Friday, December 23, 2011
It's almost Christmas Eve. I pray that you will be blessed by the love, peace, hope and joy that the birth of Jesus Christ has to bring. May He be with you now and throughout each new day protecting you, guiding you, inspiring you, comforting you, encouraging you, and loving you.
Wednesday, December 21, 2011
We sometimes feel a great need to handle anything and everything - and handle it well - especially when showing off our holiday cheer! But remember today that the holidays are about praise and worship of our Saviour and not who has the most awesome Christmas party, biggest tree or most expensive gift. Being together, talking, sharing memories, enjoying the company of the ones you love - that is the closeness that the season should bring. It doesn't matter if you have a grand gourmet meal or a couple fast food burgers - just fellowship and remember the Christ in Christmas.
So, for today I will not get carried away. I will cherish the pleasures of love, peace, and hope with my friends and family and my holiday will be a blessed and treasured time.
Tuesday, December 20, 2011
Today, let us focus on the innocent, defenseless, helpless, wonderful little creatures our lives are blessed with - babies. Pray for their health, their survival, their ability to grow and learn, their ability to give love, their blindness to hatred, and the amazing unique characteristics they bring to this world. They renew our hope, they bolster our love and compassion, and they constantly amaze and inspire us.
So, for today I will pray for babies and be thankful for the one baby that changed this world forever.
Monday, December 19, 2011
This is the season of Christ. In addition to giving and receiving gifts, we need to make sure we're giving our heart. Spend some time this holiday serving others. There are so many people who won't have a big Christmas celebration. They won't have gifts under the tree - they might not have a tree. You can impact someone's life during this season of Peace and Joy by getting out there to serve. Volunteer to do something. Pick one thing - helping at a food bank, giving gifts for children in need, singing carols for the elderly in a senior home - just choose and then do it. Give the real gift of the season - LOVE. One person does make a difference - and you can be that one person.
So, for today I will serve with the heart of Jesus. We are celebrating the birth of Jesus, a man, who loved us so much He was born to save us. This Christmas season our love can carry on his message.
Thursday, December 15, 2011
Being polite is good. Being grateful is better! When you say "Thank You" have it come from a place of gratitude. Make sure "thank you" means something when you say it. It's easy for it just to be words - but especially now, make sure it's meaningful. And most importantly, tell Jesus "Thank you" for coming to this world to save you. We are celebrating His birth. A birth that changed the world forever. If that's not worth a heart-filled, overwhelming gratitude "Thank you," I don't know what is.
So, for today I will say, "thank you." I will have an attitude and heart of gratitude and express it to all around me. And for the one who does the most for me, the one who made my existence possible, the one who loved me so much He saved me - I will say, "THANK YOU" and mean it.
Wednesday, December 14, 2011
Beauty comes in all shapes, sizes, and packages. At this time of the year the elaborate decorations catch our eye and dazzle us. Don't get me wrong, I LOVE all the Christmas decorations, but it can make us focus on the wrong kind of beauty. Look today for the beauty within others instead of how they are "wrapped." See the twinkle in their eye, hear the compassion in their voice, notice the tender thoughtful gesture that would otherwise go unrecognized. Notice the humble beauty of the loving hearts that surround your life. Jesus was born into the meekest of circumstances. Many wouldn't have recognized Him as the most beautiful and special child in the world. They would have seen His surroundings, His outer circumstances and subsequently missed the beauty within. Don't judge the book by its cover today, experience the gifts within each chapter.
So, for today I will notice the beauty. I will look past the glitz and glamour of the season and focus on the true beauty God bestows on me. I will look into the hearts, souls and actions of those around me and appreciate how beautiful and special they are.
Tuesday, December 13, 2011
Have we figured out our purpose yet? What is that you are really called to do? What do you want your legacy to be? God may speak to you in many different ways, but rest assured He is speaking to you. So take the time to listen today and find your purpose. Christ lived His life on purpose, with purpose and for a specific purpose. We can find our way as well - Pray and then do your part.
So, for today I will live on purpose. God will guide me to my calling and He will give my life purpose.
Monday, December 12, 2011
Friday, December 9, 2011
There are battles being fought every day. Some are on a battlefield, some are in politics, some are in homes, some are in hearts. For all the battles, wherever they may be, pray for peace. Pray for the end of violence, pain, lies, confusion, distortion, and greed. Pray for physical peace, mental peace, and emotional peace. We need God's grace and touch. We need His healing waters to wash over us.
So, for today I will pray for peace. For peace on earth, goodwill toward men, Amen.
Thursday, December 8, 2011
Sometimes, we use presents as a way of making up for what is lacking in our relationships. Grand gestures at Christmas are nice, but what will bring true joy is the gift of you! What do the people you love really need from you? A new gadget or more of your compassion? A great book or for you to listen to them? A fancy watch or more of your time? Think about the things that you really should give more to others and make that your Christmas present this year. Giving the best of you is the best present you can offer anyone you love. So unwrap your talents, skills, compassion, understanding, humor and tenderness this Christmas and give it away joyfully!
So, for today I will give of my gifts. What I can offer can't be found in stores. I have my own unique, one-of-a-kind gifts that need to be shared with the people I love. This Christmas I will unwrap me!
Wednesday, December 7, 2011
About a year ago, a friend of mine passed away suddenly and unexpectedly. He was 45 years old, in good health, a loving father, good husband, and he loved God. He would often comment on how blessed he was to wake up each morning. He always said, "another day in paradise - thank you Jesus." He loved every day whether it was great, good, fair, boring, tough or just plain old regular. My friend was a wonderful example of contentment and gratitude. Our days are numbered.
So, for today I will be grateful for normal days. I can and will be content in the gift of routine. I can delight in the fact that today held no surprises and that my life went on for 24 more hours. Those hours provide me more time to love and be loved - and that is irreplaceable.
Friday, November 11, 2011
Brave men and women have sacrificed it all in the name of Country. On this day, I will pray for every soldier who has ever served. I will pray for the troops here and abroad that God protects them and keeps them safe. I will pray for the families of those soldiers who try so hard to be brave and carry on while their loved ones are in harms way.
So, for today I will pray for our troops. I will ask God to bless and protect each one of them. I will praise God for the freedoms and liberties I am allowed - including praising Him. I will pray and I will be grateful.
Thursday, November 10, 2011
But do we take it for granted? If we're being honest, the answer is "yes". We know we sin and we know we continue to sin because we say, "God will forgive me." God does forgive, but He also knows the truth of our hearts. He knows if and when we are truly repentant and willing to submit, rather than blowing Him off. I don't think we can stand face to face with Jesus and not feel the weight of our sin. In His awesome presence, I think we will feel it more deeply and sharply than anything imaginable. The realization of how much we have ignored Him, pushed Him to the side, put our selfish interests before Him - it will hit us with a bang. And when we fall to our knees under this weight and confess it to Him with a true heart, we have the honor and privilege of experiencing the glory, majesty and power of His grace to forgive us. Why put that off until judgement day? Don't ignore sin, don't take for granted that you will be forgiven - Take that weight, feel it, confess it and experience the power of His grace that will change your life.
So for today, I will remember the power of His grace. I will stop taking Him for granted and I will open my heart and ego to the truth that I NEED forgiveness now - I need redemption now - I need His grace to change my life now.
Wednesday, November 2, 2011
I have been blessed in so many ways - more ways than I can count. Sometimes, when I'm tired or frustrated or just feeling blah, I forget that. I think we all do. Some days it just slips our minds.
So for today, I will count my blessings, realize how valuable they are, and be thankful.
Monday, October 10, 2011
Whatever it is, for today just do your best. Say a prayer and ask God to help you... be the best parent you can be today, be the best husband/wife you can be today, be the best friend you can be today, be the best boss you can be today, be the best listener you can be today, be the best comforter you can be today, be the most kind you can be today, give the most love you can give today....... Pick one or two areas and strive to be the best. Remind yourself throughout the day of your goal. When you feel yourself "not" doing your best, stop, check yourself and your attitude and begin again.
So, for today I will do my best. God will help keep me focused and He will lead my thoughts and deeds. One day at a time, I can do my best and make God proud.
Tuesday, October 4, 2011
If you have people you love, people you trust, people you can say anything to and know that they will support you, help you, set you right when you're wrong, and will always be there for you - BE THANKFUL!!! Not everyone has such trusted and special relationships. Our relationships in life are precious and unique and need to be cherished.
So for today, I will be thankful for my friends. Thank you Jesus! Thank you for these amazing and uniquely gifted individuals. Through my relationships with each of them, You have given me exactly what I need. Thank you!!
Monday, October 3, 2011
What if we spent our energy "wooing" God. The definition of "woo" is to seek the favor, affection and love. Now we know that God loves us unconditionally, but we take that for granted - don't we? Instead ignoring His unquestioning love, we could show more respect and gratitude daily by "wooing" Him with our thoughts and actions. One sure fire way to "woo" God is to "woo" all those around you. What can you do to "woo" those around you - your spouse, children, parents, friends, neighbors? If we care about the people around us, shouldn't we want to "seek their favor, affection and love?" Stop taking love for granted and start "wooing"!!
So, for today I will "woo" God and all those around me.
Thursday, September 29, 2011
I will stop losing my temper and start exercising patience. I will stop gossiping and start encouraging. I will stop demeaning and start praising. I will stop ignoring and start paying attention. I will stop controlling and start being more flexible. I will stop yelling and start speaking calmly. I will stop being a doormat and start standing up for myself. I will stop my "pity party" and start recognizing my blessings. I will stop procrastinating and start doing. I will stop letting my past hold me back and I will start a new journey. I will stop discounting God's power and affection and I will start acknowledging and thanking Him.
So, for today I will stop. Whatever it is that needs to end will stop today so that I can start a better life.
Tuesday, September 27, 2011
"People are often unreasonable, irrational, and self-centered. Forgive them anyway.
If you are kind, people may accuse you of selfish, ulterior motives. Be kind anyway.
If you are successful, you will win some unfaithful friends and some genuine enemies. Succeed anyway.
If you are honest and sincere people may deceive you. Be honest and sincere anyway.
What you spend years creating, others could destroy overnight. Create anyway.
If you find serenity and happiness, some may be jealous. Be happy anyway.
The good you do today will often be forgotten. Do good anyway.
Give the best you have, and it will never be enough. Give your best anyway.
In the final analysis, it is between you and God. It was never between you and them anyway."
So, for today I will act in faith. I will remember that it's between me and God - period.
Monday, September 26, 2011
If your body of friends and family are faithful, motivated and focused Christians; that will help you stay in motion. You will be a more active participant in your relationship with Christ and in your community of faith. Fellowship with like minded (and hearted) individuals is what God intended in creating the church - the body of Christ. So, is your body in motion? Or are you and the company you keep at rest? Are there influences of what the world thinks instead of what He thinks? Is it about the easy road? Or is there just no motivatation to try harder? It's not about being a "bad" person. We all have differnt levels of effort we exude at different times, the key is to recognize it, own it, not make excuses and do better. Determine if you and your company are truly interested in growing? Status quo and being comfortable that you're "enough of a christian" isn't really the attitude God hopes for. What if he felt it was "good enough" to come to earth, but not to die for our sins... We should all, even if it's in small ways, try to keep changing and growing and following.
So, for today I will check the company I keep and check my own motivations. I will recognize that blessings abound beyond my imagination when I stay in motion and keep moving forward in my faith.
Thursday, September 22, 2011
"But I will hope continually. And will praise You more and more. My mouth shall tell of Your righteousness, of Yours only. O God, You have taught me from my youth; And to this day I declare Your wondrous works. Now also when I am old and grayheaded, O God, do not forsake me, Until I declare Your strength to this generation, Your power to everyone who is to come. Also, Your righteousness, O God, is very high, You who have done great and wonderful things; O god, who is like You? You, who have shown me great and severe troubles, Shall revive me again, And bring me up again from the depths of the earth. You shall increase my greatness, and comfort me on every side."
So, for today I will hope continually. I will recognize His wondrous works and feel His strength and compassion as He revives me day after day. He is my comfort and in that my hope can remain strong.
Monday, September 12, 2011
There are millions of words available to describe every type of situation, circumstance, feeling and hope yet somehow we fall on the same choice few day in and day out. Is it habit? Lack of creativity? No thesaurus around when you need it? Well, for today you will get more control and be more creative in expressing yourself. You will challenge yourself to set a better example and break a rude habit.
So, for today I will not use profanity. I will remember that how I speak reflects who I am and who I want to be. I can challenge myself to grow, gain some self-control and become a more pleasant and respectful person today.
Friday, September 9, 2011
Do you remember where you were when you heard the news? I do. I was at home getting ready for work. With my one year old asleep in the crib and my husband still in bed, I watched as the second plane hit the tower. I thought my eyes had played a trick on me. To my horror it wasn't a computer graphic. It was a real plane hitting a real building and killing real people. I don't remember what I was wearing or if I even got dressed that day. The shock and pain and numbness of that day will forever be with me. There is evil in this world. There is devastating heartbreak. I would never have imagined something like that would happen. Now that it has, I find myself not counting any possibilities out. Every moment is fragile. The next moment could be stolen from you in the blink of an eye. So for today, I will thank God for His protection. Thank Him for watching over my family today. For blessing us the opportunity to make it through the day and give each other one more hug, one more kiss, one more smile.
So for today, I will thank Him for His protection. I will not take today for granted or count on tomorrow. I will live today with more love and more joy and more gratefulness than yesterday. I will live it as if it were my last. And, God willing, if I rise tomorrow I will live that day the same way. God bless America.
Thursday, September 8, 2011
Through the life and death of Jesus Christ we can learn how to love and be loved.
God provides us with unending opportunities for love. The chances are out there every day, so take advantage of them. For today cherish all your loved ones more. Tell them you love them, show them you love them. Give your love away as if this was your last day on earth. Hug them, kiss them, let them know how important they have been in your life and how blessed you are to love them.
For today, cherish loved ones the way that Jesus loves you. We are precious in His eyes and He made the ultimate sacrifice for us out of love. Today we can pass that love to all the people we are blessed with.
Tuesday, September 6, 2011
Worrying doesn't work. Trusting God does. Put your faith into His actions and power! Even if you hate to admit it, you know you're not in charge. You can't control the future. And you're wasting your time worrying about a past that's gone or a future that's not here yet. God knows what you need. He knows what you're going through. And He will work it out. It may not be worked out the way you envisioned it - but that's where your trust must come into play. The best reason not to worry is because God said so. He told us "Do Not Worry." So trust instead.
So, for today I will trust. I will trust that He loves me, is with me, and is actually working things out for me. That's what He promised - so I either believe it or I don't. What do you believe?
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Today, I will actually set aside uninterrupted time to quiet my mind and my soul. I will turn the phone off, turn the TV off, turn the computer off, not read a book, not make a grocery list, and not think about what I need to do once rest time is over. I will find a quiet spot and gaze at the sky. I will sit in my favorite chair and close my eyes. I will breathe, I will clear my mind, I will relax my shoulders and ease the tension, I will quiet my nerves, I will listen to my slow and deep breathing - and I will rest!!
So, for today I will rest. I will let God breathe His peace into my soul. I will slow down and think of nothing. I will allow this time to be God's moment to work within me. He will know what I need and during this silence and peace, He will provide for me. I will rest.
Monday, August 29, 2011
know that this too shall pass. Life seems to be made up of temporary circumstances that change over time. Things don't stand still or stay the same. So we can have hope knowing that this too shall pass.
Sometimes we are overwhelmed, desperate, distraught and hope seems hard to find. We are in the middle of what feels like the worst possible time of our life and we feel lost. We feel like victims, prisoners, caught in a nightmare that will never end. These times are so hard to endure and sometimes even praying is hard to do. But keep in mind one very simple truth - throughout your life things have always continued to change. Life changes. This too shall pass. God hasn't given you more than you can bear or left you alone. And He will not all of a sudden decide to keep you in a perpetual state of unchanging hopelessness. His arms of love will surround you if you let Him. He will take you to the other side. He will protect you through the worst of circumstances. He will bring you into a new day. Hold on to hope. Hold on to your belief in His power. Don't let anyone or anything make you think that life will always be like this. It won't.
Your life is a journey and this pit-stop is not the end of the road. This is not your final destination. So, for today I will know that this too shall pass. I will have 100% confidence that life changes - He will be with me and my life will move beyond this moment. This too shall pass.
Thursday, August 25, 2011
I don't hold myself to that same standard of ideal, but I somehow expect my family and friends to be unblemished. That's not a very fair attitude is it? Knowing my own imperfections and acknowledging that I'm trying and doing the best I can helps me to remember that those around me are probably doing the same thing. We all have limitations and I think it's better to understand those limits and try to work within them and around them instead of holding an unrealistic expected standard. They will make mistakes or fall short of ideal, just like me. So instead of viewing them negatively, I have decided to work harder at accepting those limitations with compassion and understanding and a little grace. I think if I do that we will all be much more content and at peace.
So, for today I will accept the limitations of others. I will see them with eyes of grace just as I hope they will view me. I will pray that we can find ways to encourage and help each other that are constructive and positive. I will try harder and remember that those around me are doing they best they can.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Life speeds by. We are, more often than not, giving our partial attention to every detail of our life because we're so focused on what needs to be done next. Our parents and our grandparents seemed to have worked hard, provided for their families, and kept in touch with friends and loved ones without cell phones or the Internet. Why then can't we recapture a few hours to live life instead of going through the motions. Smell the roses...how about even noticing that you have planted roses!
So, for today I will turn off the cell phone (and computer) and I will pay attention - full attention - to the people around me or have quiet reflection to give peace to my heart, soul and mind. I will feel privileged to have those moments of engagement without distraction and I will know that I am blessed.
Being content is actually easier than we realize if we just focus on the right things instead of the wrong things. Being content doesn't mean you are super happy with every aspect of your life. But it does mean that you feel joy for the blessings great and small. So, for today be content by focusing on three things that you are thrilled that you do not have to be without today. Maybe it will be your spouse, your job, and the fact that you have food on the table. Maybe you will be content because you have shelter, good health, and a kind friend. Maybe you will be content because you are loved, you are valued and you are irreplaceable in God's eyes.
So, for today I will be content. I will focus on the things that God has blessed me with and my heart will find joy in those blessings. For today I will be content and at peace.
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
The partnership, affection, passion, and resolve of a marriage is a blessing and a huge responsibility and a lot of work sometimes. It requires us to put the other person first, pray more for them than we do for ourselves, and to love them with all your heart not as a separate person but as one with you. It requires us to see and believe God working through that person. It requires having more faith in God than you do in that person because your spouse is flawed and will let you down, but God won't. Honor the blessing and pray.
So, for today I will pray for marriages. I will pray that we all begin to see our spouse through God's eyes instead of our own. That we love with God's heart instead of our own. That we are stronger, more passionate, more caring, more loving, more forgiving, more cooperative, more flexible, more understanding, more kind, more respectful, and more Godly than we have ever been before.
Monday, August 22, 2011
But we all fall off schedule, life interrupts our "plans" and we end up eliminating some things and re-prioritizing others. The challenge for today is to try to be more consistent in whatever it is that haunts you. There is something that you have promised over and over to be more consistent about. There is something that is important to you, but hasn't been important enough yet. Consistency provides so many benefits. When we are consistent, there is structure, there is peace, and there is a sense of expectation and fulfillment. Consistency brings comfort, less stress, less guilt, and more contentment. So figure out what it is that's lacking in your life and don't just talk about being more consistent - do it! Consistency isn't easy, but it's worth it.
So for today, I will be consistent. I will not just fill space with hot air and false promises. I will tackle this issue and strengthen my soul and spirit with resolution provided by God's grace and I will do it! I will walk the walk and reap of benefits that consistency brings.
Friday, August 19, 2011
Stop with the excuses to not smile and think about all the reasons to smile! Just do it! There's no rule that says you have to wait for a "reason" to smile. Instead of looking for a reason, why not change your thinking and smile all the time? Lighten your heart, lighten your spirits and lighten your day by getting through it with a smile on your face. Make smiling the norm instead of the exception.
So, for today I will smile. I will wear a goofy grin and be proud. When people say, "what are you smiling about?" I will respond, "everything and nothing." You have a million reasons to smile so stop playing down your blessings. Smiles are infectious, so pass on the virus! For today smile :)
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Today I just want to you move forward. Be brave. You might be anxious, but face the challenges of the unknown with courageous endurance. Summon up the strength through God's grace to endure. Life is one day at a time. I can take on today and make it through. God will walk with me today. I will face with Him whatever comes my way. I won't get ahead of myself and try to face all the "what ifs" of the rest of my life or the rest of the year. I will courageously endure today.
So, for today I will be brave. There are many things that cause me unease, but for today I will be brave and rely on God to strengthen me. I will courageously endure today.
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Chats with God can be some of the best conversations you will ever have. I'm asking you to speak to Him, out loud and as your best friend. For example, "ok God, I cannot believe what happened to me today and I need your help..." Find a place where you feel comfortable to be open with Him and just start talking. We do so much of our connecting with God in silence that you will be amazed how much flows out of you when you actually speak out loud to Him. As you talk, you'll find that you have much more on your mind than you realized, but also that He'll work with you and in you and you'll start talking yourself through. He will provide you with the insight, comfort, hope, security or love that you're seeking.
So, for today I will talk to God. I will use my voice and not my thoughts to communicate with God. I will connect with Him and make it real.
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
We all can be driven crazy by the people we work with and/or live with. Our buttons can be pushed at any moment. But, to have an accepting and open spirit means we go out of our way to show tolerance, compassion, kindness, patience, and grace; we show God's love shining through. Make the extra effort today to take a deep breath, say to yourself - "how would I want to be treated," and then be calm and kind. Improve the mood in you and around you.
So, for today I will be accepting. I will show God's generous patience and love in as many situations as I can.
Monday, August 15, 2011
Dance in the rain with joy in your heart and a spirit of optimism. You at least have to try. We get tired and don't always feel like dancing, but "keep dancing!" You don't have to be in perfect rhythm or even on beat at all, but just keep moving. Instead of saying, "Lord please just get me through this day" - say, "God, I'm still dancing. With your help the storm will not stop me. Please help me keep the beat, glide my steps and keep dancing." Everyday that you dance instead of drudge, God will give you what you need. He will lighten your heart.
So, for today I will dance in the rain. Although the storms hit me, I'll keep rejoicing, stay hopeful, and keep dancing. I will hear the vibrant beat of God's melodies and I will dance in the rain knowing that I am protected, I am loved, I am cherished. And I will know that I have the best dance partner in the world!
Friday, August 12, 2011
We move so quickly through the day. So much to do, so little time. But guess what - tomorrow comes and that's more time to do more things. So for today, breathe!! Slow down, calm yourself, take a deep breath and repeat until you feel your spirit become quiet. You'll think better, make better decisions, and feel more fulfilled if you will just breathe. Life is a marathon. The key to running the race to the finish line - breathing!!! Take those deep breaths, slow your pace. Let the calm in, let the peace in, let the hope in, let the comfort in.
So, for today I will breathe. I will quiet my soul and breathe in the peace that God intends for me. Slow, relaxed, deep breaths will mean I have a better day.
Thursday, August 11, 2011
There's an ever growing trend in our society - that everything is disposable. When the going gets tough, the tough get going...right out the door. When things start to get difficult people are running away and there is a lack of real commitment. Marriages and children are getting tossed aside. My heart aches for the lives torn apart because of the absence of faith, hope, love and commitment. Our society is forgetting the value of hard work, especially when that work needs to happen right in your own home, with your own family. So for today I just wanted to remind us all of the promises we've made. Promises founded in love and hope and faith. We chose our relationships and we made promises to love, honor, and protect. So before we decide that our partnership or parenting is disposable, we need to think again. Look to God for strength, resolve and answers. Society and its' twisted morals don't have the answers, but God does. Trust Him and He will fulfill His promises so that you can fulfill yours.
So, for today I will take the bad with the good. Instead of running away, proclaiming life is unfair, or out of exhaustion just giving up - I will turn it over to God. I will allow His promises to strength my promises to others.
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
To be encouraging means that you actually have to put your opinions aside. It's a simple change of heart, change of mindset and change of wording. Don't tear down, don't critique, don't moralize and offer you expert advise. Use only positive phrases - no negatives today. Simply say, "If this is something you believe in and it's important to you, I will do my best to be there in any way I can to support you." Then mean it and shut up! Don't qualify your support. Don't add conditions to your encouragement. Just be supportive in word and deed today. You can do that for one day can't you? We all face negativity in endless amounts throughout our lives. Why can't we just give each other some slack today and be encouraging. Build up instead of tearing down.
So, for today I will be encouraging. I will offer support and love not opinions and suggestions. I will leave my attitude to the side and I will be gracious, supportive and kind.
Friday, August 5, 2011
God wants us all to have fun. He wants us to have all good things. But He also expects us to be responsible and exercise moderation. If we're honest, we can all have a good time without going too far. If you think that you can't have fun unless your totally obnoxious, loud, drunk and over-the-top, then maybe there's something wrong with your definition of a good time. Maybe it isn't fun that you need. Maybe there's something you are trying to avoid. Or you're trying to fill a void in your life. Instead of getting out of control, try to approach those feelings from a new perspective. Sometimes all it takes is having a real conversation with a trusted friend/loved one/pastor to break through the issues and start the progress. God loves you and can fill any gap, any void, any hurt. If you really want to have fun - turn to God.
So, for today I will exercise moderation. I will not use the excuse of "having fun" to validate my indiscreet and irresponsible behavior. I will be surprised that moderation doesn't ruin my fun, but enhances it. I will be thankful that moderation protects me and others from harm. I will have a good time. I will have fun and I will exercise moderation and give thanks that I live to see another day!
Thursday, August 4, 2011
Let Him sing to your soul:
Ever since the world around you shattered, you've been looking everywhere for something more. Sometimes you feel like your life doesn't matter, but it does. I tell you it does.
Yesterday you found your heart was broken. Tomorrow doesn't leave much room for hope.
Today you'll find that my arms are wide open and my heart is full of love.
Give up on all the other things because my love can bring you more, and if you take a chance on me I'll give you what you're looking for.
Come on, let me love you and hold you through the storms.
I will keep you safe and warm.
Come on, let me love you and kiss away your tears.
I will always be here.
Come on, let me love you.
(by Third Day - "Let me love you")
So, for today I will let God love me. I will let God love me.
Wednesday, August 3, 2011
So what inspires you? Uplifting music, a beautiful sunrise, the smile of your baby's face, that 100 year old tree you pass on the way to work, all of these things. Wherever you draw inspiration from dive in today. Alert your senses and take in all the wonderful, beautiful, amazing sources of inspiration that surround you each and every day. Of all the glories that are in my life, one of the best sources of inspiration I have ever found sits quietly on my nightstand just waiting for my to pick it up - my Bible. With the turn of a few pages, I can always find whatever it is I need in this one wonderful book. Comfort, compassion, encouragement, love, joy - INSPIRATION!! All of my blessings inspire me. Count your blessings and be inspired.
So, for today I will find inspiration. I will see the delights that God has created and find the beauty, hope, and inspiration He intends just for me. And when I'm recognizing all these wonders, I will also realize that the most inspiring part of my life is the love God has for me.
Tuesday, August 2, 2011
Some people get ahead of themselves in worry. Some people are the opposite. They get carried away in perhaps unrealistic fantasies of the perfection that will come tomorrow...they day dream themselves into a perfect little future world where everything goes as they hope for. In either case, we're setting ourselves up for disappointment. We'll be disappointed that we didn't enjoy the moments we were blessed with. We will have spent all our time fretting or day dreaming and not living. The problem with getting ahead of yourself is that your radar is off. Instead of perceiving things as they are from a clear point of view, you're skewed one way or another. When you're skewed - nothing will measure up. It's better just to take it one day at a time. Cherish what's happening today - now. Just take care of today's worry, and if the day is going well, seize the opportunity to smile and have some joy in your day. Life changes, things change. Haven't we noticed that by now? So just chill. Slow down. Take life as it comes and then do your best.
So, for today I will not get ahead of myself. I will take comfort and joy in the blessings of today. Life is a journey not a destination. Enjoy the ride.
Monday, August 1, 2011
You can only protect your children so much, love them so much and try to teach them so much. Your powers as a parent, relative, or friend are limited - but God's power knows NO LIMITS. So put His power to work for the children in your life. Pray for them constantly. Pray without ceasing that God provide, guide, protect, and love them throughout every minute of every day. You can't always be there, but He can. Trust Him and count on Him to do for the children in your life all the things you cannot do.
So, for today I will pray for the children in my life. I will place them in God's hands. I will believe and have faith in His powers of love and protection, inspiration and guidance, forgiveness and salvation. And tomorrow, and every day after that, I will pray for the children again.
Friday, July 29, 2011
God's thoughts and action are so far above our heads that we can't possibly ever "get it all." How can we possible predict, follow or understand His unique and tactical plan for each one of us? We have foundational truths that He has given us, we get signs, and we feel His presence. Usually in hindsight we can see His movement throughout our circumstances and realize that He was there all along guiding and directing our path - but when we're at the beginning or in the middle of a situation we have a hard time "waiting" on Him. Instead of being impatient today, instead of fighting the fact that I don't have all my answers right this moment, I will be still and wait. I will enjoy the blessings I have, be thankful for the strength He lends me to get through the hard times, and I will pray and confidently wait on the Lord to reveal my next step.
So, for today I will be still and wait. I will trust that God knows more than I do and that He's got things under control.
Thursday, July 28, 2011
Here's a few lines from a beautiful song that helps me remember that there is more to me than my past transgressions. It gives me encouragement and hope - for who I'm becoming and who I will ultimately be.
"You are more than the choices that you've made. You are more than the sum of your past mistakes. You are more than the problems you create, You've been remade. This is not about what you've done, but what's been done for you. This is not about where you've been, but where your brokenness brings you to. This is not about what you feel, but what He felt to forgive you and what He felt to make you loved. You've been remade."
So, for today I will remember I am more.
Wednesday, July 27, 2011
Today take notice - I mean really take notice of the dazzling artistic display of life around you. Don't just drudge through the motions and confine yourself to a sensory deprived existence because you're too busy to "see." Wake up, open your eyes, and experience the vibrant colors in your life. Be grateful that you have the physical senses to absorb the array of beauty around you - you can see it, smell it, hear it, touch it. What a blessing that is. We don't experience life in shades of gray, we have a full rainbow surrounding us so enjoy.
So, for today I will see in color. I will allow the glorious elements around me to enter my heart through my senses and I will be thankful that life is not drab and dull and limited only to black and white. I will embrace the colors in my life today!
Tuesday, July 26, 2011
Today is a chance to raise the bar for yourself and those around you. We all have to ability to set a good example. Sometimes we do, sometimes we don't. Let's try to focus on being a positive role model today. Our influence may be greater than we know. Someone out there may be watching (other than God). Someone out there may be changed, guided, or uplifted by our words or deeds today, so let's make sure we show what we believe. Let's walk to the walk and not just talk the talk today. Let's make a positive impact on those around us.
So, for today I will be a positive influence. I will keep in mind that my actions and words have impact on those around me whether I know it or not. God set a wonderful example for me and I will endeavor to set a wonderful example for others today.
Friday, July 22, 2011
The sun came up, we opened our eyes, and we took a deep breath to start the day. That's worth celebrating! So today, just feel good about being alive. That's it - no more, no less. Just celebrate and be thankful that you have the opportunity of today. Your heart is beating and you're still here. You haven't run out of time. You still have another chance. You have one more day where anything is possible so that's a very good day!
So, for today I will celebrate. I will be thankful and exuberant that I have been given one more day. I will thank God for the blessing of today and I will live it today in celebration!
Tuesday, July 19, 2011
Instead of spending the day crazed at the malls shopping and hitting every sale, battling total strangers for stuff I don't even need, filling my hours with "to-do" lists and pressure - I will just relax. Down time is wonderful. Down time is necessary. You need quiet and peace in your life once in a while. You need to recharge. Tune out the noise today.
So, for today I will relax. I will take a deep breath and exhale.....aaahhhhh! I will thank God for the silence and the peace and I will relax today.
Friday, July 15, 2011
So, for today I pray that you will be blessed..
"Don't let your tomorrow be like yesterday.
I spoke to God, I called out your name,
and on your behalf I just asked if He would be there for you.
I want you to be blessed, don't live life in distress.
Just let go, let God, He'll work it out for you.
I pray that your soul will be blessed, forever in His rest,
because you deserve His best, no less.
Be blessed from the bottom of your feet to the crown of your head.
Your life be blessed. Your family be blessed. Your finances be blessed.
Everything about you - be blessed.
Give it to Jesus.
Let go, let God do a work in you and be blessed."
Now pray for blessings on someone else and pass His love along.
Thursday, July 14, 2011
A friend said this once and I thought it was awesome. Stop holding on. Stop torturing yourself. Just do it. Get over it and move on. Unless you want your past to determine your future, get over it. Whatever it is, you have a choice - stay stuck or get on with your life. I look forward to the future. I always marvel at the way life bobs and weaves. Whether it's highs or lows that I hit, God gets me through it. So why is it that even when God has brought us to a new life, a new situation, a new hope - we use all our might and strength to destroy it by holding on to the past. It's like we sabotage all His love and kindness and blessings because we don't let go. Stop doing that. Get over it!
So, for today I will get over it. I'm in control of this decision. No one else has that power over me. I can make a choice and I choose the future instead of the past. Been there, done that, over it, moving on.
Monday, July 11, 2011
I've tried everything I can think of. Does that sound familiar? What that usually means you've tried everything you're willing to do - right? You haven't really done everything possibly imaginable under the sun have you? You've done the two or three things you are comfortable with trying and when they didn't work, you've said, "well I've done all I can." How about asking and trusting God to show you new ways - ways you're not comfortable with - ways you wouldn't have thought of - And when He shows you these new paths - take them!
So, for today I will change my path. I will stop whining, complaining and wishing. Instead I will trust and leap out of my comfort zone to the path that God is showing me. That path will actually accomplish my goal and will actually make me happier - why have I waited so long?
Friday, July 8, 2011
Today is a day where patience will reign. I will breathe, I will slow down, I will accept that some things have their own pace and it doesn't always match mine. I will not explode, I will not get irritated, I will kick back and let the stress go and let the patience flow. I'm not a very lovable person when I'm impatient - in fact, I don't even like myself when I act that way. I think challenging myself to be patient today will be a good thing for me and those around me. How about you?
So, for today I will be patient. No matter what, I will keep my cool and be better off for it.
Thursday, July 7, 2011
Many times you hear a parent saying, "I would die for my kids." The love and protectiveness of a parent can be an awesome force. You'd jump in front of a bullet for them. Would you do the same for a friend? How about someone you don't even like? Would you submit to torture, humiliation, excruciating and prolonged pain for the guy down the street who doesn't even know your name? Would you silently suffer through imprisonment, beatings, whippings and hatred for the sake of a stranger? If push came to shove I think we can all admit that we might lay down our lives for someone we deeply love, but not necessarily for anyone else. That simple fact reinforces the amazement we should have about the depth and power and sacrifice of Christ's love for all of us - whether we love Him back or not.
So for today I will be amazed. Amazed by the overwhelming gracious love that He pours out on anyone and everyone. It's so far beyond my abilities that I can only be awestruck in wonder of His amazing generosity - and be eternally grateful that His love isn't as limited as mine.
Wednesday, July 6, 2011
Jesus suffered for me. Jesus died for me. Jesus rose for me. Jesus saved me.
So, for today I will have peace that my salvation has been accomplished through His actions. Amen.
Tuesday, July 5, 2011
Jesus knows your failings. He knows your hardship. They are not a surprise to Him. But He doesn't want you to lose heart or faith. Let your faith strengthen you to get back up after you've been knocked down. God is working in ways we do not have the ability to understand. You may get knocked down, but He will keep you from being knocked out - so don't give up, get up instead! If things aren't going right in your life - keep trying, make some changes, accept the things you cannot control and control the things you can (your attitude and your actions). God will dust you off, strengthen you, and ready you for the next battle - but He helps those who help themselves, so you have to get back up first.
So, for today I will get back up. I may be weak and unsure, but I will believe that for today God is with me. That He will protect me when I get back up. I will put my faith and trust in Him and not my own motivation or strength. I will get back up and let God do His work in and through me.
Thursday, April 21, 2011
Life is difficult and there are lots of problems all over the world, but even as bad as we think it may be sometimes - it could have been much much worse. Hopelessness, defeat, pain, frustration, darkness, gloom, hatred, vengeance, despair... that's what I think daily life, every day for eternity would be like without the Glory and Love of Jesus Christ. When I think about that, I rejoice and give thanks for every day that I receive that has joy, grace, forgiveness, peace, light, love and hope! I have a better life here and a better life to come because He gave up His life for me. I'm glad I don't have to live in a world where that hadn't happened, but it's a good reminder to imagine that place so I don't take for granted the sacrifice Jesus made for me.
So, for today I will imagine what the world could have been and thank God that it isn't that place. My hope and help come from the Lord - what a wonderful blessing.
Wednesday, April 6, 2011
Monday, April 4, 2011
Thursday, March 31, 2011
Thursday, March 17, 2011
We all have a million reasons for why we haven't gotten around to something important in the development of our character, but the excuses stop today. I will begin reading my bible. I will start going to church on Sunday. I will begin attending a bible study. I will start asking my Christian friends about their faith. I will start volunteering at a soup kitchen or half-way house. I will begin exercising more patience with my children. I will start being kinder to that one person at work who drives me crazy. I will start something today! Whatever it is that I've been thinking about doing, whatever it is that seems like a good idea that I have never gotten around to, whatever I have been putting off and putting off for weeks or even years, today I will just start!!
So, for today I will begin. I will take my first steps at something new, something needed in my life. I will reach beyond my current comfort zone. I will stop making excuses and I will begin.
Wednesday, March 16, 2011
When the first impact of the pain of your broken heart hits, it's devastating. You feel crushed under the weight of it. Many people say that in time you'll forget. Some say you'll never be the same again. Cliches don't help, choices do. You have a choice. If you want to let your misery consume your life and destroy everything good you felt about yourself, others or even God - then that's your choice. You can block out the world and breath in the pain, pity or anger day in and day out. But that's not a very good choice. Living that way is like living with a thief that will rob you, use you, and deny you all of the beauty, love, friendship, comfort and security that God has planned for you. You don't have to forget what has happened and sweep it under the rug - that's not realistic. You aren't the same as you were before, but instead of letting the pain change everything about you, let it become a part of who you are and not all of who you are. You are so much more than the pain. Don't let it control you and ruin your life. You had good moments before the pain and good moments are yours for the taking if you just believe.
So, for today I will let my broken heart heal. I will think of my life as a recipe. Like all good recipes, there will be a lot of different ingredients. My hope, my laughter, my pain, my love, my dreams, my mistakes, my victories....they are all different ingredients in the great recipe of my life. What recipe do you know of that only has one ingredient?? None. Your life is not just heart break with nothing else added. So for today let your broken heart heal and start to mix together all the ingredients of your life to lead you back to the path God intends for you - beauty, love, comfort, peace, hope.
Monday, March 14, 2011
Have you ever noticed how a great song can transform your mood and your day. When I'm feeling low, the best pick me up is to listen to some great music and really throw myself into the emotion and feeling of the lyrics being sung. So start your day off with a favorite and don't just listen, sing out loud. Don't be embarrassed or too cool - have fun!
So for today, I will sing because it will remind me that there are good times in life. I will sing because most of the time I take myself and life too seriously. I will sing because it's good to be silly and "uncontrolled" sometimes to relieve tension and frustration. I will sing because today I want a light heart. I will sing because God loves a joyful noise.
Friday, March 11, 2011
I like this saying and I think it sums it all up.
So, for today I will believe with all my heart and have hope knowing that God is GOD and that He has His hand in ALL THINGS.
Thursday, March 3, 2011
So what do you do? Go through life not caring about the consequences to your actions? Let's see how fulfilling and wonderful your life would be...I don't like responsibility so I can cheat on my spouse (I didn't really mean those vows - oh yeah maybe my spouse didn't mean it either); when I cheat I don't have to tell my spouse because spreading disease doesn't matter unless I actually care about that person (but what if they've given a disease to me and not told me); I won't give my children any discipline or structure because teaching them is a hassle and I'd rather be cool than enforce rules (and why would I want my kids to think I love them and want to protect them); I will drink way too much and then drive my car (because killing someone else isn't any big deal); I don't have to show up to work because I don't care if anyone is relying on me (and there's just so many other opportunities in this economy right?); I can lie to my friends and family about anything because I'd rather manipulate to get my way all the time (you know honesty is part of that whole crazy responsibility notion) - how is this list looking to you so far? Is this is the kind of imprint you want to make on your family during your time on this earth? Or would you rather have a blessed life that is actually more simple and fulfilling - be responsible.
So, for today I will be responsible. I will consider the ramifications of my actions, I will think about the consequences to others, I will strive to make good sound solid decisions, I will pray for guidance and I will be proud of wanting to be responsible.
Monday, February 28, 2011
Do you sometimes feel like you're an amazing (but failing) acrobat or juggler? You're trying to maneuver your life into so many directions or keep a ton of things up in the air (praying that you don't drop any of them)? I feel that way sometimes. That's when I know that I've taken on too much and I've deluded myself into thinking I'm in charge of everything. I've forgotten to stay focused on God and allow His power and grace to steer my life. If you're juggling and hustling today - stop. Remember the power that's with you, God, and let Him take over. No one is more capable or caring. If you remember Him, He will be there for you.
So, for today I will not forget God. He will keep me balanced and intervene where needed so my life doesn't come crashing down around me. I can't juggle all these things alone. I need His hands to take control.
Thursday, February 24, 2011
It's very important to think about and care for others. We were put on this earth for the purpose of serving others just as Jesus served us. We need to have open hearts and generous spirits to do this well. And many people day in and day out make the time and effort to do for others. It's those people who also often go overboard and forget to take care of themselves as well. We need energy and enthusiasm to do good works and it's o.k. once in a while to just stop and do something special for yourself. Maybe it's having a long hot bubble bath, maybe a massage, maybe a round of golf, maybe sitting outside with a glass of wine watching the sunset, having your favorite take out - there's something that you regard as a luxury in your life. It doesn't have to be a luxury that costs anything, it can be the luxury to splurge on yourself in terms of time and activity. So, if you consistently and conscientiously do for others and strive to grow and glow in your walk of faith, take some time today to rejuvenate.
So, for today I will do something special that's just for me. I will focus a little bit of attention on myself today and re-energize and thank God for blessing me.
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
To free myself of something in the past that I haven't forgotten, I will apologize. I will do my best to be a better person and claim my wrongs. It may not make the situation all better - it may do nothing at all - it may be long forgotten by the other person - but to free myself and do the right thing, I will take this step. Life is too short to be imprisoned by the past. Don't stay captured by actions that were made in frustration, stupidity, desperation, anger or foolishness. Take responsibility, say, "I'm sorry" and let it go.
So, for today I will apologize and then forgive myself because God forgives. If my heart and mind and soul are in the right place and I mean what I say, God will know that too.
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
Out of the blue I will send a note, a text, an email, a voice message, or a card to someone I care about. I will make only one simple line and send it right away. I will simply say, "I was thinking of you so I wanted to say "hello" and "I love you." And I will not ask them to pass it on to 500 friends in order to receive good luck! I will not expect anything in return. If my note goes unacknowledged, that's o.k. I am not doing this for me, I am doing it for that person. My desire will only be to remind that person that they are special enough to be remembered. You never know if someone else is feeling low or forgotten, hurt or distressed, overwhelmed or under appreciated. Your "hello" may be all they need to make it through the day. Your "hello" may be an answer to their prayer.
So, for today I will say "hello" to bless someone with love the way God blesses me with unexpected, undeserved, unending love.
Monday, February 21, 2011
The strongest hope and joy that I have for myself and all the people I love and pray for in this world is knowing that it's never too late to give your heart to God. Over and over and over I hear people saying, "that person will never change." Or, "it doesn't matter what I say or do, he/she doesn't listen and they'll never understand." Well, that sense of hopelessness is because as humans, we are limited. We have weaknesses, distractions, and we give up.....God doesn't. God has unlimited powers, but we forget that when we see someone faltering or so far removed from Him that we're distraught over their salvation (or lack of it). But again, that's because our eyes, our hearts, our minds and our efforts have limits. But God's don't!! It's never too late for God to touch that persons heart. He will find a way to speak to them so that they hear. So never give up on Him or them (or on yourself - He may use you as an instrument).
So, for today I will know that it's never too late. Never too late for God to touch and change someone - including me! I will pray for an open heart, open mind and willingness to accept an amazing love that will change everything. And then I will be patient as God does His work.
Friday, February 18, 2011
We all have something big we are facing. For each of us it may be a different issue, but a decision is needed. Your decision may alter your day or alter your life, so instead of wanting instant gratification and resolution, for today we should all reflect thoughtfully on what we are facing. Actually weigh the pros and cons. Calmly, patiently and morally examine your choices and decision possibilities and then determine your course. Put the anxiety of rushing to the side, don't make your choices in the heat of anger or despair - take your time, be thoughtful, prayerful - the world will actually wait. We are all capable of making horrible decisions when emotion, drama or desperation raise their ugly heads.
So, for today I will reflect and then decide - and my choice will be the better because of this.
Thursday, February 17, 2011
Listen, absorb, and empathize but don't offer opinions, advise or revelations about what you would have done. In a world full of back-seat drivers and endless points of view, we have forgotten how to just listen and be supportive. We are so ready to offer our advise and what we think is the correct way to handle something. I think we can all admit to doing this. But when we do it, we forget that we're not the one walking in those shoes, we're not made up of the same strengths/weaknesses/characteristics of that other person - so why do we always think that handling it the way "I would" will even work for that person.
So, for today I will just listen. The next time someone needs my ear, I will give them that and nothing else. I will keep my lips zipped and actually absorb what they are saying and more importantly what they are feeling - and I will give support without opinion.
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
Knowing how difficult it can be to ask for help, how about graciously agreeing to help and pitch in without making it conditional. Become a servant to that friend and just help - no ifs, ands or buts. I guess a pet-peeve of mine is when someone claims that they "are there for you," but only if it doesn't interfere with their desired scheduling. You ask for help because you're in a bind and they say o.k. - and then ask for you five favors in return. Or they say they will help, but only if it can be at this time, in this location, and not last any longer than this amount. Even worse, they make sure to convey what an imposition this will be and how it just ruins their plans for the day but since they want to be the good friend they will sacrifice. That's not helping - it's self-centered and it makes the situation more difficult and stressful for the person in need. If you can't help whole heartedly without reservation and condition, just say no. Don't impose your conditions on the situation and make it about you. Helping is supposed to be about the other person - not you. So put their needs before your own and actually help.
So, for today I will help without conditions. I really put aside my own needs for my friend and with a full heart and a spirit of true giving I will pitch in without setting rules.
Tuesday, February 8, 2011
You can praise and worship God in every little thing you do. You just have to approach what you're doing from the mind and heart of doing it for Jesus. Actually say to yourself as you start cleaning the house, "God I'm doing this for you. As a thank you for blessing me with a house, instead of getting upset that I have to clean, I will be thankful and grateful that I have a place to keep clean." You can apply this to anything. I found it most effective to apply it to the things I really dislike. Instead of being resentful of them, now I'm mindful of wanting to thank God and praise Him during my daily routine. I actually get through the task in a much better mood, I do a better job, and I'm praising God all at the same time. It's a definite win-win situation. It's not an easy thing to remember every day, but start today by picking one thing. Then keep practicing it whenever you can.
So, for today I will praise God during a chore. I will put my heart and mind in the right place before I even start. This chore is not a burden but an opportunity. I will be glad that I have the ability to perform the task and will thank God for the blessings that are in/surrounded by it.
Monday, February 7, 2011
The hand shake, the fist bump and high-five are all fine, but nothing replaces the genuine affection of a good tight hug. So, stopping slapping hands and start hugging! Stop being too cool or too refined or too professional to hold back. Hug, hug, hug. Show someone genuine caring or concern today. A hug can convey tons of different emotions, so reveal your emotions today instead of repressing them into the condensed version of a hand shake or high-five. Wrap your arms around someone - let them feel your love, protection, safety, confidence, understanding, thoughtfulness or celebration.
So, for today I will hug more people. I will share my emotions with a big, real, strong hug! I will be the arms of Christ and I will wrap that person in affection and comfort. And when I hug that person I will pray that they feel God hugging them too.
Thursday, February 3, 2011
The devil knows I'm getting stronger, growing closer to God and changing my attitude. The devil is great at disguises too - he comes as negative glum feelings during the day, the quick temper, the nagging voice in your head saying you're not good enough, the lack of hope that things can and will get better. The doubts and fears he creates hurt us and try to break our spirit. But today, with God's grace I will win. Gos is the ultimate source of hope. Look around at everything He has blessed me with!! I will place my trust in God, I will call on the name of Jesus for strength, courage, protection, faith, persistence, and weapons! I am not in this battle alone. I will call on the Lord to fight it with me, to fight it for me. The devil may be tricky, but God cannot be fooled. I will rely on God's wisdom and His voice to rebuke the devil today.
So, for today I will focus my energy on the strength, power, grace and love of Jesus Christ and I will fight back - and win!
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
This is the simplest of songs, but holds so much truth and meaning. In a world of tearing down, finding fault and assigning blame; these few lines put the values we should hold dear into perspective...
We are one in the Spirit, we are one in the Lord,
and we pray that our unity will one day be restored,
and they'll know we are Christians by our love.
We will work with each other, we will work side by side,
and we'll guard each man's dignity and save each man's pride,
and they'll know we are Christians by our love, by our love.
Yes, they'll know we are Christians by our love.
So, for today I will let them know I'm a Christian by my love.
Monday, January 31, 2011
Put feet to your faith. God is not your maid or your slave. He doesn't just make everything happen for you exactly the way you ask, exactly when you ask it. You can't just sit there, pray, and then do nothing. If you are praying for His will and you trust Him to guide your life, then move your feet in the direction He is taking you. Stop going off the path and trying to force a journey down a path you "thought" was meant for you or just sitting around waiting for a miracle to change your life. It might be time to let go of what you "thought would be" and trust His direction down a new road.
So, for today I will move my feet. Instead of sitting and waiting, instead of forcing a walk down the wrong road - I will move my feet down the path God is shaping for me. I will trust His path and His direction and I will WALK in faith not just pray in faith.
Friday, January 28, 2011
I will confess that I am broken. As great as I think I am - there are parts of my life that I am not living in the way God intends me to - and I'm not living them that way because I don't want to follow the rules. I'm stubborn. I'm selfish. I'm trying to pick and choose the "important" parts of the bible and I'm disregarding other parts as "not a big deal." Why? Because I don't really want to change. I want what I want, not what He wants for me. But I need to own my short-comings and honestly seek God's help to change them. So, I will rightfully and humbly confess where I'm in the wrong and seek God's clarity and wisdom and strength. I can't deny who I really am today.
So, for today I will not be in denial. I will expose myself to the Lord for who I really am and I will pray and actually try to follow His word better. I know my life will be more fulfilled than I've ever imagined - if only I would follow Him wholly and not in pieces.
Thursday, January 27, 2011
We usually focus a lot on praying for the people we know. We ask God to help, protect, and comfort them and we delight in how He works in their lives. But do we stop to recognize that many of the blessings we ourselves have received come from the prayers of others. God listens to their prayers and blesses us. So the next time you make it through a difficult struggle or when things are going really well in your life, be thankful that others have been praying for you. They love you enough to go straight to the most powerful source and request blessings on your behalf - what a wonderful gift.
So, for today I will be glad that others pray for me. I will rejoice in the fact that God listens to those prayers and blesses me because others love me enough to speak to Him.
Wednesday, January 26, 2011
You feel like you have a gap in your life. You might be struggling with being alone, or being confident, or feeling important. We all go through it and we all "try" to fix it. We fill our lives with all kinds of things or people that we think will give us what we're missing. If I'm thinner my life will be better. If I'm richer my life will be better. If I'm in a relationship my life will be better. But the truth is - skinny people and rich people have problems. And don't get me started on all the problems relationships can have - especially ones not founded on the right things. The answer isn't in a bottle or in a person, it is in trusting God and believing that His plans for you are meaningful and significant. He has a unique and specific purpose for your life and just maybe you're not seeing what it is because you're trying to fix what you think He missed.
So, for today I will realize that God is the answer. Instead of thinking He made a mistake or that He forgot a few things that would make my life "better," I will actually trust His judgement and know that His plans for me are important because I'm important. I won't try to "fix" His plans today. I will trust and believe in Him instead.
Tuesday, January 25, 2011
Failures don't have to define you and they don't have to mean that you're stuck in that one spot.
It's how you handle the failure that will determine the course of your journey. My husband always tells our daughters, "practice makes perfect." (Then, we, of course, also explain that no one is perfect.) But the point is that we want to teach them to go for it, do your best, and don't be discouraged if you have to keep trying - because you will fail sometimes. Resilience is one of my favorite characteristics. People who pick themselves up no matter what they have been through amaze and encourage me. When you see someone fail, but then immediately get up, move on and actually have hope and determination to move forward - they really understand, accept and acknowledge the value of failures. They don't wallow. They try to learn. And, they don't let failure define who they are. They know failure is an integral part of life and they make the best of it.
So, for today I will know that failures come. I will not try to hide from failing. I will not stay down when I fail. I will accept that failure can teach me, help me grow, and help shape my life for the better.
Wednesday, January 19, 2011
A 36 year old man lost control of his car in my neighborhood and hit a tree. He died at the scene. A 67-year old woman was hit by a car that ran a red light and she died. Life ceases in the blink of an eye. We don't know when and we don't know how it will come, but it will come. I'm thankful that I opened my eyes this morning.
So, for today I will be grateful I'm here. I can still give and receive love for a few more precious moments. The day doesn't have to be perfect or even particularly eventful; I'm here and I'm grateful.
Tuesday, January 18, 2011
You have a life beyond your work. You have people who love you, care about you, want to spend time with you and laugh with you. But they don't want to deliver the punch line while you're texting to your company. They want to share a meal with you without your cell phone ringing with a question from a co-worker. Life is going to move on whether you're "present" or not. Just for today, don't let it pass you by while you're on your blackberry/iphone. It will be a hard day for some of you, but I promise - those emails, texts, and voice messages will all still be there tomorrow. And guess what, the world will not explode because you chose life over work for a few precious hours.
So, for today I will leave work at work. I will take advantage of the gift of time in the evening to cherish my family and friends, to share stories and laugh, to reconnect with someone special, or to just take the quiet time and be at peace. I will not obsess tonight. I will enjoy "life" and live!
Friday, January 14, 2011
For today I will make a list and not be surprised to find that it's impossible to only list 10 items. Over a lifetime it's amazing how many treasured moments we experience that most don't count as important blessings - a friend coming over to hang out when you needed it, a walk at the beach, a giggle from a small child when you make a silly face, a hug from your parents that made you feel safe and loved, watching your child hit the ball during the game (even though it was a foul ball and they ended up striking out). The list for each of us is varied and deep. Reflecting on these moments has real value in determining how you will feel today.
So, for today I will make a list and thank God for every single item on it. And, if I run out of paper, I will thank God again for his abundance of grace and that I have a memory that can record more than my paper will allow.
Thursday, January 13, 2011
We only receive glimpses and a few highlights from the Bible regarding Heaven. It is so indescribable and overwhelming beautiful that it is hard for us as humans to comprehend all its splendor, but we can imagine. Think about it what your first reaction will be when you are face to face with your Lord and Savior Jesus Christ... will you dance before the Lord, be in awe and be still, will you stand in His presence or fall to your knees, will you sing Hallelujah or be unable to speak, will you smile or will you weep tears of joy.... I don't know what I will do, but I like to imagine what it will be like to feel that much love, understanding, comfort, peace and joy!!
So, for today I will imagine. I will play out different scenarios in my head and heart and think about the awesome power and presence of Jesus that I will one day experience face to face. And while I imagine my face to face encounter and I will thank God that He blesses me and is there for me even when I'm not face to face with Him.
Monday, January 10, 2011
Many people tend to prayer for themselves, their family and their friends on a regular basis. If you know people who are definitely in pain, keep praying for them. Your prayers are being heard! But what about the people around us who seem to be doing alright? On the surface they smile, they are uplifting, and most of the time they are the ones to pray for or encourage us. They are the "rock" we lean on and we depend on their strength to make us stronger. Do we ever pray for their comfort and peace? Maybe, maybe not. Strong, faithful, devoted people also experience pain, confusion and doubts. For today, find the few people in your life who seem to have it all together and prayer for the relief of their pain even if you don't know what it is. Thank God for their friendship and guidance in your life. Ask Him to continue to use that person to share His love and to ensure that their hearts are filled with the love and joy you feel for them.
So, for today I will pray for those in pain. I will extend my scope of prayer to go beyond what I know or assume. I will pray for the hidden pain in the lives of the people around me. I will pray that God eases their minds and spirits and keeps them encouraged in His love and in His message. And I will remember again tomorrow that strong people need prayer too.
Monday, January 3, 2011
I will look at all the things I have survived. I will look at all the progress I have made since way back then. I will look at how I have grown in my walk of faith and that I am still growing. I will be proud of all the baby steps and big steps along the way. I will feel strengthened and renewed when I realize I HAVE CHANGED, I HAVE GROWN. And I will say to myself, "Look how far I've come!"
So, for today I will look how far I've come and feel good. I will remember that with God's grace I have made it this far. I will thank Him for being by my side when I needed Him and for carrying me when I wasn't strong enough on my own. I will acknowledge His power and be grateful for how far I've come. And I will excite in the fact that He's not done with me yet!!