I just learned that a good friend’s husband is looking at back surgery soon. He has been in pain with spinal problems for many years. This prayer is for him – and for all who are suffering from physical or emotional pain.
I pray for your health, happiness, and peace of mind.
Spread your kindness and love, your peace and faith to all you meet. And if you are blessed with freedom from suffering, count your blessings, my friend… and thank the Lord.
I had an ah-hah moment this morning as I was doing my Bible Study and reading the devotionals. In Touch magazine’s topic yesterday was “God’s Perspective on War.”
Charles Stanley wrote, “War is a very controversial subject in both the world and the church…” and then he asked the question, “What does the Lord think about war?”
He continued by trying to answer his own question, using Romans 13:1-4 as a springboard.
Here is Romans 13: 1-2a – “Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those who exist have been instructed by God. Therefore, whoever resists the authorites resists what God has appointed…”
He said wars are waged to protect citizens against evil.
But, is every ruler appointed and instructed by God? I would question that. If they are, in fact, instructed by God, are they listening? Are they following God’s instruction?
Do wars over land rights have anything to do with protecting citizens’ lives? The governments send its citizens into battle knowing many will be killed!
God bless our veterans! I guess it was July 4th and its festivities – honoring our war veterans that got me thinking on this subject.
IMMIGRATION AND CIVIL RIGHTS
Pediatricians shared pictures drawn by migrant children after being released from US custody
A drawing by children recently released depicting their time spent in US Customs and Border Protection (CBP) custody. Photograph: Handout ./Reuters
Is God instructing Donald Trump to take chidren from their parents, lock them in cages, give them aluminum blankets, make them sleep on a cold floor, and provide inadequate medical care for them? It’s heart-breaking!!!
Yes, I know – this is a controversial, multi-faceted problem. But, it just can’t be right!
Governments were established as a means of promoting good and restraining (stopping, if possible) evil. I am convinced that God’s goal is the destruction of wickedness, NOT THE DESTRUCION OF PEOPLE.
Why can’t we JUST LOVE ONE ANOTHER?
When governments condone immorality, fuel the rich, and oppress the poor, then God allows war for the sake of the innocent.
In Luke 6:27-31, the Bible teaches us to love our enemies, do good to those who hate us, and bless those who curse us. BUT, as Charles Stanley pointed out in today’s devotional in In Touch magazine, “Jesus was speaking about personal conflicts, not national wars.” He continued by reminding us we need to “distinquish between commands issued to nations and instructions given to individuals.”
God allows governments to wage wars for the protection of those being harmed. The job of the government is to protect people.
What would have happened if no government had stepped in to stop Hitler?
Where in our world today do we see people being harmed by the government? Caged? Scorned? Marginalized? We don’t have to look very far!
When I put the word “abuse” in the free photo library search, look what I got:
Is this what the immigration policy has boiled down to? A wall?
Is this how we step forward to protect people in the world who are forced out of their homes and risking their lives to seek asylum in a safer place?
No, we can’t take in thousands of people who need protection from other countries. We need to limit immigration/ asylum seekers and enforce our limits. But, what is the root cause? What are the conditions that are forcing these families out of their native lands?
How can we look for ways to protect our own people and treat others with love?
There is no easy solution to the abuse and marginalization, the hunger and the threats to life in this world. JUST LOVE ONE ANOTHER sounds like pie in the sky – Pollyanna thinking.
But LOVE is the answer! Right and Truth must ultimately prevail.
We must stand up/ speak up/work for/pray for/hope for/ and believe in PEACE.
It is not ours individually to take our own revenge. We will never experience inner peace if we battle individuals who wrong us. Our job is to forgive, to love, and to work together to make our own government more responsive to the needs of its citizens and the right to a peaceful life for us all.
I do dream of a world with no more war. Don’t you?
I followed the recipe, but when I was finished, I decided it needed some enhancement. I went back to the site on a quest for enhancement ideas. Right next to that recipe was one that added curry to the soup. We love curry. Also, I wanted it to be a bit creamy. I had some half and half on hand. I added that.
You know, when you are on a quest for improved flavors, improved health or attitudes, improved life-styles … you name it … you have to be adventuresome! Mix it up. Improvise. Think outside the box!
Recently I have been on a quest for ideas to enhance the birthday party for my great-grandson. It’ll be at our house this Saturday. He’ll be two on Sunday. We have about 25 friends and in-law-family of my granddaughter coming to join us. What can we do besides eat and socialize?
I asked Siri. She led me to fatherly.com, a website with an article titled, “20 Original Ideas for a Second Birthday Party.” From a rainbow party to a fairytale fete, these birthday themes are touted to be perfect fits for two-year-olds.
The article on fatherly.com said,
“They have simple tastes.
They want cake,
shiny things to wave about,
and to run free…
Second birthdays should be glorious play dates.”
I pray for good weather, and I pray that my granddaughter will have other two-year-olds here for my great-grandson to play with. But, whether she does or not, the ideas I discovered on this site satisfied my quest for answers to “What can we do besides eat and socialize?”
Balloons sounded like a great idea to me. If our unpredictable Montana weather is bad that day, balloons can hit furniture and not put dents in it!
Now, we need to choose a theme – and get busy. Thinking outside the box can sometimes result in extra work. Don’t be afraid of it!
Let Your Quest Quicken Your Faith and Deepen Your Soul
If one of your quests is like mine: to look for clearer direction or purpose for life, what questions do you ask? Where do you go for answers?
My go-to source for such answers is clear to you if you have read any of my other posts. Rarely do I leave you without a reference to God, to the Living Lord who walked on earth and showed us the Way, or a reference to Scripture. I will not disappoint you this time either.
It’s not just Google or Siri to whom I turn when I have questions. They are a great help when it comes to history, places, recipes, party ideas… but when it comes to matters of the heart and soul, nothing beats the Good Book!
My NIV (New International Version) Study Bible has a great concordance. I can look to the back of the Book for words that reference my questions. It will list all the places in the Bible where the idea I am seeking is mentioned.
For instance, when I was concerned about a friend who was excessively worrying, I went to the word “Worry” in the Concordance. I found the perfect scripture to add to the card I was sending to my friend.
Phil.4:6-7 “Don’t worry about anything, instead pray about everything. Tell God what you need, and thank Him for all He has done.Then you will experience God’s peace, which exceeds anything we can understand. His peace will guard your hearts and minds as you live in Jesus Christ.”
Thrill to the Quest
Let the references from Siri, the links you find on Google, and the assurance of Scripture never fail to thrill you! Technology is amazing. But so is our Certain Help in times of trouble. Don’t forget to call on the Lord. Pray!! When all else fails, He will never fail you!
Keep your quests alive!
God Bless You, my Seeking Friends…
Welcome to Day #14
of my A-Z series: Adding Meaning and Finding Purpose in Life
Today’s letter is “N”
The title, “Naomi’s Nurturing News” is inspired by the Biblical account of Naomi, a destitute widow. The story is told in the book of Ruth.
We all have a lot to learn from Naomi and God’s steadfastness in her life.
When a famine occurred in her home area of Bethlehem, the widow migrated with her two boys to Moab, where she intended to ride out the famine – and then eventually return with them – where she imagined her sons would marry hometown girls. She dreamed of living a productive and happy life near them, filled with grandchildren.
However, her dreams were shattered when her sons married Moabite women, produced no grandchildren, and then both sons died. She did eventually return to Bethlehem, but she was a beaten-down woman who told her old friends who greeted her by name to call her “Bitter” instead.
With God working behind the scenes, a few chapters later, we see a transformed Naomi, filled with joy and a new zest for life. Yes, our God is an awesome God. The Good News from Naomi’s story is the power of nurturing love to bring life’s true meaning and purpose to fruition.
Naomi is a woman whose story
Inspires me to want to know
How to develop her nurturing spirit
And watch my family’s greatness grow.
Naomi moved from Jerusalem
To Moab with her two sons.
She dreamed that they would marry
Israelite women – but they were not the ones
The boys selected for their wives –
Instead Moabites were chosen
And when her sons both died,
Naomi’s life seemed hopelessly frozen.
She told her daughters-in-law that
Jerusalem was calling her home.
“Stay here and remarry,” she encouraged.
“Don’t come with me to roam.”
But one of those lovely ladies,
(Ruth was her name, we read),
Told Naomi she would go with her
And take care of her every need.
In spite of Naomi’s objections,
Ruth did exactly that – she went –
And stayed with Naomi faithfully;
Loving her back with every second spent.
Naomi’s nurturing spirit
Helped Ruth find Boaz, her new love,
And eventually came the baby, Obed,
A gift from God above.
Instead of dying bitter and alone,
Naomi’s life was full, not hollow.
Her nurturing spirit invited love –
Her faith is an example we can follow.
Don’t let life’s troubles stop your heart
From reaching out to others in love.
The more you give, the more you’ll get,
In blessings galore from our God above.
Luke 17:6 teaches us, “If you have faith the size of a mustard seed, you could say to this mulberry tree, ‘Be uprooted and planted in the sea,’ and it would obey you.”
Naomi’s story reminds me that life is not always fair. Our dreams do not always come true. We will have days (maybe even months or years) of questions, wrestling, and searching for answers. But, God has room for our questions and our searching. God is with us during our periods of bitterness, our uncertainty, and our doubting. God does not give up on us.
To find more meaning and to ultimately fulfill our purpose in life, we need Naomi’s mustard seed faith. We must trust God and cling to Him. Develop consistent prayer time … regular, open, heart-felt conversation with God. He will give us what He gave to Naomi: a new zest for life.
Trust – and work with our nurturing God as He writes a new chapter in your life.
He has promised to protect and provide for you all your life. Pick up your mustard seed faith – and watch Him fulfill His promises in you!