Friday, June 28, 2019

Eight Things Christians Can Do Each Day

Recently I mentioned that I try to remind myself to sing “Jesus Loves Me” each morning. The following was shared with me online recently, and I believe it’s another good everyday reminder.

8 Statements Christians Should Make Each Day

If you are a Christian, you can start each day by telling yourself these wonderful truths. You might want to memorize this list or run it off and keep it by your bed to read each morning!

1. I am God’s child.

John 1:12: To all who did receive him, to those who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God.

1 John 3:1: See what great love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God! And that is what we are!

2. Although I deserved death, Jesus forgave my sins and promises me eternal life!

Romans 6:23: For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

3. Whatever happens today, I will not be alone.

Romans 8:38-39: For I am convinced that neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither the present nor the future, nor
any powers, neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

4. Not only is God ever-present, He is my Helper. 

Hebrews 13:5-6: God has said, “Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you.” So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?”

5. I can obey God’s commands today because He gives me His power.

Philippians 4:13: I can do all this through him who gives me strength.

6. I can resist the devil today and he will flee from me.

James 4:7: Submit yourselves, then, to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you.

7. God has purposes for me today and I long to fulfill them.

Ephesians 2:10: For we are God's handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

8. As I walk with God, He will use even the worst things in my life for my good today and every day!

Romans 8:28: We know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.   

Friday, June 21, 2019

Thank God for the Father of My Children

My husband Murray is a happy guy. Sadly, I’ve always been more on the sour side.

After almost thirty-two years, fortunately, he seems to be wearing off more on me than the other way around.

And hopefully on our children too. I’ve been told that my sons all smile a lot. They get that from their father.

Murray constantly tells jokes. Once a lady we knows said to him, “Murray, you amuse yourself.”

And he does, even if we don’t always laugh at his jokes, he does.

I’m trying to be more like Murray, smile more, laugh more, take things less seriously, make more jokes, sing more songs.

He is fascinated by people’s stories that he finds on podcasts, Facebook, people he meets in grocery stores. Like a child, he sees everything as new. Murray says, “Everyone has a great story.”

When I go a little crazy, he is stable. He sticks with me and helps me figure out what to do next once I calm down. The longer I know him, the more I love him.

He seeks to do nice things for me—making me a strawberry tinged water with a new fruit infuser cup we have; typing up the handouts I got from the writers’ retreat we went on; bringing me a cup of coffee; reminding me that he loves me.

A prayer I’ve heard Murray say many times is, “Help me be more like Jesus every day.” I see this in him.

My prayer for my husband and adult children is that they grow to learn and enjoy more every day the incredible and delightful people they all are.

Friday, June 14, 2019

Sweet Memories, what I could Learn From these Kids

October 29, 1996: The other night, we were praying before we went to bed, and Caleb was making up a prayer song, and we were all repeating after him. He said, (about God) "We always take care of Him." I felt like I had to correct this impression, so I said that well, we don't really take care of Him; He takes care of us. Rebecca said, "But it says that when we help someone else, we help Him." I had to admit that she was right, and let her straighten out my faulty theology.

October 30, 1996: I was reading some Bible stories to Sarah at lunch. I read to her about how Solomon was building a temple for God. She said, "Then he's going to come in and praise the Lord!"When I told her I was going to read the story about the three men in the furnace, she said, "But then there was four, and one of them was God!" Then when I read about Daniel being thrown into the lions' den, she said, "But Jesus shut their mouths!"

October 31, 1996: Sarah was talking today about how Ping-Hwei is speaking English better and better every day. She said, "He's doing weller and weller."

November 13, 1996: I was trying to explain to Rebecca today a little about genetics, how she got her nose and ears and hair from Mommy and Daddy. She asked, "So when you picked me up, did I get hands?"

November 16, 1996: We're having a wind-rain-thunder storm right now, so I was listening to the weather radio. The kids asked if the man and lady talking on the radio were real. I think sometimes they have the idea that the people are right inside our radio. So little as I know about radio waves and so-forth, I tried to explain it to them, how there are tiny waves in the air that we can't see, and our radio antenna picks them up, etc.  After I was finished explaining, Rebecca asked, "Are that man and lady married?" "Do they love Jesus?"Caleb wanted to know. I guess I wasn't explaining exactly what they were looking for.

December 2, 1996: Sarah and Murray left the orthopedic doctor, on Wichita Clinic's ground floor. Sarah said, "Aren't we going on the alligators?" pointing to 3 metal doors. "Oh, I mean elevators."

December 3, 1996: The other day Caleb asked Murray, "What would happen if you cut off your knees?"

December 5, 1996: We asked our friends John and Stacy to take the kids to the swimming party at the Y the other night, because Murray was afraid he might fall on his crutches around the pool. The kids were talking about that to Stacy, and she, teasing, said she thought it would be funny if Murray fell into the pool. The kids got indignant with her and rebuked her. Sarah said, "You have to understand, Daddy has a broken foot. It wouldn't be funny if he fell in the pool."

Friday, June 7, 2019

Grace. Rejoice!

In church this week we talked about Luke 10, where Jesus sent out seventy-two of his followers to heal and to teach about him. When they returned, they told him of their success, with joy.

Verses 17-20: The seventy-two returned with joy and said, “Lord, even the demons submit to us in your name.” He replied, “I saw Satan fall like lightning from heaven. I have given you authority to trample on snakes and scorpions and to overcome all the power of the enemy; nothing will harm you. However, do not rejoice that the spirits submit to you, but rejoice that your names are written in heaven.”

Our pastor, Todd, reminded us that we should not count on joy from our daily lives, our relationships, our success at work or school. Because there will be days when those things will fail to give us joy. Instead, rejoice because our names are written in Heaven.

So often Christians do not appear joyful to the world. I’m talking about me. I have a frown on my face. I am discouraged.

God has given us grace. We should rejoice!

John 16: 33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”

We can have joy even when we have trouble. Jesus has overcome all the filth of the world, and he invites us to stand with him.

Tod has said more than once that we should begin each day by singing “Jesus loves me.” I am working on practicing this. Sadly, I often wake up feeling depressed, disappointed in myself.

How can I show God’s love to others feeling that way? Instead, if I remind myself Jesus loves me, and teach my heart to believe that, then I will have joy to share with those around me.

We sang a song Sunday, too, which touched me, “True North.” Such a joyful piece.

This song reminds me that I do not need to let my failures bring a curse to me. I can stand solidly in God’s love, changed, redeemed. I have chosen not to be condemned by my sin. I have chosen God’s forgiveness and grace. My name is written in God’s book of life. I can choose to be delighted. I can rejoice!

Philippians 4:4: Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice!

Psalm 32:1: Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered.

Psalm 37:4: Take delight in the Lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart.