Tuesday, May 22, 2012

A Psalm in the Night

Are you wondering why I’m up writing a blog post in the middle of the night? I couldn’t sleep.  Not a common problem for me actually. I usually don’t have too much trouble falling asleep or staying asleep. But tonight there was much on my mind that I could not relax and rest. So what else was there to do but get up and try to clear some of the troublesome thoughts from my mind?

 I came to the computer to check emails and such and found a scripture from a friend. Psalm 37.  Comforting words. Some of the verses that spoke most gently to me were verses 4-5: “Delight thyself also in the LORD; and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart. Commit thy way unto the LORD; trust also in him; and he shall bring it to pass.”   Delight. The word seems to even taste good as it passes from my lips. I realize that I must begin to delight in the LORD more than I have been recently.   Commit. To put in the charge of. My way must be committed to the LORD…not to myself!  Trust. The firm belief in the reliability of another. If our LORD is not reliable, then we have no hope.

Delight. Commit. Trust. And THEN God will give the desires of our heart and cause our prayers to be answered.  He wants to bless me! He really does! But there are these things that I must do first.

 As I feel my eyelids begin to get heavy, I read another verse. The seventh. “Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because of him who prospereth in his way, because of the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass.  The words that get my attention here are rest…wait…and fret not. Rest. So often I am still. I am quiet. But I am not resting.  Wait. It’s so hard to be patient and wait on the LORD. I want to see my prayers answered NOW!  But it may not be the right time yet in God’s eyes.  And fret not. Fret means “to gnaw, chafe, wear away, to irritate or be irritated”.  I hate to wear shoes that rub blisters or some kind of clothing that is too tight. It keeps my mind on whatever it is that’s hurting. Sometimes things and situations irritate me just as bad or worse than a blister from an ill fitting shoe! But God says in this verse that I should rest IN HIM and wait patiently FOR HIM and in doing so to fret NOT.

 Why is it that I get so bent out of shape over things that I have no control over? I think tonight that I will soon be able to lie down and sleep.  I believe if I can delight…in the LORD….commit….my way unto the LORD….trust…in HIM…rest…in the LORD…and wait patiently for HIM…that I will be more likely to be able to relax and FRET NOT !

Thank you LORD for reminding me yet again tonight that You ..not me…are the One that is in charge and the One that can change the hearts of men!

Sweet dreams…….


Thursday, May 10, 2012

Our Mothers

(Mama & Daddy not long after they were married)

“I remember my Mother’s prayers and they have always followed me. They have clung to me all my life.” ~Abraham Lincoln~

 Although Mr. Lincoln said this, I can truly say the same about my mother. I fully believe that many of the blessings I enjoy today are the results of Mama’s prayers more than forty years ago. (She passed away in 1970) My heart’s desire is to leave such a legacy to my children also. One of my favorite verses is 3 John v. 4….”I have no greater joy than to hear that my children walk in truth”. I like it so much that I named my blog Walking in Truth.  And that word “truth” in that verse doesn’t mean so much  a concept of things but a Person…Jesus Christ. Jesus said, “I am the way, the TRUTH, and the life therefore the greatest joy a Mother can have is to see her children walking in the truth of knowing Christ as Saviour!

 Today for Mother’s Day I want to talk about some mothers in the Bible and see which ones we should pattern our own lives after.

 First let’s look at REBEKAH who was the mother of Jacob and Essau.

Genesis 27:6-10  6 And Rebekah spake unto Jacob her son, saying, Behold, I heard thy father speak unto Esau thy brother, saying,

7 Bring me venison, and make me savoury meat, that I may eat, and bless thee before the Lord before my death.

8 Now therefore, my son, obey my voice according to that which I command thee.

9 Go now to the flock, and fetch me from thence two good kids of the goats; and I will make them savoury meat for thy father, such as he loveth:

10 And thou shalt bring it to thy father, that he may eat, and that he may bless thee before his death.

Was Rebekah a good or bad influence? I would say BAD. She loved Jacob more than Esau. Both were her sons. This was not a good thing! She was partial to Jacob and wanted him to receive the largest blessing from his father so she helped him to deceive his blind father Isaac into thinking he was Esau. She was the instigator of so much division in her family that Jacob was forced to leave home because Esau was so mad about the deception and losing his blessing that he threatened to kill Jacob! Rebekah probably wished she could go back and undo the wrong she had talked Jacob into doing! But it was too late.  It reminds me of something my son David said many years ago when he was still just a teenager and it’s always stuck in my mind.  He said (about a certain situation we were discussing) ,”Events we set in motion cannot always be reversed simply because we feel remorse.” How very true that is! So we must be careful what we do and say!

 Second…let’s look at JOCHEBED….the mother of Moses.

 Exodus 2:6-10  6 And when she had opened it, she saw the child: and, behold, the babe wept. And she had compassion on him, and said, This is one of the Hebrews' children.

7 Then said his sister to Pharaoh's daughter, Shall I go and call to thee a nurse of the Hebrew women, that she may nurse the child for thee?

8 And Pharaoh's daughter said to her, Go. And the maid went and called the child's mother.

9 And Pharaoh's daughter said unto her, Take this child away, and nurse it for me, and I will give thee thy wages. And the women took the child, and nursed it.

10 And the child grew, and she brought him unto Pharaoh's daughter, and he became her son. And she called his name Moses: and she said, Because I drew him out of the water.

You all know the story of baby Moses…how all the baby boys were to be killed by the Egyptians and how Jochebed made a little floating basket and put baby Moses in the river when he was just 3 months old. In these verses we read how Pharaoh’s daughter saw the baby and loved him. How Miriam told her she could get a wet nurse…his own Mama…and so Jochebed got to raise Moses after all for the first few years at least. She MUST have been a GOOD influence on Moses during that time , probably teaching him the laws of God and the Scriptures she knew because we know that later in the Bible Moses chose to claim his Hebrew heritage … “Choosing rather to suffer affliction with the people of God, than to enjoy the pleasures of sin for a season;” (Hebrews 11:25)

Never underestimate the value of godly training during childhood!

 Third….the mother of Rahab …whose name is not mentioned in the Bible.

Joshua 6:20-23  20 So the people shouted when the priests blew with the trumpets: and it came to pass, when the people heard the sound of the trumpet, and the people shouted with a great shout, that the wall fell down flat, so that the people went up into the city, every man straight before him, and they took the city.

21 And they utterly destroyed all that was in the city, both man and woman, young and old, and ox, and sheep, and ass, with the edge of the sword.

22 But Joshua had said unto the two men that had spied out the country, Go into the harlot's house, and bring out thence the woman, and all that she hath, as ye sware unto her.

23 And the young men that were spies went in, and brought out Rahab, and her father, and her mother, and her brethren, and all that she had; and they brought out all her kindred, and left them without the camp of Israel.

Many times in Scripture Rahab has a suffix added onto her name…Rahab THE HARLOT.  We don’t know at what point in her life she had become a harlot. We do know that during that time period many children followed in the profession of their parents. Whether her mother was also a harlot we do not know. She could have been a bad example for Rahab. But on the other hand, it may have broken her heart to see her daughter in this sad profession. All we actually DO know about Rahab’s mother is that  she was saved from certain death by the children of Israel when they destroyed Jerico. Why was she saved? Because of Rahab. Rahab hid the Hebrew spies. She believed their God was mighty and she believed the spies when they told her if she would hand a scarlet cord (red rope) out her window they would not kill her nor any of her family that she could get to the safety of her house. Verse 23 says that her mother was one of the ones saved. This reminds me that there are Christian women who may have mothers that are lost. That mother might someday be saved because of the testimony of their saved daughter as they keep the scarlet thread of Christ’s salvation evident in their lives! And what a great testimony Rahab ended up with! She married a Hebrew and was the mother of Boaz who married Ruth.  Rahab is mentioned in Matthew 1 in the “family tree” of Jesus.  Moral of this story? Through faith in God, your life can be turned around and God CAN use you to be an instrument used to see your whole family saved!

 Fourth.  HANNAH….the mother of Samuel

 1 Samuel 2:18-21  18 But Samuel ministered before the Lord, being a child, girded with a linen ephod.

19 Moreover his mother made him a little coat, and brought it to him from year to year, when she came up with her husband to offer the yearly sacrifice.

20 And Eli blessed Elkanah and his wife, and said, The Lord give thee seed of this woman for the loan which is lent to the Lord. And they went unto their own home.

21 And the Lord visited Hannah, so that she conceived, and bare three sons and two daughters. And the child Samuel grew before the Lord.

Hannah was a good example of a mother who was willing to do whatever it took to do whatever seemed best for her child. For many years Hannah could not have a child but finally God answered her prayers and gave her a little boy she named Samuel. To show God just how grateful she was for this blessing of a son, after he was weaned, she brought him to the temple to live with the priest Eli….to serve God there. For many, many years I thought that was the end to the story and it always made me a little sad. But then over 25 years ago my dear missionary friend Elaine Rogers spoke to our ladies group at church and taught about Hannah. She made the remark that Hannah had the same number of children that she had…4 boys and 2 girls. I was stunned for I had heard the story of Hannah and Samuel all my life but at that point I had never read the Bibles all the way through for myself. So many things I had been missing. I have tried to read through the Scriptures over a period of 1 to 2 years at a time and have found that to be the single most important thing I have ever done in my Christian life to become closer to the Lord.  The more I read the Bible, the more I realize how little I really know about the things of God. The closer I become to HIM, the more I realize just how far away I really am from Him! 

 Fifth and lastly…MARY…the mother of Jesus.

 Luke 1:26-33  26 And in the sixth month the angel Gabriel was sent from God unto a city of Galilee, named Nazareth,

27 To a virgin espoused to a man whose name was Joseph, of the house of David; and the virgin's name was Mary.

28 And the angel came in unto her, and said, Hail, thou that art highly favoured, the Lord is with thee: blessed art thou among women.

29 And when she saw him, she was troubled at his saying, and cast in her mind what manner of salutation this should be.

30 And the angel said unto her, Fear not, Mary: for thou hast found favour with God.

31 And, behold, thou shalt conceive in thy womb, and bring forth a son, and shalt call his name Jesus.

32 He shall be great, and shall be called the Son of the Highest: and the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David:

33 And he shall reign over the house of Jacob for ever; and of his kingdom there shall be no end.

Verse 28 tells us that Mary was “highly favored with God” and “blessed among women”. Where do we start talking about Mary, the Mother of Jesus? Let’s just see what we can find in Scripture about Mary that perhaps we can model our own lives after:

 1. Luke 1:38  And Mary said, Behold the handmaid of the Lord; be it unto me according to thy word. And the angel departed from her.

Here we see she was submissive to God. Something we all need to learn to be.

 2. Luke 1:46-54 46 And Mary said, My soul doth magnify the Lord,

47 And my spirit hath rejoiced in God my Saviour.

48 For he hath regarded the low estate of his handmaiden: for, behold, from henceforth all generations shall call me blessed.

49 For he that is mighty hath done to me great things; and holy is his name.

50 And his mercy is on them that fear him from generation to generation.

51 He hath shewed strength with his arm; he hath scattered the proud in the imagination of their hearts.

52 He hath put down the mighty from their seats, and exalted them of low degree.

53 He hath filled the hungry with good things; and the rich he hath sent empty away.

54 He hath helped his servant Israel, in remembrance of his mercy;

Mary loved the Lord God with all her heart.  When we read these verses, it seems like we can just hear the love for God bubbling up for way down deep in Mary’s soul. Good example for how we should worship God!

 3. Acts 1:14  These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.

 Mary was actively involved in prayer and worship with other Christians. Another great example of how we as Christian women should be! We need the support of a group of like-minded Christian women to help keep us pointed in the right direction from day to day.

 As I think about Mother’s Day, I look back and know that I haven’t been all I should have or could have been to our three children. But I can look back and know that I did point them as best as I could to the ONE Who is all they could ever hope for and that is the Lord Jesus Christ. If we do that as mothers, then we have not failed.

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Our Ordered Steps

It was a beautiful day for playing outside! For playing baseball with Granddaddy and for making silly faces with Granmamma! The sand in our driveway was hot from the sun shining all day and, of COURSE, who could refuse the temptation to kick off the Crocs and crunch those wee little toes in the golden sand for a while?  Not my grandbaby boy! He had those shoes off and was walking around and scooting his little footsies through that sand before I knew it! Since it was just still April and in this old fashioned Granmamma's mind a little too soon to be going barefoot, I called and told him to put his shoes back on.  And he did immediately! He's good like that!  And then I saw it! A little bare foot print....with a piece of broken glass maybe half an inch away from it! (If you look in the picture below, it is almost directly in the center of the picture)  Well! It just about took my breath away to see how close he had come to having perhaps an ugly gash in his little foot!
 Then I started looking around and saw quite a lot of other pieces of glass there in the driveway.  And I realized what had happened. All that week my husband and a friend had been carrying old junk cars to the recycling place and evidently one of their loads had contained something with broken glass.  Thank goodness it was the kind that breaks into tiny pieces when broken instead of long shards!  I made sure the grandbabies stayed far away from all that broken glass after that!

The minute I saw that piece of glass directly beside his little footprint, I thought about how God directs our footsteps. How He knows and sees where we're going from the time we're born until the time we die. How He kept our little one from getting a cut foot...while all the time he never even knew he was in danger!  I sometimes wonder how many times we come that close to danger and even death every day and never even know it because God moves the danger...whatever it might be...just inches or less away from us so that we're not harmed.

The steps of a good man are ordered by the LORD: and he delighteth in his way.

I'm so glad God orders our steps and that He is even delighted to do it for us!

God bless you!