Refine me to Gold

Refine me by Your Holy fire to Gold

Pain is an opportunity for growth in God! I shared this concept with a few friends lately.

Pain can draw us to our Savior or fear over pain can cause us to look over our shoulder and run from the Savior. The molding of our character burns and can scar us.

Daniel 3 shares the story of three young men who refused to bow down before a king. They trusted God over any threats by man. God protected them from a fiery furnace and death. As a result, the King and others turned their lives over to God.

Daniel 3:16-18 CEV
The three men replied, “Your Majesty, we don’t need to defend ourselves. [17] The God we worship can save us from you and your flaming furnace. [18] But even if he doesn’t, we still won’t worship your gods and the gold statue you have set up.”

These young men placed their hope in the One True God!! We can choose the same course. Trust God in your pain to be refined as gold into the treasure He already knows you to be.

Psalm 25:1-8 MSG
My head is high, GOD, held high; I’m looking to you, GOD; No hangdog skulking for me. [3] I’ve thrown in my lot with you; You won’t embarrass me, will you? Or let my enemies get the best of me? Don’t embarrass any of us Who went out on a limb for you. It’s the traitors who should be humiliated. [4] Show me how you work, GOD; School me in your ways. [5] Take me by the hand; Lead me down the path of truth. You are my Savior, aren’t you? [6] Mark the milestones of your mercy and love, GOD; Rebuild the ancient landmarks! [7] Forget that I sowed wild oats; Mark me with your sign of love. Plan only the best for me, GOD! [8] GOD is fair and just; He corrects the misdirected, Sends them in the right direction.

The gods of this world: materialism, social status, economic wealth, can’t compare to the peace found in trusting our Creator God with our futures. In this time of uncertainty, world instability, financial chaos, relational strife. There is only one real choice, Jesus.

This mindset may not make sense to our human mind however, as I talked with a dear Sister in Christ yesterday, Jesus is the only Peace to be found. He has never changed from the time of Daniel.

Let the supernatural peace of God take hold of your heart and mind. Micah 4:11-13 the Message version, practically jumped off the page. Hold onto the promises of God.

Holy Spirit fuel our steps!!!🔥💜

Micah 4:11-13 MSG
But for right now, they’re ganged up against you, many godless peoples, saying, “Kick her when she’s down! Violate her! We want to see Zion grovel in the dirt.” These blasphemers have no idea what GOD is thinking and doing in this. They don’t know that this is the making of GOD’s people, that they are wheat being threshed, gold being refined. [13] On your feet, Daughter of Zion! Be threshed of chaff, be refined of dross. I’m remaking you into a people invincible, into God’s juggernaut to crush the godless peoples. You’ll bring their plunder as holy offerings to GOD, their wealth to the Master of the earth.

Fisherman or Fish

Photo by Sirikul R on Pexels.com

Fishermen have a difficult job, they are at the mercy of nature, chaotic weather patterns, and abundant supply of fish. Fishermen have to trust the wisdom of generations of fishermen and luck. However, when the nets remain empty, they are sunk.

As it is in life, there are times when we don’t know where to plant our steps or drop our nets. We may feel the world is chaos, but the Lord is drawing His people to seek Him. Jesus calls us to listen to His wisdom.

At times, He may instruct us to step back from groups of friends, maybe even family, that are not aligned with His ways. Maybe we need to shake the dust off some of the choices of our past.Or He may encourage our boldness to share our life stories of joy, hardship, and His deliverance.

It is hard for me to live in conflict with anyone. But just as the fisherman, Simon Peter, and Andrew were called by Jesus as the first disciples to drop their nets and become fishers of men, we are also called to do the same, to seek Jesus and follow Him.

Matthew 4:18-22 AMP 18 As Jesus was walking by the Sea of Galilee, He noticed two brothers, Simon who was called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea; for they were fishermen. 19 And He said to them, “[b]Follow Me [as My disciples, accepting Me as your Master and Teacher and walking the same path of life that I walk], and I will make you fishers of men.” 20 Immediately they left their nets and followed Him [becoming His disciples, believing and trusting in Him and following His example]. 21 And going on [further] from there He noticed two other brothers, James the son of Zebedee, and his brother John, in the boat with their father [c]Zebedee, mending their nets; and He called them [to follow Him as His disciples]. 22 Immediately they left the boat and their father, and followed Him [becoming His disciples, believing and trusting in Him and following His example].

It may cause distress, and emotional upheaval but I am learning to follow Jesus instead of other things. You may get crazy looks, or have people say, ” No thanks, I don’t want to hear your thoughts.” Jesus still wants us to make fishers of men, to make disciples in the nations, across the street, or even the world. He will use your life story.

The statement “shake the dust off our feet” means being okay with walking away from people who may not be open to the Word of God, Jesus. We must stand firm in Jesus Christ alone, not be afraid to claim His truth ( He is the Way, the Truth, and the Life ), and share with others our personal testimony of His work in our lives.

We are not superior to any human, we must seek the Lord for His words to others before a word leaves our lips. We must forgive others who are not ready to hear the gospel but pray for them. We must seek Jesus forgiveness for our past poor choices and start over with an evolving testimony to share.

Some people may think we are religious nuts or will not listen to our call by the Holy Spirit to share what we have learned from our walk with Jesus. It can hurt our hearts and make us second guess the call Jesus has on our lives.

But stand firm, there are certain people you are called to intersect and share your story. I have been fearful at times to step out in boldness, however, I am amazed when I have spoken as He prompts, I am humbled and in awe of how Jesus fills my words with His truth.

We are not all-knowing, we are not the Savior, Jesus is. Just as He prepared the first disciples, He will prepare us. We must give people space after we share His transforming work in our life. Sometimes we must give grace, tighten our sandles and walk on.

We must Let go and Let God be the source for their transformation. You may be just a seed sower and they will need more time. Emotionally letting go of family or friends who don’t know Jesus or who have stepped away from His umbrella of protection feels sad and without hope.

However, Jesus can work with your loved ones when you step out of the way. Shaking the dust off your feet can bring more clarity as Jesus speaks through the next person He has directed across their path. Shaking the dust off the poor choices of the past can also bring new life in a new relationship with Jesus.

Sean Curran has a meaningful message of patience in his song, ” Shake the Dust off.” His lyrics remind us to ” Shake off the dust and let fear fall.. let praise arise” and ” Arise, O generation, revivals’ on the run”.

We can trust our God, He will not be silenced, His truth never changes, and soon the whole world will know, there is no King but Jesus.

Be a fisher of men for Jesus! Consider throwing out the net if you know Jesus as Savior, or seek to be caught by Jesus, grab the net if you want to know Him.

2 Thessalonians 3:16

Now may the Lord of peace Himself grant you His peace at all times and in every way [that peace and spiritual well-being that comes to those who walk with Him, regardless of life’s circumstances. The Lord be with you all.

Words Matter: Do you want to start a forest fire ?

Forest fires start with words

How are you using your words, blessing or cursing? It matters to God how we treat those He places along our path. No one is perfect not one of us!

My current self reflection is: are my words encouraging, speaking truth in love or in frustration, snarky, unthinking babble?

What is my main purpose when speaking is to be right or to cause more destruction to someone who is struggling? Have you ever thought about how your words impact people in your sphere?

Matthew 12:34-37 NLT
[34] You brood of snakes! How could evil men like you speak what is good and right? For whatever is in your heart determines what you say. [35] A good person produces good things from the treasury of a good heart, and an evil person produces evil things from the treasury of an evil heart. [36] And I tell you this, you must give an account on judgment day for every idle word you speak. [37] The words you say will either acquit you or condemn you.”

Do you want to acquit or condemn another person who is created by God? Gossip or slander tears down, it does not build up, even in asking prayer for someone. Go to God with concerns, He knows the details of His children. There are times you feel prompted to share your struggles, the Lord will guide you to safe, Loving, Godly brothers and sisters in Christ.

Titus 3:1-2 NLT
[1] Remind the believers to submit to the government and its officers. They should be obedient, always ready to do what is good. [2] They must not slander anyone and must avoid quarreling. Instead, they should be gentle and show true humility to everyone.

Do you want to be known as the quarrelsome, judgmental Christian or a gentle, humble servant of Jesus? If you are a parent, our kids watch how we use our tongues. Troubles come when we speak without thinking. I am guilty of this character flaw. It’s as if my tongue has a mind of its own. James is a solid book of the Bible, here are a few pearls of wisdom I turn to often.

James 1:2-12,26 NLT
[2] Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. [3] For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. [4] So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing. [5] If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. [6] But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. [7] Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. [8] Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do. [9] Believers who are poor have something to boast about, for God has honored them. [10] And those who are rich should boast that God has humbled them. They will fade away like a little flower in the field. [11] The hot sun rises and the grass withers; the little flower droops and falls, and its beauty fades away. In the same way, the rich will fade away with all of their achievements. [12] God blesses those who patiently endure testing and temptation. Afterward they will receive the crown of life that God has promised to those who love him. [26] If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and your religion is worthless.

Reread James 1:26: If you claim to be religious but don’t control your tongue, you are fooling yourself, and our religion is worthless. Wow, that hurts, it is a conviction in your heart meant to bring a pause, and lead you to repent, ask forgiveness from Jesus and for help to break this flaw, in the Name of Jesus. We can’t do this on our own, our flesh gets the credit for impulse control issues. We need to grow in self control, a fruit of the spirit!!

Galatians 5:22-25 NLT
[22] But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, [23] gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things! [24] Those who belong to Christ Jesus have nailed the passions and desires of their sinful nature to his cross and crucified them there. [25] Since we are living by the Spirit, let us follow the Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives.

Those who parent, mentor, or feel the call to share wisdom with others are called to a higher standard. Their loyalty must be in God alone. We live in a world with trial and daily we get the opportunity to hone our faith in Jesus. We must be humble and seek the Lord for all things, too.

James 3:1-10,13,17-18 NLT
[1] Dear brothers and sisters, not many of you should become teachers in the church, for we who teach will be judged more strictly. [2] Indeed, we all make many mistakes. For if we could control our tongues, we would be perfect and could also control ourselves in every other way. [3] We can make a large horse go wherever we want by means of a small bit in its mouth. [4] And a small rudder makes a huge ship turn wherever the pilot chooses to go, even though the winds are strong. [5] In the same way, the tongue is a small thing that makes grand speeches. But a tiny spark can set a great forest on fire. [6] And among all the parts of the body, the tongue is a flame of fire. It is a whole world of wickedness, corrupting your entire body. It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself. [7] People can tame all kinds of animals, birds, reptiles, and fish, [8] but no one can tame the tongue. It is restless and evil, full of deadly poison. [9] Sometimes it praises our Lord and Father, and sometimes it curses those who have been made in the image of God. [10] And so blessing and cursing come pouring out of the same mouth. Surely, my brothers and sisters, this is not right! [13] If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. [17] But the wisdom from above is first of all pure. It is also peace loving, gentle at all times, and willing to yield to others. It is full of mercy and the fruit of good deeds. It shows no favoritism and is always sincere. [18] And those who are peacemakers will plant seeds of peace and reap a harvest of righteousness.

The tongue can bless or curse. Do you want to start a forest fire? Our tongue and words can be restless and evil, especially when you are Hangry. I remind myself to evaluate for H.A.L.T.: Hungry, Angry,Lonely,Tired. Even still, there is no excuse for lack of self control.

On my own, I may not be gentle, peace loving, or willing to yield to another. But with accountability of fellow believers in Christ, time in stillness speaking with my best friend, Jesus and asking Him to help me change character flaws, I am hopeful of healthy communications. Grateful to those who speak truth over my circumstances so I can grow in Christ and in community of His people.

I want to be known as a peacemaker and an example of a fruit bearing Christian, how about you? It is a new day, start to tame your tongue and may the words we speak be pleasing to God and encourage others.

Psalm 19:14 NLT
[14] May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing to you, O LORD, my rock and my redeemer.

Sky’s the limit!!

We are One Human Race

It came to my attention recently as I was watching the integration of our chicks and hens the similarity of these chickens with my observation of society.

You see, we had six, white adult hens and a menagerie of 7 colorful chicks integrating themselves together into one coop. As I watched the survival of the fittest I was amazed to see how each one of these colorful groups managed to stay pretty much within their social constructs.

The Clucky Ladies

Even as the younger ones are getting older and becoming more prominent than the white, the adult hens allowed them food and a community. Of course, one hen would ruffle her feathers and poke away, pulling feathers from the small ones and making sure that everyone in the group knew she was the lead hen.

The lead hen is Stumpy because she lost a toe when she was a chick. Perhaps her attitude was a result of being bullied when she was young. Regardless, the other five hens do not allow her to be mean to the colorful group. Instead, they show teamwork enabling everybody to get along.

It would be nice if our world and country reflected community more. Kindness, compassion, and loving each other more. We are one as a human race created in a kaleidoscope of colors, beautiful and unique.

As I watched other backyard or farming chicken coop owners on Youtube, I learned how to integrate the small chicks with the hens without causing a bloodbath of pecking. I’m grateful for their wisdom. Yes, there are some good things about Youtube. God’s Word, the Bible is even better as a resource because it never fails me.

This morning as I walked into the coop I saw two of our Black Rock Chickens standing next to our big white adult hens. Every day I see the combination of all these colors mixed together. Today, the Clucky ladies were one, no pecking, just united. It reminds me God calls us to be united and He calls us to love one another.

1 Corinthians 13: 4 – 7 Love is patient and kind. Love is not jealous or boastful or proud or rude. It does not demand its own way. It is not irritable, and it keeps no record of being wronged. It does not rejoice about injustice but rejoices whenever the truth wins out. Love never gives up, never loses faith, is always hopeful, and endures through every circumstance.

1 Corinthians 13 is known as the love chapter, check it out. It’s not easy to be patient with people nor is it easy to put down a grudge and forgive people. It’s not easy to love even if we’re hurt. But those are the things God calls us to do because one of the greatest commandments says to love God and love his people.

John 13: 34 – 35  So now I am giving you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, you should love each other. 35 Your love for one another will prove to the world that you are my disciples.”

I’m so grateful for these ridiculous chicks who make me laugh and give me work to do. Because they remind me of the importance of God‘s creation and I learn from them how to be in my own world.

Today’s reflection reminded me of a song from my youth, We are One in the Spirit. This message of unity was awesome by Jars of Clay. Do you reflect Christian love? If you need a reboot, today may be the day. Be blessed! We are one human race!!

Eagles in the wind

Photo by Frank Cone on Pexels.com

Twice in the past two weeks, my youngest & I were in the car when a bald eagle flew over and circled us. It happened again Tuesday after school for the second time. Eagles are my favorite bird they represent majestic powerful victory. They are messengers of God’s protection for His people. The Israelites were in need of protection as they traveled in the desert escaping the oppression of the Egyptians, it is described in Deuteronomy 32.

Deuteronomy 32: 10 - 11
He found them in a desert land,
    in an empty, howling wasteland.
He surrounded them and watched over them;
    he guarded them as he would guard his own eyes.[c]
11 Like an eagle that rouses her chicks
    and hovers over her young,
so he spread his wings to take them up
    and carried them safely on his pinions.

Breathtaking and in awe, my youngest and I shared a beautiful moment at the roadside. Watching this amazing eagle, we were speechless. First, it circled the car, and then, it was pushing hard and flying against the wind then circled and went with the wind to the east. I wrote a blog post called ” Wind” last week, check it out. In Hebrew, it is Ruach, meaning wind, spirit, and breath. 

Is it a sign or a wonder? Only God knows. I believe that we are given opportunities to see our Creator God in nature. He can do anything. My love for His creation and my stillness with God can bring amazing moments. We have to fix our eyes on His truths and spend time with His Word to gain wisdom, especially in these crazy uncertain times. People are watching our walk of faith, I was blessed to share these with my child.

The next day I sent this text to my daughter: Sweet daughter: I believe it was prophetic that twice recently you and I have had eagles soar and hover over us in the car. Consider this, my precious one, We are to be God’s messengers, He wants us to fly with the wind, His Holy Spirit, into the future. He was showing both of us the eagle pushing against the wind then in with majesty this beautiful eagle flowed with ease facing east. We must flow with God, my dear daughter! He will use our obedience when trust in Him alone. (Expect distractions from the enemy, as he has different plans.) 

Isaiah 40:28-31 [28] Have you never heard? Have you never understood? The LORD is the everlasting God, the Creator of all the earth. He never grows weak or weary. No one can measure the depths of his understanding. [29] He gives power to the weak and strength to the powerless. [30] Even youths will become weak and tired, and young men will fall in exhaustion. [31] But those who trust in the LORD will find new strength. They will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.

Since He created each of us in His Image, He knows how best to send a message. Are we seeking Him? Are we open to hearing His truth? When we are available to hear Him, He will share a wonderful mystery that will take our breath away.

Wind

Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

The wind has been blowing at hurricane forces with red flag warnings covering my state for over a week. Wind escalades consuming fires; causes dust storms, and blows the tumbling weed you may have seen in Wild West movies. Those weeds can grow into the size of house doors. I have a friend who shared seeing an entire front of a house covered by them, with a senior citizen needing help.

I have been meditating on the wind, the Hebrew word for wind is Ruach. Strongs Concordance definition: Ruach means breath, wind, spirit with its’ phonetic spelling is (roo’-akh). Johnathan Cahn, a Messianic Jewish author shares his interpretation in his “Book of Mysteries”. The Holy Spirit, the breath of life along the wind are synonymous with the power of the Lord. Have you ever thought of this concept?

The Bible supports this premise, as I did research I found the wind described in Genesis through Revelations. It was an amazing read I will share some scriptures.

Genesis, the first book of the Bible, describes God’s action to blow across the earth and dry land after the flood.

Genesis 8:1    But God remembered Noah and all the wild animals and livestock with him in the boat. He sent a wind to blow across the earth, and the floodwaters began to recede.

The Lord used the wind to bring a holy fear to enemies in war just by its sound in Leviticus, wind cleared locusts and brought quail to the hungry Israelites in Numbers 11.

2 Samuel 22 describes how the Lord heard the cries of David and David saw Him in the storm clouds. What a visual? I choose to believe the same is true today. We may have other noises or busy lists drowning out this revelation.

2 Samuel 22:11
Mounted on a mighty angelic being, he flew,
  soaring on the wings of the wind.

Elijah described being worn out and feeling alone as He continued to serve the Lord even though many peers thought he was crazy and stupid. In 1 Kings 19, we are reminded that despite the noise around us the Lord speaks in whispers. Are we spending time with our Lord? It is hard to hear His whispers when we aren’t listening for them. I am guilty as charged at times.

1 Kings 19: 11-12   11 “Go out and stand before me on the mountain,” the Lord told him. And as Elijah stood there, the Lord passed by, and a mighty windstorm hit the mountain. It was such a terrible blast that the rocks were torn loose, but the Lord was not in the wind. After the wind, there was an earthquake, but the Lord was not in the earthquake. 12 And after the earthquake there was a fire, but the Lord was not in the fire. And after the fire, there was the sound of a gentle whisper.

At one point, Job was rebuked by the Lord for his rantings. The Lord reminded Job where all things began, with Him. Job 38:24 Where is the path to the source of light? Where is the home of the east wind?

In Psalm 28, the Lord is increasingly frustrated as His children are not walking with Him, the Lord says in verse 26: He released the east wind in the heavens, and guided the south wind by his mighty power.

My time hearing the winds, seeing the trees sway, watching the tumbleweeds, not being able to walk a straight line outside, eating dust, and sneezing from the wind, made me consider the Lord made the wind and it holds the majesty of His power.

Matthew 8:26-27 is one of my favorite stories of Jesus calming the storm at sea while his buddies freaked out. Jesus responded, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” The winds were out of control and Jesus rebuked the winds. It was a defining moment because they were in awe that even the winds obeyed Jesus. Sadly, I can be like the disciples! But I don’t have to stay in that place.

Psalm 104 describes the majesty of the Lord and his creation of sky, heavens, clouds, and wind.

Psalm 104: 1- 4   
1 Let all that I am praise the Lord. O Lord my God, how great you are! You are robed 
with honor and majesty. 
2 You are dressed in a robe of light. You stretch out the starry curtain of the heavens; 
3  you lay out the rafters of your home in the rain clouds. You make the clouds your 
chariot; you ride upon the wings of the wind. 
4  The winds are your messengers; flames of fire are your servants.

Ah, another windy day, red flag warning in case of fires, the earth is so dry, just a spark of flame will light up the pastures. Isn’t that a metaphor for life, my friends?

Action steps: Meditate on these: Am I walking with the wind, in a sense my Holy Spirit, my Lord? Or am I walking against His instructions with worry, defiance, pride, grumbling, basically, in sin? If I choose the fleshy sin ways, I am dried up, worn out, depressed, anxious and lonely. If I walk with the Lord I allow Him to carry me or at the very least, I let my burdens be directed by His wisdom and the negative mindset to be blown away as I trust Him.

James 1: 5-7       5 If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. 6 But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. 7 Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord. 8 Their loyalty is divided between God and the world, and they are unstable in everything they do.

I want to be in control, do you? However, with each passing year, I am learning my need to control is not helpful. I can’t control the future and world events any more than I can control the wind. I am choosing loyalty and a walk with Him.

Walk with the wind not against it! Hold onto your hat, life will be more interesting and less parched.

Eagles

Photo by Frank Cone on Pexels.com

Eagles are majestic, powerful, grace-filled examples of the Creator God. I have always been fascinated by these birds. I live in the Rocky Mountain region and am occasionally blessed to see eagles soar.

There are scriptures that describe their attributes as protector, safety under her wings, and as an example of renewed youth and energy.

Deuteronomy 32:11
Like an eagle that rouses’ her chicks and hovers over her young, so he spread his wings to take them up and carried them safely on his pinions.

Exodus 19: 1- 6 19 On the first day of the third month after the Israelites left Egypt—on that very day—they came to the Desert of Sinai. 2 After they set out from Rephidim, they entered the Desert of Sinai, and Israel camped there in the desert in front of the mountain.
3 Then Moses went up to God, andp the Lord called to him from the mountain and said, “This is what you are to say to the descendants of Jacob and what you are to tell the people of Israel: 4 ‘You yourselves have seen what I did to Egypt, and how I carried you on eagles’ wings and brought you to myself. 5 Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, 6 you[a] will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”

Psalm 103: 5 He fills my life with good things. My youth is renewed like the eagles.

Interesting facts from all about birds.org the Cornell lab:

Immature Bald Eagles spend the first four years of their lives in nomadic exploration of vast territories and can fly hundreds of miles per day. Some young birds from Florida have wandered north as far as Michigan, and birds from California have reached Alaska.

Had Benjamin Franklin prevailed, the U.S. emblem might have been Wild Turkey. In 1784, Franklin disparaged the national bird’s thieving tendencies and its vulnerability to harassment by small birds. “For my own part,” he wrote, “I wish the Bald Eagle had not been chosen the Representative of our Country. He is a Bird of bad moral Character. He does not get his Living honestly. … Besides he is a rank Coward: The little King Bird not bigger than a Sparrow attacks him boldly and drives him out of the District.”

Lamentations 4:19 describes the enemies as swift and wise to find the Lord’s people or to cover over God’s people in a negative way.

Habakkuk 1:8 described the enemies of God as eagles that swoop down to devour their prey. Powerful !

Even though Ben Franklin describes the Eagle as a bird of bad moral character since it can be an opportunist when it comes to food, a eagle is powerful. It soars to amazing heights; 10,000 feet, and dives at a speed of 100 miles per hour. They are loyal; they mate for life, are providers for their eaglets, and tenacious. I’m relieved our nations symbol was not a wild Turkey, aren’t you?

According to Kristin Stanton of UniGuide.com, an Eagle symbolizes Loyalty, devotion, freedom, independence, truth, honor,the Divine, and Hope.

The Eagle reminds me that with God I can soar to amazing heights, I can live in the Power of truth and I can live in freedom with my Savior.

Isaiah 40:31 But those who trust in the Lord will find new strength, they will soar high on wings like eagles. They will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not faint.

Interchangeable

The triune: The Father God, God’s Son, Jesus, and the Holy Spirit are three in One. He is the Rock, the God of the Mountains: El Shaddai. He is Omnipresent. ( Jeremiah 23:23-24) No one can hide from Him. Amazing!!

The Names of God are an amazing reflection of His characters . Years ago, I was exposed to this list in a Bible study. My mind has been deeply pondering culture, world news and staying firm in faith with God.

He has shown himself in the joys and trials of life, our God is massive and His Names have specific meaning depending on my circumstances.

I felt called to share this wisdom today. May one of these Names of God bring hope to you and maybe draw you deeper into a relationship with Him.

  1. Adonai – My Great Lord, He is the Majestic Lord, our authority. (Psalm 8:1)
  2. Elohim – The All-Powerful One, He is the Creator of the Heavens and earth. He is everywhere. (Psalm 68)
  3. El Roi – The God who sees me, God knows who we are and what we are going through. (Genesis 16:11-14)
  4. El Shaddai – The God of the Mountains, He is all-powerful and the source of all blessings. (Psalm 139:7-12)
  5. Immanuel – God with us, the Great I Am, Jesus came as a baby, He is in our midst. (Isaiah 8:8-10,Matthew 1:23)
  6. Jehovah – “I AM”, He is the God who never changes. He is faithful, even when we are not. (Psalm 102)
  7. Jehovah-Jireh – The Lord will provide. He will meet all our needs, Jesus, His Son was sacrificed for us. (Psalm 23)
  8. Jehovah-Nissi – The Lord is My Banner, God gives victory, Our battle is against the dark, evil, He is Light.(Ephesians 6:10-18)
  9. Jehovah-Shalom – God of Peace, Jesus is our Prince of Peace, He defeats our enemy when we seek Him. (Hebrews 13:20)
  10. Yahweh – ” I AM”, His promises never fail. He is faithful and never changes. (Malachi 3:6, Psalm 46:1)

We must hold onto the hope found in the unchanging God, who may have many interchangeable names but is the Alpha and Omega, beginning and the end.

“No one but you”, a song from Hillsong United, brings the breath of life to me as I hear the words of promise. There is No one like our God. May this song encourage you today!!

Fall has come

There is something about the fall season. The change of weather from super hot, sticky days, as a fan does not provide relief from the dripping perspiration, heat comes even into the night.

The need for cool, brisk evenings comes to its zenith when the calendar lands on October. Ah, the winds begin to blow more urgently.

It is fall. The days may start off warm, however as the sun begins to drop into its place of rest, the evening temperatures cool bringing comfortable sleep.

The windows are now open for breezy times, the trees rustle as the sound of leaves begin their change of color. Summertime green leaves transform into burgundy, red, orange, yellow and an amazing dark purple. As you crest a hill driving down a country road from the top of the mountain to the valley, the multiple colors can be seen from a distance. It is a breathtaking color palette of leaves from an artists’ brush, the Creator God.

I love fall. Nature cycles from energized green trees, productions of flowers, vegetables and even sunflowers and grain harvests. Farmers combine multiple crops such as wheat, barley, crushing corn stalks for livestock silage and a final crop sugar beets. As temperatures drop, they prepare the land for next years crops.

Apples have been a bumper crop in our area. The sweet, satisfying apples release a juicy taste quenching your thirst and reminding you to add caramel. Yummy! It is fall!

When the winds pick up, blowing in gusts, I see a tumble weed blow across the fields, it picking up another torn dry portion and expand ever larger as it hops along.

Yes, the seasons ( or times) they are a changing, like Bob Dylan sang. It is a time of introspection. A time of considering change in our own life, or maybe holding onto the amazing good things. I am learning not to take anything for granted.

Ecclesiastes 3:1-8 
1    There is a time for everything,
 and a season for every activity under the heavens:

2     a time to be born and a time to die,
 a time to plant and a time to uproot,
3     a time to kill and a time to heal,
 a time to tear down and a time to build,
4     a time to weep and a time to laugh, a time to mourn and a time to dance,
5     a time to scatter stones and a time to gather them, a time to embrace and a time to refrain   from embracing,
6     a time to search and a time to give up, a time to keep and a time to throw away,
7     a time to tear and a time to mend,
 a time to be silent and a time to speak,
8     a time to love and a time to hate,
 a time for war and a time for peace.

As the leaves shrivel further they begin to drop from the trees. Piles form and swirl as the gusty winds begin again, it is a restless example of things never staying still for long. Time brings change.

Life is as constant and moving as the leaves. The four seasons remind me to be grateful for transitions: winter, spring, summer and fall. Each season has a purpose just like life.

Leaves remind me as they fall to the ground, drop the old ways. Shriveling leaves, can represent limiting life because choices have caused me to step away from the source of life. There is still time to be made new and alive again.

There is another season to navigate. Get ready because winter can be a time of rest.

Daniel 2: 20 - 25   
Daniel said: 
20 “Praise be to the name of God for ever and ever; wisdom and power are his.
21 He changes times and seasons; he deposes kings and raises up others.
     He gives wisdom to the wise and knowledge to the discerning.
22 He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness,
    and light dwells with him

Fall into the arms of the Creator God. He is wise.

Salmon Endurance

Do you ever feel like a salmon swimming against the river current? You are in the living water, it provides a vehicle to allow your movement to a different place. Yet the boulders and tree branches that are scattered in the river provide the potential for detours, fits and stops.

You are using all your energy to stay in motion. Your body burns the calories, especially if your favorite stress reliever chocolate. Yum!! Yet the sugar in chocolate is still not enough to keep you moving.

If you remember your Biology class, once your simple sugars ( carbohydrates) are drained, your blood sugar drops and your body seeks another source of energy, such as fats and proteins. If you are endowed with an extra muffin top in your midsection, it may be a good thing to feel that fat waste away. If you are not endowed with extra insulating fat, your muscles can loose the protein energy and as a result, you tire and muscle can waste away. No Bueno!!!

Its the building blocks of proteins such as meats, nuts and such that provide the best energy source. You see, those food products can be used and last longer than carbs.

We need energy to endure in life. We must seek approval of God over man to endure. We must swim with endurance the river journey of faith.

Galatians 1:10 NLT
Obviously, I’m not trying to win the approval of people, but of God. If pleasing people were my goal, I would not be Christ’s servant.

❤️

The time we spend getting to know Jesus and filling up on His Word is like the protein stores. There are more energy bursts to grab from as you work through your day.

If you add additional stress, trials, illness, or trauma, you are drained like a salmon swimming upstream. One obstacle after another works against you.

You must dig deep into the words from scripture that can pop into your mind. This will only happen if you have been mediating on God’s wisdom. It can come to the surface of your mind energizing you and providing a place to turn to God over the river currents.

Philippians 1:6 NLT. And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns.