Seeing is Believing


Jesus was crucified. He was buried. He rose again on the third day, as was prophesied. He was alive and well, after the horrors of flogging, rejection and crucifixion.

It would be easy to doubt His resurrection. It is not usual for anyone to come back from death. Yet, Jesus did. It is not only written about; there are also eye-witness accounts.

He was seen by Cephas, then by the twelve (Apostles). After that He was seen by over five hundred brethren at once, of whom the greater part remain to the present, but some have fallen asleep. After that He was seen by James, then by all the apostles. Then last of all He was seen by me (Paul) also …. (1 Corinthians 15:6-7)

So, who are we to doubt? Faith is believing in someone greater than ourselves. It is to believe the promises written about in the Bible. God – promises us that the Bible contains the absolute truth on how to behave, how to trust and how to live.

When there is nothing in your life worth a cent, putting your trust in God and in His written (God-breathed) words, can often be the difference between a life worth living and one of unspeakable heartbreak.

Jesus lived for us. He died for us. He lives for, and waits, for us to follow Him.

Choose life!

Psalm 118:8 It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man. (NKJV)

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It’s a Cold, Cold Day


It’s a cold, cold day, here today. Snow squalls are continually driving a path through the area, and brutally cold temperatures are the order of the day. Unforgiving weather, is what I call it. Exposure to these elements for too, long, would mean you would be dealing with frostbite, as well as certain death, if exposed for too long.

The world is filled with deadly conditions too. Abortion. Rape. Abuse. Deception. Theft. Prostitution. Human trafficking. Child labor. The list can almost be endless.

Billy Graham, aged 93, and still a man of God, with Godly values, prays for our human frailties and I print his prayer here, for all who would like to pray it for themselves and our earthly world and governments.

Billy Graham’s Prayer

THIS MAN SURE HAS A GOOD VIEW OF WHAT’S HAPPENING NOT ONLY TO THE U.S. BUT ALSO TO OUR WORLD!

‘Heavenly Father, we come before you today to ask your forgiveness and to seek your direction and guidance. We know Your Word says, ‘Woe to those who call evil good,’ but that is exactly what we have done. We have lost our spiritual equilibrium and reversed our values. We have exploited the poor and called it the lottery. We have rewarded laziness and called it welfare. We have killed our unborn and called it choice. We have shot abortionists and called it justifiable… We have neglected to discipline our children and called it building self-esteem. We have abused power and called it politics. We have coveted our neighbor’s possessions and called it ambition. We have polluted the air with profanity and pornography and called it freedom of expression. We have ridiculed the time-honored values of our forefathers and called it enlightenment. Search us, Oh God, and know our hearts today; cleanse us from sin and Set us free. Amen!’

MY blog: http://pattersmatters.wordpress.com
My Devotionals can be read at:
http://www.devotionalchristian.com
http://www.underthecoverofprayer.com
http://www.presbycan.com/daily devotionals

You Are Never Alone!


Sitting and thinking about what to write, I immediately focused on a friend who is dealing with a major challenge, and to help her all I can do is pray. I say that not to diminish the power of prayer, but to say she is dealing with an obstacle that only she can overcome.

Other friends and I, are all praying for resolve in the situation -assuring her that God is with her and to trust and lean on Him.

In my thoughts an advertisement from years ago popped in to my head – funny how the mind can open old files at seemingly inopportune moments. I pray for her and reassure her that she is never alone and that God is always with her and along with that meditation came an old TV ad for cigarettes – no I don’t smoke – where a mysterious gentleman is strolling dark streets – goodness knows why, I don’t remember – and in the ominous darkness he reaches for, and lights a cigarette and you hear the words – ‘you are never alone with a Strand (ciggy brand)’. I guess it was meant to be his comfort and of course, a sales pitch for the cigarette company.

My point here is that God can be and will be our comfort each and every day, if we choose to let Him. Our wellbeing is His greatest desire and when we allow Him complete control of our lives we are filled with a courage and comfort beyond our understanding.

Joshua 1:5d-6a …. I will not leave you nor forsake you. Be strong and of good courage. (NKJV)

So there you have it – He tells us clearly in His Word, ‘You are never alone’. Nothing dark and sinister but a comfort and the knowledge that He is with us always.

Whatever is overwhelming – whatever is challenging – God can change it.

Patricia

https://pepeprays.wordpress.com
http://pattersmatters.wordpress.com

Prayer Works………


The power of prayer can work miracles in our lives. Big miracles or small miracles, any or all can come our way if we pray for God’s will into our lives.

I have personally experienced some wonderful blessings myself, by trusting in God’s perfect will for my life.

Not sure what to pray or how to pray? Here are two powerful prayers that can build faith as well as provide much comfort.

For New Direction ……

The Prayer of Jabez

“Oh, that you would bless me indeed, and enlarge my territory that Your hand would be with me, and that You would keep me from evil, that I may not cause pain!” 1 Chronicles 4:9-10

The Lord’s Prayer (for all our needs)

Our Father in Heaven, hallowed be Your name. Your kingdom come. Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread. And forgive us our debts, as we forgive our debtors. And do not lead us into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. For Yours is the kingdom and the power and the glory forever. Amen! Matthew 6:9b-13

Blessings to you,

http://pattersmatters.wordpress.com
https://pepeprays.wordpress.com

Father’s Day Approaches!


As Father’s Day approaches, there are many who celebrate their Dads. These men have been excellent role models for their children. They have raised them with love and respect and have provided a safe home. Their children are well-adjusted, displaying mature coping skills that enable them to live life independently. 

Sadly, there are many others who have not got Dads that they want to celebrate. They have been brutalized or neglected emotionally and physically; leaving their children afraid, confused and lacking the necessary skills to cope in relationships and with life in general!  They survive life, they don’t know how to truly live it with joy in their hearts!

God provides a safe haven! He is a Father to the fatherless, a Provider and Protector to all!  He gives peace to our hearts and minds as we grapple to live life on this earth.  You can reach Him and speak to Him and trust Him with all your hurts, secrets and doubts. How?  Jesus said, “Find a quiet secluded place so that you won’t be tempted to role-play before God.

Just be there as simply and honestly as you can manage. The focus will shift from you to God, and you’ll begin to sense his grace. ….This is your father you are dealing with, and He knows better than you what you need. With a God like this loving you, you can pray very simply.” Matthew 6:6-8/**[The
Message]*

Don’t know what to say?  Just talk to Him as you would a close friend.  Nobody else will hear what you say or know what you are thinking.  God is safe! 

Prayer:  God – please hear me and help me.  You know what is right for me.  So I put my life in Your hands and trust You with everything.  God bless the good Dads!  Help the not-so-good Dads to become better.  Help every child to put their trust in You, so they can live life to the fullest, no matter what they have experienced in the past.  Amen!

Focus!


Matthew 6:6  But you, when you pray, go into your room, and when you have shut your door, pray to your Father who is in the secret place; and Your Father who sees in secret will reward you openly.  (NKJV)

When you pray, do you ever find yourself being inundated with other thoughts and a myriad of distractions around you?  I do, I have to confess. 

During my bible and prayer time recently, I found my focus drawn to activity in the garden.  I was trying to say the Lord’s Prayer, but I kept interjecting my own thoughts into it.  It was so persistent that I decided I would write down my attempts.  Here it is.

Our Father who art in heaven.  Uh-oh, here comes a pesky squirrel.

Hallowed be Thy Name.  I wonder did you spill the feeder yesterday, to get to the seed?

Thy kingdom come, Thy will be done, On earth as it is in heaven.  You’re very fortunate you are quicker on your feet than me.

Give us this day our daily bread.  Even the squirrel!

And forgive us our trespasses   Even those of us who plot against Your squirrels.

As we forgive those who trespass against us.  Gotta be the squirrels!

And lead us not into temptation,  I plot to hurt it, but would not

But deliver us from evil.  It is one of your creations too.

For Thine is the Kingdom  And it belongs to you just as much as I do.

The Power and the Glory  I  give up!  I’ll continue to watch – but not during my bible time.  Sorry, Abba!

Forever and ever, Amen

See what I mean?  Wasn’t that pitiful?  Reading it, I was ashamed of my poor effort and my lack of focus.  My focus should have been on God and His Prayer – not on the squirrel in the garden.  

Prayer:  Abba, I thank You that you are tolerant of my weaknesses and foibles.  Forgive me when my attention is taken from You.  Direct me to focus on You and You alone, for You are more than worthy.  Amen.

http://pattersmatters.wordpress.com

www.devotionalchristian.com

 

 

 

 

Anyway!


Anyway!  the word can sound like a negative response, or justification for a wrong action or spoken word.

I (try my best to) live by the biblical laws of the Lord’s Ten Commandments, and some time ago, I’d had some unexpected challenges and I had been questioning myself.  How could I react in a positive manner?The truth was, I was angry and in need of much grace within myself; nevertheless, I wanted to overcome that negativity.  Checking my emails, I found a friend had sent me a link to Dr. Kent Keith’s, ‘Paradoxical Commandments’  and his presentation helped me to put things into perspective -perhaps, they’ll help you today in someway too – so with permission granted me by Dr. Kent Keith, here they are for you – remember to always try to Do Your Best, in all you do.

THE PARADOXICAL COMMANDMENTS

 By Kent M. Keith

  

  1. People are illogical, unreasonable, and self-centered. Love them anyway.

 2.   If you do good, people will accuse you of selfish ulterior   motives. Do good anyway.

3.  If you are successful, you will win false friends and true enemies. Succeed anyway.

4.  The good you do today will be forgotten tomorrow. Do good anyway.

5.  Honesty and frankness make you vulnerable. Be honest and frank anyway.

6.  The biggest men and women with the biggest ideas can be shot down by the smallest men and women with the smallest minds. Think big anyway.

7.  People favor underdogs but follow only top dogs. Fight for a few underdogs anyway.

8.  What you spend years building may be destroyed overnight. Build anyway.

9.  People really need help but may attack you if you do help them. Help people anyway.

10. Give the world the best you have and you’ll get kicked in the teeth. Give the world the best you have anyway.

© Copyright Kent M. Keith 1968, renewed 2001

The Paradoxical Commandments were written by Kent M. Keith as part of his book, The Silent Revolution: Dynamic Leadership in the Student Council, published in 1968 by Harvard Student Agencies, Cambridge, Massachusetts. More information is available at http://www.paradoxicalcommandments.com/.

More of mine:  http://pattersmatters.wordpress.com

www.devotionalchristian.com

 

Rest on God’s Promise


New Life

Have you noticed how easy it is to give advice to others, while overlooking what you might need guidance on?

Recommending a change of direction or lifestyle in someone else’s world is easy but it is not so easy to do for ourselves. 

The world has many well-intentioned folk.  Some are not Godly and certainly not kind.  They make unrealistic, even cruel demands on others, ensuring their own needs are met, while completely ignoring the difficulties and restrictions they impose upon others. 

A saving grace in complex or dangerous situations, if you believe in the one true God, is to remember that you do have a ‘safe place to go’.  

God lives in the hearts of all believers and no-one can take Him away from us.  Life can be full of regulations and controls that burden  and even cause us to consider ‘giving-up’, those times are when God’s people seek the quiet of a God-filled heart.  They in turn receive a strength that is beyond the understanding of non-believers, many of whom will ridicule our dependence upon a God that cannot be seen. 

Psalm 71:1 – I run to You, Lord, for protection.  Don’t disappoint me. (CEV)

Prayer:  Father God, let us always remember who is truly in charge. We can be overwhelmed by the control that others have on our lives.  Help us to focus on You and trust in Your provision for our well-being and our inner peace.  Lord help us to continue to grow in our faith.  Amen

there’s more at:  http://pattersmatters.worpdress.com

www.devotionalchristian.com

 

 

 

My Blinking Coffee Maker


A New Day

A New Day Dawning

My coffee maker is winking at me! Honestly: on and off, on and off goes the little red light. It’s actually telling me that the machine needs cleaning, but what it isn’t recognizing is that I have cleaned it — I removed every removable part that I can find; I removed the filter mechanism and replaced the filter, and then cleaned it some more just to be sure. But the blinking red light still winks at me! What is its problem? What have I missed? Every nook and cranny has been dealt with that I can see, but it chooses not to take any notice — and so-o-o, day in, day out, whenever I make coffee, the machine winks at me. I even tried to hide the light with a black marker — a big, black, permanent marker that I thought I could use to daub onto the little red light and mask it — well, that didn’t work! No way was it going to be hidden. I think I’d miss it now — I’ve become quite used to its presence.

Psalm 51:1-2 – Have mercy upon me, O God, according to Your lovingkindness; according to the multitude of Your tender mercies, blot out my transgressions. Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity, and cleanse me from my sin. (NKJV)

When God sees the need for us to be cleaned, His light, the Holy Spirit, convicts us that unnecessary sediment is present in our spirits and hearts, the remainder of all the wrongs we have committed. He pursues us continually in many ways. He puts His people in our path to get our attention, to speak to us, and help us to recognize where improvement is needed. He reminds us continually through His Word — if in fact we are actually checking the interior of the Book. He will keep reappearing in many forms, reminding us that it is time for change.

Yet, how many times we try to mask Him so that we can go on doing what we are doing — things that we know He would not approve of. It’s as if we are picking up a big, black marker and trying to obliterate Him from the eyes of our hearts and spirits. We do that in vain because His light will not be blocked, however hard we try to make it happen. He will continue to pursue each one of us and make us aware of His disciplines and His way. His light will be ever present until we take notice and attend to what needs correction.

John 12:46-48 – I have come as a light into the world, that whoever believes in Me should not abide in darkness. And if anyone hears My words and does not believe, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him — the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day. (NKJV)

Those who have received Christ need periodic cleanings, but others need to confess their sins and receive Christ’s forgiveness for the very first time. Only when we choose to conform and repent and call upon God in the name of Jesus to help us and accept us and change us from the inside out can we begin to understand what a difference His cleansing in our lives will make. It is a feeling beyond any other and cannot be adequately described by mere words — we’ve got to try it ourselves. Many years ago, He called me to change and to follow Him. Thankfully, He took over, and I had no control over the powerful spirit of love that wrapped itself around me. He walked me to the prayer rail of my (then) church, where I gave my life to Him. I have rejoiced in that action ever since. You can do it too!

Prayer: Lord Jesus, I want to know You personally. I know that I have done wrong things in the past and I am sorry. I am willing, with Your help, to turn away from my sins and turn to You. I believe, Jesus, that You died for me and rose again for me. Please come into my life and change me and show me Your ways, right now. Amen.

A New Morning!


It is New Year’s Eve and it snowed overnight.  I look out at gray skies and a crispy, white blanket of snow covering the ground.  There are many imperfections concealed beneath it’s shroud.  You would never know there were areas of uneven ground there, because they are now hidden from view.  Just a layer of snow; deep and crisp and even!

The happenings in our lives can sometimes be hidden like that too.  We often do not know what to expect as each new day dawns.  Each event of the day is ‘under wraps’, until it is time for it to be revealed to us.   We hope against hope, that all will be white and beautiful, and not dark and menacing.  We hope for a comfortable white blanket to snuggle into.

The Bible promises that kind of comfort from God!  Each new day presents us with an opportunity to discover and experience more of God’s love.  Even in the midst of terrible sorrow, great is His faithfulness.  He is the comforter and compassionate God who remains “full of grace and truth”.  His love endures forever and is available to us, like a blanket to wrap around ourselves each and every morning.  

Lamentations 3:22-25 Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed, because His compassions fail not.  They are new every morning.  Great is Your faithfulness.  “The Lord is my portion” says my soul, “there I hope in Him”.  The Lord is good to those who wait for Him, to the soul who seeks Him. 

Prayer:  Lord reveal Your loving kindness and comfort to us.  Where there is despair bring hope!  Where there is sadness, bring joy!  Where there is struggle, bring relief.  We trust in Your provision and in Your Grace.  Please do not stay hidden.  In Jesus Name, Amen. 

http://pattersmatters.wordpress.com

Author of Eleanor’s Story – A Stolen Childhood

For grieving children Brenda Wood’s beautifully illustrated book ‘The Big Red Chair’, brings a message of love and hope.  Comes complete with a CD, on which Brenda reads the story.

http://heartfeltdevotionals.wordpress.com

  HAPPY NEW YEAR !