Category Archives: Christian

Speak Words of Blessing

“Light in a messenger’s eyes brings joy to the heart, and good news gives health to the bones.” (Proverbs 15:30 NIV)
Light in the eyes means the messenger brings good news. That news brings joy to both the bearer and the hearer.

<p class="wp-block-syntaxhighlighter-code brush: plain; notranslate">Whether I'm bringing good news or just contributing to conversation, I want my words to help and bless.I can see that I need to choose my thoughts wisely since the things I say result from the thoughts I think. (Luke 6:45 NLT–“What you say flows from what is in your heart.”) </p>

Lord, please help me think about what is right and true and excellent and praiseworthy. (Philippians 4:8) Then the words that come out of my mouth will build others up and bring blessing. Holy Spirit, thank You for persistently reminding me to practice wise thinking. The more I do that, the less I fall back into old habits of self-pity, anger, jealousy, and criticism.
Today let the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart please You and bless others. (Psalm 19:14) Amen.

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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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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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A New Attitude

Real faith results in obedience. For me to respond in faith to what God says in His Word means putting it into action in my life. I would choose to obey—to do what the Word says instead of just listening and nodding my head in agreement. (Romans 2:13; James 1:22)

This afternoon I got frustrated with a customer service representative who couldn’t seem to understand my question no matter how many ways I tried to phrase it. I’ve had problems like this before, and in the past (like last week) I’ve gotten quite upset.

But today, I’m looking at 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18: “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.” I’m in Christ Jesus. Therefore, God wants me to always rejoice, continually pray, and give thanks even in frustrating situations—even when I can’t get the help I think I need. This is an opportunity to let the Holy Spirit bear fruit in me—patience and self-control specifically. I can choose to rejoice, pray, and give thanks. I could pray, “Lord, please help me to let go of my old ways and be renewed in Christ-likeness. Thank You for this chance to grow.”

Ephesians 4:22-24 “You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off your old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.”
(Both quotes NIV)

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