Thursday, October 24, 2013

The key verse in my devotional today is Psalm 23:1-3.  I have found myself repeating these words on so many occasion.  Most recently when I felt fear, I repeated these words and claimed them as God's promise to me.  My fear subsided and I was overcome with a sense of peace.   

Psalm 23:1-3

The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not be in want. He makes me lie down in green pastures, he leads me beside quiet waters, he restores my soul.  He guides me in paths of righteousness for his name's sake.  

Psalm 36:7

Psalm 36:7 – Unpack our verse for the week and share what you’ve learned
 (This post in response to Blog Hop for Proverbs 31 Online Bible Study)

I want to start unpacking this verse by first looking at 3 translations.  Looking at more than one translation helps me to understand scripture more clearly.  

Psalm 36:7 (NIV)  How priceless is your unfailing love, O God!  People take refuge in the shadow of your wings

Psalm 36:7 (KJV) How excellent is thy lovingkindness, O God! therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of thy wings.

Psalm 36:7 (GNT) How precious, O God, is your constant love! We find[a] protection under the shadow of your wings.

Combining all three verses I might come up with one verse that reads like this:

How excellent, priceless and precious is your unfailing, kind and constant love, O God! We, people, children, take refuge, find protection and put our trust under the shadow of your wings. 

To further unpack this verse--I got out my thesaurus and looked up some information on wings and made the chart below.

Your unfailing
O God!
Take Refuge
In the shadow
Of Your Wings
Used for flight

Used for protection






Heat & cool









After looking at my chart I might again rewrite the verse as such

How priceless and cherished is your unfailing, boundless love, affection, devotion, and tenderness for ME?  Your love is so priceless, rich and rare that I (JOY) find in it a haven, hideaway, harbor and home beneath your wings of protection

Like many people, I am performance based--I love to do a good job and to get a pat on the back.  But in real life, sometimes we don't always get that pat on the back and an empty feeling inside can develop. In chapter 3 of A Confident Heart, Renee Swope mentions Proverbs 19:22 What a person desires is unfailing love.   I,  like Renee have tried to fill that emptiness or desire with something other than God's love--only to find disastrous results with that effort.  When I began to seek God's word and guidance, that void became filled.  

The great thing about Psalm 36:7 is that there is no reference at all about my performance or actions.  There is only reference to God's perfect  unfailing love and how that love is mine to claim.  I find much peace in all the words that describe love, unfailing, and refuge in my chart. 

On my break down of this Psalm 36:7 I found another verse that speaks of His love and hiding in the shadow of His wings.  Hope it speaks to you as it does to me.  

Keep me as the apple of Your eye; Hide me under the shadow of Your wings, From the wicked who oppress me, From my deadly enemies who surround me. (Psalms 17:8-9 NKJV)



Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Birds of the Air

While outside this morning I saw a group of birds resting together on the ground.  I noticed that as they perched on the grass, there was a symmetry to how closely they sat next to one another.  Not only were they equally spaced, but all seemed to be angled toward the sun in exactly the same manner.  Suddenly they all took off to dance through the sky their flight looking like a carefully and masterfully choreographed dance.  Throughout every loop and swoop, the birds continued the symmetry that they had begun on the ground. 

Matthew 6:24-34
“Therefore I tell you, do not be anxious about your life, what you will eat or what you will drink, nor about your body, what you will put on. Is not life more than food, and the body more than clothing? Look at the birds of the air: they neither sow nor reap nor gather into barns, and yet your heavenly Father feeds them. Are you not of more value than they? And which of you by being anxious can add a single hour to his span of life? And why are you anxious about clothing? Consider the lilies of the field, how they grow: they neither toil nor spin, yet I tell you, even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these. ...

My insight for the day
            1.  God is all around us--we just have to open our hearts and eyes to seeing His presence
            2.  Because God takes care of the birds and masterfully prepares their flight, just imagine how much more He longs to do through our lives--giving us confidence.

Friday, October 18, 2013

The sun is peaking its head up this morning just below the clouds making it look like lightning is flashes through the skies.  The beauty of God's creation never ceases to awe and amaze me. 

Thursday, October 17, 2013

I Believe: A Confident Heart

This post is my response to A Confident Heart Bible Study 

Topic:  I Believe ~ In order for change to take place, we have to first believe it is possible. Refute your own thoughts of doubt with declarations of faith.

In order for change to take place, I have to believe it is possible.  I do believe change is possible for anyone, but one  must be dedicated to that change and have something on which to rely for strength.    I use the Nicene Creed as my declaration of faith.  Repeating it gives me confidence and clarity.  It is as follows:

Nicene Creed

We believe in one God,
the Father, the Almighty
maker of heaven and earth,
of all that is, seen and unseen.
We believe in one Lord, Jesus Christ,
the only Son of God,
eternally begotten of the Father,
God from God, Light from Light,
true God from true God,
begotten, not made,
of one Being with the Father.
Through him all things were made.
For us men and for our salvation
he came down from heaven:
by the power of the Holy Spirit
he became incarnate from the Virgin Mary, and was made man.
For our sake he was crucified under Pontius Pilate;
he suffered death and was buried.
On the third day he rose again
in accordance with the Scriptures;
he ascended into heaven
and is seated at the right hand of the Father.
He will come again in glory to judge the living and the dead,
and his kingdom will have no end.
We believe in the Holy Spirit, the Lord, the giver of Life,
who proceeds from the Father and the Son.
With the Father and the Son he is worshiped and glorified.
He has spoken through the Prophets.
We believe in one holy catholic and apostolic Church.
We acknowledge one baptism for the forgiveness of sins.
We look for the resurrection of the dead,
and the life of the world to come. Amen.

Change is the act, process, or result of making different.  The bible has numerous examples of people who have been changed by God's word and by Christ's healing power. I call on these verses when I need to make a change.

See, I am doing a new thing , Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. Isaiah 43:19

I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.
Ezekiel 36:26

Revelation 21:5(NIV)  He who was seated on the throne said, "I am making everything new!'  Then he said," Write this down, for these words are trustworthy and true."  Revelation 21:5(NIV) 

When I lack confidence or have thoughts of doubt  I can turn to these verses:

Jesus looked at them and said, “With man this is impossible, but with God all things are possible.  Matthew 19:26
 The Lord is my strength and my defense; he has become my salvation. He is my God, and I will praise him, my father’s God, and I will exalt him.  Exodus 15:2

For you have been my hope, Sovereign Lord, my confidence since my youth.  Psalm 71:5

 Such confidence we have through Christ before God.  Not that we are competent in ourselves to claim anything for ourselves, but our competence comes from God. He has made us competent as ministers of a new covenant—not of the letter but of the Spirit; for the letter kills, but the Spirit gives life.  2 Corinthians 3:4-6

So we say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper; I will not be afraid. What can mere mortals do to me?”  Hebrews 13:6