Faith, God, Jesus, Uncategorized

Live for Today

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Today you have been given a gift. The gift of time. There are 1440 minutes in your gift. You and I get this precious gift of time, each and every day.

This is the day that the Lord has made;
let us rejoice and be glad in it.        Psalm 118:24, ESV 

God made our days and He numbered them.

Lord, reveal to me the end of my life
and the number of my days.
Let me know how short-lived I am.
 You, indeed, have made my days short in length,
and my life span as nothing in Your sight.
Yes, every mortal man is only a vapor.Selah    Psalm 39:4-5, HCSB

How much time do we waste each day? I don’t believe the goal is to fill every single minute with non-stop activity. We’ve all got necassary day-to-day duties that are unavoidable. Sleep takes up a certain amount of our hours. Work. Other daily responsibilities like cooking, errands, caring for our families, and a long list of daily tasks fill our routines. And yes, there should be a little down time each day, to recharge your batteries.

    A person’s days are determined;
    you have decreed the number of his months
    and have set limits he cannot exceed.   Job 14:5, NIV

So, if God ordained our days, and He ordained our lives, then He knows we have normal routine stuff that needs to take place. He also has ordained big and small events in our lives every day; that give us opportunities to make a difference for His Kingdom.

This is not the Carpe Diem trendy thinking of our culture. Seize the day is associated with self. Go for it. Take everything you can from each day. This type of thinking says the day is yours. As Christians, each day is a gift from the Lord that He made, and it’s not all ours for the taking.

For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.  Ephesians 2:10, NIV

God has Kingdom work for us to accomplish. And we need Him to do what He’s called us to. Maybe you don’t know your specific calling yet. Start asking God what He has you here for. Each of us has a unique purpose. In the meantime, look for daily small moments to share the love of Jesus. Working hard to provide for your family matters. Cooking a meal for your family is loving. Going to the grocery store and getting food and other essentials is important. We’re human and we need food. Being kind to the checker at the store. Helping an elderly shopper with reaching an item. (Maybe after the covid19 6 feet away craziness is over.)

There are moments each day that we can make a difference. Praying for someone, sharing the Gospel, helping a neighbor. Giving a friend a ride. Listening to your children’s ideas and hopes. Encouraging your spouse. Forgiving that person you’ve been holding a grudge against. Love God. Love your family. Love strangers you cross paths with. Love your annoying neighbor.

These are not easy on our own. They are impossible in our own abilities. We need filled up before we can overflow with the love of Christ.

Yesterday is the past. Tomorrow has not yet come. We have today.

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own. Matthew 6:34, NIV

We are all very aware we’ve got enough to deal with today. Jesus tells us not to worry about tomorrow. We are supposed to live in today. We can still make plans, and pray about future events, and circumstances. But, we are to leave those at Jesus feet and get on with our day. I know, that’s super difficult. At least for me it is.

Give each day the care it deserves. It may not be flashy but it is a gift from the Lord. Every day is not some thrill ride. Many days can be mundane and quite ordinary, but God ordained them. Thank Him for each day.

Thank God on the good days.

Thank God on the awful days.

Thank God every single day. He made it just for you.

Is Jesus Christ your Savior? Today would be a great day to accept His free gift of salvation. Tomorrow is not guaranteed.

Love you all,

Meghan

 

Go to my contact page and email me if you need prayer.

 

Bible, Faith, God, Obedience, Uncategorized

A Talking Donkey

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This amazing mule takes people up and down the steep, winding trails of the Grand Canyon. On an early morning walk during our vacation, I came across the mules getting ready to make their trek for the day. They are lovely. I can’t help but admire and respect what they do. Mules are the unsung heroes of the animal world. I have to believe that animals go to heaven, especially all the ones that have helped us humans.

A mule is the result of a male donkey and female horse. Mules are tough, sure-footed, intelligent, and instinctively cautious. Those traits come from their donkey DNA. They have been around for centuries and haul everything from people to supplies. Both mules and donkeys are mentioned in the Bible.

There’s an unusual event recorded in Numbers where a donkey speaks.

The Israelites camped along the Jordan River. The Moabites were terrified because of what the Israelites had done to the Amorites, and there were many Israelites. (That’s a lot of “ites”) The king of Moab, Balak, sends for Balaam to curse the Israelites. (Numbers 22:1-5)

“A people has come out of Egypt; they cover the face of the land and have settled next to me. Now come and put a curse on these people, because they are too powerful for me. Perhaps then I will be able to defeat them and drive them out of the land. For I know that whoever you bless is blessed, and whoever you curse is cursed.” (Numbers 22:5b-6, NIV)

At first, God tells Balaam not to curse the Israelites because they are blessed. Balak sends princes with a very attractive offer for Balaam that he will be rewarded handsomely, and the king will do whatever he says. God finally gives Balaam the OK to go. (Numbers 22:7-20)

But God was really angry with Balaam. (V. 22)

Balaam is riding his donkey to Moab when an Angel of the Lord stood in the road to oppose him. The donkey sees the angel with a sword drawn and turns off the road into a field. Balaam beats the donkey. The Angel of the Lord appears again on a narrow part of the path with two walls. The donkey pressed against the wall, crushing Balaam’s foot. He beats her a second time. The Angel of the Lord appeared a third time on the path, that was narrow, with no room to turn. The donkey lay down under Balaam and he beat her again. (v. 22-27)

28 Then the Lord opened the donkey’s mouth, and it said to Balaam, “What have I done to you to make you beat me these three times?”

29 Balaam answered the donkey, “You have made a fool of me! If only I had a sword in my hand, I would kill you right now.”

30 The donkey said to Balaam, “Am I not your own donkey, which you have always ridden, to this day? Have I been in the habit of doing this to you?”

“No,” he said.

31 Then the Lord opened Balaam’s eyes, and he saw the angel of the Lord standing in the road with his sword drawn. So he bowed low and fell facedown.

32 The angel of the Lord asked him, “Why have you beaten your donkey these three times? I have come here to oppose you because your path is a reckless one before me.33 The donkey saw me and turned away from me these three times. If it had not turned away, I would certainly have killed you by now, but I would have spared it.”

34 Balaam said to the angel of the Lord, “I have sinned. I did not realize you were standing in the road to oppose me. Now if you are displeased, I will go back.”

35 The angel of the Lord said to Balaam, “Go with the men, but speak only what I tell you.” So Balaam went with Balak’s officials.  (Numbers 22:28-25, NIV)

What’s the point, right? Is this just one of those odd stories in the Old Testament? No, it’s not. Yes, the circumstances are strange. A talking donkey is not ordinary. It wasn’t normal then, it’s not normal today.

Balaam was foolish and prideful. He didn’t even pay attention to his own donkey that knew to stop. Balaam was driven by greed. He was tempted.

“Even if Balak gave me all the silver and gold in his palace, I could not do anything great or small to go beyond the command of the Lord my God. 19 Now spend the night here so that I can find out what else the Lord will tell me.” (Numbers 22:18-19, NIV)

Balaam says he won’t go outside of what the Lord wants, but he makes sure the princes of Moab stay for the night.

Have you ever wanted something so bad that you ignored all the warning signs that God gave you? I have.

Balaam beat his donkey and forced her back on the path three times. Have you ever forced something to happen, that in your heart you knew was out of God’s will? I have.

God allowed Balaam to go on the path to Moab, yet warned him three times to stop. God knew Balaams heart. God knows our hearts too. Sometimes God allows us to feel the sting of our bad choices.

The hero in this story is the donkey. A simple creature that saw the Angel of the Lord and responded appropriately.

God can speak to us any way He chooses. Are we listening? God spoke through a donkey to Balaam. God speaks through the Bible, the Holy Spirit, people, circumstances, nature. I see no limit to how God speaks. He will never compromise His Word, the Bible, when He speaks to us.

I pray that I am more like the donkey, a willing servant of the Lord.

Love you all,

Meghan

 

 

 

 

Faith, Jesus, Salvation, Uncategorized

The Aroma of Christ

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Lean into your screen. Now inhale. Can you smell it? I really wish you could right now. Imagine sitting on my patio together as the sweet aroma of jasmine gently drifts past us. This lovely plant is growing on the fence in my backyard and it’s in full bloom. I’ve been sitting outside in the mornings with my coffee, my bible, and the delightful scent of jasmine. What a great way to start the day.

Jasmine is one of my all time favorite flowers. Clusters of delicate white flowers releasing their pleasing scent. The smell is intoxicating. I am reminded of my childhood in California as the enchanting fragrance of jasmine is in the air. Scent is the strongest of our human senses.

Two people can smell the same thing with different results. To one it can be offensive, and to the other it’s the best thing they have ever smelled. I can’t imagine many being offended at the smell of jasmine, but I’m sure they exist.

The Bible tells us that as Christians we are the aroma of Christ. What does that mean?

14 But 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. 15 For we are to God the pleasing aroma of Christ among those who are being saved and those who are perishing. 16 To the one we are the smell of death; to the other, the fragrance of life. And who is equal to such a task?

(2 Corinthians 2: 14-16, NIV)

Paul used the analagy of a triumphal procession in a Roman military parade to compare Christians to non-Christians.

Back in the day, when a Roman general had a victory on the battelfield there was a great parade through the streets of Rome. They had a very specific route taken through the city, all to show off their triumph. Senators, and state officials led the way, followed by trumpeters, and carts loaded with the spoils of war. There were musicians, and exoctic animals from the defeated enemy. Bulls and oxen were brought along for sacrifice to their Roman gods. Infantry, and the general’s adult sons were also included. It was over the top.

Also in this great procession, were the captives of war. The enemy leaders were paraded through the streets in chains on their way to prison, and ultimately their execution. Garlands of flowers were carried and incense was burned by the Roman priests. The aroma was sweet for the victors, and meant death for the captives. Same smell, different meaning.

The message of Jesus Christ is a death sentence for those who reject it. That same message is life for those who recieve Christ as Savior. The same beautiful fragrance, yet death for one and triumph for the other.

17 For God did not send his Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through him. 18 Whoever believes in him is not condemned, but whoever does not believe stands condemned already because they have not believed in the name of God’s one and only Son. 19 This is the verdict: Light has come into the world, but people loved darkness instead of light because their deeds were evil. 20 Everyone who does evil hates the light, and will not come into the light for fear that their deeds will be exposed. 21 But whoever lives by the truth comes into the light, so that it may be seen plainly that what they have done has been done in the sight of God.

(John 3:17-21, NIV)

Christ followers get the awesome privilege to spread the fragrance of life. This is not on our own ability. It is God at work in every Believer, sharing His sweet, glorious aroma. Even better than the scent of jasmine.

Jesus loves you and wants life for you. I pray you know Him as your Savior.

The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

(2 Peter 3:9, NIV)

Love you all,

Meghan

P.S. If you need prayer go to my contact page. God bless you!

Holy Spirit, Jesus, Uncategorized

From Glory to Glory

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This caterpillar has been hanging out on my parsley for several days. They are sometimes called parsley caterpillars. Soon, it will form it’s cocoon, and emerge as an eastern black swallowtail butterfly. It’s going to be fun to watch the transformation. I’m eagerly awaiting the beautiful butterfly that will appear.

Yes, this caterpillar is eating my parsley right now. It’s not going to make a dent though. My parsley is the size of a shrub, so there’s plenty to spare. It will be worth it to have a butterfly that is both gorgeous, and useful to help with pollinating. I wonder if this little creature knows what’s coming.

If he knew he was about to get some amazing wings, maybe he would hurry into his cocoon.

I feel like this caterpillar at times. Completely content with where I’m at. Just hanging out and thinking everything is just fine. I don’t want God to shake things up by putting me in a cocoon. That sounds terrible. Can’t I just hang out and eat parsley all day with sunshine on my back?

God won’t allow me to stay where I’m at. He sees things I cannot. God knows everything, and knows what going into the cocoon will do for me. God wants me to get those beautiful wings and fly.

When we accept Jesus Christ as our savior, that’s just the beginning. God wants us to be like Jesus. Live like Him. Love like Him. Forgive like Him. Follow the Father like Him.

“I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me. The life I now live in the body, I live by faith in the Son of God, who loved me and gave himself for me.” (Galatians 2:20, NIV) 

 

“Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.” (Romans 12:2, NIV)

“Whoever claims to live in him must live as Jesus did.” (1 John 2:6, NIV)

Yes I want to be more like Jesus, but that’s a tall order. On my own, that’s impossible.

This transformation happens through the power of the Holy Spirit in each believer. I have zero ability to become like Jesus in my own strength. It would be phony. A fully surrendered life to Jesus brings that transforming power.

We get saved by grace through faith in Jesus, and then He begins to work on us. Clean us up. Heal us. Set us free. It’s not easy work though. It can be quite painful. There are times when we have to go into the cocoon and wait, and be transformed.

We get impatient. Restless. It’s too hard. We try to break out of the cocoon too early.

When we trust God and His transforming work in us, we get the most lovely wings. We end up a little more like Jesus each time. There will be lots of cocoons in our lifetimes before we end up in the ultimate glorious place, heaven.

He’s changing us. So hold on to Him. Be patient and trust the tramsformative work He is doing.

“But we all, with open face beholding as in a glass the glory of the Lord, are changed into the same image from glory to glory, even as by the Spirit of the Lord.” (2 Corinthians 3:18, NASB)

Love you all,
Meghan

 

Faith, Trials, Uncategorized

Every Act of Kindness Is Big

Last week I was shopping at my local Aldi. I got there when they opened in search of water and maybe some toilet paper. My expectations were low. There was no water or toilet paper to be found. I asked the manager when the next shipment was arriving.

“Later that morning”, he said. “I have two packages of toilet paper in the back. Do you want them?”

Absolutely!

Once he loaded the t.p. in my cart, I made sure to ask the two women near me if they needed any.  They both were O.K., and on the hunt for paper towels.

The manager then said to me, “Give me your cell number. I will hold water for you once the shipment arrives and I’ll text you when it’s ready.”

Say what? Kindess? You mean I don’t have to wrestle someone for water?

A few hours later I recieved a text from the store manager that my water was ready. It was a good thing he saved it for me. As soon as the water was put out, it was gone within minutes.

This act may seem small. In the grand scheme of things it is. In that moment, it was a big deal for me. God bless that kind manager. He didn’t have to do that. But, he did.

In God’s economy kindess matters. We are given opportunities every single day to make a difference. Sometimes they seem small, almost insignificant. God knows the big picture. One act of kindness can change someones day, even their entire outlook on life.

In the book of Acts we can see one very small verse, with one very simple act of kindness. Paul is being transported on a ship to Rome to appeal to Caeser. Read Acts to get the entire incredible story. Anyway, there’s a massive storm and ultimately they run the ship aground. Everyone bails out and gets to shore on the island of Malta.

“The islanders showed us unusual kindness. They built a fire and welcomed us all because it was raining and cold.” (Acts 28:2, NIV)

276 men had been at sea in a terrifying storm for two weeks. When they arrive on the shore of an unknown island they were met by kind islanders who had built a fire to warm them in the cold and rain. Sounds like no big deal. It’s one verse, and most of us are focused on every other part of this amazing story, that we miss the kindness of the islanders.

God used the islanders to bless these men, including Paul, after surviving a horrific storm.

God wants to use you today. It may seem small, but it’s not. We are looking for some big, grand gesture. And sometimes we get those chances to participate in the larger, flashier blessings. Those are very important too. I’m talking about the seemingly small daily things. The little things that can have a massive ripple effect for something larger.

Thanking the grocery store workers who are working tirelessly right now.

Giving another customer your package of toilet paper from your cart.

Checking on elderly friends and neighbors.

Praying for those infected with the virus and their families.

Praying for the doctors, nurses and all hospital staff who are putting themselves in harms way to save lives.

Thank your pastor who feels all the responsibility and stress to care for their hurting flock. Pray for them too!

The list is infinite.

God has opportunites set up just for you so He can use you. We get to be a part of what God is doing. He wants to use regular people like you and me to bless others. No act of kindness is too small or too big. If there is an oportunity to bless another human being, take it. Ask God to open your eyes and soften your heart to those who might need some help or a kind word. We can make a difference.

“Do to others as you would have them do to you.” (Luke 6:31, NIV)

Love you all,

Meghan

 

 

 

 

Photo by Porapak Apichodilok on Pexels.com

 

 

Faith, Trials, Uncategorized

This Too Shall Pass

This is the verse from Proverbs. No, it must be from Psalms. That’s not it either. This too shall pass is not in the Bible. Many of us assume it’s found in the Bible because it sounds like something right out of the Old Testament. My mom said it often. Maybe your mom said it too. My mom said it because she had to deal with really difficult circumstances throughout her life. She learned that she would get through, by the grace of God. You are going to make it too!

In such a stressful time full of so many unknowns I see so much good. Families are spending more time together. No practice. No running out the door to go to school, or anywhere. Many are now either working from home or have been laid off. I’m not saying being laid off is good, but the free time is. A giant pause button was hit on our lives around the world.  

We have some extra time to just be. We are so busy doing that we have forgotten the importance of just being. The love God has for each of us is not based on what we can accomplish in a day. God’s love for us has no strings attached. God loves us right where we are at, just as we are. We can’t earn His love. God offers His love freely to us. 

If your life has been radically interrupted like most of us around the globe, use this time to spend with the Lord. Just be with Him. Ask Him the hard questions, He’s got answers if we’re ready to listen. Do you know Him? He already knows everything about you. Do you know Jesus as your savior? 

“Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”( John 14:6, NIV)

This time of crisis will end. Let’s make the most of being stuck at home. Have fun with your kids or grandkids. Stay in your p.j’s because you can. Turn off the news now and then and watch something funny. Laughter is a fantastic stress reliever. Take a social media break. Maybe choose one day where you don’t go online. Read a book. Take a walk. Pray often. Read your Bible. Check on elderly friends and neighbors. 

Our lives seem to go from one responsibility to the next, and sometimes with little or no break between. When was the last time you had nowhere to go? When was the last time you sat for more than five minutes? I’m talking to all of us that are always doing and have forgotten to just be. 

We’ll have plenty to do soon enough. Take it each day. That’s all we can do. Trust God who is completely worthy of trust. If you start to worry, stop and pray. Give those worries to the Father. He can handle it. 

“Cast all your anxiety on him because he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7, NIV)

This too shall pass. This crisis will end. I know the restrictions are getting tighter in some places but let’s do our part. Follow the guidelines the best you can. Be patient. It will end. God will carry you through. Trust Him. Lean on Him. Cry out to Him. He’s got you!

We’re all in this together. Rich, poor, famous, and regular folks like me have to follow the same restrictions to help combat the coronavirus. We can do this! We will make it!

Be wise. Be discerning. Trust God.

“For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sound mind.”(1 Timothy 1:7, NKJV)

Love you all,

Meghan 

 

 

Dear Lord,

Thank you that you are faithful and trustworthy. We can fully rely on you to carry us through hard times. Give us your peace when we start to worry. Give us your presence when we feel alone. Give us your protection when we feel afraid. Help us to make the best use of our time and learn what we need to out of this crisis. Help us to come out of this better, stronger, and with bigger faith. We thank you and praise you!

Amen

 

If you need prayer please email me!

Faith, Trials, Uncategorized

Keep Calm and Carry On

This iconic message, recognized globally, was originally designed by the British Ministry of Information in 1939. Before England had entered the war they were prepping for the worst. The British government was expecting a massive aerial attack from the German’s at the onset of war. The blitz didn’t start until about a year later. Keep Calm and Carry On was stored away to be used when things got really bad for England. The poster never came out of storage and was forgotten. About 60 years after the end of WWII an original poster was discovered in the bottom of a box from a book auction. 

The book shop owner displayed the poster and started reproducing and selling copies. Keep Calm and Carry On just took off after that first copy was found. The copyright is expired so that’s why we see so many variations of Keep Calm and Carry On.

The intent of the message was to reassure people during WWII. To create a mindset. To persevere. To be resolute. Determined. The first German air raid on London lasted for 57 consecutive nights. Bombings, night after night. 

Though this poster was never used during the war, I can only imagine what people in London experienced. Keep Calm and Carry On sends a message to the enemy and to yourself. We refuse to give in to fear. We’re going to make it, no matter how bad things get.

This poster immediately came to my mind as panic sets in around the world with the threat of coronavirus. Here in America store shelves are being emptied of water and of all things, toilet paper. The only other time I’ve seen it worse at the stores is when Hurricane Harvey hit Houston. Everything was empited at the stores, everything. 


All things may appear to be completely out of control. Please be assured God is still in control.

God is always on the throne.

God is not surprised by the virus.

God is not fearful or overwhelmed.

God is faithful.

God is completely trustworthy.

God loves you.

Most of us know the story of Job in the Bible. Job was a Godly man.

“There was a man in the land of Uz whose name was Job, and that man was blameless and upright, one who feared God and turned away from evil.” (Job 1:1, ESV)

Job had seven sons and three daughters. He had servants, and tons of animals. Job was blessed and respected. 

 “so that this man was the greatest of all the people of the east.” (Job 1:3b, ESV)

God allowed Satan to test Job. He ends up losing his children, his animals, his servants and everything in between. Yet Job never cursed God. (Spoiler alert: Job gets back twice as much as he had before.)

The Lord speaks to Job.

 

Where were you when I established the earth?
Tell Me, if you have understanding.
Who fixed its dimensions? Certainly you know!
Who stretched a measuring line across it?
What supports its foundations?
Or who laid its cornerstone
while the morning stars sang together
and all the sons of God shouted for joy?

Who enclosed the sea behind doors
when it burst from the womb,
when I made the clouds its garment
and thick darkness its blanket,
10 when I determined its boundaries
and put its bars and doors in place,
11 when I declared: “You may come this far, but no farther;
your proud waves stop here”?

12 Have you ever in your life commanded the morning
or assigned the dawn its place, 

(Job 38:4-12, HCSB)

I have never made a planet, or a star, or the moon. I don’t even have the capabilities to create anything even close to that. I am not God. There is one God and He made everything and He holds it all together. Nothing surprises Him. 

We are all going to make it through the coronavirus. Let me give it the scientific name, COVID-19. Now I feel really smart. 

As Christians we can shine our light by keeping calm and carrying on. Let’s not panic. Keep trusting the One who holds it all together. And if you’re feeling afraid, cry out to Him. God loves you so much, and wants to comfort you, and give you His perfect peace.

Keep calm and carry on!

 

God is our refuge and strength,
    an ever-present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way
    and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea,
 though its waters roar and foam
    and the mountains quake with their surging. (Psalm 46:10, NIV)

 

Love you all,

Meghan 

 

 

 

Dear Lord,

You are the perfect Father. Your love and care for us is overwhelming. Please give peace to your children right now. For those who have the virus, please heal them. Stop it’s spread. Please end this quickly Lord. For those who don’t know you as Savior, draw them to you. Save them. Help us all to do our part to be wise and discerning. To follow your leading, and to keep trusting you. Provide basic needs, proper healthcare, and finances wherever it’s needed. You promise to provide all of our needs and you always do. Give wisdom to local, national, and international leaders. Thank you Lord. We trust you.

In Jesus name,

Amen

 

Please email me if you need prayer!