Psalm 27:7 niv

puffs

There are times when it seems the Lord does not hear us when we pray.
Sometimes we just don’t hear Him or don’t recognize the answers,
and other times we don’t like what we hear or the answer.

The truth is He always hears our voices;
He is always merciful and always answers with what is best for His Kingdom.

Why is it easy to listen to what you want to hear
and hard to listen to what you don’t want to hear?

Is it because you don’t trust God or perhaps because you are a stubborn child?

Blessings this day of grace,

patricia

Photo: stockvault.net

Psalm 34:17 esv

green-leaf-in-the-rainThe Lord hears every word you speak,
even those you don’t say out loud.
Cry out to Him and He will hear you and He will answer.

Do feel there are times when you call out to God 
that you are getting a busy signal or an answering service is picking up the call?
What do you do when you feel like that?

Blessings this day of grace,

patricia

1 Thessalonians 4:9

hearte

Living together and getting along with each other is not always easy.
We look to some learned person or self-help guru for help,
when we  have the answers already.
God teaches us to just love one another.

Why do we look for complex help from man
 when we have straight-forward help from God?

May this be a day of grace,

patricia

 

Asking For help

Not long ago, while praying, I found myself wandering all over the place.  I was avoiding the reason I was on my knees.  I needed forgiveness.  I did not want to confess, once again, that I had sinned.  But we cannot be forgiven without confession.  So, the confession was done and forgiveness granted, again.  How tiresome and discouraging it is having to return, over and over, asking for mercy and grace.

My words are often sarcastic, angry, critical, lying, prideful, hurtful, and sometimes even hateful.  I look at the world and all it has to offer and I roam around in it.  I can be influenced by those who seem to “have it all” and deceived by those with the “power of persuasion”.  I see all their pretty things and hear their lovely words and I want to be a part of it.  Sin, plain and simple, but complex and ugly, too.

We are assured that our sins are forgiven, and more than forgiven, they are erased.  We may still have the consequences of our actions and we, along with others, may always remember, but God forgives the sins and lets them go.

For I will forgive their wickedness
and will remember their sins no more.
Hebrews 8:12 NIV

Knowing that God wants us to lead lives of victory and that He does not leave us to our own devices but has given us a life  manual for our instruction and education, I went to His Word.  I asked, “What am I missing that I need to know to help me overcome and be victorious on my battlefields?”  Of course, I am not the first person to wonder this.  David was a man who struggled with sin.  He asked the Lord to forgive him and he took another step and asked His help.

Take control of what I say, O Lord, and guard my lips.
Don’t let me drift toward evil or take part in acts of wickedness.
Don’t let me share in the delicacies of those who do wrong.
Psalm 141:3-4 NLT

There is the answer to my question.  If when I speak, I first look to the One who has watch over my mouth my words will be encouraging, kind, thoughtful, compassionate, humble, sweet to hear.  And if I use God’s compass when roaming the world I will not be adrift. I will have sure direction and purpose.  I will not be deceived by what is fake and untrue.  I will know that I cannot share the fine things of those who do wrong and be innocent of wrongdoing myself. 

I look to you for help, O Sovereign Lord.
You are my refuge; don’t let them kill me.
Keep me from the traps they have set for me,
from the snares of those who do wrong.

Let the wicked fall in their own nets, but let me escape.
Psalm 141:8-10 NLT

There will be the traps and snares of those who do wrong, and some of my own making, but there is One who saves us from them.  His sanctuary is the fortress on the battlefield.  It is a place that evil cannot enter.  Yet all we have to do is ask and we are saved.

So, like David, I turn to God who in His mercy has given us His Word to help us on our journey and ask His help.

If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God,
who gives generously to all without reproach,
and it will be given him.
James 1:5 ESV

Finding God

When Paul was in Athens, waiting for Silas and Timothy to join him, he was disturbed to see the city full of idols.  He talked to the Jews and God-fearing Greeks in the synagogue and to the people in the marketplace, discussing with them idols and the worship of them.

Epicurean and Stoic philosophers, members of the Court of Areopagus, the judicial body with authority over civil and religious life in Athens, were interested in what Paul had to say.  These men spent most of their time talking about or listening to new ideas and took Paul to a meeting of the Areopagus because he was speaking of things “strange to their ears and they wanted to know what they meant”.

This was the perfect opportunity for Paul to tell them about the one true and sovereign God.  In Athens there was an altar to an “unknown god” so Paul began to tell them about this unknown god, who He is and what He has done.  He told them about the God “who made the world and everything in it…that He gives to all people life and breath and every thing”.  Paul told them God puts each person in the place they need to be when they need to be there “so they would seek God in the hope that they would feel their way toward Him and find Him”.  And he told them “Yet, He is not far from each one of us”.

It is interesting that Paul tells these men, philosophers, who study and ponder, discuss and debate, everything with everyone, that what they are doing is part of a plan, God’s plan.  They are just where they need to be at just the right time so in their searching for answers to life’s questions they will find those answers by finding God.  And he tells them that God is not in some far off place or time but near them.

What Paul said to the men of the Areopagus he says to us today. When we are looking for God going from place to place, teacher to teacher, study to study, discipline to discipline, maybe what we need to do is be still and quiet where we are for a time.

…and He determined the times set for them and the exact places where they should live.  God did this so that men would seek Him and perhaps reach out for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us. Acts 17:26b-27 niv

God is everywhere. Not just the desert or mountain top, forest or seaside, classroom or church.  He is where we are all the time.

I wonder at all the time I spent going to places and events  looking for God, when all along He was right there with me…waiting.


Just wondering…