Friday, January 31, 2020

What Are The Voices Saying?

You are NOT pretty enough, thin enough, smart enough, gifted enough! The negative thoughts that come into our head can be an obstacle to deal with each day before we even begin to face the day. What do we do with those negative voices in our head that make us feel that we are not able to do anything, accomplish anything, or have any purpose?

This is a good time to begin to "pray!" If the negative thoughts are about someone who is now living rent free in our mind then we need to pray for them and that will begin to hush those voices. Meditate on God's Word. Read something that you enjoy. Be sure to surround yourself with positive, sweet, caring people because the negatives can cause those voices to scream instead all the poison you are hearing. Some times this means we have to disconnect kindly from the negativity of someone to have more peaceful thoughts.

Life is too fragile to fill it with anything that will only take away your peace! God wants us to live in a way that is pleasing to Him and not overrun by others and their own destructive patterns. Live purposefully in a way that makes those around you feel the blessing of your friendship!

There are steps I take to hush those negative voices in your head and it works! Here are some suggestions:

1. Pray
2. Meditate on God's Word
3. Go to church (it's free therapy)
4. Listen to good music and read a good book
5. Join a Bible Study Group
6. Helping others by serving in a ministry or community outreach.
7. Choose wisely with who and where you spend your time - such as a park, the beach, any place that makes your soul smile!

 A picture I took of the top of one of my granddaughters December 2013.




Friday, January 24, 2020

A Matter Of Perspective

This was written by one of my junior high teachers who is still in contact with me today thanks to facebook! She was one of my favorite teachers and now one of my favorite friends who I know takes time to pray for me and my family. I asked permission to use this on my devotional blog.

A Matter of Perspective! by Donna Sparks:
There is someone in my extended family for whom I have prayed regularly for years.  She is a Christ-follower…but seems not to be concerned about how others perceive her attitudes and behavior.
Realizing that it was not my place to correct or direct her, I prayed specifically about certain aspects of her character that I thought surely the Lord would want to work on to improve her image as a Christian.  Knowing that God knows more about her and can speak to her in ways that I cannot, I began to pray, “Lord, help her to see herself as you see her.”
I felt satisfied that I had hit upon the best approach to God on her behalf…until this morning during my prayer time.  I prayed as usual, “Lord, help her to see herself as you see her,” and then words came out of my mouth that I had never intended to pray—“and help me to see her as you see her.”  I literally jumped and almost said, “No, Lord, I meant to say…” But I stopped in awe of what had just happened…and conviction flooded my heart. The Holy Spirit had led me to pray in the way that I should have been praying all along.
God doesn’t need me to point out what’s wrong in the life of his children; Satan is already the champion accuser. Rather than focusing on the negative, I am beginning to look for things that God sees in this woman as praiseworthy, and then thank him for them, trusting him to continue to work in her life.  God needs me to see her as he sees her—his child under construction…just like me.
donna sparksDonna Pharr Sparks refers to herself as “an expired English teacher,” because after becoming a stay-at-home mom ten years into her career, she allowed her certificate to expire.  She still loves using her writing skills and has been published in several magazines, including Family Circle and Woman’s Day.  A native of Chattanooga, Donna lives with her husband, Ray, in Murfreesboro, TN.  She enjoys working with children at her church and cherishes fun times with three of her four grandchildren. She has to settle for Skyping with the fourth one, who
                                         lives in Germany.

Saturday, January 18, 2020

Love Languages

written by Tracey Schultz Graham:
I could't sleep last night so what do you do when you can't sleep? You start a project. Mine was trying to figure out what to do with a box that I had yet to unpack - a box filled with books. I really need to invest in a bookcase but I can't seem to narrow it down on all the ones I find on Pinterest. Oops, I seemed to have admitted my addictions. Books & Pinterest (ok that's a whole other story). Anyways, as I was going through my books I came across a book that was written by Gary Chapman called, "The Five Love Languages."

According to this book, it tells you what your one emotional love language is. On a rare instance, a person may have two - guess who has two? Okay so I rarely follow the rules and never color inside the lines. What can I say? As I opened the book, skimmed through the pages, I saw right there in black and white my two love languages. Words of affirmation and quality time. I started thinking obviously these are my needs, my desires that I require to make a relationship work. Then I thought about God and if He is first in my life was I meeting His needs and His desires? In other words, does God have any "Love Languages?"


I love how God is faithful and answers in our quiet time if we just listen and meditate on Him. We always think of God as strong, powerful, almighty, not needing us, not wanting to be desired by us but the truth is that the Bible is a love story between God and His people. The most important thing we will ever learn about God is He desires a relationship with us!


John 17:3 says that they may know you, the only true God.


Jeremiah 29:13 "You will seek me and find me when you search with all your heart."


That verse says to me that he wants me to pursue him. That God waits to be wanted. He doesn't want a "part time" relationship with us. He wants "Quality Time." God desires to share a life of beauty, intimacy & friendship with us. God also wants "Words of Affirmation" or Praise/Worship/Thankfulness.


Philippians 4:4 "Rejoice in the Lord always; Again, I will say, Rejoice!"


I Thessalonians 5:18 "In everything give thanks; for this is God's will for you in Christ Jesus."


Giving God Praise, Worship & Thankfulness is so important because it increases our intimacy with him. I always knew about God ever since I was a little girl but I didn't know God. We don't really know God until we step out on his word & have experiences with him and see his faithfulness.


God thank you for letting me see your "love languages" and remove anything or anyone that keeps me from you. Amen!!

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Critical In Nature

"Judge not, that ye be not judged." Matthew 7:1

It is so easy to be critical of others and when I begin to go down that trail I have to ask myself: "When did I get to be so superior?" Am I so perfect that even though I have so much to work on myself personally I need instead to take time and thought to what others are doing wrong? I instead need to begin praying for those individuals and realizing they are in God's hands and take responsibility for myself. I think it is easier to see the faults of others than our own faults. We are fools if we believe we have it right and others have it wrong.


We need to stop believing we have the power to change others when we cannot even change ourselves. Let's work on encouraging others instead of tearing them down. Let's learn to take our focus off what others do and say so we can focus more on what we do and say instead.

Criticism has never accomplished anything but instead has brought pain to others. 


Criticism is a lot like cruelty, it leaves similar scars.


This picture was taken of the flowers in my yard!

Sunday, January 5, 2020

Be Kind

Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, even as God in Christ forgave you. Ephesians 4:32

Just recently someone asked me what I thought they should do about their circumstance. It involved another individual and I really did not know the answer. I explained to them that right now there was no clear direction to the situation but for the moment I had some advice. First of all, pray that God would reveal the right answer and second of all while waiting for the answer, be KIND!

Kindness is always the right thing to do in any circumstance. I believe it has the power to heal. 

A happy marriage is the union of two good forgivers! Ruth Bell Graham

 
This picture was taken on one of my walks on the beach where we live.