Posted in New every morning, Words For The Year

Think on these things

Philippians 4:8 (Amplified)-

For the rest, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things – [fix your minds on them].

Put another way, here it is as Eugene Peterson puts it in The Message:

 Summing it all up, friends, I’d say you’ll do best by filling your minds and meditating on things true, noble, reputable, authentic, compelling, gracious—the best, not the worst; the beautiful, not the ugly; things to praise, not things to curse. Put into practice what you learned from me, what you heard and saw and realized. Do that, and God, who makes everything work together, will work you into his most excellent harmonies.

So what works for you?  What do you mediate upon?  We are fortunate to have wide pastures and fields and coastal foothills and the Monterey Bay not far away so it is very easy to consider the beauty God has blessed us with.

2014-04-28 19.17.45

We had very little to do with living here.  In fact, after twenty-five years in the same community, unless I give credit to God, I cannot offer a reasonable way I came to live in our little town.  I currently live within two and a half hours of where I was born, less than an hour to where we were married and lived eleven of our married years together and about eight hours where my wife and I met each other in high school.  

God’s majesty has naturally been a part of all we enjoy.  It is far more rewarding to me to observe than man-made stuff that has a very short lifespan (take a look at any western barn – 100 years is an amazingly long lifespan)  

Again, I recommend viewing your life through the lens of The Gospel – this time look at Matthew 6 in The Message:

25-26 If you decide for God, living a life of God-worship, it follows that you don’t fuss about what’s on the table at mealtimes or whether the clothes in your closet are in fashion. There is far more to your life than the food you put in your stomach, more to your outer appearance than the clothes you hang on your body. Look at the birds, free and unfettered, not tied down to a job description, careless in the care of God. And you count far more to him than birds.

27-29 “Has anyone by fussing in front of the mirror ever gotten taller by so much as an inch? All this time and money wasted on fashion—do you think it makes that much difference? Instead of looking at the fashions, walk out into the fields and look at the wildflowers. They never primp or shop, but have you ever seen color and design quite like it? The ten best-dressed men and women in the country look shabby alongside them.

30-33 “If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.

34 Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.

Doesn’t it seem like God has already worked through all the emotions we might feel no matter the circumstances and He provides a view that brings peace and rest and beauty to our lives?  I think the admonition to think on these things is vital.  It is far easier on ourselves, spirit, soul and body when we do.  It is also much easier on those around us.  So enjoy all that has been provided for you and REST.  By the way, tomorrow is Sunday.  Whether you celebrate Saturday as the Sabbath or Sunday as the First Day of the week, listen to God and relax. Be BLESSED!

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A Smile in the Daily

A Smile in the Daily

I admit I love Facebook…it is a source of cheer and joy and insight to me in my daily journey.

A long time ago, as a little boy, I like so many chose what I thought I would like from a very limited catalog of personal experience. Then the Sear’s Christmas Catalog came once a year to my home and I would explore so many options I had not yet seen. New toys, new ways to play.  Yes, it was consumerism, but I also discovered that I lived in a small part of a very large world. Over the years, I learned to broaden my tastes and likes and exploration became a core of my life. I am still in the life-long learning phase of my life six decades later.  I remember thinking that was just a part of the school system of my childhood and would pass.  It did not. Curiosity became a deep wish to fulfill. What next could I learn?

Food helped me apply this quite practically. Once I disliked white rice and most anything that went with it. Then I was given a trip to the Far East courtesy of the US Navy.  I learned to love food from its sources. What a delight!

More importantly, I learned that diversity of flavor enriches my life – I found people of many nations bring so much to the richness of my life that I walk around with a big smile most of the time. I do not know your life nor have I the time to deeply investigate what makes you unique…I wish I did…maybe, that is what eternity is all about. But when you share a little of who you are, I become richer. Thank you for making me a wealthy man.

There is a video linked in the title above. Go there..

it shows how the unexpected can bring joys unimaginable in the daily of our lives. Look for these joys; they are all around.

HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Posted in Consider this, doing the next thing God asks, New every morning

Happy New Year!

New Beginnings

01/01/2014

Matthew 6:33 Amplified Bible (AMP) –

But seek (aim at and strive after) first of all His kingdom and His righteousness (His way of doing and being right), and then all these things taken together will be given you besides.

Pasted from <http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Matthew%206:33&version=AMP>

God is speaking to us in so many ways, but on this first day  of a New Year, I just want to sense that He is first. Above everything else.   If I observe, I will see Him, I will hear Him, I will follow Him. I think He wants us to recognize Him first so that everything else falls into proper order. He is God of order and purpose. Genesis 2 tells us that we are given the task of subduing the earth and everything in it. He also tells us that He has a great purpose for each of us. That is enough to set our course, to give us correct motivation.

Jeremiah 29:11 Amplified Bible (AMP) –

For I know the thoughts and plans that I have for you, says the Lord, thoughts and plans for welfare and peace and not for evil, to give you hope in your final outcome.

Pasted from <http://www.biblegateway.com/passage/?search=Jeremiah%2029:11&version=AMP>

Bible Reading today: Genesis 1, 2. Luke 1. The beginning of all human conversation with God. Luke 1 tells us the supernatural story of the prophet John The Baptist and Jesus our Messiah.

 

Posted in Consider this

Have you thought of all the flag has flown over?

A declaration 235 years ago…

We are a free nation because of the sacrifice of many.  Thank you to every person known and unknown that gave their lives, their families, their possessions second place so we could live free.  Don’t take freedom for granted today.  It is a gift of unimaginable expense…

and we live FREE!

GOD bless America!

it flies free over each of us...
Posted in Consider this, doing the next thing God asks

The Last Operative by Jerry B Jenkins

I received this book on Friday July 30 and finished it in just over 24 hours. I think there are two reasons for this.

ONE, it has been a while since I have read a Christian Fiction book and just wanted to go into the atmosphere one creates in my imagination.

TWO, I really like Jerry B Jenkins feeling his style of writing reflects some of the best in the genre. I think the greatest feature Jerry brings to the craft of story-telling is the gift of telling a story of a worldly event without reducing his reader to the crassness of speech, actions and values of a world that cares not one bit about Jesus Christ.

To see a talented character also possessing Christian morals and even battles is encouraging and edifying for my imagination. I know I won’t be visualizing things that add little benefit to my thought life in the next few days as a result of the exposure to a world of espionage and intrigue that I know nothing about.

However, I did have one interesting thought:
What if each of us truly ARE operatives in roles we are committed to but have little understanding of their greater implications? Secret agents working for the GOD of the universe on missions we hardly understand making waves of influence we see dimly. Take it one step further, what if each of us are uniquely qualified to do the task of living our lives as we have been given and there are no other replacements? We might be even more serious about the passion we bring to it and the singleness of purpose that will keep us on task until the last day.

So, get the book. Enjoy the read, the locations and especially the characters. Share it with others.

Then live your life as a secret agent for Jesus Christ. You ARE the only one on your mission.

Posted in Bearing Their Burdens

Look out world — Here comes Bearing Their Burdens

He is the same, yesterday, today and forever...

May 5, 2010

Today, Steve Chase and Emery Smith had an ‘aha’ moment.

GOD is in control and is inviting us on a day-by-day journey into the miraculous.  We met for coffee at our favorite place of inspiration, Mars Hill in downtown Hollister, CA.  As I walked the five blocks, I felt mostly empty.  Nothing substantial was in my soul to share with Steve.  I felt it likely that as always we would have great fellowship, but likely there would be little take-away.

I wanted more.  I asked.  He gave.

A dear friend dropped by and shared an update of her always-giving life with us and immediately I knew she was to meet a fellow friend of mine with a complimentary vision of what GOD wanted them both to be a part of; doing almost exactly the same thing and not knowing the other.  We then talked further and realized that her contacts were substantial in an business community where we felt we needed contacts.

I finally got it! GOD was ‘networking’ us right before our eyes.

Then another friend, a part of the behind-the-scenes force that made the coffee shop the restful place it is, came up and in our conversation,  Steve and I realized that GOD so wanted us to follow Him but He was not going to drop ‘an envelope with the day’s agenda’ in our lap.  We would daily have to seek Him and throughout the day for the next step, the next contact, the next idea.

CONNECTEDNESS. Fellowship. Trust. Waiting upon Him.

All I know is today I have to start talking about Bearing Their Burdens as a reality whose time has come…no more distractions, delays or darts from the enemy.  This is a GOD-thing in a GOD-moment and we are gonna cross the river to claim our rightful possession for His Kingdom to come.

The first step is to share the Facebook page with friends.  The next step is to begin the regular blog posts; what you are reading is the first of many to come.

My heart is incredibly full that GOD would choose to use two guys with a visible lack of earthly qualifications but hearts that yearn to see His Kingdom grow.

Thank you Jesus. Stay tuned—More to follow.