“A TIME TO KEEP AND A TIME TO THROW AWAY”

 

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I am not exactly going to be throwing anything away but I have decided to let this “noelenesite” lie dormant for a while and only post on my “growing into motherhood” site (http://noelene2014.com/) in the foreseeable future.

I want more time to “stop and smell the flowers” and having two sites is not viable at the moment.

So if you are following “noelenesite” please click follow on the link above.

THANK YOU.  I WOULD HATE TO LOSE YOU!

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DON’T JUDGE A BOOK BY ITS COVER (A SECOND REMINDER!)

UNDER A JUNIPER TREE

IMG_20141103_201253Yesterday I was walking down the street and I passed a couple who had various body piercings and tattoos. My first reaction was to scowl at them, because to me, it just does not look right and I feel that they are ‘defacing’ the beautiful bodies God has given them. That is my personal opinion. My reaction reminded me of a few years ago when God taught me a major lesson about how easily we judge things and people by their outside appearances. I had just climbed off a plane in Birmingham, England, and was waiting, along with a 100 other people, for my luggage to appear on the carousel belt. I was on the opposite side of the carousel from where the luggage first appeared. The 4th item of luggage to appear was a big black suitcase that was ripped at the sides and held together by ugly brown…

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The Blind Man Knows…

Despite our circumstances we are free to choose our own attitudes!

Morning Story and Dilbert

Morning Story and Dilbert Vintage Dilbert
November 18, 2008

A new resident arrived at our Nursing Home; a 92-year-old, petite, poised and proud man, well dressed, his hair was neatly combed and his face shaved perfectly smooth with a pleasant cologne applied. Even though he is legally blind, he decided to move to our nursing home. His wife of 65 years recently passed away, making the move necessary. After waiting patiently in the lobby of the nursing home, he smiled sweetly when told his room was ready.

As he maneuvered his walker to the elevator, I verbally provided a visual description of his tiny room. As we entered, he was ecstatic and said, “I love it,” with the enthusiasm of an eight-year-old having just been presented with a new puppy. “Mr. Roth, please calm down, you know you have a vision problem and cannot see the room.” “That doesn’t have anything to do with…

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LOVE KNOTS

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I was paging through a book the other day and this sentence caught my attention “God is closer to sinners than saints”.  The thought crossed my mind that it was a good thing as I doubt very much whether I will ever achieve the status of sainthood in this life time!

It carried on to say:

“God, up there, in heaven,

Is holding onto each person with a string.

Every time you sin, you cut the string;

But God fixes the string again, with a love knot.

Since this knot makes the string shorter,

You are also a bit closer to God.

Thus each sin cuts it,

And each cut means a knot,

And each knot draws you closer to God”. (Praying Body and Soul, Mehothds and Practices of Anthony de Mello)

Imagine yourself standing on the outstretched palm of God’s right hand here on earth, around your waist is tied a rope which is attached to God’s left hand in Heaven.  Every time you sin it is like you have taken a scissor and cut that rope but instead of plunging to your death you are supported by the hand underneath you.

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As you confess your sin to God “He is faithful and just and will forgive your sins and purify you from all unrighteousness” (1 John 1:9).  God then reaches down with His left hand, to which our rope was attached, picks up our dangling piece of rope and ties the two pieces together with a love knot. He actually says in His word that He leads us “with ties of love” (Hosea 11:4). As His left hand goes back up to Heaven, the string tightens and He lifts His right hand a little higher so our feet are still firmly supported on His hand and we are drawn closer to Him.

Ephesians 5:1 states “Be imitators of God, therefore, as dearly loved children and live a life of love.”

If we follow this command we will find that as time goes by we will sin less and less and therefore God won’t have to make as many love knots in the rope which is a very good thing because the shorter that rope gets the closer we get to heaven and the nearer we are to meeting God face to face which will mean we are dead!  God says to us “I set before you today life and prosperity, death and destruction.  For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in His ways, and to keep His commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you” (Deuteronomy 30:15,16)

Images courtesy of Google

DEPRESSION……

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One of the Biblical characters that I most identify with is the prophet Elijah. He had major ups and downs, suffered from depression and frustration and yet was known as one of the boldest of God’s prophets!  I identify with the first part of what I wrote, not the prophetic part!!

  1. At one time God told Elijah to hide near a brook and said “I have ordered the ravens to feed you” and they do just that “the ravens brought him bread and meat in the morning and bread and meat in the evening”.
  2. Elijah had authority through God to tell a widow that her “jar of flour will not be used up and the jug of oil will not run dry” and that is what happened.  There was a never ending supply of flour and oil in the house.
  3. This same widows’ son dies and Elijah cries out to God “O Lord my God, let this boy’s life return to him!” and “the Lord heard Elijah’s cry, and the boy’s life returned to him”.
  4. Elijah challenges four hundred and fifty of Baal’s prophets to call down fire from Baal and set a bull on an altar on fire.  The prophets cry out the whole day to Baal but nothing happens.  Elijah had made a separate altar and placed another bull on it with heaps of wood underneath it.  He then says he will call on his God to reign down fire from heaven and then, adds insult to injury, and tells some folks to fill four large jars with water and pour it over the altar.  He tells them to do this three times.  Once this is done, he calls upon the Lord and “the fire of the Lord fell and burned up the sacrifice, the wood, the stones and the soil”!

Elijah then has all the prophets put to death.  The queen of the land at that time happens to be a woman named Jezebel and she is bitterly unhappy about the fact that all her prophets have been killed and she sends this message to Elijah “You killed my prophets, and now I swear by the gods that I am going to kill you by this time tomorrow night” and this man, who has witnessed the most awesome miracles, the incredible faithfulness of God, turns around and flees for his life!

He has just called down the power of God to start a fire with wood that has been drenched, he has been instrumental in bringing someone back to life from death, and yet, at the threat from a woman he flees for his life into the desert where he finds a tree, sits underneath it and gives in to self- pity! “I have had enough, Lord” he laments.

He reminds me of me!

I have known God’s faithfulness in my life, I have witnessed a few miracles, I have felt God’s peace and His comfort in times of great sorrow and yet when I am faced with disappointments, or the death of a loved one or the shattering of a dream I thought was from God, I too, sit down and cry out to God “I have had enough, Lord”.

Elijah falls asleep (or if he was anything like me, he cried himself to sleep) and while he is sleeping an angel of the Lord bakes a loaf of bread for him over hot coals and fills a jar with water and then gently touches him and says “Get up and eat”.  A few days later God speaks to him in a gentle whisper and then gives him an assistant in the form of Elisha to keep him company and to help him do what God has prepared for him to do.

God does not accuse Elijah of lack of faith, there are no recriminations about the fact that he ran away in fear.  God does not accuse him of being a coward and lambaste him for feeling sorry for himself.

Instead, God commands His angel to feed Elijah and to ensure that he has a good sleep and then God, Himself, speaks directly to Elijah and to top all this off He then gives Elijah a companion who will accompany him on his journey!

God treats each one of us in the same way.  His love and forgiveness is overwhelming.  When we are overcome by our own sins, mistakes, fears, hurts, God longs to comfort us and care for us and through the death and resurrection of His Son He has made a way for us to be reconciled to Him.  We don’t have to wallow in self-pity when we feel we have blown it/sinned against Him/failed – all we need to do is to take some time out, pray to Him, sleep, eat, rest and then wait for Him to speak to us.

God “does not treat us as our sins deserve or repay us according to our iniquities”.

Our God is “compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.”

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1 Kings 18, 19

Psalm 103

A ‘HOUSE’ UNDER CONSTRUCTION

JobNo22-TurnerDebden-Digi-03 If we have accepted the Lord as our savior God says that we belong to Him.  A synonym for belong is ‘to have a home, to have a rightful place’ and the origin of the word belong comes from ‘to reach’.  God reaches out to us and Jesus says “If anyone loves me, he will obey my teaching.  My father will love him, and we will come to him and make our home with him”.  (John 14:23)

It is God and the person who lives in a house that makes it a home and I love the way CS Lewis describes the way God changes our ‘house’ because He wants to make it a fit place for Him to call home!

Imagine yourself as a living house.  God comes in to rebuild that house.  At first, perhaps you can understand what He is doing.  He is getting the drains right and stopping the leaks in the roof and so on: you knew that those jobs needed doing and so you are not surprised.  But presently He starts knocking the house about in a way that hurts abominably and does not seem to make any sense.  What on earth is  He up to?  The explanation is that He is building quite a different house from the one you thought of – throwing out a new wing here, putting on an extra floor there, running up towers, making courtyards.  You thought you were being made into a decent little cottage;  but He is building a palace.  He intends to come and live in it Himself”.

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GRACE

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The words grace and peace are used together numerous times in the Bible. A lot of the New Testament writers began and ended their letters with the words “grace and peace to you”. Paul started the book of Romans with: “Grace and peace to you from God our Father and from the Lord Jesus Christ”. Peter started his second book with: “Grace and peace be yours in abundance through the knowledge of God and of Jesus our Lord.”

In Acts 4:33 we are told “With great power the apostles continued to testify to the resurrection of the Lord Jesus, and much grace was upon them all.” The apostles were able to perform great miracles of healing and deliverance because God’s grace was resting upon their lives.

How wonderful to know that when we are in right standing with God His grace rests upon us to do what we otherwise couldn’t accomplish.

Extract from “God’s Promise for Families”

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BE ALERT

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It is so easy to fall back into despondency, despair and unhappiness – we have to consciously fight these feelings. The two P’s work wonders – praise and prayer!

“The devil has two very masterful tricks. The first is to tempt us to become discouraged, for then we are defeated and of no service to others, at least for awhile. The other is to tempt us to doubt, thereby breaking the bond of faith that unites us with the Father. So watch out! Do not be tricked either way.” 

From – Streams in the Desert.

Photo – courtesy of google

IT’S NOT THE END

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Thought this was a brilliant sign to copy and put on the wall in front of my desk for those moments when I feel discouraged, heartbroken, lack patience or just feel so weary I have no energy to carry on.

To remember that “My heart is set on keeping God’s decrees to the very end”  (Psalms 119:112).  To keep in mind that if  “Listen to advice and accept instruction, in the end I will be wise”  (Proverbs 19:20) and “the end of a matter is better than its beginning, and patience is better than pride”  (Ecclesiastes 7:8).

To memorize the following words spoken by Jesus “I am the Alpha and the Omega, the Beginning and the End.  To him who is thirsty I will give to drink without cost from the spring of the water of life.  He who overcomes will inherit all this, and I will be His God and he will be my son and daughter”.