spiritualsnippets.com

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

No Tears

“My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.”  Psalm 73: 25b-26.

There were no tears at our mother’s deathbed this week. It’s true.

It wasn’t because she wasn’t a wonderful person, mother, and friend.

It was because she had suffered with Alzheimer’s for six years and we rejoiced to have her set free from a brain and body that no longer functioned as they should.

We cling to the promise that she is once again whole.

Of course, the next day it hit me that I would never see her smile again or hear her call my name. I broke down, as you would expect. I will miss my mother!

But God is our family’s strength and hope.

And our portion forever.

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Comfort and Compassion

Isaiah 49:13- “Sing for joy, O heavens, and exult, O earth; break forth, O mountains, into singing! For the Lord comforts his people and has compassion on his afflicted.

I currently have two friends battling cancer and one who recently lost a loved one to Covid-19. In all three cases, these Christians tell me that they feel much closer to God now than at any other time in their lives.

Why?

Could it be that they realize they do not have control over these situations and so rely on the one true God for help and comfort?

Maybe they are spending more time in prayer and in reading the scriptures, such as  

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.”

Or, this one from 2 Corinthians, chapter one, verse 3- “Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of compassion and the God of all comfort, who comforts us in all our troubles.”

He’s not a God on a lofty throne who has no idea what we are going through. His Word tells us that Jesus came to earth as a man and suffered many of the same things we do. He is well-acquainted with suffering and so He has given us His Holy Spirit to bring us comfort like no one else can. 

My friends have found the Holy Spirit to be compassionate… loving… understanding… and comforting.

No matter what the circumstances, He is there for His children.

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The Mediator

I Timothy 2:5- “For there is one God and one mediator between God and mankind, the man Christ Jesus.”

We recently sold our house. 

We used a realtor to write the listing, manage the showings, and see the process through escrow to the day of closing. 

A home inspector did his job and an appraiser set a number for the value. 

All these people played a vital role as intermediaries between us and the buyer.

I felt a new appreciation that Christians, because of Jesus bearing our sins on the cross, don’t need an intermediary between ourselves and our wonderful God.  

Once we have professed faith in Jesus as our Savior, we can come directly to the Father’s throne of grace in prayer. We can have a personal relationship with Him, bringing Him our concerns, our requests, our praise.

 Because nothing and no one can come between us!!!

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See the Blessing

Jeremiah 29:11- “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

“Three years? Perhaps longer?”

Last month our son told us his family was moving to Germany where our daughter-in-law had accepted a position with the Department of Defense.

We had known about the job application. The possibility of them relocating. We’d even prayed that God’s will, not ours, would come to pass. And we really did want the very best for them. 

Still, the news devastated us.

My husband and I had just completed renovating a small condo near them. Four hours away from our home in Arizona.

We had looked forward to living part time near them and bonding with our newborn grandson. Now it looked like our dreams were only that. Dreams.

In the following weeks, they prepared for their move. Packing, selling many of their belongings, saying goodbye to family and friends.

Last March, God had led us to purchase the condo. We were so sure He wanted us to spend time with our son and family. Were we wrong?

No! We have come to realize that God blessed us in incredible ways. We had the resources to make the purchase, do renovations (which my husband and I love to do) and even bring us new friends in the process.

God knew that the sweet little family that we love so much would be leaving. He chose to bless all of us—ahead of time—with precious moments spent together. Times that have allowed us to form a close bond that will sustain us while we are apart.

Are you wondering where God is in all of the circumstances of your life? Ask Him to show you His hand of blessing… His plan for your future. 

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Take a Deep Breath

Proverbs 21:31b- “…victory rests with the Lord.”

At the end of the day, do you feel beaten down and dejected?

Do politically-charged events cause you stress?

Have you decided to keep the television—especially news channels—turned off for awhile due to divisive commentaries?

This constant state of unease and disruptiveness is NOT what God desires for us.

He wants us to rest in the knowledge that ultimately the victory will be His.

Take a deep breath. Go for a walk and enjoy the beautiful new day He has made. 

Trust Him for the outcome that will work out His plan for us as individuals and the world at large.

His Word says He is faithful. 

He will do it.

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Bringing Things Into Focus

2 Corinthians 5:7- “for we walk by faith, not by sight.”

My vision became progressively worse until my world took on a hazy glow.

I consulted my ophthalmologist. Cataract surgery was in order.

I actually looked forward to it. The thought of a brighter world—maybe even a world free of the glasses I had worn since sixth grade—was very appealing.

Within a few minutes of surgery, I was released from my foggy world. 

I think about times when I fail to see clearly the actions I should take and the decisions I should make. When I wrestle with the “why’s” and “how’s.”

Those are the times I go to God’s Word. I need His healing for my “spiritual eyes” bringing purpose and direction—a clear focus on what is important.,

One day, God will reveal all things to us. But for now, it is His Word that encourages and gives us insight. We can come before God with confidence, knowing that what we ask for aligns with His will as outlined in scripture.

Are you having trouble seeing the path ahead? Do you need someone to lead the way?

Surrender your own will to His and just follow. 

Walk by faith, not by sight.

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Spiritual Direction

Psalm 23:1-3  “The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside the still waters. He restores my soul; He leads me in the paths of righteousness, for His name’s sake.”

My husband loves to drive. 

I’d rather look at the scenery, read a good book, or recline my seat and take a little nap. 

Now and again, he’ll ask me to get the map out of his satchel and look for a certain road, landmark, or whatever. Often, he pulls over to the side of the road and interprets it for himself.

If we should happen to get lost (now really lost, you understand) and I suggest that we ask someone for directions, he gives me “the look.”

Why is it men are so against asking for directions? Think about how many hours could be saved and how many wrong turns could be avoided!

As Christians, we have an infallible source at our fingertips! God, who has always been in existence, knows the past, present, and future. With His Word as our “map” and His Holy Spirit as our Guide, we never have to face an uncertain future.

If we take a wrong turn, we can get back on the right path by heeding what scripture reveals to us as truth.

Confident and encouraged, with His help, we find our way.

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Promises Made Good

Numbers 23:19- “God is not a man, that he should lie, Neither the son of man, that he should repent: Hath he said, and will he not do it? Or hath he spoken, and will he not make it good?”

“But you promised!” My daughter cried—and even stamped her tiny foot—as she yelled the words. Tears ran down her cheeks. Four years old and she already knew the meaning –and the heartbreak—of promises not kept!

Earlier in the week, she had asked me if she could have a friend over to swim on Saturday. I said that she could, not knowing that she’d come down with a terrible cold by Friday.

We cancelled her plans. And, even though done with good reason, to a small child it became a “broken” promise.

She lay in bed all day, Saturday, coughing and sneezing, with a sore throat and a fever. She slept with the new bright orange and yellow beach towel I had bought her as a reminder of my new promise to ask her friend over, again, for a swim when she felt better.

Sometimes we may not be able to keep our promises. However, scripture reminds us that God’s promises are true. We can count on them with 100% certainty.

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Are YOU That Someone?

Psalm 139: 8-10- “If I go up to the heavens, you are there; if I make my bed in the depths, you are there. If I rise on the wings of the dawn, if I settle on the far side of the sea, even there your hand will guide me, your right hand will hold me fast.”

News broadcasts report that loneliness and depression in the pandemic have resulted in a staggering number of suicides.

Isolated. Cut off from friends, relatives, and colleagues.

Most of these people didn’t know the love of Jesus. Weren’t able to rely on His unfailing love.

If they had only known Him as their guide, comforter, and protector.

But God reminds us that they will only know if someone is willing to tell them. 

Are YOU that someone?

Will you step out in faith and share God’s Word with a hurting world?  

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BEHOLD!

Ephesians 1:18-  “I pray that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in his holy people.”

It’s that time of year when we think of the Christmas Story. 

“BEHOLD” the angels sing.

It means more than just “look at, or observe.”

A deeper meaning is “to look intently at…”

Letting the eyes of our hearts be enlightened and focused on Jesus—who He IS and what He has DONE for us.

Scripture tells us we were made to BEHOLD Him.

The more we come to know Him through scripture, prayer and worship, the more we can truly do that.

As we decorate our tree, BEHOLD HIM.

As we wrap our gifts, BEHOLD HIM.

As we light our candles, BEHOLD HIM.

As we sing our carols, BEHOLD HIM.

As we eat our Christmas dinner, BEHOLD HIM.

As we read the Christmas story, BEHOLD HIM.

As we wash the dishes, box up the decorations for another year of storage, as we dispose of the tree and pack away the box of Christmas C.D.’s… Each and every day all year long,

LET US BEHOLD HIM!

As our King, our Creator, our Savior, our Provider and

OUR GOD.

I

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