Morning

Morning
Compassionate Lord,
Thy mercies have brought me to the dawn
of another day,
Vain will be its gift unless I grow in grace,
increase in knowledge,
ripen for spiritual harvest.
Let me this day know thee as thou art,
love thee supremely,
serve thee wholly,
admire thee fully.


Through grace let my will respond to thee,
Knowing that power to obey is not in me, but
that thy free love alone enables me to serve thee.
Here then is my empty heart,
overflow it with thy choicest gifts;
Here is my blind understanding,
chase away its mists of ignorance.
O ever watchful Shepherd,
lead, guide, tend me this day;



Without thy restraining rod I err and stray;
Hedge up my path lest I wander into
unwholesome pleasure,
 and drink its poisonous streams;
Direct my feet that I be not entangled
in Satan's secret snares,
nor fall into his hidden traps.
Defend me from assailing foes,
from evil circumstances,
from myself.


My adversaries are part and parcel of my nature;
They cling to me as my very skin;
I cannot escape their contact.
In my rising up and sitting down they
barnacle me;
They entice with constant baits;
My enemy is within the citadel;
Come with almighty power and cast him out,
pierce him to death,
and abolish in me every particle 
of carnal life this day.
(The Valley of Vision)


Thank You, Jesus, this day.
Protect and guide us on our way.
In the very name of Jesus,
AMEN

Take time and give thanks today.

Be grateful in all things.

Trust in Him, He is good.

Always Experiencing Him,
Jody

Idols of the Heart Study


A sweet friend will be joining me at my home for tea and this Bible study beginning tomorrow morning, the 15th, at 10 am.  If anyone is interested, please email me for more information.  We would love to have you join us in, Idols of the Heart: Learning to Long for God Alone, by Elyse Fitzpatrick. 

Each week I will post something we have learned about the idols of our hearts, and the desire of longing for God alone.

"'You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, and with all your soul, and with all your mind.'  This is the great and foremost commandment."  Matthew 22:37-38

Notice the words "all" and "and;" they are so very important for such little words, and packed with great meaning.

Here's a couple questions from the 1st chapter...

"Do I love Him with everything that I am, or are there other loves in my heart that clamor for my attention?"

"Do I worship additional gods, or is He always, and in every case, the supreme Ruler who receives my undivided passion and devotion.?"

"Idolatry lies at the heart of every besetting sin that we struggle with."

"Little children, guard yourselves from idols."  1 John 5:21

"God changes hearts."

Again, I would love to have you join us for tea and study.  Email or comment if interested. (faithfamily6@gmail.com)

Let's learn together how to displace the idols in our hearts with the Word of Truth, and enjoy the freedom of longing for God alone.

Always Experiencing Him,
Jody

Grace Rain

A rainy day.
Let His Grace rain down on you.


God's Grace.  Amazing Grace.  

"For by grace you have been saved through faith; 
and that not of yourselves, it is the gift of God;"
Ephesians 2:8

"My grace is sufficient for you, for power is perfected in weakness."
2 Corinthians 12:9

"so that being justified by His grace we would be made heirs 
according to the hope of eternal life."
Titus 3:7

"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."
Hebrews 4:16

Always Grateful
The changing seasons
daughters safe flight to AZ
rainy day - remembering 
God's Grace - so grateful
daughter receiving new book from friend in mail
piano and guitar practice 
"thorn in flesh?"
prayers to Him
Be still and know that I am God
Listening, listening

#3391 -3405
October has dawned
mammograms
waiting Dr. results
a bit of cooler weather
building a burn pit w/son
stacking wood - good exercise
girls decorated for Autumn
rain on new seed in ground
Grace
Peace
practicing Christmas choir songs while driving
Ming Dynasty w/hubby
kids staying at the cabin w/grandparents - they still love it! :)
going out w/hubby
blessings of rain - Grace Rain

What are you thankful for this day?

What do you do on rainy days?

Always Experiencing Him,
Jody

Seasons

Spring, summer, autumn...
  Seasons.  
     Seasons come.
           Seasons go.
                  Seasons are here for a time, and fade into another;
Difficult to tell when one leaves and another comes...
    but, seasons are always consistent, 
                always changing, always moving into another.
Whether weather, or life, seasons continually change.





We arrive in one season, then in only a short while, we are begging for the next...we simply are not satisfied.  We long for what we do not have.  In summer, we long for cooler days, in winter, we long for warmer days.  When it's gloomy; "Where's the sunshine?"  Then, when the sun is out, we long for a gloomy day so we can pull out a good book, kick back, and relax.

When we are single, we long for marriage, when married, we long for children, when we have children, we long for the time they are gone, and when they are gone, we long for children once again, then, that's when we have found most people get "DOGS!"  Ok, sorry if I offended you "little" dog people, but it's true; so it seems :).  We have a CAT!  It was for the kids, but yes, it's a "baby" too!




Why can we not be content with where God has put us in our lives?  Paul says in Philippians 4:11, "Not that I speak from want, for I have learned to be content in whatever circumstances I am."  Paul found a way to be content, to be happy in God alone, wherever he was, and whatever he was doing.

When someone says we must be like Paul, we can't, because we are not all single men.  He had no one else to think about, worry about, or provide for other than himself.  What a blessing for those who have chosen to follow wholeheartedly in Paul's footsteps and remain single, but we must take Paul's heart of following and apply it to who and where we are in God's world, and in this season of life he has us in at the moment.

I believe once we know God's will, seek to obey Him, and not the world or culture, then it becomes easier to be content.  Life becomes difficult when we listen and look to our peers, to the world, TV, radio, sales papers, catalogs; then, our vision of God's will becomes quite hazy.  Or, when His will collides with our own initiatives, our agendas, our desires, our wants and wishes.  We tend to fall off-track once again, til we see chaos around us and we look again to God and His ways, His paths, His desires and, when we line up with Him, He can bless beyond what any of us desire.  

Go here to read an excerpt of a book by John MacArthur called Found: God's Will. (The giveaway is over, but the book is a super read!)  Go here to buy it for $1.50!  




In knowing God's will, are we in obedience?  Are we willing to obey all He has called us to in this season of life? Reading His words, are we willing to sacrifice our own desires for God's desires?  Are we willing to sacrifice what we want for what God wants?  To fully obey His will, His commands, His desires, His heart?  

Seasons of our lives will change for us as men and women, as we go through life.  As women, we may have a career for a time, then we may be mothers for season, then again if God chooses, we may enter the career season once more.  God's will does not change, we just move into different phases, different seasons of it.  Are we willing to sacrifice one for the other?

With each season of life, I am convicted every time I pick up His words, for they pierce my heart; "the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart." Hebrews 4:12

I pray you will let God look into your heart, and allow Him to pierce your soul, to examine your intentions.  Don't be sad or upset if He brings convictions; know it is the working of His Holy Spirit in your life to bring you into alignment with Him.  God's word is always clear, and right, and true.

So, "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."  Heb. 4:16.

Where are you in your season of life?

Do you find joy where God has you at this time?

Let me know your thoughts and encouraging words...

Follow along, by clicking in the sidebar to follow and by signing up to have the posts joyfully sent to your email address whenever a new one is posted.  I love hearing from friends...

Always Experiencing Him,
Jody

SEEK Him

A post from the archives - In October, I still choose to SEEK, to use my one word I chose for this year of 2 0 1 4...

When the boy-man makes slings out of an old leather boot and paracord with just the right colors for himself and his sisters; they seek the perfect rock to throw.  And when the same boy-man or his sister, the lady, makes a wrong note on the piano during a song, they seek the right note, the one that sounds.just.right.  

So, my one word for this year of 2014 is SEEK, to seek Him in all things.

There is faith and rejoicing; "In the beginning..."  Yes, "In the beginning was the Word and the Word was with God and the Word was God."  John 1:1.  I go back to the beginning, seek the beginning, and He is there, the Word is there, was there, and the Word.Was.God.  I seek the One who was, and is, and is to come.  

Deut. 4:29 says, "But from there you will seek the Lord your God, and you will find Him if you search for Him with all your heart and all your soul."  

If I seek Him, I will find Him.  Yes.I.Will.Seek.



We seek the Light in the middle of the night, not just the light switch, but The Light we pray to, and seek, when my sister has miscarried and we rush to the hospital, and seek the dear friend who experienced this same trial at 15 weeks not just 9 months ago, and who can pray and cry with my sister because she knows, she understands, she loves.  We seek the One who can give strength during this time, when my sis is hurting, physically, and emotionally, from holding her 18 week old baby, Kelton Gene, whom God has determined needs to be with Him this day.  We seek why God would not allow us to have the joy of holding this precious gift, but we know God's plans are so much higher than ours, so we seek Him, we trust Him, we love Him, we have faith that He knows best, and we.simply.trust.  Faith.Just.Faith.In.Him.Yes.  And, as we have the burial service, and his siblings read His Words, Words of comfort, as the daddy reads The Words, and as cousins sing 10,000 Reasons, Amazing Grace, and Jesus Loves Me, we seek Him, always seeking Him for His peace, that only He can give, and we give thanks, thanks to the One who loves and does NOT leave us, who stays, and comforts those who grieve.  Thank You, Jesus, for this peace that only You can give.





"Therefore if you have been raised up with Christ, keep seeking the things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God."  Col. 3:1

Jesus is the Light; the love of Jesus is the Light of the world.  The Light will dawn in your souls and Christ the Morning Star will shine in your hearts.  

"Sow with a view to righteousness,
Reap in accordance with kindness;
Break up your fallow ground,
For it is time to seek the Lord
Until He comes to rain righteousness on you."
Hosea 10:12

We seek Him as we hear another person in our community has cancer, and the cousin with incurable cancer waits on God to take him home, the neighbor who is in a hospital in KY waiting on the specialist to help him, another with incurable brain cancer, the family members who wait with them, the cousin who lost her mother this past year and the three ladies who became widows all within a year in our community.  Oh, how we seek You, Father!  How we seek Your hand to uphold us in these days, to be an encouragement to all around us.  Father, we SEEK Your arms, Your loving arms to hold us, to comfort, to give grace, Your grace.

"I love those who love me;
And those who diligently seek me will find me."
Proverbs 8:17





"But seek first His kingdom and His righteousness, and all these things will be added to you."
Matthew 6:33

We do this, this seeking; seeking Him who can help and guide us along the paths, along narrow paths, the paths which lead to life everlasting, paths He has given to bring us closer to Him and to His ways, closer to whom He has for us to become, to be, to live for Him, to shine His Light throughout our world in which He has placed us, to be a light for Him.  And, we give thanks, for food, for prayers, for friends, for more food, for love and understanding, for kind words, for hugs, we give thanks for all.








As we seek to live for Him, to know His ways, to trust His paths, to obey His will, we know, "The Light shines in the darkness and the darkness has not overcome it.  John 1:5

And I keep counting, keep counting the gifts, the good, the hard, the eucharisteos, giving thanks in ALL things, it helps, brings comfort, knowing God always gives, gives what we need, what makes us stronger for Him.  Nearing 4000 gifts, I keep on, are you counting?  Get a journal and write, write what you are thankful for, the good and hard.

Seek to live for Him, seek to know His will, seek Him in the trials and temptations of this life, and He will give you ALL that you need.  

God is God, God gave God, He gave All, He will bring you through.  Trust His All.


How have you sought God this day?

I would love to hear God's blessings on you...

How do you choose to thank Him?

Always Experiencing Him,
Jody

1st Fire of the Season

Jamin built us a fire last evening for us, because the temperature was going to be around 36 degrees!  Oosh!  That's just cold!  The rising flames were so warm and beautiful.  Thanks, Son!  

I sit, I watch, I bask in the wonderful glow pouring from the fireplace.  Such warmth bathes my body and my soul as I ponder the fire, the burning, the coals and ashes.  
(The pictures are from last year's season)


Comforting, warming, relaxing, it smells so good, the sounds of the wood crackling under the heat, the mesmerizing flames make you want to curl up with a good book and sit, or with a big quilt and nap.  Four of the five senses have been touched.

But, if you get too close, it burns, hurts, singes, but it also refines, purifies, and seals.
Staying close to God, our Father, so He can continually purge us of our impurities, our sins, purify us, refine us as silver and gold, listening to hear His voice and being obedient to His will is where we will find the warmth and comfort from Him.  We hear Him best when we are close, where we feel the comfort, the warmth, but also the heat, and the burning.


             Purification
"Lord Jesus,
     I sin - Grant that I may
never cease grieving because of it,
never be content with myself,
never think I can reach a point of perfection.
     Kill my envy, command my tongue,
trample down self.
     Give me grace to be holy, kind, gentle, pure, peaceable,
to live for thee and not for self,
to copy thy words, acts, spirit,
to be transformed into thy likeness,
to be consecrated wholly to thee,
to live entirely to thy glory.
     Deliver me from attachment to things unclean,
from wrong associations,
from the predominance of evil passions,
from the sugar of sin as well as its gall,
that with self-loathing, deep contrition,
earnest heart searching
  I may come to thee, cast myself on thee,
trust in thee, cry to thee,
be delivered by thee.
     O God, the Eternal All, help me to know that 
all things are shadows, but thou art substance,
all things are quicksands, but thou art mountain,
all things are shifting, but thou art anchor,
all things are ignorance, but thou art wisdom.
     If my life is to be a crucible amid burning heat,
so be it,
but do thou sit at the furnace mouth
to watch the ore that nothing be lost.
     If I sin wilfully, grievously, tormentedly,
in grace take away my mourning
  and give me music.
remove my sackcloth 
  and clothe me with beauty;
still my sighs
  and fill my mouth with song,
then give me summer weather as a Christian.
                  (The Valley of Vision)

"The words of the Lord are pure words;
As silver tried in a furnace on the earth, refined seven times.
You, O Lord, will keep them;
You will preserve him from this generation forever."
Psalm 12:6-7

"Some of those who have insight will fall, in order to refine, 
purge and make them pure until the end time; 
because it is still to come at the appointed time."
Daniel 11:35

"And I will bring the third part through the fire,
Refine them as silver is refined,
And test them as gold is tested.
They will call on My name,
And I will answer them;
I will say, 'They are My people,'
And they will say, 'The Lord is my God.'"
Zechariah 13:9

Are you listening to the One who refines?

How are you being tested this day?

Are you staying in His warmth, His comfort?

Always Experiencing Him,
Jody

Before His Throne

Worship and rest in Him


"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."
Hebrews 4:16

Even on a Thursday, take time out to breathe in the breath of God and all He has to offer.  Among the tribulations and trials, rest in Him, in the shadow of His wings.  Among the blessings and life He gives, don't forget to take time for Him and give Him thanks.

How are you breathing in God this day?

Always Experiencing Him,
Jody