Love So Amazing

The One who put the stars in space
Prepares in heaven for me a place,
And someday I will see His face.
Jesus Christ my Savior.

On the cross unjustly slain,
He took away my guilt and shame.
For all my sin He took the blame.
Such love, my Lord and Savior!

My thanks and praise seem so small
Since You, Lord, sacrificed Your all
To redeem creation from our fall,
Mighty Lord and Savior.
(By Tricia 6/5/2019)

“Were the whole realm of nature mine,
That were a present far too small;
Love so amazing, so divine,
Demands my soul, my life, my all.”
(Fourth verse of Isaac Watts’ hymn,
“When I Survey the Wondrous Cross.”
)

“Let not your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. In My Father’s house are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would have told you; for I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come again, and receive you to Myself; that where I am, there you may be also.” (John 14:1-3 NASB)

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Introduction – Hope Amid Anxiety

June 12, 2019

In my “Journey toward Wholeness” blog, I shared mostly about the battle I faced when medication problems threw me into a bout with anxiety a few years ago.  Because many people struggle with depression and/or anxiety, I hoped the accounts of my feelings, thoughts, and the help God gave me might benefit someone. That is my hope with these re-blogs also.

I love God and have been a Christ-follower for many years, but that hasn’t prevented anxiety and depression from bothering me. In fact, I’ve had difficulty with depression and anxiety for much of my life. (They often go together.) For me, medicine, counseling, and other therapies have helped. God is to be praised for all the help I received because He is behind it all. He is the source of every good thing. I have tried at times to function without the medicine, hoping that extra Bible reading or more prayer would take care of my problems. But I couldn’t do it. Speaking from experience, I can say that drawing near to God is a wonderful thing, but getting chemical imbalances corrected with medicine can also make a big difference.

Tricia’s Journey Begins

I remarked once that God could just heal me, and I wouldn’t need medicine. My pastor reminded me that God could heal my eyes too, and I wouldn’t need glasses, but that wasn’t God’s priority work in my life at that time. So I decided to thank God that medicines have been developed to help with the problems I have. I’m also very thankful for the many people who prayed for me and loved me through that struggle.

Sometimes I have prayed that God would help me to more truly love Him with all of my heart, soul, mind, and strength. One day I asked Him to help me be sure I knew the real Jesus and not a substitute or just an idea someone made up. My journey through Anxiety Valley helped answer those prayers.

Psalm 62:5 “My soul, wait only upon God and silently submit to Him; for my hope and expectation are from Him.” Amplified Bible

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Wholeness Journey Reblogs

6-20-19

Cascading Stream in Montana -summer 2017

I quit writing my second blog, “Journey Toward Wholeness” and removed it from the internet because I had trouble keeping up with it. So I decided to re-post those writings on this blog. I had hoped to post them on a third page, but I haven’t been able to do that. So I’ll post them to this home page and put these “Journey” posts in a different category.

I share the thoughts and prayers in the “Journey Re-Blogs” category as a testimony to the great love, patience, and goodness of the Lord our God.

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Remembered Hymn–Redeemed

After publishing my post “Redeemed” yesterday, I remembered the hymn “Redeemed” which our church sang when I was a child. The lyrics mean much more now to me than they did back then.

Thank You, Lord, for the classic hymns of the church. Amen.

Redeemed
By Fanny Crosby (Music by Wm. J. Kirkpatrick)

1 Redeemed, how I love to proclaim it!
Redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
redeemed through His infinite mercy,
His child, and forever I am.

Refrain:
Redeemed, redeemed,
redeemed by the blood of the Lamb;
redeemed, redeemed,
His child and forever I am.

2 Redeemed, and so happy in Jesus,
no language my rapture can tell;
I know that the light of His presence
With me doth continually dwell. [Refrain]

3 I think of my blessed Redeemer,
I think of Him all the day long;
I sing, for I cannot be silent;
His love is the theme of my song. [Refrain]

4 I know I shall see in His beauty
The King in whose law I delight;
Who lovingly guardeth my footsteps,
And giveth me songs in the night. (Refrain)

Found on Youtube at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vGm5LLsJyQY
where it is sung by the congregation at Temple Baptist Church in Powell, TN.

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Redeemed

In the book of Hosea, God tells the prophet to marry a prostitute, so he married Gomer (Hosea 1:1, 3). In Hosea 3:1, God tells Hosea to love his wife again, even though she had apparently returned to prostitution. Hosea 3:2 says, “So I bought her back for fifteen pieces of silver and five bushels of barley and a measure of wine” (NLT).

The book of Hosea shows us God’s faithful love for Israel in spite of her unfaithfulness to Him.

Hosea also has truth for us today: God paid a redemption price for us. It wasn’t silver or wine or barley, but rather the life-blood of His Son Jesus.

And God wants to redeem every person and make each one His own. He’s already paid the price, but He gives each one the choice to accept or reject the love and life He offers.

Thank You, Lord, for paying the price to redeem me from sin and darkness. Thank You for Your offer of forgiveness through Jesus. I love You because You made me one of Your beloved children in Christ. Amen.

One of my favorite Bible quotes: “But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God. They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.” (John 1:12-13 NLT)

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Creation Praises

Bless the Lord O my soul, and all that is within me bless His Holy Name!
O Lord, You paint the eastern sky with sunrise every morning,
And at end of day You brush sunset colors over the opposite canvas.
Dark of night reveals the multitude of stars which populate the heavens.
Your creation praises You! I will join them with a song of joy.

I will praise and thank You for the symphony of blooms in our front yard.
The Bridal Veil and Forsythia blooms began the melody.
Then the Bradford Pears added their white-frosted branches to the mix.
Their flowers faded out, but the lilacs chimed in with their fragrant purplish mounds.
Our Spirea bushes pour forth fountains of flowers.
The flowering cherry trees add their own notes of beauty.
And daffodils, daylilies, and irises of various hues complete the chorus
To You, the Maker of heaven and earth.
Let Your people praise You! Let all the people praise You, Creator and Lord!

People can admire creation’s beauty and write about its loveliness. Some can paint replicas of nature on canvas. But we couldn’t begin to create life. You alone create living things, whether plant or animal.
You are the awesome, amazing, living God! Let everything that has breath praise You! Amen.

From the hymn “God Who Touchest Earth with Beauty”

photo by Tricia Opitz

God, who touchest earth with beauty, Make me lovely too; With Thy Spirit re-create me, Make my heart anew.

Like Thy springs and running waters, Make me crystal pure; Like Thy rocks of towering grandeur, Make me strong and sure.

Like Thy dancing waves in sunlight, Make me glad and free; Like the straightness of the pine trees, Let me upright be. …

(Lyrics by Mary S. Edgar; music by Frederick Arthur Gore-Ouseley)
(Source – Baptist Hymn Book )

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Heavenly Set Point

“Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things. For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God” (Colossians 3:2-3 NIV).
I didn’t do very well at this today when I ran up against a rule I didn’t like. The man I talked to said he didn’t make the rules; he just had to obey them. It was a state regulation. “Stupid rule! Grumble, grumble. How inconvenient!” Oops. That’s definitely not “what is above” thinking. Either I had forgotten to set my mind on heavenly things, or it had drifted off. I felt disappointed because I couldn’t do what I’d planned. But why was I so irritated? Maybe in pride and self-focus I think I have the right to say how things ought to be. Then I’m upset when they don’t go that way.

Next time, I hope I can do better at setting my mind on things of heaven and at remembering that I have died, and my life is now in Christ. I want to bring every thought captive to Jesus (2 Corinthians 10:5) and reorient my thinking back to its set point—things above.
(Set point=the level or point at which a variable physiological state (as body temperature or weight) tends to stabilize.

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