Sit up straight!

As I sit on my hotel room balcony at Madeira Beach, FL having my quiet time, I find the top of the rail right in my line of sight. To see the birds fishing and the occasional shark fin, I have to change my normal sitting position and sit up really straight, stretching a bit taller than normal.

It made me wonder:

What blessings do I miss because I won’t sit up and take notice?
How do I miss being a blessing to others when I won’t humbled myself.
What message is The Lord trying to send me that I am missing because I won’t change my posture before Him?

Lord, help me be tuned in enough that I am always in the right posture before you. I don’t want to miss anything you have for me because I know it will be good.

James 1:17 (NLT) Whatever is good and perfect comes down to us from God our Father, who created all the lights in the heavens. He never changes or casts a shifting shadow.

Are you committed?

Psalms 37:5 Commit everything you do to the Lord. Trust him, and he will help you.

I am really enjoying “Jesus Calling,” which is the most powerful devotional book I have ever encountered. This morning I was particularly struck by,

“Don’t divide your life into things you can do by yourself and things that require My help. Instead, learn to rely on Me in every situation.”

Busted!

Psalms says to commit EVERYTHING I do to The Lord – not just the stuff I can’t get on my own. And, if I REALLY did some soul searching, I’d probably realize there’s a lot less I can do on my own than I typically think.

Lord, help us rely on you in every moment today as we strive to make a difference in our world for you.

Postscript – I don’t read “Jesus Calling” as if God has given the writer new revelation and messages. Evidently, some people do – which is very dangerous. I read it, comparing it to God’s revelation to us through His word and find no new message. What I seek is the same kind of meditation on God’s Word that draw me closer to His presence. I think that matches up with His heart.

Love Our Kids – Are You Being Fair?

While I started a degree in elementary education, I didn’t complete it. I can see now that the desire I had to teach starting at a young age has been fulfilled as I train and develop adults in the workplace and through teaching adults at church. Kids are definitely not my strong suit. 

And yet, as our church needed Wednesday night children’s workers, I felt like I had to help. So I started helping. . . grudgingly. The Lord has really had to work on my attitude.

I am a big “rule follower” and I’m not very patient when kids (or adults, for that matter) seem to ignore the rules or not care enough to find out what they are. Praise the Lord, He is more patient with me! I am sure that I have been known to make rules that weren’t fair or necessary. And I am even more sure that I have disciplined kids when they didn’t really need it because it was more about my pride than their behavior.

I know, O Lord, that your regulations are fair; you disciplined me because I needed it. Psalm 119:75

This scripture hit me hard this morning. Help me, Lord, to impose only regulations that are fair. Help me not to react and create rules or punishments that are really based in my frustration, rather than the child’s behavior.

Loving Our Kids Devo for Teachers – Getting things in perspective

Matthew 6:33 – Steep your life in God- reality, God- initiative, God- provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.

I like this paraphrase of a familiar scripture from The Message.

So today when you’re dealing with the children entrusted to you (or a parent or co-worker), take a second to think about God’s perspective of the situation and take action based on that instead of what your flesh feels.

I find that my first response to a situation is based on how I think it makes me look. That makes me want to start “protecting myself” and making sure I don’t look a fool; making sure I am “respected.” Unless I seek the Lord’s perspective, I am making it about me, when it very often has NOTHING to do with me.

Lord, help us to seek your reality and to see how you are at work. Praise you for your provision in everything.

Love Our Kids Devo for Teachers – Grace Abounding

And God is able to make all grace abound to you, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 2 Corinthians 9:8 (NIV 1984)

Are you abounding in grace? I can assure you that unless I am relying on the Lord, I am not. An attitude of grace (which walks very close to humility) is not one of my natural tendencies.

But “God is able”! These one of the greatest phrases in the Bible. God is able to make grace ABOUND.

I know as you work with kids grace is an absolute necessity. As you work with parents and co-workers who look at life very differently from you – grace is an absolute necessity.

I pray that today we will avail ourselves of the grace that God can make abound to us if we will only let Him.

Humble Benefits

James 4:7
So humble yourselves before God. Resist the a devil, and he will flee from you.

I know this verse – it is very familiar. But yesterday when my day started out with great frustration and then it continued until I left for lunch, it didn’t come to mind. However, I knew that letting the frustration continue to build was going to lead to thinking very negatively about vendors, co-workers and any situation I encountered. The Lord kept reminding me – “This is not really important. Think about the good things that are happening.”

That takes becoming humble and realizing that my current problem is not the biggest thing that is happening right now.

Humility may not be as difficult for you as it is for me, but I want to encourage you today to look at every situation from God’s perspective. Resist the Devil trying to get you all tied up in knots over something very insignificant.

Your day will get brighter in a hurry, the Devil will be defeated and The Lord will be glorified.