I am a stranger here on earth…. When Solomon became King he was but a child with so much life ahead of him. Though at the time there was no way of really knowing how long he would live, as king he had everything he needed except one thing – wisdom. We can’t really know with absolute certainty what our tomorrows will bring. To that extent we are very much like strangers – newcomers to every day in which God blesses us. Gracious God thank you for the new days in my life. Though I meet each day as a stranger, I pray for wisdom as I experience each moment and say thank you like an old friend at the end of the day.
On the eve of a new season, God calls us to things before we think we’re ready, because it leaves room in our hearts and minds to allow Gods’ power and authority to lead and guide us in our passion for the work God has called each of us to do.
Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
and do not rely on your own insight.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
and he will make straight your paths.
Do not be wise in your own eyes;
fear the Lord, and turn away from evil.
It will be a healing for your flesh
and a refreshment for your body.
Do not be afraid of sudden panic,
or of the storm that strikes the wicked;
for the Lord will be your confidence
and will keep your foot from being caught. Proverbs 3:5-6,25-26
She taught me everything I know, and when I’m really listening she teaches me more deeply. Even now I strive to not disappoint her, as she endures within me. It is he who created her; he saw her and took her measure; he poured her out upon all his works… (Sirach 1:1-11) For the gift of my Mother, I’m forever grateful. I remember, her life is my life.
…he thought he was seeing a vision. Acts 12:1-17 It is possible to look upon something and think that it can’t be real when in fact it is, such as unforeseen opportunities. Unless you act on what seems a reality you may never know that it was in fact real until it’s too late. The freedom to act is a gift. When our time comes, may wisdom in Love be our guide to use such a gift. Real freedom is making the right choice out of love for God and not one’s self.
If you continue in my word, you are truly my disciples; and you will know the truth, and the truth will make you free. John 8:21-32
Dust To Dust
this one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and straining forward to what lies ahead, I press on toward the goal for the prize of the heavenly call of God Philippians 3:12-21 In between the dust life happens. Leave the past where it belongs – in the past. You can’t change it. Let God’s wisdom of today keep your heart on the one true goal.
Understand …He who planted the ear, does he not hear? He who formed the eye, does he not see? The Lord knows our thoughts, that they are but an empty breath. Psalm 94:8-11 I am reminded that as a child it never dawned on me that the infinite wisdom my mother shared with me, concerning puberty, peer pressure and relationships, was coming from experience. As I grow in to my own spirituality I understand more and more of God’s understanding of me. Futile thoughts cause us to forget this. Rest assured, where ever we are, God’s been there. He knows us and has plans for us.
“…one’s life does not consist in the abundance of possessions.” Luke 12 13-31 Growing up as a child my mother used to say that she never knew she was poor. She could not remember when she did not have food to eat, a place to stay and white gloves on Sunday. She accomplished many things in her life and yet she would tell you that her greatest possession was God’s love for her, her love for God, and the love she had for her family, exactly in that order. Wealth by the world’s standards consists of many possessions. But blessed by God’s grace and mercy it is for us to look past the world’s standards, seek Wisdom and live according to God’s truth; according to God’s love.
Luke 12:13-31 For it is the nations of the world that strive after all these things, and your Father knows that you need them. Instead, strive for his kingdom, and these things will be given to you as well.
Happy are those who find wisdom,
and those who get understanding,
for her income is better than silver,
and her revenue better than gold.
She is more precious than jewels,
and nothing you desire can compare with her.
Long life is in her right hand;
in her left hand are riches and honour.
Her ways are ways of pleasantness,
and all her paths are peace.
She is a tree of life to those who lay hold of her;
those who hold her fast are called happy.
“Which of these three, do you think, was a neighbor to the man who fell into the hands of the robbers?” ...‘Go and do likewise.’ Luke 10:25-37 The lawyer in this passage of Luke thought he was being rather smart by asking Jesus “Who is my neighbor?” However, his question reveals that what he was asking, is about who is to be the neighbor that he should love. It’s one of those kinds of questions that has the potential to separate and divide the haves and have-nots, the righteous and sinners; if we allow our sense of who we are, to be defined by the world’s standards rather than by God. I like the way Jesus addresses the question with a question after first telling a parable about four men. Jesus challenges the lawyer to identify himself in the parable. Of course the lawyer would not see himself beaten at the side of the road. How many of us would? He could however see himself as the Priest or the Levite. That is until he realizes that both in the story show more folly than compassion as would be expected from a Priest or Levite. At the very least, Jesus’ question briefly forces the lawyer to identify with the Samaritan (considered to be “unclean”). The parable helps the lawyer and us to understand simply, that the one who acts is the neighbor. At all times, each of us is to be the neighbor because in Christ it’s who we are. A scripture from Ecclesiastes 10:1-18 …folly is set in many high places, and the rich sit in a low place, really begins to take shape in times of need. We don’t always have the luxury of determining who will help us. Perhaps one day we may find our selves “fallen at the hands of robbers.” Which of the three would we want to pass by? Is it not the one who acts on our behalf?
Matthew 7:1-2 “Do not judge, so that you may not be judged. For with the judgement you make you will be judged, and the measure you give will be the measure you get.”
I once had a five year old child tell me one day in Sunday School class that he did not like being compared to a sheep because sheep were stupid animals and he wasn’t stupid. No doubt this kid was beyond his years but I can’t help wondering if the Pharisees felt this way about Jesus’ sheep metaphors. One thing is for certain, the sheep were at least smart enough to know when they were being called by the Good Shepherd. Perhaps sheep aren’t the brightest of animals, but if we can achieve half as much wisdom to know the Savior’s voice when he calls us, we can all be just as smart. I believe if we can learn to always hear God’s voice, the following will get easier; perhaps as easily as sheep.
John 10: 19-30 Jesus answered, ‘I have told you, and you do not believe. The works that I do in my Father’s name testify to me; but you do not believe, because you do not belong to my sheep. My sheep hear my voice. I know them, and they follow me.
Psalm 23:1 The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want
The word is vexation, a state of being frustrated, annoyed or worried. Job went through a period of vexation. He pleaded for understanding of his friends’ reprimand as to what he had done to render such devastation in his life. Of course we know from the scripture that Job was innocent, guilty only of serving God. I believe Job had every right to plead his case. However, fear of God (Job 28:28) does not mean that we should be afraid to question God concerning the trials and tribulations in our lives. Wisdom is it’s own teacher. There will be many times that we are frustrated, annoyed or worried about a negative situation of which we are unaware as to why we are being challenged with this experience. Let us pray that seeking God will be our first and only recourse. Of course seeking wisdom about the situation will require that we believe God is present and at work even when what we see is to the contrary and all we are able to do is praise a truly just and loving God as we wait it out. All the while we know that redemption, reconciliation and healing is God’s blessed assurance.
Job 4:6 Is not your fear of God your confidence and the integrity of your ways your hope?
Proverbs 14:26 In the fear of the Lord one has strong confidence, and one’s children will have a refuge.
Hebrews 11:1 Now faith is the assurance of things hoped for, the conviction of things not seen.