Posted in Devotion

Satisfaction

What makes you completely happy and content? Maybe it’s a good time with friends or a tall cup of coffee. Maybe you find happiness in a thrilling novel or feel complete when you’re with your special someone. When you were younger maybe you threw a tantrum in the store because you thought only the newest gizmo would satisfy you. Now that you’re older, you understand that the toy you wanted so badly didn’t make you happy for long, but you still long for the newest phone or a bigger house.

Whatever it is that you think will satisfy you, it won’t last.

Believe me, I’ve tried to satisfy my longing for love and security and happiness with a variety of things. None of those things were bad in and of themselves, but their satisfaction level only lasted a brief moment.

Truly nothing will satisfy us like God.

Satisfy us in the morning with your steadfast love, that we may rejoice and be glad all our days. Psalm 90:14

We all long acceptance, love, and contentment, but only God can fill that thirst. How does that happen? God fills us completely when we spend time with him, whether that’s through a church service, Bible reading, prayer time, or worship through song.

My prayer for myself is that I will seek God more when I’m feeling thirsty rather than seeking earthly things.

Satisfy me Lord, oh oh
Satisfy me Lord, oh oh
Yeah, I’m begging You, to help me see
You’re all I want, You’re all I need
Oh, satisfy me Lord

-Tenth Avenue North

 

Posted in Devotion

God’s Creations

The heavens declare the glory of God, and the sky above proclaims his handiwork. Day to day pours out speech, and night to night reveals knowledge. Psalm 19:1-2

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God’s creations are so magnificent and breathtaking during every season. Psalm 19 says they reveal the glory of God and his workmanship. It’s definitely amazing to consider all of the tiny little details  that God put into his creation. For example, consider four leaf clovers. Most of the clovers only have three leaves, but God decided to put in a few with four leaves just to keep us looking closely at his creation. All of these little details should lead us to marvel in the glory of God. It’s easy to complain about weather or nature-related allergies, but it’s more satisfying to compliment God’s creations.

 

Posted in Devotion

Not Good but God

Most of my life I have been labeled the “good girl”. Teachers always liked me in school. I followed and still mostly follow the rules. I do what people want, even if it causes me stress or pain sometimes. I won awards at school. I went to college and kept good grades.

On the outside I usually appear to be good, but one of my deepest fears is that people will one day discover the bad inside of me. They’ll see my hateful thoughts and insincere motives. To avoid that I just keep striving to maintain the image in their eyes and my own.

Then I remember… I am no good without God.

I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord; I have no good apart from you.” Psalm 16:1

God sees all that I am, clean and dirty. There is no hiding or masking with him. Gratefully I fall at his feet because Jesus’ blood is strong enough to cover all of the things I don’t want to be exposed. Without the sacrifice of Jesus, the worst exposure of all would happen at the close of my earthly life. It is bad enough when I fail and disappoint people, but to fail and disappoint God with my life would be torture. Thankfully, because of Jesus, I am made righteous.

As the psalmist says, “the Lord is my chosen portion and my cup” (Psalm 16:5) because why would I follow any other gods? They can’t satisfy me in the same way. They didn’t sacrifice their lives, so I could have a relationship with them. They just don’t measure up to my God.

Therefore…

I have set the Lord always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices. Psalm 16:8

Posted in Bible Study

The Power of Words

 

Last night, some friends and I were having a conversation about Facebook interactions. If you’ve been reading this blog for a while, you know I have mixed feelings about Facebook and you know that I’ve taken several breaks from the social media platform. This specific conversation was about how some people scroll and rarely make any indication that they’ve even seen posts. To me, that’s the creepy part of Facebook; I try to always keep in mind all of the friends I am speaking to when I post something because it is easy to forget the large audience of Facebook. Then the conversation shifted to the new emoji reactions that Facebook recently released. My input to this conversation is that comments are more valuable to me. I don’t get much satisfaction from seeing a notification that someone “liked” or “reacted to”. A comment is more cherished in my heart because of my strong connection with words.

As a book-lover, I wholeheartedly agree that words are powerful. Rudyard Kipling said that “Words are, of course, the most powerful drug used by mankind.” Or as James put it, “the tongue is a flame of fire….It can set your whole life on fire, for it is set on fire by hell itself.” James 3:6. Lately, God has been revealing to me about how to make everything about him, and specifically God has shown me that the words I choose to speak and write are powerful. It’s always been a problem of mine to speak and write what comes to mind and what I think others want to hear. Through painful discipline, I’m learning (over and over) to really apply James 1:19 by pondering my words very carefully.

In fact, God has quite a bit to say about words and how we use them. In Psalm 12, the psalmist makes the bold request that God cut off all flattering lips and the tongue that makes great boasts. Instead, the tongue should be used to spread wisdom, healing, and encouragement (Proverbs 12:18; Ephesians 4:29).

 

Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart
    be acceptable in your sight,
    O Lord, my rock and my redeemer.

Psalm 19:14

If you also struggle with words, I don’t have any specific advice other than to prayfully submit to God. I’ve had to ask for forgiveness from God and people quite a bit, and I expect that I will more in the future. It’s been a lesson in patience as I’ve wanted to say something but realize that it’s not appropriate or uplifting. Ultimately, though, it will be worth the discipline and patience because I trust that God is changing me and using the words he gives me to say to encourage and challenge others. I only have to learn to listen to his guidance rather than spouting off whatever comes to my head.

In closing, I leave you with words from Roald Dahl:

“Don’t gobblefunk around with words.”
Roald Dahl, The BFG

 

 

 

 

Posted in Bible Study

mountains

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I lift my eyes to the hills.

From where does my help come?

My help comes from the Lord,

Who made heaven and earth.

He will not let your foot be moved;

He who keeps you will not slumber.

Behold, he who keeps Israel

Will neither slumber nor sleep.

The Lord is your keeper;

The Lord is your shade on your right hand.

The sun shall not strike you by day,

Nor the moon by night.

The Lord will keep you from all evil;

He will keep your life.

The Lord will keep

Your going out and your coming in

From this time forth and forevermore.

Psalm 121

Posted in Bible Study, Life

Settling for Less Than the Best

As the deer longs for streams of water, so I long for you, O God.

Psalm 42:1

Lately I’ve been having these moments of intense longing for God. Usually these pangs come when I’m busy. I’ll tell myself “okay when I get back to the house, I’ll spend hours with God” but then I get distracted or convince myself to do something different. My mood is affected. If I long for water, why do I settle for soda? If I long for Jesus, why do I settle for mere entertainment?

This reminds me of an event the other day. At the church Easter Egg hunt, we noticed two boys walking through our field where we had hidden the eggs. No one really paid much attention to them until the hunt was about to start. When some of the workers went over to approach them, the boys ran off. Turns out they had been stealing the eggs because we found our prize egg in the creek without any candy. The boys longed for a hunt and for candy yet they chose to remain on the outside and steal. They could have been part of the celebration and had many eggs. Instead they settled for stealing. My Christian walk shouldn’t be about settling. When I long for Christ, I should spend time with him. He’s there with welcome arms.