Saturday, July 6, 2013

Wandering off on my Own

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 43. Here is what I learned.

Send me your light and ·truth [faithfulness] to ·guide [lead] me. Let them ·lead [bring] me to your holy mountain [Zion, the location of the Temple], to ·where you live [your dwelling]. Psalm 43:3 (EXB)

Send your light and your truth. Let them guide me. Let them bring me to your holy mountain and to your dwelling place. Psalm 43:3 (GW)

Guide: a primitive root; to guide; by implication, to transport.

Lately there have been reports of hikers lost because they chose to leave the paths/trails and venture out on their own. Some hikers were found safe, others lost their lives. The paths provide a safe way to navigate through the wilderness. Yet, some think they know better, or want to prove that they are capable of making their own path, or are attracted/distracted by something off the path. 

The same is true in life. God not only has designed a path, but provides the light to direct me as I walk along. He provides guidance and will lead me safely. Yet, I too often am distracted by what is off the path, or I want to take a different path, because I think I know a better way. However, each time I wonder off on my own, I end up struggling, unhappy, dissatisfied at what I found, discouraged at mess I created for myself, and wandering around wondering how to find my way back to the path. 

Thankfully, God never loses sight of me as I wander off on my own. He is waiting to lead me back to His path, as soon I say... “help”. You’d think over time, I’d stop wandering off on my own, realizing that it only leads to trouble. But I’m a slow learner and quick forgetter of what I have learned. Thankfully, God is patient, gracious, and merciful. And no matter how many times I wander off the path and go out on my own, God is waiting and watching ready to lead me back to the path. 

To create a positive day, I need to stay on the path God has laid out for me, and not go wandering off on my own. 

Friday, July 5, 2013

Hear and Listen

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 29. Here is what I learned.

The voice of the Lord makes the wilderness tremble; the Lord shakes the Wilderness of Kadesh. Psalm 29:8 (AMP)

The Lord’s voice shakes the ·desert [wilderness]; the Lord shakes the ·Desert [Wilderness] of Kadesh. Psalm 29:8 (EXB)

As the storm travelled, it burst over the desert. "The voice of the Lord shaketh the wilderness; the Lord shaketh the wilderness of Kadesh." God courts not the applause of men - his grandest deeds are wrought where man's inquisitive glance is all unknown. Where no sound of man was heard, the voice of God was terribly distinct. The vast and silent plains trembled with affright. Silence did homage to the Almighty voice. Low lying plains must hear the voice of God as well as lofty mountains; the poor as well as the mighty must acknowledge the glory of the Lord. Solitary and barren places are to be gladdened by the gospel's heavenly sound. What a shaking and overturning power there is in the word of God! even the conservative desert quivers into progress when God decrees it. The Treasury of David

Sometimes I sit listening intently for God’s answer to my prayers. The silence is so overwhelming. Then I realize that God is SHOUTING His answer, only I don’t hear it because I’m waiting for the answer I want to hear. 

God wants my attention and yet, I’m not hearing or noticing Him. I often wonder if He’s standing there waving His arms, jumping up and down, shouting at me to get my attention... only I am blind and deaf because of my own desires. 

When I finally notice and hear God, and listen to Him, His answer to my prayers are so much better than I could imagine. His plans are so much more thought out than mine. His plans take into consideration all aspects of the now and future, where my plans are short-sighted and are adequate for only the here and now. 

To create a positive day, I have to hear and listen to what God is saying. I may not always understand or agree, but God does has a plan and purpose! 

Attend Class

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 19. Here is what I learned.

Each day pours out more of their sayings; each night, more to hear and more to learn. Psalm 19:2 (VOICE)

Day after day they ·tell the story [bubble/pour forth speech]; night after night they ·tell it again [declare knowledge]. Psalm 19:2 (EXB)

Day unto day - One day to another; or, each successive day. The day that is passing away proclaims the lesson which it had to convey from the movements of the heavens, about God; and thus the knowledge of God is accumulating as the time moves on. Each day has its own lesson in regard to the wisdom, the power, and the goodness of God, and that lesson is conveyed from one day to another. There is a perpetual testimony thus given to the wisdom and power of the Great Creator.
Uttereth speech - The word here rendered uttereth means properly to pour forth; to pour forth copiously as a fountain. Compare Proverbs 18:4; Proverbs 1:23; Proverbs 15:2, Proverbs 15:28. Hence, the word means to utter; to declare. The word "speech" means properly "a word;" and then, "a lesson;" or "that which speech conveys." The idea is, that the successive days thus impart instruction, or convey lessons about God. The day does this by the returning light, and by the steady and sublime movement of the sun in the heavens, and by all the disclosures which are made by the light of the sun in his journeyings.
And night unto night showeth knowledge - Knowledge respecting God. Each successive night does this. It is done by the stars in their courses; in their order; their numbers; their ranks; their changes of position; their rising and their setting. There are as many lessons conveyed to man about the greatness and majesty of God by the silent movements of each night as there are by the light of the successive days - just as there may be as many lessons conveyed to the soul about God in the dark night of affliction and adversity, as there are when the sun of prosperity shines upon us. Barnes' Notes on the Bible

I’m thankful that not only is there so much to learn about God and how He works, but that He is a great teacher. God knows that I learn best with visual, or hands-on experiences. And God provides many lessons showing and allowing me to experience His truths. 

As I lie in bed each night, I enjoy reviewing what God taught me and how He demonstrated His love to me that day. I continue to be amazed at how creative God is in teaching me. 

To create a positive day, I need to “attend class” and be open to what God wants to teach me each and every day. 

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

Rock-solid Friendships

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 16. Here is what I learned.

The beauty of faith-filled people encompasses me. They are true, and my heart is thrilled beyond measure. Psalm 16:3 (VOICE)

As for the godly (the saints) who are in the land, they are the excellent, the noble, and the glorious, in whom is all my delight. Psalm 16:3 (AMP)

And these God-chosen lives all around— what splendid friends they make! Psalm 16:3 (MSG)

This verse is probably to be regarded as a further statement of the evidence of the attachment of the psalmist to God. In the previous verse, according to the interpretation proposed, he states that his happiness - his all was centered in God. He had no hope of anything except in him; none beyond him; none besides him.
In this verse he states, as a further proof of his attachment to him, that he regarded with deep affection the saints of God; that he found his happiness, not in the society of the wicked, but in the friendship of the excellent of the earth. The verse may be thus rendered: "As to the saints in the earth (or in respect to the saints in the earth), and to the excellent, all my delight is in them." In the former verse he had stated that, as to God, or in respect to God, he had no source of blessing, no hope, no joy, beyond him, or independent of him; in this verse he says that in respect to the saints - the excellent of the earth - all his delight was in them. Thus he was conscious of true attachment to God and to his people. Thus he had what must ever be essentially the evidence of true piety - a feeling that God is all in all, and real love for those who are his; a feeling that there is nothing beyond God, or without God, that can meet the wants of the soul, and a sincere affection for all who are his friends on earth. Barnes' Notes on the Bible

It would seem logical, that if I enjoy God’s company, that I’d enjoy the company of those who love God. I think of my friends, we may not have a lot of common interests, but the one thing we do have in common is our love for God. That single bond is greater and stronger than liking the same sports team, or liking the same hobby. For loving God is the foundation for life and sets the standards for living. 

True friendship is grounded in each individuals love for God. The more each person loves God and aims to accomplish God’s will, the friendship is stronger and more enjoyable. 

To create a positive day, I first must make sure my relationship with God is right and strong, then I can enjoy rock-solid friendships that have God as the foundation. 

Lean On

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 4. Here is what I learned.

From this day forward, offer to God the right sacrifice from a heart made right by God. Entrust yourself to the Eternal. Psalm 4:5 (VOICE)

Offer just and right sacrifices; trust (lean on and be confident) in the Lord. Psalm 4:5 (AMP)

And put your trust in the Lord: not in your strength, in horses and chariots, and numbers of men; nor in wise counsels, nor in riches, nor in fleshly privileges, nor in works of righteousness, or sacrifices of righteousness: for though they are to be performed, they are not to be trusted in; nor in your own hearts. And while the psalmist is striking at the false confidence of the sons of men he is addressing, he may at the same time be thought to be encouraging those that were with him to trust in the Lord, Jehovah, the Son of God, before spoken of by him as the object of trust, Psalm 2:12; to trust in his person for the acceptance of their persons and sacrifices of righteousness; and in his righteousness for justification; in his blood for pardon; in his sacrifice for expiation of sin; in his fulness for daily supplies; and in his power for protection and safety. And it is right to trust in him at all times; in times of affliction, temptation, and desertion: he is always the same; in him is everlasting strength; he has an heart as well as an ability to help and succour, and none ever trusted in him and were confounded. Such have peace and safety, and can want no good thing. Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible

Lean on and be confident in the Lord. God can handle us leaning on Him... He’s strong enough to support us, He won’t break. But often, I know that I’d rather try to stand on my own, and sadly to say... that never seems to work out! 

I use crutches to walk any distance due to nerve damage in my leg. I tried using a cane, but that didn’t provide the support necessary and I found myself falling. There are times, when I set my crutches aside, especially in the apartment (there are things I can grab onto if needed). But I’ve learned over the past 12 years, that when my leg is tired, it supports me less, therefore, I do better using a crutch or two even in the apartment. I’ve learned that my crutches are stable enough to support me. When I use the crutches I’m able to get around without the fear of falling, and it makes getting things done easier. The crutches remove my fear of falling, because over the years, I’ve learned that when I use them, I have the ability necessary to move about. 

Leaning on God is NOT a crutch! Rather God provides the needed support, stabiliy, and help to accomplish His will. When I face an unknown or start to worry about things out of my control, I’m standing on my own and am sure to fall. But when I lean on God, He provides exactly what is necessary to move about freely and safely.

To create a positive day, I need to lean on and be confident in the Lord and what He is doing. 

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Exercise Gratitude Repeatedly

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 67. Here is what I learned.

God! Let people thank and enjoy you.  Let all people thank and enjoy you. Psalm 67:5 (MSG)

God, the people should ·praise [thank] you; all people should ·praise [thank] you. Psalm 67:5 (EXB)

The repetition shows that this was the principal thought in the mind of the author of the psalm. It expresses an earnest - an intense - desire, that all nations should acknowledge God as the true God, and praise him for his mercies. Barnes' Notes on the Bible 
Let the people praise thee, O God! Having spoken of all nations participating in the saving knowledge of God, he next tells us that they would proclaim his goodness, and exhorts them to the exercise of gratitude. The repetition used clearly shows of itself that he alludes to an event of a new and unprecedented kind. Calvin's Commentary

Exercise of gratitude. Repetition. I like the picture that creates. We know that physical exercise is a set of repetitions to build up strength and flexibility, not to mention remain healthy. The same can be true of “gratitude exercise”, for repetitions of expressing praise will build up our spiritual strength and help our souls to remain healthy. 

Good trainers know that you can’t just exercise one time and then call it quits, because well you did exercise. To be effective, exercise must be done often and with increases resistance in order to continue to be beneficial. 

Exercising gratitude may begin with praising God for the good things, that’s easy. But exercising gratitude in the midst of something you don’t understand or as you go through a difficult situation—that will strengthen your soul. Because no matter the situation, you know that God is worthy of praise. 

To create a positive day, I need to exercise gratitude repeatedly! 

Sunday, June 30, 2013


This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 92. Here is what I learned.

But you have ·made me as strong as [exalted my horn like; symbol of strength] an ox. You have poured ·fine [rich; fresh] oils on me [a gesture of hospitality]. Psalm 92:10 (EXB)

But You have made me strong as a wild ox, anointed me with the refreshing oil of Your blessing. Psalm 92:10 (VOICE)

But you’ve made me as strong as a wild ox. I’m soaked in precious ointment. Psalm 92:10 (CEB)

Faith takes delight in foreseeing the mercy of the Lord, and sings of what he will do as well as of what he has done. The Treasury of David

"Anointed with fresh oil." Every kind of benediction and refreshment I have received, do receive, and shall receive, like one at a feast, who is welcomed as a friend, and whose head is copiously anointed with oil or fragrant balm. In this way, the spirits are gently refreshed, an inner joyousness excited, the beauty of the face and limbs, according to the custom of the country, brought to perfection. Martin Geier

There is nothing better than realizing that God is not limited by any circumstance. He has proven over and over that He cares for His own. He’s done it before, He can do it again. 

When I limit God’s ability by trying to figure it all out on my own, I find my soul hurting and discouragement sets in because Satan then uses the ‘failure’ to try to convince me that God doesn’t care. However, that is just not true! I can not limit God in anyway. God can take care of me using any and all His resources. He can supply my needs using some of the same creative ways He’s used, or He can supply in a brand new way. 

Knowing what God has done gives me confidence that He can and will do it again! That fact alone refreshes my soul and creates a positive day! 

Very Best Way Possible

This year, I'm sharing my "Treasures" of my study of my "Ponder the Morsels" book. I've picked 31 Psalms to study throughout 2013. Today I studied Psalm 91. Here is what I learned.

They will call to me, and I will answer them. I will be with them in ·trouble [distress]; I will rescue them and ·honor [glorify] them. Psalm 91:15 (EXB)

He will call on Me, and I will answer. I’ll be with him through hard times; I’ll rescue him and grant him honor. Psalm 91:15 (VOICE)

"I will answer him." I think we sometimes discourage ourselves by a misconception of the exact meaning of the expression, "answer," taking it to mean only grant. Now, an answer is not necessarily an acquiescence. It may be a refusal, an explanation, a promise, a conditional grant. It is, in fact, simply attention to our request expressed. In this sense, before we call he will answer, and while we are yet speaking he will hear, Isaiah 65:24.  Mary B. M. Duncan

Answer: Pay attention.

I’m so thankful that first, God pays attention to my prayer. I’m also thankful that God answers my prayers using all His wisdom, grace and mercy. He knows much better than I want is best for me. When I pray, I must be watching for HIS answer to my prayers and not some preconceived notion of what I think the answer will be! 

How often do I pray, not desiring God’s best, but rather what I WANT right here and now? Those prayers are that of a two-year old... I want it and I want it NOW! And if God doesn’t give it to me, I get upset and complain. The problem isn’t that God didn’t answer my prayer, but rather that God didn’t give me the answer I WANTED

God is paying attention. God does hear my prayers. And because He is a gracious and merciful God, He doesn’t give me all my wants. Rather, He answers my prayers in accordance with His will and His purpose. 

When I pray, I need to pray in accordance to God’s will, knowing that He will answer my prayers in such as way that will glorify Him and accomplish His purpose and plan in my life. 

Praying, expecting and knowing that God will answer in the very best way possible—not just giving me what I want—will create a positive day.