Freedom

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Galatians 5:13 – You, my sisters, were called to be free. But do not use your freedom to indulge the sinful nature; rather, serve one another in love.

Freedom is a gift.

Freedom to live in the United States of America.

Freedom from the old testament law’s authority.

Freedom to participate in the work of the Spirit.

Freedom to worship in the church of your choice.

Freedom to witness to others.

Freedom to serve in love.

Freedom to love one another.

Time

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John 7:33  Jesus said, “I am with you for only a short time, and then I go to the one who sent me.”

I just returned from a trip to Colorado where I visited our daughter at Colorado State University. I flew into Denver on an early morning flight, where I caught a shuttle to CSU in Fort Collins. The shuttle consisted of one other passenger who was only going half the distance, myself and the shuttle bus driver, Scott. I began visiting with Scott to find out he was celebrating his 39th wedding anniversary in August! He had moved to the Denver area from California  where he retired from the police force ten years earlier to start up a new church. He had spent the night before doing prison ministry until 1:00am, went home where he napped until 3:00am so that he could make a couple round trips from Denver to Fort Collins with the shuttle bus before he went home to pack for a men’s Bible retreat in the mountains for the next 3 days. After hearing Scott’s story I was feeling guilty about wanting a few days away to write and relax.  I asked Scott, how he found the energy to keep going. He told me there was a lot of work to do before he leaves this earth.

In today’s verse Jesus told the crowd, “I am with you for only a short time”. Our time here on earth is short. Only a blink in eternity. How will you spend your short time here on earth? Sort out the important and focus on that. Be diligent, like my shuttle driver Scott, to the work God has called you to do.

Dad Dreams

Mike & Ben

Luke 1:76-80  And you, my child, will be called a prophet of the Most High; for you will go on before the Lord to prepare the way for him, to give his people the knowledge of salvation through the forgiveness of their sins, because of the tender mercy of our God, by which the rising sun will come to us from heaven to shine on those living in darkness and in the shadow of death to guide our feet into the path of peace.

And the child grew and became strong in spirit; and he lived in the desert until he appeared publicly to Israel.

We all have hopes and dreams for our children. Zechariah is filled with the Holy Spirit when he spoke of what his son John’s life would entail. As a new dad, I am sure he envisioned honor, praise and a lavish lifestyle for his new son who the angel had said would lead the way for the Lord. When in reality, John lived off the land in the desert until he was 30, and died a criminal’s death. What are your dreams for your children? Don’t be a road block for God to work in your child’s life. Pray that God use them in the way he intended and not as you dreamed.

Happy Father’s Day – especially to my incredible husband and father of our three children, who he continues to pray for daily.

Read It

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Matthew 24:36  Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

Jesus is explaining to his disciples the signs to look for when the end days are near, and how difficult it will be to live through those days. But then, right in the middle of his teachings, Jesus gives us hope for difficult days in the future and those we are experiencing now in our daily lives. Even when things seem unbearable, Jesus reminds us of the gift he has given us through his word – The Bible.  Take time to read it and reread it. Especially during dark days. Jesus has a way of speaking to us through the scriptures by giving us the words we need to keep moving forward during those difficult times. Spend time with Him in his Word today!

 

Crumbs

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Matthew 15:25-28  Then the woman came and knelt before him. “Lord, help me!” she said. He replied, “It is not right to take the children’s bread and toss it to their dogs.” Yes, Lord.” she said, “but even the dogs eat the crumbs that fall from their masters’ table.” Then Jesus answered, “Woman, you have great faith! Your request is granted.” And her daughter was healed from that very hour.

As a mother, there is nothing worse than when your child hurts. In the verses above, a Canaanite woman begs for the crumbs of Jesus’ help for her daughter. Because of the woman’s persistent faith, her daughter is healed. Continue to pray for your children. Jesus has promised us so much more than crumbs from the table. Trust him to give our children exactly what they need at the exact right time!

Travel Light

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Mark 6:6-8 Then Jesus went around teaching from village to village. Calling the twelve to him, he sent them out two by two and gave them authority over evil spirits. These were his instructions: “Take nothing for the journey except a staff – no bread, no bag, no money in your belts.”

Jesus sends his disciples out into the world two by two to teach and share all they had learned during their time with Jesus. Now, I don’t know about you, but if I were leaving on mission trip, I would have a bag packed of “must haves”. What would you have in your bag of necessities? Jesus instructs  his disciples to take nothing – no clothing, no snacks, no purse, no money. Do not hold tight to your possessions. Instead go in faith where God directs you. He will provide for your every need. We are also called to provide for those who do God’s work. Pray and give generously so they are able to continue to build God’s kingdom.

The Potter

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Jeremiah 18:1-6  This is the word that came to Jeremiah from the Lord: “Go down to the potter’s house, and there I will give you my message.” So I went down to the potter’s house, and I saw him working at the wheel. But the pot he was shaping from the clay was marred in his hands; so the potter formed it in to another pot, shaping it as seemed best to him. Then the word of the Lord came to me: “O house of Israel, can I not do with you as this potter does?” declares the Lord. “Like clay in the hand of the potter, so are you in my hand, O house of Israel.”

My daughter’s favorite class in high school was pottery. She loves working on the potter’s wheel and the feel of the clay in her hands. I love the beautiful pieces of pottery she brings home. Hannah tried to teach me how to throw pottery. She makes it look much easier than it is. She places both her hands firmly, yet gently on the clay. The slightest move with either hand will change the completed piece.

You and I are like that lump of raw clay, waiting for the potter’s touch. When God places his hands on us he will work out our imperfections and firmly, yet gently molds us into the likeness of his son, Jesus Christ. This week, be aware of the potter’s touch!

Marriage

 

DSC_0378Luke 20:34-36  Jesus replied, “the people of this age marry and are given in marriage. But those who are considered worthy of taking part in that age and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage., and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God’s children, since they are children of the resurrection.

The glimpse of heaven we receive in these verses have always been difficult for me. I love my husband – a lot. I enjoy spending time with him and the intimacy we experience in our daily lives. He is my best friend. I do not want to loose my husband when we arrive in heaven. Last week he had emergency gallbladder surgery to remove his extremely infected gallbladder. He was in the hospital for three days on large doses of antibiotics. He is home now recovering, and feeling increasingly better every day! (Praise God)

As I studied these verses more in depth, I realized relationships in heaven will be so much more than the relationships we experience here on earth. We will be capable of loving on a new level, with the ability to experience satisfying intimate relationships with so many more people. I will not loose my husband , my best friend, in heaven. He will be with me experiencing the same joy and community right alongside me. I look forward to meeting you there as well to join my husband and I praising our Lord for eternity.

Mothers

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Luke 1:28- 30  The angel went to her and said, “Greetings, you who are highly favored! The Lord is with you”. Mary was greatly troubled at his words and wondered what kind of greeting this might be. But the angel said to her. “Do not be afraid, Mary, you have found favor with God.”

One of the greatest joys in my life is being a mom to my three children. But, also one of the greatest fears in my life is being a mom to my three children.

God has entrusted me with three of his precious children to nurture into adulthood. I do not need to be afraid, because God is with me through every heartache and every celebration. I have been blessed beyond measure by each act.

Moms, when you go to bed at night exhausted from cleaning, cooking, laundry, trips to the park, play dates, building Lego houses, reading just one more story….. Remember, you are changing the world. God sees the unselfish silent sacrifices you are making . You are building the kingdom of God in your home. You have found favor with God!

 

Community

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Mark 8:1-3 During those days another large crowd gathered. Since they had nothing to eat, Jesus called his disciples to him and said, “I have compassion for these people; they have already been with me three days and have nothing to eat. If I send them home hungry, they will collapse on the way, because some of them have come a long distance.”

Our walk with Jesus is a personal journey. Our daily quiet time with him is an important part of the journey. But, just as important is the community of believers we interact with on a regular basis. I will always have a a special bond with the kids in my high school youth group, the women I have learned from in Bible Studies, and the church groups who have worked together to increase the Kingdom of God. When we come together, we can do wonderful things in Jesus name.

Who is a part of your community?

Who can you go to when you need someone to lean on or talk things through?

Who are you encouraging in their walk with Jesus?  Welcome them into your community!.