Christian

As Pure As the Driven Snow

Have you ever wondered what that means?

To be “as pure as the driven snow” refers to the snow that has been blown into a drift where no one has walked through it. It is as clean as it was when it fell from the sky. 

King David cried out to the Lord, “Create in me a pure heart, O God.” (Psalm 51:10) And “God testified concerning him, I have found David son of Jesse a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.” Acts 13:22

I find it meaningful that David, a man who committed adultery and murder, would be God’s example of a man with a pure heart. This tells me that no sin, nothing we did in the past that has been forgiven, can keep us from being a person after God’s heart. “Wash me and I will be whiter than snow.” (Psalm 51:7)

What did God see in David’s heart? Does God see those things in my heart? In your heart?

No matter what we do outwardly that may look good to others, God sees our heart. If we are selfishly motivated, arrogant, or proud, God knows.

God sent the prophet Samuel to Jesse and told him, “I have chosen one of his sons to be king.” 1 Samuel 16:1

Samuel thought for sure that Eliab would be chosen, but the Lord said, “The Lord does not look at the things man looks at. Man looks at the outward appearance, but the Lord looks at the heart.'” 1 Samuel 16:7

Finally, Jesse brought in David, his youngest son, who was tending the sheep. The Lord told Samuel, “Rise and anoint him; he is the one.” 1 Samuel 16:12

God chose David to be King, instead of King Saul. Saul didn’t obey God’s commands because he “was afraid of the people …and gave in to them.” (1 Samuel 15:24)

 He sacrificed offerings to the Lord. But Samuel said to Saul, “To obey is better than sacrifice.” (1 Samuel 15:22) We need to follow God’s commands, not motivated by what people think.

God knew that David was unafraid and would obey His commands. He knew that David believed the Promises. God knew David did not depend on his own strength and ability. He didn’t think too highly of himself, but was humble in heart. David said, “He rescued me from my powerful enemy, from my foes, who were too strong for me.” Psalm 18:17

David trusted in God and in His Word. He prayed, “Show me your way, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me.” (Psalm 25:4) We can get a glimpse into David’s heart when we read the Psalms he wrote. I want God to say that I am a woman after his heart. Don’t you?

In 1 Samuel 17:47 David said to Goliath, “All those gathered here will know that it is not by sword or spear that the Lord saves; for the battle is the Lord’s and he will give all of you into our hands.”This is what David believed in his heart, but he didn’t become this strong overnight.

“David said to Saul, “Your servant has been keeping his father’s sheep. When a lion or a bear came and carried off a sheep from the flock,  I went after it, struck it and rescued the sheep from its mouth. When it turned on me, I seized it by its hair, struck it and killed it. Your servant has killed both the lion and the bear; this uncircumcised Philistine will be like one of them, because he has defied the armies of the living God. The Lord who rescued me from the paw of the lion and the paw of the bear will rescue me from the hand of this Philistine.” 1 Samuel 17:34-37

My prayer is that, just like David, our faith will grow stronger every time we put our trust in the Lord and depend on Him to win the battle.

“(David served) God’s purpose in his own generation.” (Acts 13:36) I believe that God is looking for people with a pure heart to accomplish His purpose today. Will he use me? Will he use you?

With Love, 

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This Is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

All Scriptures are NIV unless otherwise noted.

Photo by Csaba Pap on Unsplash

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Christian

Has God Put a Desire In Your Heart?

Has God put a desire in your heart? Has He made it so crystal-clear that you know for sure it came from Him?

Did things go great at first, but then problems started to arise? If things don’t go the way you expect, don’t begin to doubt what you first believed. Do not doubt yourself and your ability to accomplish the task.

Remember: God never does things the way we think He will. Just because problems arise doesn’t mean we should give up. In fact, I think it would be safe to say, problems will definitely arise!

Nehemiah spoke about “what my God had put in my heart to do for Jerusalem.” (Nehemiah 2:12)

God put it in Nehemiah’s heart to rebuild Jerusalem. Do you think he may have run into a few problems? Of course he did!

We are instructed to learn from the past. For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through the endurance taught in the Scriptures and the encouragement they provide we might have hope.” Romans 15:4 NIV

When God puts it in our heart to do something, we can expect a spiritual battle to be right around the corner.

At first, everything happened quickly and easily for Nehemiah. The king granted all of his requests: letters to the various governors to provide safe travel and permission to take lumber from the king’s forest. The king even sent army officers and cavalry along with him on his journey to Jerusalem.

When Nehemiah asked the people to take on the great challenge to rebuild the wall, they enthusiastically agreed. They “worked with all their heart” (Nehemiah 4:6) and repaired the walls. Things were going great!

Then opposition began. The people were ridiculed mercilessly. “What are those feeble Jews doing? (Nehemiah 4:2) The enemy will always attack you personally. Who do you think you are? You can’t do that!

The enemies plotted together to stir up trouble. The strength of the laborers began to give out. What they started doing with all their heart, they began to doubt their ability to accomplish. They began to fear their enemies. (See Nehemiah 4:10-12)

Does any of this sound familiar? Because this is exactly how things work today! Be encouraged because things are right on track.

When the enemy came against them, “Each of the builders wore his sword at his side as he worked.” Nehemiah 4:18

When spiritual forces come against us, we must take up the Sword of the Spirit as we work. What does that mean for us? The Word of God and prayer are our weapons against the enemy.

By staying in the Word, we can hear the voice of God. Through prayer, we commune with the Almighty, which is intimate communication and the sharing of thoughts.

“For the word of God is living and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword…” Hebrews 4:12

“Take ..the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God … and pray” Ephesians 6:17-18

Dear friends, do not be surprised at the fiery ordeal that has come on you to test you, as though something strange were happening to you.” 1 Peter 4:12

Is my faith being tested? Will I still believe what God has said when the enemy comes against me? Am I trying to accomplish something in my own strength? Or am I trusting Him to do it, knowing that my part is obedience?

Paul said, “Being confident of this, that He who began a good work in you will carry it on to completion…” Philippians 1:6 NIV

Put your trust in God, pray and read the Word. Now carry on, Christian Soldier!

(The story of Nehemiah’s determination to rebuild Jerusalem is found in the book of Nehemiah.)

With Love, 

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This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog

Photo by John T on Unsplash

Bible

That’s Not What I Expected!

Sometimes God has a plan that is nothing like our expectations.  If only we would just trust Him, but instead we think we know what He should do. Learn how God just might do things in a completely different way than you expect!

Meet Naaman, the Commander of the Army of the King of Syria, a valiant soldier and highly regarded by the King. He was wealthy and respected by everyone; he had prestige, servants, and lived in grand style. I’m sure he had the best clothes, a beautiful home and (well you get the picture). Oh, he did have one little problem. He had leprosy.

His wife had her own personal servant girl, of course. Lucky for Naaman she was an Israelite. Even though she had been captured by a band of Syrian raiders, this little girl had compassion for her master (owner). 

One day, she told her mistress, “If only my master would see the prophet who is in Samaria! He would cure him of his leprosy.” (2 Kings 5:3)

Desperate to be cured, Naaman reported this to the king. The king, also anxious to see his best general cured of this egregious disease, sent Naaman to the King of Israel (with a lot of money, to boot).

Naaman expected the King to cure him of his leprosy in return for a substantial payment; but that is not what God had in mind. In fact, when the King of Israel discovered what Naaman wanted he panicked, thinking the King of Syria was trying to pick a fight. (See how this is not going as expected?)

When Elisha the prophet heard about this, he sent for Naaman. So Naaman gathered his entourage, his horses and chariots, flags and whatever, and he paraded to Elisha’s door.

Naaman must have thought pretty highly of himself, making a grand arrival with all those horses and chariots, and lots of money. But Elisha doesn’t even bother to come out and greet him! Instead Elisha sends a messenger who says, “Go wash yourself in the Jordan River seven times.”

Naaman expected the Prophet of God to dramatically wave his hands in the air and call on his God to cure him in some spectacular display. But once again, not what he expected. 

Naaman probably thought, “Who does this guy think he is? I’m not going to take a bath in that muddy river! Naaman, used to being treated with honor and respect, refused to do what Elisha said and stomped off in a rage.

I know what you’re thinking: What!? How can Naaman be that stupid? Doesn’t he want to be cured? 

But don’t we do the same thing? We pray for something, but it isn’t answered the way we expect. So we think our prayer isn’t being answered at all. Or, maybe we don’t like the way it is being answered.

It isn’t surprising that Naaman got angry. The Jordan River is a dirty, muddy river. We wouldn’t want to bathe in it either, especially if we tend to think rather highly of ourselves. (Ouch!)

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This isn’t the Jordan River, but this river is similar in muddiness.

Only after his servants convince him, does Naaman agree to go and dip himself in the dirty river. When he followed God’s plan, he was completely cured and his skin became like that of a young boy. Things turned out even better than he expected!

Naaman exclaimed, “Now I know that there is no God in all the world except in Israel.” (vs. 15) And he vowed to never worship any other god but the Lord.

Read the story of Naaman in 2 Kings chapter 5. There’s a lot more to the story!

With Love, 

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This is My Journey Unscripted.

Click this link to learn more about Jesus: Who Is Jesus?

realchristianwomen.blog 

1st Photo by Andre Guerra on Unsplash

2nd Photo by Leo Nard on Unsplash

Bible, Christian

All To Jesus I Surrender

Today, I begin my post with worship. Precious Jesus, we surrender.

The Lord keeps bringing this Scripture to my mind: “I have found David son of Jesse, a man after my own heart; he will do everything I want him to do.” Acts 13:22

Isn’t the key to being a person “after God’s own heart” to be surrendered to God’s will and to put our trust in Him alone?

Stand outside tonight and look up at the stars. Look at the work of His hands! Those stars were scattered across the sky by God’s mighty hand. The stars are so far away that even though they are larger than the sun, they look like tiny points of light.

Did you now that our galaxy, the Milky Way, has approximately 100 billion stars in it? But the Milky Way is not the only galaxy in the universe… There are about 10 billion galaxies in the observable universe!¹

Just imagine the enormity of what we can’t see! This is the God that we trust!

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Photo by Lucas Gallone on Unsplash

So how do we know what God wants us to do? How can His plan be carried out if we don’t know what it is?

We must trust the Lord, study the Word ,and spend time in prayer. 

Proverbs 3:5-6 says, “Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.”

God reminds me that “we are his people, the sheep of his pasture.” (Psalm 100:3 ) Sheep aren’t that smart.  They need endless attention and meticulous care. They are unable to take care of themselves. They need a shepherd. It is not by accident that we are compared to sheep in the Scriptures.

David was a shepherd boy. He learned about God as he cared for his flocks. He knew everything about the relationship between the shepherd and his sheep. He writes, “The Lord is my shepherd. I shall not want.” Psalm 23:1

The sheep know the shepherd’s voice. Jesus said, The one who enters by the gate is the shepherd of the sheep. The gatekeeper opens the gate for him, and the sheep listen to his voice. He calls his own sheep by name and leads them out. When he has brought out all his own, he goes on ahead of them, and his sheep follow him because they know his voice. But they will never follow a stranger; in fact, they will run away from him because they do not recognize a stranger’s voice.” John 10:2-5

As we spend time in the Word and in prayer, we will learn to hear His voice.

Jesus declared, “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. (John 10:11)

If we are surrendered to the Lord, if our heart seeks after Him, we are doing our part. God will carry out His plan. He will do it. He will make that happen. He is the Good Shepherd.

With Love, 

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This is My Journey Unscripted.

Do you know Jesus?

If you have never asked Jesus to be your Savior, you can do it now. He loves you more than you can comprehend, and it will change your life forever.

“IF YOU CONFESS WITH YOUR MOUTH, ‘JESUS IS LORD,’ AND BELIEVE IN YOUR HEART THAT GOD RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD, YOU WILL BE SAVED. FOR IT IS WITH YOUR HEART THAT YOU BELIEVE AND ARE JUSTIFIED, AND IT IS WITH YOUR MOUTH THAT YOU CONFESS AND ARE SAVED. AS THE SCRIPTURE SAYS, ANYONE WHO TRUSTS IN HIM WILL NEVER BE PUT TO SHAME.”   ROMANS 10:9-11

realchristianwomen.blog

 

References:

1 https://scienceline.ucsb.edu/index.html

 

 

Christian

Can’t Sleep?

One day, I was looking for a particular toy for my son. Stepping on my tippy toes, I blindly reached into a large box on a high shelf in my closet and scooped up a handful of small toys.

As I held it up to see if I had the desired toy, this is what I saw: Twined around the toys was a 3 foot-long snake skin! Startled and panic-stricken, I quickly threw it all into the air and screamed!

At this time in my life, I was terrified of snakes, mice, lizards, and all creepy creatures in general. I’m happy to report that 30 years later, not so much.

The problem was, I couldn’t sleep at night. What with (who knows how many) snakes loose in the house!

Now this happened during the days of heated waterbeds, and we slept in one. In my imagination, this would be the exact place a snake would slither into during the middle of the night.

What’s a waterbed, you ask? Well, you can google it. Now back to the story….

“Lucky” for me (tongue in cheek), I happened upon a Bible verse that set me free from this fear. “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.” Psalm 4:8

Every night when I went to bed, this was my prayer. I passionately thanked God for His promise and repeated it over and over until I went to sleep. I was putting my faith and trust in God and in His Word; it carried me through a very scary time.

This is why it is so important to make Bible study a priority. The Holy Spirit spoke to my heart when I read this verse. God did keep me safe. I was able to sleep peacefully, and eventually we were able to move to a better house.

Wherever I go, and whatever comes my way, I will trust in God’s Word.

The more I study God’s Word, the more I trust in Him.

“If your law had not been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction. Psalm 119:92

“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.” Psalm 119: 105

“You are my refuge and my shield. I have put my hope in your word.” Psalm 119:114

This is My Journey Unscripted.

With Love, 

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Do you know Jesus?

If you have never asked Jesus to be your Savior, you can do it now. He loves you more than you can comprehend, and it will change your life forever.

“IF YOU CONFESS WITH YOUR MOUTH, ‘JESUS IS LORD,’ AND BELIEVE IN YOUR HEART THAT GOD RAISED HIM FROM THE DEAD, YOU WILL BE SAVED. FOR IT IS WITH YOUR HEART THAT YOU BELIEVE AND ARE JUSTIFIED, AND IT IS WITH YOUR MOUTH THAT YOU CONFESS AND ARE SAVED. AS THE SCRIPTURE SAYS, ANYONE WHO TRUSTS IN HIM WILL NEVER BE PUT TO SHAME.”   ROMANS 10:9-11

realchristianwomen.blog