Making Things New

 

I looked at the bulletin board over my desk and saw the Scripture verse, Isaiah 43:18-19, (KJV), which says, “Remember ye not the former things, neither consider the things of old. Behold, I will do a new thing; now it shall spring forth; shall ye not know it? I will even make a way in the wilderness, and rivers in the desert.”

I started my computer today to get onto the internet, and the first offering said my Windows license has been corrupted and taken, if I remember correctly and that my computer will shut down every few moments. I need to contact my service provider. The search engine refused to open. My computer expert son told me it may be time to buy a new computer or take it to the computer repair guy in town. “It sounds like it’s a virus.”

I called my husband to give him the bad news. He asked me to close it up and re-start it. I did and it still didn’t work. When he got home, he tried to get online and chose another of the headings to open the search engine company and it wanted his e-mail and other stuff, so he closed out and tried another heading. I asked why he didn’t choose the first one in line, like I did but he didn’t want to. The second time it worked perfectly and I was able to continue using my computer.

In the meanwhile, I was praying, “Dear God, please fix my computer; please let it work.”

I had to go to the library to use their computer because I’m doing some stuff for a client. I’d been in earlier and almost brought my work with me to use theirs at that time. I just figure it’s easier to work at home. If I had, I would have gotten more done.

Anyway, I felt relieved that I didn’t have to hop in the car and drive all that way to the store early in my day. I have a lot to do tomorrow already. Plus, I hope to get a few more years out of this computer.

Why did the verse in Isaiah speak to me tonight? I guess that last part about God making a way in the wilderness and rivers in the desert fit my thinking about the computer. What I thought was infected or soon to be dead, suddenly came to life and I was able to work for the client. I hope to get an early start tomorrow before the scheduled events of the day. I’m grateful that God watches over me.

I think I’ll avoid the one new site I visited last night that may have caused my computer glitch. I have antivirus stuff and malware protection on this machine, so maybe it’s just a fluke. All I know is that in Romans 8:28, God says He causes all things to work together for good to those who love Him and are called according to His purposes.

Since the imposed wait came along, I relaxed with my husband for a short amount of time and then got the dishes done.

I hope this finds you well. May God bless you and keep you from harm.

 

Seek God First

I was spending some quiet time with the Lord today and I got reminded of Matthew chapter six. Verses nineteen through thirty-four speak in a comparative manner of collecting treasures on earth and laying up treasures in heaven. Jesus reminds us that God provides for us. I included the verses here because many times over the weeks I’ve sensed God reminding me to seek Him. He is the eternal reality. This life on earth is short and the older I get the more I’m aware of it.

Mat 6:19, (ESV)  “Do not lay up for yourselves treasures on earth, where moth and rust destroy and where thieves break in and steal,

Mat 6:20  but lay up for yourselves treasures in heaven, where neither moth nor rust destroys and where thieves do not break in and steal.

Mat 6:21  For where your treasure is, there your heart will be also.

Mat 6:22  “The eye is the lamp of the body. So, if your eye is healthy, your whole body will be full of light,

Mat 6:23  but if your eye is bad, your whole body will be full of darkness. If then the light in you is darkness, how great is the darkness!

Mat 6:24  “No one can serve two masters, for either he will hate the one and love the other, or he will be devoted to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and money.

Mat 6:25  “Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing?

Mat 6:26  Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they?

Mat 6:27  And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life?

Mat 6:28  And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin,

Mat 6:29  yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.

Mat 6:30  But if God so clothes the grass of the field, which today is alive and tomorrow is thrown into the oven, will he not much more clothe you, O you of little faith?

Mat 6:31  Therefore do not be anxious, saying, ‘What shall we eat?’ or ‘What shall we drink?’ or ‘What shall we wear?’

Mat 6:32  For the Gentiles seek after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them all.

Mat 6:33  But seek first the kingdom of God and his righteousness, and all these things will be added to you.

Mat 6:34  “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow, for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Sufficient for the day is its own trouble.

When I read Proverbs, it talks disparagingly of slothfulness and it reminds people to leave an inheritance to their children. In the book of Second Thessalonians it says in the English Standard Version at 2Th_3:10  For even when we were with you, we would give you this command: If anyone is not willing to work, let him not eat.

2Th_3:11  For we hear that some among you walk in idleness, not busy at work, but busybodies.

2Th_3:12  Now such persons we command and encourage in the Lord Jesus Christ to do their work quietly and to earn their own living.

The Apostle Paul is aware of Jesus’ teachings and he’s not contradicting Jesus, but he’s addressing a problem with some of the believers. They were so convinced that Jesus was returning immediately that they didn’t think they needed to work. Jesus said don’t let money be your master. Let God be your master and He will provide. One of the ways He provides is by giving us work to do so we can earn a living. I think that’s pretty clear. My husband has preached that work is not a part of the curse in the book of Genesis. The curse for farmers came after the fall in the addition of weeds and thistles and the ground not cooperating.

Even though we live in a fallen world, unlike anything at the beginning of the Creation, Jesus is saying if we seek God first then we need not worry about provision. If we focus on God first, then the earthly stuff that we need will come our way through opportunities, ideas that flourish, through gifts from others, etc. The Jewish people are God’s chosen people and one of the issues that causes jealousy against Jewish people that I’ve heard about is the fact that many worked hard, became scientists or comedians or business people and they prospered more than the rest of their neighbors. When God loves you, He likes to prosper you. Not every Jew or every Christian is rich. It can’t be that simplified, but God’s principles apply to everyone. Give and it shall be given unto you is a principle: Luke_6:38  “give, and it will be given to you. Good measure, pressed down, shaken together, running over, will be put into your lap. For with the measure you use it will be measured back to you.”

If you help the poor or give to a cause near and dear to God’s heart, He will bless you. It’s repeated in Scripture and it may be more than about money.

I’ve found Him worth seeking, anyway.

Well, I hope you are blessed today and forever.

Retreats

I wrote this last Thursday before I drove north. I thought I saved it on a future posting site within this website, but when I reached my location it was gone and my computer was at home. The computer at the place I was at wasn’t working, and blogging went to the lowest of priorities. So, now that I’m back, I retrieved the unsaved blog from the saved Microsoft Word and copied and pasted it here. Also, on Tuesday, I worked a sixteen hour day as an election inspector and did not sleep well the night before and got up early today for Bible study, so I’m semi-comatose as I add these few lines. 🙂

My husband used to go on a men’s retreat two times a year with a group of men from the city we lived in at the time, some from the same church, some unchurched, some from smaller churches. Most were believers in Jesus Christ and went to seek God on a deeper level and to enjoy camaraderie with others. They spent three days in the Spring, if memory serves me correctly, and five days in the Fall.

At first, I resented it. I was a stay at home mom and he worked a ton of hours. I sensed God’s Spirit saying to let him go. So, I agreed, hardly wholeheartedly. I didn’t hide my feelings. When it was extremely difficult to let him go, I would wipe away the tears. He would hug me and say, “I love you. We’ll be praying for you.”

Then he’d surprise me, once with a plaque of an old-fashioned beautiful mother with her long flowing gown, ministering to her young ones. The bottom of the picture quoted a Scripture from Proverbs 31 praising the wife of the home. One other time he brought me home a bouquet of flowers. It always surprised me because of the randomness of the gifts, but the greatest gift was his safe return and his growth with God and with his friends. Our marriage improved, too.

All these years later, he is going with the friend that took the first trip with him. They walked Mt. Washington along the road with bags of provisions attached to cheap backpacks up and hiked the trail down. Yowza. Over the years they discovered great camping equipment, maps of the trails, dried food, light weight clothes, and their favorite restaurants along the journey.

Now, his buddy for over thirty years has an RV and they’ll take the trip with less physical exertion. We wives will wait at home and pray for them and they’ll seek God and hopefully find their favorite bakery, and a great pancake house that gives portions beyond belief.

These two men are so different from each other that they bring out the best in each other. His friend gets him laughing like none of his other friends, and they discuss God and His characteristics, and they share things no one else is privy to, or so he’s led me to understand. I get it, I have friends like that. What a blessing.

So, I’ve decided to take a few days to go visit one of my kids and the grandkids, yet I plan on getting home before him so I can see the missionary and his wife who’re coming to our church.

Sometimes, it’s just good to go away to get refreshed and to seek God in another environment. I told my daughter I am not bringing any books to read or any writing assignments. I’m going to relax and maybe help her out some around the house and then turn around and come home recharged. That’s the plan. She’s free to sit with me in her church which is much different than ours, and that will be re-energizing as well. That’s what I’m thinking anyway. 🙂 May God bless you.

Fourth

Continuing the thoughts on The Ten Commandments, I’m on number four.

Exo 20:8  Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy.

Exo 20:9  Six days shalt thou labour, and do all thy work:

Exo 20:10  But the seventh day is the sabbath of the LORD thy God: in it thou shalt not do any work, thou, nor thy son, nor thy daughter, thy manservant, nor thy maidservant, nor thy cattle, nor thy stranger that is within thy gates:

Exo 20:11  For in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, the sea, and all that in them is, and rested the seventh day: wherefore the LORD blessed the sabbath day, and hallowed it.

 

This is a tricky commandment for me because frankly, I don’t follow it. I try to get some rest on Sunday’s and if we eat at a restaurant I feel bad that I’m part of causing other people to work. Of course, it is their choice.

 

In Exodus 31:13 and 17, it says, “Speak thou also unto the children of Israel, saying, Verily my sabbaths ye shall keep: for it is a sign between me and you throughout your generations; that ye may know that I am the LORD that doth sanctify you.”

Exo 31:17  It is a sign between me and the children of Israel for ever: for in six days the LORD made heaven and earth, and on the seventh day he rested, and was refreshed.”

 

The reasons for me not following it are twofold. One, I’m not an Israeli. Two, it falls under the law and Jesus died, fulfilling the law, so we’ve entered into His rest through His death and resurrection.

 

My conundrum is that I truly feel the rest of the commandments need to be followed. “Thou shall not murder” is as valid today as always, which is in one of the upcoming commandments.

 

None of them save people, the law exposes our unworthiness and our need for a Savior before a perfect, holy God.

 

God is good and He loves us unconditionally. That’s the blessing of being a Christian. God loves us and He tells us to love others so they’ll know we’re Jesus’ disciples by our love. Joh_13:23, (KJV) says, “Now there was leaning on Jesus’ bosom one of his disciples, whom Jesus loved.

Joh_13:34  A new commandment I give unto you, That ye love one another; as I have loved you, that ye also love one another.”

 

Then Jesus consolidated the commandments into two all-encompassing decrees:

Mar_12:28, (KJV)  And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all?

Mar_12:29  And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord:

Mar_12:30  And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment.

Mar_12:31  And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these.

Mar_12:32  And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he:

Mar_12:33  And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.

Mar 12:34  And when Jesus saw that he answered discreetly, he said unto him, Thou art not far from the kingdom of God. And no man after that durst ask him any question.

 

May God bless you!

 

 

 

 

Can I Do It?

I see people pushing themselves when they’re beyond exhaustion. I tend not to do that.

Our family used to work together as kids with Dad at the lead on Saturday’s sometimes. As an adult, when I wake up on a Saturday I am raring to go.

I think it’s great for kids to work with their parents or grandparents. They learn how to work and it’s a great time to connect.

I just have a hard time going above and beyond regularly. My body gets sick.

Do you take time to work side by side with the younger ones in your life?

May God bless you!

So Much!

Some days I’m not sure what to write about, others there’s so much to choose from it’s hard to know what to mention and what to let go of. That is an art in writing. I recently read that when you write everything out for the reader and don’t leave room for them to “get it,” or imagine their own scenario, that’s “writing on the nose.”

Jerry Jenkins mentioned that and I apologize if this is the second time I brought this up. When I read that piece of advice, “Don’t write on the nose,” I pondered, Do I do that?

In non-fiction, the reader needs to be able to follow where you’re going, but even there, “on the nose” writing may insult their intelligence or bore them.  So, as I’m  writing daily, I’m working on not writing “on the nose.”

On the novel, I’m trying to put my heroine in danger that changes her life. I keep niggling on the idea of writing from the brother’s point of view and he’s the antagonist. I just don’t want to do it, but today it almost seemed like he was in my head showing me just what he felt about the situation.

I have Scriptures posted near the computer for motivation. Proverbs 22: 29 (NKJV) says, “Do you see a man who excels in his work? He will stand before kings; He will not stand before unknown men.”

Not that I want to stand before kings, it reminds me not to settle for mediocrity.

A verse I read unintentionally the other day said, “For even when we were with you, this we commanded you, that if any would not work, neither should he eat.”

That was from the Apostle Paul in  2 Thess. 3:10 in the (KJV).

That’s motivated me around the house and with my writing as well. I’ll take all the encouragement I can get. LOL

I thought I’d write more on my novel earlier in the day, but my list of to-do’s got in the way. I’m cleaning a room that got neglected and today I used the paper shredder to get rid of excess copies of treasurer and secretary reports from a non-profit organization I volunteered at for at least four years in this town. The shredder stops when it gets too warm, I think. I almost bought another one tonight because I thought I broke it. A friend suggested I pray over it, and I did. Then it worked. It may have a short in the wire; I’ll ask my husband to look at it.

Anyway, I’ll have to blog about the other stuff I was thinking of on another day. Too many words can be like too much food. What was enjoyable turns into discomfort and stimulates a lack of appetite, in my opinion. Hope you have a good day!

Doing My Work Heartily

Sometimes when I read Colossians 3:23 “And whatsoever ye do, do it heartily as to the LORD and not unto men,” I think, what is my work for this time and place in the world?

Is it more important to read the Bible and pray and talk to people about Jesus? Is it more important to write about God, hoping some may think of Him if they’re not apt to? Is it more important to wash dishes as I’m preparing a meal? Is it more important to take time to make applesauce with children even though it’s holding up time for all the dishes of our feast to finish and stay warm, this afternoon?

Yes, we finally had our Resurrection Sunday meal on the Saturday after the date.

What about vacuuming and disinfecting? What about some social contact when you’re mostly alone? What about throwing papers away? What about writing to our states and asking them what is most important: the NFL or other sports owners; Hollywood producers and a conglomeration of corporate owners as mentioned in an article by The Washington Post at https://www.washingtonpost.com/news/morning-mix/wp/2016/03/19/nfl-suggests-religious-liberty-bill-could-affect-georgias-super-bowl-bid ; or passing laws that protect freedom of religion in America or no transgenders in bathrooms, especially in America where there are single rooms for family bathroom needs? A transgender can use a family bathroom and no one will object.

What is my work at such a time as this? What is your work at such a time as this?

Even if work is distasteful sometimes, if it is done for God, really done for God, it can take the sting out of an unpleasant situation. I know, I’ve done so. I need to read my Bible, I need to pray, I need to listen. What is Your priority for me at this moment, my God and my Savior? Be blessed, readers and ponderers.