Dancing On Air



Photo courtesy Linda Moyer © 2011

I think birds are one of the loveliest of all God’s creatures.
Extremely fun to watch too as they flit about
 doing whatever birds do.


They seem to know how to balance work and play.

 I know because I’ve heard them singing. And I have seen them, in between their nest-building assignments, literally dancing on air as they fly circles around one another.


When is the last time we were that carefree?


Today, I am pausing to reflect on the fact that God lovingly provides for ALL of His creation.

 That includes me and you.

 So we do not have to be exhausted with worry or weighed down with the cares of life.


He who cares for the birds cares much more for us because we are “valuable” to Him.
 I know because He said so.


I hope you will trust His message for you.
You are loved. You are valued.


Why don’t we all lay down any weight we might be carrying?
Only then will we be able to fly.

And, who knows?
 We might just find ourselves dancing on air.

_____________________
I hope you enjoyed this repost from the archives. 
 
Is there something weighing you down today? 

Release it to God. Trust His promises. Watch the winds of faith begin to move in your life, and don’t be afraid when your feet start to leave the ground.

Joining Joan at The Beauty in His Grip

Beauty in His Grip Button

The BIble On Screen

You may have heard that the History channel will be airing a five-part miniseries called The Bible beginning March 3rd.

I am always a bit skeptical about these kinds of shows because they inevitably portray God and the Bible in a way that is disrespectful, to say the least. However, I have to say I’m intrigued about this one.

I saw this article on Guideposts.org from producer, Mark Burnett, and now I am even more intriqued. Click here to read: The Bible Brought to Life and tell me what you think.
 

Here’s a quote from the article:

The biggest question was, would a channel actually green-light this? Today’s kids probably know more about Batman and Robin than about David and Goliath, and more about the Matrix than about Daniel’s prophecies. They get their stories from the screen.

I’m not much on recommending things I haven’t seen myself yet but, in this case, maybe it’s worth the risk. Because Mr. Burnett is right. We live in a culture where kids (and most adults) are connected to the screen. And as he goes on to say, “Doing this “on the screen” would allow millions of people to discover the Bible.” 

My hope is that The Bible will inspire us all to see the sacred pages in a new light. And that we would all understand that it is more than a book. It is a revelation of God himself to mankind.

Something worth watching AND reading!

I’m linking this post to Katherine’s blog for her Thursday Favorite Things Blog Hop.

Religion – A Dirty Word?

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Religion. It has almost become a dirty world in our society. People are fond of saying that they are spiritual but not religious. What does that mean?

Maybe they are alluding to a desire to maintain some form of connection with God without having to adhere to all the trappings of so-called “manmade” rules and regulations.

Could it be that we Christians have complicated the message? Maybe the world is confused because we too often water down the Word with our own muddy interpretation leaving people stuck in the mire of semantics.

But before throwing out the baby with the bathwater, so to speak, maybe we should consider this simple and straightforward Bible definition:

Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. James 1:27

I have often heard the first part of this verse quoted but not the latter. Apparently, taking care of others is equally as important as keeping ourselves from being polluted, or as one version reads “unstained”, by the world.

But how on earth is this possible?

Once again, through the powerful Word of God. This passage from James 1:19-27 makes it clear.

My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. 

Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. Anyone who listens to the word but does not do what it says is like someone who looks at his face in a mirror and, after looking at himself, goes away and immediately forgets what he looks like. But whoever looks intently into the perfect law that gives freedom, and continues in it—not forgetting what they have heard, but doing it—they will be blessed in what they do.

Those who consider themselves religious and yet do not keep a tight rein on their tongues deceive themselves, and their religion is worthless. Religion that God our Father accepts as pure and faultless is this: to look after orphans and widows in their distress and to keep oneself from being polluted by the world. 

I had a woman tell me recently, a Christian woman, that she doesn’t like rules. That’s a dangerous thing to say. The Bible is full of them. A civil society is dependent on them.  And our lives are better when we adhere to them. Jesus taught that we are to submit to the laws of God and the laws of man so that we might be at peace. The alternative is assuming a certain prideful arrogance that says we can live however we want with no consequences. And to do that is to harbor within ourselves the same spirit of rebellion that got Lucifer cast out of heaven.

When we realize that the rules established by the church and organized religion were originally an attempt to reflect the laws of God, we begin to see that there is great purpose and importance to be found in them. Although our interpretation, the church’s interpretation, will not always be perfect, we need to respectfully submit to the overall intent while guarding ourselves against outright deception:

I urge you, brothers and sisters, to watch out for those who cause divisions and put obstacles in your way that are contrary to the teaching you have learned. Keep away from them. For such people are not serving our Lord Christ, but their own appetites. By smooth talk and flattery they deceive the minds of naive people. Romans 16:17-18

So there is a balance. But when everything is bathed in the pure flow of God’s holy word, we can clearly see what is worth keeping. We reject lies. We hold tight to truth. After all, following “the perfect law that gives freedom” is meant for our safety and blessing.

That’s why we don’t “throw out the baby with the bathwater”. Because, with God’s help, we are able to discern the gleaming goodness in the midst of all the muddy mess.

Words To Live By

Be Strong 
Be Courageous
Why? Because

Keep this Book of the Law always on your lips; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:8-9

Thank you, God, for breathing life into ancient words that still speak to us today. 

Linking up with On Your Heart Tuesdays

and

How Did We Get Here?

“Catch for us the foxes, the little foxes that ruin the vineyards, our vineyards that are in bloom.” Solomon 2:15 

 
I listened to the announcement as the NCAA handed down sanctions against Penn State University for it’s role in the Sandusky cover up. Some say the school was not penalized enough. But, regardless of what the effect of those penalties will be, the message has been sent.

There is a consequence to our actions (and inaction). The principle of sowing and reaping is alive and well. And sometimes it’s about the things we don’t do as much as the things we do.

I also watched a lifeless young man sitting in the courtroom at his arraignment for the killing spree in Aurora, Colorado. I could no more tell you what he might have been thinking at that moment than I could on the evening when he committed his evil rampage. But I wonder if all the long, dark nights spent in solitary confinement have caused the rising light of dawn to shine on this often forgotten yet enduring truth:

Do not be deceived, God is not mocked; for whatever a man sows, this he will also reap.  For the one who sows to his own flesh will from the flesh reap corruption, but the one who sows to the Spirit will from the Spirit reap eternal life.” Galatians 6:7-8

Photo: www.findingtheinspiring.blogspot.com
  

I heard a woman share her testimony in church not long ago. One day she was a teacher, the next day she was in rehab for drugs. And when she landed in jail for violating her probation, she found herself asking, “How did I get here?” 

After she eventually turned to God and away from drugs, she had an experience that answered that question.

At her new job delivering pizza, she pocketed money that a customer intended for payment. It was a small amount and she reasoned that she could accept it as a tip. But towards the end of her shift she heard God whisper that this was exactly how her demise began in the past.  She quickly took the money out of her pocket and placed it in the cash register where it belonged.

What she learned that day is that little things add up to big things. Ignoring sin is like allowing those little foxes to rip through all that is lovely in our lives. We may think they are entertaining and harmless at first, but if gone unchecked they will lead us to ruin.

Still, we watch the news and wonder out loud, “What’s happening to our society? When did things get so out of control? … How did we get here?” 

I’m sure the molesters and the murderers would agree that their downfall began with a single thought that turned into one bad decision that lead to many more. And I have experienced times in my own life when I closed my eyes to the truth and opened my heart up to the great lie. The lie that tells us we have a right to that sin, whatever it is.

But, just like Eve in the garden, we discover something when we bite into that innocent-looking piece of fruit…it bites back! You realize that sin is sin no matter how good it looks on the outside. So the cover-up begins. Even though we all find out at some point that we can run, but we can’t hide.

Over and over, God’s word reminds us that There is nothing concealed that will not be disclosed, or hidden that will not be made known.” Matthew 10:26
Numbers 32:23 states, “…you may be sure that your sin will find you out.” 

 
So what can we do to keep from having to ask ourselves some day, “How did I get here?”

Perhaps the answer is in not pretending it will be easy or that we can do it on our own. We have to acknowledge we need help. We are all prone to sin. We all need a Savior.  

And the good news, the great news, is there is a Savior! Jesus is willing and able to pick us up when we fall but we must be willing to turn to Him in sincere repentance. Because making excuses rather than amends – that is what hardens the heart.

Sow righteousness for yourselves, reap the fruit of unfailing love, and break up your unplowed ground; for it is time to seek the LORD, until he comes and showers his righteousness on you. Hosea 10:12

Today, I see a great need in our country, in our world, in myself and I believe it truly is “time to seek the Lord.” Let’s dig into the Word and ask God to help us break up any unplowed ground so our lives might produce the beautiful harvest that He intended.

Inspiring Tip: To keep away those little foxes, you might enjoy visiting the resource page at Biblegateway.com which has links to audio bibles, commentaries and other study tools.

Linking Up with On Your Heart Tuesdays.