Tag Archive | storms

Soul Anchor

False security.  That’s the topic for today.  Why?  Because last night when I finally made it to bed after a long evening, a storm hit.

As the winds raged through the woods about my house and the rain beat against the window above my head I buried my face into my nightly source of comfort.  You might think that would be my husband, and I suppose he is to an extent.  I mean, he keeps my feet warm, but I absolutely can’t sleep without my “snuggly robe”.

Me in my snuggly robe

I have a huge, soft robe that I wear sometimes during the day, but always sleep with like a teddy bear, at night.

And, of course, I cuddled in closer next to my sleeping husband, as well.

So I fell off to sleep, then,  cozy and secure,  missing the storm at its worst, complete with tornado sirens.  My son informed me about it next day.

Funny thing is, although I felt “cozy and secure”, if a tornado had hit our house, me and my snuggly-robe would have been sucked right out the nearest window!

What’s your snuggly-robe? What teddy bear do you cuddle in closer to when the storms of life hit?

I think it would be better to hang onto something that wouldn’t blow away so easy, something with roots.  Don’t you?  A soul anchor, perhaps…

“We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain…” Hebrews 6:19

And what is this “firm and secure hope anchor for the soul?

JESUS,

JESUS,

JESUS…

“Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.” Hebrews 7:25

And what does he save us from?  Ultimately, eternity in hell, but daily?

Only Jesus can save us from the storm that howls about us and threatens to suck us right out the window every day, every moment…

our sin.

He saves us from our selfish own selves:

“Such a high priest meets our need-one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens.” Hebrews 7:26

So, again I ask, what are you clinging to?

“Those who cling to worthless idols forfeit the grace that could be theirs.”  Jonah 2:8

Thing is, we can’t hang onto Jesus with dirty hands.  So, here’s some verses I’m clinging to today.  You might want to hang on, too:

“Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good.

Be devoted to one another in brotherly love.

Honor one another above yourselves.

Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord.

Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.

Share with God’s people who are in need.

Practice hospitality.

Bless those who persecute you; bless and do not curse.

Rejoice with those who rejoice; mourn with those who mourn. Live in harmony with one another.

Do not be proud, but be willing to associate with people of low position.

Do not be conceited.

Do not repay anyone evil for evil.

Be careful to do what is right in the eyes of everybody.

If it is possible, as far as it depends on you, live at peace with everyone.

Do not take revenge, my friends, but leave room for God’s wrath, for it is written: “It is mine to avenge; I will repay,” says the Lord.

On the contrary: “If your enemy is hungry, feed him; if he is thirsty, give him something to drink. In doing this, you will heap burning coals on his head.”

Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.”  Romans 12:9-21

Do you have an anchor for your soul?  Click on the pic to meet mine:


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Storm Faith

storm damage

See that hollow limb above?  It was blown off its tree by strong winds the other day.  My husband and I came across it on a hike through the woods.

On the outside it looks like a strong enough limb, but notice its hollow insides.

Made me think, “How are my insides?”

Am I strong enough to hang on in a storm?

It’s what’s inside that matters.

Read these verses from Matthew and answer for yourself what makes a person strong enough to resist the wind:

“Therefore everyone who hears these words of mine and puts them into practice is like a wise man who built his house on the rock. The rain came down, the streams rose, and the winds blew and beat against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had its foundation on the rock.”  ~ Matthew 7:24-25

Notice those highlighted phrases?  It’s all about hearing and putting into practice — that’s the difference between strong or hollow faith.  It takes faith to obey, and when we obey, our faith gets stronger. It’s a circle, like a tree ring!

Unfortunately, I tend to treat Jesus like a genie in a bottle, rubbing the lamp when I pray, saying, “Here’s my plan, now bless it.”

Where His pleasures cross my own, I choose my own pretty much every time.  Obedience-schmedience!

Why?!

Maybe because, sometimes, it hurts to obey…

Pastor Mark Brown, from Australia, put it this way on his blog:

“I want to follow my will, my desire, but this is plain wrong.  I must submit myself to the will of Christ, and push through the pain.” ~ Journey Deeper into God’s Word

I like the way he put that — “push through the pain.”

And why in the world would I choose to push through the pain rather than enjoy immediate pleasure…

JOY!

That’s what Jesus did.  He chose joy:

“Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God.” ~ Hebrews 12:2

And that’s what Jesus taught. He taught his disciples to choose joy:

“If you obey my commands, you will remain in my love, just as I have obeyed my Father’s commands and remain in his love.  I have told you this so that my joy may be in you and that your joy may be complete.”  ~ John 15:10-11

Stop! Drop! and Pray!

Let’s pray:

Father, I want the joy, joy, joy, joy down in my heart, down in my heart to stay!   So, help me to obey all that You say.  Not just the commands that go my way. ( Anyone else notice this rhyming?)

You are THE way —  The way to peace, the way to happiness, the way to JOY!

Please show me, Father, how I’ve been choosing my ways over Yours.

Here’s some ways that come to mind: (This is where you confess…)

Father, thank you for being faithful and just to forgive me when I confess my sins to You. ( 1 John 1:9)

And when your pleasures cross mine, help me to choose Yours every time.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

Do you know the One who made the trees?  Click the pic below to meet Him.  Come on!  Go out on a limb. 🙂

~~ Gloris Young

Storm Watch…

Well, we’re under a storm watch today, here in the Midwest.

A  warm front from the south will be smacked down by a nasty cold front from the north, right over our heads, creating perfect weather conditions, the weatherman said, for strong winds, heavy rain, and maybe even a tornado or two.

Well, the cooler temps and rain predicted for the rest of the week, have my family packing our bikes back into the garage.

Cold fronts can be real party-poopers for us fair-weather-bikers. 😦

Sigh…

And we certainly don’t want cold fronts building up in our hearts, Christian.  Cold winds of doubt can smack down our faith and blow away any chances of happiness and peace.

Fortunately, we can control our heart conditions by… (drum roll, please)

READING OUR BIBLES! Say it with me —   THE BIBLE IS MY FRIEND!  The B-i-b-l-e, that’s the book for you.  It’s true!

Regular Bible reading (and doing) will keep our hearts warm.

Below is a diagram, from the Navigators ministry, showing how to get a HAND-le on the Bible:

“The Word Hand”.  “Meditate, Memorize, Study, Read, Hear.”

Memorizing the verses on each finger of that hand above might be just the thing to improve your internal weather pattern.  You could trace your hand into your journal to make your own HAND-y diagram. (can you tell I’ve taught a lot of Sunday School?)

(Click on the WORD HAND for a more thorough explanation of the verses from Navigators.org, if you’re interested)

Another cold front stopper and heart warmer is to PRAY.

PRAY, PRAY, PRAY, PRAY, PRAY!!!

Stop! Drop! and Pray!

We don’t have to weather our storms alone!

My pastor said, “The storm your going through isn’t the issue.  It’s Who’s going through it with you that matters.” ~Cal Rychener

So, Who’s your storm-buddy? You gotta be prepared…

“When I think I’m goin’ under, part the waters, Lord.

When I feel the waves around me, calm the sea.

When I cry for help, O, hear me, Lord, and hold out your hand!

Touch my life!

Still the raging storm in me.”

I need you every hour...

“The Cold Front Prayer:

“Oh, Father, thank you for loving me.  I need you every hour, every minute, every second.

Thank you for touching my life when I call to you, like the song said above, and stilling the raging storms in me.

Please help me to love Your Word, the Bible.  The B-I-B-L-E — may it be the book for me.

And, Lord, I know there’s so much time wasted I”ve wasted because I didn’t pray, and so many storms in my life that could have been avoided if I’d relied on You in the midst of them.

I am so weak.  Strengthen me inside with power through Your Spirit (Ephesians 3:16) In Jesus’ name, Amen.”

You got a storm buddy?  Click on the pic below to meet mine:

Dynamite! Psalm 18

“You will receive power when the Holy Spirit comes upon you…” Acts 1:8  

Beth Moore, author, Bible teacher, and rock star in Christian women circles, has said that praying scripture is like strapping two sticks of dynamite together.  Kaboom!!   

 It causes an explosion in the spiritual realms and an explosion of faith for the Christian.  Why???  

Because Scripture is powerful —  “For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.”  Hebrews 4:12  

And so is prayer —“The effective, earnest prayer of a righteous man is powerfully effective.”  James 5:16b HNV  

Psalm 18 is one of my favorite psalms.  It shows God’s mighty power to save us out of deep despair. 

King David wrote Psalm 18 after God miraculously saved him from an enemy that had trapped and completely overwhelmed him — King Saul.   

  

  

Most of us don’t have King Sauls trying to kill us , but we have doubts,  

fears and  

anxieties breathing down our necks,   

threatening to destroy our faith — sometimes on a daily basis.  It can be a little overwhelming, and scare us into hiding, like David.   

This picture shows Engedi, in Israel, where David his from his enemy…  Where David hid from King SaulDo you find yourself hiding from yours?   

Well, get up and blast the enemy of your soul with these two sticks of dynamite — Prayer and Scripture…  

Helm's Deep

Read Psalm 18 out loud to the Lord — note:  I inserted You’s for He’s, etc   

  ” I love you, O Lord, my strength.  [You] are my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge. [You] are my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.  I call to [You] Lord, who is worthy of praise, and I am saved from my enemies.  The cords of [fear] entangled me; the torrents of [worry] overwhelmed me.  The cords of the grave  coiled around me; the snares of death confronted me.  In my distress I called to [You]; I cried to my God for help…[You] heard my voice; my cry [came] before [You], into [Your] ears.  The earth trembled and quaked, and the foundations of the mountains shook; they trembled because [You] were angry.  Smoke rose from [Your] nostrils; consuming fire came from [Your] mouth, burning coals blazed out of it.  [You] parted the heavens and came down; dark clouds were under [Your] feet.  [You] mounted the cherubim and flew; [You] soared on the wings of the wind.    

[You] made darkness [Your] covering, [Your] canopy around [You]– the dark rain clouds of the sky.  Out of the brightness of [Your] presence clouds advanced, with hailstones and bolts of lightning.    

The Lord thundered from heaven; the voice of the Most High resounded.  [You] shot [Your] arrows and scattered the enemies, great bolts of lightning and routed them.  [You] reached down from on high and took hold of me; [You] drew me out of deep waters.  [You] rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me. They confronted me in the day of my disaster, but the Lord was my support.  [You] brought me out into a spacious place; [You] rescued me because [You] delighted in me.  Psalm 18  

You brought me out into a spacious place.  You rescued me because You delighted in me.
You brought me out into a spacious place. You rescued me because You delighted in me.

Thank you, Father, for loving me and saving me.  In Jesus’ name, amen!”  

Here’s some great verses to pray for yourself and others:  

I pray also that the eyes of your heart may be enlightened in order that you may know the hope to which he has called you, the riches of his glorious inheritance in the saints, and his incomparably great power for us who believe.  Ephesians 1:18-19  

And speaking of Beth Moore…  click on Book Recommendations on the right for more details about this awesome book of hers.