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Thoughts Archived > From Day To Day

27 Jan 2013



January 27, 2013

  From Day To Day  

Luke 12: 22 - 34



Then turning to his disciples, Jesus said, "So I tell you, don't worry about everyday life - whether you have enough food to eat or clothes to wear.  For life consists of far more than food and clothing.  Look at the ravens.  They don't need to plant or harvest or put food in barns because God feeds them.  And you are far more valuable to him than any birds!  Can all your worries add a single moment to your life?  Or course not!  And if worry can't do little things like that, what's the use of worrying over bigger things? 

"Look at the lilies and how they grow.  They don't work or make their clothing, yet Solomon in all his glory was not dressed as beautifully as they are.  And if God cares so wonderfully for flowers that are here today and gone tomorrow, won't he more surely care for you?  You have so little faith!  And don't worry about food - what to eat and drink.  Don't worry whether God will provide it for you.  These things dominate the thoughts of most people, but your Father already knows your needs.  He will give you all you need from day to day if you make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.

"So don't be afraid, little flock.  For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom. 

"Sell what you have and give to those in need.  This will store up treasure for you in heaven!  And the purses of heaven have no holes in them.  Your treasure will be safe - no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it.  Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be."  






Since God knows everything, he knew I would be where I am in life and that I would be preaching on this topic this morning....and need to hear it as a gentle reminder....or not so gentle....according to how my life seems to be going right now.

First things first....if you are in crisis....rebuke Satan right out of your life.  As we learned last week, or of which we were reminded, Satan is in charge of turmoil and crisis and he deserves NO PLACE in any of our lives.  Cast him back into hell.  Once he is gone, if your crisis continues, either your faith is not as strong as it needs to be to believe you have the power by the Holy Spirit to indeed cast Satan out of your life, or, Satan has a major stronghold on your life and you need to call on the armies of heaven to help, or, God is trying to teach you a lesson.  God may be trying to teach you a lesson AND Satan may be attacking on all fronts, too.  Stand firm against Satan and listen closely to God.  Sometimes God talks fast, and if you don't get what he said written down, it can be lost and you will miss a step.  Be careful.  I am forever missing steps, because I am not as quick as I need to be.  Most folks remember things....me....I've got to write them down.  Then, if you are like me, you lose the piece of paper!  Know, also, that Satan will ALWAYS be trying to huff and puff and blow your life down.  So don't think rebuking him is a one time thing.  But not everything he attempts is epic/crisis proportion.  Although it may feel that way sometimes.  Choose your battles, some just aren't worth giving him the time of day.  Ignoring him can be mighty effective sometimes.  He gets bored and can go away....but he may come back with a vengeance.  Beware.    

In the first paragraph, Jesus tells us not to worry, that we are far more valuable to God than any birds....I wonder....God DID make them first for himself to love and be loved by.  Then Jesus queries us as to whether any worry will add a single moment to our lives and indicates it would not.  And that if worrying over little things doesn't work, why worry over big things.  Okay.  I had a friend who died last year that always told me to never worry....it was okay to be concerned though.

Based on all of this, I am on overload in the department of concern.  And yet, not really.  I have this peace....you know the one....oh, maybe you don't....anyway, it's the one that passes all understanding.  I've wondered if I am delusional or in denial.  If I am just pushing the fear away to survive.  But I could not function under that Satanic turmoil and still come up for air.  I am breathing fine....quite well, as a matter of fact.  I don't have all the answers....hek....some days I don't have any answers, but God does.  And if I just listen....take the time to literally listen....the answers come.  Sometimes, as I said, faster than I can write them down.  And sometimes I wonder what time schedule God is on because I cannot possibly get all the things done he gives me to do in one day.  So I can only hope these are not daily tasks, but tasks to confront and perform, nonetheless....and all the more.  I'm almost afraid to ask...if he says they are daily tasks, he'll have to plug my brain into some other body, because tho' the body is willing, the brain doesn't always want to cooperate, and visa versa.  Hek, some days you could sell tickets to watch me just live....I can be a real goofball.  A good mix between 'the' roadrunner (from the cartoon), an octopus, and a Golden Retriever.  I'm sure there is more, but I'd probably have you laughing all day....if you really knew me you would be....and we'd accomplish zip learning.  Like those days I am more like a turtle because I love to duck my head into a good book to read.  Anyway.....   

What about you?  What do you feel about what you are going through?  Are you perplexed, worried, overly concerned, freaking out?  Or are you experiencing God's peace in the midst?   Are you able to listen and walk in the direction he leads?  Can you even keep your eyes fixed on God?  Have you accepted Jesus as your Savior and made him Lord of your life?  Maybe you should....I'm sure he'd be delighted to have you in his life and be in yours.  It's easy.  All you have to say is, "God, please forgive me of my sins.  Jesus, I accept you as my Savior and want to make you Lord of my life.  Holy Spirit, baptize me with the fullness of your spirit. I wish to receive all the fruits and gifts you have to give.  Thank you.  Amen."    

Jesus goes on to tell us about how well the lilies were dressed better than Solomon and that if God cares so wonderfully for flowers with a brief lifespan, won't he more surely care for you/me/us.  Jesus implies we have little faith, if we are worrying about our lives.  'Admonishes us not to worry about what to eat or drink or whether God will provide for you/me/us.  Intimating he absolutely will.  

Jesus further tells us that we are not alone essentially, that these types of thoughts dominate most people's minds, but then reminds us, perhaps gently...."but your Father already knows your needs.  He will give you all you need from day to day, IF [big IF] you make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.  Hmmmm.  There's the clincher.  Focus on what God wants you/me/us to do for him to further the Kingdom of God....do it first and foremost, and be richly rewarded by having all your needs supplied by him....daily.  An 'ah ha' moment, eh?

"How ", you ask?  What is the basis of what we learned so far over the years?  Put God first.  Love him with all your heart, mind, strength and soul, and love your neighbor as yourself.  God, self, neighbor.  You can't love your neighbor as yourself, until you love yourself first.  Share the Gospel of Jesus Christ in all ways.  Receive it as a gift, share it as a gift.  Live it with every breath.  Do for others in his name.  Realize that everything you have is because he gave it to you or allowed you to have it.  Give back to him and share with others for and with him.  There are so many lessons that are foundational to making the Kingdom of God your primary concern, but these are the foundational biggies. 

Jesus says, "So don't be afraid, little flock.  For it gives your Father great happiness to give you the Kingdom."  He really does want us to 'have it all'.  But having it all in the Kingdom of God is about receiving forgiveness of sins and eternal life.  Does that mean our heavenly home will be a reward, but that our earthly home is our problem?  No.  What we've learned here today is that he is as concerned about our well being and our earthly needs as he is about our heavenly needs.  We should be most focused on our heavenly rewards and he will see to it that our daily needs are met.  You can't have the mansion on earth unless you are concerned about his and your mansion in heaven.  Let me say that Satan grants mansions on earth, but never in heaven.  Beware.  Know whose team you are on.  Ask Jesus into your life to be on God's team.  

And then Jesus tells us how we can go about making the Kingdom of God first.  "Sell what you have and give to those in need."  That can be you, your family, as well as the stranger along life's way, or the sparrow, raccoon, bunny, stray cat or dog seeking food.  Or any cause in between.  Consider where your dollars go.  Will they further the Kingdom of God?  Do your dollars go anywhere near where God is?  Or are you giving to organizations who are not furthering the work of God or helping others?  Are you justifying your actions to make them fit God's definition for the Kingdom?  Do they really fit?  Hmmmm.....something to consider.

Selling what you have and giving to those in need will store up treasure for you in heaven!  [Note exclamation point by Jesus.] And the purses of heaven have no holes in them, Jesus says.  He also said, "Your treasure will be safe - no thief can steal it and no moth can destroy it."   If you have ever stored things for a while, you know for a fact that moths destroy anything they can get their hands on.  And most folks understand the need for locks on the doors in this day and age.  Satan is a thief that kills, steals, and destroys.  He will enter anything in your life and anyone.  He will make every attempt to kill, steal, and destroy those you love, your relationships, those around you, and everything you own, and that which everyone else owns, too.  If you have made the Kingdom of God your priority, put less priority on the things you own, and place those people around you in God's hands....arms, it diminishes Satan's joy, and his attempts, his attacks, will hurt less, affect you less, because you will have given them all over to God, knowing he cares and he is in control.  Those things you give up....will be given back to you many times over.  Usually better.  The people you release unto him....he will send Christians to offer the Gospel message, keep watch over them, and hopefully you will see them in heaven one day.   

"Wherever your treasure is there your heart and thoughts will also be."  I get this now.  And my priorities have not been clear.  They are now.  I can now see there are a lot of things I do not need, but want.  But in wanting what I have, I am not meeting what I need.  How do you get rid of an heirloom?  By looking potentially hungry and sick children in the eyes.  By looking in the mirror and seeing the haunted look on your own face due to the inability to keep a roof over your head and that of your family's.  Heirlooms are meant to be handed down.  Traditionally that is after death.  If they can help the living, the responsibility must be met in life.  I applauded an elderly woman who took me under her wing when my Mom died a week before my 21rst birthday because she chose to give her kids things in life, rather than have them wait until her death, so she could see their joy in having and using them.  It mattered not to her whether they sold them to use the money for other things or cherished them as is.

We all need to clean out the nests we make in life.  How often will you read that book?  Yet others could benefit by it.  I have to say, I may not be able to get rid of all my books, and I don't know that God is calling me to do that because of part of that vision I mentioned.  I hope to make them available to others through a lending library.  Maybe he is calling you to do the same.  Or maybe that vision will change and I will have to eliminate them all.   What about you?  Any books to share, give away, sell?  And that antique china....how often do you use it anymore?  My jewelry and all the heirloom jewelry is all gone now.  And I won't pretend that it was easy.  It was pretty painful.  But as I look back on it now, I see that I should have gotten rid of it a long time ago.  My parents, now grandparents from heaven, would have wanted me to do what ever is necessary to give their love away to their grandkids.  So with the food, medical necessities, and daily needs, like the roof over our heads....my family and I get an embrace from them.  How about you?  Do you need to embrace anyone by exchanging an item for a blessing? 

I am the worst at remembering where a scripture reference is.  I will remember the notation in the margin and what I wrote or what it looked like, but I am awful at specifically knowing a reference.  Somewhere in the Old Testament is a reference about by giving to the Kingdom we help to build the Kingdom.  It was an 'ah ha' moment for me.  It made it a little easier once I had let all the jewelry go and was agonizing over it.  I still do sometimes wish with all my heart that things hadn't developed in such a way as to have to have done what I did, but then I think about the hand of God in my life and how he made it available for me to use the gifts from those I love who are in heaven.  That all came together in my heart and swelled it with love from God and my family in heaven.  What a great gift to know even from heaven I am loved...still.  And that everyone is watching over me....still.  And I received further confirmation that our God reigns....and he loves me.... still.

How about you?  Are things well for you, or do you find yourself in a similar situation as I and need help?  Or is it just time to build the Kingdom for God and give to those in need?  Are there things around you that could be a greater blessing to you or others?  When was the last time you used those golf clubs?  Will you ever?  Do you have to keep all those tools?  Will you really get on the roof to fix the masonry around the chimney, or could you sell some of those tools and hire someone instead?  Safer to hire some kid to shovel walks than to keep the snow blower....that could pay down that credit card you owe so much on.  What about those flowers....you know....the fake ones in the vase on top of the hutch....when was the last time you took them down and dusted them, or even truly enjoyed them?  Have you even looked up lately?  Are you tripping over furniture?  How old is your daughter....your son.....do you really need to keep the room as a shrine to their youth?   [Please note:  this is not directed to those who have lost children through abductions or who are missing....God and I understand the need to have things to embrace...memories to hold....a bed to crawl onto and cry from.  But maybe, just maybe, you have something that could enrich and embrace another child in your child's name....and from their heart.  Your child may be older now....when they come home, they'll have different needs.  Of course you will hold onto those things most cherished, if you choose to share.]  Could you use the room to make scrapbooks of all the family photos, or as an office to learn to sell on Ebay to make money?  Maybe start a home based business on a different level.  Maybe even rent out that room to someone who is displaced from the storm, Sandy, if you are on the east coast of the U.S.   

I have a huge burden on my heart about the fact that people who were displaced from the storm, Sandy, on the east coast are scrambling to find shelter from the horrible temperatures and inclement weather.  I lived on the east coast.  I am saddened that the whole of the east coast has not opened their doors to all the strangers displaced from the storm.  In the olden days (pre 1970), some might rent a room to someone or invite a family even free of charge until they could get on their feet.  It mattered not how long, it only mattered there was a need that needed to be met....that another human being was suffering.  What has happened to the world?  I do know there are folks out there ready to take, kill, steal and destroy.  But is anybody even TRYING to discern with wisdom, while they open their doors?  No condition is perfect.  Be safe, be wise, but be open....help your neighbor....anywhere in the world.  Don't just give a buck or two.  Can't have them in your home for some reason?  Could you pay 2 months rent for them somewhere and get their utilities turned on?  Offer them in for just a cold spell?  Feed them?  Do you need 2 cars?  Can you give them one?  GIVE.  Not loan.  Give?  THIS is how you make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.  When was the last time you tithed to God through a church?  Maybe now it's time to get caught up.

It matters not the country.  It matters not the situation why.  It matters that you reach out in the name of God.  It matters that you store up your treasure in heaven by giving to those in need.  Give to God the treasure of your heart, by giving to his children on earth....man, woman, child, young or old, slave or free.....animals or trees.  Wherever your treasure is, there will be your heart also.  Give your heart to God by giving to those need.  Press toward the mark for the prize of the high calling of God.  Philippians 3:14   Trust God that he will meet your needs from day to day, if you make the Kingdom of God your primary concern.                           




Let Us Pray


Jesus, hi.  I want to thank you for reminding me of what my priority should be....making the Kingdom of God number one.  God, hi.  I want to thank you for making provision for me, if I do what I am supposed to do.  Please speak louder, slower, and give me time to make note, will you?  Oh, and be specific.  I can imagine at your age, you may need a few moments to write things down, too.  It's best if you don't give me a lot of choices.  Just open a door or not....that way, I don't have to think and choose from so much.  Okay, maybe just a couple choices.  :  )  Thanks.  Holy Spirit, hi.  Please do not leave my side....my life.  Surround me with guardian angels, instill within me all that you have to give, that I may not ever be without you, your wisdom and discernment, all the fruits and gifts you have to give.  And could you increase the gifts of wisdom and discernment?  I think the discernment and wisdom knobs might be on the fritz.  Please, all of you, help me in all the ways you can, surely you can see I need all the help I can get....more days than others.  Show me what you want me to do for you....and me....to make the Kingdom of God my primary concern.  Help me increase the time I pray for others....okay....I'll do better in this area....in case you've not noticed, I've already increased prayers for others.  I wish to bring you all the glory.  I bow down to you in worship with gratitude....for all of my life.  Thank you for loving me, giving me life, living for me, dying for me, embracing me, filling me.  Thank you enormously for those you've given me to love and care for....I am eternally grateful.  Please let their lives be a blessing to them, and you, and when they are not, ease them gently into your loving arms in heaven.  Thank you.  I love you.  Amen.                    




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Lord,LordJesJeJeJJjEJJJ     JJThe LORD is king!  Let the nations tremble!  T***


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Let us hear from Paul as he prays:  

When I think of the wisdom and scope of God's plan, I fall to my knees and pray to the Father, the Creator of everything in heaven and on earth.  I pray that from his glorious, unlimited resources he will give you mighty inner strength through his Holy Spirit.  And I pray that Christ will be more and more at home in your hearts as you trust in him.  May your roots go down deep into the soil of God's marvelous love.  And may you have the power to understand, as all God's people should, how wide, how long, how high, and how deep his love really is.  May you experience the love of Christ, though it is so great you will never fully understand it.  Then you will be filled with the fullness of life and power that comes from God.

Now glory be to God!  By his mighty power at work within us, he is able to accomplish infinitely more than we would ever dare to ask or hope.  May he be given glory in the church and in Christ Jesus forever and ever through endless ages.  Amen.  Ephesians 3:14-21 NLT         




Scroll down to read Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving...'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'.




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It is time to reach into the community and the world around you to see wherein lies the greatest need.  As you choose to focus on these areas, do so with a servant's heart.  Whether the need is for children, adults, or animals, or any cause in between that will help those in need, ask God how you can best serve his needs, what path you must take, and how long you should persevere.  Sometimes we are to be in the lives of others merely as stepping stones.  Sometimes we are to touch those lives forever.  Whatever journey you are called to take, whatever team you will be a member, know this:  God is with you always...even til the end of time.  He loves you, is grateful for you, and will help you along life's way, especially if you are helping others along theirs, persevering with a servant's heart.  


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    One last thing....


 Jesus' Prayer of Thanksgiving

'The Unforced Rhythms of Grace'


"Abruptly Jesus broke into prayer:  "Thank you, Father, Lord of heaven and earth.  You've concealed your ways from sophisticates and know-it-alls, but spelled them out clearly to ordinary people.  Yes, Father, that's the way you like to work."

Jesus resumed talking to the people, but now tenderly.  "The Father has given me all these things to do and say.  This is a unique Father - Son operation, coming out of Father and Son intimacies and knowledge.  No one knows the Son the way the Father does, nor the Father the way the Son does.  But I'm not keeping it to myself; I'm ready to go over it line by line with anyone willing to listen."

"Are you tired?  Worn out?  Burned out on religion?  Come to me.  Get away with me and you'll recover your life.  I'll show you how to take a real rest.  Walk with me and work with me - watch how I do it.  Learn the unforced rhythms of grace.  I won't lay anything heavy or ill-fitting on you. Keep company with me and you'll learn how to live freely and lightly.


   Matthew 11:  25-30

  The Message


And the people said,









I now write most prayers in the position of ' I ' (first person) because most people are sitting at their computer alone, not in groups, and it allows those reading and praying to personalize the prayer as coming from them going to God.  Variations may appear on holidays when families may wish to use the prayer provided. 


  Unless otherwise indicated, all Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright 1996.  Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Wheaton, Illinois 60189.  All rights reserved.


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