What to Believe

Last night, as I lay in bed, one of my legs started hurting. I said, “Lord, what’s going on?”

Now, whether it was my thought, imagination, the enemy of our souls-which I doubt, or the One and Only Great God, I felt as if a gruff voice impressed on my mind, “Feed My sheep.”

What do you think of that? So, tonight just past my bedtime, I’m sitting in a recliner under a crocheted afghan I made well over 20 years ago, a Granny square pattern, with a dim light on my right and a hand-cranked flashlight losing power over lined paper so I don’t overstimulate my senses and stay awake too late. I’ll type this in the morning, “Lord willing and the creek don’t rise,” as my mom used to say back in the day.

I’ve been blogging less often because of life’s pressures and a little burn out. I’m reading the Psalms in the Old Testament and First Corinthians in the New Testament. No matter how many interesting books I read, none nourish my spirit like the Bible.

I read 1 Corinthians 10:13 (NKJV), a favorite verse of mine: No temptation has overtaken you except such as is common to man; but God is faithful, who will not allow you to be tempted beyond what you are able, but with the temptation will also make the way of escape, that you may be able to bear it.

Speaking of temptation, the last time I blogged I mentioned my granddaughter saying something about an unfortunate substance being on her ear and contacting my kiss. The next morning, on speaker phone I heard her mom say, “What did I read in Grandma’s blog about your ear and a booger?”

My young granddaughter said, “Oh, I just played a trick on her.”

She lied! I thought it was unlikely that she would have a booger on her ear, but then, I thought, maybe it got on her pillow case and transferred over. She’s got brothers and she’s athletic but I didn’t think she’d ignore something on her ear. I gave her the benefit of the doubt.

This photo is from gettyimage.com and I found it on Google.com.

The next time something is suspicious with her, I’ll consider she might be tricking me again, or telling a fib. She’s never lied to me in matters of importance, but in kidding around, she felt a temptation to say something that would gross me out, and she went with it. That’s what I like about temptation, the only thing I like about temptation. I have moments or longer to consider if I’ll fall if the opportunity comes my way. I can choose to lie or steal or cheat, etc. or not. And 1 Corinthians 10:13 says God gives me a way to escape any temptation that comes my way. What a relief. All I have to do is ask God to make it clear to me what I should do to avoid sin, and He’ll provide a way out.

Another reason I like this verse is that it’s reassuring that I’m not the only one in the world to get tempted. Yet, it’s not a sin to get tempted. It’s only a sin when I act on the temptation. Do you believe this verse?

May God bless you!

Marriage for Life Continued

 

I hear about men and women leaving their spouses for people they’ve met through the Internet. I think it’s sad for all the parties involved.

Over the years I began running into Scriptures that showed God’s intent for marriage.

Happy senior couple                                                                         (photo from stock.adobe.com)

In Genesis, chapter two, verses 15-24, we read about Adam, the first created man being placed in the Garden of Eden and being told the responsibilities he faced there.

God decided animal companionship wasn’t enough, so He made a woman from Adam’s rib. Verse 24, (ESV) says: “Therefore a man leaves his father and his mother and clings to his wife, and they become one flesh.”

I’ve seen lots of married couples over the years. One man used to rush into the house after work, give a quick hello to his family and visitors and then get on the telephone with his mother.

I looked to his wife in surprise. “Every day,” she quietly asserted and then lowered her head.

One of the things I liked about my husband before we got married was the way he talked about his mother and his sister. He respected them and appreciated their accomplishments. Both were excellent bowlers and hard workers and fun to be around, to name a few of their traits.

My husband loved his mother but after we got married sometimes I encouraged him to call her because he’d get busy with work and our immediate family and other things and time would slip away.

She never came between us and I model my relationship with my children and their spouses based on her example which she gleaned from her mother-in-law. My mother-in-law said her mother-in-law rarely said anything, but if she did, she’d tell her son to treat his wife well.

God set people into families with a father and a mother – the first social unit to exist in the world.

Years later, Jesus spoke about not divorcing your wife because men were divorcing women for hardly any reason at all. In Mark 10 He reminds them of marriage ordained in Genesis 1 and Genesis 2, and He says if anyone marries a divorced person, it causes the person to commit adultery.

In Matthew 5:32, Jesus says whoever divorces his wife, except for in cases of fornication, causes her to commit adultery.

Luke 16:18, (ESV) quotes Jesus: “Any man who divorces his wife and marries another woman commits adultery and the man who marries a woman divorced from her husband commits adultery.”

Jesus wanted marriage to show an example of God’s love. God unselfishly loves people and He wants men and women to marry and show unbelievers how beautiful unselfish love is – a pattern from God Himself. Eph. 5: 15 – 33, (Webster) says:

Eph 5:15  “See then that ye walk circumspectly, not as fools, but as wise,

Eph 5:16  Redeeming the time, because the days are evil.

Eph 5:17  Wherefore be ye not unwise, but understanding what the will of the Lord is.

Eph 5:18  And be not drunk with wine, in which is excess; but be filled with the Spirit;

Eph 5:19  Speaking to yourselves in psalms, and hymns, and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord,

Eph 5:20  Giving thanks always for all things to God and the Father, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ;

Eph 5:21  Submitting yourselves one to another in the fear of God.

Eph 5:22  Wives, submit yourselves to your own husbands, as to the Lord.

Eph 5:23  For the husband is the head of the wife, even as Christ is the head of the church: and he is the Savior of the body.

Eph 5:24  Therefore as the church is subject to Christ, so let wives be to their own husbands in every thing.

Eph 5:25  Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave himself for it;

Eph 5:26  That he might sanctify and cleanse it with the washing of water by the word,

Eph 5:27  That he might present it to himself a glorious church, not having spot or wrinkle, or any such thing; but that it should be holy and without blemish.

Eph 5:28  So ought men to love their wives, as their own bodies. He that loveth his wife, loveth himself.

Eph 5:29  For no man ever yet hated his own flesh; but nourisheth and cherisheth it, even as the Lord the church:

Eph 5:30  For we are members of his body, of his flesh, and of his bones.

Eph 5:31  For this cause shall a man leave his father and mother, and shall be joined to his wife, and they two shall be one flesh.

Eph 5:32  This is a great mystery: but I speak concerning Christ and the church.

Eph 5:33  Nevertheless, let every one of you in particular so love his wife even as himself: and the wife see that she reverence her husband.”

I’ve fallen short of living unselfishly many times but sometimes I get it and then act on it. I’ve seen my husband live unselfishly for my benefit.

He doesn’t really like me talking about him, but it’s hard to write about marriage without bringing him up some of the time.

I’ve asked his permission in the past and he’s given me an okay for all time, but I try and limit it for his sake.

So to bring it to a narrow focus:

  • God made marriage for man and woman for their benefit and for the benefit of their children and for society.
  • God made marriage so mankind can have a concrete example of His sacrificial love for us.
  • God intended marriage to last until death parted couples.

When I got engaged, before I said yes, I’d thought long and hard about the commitment involved. Forsaking all others FOR LIFE seemed huge to this young woman.

How did I know if I’d meet someone incredible in the future? What if I got tempted to cheat?

So I made up my mind that since I was crazy about him that I would forsake all others for life. I would resist temptation if it came my way.

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

May God bless you!

Finding Rest

 

Jesus said in Matthew 11:28-30, (ESV), “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

Mat 11:29  Take my yoke upon you, and learn from me, for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

Mat 11:30  For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

I feel more refreshed today than I have been because I don’t feel as overwhelmed. We started a prayer group this week at church and when we finished it felt jarring to talk to people in the coffee room. The presence of the Lord was so strong, to be smack dab in reality again is what felt unsettling.

I hope you’re finding time to be in the Word and to sit quietly at Jesus’ feet. What a privilege we have to cast all our care upon Him, for He cares for us as noted in 1 Peter 5:7.

I find I need others. When temptation comes my way, I can let an accountability partner know about it and ask for prayer. Christians can remind other Christians that to be tempted is not a sin. To step toward the temptation and to take action is the sin. That’s when we need to repent and ask God’s forgiveness. If we’re tempted and don’t act on it, we pray to be delivered from temptation and then walk away from the temptation and walk away from any condemnation the devil tries to put on us. He’ll do anything to distract us from God and being obedient to God.

Romans 8:34, (ESV)  Who is to condemn? Christ Jesus is the one who died—more than that, who was raised—who is at the right hand of God, who indeed is interceding for us.

Rom 8:35  Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?

Rom 8:36  As it is written, “For your sake we are being killed all the day long; we are regarded as sheep to be slaughtered.”

Rom 8:37  No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us.

Rom 8:38  For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers,

Rom 8:39  nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.

 

God bless you!