Saturday, February 26, 2022

"When you have money no one is ever really your friend" - Death on the Nile

Quote from "Death on the Nile."

”When you have money no one is ever really your friend.”

In today's world money is a god. It has always been a god.

If God owns everything, can I be trusted? Will my greedy heart go after all that God owns? Can my love for him be skewed by what I can get from him?

“The earth is the LORD's and the fullness thereof, the world and those who dwell therein.” (Psalm 24:1)

Many have sought God for what they can get from him. What's in it for me? 

What if the life-saving gift that he is offering is rejected? What if what we're looking for is achieved as we humble ourselves?

Everyone desires peace, love and joy. We want to discover and attain all that life has to offer. Unfortunately, in our search, if left to our own devices, we may obtain what we want and miss what we need.
 
"What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul?" (Matthew 16:26)

“For the world offers only a craving for physical pleasure, a craving for everything we see, and pride in our achievements and possessions. These are not from the Father, but are from this world.” (1 John 2:16 NLT)

God the Father in his great love for us sent his son Jesus to earth that we indeed may live life to its fullest. Jesus came to give us life but the war that was waged continues to operate. It steals, kills and destroys everything around us. (John 10:10)

If God owns everything, can I be trusted? Will my greedy heart go after all that God owns? Can my love for him be skewed by what I can get from him? Will I miss the bigger picture?

The Lord who formed me, (Psalm 139) and knows me well is interested in lavishing me with his love! Yes, even his resources for life. 

Can I really be called God’s friend?

God has looked upon me. He knows my brokenness and need. He knows that I can easily be tricked into a downward spiral of depravity.

So, what does the Creator of Heaven, who owns everything do? He sends his Son Jesus to earth. He takes a world of chaos and turns it right side up.

He reminds me of the new life he offered Nicodemus. It’s available for me too! “You should not be surprised at my saying, ‘You must be born again.’ The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit.” (John 3:7-8)

Will the God who owns everything trust me? Jeremiah reminds us that our hearts are desperately sick. Who can know this heart and fix it? (Jeremiah 17:9) Only the Lord!

Hollywood says, ”When you have money no one is ever really your friend.”

Yet, God has called me his friend and he owns everything!

“But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)

In humility and need. I surrendered to the Lord for new life and forgiveness of sin. What did I get in return? New life! Eternal life and sins washed away.

What does the Creator of the world say about me? 

 As his son walked on earth, this is the message to his followers, to his disciples, to his children. “Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. I no longer call you servants, because a servant does not know his master’s business. Instead, I have called you friends, for everything that I learned from my Father I have made known to you.” (John 15:13-15)

He calls me friend. He reveals the Father’s plan to me.

“This is what the Lord says, he who made the earth, the Lord who formed it and established it—the Lord is his name: ‘Call to me and I will answer you and tell you great and unsearchable things you do not know.’” (Jeremiah 33:2-3)

All who call upon my name shall be saved. (Romans 10:13)

It seems no matter where I search in his Book, there is a call for me to come to him. The Owner and Creator of everything wants me! He remembers that I am but dust and bids me to come.

He desires to lavish me with his great love! (1 John 3:1) Salvation is the gift for the far off, the broken, the greedy, the swindler, idolater, rebellious, the confused, the cheater and the cheated, the sinner who thinks there is no hope.  We are not beyond his reach.  He is the Restorer to the broken and crushed in spirit.

He has come to give us life and everything we need in this world and beyond. Will you trust him today?

The gift is free! “Salvation is found in no one else, for there is no other name under heaven given to mankind by which we must be saved.” (Acts 4:12)

God owns everything and wants me and you! Salvation establishes our relationship with the Creator.  He calls us friends and loves us!

He can't stop thinking about us and died for the re-establishment of our relation with the Father.  Noah was given the olive branch, delivered by a bird.  We have been given the new life delivered by the Son!

God bless you!~ Liz

Wednesday, February 2, 2022

Quick Decisions

 I recently placed an online order. This is a very common activity for me. I'm savvy and know how to look for a good deal.

With the cold weather and the wintry mix that we've been getting I placed an order for some rock salt. I want to be prepared. My eyes caught a good deal on some ice melt so I proceeded to order this bucket that would carry me through the rest of the winter.

What keeps me and holds me together as I live my life? I am a believer. What does that mean? I have heard the gospel of Jesus Christ. I trust Jesus. He came to save my life. I believe that he died on the cross and on the third day rose again. When he left the earth, he sent what he promised, the Holy Spirit, which guides me daily.

And she lived happily ever after.

There are forces, a spiritual war that believers are caught in. My life is redeemed and belongs to the Lord. Yet there are entities trying to diminish my effectiveness.

Everything is not what it seems to be! Read the fine print!

The warning - stay on the alert! I'm an excellent shopper yet I got caught off guard in my recent purchase.

I’m savvy, I was confident.  As I shop online I often ask the Lord to show me what I need because often my shopping cart is filled with what I want.  That is a discipline that I continue to learn daily.

As a believer I must remain vigilant.  It's more than an online shopping experience. The repercussions are costly.

Everything must be filtered through the Word of God.  My emotions may be easily fooled.  The heart must be examined by the Lord.   A constant dialogue with the Holy Spirit must be my daily pursuit.  My heart might try to trick me. My emotions can be easily fooled. “The heart is deceitful above all things, and desperately sick; who can understand it?” (Jeremiah 17:9)

Everything must be tested.

The apostle Paul spoke to the Corinthians and warned them! The enemy of our soul is a great deceiver. He lies, he deceives, he tricks, and if we’re not careful his influence can lead us astray.

Many have been led astray by false teachers and doctrine. (2 Corinthians 11) This is not a pit that the people of old fell in. This hole exists and consumes people today.

It's beautifully decorated. The road is wide, lined with trees.  If you listen carefully, you might hear the conversation. It is not the birds chirping and praising the Lord early in the morning. The rustle of the tree leaves speak of danger.

It's the same conversation that Adam and Eve had with the serpent. A little twist here and a little change of language and mankind was deceived and fell.  Disobedience left a terrible imprint.

The Bible says, “Enter through the narrow gate. For wide is the gate and broad is the road that leads to destruction, and many enter through it. But small is the gate and narrow the road that leads to life, and only a few find it.” (Matthew 7:13-14)

God’s Word reminds us, that he who delights in the Lord, “That person is like a tree planted by streams of water, which yields its fruit in season and whose leaf does not wither—whatever they do prospers.” (Psalm 3)

Pick up the sword! It is the Word of God. Pray and ask the Spirit of God to give direction. He can open our eyes to really see and cause our ears to hear correctly. Pride can come in and begin to tell us that we are secure. But we must consult with our heavenly Father. Fight to remain!

My online order status said it would take a little longer for delivery, so I cancelled the order. 

A few days later I received a package in my mailbox. I don't have a big mailbox.  The item was wrapped in plastic. I looked at the package and I was baffled.  I had no recent orders. I began the unwrapping process.  I'm still unsure. What could this possibly be? As I removed all the packaging, inside this plastic bag was an item the size of a handball.

Lo and behold, there was a tiny little mini bucket of rock salt. Now if you are as confused as I was  - now we can laugh! The item that I ordered (in my savvy shopping excursion) was not a big bucket of rock salt. The small print under the item description read that this was a miniature rock salt bucket to be used as a Christmas tree ornament! It’s January!!

Oh, the lesson isn't finished. This tiny replica cost me $23. Praise the Lord I got a refund!

Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour.” (1 Peter 5:8)

It can happen that quickly. Deception, trickery, accusation, pride, a world wind of confusion, anger, misrepresentation, lying, stealing, a whisper laced in gossip – be on the alert!  There is a battle waging!

I'm not as savvy as I thought I was.

I'm thankful that as a believer I have a great Counselor to give me advice and direction. He teaches me about what I need, not what I want.

Lord, I am your child. Lead me and I will follow.

The Lord does not use fine print. He makes it very clear to all who will listen. He loves us.

“The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy; I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.” (John 10:10)

“For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

The quickest decision we can make that leads to life is to say yes to Jesus! That's NO DECEPTION - it is life!

God bless you!~Liz

Deep calls to Deep

“Her husband Elkanah would say to her, “Hannah, why are you weeping? Why don’t you eat? Why are you downhearted? Don’t I mean more to you th...