Monthly Archives: February 2014

Thought For The Day 02/22/14

Standard

Knowing Ourselves

Post 1075

___

waiting-for-the-train-at-the-railway-station

http://www.123rf.com/photo_3194105_woman-waiting-for-the-train-at-the-railway-station.html

___

Knowing yourself is not so much about introspection and interaction. To know yourself is to realize that you are more than the little self that has been given to you by your history — the pattern that others made — that your true self is, in truth, much larger and includes other people, other cultures, other species even. That life is less about being and more about inter-being. We come to know ourselves, then, through coming to know each other. And the deeper that knowledge, the richer and more creative t he world we build together

Danny Martin

http://www.finestquotes.com/select_quote-category-Knowing%20Yourself-page-0.htm

___

There is a commercial airing here on US television (I do not know if it airs worldwide) for a dating service that has a line of dialog that goes something like this: How can you know who’s right for you until you know yourself? Now this is a paraphrase of the original, but it is a sentiment that offers some profound advice that is well worth remembering. You see, whether it is as you are searching for life’s companion, or you are searching to become closer to God, neither will be accomplished unless and until you first know your own heart and what it is you want from the thing you seek!

___

Now most of us might think that this is easy. But, take a moment and think about the last time it took you what seemed like forever to make a decision about something in your life. Perhaps it was something as inane as what it was you wanted for dinner in a restaurant, or even making a choice about the clothes you are shopping for. Or how about that indecisiveness you feel as you are about to begin that big work project. Yes, each and every one of the choices we are faced with all force us to look inward and make some hard and fast decisions about what will make us both happy and feel fulfilled, at the same time! And yet, as well as we think our strengths and weaknesses are and what will ultimately make us happy, often, when forced to make a choice, we remain uncertain. I don’t know about you all, but there are many times that I feel like I have one of those “mini” me’s, one wearing a halo complete with harp, and the other, horns on head and pitchfork in hand, sitting one on each shoulder, and each one whispering loudly into my ear, vying for my attention so they can tell me why their way is the best way!

___

Fortunately for man, it really is easier when it comes to matters of faith because it is the one area in our lives where we are driven by the emotions and feelings contained within the heart instead of inside our head. Faith affords us a profound insight into ourselves and it is easier to trust the things He is saying to us because He knows who and what we are meant to be in the first place! And when we can turn our face heavenward and say to Him, “You know me because you made me”, we have taken the first step in knowing exactly who we are and exactly what we want from life. Once we have this sorted out, the rest of the things we accomplish throughout our lives is merely the icing on the cake!

___

There is a song that I remember learning as a child about trusting God and the promises He makes to us all as we seek to become closer with him. The words of the first verse goes something like this:

Standing on the promises I cannot fall,
Listening every moment to the Spirit’s call
Resting in my Savior as my all in all,
Standing on the promises of God.

In case we have any questions about what He can do for us, His promises are given to us in many scripture passages from the Bible. I am sharing a few for you to read and remember. Allow them to boost you up during the times you find yourself doubting. And there is something else to consider. You may just find that taking them to heart might help you to get the rest of your life’s “ducks” in a row, as well!

___

Jeremiah 29:11 NLT

For I know the plans I have for you,” says the Lord. “They are plans for good and not for disaster, to give you a future and a hope.

__

Matthew 11:28-29 NLT

“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls.

__

Philippians 4:19 NLT

And this same God who takes care of me will supply all your needs from his glorious riches, which have been given to us in Christ Jesus.

__

Romans 8:37-39 NLT

No, despite all these things, overwhelming victory is ours through Christ, who loved us.

And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord.

___

Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 02/21/14

Standard

Evangelism

Post 1074

___

Evangelism

https://dbcmedia.org/sermons/images/86

___

I am convinced, by the way, that friendships provide the most fertile soil for evangelism. When the reality of Christ is introduced into a relationship of love and trust that has already been established, the effect is powerful. And it seems that invariably, when someone becomes a true follower of Christ, that person’s first impulse is to want to find a friend and introduce that friend to Christ.
 
John MacArthur
Source: Twelve Ordinary Men

___

I am always amazed when I read about the new efforts at “Evangelism”. Even the efforts of Pope Emeritus Benedict at encouraging an age whereby the fostering of love in the world is accomplished by what he refers as “The New Evangelization”, is anything but new! After all, was not the greatest of all evangelists the Son of God himself? Did Jesus not focus on the most important components of “Evangelization” by teaching the fundamental tenets of the Christian faith, and then courageously foster every time He spoke, a deeper understanding of its components and applications? And was not all of the ideas of faith that ended with Christ’s death not carried forth even further by the Apostles who continued living, loving and leading with both joy and the strength of conviction as the years progressed? “And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.” Acts 13:52 NIVAnd while we may not have actually named the process itself for perhaps 1300 more years, that does not change the fact that what was, is, and always will be by the intent of the Christian heart in sharing our beliefs, an ongoing effort at “Evangelization”?

___

Today the process by which we effort our “Evangelism” is vastly different that it was in its early days. While we may at times curse the technologies that the modern age has afforded man, the fact of the matter is that we can now reach the four corners of the globe in a nanosecond! My blog is one example of the miracle technology has gifted to us. For example, for one week in 2013, the chart below (part of the statistics WordPress maintains for me) shows you the scope of the countries my words have touched, and the number of people who have shared my thoughts. Pretty amazing for a housewife from South Carolina, don’t you think?

___

Country Views
United States 106
Canada 18
United Kingdom 14
Germany 9
India 9
Indonesia 4
South Africa 4
Philippines 3
France 3
Australia 2
Lithuania 2
Spain 2
Singapore 1
Israel 1
Uruguay 1
United Arab Emirates 1
Sri Lanka 1
Italy 1
Malaysia 1
Peru 1
Finland 1
Thailand 1
Hong Kong 1
Latvia 1

___

So now think about the lives that were touched by the mini-series that aired on “The HISTORY CHANNEL” last night, “THE BIBLE”! The celebrity “Twitter” accounts of many unlikely notables were abuzz with messages urging their followers to tune in, including Rapper P. Diddy; Glee TV star Jane Lynch; Singer Christine Aguilera; The Duchess of York, Sarah Ferguson; Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine; Reality notable Kate Gosselin and Shannon Tweed, wife of KISS star Gene Simmons! And while it is too early to check out the ratings numbers, polls taken were universally positive. I watched it with my father, and while there were a few liberties of poetic license, it was a remarkable undertaking which, when it is over, will have numbered 10 hours of historically accurate tales from the Bible and I suspect, will have a viewership of several hundred million people! Yes, “Evangelization” at it’s finest, and all because a devout Roman Catholic actress, Roma Downey, and her famed reality show producer husband, Mark Burnett, dared to dream of a way to bring history to life and share faith’s tale. And so the effort at using the tools of modern technology at fostering “Evangelization” continues!

___

I am going to share with you some Bible verses that will focus on the words of Jesus and tell you some of the reasons He believed “Evangelization” was absolutely necessary. Read them and then remember that sharing God’s message to others is what is asked of all of us. So, if I can do what I do every day in writing my thoughts, what can each of you do?

~

Matthew 9:37-38 

Then He said to His disciples, “The harvest is plentiful, but the workers are few. “Therefore beseech the Lord of the harvest to send out workers into His harvest.”

~

Luke 19:10 

“For the Son of Man has come to seek and to save that which was lost.”

~

Acts 1:8  

but you shall receive power when the Holy Spirit has come upon you; and you shall be My witnesses both in Jerusalem, and in all Judea and Samaria, and even to the remotest part of the earth.”

~

Matthew 28:19-20  

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.”

~

2 Corinthians 6:2

for He says, “At the acceptable time I listened to you, And on the day of salvation I helped you”; behold, now is “the acceptable time,” behold, now is “the day of salvation “

 
___
“Continue steadfastly in prayer, being watchful in it with thanksgiving. At the same time, pray also for us, that God may open to us a door for the word, to declare the mystery of Christ, on account of which I am in prison— that I may make it clear, which is how I ought to speak. Walk in wisdom toward outsiders, making the best use of the time. Let your speech always be gracious, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how you ought to answer each person.”
 
Colossians 4: 2-6 ESV

___

Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 02/20/14

Standard

Bashing The Blues To Bits

Post 1072

___

laughter
___
 
 What monstrous absurdities and paradoxes have resisted whole batteries of serious arguments, and then crumbled swiftly into dust before the ringing death-knell of a laugh! 
 
Agnes Repplier
___
I am feeling just a bit sad today. I have no reason in particular for feeling this way although there are perhaps a dozen little reasons, each fighting one another to be acknowledged as the victor. Perhaps it’s worry over health issues for those I love that will force us to travel to another state within the next few weeks for expert healthcare management. Perhaps it’s just waking to an overcast, grey day that has my body hungering for the Vitamin D that some sunshine will give. Perhaps it’s seeing friends unhappy in grief which seems to have passed the “bad luck happens in sets of three” stage. Perhaps it is sadness over my dad’s move to my sister’s in CO. Perhaps it’s unhappiness among some of my friends and colleagues from within the ranks of my church. Perhaps it’s that my life is so tied to people who have determined that because there may be another “situation” in the Middle East, that the Future’s Market can judge and issue an edict that results in ridiculous fluctuations in the price of my gasoline.
___
None of what I’ve described here is anything that I have direct control over, as much as I wish it were otherwise. The external forces that seem to be at war with us all every day are simply that….external challenges meant to undermine our confidence and resolve and spirit. Just a thought here, but perhaps they are given to us by the Devil to cause us to question our internal fortitude as well as our faith?
___
I believe that the potholes we encounter all along our pathway in life are part of the Devil’s playground and toys, intended to stir up as much “Agita” (Italian slang meaning heartburn, acid indigestion, upset stomach or, by extension, a general feeling of upset) as he can manage. Because the more upset we become, he hopes the more we will question our lives and the paths we have chosen. The question, for me, now becomes, will I allow this sadness to continue throughout my day? Or will I pick myself up, dust myself off, and put a smile not just on my face, but in my heart, as well? For we all know that like “an apple a day keeps the doctor away”, so can joy and happiness and laughter every day keep the devil away! Perhaps that is why my ha-ha posts mean so much to me, and to many of you. If somehow, we can manage just one chuckle in our day, don’t you agree that the other parts, the heavier parts, become somehow less cumbersome?
___
Some One Liners To Help Put That Smile Back On Your Face!
 
Author’s Unknown
 
 
1. Give God what’s right — not what’s left. 
2. Man’s way leads to a hopeless end — God’s way leads to an endless hope.
3. A lot of kneeling will keep you in good standing.
4. He who kneels before God can stand before anyone.
5. In the sentence of life, the devil may be a comma–but never let him be the period.
6. Don’t put a question mark where God puts a period.
7. Are you wrinkled with burden? Come to the church for a faith-lift.
8. When praying, don’t give God instructions – just report for duty.
9. Don’t wait for six strong men to take you to church.
10. We don’t change God’s message — His message changes us. 
11. The church is prayer-conditioned.
12. When God ordains, He sustains.
13. WARNING: Exposure to the Son may prevent burning. 
14. Plan ahead — It wasn’t raining when Noah built the ark. 
15. Most people want to serve God, but only in an advisory position. 
16. Suffering from truth decay? Brush up on your Bible.
  17. Exercise daily — walk with the Lord. 
 18. Never give the devil a ride — he will always want to drive. 
 19. Nothing else ruins the truth like stretching it. 
 20. Compassion is difficult to give away because it keeps coming back. 
 21. He who angers you controls you. 
 22. Worry is the darkroom in which negatives can develop. 
 23. Give Satan an inch & he’ll be a ruler.
24. Be ye fishers of men — you catch them & He’ll clean them. 
 25. God doesn’t call the qualified, He qualifies the called. 
 26. Read the Bible — It will scare the hell out of you.
 
___
Gracious words are a honeycomb, sweet to the soul and healing to the bones.
Proverbs 16:24 NIV

___

Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 02/19/14

Standard

What Will Your Bucket List Include?

Post 1071

___

Bucket List

http://sogyeltobgyel.blogspot.com/2011/04/before-kicking-bucket.html

___

The greatest danger for most of us is not that our aim is too high and we miss, but that it is too low and we reach it.

Michelangelo

http://mslistologist.com/2010/04/57-quotes-that-will-inspire-you/

___

A few years ago, a movie was released that forever changed a common phrase we have all used musingly, at one time or another, when discussing the culmination of a life well lived…..”kicking the bucket”! For any of you who may not be familiar with the famous movie that starred Jack Nicholson and Morgan Freeman, “The Bucket List”, released in 2007, is a comedy that follows two terminally ill men as they embark on a road trip with a list of zany and wonderful things they want to do/see/accomplish before they die! And since then, people everywhere have jumped on the “bucket list” bandwagon, compiling their dream “to do’s” for every time frame imaginable….. a bucket list for week, for the month, for the year, etc. Even corporations have joined in with a business model “bucket list” for employees to aspire to!  So today, I want us to think about creating a “bucket list” for our life of faith!

___

Now I know that I am not the first to suggest a “bucket list” for faith. In fact, many churches have complied such a list for congregants who are celebrating the “Year of Faith”, which is an effort by the Roman Catholic Church (and adopted by many Protestant denominations, as well), of sharing the Gospel in an effort at adopting “New Evangelization” or the proclaiming of faith and the son of God to all people. Now history shows that many Roman Catholics have traditionally viewed this type of activity as an effort more suited to Protestant religions! So it is probably easy to understand how establishing a bucket list for this purpose, would facilitate the goals this movement is trying to effect. You see, sitting down and writing a list of the things that are the most meaningful as we explore what it is we hope to realize from embarking on the journey that brings us closer in terms of our personal relationship with God, helps each of us to discover just what our goals are. It allows us to decide what the things are that will be the most valuable to us in understanding the dynamics of our faith, and it also provides us a way to remember all of the things we hope to accomplish even as it acts as a catalyst to inspire us to do even more!

___

So what do we want to include on our “bucket list”? Well, there are a few standards that should begin every “bucket list” of faith, such as:

  1. Remember to offer a prayer of thanks at least once each day to God for all of the blessings he has bestowed! And even if it seems as if there is nothing in your life to be thankful for, then simply thank Him for the fact that you woke this morning to a brand new day where you can begin again the process of discovering His wonders!  2 Timothy 1:3 NLT, “… I thank God for you—the God I serve with a clear conscience, just as my ancestors did. Night and day I constantly remember you in my prayers.”
  2.  Make it a point to read one Bible verse every day. If you have trouble understanding what is being told in a particular version, such as the King James Version, there are many versions that have translated the texts into a format that is more easily understood. And you need not buy a copy. Simply enter http://bible.cc/ and the “Online Parallel Bible” will come up. Next, type in any book of the bible, and simply start with chapter 1, verse 1, and you will find the verse in nearly every translation right there, in front of your eyes. Psalm 119:105 ESV, “Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.”
  3. Become a volunteer in your community so that you live and breathe Christ’s teaching to “Love Thy Neighbor”. What you give to help others and make your community a better place for everyone, will be returned to you many fold! 1 John 3:18 ESV, “Little children, let us not love in word or talk but in deed and in truth.”
  4. Visit a church or a cathedral that holds a place in history. Look around at the walls and the floor, and sit in a pew that has held thousands upon thousands of the faithful throughout history. Think about the master artist that created the unique and exquisite stained glass windows. Look at the baptismal font and envision the life of the untold numbers of babies who became part of God’s family on that very spot. Remember as you see, smell and touch the wonders of the history of the building, that a church is more than the structure. It is the people, all believers united together, one with the other under God! Acts 20:28 NIV, “Keep watch over yourselves and all the flock of which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers. Be shepherds of the church of God, which he bought with.”

___

There are a thousand of other things I can think of to include in my personal “bucket list”, but just as our faith and beliefs are somewhat subjective, so are the things we might choose to do in an effort at bringing us closer to the Almighty. But let that be my challenge to you today! Make a list of your own. It needn’t be long, nor must it include everything one might hope to discover, right off the bat. Let your list grow and grow, even as you grow closer to the Almighty, with each thing that you do. Let His love for you act as your compass as you seek to discover all that you can about not just God, but your own heart, as well!

___

The body is a unit, though it is made up of many parts; and though all its parts are many, they form one body. So it is with Christ. For we were all baptized by one Spirit into one body-whether Jews or Greeks, slave or free-and we were all given the one Spirit to drink. Now the body is not made up of one part but of many. If the foot should say, “Because I am not a hand, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. And if the ear should say, “Because I am not an eye, I do not belong to the body,” it would not for that reason cease to be part of the body. If the whole body were an eye, where would the sense of hearing be? If the whole body were an ear, where would the sense of smell be? But in fact God has arranged the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be. If they were all one part, where would the body be? As it is, there are many parts, but one body. The eye cannot say to the hand, “I don’t need you!” And the head cannot say to the feet, “I don’t need you!” On the contrary, those parts of the body that seem to be weaker are indispensable, and the parts that we think are less honorable we treat with special honor. And the parts that are unpresentable are treated with special modesty, while our presentable parts need no special treatment. But God has combined the members of the body and has given greater honor to the parts that lacked it, so that there should be no division in the body, but that its parts should have equal concern for each other. If one part suffers, every part suffers with it; if one part is honored, every part rejoices with it.

1 Corinthians 12:12-26 NIV

___

Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 02/18/14

Standard

It!

Post 1070

___

we can do it

___

Faith is a passionate intuition. 
 
William Wordsworth
___
I try to understand “IT” but sometimes “IT” is not something to be understood.  “IT” is, rather, something to be intuitively sensed.  “IT” is felt with every breath of air that touches our skin. “IT” is seen in the twinkle of an eye, but only if we take care to look into that eye deeply enough. “IT” resonates with every laugh we hear. “IT” washes our face with the tears we weep. “IT” is something as etherial as every beat of our heart. “IT” is all-encompassing and yet  “IT” does not try to stifle. “IT” allows us complete freedom and yet “IT” shares with us the rules and gives us a map by which we must put “IT” to work in our lives each and every day! “IT” guides and yet never dictates. “IT” lures and yet never demands.  “IT’s” message is so profound as to leave us breathless in its passions and drives our soul on a quest as we hunger for more.  “IT” is joy.  “IT” is sorrow.  “IT” is love. “IT” is hate.  “IT” is forgiveness.  “IT” is redemption. “IT” is what “IT” is!

___

Love+Is

___

It Is You (I Have Loved All Along) 

Performed by:
Dana Glover

 

There is something that I see
In the way you look at me
There’s a smile, there’s a truth in your eyes
But an unexpected way
On this unexpected day
Could it mean this is where I belong

It is you I have loved all along

__ 

It’s no more mystery
It is finally clear to me
You’re the home my heart searched for so long
And it is you I have loved all along

__ 

There were times I ran to hide
Afraid to show the other side
Alone in the night without you
But now I know just who you are
And I know you hold my heart
Finally this is where I belong
It is you I have loved all along

__

 It’s no more mystery
It is finally clear to me
You’re the home my heart searched for so long
 And it is you I have loved all along 

__

Over and over I’m filled with emotion
Your love, it rushes through my veins
And I am filled With the sweetest devotion
As I, I look into your perfect face

__ 

It’s no more mystery
It is finally clear to me
You’re the home my heart searched for so long
And it is you I have loved
It is you I have loved
It is you I have loved…..all along

___

Click the embed link to view the video!

___

For ye are bought with a price: therefore glorify God in your body, and in your spirit, which are God’s.

1 Corinthians 6:20 KJV

___

Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

Thought For The Day 02/17/14

Standard

Living Together

Or

Living Apart Together

Or

Living Together Apart

 

Post 1069

___

wedding-rings

http://www.relationstips.com/how-to-choose-the-perfect-wedding-ring/

___

‘It is not a lack of love, but a lack of friendship that makes unhappy marriages.’

Friedrich Nietzsche

http://www.goodreads.com/quotes/tag/marriage

___

There is something so profoundly comforting knowing that the man I love is sitting just 6 feet away from me watching golf on TV while I am sitting here, “netbook” afire with my bursting thoughts. You see, just the simple fact that we are sharing a common space even without saying a word, is building a comforting memory that he is here, at my side, just as he has been every second since we were married nearly 39 years ago. That we can share a word or a tender caress at any given moment, somehow serves to strengthen bond of love that unites us so that the times that are not quite so idyllic will not sever it! Which makes me wonder about the dynamic of the relationship of those who have adopted the “LAT” way of life!

___

“LAT”, which stands for “Living Apart Together”, is an increasingly popular lifestyle for some couples. According to The New York Times, a drifting away from the nuclear, traditional marriage model almost makes sense, given the changes that have occurred within the family dynamic over the last 50 years. Most families are two income households and often work schedules interfere in what was once a traditional life at home. Separate work and social lives seems to foster an increasing independence within relationships, which is leading couples to choose either residing in separate homes, but near one another, or to live in the same home, but each maintaining an independent living space within the home.

___

A union of two hearts sealed by God’s blessing, is a serious and sacred undertaking, which is why we are told in Matthew 19:6 NIV, “So they are no longer two, but one. Therefore what God has joined together, let man not separate.” It is through the little connections that happen within the relationship….the little everyday acts of closeness….which acts as the glue which holds a relationship together through the roller coaster ride that is life! Still, God hates a division of a couple even more. He says in Malachi 2:16 NIV, “I hate divorce,” says the LORD God of Israel, “and I hate a man’s covering himself with violence as well as with his garment,” says the LORD Almighty. So guard yourself in your spirit, and do not break faith.”

___

I suppose that there may be times when, had they lived under the same roof, couples who practice “LAT” would have been divorced. Yes, perhaps we need to look beyond convention, and acknowledge that whatever works and makes a couple happy, is what is the best scenario for them, since each relationship is unique. Still, I have to wonder…..have we actually lost sight of the interpersonal dynamic of two hearts, vibrant and alive, rooted in the rich soil of faith, as we embark on life’s journey, holding hands, but only when it is convenient?

___

“Let no debt remain outstanding, except the continuing debt to love one another, for whoever loves others has fulfilled the law.”

Romans 13:8 NIV

___

Copyright © 2011-2013 “MandysPath” Ministry

Faulty Beliefs vs. Maturity

Standard
Faulty Beliefs vs. Maturity

I want to share this post with you all which was written by a fellow blogger, Pastor Joe Quatrone, Jr., whose posts I have been following for quite some time. It is an observation worth thinking about!

Joe Quatrone, Jr.

“WA-father-and-son-walking-007hen I was a child, I talked like a child, I thought like a child, I reasoned like a child. When I became a man, I put the ways of childhood behind me” (1 Cor. 13:11).

Have you ever walked into the living room on Christmas morning to find your husband sitting in the middle of the floor playing with a new train set? There is nothing wrong with a grown man or woman taking a few minutes out of an otherwise physically and emotionally taxing day to have fun. But it’s another matter altogether when an adult copes with the important matters of life from the emotional standpoint of a child.

If you are married to a fifty-year-old kid, who doesn’t know when it’s time to be the father or husband, after a while the cuteness of your husband’s antics are replaced by a growing resentment…

View original post 1,055 more words