Monday, 30 January 2012

God's weapons - or - the world's?

2 Corinth 10 v 4:  For the weapons of our warfare are not carnal but mighty in God for pulling down strongholds.
The world's weapons?
So, God's weapons then!  What are they?  We have all read these verse but I for one need reminding.  So here goes
Eph 6 v 13-18:  Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand. (14) Stand therefore,
  • Having girded your waist with truth,
  • Having put on the breast plate of righteousness,
  • (15) and having shod your feet with the preparation of the gospel of peace; (16) above all,
  • taking the shield of faith with which you will be able to quench all the fiery darts of the wicked one.
  • (17) And taking the helmet of salvation,
  • and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God.
  • (18) Praying always with all prayer and supplication in the Spirit 
  • Being watchful to this end with all perseverance and supplication for all the saints.
God's weaponry!

As God's children we have access to His weaponry.  My encouragement to you is to take advantage of His grace to provide and know with God on your side, you are the majority!

God bless
Tracy

Linking this week with:

Joan of The beauty in His grip for:

and
Shanda from A Pause on the Path for:

and

and
Laura at Beholding Glory for:




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Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Winsome Wednesday - Why the Word?

2 Tim 3 v 16-17:  All scripture is given by inspiration of God and is profitable
  • for reproof
  • for correction
  • for instruction in righteousness
  • (17) That the man of God may be complete,
  • and thoroughly equipped for every good work.


Ps 119 v 105:  Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.

Prov 30 v 5:  Every word of God is pure (tested, refined); He is a shield to those who put their trust in Him.

Gods word - for you - by God
God bless
Tracy

Blog hop time!

Please join me to encourage and be encouraged.  No particular post required, just maybe, if you have the time, encourage another blogger on this link-up and just maybe, you too will be encouraged!

I invite you to link up below:


Monday, 23 January 2012

God's grace in all things!

Dad - back in the day!
Monday morning last week the matron at the frail care phoned and said my dad had taken a turn for the worse.  So we made arrangements and flew to East London (in South Africa) that afternoon arriving at my brother's place late evening.  We sat and chatted and made arrangements to go see my dad in the morning.  5.45am they phoned to tell me he had passed away at 5am.

I was crushed!  Because I felt badly for not going the evening before, for not having a final opportunity to witness to him.  I felt guilty, a bad daughter!  Like I was given an opportunity and threw it away!

And this is how the Lord showed me His grace and mercy:
  • Within minutes of the call my sister-in-law showed me her daily devotional for that day.  It was about God's timing
  • At the home, everyone was gentle and gracious with us
  • At the funeral, which was very short, one woman told me she had often told my dad about the Lord.  I felt God was telling me that many seeds had been planted in my dad's life over time
  • One twitter I read said 'the best 5 words in the bible to them are "we will see His face" '.  That stopped me and gave me hope that maybe, just maybe.... my dad saw the light?
  • The response of my family and friends on facebook, old and new, was so touching and so humbling and I just thought of how powerful prayer is.  Another glimmer of hope for his salvation?
I believe God did 3 things for me:
  1. He showed me His grace with all the support and God "incidences"
  2. He showed me that my dad had been given lots of opportunities to reach out to Him
  3. and finally, He showed me that I was placing myself under condemnation, this is not from God.
Rom 8 v 1:  There is therefore no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, who do not walk according to the flesh, but according to the Spirit.

I will miss my dad, especially the man he was when I was growing up.  I will remember the good and not the bad, but I will also not let the devil place me under condemnation and I choose to see God's grace in my dad's life and in mine.


My encouragement to you is, no matter what you are going through, see God's hand and God's grace in it.

God bless
Tracy

Linking this week with:
Joan of The Beauty in His Grip on Monday  for:

and 
Shanda at A Pause on the Path on Tuesday for:

and
Joan at Reflections of His Grace on Thursday for:

and
Laura at Beholding Glory on Friday for:

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Winsome Wednesday - Relief!

2 Chron 20 v 15(b):  ...Do not be afraid nor dismayed because of this great multitude, for the battle is not yours, but God's.

Is that not a huge RELIEF?!  We do not have to fight ANY battle.  God says the battle is His!
Relief in letting go and letting God

What does He require of us?
2 Chron 20 v 17:  You will not need to fight in this battle,
  • Position yourself, (in faith)
  • Stand still, and (in faith)
  • See the salvation of the Lord, Who is with you, O Judah and Jerusalem. (in faith)
  • Don not fear (in faith)
  • Or be dismayed,
  • Tomorrow go out against them, for the Lord is with you.  (in faith) 
In faith, stand and see God fight your battle for you.  He gives you the victory, you give Him the glory.  A victorious circle   The brackets are my input.



My encouragement to you - stand in faith and leave the fight to God, He knows what is required for your victory.  The relief, the peace, comes in the knowing that God's word is good and true.

God bless
Tracy

BLOG HOP TIME

Please join with me to encourage and be encouraged.  No particular post required just maybe, if you have the time, encourage another blogger on this link-up and just maybe, you too will be encouraged!


I invite you to link up below:




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Monday, 16 January 2012

Look at the plank in your eye first!

Have you ever had a run in with someone and thought, "That's it! I'm going to go see what the bible says about that!" and you storm off in all your Christian glory to just 'show them' where they are going wrong?!


I've had moments like that!  I rush off to my bible, open it up randomly and yes, God does give me some scripture:
Prov 21 v 9:  It is better to dwell in a corner of a housetop, than in a house shared with a contentious woman.
Prov 21 v 19:  It is better to dwell in the wilderness than with a contentious and angry woman.
Prov 14 v 1:  Every wise woman builds her house but the foolish pulls it down with her hands.

SIGH!

At this point I'm thinking "Okay Lord, but what about that person?  Its so unfair, etc, etc." And God's saying, "You work on you and I'll work on them!"

So I stand at a crossroad:
  1. I can continue chasing that person onto the rooftop or into the desert (some peace and quiet - just saying - smiles), or
  2. I can try to build my home with God's help, minding my tongue, focusing on changing my attitude and leaving the other person in God's hands.
Matt 7 v 3:  And why do you look at the speck in your brother's eye, but do not consider the plank in your own eye?
Work on my attitude!
My encouragement to you is to trust God to work in the other's person's heart and to work with God on your own heart and watch how things work out for the good.  His word says so.

God bless
Tracy

Linking this week with:
Joan at The Beauty in His grip for:

and Shanda at A Pause on the Path for:

and Joan at Reflections of His Grace for:

and Laura at Beholding Glory for:

Friday, 13 January 2012

5 Minute Friday - Awake!

Here we go - unedited, unscripted (scary stuff):

Have you ever had someone whom you haven't seen or heard from in a long time come onto your mind?  They kind of hang around the recesses of your mind on and off for a few days?  Then you hear, "so and so has been suffering" or "this one is going through a hardship and lost everything" or "she has been hurt", etc.
Who is on your mind?

Its normally at this point I slap myself on my forehead and say "Ok, God, now I know why you kept putting them on my mind, You wanted me to PRAY for them, duh!"  "Wake up already!"

Eph 6 v 18:  Pray in the Spirit at all times and on every occasion.  Stay alert (awake) and be persistent in your prayers for all believers everywhere. 
(brackets are my input)

I want to be AWAKE to God's call to pray and encourage others, always!  I don't want to realize after the fact that that is what God wanted me to do!  So my encouragement to you today is if someone is on your mind, pray for them.  I am learning how amazing and how powerful prayer is!  Like no circumstance is a coincidence,  neither is any thought!

God bless
Tracy

Linking today with Laura at Beholding Glory for:

and
Lisa-Jo at The Gypsy Mama for:

Thursday, 12 January 2012

His Name is Jesus!

Are you disappointed?  Someone let you down?  Your heart been broken?


I'm here to tell you that there is One who will not let you down, who will not disappoint you, who will take your fractured or broken heart and renew and restore it!

His name is JESUS - He was disappointed, let down, broken-hearted - literally!  He understands, He cares, He saves.


John 1 v 12:  But as many as received Him to them He gave the right to become children of God, to those who believe in His name.

HIS NAME IS JESUS
HIS NAME IS JESUS

God bless
Tracy

Linking with Joan at Reflections of His grace! for:

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Winsome Wednesday - Music Moves Me!

What was your favourite song from Sunday School?  Mine was....oh, I don't remember!  But what I do remember is that music moves me.  I am no musician, I am no singer (the interior of my car can attest to that) but music moves me!


Sometimes the kids will be listening to something secular and it makes me feel depressed or anxious so I tell them to please turn off the suicide music already!!  Sometimes something comes on the radio and it just makes me perk up a little!

I keep two things in mind:
  1. Lucifer was the head of music in heaven before he fell, so HE KNOWS HOW TO USE IT!!!
  2. I am just human, so secular stuff, good or bad, can get to me!
Knowing that, I fill my ipod with Christian stuff.  I blast it when I cook (when I don't have to compete with the TV!)  I blast it in the car!  I try to make sure the music influencing my brain most of the time is Christian.  Don't get me wrong, I do listen to secular stuff too but I try to be more selective there.

Ps 100 v 1-2:  Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands! (2) Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing.
Ps 95 v 1:  Oh come, let us sing to the Lord!  let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation.

Music is an awesome gift from God, the making of it and the appreciating of it.  My encouragement to you is to let God's gift of music move you and if it moves you to praise Him, that's excellent!

God bless
Tracy

BLOG HOP TIME!

Please join with me to encourage and be encouraged.  No particular post required just maybe, if you you have time, encourage another blogger on this link-up and just maybe, you too will be encouraged!

I invite you to link up below...



Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Quiet I am not!

So, I talk too much!  I get angry too quickly!  When I feel defensive I talk myself into a corner!  When I don't think you get my point I, um ... make sure you do, verbally!  Yep, I am not good at keeping quiet!


The quality that always gets my attention in other women is the ability to look serene, and not have the need to defend or explain oneself.  When they do speak their speech is full of love, laughter, encouragement.  Never a negative word do they speak.  Their faces shine with an inner beauty!  THAT'S WHAT I WANT!

Prov 17 v 28:  Even a fool is counted wise when he holds his peace (keeps quiet - yep); when he shuts his lips, he is considered perceptive!
Even a fool is considered wise when keeping quiet.  Very valuable lesson there!


One of the areas in which I can improve (there are many) is "pick your fight", as in - How important is it?  For example, if I say its black and you say its grey, does it really matter?  Is it worth causing an argument over?  Is it worth fracturing a relationship for?  No!  It isn't!

Something I've been training myself to do with those closest to me when I disagree or if I feel wronged, I tell myself "let it go, let it go" and I have been practising that.  It certainly takes the wind out of the sails of a potential argument.


Yes, I want to learn to be quiet (a quiet, content person).  I want to cultivate an inner peace and as 1 Peter 3 v 4 says:  Let it be the hidden person of the heart, with the incorruptible ornament of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is very precious in the sight of God

My encouragement to you if you too find it difficult to keep quiet - let it go, and if its truly unfair - let God, He will!

God bless
Tracy

Linking today with Shanda at A Pause on the Path for:

Monday, 9 January 2012

"Content" - My word for 2012!

Well, this word kind of chose me!


For the last 2 years I have chosen a scripture for the year instead of new years resolutions.  This I've done for 2012 and you can read it to the right  -->  Its a great scripture:  Isaiah 43 vs 18-19!

Then I started seeing various blogs where lovely ladies were choosing a 'word' for 2012.  I was intrigued but did not really give it too much thought after that.  But a few days ago I did a post on contentment and Deidra, from The Middle, left me this comment: ".... and you picked a great word for 2012 - Contentment - I need to soak that one in!"


So, I have decided that my word for the year is "Content".  I don't believe in co-incidence (except that I was born on my birthday - my husband's joke) I believe God wants me to learn contentment in all things.


The Goal:
Phil 4 v 11:  Not that I speak in regard to need, for I have learned in whatever state I am to be content.
and
Heb 13 v 5:  Let your conduct be without covertness, and be content with such things as you have.
a by-product:
1 Tim 6 v 6:  Now godliness with contentment is great gain.




So, "CONTENT" it is then!  I am content with that :)


God bless
Tracy




Linking today with Joan at The Beauty in His Grip for:

and
Jen from Finding Heaven for:





Friday, 6 January 2012

5 Minute Friday - Roar

Here we go, unedited and unscripted (scary stuff!)


1 Chron 16 v 31 - 34:  Let the heavens rejoice, and let the earth be glad;  and let them say among the nations, "The Lord reigns." (32) Let the sea ROAR, and all that is in it.  (33) Then the trees of the woods shall rejoice before the Lord, for He is coming to judge the earth.  (34) Oh, give thanks to the Lord, for He is good!  For His mercy endures forever.




Let us go forward:

  • rejoicing
  • being glad
  • giving thanks
  • giving God the glory
in the same manner as the way in which the seas ROAR!


God bless
Tracy


Linking today with Laura at Beholding Glory for:

and
Lisa-Jo of The Gypsy Mama for:



Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Winsome Wednesday - A Biblical Recipe for Successful Living!

This is the first Winsome Wednesday of 2012 and I want to focus on ways to achieve closeness with God and living a victorious life in Christ.  I came across these verses when having a quiet time the other day and thought, "If I lived like this I would have far more victory and joy and peace in my life."


I have broken this scripture down in point form, like a recipe (smile)

Ps 105 v 1 - 4:
  • (1) O give thanks unto the Lord.
  • Call upon His name,
  • Make known His doings among the peoples.
  • (2) Sing to Him, sing praises to Him,
  • Meditate on and talk of all His marvelous deeds and devoutly praise them.
  • (3) Glory in His holy name; 
  • Let the hearts of those rejoice who seek and require the Lord [as their indispensable necessity].
  • (4) Seek, inquire of and for the Lord,
  • and crave Him and his strength (His might and inflexibility to temptation);
  • Seek and require his face and His presence [continually] evermore.   (Ampliphied)
An attitude of thankfulness, giving God all the glory, praising Him, pointing others to Him, seeking Him for strength, renewal, guidance, craving His presence....that is definitely a recipe for successful living!


My encouragement to you...seek God first in all things and no matter how you feel today, thank Him and praise Him.  It will change your perspective for the better.

God bless precious friends
Tracy

Blog hop time!!
Please join with me today to be encouraged and to encourage.  No particular post required, just maybe, if you have the time, encourage another blogger on the link-up and hopefully, you too will be encouraged!

I invite you to link up below....




Contentment in all things!

On Christmas day I woke up in a hotel and one of my first thoughts was about the staff who had to work that day serving us.  I wondered about them and how they felt about working on Christmas day.

I chatted to those I came across.  Some were negative (can't say I blame them much), some were realistic (need the job, put food on the table), some wore smiles and joyfulness despite the fact that they probably would have been happier to be at home with their families.


Then I made the usual telephonic Christmas wishes and the one with my dad was the saddest.  He is not born-again, living a life that has no victory, and feels everyone owes him and feels very sorry for himself.  He was bitter and negative and once my call was over I was very aware of the level of his discontentment!

Then we were off to other family for Christmas lunch!  There were various levels of contentment.  Joy to have family together, joy at being included and involved, the gifts were appreciated.  There was a little discontentment with some having expectations of the day not being met, but in general, much joy at being together.


So that evening as I lay in bed I tried to assess where on the contentment scale I am.  Paul says to be content in all things, in all circumstances, with much and with little.
Phil 4 v 11:  I am not saying this because I am in any need, for I have learned to be content in whatever situation I am in.


I believe God brought the contentment or discontentment of others around me to my attention so that I could see how they reacted to or affected those around them.  It was refreshing to me to be reminded how being discontent affects your attitude, your joy or lack thereof, how it affects your countenance (awesome word).  I think being content is a gift that releases joy and inner peace.  Its something I want to try to be on a daily basis, content!



My encouragement to you is to try to be content wherever you are in your life.  If you are, the sun shines brighter, people seem friendlier, food smells and looks better, colours are sharper, and in general joy permeates around you!  

God bless
Tracy


Linking today with Shanda at A Pause on the Path for:


and
Joan of Reflections of His grace for:





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