sent in Jesus to show us his own heart and make a way to make us right with him forever. We can rest from our constant striving to ‘get it right’. Jesus did it.

A spirit of works and religion

Jesus broke a bunch of Sabbath rules during his 3 year ministry here on earth. It is an evil, evil religious spirit that ruled the hearts of the Pharisees and Sadducees. Some people carry this same spirit within our churches today. Many of them aspire to high positions and because they are wearing their sheepskin disguises, they find their way in. If they’re in your church, don’t hang with them no matter what place you think you’d like to have within that body of Believers. Pray (hard and long) about finding a new tribe if the overall atmosphere exudes this spirit.

OR you can put on your armor and press through the crowd like Jesus did. Don’t expect them to lay down their rocks; rather, understand it is not a carnal enemy we face in them, it is a spirit of the world. But don’t be afraid, Jesus overcame the world, making a way for us to lie down in green pastures and walk beside still waters. To me, these are the ‘Ahhhhh’ verse of the Bible. This is a picture of perfect rest! It is set apart from sanctimonious religiosity, but set close to the rule-breaker King, Jesus Christ.

Today’s Rest

This week, we’ll look at the Word’s promise and picture of rest, with green pastures and still waters. We’ll talk about the rod and staff and the table God sets before our enemies. We’ll talk about shepherds, too. Oh, it’s good stuff, isn’t it?! Yes, the Scriptures in this passage are familiar, but I’ll be praying God reveals something to each of us that we’ve never seen before so Pslam 23 touches the spirit as it’s never touched before. Today, just read the Psalm and rest in God’s love. Let him talk to you about the verses and simply lisen. As we move through the week, let’s see if the Holy Spirit is moving us in the same direction or using us as “iron sharpens iron.”

Until tomorrow, be blessed with rest! <3

Rest in God's love...Psalm 23 is a picture of our spiritual rest.

Psalm 23

1The LORD is my shepherd, I lack nothing. 2 He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, 3 he refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name’s sake. 4 Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me. 5 You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. 6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the LORD forever.

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