Wednesday, March 4, 2015

LACED WITH GRACE...keep on swimming.

Some things are just hard to understand, but yet, some amazing things come out of it.
Lately I have been thinking about some things in my life. As I have tried to make rhyme and reason out of some things, I have come to the conclusion that some things are just not for me to understand.
Instead, it is like the electricity that I can’t see…I have to just trust. Everytime I flip the light switch, it is an act of trust that the electricity waves that I don’t understand will make the room illuminate with brightness.
Not understanding but yet trusting makes me think of the children of Israel who were finally set free after years and years of slavery. As they began to march to their freedom, they marched straight to the Red Sea. As they looked around they saw impassable mountains on both sides of them and the sea straight in front of them. As they looked behind them, the Egyptian army was in hot pursuit after them.
No matter which way they looked, it appeared that they had come to a dead end. There seemed to be nowhere to turn. I am sure at this point, they were questioning what exactly was going on. How difficult it must have been for the children of Israel to understand why God would allow them to come this far, only to come up to a dead end.
But God understood even if they didn’t.
God knew exactly what He wanted to do. He had not made a mistake. He could see what they could not see. He opened up the Red Sea so they could walk through to safety. Years later, the Israelites looked back  and sang,  “Your road led by a pathway through the sea—a pathway no one  knew was there!”  (Psalm 77:19 LB).
Maybe you feel like you are up against a dead end! Or like there is nothing in front of you but raging sea waters. You may not understand but God knows and He already sees a path that we may not see. As the Israelites came close to the Red Sea, God opened up the waters and gave them direct passageway across to the other side. Not only did God make a way, but He even made it possible for the Egyptians to NOT have access across. As the Israelites crossed over, the waves came crashing back down, drowning out the enemy.
The closer we get to the water, and place our trust in Him, He will lead us safely across. We just have to trust Him and keep swimming!
“Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your  own  understanding; in all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make your   paths straight.” Proverbs 3:5-6 (NIV)
Some things are just not for us to understand. But we can still trust in the Lord and all of His ways! Are you swimming or are you drowning?

drowning?







BLESSINGS, LAURIE

Monday, March 2, 2015

TODAY'S DAILY...what color do they see?

If you are on Facebook, you have seen the many statuses about "the" dress! Is it white and gold or is it black and blue? The color that you perceive it to be depends on your perspective and what kind of light you look at from.

'TODAY'S DAILY...

If you are on Facebook, you have seen the many statuses about "the" dress! Is it white and gold or is it black and blue? The color that you perceive it to be depends on your perspective and what kind of light you look at from.

The colors that people reveal depends on the perspective or what kind of light is being reflected. People who show their true colors reminds me of the pig story...

"A farmer brought his pig inside, he gave him a bath, filed his nails, splashed some perfume on him and tied a ribbon around his neck and sat him down on the couch. For a few minutes, the pig was presentable but as soon as the door opened wide, the pig flew out and jumped in the first mud puddle he found. Why? After all he was all cleaned up and looking good! It was because he was still a pig at heart, nothing inside had changed."

You can change your clothes, comb you hair and paint on a big smile while sitting on the front pew at church, but unless you have made a change inwardly, all you've changed is your clothes.

You see, it doesn't really matter what color that dress is, gold and white or black and blue, at the end of the day it's just a dress. 

"God carefully watches the goings on of all mankind..." -Job 34:21

At the end of the day, our true colors will be what matters to God. If you act one way at church on Sunday but yet a different way Monday morning at work or school or on Friday night you find some mud to roll in, then perhaps you need a spiritual change of clothes, a change from the inside out!

True colors are always revealed, whether it's gold and white or black and blue, why not make your true colors count for the Kingdom! 

BLESSINGS. Laurie'

The colors that people reveal depends on the perspective or what kind of light is being reflected. People who show their true colors reminds me of the pig story...

"A farmer brought his pig inside, he gave him a bath, filed his nails, splashed some perfume on him and tied a ribbon around his neck and sat him down on the couch. For a few minutes, the pig was presentable but as soon as the door opened wide, the pig flew out and jumped in the first mud puddle he found. Why? After all he was all cleaned up and looking good! It was because he was still a pig at heart, nothing inside had changed."

You can change your clothes, comb you hair and paint on a big smile while sitting on the front pew at church, but unless you have made a change inwardly, all you've changed is your clothes.
You see, it doesn't really matter what color that dress is, gold and white or black and blue, at the end of the day it's just a dress.

"God carefully watches the goings on of all mankind..." -Job 34:21

At the end of the day, our true colors will be what matters to God. If you act one way at church on Sunday but yet a different way Monday morning at work or school or on Friday night you find some mud to roll in, then perhaps you need a spiritual change of clothes, a change from the inside out!
True colors are always revealed, whether it's gold and white or black and blue, why not make your true colors count for the Kingdom!

Thursday, February 26, 2015

DAILY DEVO...are you thirsty?

I've learned another great Truth today as I continue to study the book of Proverbs...THIRST for knowledge!


"Above all and before all, do this: Get wisdom! Write this at the top of your list: Get understanding! Throw your arms around her-believe me, you won't regret it; never let her go-she'll make your life glorious." -Proverbs 4:7 (MSG)


King Solomon, the wisest man, spent three chapters in the book of Proverbs stressing the importance of not only getting wisdom but obtaining understanding, so we don't fall to be a fool.


It reminds me of the classic salty fry technique: McDonalds puts so much salt on their fries so that we buy a supersize drink. Fries alone may taste good, but it also makes us thirsty, it whet's our appetite for more!


Solomon can give us all kinds of great wise sayings, but there is so much more to learn from Proverbs. Solomon is just whetting our appetite for more for more wisdom and for more knowledge.
Unfortunately, when it comes to wisdom and knowledge, sometimes we order off of the value menu. We allow things like disunity, negativity and sour attitudes to alter our clear mindset on what we understand to be true.


We must turn our eyes back to the big tall glass of water in our spirits and let God whet our appetite for more of Him and more of His wisdom and more of His knowledge!


Christians are to be the salt of the earth (Matthew 5:13), so how thirsty for God are those around you?


Tuesday, February 24, 2015

Daily Devo...The icing on the cake

There's nothing like walking into a house and smelling a cake baking.

"Ohh something smells good! Is that chocolate cake?"

No matter how good it smells though, a cake isn't a cake until you break out the frosting! My kids use to wait for the cake to be frosted so they could lick the bowl but mainly because they knew the cake was ready to eat!

Whenever we put the finishing touches on something, we say, "the icing on the cake", which means, something good has been added to something that is already good.

A cake is good by itself, but how much more amazing is it when the icing is added?

"And above all these things put on charity, which is the bond of perfectness." -Colossians 3:14

Paul is telling the Christians of Colossae the essential elements of living a victorious life: put on the spiritual graces of mercy, kindness, meekness, long suffering, forbearance and forgiveness. Because they were quarreling, fussing and stepping on each other, Paul was saying put off the old and put on the new.

Everything Paul was saying to live a victorious life was good, however, the icing on the cake was when he said to even make it better, add charity, or love.

Even God said "love" is the cream of the crop or the icing on the cake..."and now abideth faith, hope, love; but the greatest of these is love." (1 Cor. 13:13)

Without love, we are nothing. Without love we are just making noise, our deeds are meaningless, our mountains have no value. To say we are a Christian but yet do not love others is simply just a cake with no icing!

Saying you are a Christian is good, but genuinely sharing the love of Christ is making a good thing even better. It's the icing on the cake!

 

Friday, February 20, 2015

LACED WITH GRACE...got power?

TODAY I shared the following devotion with the readers of LACED WITH GRACE. www.lacedwithgrace.com



Winter is here!






No doubt, wherever you live, you have felt the effects of Mr. Freeze. Cold temperatures. Snow. And ice. Normally, living in the south means we can count on one hand the wintry storm advisory’s we get, this week has been one of those times.






This transplanted southern girl knows a thing or two about winter, growing up in Green Bay, Wisconsin or what we called “The Frozen Tundra”, I’ve seen my share of snow blizzards. But you haven’t seen anything until you experience a good olĂ© ice storm in the south.






Solid ice everywhere. On the streets, hanging from the trees and weighing down rooftops. Ice is powerful. It is thick. It is slippery. And it is heavy. I’ve seen rooftops cave because of it, I’ve seen schools and businesses close down because of it and I’ve seen power lines snap causing city-wide blackouts because of it.






The longest we went without power in an ice storm was 8 days. That was a few years ago. Can you imagine: single digit temperatures with no electricity, no heat, no stove to cook on, food spoiling in refrigerator and no way to charge your cell phone except in the running car! Without power, we are so restricted and we are lost!






As hard as it was to survive 8 days without power, I cannot imagine how people think they can manage one day without the power of God!
Who are kept by the power of God, through faith unto salvation, ready to be revealed in the last time.” -1 Peter 1:5
Story has it that the apostle Peter lived all his life in the power of God, from Pentecost to his death. That alone is remarkable to me, for many of us, the Christian life is up one minute and down the next. Through all of Peters ups and downs, he continued to walk in the power of God, all the way until the end.






The above mentioned scripture I believe is a key to being able to stay in the right place with God and His power. Think about it, the Apostles were men of power. They were KEPT by the power of God.


What can “keep” us in the power today? FAITH!






Believing keeps us in the power of God. This was Peter’s secret, he believed. Without power, we are limited. Not just physically, but spiritually. You and I cannot survive, we will not finish the race, unless we have the power of Jesus Christ in our lives.






I do not want to get caught in a storm without power. How about you… are you feeling restricted or lost or do you have His power to weather your storm?






PRAYER: “Dear Lord, help me today to receive Your power and walk boldly in faith today, tomorrow and the rest of the days of my life. Days will come that will feel like a storm, but Your power WILL see me thru. By the power of God, thank You for keeping me!” AMEN


Wednesday, February 18, 2015

Daily Devo...common sense

Most people are born with common sense, however, it appears that some people are born with MORE sense than others!

You can see this by looking at your own children or even your siblings. Even when two or more grow up under the same roof, there will always be that one who chooses to learn the hard way.

I had one or two offsprings like that. They wanted to do things their way. In their time. They didn't believe it would hurt until they felt the pain. They didn't see the danger until they felt the fear. They had common sense, but had a need to push it to the limits.

Often we saw this common sense kick in when we would go on camping trips with our kids. There is something about getting in the woods, getting back to the basics, that would elevate common sense.

(Common sense said "don't get too close to the campfire". Common sense said "Don't stand up in the rowboat".)

Spiritually speaking, some people have lost their common sense. They have gotten away from the basics of Christianity. They are walking close to the edge.

Job was given sound instruction...

"But ask the animals what they think - let them teach you; let the birds tell you what's going on. Put your ear to the earth -learn the basics." -Job 12:7 MSG

The same common sense remains for us - learn the basics and watch God elevate your walk with Him.

Friday, February 13, 2015

DAILY DEVO...Is it enough?

If I've heard it once, I've heard it a thousand times, "There's nothing to eat!" My kids had a way of standing in front of a full refrigerator and see nothing to eat!


Oh there was plenty to eat, but they didn't want to wait for it they wanted something to eat NOW!
That same "quick fix" follows us into adulthood if we aren't careful. We don't want to wait for anything. When we get into debt, we look for a "quick" way to make money or when we need to lose a few pounds, we look to the newest and "quickest" diet. None of us want to wait. And then when our "quick fix" doesn't work, we complain there isn't enough.


There isn't enough food. There isn't enough money. We don't have enough friends. We don't have enough time.


Jesus' disciples were with Him as He fed 5,000 with only 5 loaves and 2 fish, but yet, alittle while later they complained the 7 loaves that they had for 4,000 was not enough.


How "quickly" we forget the miracles God performs in our lives. We only see what is right in front of us and we complain it is not enough, but God is more than enough!


Tomorrow is Valentines Day and someone is bound to be forgotten or perhaps you will receive less of a token of love than you think you deserve. You may say, "Is THIS it?" or "it's not enough", but remember that true love comes from above, it first came in way of the cross and IT is ALWAYS enough!


"My grace is sufficient for you, for My power is made perfect in weakness." -2 Corinthians 12:9
God's Grace is enough.


HAPPY VALENTINES.