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Saturday, November 9, 2019

Inspired by . . . God's closet

The battle is the Lord's, friend, but the battle is real.

Almost before I hit publish on my last blog post I began seeing affirmation of His word popping up in my IG and FB feeds.

Many of you let me know that you were getting His message, too.

Be still


Stop striving.

Depending upon our individual personality, these commands are either a sweet relief or a very real struggle. 

Either way, even in the waiting, scripture teaches us to be prepared. To "position" ourselves, as it says in Chronicles 20. There are so many scriptures, beloved, that tell us to be watchful, and ready. Many of these are in the context of Christ's return. However, I believe they also can refer to being ready for Him to reveal Himself in our daily struggles.

When we stop trying to control every minute of our days, we open the door for God to show up in miraculous ways. I know you've experienced this truth.

Almost the first thing we do every morning to prepare for our day is to clothe ourselves. For those of you in the corporate world, you're looking to make a statement. Red tie, black suit, red scarf, chic, sleek. In control. Mom's are pulling on sneakers and comfortable clothes. Active, ready to wrangle the kids and clean up messes. You get the idea; you dress for what you expect to encounter on any given day.

In the same way we prepare our physical bodies for the daily fray, scripture teaches us how to clothe our spiritual selves for battle.

Ephesians 6 teaches us defense: how to protect ourselves against the wiles of the enemy. The belt of truth, breastplate of righteousness, and shoes of peace all give us the power to stand firm. The shield of faith protects us from the enemy's fiery arrows.

Then there are the garments described in Colossians 3. These garments prepare us for action or interaction with others. Compassion, kindness, humility, gentleness, patience, and love. Just as that red tie or scarf may project power and control, these attributes set us apart as children of God.

When we respond to situations with kindness and humility, people take notice. Sadly, these are rare traits in today's world. But we can be a powerful witness for Christ, simply by "wearing" these "garments."

There may not be many things about the Proverbs 31 woman we can emulate, but we can achieve this:
"She is clothed with strength and dignity and can afford to laugh at tomorrow."
By constantly asking for God's help through prayer, we can be prepared to do what the Lord has called us to do, even as we wait patiently while the battle rages around us.

We can rest in this truth:
I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have tribulation. But take heart; I have overcome the world."  (Joh 16:33)


Saturday, November 2, 2019

Inspired by . . . this battle

You will not need to fight in this battle. Position yourselves, stand still and see the salvation of the Lord. 2 Chron 20:17

What battle are you fighting today?

Are you fighting your husband, your kids, yourself? Battles in the public arena, your school, your church?


Be still.

The battle is the Lord's.

He may be speaking to the kingdom of Judah in this OT passage but He is just as clearly speaking to each one of us who consistently fight, battle, and strive in our own strength.

The battle is the Lord's. Our job is to take up the position He has given us and wait and see what the Lord will accomplish.

So what is our position? What has God given us to do?

He has told you, O man, what is good; and what does the LORD require of you but to do justice, and to love kindness, and to walk humbly with your God? Mic 6:8
Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you. 1Th 5:16-18
Fear God and keep His commandments, for this is the whole duty of man.  Ecc 12:13

Easy words to read, hard words to follow. Keep them before your eyes. Meditate (think) on them. Practice them. They will become part of your life.

Then, you will cease striving and know ... the peace of God.

Peace I leave with you; My peace I give to you. Not as the world gives do I give to you. Let not your hearts be troubled, neither let them be afraid. Joh 14:27


Wednesday, October 2, 2019

Inspired by . . . past Write 31 series

Over the last few years, October has become one of my favorite months. It's almost like a second spring here in south Texas. As the heat subsides, the plants can stop fighting just to live and put their energy back into blooming! My garden really puts on a show this time of year.

October's golden glow is just one more thing to love. There is something different about the morning light this time of year. It's like liquid gold seeping through the curtains and coaxing me out of bed in the morning.

Texas may not have four seasons like other parts of the US but there are hints of change and I enjoy celebrating each one.

Another thing I've always looked forward to in October is the #write31days challenge. I wasn't going to be able to participate this year, but I was still sad to learn that 2018 was the last year of the official challenge. 

I first participated back in 2014 and every year since, save one. Each year proved to be a unique blessing. The series are always available here on the blog but as we begin our journey into October I wanted to highlight them again in hopes that you will find something to love.

31 Days of Joy

31 Days Praying the Names of God

31 Days in the Psalms

31 Days Hymns of Faith

The official #write31days challenge may be over but I hope there are bloggers out there who are continuing to challenge themselves on their own. Focusing on a theme and writing about it each day has proven to be a rewarding experience. One I'm sure I will revisit in the future!