spiritualsnippets.com

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

RELAX. HE’S GOT THIS.

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Proverbs 3:5,6- “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.”

 

Are you worried? Frustrated? Agitated?

You know our Heavenly Father will take care of you.

But, do you find it hard to trust?

Here’s an idea I heard a few days ago on my local Christian radio station. It is so simple and practical that it bears repeating.’’

Here is what a caller suggested doing:

At the top of a paper, write this heading: Things I Am Fearful of and/or Worried About.

Now, list them out. As many as you can think of…

When your list is complete, go back to the top of the page and erase the heading.

Replace it with these words: Things I Can Trust God With.

Then thank God for being in control of each and every situation. 

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Is Anger a Sin?

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                                       Ephesians 4:26a– “In your anger do not sin.

 

Mark pulled into the driveway after a long day’s work. The sun was already setting. So much for hitting a few golf balls before dinner. 

His boss had asked him to stop by his desk on his way out. Their discussion hadn’t been a pleasant one and it had lasted over an hour.

Now, with no way to release his frustration, he’d arrive home to face his wife’s need to vent after taking care of their nine-month old twins all day. He knew she wanted some adult conversation, but her complaints always sparked his anger. Didn’t she realize he wanted nothing more than a little peace and quiet, himself?

Yesterday, he’d blown up at her meaningless chatter. He regretted yelling… pushing her… storming out.

Mark’s Christian counselor said it was acceptable to have angry feelings. However, his behavior—his reaction—was what was sinful. He’d shared the verse from Ephesians.

Mark bowed his head before entering the house. Lord, I need your help to keep from overreacting. I don’t want to hurt my wife. Please calm me. Keep me from sinful behavior when our conversations get emotional. Help me show her love and grace.

 

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Design and Purpose

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Esther 4:14- “Perhaps this is the moment for which you have been created.”

 

When Bobby jumped into Atlantic Ocean’s choppy water to save the life of a stranger, no one was surprised.

His friends reported that he was “just that kind of guy.” 

He never hesitated to help others in need, give to a worthy cause, encourage those who were facing difficult life circumstances.

He shied away from attention, content to do humanitarian acts without accolades or fanfare.

At his funeral (age 32), the pastor quoted the verse from Esther. He reminded those at the service that God has a calling on each and every one of our lives—a design and purpose for everything we are.

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Is Your Heart Troubled?

 

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                                          John 14:1a- “Let not your hearts be troubled…”

 

One of the talk shows I watch regularly ends with this encouragement from the scriptures: “Let not your hearts be troubled.” 

The need for solace and peace is abundantly clear as each day’s news is presented and analyzed.

Couple that with our own personal problems and no wonder more people suffer from anxiety.

A mound of bills to pay, family relationships falling apart, health issues.

So how do we find true peace in these uncertain times?

First, rely on the Holy Spirit to bring us peace…the deep peace within that knows God is in control; not the peace that we feel we can create ourselves because that peace doesn’t last.

Second, rely on the encouragement of the scriptures and other believers. Renew our thoughts and minds, speaking the words aloud in moments of apprehension.

Thirdly, pray right away when the need arises. And keep praying throughout the day. Pour out your fears to Jesus. Lay your burdens at his feet. And, once you feel your anxieties lift, resist the desire to take them back up again and worry about them. 

Claim victory over them in the name of Jesus Christ.

 

 

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Too Wonderful for Words

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Psalm 145:5– “They speak of the glorious splendor of your majesty— and I will meditate on your wonderful works.”

 

One of my favorite songs, growing up, was from an old movie I saw on a Saturday afternoon as I babysat for the neighbors.

Once I got the kiddos down for their naps, I turned on the television. I’ve long since forgotten who sang the song, but this young teenage girl swooned at the words, “You’re just too wonderful. Too wonderful for words.”

These words apply to human (and perhaps idealistic) love, but let’s see how they apply to our Lord and Savior.

Besides today’s verse in Psalms, other verses use synonyms for wonderful: marvelous, glorious, awesome—to describe Him:

Job 37:5– “God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding.”

Psalm 111:3– “Glorious and majestic are his deeds, and his righteousness endures forever.”

Psalm 47:2– “For the Lord Most High is awesome, the great King over all the earth.”

The Bible tells us that God is our “first love” worthy of our love and praise. So, as you worship Him today, let’s tell Him that He is marvelous, glorious, awesome, and “too wonderful for words.”

 

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Hiding God’s Word in Our Hearts

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Psalm 119:11- Thy word have I hid in mine heart, that I might not sin against thee.

 

The Bible says scripture is more desirable than gold and sweeter than honey. Each page is filled with eternal truth and wisdom. So what is the value of memorizing God’s Word?

1- The deeper we know God, the deeper we know his will for us.

2-The Word has power! If you are fighting against a specific sin, hiding God’s Word in your heart will help you overcome temptation.

3-Keeping Scripture at the forefront of our minds helps us receive spiritual transformation from Almighty God.

4-Having God’s Word fresh in our minds, will help us avoid temptation.

5-The Word will bring us hope and greater communion with God.

6-Scriptures help us understand the heart and desires of God.

7- When we memorize Scripture, we can readily share the salvation message with unbelievers and help them understand their sin and need for a Savior.

8-The Bible is a book of tremendous wisdom that can have an impact on every area of our lives. By memorizing Scripture we are able to have wisdom with us at all times.

9-When we have verses committed to memory, we can more easily encourage other believers in the truth.

Let’s challenge ourselves to memorize just one verse each week. Start with short verses that “speak” to us, and gradually work our way up to more challenging ones. God will honor our commitment by blessing us with a closer walk with him.

 

 

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Growing Our Faith

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Romans 10:17- “…faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ.”

The subject of faith came up in our Bible Study Group this week.

How does one get faith? How does one grow faith?

The answer was surprisingly simple. 

Romans tells us that first we need to hear the word of God. (This plants the seed of faith in our hearts).

How?

There are two main ways: 1) We hear it preached from the pastor’s pulpit  and/or 2) We hear it as we read the Bible.

Then, we need to take care of that seed—help it grow.

Don’t overlook the word “hearing.”  

As a teacher, I know that when students memorize something, it is an immense help if it is repeated out loud. That way, it gets into their brains using both visual AND auditory senses.

Pray that God will increase your faith as you follow these two principles. 

Next week, we will talk about the value of memorizing scripture.

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No Worries, No Fears

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Psalm 23:4- “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil, for you are with me; your rod and your staff, they comfort me.”

 

In last week’s sermon, my pastor showed the congregation a picture of The Valley of Jehoshaphat, otherwise known as The Valley of the Shadow of Death.

If you’ve ever lost a loved-one, experienced extreme sadness, or found yourself in a fearful situation, you can relate to what David was saying in this psalm. But, I never knew the “Valley of the Shadow of Death” was an actual place. I thought it was simply figurative language.

The Valley of Jehoshaphat (which means “God has judged.”) is a narrow furrow of land in the Kidron Valley between the Temple Mount and The Mount of Olives where it is said that one day the events of Judgement Day will take place. (Joel 3:12) and all nations will be judged. At its southern end is a series of tombs.

Although valleys, historically, have been fertile places for farming, they are also susceptible to attacks by invading armies. So, David’s use of this reference helps us visualize a place where ambushes might take place.

However, King David goes on to tell us that he isn’t afraid because he is comforted by God’s rod and staff. 

A royal scepter is called a rod. A staff is a ruler’s symbol of authority standing between his feet. What could be more fitting than this description of our Lord as both The Good Shepherd and The King of Kings?

Keep that in mind as you walk through your own Valley of the Shadow of Death.  Our Good Shepherd, Jesus, protects us against our enemies, guides, and rescues us just as a shepherd protects his flocks.

 

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One Out of Ten

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Luke 17: 16-18: “He threw himself at Jesus’ feet and thanked him—and he was a Samaritan. Jesus asked, “Were not all ten cleansed? Where are the other nine? Has no one returned to give praise to God except this foreigner?”

 

Christians all over the world have been praying for an end to the fires in Australia—asking God to send rain.

Last week, He did just that.

He sent rain AND hail.

How many of us pour out our hearts to God, only to “forget” to offer thanks when our prayers are answered?

A friend is healed from an illness.

A wayward child returns home.

Funds are provided to pay for unexpected bills.

In Luke, ten lepers are healed, but only one returns to thank Jesus.

Although there are scriptures reminding us to pray to The Lord to supply our needs (He wants to give His children good things), we are also told that giving thanks is the appropriate response.

 

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Always There

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Deuteronomy 31: 8- “The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.”

 

I tip-toed into my father’s room last week and studied his face while he lay sleeping next to Mom.

I recalled some especially good times from the past and soon found tears trickling down my cheeks.

“Don’t leave me, Daddy,” I whispered just like I often did when I was a little girl.

I realize it will happen some day. After all, Dad is 93. But I’m just not ready to say good-bye to this gentle man quite yet.

I know I will see my earthly father again in heaven, but until then there will be a period of time we will be separated.

On the other hand, God tells us that He is eternal and will live forever. I am grateful that he created us and will watch over us both now and for all eternity.

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