Sunday, September 20, 2015

Yes! Jesus Loves Me.

Something wonderful has happened in my spiritual life. I finally believe God loves me. I really believe it with all my heart for the first time in my life.

Growing up with a stern and abusive father has always colored my perception of God, I think. My father was religious but didn't really know God. You could see that in his actions.

I've always been afraid of God and thought he expected me to be perfect. The Bible said God loved me, so I tried to believe it and sometimes I did, but not like now. I don't have to try anymore; I believe.

This all happened because of  talks by Ty Gibson I found online, I finally saw the deep love God has for me and the human race. Ty tells us that God would rather die than live without us. What a revelation that was for me.

Here are a few addresses where you can find Ty's Bible Studies on the Love of God:

You can also watch Ty on

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Two Kinds of Wisdom.

James tells us there are two kinds of wisdom, wisdom from the world and wisdom from God. He also tells us how to tell the difference between the two. They stand side by side in glaring contrast in their motives and outcomes.

If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to you.
 James 1:5-8

Who is wise and understanding among you? Let them show it by their good life, by deeds done in the humility that comes from wisdom. (Wisdom from God)

But if you harbor bitter envy and selfish ambition in your hearts, do not boast about it or deny the truth. Such “wisdom” does not come down from heaven but is earthly, unspiritual, demonic. (Wisdom of the world)

For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice. 

But the wisdom that comes from heaven is first of all pure; then peace-loving, considerate, submissive, full of mercy and good fruit, impartial and sincere. Peacemakers who sow in peace reap a harvest of righteousness.
 James 3:13-18

Brothers and sisters, think of what you were when you were called. Not many of you were wise by human standards; not many were influential; not many were of noble birth. But God chose the foolish things of the world to shame the wise; God chose the weak things of the world to shame the strong. 

God chose the lowly things of this world and the despised things—and the things that are not—to nullify the things that are, so that no one may boast before him. It is because of him that you are in Christ Jesus, who has become for us wisdom from God—that is, our righteousness, holiness and redemption. Therefore, as it is written: “Let the one who boasts boast in the Lord.”

1 Corinthians 1:26-31

James names, "selfish ambition" and "bitter envy" as worldly wisdom. In our culture, who is admired? Those who get ahead, those who become rich and have many possessions. Have you heard the saying, "Whoever dies with the most toys wins?"  Actually, this has probably been true of almost all cultures. No matter how they get to the top, the top people are envied and admired. How did they get there? Most likely through envy themselves and selfish ambition. 

James knows this. The wisdom from God is nothing like the wisdom of the world; when you look at Jesus, you see wisdom in action. One reason people make fun of Christians is they don't understand God's wisdom. It seems foolish to them to put God and others first. But God can open anyone's eyes if they will ask Him. He gives generously to all, James says. And I love what James says next, "without finding fault." 

We have a God who understands how our brains work and what we have been taught and seen in our lives. He doesn't find fault, he only asks that we come to him for true wisdom, which will result in peace and love instead of "disorder and evil."

Monday, September 14, 2015

Our Wonderful God.

The leading priests and the teachers of religious law saw these wonderful miracles and heard even the children in the Temple shouting, "Praise God for the Son of David." But the leaders were indignant.  Matthew 21:15

When he (Jesus) said this, all his opponents were humiliated, but the people were delighted with all the wonderful things he was doing. 
 Luke 13:17

As soon as all the people saw Jesus, they were overwhelmed with wonder and ran to greet him.  
Mark 9:15

This also comes from the LORD of hosts, Who has made His counsel wonderful and His wisdom great. Isaiah 28:29

O LORD, you are my God; I will exalt you; I will praise your name, for you have done wonderful things, plans formed of old, faithful and sure. 
Isaiah 25:1

Let them praise the LORD for his great love and for the wonderful things he has done for them.  
Psalm 107:21

Lenny Leblanc - What A Wonder Lyrics 

You give hope to the hopeless
You give faith to the faithless
Your love comes through
Like the morning light
You give grace to the humble
And have mercy on the merciful
This world's never seen anybody like You

O what a wonder
A wonder You are
You hide the sun and let it rain
O what a wonder
Jesus what a wonder You are
O what a wonder
A wonder You are
To save somebody like me

O what a wonder
Jesus what a wonder You are

You bring healing to the nations
There's no other salvation
You're the only One who can turn it around
You make a way for the wanderer
You give freedom to the prisoner
All of hell must tremble
At the sound of Your name

O what a wonder
Jesus what a wonder You are
O what a wonder You are 

Wednesday, September 9, 2015

What Can We Give to God?

How can I repay the LORD for all the good He has done for me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation and call on the name of the LORD,
I will pay my vows to the LORD in the presence of all his people.
Psalm 116:12-14

What does God desire in return for his love? He wants us to accept his plan of salvation from the evil in this world. He wants us to call on his name every day. He wants us to be true to our vows. Vows should be few and not broken. He will forgive though, if we break a vow to him.

Song, Two Hands, One Heart.  by Don Moen,

What can I give?
What can I bring?
That would be pleasing to my King
I'll give my heart, not just a part
I'm lifting up my everything
Well it's all I have to offer
And it's all I have to give
Two hands, one heart
One life to offer You
Two hands, one heart
That's what I give to You
Use me today I know You can
Lord I surrender to Your plan
You made this heart
And you made these hands
Take me and use me as I am
Well it's all I have to offer
And it's all I have to give
Little becomes a lot
When it's in Your hands
Take me and make me more like You
Well it may not seem like much
But with the Master's touch
I know that I'll be more like You
Two hands one heart
One life to offer You
Two hands one heart
That's what I give to You

Sunday, September 6, 2015

God's Love Reaches to the Heavens.

Your love, Lord, reaches to the heavens,
your faithfulness to the skies.
Your righteousness is like the highest mountains,
your justice like the great deep.
You, Lord, preserve both people and animals.
How priceless is your unfailing love, O God!
People take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house;
you give them drink from your river of delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
in your light we see light.

Psalm 36:5-9

Album: Woship With Don Moen
Your steadfast love extends to the heavens
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds
Your righteousness is like majestic mountains
And your wisdom like the depths of the sea
And you come to me
Filling my heart with your loving kindness
I find my peace in the shadow of your wings
I eat my fill from the abundance of your household
And I drink from the streams of rejoicing
You are my king

More lyrics

Tuesday, September 1, 2015

Who is God?

“Let not the wise boast of their wisdom
or the strong boast of their strength
or the rich boast of their riches,
but let the one who boasts boast about this:
that they have the understanding to know me,
that I am the Lord, who exercises kindness,
justice and righteousness on earth,
for in these I delight,”

Jeremiah 9:23,24

I've been writing about different Christian songs that help me. When I listen to the song, "Above All," I picture the ancient powers that no longer exist and kings who are long dead. I think of how majestic mountains were made by God's hands and how he flung the stars across the universe. I think of the wisdom of man that is so small compared with God's wisdom. I think of the wealth of the rich, how they fill their homes with great paintings and other art, how they wear the best clothes, drive the most expensive cars and try to find happiness in these things.

Then I think of what God is like and how these things of the world cannot compare to him. Humans tend towards pride in what they have and what they do, but Jesus left everything behind to become a human being. He left his Father's side for the first time in eternity. Then he suffered excruciating mental and physical pain when he took the fall for us.

What an amazing God we worship! The Bible says, "God is love." He isn't just loving; he is love. 

Above All by Don Moen.

Above all powers, above all kings
Above all nature and all created things
Above all wisdom and all the ways of man
You were here before the world began

Above all kingdoms, above all thrones
Above all wonders the world has ever known
Above all wealth and treasures of the earth
There's no way to measure what You're worth

Crucified, laid behind the stone
You lived to die, rejected and alone
Like a rose, trampled on the ground
You took the fall and thought of me
Above all

More lyrics

Friday, August 28, 2015

A River of Love.

"Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst."  John 6:35

"Whoever drinks of the water that I will give him shall never thirst; but the water that I will give him will become in him a well of water springing up to eternal life."  John:4:14

I read John 6 this morning and I thought about whether I hunger or thirst for anything. I don't, as far as I know. I used to hunger and thirst for love, but I have found that in Jesus. I looked for love from men, but men are fallible human beings who cannot love the way we want them to love. That is too much to ask for from any man or woman.

In our North American culture, we are taught from childhood to seek love from someone. And of course, God has put within each of us a desire for love. Unfortunately, our culture tells us, "You can find the love of your life right here on planet earth!"  Um, no. We can find human love alright, if we are blessed, but Jesus is the only one who can be the love of our life. Once you really believe and accept he loves you, just the way you are; that he loves your company, he loves to talk with you, he "delights in you," as the Bible says; only then do you never thirst or hunger for anything else in this world. He is enough.

River of Love by Don Moen

Thirsty for more of You More of Your Spirit and truth Wash me from all my sin Fill me with Your Spirit again You're the River of Love Flowing with grace and mercy Flooding my soul Filling my heart with peace O River of Love Like streams in the desert Giver of life Giving You life and love To set me free Heal me and I'll be healed Save me and I will be saved You've filled me with songs of praise Forever I will sing of Your grace If anyone is thirsty let him come on in When you drink the living water You will never thirst again Giving Your life and love To set me free Giving Your life and love To set me free.

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Songs for God.

Lenny Leblanc - A Shadow In Your Light Lyrics 

Let me be a shadow of Your light
Just a small reflection of a greater love
Let me be a shadow in Your light
That falls on the lost and the lonely

All that I am I lay at the cross
No sacrifice too great a cost
So down on my knees
Lord I ask You please

Let me be a shadow in Your light
Just a small reflection of a greater love
Let me be a shadow in Your light
That falls on the lost and the lonely

Lenny Leblanc - Love You Forever Lyrics 

You came like the wind
Took me to a mountain
From a valley of sin
And my soul patiently waits
For I long to be near You

Jesus Savior
You changed the rhythm of my heart
And I will praise You

Long after the rivers all run dry

And I will love You forever

Lenny Leblanc and Don Moen are my favorite singers right now. I believe God led me to their songs on youtube. I've bought some CDs and will get more. I've often wished I could hear the music that went along with the Psalms. One thing I know, that music will be loud and full of musical instruments, because the Bible describes that.

I come from a church where the old people were offended if even one person used a guitar! Yet, the Bible says to praise the Lord with loud, clashing cymbals.  I'm 65, but I'm a loud music sort of person; I love music that makes me feel like dancing. David danced before the Lord. We should dance before the Lord. He made us to move to music. Thank you God for music.

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Songs for Encouragement.

If you have been reading my blog for awhile, you know I have trouble with feelings of sadness. I'm working with God to live in joy with lots of happiness. He is helping me every day. One of the ways he has shown me to feel better is to listen to Christian music. It always lifts my spirit up to God and away from myself, so I thought I'd do some posts with lyrics to my favorite songs. I hope the words will inspire you as they do me.

Lenny Leblanc - I Believe Lyrics 

Like a ship on troubled waters
Many sail alone
Mothers weep for sons and daughters
And pray they will come home
For soon it will be harvest time
And all the storms will pass
O what joy I'll find
When I see You at last

You are my resting place
Along the narrow highway
You are my bridge
Across the open sea
You are my Savior
And my passageway to Heaven
O Jesus I believe in You
O Jesus I believe

Father You have seen my struggles
And You have known my fears
But Lord You've been so faithful
To wipe away my tears
So when the world laughs at me
And says I'm just a fool
I will bow my knee
And worship only You

I believe You are the only answer
To life's questions
Lord help me keep my heart
In the right direction 

You are my resting place
Along the narrow highway
You are my bridge
Across the open sea
You are my Savior
And my passageway to Heaven
O Jesus I believe in You
O Jesus I believe

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Troubled Hearts.

Photo by: Wingchi Poon

 On the eve of his arrest, Jesus told his disciples, "Tonight all of you will desert me. For the Scriptures say, 'God will strike the Shepherd, and the sheep of the flock will be scattered.' Matthew 26:31

Jesus also told the disciples he must now go away. Peter asked to go with him and said he would die for him. Jesus answered, "Will you lay down your life for Me? Truly, truly, I say to you, a rooster will not crow until you deny Me three times. John 13:38

What is amazing is what Jesus said next, "Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe in Me as well."  John 14:1  Then he told them how he was going to prepare a place for them in heaven and would come back to get them.

So, the disciples were going to deny Jesus and run from him because they were afraid to be arrested too.  And what does our God say about this?  "Let not your hearts be troubled."  In other words, "Don't worry about it. I'm not worried about it."

Today, I felt discouraged because of my lack of love and patience. It was all inside my heart; I didn't say or do anything wrong. But I knew, and Jesus knew what was in my heart. I guess there may be Christians that don't have such a hard battle with themselves. I'm not one of them.

You hear preachers say, "Give your life to Jesus and you will have peace."  Well, yes, you will have peace for awhile, but then the doubts come and the bad thoughts come and you wonder where the peace went. Preachers don't talk about that. They make it sound like you will have no spiritual problems after you are converted.

So, if anyone out there is like me, take heart. "Let not your hearts be troubled." God says to confess our sins, he wipes them out and we start all over again. I believe him. For me it is a daily thing. But that's okay. I say to him, "I can't do anything to be righteous; you will have to do it all." I know he will. I also have to take my eyes off myself and look at Jesus' life, death and resurrection. That will always encourage me.

"And I am certain that God, who began the good work within you, will continue his work until it is finally finished on the day when Christ Jesus returns."  Phil. 1:6

Thursday, August 20, 2015

I Know My Redeemer Lives.

For I know that my Redeemer lives.
And he shall stand at last on the earth.
And after my skin is destroyed, this I know,
That in my flesh I shall see God.

Whom I shall see for myself,
And my eyes shall behold,
and not another.
How my heart yearns within me!

Job 19:25-27

Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible
"...yet in my flesh shall I see God": he believed, that though he should die and molder into dust in the grave, yet he should rise again, and that in true flesh, not in an aerial celestial body, but in a true body, consisting of flesh, blood, and bones, which spirits have not, and in the same flesh or body he then had, his own flesh and body, and not another's; and so with his fleshly or corporeal eyes see God, even his living Redeemer, in human nature; who, as he would stand upon the earth in that nature, in the fulness of time, and obtain redemption for him, so he would in the latter day appear again, raise him from the dead, and take him to himself, to behold his glory to all eternity: or "out of my flesh" (f), out of my fleshly eyes; from thence and with those shall I behold God manifest in the flesh, my incarnate God; and if Job was one of those saints that rose when Christ did, as some say (g), he saw him in the flesh and with his fleshly eyes. 

"But He knows the way I take; When He has tried me, I shall come forth as gold. 
My foot has held fast to His path; I have kept His way and not turned aside. 
I have not departed from the command of His lips; 
I have treasured the words of His mouth more than my necessary food."
Job 23:10-12

I admire Job. In reading his words, you can see a real person who is suffering terribly and not understanding why. He pours out how he feels; how he wishes he could talk with God and ask him why this is happening to him. He seems to come close to unbelief, but he always recovers and speaks of how he longs to be with God in heaven.

God never does explain to Job why he is suffering. He simply shows Himself to Job and Job says, " "I have heard of You by the hearing of the ear; But now my eye sees You; Therefore I retract, And I repent in dust and ashes."

I think if we knew how wise, loving and majestic God is, we would not bother to ask why, we would just accept whatever came from his hand and trust him. I remember someone asking me why God let all these bad things happen to them and I said, "It happens to people all over the world. Why should we be exempt?" I've always known I was just one person in a world full of pain. Still, I've been angry, depressed and despairing about my sufferings.

But I bring all these feelings to God now and he strengthens me to live my life in friendship with him. When I feel unloved and misunderstood by people, I know now that God is my friend. I can spend the whole day with him and share all I think and feel. Sometimes I ask him, "What should we do next?" Whatever I'm doing, I try to remember Jesus is right beside me. 

Sometimes I feel so alone. But Jesus is here, right here with me in this room. He takes me as I am; no harsh judgement, nothing but love. There is a song I listen to that says something like, "How could I face the day if you were not by my side." That's how I feel about God.

Saturday, August 15, 2015

Creation, Redemption and the Sabbath.

I listened to a sermon a few weeks ago that opened my mind about the Sabbath commandment.  The preacher reminded us of when God gave the Ten Commandments to Moses. When Moses came down the mountain, he saw Israel worshiping a golden calf idol. He threw down the Ten Commandments and they shattered.

God made another set of commandments but he changed one a bit: the fourth one, the Sabbath commandment. I didn't realize this before. Here is the wording for both commandments:

"Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy. "Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the LORD your God. On it you shall not do any work, you, or your son, or your daughter, your male servant, or your female servant, or your livestock, or the sojourner who is within your gates. For in six days the LORD made the heavens and the earth, the sea and all that is in them, and rested on the seventh day; therefore the LORD blessed the Sabbath day and made it holy. 
 Exodus 20:8-11

“Observe the Sabbath day by keeping it holy, as the Lord your God has commanded you. Six days you shall labor and do all your work, but the seventh day is a Sabbath to the Lord your God. On it you shall not do any work, neither you, nor your son or daughter, nor your male or female servant, nor your ox, your donkey or any of your animals, nor any foreigner residing in your towns, so that your male and female servants may rest, as you do. Remember that you were slaves in Egypt and that the Lord your God brought you out of there with a mighty hand and an outstretched arm. Therefore the Lord your God has commanded you to observe the Sabbath day."
Deuteronomy 5:12-15

When I was a little girl, we memorized the first one at church and school. But this preacher was saying we were not to only remember and thank God he created us and all things; but we are also to remember we were slaves at one time. Not to humans, but to sin. Jesus set us free from slavery to sin and adopted us as his children. We are free indeed.

He also spoke on how the Sabbath was a rest after creation.  Genesis 2:2,3 says, "By the seventh day God completed His work which He had done, and He rested on the seventh day from all His work which He had done. Then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it He rested from all His work which God had created and made."

The Sabbath was a rest for Jesus, after he had gone through his terrible suffering for our redemption:  "Now the women who had come with Him out of Galilee followed, and saw the tomb and how His body was laid. Then they returned and prepared spices and perfumes. And on the Sabbath they rested according to the commandment."  Luke 23:55,56

Everyone knows Jesus rose from the dead on Sunday morning. They say that is why Christians celebrate the Sabbath on Sunday. Well, there is no scripture for this idea. It wasn't officially changed to Sunday for hundreds of years after Jesus' death: then it was done to placate the pagans who used to worship the sun on Sunday. Emperor Constantine started it. He was a sun worshiper before he became a Christian.

God is a poet. You can see that all through the Bible. He also speaks to us through symbols that have great meaning. The number 7 in scripture symbolizes perfection. So does the number 12. Most say it doesn't matter what day we worship God as long as we worship him. Yes, we need to worship him every day of the week. But there is a special blessing on the 7th Day. God says there is; we may not understand why, but he says it is a special day so I believe it. No one has the right to change God's law. 

Another law of God's that was changed was the second commandment against making idols. This was changed so they could make statues of Mary, the apostles and Jesus and bow down to them and pray to them. Man has thought to change God's laws, but they have not. They are the same as the day he wrote them on the mountain and gave them to Moses.

The preacher's name is Ty Gibson. He speaks of how God loves us so much that his sermons have helped me believe that. I've kind of thought God put up with me. It was hard to believe he loved me. But after listening to this man's sermons I know God loves me so very much. I feel adored by God.
You can listen to his sermons here:

Thursday, August 13, 2015

The Brothers of Jesus.

We know from scripture that Jesus had brothers and sisters. His brother's names are written down for us. Most scholars believe the book of Jude was written by Jesus' brother Judas. But Judas didn't always believe in Jesus. In fact, he may have thought Jesus was crazy.

"And He (Jesus) came home, and the crowd gathered again, to such an extent that they could not even eat a meal. And when his family heard it, they went out to seize him, for they were saying, 'He is out of his mind.'"   Mark 3:20,21

What must it have been like for Jesus, knowing his brothers didn't believe he was the Messiah? It must have saddened him. Who know all that they said to him; they were probably even embarrassed by Jesus. The leaders of the church hated Jesus. How did this affect his brothers and his mother too.

Early in his ministry, Jesus came to Nazareth to preach. After his teaching, the men of the church grew angry and murderous.

"Is not this the carpenter's son? Is not His mother called Mary, and His brothers, James and Joseph and Simon and Judas?  And are not all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?”  Matthew 13:55-56  (In other words, he is just a man.)

"When they heard these things, all in the synagogue were filled with wrath. and they got up and drove Him out of the city, and led Him to the brow of the hill on which their city had been built, in order to throw Him down the cliff. but he passed right through the crowd and went on his way." Luke 4:28-30

Jesus' brothers must have been there when this happened. His mother was probably there too. What a shock this all must have been to them. How did their neighbors treat them after Jesus left? I would guess the whole town was in an uproar discussing Jesus and his family.

We know that at one time none of his brothers believed in Jesus because of this verse:

"So his brothers said to him, 'Leave here and go to Judea, that your disciples also may see the works you are doing. For no one works in secret if he seeks to be known openly. If you do these things, show yourself to the world.' For not even his brothers believed in him."  John 7:3-5

Pulpit Commentary
They appeared here to criticize their Brother's prolonged absence from Jerusalem, and his abstention from the Passover and other national festivals. They would, perhaps sincerely, hurry forward his public demonstration, and compel him to say to the great world what he had been saying in Galilaean villages, in the borders of Tyre, and in the cities of Decapolis. Depart hence, and go into Judea. "This is the time and place." 

Cambridge Bible for Schools and Colleges
The bluntness of this suggestion, given almost as a command, shews that they presumed upon their near relationship. It would be more natural in the mouths of men older than Christ, and therefore is in favour of their being sons of Joseph by a former marriage rather than sons of Joseph and Mary (comp. Mark 3:21Mark 3:31). They shared the ordinary beliefs of the Jews about the Messiah, and therefore did not believe in their Brother. But His miracles perplexed them, and they wished the point brought to a decisive issue. There is no treachery in their suggestion; its object is not to put Him in the power of His enemies. (thy disciples also) His brethren seem to imply that they themselves are not His disciples even nominally. 

But, in spite of his brother's unbelief all during Jesus ministry, it seems they all believed in him as their Savior after his resurrection!  What a wonderful thing for Jesus. This must have made him so happy, for his heart is filled with love for everyone, but he must have especially loved his brothers whom he had grown up with in Nazareth.

All these with one accord were devoting themselves to prayer, together with the women and Mary the mother of Jesus, and his brothers.  Acts 1:14

But I saw none of the other apostles except James the Lord’s brother.  Galatians 1:19

I was picturing in my mind, Jesus welcoming his brothers to heaven!  What great joy for them and for him.