Not even a glitch: life in paradise

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What do you think when you’re far away?
Do you pray to God for just one more day?
Do you feel the breeze while closing your eyes
Feeling blessed for each moment in paradise?
If only, if only it could always be so
Then joy through your heart would always flow.
You’d say in all times this life is rich
No problems,  no worries, not even a glitch.
Well God brings the bliss and that’s for sure
He brings the bliss and some manure.
He brings a shovel to clear the stall
And lots of flies that dot the walls
Then rain and hay and extra hands
That ease the work and make you glad
Yes glad you find in work or play
When finding God in every day.
Knowing Him through pain and tears.
Knowing Him in all your fears.
Knowing He knows, yes knows it all
That He’ll pick you up whenever you fall.
Yes, be glad when there’s nothing you lack.
But gladder still when God’s got your back.

Who shall separate us from the love of Christ?

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http://bible.com/12/rom.8.35.asv
Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? shall tribulation, or anguish, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword?
Bible.com/app

Sometimes we feel alienated from God.  Times get really tough.  We anguish over circumstances, broken relationships,  betrayals,  persecution by bullies, political opponents or people that just can’t or refuse to understand us.  When times get rough the first tendency is to cry out “Why me God?!!!”
But God says in every circumstance, whatever we are anguishing over He has never left.  His love burns a steady hot  radiating compassion, love, kindness,  patience and wisdom.

Satan seeks in our misery to break us down and put a wedge between us and God.  He would enslave us in fear and resentment and seeking anything to dull the pain.  While God comes along side and urges us to greater faith, greater strength and patience.  “Be strong in the Lord and the power of His might.”  The easy road of complaining and apathy or resentment is self destructive while trusting God to do amazing things in the dark times brings joy and hope and freedom from fear.  Every time we use our faith muscles by saying “God is awesome!  He’s got my back in this! ”  we grow stronger and less easily pushed over when hard times or bad news hits.

Having faith is believing the mountain is still there even though hidden by dense fog.  We know that we know that we know even against “evidence to the contrary.”  Don’t give up on God.   He will never give up on you!

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To everything there is a season

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Are you in the middle of changes and you can’t wait to get to the other side?

It seems renovation is an endless process.  There is so much take down and demolition that has to take place even before starting.   Everything has a time and a purpose.   It’s back breaking, heartbreaking, mind boggling,  overwhelming work.  Thank God  we have a wise builder,  my husband,  who sees the big picture and plans for each next phase of this project.   For me I just want it over so there can be no more dust, working shower and tub, a functioning kitchen, time to get on a with life!

God looks at the big picture too.  He says,  He has plans, amazing and glorious plans for our lives that are good and acceptable and perfect.   These are plans to bless us not curse us.  Plans to restore the years that were robbed from us.   When we were wounded He will heal.  When we were abandoned He vows to never leave but provide a constant Comforter and Guide.  When we were dead He calls LIVE!  Jesus said I am the resurrection and the life.  He who believes in me shall never die the second death.  He said “Come to me all you who are weary with heavy burdens and I will give you rest.  Take My harness on you for I am humble and gentle of heart and you will find rest for your souls.”  It’s when we hook up with Jesus we can begin the transformation.   He views us, as the One who redeemed us from the curse of the law by paying our debt, as totally cool.   He freed us from the systems that require our time,  commitment,  passion, devotion with strings but cannot enable or secure our future with love and purpose.  He has provided His Word,  the Bible, as the method for straightening our thoughts and attitudes.  When we accept God’s Redemption plan through the sacrifice of His Son, Jesus,  for our life, Jesus baptizes us with the Holy Spirit.   Without the Holy Spirit the truths of God are undeciferable, reading the Bible just doesn’t make sense.  All Scripture from the Bible, is God breathed, and God uses it to build His values into us, show us when we are wrong or off base, how to get us back on track, and to equip us completely for every good work.   The Holy Spirit Is our Mentor.   He uses the Bible,  our circumstances,  and other Christians to inspire to change and become who we long to be: free from fear, envy, violence, confusion,  anxiety, worry.  As we press into Jesus and wait on the guidance of  the Holy Spirit we slowly shed those hang ups and values that keep us from true freedom,  from real rest of heart and mind.  We become whole.   This is a neverendng process this side of heaven. Until God says “it is finished!” we  will always be a work in progress. 

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In the morning I will

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Sing to the Lord!
Bless His Name!
Expect great and awesome things for He is quite amazing.
Know He is good and His mercies touch EVERY life on this planet with air and sunlight and water.  He adorns this world with plants of every variety and set the moon in the sky to govern the night and set each season.
Yes I will sing to the Lord the song of the set free, the song of the adopted, the song of the forgiven, the song to the healed,  the song of the released to serve and heal and love without strings and without limits.

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How to Overcome Fear, Anxiety and Worry | Story | BGEA

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How do we handle stress?  Life is not easy.  Even when things seem to go well there are many things that steal our peace: events in the news locally and worldwide, illness, the loss of a loved one, financial reverses.  A certain amount of stress is normal,  even healthy, because it sharpens our minds and presses us to greater achievement but if we feel unable to make changes and the circumstances become our preoccupation we may find the clouds of anxiety,  fear, depression, anger always hang over our minds and hearts and threaten our peace.  Here’s some great words from Billy Graham that I find true in my own life.

http://billygraham.org/story/how-to-overcome-fear-anxiety-and-worry/?SOURCE=BY155ANL2&utm_source=BGEA+Today+email&utm_medium=bgemail&utm_campaign=bgemailnewsletter&utm_content=05.19.2015+email+1

Born again? How about renovation?

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I wrote this January 19, 2014. Now we’re nearing a year and a half since we began this very hard process of renovation. And we’ve been installing furniture now!!! The rooms have beds! The living room has sofas! The closets have shelves and poles to hang clothes! We have a new roof! And I am falling in love with this once abused and broken and disgusting house.

I must say this is a perfect example of how we were before God came to save us. He says we are all as an unclean thing and all our righteousnesses are as filthy rags and we all do fade as a leaf and our iniquities like the wind have taken us away. But when God sent Jesus to cover our sins with His blood He, like HGTV, flipped us! He did a total makeover. Much more then, being now justified by His blood we shall be saved from wrath through Him. For He has made Him to be sin for us that we might be made the righteousness of God In Christ.

That is just the beginning. Like the garbage removal and the hole filling and wall painting and floor renovating is just setting the stage for usefulness, accepting Jesus as your Savior is just the beginning. The Bible says we need to study to show ourselves approved unto God as workmen that don’t need to be ashamed but can rightly divide or correctly assess the word of truth. 2 Timothy 3:16-17 says all Scripture is God breathed and is useful for doctrine, for reproof and correction, for instruction in righteousness that the man of God may be whole and complete, fully equipped and furnished for all good works. Can you see it? Can you see that we are God’s makeover? He say we are His house!

My husband and I have come a long way since we took on this house. I didn’t like it at first. I dreaded all the time I had to spend with it and sometimes I went away injured and exhausted. This is the stuff of relationships. They can be hard and painful. But God showed His love for us by dying for us even when we hated, or didn’t even have a clue about Him and were a hot mess. He took us on and promised that we would be AWESOME, ADORABLE, WISE, POWERFUL, BEAUTIFUL! We are all a work in progress but the more time we spend with the Master and submit to His scraping, and refining and prepping the sooner we will become ready for the furniture and that’s when we will begin to take on the character, attitudes, and wisdom of our Great God and Savior, Jesus Christ.
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janjoy52

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  I love seeing the befores and afters with HGTV’s renovations.   They seem so quick and, ok it looks like hard work, but, how hard can it be?   Well, now that I’m neck deep in renovating our  thrashed rental I can tell you it is neck breaking, back breaking and heart breaking.  Yes, I am being a drama queen.  When I am weary my thoughts and mood turn to the dark side.  But, I must say, through my scrapping, spackling, hole-filling I have had some awesome conversations with God. Starting with a conversation Jesus had with religious leader Nicodemas in his day. Jesus told Nic if he ever wanted to make it into God’ s kingdom he would have to be born again. His basic genetic code was not Kingdom friendly. He needed a rebirth. A makeover.
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God starts the process with a basic rewiring by implanting His Holy Spirit…

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Sign me up!

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I know the title of this blog is odd and
confusing but I receive lovely devotionals every day from this group that begin with prayers to God that resonate with my heart’s desire to know God better, lean in closer to Him and receive all the blessings and gifts He says He wants to lavish on me.

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Give them a look and see if this isn’t the path you’ve been looking for all along.

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http://churchgrowthorg.cmail1.com/t/ViewEmail/t/06B5ED38CA1F7D88/0AA00528B683BB4EC5EC08CADFFC107B

Watch “Alleluia + Spontaneous Worship – Amanda Cook and Steffany Gretzinger” on YouTube

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Sit still.  Prepare yourself to just be still without interruption and listen to what God is telling you.  He is speaking to you.  He is the rewrite of our stories.  What you have been and who your parents were how you have used or been misused by others does not define you.  Let God rewrite you.  He will rewrite your story.  Listen. Open your ears.  Open your eyes.  Open your heart.

Alleluia + Spontaneous Worship – Amanda Cook and Steffany Gretzinger: https://youtu.be/dn2cWQTTkR8

Spring! Praise to the Giver of life!

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In Jesus we live and breathe and move and have our being.  In Him all things have been made and hold together and without Him nothing exists that was made. 

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He is the exact image of the invisible God. Jesus,  You are the penultimate Artisan.   You made everything to contain Your music and dance for the joy of being.  When Moses asked what You called Yourself You said I AM.  For every need You fill.  You are  Water to our thirsty,  Light to our dark,  Bread to our hunger,  Life to our death,  Hope to our despair.  You are  Father to the orphan.  Home to the homeless, Friend to the lonely,  Strength to the weak.

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You speak into every season and we welcome YOU into our Spring.  We say thank you as You welcome us into Your Spring!

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