Blessings and Tragedies

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Even in this stump God can bring out beauty.

A tragedy only becomes tragic when we do not give it to Jesus, so He can redeem it.
A blessing does not really bless until it is given to Jesus, so He can multiply it.

Don’t you understand even yet? Don’t you remember the 5,000 I fed with five loaves, and the baskets of leftovers you picked up? Or the 4,000 I fed with seven loaves, and the large baskets of leftovers you picked up? Why can’t you understand that I’m not talking about bread? Matthew 16:9-11 NLT

Making the Desolate Beautiful

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My desert His palette

What makes this day?
A day with work and toil,
A day with struggle and worry,
A day with grief and sadness,

Jesus makes this day filled with His love.
He makes it a day of salvation from my troubles,
A day of deliverance from my foes,
A day where past failure is forgiven,
A day where hope can flourish,
A day with purpose and meaning,
A day of good things for me to do,
A day of guidance to His pasture,
A day of communion with God,
A day of feasting in His presence,
A day of giving thanks for His unfailing love,
Thank You Lord for making this day for me.

A reminder for your desert days from Psalm 107

Death Valley

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A dry parched land

Wandering in a parched land my day is dry and shriveled. I begin to wonder where is God?

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from saving me,
so far from the words of my groaning?
O my God, I cry out by day, but you do not answer,
by night, and am not silent. Psalm 22:1-2

This psalm says what I feel. Farther into the psalm I discover that this is prophesy of Jesus on the cross.

I can count all my bones;
people stare and gloat over me.
They divide my garments among them
and cast lots for my clothing. 1Psalm 22:17-18

With that insight comes help, for I know He knows the desert I am in. That is why He came—to help me.

Thank You Lord.

A Morning of God’s Love

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Oh, what a beautiful morning.

Because of God’s love for me:
I am forgiven, and I can forgive others.
I am loved, and I can love others.
I have hope, and I can offer hope to others.
I have His life in me, and I can offer His life to others.
I can pray for my family and know His love for them is greater than mine.
I know His love will never leave me.
What a wonderful beautiful morning!

 

The Rock of Ages

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Rock spires along Icicle Ridge poking through the clouds

I have been struggling with some self-accusations that bubble up in me from time to time. They take all the zip out of life and make me feel worthless. To counter this, I read, meditate and pray the Psalms. Most recently Psalm 18 has helped me.

I love you, Lord;
you are my strength.
The Lord is my rock, my fortress, and my savior;
my God is my rock, in whom I find protection.
He is my shield, the power that saves me,
and my place of safety.
I called on the Lord, who is worthy of praise,
and he saved me from my enemies. Psalm 18:1-3

Later on in the psalm it speaks about how he rescued me because He delights in me. Wow, the Lord of the universe delights in me. That knowledge overwhelms all the negative self-talks, but don’t take my word for it go read and pray and rejoice in this psalm for yourself, rest upon the real Rock of Ages, it will make your day.

Crashing Waves

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Will you crash against the Rock or hide in its cleft?

Pride is about who you are and what you can do. Humility is about who God is and what He has done in Jesus.

“See, I lay in Zion a stone that causes men to stumble and a rock that makes them fall,
and the one who trusts in him will never be put to shame. Romans 9:33

Drop by Drop Beauty Forms

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A beautiful ice chandelier

Just like this ice sculpture is being formed drop by drop, layer upon layer into something beautiful, we too are being carefully molded by the Holy Spirit into the likeness of Christ.

For of His fullness we have all received, and grace upon grace. John 1:16 NAS

Undeserved grace upon grace,

For our light and momentary troubles are achieving for us an eternal glory that far outweighs them all. 2 Corinthians 4:17

Unnoticed blessing upon blessing

And we, who with unveiled faces all reflect the Lord’s glory, are being transformed into his likeness with ever-increasing glory, which comes from the Lord, who is the Spirit.                 2 Corinthians 3:18

So take heart God is not done yet, but know this He is faithful to carry us onto completion.

…being confident of this, that he who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion until the day of Christ Jesus. Philippians 1:6

White-Gloved Hands of Praise

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Ponderosa Pines lifting white-gloved hands in praise.

I can read Isaiah 12 over and over and it never loses its power, or joy, or wonder. I can dwell on each verse and my song of praise and thanksgiving keeps building with in me for I know it is just the beginning.

 

Redeemed for a Purpose

“I have swept away your offenses like a cloud, your sins like the morning mist.
Return to Me, for I have redeemed you.” Isaiah 44:22

God redeems us so we can be with Him.

Lone pine overlooking Yosemite Valley, CA

Sweeping away the clouds to reveal the beauty of Yosemite Valley

“The LORD your God is with you, He is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you, He will quiet you with his love,
He will rejoice over you with singing.”  Zephaniah 3:17

He has saved us to love us and rejoice over us.

Looking Down Seeing Up

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Clouds and trees reflected pools of water along the Icicle River.

With all the alarming things in the news, I need to see the heavens instead of the frightening rocks.

I will lie down and sleep in peace,
for you alone, O Lord,
make me dwell in safety. Psalm 4:8