Wednesday, March 22, 2017

THIS LITTLE LIGHT


Grrr... I found myself uttering in frustration. I like a room completely dark in order to sleep. Last night was one of those that insomnia threatens and every little beacon of light seemed to glow brighter and brighter increasing my frustration with not sleeping and increased my focus on why there were so many lights in a room.
As I tossed and turned and covered my head and turned over the clock to face the table and turned over the remote that every button is lit up on to subdue them, the scripture began to run through my mind Mat 5:14 Ye are the light of the world. A city that is set on an hill cannot be hid. Even though I turned the clock face down, there was still light glowing around the edges. Even though I turned the remote upside down...yep, there was light glowing around the edges. I began to think about the tiny less than 1/8 inch battery indicator on the laptop that was glowing green. It isn’t very large, but it is lighting the room. How about the little red dot on Garrett’s DVD play that indicates off? Yep was lighting the room. I began to think about how little light it takes to invade darkness. Jesus said, “Ye are the light of the world, a city that is set on a hill.” I think there were 5 or 6 things glowing in the dark last night which lit the whole room. I began to wonder what if, God’s children would allow the light inside of them to glow in a darkened world? See it didn’t take much light to shatter the darkness in my room. I found myself thinking that we might want to be accepted or liked or favored so we have a tendency to do what Jesus went on to say: Neither do men light a candle, and put it under a bushel, but on a candlestick; and it giveth light unto all that are in the house.
We are admonished to not put our light face down on the table to make it easier. OUCH. Sometimes that is a difficult task. I found myself thinking if I am ever going to get any sleep then I need to get up and unplug everything. This led me to thinking light needs a power source. I asked myself, “Am I fully plugged into my power source? Do I allow the light of Christ to shine through me? Do I put my light under a bushel? (or face down on a table) Do I unplug from the outlet to make life easier?” God forbid that I could answer yes to any of those but I fear at times maybe I don’t like the answer I might give.

So my reflection for insomnia and the battle of the lights is to challenge God’s people to be what He called us to be, “The light of the World. A city set on a hill” (Yes one little light looked like a whole city lit up in the dark!) To not cover the light inside of us so that He might be high and lifted up! 

Friday, February 17, 2017

Spider Web vs Cob Web

Have you ever thought about if there is a difference between a "spider web" and a "cob web"?  Been thinking on the topic for a few weeks and if you will bear with me will show you how they are a perfect picture of how we should handle things in life.



  • Spider Web is a device created by a spider out of proteinaceous spider silk, generally meant to catch its prey. 
  • Cob Web is an old dusty spider web.
  • "Watch for webs during your daily cleaning."  We must guard our souls with daily cleaning through prayer and the Word of God. 
  • "Webs should be removed as you see them."  This can help keep spiders from infesting your home. Removal of things that don't belong can protect our souls.  Maybe it is turning the switch to off on things we watch, or closing the cover to things we read, or not going to places we shouldn't go or leaving friends that would hinder our spirit from thriving in Christ.  
  • "Be sure to check under furniture." Some types of spiders may make webs in dark areas. We have to get alone with God and turn over the furniture in our lives sometimes and allow the Holy Spirit to bring to light and cleanse those dark areas that we think no one sees or maybe even knows about.  God knows. 
  • "Some places may
  •  be difficult to reach with a vacuum cleaner. Any nooks or crannies you cannot reach with a vacuum can be cleaned using a soft duster with a handle." Sometimes we have to go even deeper and not only pray but get alone with God and His Word and fast to find those difficult to reach things that we might need emotional healing from. Such as:
  • The past
  • desertion
  • neglect
  • emptiness
  • vacancy
  • the past
  • long since abandoned by their creator
  • old age neglect
  • something that needs cleaned and wiped away



Been finding circumstances and even choices are like the spider web.  Did you ever stop and think about how that spider weaves it's web.  Yes is is a God given ability but, it begins with a single thread which forms the rest of the structure.  You can equate that to a single choice that begins a web of destruction.  The spider climbs to suitable starting place and releases its thread in the wind, with luck it catches onto something and the spider cinches the starting thread and begins weaving. Lives are like that.  A temptation dangled to see if it catches onto something in you and if it does the weaving begins and it gets harder and harder to remove.
What is the purpose of these beautiful yet nasty structures in nature?  The spider weaves a web to catch its prey.  That silky thread when you get it on you, is very difficult to get off.  It sticks to everything and is a bit stubborn about letting go.  The enemy of our soul would dangle a thread to see if he has something to attach to in order to begin weaving his web.  

According to the world wide web, 
Have you ever thought about how those webs work?  According to an article on arachnids it says: "The spider sits in the middle of its web, monitoring the radius threads for vibrations. If an insect gets caught in any part of the web, the spider will feel the motion through the radius threads and make its way to the vibration source. In this way, the web extends the spider's sensory system over a much wider area. The spider might also leave the web, to retreat to a separate nest, while monitoring the web via a connected signal line."  The spider web is very beautiful to the prey but also very hard to see.  "temptation is very beautiful to the eye and yet hard to see for what it is. It has been carefully woven and planned out so that the prey is caught before it knows it. 

The enemy of our soul is much like the spider.  He dangles a thread in the wind, testing us, he looks for weak areas that maybe we aren't as diligent to guard, he begins weaving and when the web is finished, sits and waits, testing the vibrations and our responses to the temptations, to the things put in front of us.  The spider even may go to a separate nest, making it seem it has left... only to monitor our activity with a signal line.  The Word tells us in 1Pe 5:8  Be sober, be vigilant; because your adversary the devil, as a roaring lion, walketh about, seeking whom he may devour: spider, lion, the enemy waits for the prey.  Stalk, trap, devour.  

A Cob Web on the other hand is a spider web that has been left behind by spiders.  Spider web implies a fresh web probably inhabited by the spider, while a cob web has either been left behind by the spider or the spider dies. The web collects dust and lint.  Where do we find cob webs?  In abandoned areas. 

Cobwebs represent:

Sometimes we have to walk back into the past just like walking back into an abandoned house and the cobwebs are there waiting to get on you.  Sometimes we are tempted with something that we long ago thought we had completely mastered only to find out that a wisp of a cobweb, full of dust is waiting to fall on us yet again.  The Word tells us in Matthew 12:43-45  When the unclean spirit is gone out of a man, he walketh through dry places, seeking rest, and findeth none.  (44)  Then he saith, I will return into my house from whence I came out; and when he is come, he findeth it empty, swept, and garnished.  (45)  Then goeth he, and taketh with himself seven other spirits more wicked than himself, and they enter in and dwell there: and the last state of that man is worse than the first. Even so shall it be also unto this wicked generation.

We have to be diligent and we have to be careful to keep our spiritual man clean.  We have to not neglect the gift that has been placed inside of us.  Paul told Timothy in 2 Tim 1: 6 to stir up the gift that was inside of him.  We have to invite the Holy Spirit to reside and do the work that only He can do.  SATAN BEGINS WEAVING HIS WEB TO TRAP YOU THE MOMENT YOU BOW YOUR KNEE AT THE ALTAR AND GET SAVED.  "Come in said the spider to the fly" in the children's book.  Sounds good, looks, good, but the spider is a destroyer. 

Friday, February 10, 2017

BUT GOD…
               BUT GOD...
                              BUT GOD....
Perhaps my favorite phrase in the Word of God is, “But God.”  Perhaps this is my favorite because I know how human I am.  I know how at times I am weak when I need to be strong.  I know at times I speak when I need to be silent or maybe am silent when I need to speak forth.  I know that many times a day I fail my God but that He never fails me. I know when my plate is full and life is being squeezed in a continual vice, He is my strength.  I know when I am at the end of myself and my ability; I can find Him in my situation. I find myself saying often these days, “I can’t.”  Then I turn around and say, “But God,” for I know that although I can’t, God can.
The word but is a transition word, a conjunction to show contrast, on the other hand, yet.  I looked up the phrase that I use often and found several places in the scripture that show me although we are weak, He is strong.  Although I am a sinner, He is my righteousness.  Although I stumble, He catches me.  Although my faith is weak, His ability is greater.  When the future looks bleak to me, He will bring me into the Promised Land.
But God is found in scripture to encourage and to build our faith.  Acts 10 tells us that God is not a respecter of persons, what He did in the Bible, He will do today. Malachi 3 tells us that God does not change, He is the same yesterday, today and forever it tells us in Heb. 13:8. These promises are ours today.  Israel told Joseph that he would die “but God shall be with you.” Another place in Genesis tells us “ye thought evil against me; but God meant it unto good”, I love this thought that when I don’t know what direction to turn, “But God led the people.” Phil 2 says, “But God had mercy on him.”  Thank you God for your mercy! “But God is faithful,” 1 Corinthians tells us.  1 Corinthians also tells me that “But God giveth the increase.” They thought Christ was dead, “But God raised him from the dead.” And a favorite but God is Rom 5:8 But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.” 

I want to encourage you don’t give up when you mess up.  Don’t quit when you are weak.  Don’t settle for less than “But God.”  I thank God that the exact phrase “But God” is in the Word multiple times and that I can use the hope those words bring to carry me every day.

Thursday, December 22, 2016



"CHRISTMASSY"

“I’ve never felt less Christmassy” is a quote I have been seeing different ones say…and I find that if I am not careful the Bah-humbugs take over me.  BUT  when I take the focus off of all the trappings and the hustle bustle and all of the things that Christmas has become that it is NOT….then I find I have quite a lot of Christmas Spirit.  Christmas is not the decorations, the gifts, the shopping, the cooking, etc. (You fill in your own blank) ….CHRISTMAS IS that moment in time when God said, TODAY is the day that I will take on flesh and step onto earth as a LAMB in a stable to be the final sacrifice that mankind needs to bridge the gulf that sin created that has no bridge.  Christmas is that moment in time that Joh 3:16  For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life. 
            When I begin to put this season into perspective, the hurts, the heartaches, the is nots and the wish it were’s fade away into glorious praise that because of this moment in time, I have a Savior not just for me, but a savior for all that will believe on Him.  Let us not forget… It is all about Christ, Emmanuel, God with us. Because he came, I live.

A little story I made for the kids in my class, when they asked me to write one from a word list they had:

CHRISTMAS IS: 
I find that I have a lot of Christmas Spirit when I think of the gift that was in a manger on Christmas Eve.  The Little Drummer boy, the shepherds, and the wise men knew that you would never find a gift this precious in the North Pole at Santa’s Workshop. 
This gift was not wrapped in wrapping paper but in a scarf provided by his mother. You will not bring this gift down a chimney from Santa’s Sleigh or stuffed in stocking with a candy cane nor found among the lights and decorations or under the Christmas tree with all the dolls, toys, or wrapping paper. I wouldn’t expect this gift to be left on a table with cookies and hot chocolate. 
I would expect this gift to be found in the midst the nativity scene with Angels proclaiming that the star is shining and the bells are ringing to proclaim the good news! This news would even place the biggest heart in every Grinch or Scrooge if they would but believe that the best gift of all was Christ sent among mankind to be the Savior of the World.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Markers

Markers….Defining moments….. Driving down the road yesterday passing by spots…that bring back memories…some good, many painful, I began to think about the markers in our lives…. Marker is defined as something used as a mark or indication. A memorial-something designed to preserve the memory of a person, event, etc., as a monument. - I began to think WHAT ARE THE MARKERS THAT MATTER? Is it the spot I passed with the many memories of my grandma and her awesome fried pies that she always had waiting for us after school, or the spot where she had her kettle of apple butter bubbling in the backyard and we had to take turns with the wooden paddle to stir it? Is the spot in the yard that she decided she couldn’t go on? Is the marker that matters the empty yard that once housed Ted’s sister’s family? Or is it that the yard is empty…no scars remaining of the devastating fire that snuffed out their lives. Is it the phone call in the wee hours of the morning alerting us to the fire & the panic that set in of the ramifications and what life would look like from that moment on? Is the marker that matters the barn with the wood that is weathering that took the brunt of the dump truck that ran over my brother or the spot in the driveway where he laid waiting for help to arrive. Is it when I see my other brother who sorrows that he couldn’t fix things for his little brother? Is it the spot in the road where my nephew’s blood ran across after he was thrown from the truck & his lifeblood poured out of him? WHAT MARKER REALLY MATTERS? Is it birthdays of those who have gone on? This week is the birthday of one of the most precious ladies that I was ever blessed to have in my life…my mother in law….oh how I miss her. Is that the defining memorial? Is it another holiday with fewer and fewer around the table. Is it when I look across the yard and think of my brother in law, my father in law…are those the defining moments? Is it standing in the cemetery and all that is left of loved ones is a memory & an etched stone? Is it when I see my newly widowed aunt not know what to do with herself? Or is it when I remember that those best hugs ever from my uncle have gone to the grave?… Even though all of those things are in my life as reminders…way too vivid at times….and it would seem they are there more often than not….they are not what defines me. I cannot help but think that each of these moments shape a portion of who I am and who I have become but even at that …they are not the markers that define me. JESUS CHRIST is the rock that defines me. His is the marker that holds the most important place in my heart…Jesus would be the one in the wee hours of the night when I had absolutely nothing to hold on to….who came in and loved me and cleansed me and saved me…in spite of myself…in spite of how good, bad or ugly my life was…..That is the moment, the rock I turn to when all of those other moments become too big at times… That moment of giving my all to Jesus is the moment that drives me every day. That moment reminds that Greater is He that is in me than he that is in the world….That the same Spirit that raised Jesus from the dead is the same Spirit living inside of me…THAT MOMENT, THAT MOMENT OF ALL MOMENTS…. IS THE MARKER THAT MATTERS FOR ALL ETERNITY…...I pray that you my friends will have your own moment with Jesus when you let Him come in and cleanse you and rule in your life. Psa 62:6-7 He only is my rock and my salvation: he is my defence; I shall not be moved. (7) In God is my salvation and my glory: the rock of my strength, and my refuge, is in God.

Wednesday, September 14, 2016

TWO ROADS

Thinking about how as Robert Frost puts it, “Two roads diverged.” I went on to think about how life is like those two roads only instead of diverging in a “yellow wood,” they diverge at the Cross of Jesus Christ. The word illustrates this for us with the story of the two thieves that hung on either side of Jesus. Mat 27:38 Then were there two thieves crucified with him, one on the right hand, and another on the left. Their story is told in Luke 23: 39-43. I began to think about how the one thief took the high road, the less traveled road and acknowledged Jesus, saying this man has done nothing, asking Jesus to remember him. He chose life over death and Jesus told him that he would see Him that day. The other took the more traveled road, mocking and insulting, choosing death over life. I think about how we all travel this road of life and how we all come to the age of accountability which is where the two roads diverge. We either choose the less traveled road, the one that leads to life, eternal life with Christ; or we choose the well-traveled road that leads to destruction and certain eternal death. The Word of God tells us that Mat 7:13-14 Enter ye in at the strait gate: for wide is the gate, and broad is the way, that leadeth to destruction, and many there be which go in there at: (14) Because strait is the gate, and narrow is the way, which leadeth unto life, and few there be that find it. I find myself people watching and I stop to listen and wonder at the choices people make to travel the road they are on. What brings a person to the end of life of the path to destruction, seemingly unconcerned that there will be a day of reckoning? What brings a young child to the place that they thumb their nose at the teaching of the straight and narrow way, of a God that loves them, of anything Holy, and they get on the path to destruction, bent on staying there? Lately I have observed both. The younger and the older and those in between making decisions that keep them on the wide path to destruction; living today as if this is all that life holds. IT MAKES MY HEART HURT. Contrary to popular teaching, everyone that goes by the way of the grave will not spend eternity in heaven just because they died. The Word is clear that you choose your eternal destination by what you do with Jesus. “Joh 3:3 Jesus answered and said unto him, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again, he cannot see the kingdom of God.” He tells us in Hebrews 9:27-28 And as it is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment: (28) So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation. Christ is standing at the cross, at the point that the two roads diverge beckoning come, take my yoke, follow me, take the straight and narrow path and find your eternal rest. The Word tells us in 2Co 6:17-18 Wherefore come out from among them, and be ye separate, saith the Lord, and touch not the unclean thing; and I will receive you, (18) And will be a Father unto you, and ye shall be my sons and daughters, saith the Lord Almighty. He also tells us that we can’t straddle the fence, he tells us that we have to choose. Rev 3:15-16 I know thy works, that thou art neither cold nor hot: I would thou wert cold or hot. (16) So then because thou art lukewarm, and neither cold nor hot, I will spue thee out of my mouth. (spue meaning to VOMIT) We sicken God when we don’t choose. Joshua says it like this, Jos 24:15 And if it seem evil unto you to serve the LORD, choose you this day whom ye will serve; whether the gods which your fathers served that were on the other side of the flood, or the gods of the Amorites, in whose land ye dwell: but as for me and my house, we will serve the LORD. Elijah asked in 1 Kings 18: how long will ye halt between two opinions. Back to Robert Frost’s musings, “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—I took the one less traveled by, And that has made all the difference. I want to encourage you to think about more than today, to think about your eternity. Which road do you choose? I choose Christ.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Bitter or Better? Weathering Life's Circumstances.

Circumstances of life, that is what is on my mind. I am thinking of how each of us is given a life to live. I am thinking of all the choices we make in that life span that bend and shape us….I am thinking of how some of us allow those things to teach us and others allow those things to imprison them. There are those wonderful experiences and then there are those things that come from left field that impact us mightily and sometimes harshly. There are those things that cause us to live our lives filtered through the lens of joy and others that cause us to filter our lives through the lens of pain. Then there are those absolute tragic things that grip us and will not let us go. We have trouble shaking the ugly tentacles off of us. All of us, if we live long enough, will have both the triumphant and the tragic moments. Do we let them define our lives in a positive or negative way? I think one of the biggest differences among people is we let life’s moments define us. Do circumstances teach and change us as a person? Do we allow those moments to guide us in helping another through similar events? Perhaps a root of bitterness and anger is allowed to take root and to sprout taking up permanent residence in our lives. Do circumstances create a deadly poison in our lives like a dark storm cloud will spread to all those around us covering and consuming all it comes into contact? Do we allow things to create a gentle breeze in our lives that will blow across others creating a calming and refreshing encounter? There are two guarantees in life—birth and death. If you are born….then you will die. It is inevitable. I happen to believe that God in in control and has our days already written and when a person is appointed to die……God decides. I love the verse that tells us that as God comforts us so we may be able to comfort them which are in trouble. 2Co 1:4 Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God. Recently I am having one of those defining moments of life and I was reminded how we make the choice to get bitter or to get better. I was once again reminded by the kind words of a friend who had already walked through the path that I now have to walk that we can use our life experiences to help another or we can tear down and destroy. I was reminded that bitter gains nothing but pain and heartache but love and kindness go a very long way. Life is a struggle at times, we don’t always get it right, BUT how about we use what we encounter to build our character. How about we use what we go through to make us better. How about we use what we go through to allow us to extend a hand to a fellow human being and give them a hand up now and again. How about we forgive when forgiveness is called for and forget when forgetfulness is needed. How about we use the love that we have been loved with to build bridges instead of allowing bitterness to consume everything around us. 1Pe 3:9-12 Not rendering evil for evil, or railing for railing: but contrariwise blessing; knowing that ye are thereunto called, that ye should inherit a blessing. (10) For he that will love life, and see good days, let him refrain his tongue from evil, and his lips that they speak no guile: (11) Let him eschew evil, and do good; let him seek peace, and ensue it. (12) For the eyes of the Lord are over the righteous, and his ears are open unto their prayers: but the face of the Lord is against them that do evil.