Does anyone listen anymore & May Scripture Writing Plan

not-listening

Sometimes I wonder. I just wonder what kind of people we are becoming.  Raising a generation on technology.  Our cell phones, for instance.  You don’t have to know much of anything going out into the world.  Why?  Because you can call anyone at any time & find out what to do.  How many times has my 12 year old puzzled me to the point my knee jerk reaction is “Google it.”  Not to be confused with it’s close cousin “Googol”, which if I remember correctly from 7th grade math class, that a googol is a 1 with 100 zeros behind it.  And not JUST an internet sensation that I am mainly dependent on for vast amounts of knowledge.  Just a little history lesson on math.  Bet you don’t get that often.

ANYWHOO- There are many times that I personally may not hold myself responsible for listening as closely as I need to because why? I can call or text at any time & find out what that person said.  Perhaps for example when my sweetie is giving me his grocery list, as I head out the door, I may or may not listen as intentively as I could, because, well you know, I have a LOT of other things I need to be remembering right then.  I know once I get to the Kroger, I can text him & find out everything he told me, plus some other things he forgot.  Sometimes I wonder, do I do this with God, too?  Am I guilty of not listening, not heeding the warnings of sin, until I get into a fix, then I start trying to pray my way out of it?  Then, I have time to listen & talk to God.  I believe that is why we should daily stay in contact with God.  I feel like if we are listening to the Lord, by studying our Bibles & talking to Him through prayer, we will have little time to be judging, looking down our noses at others, & fault finding.

Solomon had some beautiful words about listening in the book of Proverbs-

Proverbs 1:5 A wise man will hear and increase learning, And a man of understanding will attain wise counsel

Proverbs 19:20 Listen to counsel and receive instruction, That you may be wise in your latter days.

And this wonderful piece that is titled “The beginning of knowledge”

Proverbs 1: 10-19

My son, if sinners entice you,
Do not consent.
11 If they say, “Come with us,
Let us lie in wait to shed blood;
Let us lurk secretly for the innocent without cause;
12 Let us swallow them alive like Sheol,[a]
And whole, like those who go down to the Pit;
13 We shall find all kinds of precious possessions,
We shall fill our houses with spoil;
14 Cast in your lot among us,
Let us all have one purse”—
15 My son, do not walk in the way with them,
Keep your foot from their path;
16 For their feet run to evil,
And they make haste to shed blood.
17 Surely, in vain the net is spread
In the sight of any bird;
18 But they lie in wait for their own blood,
They lurk secretly for their own lives.
19 So are the ways of everyone who is greedy for gain;
It takes away the life of its owners.

How relevant is that over 3,000 years later?  We should listen & stay away from sin, as much as possible.  I truly believe staying in God’s Word is one of the most important ways to keep listening.

May Scritpure Writing Plan English

My sweet friend Shannon, over at Sweet Blessings, said I could share her scripture writing plans.  This is the one for May.

If you get a chance, go on over there & let her know what a “sweet blessing” she is for creating these scripture plans.

Y’all, I have so much to catch y’all up on.  I will be back with pictures, before long!  Until next time, I should be going, because I should be washing clothes.

 

Confessions of the I should be washing clothes blogger & what Ebola doesn’t care about

confession tolavishlylove.blogspot

I have a confession to make.

I am not as awesome as you think I am. 

There.  Now you know. Oh, I know it seems like I have everything in the world together (Please don’t talk to my friend Jen about this.  She knows me too well.)  That I have the perfect life. (Refer to the last statement in parenthesis.) I am always totally put together. (Ha. Haaa. Haaaaaa.)  I never let the occasion pass that I don’t always say & do the appropriate things, at the right time. I never leave anything to the last minute & am on time for everything.  (Ok.  I really have to stop with it now.)  And you all know what a total math whiz I am. (Ok.  Seriously, that’s the last one.) Whew, glad to clarify all that.  Those who know me, know I have my share of flaws.  As I get older, I begin to reflect on what it is all this life stuff is about.  Because c’mon. I had some things I wanted to do in life.  I’ve done some of them.  Other things have just fallen by the wayside.  That’s just reality.  Most importantly, I am a put-ter off-er.  I always think there’s more time to do better, change my life, or help make other’s lives better.  The bad news is there’s really not more time.

time behance.net

The other night, at church, Bro. Brad gave a thought provoking talk about how today is the day. We can make excuses from here to yon on why we can’t do something.  He said there are many that are not in a right relationship with God, that think, “I’ve got time.”  Folks that say, “When I make more money, I will give more to the Lord.”  Then, they are blessed with more & it seems they take up another payment on something they could not live without.  Bro. Brad brought to our attention the only reason people don’t own a pet elephant is because we have never been offered a deal for zero down & make monthly payments.  ( That Bro. Brad can be pretty comical.) His point was,  we shouldn’t let stuff get in the way of our relationship with the Lord.  We may say, “I will work more for the Lord, when I have more time.”  When the kids get older, when my job slows down, when I don’t have so many other activities going on, such as kid’s soccer practice, softball games, basketball games, being a taxi to your kids.  When all of that stops, I will devote more time to the work of the church.  Let me tell you.  Time doesn’t stop.  If you don’t make a way to do things now, the time has past.  And guess what?  Yep, you know.  You never get that back. That’s why we must figure out a way to maintain a balance.

II Corinthians 6:2

For He says: “In an acceptable time I have heard you, And in the day of salvation I have helped you.” Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation (NKJV)

It’s to our ultimate advantage to be faithful to the Lord. So many times I see people not attend church services because all of their other activities have them worn to a frazzle.  I heard a preacher say one time, when you start missing church, you can bet it won’t be long until more & more things hinder your spiritual life.   Let me tell you, sweet friend, the ol’ devil has his ways to keep us from doing the Lord’s will.  Many times, it’s not one big thing that happens.  It’s more of a slow leak than a big blow out.  That’s why the small things matter.

I know sometimes people search for something, in life. They are looking for a purpose.  I am happy to tell you, you need not look any further.  Jesus is it.  There are so many things out there that tries to make you believe happiness & contentment comes from this world.  If I only had a new car, a better house, more money in the bank, a bigger t.v., then things would be better.

Umm, not really. 

Ebola doesn’t care how much money you have in the bank.  You can still be inflicted with a dreaded disease, even if you have a 72” big screen t.v.  Then, what becomes important?  Relationships? People who will take care of you & help you through hard times? Many times your relationship with God takes a front seat.  God should be our first choice at all times.  Not our last resort. The apostle Paul talks about how matters of the heart, really matter.  Especially when it comes to love.

faith justsanoto toxicrelationships

I Corinthians 13: 4-8 

 Love suffers long and is kind; love does not envy; love does not parade itself, is not puffed up; does not behave rudely, does not seek its own, is not provoked, thinks no evil; does not rejoice in iniquity, but rejoices in the truth; bears all things, believes all things, hopes all things, endures all things. Love never fails.

Faith, hope, & love are very important. It’s a good thing to choose to make those a part of your daily life.  Don’t think you have time to make things of your heart right.  The time is now.

time bethannchiles

Solomon was the wisest man & had great wealth. He had access to all the things of the world.  It was unbelieveable!  The Queen of Sheba was so curious of his riches & knowledge, she paid him a visit.  Afterwards, she had this to say:

II Chronicles 9: 5 & 6

Then she said to the king: “It was a true report which I heard in my own land about your words and your wisdom. However I did not believe their words until I came and saw with my own eyes; and indeed the half of the greatness of your wisdom was not told me. You exceed the fame of which I heard.(NKJV)

 

After all the glitz & glamor of having everything he could ever wanted, the wise Solomon gave the recipe of what our whole existence is about.

Ecclesiastes 12:13

Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter: Fear God and keep His commandments, For this is man’s all.(NKJV)

So, if Solomon is giving us the answer to the meaning of life, why don’t we take heed? It’s like we have found the answer, but we often times keep looking somewhere else for what life is all about.  We must act now to make things in our life right & know we are not promised the next minute.  At the end of your life, what will really matter?  Whatever you have been putting off, take that step of faith.  The Lord will be there to walk with you.  It’s time.

I hope everyone has had a blessed week. With this past Friday being Halloween, I had my share of sweet trick or treaters!  We trunk or treated at church Wednesday night.  The kids had a great time.  And then we had that thing called setting your clock back an hour on Saturday night.  We really need to quit with the time changes.  Just make it one way & leave it, is what I say.  Oh well, another time no one consulted with me. Until they do, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

happy fallphoto credits: love printables, behance.net,tolavishlylove, justsaynototoxicrelationships

 

God’s Power

photo credit: fbcoverlovers.com

photo credit: fbcoverlovers.com

I read a very thought provoking statement the other day:

“God’s power to restore is stronger than Satan’s power to destroy.”

 Hmmm…this got the wheels to turning in my head.  I started plugging in all of the problems of my life into that statement.  I thought about some of my relationships that have turned from love to indifference.  I thought of my own child, who has fallen by the wayside, and lives a life not pleasing to God.  I thought of the things that hover over me daily, that try to weaken my faith.  I thought of my family, that is not in church.  I thought of how some people enjoy being critical & judgmental.  I thought about all the material things others have, that I don’t.  Goodness gracious!  It didn’t take me long to really get a list going & to think “what in the world do I have to be happy about?”  Well, let me just tell you.  I am fortunate & blessed to have Jesus in my life. 

I John 4:4 says Ye are of God, little children, and have overcome them: because greater is He that is in you, than he that is in the world.

That means Who I have in my heart is bigger & better than anything in the world!  I then thought about my children who are in church.  I thought about those family members, who are a Godly bunch .  I thought about how there are things & people in life that I cannot, and would not want to, control.  However, I have an avenue of prayer to bring all of that to the Lord.  I thought about how even when those around me are rude or mean, I have the power to not imitate the same behavior.  I thought of the wonderful church family I have & how they share my journey with Christ.  I thought about how life is unfair, but God’s not. I thought about how I pray for my son each & every day that goes by & I believe, with all my heart, God has a plan for him.  I thought about how I am surrounded by good people who really care about me.  I thought of how no matter what comes my way, my God is able to restore anything back better than it was in the beginning. 

Ephesians 3:20 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us,

Ephesians 3:21 to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen.

I also considered King Solomon.  He had all the riches the Earth could give him.  He turned from God, trying to chase his own rabbit, to find happiness.  He involved himself in the lusts of the world.  At one time he had 300 concubines, 700 wives & princesses, & he turned his heart to other gods.  From the world’s view, it might have seemed like he was living the life.  But, his morals went to pot pretty quick.  Without God, he found contentment for a season, but ended up with emptiness inside.  The wisest man of his time, ended up giving this advice about how to really live life:

Ecclesiastes 12:13 Let us hear the conclusion of the whole matter:                                                      Fear God and keep His commandments,
For this is man’s all.
14 For God will bring every work into judgment,
Including every secret thing,
Whether good or evil.

And you cannot even think about a life being changed & restored without mentioning Job.  His latter days were better than the beginning (after he went through some really hard times in his life).

Job 42:12 Now the Lord blessed the latter days of Job more than his beginning; for he had fourteen thousand sheep, six thousand camels, one thousand yoke of oxen, and one thousand female donkeys. 13 He also had seven sons and three daughters. 14 And he called the name of the first Jemimah, the name of the second Keziah, and the name of the third Keren-Happuch. 15 In all the land were found no women so beautiful as the daughters of Job; and their father gave them an inheritance among their brothers.

God even made Job’s daughters beautiful.  What a wonderful God is that?  Nobody wants ugly kids!  He just slipped that right in there.  That was just icing on the cake.

So, today I ask you, do you dwell on Satan’s power to destroy, much more that the Lord’s power to restore?  It’s so easy to do.  But know that the Lord has plans for our lives that are bigger than anything we can ask or think.  We just have to live by His word & leave Him to do his job.  That’s my problem sometimes.  I try to take on worries & troubles that aren’t mine in the first place.  I get tired of the struggles & troubles of life & want to give in to something easier.  However, my job is to have faith & believe God will take care of it all.  When I do that, I begin to experience the peace & love God promises.  And that feeling is really good.  Like sweet tea & fried chicken good.

Thank you for coming by to spend some time with me.  I enjoy our visits together!  Just know & believe that better things are coming.  We are all going to have trials & heartache.  Isn’t it better to have trials & heartache with Jesus?  I hope you have a wonderful day.  As for me, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

Into the Word Wednesday

 

into the word wed
Can’t believe it’s Wednesday already! Since we have the holiday tomorrow, today is really my Friday, work wise. After today, I will be off work until Monday,   So glad to have some R & R with my family & friends.  Today, I am linking in with two sweet ladies over at Upward Not Inward. Each Wednesday, they get together & tell what the Word has been saying to them, that week. They are kind enough to share this with others. Without further delay, I give you what the Word has been saying to me this week.

Reading along about the story of Solomon in I Kings, I ran across the beautiful conversation God & Solomon had. In chapter 3: 3 it says that Solomon loved the Lord. In verse 5 the Lord appeared to Solomon in a dream.

God tells Solomon, “Ask! What shall I give you?”

Solomon starts out by acknowledging what God has done for him & his family. Then, he says to God in verse 9,

Therefore give to Your servant an understanding heart to judge Your people, that I may discern between good and veil. For who is able to judge this great people of Yours?

Solomon, one who has been chosen by God to rule His people can ask for ANYTHING in the world. He could have asked for riches, fortune, or fame. He did not, though. He asked for an understanding heart to aid him in making the best decisions possible for others. What a humble & amazing thing to ask for. Truly, God was impressed with this. v. 10 says,

The speech pleased the Lord that Solomon had asked this thing.

Because he was so proud of Solomon for wanting to do the best job possible, God blessed him. v. 11

Then God said to him: Because you have asked this thing, and have not asked long life for yourself, nor have asked riches for yourself, nor have asked the life of your enemies, but have asked for yourself understanding to discern justice. v.12 behold, I have done according to your words, see, I have give you a wise and understanding heart, so that there has not been anyone like you before you, nor shall any like you arise after you. v.13 And I have also given you what you have not asked: both riches & honor, so that there shall not be anyone like you among the kings of your days.

It is so easy to get caught up in the “I want, I need, I have to have” attitude.  I will not want or need a thing.  Then, I go to the mall &  WHAT DO YOU KNOW!  Stuff everywhere, that I don’t know how I was making it without all of it!!  If God asked me what He could give me, I am so afraid I would ask for something so superficial that I would never get anything I really could use.  Like a wise & understanding heart. 

Geez Louise, Solomon, you really nailed it on the head

 I just pray that I can be selfless, always thinking of others, & a servant like Solomon was.

Thank you so very much for stopping by to visit with me today. Go on over to Upward Not Inward & link in with Falen & Laura. You will be glad you did! I hope you have a wonderful day! As for me, I have to be going because I should be washing clothes.

This blog makes me happy!

This blog makes me happy!