Look at the stars

I love this quote I found online.  I believe this to the very core of my being.  There is light!

Looking around at the world today and all that is happening in the news, we will notice a lot of bad; there is a lot of hatred, sorrow, terrorism, etc.  We will notice people who don’t care any more.  There is more financial stress, more destruction, and more illness, and the list goes on. Many people can grow cold and uncaring or just become immune to all the evil in the world.  What was once devastating or shocking to society years ago will be acceptable or ‘normal’ today.  Take divorce for example.  It is very commonplace today, but a couple hundred years ago, if someone were to say they were getting divorced, they would probably be either shamed or pitied greatly.  Now it is much more acceptable.

In a world growing cold, immoral, or uncaring I can find myself becoming judgmental.  It’s just not the way it used to be.  More and more of what is acceptable now was immoral 50 years ago.  It is very easy to focus on what is bad in the world.  The news, for example has mostly stories of terrorism, war, and crime with only a short human interest story at the end.  There is a way I’ve learned to stop being so sorrowful and disappointed concerning the world system.

article-0-0743C84F000005DC-546_634x368

Look at the stars

The more darkness there is, the more stars I can see.  I can go out to the country and see an image such as the one here.  A  multitude of stars in space.  There is darkness all around, but so many stars to enjoy.  If I keep my head up instead of down, I can see more light instead of darkness.

maxresdefault

In the city, with all the lights, buildings, and cars, there is much less light in the sky.  It’s easy for me to be so distracted by the action, people, and things around me that I no longer see the stars.  The world is in the way.  Even when I do look up, the stars are much less noticeable.  Most of them are dimmed in the midst of the lights of the world.

Look to God

god-is-light-in-him-there-is-no-darkness-at-all-quote-1ddf4ec73a44f86ca71ac6d1320605afeThese two verses say it all.  “God is light. In Him there is no darkness at all.” 1 John 1:5.  and “Set your mind on thing above.”  Colossians 3:2.  If I keep looking up, if I look at the stars in the night sky instead of the darkness itself, I can see light.  There is still good in the world.  There is still happiness. God is teaching me not be so negative.  Do not see the glass half empty.  Do not look only to the faults in the world.  See the small points of light in the midst of darkness.  Focus on the positive.

Like Carrie Hope Fletcher said, “Happiness is always there. You just have to choose to see it. There’s no point dwelling in the dark and ignoring the light of the stars.”  See link above for more information on Carrie Hope Fletcher.

Advertisements

Soothing the Soul

Three things that soothe my soul.

MUSIC:  Do you ever wonder why there is music playing everywhere?  Everywhere we go: restaurants, malls, department stores, and the list goes on.  Music is a source of rest and relaxation for me. I will listen to different types of music depending upon my mood.  I like soft ambiance type music, slow and soothing, when I am stressed and need to cool off emotionally speaking.  When I am sad I like to listen to upbeat Christian music that lifts me up and get my heart racing and my adrenaline pumping.  When I feel lonely I like to listen to love songs about how much Christ loves me.  And sometimes I like listening to romantic music about the love between a husband and wife.  There is music for all ages, races, nationalities, and personalities.  Music is a common ground that all people can appreciate sometime in their life.

MEDITATION:   Many times I like to sit and let my mind wander.  I often do this while taking a long drive out of town here in North Texas.  I look out at the plains, the farm fields, the road ahead of me, and just think of nothing.  I let thoughts float by and when one interesting thought comes my way I may ponder it for a while.  If it is a problem I need to solve, I pray about it and ask God to show me how to fix it.  Many times it is just a thought about a random subject that I begin to analyze or a topic that I try to outline or learn from.  Sometimes I just sit there and listen to the birds sing, the wind blow or the soft music playing in the background of my mind.  (I often seem to have some song in my head playing in the background of my thoughts).  Meditation like this can be like dreaming while you are awake.  I have read somewhere that dreaming is like organizing your experiences of life that day and filing your thoughts, memories, and emotional experiences in your mind.

MEMORIZATION

im-blessed

 

The scripture above is a great example of how scripture can soothe the soul.  We have every blessing available to us through Jesus Christ.  If we search the scriptures we can find a multitude of blessings we can receive or have received from Him.  The best way to keep this with us is to memorize scripture.  We can say at any moment, wherever we are, that we are blessed by God.  And this soothes my soul.  Another good example is Psalms 103:1-5

Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And all that is within me, bless His holy name.
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget none of His benefits;
Who pardons all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases;
Who redeems your life from the pit,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and compassion;
Who satisfies your [a]years with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle.

What are we becoming?

The more I see, the more confused I become. 

It never ceases to amaze me how further and further the world is straying from the Lord and His ways.  Today someone outright lied to me.  I had the facts on paper right in front of me and he refused to admit it.  My mind cannot understand how to outright lie like that.  I cannot say I have never stretched the truth or told a little fib maybe to spare someone’s feelings, but to deny the facts? Never.  If someone asks me a question, I have to tell the truth.  Jesus says to tell the truth.

jesus002I am a stranger in this world.  As I grow, I hope I am looking more and more like Jesus.  Too many times I see Christians becoming more and more like the world.  This should not be so.  We should be becoming more and more like the Father.  We should have the Father’s eyes:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D9L1ODcaE-k

Psalm 84

We long for God.  He made us that way.  Like the song, “God shaped hole” by Plumb.  When we ask Christ into our lives, His spirit comes to live in our spirit.  We become the dwelling place of God’s Spirit.  Therefore, we our spirit is always satisfied.

 However, our soul still has longings.  The Christian life is a journey toward the goal of saturating our soul with His presence.  Although our spirit is always satisfied and filled with joy, peace, patience, etc., our soul is torn between the flesh and the spirit, between the world system and God.  Our soul still has to deal with our own longings, physically, mentally, emotionally, relationally, needs, desires, habits, financially, psychologically, and the list goes on.  I find that even though I am filled with joy in my spirit, my soul has a longing.  Sometimes this is hard to understand, but I feel that the cause may be in part because I are not fulfilling God’s plan for my life.  If I am bored, maybe it means I am not doing all God wants me to do.  If I feel lonely, maybe there is someone I have to forgive, a relationship that needs to be restored, or maybe it’s just because I need to create more relationships and meet more people.

God does supply all our needs; they are there always.  We just need to take them.  God doesn’t always just lay them in our lap.  Sometimes He wants us to take them.  Sometimes He wants us to find the treasures He has for us, like a parent hiding an Easter Basket and having their children look for them.  He won’t make us take His gifts.  He doesn’t force his goodness on us.  He offers it to us.  He hands it to us.  But we need to take it.  We need to claim possession and declare that it is ours.  We need to accept the gift.

The keys are:  one – asking.  “Ye have not because ye ask not.  Ask that you will receive and you joy may be full” (see John 16:23-26, Matt 7:7-8, and James 4:2-3).  John 16:26 says that Jesus won’t ask the Father for us.  That means we need to ask the Father for what we need.  Two – motives; are we asking for our own worldly pleasure, “Give me money so that I can spend it in me” or “Lord I’d like a new Mercedes”?

So, to sum up — The longings that we have are known by God.  It’s up to us to ask with the right motives.  And it is up to us to accept them, take them and receive them when he lays them before us.  And it is up to us sometimes to find it, to look for it when he says it is His plan for us.

LIVE FOR TODAY

Bible

Matt. 6:34 states “do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own.” 

In today’s society with the economy, politics, etc. the way they are we need to focus on today.  Focus on this moment right now.  We need to forget about yesterday and it’s guilt, mistakes, missed windows of opportunity, etc.  We need to trust in God and not worry about what will happen tomorrow.  Let go of the fear, worry, unknown, etc.

win03

Prov. 3:5,6 “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding.  In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will direct your paths.

Trust the Lord with your future.  It belongs to Him.  He knows what is coming.  Only then will we have the peace that comes from knowing everything will be okay.

MY PRINCE AND I

My Prince and I

Love is growing in the field of romance

And like the sunshine on flowers we dance;

Here we meet, in our secret place

For I search for truths and seek His face.

He shares His treasures of truth with me

Breaking bondages and setting me free

From the cares and sorrows that my life may bring

Causing my heart to soar and sing;

As we’re walking along He refreshes my soul

Like a flowing waterfall making me whole,

Restoring my strength with cakes and cream

And giving me peace and joy like a dream;

His constant companionship, faithfulness and love

Despite my failures brings me hope from above,

He’s my groom taking me to His place

Eternally dancing with me face to face

I know His love for me has no end

My Lover, Redeemer, Warrior and Friend.

©2008 Terri Byars, All Rights Reserved.

NEW YEAR’S RESOLUTIONS

break

Like most other people, I start each year with new year’s resolutions. I usually say I’m gonna lose more weight.  Finally in 2010, I lost 50 pounds.  That was a little short of my goal, but I was still proud of my accomplishment.  But over the years 2010 to 2012, I gained all of that back plus more.  Mostly because of stress.

So this year, I have a new goals:

1.   Live life to the full

(John 10:10 Jesus says, “I have come that you might have life and that you would have it more abundantly.”)   

2.  Soul Prosperity

(3 John 1:2 Beloved, I pray that you may prosper in all things and be in health, just as your soul prospers.

According to this verse, my health is directly related to the prosperity of my soul.  Instead of trying to lose weight and not reaching that goal because of the lack of prosperity in my soul, I am going to seek fulfillment in my mind, my will, and my emotions.  Here are the ways to do that:

     1.  Be thankful in all things (1 Thess. 5:18 “give thanks in all circumstances”) 
                 –Notice it does not say “for all things” but “In all things”.
    2.  Memorize scripture  (Ps. 119:50 “Your word has given me life”.)
    3.  Practice the presence of God (Ps. 16:11 “In your presence is fullness of joy” NKJV)
    4. Keep my mind on God (Isa. 26:3 “You will keep him in perfect peace, Whose mind is stayed on You”)

God’s word is life.

In God’s presence is joy.

The mind focused on God will be at peace.

My scripture focus will be: 3 John 1:2  Presentation1

And Phil. 4:8 and 11b                               Presentation1
 
I am determined to think abundant thoughts full of joy, filled with God’s presence and focused on His Word. 
I believe once I accomplish this, the health and well-being of my body will follow.