Walking through this world of sin,
Despair creeps to my heart;
Yet Christ speaks to me within,
And peace my LORD imparts.
“I am with You,” he has said,
“The Comfortor is yours.
Walk the path which I have laid,
And trust my perfect Word.”
Other Christians walk near by,
Their presence I enjoy;
The Noble ones are my delight,
My Portion is the LORD.
New strength through joy my LORD doth give,
And I can walk again;
With songs of praise my heart is filled,
With joy and hope I run.
“O my soul, thou hast said unto the Lord, Thou art my Lord: my goodness extendeth not to thee; But to the saints that are in the earth, and to the excellent, in whom is all my delight.”
The glory of God is like the ocean, into which all activities of our life flow as rivers. If an action has its source in God’s will for your life, then you may be sure that that action will flow into the ocean of God’s glory and be used for the benefit of His kingdom.
Sometimes we find ourselves “stuck” in the humdrum of life, doing the daily necessities but not feeling particularly useful. On days like these it can be especially meaningful to trace the current of purpose through the tasks. I find it especially helpful and encouraging to see how one small task – like preparing a meal – can be taken down the river bed into the ocean of meaningful Kingdom work.
We all must eat if we are to be able and fit to labor in the spheres to which we are called, and it is a tremendous gift to be able to feed a band of growing children who will one day be the leaders of the next generation. Or perhaps you are feeding people who are the leaders of the current generation – equally fulfilling when done in Jesus’ Name.
When we operate within the will of God for our lives, all that we do can be used for His glory. This is such a kind provision from our Lord. Trace the rivers in your life, and “whether therefore ye eat, or drink, or whatsoever ye do, do all to the glory of God.” – 1 Corinthians 10:31
One day last week we needed supper in a slow cooker for ease of preparation when the dinner hour actually arrived. This is our preferred way of food preparation, anyway, but some days it’s just a necessity. Pancakes were all I could think about – they just sounded so good! But who ever heard of pancakes in a slow cooker? Well, it can be done, as I was thrilled to find out! A combination of all different recipes later and the family had happily consumed almost an entire 6-qt slow cooker full of the tasty baked good. This recipe doesn’t make any pretense about being beautiful – it’s really kind of… not. But it tastes incredible, especially if you are a pancake-loving person, like most of us are. The best thing about this recipe is that it is very allergy-friendly, being wheat, dairy, and sugar free. You can also change up the suggested spices and extracts to create your own unique flavor. Tastiness!
6 cups oats, blended to flour
3 cups unsweetened almond milk
1/2 cup erythritol & stevia blend (or sweetener of your choice)
1 teaspoon salt
2 Tablespoons baking powder
1 Tablespoon baking soda
1 Tablespoon cinnamon
1 1/2 teaspoons nutmeg
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 teaspoon blueberry extract
1 cup blueberries (fresh or frozen)
1 cup dark chocolate chips
Combine all ingredients ina large bowl and stir until well combined.
Pour into a greased 6-qt slow cooker and cook on high for 2 hours or until done through (insert knife in center to check).
Serve hot with your favorite pancake toppings.
Wishing you a blessed week of remembering the sacrifice Christ made for us and celebrating our risen Savior! “Love so amazing, so divine, demands my soul, my life, my all!” – Isaac Watts
“Thank God for purpose in life. So many purposes come into existence when one works the will of God, that there is no excuse for the laziness or wasted time. He is redeeming our lives, as well as our souls.” – Jim Elliot
It’s a very simple thing to think of, really, but the simplicity of it is what makes it sparkle in the sunshine of life. There was a pile of firewood to move: not dirty firewood, but very clean, attractive looking firewood. It had been left behind on a site at the RV Park and it was time for it to go. Rather than walk 1/4 mile around the Park to the usual storage area, why not carry it through the creek? It would be a little shorter and much more interesting. So we did. It was a sisterly adventure, and the lovely feeling of water around our ankles, mud between our toes, and a field of blooming bugle to cross made the afternoon one to remember. Spring is here, and opportunites of every species and variety abound!
Have you ever felt like the weight of life was bending you low, wearing you down, and discouraging you?
As I was wandering around the property a few days ago, I noticed the daffodils. They were bright, yellow, and fully bloomed, yet they were weighed down and bent over from the storm the night before. Water drops remained on their leaves.
Do you ever feel like that ~ weighed down, blown over? Like one more little circumstance, perhaps as small as a water drop is to a daffodil, will make you completely bend? Or like one more gust of wind will break you?
The Psalmist had experiences and feelings like this. But what did he do? Read Psalm 119:81-88.
My soul fainteth for thy salvation: but I hope in thy word. Mine eyes fail for thy word, saying, When wilt thou comfort me? For I am become like a bottle in the smoke; yet do I not forget thy statutes. How many are the days of thy servant? when wilt thou execute judgment on them that persecute me? The proud have digged pits for me, which are not after thy law. All thy commandments are faithful: they persecute me wrongfully; help thou me. They had almost consumed me upon earth; but I forsook not thy precepts. Quicken me after thy lovingkindness; so shall I keep the testimony of thy mouth.
“All thy commandments are faithful: they persecute me wrongfully; help thou me.” Amidst the persecution, affliction, and distress, he did two things. He chose to think on truth (“I hope in Thy word… I do not forget Thy statutes…All Thy commandments are faithful.”) and prayed (“help thou me… quicken me after Thy loving kindness”).
So whatever the trial you may be wrestling through, take the Psalmist’s example ~ focus on the truth of God’s Word, and pray. These two things are just what the enemy of our souls does not want us to do. But the Lord will strengthen you to endure and persevere!
Herein is my Father glorified, that ye bear much fruit; so shall ye be my disciples. – John xv.viii
The North Carolina Family Encouragement Weekend has been a highlight for many families for several years now. By God’s gracious leading and provision, this year was no exception as we gathered for a short but packed 1.5 days to fellowship together around the Word of God.
The conference began with a charge to meditate on Scripture. This small but significant exhortation to obey Joshua 1.8 truly set the tone for a sweet and precious weekend with God’s people. To Him be the glory!
Sessions were an immense blessing as speakers expounded on Biblical truths flavored with personal testimony to our Lord’s mercy, grace, and love.
Families from all regions and stages of life came together to encourage one another in the ways of righteousness.
Children’s Hour was a delight!
Hungry souls were fed from the Scriptures.
Discipleship Gametime! We saw God clear up the rain for this day, just as He has kindly and faithfully done for years past.
Music, food, fellowship, and hearts overflowing.
To God be the glory, great things HE hath done.
Christ’s finished work on earth and Calvary are still bearing marvelous, incomprehensible fruits in the lives of believers. All we have and are we owe to the blessed Trinity and to Christ Himself, who, “though He were a Son, yet learned He obedience by the things which He suffered.” (Hebrews 5:8)
Oh the sweetness, oh the rest
Of leaning on the Father’s breast,
Of lisping “Abba,” precious name:
To give me this my Jesus came.
When nought but tears are like to flow
And to my Father I would go,
But weakness hinders, folly blights:
Christ dwells with me on these dark nights.
When I see the Word so clear
That speaks to me of One so dear
I call to mind: ’twas Christ that sent
The Holy Spirit down to men.
And when I fall at Jesus’ feet
Rejoice in hope of heaven sweet
That “God is love” comes soon to mind:
He sent His Son to save mankind.
Lord, You know the sins of my heart, my rebellion. If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just to forgive us our sins, and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness. – 1 John 1:9
Come now, and let us reason together, saith the LORD: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool.- Isaiah 1:18
Lord, You know the unbelief that keeps plaguing me. Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. – Isaiah 26:3
Lord, You know the fear I have when thinking of Your return; the fear of failure or of not having a “repentant enough” heart. Good and upright is the LORD: therefore will he teach sinners in the way. -Psalm 25:8 Being confident of this very thing, that he which hath begun a good work in you will perform it until the day of Jesus Christ: – Philippians 1:6
Does He really care about the small details in my life? Oh, Yes! What about that final math test which had a score of one hundred percent? Does that not count for a Creator and Savior who walks beside me as my faithful Friend? Will He not stay by me all the way? He has promised to never leave nor forsake. What about the time my family went into a church to sing, and on the wall was the very verse that had been my anchor to overcome the struggle I was in? Or the time I was struggling in the car and He brought that same verse back to me? Or the time I woke up with tempting thoughts on my mind and my dad quoted that same verse to me? The Lord is so good. These are a few of the ways in which the Holy Spirit has dealt with me, bringing me to Himself. But I would ye should understand, brethren, that the things which happened unto me have fallen out rather unto the furtherance of the gospel; – Philippians 1:12
Stay in the Word of God. Its truth is precious, and the more one stays in it, the more they find it so. The Lord is faithful. His Word is true. Jesus will be enough for you. Only turn to Him. Trust Him. Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto His brethren, that He might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people. For in that He himself hath suffered being tempted, He is able to succour them that are tempted. – Hebrews 2:17-18 [emphasis added] This makes me want to praise Him.
Trust and Distrust
Distrust thyself, but trust His grace;
It is enough for thee!
In every trial thou shalt trace
It’s all sufficiency.
Distrust thyself, but trust His strength;
In Him thou shalt be strong:
His weakest ones may learn at length
A daily triumph-song.
Distrust thyself, but trust His love;
Rest in its changeless glow:
And life or death shall only prove
Its everlasting flow.
Distrust thyself, but trust alone
In Him, for all – for ever!
And joyously thy heart shall own
That Jesus faileth never.
-Frances Ridley Havergal