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Posts Tagged ‘praise’

God_provides

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him!” Matthew 7:11

I am so grateful for the provision of God. He gives us life, and breath, and hope. He knew us before we were in the wombs of our mothers, and has a plan and purpose for each of us. He provides ways for us to work, talents for us to use, gifts for us to share. He cares about every detail of our lives. God does not live in some far off place, moving the affairs of men as chess pieces…He is a loving heavenly Father who weeps when we mourn, rejoices when we are happy, and gives us so many good gifts. Of course, His greatest gift was sending His only Son Jesus to die in our place, that we would not be punished for our sins, but will instead be welcomed into His Presence once we have accepted that gift, and proclaimed Jesus as our Lord and Savior.

I cannot imagine my life without God’s provision. There are some in this world who deny His existence, and yet they breathe the air He devised, they walk the earth He formed, they exist in the body of man, who He created to walk with Him.

God’s promise to renew my mind gives me access to His deep thoughts. The presence of the Holy Spirit in my life gives me a Comforter, Teacher, Guide and Friend…Someone who will instruct me throughout this turbulent and sometimes, terrifying journey of life. God has given us armor to wage war against the enemy of our souls. He has given us His Word to wield as a living weapon more powerful than any man made missile. He has provided each of us with spiritual gifts to bless and build up the Body of Christ.

I cannot name one provision of God that I am more grateful for than another. I am dependent on Him for everything I am, everything I do, and everywhere I go. I pray He will always provide me with words to encourage and uplift, talents to build up, and strength to finish the race He has set before me. That is my prayer for you as well.

“His divine power has given us everything we need for a godly life through our knowledge of him who called us by his own glory and goodness.” 2 Peter  1:3

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music-notes

Tonight is the annual Grammy Awards. In case you live under a rock, it is the award show highlighting the “best” music of the past year. I put the word best in quotation marks because I believe “best” is always an opinion, and I rarely agree with the music awarded a Grammy. But I do love music. Today I’m going to add to my Lenten 40-day journey by listening to more music.

I have a lot of favorite artists. Through the years I’ve spent money on music ranging from Alabama to ZZ Top, from Kenny Rogers to Kenny G, from Beatles to Wings to just plain Paul McCartney. I listen to praise & worship, jazz, pop, alternative rock, country (ish) and movie show tunes.  I love Bethel worship and Jason Upton (especially his latest album “A Table Full of Strangers”), but I also love pop stuff, like Ben Rector (I’ll be singing along with his latest tunes when he’s in Des Moines in March). Most of you know I’ve basically been a concert stalker for NEEDTOBREATHE (I think I’ve been to 6 concerts in 5 different states in 3 years). But at those concerts, I’ve fallen for the music of a couple of their opening bands, like Colony House and Drew Holcomb & the Neighbors. We like Drew’s music so much that I’m working on a way to see him while he’s in Des Moines in April.

The old stuff, from my teens and 20s, still have a hold of me. I recently purchased James Taylor’s latest album, Before This World, because he’s James Taylor. I don’t need any other reason. And it’s good. Really good.

Music is such a powerful influence in our lives. It can move us emotionally from the highest highs to depressing lows. I do try to avoid those types of songs. I’m not really into being depressed. The music and lyrics stay with us for most of our lives…I have no problem remembering the hymns I learned in my home town Methodist church when I was a child. I can sing the words to all the ABBA songs being played during my Curves workout.

Take some time today to fill your heart with good music…music to lift your soul, spur you to feeling good about yourself and others, music that helps you remember happy times.David was a lowly shepherd boy, who penned songs while watching over his sheep. He sang and played a variety of instruments. Music and worship became his training ground before being crowned king of Israel and called a friend of God.

By the way,  I do have a very favorite group- who do you think?

Psalm 18[a]

For the director of music. Of David the servant of the Lord. He sang to the Lord the words of this song when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. He said:

I love you, Lord, my strength.

The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
    my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield[b] and the horn[c] of my salvation, my stronghold.

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