spiritualsnippets.com

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

Thought Life

Psalms 19:14- “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be acceptable in your sight, O Lord, my strength and my Redeemer.”

In high school, my Sunday school teacher frequently talked about “thought life,” warning us that impure thoughts lead to impure actions. Conversely, he said that pure thoughts lead to actions that are acceptable to God.

Throughout life, I have found the verse in Psalms to be true. But for teens nowadays, the influences of social media, movies, and literature are even more profound.

So, if what goes into their minds is impure, how can their thoughts (the meditations of their hearts) be pleasing to God? And how can the result be lives lived according to God’s will?

I think the answer to the question is found at the end of the verse: Those that find their salvation and strength in the Lord, will be able to live with clean minds (thoughts) and out of their mouths will come clean speech.

The Bible and prayer—along with the Holy Spirit—will guide teens living in the world today. When their true desire is that their thoughts and actions please God, He will be there to help them do just that. 

As parents and grandparents, daily prayer for our young people to resist the temptations of this world and to follow the truth found in God’s word is more important today than it has ever been.

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What is it About Pets?

1 John 4:19- “We love because he first loved us.”

Angie had a hard time healing emotionally after her Springer Spaniel, Rex, died. She had been shy growing up, and a bit of a “late bloomer” as her mother put it. But once she connected with Rex, her confidence grew by leaps and bounds.

He loved her no matter what and she thrived beyond all her parents could hope for.

Most people will tell you that the dog’s ability to give its owner unconditional love that is the reason they are so drawn to their pets.

The Bible tells us that we love Jesus because he first loved us—while we were sinners. He loves us unconditionally and we are drawn to Him with cords of love and grace.

Do you need someone in your life who will love you no matter what? Turn to Jesus and acknowledge Him as Savior and Lord. Experience His peace and unconditional love.

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Victorious Reunion

I Corinthians 15:54- “ So when this corruptible shall have put on incorruption, and this mortal shall have put on immortality, then shall be brought to pass the saying that is written, Death is swallowed up in victory.”

My father passed away last week, so instead of writing this blog, I was writing a speech for his memorial. I had an opportunity not only to eulogize a wonderful and godly man, but I also wanted to use my comments to present the gospel message to those in attendance who may not have heard it before.

I had spent a couple of days in tears, missing my dad. But it helped to dig into scripture as I wrote his eulogy. I soon found the comfort I needed and the strength to get through the memorial and for the days ahead.

I was reminded that I will see him again when I join my family in heaven one day. I thought of the joyous reunion he is having now with my mother. I gave thanks for the absence of pain and the renewal of his mind. Most of all, I marveled at the fact that he is now with our Lord. 

He has actually seen the face of God! 

The memorial service was beautiful. My two sisters spoke. My brother played the guitar and sang. The military salute and taps will be unforgettable. 

Our family united in a fitting tribute to a special man who left us a legacy of love, truthfulness, and faith.

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The Crown of Life

James 1:12-“Blessed is the one who perseveres under trial because, having stood the test, that person will receive the crown of life that the Lord has promised to those who love him.”

Joyce reminisced about being crowned Miss Arizona several decades earlier, when she was just twenty years old. She smiled as she thought about the moment the crown was placed on her head. 

“It was one of the most wonderful experiences I’ve ever had. To this day, I can still feel the weight of the crown and hear the cheers of the audience.”

I can only imagine what that must have felt like, having never won such a contest myself. However, the Bible tells us that each believer will receive the crown of life. 

What a joyous occasion that will be when Jesus places it on our heads!

We will cheer for each other, remembering that His promises are true and that He keeps each and every one of them!

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If He Brings You To It…

Isaiah 41:14- ““For I am the Lord your God, who upholds your right hand, Who says to you, ‘Do not fear, I will help you’.”

With the assistance of his uncle, my two-year-old grandson swung at the plastic ball resting on the Tee. A moment later, the fly ball hit me smack in the forehead.

Except for a little tenderness the next morning, I was fine. But, it was not so with Goliath when David, the little shepherd boy, used a slingshot and a stone to bring him down.

How was David able to accomplish this? With God’s help, of course!

A common phrase going around the past few decades is, “If God brings us to it, He will see us through it.”

God’s word tells us He will prepare us for any task he asks of us. He will stand beside us; walk beside us. He won’t ask us to do a task he has not prepared us for– or one he is not teaching us to handle.

Just as God prepared David, Peter, Paul, Jonah, Moses and many others in the Bible, we can be assured that if he calls us to a task, he will prepare us to fulfill it. 

Never fear; He who is with us is greater than he who is in the world.

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A High Wall, Cracked and Bulging

Isaiah 30:13- “This sin will become for you like a high wall, cracked and bulging, that collapses suddenly, in an instant.”

The evening news is filled with videos of storms taking place in The United States. Homes destroyed.

Lives lost.

One day everything is fine. Then bad weather brings destruction.

The devastation reminds me of the verse from Isaiah. A word picture of sin’s devastating effects.

My friend felt like there was a wall between her and her husband, but she didn’t know what it was. Months later, she learned about her husband’s affair, and their marriage crumbled in an instant. 

When someone tries to keep sin a secret, or continues on the sinful path, it becomes a high wall keeping them from having a relationship with a spouse, family and friends. 

A cracking. A bulging. 

It also destroys our relationship God.

Note: I am not saying our current storms have anything to do with man’s sin. That is not the message here. Only God knows that. 

This blog post is simply a vivid picture of what sin can do in our lives.

The Bible tells us to confess our sin and experience forgiveness and restoration of relationships.—especially our relationship with Him.

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He Hears

I John 5:14- “This is the confidence we have in approaching God: that if we ask anything according to his will, he hears us.”

From time to time, I like to read historical fiction. 

The main character in a book I read recently wrote faithfully each month to her fiancé during the war—even though she never got confirmation that he’d received her letters.

I thought of how comforting it is that Christians are assured of God hearing our prayers. He is concerned with our day-to-day lives, providing for our needs and guiding our steps.

We don’t have to worry about Him hearing us. His Word is truth and it assures us this is so.

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Life Is Too Short

James 4:14- “yet you do not know what tomorrow will bring. What is your life? For you are a mist that appears for a little time and then vanishes.”

Life’s Too Short. Eat Dessert First.

Remember hearing that and laughing?

Life’s too Short. Live every day as if it was going to be your last. (Harry Morant)

Or, today is the first day of the rest of your life. (Unknown)

These quotes give pause, don’t they?  

Most of the time, we go throughout life without giving a thought that today might be our last.

Until…

We’re asked what’s on our bucket list.

Until…

We’re given a dreaded diagnosis.

And what is our reaction?

I would guess that Christians react somewhat differently than the rest of the world. Because we know the rest of our story.

We are all eternal beings. 

The difference between those who know Jesus as their Savior— and those who don’t—will determine where they will spend rest of eternity.

I don’t just write this blog for Christians, I write for those who haven’t yet accepted Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior.

If that applies to YOU, please ask a Christian friend to explain the way to salvation to you; contact the pastor of a Christian church; attend a church service; talk with your parents (if they are Christians, they have been praying for you). 

Learn what it means to be assured of a life—after this one—where you can spend eternity in Heaven.

I invite you to read my bestseller, The Choice by Brenda C. Poulos. (Available in audio, paperback, hardcover, and e-book on Amazon/Books.)

Because the alternative is too alarming.

And this life is too short.

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Follow His Lead

Exodus 13:21– “By day the Lord went ahead of them in a pillar of cloud to guide them on their way and by night in a pillar of fire to give them light, so that they could travel by day or night.”

Feel the need for guidance?

Don’t know which way to turn?

Wonder if you’re on the right path?

There’s a lesson to be learned from the passage from Exodus. 

God watched over the Children of Israel on their journey to the Promised Land, guiding them with a pillar of cloud by day and fire by night. All they had to do was follow it when it moved and stop when it stopped.

Sound simple?

The Bible tells us that God will direct our paths if we keep our eyes on Him. Running ahead of Him (thinking we know what’s best) is what gets us into trouble. 

How can God lead, if we run ahead?

We need to follow the One that knows all the twists and turns in the trail just as the  Israelites did.

God has a path for each one of us. All we need to do is keep our eyes on Him.

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Have You Felt His Nudge?

Jeremiah 17:10- “I, the Lord, search the heart, I test the mind, even to give every man according to his ways, according to the fruit of his doings.”

My week had gone by quickly, filled with lots of activity. Doctors’ appointments, lunch with girlfriends, grocery shopping, a visit with Dad.

I told myself that I couldn’t have squeezed anything else in. But that didn’t make me feel any better about not doing the one thing I’d placed at the top of my list: visiting a sick friend.

Yes, I’d sent a card. I’d even called. But I’d been a Christian long enough to know what it felt like to be “nudged” by the Holy Spirit to do more.

And now I was experiencing what it felt like to disappoint Him—again.

You see, it wasn’t the first time I’d put what I wanted to do in front of what I knew He was calling me to do. Like yesterday, when I hadn’t spoken to the homeless woman sitting in front of Walmart. And all the other days when I could have shared the Good News of Christ, but didn’t.

My Sunday school teacher used to quote a Bible verse, “The spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.” Even before reaching adulthood, I had occasions to experience the meaning of those words. 

For as long as I can remember, I have quoted the verse to myself about hearing God tell me I had been a good and faithful servant. The desired to hear God say those words to me encouraged me many times to reach beyond myself and serve God in my community.

But now I was disappointed to find I was putting self first. I knew that didn’t please Him—and it didn’t make me happy either.

I confessed my pride in self and my accomplishments. I asked for forgiveness and for Him to send the Holy Spirit to minister to my heart and lead me in the path he has for me. I’ve prayed for Him to infuse my soul with a love for the scriptures so that I might walk that path with strength and passion.

How are you doing on your journey of putting God first and serving Him with zeal?

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