Monday, November 14, 2016

Blessed be GOD... who comforteth us in all our tribulation.

" I will go in the strength of the Lord GOD..." Psalm 71:16

This morning I was so encouraged and thanked the Lord for His presence in my life. What a wonderful thought and comfort it is to have a Friend in the Lord Jesus... a Friend  like no other.

Do you find yourself bearing the load of your burden alone... and forgetting that Christ is our only comfort?

As we all face the trials and temptations of this world, I thought of the comfort found in the Lord Jesus and the peace He gives.  

"Peace I leave with you, my peace I give unto you: 
not as the world giveth, give I unto you. 
Let not your heart be troubled, neither let it be afraid.
John 14:27

Sometimes we may find a quick "fix"  and our problems bandaged for the time being through various means... and it can be a simple pouring of our hearts to someone other than the Lord Jesus.  But I find myself  never in complete rest or peace until I bring my burdens and cares to the Lord. He alone gives me the "peace that passeth all understanding" ... and what my heart needs. 

Unlike earthly friends, the Lord Jesus

... never disappoints, 
....never judges,
... never looks down upon me.

He understands, He cares, He comforts and covers me with His protective arms. He helps me up when I fall. He is ever present with me... 

"The LORD upholdeth all that fall, 
and raiseth up all those that be bowed down." 
Psalm 145:14

Indeed, there is no other Friend like the LORD JESUS. 

I heard the following Hymn not too long ago and found it a wonderful reminder and encouragement for the burdened soul. May it uplift you as it did me...

ALL YOUR ANXIETY ALL YOUR CARE
Edward H. Joy, 1920

Is there a heart o’erbound by sorrow?
Is there a life weighed down by care?
Come to the cross, each burden bearing;
All your anxiety leave it there.

Refrain:
All your anxiety, all your care,
Bring to the mercy seat, leave it there,
Never a burden He cannot bear,
Never a friend like Jesus!

No other friend so swift to help you,
No other friend so quick to hear,
No other place to leave your burden,
No other one to hear your prayer.

Come then at once; delay no longer!
Heed His entreaty kind and sweet,
You need not fear a disappointment;
You shall find peace at the mercy seat.

Heavenly Father, Thank you for being the God of all comfort who comforts us in all our tribulation. Thank you for giving us a Friend in the Lord Jesus Christ who understands all our cares and infirmities and is a faithful and merciful High priest. We thank you that we can find complete rest and peace in your presence.

May you find rest and peace in the faithfulness of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

Go ye and LEARN what that meaneth, " I will have MERCY and NOT SACRIFICE..."

" For I desired MERCY and NOT sacrifice; and the KNOWLEDGE OF GOD more than burnt offerings." Hosea 6:6

What is mercy? As I read and meditate on the WORD I marvel at my weakness... and stand in awe at the Lord's goodness!

I marveled this morning while reading through the account of the Lord Jesus sitting down and eating with the publicans and sinners...
Yes, publicans and sinners.

Matthew 9:10-13

"  And it came to pass, as Jesus sat at meat in the house, behold, many publicans and sinners came and sat down with him and his disciples.

And when the Pharisees saw it, they said unto his disciples, Why eateth your Master with publicans and sinners?

But when Jesus heard that, he said unto them, They that be whole need not a physician, but they that are sick.

But go ye and learn what that meaneth, I will have mercy, and not sacrifice: for I am not come to call the righteous, but sinners to repentance. "

How in need I am of the LORD GOD. 
How easily I find myself just like the Pharisees... judging, finding fault, and lacking compassion. 
Do you ever find yourself "whole"... and not in need of a Physician? 
Do you ever find yourself thinking that you are " sacrificing unto the Lord"... but lack mercy toward another?  

The Lord's admonition to the Pharisees, is also good for me. I  must learn and know what it means to show mercy.

I thought about how quickly I judge another person and find so many faults... because, well, they "aren't as they should be". Sometimes I look too long(way too long) at the speck in the eye of another person.  Do you do the same?  

In the light of God's Word,  I'm ashamed at how shallow my "goodness and faithfulness" to the Lord can be. 
I can be very faithful in my morning devotion, but does it go away throughout the day when I'm faced with showing kindness to a "publican" or "sinner"?

" O Ephraim, what shall I do unto thee? O Judah, what shall I do unto thee? 
for your goodness is as a morning cloud, 
and as the early dew it goeth away." 
Hosea 6:4

Mercy... showing kindness and compassion... pardoning iniquity. 
Mercy... learned only through the knowledge of God.

" Who is a God like unto Thee, 
that pardoneth iniquity, 
and passeth by the transgression of the remnant of His heritage? 
He retaineth not His anger for ever, 
because He delighteth in mercy. 
He will turn again, 
He will have compassion upon us; 
He will subdue our iniquities; 
and Thou wilt cast all our sins into the depths of the sea."  
Micah 7:18,19

God's mercy on us(when we didn't deserve it)...ought to be the same mercy we show toward one another.

Faithful and loving Father, we humbly acknowledge our sins before you. How often we too, like the Pharisees, judge and find fault in others. Teach us and guide us to walk in humbleness of mind, laying aside all forms of selfish pride and self-works. Help us to learn what it means to have compassion, mercy and love  through the help of your Holy Spirit. 

May you look unto the Lord Jesus Christ and learn of His ways... His gentleness, compassion and faithfulness that always brought glory to the Father.
~Ellie

Wednesday, October 26, 2016

The MEEK will HE guide... the MEEK will He teach His way..

"What man is he that feareth the LORD? Him shall HE teach in the way that HE shall choose. His soul shall dwell at ease; and his seed shall inherit the earth." Psalm 25: 12,13

This past week I was reading through Matthew 5, the well known chapter where the Lord Jesus teaches of the blessings reserved for those who follow Him. 

And as I read through the various characteristics the Lord Jesus mentions in the Beatitudes, I stopped and reflected on the importance of having a MEEK spirit. 

Meekness isn't the easiest of characteristics... but it describes the Lord Jesus fully. It should also describe us as believers...

MEEKNESS (def.): 1) a calm temper of mind, not easily provoked, 2) submissive, lowly, humble, 3) having or showing a quiet and gentle nature, 4) enduring injury with patience and without resentment

If we look at the various definitions, we find the Lord Jesus was the embodiment of meekness.  

I remember when I first started memorizing verses a few years back... and I remember the excuses that I made... all because I "couldn't memorize". However, my heart yearned to know more of  my Lord and Saviour... and I knew I could only grow in my knowledge of Him though His WORD.  So I started with a familiar verse... 

" Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me
for I am meek and lowly in heart: 
and ye shall find rest unto your souls." 
Matthew 11:29

Little did I realize, but it was the perfect verse that would teach me and grow me in the knowledge of the Lord. The verse has taken me on a most rewarding journey... that I would learn of Him. 

But in order to learn of Him... well, my heart had to be adorned in humility.

" Wherefore lay apart all filthiness and superfluity of naughtiness, 
and receive with meekness the engrafted word
which is able to save your souls." 
James 1:21

We are in no way teachable if we do not have fear of the Lord and be found meek and lowly in heart. We must lay aside all forms of pride. Truly, He alone must take precedence and have complete control of our whole being.... body, soul and mind.

How I need the Lord's yoke... to guide and direct me...and to teach me. Only then will my soul "find rest" or "dwell at ease".

Heavenly Father, Thank you for the Lord Jesus Christ who is the perfect example of meekness. Help us to receive your word with meekness and humbleness of mind, that you may lead and teach us to walk in integrity and uprightness of heart. 

May you reflect the Lord's glory and honor in your life today by being a testimony of His character. 
~Ellie

Thursday, September 29, 2016

The LORD is God, and HE has given us LIGHT...

" For God, who commanded the light to shine out of darkness, hath shined in our hearts, to give the light of the knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Jesus Christ." 2 Corinthians 4:6

This morning I was truly blessed to think upon the marvelous work of God in my life. What mercy that God would look upon me and bring me to light...  

I marvel at the work of the Lord Jesus Christ and think often of my unworthiness. How thankful I am... that I should taste and see the goodness of the Lord.

As I went about my daily work this morning, I happened to hear this song playing... it was indeed a time to stop and thank the Lord for His unbounded love.

I HAVE COME FROM THE DARKNESS
(M.W. Chaplin)

I have come from the darkness to the light of the Lord,
I have come from the night to the day.
He has guided my footsteps in the truth of His word;
By His love He has shown me the way.

Chorus:
I have come from the darkness to the light,
To the light of redemption from sin.
Oh, my soul will rejoice in His might,
For my Savior dwells within.

In the light of His presence all temptations depart,
And the shadows of doubt are cast aside.
With the radiance of sunshine He has entered my heart,
Where His spirit of love abides.

Heavenly Father, thank you for being GOD and commanding light to shine in our hearts. We praise you for the Lord Jesus Christ who has brought us from death to life and has opened the door to your throne of grace. Our hearts are rejoicing that we would be made children of God and marvel at your holiness. Help us today to be a light that shines for you.

" For the LORD will not forsake His people for His great name's sake: 
because it hath pleased the LORD to make you His people." 
1 Samuel 12:22

May you be joyful today... offering praise to the Heavenly Father for the Lord Jesus who has brought light and life to us.

~Ellie

Monday, September 12, 2016

But THOU remainest... THOU art the same.

" The ETERNAL God is thy refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms..." Deuteronomy. 33:27

This past week I was thinking of the Lord... and was so very comforted in knowing that He never changes. When things around us may crumble, how comforting it is to know that our God remains the same!

We can experience the loss of a friend, the loss of earthly possessions, but oh, the wonderful comfort that our God remains the same! He never changes, He is always the same!

The character of God... ever faithful, ever true. From eternity to eternity He is God.

Do you ever find yourself simply lifted up or encouraged by just one small phrase found in the WORD of GOD? 

Such was the case when I read the verse in Hebrews 1:11

"They shall perish; but Thou remainest..." 

Such comfort and peace the simple phrase, Thou remainest, brought to me... 

Who can offer such hope, such peace, such comfort in a world that is full of turmoil and unrest?

What hope and assurance is there.... in the things that perish? 

Our hope is in the One that remains...the ETERNAL God,  the One who is our refuge, the One whose everlasting arms sustain us.

" Be Thou my strong habitation, 
whereunto I may continually resort: 
Thou hast given commandment to save me; 
for Thou art my rock and my fortress." 
Psalm 71:3

As I read more and more of God's Word, I find myself in awe with the treasure so marvelously laid out for us.  

And while we may go through life's trials and find ourselves in moments of discouragements, we've been given the WORD... which brings LIFE...  as well as HEALING to our bodies. 

Oh, if we would only be ever mindful of God's Holy Word and cherish it in our hearts...

" My son, attend to my words; 
incline thine ear unto my sayings.

Let them not depart from thine eyes;
 keep them in the midst of thine heart. 

 For they are life unto those that find them, 
and health to all their flesh." 
Proverbs 4:21,22

Father, thank you for being our eternal God and dwelling place from generation to generation. Our hearts rejoice, for in you we are secure. How thankful we are for the refuge found underneath your everlasting arms. Help us to praise you and trust your unfailing love for us in regards to the trials we may face today.

May you find comfort in God's Holy Word today.
~Ellie

Friday, August 12, 2016

Out of heaven He made thee to HEAR HIS VOICE...

" Know therefore this day, and consider it in thine heart, that the LORD  He is GOD in heaven above, and upon the earth beneath; there is none else." Deuteronomy 4:39

Much of our time here on earth is busy and occupied... there are many activities that tire us. We often find ourselves waking up with the burden of the day. So much needs to be accomplished.

And yet, our God knows our needs. He cares and provides what's best for us... He prunes, He purges.

As I reflect on the Lord's goodness this morning, I marvel at His care.

I confess that I don't always find every situation in my life rosy. .. no, not all the surroundings are easy to go through.

How often I lose sight of God's plan to grow me,
... working in me a faith that does not waver,
... working in me a life that is more and more like Christ's,
... working that I might be humble and obedient to His will.

Pruning hurts... but it yields fruit in the end.

How encouraging to know that the CREATOR of heaven and earth... is LORD over all. There is none besides Him. He does what is right and perfect...

When things around us may crumble... our refuge is in our God.

Despite what the future holds... our God is in control.

And while God may take us through trials and afflictions, He is ever near us...working that which is needful in our lives. .. patience, character and hope.

Indeed, our God is a merciful God...

" But if from thence thou shalt seek the Lord thy God, thou shalt find Him, if thou seek Him with all thy heart and with all thy soul.

When thou art in tribulation and all these things shall come upon thee, even in the latter days, if thou turn to the Lord thy God, and shalt be obedient to His voice; 

For the Lord thy God is a merciful God; He will not forsake thee..." 
Deuteronomy 4:29,30,31

Oh, what assurance- that when we walk with Him, and look unto Him... He hears us and helps us! 

Father, we thank you for making us hear your voice through the living Word. Thank you for the promises we have that comforts us in time of need. Help us to be firmly rooted and grounded in the WORD.

May you be encouraged today to trust the Father's care for you... and be still in knowing that HE IS GOD.
~Ellie

Thursday, July 28, 2016

REST in the LORD, and WAIT patiently for HIM...

" Say to them that are of a fearful heart, BE STRONG, FEAR NOT..." Isaiah 35:4

This past week I have been thinking much about my need to rest in the LORD. I came across verse 7 while reading  Psalm 37.... and instantly found myself thanking the Lord for His beautiful reminder to me. The Lord knew my need this week... He knew I needed to be reminded that He is in control of all things.... and that I should rest.

In the midst of life's trials and afflictions, our hope is to rest in the Lord. How often I find myself not resting in the Lord....

Are you often in the same predicament? Fearing, fretting, faithless, uneasy?

I'm sure we all have fears that cause us to live moments of unrest.  But, oh  how much better for us to trust our heavenly Father. 

"Behold, the LORD'S hand is not shortened, 
that it cannot save; 
neither His ear heavy, that it cannot hear."  
Isaiah 59:1

Our loving God knows and hears our need, our situation... Is He not capable to work all that concerns us for our good?

So often we are brought into paralyzing moments because of fear... but fear is not from God! 

Psalm 37 is a wonderful reminder of God's desire for us to put away fretting from our lives.We are to commit our ways to Him... and rest in Him.... and wait patiently for His deliverance. 

The best medication when we are fearful... is to rest.

" Finally, my brethren, 
be strong in the Lord, and in the power of His might."
 Ephesians 6:10

Heavenly Father, thank you for being our refuge, in whom we find complete rest. Help us to be still and know that you are God in the midst of our trials. Make us to know the peace that keeps our minds and hearts in Christ Jesus by being anxious for nothing.

May you be encouraged to rest and wait patiently for the Lord to complete His work in your life.

~Ellie