Let the Holy Spirit Be Your Guide

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Do not conform to the pattern of this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind. Then you will be able to test and approve what God’s will is—his good, pleasing and perfect will.

– Romans 12:2 NIV

March 9, 2018

For the past twenty years I’ve thought about “aging gracefully”. An acquaintance of mine once called me “stately”. I smiled to myself and then to her and said with a sincere “Thank you”. Awhile later I began thinking about the word stately; thinking back on my high school years when I was a full 6’2”, thin (very thin) straight “ dirty blond” hair, and thought stately (?). Now, bear in mind that was at least 40 – 45 years ago.  And this acquaintance of mind told me this fascinating fact about 10 years ago.

Was it because of the way I was dressed, my natural looking makeup, my height, my smile?  What was it exactly?  So, I stopped “thinking” and grabbed for my dictionary. Mrs. Merriam Webster said, – didn’t have anything to say; the Advanced Dictionary and Thesaurus stated, “baronial, statuesque, a noble tree (impressive or grand in size, appearance or manner.”), a severe-looking policeman set astride a noble horse, a stately column – hmm these weren’t too useful. Let’s see what Mr. Oxford to say, “impressive or grand in size, appearance or manner.”  That’s more helpful. So, I look noble (!?). How does one look noble. All I could think of was England’s monarchy. Certainly not. ( I know incomplete sentence, but this isn’t suppose to be an English/language class).

Still not completely certain of what she meant, I asked her, and her response was more of the impressive or grand in size, appearance or manner.  me being a southern, mountain girl/woman still didn’t get it. So, I referred to a book, Aging Gracefully, by Linda Staten and Jeannie Hund. Whose first words were,” They say that life is a journey and it’s true. There’s a lot to see and do, and the best way to catch the sights is to slow down and take a closer look. That’s what aging gracefully is all about – liking at who you are, appreciating what you’ve got, and knowing how to have a good day!  In your own unique way, of course.”  Well, that didn’t exactly answer my question either, but I liked it. So, I want to take each day in stride; starting with my usual routine of prayer and bible reading in the peace and quiet (my husband retires in the next 3 weeks), feed my 2 cats, drink my coffee and spend a few minutes thinking about what I’m going to do the rest of the day. And wonder, mainly, about what God asked me at the being of Lent – “What are you going to do for me?”

So, I’ll sit here and ponder for awhile. A follower wrote about suicide among female inmate guards and it has touched my heart greatly. I feel I must do some thing. Even if it’s wrong. My “stately” body and mind has got to do some thing. 

March 8, 2018

March 8, 2018

16 Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. 17 Relieve the troubles of my heart and free me from my anguish. 18 Look on my affliction and my distress and take away all my sins. 19 See how numerous are my enemies and how fiercely they hate me! 20 Guard my life and rescue me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you. 21 May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, Lord, is in you. 22 Deliver Israel, O God, from all their troubles! (‭Psalm‬ ‭25‬:‭16-22‬ NIV).

“No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame, but shame will come on those who are treacherous without cause.”

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭25:3‬ ‭NIV‬‬

http://bible.com/111/psa.25.3.niv

March 6, 2018

“A first step in repentance is confession of sin and a prayer for the Lord’s effective enablement in the believer’s life. True repentance involves the work of the whole person in recognizing and sorrowing over sin and renouncing it so as to turn to God in full heart’s devotion to His Lordship.”

– Jeremiah 31:18

March 6, 2018

bible.com/116/jhn.1.17.nlt

“In you, Lord my God, I put my trust. I trust in you; do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me. No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame, but shame will come on those who are treacherous without cause. Show me your ways, Lord, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long. Remember, Lord, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old. Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, Lord, are good. Good and upright is the Lord; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways. He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way. All the ways of the Lord are loving and faithful toward those who keep the demands of his covenant. For the sake of your name, Lord, forgive my iniquity, though it is great. Who, then, are those who fear the Lord? He will instruct them in the ways they should choose. They will spend their days in prosperity, and their descendants will inherit the land. The Lord confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them. My eyes are ever on the Lord, for only he will release my feet from the snare. Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted. Relieve the troubles of my heart and free me from my anguish. Look on my affliction and my distress and take away all my sins. See how numerous are my enemies and how fiercely they hate me! Guard my life and rescue me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you. May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, Lord, is in you. Deliver Israel, O God, from all their troubles!”

‭‭Psalm‬ ‭25:1-22‬ ‭NIV‬‬

http://bible.com/111/psa.25.1-22.niv

March 5, 2018

 

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Too often, we can crowd Jesus out of our lives with things that have nothing to do with  Him.  It happened at the temple in Jerusalem.  The business of sacrificing became greater than the reality of which the sacrifice was meant to serve.

Jesus cleansed the temple.  He drove out the animals and money changers.  He refocused the attention to the real sacrifice, Himself.  “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” (John 2:19)

Have we held something sacred in our hearts that rivals the Lord Jesus?  What needs to be cleansed from our temples?  Where are we majoring in the minors?

 – Rev. Thomas C. Brown