365 Days of Praise - Beyond Ourselves

When You Put Your Head On Your Pillow Tonight

09/27/2021

Do you sometimes wonder what our world will be like in the future? Revelation 1:5 tells us. “Jesus Christ, the faithful witness, the firstborn of the dead, and the RULER of the KINGS of the EARTH…” Yes, one day Christ will rule the earth. Can you imagine what bliss that will be? Naysayers will be nowhere to be found. Lying. What’s that?  Shooting sprees. What are you talking about?  Yes, one day, the supreme RULER whose reign has no end and who reigns with justice and with mercy will rule the kings of the earth. If you’re a citizen of Christ’s kingdom that’s something joyful to think about when you put your head on your pillow tonight.

Lord Jesus Christ, what a glorious blessing to look forward to Your reign as RULER of the kings of the earth

Breathe Deeply

09/25/2021

Have you ever heard someone say “that stinks” when something awful happens? If bad things repeatedly happen, they might even say life stinks.  Instead of focusing on the foul, though, we have a choice to breathe in what Song of Solomon 2:1 refers to as the Rose of Sharon, a reference to Christ and His splendor, heavenly fragrance, and beauty. When life stinks, stay extra close to Christ. Breathe in His fragrance. “I am the ROSE of SHARON, the lily of the valleys.” Song of Solomon 2:1

Lord Jesus, You are the ROSE of SHARON, the fragrant aroma of heaven. Thank You that we can breathe in the beauty of Your fragrance in the midst of whatever our day brings. 

 

*Herbert Lockyer, “All the Divine Names and Titles in the Bible,” Zondervan Publishing House, Grand Rapids, Michigan, page 247. 

Bask in Your Ancestrial SonLight

09/24/2021

Do you know who your ancestors are? How far back can you trace your family tree? Being able to trace one’s lineage is important to many and is definitely important in the Jewish culture. Jesus’s human lineage can be traced to Israel’s King David. But Jesus has an even more illustrious lineage as He states in Revelation 22:16. He says, “I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.” In other words, His roots go further back than David. They go all the way to creation. Jesus is the bright morning star, heaven’s light. In our often dark and lonely culture it’s important for us to daily bask in the SonLight. It’s important for us to invite others to join us.

ROOT and DESCENDANT of DAVID, bright morning star, we praise, worship, and love You.

“I, Jesus, have sent My angel to testify to you these things for the churches. I am the root and the descendant of David, the bright morning star.”   Revelation 22:16

 

What to Do in Our Shifting Times

09/23/2021

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Are you concerned about people’s shifting views about the Bible and Jesus? If so, remember that Jesus is who He says He is and you are doing the right thing by building your life on Him and His Word. As a matter of fact, Jesus says in Matthew 7:24-27 that you are wise.

Therefore, everyone who hears these words of Mine and acts on them may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock.And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock.

Everyone who hears these words of Mine and does not act on them will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand.The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house, and it fell—and great was its fall.

Notice that both men experienced the same conditions – the rain, floods, wind slamming against their house. Only one house stood. Our nation is experiencing floods of people and the winds of change. Are you a Christian? If you are, you will stand because your life is built on Christ. If you are not a Christian, you have the opportunity to be what Christ describes as “wise.” On what are you building? 

Lord Jesus, we worship You, the ROCK of OUR SALVATION.  Thank You for the assurance You give us that we will stand because our lives are built on You.

If you missed it, my thank you and what’s ahead.

When There’s Nothing Left to Squeeze Out of You

09/22/2021

Do you ever feel like not another thing can be squeezed out of you? Do you feel you’ve given all you can give? We all know that you can’t get water out of a dry rock, and perhaps that describes us at times – dry. If so we can look to Christ, whom Isaiah 30:29 describes as the ROCK OF ISRAEL  Jesus provided water for the Israelites in the wilderness. Jesus provides Himself as living water for believers. (John 7:37-38) Drink deeply from Him. He loves you so!

ROCK of ISRAEL, You were there for the Jews as they traveled to the Promised Land. You are here for us. We love and praise You – the One from whom we can drink deeply and be saved, the One from whom we can drink and be replenished. 

“You will have songs as in the night when you keep the festival,
And gladness of heart as when one marches to the sound of the flute,
To go to the mountain of the Lord, to the ROCK of ISRAEL.”  Isaiah 30:29

Gentle Boldness

09/21/2021

Several years ago the world was sickened by the confirmation that Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi had been confirmed dead after being tortured in a Saudi consulate.  Can you, would you, expect to see him walking around and eating with family and friends after his death was confirmed? No, of course not. Does that help us better grasp why people didn’t believe that Jesus was alive after they witnessed His torturous scourging and crucifixion? Matthew 28:6  gives the shocking angelic announcement to Mary as she stood outside Jesus’s empty tomb. “He is not here, for He has risen, just as He said. Come, see the place where He was lying.” In addition to Mary and the disciples seeing the resurrected Christ, more than  500 eyewitnesses saw Jesus after His resurrection. The grave couldn’t hold Jesus because He is life. He gives eternal life to everyone who acknowledges they are a sinner and asks forgiveness in His name. People are dying every day because of natural causes, disease, and senseless evil random shootings. None of us know when the life of our family, friends, and neighbors will end. It is time for us to be bold and lovingly ask those who are unsaved, “Do you know where you will be when you die? “Gentle Boldness” is the title of one of my chapters in Discovering His Passion. Prepare yourself to share Christ with others.

Jesus, we celebrate You – the giver of eternal life. Help us gently, but boldly share You with others. 

Lifted Head, Humble Heart

09/20/2021

I’m the richest woman in the world. I know. You’re wondering why I would say that since I’m not. I can say that because of Jesus, and you can say that, too. He’s given us riches beyond our comprehension. Sit back, take a load off. Marinate your soul in the riches that have your name on them.

  1. I am rich in mercy.  Ephesians 2:4  “God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved me (us), even when I was (we were) dead in my (our) transgressions, made me (us) alive together with Christ.” Compared to the glory of God, I was poor and pitiful before Jesus saved me. Now, I am filled with His rich grace and mercy.
  2. I am an heir of the kingdom of God. James 2:5 “Listen, my beloved brethren: did not God choose (me) the poor of this world to be rich in faith and heirs of the kingdom which He promised to those who love Him?” Earthly home a concern? Take heart. You’ve got a place in the kingdom of God.
  3. I am the rich bride of the King and His glorious brilliance. Revelation 21:2, 11  “And I saw the holy city, new Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God, made ready as a bride adorned for her husband…having the glory of God. Her brilliance was like a very costly stone, as a stone of crystal-clear jasper. Yes, we believers are headed to the glistening glory of Jesus.

Friends, walk with a humble heart but your head uplifted. Tremble at the reality of who you are, whose you are, and the glorious brilliance awaiting you.

Glorious Brilliance, sweet Lord Jesus, thank You for the RICH MERCY you have poured over us and into us. May we hold our heads high while walking with humble hearts. Prompt us with the name of someone who needs Your mercy so we can share the good news of Your grace with them.

About Pleasing God, Being Taken Up, and Rewards

09/19/2021

Do you ever think about pleasing God? Did you know that it’s possible to please God? Hebrews 11:5-6 states that Enoch was pleasing to God and that God is a REWARDER of those who seek Him.

By faith Enoch was taken up so that he would not see death; and he was not found because God took him up; for he obtained the witness that before his being taken up he was pleasing to God. And without faith it is impossible to please Him, for he who comes to God must believe that He is and that He is a rewarder of those who seek Him.

Hallelujah! Does that make you want to shout in praise of God? It does me! God “took him up” before his body died. Zap! In the air. Gone from earth. Friend, the same is going to happen to believers at the time of the rapture.  Unbelievers will look around and say, “Where’s mom?” The ones left behind who have some Bible knowledge may realize that “God took us up.” Yes. Up. Let that sink in for a minute. How can we be assured God will take us up and not leave us in our morally declining, evil world that calls evil good and good evil? We can be sure because we have placed our faith in the Lord Jesus Christ who died on the cross for our sins. Yes, faith. Without it, we can’t be saved. Without it, we can’t please God. Without it, we won’t go to heaven. With it, we will be saved. We will be rewarded. Are you saved? Then shout hallelujah and ready yourself for Christ’s return. He’ll be handing out rewards on the basis of what you did for His kingdom. (Remember the 10 minas story? Luke 19:11-27) If you’re not a follower of Jesus, think about the role of faith and how we exercise it all the time. We exercise faith when we get on a plane. (Is the pilot mentally stable? Will the oxygen flow correctly? Is there a terrorist on board on a suicide mission?) So, yes. Exercise your faith for the salvation of your soul. Exercise your faith that Christ is coming again just like He promised. Live in a way that pleases Him. Set your mind on the things above, not earth. Ask Him to fill you with His Spirit so you walk out His kingdom purposes. God is a REWARDER of those who seek Him. Will you seek Him?

Lord God, REWARDER OF THOSE WHO SEEK YOU, we seek You with a hallelujah in our hearts. 

If You’re Looking for a Better Life

09/18/2021

Are you looking for peace and happiness? Do you want a better life? Only one person, our REDEEMER, has the holiness, the wholeness, the power, and grace to be our all in all. As Colossians 1:13-14 says,

He rescued us from the domain of darkness, and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son,in whom we have REDEMPTION, the forgiveness of sins.  

Jesus is the only One able to rescue us from the domain of darkness and transfer us to His kingdom. He is the one who is able to rescue us from the sin and heartache of this world and take us to the holy heights of heaven. So we look to the cross. We look to the resurrected Lord. We look to the Bible. We look to the skies. And, we know that as Jesus kept His Word to come to us once for salvation, He’ll return to redeem us out of this world and take us to our eternal home. Our redemption is closer today than it was yesterday. Praise Him!

Lord Jesus, Redeemer, we’re closer to heaven today than we were yesterday. We’re closer to seeing Your unimaginable beauty. Thank You for rescuing us from the domain of darkness. We love You and pray Your light shines in our hearts and blesses others.  

When You Need Deeper Faith

09/16/2021

I know, I know, I know. We sing about Jesus’s resurrection. But is it ever hard for you to get your mind around the fact Jesus was literally dead and came back to life? Do you ever stop and ponder if you believe what you do because you’ve always been told that or if it is your own conviction?  When Jesus said, “‘I am the RESURRECTION AND THE LIFE; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies’” (John 11:25), He was talking to a woman who was saying with her mouth she believed but who wasn’t expecting Jesus to raise her deceased brother. Jesus is patient with us just like He was with Martha. If you’re struggling to believe or you have questions, Jesus is always present for you to talk to Him. Ask Him your questions. Listen quietly in His presence. Open your Bible and ask Him to guide you through it. Keep seeking. He’s a prayer away and able to lead us to deeper faith.

Lord, You are the RESURRECTION and the LIFE. We profess our faith with thanksgiving that You are ever-present and able to lead us to deeper faith in You.