Tag Archives: blessing

Just Go!

sampsons-new-friendNestled in one of my favorite places I rediscovered the old riding stables at our state park. I hadn’t driven up that road in years and had forgotten how beautiful that spot was.  On that day, no one was there but me and my dog so I parked and let him out to run and play next to the water.  The stables up the hill brought back a flood of memories.

I kept looking up the hill at the stables thinking about how sad they were no longer being used.  I saw no point to walk up there but Sampson had different ideas.  Up the hill he went and I followed him.

We got up to the stables and the smells of the area ignited his hunter instinct.  He was going to each closed stall, sticking his nose in where he found the opportunity.  He was onto something but I thought it was the smell of what used to be there that enticed him.  He went to one particular stall and started whimpering, scratching the ground to get in.  When I got close I heard why.  The stables weren’t abandoned at all, there were horses there!

I have always loved horses.  Imagine my delight (and Sampson’s) when we saw them.  I opened the top gate of the stalls, petted all of them.  It may sound silly to you, but I was so happy!  Few and far between are my opportunities to be close to these beautiful animals I love so much. I consider that a very personal blessing from my Father, who knows His girl so well.  By just walking up that hill I received a tremendous, custom-made blessing, just for me. #perspective

That’s my point.  Based on what I SAW, there was no reason to even trudge up that hill. I had convinced myself there was no reason to go.  I could have called Sampson back to me, gotten him in the car and missed a great blessing.  Instead I went and oh, the pleasure in the time we were there was wonderful.

That’s your word, friend.  Just go! Don’t sum things up based on what you see.   Don’t look for reasons not to do something (we always find plenty of them); look for reasons TO go.  Do it just for you.  You’ll be glad you did.

1st Corinthians 2:9:  “but just as it is written, “Things which eye has not seen and ear has not heard and which have not entered the heart of man, all that God has prepared for those who love Him.””

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Inconveniently Incompatible.

I’m training for a new job which uses similar software of my other job.  I was delighted to hear this and thought how convenient that would be in many ways, thinking I could use the same for both jobs and I’d be a step ahead in the training process because I was familiar with how to use it. When I clicked on my already installed program, I discovered I couldn’t get to where I needed to go for training.  Bummer. This meant I would have to have two separate operating systems and one computer won’t support that. True, I’m familiar with the software so that part of the training will be easier, but another computer is a necessity.  Convenient quickly became inconvenient.

In the quest to plant their feet in the Promised Land, Jericho was the first city designated to be taken. In Joshua 6 the Israelites were specifically instructed that after the walls of Jericho fell they were to kill every living thing in the city (with the exception of Rahab and her family) and to take nothing except certain things God instructed them to take (6:18-19).

Take nothing.  Take nothing.  They were told not to even look upon the plunder so they wouldn’t want it.  Apparently that wasn’t direct enough for Achan (7:1) who loaded up what he shouldn’t have.  When they got back to their camp God told Joshua the people had been disobedient and to go through family by family until the unfaithful one was found then burn what he took, everything he owned and kill his family, which is what Joshua and the Israelites did.

The punishment seems a little harsh for the crime, doesn’t it?  I mean, a whole city had just been destroyed.  They killed every living person and animal. They gathered what God said to gather. What’s a little extra?  Who would know?  So one person out of thousands disobeyed which had an effect on the rest of the people.

The second generation of Israelites were wandering in the desert, having grown up in the wilderness with no material possessions but the clothes on their backs and shoes on their feet.  It was all they knew.  They come into this destroyed city which God says is theirs and see all this stuff (although fire damaged) so from a human perspective, it’s easy to understand why they would be attracted to picking some of the spoil left behind and in another case that may have been fine…but God said to take nothing.

Sin and obedience, even when we think it’s insignificant and won’t affect anyone, are incompatible.  We may get away with our compromise for a little while but sooner or later if we don’t deal with it, God will.  To many living in the 21st century, this seems ridiculously harsh but these stories are in our Bibles to show who God is and how He deals with His people and (especially) willful disobedience.

Incompatible things won’t cohabitate well.  Try as we may to make them work, there is a glitch…an uneasiness…even if it looks and acts like it works.  Just like the software I mentioned, I probably could have found a way to make it work, but I was told I needed two separate applications of the program so I made the decision to get another computer.  Rather than bring problems upon myself and more importantly jeopardize the new job and maybe even my current one, I decided to be obedient.

If there’s some little persistent thing in our lives we think doesn’t matter rest assured, it does.  It could be the thing that robs us of the peace Jesus so wants to be ours.  More importantly, though inconvenient and perhaps embarrassing to deal with, our ultimate goal should be to live to please God, be obedient to Him so far as we can control.

Let’s do an inventory.  Where have we compromised?  What have we watered down?  What have we brought with us that we know we shouldn’t have?  Our obedience could very well be the gateway to our next blessing.  Don’t risk it.  Deal with it. When we do and ask for forgiveness there may be lingering consequences but there will always be God’s mercy and grace to help us through making it right.

Don’t Give Up!

I type for an Australian transcription company and there are times I struggle to understand what the speaker is saying.  Sometimes the mystery word is an easy find, but sometimes like today, it’s not.  I spent over an hour on one note trying to decipher what he was saying.  I searched every available resource, no luck.  This was my very first note of the shift mind you, so I immediately became discouraged.  I thought to myself, “There’s no sense in even trying today if it’s going to be like this.  I won’t make any money…waste of my time…”.  I finally found the word – which was incidentally one I had never heard before in either language!

So here’s the deal.  I’ve committed at least two hours most days to this, my second job.  I said I would, so even if an hour of it is spent searching, it is what it is; I still have an hour to type, or longer if my crazy schedule permits.

The message?  Keep doing what you said you would do.  Keep trying. Don’t give up.  Be a person of your word.  Keep believing when it seems there is no reason to.  Those are the times you’re going on nothing, absolutely nothing else but God’s word.  Make HIM proud – work to honor and please HIM.  Too often I want to do what’s easy for me forgetting that my “Boss” is the One I’m aiming to please.  In little increments (as well as long term), I have to decide with every decision who I’m ultimately doing this for…I have to put me in the background and Him in the foreground.

Don’t quit – the answer, the blessing and the knowing you’ve completed what you set out to is just around the corner.

Romans 5:3

Never Stop

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Unconventional blessing!

We have our ideas, even plans, of what we think our lives will be like, what should happen and when, then when things don’t go as we expect, we think we’re cursed, wrong and finished.

We think God has let us down, allowing us to be disappointed, heartbroken and discouraged. We may even think He’s failed us. What if the opposite were true?

What if He wants to surprise you? What if those often quoted words in scripture, Isaiah 55:9 (For as the heavens are higher than earth, so are My ways higher than your ways and My thoughts than your thoughts) are true to the extreme?

We expect God to act like we would and when He doesn’t it blows us away.  What if He’s busy in a way you can’t even fathom? If you don’t see Him or feel Him, don’t stop expecting Him or anticipating seeing Him work on your behalf. Why is it we allow disappointment and disbelief to so easily invade us?

Our Father-God is creative beyond what we can imagine.  If we will simply believe even when everything we see and feel says to do otherwise, He will come through. It may not be the way we think He should.  Sometimes I think He wants to see the element of surprise on our faces – sometimes it takes a “higher way” so we can know without a doubt that only God can pull it off!

The picture above is a picture of an old car.  I had car trouble a while back and was fretting and praying about how I was going to get us to work, we needed a car and I knew God knew that.  Just climbing back from a devastating year when my income plummeted, I just had enough to pay the bills.  Daily, many times a day, I would “cast my anxiety upon the Lord” because I believed He cared for me and would provide the transportation we needed.  I tried to keep walking absolutely believing in Him and that He would provide.  We took the city bus, and my wonderful employer adjusted my schedule so I could work during their operating hours.  I was good with that, God provided.  Then seemingly out of nowhere, some friends called and said the Lord had laid it on their hearts to GIVE me this car.  I was astounded.  Didn’t see that coming! It’s not a pretty car, and it doesn’t look like a blessing but through my friends, God provided what we NEEDED.  “higher than your ways…” –

Yes Sir.  Much higher.  Blessings often don’t look like blessings at all, but if you’re looking for God in EVERYTHING (to provide your NEEDS) we will always see Him and He and His blessings may not look like the God we have in our conventional box.  Even when you’re disappointed and discouraged, never ever stop believing He is right there with you, and in HIS TIME you will see Him.  Never stop looking!