Angela's Blog
A Bit About me

Welcome to my personal weblog! I have many areas of interest as a Christian wife and home schooling mother of 6 girls: writing, poetry, website design, digital photography, a home business (sewing); however, this blog will focus more on the wonderful journey the Lord has brought our family through and what the Lord has shown me in His Holy Word.


I know that my devotionals don't often speak of specifics in our lives, but I want my readers to know that what I write comes most often from what the Lord is doing in our lives, or has done. I don't just repeat words by this preacher or that one. My devotionals are often written through a haze of tears, sometimes in grief, sometimes in peace at God's goodness for what He is doing for our good. At other times, after a flood of tears over my lack of faith in His great plan for us, especially after I've seen Heaven's gates open in another miraculous answer to prayer. What I write is what God shows me through those trials which He brings because of His great goodness as He works out His perfect plan. - Angela.


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Old Fashioned, KJB

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Devotionals

When Doing God’s Will Hurts

Doing God’s will may not always feel the best, but it is always the right thing to do.

Our family has felt this more this last 8 months or so more than at any other time. Although we know we are following God’s will, the consequences are that people our family cares about are getting hurt, and that tears us apart.

I started this devotional a few days ago, but the pain of having hurt others was still too fresh to focus. As I read it now, I am reminded of David, one of the greatest kings of Israel. He had been following God’s will in destroying some of Israel’s enemies, only to come back to his city and find it ransacked and the women & children taken captive. Needless to say, the people who had followed him were not too please:

And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God. 1 Samuel 30:6

Regardless of we must do as Christians to stay in God’s will, someone may get hurt. Of course it’s going to hurt us and can even be “distressing”, but David’s solution is certainly the right one:  “…David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.”

When our focus remains on the Lord, the hurt of hurting others may still be there, but we can be encouraged as we know God is working out His plans, not ours:

“And we know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose.” Romans 8:28

“Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ:” Philippians 1:6

My life verse still remains Hebrews 12:2

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. Heb: 12:2

When Trials Become Sin

This may seem like an odd title, but it is definitely something I’ve seen that was happening in my own life. It helps me to write things out so I can see the full impact of my actions/inactions and either continue in the right or stop the wrong. I hope that my story can be a help to others so this doesn’t happen to them.

As we’ve gone through some pretty hefty trials this last year, there were times when I was so overwhelmed and all I could think about was what we were going through. God was not in the forefront, the center or anywhere He should have been in my thoughts. I was headed down a path that would end up with me being so wrapped up in the hurt, the betrayal, the actual things going on around me, that I lost sight of The One who allowed all these trials to come upon me to strenghten me. Oh yes, I could quote verses about God being in control, and that all would be okay, but I was focusing on that rather than focusing on my Lord!

Remembering that anything that takes the preeminence in my heart other than God is an idol, I realized the trials/hurt, etc. had become the center – hence and idol – SIN.

The truth is, it doesn’t matter if the trials ever end or they get bigger and bigger. That’s not where my focus needs to be. All I am MUST be focused on the Lord, not what He is doing, whether He brings trials or easier times.

My Bible tells me many things about what position/priority God MUST have in my life, and I’ll quote some of them further, but it can all be summed up in very short passages as relayed in three of the Gospels:

“Master, which is the great commandment in the law? Jesus said unto him, Thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind. This is the first and great commandment. And the second is like unto it, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. On these two commandments hang all the law and the prophets.” Matthew 22:36-40

“And one of the scribes came, and having heard them reasoning together, and perceiving that he had answered them well, asked him, Which is the first commandment of all? And Jesus answered him, The first of all the commandments is, Hear, O Israel; The Lord our God is one Lord: And thou shalt love the Lord thy God with all thy heart, and with all thy soul, and with all thy mind, and with all thy strength: this is the first commandment. And the second is like, namely this, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself. There is none other commandment greater than these. And the scribe said unto him, Well, Master, thou hast said the truth: for there is one God; and there is none other but he: And to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength, and to love his neighbour as himself, is more than all whole burnt offerings and sacrifices.” Mark 12:28-33

It is also recounted in Luke 10:25-37, but in this instance, the Lord emphasizes the fact that we sin because we cannot love the Lord in this way, but it should still be our goal. Whenever I make it my goal to “to love him with all the heart, and with all the understanding, and with all the soul, and with all the strength”, my heart is at peace. Come what may, good or bad, I’m not flustered, angry, upset, distraught, etc.

Here’s a brief account of this last week. It was interesting to say the least.

Sunday am: Asked to take in a friend from out of town who’s wife has been medivacced to local hospital for “flesh eating disease”. Didn’t know at this point if she was going to make it.

Sunday pm: 10 minutes escorting our friend to our home after church, our 9 year old border colie dies

Monday am: deal with disposal of beloved pet

Monday afternoon to 1am: rush husband to doc then hospital fearing heart attack. No heart attack but suspect angina attack – symptoms identical and still kicks the stuffing out of him

Tuesday afternoon: take husband to naturopath, confirm angina attack and that it was SEVERE. Narrowly avoid heart attack.

Wednesday afternoon: find one of our cats outside and he’s barely able to move. Think he was in a cat fight.

Thursday am: realized cat had been runover by car, not catfight. Losing another pet this week was not a preferred option. Rush to vet.  After some treatment, he’s going to be okay.

Also throughout the week, dealing with personal attacks on our family. Our friend in the hospital is still touch ‘n’ go, but she’ll be in hospital here at least 3 more weeks.

While going through this all, I was truly amazed at the peace God gave when I struggled to focus on Him. Then the following came to mind:

1. Alpha and Omega:

My thoughts should always begin and end with Him.

“I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the ending, saith the Lord, which is, and which was, and which is to come, the Almighty.” Revelation 1:8 Also Revelation 1:11, Rev. 21:6, Rev 22:13

2. Preeminence:

He should have the preeminence (first place) in all things, and that includes my trials.

“And he is the head of the body, the church: who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead; that in all things he might have the preeminence.” Colossians 1:18

3. Focus: He should always be the focus. My “spiritual” eyes must be always looking to Him:

Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God. For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be wearied and faint in your minds. Hebrews 12:2-3

Remembering these three things have been a huge help in placing the Lord first, versus letting the trials be my focus and become sin.

The following verse has also been in the forefront this week as I sought grace to go through whatever the Lord would have for me:

Seeing then that we have a great high priest, that is passed into the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our profession. For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin. Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need. Hebrews 4:14-16

He wants us to come to Him, not shy away when trials come, and let us not forget our purpose:

Thou art worthy, O Lord, to receive glory and honour and power: for thou hast created all things, and for thy pleasure they are and were created. Revelation 4:11

So…..

I will sing of the mercies of the LORD for ever: with my mouth will I make known thy faithfulness to all generations. Psalms 89:1

I Stand Redeemed

With Canada Day (July 1st) having just passed, and Independance Day (July 4th) for the USA tomorrow, I began to think about the birth of these two nations. They began as Christian nations, but have generally degraded into nations that only have a vague semblance to Christ. Worse than that, there is little difference between the world and many who claim the name of Christ.

The Bible talks about this happening to the world in the last days.

2Timothy 3:1 ¶ This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come.
2 For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy,
3 Without natural affection, trucebreakers, false accusers, incontinent, fierce, despisers of those that are good,
4 Traitors, heady, highminded, lovers of pleasures more than lovers of God;
5 Having a form of godliness, but denying the power thereof: from such turn away.
6 For of this sort are they which creep into houses, and lead captive silly women laden with sins, led away with divers lusts,
7 Ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.

It is vital that each and every one who is a blood-bought, born-again, child of the living God, daily make a conscience decision to follow the Saviour who gave all for us. Like the Apostle Paul who spoke of submission to Christ, we must also say: “…I die daily. 1 Corinthians 15:31

Titus 2:11 ¶ For the grace of God that bringeth salvation hath appeared to all men,
12 Teaching us that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we should live soberly, righteously, and godly, in this present world;

The above texts may seem to have little to do with the title of this devotional, but they were meant as a reminder. Although the hour in which we live becomes consistently more wicked, the peace and assurance that can only come from God can remain steadfast in the simple knowledge of our redemption! Our God has not changed!

Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. Hebrews 13:8

Titus2:13 Looking for that blessed hope, and the glorious appearing of the great God and our Saviour Jesus Christ;
14 Who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify unto himself a peculiar people, zealous of good works.

I Stand Redeemed!

1) When I think of all my faults and my failures;
When I consider all the times I’ve let God down.
I am humbled by the grace He has extended.
I’m amazed at the mercy I have found.
I could never earn His love on my own,
Yet every time I come before His throne:
Chorus:
I stand redeemed, by the blood of the Lamb.
I stand redeemed, before the great I am.
When He looks at me, He sees the nail scarred hands
That bought my liberty.
I stand redeemed.
2) Even at my best I am unworthy;
I have nothing precious I can give.
A broken life is all I have to offer,
And yet it’s a priceless gift to Him.
The bitter marks of sin will never fade away,
And I can come before Him unashamed.

The Comfort of the Scriptures

Romans 15:4  For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning, that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.

It amazes me how much we can put ourselves through simply because we don’t take our cares to the Lord. Our lives have always been pretty typical, having one disturbing major issue happening at a time, but it seems like this time around it has been 4-5 at the same time. I can honestly say that the last 6-7 months have been the hardest trials I have gone through in my entire Christian life with some things being personal and some affecting our entire family. At times I felt overwhelmed and it seemed I barely had a grasp of the hem of the Lord’s garment, yet, there was still a peace that kept me going as I knew the Lord was going to see us through, again. When I took our cares to the Lord, that peace was the strongest, and of course when I focused on the issues, that peace seemed so dim, but it was always there.

Taking all our cares to the Lord is exactly what He expects us to do!

1 Peter 5:7  Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

It truly is a blessing to be able to write down what I learn from the Scriptures and the lessons learned from what God brings into our lives.  Several years ago, I did a full blown lesson on “Depression”, and God used it not only to calm my troubles heart, but to be an encouragement to others as well. If any of our trials help anyone to go on for Christ, the I count those trials a privilege.

2 Corinthians 1:4 Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.

Yet God has also given us an even greater comfort that to me makes any and all trials worthwhile.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-18 But I would not have you to be ignorant, brethren, concerning them which are asleep, that ye sorrow not, even as others which have no hope. For if we believe that Jesus died and rose again, even so them also which sleep in Jesus will God bring with him. For this we say unto you by the word of the Lord, that we which are alive and remain unto the coming of the Lord shall not prevent them which are asleep. For the Lord himself shall descend from heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and with the trump of God: and the dead in Christ shall rise first: Then we which are alive and remain shall be caught up together with them in the clouds, to meet the Lord in the air: and so shall we ever be with the Lord. Wherefore comfort one another with these words.

Our Lord is coming back one day! All our trials will be over and we will see the one who redeemed us from our sin! What greater comfort is there?

1 Peter 1:18-19  Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot:

I couldn’t find a vocal rendition of this hymn that I liked, but at least I can post the words and music. The music player is at the bottom of the lyrics.

When We See Christ

1) Oft times the day seems long, our trials hard to bear,
We’re tempted to complain, to murmur and despair;
But Christ will soon appear to catch His Bride away,
All tears forever over in God’s eternal day.

Refrain
It will be worth it all when we see Jesus,
Life’s trials will seem so small when we see Christ;
One glimpse of His dear face all sorrow will erase,
So bravely run the race till we see Christ.

2) Sometimes the sky looks dark with not a ray of light,
We’re tossed and driven on , no human help in sight;
But there is one in heav’n who knows our deepest care,
Let Jesus solve your problem – just go to Him in pray’r.

3) Life’s day will soon be o’er, all storms forever past,
We’ll cross the great divide, to glory, safe at last;
We’ll share the joys of heav’n – a harp, a home, a crown,
The tempter will be banished, we’ll lay our burden down.

Our God of Second Chances

How many times have any of us done something really stupid, and realize it right after, or right in the middle of it?

Do you ever get to feeling like you can’t do anything right, wondering why you bother trying as your going to fail anyway?

You really didn’t mean to hurt someone, yet you did, and you figure it can’t be set right.

I must admit, I’ve been there some days. It just seems like no matter how hard you try, things just don’t seem to work out, or not that often anyway.

I could use all kins of cliches right now about getting back up on the horse, “try, try again”, etc., but I’d rather just seen how God views the efforts of His children:

For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: but the wicked shall fall into mischief. Proverbs 24:16

In other words, the child of God shouldn’t give up trying to do right, regardless of the failures. As I was looking into this whole idea of not giving up, or rather, God not giving up on us – giving us chances upon chances as we stumble and fall –  all of Psalm 103  has been a huge blessing to me.

Ps 103:1 ¶ A Psalm of David. Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name.

This is where our focus should be! Regardless of the circumstances!

Ps 103:2 Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:

God blesses us so much! Not always monetarily….what is peace in your soul  for this life and all eternity worth? – Christ’s death!

Ps 103:3 Who forgiveth all thine iniquities; who healeth all thy diseases;

When God saved me, I was bound by the chains of my sin…..yet He forgave me then, and continues to forgive and guide me now!

Ps 103:4 Who redeemeth thy life from destruction; who crowneth thee with lovingkindness and tender mercies;

He’s spared me from the punishment I deserved: Hell; and then crowns me as His child in love and mercy!

Ps 103:5 Who satisfieth thy mouth with good things; so that thy youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

Just when I think I can’t go on, He gives me the strength to continue to live for Him!

Ps 103:6 ¶ The LORD executeth righteousness and judgment for all that are oppressed.

I have the Great Judge on MY side! He is not partial in judgement. He is not a respecter of persons! He will judge rightly!

Ps 103:7 He made known his ways unto Moses, his acts unto the children of Israel.

He’s given us His precious Word so that we can know His ways!

The next verses are so incredible! What mercy! What grace! He knows we will fall, but the LORD loves us anyway because He knows what we are made of! He continuously extends His mercy to those who seek to do things His way. What a wondeful God we serve!!!!

Ps 103:8 The LORD is merciful and gracious, slow to anger, and plenteous in mercy.
Ps 103:9 He will not always chide: neither will he keep his anger for ever.
Ps 103:10 He hath not dealt with us after our sins; nor rewarded us according to our iniquities.
Ps 103:11 For as the heaven is high above the earth, so great is his mercy toward them that fear him.
Ps 103:12 As far as the east is from the west, so far hath he removed our transgressions from us.

Ps 103:13 Like as a father pitieth his children, so the LORD pitieth them that fear him.
Ps 103:14 For he knoweth our frame; he remembereth that we are dust.
Ps 103:15 As for man, his days are as grass: as a flower of the field, so he flourisheth.
Ps 103:16 For the wind passeth over it, and it is gone; and the place thereof shall know it no more.
Ps 103:17 But the mercy of the LORD is from everlasting to everlasting upon them that fear him, and his righteousness unto children’s children;
Ps 103:18 To such as keep his covenant, and to those that remember his commandments to do them.

He certainly deserves our praise!

Ps 103:19 ¶ The LORD hath prepared his throne in the heavens; and his kingdom ruleth over all.
Ps 103:20 Bless the LORD, ye his angels, that excel in strength, that do his commandments, hearkening unto the voice of his word.
Ps 103:21 Bless ye the LORD, all ye his hosts; ye ministers of his, that do his pleasure.
Ps 103:22 Bless the LORD, all his works in all places of his dominion: bless the LORD, O my soul.

After reading that Psalm, the following verse also came to mind. I hope this has been a blessing to you as well.

Psalms 119:103  How sweet are thy words unto my taste! yea, sweeter than honey to my mouth!

The Award

It is my turn to receive an award. Yup! A very special award, and even though most of us are earn it one time or another, most are quite reluctant to step forward and accept it. Well, reluctant or not, I accept the award as I think I have excelled at it better than anyone for quantity and quality in conversation with one individual. Do I sound boastful or proud? Well, I’m not, just being truthful. You see, this not so prestigeous award is the least-coveted:

“Open Mouth, Insert Foot Award.”

No need to clap, as the award speaks for itself.

Surely someone else wants to claim it, but too bad cause I’m No. 1!  However, I am more than willing to share it.

No, takers….hmmmm…..I must have succeeded in opening my mouth wide enough….

Sorry for the satire, but I thought it quite apt for this post, and sadly true. I tend to earn this award frequently, especially at times where I truly had nothing but the best intentions at heart. We’ve all been there….saying too much, too little, or saying something that came out so totally opposite of what we meant.  Amongst friends, this isn’t usually an issue, as they know you well enough that they typically burst out laughing at the “faux pas” (or social mis-step). However, when speaking with someone new, or knows you less, the end result can be disastrous.

In the last few months, I’ve been berating myself over this very thing. I seem to have very little problems with forgiving those who hurt me, but I’ve always been quite hard on myself when the shoe fits on my foot, or in my mouth, as it were.

In conversations/letters with someone who didn’t know me well enough, I used an expression that obviously had a different meaning to both of us, and also didn’t explain myself well enough on other points, came across wrong, and the list goes on. I ended up hurting the other person, realized some of it then yet didn’t know how to fix it, and didn’t even realize the rest of it till a month or so later.  I’ve given this person some space, and have been praying and praying for an opportunity to approach them to explain and apologize, but the opportunity just hasn’t been there. It also seems that a simple “I’m sorry” isn’t adequate. However, after my “perfect performance”, I’m almost afraid I will just make things worse.

The thing that bothers me the most about winning the award this time, is that I was trying to reach this individual for Christ. Whether or not I manage to remove the blot off my name isn’t the important part. If a person rejects me, they really haven’t lost anything, but if a person rejects Christ, they lose EVERYTHING!

Truth be told, this is an award I’d rather never win again, but it does have a way of making its rounds. The only way I see to remove some of its stigma is the chance to patch things up with the one who witnessed and endured my greatest performance. I have been getting an occasional smile again, but I’d give just about anything for a chance to set things right. Maybe the solution is as simple as directing the person to this post….maybe, just maybe they would read it.

I think you’ll understand when I say I hope you’re not the next person who wins this award!

If anything, I’m so thankful that there can be no misunderstandings between my Lord and I. He always knows what I really mean, even when the words don’t come out right.

“But he knoweth the way that I take: when he hath tried me, I shall come forth as gold.” Job 23:10

I’m also thankful that He is the God of love, justice and compassion, and of not just second chances.

“This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.” Lamentations 3:21-23

“The Wounds of a Friend…”

Recently, a dear friend sent me a note that was one of the sweetest I’ve ever received, and yet, one of the greatest rebukes, and I needed both!

Dear Angela,

From your recent posts I am gathering you have a lot on your plate. Just wanted you to know I am praying for you today! You and your family are in my prayers.

Hugs,

My reply:

You are such a dear! Thinking of me when you are on your way to bury your father-in-law!

I know you never meant for your sweet, sweet, sweet! note to be a rebuke, but the Lord sure used it as such, and I needed it!

With all that has been happening, I’ve kinda be withdrawing from most people, especially my dearest friends, and that is flat out wrong. I’m not the only one who is pre-occupied, hurt, etc. but I’ve had tunnel vision and am only seeing our family’s problems when others are hurting too.

Oh dear! I feel a devotional coming on….LOL

Thank you dear friend! Your precious note is extremely timely! **thanks**

I am so grateful the Lord sent me this sweet rebuke, and especially thankful He didn’t have to do more to get my attention!

“Faithful are the wounds of a friend;” Proverbs 27:6

It is so easy to get “wrapped up” in our own lives and our truly small problems, that we forget that others are going through their own fires & floods. They too need the encouragement that we are begging God for at those times.

“Blessed be God, even the Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies, and the God of all comfort; Who comforteth us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort them which are in any trouble, by the comfort wherewith we ourselves are comforted of God.” 2 Corinthians 1:3-4

“But now thus saith the LORD that created thee, O Jacob, and he that formed thee, O Israel, Fear not: for I have redeemed thee, I have called thee by thy name; thou art mine. When thou passest through the waters, I will be with thee; and through the rivers, they shall not overflow thee: when thou walkest through the fire, thou shalt not be burned; neither shall the flame kindle upon thee. For I am the LORD thy God, the Holy One of Israel, thy Saviour: I gave Egypt for thy ransom, Ethiopia and Seba for thee.”
Isaiah 43:1-3

“Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the right hand of my righteousness”. Isaiah 41:10

Praise the Lord for His grace and mercies and for Christian friends who let the Lord use them!

“This I recall to my mind, therefore have I hope. It is of the LORD’S mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness. The LORD is my portion, saith my soul; therefore will I hope in him. The LORD is good unto them that wait for him, to the soul that seeketh him. ” Lamentations 3:21-25″

The Joy of the Lord is my Strength

As I’ve gone through some very trying times on one issue the last 10 years, then very pronounced in the last couple weeks, and to which I really don’t see an end, God has been bringing some verses back to mind over and over:

“And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. ” 2 Corinthians12:9a

The context of the verse is the Apostle Paul going through a very difficult time (we are not told what it is), and he continues with:

“Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me. Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in necessities, in persecutions, in distresses for Christ’s sake: for when I am weak, then am I strong.” 2 Corinthians 12:9b-10

I do well some days, but other days, I feel overwhelmed, yet I know the Lord is always there. If I keep my eyes on Him and the salvation He has given me, He WILL give me the strength.

“And David was greatly distressed; for the people spake of stoning him, because the soul of all the people was grieved, every man for his sons and for his daughters: but David encouraged himself in the LORD his God.” 1 Samuel 30:6

“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory;” 2 Corinthians 4:17

“Knowing that he which raised up the Lord Jesus shall raise up us also by Jesus, and shall present us with you. For all things are for your sakes, that the abundant grace might through the thanksgiving of many redound to the glory of God. For which cause we faint not; but though our outward man perish, yet the inward man is renewed day by day.”

“For our light affliction, which is but for a moment, worketh for us a far more exceeding and eternal weight of glory; While we look not at the things which are seen, but at the things which are not seen: for the things which are seen are temporal; but the things which are not seen are eternal.” 2 Corinthians 4:14-18

“Looking unto Jesus the author and finisher of our faith; who for the joy that was set before him endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.”  Hebrews 12:2

The Sacrifices of the Wicked

Make a Joyful Noise unto the LORD

I was sent a link to a rendition of Amazing Grace, and truly, it is probably one of the best, if not the best, rendition I have ever heard. Yet, when I researched the group (which I had never heard of before, they are “famous” in secular circles), not a one even claims to be a Christian let alone saved. As I watched their eyes, there was truly no comprehension there, just showmanship. My heart has been torn with grief to hear such a soul stirring song sung by people that have no comprehension of what it means. I have cried for them and prayed for their salvation over the last couple weeks.

As I was pondering over how beautiful it sounded, and how feeble my attempts are sometimes, I was reminded of this verse and others:

The sacrifice of the wicked is an abomination to the LORD: but the prayer of the upright is his delight. Proverbs 15:8

On the flip-side, God talks about how His children are to offer Him the sacrifice of praise and singing:

Jer 17:26 And they shall come from the cities of Judah, and from the places about Jerusalem, and from the land of Benjamin, and from the plain, and from the mountains, and from the south, bringing burnt offerings, and sacrifices, and meat offerings, and incense, and bringing sacrifices of praise, unto the house of the LORD.
Jer 33:11 The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the LORD of hosts: for the LORD is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the LORD. For I will cause to return the captivity of the land, as at the first, saith the LORD.
Heb 13:15 By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name.

And they shall come from the cities of Judah, and from the places about Jerusalem, and from the land of Benjamin, and from the plain, and from the mountains, and from the south, bringing burnt offerings, and sacrifices, and meat offerings, and incense, and bringing sacrifices of praise, unto the house of the LORD. Jer 17:26

The voice of joy, and the voice of gladness, the voice of the bridegroom, and the voice of the bride, the voice of them that shall say, Praise the LORD of hosts: for the LORD is good; for his mercy endureth for ever: and of them that shall bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the LORD. For I will cause to return the captivity of the land, as at the first, saith the LORD. Jer 33:11

By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. Heb 13:15

And now shall mine head be lifted up above mine enemies round about me: therefore will I offer in his tabernacle sacrifices of joy; I will sing, yea, I will sing praises unto the LORD. Psalms 27:6

Regardless of what I think my voice sounds, I am commanded to make a “joyful noise unto Him”. It is obvious by the context of these verses that the Lord is talking about singing.

Ps 66:1-2  Make a joyful noise unto God, all ye lands: Sing forth the honour of his name: make his praise glorious.

Ps 81:1 Sing aloud unto God our strength: make a joyful noise unto the God of Jacob.

Ps 95:1 O come, let us sing unto the LORD: let us make a joyful noise to the rock of our salvation.

Ps 95:2 Let us come before his presence with thanksgiving, and make a joyful noise unto him with psalms.

Ps 98:4 Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all the earth: make a loud noise, and rejoice, and sing praise.

Ps 98:6 With trumpets and sound of cornet make a joyful noise before the LORD, the King.

Ps 100:1 A Psalm of praise. Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands.

God is not pleased with the empty song sacrifices of the lost, but when his children truly sing to Him, that is well pleasing.

I just recalled an incident when I was in the hospital a few months ago to have my gall bladder removed. I was in a room with 3 other people, one of which was not pleasant. I had had enough, so I just started humming various hymns. When one of the nurses heard me sing Blessed Assurance by Fanny Crosby, she thanked me and said that it was her mother’s favorite. I got to witness to her, found out she was saved, but not attending church.

I don’t know if anything will come of what happened, but that event and the song that spurred on this devotional have been an encouragement for me to not be ashamed to sing/hum for my Lord, and have stirred me on to sing again in my life. I’ve still been singing for church, but I used to sing all the time at home and hum when shopping, and I’m not really sure what “stole” my song away. This has helped to renew my zeal to praise the Lord in song, regardless of how I sound. I’ve even found myself humming again as I’m shopping.

Praise His glorious name!!!!


The Blessings of a Humble Heart

Like most children, our youngest Carolyn, can be a real cutie and quite the little stinker as well. She gets the cutest expressions, especially when her father or I am teasing her. However, as we are reminded daily, she is a sinner in need of the salvation the Lord has provided us.

A few weeks ago, as siblings sometimes do, she was trying to get another sister in trouble by lying to me about a situation. When the truth was found out, I quoted this verse:

“A lying tongue hateth those that are afflicted by it…” Proverbs 26:28

and explained that by lying to Mommy she was saying she hated me. The precious dear broke down and cried so hard.

“I don’t want to hate you!” she cried.

“I know, but that is what the Bible says,” I replied.

I’m so thankful we have such a good relationship, for since then, she has tried so very hard not to lie.  It has truly been a blessing to my heart to see how humbly she submitted herself to God’s Word.

I began to think about my relationship with my Lord. When I read His Word, is my heart humble and willing to submit like our daughter? Am I willing to quickly change the path I’m on if the Lord shows me it’s wrong? I wish I could say that I always line up with His Word, but to my shame, I don’t always line up right away or perfectly nor is my heart as tender when I do sin.

I want to strive to be like this little child.