365 Days of Praise

In Favor of the Saints

05/06/2021

Do you ever wonder what the future holds? If so, the book of Daniel answers your question. There will be a war and God’s saints will be overpowered UNTIL the One who is more powerful than any other, the Highest One, steps in. I wonder if you feel as I do – overwhelmed with gratefulness to be on God’s side, to be designated as His saint?

“I kept looking, and that horn was waging war with the saints and overpowering them until the Ancient of Days came and judgment was passed in favor of the saints of the highest One, and the time arrived when the saints took possession of the kingdom.” Daniel 7:21-22

Heavenly Father, to be referred to as “Your saint” and to know that You, the Ancient of Days, are going to judge in favor of us is overwhelming. Thank You, merciful Ancient of Days. 

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Unclean Lips and Lives

05/06/2021

I don’t think there’s any way we can get our minds around what the holiness of the LORD is like. I don’t think we have the slightest idea of the magnitude of heaven’s glory. Isaiah attempted to describe heaven.

“In the year of King Uzziah’s death I saw the Lord sitting on a throne, lofty and exalted, with the train of His robe filling the temple. Seraphim stood above Him, ….

And one called out to another and said ‘HOLY, HOLY, HOLY is the LORD of hosts, The whole earth is full of His glory.’ And the foundations of the thresholds trembled…”Isaiah 6:1-4a.  

What was Isaiah’s response?

“Woe is me, for I am ruined! Because I am a man of unclean lips – And I live among a people of unclean lips; For my eyes have seen the King, the LORD of Hosts,” Isaiah 6:5.  

Isaiah’s response to seeing the LORD was a profound awareness that he was unclean. Were it not for JESUS bearing our sins on the cross, it would not be possible for us to live in the HOLY, HOLY, HOLY LORD’S presence, which is why we praise HIM today and every day.

We praise You, HOLY, HOLY, HOLY Lord!

I Need Jesus

05/05/2021

I need Jesus and Jesus just like He is. Why? Well, first of all, I need someone who can stand before holy God on my behalf and represent me. Only Jesus can do that. On a daily basis I need Jesus to forgive me, cleanse me, and stand me up – strengthened to walk out my day by His Spirit. I need Jesus to guide and prompt me when I start to veer off course. I need His love and encouragement. I NEED JESUS. Hebrews 4:15 tells us,

“We do not have a high priest who cannot sympathize with our weaknesses, but One who has been tempted in all things as we are, yet without sin.

Therefore let us draw near with confidence to the throne of grace, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help in time of need.”  

Can I hear a hallelujah, friend? Can you imagine with me what it would be like to be accountable to a heavenly being – a high priest who didn’t sympathize with us and our weaknesses?  Yikes!  But our sweet and mighty Savior does. Oh, praise Him! We can say, “I messed up! I sinned! I failed.” And He doesn’t condemn us and make us feel worse. Yes, we should grabble with our sin and think about how, when, where, why we fell for a temptation or were deceived. With every mis-step, we have a God-step opportunity. With bowed head and heart, we can confess our sin to our sympathetic High Priest, accept His mercy, hear His voice, “Go and sin no more.” We can walk more wisely into our day. Jesus loves you and doesn’t want you wallowing in your sin. If you’ve been avoiding your High Priest because you feel so bad about your sin, go to Him! He loves you and is waiting, child of God.

NOTE to Moms: (Or anyone who has a mom or knows a mom.) Hey Mom, we can sometimes (or often) feel like a failure. God knows how many times we fail and cry out to Him for forgiveness, strength, “overs,” wisdom, protection for our children, and that they will come to know Him as Savior and Lord. If you can relate, I encourage you to get my book, “The Plan A Mom in a Plan B World.” (Different book from The Plan A WOMAN in a Plan B World) I had mom friends of all ages/stages share personal stories that will encourage you and provide practical/spiritual tips. The discussion questions at the end of each chapter make it a great resource for mom groups, also. $7.49 Mother’s Day special.

We praise You, Lord Jesus, HIGH, and LIFTED UP, greatly exalted. We can’t wait to see You face to face! 

PS: If you aren’t getting my monthly Kidz Time devotional activity for your kids to watch, get it here and spread the word. It’s free. It’s fun! Subscribe & it’ll be delivered to your inbox monthly. A great Saturday morning or rest time activity. 

A Moment Isn’t A Destiny

05/04/2021

Things aren’t always what they seem.  And just because things appear one way in a moment of time, it doesn’t mean they’ll stay that way.  Case in point: Jesus. If we’d been in Jerusalem when Jesus was hanging on the cross we might have concluded, “Jesus failed.”  However what appeared to be Jesus’s lowest moment was in fact God’s highest plan being accomplished. Three days after Jesus’s death on the cross, God raised Him. So the moment was really, “God’s plan succeeded. Jesus accomplished His mission.”  Isaiah 52:13 prophesied, “Behold, My servant will prosper, He will be HIGH and LIFTED UP and greatly exalted.” Jesus is seated at the right hand of God – HIGH AND LIFTED UP – greatly exalted. The next time you feel like a failure and that God’s plan isn’t working, remember Christ on the cross. A moment doesn’t define you. It may be a step forward. Look up and pray in faith. Ask your Heavenly Father, who can move mountains and bring success out of defeat, to work positive changes in your circumstances. Walk by the promptings of His Spirit.

NOTE to Moms: (Or anyone who has a mom or loves a mom.) Hey Mom, we can sometimes (or often) feel like a failure. God knows how many times we fail and cry out to Him for forgiveness, strength, “overs,” wisdom, protection for our children, and that they will come to know Him as Savior and Lord. If you can relate, I encourage you to get my book, “The Plan A Mom in a Plan B World.” (Different book from The Plan A WOMAN in a Plan B World) I had mom friends of all ages/stages share personal stories that will encourage you and provide practical/spiritual tips. The discussion questions at the end of each chapter make it a great resource for mom groups, also. $7.49 Mother’s Day special.

We praise You, Lord Jesus, HIGH, and LIFTED UP, greatly exalted. We can’t wait to see You face to face! 

PS: If you aren’t getting my monthly Kidz Time devotional activity for your kids to watch, get it here and spread the word. It’s free. It’s fun! Subscribe & it’ll be delivered to your inbox monthly. A great Saturday morning or rest time activity. 

Groaning. Drained. Hiding.

05/03/2021

King David was deceived….thinking he could hide his sin of adultery and murder and merrily continue with his life. But sin isn’t a kind bedfellow. Psalm 32:3-4 records how it affected David. “When I kept silent about my sin, my body wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night, Your hand was heavy upon me; My vitality was drained away as with the fever heat of summer.” But what happened when David acknowledged his sin and confessed it to the Lord? We find the answer in Psalm 32:5. “I acknowledged my sin to You, and my iniquity I did not hide; I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord’; and You forgave the guilt of my sin.'”  What advice does David give us in Psalm 32:6?   “Therefore let everyone who is godly pray to You in a time when You may be found.” David discovered that instead of hiding from God, it was better to make God His hiding place. “You are my HIDING PLACE; You preserve me from trouble; You surround me with songs of deliverance,” Psalm 32:7.  On occasion we might be like David and think we can hide our sin from God. But the truth is, we can’t. He sees us and even knows our thoughts. Yet even while we are in our sin, He invites us to a place of forgiveness – Himself. Today we can choose to stop trying to hide our sin. We can turn to God and humbly confess, “You are my HIDING PLACE; You preserve me from trouble.” We can experience “songs of deliverance.”

Lord, how sweet to know You as our HIDING PLACE who preserves us from trouble and surrounds us with songs of deliverance. Thank You. We praise You.

Help is On the Way

05/02/2021

“Help is on the way.” It’s all I could think to say as I grabbed my purse and headed to my car. She needed to hear those words. She needed to know that help was on the way…the kind of tangible help we need when we’re at our wit’s end when we don’t know how much more we can take. And so, God wants us to know, “He is our HELP.” We may not see Him, but we have the full assurance that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present HELP in trouble,” Psalm 46:1. Are you in trouble and need HELP? Are you in despair and need HELP? Are you disturbed about something and need HELP? Unlike the friend who had to wait for me, the Lord is our present HELP.  We need only call on Him as Psalm 43:5 reminds us. “Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why are you disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise Him, the HELP of my countenance and my God,”

Heavenly Father, we praise You, our HELP, and the HELP of our countenance.  

When Nations Are Rocking Over Control

05/01/2021

Power. Control. Who has it? Who wants it? To what extent will people go to gain control? Daily, we see people driven to have control over others whether at the local, national, or world level. I wonder how we would live if we kept Hebrews 1:2  in our thoughts? It says that Jesus is the HEIR OF ALL THINGS.  At the time those words were written to the Hebrew people, it appeared the government had control over everything. However, God wanted the Hebrews to know that Jesus is the possessor of everything. He created the world and it is ultimately His. It was important for the first century Christians to be assured of this fact. It’s important for us to be assured of it. How does it make you feel when you reflect on this great reality and truth?

LORD, we praise You for appointing Jesus as the HEIR OF ALL THINGS. Thank You for the assurance this brings us.

When You Cry Out, He’ll Hear

04/30/2021

Do you have children or have you ever babysat? Think for a moment to a time when a child cried for you. Maybe they were in their crib. Or perhaps you heard a thud, then the cry of a toddler who had fallen. What happened at the moment they cried out? Their voice “came into your ears.” I love the way that just as a child’s cry “comes into our ears,” the psalmist, David, worded that our cries “come into God’s ears.” Second Samuel 22:7  says, “In my distress, I called upon the Lord. Yes, I cried to my God and from His temple, He heard my voice, and my cry for help came into His ears.” Yes, just as we can hear a child’s cry even if we’re in another part of the house, so God hears our cry from His temple. Our cries to God go into His ears. Our Heavenly Father is a HEARING GOD, not a deaf God. What will you cry out to Him about today?

Hearing Father, thank You for listening to our cries. Help us also listen to You.

How Can We Not…

04/29/2021

On February 28, 2002, God healed my mother. Bernice Ruth Taylor went to be with the Lord. No longer did she suffer the physical ailments that had ravaged her body. She was ready to be with Jesus. She took off her oxygen mask, smiled at us, and after we verbalized our love for one another, she closed her eyes. However, none of us were prepared for the next moment. Mama’s eyes flew open and she startled us with, “boo!” I’ll never know how long she’d planned that dramatic and joyous moment or if it was a spur of the moment idea. Regardless, she made her point. She wasn’t scared. She was, in fact, excited. Her attitude reflected Jeremiah 17:14 which says, Heal me, O LORD, and I will be healed; Save me and I will be saved, for You are my praise.” My mother knew Jesus was her HEALER and that she was on her way to Him for her complete, ultimate healing. With that she closed her eyes a final time on earth and opened them in heaven…fully healed. How can we not praise Him? Jesus is our hope. He is our healer. On this we need to focus in these difficult days. 

Lord God, You are our HEALER and we praise You!

No Better Time Than Now

04/28/2021

Do you worry about where our nation is headed? Although evil may temporarily prevail, the Bible tells us the end of the story. And it’s a good ending! God will prevail. Colossians 2:10 tells us Christ is the HEAD OVER ALL RULE AND AUTHORITY.  One day every knee will bow before Him. Examples of people humbling themselves before the LORD who is the HEAD over all rule and authority are found throughout the Bible. For example, read Daniel 4. King Nebuchadnezzar prided himself because of his power, but God humbled him. Daniel 4:34 records Nebuchadnezzar words,

“But at the end of that period, I, Nebuchadnezzar, raised my eyes toward heaven and my reason returned to me, and I blessed the Most High and praised and honored Him who lives forever; For His dominion is an everlasting dominion, And His kingdom endures from generation to generation.”

An important question for every person is, “who do you acknowledge to be the ultimate head over all rule and authority?” If you know someone who is discouraged by the moral decline in our nation, remind them of the ONE who is Head Over All. There’s no better time than now to share our faith and hope with others.

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LORD JESUS, thank You for the comfort that You are HEAD OVER ALL RULE AND AUTHORITY!  Use us as witnesses of our confidence in Your reign.