Wednesday, March 25, 2020

A Message for a Trying Time of Pestilence....

What Is the Message of Psalm 91?

In the Israelite context of this psalm, a promise was made to a new nation that no purpose of God’s could be thwarted. In our times, God has promised the believer that He has prepared good works for us to do (Ephesians 2:10). No corona virus can come between us and His plans. For the believer, being able to glorify God with our lives is the ultimate hope and dream for this life. Being able to fulfill His will for us cannot be disrupted or cancelled.
Hear God’s message to you that your life is beneath the shelter and shadow of His wings. He is your life’s fortress, delivering you to spiritual strength now and certain bodily strength as well in eternity. This day, no arrows of evil or of disease can touch the meaning and purpose that God is pulling from your life. Make the Lord your refuge, and nothing will be able to affect or infect you that will diminish God’s purposes for you.
The psalm ends with what is referred to by commentators as a divine oracle. God is speaking to His people. And He promises that those who call upon Him will be answered; that those who hold fast to Him will be delivered; that those who trust Him for who He is will be protected.
Photo credit: Unsplash/Aaron Burden

How Can We 'Rest in the Shadow of the Almighty'?

Jesus gives us words in Luke 21 that are parallel in theme to Psalm 91. Hearing them and receiving them into our spirits, we can receive the security that Psalm 91 promises to rest in our Almighty God.
In Luke 21, Jesus is speaking about the signs of the end of times. In verse 10, He speaks of wars—of nation rising against nation. In verse 11, He speaks of earthquake, famine, pestilence, terrors, and signs from heaven. In verses 12-17, He talks of persecution for Christians and times when we will be delivered over to authorities for death.
He concludes in verses 18-19: “But not a hair of your head will perish. By your endurance you will gain your lives.”
Think about this: Jesus says that in dying, not a hair on our heads will perish.
We who believe are spiritually secure through Christ—never to face judgment. We are eternally secure—headed to the place of no suffering or pain. We are presently secure in purpose—no event of the world can surprise, overwhelm, or demote us from fulfilling God’s good works for us here. And, by Jesus’ words, we are to consider ourselves miraculously secure when meeting the eruptive trials of this life.
God’s protection is beyond our understanding. And so, my conviction is to read Psalm 91 exactly how it sounds—that nothing even of my body can be touched by the coronavirus. Though I die, not a hair of my head will perish. Even if my body is touched by COVID-19, it cannot be harmed. In the paradox is the hope. For, the age to come is not ever to be viewed by the believer as a distant and abstract reality.
Touch the hairs of your head—reach up and grab them. Know that you are the Lord’s and no evil or manifestation of evil in this world can touch you, not even a strand you hold. You will suffer in this world. Yet, Jesus has overcome it. So, you being in Him, nothing can touch you. Whatever does touch you, His hand is the closer layer abiding over you like a shadow of protection.
Photo credit: ©Getty Images/Bulat Silvia

9 Ways We Can Take Comfort in God During Coronavirus Fears

Knowing this God is our comfort. Psalm 91 describes Him as our shelter, shadow, refuge, fortress, refuge, shield, buckler, dwelling, rescuer, and protection.
1. Shelter (v. 1):  God is our hiding place, covering us with His good purposes.
2. Shadow (v. 1):   God is over and beyond us—seeing more than we see and knowing more than we know. We can rest in His shadow.
3. Refuge (v. 2): He is a safe place for us of security; we climb into Him.
4. Fortress (v. 2): He is our defense whose promises cannot be inhibited.
5. Shield (v. 4): Resting in our God deflects the enemies of fear and doubt in times of trial.
6. Buckler (or, shield that completely engulfs) (v. 4): He is a defense on every side. He knows every part of us and our lives—no aspect is beyond His reach.
7. Dwelling (v. 9): God’s protection is not fleeting; His protection serves for our continual habitation.
8. Rescuer (v. 14): He leads us off with Him, drawing us to Himself and rescuing us from being overcome by the world.
9. Protection (v. 14): In His protection, He carries us to an elevated place—by trusting in Him, our minds and hearts become inaccessible to the churning fears below.
As believers, we have committed to Christ that our lives and times are in His hands; our dream is that our days might bring Him eternal glory. The reality of God’s comfort and power to deliver us to eternal life is what gives us the spiritual deliverance from being dominated by pandemic in these days. The promises of God – of life to come and of His divine purposes in this life – shade, shelter, and satisfy us. When fears of the coronavirus and its impacts surround us, how much fiercer is the security of an infinite God!
Photo credit: Unsplash/Dusan Smetana

Psalm 91

Now, read the psalm in full, and meditate on the truths of God’s comfort and protection:
He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High
will abide in the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say to the LORD, “My refuge and my fortress,
my God, in whom I trust.”
For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler
and from the deadly pestilence.
He will cover you with his pinions,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness is a shield and buckler. 
You will not fear the terror of the night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
nor the destruction that wastes at noonday. 
A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand,
but it will not come near you.
You will only look with your eyes
and see the recompense of the wicked. 
Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place-
the Most High, who is my refuge-
no evil shall be allowed to befall you,
no plague come near your tent. 
For he will command his angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways.
On their hands they will bear you up,
lest you strike your foot against a stone.
You will tread on the lion and the adder;
the young lion and the serpent you will trample underfoot.
“Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him;
I will protect him, because he knows my name.
When he calls to me, I will answer him;
I will be with him in trouble;
I will rescue him and honor him. 
With long life I will satisfy him
and show him my salvation.”
(Psalm 91)

Thursday, February 7, 2019

A Gift from God

A Miracle

Back in January last year I decided to give up my car and my parking space. It was a hard decision...the hardest ever! I loved the freedom my car gave me....it was getting old and wasn't worth fixing and I knew I would never on my own have the cash or credit to buy another. It was what I needed to do...the practical thing....but o how it hurt to give up that freedom. I managed....I used my shoprider scooter to get around the city and pick up groceries....it worked but I missed my adventures.
I missed getting to my old church....the bus took forever and it was cold in the winter waiting so I checked out churches close by....it wasn't the same....I missed the singing....the preaching....the bible study....my friends. I flew to Ontario for the family reunion and it was wonderful....but I missed the freedom to go ...to be ....to pick up and flit wherever there was a moment. I came back and settled in again but I went into a September depression....I hibernated....no triggers for this ....it just 'was'.
Then in October I got an email from the insurance company wanting to give me a large amount of money for a settlement on the car accident that happened the previous August....I couldn't believe it....I had not even asked for anything. God works in ways I can't even fathom...It was enough to get me a wonderful 2012 Dodge Caravan that took me home for Christmas and a wonderful 12,000 km adventure through 17 states and 3 provinces.....I just got home and was wondering where I was going to park 'My Miracle Van' and my landlord said, I just pulled your file to let you know I now have a parking spot for you! God even cares for the little things like a parking spot on the very day I needed it.
I am wrapped in the 'love of God' and feel so blessed.

Monday, April 10, 2017

Forgiveness

Found this in a paper  'Family Matters' and thought it was something I wanted to keep and share.
Forgiveness is essential. Its the first step in healing.
Forgiveness excuses me so I can move on to healing.
In Jesus Christ, you are forgiven. Then you have the freedom to heal.

Forgiveness, healing, freedom, so lovely. So closely connected.
Yet even when we know we are forgiven, forgiveness can seem hard.
We cry, " If you only knew what they did to me!" We say that others don't 'deserve' forgiveness. But once again, Jesus comes to our rescue. He has to, because....

  • Forgiveness doesn't come naturally to us.
  • Sometimes we need His help to even want to forgive.
  • We don't know how to forgive.
  • We're not sure we are forgiven.
Sometimes we hesitate to forgive because we are afraid of what it means. See if this helps....
  • Forgiveness never means what the other person did or said was OK.
  • Forgiveness doesn't nullify your suffering.
  • Forgiveness doesn't mean you must trust the other person immediately, if ever.
  • Forgiveness doesn't mean you must reconcile. Reconciliation isn't always healthy.
Before we make an important decision its always good to weigh the pros and cons
Here are the pros of forgiveness....

  1. Forgiveness is the 'key' that opens the door to the cell where you have stayed locked up in bitterness, anger and hatred.
  2. Forgiveness means you can be free from thinking the same toxic thoughts over and over.
  3. Forgiveness frees you from the burden of trying to get even. It is casting your cares on God, I Peter:5:7 and leaving them in His capable hands.
  4. Forgiveness is your first step on your road to healing.
Here are some of the cons....

Thats right....there are none ....You will never regret forgiving


Wednesday, December 7, 2016

A Nugget of Truth that spoke to my heart today


Repentance
December 7, 2016





Godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation…
2 Corinthians 7:10

Conviction of sin is best described in the words:

My sins, my sins, my Savior,
How sad on Thee they fall.

Conviction of sin is one of the most uncommon things that ever happens to a person. It is the beginning of an understanding of God. Jesus Christ said that when the Holy Spirit came He would convict people of sin (see John 16:8). And when the Holy Spirit stirs a person’s conscience and brings him into the presence of God, it is not that person’s relationship with others that bothers him but his relationship with God— “Against You, You only, have I sinned, and done this evil in your sight…” (Psalm 51:4). The wonders of conviction of sin, forgiveness, and holiness are so interwoven that it is only the forgiven person who is truly holy. He proves he is forgiven by being the opposite of what he was previously, by the grace of God. Repentance always brings a person to the point of saying, “I have sinned.” The surest sign that God is at work in his life is when he says that and means it. Anything less is simply sorrow for having made foolish mistakes— a reflex action caused by self-disgust.


The entrance into the kingdom of God is through the sharp, sudden pains of repentance colliding with man’s respectable “goodness.” Then the Holy Spirit, who produces these struggles, begins the formation of the Son of God in the person’s life (see Galatians 4:19). This new life will reveal itself in conscious repentance followed by unconscious holiness, never the other way around. The foundation of Christianity is repentance. Strictly speaking, a person cannot repent when he chooses— repentance is a gift of God. The old Puritans used to pray for “the gift of tears.” If you ever cease to understand the value of repentance, you allow yourself to remain in sin. Examine yourself to see if you have forgotten how to be truly repentant.

WISDOM FROM OSWALD CHAMBERS


The attitude of a Christian towards the providential order in which he is placed is to recognize that God is behind it for purposes of His own. Biblical Ethics, 99 R

Monday, May 9, 2016

I've Got Your Back

Last night I took a walk along the river. The Canada Geese were nibbling grass along the way and to my amazement there were four little goslings already out and about with their momma and poppa.
Along came a dog and all the geese dashed to the river for safety.
I thought I would take a peek and see if everyone made it safely as those goslings were pretty little.
Three were floating with their momma but one was missing.
I heard a 'peep, peep, peep' and out popped a head among the rocks....one little one was clearly in trouble....stuck in the rocks.
I climbed down the rocks and picked him up

 Come back, come back he was saying.
O no...I've been left behind....peep,peep,peep


The aunties and uncles were all looking and discussing how they could help.
The momma and poppa  and brothers and sisters trudged up the hill to look for him.
 I tossed him gently into the water and all the aunties gathered around and headed the little one back to its momma....safe and sound.
Happy Mothers Day to all those special people who help to bring my children home safe and sound and encourage and support them.