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Archive for March, 2012

Great is Thy Faithfulness

Great is Thy Faithfulness (Photo credit: listentothemountains)

3 for I have always been mindful of your unfailing love    and have lived in reliance on your faithfulness. Psalm 26:3

(NIV)

I had been feeling, in the words of my husband “some kind of way”.  Not good, not bad, not happy not sad, just a little off my normal chart.  Prepaing to write I turned on Pandora and selected my David Neveu  station.  Great is Thy Faithfulness from his Adoration CD began playing and as the song and meditations of the events of this week washed over me it was not long before I was sitting with tears streaming down my face.  With each tinkling note of the piano keys, slowly and melodically the cares, concerns and worries of the week were covered again by the love of God.  God’s faithfulness in the face of my questioning doubt showed up and showed out repeatedly.
Life circumstances happen and occasionally cause us to voluntarily take a knee like a boxer in the boxing ring.  Because of the strength ingested from the power of  God’s promises found in His word we can again stand with both feet planted firmly, eyes fixed heavenward as we welcome whatever else the world has to offer.   Regardless of how many battering, punishing blows we receive, from which we in our finite minds believe we may never recover, God is ever  our refuge.   The tears have dried, my  chin is lifted awaiting whatever may present itself and I can say with assurance, It is Well With My Soul! (David Neveu)  http://youtu.be/yKh8pi2AYCE .

Making His praise glorious!

Renee

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Animal husbandry

Animal husbandry (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. John 10:16 (NIV)

Growing up I recall how exotic and exciting it felt to visit another church when the family traveled out of town.  Being shy I hated that part of the service when we were asked to stand up to be oggled and often tried to imagine that if I held very still I wouldn’t be seen, or noticed, I know not likely when the rest of the family stood, but I couldn’t be blamed for trying.

The older I got my feelings about standing out in church never quite felt right, so regardless of where I went, no matter the looks or elbows from friends with whom I attended, I did not and to this day do not stand.  While I might walk around and shake a few hands, I refuse to stand up and stand out.  You see, I realized that no matter where I went, surrounded by other believers, should have been home.  The text this morning reminded me that standing out in a flock is not a necessary requirement.  My Shepherd, Jesus knows my name, pedigree,  and even the number of hairs on my head (before and after they are cut).  As a Christian I believe it is imperative when in the presence of other visiting sheep, to envelop them gently and prayerfully.  Our posture of attentive, active listening to the Sheperd’s voice  is an example in and of itself.    There are amongst us daily sheep not really looking for flocks, yet the attention and love of the Shepherd wraps them in a love that bids them to stay.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose. Romans 8:28 (NIV)

Many years ago I was in an emotionally abusive relationship. That relationship robbed me of self-esteem, confidence and hope. When some days seemed darkest a sliver of light peeked through and with that light the promise of renewed hope and possibilities.

During my emergence from that pit it was necessary to get a new car. I selected a 2000, 4-door Acura Integra that I named Freedom. Freedom allowed me to come and go when and where I pleased. Along with an orange stuffed prayer bear we traveled from one end of the country to the other. There were several failed theft attempts to remove her from my life and a late night tussle with a deer that caused a rattle and wheeze that can still be heard.

Through it all Freedom has been such a blessing in my life! When she became our only vehicle, I admit to harboring a smidgen of doubt as she is getting up in years but daily we covered her in prayer and placed her and our safety in God’s hands.

Freedom’s radiator began hissing smoke on the way home the other day and again I prayed and again God delivered us home safely. i am so thankful that God always allows me to see His love and hope in situations that appear

1994-2001 Acura Integra photographed in USA.

1994-2001 Acura Integra photographed in USA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

dire and I know that by continually trusting God all things will work out as He sees fit.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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god lives in yu - treo_062809_002_web

god lives in yu - treo_062809_002_web (Photo credit: kevindean)

11 Sing the praises of the LORD, enthroned in Zion;    proclaim among the nations what he has done.  Psalm 9:11 (NIV)

Each and every single day there is something to be thankful for!  From the breath filling my lungs, the blood that pulsates through my veins, the smile I can share but most of all for a Savior who loves me!  This day is special because it is the day of my 100th blog posting, I am truly amazed that it  happened so quickly.  Praises to the Lord for inspiring, touching and blessings with these posts, I am so grateful to be used by Him.   My humble thanks to those who pray for me and read these words!

This week I am also very thankful for good medical reports! My Dad no longer needs dialysis and his body and life are miracles and he truly has a testimony to share. I am also thankful for the blessing of being able to witness the promises and possibilities that another Spring brings.

Today, I thank God for the love and possibilities that surround me. Lord, let Your light and love shine through today!

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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Learn to Knit

Learn to Knit (Photo credit: abbynormy)

12 Now go; I will help you speak and will teach you what to say.”  Exodus 4:12 (NIV)

Someone actually asked ME to teach them how to knit!  No, I did not laugh or giggle, though I wanted to,  did not offer the excuse “but I am just learning” or look for the hidden camera to see if it was a joke. I just said ok, provided a small list of getting started supplies and watched as many of the learning to knit videos I could to refresh my memory so that when and if the time came, I would be ready.

Well that day came and my first surprise was the pupil arrived.  Not only arrived but  prepared with needles and 3 skeins of yarn, so we began, with a slip knot.  For those who grew up and were fortunate to have Girl Scouts, Boy Scouts or lived around outdoorsmen we take it for granted that everybody can do a slip knot, which is not true. So the first lesson was this basic knot was repeated over and over, patiently again and again until it was mastered.   Oh and my other challenge, that I found out during the first lesson, this pupil unlike me, is left-handed. God always provides moments when the instructor has to not only has to remember what it was like to get those basics down until they felt natural but also must learn to do things in different way so that others  can learn in a way that is comfortable for them.  Everytime it feels  I still have so much to learn, God reminds me that a willingness to share what little I know more will always be given to me because He knows and sees everything!

Making His Praise glorious!

Ree

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29 But I tell you that even Solomon with his riches was not dressed as beautifully as one of these flowers.  Matthew 6:29 (NCV)
How we dress cannot compare to the beauty of the flowers of every country, small or large created by the Hand of God!  Today I am gazing in awe at the beauty His hands have provided and resting in the knowledge that this same God created each of us to be even more special than these!
Making His praise glorious!
Ree

 

 

 

 

 

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English: Photo showing how to pick up a droppe...

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7 Give all your worries to him, because he cares about you. 1 Peter 5:7 (NCV)

For two days, the needles have been silent.  Fingers have not felt the soothing slide of yarn, ears have not heard the rhythmic clicking and clacking of stitches being woven together nor have my eyes viewed rows of progress.   Every single work in progress,  all of them, came to a screeching halt.   What the world, how could it be the very thing that has fueled my days and blog had stopped.  I have been perplexed and in a word, lost.

One innocuous phone call and my world went into a silent, motionless holding pattern.  Not upset, not resigned, not spurred on, just…nothing.   Oh then last night the dam broke and the tears and words flowed, freely and unchecked.  I was impatient and once again questioning God, Poppa why? what? when?  As usual, He spoke, the whisper caressed my ear, gently patted my back and dried the tears.  “I got this!”  That was it, all He said and I realized again that the life I had surrendered so long ago, remained surrendered.  My self-imposed worries and fears had to be laid down at His feet.   Freed, I plan to pick up the needles and work on a project of praise and thanksgiving.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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Bible

Bible (Photo credit: WELS.net)

13 But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called “Today,” so that none of you may be hardened by sin’s deceitfulness.  Hebrews 3:13 (NIV)

There are some days when a  little extra word of encouragement is needed.  As I typed those words I had the strongest feeling that biblical words of encouragement were necessary.  I searched the Bible and found there were approximately 54 texts that referred to the word encourage and it’s variations.  As I read through the texts I felt myself praising God for the moments the words gave me.  No sooner was the last word read, the phone rang and it was the imaging center.  Uh oh, time for more tests.  Listening, writing as quickly as I could while asking questions, I was cheerful and calm.  Having been down this road before, my sense of here we go again washed over me.

Immediately, I felt God’s presence as He reminded me of the words of encouragement I had just read and the words I had written right before answering the phone.  I may not know what the future brings but I have the promise of God’s love and presence to get me through every and any situation life brings.   Be encouraged, I certainly am!!!!

Psalm 10:17
You, LORD, hear the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry,

  1. Romans 1:12
    that is, that you and I may be mutually encouraged by each other’s faith.
  1. Romans 12:8
    if it is to encourage, then give encouragement; if it is giving, then give generously; if it is to lead, do it diligently; if it is to show mercy, do it cheerfully.
  1. Romans 15:4
    For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.  Romans 15:3-5 (in Context) Romans 15 (Whole Chapter)
  2. Romans 15:5
    May the God who gives endurance and encouragement give you the same attitude of mind toward each other that Christ Jesus had,
    Romans 15:4-6 (in Context) Romans 15 (Whole Chapter)
  3. 2 Corinthians 7:4
    I have spoken to you with great frankness; I take great pride in you. I am greatly encouraged; in all our troubles my joy knows no bounds.

Making HIS praise glorious!

Renee

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Temple de Liber Pater, Sàbrata

Temple de Liber Pater, Sàbrata (Photo credit: Sebastià Giralt)

19 Or don’t you know that your body is a temple of the Holy Spirit who is in you? Don’t you know that you have the Holy Spirit from God, and you don’t belong to yourselves? 1 Corinthians 6:19 (CEB)

How is it possible that a temple constantly under construction has fallen into disrepair?  I mean really, after 50 years, it is still not finished and now the foundation has apparent cracks, walls previously solid have crumbled and been removed, brick by brick.  This temple is a mess, yet God keeps working to ensure that His temple is habitable.   The word on the street may be that it should have been condemned, torn down to make way for something new and solid, but God!  Windows still have not been installed, however, there again God shines through and illuminates that wreck of a temple.   Granted, it may be surrounded by tall gleaming, pristine temples, with members streaming to and through its doors.  What an incredible God, to send the Holy Spirit to live within this and all other less than pristine temples in a world with so many updated, state-of-the-art models.   For it is those seemingly broken down, ramshackle temples that have a wealth of stories to share.  I pray this construction is never complete, that the walls be built and rebuilt as often as long as it permits me to be continually in service to the God who loved me when I could not love myself.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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English: Red sunrise over Oostende, Belgium

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4 Who has helped you utter these words?    And whose spirit spoke from your mouth? Job 26:4 (NIV)

 

There is a new movie coming out with Eddie Murphy about a man who has only 1000 words left to speak.  I only know what was shown on the trailer, but can say it isn’t a movie I will be rushing out to see.  However, I have been thinking about the premise for a couple of days.  What  if  we had a daily allotment of words how would it affect our interactions? Would we carefully select words for greater impact? Be more aware of situations when not speaking or responding at all is sufficient? As I replayed just a few snippets of recent daily conversations I realize that in my exchanges there were unnecessary, sarcastic and stinging words.   Yet, there were actions that spoke volumes words never could have.  Job, body wrecked with pain and spirit aching in 41 different verses referred to words, their inspiration, their impact and importance.  Christ did not calculate the value of  words when He spoke, though every word left an indelible mark and ultimately changed lives.   Dear Lord, help me to use the correct allotment of words to lead others to you and not to subtract from the possible inhabitants of Heaven by speaking too many empty weightless words.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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