God’s affirmation washing over me!


PLEASE READ THIS FIRST: Matthew 3:13-17
What do you sense the Lord saying to you in this passage?

I want to try something. I wonder if some are reading my reflections first. Try listening for the Lord in the passage first, and post your own comment. My comments are not meant to shape yours, but to let you see how the Spirit spoke to me. I would like to hear how the Spirit is speaking to you through the passage!

Continue reading ‘God’s affirmation washing over me!’ »

When the Spirit is working in me!


PLEASE READ THIS FIRST: Matthew 3:7-12
What do you sense the Lord saying to you in this passage?

I want to try something. I wonder if some are reading my reflections first. Try listening for the Lord in the passage first, and post your own comment. My comments are not meant to shape yours, but to let you see how the Spirit spoke to me. I would like to hear how the Spirit is speaking to you through the passage!

Continue reading ‘When the Spirit is working in me!’ »

Isaiah called it!


PLEASE READ THIS FIRST: Matthew 3:1-6
“This is he who was spoken of through the prophet Isaiah…” (Matthew 3:3)
If there is a quote in the bible, do you ever check where it is from?
Matthew links John to Isaiah’s “voice of one calling in the wilderness” (Isaiah 40:3).
If we look closer at Isaiah 40, you see who Matthew is claiming Jesus to be.
The voice calling is preparing the way for the Lord to come!
He predicts that the “glory of the Lord will be revealed.” (Isaiah 40:5).
And “all people will see” His glory (Isaiah 40:5), not just a religious few.
This message is announcing “good news” (Isaiah 40:9), or ‘gospel’.
And the good news is, “Here is your God!” (Isaiah 40:9)
Isaiah prophecies that the “Sovereign Lord comes with power” (Isaiah 40:10).
But not in the typical power way: “He tends his flock like a shepherd: He gathers the lambs in his arms and carries them close to his heart; he gently leads those that have young.” (Isaiah 40:11)
Do you see what Matthew is saying: if John is the voice calling, then Jesus is…
“Here is your God” becomes “‘Immanuel’ (which means ‘God with us’)” (Matthew 1:24).
Do you see Jesus as God Himself, here to rescue and restore us like a Good Shepherd?
What do you sense the Lord saying to you?
PRAYER
Lord, I can’t explain how it works, but I do believe that somehow You are God with us, just as Isaiah predicted. Thank You for carrying me close to Your heart.

Open to His guidance!


PLEASE READ THIS FIRST: Matthew 2:19-23
“Having been warned in a dream…” (Matthew 2:22)
I believe in spiritual guidance, that God helps and directs us through life.
Here we have God using a dream to guide Joseph in his role as Jesus’s father.
I don’t think God has used dreams for me, but He has directed me in other ways.
Through prayer journalling, bible reading, or helpful/challenging words from others.
Through bad experiences, gut feelings, or unexplainable God moments.
As I reflected on these experiences, I got a clearer sense of what I should do.
None of this can be scientifically tested or proven, but the results are there for me.
Many people may dismiss this ‘guidance’, but I can’t, it has helped me too many times.
I choose to see this as God’s world, and to see all things as under His guidance.
Nothing is by chance, all things are working together for His good purpose.
By being open to His guidance, we will see it, and benefit from it.
By being closed to His guidance, we won’t see it, and won’t benefit from it.
“Whether you turn to the right or to the left, your ears will hear a voice behind you, saying, ‘This is the way; walk in it.’” (Isaiah 30:21)
What do you sense the Lord saying to you?
PRAYER
Lord, Your Spirit is guiding me through me life. I sense it, thought I admit I do not always follow it. Help me to see the folly of ignoring Your warnings… and the blessing of following Your lead!

Following Jesus through the bible


PLEASE READ THIS FIRST: Psalm 1
“Blessed is the one… who meditates on his law day and night.” (Psalms 1:2)
What is the key to a blessed (or happy, or full) life?
Ultimately, the key is living as God designed and created us to live.
Adam and Eve (and us with them) have tried to find happiness in other ways.
Our problem is we fill our minds (meditate) with alternative ways and goals.
This psalm is not calling us to be bible nerds, reading the bible all the time.
But it is urging us to make the wisdom of God as found in the bible our priority.
In any situation, how does God want us to be, what does God want us to do?
We can’t know this unless we spend time reflecting on what He has revealed to us.
God has inspired the authors of the bible to record what they did for our benefit.
In every story, teaching, command, etc. there is wisdom to be found, and followed.
We do more than just read and then forget it, we look intently into it (James 1:22-25).
We look for life lessons, wisdom principles, examples to follow, or not.
Jesus wants to teach, rebuke, correct and train me for good living (2 Timothy 3:16-17).
But He can’t do this if I am not taking the time with Him in the bible to listen.
What do you sense the Lord saying to you?
PRAYER
Lord, going my own way is foolish and ultimately unfulfilling. Thank You for speaking to me through the bible; help me to not merely listen, but to do what it says!

Restless wanderers


PLEASE READ THIS FIRST: Genesis 4-6
“You will be a restless wanderer on the earth.” (Genesis 4:12)
The word ‘lost’ in christian circles seems to mean doomed or ‘going to hell’.
But a child ‘lost’ in a mall is not doomed but desperate, needing help.
I see all humanity – including myself – in this lost condition.
We are like Cain, restless wanderers, desperate and in need of help.
We’ve lost our connection to God and are weary and burdened under the curse of sin.
Life is hard in this world, and we are desperately trying to find our way.
We look to this or that hoping to find love, joy and peace… but to no avail.
Our hearts are restless, but nothing we grab for can give us inner peace.
As St. Augustine said, ‘our heart is restless until it finds its rest in God.’
These chapters show our world going from bad to worse… and show our need for Jesus!
We are like lost sheep, but Jesus is the Good Shepherd come to help us.
We may be lost in this world, but Jesus is looking for us, and can restore us.
In Jesus we find rest for our restless hearts, as He helps us back to life with God.
“Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest.” (Matthew 11:28)
What do you sense the Lord saying to you?
PRAYER
Lord, help me to realize that nothing else can make me happy or give me rest. I am weary and burdened, like Cain… I am looking to You for rest.