Seeing life's events in the light of God's Word.

When Temptation Strikes

Matthew 26:41– “Watch and pray so that you will not fall into temptation. The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

At one time, my husband and I lived in a house behind a grocery store. Our back fence separated our property from the store’s parking lot. Midmorning, every single day of the year except Christmas and New Year’s, unbelievably good smells from the store’s bakery and deli would waft right into our house!

Needless to say, we were constantly tempted to hop the fence and buy freshly baked bread or tasty rotisserie chicken. When the store did a special promotion, bringing their grills outside to cook hot dogs or brats, it was almost too much to bear!

I recall in the midst of dieting, we would resolve to not go grocery shopping without the other so that we could keep from buying foods from our “forbidden” list.  We also tried to spend time away from home, involved in activities where we might not be tempted to break ranks and give in to our churning stomachs.

Although food is a temptation for lots of us, there are also many things in this life that could potentially lure us into behaviors that are not good for us, such as spending too much time on the computer, gambling or gossiping over the back fence, to name a few.

We have good intentions. We mean to change, but these things seem to have such power over human beings.

Why? Because as the verse above tells us, our flesh is weak. It also tells us what to do about it: WATCH. Be aware of those things that tempt us and those times when we are most vulnerable. Then, try to keep ourselves out of those situations.

But that’s not enough. The most powerful thing we can do is PRAY. Seek God’s guidance and tap into His power of resistance against those things that tempt us. Ask Him to replace that temptation with a desire for something better. And He will because He is faithful, because He keeps His word, because He doesn’t want to see us succumb to temptation.

He want us to be free of those things that bind us. Free to live a victorious life— in Him!


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What’s on God’s Agenda for Today?

Psalm 121:4- (He who keeps you) will neither slumber nor sleep.

I answered the phone on the third ring. It was my son, calling me on his way to play a round of golf. He filled me in on what he had been up to the previous week and what he had planned for the next few days. I appreciated his call. I love to hear what is going on in his life.

I think back to that phone call as I wonder, what God is doing today? What’s on His agenda?

Well, I think He is doing pretty much what He does every day. I’ll list what comes to mind in no particular order because He does what he does, simultaneously. The Bible tells us He can be everywhere at once and do every thing at once. Here are some insights from His Word:

1) He is active in listening to, and answering, prayers. I Peter 3:12- “For the eyes of the Lord are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their prayer.”

2)  He literally holds this universe together. Hebrews 1:3a- “The Son is the radiance of God’s glory and the exact representation of his being, sustaining all things by his powerful word…”

3)  He is creating. Not only did He create the heavens and the earth as we read in the book of Genesis, but John 14:6 quotes Jesus as saying “My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that I am going there to prepare a place for you?” The who He is referring to is believers—those who put their faith in Jesus.

4) He is protecting. Isaiah 41:10- “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God. I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

5) He is forgiving. Hebrews 7:25- Jesus “Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.”

I am sure this is not an exhaustive list. Please comment by adding to the above others that you think of, including the scriptural reference.

Our God is always with us…always awake…always watching over us… He is the same today, tomorrow, and always!


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The Ultimate Valentine

Romans 1:20- For since the creation of the world God’s invisible qualities—his eternal power and divine nature—have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that people are without excuse.

We hadn’t used binoculars since we camped in northern Arizona. Now, I pulled them out of the closet and packed them into our suitcase. We were heading for a whale watching excursion in the Pacific Ocean as part of our vacation in San Clemente, California.

The binoculars would help us detect the large mammals from a distance, bringing them into focus even from far away. Without them, we might never know that these spectacular creatures were anywhere nearby.

The Bible says one day we will see God. We will “Behold Him” in all of His Glory. We won’t need binoculars—we’ll see Him face-to-face!

But what about now? Is there any way to see Him—to recognize Him in our daily lives here on earth?

His Word tells us we can see evidence of Him all around us— in the heavens and on the earth. That even in those places where the gospel hasn’t been preached, people can know of Him because all of nature testifies of Him!

This earth, this galaxy, didn’t come into existence because of some “Big Bang!” They were created for us to inhabit, for our enjoyment, in order to increase our awareness of our Heavenly Father. All of creation gives evidence of the great love of God for His children.

The rainbow…a waterfall…the hummingbird…sunrise and sunset…ocean waves…a summer breeze… a colorful butterfly…sunbeams streaming through a windowpane…stars, moon, planets, and puffy clouds… Take a second look at them, today. Think about the one who created them: our Heavenly Father.

He loved us so much that He made all of nature for our pleasure, but more than this, he made them to send us a message. A message that He exists, that He loves us, that He wants to connect with us. They tell of His divine nature and His great power.

God was in control as He created. Today, He IS still in control. Although things may not always seem to be going “right”, He IS near us. He will have the ultimate victory!

This world may be all about Valentines and lace and sparkly diamonds, but He is about a universe filled with reminders that His love is unfailing, unending. Love in its purest form, for by His very nature, HE IS LOVE.




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Lip Sync?

Jeremiah 23:26– How long will there be lies in the hearts of those who speak false words in My name, who speak the lies of their own heart?

On the morning news I heard a story about a recent Lip Sync contest that took place on a late night television show. A video clip showed famous celebrities belting out the lyrics to popular contemporary songs and the audience cheering them on, as if they were hearing the actual artists themselves. In most cases, it was virtually impossible to tell they were not really singing the words themselves!

I think about the voice of God. Is it possible for us to know if it is really His voice we are listening to, or that of someone else? Someone who may say similar words, but twist them ever so slightly so that the meaning is distorted? The intent to misguide…

How can we know His true voice? How can we recognize the voice of impostors who really mean to lead us away from The Truth?

Television talk shows, social media, magazines—the list goes on and on. It won’t take much effort to find voices in every venue that purport to know and proclaim their own “truth.” If we are not careful, we may fall prey to their message. We may, in fact, be led away from the True and Living God we so earnestly seek.

There are hundreds of books to be read. There are opportunities to attend church or even watch worship services from your own living room. You can read online commentaries. The list is never ending.

So, I ask you, again: How will you know the message is from God? How will you know His true voice from that of the Lip Syncers of this world?

The Bible, as God’s Word, is His message to us. It is the only written word that is 100% endorsed by Him. So, when we read or hear other voices, the way to know if they voice His Truth is to simply check out the message they bring against what The Bible says. If their words align with the Bible, they can be believed as trusted sources. If they conflict, discard what they say and believe God’s Word every time.

If you do, you’ll never go wrong, never be led astray, never be caught wondering if it is really HIS Voice.



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