January 15, 2017

Clarion Call

Be still, and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations,
I will be exalted in the earth!   Psalm 46:10
This is a special and favorite verse for many of us. I know it definitely is for me. Chapter 46 begins with proclaiming God is our refuge and goes on to declare that whatever rages around us, God is with us, and then in verse ten, these words stand out like an oasis in a desert. Be still, and know that I am God. Right there is the answer to everything. He is God.
Psalm 46:10 has been a clarion call in my life that drew me near to Him. Every time I read it or think about it, I hear Him saying “Stop everything else, draw near to me, and you will know Me.” It has been a life changing, relationship growing verse that has impacted my life more than any other verse in the Bible. 
You may be wondering how “Be still” can serve as a clarion call. A clarion call demands action. “Be still” doesn’t sound like an action. It sounds like the exact opposite!
But when that action is placing ourselves in a position to draw near to the Lord, that is the best action I can think of and one that has produced more beneficial results in my life than anything else I have done. There isn’t anything greater than being still to be with the Lord.
That action results in knowing Him. That is the clarion call. That is the action demanded.
Can you hear Him calling you to be still and know Him? What will your answer be to this great clarion call?

January 9, 2017

Do We Take God at His Word?

Psalm 119:105 
Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. 

Do we take God at His Word? This is an important question because for some people it means that we have to logically understand everything He says–and that is impossible. Does that mean we don’t take Him at His Word, or does it mean we engage our faith?

Yes, we must engage our faith to take God at His Word. God’s ways are higher than our ways and we will never understand everything He has written to us in our Bible. But we can believe what we don’t understand…by faith.

Faith is definitely required to take God at His Word and it begins the moment we exercise faith to receive Salvation and is integral in living out our new life in Christ.

It is also important that we read our Bible and know what God actually says in His Word and not just rely on teachers and preachers. We need to read our Bible and allow God to teach us. Not everyone is a studied theologian, but everyone can read Genesis through Revelation and ask God to teach them and increase their knowledge and wisdom.

Everyone can also benefit from the use of a concordance that is either in your Bible or buy one to use when you read the Bible. There are so many convenient and free online tools that can help with Bible study and we need to reap the benefits of the resources that are now online.

Why is this so important? We need to know what we believe and why we believe so that we can be grounded and rooted in our faith. We need to know God’s Word so that it can help us navigate our life.

We need to know God’s Word in order to benefit from the many promises He has given us. 

His Word tells me if I believe on Him then I am saved: John 3:16, Romans 10:9
     I will take Him at His Word.

His Word tells me once I am saved that I am His forever: John 10:27-30
     I will take Him at His Word.

His Word tells me nothing can separate me from His love: Romans 8:38-39
     I will take Him at His Word.

His Word says He has a plan for my life: Jeremiah 29:11
     I will take Him at His Word.

Proverbs 30:5 Every word of God is pure; He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him.

January 3, 2017

Life's Winding Roads

On our way to Phoenix to spend Thanksgiving with Randy’s dad and sister, this being the first Thanksgiving since his mom died in January, we drove through Albuquerque, New Mexico and Flagstaff, Arizona for the mountains. We arrived at the east side, the mountain side of Albuquerque and decided to take a drive up the winding Sandia Mountain Scenic Drive.

That turned out to be a bad idea when we were at a higher elevation and found ourselves on snowy, icy roads and had to turn around and come back down the mountain. The sun was also setting and we knew we had to get back down to elevation where the temperature was above freezing and the roads were clear again. The shoulders of the road were filled with snow and ice which made turning around a difficult challenge.

Randy chose to do a three point turn in the best place we could find, and I had to close my eyes and pray he was successful or we would have easily been careening off that mountain road. We both took a deep breath and prayed and he carefully managed the turn, and we were very happy to be heading down the mountain!

Life can be like a winding road, can’t it? I have traveled down many winding and uncertain roads and I couldn’t always see what was ahead. There have been twists and turns I didn’t anticipate. There have also been dead ends I didn’t expect and forks in the road where I didn’t know which way to go. There have surprises and interruptions and changes that weren’t in any of my plans or on any of my lists. Does any of that sound familiar to you? Have you been faced with not knowing where the winding road is taking you?

It is hard to let go of wanting to know where I am going, when I will get there, and what exactly I will do when I reach my destination. Following God does not mean we have all these answers before we begin a journey. Instead of answers, we need a strong faith that trusts wholly in the Lord.

I have traveled long enough to know our journey through life is often down an uncertain road. But it is a road not traveled alone. Even when we don’t know where we are going, God’s sovereign direction is taking place in our lives. And if that life is fully surrendered to the Lord, we will experience the peace in knowing He is in control and that He knows where the road leads.

As you follow Him, He will take you on a journey you never would have imagined and it probably won’t look like the journey you envisioned for yourself. We will never fully understand His mysterious ways and all the twists and turns in the paths we travel in relationship with the Lord. But I would rather travel the roads of life with Him than any other way. I would not want to face tomorrow on my own, and I don’t have to since He is always with me. Joshua 1:9b “For the Lord your God is with you wherever you go.”

Psalm 16:11
You will show me the path of life; in Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore.