Concentrate on the good

Philippians 4:8 [Full Chapter]

Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure,  whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
What do we spend our time thinking about? I’d be willing to bet that a lot of the time it does not fit the list above. Too often we are concerned about what someone else has done. We are quick to point out flaws in others. We can also concentrate on all the negative things instead of the positive.
good-gifts
Consider the good things. Remember the gifts that we have been given by God and praise him!

Sing a new song

Colossians 3:16

Let the message of Christ dwell among you richly as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom through psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit, singing to God with gratitude in your hearts.

SING TO THE LORD

Today I’m reminded of how important it is to be grateful for everything that you have. God has given us so much. Many of us have so many things that we don’t appreciate. Many of us need to remind ourselves that we have a roof over our heads, food to eat, family and friends and lots of other things. Do we remember each day to thank God for those gifts? I don’t think we do. Somehow we spend time praying for other things. The things we pray for may not be bad. We may be praying for others which is important. But let us not forget each day to thank God for the gifts that he has given us.

The passage from Colossians reminds us to sing hymns songs from the spirit and sing our gratitude to God. St. Francis says that those who sing pray twice. So if you can sing songs of gratitude to God

O come, let us worship and bow down, let us kneel before the Lord, our Maker! For he is our God, and we are the people of his pasture, and the sheep of his hand. O that today you would listen to his voice!

Psalm 95:6-7 NRSV

listeingforgod

It is so easy to forget to give attention to our God. Church is not the only place to worship God. We should be thanking God and giving praise through every moment. We must stop and be silent long enough to hear God’s voice. We are so good at putting everything else first. Praise, thank, and listen to God at all time.s

We have it backwards

Psalm 9: 1-2

I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart;

    I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.

I will be glad and exult in you;

    I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.

When things are going badly we call on God for help. When we are afraid or ill or in danger we Immediately pray for help. When we don’t talk to God is when everything is going well. We just don’t think about it. We are too happy and satisfied.

Psalm 34 4

Somehow I think we have it backwards. When things are going great we need to thank God. We need to jump up and down for joy and sing aloud songs of praise.

I can just imagine the expressions on the faces of those around us. This is not something we see often. Maybe if we did that we would bring more people to our God. At least they would know that we counted on God for good things. Then they would understand that we belong to a God who is alive and well and present in our lives. Someone else may want that.

Starving amid abundance

Life is a banquet, and most poor suckers are starving to death! From Auntie Mame

starving

This is so true. I wonder how often we stop to savor just being alive. Are we thankful for what we have instead of longing for what we don’t have.? Most of us in this county are so blessed compared to those living in third world countries. My husband and I lived in Panama for a while ( Many years ago)  and it made me decide that everyone in this country should have to live  in a place of horrible poverty and need for a least a year.

Take time to be aware of your blessings. Thank God always.

Loving God, forgive us for our lack of vision. We do not see the good around us as often as we should. Help us to see our blessings and give thanks. AMEN

 

God does laugh

 

“To listen to some devout people, one would imagine that God never laughs.” Anon

Praise-God-for-His-Sense-of-Humor

Have you met Christians ready to pummel you with their God? Or the one for whom anything to do with God is a totally serious business. They never laugh when they are talking about him To them, God is a wrathful, angry God. One from only the Old Testament. Jesus taught us about another God. The God who wants us to have a cheerful face.  The New Testament God is the one I follow. Christ didn’t have a grumpy face.  He went to parties. He drank wine. His face was full of love.

 

 

Prayer: Intimate God, let us show a cheerful face to others that we might draw them to you. Help us to teach them about Jesus. Amen

 

 

 

 

Prayer: Thank you loving God for continuing to give us a chance. We just don’t seem to learn. Forgive us our sins. Amen

 

Music touches the soul

There is nothing in the world so much like prayer as music is.       William P. Merrill

Inspiring-beautiful-music-quote1

To me, music is not like prayer, it is prayer. I can sit in the church and listen to the music and be pulled out of myself. Attending a service where everyone sings out in praise can touch my soul. I can be moved to tears by a beautiful hymn. I thank God that he has gifted us with music.

Prayer: Thank you God for the beautiful music. May we continue to be touched by it and drawn closer to you. Amen

 

Saved by grace through faith

saved-by-grace-through-faithEphesians 2:7-10 —definition of grace

that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God— not because of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.

We can’t earn our way with God. We have been granted grace through the sacrifice of Christ. None of us can say we are better than another. We are the same…god’s creation.

We were created to do good works. Not to win any awards or make ourselves noticed but to follow God’s plan for us.

Grace is a gift.  Accept it.

The light is coming

Today we continue to look forward to the birth of Jesus. It comes close to the shortest day of the year and the time when we start back toward more light.The light of Christ is coming into the world.

I don’t think there is any data to tell us exactly the date of Jesus’ birth but this is when we celebrate it and that is fine. A time set aside for us to remember the birth of the baby that changed the world.

light-of-life

Amazing god, help to remember why we celebrate. AMEN

Have a ready heart

Advent brings so much for us to ponder. What is the meaning of Christmas? How can I get ready for Jesus? What does this season mean to me? Can I stop long enough to remember what it is all about?

We have to look toward Christmas with a ready heart.

Advent-wreath-and-quotes

Loving God, help us to turn from the busy-ness and dwell on the gift of God. AMEN