Recently I read an article about a teacher who every Friday asks her 11 year-old students to list four classmates they would like to have at their table. Also, list a student who had been outstanding that week. She could study these lists and see who was never mentioned or seldom mentioned and spend time in working with those students. She could figure out who may be bullying or being bullied and work and pray about the situation. She did that without having the students tell on each other.
Nehemiah 8:10 states “Nehemiah said, ‘Go and enjoy choice food and sweet drinks, and send some to those who have nothing prepared. This day is sacred to our Lord. Do not grieve, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.'” God always dots every “I” and crosses every “t” and leaves nothing to chance. We just need to be alert and listen.
As I sit at my desk early this morning, where I can normally see out all my windows for a distance, due to the heavy fog, the view is limited. Now I don’t sit and worry, fret and wring my hands for I know that this will lift and clear up. Would love to have the same kind of thinking with so-called challenges. Instead of fretting, just knowing in my heart that all is well and God is still in control and always will be!
It is for me seeing through the mist or even rising higher in consciousness and seeing the big picture. The faith I have here is exactly what I experience before going to sleep at night. The new day will soon be dawning. Mark 10:27 states “Jesus looked at them and said, With man it is impossible, but not with God. For all things are possible with God.'”
This morning as I was praying and studying, the telephone rang and it was a robotic call so I hung up. Next, I thought of the junk mail we get and have to toss. Then I thought of unwanted thoughts suggesting a lack of good somewhere in my life. They are all the same. I don’t have to listen to a call or order something I don’t want or need so I don’t need to “buy into” a false belief that doesn’t come from God!
We had recently made a road trip and driven several hours in the car for the last two days and when I got out of bed this morning, I felt stiff and achy. As I studied and prayed this morning, I thought this stiffness was due to riding in the car for hours. Not true, I don’t have to take this as a reality anymore than I have to sell our house just because we get realty ads in the mail!
Philippians 4:6-7 states “Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”
Last night we went to a wonderful restaurant for New Year’s Eve and when we arrived and told them we had made reservations, they replied they didn’t ever reserve tables. I had made a point of calling several weeks earlier since they have a special menu for New Year’s Eve but the lady assured us we didn’t have one. My husband wanted to walk out and I was a little perturbed but turned inwardly to God to replace irritation for love for this young lady trying to do her job in a very busy, chaotic situation.
We were soon seated, had a wonderful meal and met a couple from our town. We were at the next town over. Then we came home and watched our college team win a bowl game in which they played better than they had all year! It turned out to be a marvelous evening but I was well aware that had I not gotten dominion at the restaurant, it could have turned out much differently.
Isaiah 43:18-19 states “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the desert and streams in the wasteland.” In the past, I would have demanded to see the manager and insisted on being seated right away! By releasing that trait that was never a part of my true identity as a child of God, my evening was perfect!
As I worked at my desk early morning and glanced out at my hanging basket of pansies, I saw they had frozen during the night and appeared dead. At first I was saddened and felt a little irritated that I hadn’t brought the basket in. Then it dawned on me that the roots of those flowers knew nothing of freezing temperature and they were made to glorify God in their beauty. Two hours later I glanced at them and they were just as full and colorful and healthy-looking! What cannot God do?
John 14:26-27 states “But the Counselor, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.”
This had been an answer to my prayer asking for inspiration to pray about a challenge! Only Good is going on!
This morning I was having a conversation with a friend who had called me. She revealed to me that she was so afraid of eating sweets due to a disease she claimed was in her family. The first thing I told her was she could only inherit love and loving qualities. Then we talked about the verse in the Bible that said not to worry about anything that goes into the body but things that come out like the words from our mouth. We then decided that the concern should be more that her words might be sweeter. There was an “aha” moment for both of us. There is always spiritual growth that is needed evidenced by the words that come out.
Colossians 3:15 states “Let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, since as members of one body you were called to peace. And be thankful.”
As I think of the birth of the Christ, I think of the birth of a new idea and decided I would work more at having responses rather than reactions. That would certainly be a new idea as sometimes there is an old reaction to certain things that should be changed. Today, I will pay special attention to the words coming out of my mouth and make sure my heart is filled with humility, love and gratitude.