God Signs, Seals and Delivers His Private Messages

My favorite pass time is working puzzles.

One day last week, while seated at my puzzle table in the lobby of my 55+ apartment building where I reside, a fellow resident approached the table and haphazardly said to me, “Did you know there is only one place in the Bible where God personally wrote down something?”.  I looked up  from my puzzling activity and nonchalantly replied, ‘Are you sure about that?’.  “Yep! It’s that time when God gave Moses the Ten Commandments,” he continued.  ‘Oh, I don’t think you are right about that, my friend.  But let’s talk about it later,’ I replied and returned to my puzzle project.  So, my friend shuffled his weight from one foot to the other, shook his head in disbelief, shrugged his shoulders, mumbled something under his breath about ‘his knowing the Bible’, and moved on.

The reckoning…

About a week later, I was again alone in the lobby at my puzzling activities when along came my ole friend.  We exchanged greetings, then I asked him how many fingers was I holding up.  He replied four.  “That’s right,” I confirmed.  “And that’s because there are actually four times that it is recorded in the Bible that God wrote down something for a person.”  With disbelief on his face, my friend pulled up a chair and sat down, looking quizzically at me.

“Now, what I am about to say will depend on your level of faith.  Who do you say that Jesus is?” I asked him.  “I believe in John Chapter One,” my friend said.  “Yes, but do you believe that Jesus is God incarnate?” “Yes he replied.  “Well, was there any time in scripture where Jesus kneeled down and wrote something?” I continued.  “Oh, yes!  When He challenged those guys that brought a prostitute to Him.”

“Okay.  That’s one.  Now what about Daniel?  What character traits do you recall about him?  “That’s right!” my friend exclaimed.  There’s a story about something being written on the palace wall of King Belshazzar where a banquet was being held, and that only Daniel could interpret.”  “Right!  And that’s number two,” I said.  “And don’t forget, the Ten Commandments were written down for Moses…twice!” I continued in an amplified voice.  “That makes four times in all that God wrote something down for people!” I concluded.

Moral of the story…

While Christians are on this earth, they will no doubt have numerous opportunities to witness or testify to others about their perceived knowledge of the written Word.  May I suggest that you guard against being too hasty or dogmatic about your perceived knowledge.  Always tread lightly when recalling absolute Truths.  And when correcting someone who thinks of themselves as being an ‘expert’ in biblical knowledge, wisdom and understanding of God’s holy word, tread with caution…pray first and foremost.

I am glad to report that my additional information to my friend was well received and the exchange of information has truly drawn us closer together.  Who knows, there may be additional times in the Bible where God wrote something down that I, too, missed.  Please send me a head’s up if I did.  I would love to receive your comments. For I am an approachable vessel of godly messages that I receive from other sisters and brothers in Christ.

My Prayer for you…

Precious Jesus,  I thank You for sending my way so many opportunities for new bits of insight that is in fact given to me as my trials that make it possible for me to be a more powerful witness for You.  It is my earnest desire that You help me to show others through my positive responses and thoughtful ways just how much I love You and Your holy Word.  Amen.  

Scripture Lesson “Each one should use whatever gift he (or she) has received to serve others, faithfully administering God’s grace in its various forms. So that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To Him be the glory and the power for ever and ever.” I Peter 4:10-11

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God Used Covid-19 To Prepare My Daughter For Her New Job

Covid-19 Victim Who Has Lost His Sense Of Smell

Did you know that a majority of medical professionals and scientists, as well as The Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention listed the loss of taste and smell as the most common symptoms effecting victims who contracted the COVID-19 pandemic virus?

Earlier this year, my daughter, her husband and their 2 young children experienced a bout with Covid that lasted about a month. Thank God they all recovered with little or no lasting effects…all, that is, except my daughter. More than once she has said to me that one of the prolonged debilitating effects of Covid-19 is that she has not regained her sense of smell.

Now the medical term for the loss of the sense of smell is called Anosmia. And some researchers believe that this condition, while not permanent, may last for an extended period of time. At times, my daughter has seen her condition as a blessing and other times as a curse. For example, last week she accidentally burned up the cookies because she forgot to set the stove timer and could not smell them burning. But this week, she scored ‘browny points’ on her new job all because she could not smell the operation of the plant she had been assigned to audit.

Let me explain…

My daughter is a vegetarian and has not eaten nor cooked red meat for a number of years. In fact the very smell of her husband cooking or barbecuing any meat makes her sick. Last week, her work assignment was to audit a meat packing plant that prepares meat and vegetable toppings for pizza companies. She accompanied several plant managers throughout the plant and observed the preparation of these products. Her host company kept asking her how did she feel. Was she becoming nauseous or experiencing an upset stomach? It was explained to her that prior auditors have had to cut their visits short because of the strong smells of cooked foods in the various areas of the plant. But seemingly, these odors did not effect my daughter and they wondered why.

An opportunity to witness…

As my daughter explained her work situation with me, all I could think of was what a wonderful opportunity for me to witness to her about the role our Lord and Savior had played in this incident. I was thinking how negligent my immediate family had become since the pandemic hit and we had not had as many opportunities to discuss church activities and services like we used to.

So at an opportune time during our conversation, I gently said to my daughter, ‘You know, sweetheart, sometimes during an illness, God uses that situation to purify our infirmities like allergies. And He uses them for His purposes. Of course, the Old Testament story about Job found that out the hard way. Job had lived a pure life in every way, yet he needed to learn (through the words of Elihu) that God can use anybody He chooses…whether that person is an enemy or friend of God.

But you found out that what you believed to be a ‘thorn in your side’ after Covid-19 was actually a ‘blessing’ in disguise. Didn’t you say that the managers that you met with told you that they would surely request that your company send you out to conduct future audits because of the professional mannerism in which you performed your tasks?’

My prayer for you and others is this…

“Dear Heavenly Father, I realize that You speak to Your flock in various ways. And during my daughter’s abstention from red meat, she had no clue that her phobia would serve as an opportunity for her to give You thanks and glory. For there is no doubt, that the good report that those managers will send back to her employer, will serve her well in the future. Please help all of us, Dear Jesus, to realize that we must become good listeners in order to point the way to other believers that there are numerous opportunities to turn hearts towards heaven even during sickness and hard times. Yes, this dreadful pandemic called Covid-19 gives us so many avenues to explore and expand our faith in the precious Name of Jesus, Amen.”

Scripture Lesson: “God does speak — now one way, now another– though man may not perceive it. Or a man may be chastened on a bed of pain with constant distress in his bones. Job 33:14, 19

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God Let Go Of My Hand

When God leaves you all alone…

Who would have thought that there could come a time when God would let go of your hand?

Think about it!  Sure…there are plenty of times when YOU let go of God’s hand.  But how many times has God let go of YOUR hand?

Let me refresh your memory.

What about that time when you had just experienced a triumphant moment of receiving accolades from your employer, classmates or family and friends.  Or shortly thereafter, you were guest of honor at a scrumptious birthday dinner.  Or better than anything else, you discovered that you were the heir of a large inheritance from a deceased wealthy relative.  Oh, how the praises went up as those blessings came down!  Or just maybe, it happened just when you were going through a debilitating sickness!  WOW! That hurts…

Then it happened…CRASH BAM…THANK YOU MAMAM!  For shortly after that, the Lord left you!  He actually took His presence away and let go of your hand!

God’s M.O.

God operates like that sometimes.  Scripture tells us that God did just that to King Hezekiah in 2 Chronicles 32:31.

“And so, in the matter of the envoys of the princes of Babylon, who had been sent to him to inquire about the sign that had been done in the land, God left him to himself, in order to try him and to know all that was in his heart.”

Now the Chronicler who wrote 1st and 2nd Chronicles does not give us the full narrative of exactly how King Hezekiah reacted (or what was in his heart concerning this matter), you have to read Isaiah Chapter 38 to get a fuller picture.  There you will discover that the Prophet Isaiah had just warned the king that God had numbered his days and that Hezekiah was about to die.  Hezekiah’s response was to turn his face to the wall and pray.  He reminded God of how faithful he had been in carrying out God’s commands and re-establishing kingdom worship and righteously serving God’s people.  God relented after hearing King Hezekiah’s prayer and healed him.

Hezekiah express his gratitude for his promised healing by requesting a divine sign from heaven sealing the promise that God would do what he said he would do.  So, God responded by causing the sun to miraculously stand still for a number of hours.  After all of this happened, however, an envoy of Babylonian princes came to visit King Hezekiah to learn more about the sun miracle and to congratulate him on his healing.  So, during all this time, “God had left him (Hezekiah) to himself, in order to try him and to know all that was in his heart.”

Lessons learned…

For me, I have learned when I am faced with the most serious adversities in life and feel as though the Lord has truly abandoned me, I find myself unable to pray earnestly to Him.  I begin to operate in my own strength until I cannot go any further.  Sometimes reluctantly, or in shame, I call on the Lord to rescue me.  In retrospect, I should be more like King Hezekiah and just turn my face to the wall and recall in my spirit all the times God has brought me out of trouble.  But unlike the king, my list of services might not be as long and as worthy as his. My flesh causes me to erroneously think that God operates on merit and not by his Spirit.

What about you?  Do you always remember the goodness of the Lord when you are faced with dilemmas in life?  Can you recite a list of godly services you have performed for the sake of others.  Do you remember how gracious and merciful our Lord is.  Do you remember that it is not by power or by might, but by My spirit says the Lord?  Do you believe that some adversities, bad news and illnesses can be in fact beneficial?  Not only for kings and people in high places, but for me and you.

My prayer for you…

“My Precious Lord Jesus, We definitely realize now that sometimes you leave us, yes, you actually let go our hands, so that You can examine our hearts.  Therefore, we thank You for the trials and difficulties that cause us to draw closer and nearer to You.  We praise you for not entirely forsaking us. This sincere prayer is offered in the matchless Name of Jesus.” Amen

Remember, Easter Sunday is within a few days, so why not concentrate on the last 7 words (phrases) of Christ. You might also see within these scriptures that God actually let go of his Son’s hand for a little while. Be blessed!

“Father, forgive them, for they do not know what they are doing.” Luke 23:34
“Truly I tell you, today you will be with me in paradise.” Luke 23:43b
“Women, here is your son.” John 19:26b

“Here is your mother.” John 19:27

“I am thirsty.” John 19:28b
“Eli, Eli, lema sabachthani?” (Which means “My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?”
“Father, into your hands I commit my spirit.”  Luke 23:46b

Jesus died for you and for me.

Scripture Lesson: “We who are alive are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that His life may be revealed in our mortal body.” 2 Corinthians 4:11

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God’s Aroma Of Christ Is You!

My daddy, smells like Jesus.

I am sure during your lifetime, dear readers, you have heard someone use at least one of the following idioms referencing the nose:

  • Cut Off Your Nose to Spite Your Face
  • Have Your Nose in the Air
  • It’s No Skin Off My (Your) Nose (Back)
  • Keep Your Nose Clean
  • On the Nose
  • Powder One’s Nose
  • Right Under (One’s) Nose
  • Rub Someone’s Nose in (Something)
  • Stick Your Nose into Something
  • Have a Nose for (Something)

Well, while reading and meditating over 2 Corinthians 2:1-17, the Holy Spirit allowed me to obtain a more profitable understanding of God’s holy Word as recorded by the Apostle Paul. The entire chapter demonstrates that Paul is a peace maker extraordinaire.

To briefly summaries Chapter 2…

The Apostle Paul has written a letter to the Church at Corinth, rather than making a second personal visit, suggesting (no imploring) that they consider forgiving a church member who had been spreading lies about him and the way he demonstrates his faith in Jesus Christ. The troublemaker was saying that Paul preaches out of both sides of his mouth and seemingly, the members of the Church at Corinth believed those lies and were forming negative opinions about the character of Paul.

In the letter, Paul is explaining why he has chosen not to make a second visit in person as promised, because he is still feeling some pain about how members of the Church of Corinth so readily embraced the untruths of the troublemaker. Paul also feels that perhaps the Church members may also need some space. So, Paul is explaining in his letter that he does not desire that the perpetrator be punished for his actions, and if the Church forgives the man, then Paul will also forgive him because that is exactly what Christ would do. Paul reminds the congregation that nobody wants to give Satan another opportunity to wreck havoc in the family of God.

The nose, nose…

Now this is the beautiful part of Paul’s letter. Paul explains to the Corinth Church that as we grow in grace in Jesus Christ, He matures us and gives us victory in our endeavors (battles) on His behalf. The Holy Spirit also gives us inexplicable knowledge of Himself and breathes within us an exquisite aroma that only His true followers can spread abroad. This sweet scent ascends all the way up to Glory which God recognizes and rewards with dispensing eternal life. Other brothers and sisters who are walking in the light recognize the scent, too, and rejoice. But those on the road to destruction smell the stench of a dead man walking.

What aroma is in your nostrils?…

I don’t know about you, but when I was a child, my nickname was ‘Cry Baby’, because somebody was always hurting my feelings. And I was also the last one picked on anybody’s team when my siblings and friends played games. I wanted everybody to like me, and when they didn’t, I pouted. I was also very gullible as a child and believed people when I should have been more discerning. But thanks be to God and my Sunday School teacher. They both taught me how to pray. Little by little, I learned to depend on the Scriptures and the Holy Spirit did the rest. During middle school and high school I met new friends and because of my good grades, art talents and I also want to add my ‘giving’ spirit, I was well on my way to trusting and serving the Lord. I guess I just “smelled” good.

There’s a sweet, sweet spirit in the air. Where of, I am glad.

My prayer for you…

Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for your sweet presence in my life when I was lost, self-centered, and without hope. Please forgive me for my inherent ignorance of the gospel of Jesus Christ which you have written on the tablets of all of our hearts. I praise you, Holy Father, for coming into my life and opening doors that nobody can shut and for lifting me above the enemies of this world. Help me, Lord Jesus, to remember to thank you for every blessing You so willing bestow upon me and everyone who can relate to this blog revelation. For we are all so undeserving of the ultimate sacrifice you made on our behalf. We ask all of these blessings in the precious Name of Jesus. Amen and Amen.

Scripture Lesson: “Thanks be to God, who always leads us in triumphal procession in Christ and through us spreads everywhere the fragrance of the knowledge of Him.” (2 Corinthians 2:14).

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.wordpress.com every Friday for a new post from The Master’s servant manger…Me!

God Sent The Holy Spirit As My Teacher

Image result for oxymoron examples in bible
Hummm…Now let me think…

Sometimes, the Bible doesn’t make since. It takes on the characteristics of being an ‘oxymoron‘! Ooops! Be careful sister blogger. You may be treading on dangerous grounds.

Well…not exactly!

Let’s carefully look at the meaning of ‘oxymoron’. Basically, an ‘oxymoron’ is a set of contradictory words placed together in a sentence or a thought. It’s usually a descriptive term (an adjective followed by a noun or pronoun). For example, in Revelation 1:8 it reads: “I am the Alpha and the Omega,” says the Lord God, who is and who was and who is to come, the Almighty. In another place, Jesus invites us to live the ultimate oxymoron: celebrate suffering: “Blessed are those who mourn, for they will be comforted.” Matthew 4:4 And yet, in another place: “It is better to give than to receive.” Acts 20:35b.

Now, tell me; don’t those three examples above sound a little confusing? Yet there are hundreds more examples in God’s word that mimic those truths and require deliberate prayer and intervention of the Holy Spirit to gain a deeper and meaningful understanding. And that’s what I have been praying for all this week…in all my getting, Lord, give me an understanding of thy Word! (Proverbs 4:7)

Make it plain, dear Jesus…make it plan! Please order my steps in your Word, King Jesus.

Take a look at the list below of terms the Holy Spirit placed in my spirit that are covered throughout the pages of both the Old and the New Testaments, and considered to be classified as an oxymoron or a paradox concept:

Love and hate.  Good and evil.  Live and die.  Rich and poor.  Strong and weak.  Heaven and Hell.  Up and down.  Young and old.  Male and female.  Right and wrong.  Give and take.  God and Satan.  Jews and Gentiles.  Lion and Lamb.  Pride and Humility.  Wisdom and Foolishness.  War and Peace. Revelation and Hidden.  Just and Unjust. Peace and Enmity. Weak and Strong. Save and Destroy. Love and Hate.

So, the benefits of studying oxymorons or paradoxes in God’s Word is so that our reward will be, if we remain in Jesus and the Father’s Word remains in us, we will be able to ask Him for anything and have the confidence that He will give it to us. And when we can recognize in Scripture that the message is written with the use of oxymorons, we will be able to pray God’s word back to him with a clearer understanding and application. You will then be studying to show yourself approved…rightly dividing the Word of God. The key is to make God’s word your words.

My prayer for you….

“Dear Heavenly Father, thank you for giving us heavenly knowledge by the dispensation of the Holy Spirit. Oh Lord, it is our heart’s desire to remain steadfast and unmovable in your Word. And, Most Holy One, we thank you for giving us your promise to honor the things that we ask in your Name. Continue, Holy Spirit, to teach us just how to use your Bible to honor all your precepts correctly, so that we will all be built up spiritually and able to share in all your many blessings that you have promised us.” Amen!

Scripture Lesson: “If you remain in Me and My words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be given you.” John 15:7

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God’s Giving Trumps My Giving

What Is Grace?
Giving has everything to do with walking in grace!

How often do you wish you could operate in the same mindset as Christ? The older I get, the more I wish I could be more and more like Jesus each and every day. Why? Because I truly believe that this octogenarian is more apt to see Him face to face sooner than later. So now you can see, like a little child, why I implore Him to order my steps in His word on a minute by minute basis.

That is why for this week’s blog I decided to have a little conversation with God on the subject of giving. As I was examining my life, I wondered if my habits towards giving were in line with God’s concept of giving. The Holy Spirit challenged me in my mind if my giving was truly by grace. If that was the case, then, I was in concert with God’s attitude towards giving. This trend of thought caused me to search the scriptures on ‘grace‘. And what I was reminded of is just how magnanimous God’s grace is:

“For you know the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ, that though he was rich, yet for your sake he became poor, so that you through his poverty might become rich.” 2 Corinthians 8:9

And the companion scripture for the above mentioned one is the following:

“For God so loved the world that he gave his only Begotten Son that whoever believed in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life.” John 3:16

It is because of those scriptures sited above, that many people believe that God’s method of giving far surpasses any mortal’s expression of giving hands down. In other words, God gives whether you deserve it or not. God’s giving which is by grace is not about Karma! Karma is all about getting what you deserve. Grace is all about getting what you don’t deserve!

We live in a society of ‘getting’, that calls for the judgment of someone else:….I deserve this…You owe me that…You promised me…

If we are walking by faith, God teaches us through scriptures, that all that mankind deserves is death, and that, in and of itself, bears no hope for restitution; except by the blood of his resurrected Son Jesus the Christ.

So, the Holy Spirit continued instructing me by whispering, My child, spiritual growth does not happen over night. You grow in grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior, and you have passed the test. Keep on searching and depending on the Lord and encouraging others to do the same. For with grace, it will allow your giving to transform other’s desires, motivations and behavior.

Therefore, My Beloved, always remember when you give to others, make sure it is in the attitude of love and not based on merit…that is, whether that person deserves it or not…let God be the ultimate Judge.

Scripture Lesson: “For the grace of God has appeared for the salvation of all men, training us to renounce irreligion and worldly passions, and to live sober, upright, and godly lives in this world, awaiting our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who (unselfishly) gave himself for us to redeem us from all iniquity and to purify for himself a people of his own who are zealous for good deeds.” Titus 2:11-14 (Revised Standard Version)

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God Told Me To Eat The Word!

Welcome Signs (1).jpg
Massanetta Springs is a sacred place. We are here to serve you as you experience God’s grace and hospitality.

In 1989 while living in Rockville, Maryland, I signed up with my Baptist church to participate in a weekend Women’s Retreat.  The three-day meeting was held at a beautiful conference center located in the hills of Massanetta Springs, Maryland, which is located about 136 miles from my home.  More than 45 women arrived at the church’s parking lot and loaded into church buses and cars on a late Friday evening and made the trip in about two hours.

Upon arrival, we were met by an obliging and well-organized staff of conference employees who directed us to our cabins and later served us a fantastic late dinner. We did not retire early, but later that evening held our first spiritual meeting in the Mary Lou McMillin Resource Center. (See the map.) Personally, I was in ewe about the natural beauty and serenity of the landscape and rolling hills. Such peace and repose the quietude afforded all of us in attendance.

Massanetta Springs Map.jpg

It wasn’t long before some of the sisters began whispering about strange phenomenon things happening that afforded them a since of wonderment if an invisible presence was indeed also at the camp to hold their own retreat. For example, while two women were sitting on the front porch in rocking chairs, an empty chair nearby began to rock slowly (presumably propelled by the wind). At the welcoming meeting held later that evening, seemingly, our voices were more melodious and our pianist attacked the keys with far fewer missed notes. As testimonies were lifted up to our Lord by the attendees, the whole atmosphere became fortified with an angelic presence that far surpassed any church service that I had ever attended in the past.

But, later that night I had an astonishing dream…

I was assigned to share sleeping quarters with one of the senior mothers of our church whom I loved dearly and who had taken me under her wing as her spiritual daughter. As she sat on her bed and prepared for slumber, she struggled with rolling up her hair on sponge rollers. So, I went over to her and began to take over her task. Her long silver strands of hair twisted easily around each roller I applied. Afterwards, we said our prayers and fell fast asleep. Later in the night I was “awakened” by my roommate walking around the room. I turned over and asked her if she was alright and if she needed anything. She assured me she was fine, but that she just couldn’t sleep in a strange place. She sat down on her bed and as I observed the back of her head I noticed that her long silver strands of hair seemed so much longer and brighter. I arose and went over and stroked her hair and tucked her back into her bed. We both resumed out sleep and the next morning I asked her how well did she sleep since she was up during the night.

To my surprise, my friend assured me that she slept wonderfully and solidly ALL NIGHT! I corrected her and related what I had witnessed the night before with her walking around and how I had came over to her bed and STROKED……at that point I abruptly stopped talking, my eyes got wider and wider as I observed the hair rollers still in her hair. Mother, I exclaimed, did you reset your hair in the night? No, she replied, I told you I slept soundly all night. I guess you saw my angel watching over me because she knows I don’t like sleeping in anybody else’s bed.

WELL, THAT WAS THE END OF THAT CONVERSATION….BUT NOT MY INQUISITIVENESS INTO MY INNERMOST THOUGHTS!

My second encounter with “Something” around the Cross…

The leader of the retreat had instructed all of us to be outside and up on the hill by 6:00 a.m. for sunrise services at the cross. As we gathered in a circle around the cross we could smell the bacon, biscuits and fried apples being prepared in the mess hall by the conference center’s employees. Our leader yelled at us to keep our hearts and minds on praising God for another beautiful day. I was thinking that same thing just as she bellowed it out. Slowly, each women individually began to render up a prayer of thanksgiving. Again, I thought to myself, why are each women praying singularly, God can hear everybody’s prayer at the same time. Just then the spiritual leader shouted out the same words I was thinking. As we held hands in the circle, an electrical shock ran through us all and caused us to break the circle. Everybody began to pray out loud at the same time and they lifted up holy hands to the Lord.

Suddenly, I was led to approach one of our special prayer warriors and I was instructed by the Holy Spirit to ask her to pray for me. She began by blessing me with the knowledge that if I wanted God to converse with me on a regular basis I would have to ‘eat the Word’ on a regular basis. She prayed other directives over me, but all I remember is that I kept repeating the words out loud, ‘I’ll eat the Word, I’ll eat the Word!’

The Holy Spirit has made it possible for me to eat the Word so I might not sin against the Father. Biblical knowledge has become an integral part of my life and desires. Over these many years, with God’s word, he has helped me to measure all situations and decisions by it. With God’s help, I will continue to ingest his Word until traveling days are over.

So, how has your life evolved? I prayerfully hope it has been connected to the Power on High. There are no energy shortages, or water shortages or pandemic monstrosities up there. Amen!

Spiritual Reference:He said to me, “Take it and eat it. It will turn your stomach sour, but in your mouth it will be as sweet as honey.” I took the little scroll from the angel’s hand and ate it.” Revelation 10:9-10

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God’s Bible Is Our Mirror

No doubt you have heard that the state of Texas has been hit pretty hard weather-wise starting early Monday morning around 2:00 a.m., February 15, 2021 through the balance of the week. First, a great portion of the state was blanketed with snow and electrical power outages. Many households were forced to find refuge in hotels and to move in with family and friends. Some families even hunkered down in their cars and trucks to find safety and heat comfort relief and also to recharge their cell phones.

To add insult to injury, later in the week, besides doing without electricity, the water mains went out and there was no water and peoples’ home pipes burst and their dwellings were flooded. Emergency shelters were overcrowded and most hotels in our area were booked solid. This water loss catrastrophe caused many peoples not to be able to bathe or flesh their toilets. Price gouging was reported with some hotels, too, and gas stations ran out of regular gas, but premium was still available. During these emergency times, it has caused some people to become temporary thieves and to steel water from neighboring swimming pools to use in their toilet tanks in order to flush them.

So, I guess you can say Texas was forced to endure two pandemics: Covid-19 and electricity and water shortages. A few families resorted to using propane gas burners to get heat relief which proved to be very dangerous and deadly. Others foolishly used open charcoal bar-be-que burners which also proved to emit carbon monoxide poisons. (I guess when people panic, and are put in a precarious situation, they do not think straight or coherently.)

I personally was fortunate to have family members nearby who took me in and who still had heat and some water. We were forced to boil the water and had to do without it for several hours. But, nevertheless, we survived. A number of my friends and sisters in Christ reached out to me to see if I was alright and safe. They all had beautiful words of encouragement for me and we comforted each other with prayers and scripture quotes. One of my favorite scriptures I like to repeat in times like these is as follows:

“I have hidden your word in my heart that I might not sin against You”. (Psalm 119:11)

I confess when there is trouble on every side, a person is prone to utter a few words, deeds, and thoughts towards heaven that could easily boarder on blasphemy. My friends and I reminded each other that God is still on the throne and very much in control even during these times and conditions. Also, He promises that a brighter day is on the horizon. I find this prayer sighted below comforts me and keeps me in good standing with our Lord and Savior. Please recite it on behalf of the many souls here in Dallas, Texas who may have omitted sending up a prayer to the God who heals. You also might want to pray it for yourself in times of trouble and despair.

“Holy Spirit, I pray that You will clearly show me in the Word those things that are right for me and those things that are wrong. Please make it possible for me to renounce the sins in my life and to live only for You from now on. Amen.”

In closing, let me remind myself and you, too, that God has given us the Bible as a mirror to show us how not to sin against Him when trouble comes, but to have courage, faith and hope. Just remember that in spite of everything going on, God is still in control and is the Master of our fate.

Scripture Lesson: “The unfolding of Your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple. Direct my footsteps according to Your word.” Psalm 119:130, 133

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God Loves Riddles

At least 6 dead in 133-car pileup in Fort Worth after freezing rain coats roads

Lawmakers said they were troubled by reports that the interstate hadn’t been treated before the crash, which led to at least 65 people being treated at area hospitals.

At least six people were killed in a major crash on Interstate 35W in Fort Worth on Thursday morning.
At least six people were killed in a major crash on Interstate 35W in Fort Worth on Thursday morning.(Lawrence Jenkins / Special Contributor)

By Catherine MarfinJesus JimenezNataly KeomoungkhounCharles Scudder and Tom Steele

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 Did you know that if you replace “W” with “T” in “What, Where and When”, you get the answer to each of them?  How cleaver…don’t you think?  I bet you never thought about this riddle.  Well, you are not alone.  I never thought about it either.  This riddle was sent to me by a very dear friend.  And it caused me to have a little conversation with God.

I live in Texas and we rarely have severe winter weather conditions.  But today, in the Dallas area, everybody is hunkered down due to a little ice flakes on the ground and highways.  Also, due to the clouds, it is a little dim outside, too.  When I examined my emails this morning, I read where the management staff in my senior apartment building will be closing the office early today, due to the weather conditions.  This is serious, guys.  I can’t blame them because already the TV news outlets are reporting highway accidents on the road.  A deadly pileup of over 160 vehicles caused six deaths and untold injuries.

So, I decided to lift up an emergency prayer to the Lord: 

“Dear Heavenly Father, I praise you for the change of seasons, for it is important to the scientific ecology concerned with the interrelationship of organisms and their environments.  I realize if it were not for the change in seasons, we would have a hard time breathing, combating diseases and existing on this planet.  I also realize, Dear Jesus, that because in this area, the citizens are not accustomed to driving and exercising caution under bad weather conditions, they often take chances and exercise dire judgments that causes fatal accidents.  It is during these times that I pray that You will be a Lamp unto our feet (on the accelerator) and a light unto our path (the icy road conditions).”  For if You do My Father, it will make it possible for us to pursue our life’s journey joyfully and safely in this chaotic world.  (Biblical quote from Psalm 119:105)  

Unexpected weather conditions can also give us an opportunity to think.  Exactly what is it that we need to think about? Read on…

  1.  WHAT –   That we are our brother’s keeper.
  2. WHERE – There is room at the cross for everyone.
  3. WHEN –   Then we must always be slow to anger and demonstrate patience in every circumstances

Every one goes through dark experiences in their lives and it is during those times that we must hole fast to the teachings of Christ Jesus, be strong and unmovable in the precepts of our Lord and Savior.  So, please, demonstrate your faith by exercise patience and be courteous to your fellow motorist.  No matter who you are, remember to say a little prayer every time you leave your house and position yourself behind the wheel of your automobile.  Do not allow foul language to proceed from your mouth as you travel down the road.  Stay safe this winter and hold up the blood stained banner for the Lord.

Scripture Lesson:  If anyone considers himself religious and does not keep a tight rein on his tongue, he deceives himself and his religion is worthless.  (James 1:26)

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.wordpress.com every Friday for a new post from The Master’s servant manager…Me!

God’s Road Map For Court Room Décor

The Bible is my Road Map and Passport to life.

I learned something this week.  Yes, my eyes were opened to a new perspective on the Bible.  I grew up knowing, believing and respecting the teaching that the Bible was the infallible Word of God; but this week, as I read Leviticus, Chapter One in the Old Testament, the Holy Spirit showed it to me as a Road Map for court etiquette.

You will recall that I have mentioned in past blog writings, that I am an early riser and often I connect with a semi-large group of believers who gather at 5:45 a.m. to 7:00 a.m. every weekday morning on the telephone for Bible study and prayer time.  Our mission, led by an assistant clergy of my church, is to read one chapter from four different books of the bible (three chapters from the O.T. and one chapter from the N.T.).

As the spirit leads, with thanksgiving, any person is allowed to ‘wrap a prayer around’ any verse that reminds them of God’s goodness.  Boy oh boy, does this exercise start my day with holy ecstasy, jubilance and solace.  The spirit runs high and by the end of the session, our leader closes out our time together by asking for prayer requests which he lifts up to the Lord.

All those who read and study the Bible know that God’s word is new and fresh every morning.  His word is also a lamp unto our feet and a light unto our pathway.  Since God likes things done in order, he gave the Levitical priests strict instructions on how to hold court at the tent of meeting (the tabernacle).

As I read and meditated over the first chapter of Leviticus, and saw how God wanted Moses to instruct the people as to how they were to bring their offering to the Lord, the Holy Spirit showed me that the same procedure required in the days of old are being lived out today in our court system in the twenty first century.

The first lesson I learned from the scriptures was that we all have sinned and fallen short of the glory of God.  Three classes of society are mentioned in the following verses.  And the offering that was required of them had to be killed and its blood was to be shed.  The person (sinner) who brought their offering to the priest (a forerunner of Jesus Christ, the High Priest Who was to come) had to lay their hand on the head of their burnt offering.

Lev. 1:3    “If the offering is a burnt offering from the ‘herd’”,….The filthy rich people that owned the larger animals like oxen and cattle with hides.
Lev. 1:10  “If the offering is a burnt offering from the ‘flock’”,….The middle class people that owned smaller animals like sheep and goats, chickens, etc.
Lev. 1:14  “If the offering to the Lord is a burnt offering of ‘birds’”,…The poorer class of people without means and who would have to catch and kill their offering.  

NOW, LET’S LOOK AT WHAT OUR COURTS REQUIRE…

All witnesses arraigned in our court system must place their hand on the Bible and swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth.  The example given in scripture shows that each society class of people owes their survival and good fortune to God (WHO IS TRUTH) and by placing their hand on the head of their prize possession (herd, flock or bird), they are indebted to Him and just as He gives, He can take it away.  Don’t forget, the Old Testament requires that the offering must be drained of its blood and completely burn up at the ceremony’s conclusion.

CHRIST JESUS SHED HIS BLOOD FOR US!

Perhaps, if you are familiar with the Book of Leviticus, you might think that I have really taken the meaning of Chapter One to the limit.  But that’s alright.  I just like to try and relate every word of God’s revelations to my life today and make it relevant.  I trust you do the same.  So many of my friends love to read and discuss the New Testament but shy away from the Old Testament.  For me, the more I understand the Old Testament, the more God reveals himself to me in the New Testament.

See you next week. Please leave me your comment on how you relate to the Old Testament Scriptures.

Scripture Lesson:

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path. - Psalm 119:105

Click http://www.tgifmasterminds.wordpress.com every Friday for a new post from The Master’s servant manager…Me!