June 29, 2017

(Patsy’s Lullaby) Cradle Me

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Cradle me in midnight mercies
Fill me with Your day starlight
Adorn me with thanksgiving
Strengthen me with might
Guide me with Your holy kindness
Into yet another day
Lead me on to glory, Jesus
In Your everlasting way

Through valleys, through darkest night
You guard me, speed my enemy to flight
Be the lifter of my head in sorrow
Mend my broken heart today
and heal up my tomorrow

Pillow me with Your Presence
Comfort me in Your holy rest
Surround me with your angels’ songs
Sleep safe in Your shelter of my Father’s arms

 Mandisa
written along with Patsy Clairmont and Ron Rawls

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

Have you listened to this beautiful lullaby yet?  If not, please do.  Go right ahead…we’ll be waiting right here for you.

So beautiful…so calming…just as a lullaby should do!  A lullaby, by definition, is a song which quiets; and in particular, quiets babies.  This song does just that for me!  And why?  For one, the tune—the melody—is written in such a way that it evokes peaceful feelings.  And the instruments that were chosen to play this peaceful tune…the cello, the piano, violins…all communicate to our sense of hearing in a gentle way.  Along with the instrument of Mandisa’s beautiful voice!  All of a God-inspired design. But mostly I think it is the words that are sung that communicate Truth that calms and settles our minds and hearts.  These are encouraging words, for sure, but not in a compelling or powerful manner.  Rather, they encourage in a comforting way that causes one to feel safe and sheltered.

These words bring reminders to me of some of the phrases about sleep and peace that are written in the Book of Psalms.

In peace I will both lie down and sleep, for You, Lord,
alone make me dwell in safety and confident trust.
Psalm 4:8

By day the Lord commands His steadfast love,
and at night his song is with me,
a prayer to the God of my life.
Psalm 42:8

In the Scriptures we are told, time after time, of the ways in which God guards and protects and blesses us. I love the promises given to us in Psalm 91.  Here are just three of them:

Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place
—the Most High, who is my Refuge—no evil
shall be allowed to befall you {#1},
no plague come near your tent {#2}.
For He will command His angels concerning you
to guard you in all your ways {#3}.
Psalms 91:9-11

God’s heart is to care for us now…while we still live in this ever-changing world, on this earth that is diminishing and daily being destroyed by the ways of man.  And He accomplishes this in ways that show us how perfectly He will care for us throughout eternity!  He wants us to be assured that He can be trusted to provide all we need…and that we, ourselves, cannot do this successfully on our own.

It is vain for you to rise up early, to retire late,
To eat the bread of painful labors;
for He gives to His beloved <blessings> even in his sleep.
Psalm 127:2

So learn of His promises, fill your heart and mind with the Truth , and meditate on God and His faithfulness to provide. Praise Him and thank Him and bless Him!

Because Your loving-kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You.
So will I bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.
My whole being shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness;
and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips
When I remember You upon my bed and meditate on You in the night watches.
For You have been my help, and in the shadow of Your wings will I rejoice.
Psalms 63:3-7

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

Perhaps tonight when you lay your head down, you will remember the words of this beautiful song, and will sing “pillow me with Your Presence…comfort me in Your holy rest.”  May you “sleep safe in the shelter of your Father’s arms.”

God bless you and keep you…and give you peace (Numbers 6:24-25).

Prince of Peace

SHpeaceluke1

For to us a Child is born, to us a Son is given;
and the government shall be upon His shoulder,
and His name shall be called Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father [of Eternity], Prince of Peace.
Isaiah 9:6 AMP

Glory to God in the highest [heaven],
and on earth peace among men
with whom He is well pleased [men of goodwill, of His favor].
Luke 2:14 AMP

Peace can be very elusive this time of year.  In some ways this has been a rough year for us—we lost our darling granddaughter five days after her birth.  This time of year is particularly hard.  Perhaps you, too, have suffered the death of a loved one or a major loss…loss of a relationship, job, home.

Maybe stress is stealing your peace right now.  {I must admit I have let a little stress sneak in as well.}  Our daughters live in other states so we don’t get to spend as much time with them as we would like.  However, they will be coming here after Christmas.  I want to have the perfect gifts for them.  I want to make wonderful memories while they are here.  And that gets me a little frantic and a bit stressed out. When the cares of this world weigh me down Romans 8:6 reminds me that,

For the mind set on the flesh is death, but the mind set on the Spirit is life and peace

So, how do we have this peace that seems so elusive?  The peace Romans 8:6 refers to comes only from Christ and passes all understanding.  There are so many wonderful scriptures that reiterate this.  Take a minute to read through these slowly and carefully.  And let their meaning sink deep into your heart and mind.

In peace I will both lie down and sleep,
For You alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety.
Psalm 4:8 NASB

The Lord gives His people strength; the Lord blesses His people with peace.
Psalm 29:11 HCSB

You will keep the mind that is dependent on You in perfect peace
Isaiah 26:3 HCSB

…The chastisement {punishment} [needful to obtain] peace
and well-being for us was upon Him,
and with the stripes [that wounded] Him we are healed and made whole.
Isaiah 53:5b AMP

“I am leaving you with a gift—peace of mind and heart.
And the peace I give is a gift the world cannot give.
So don’t be troubled or afraid.”
John 14:27 NLT

In John 16:33 (HCSB) Jesus tells us “I have told you these things so that in Me you may have peace.  You will have suffering in this world.  Be courageous!  I have conquered the world.”  As I was writing this, the words of a Castings Crowns song came to mind – “It’s all because of the blood of Jesus Christ!”  Truth!  We cannot do it alone.

Christ IS our Prince of Peace.  His birth was a step towards peace.  He came voluntarily, knowing what lay ahead of Him.  I do not want to be guilty of rejecting His gift that cost so much.

*   ♥  ~  ✝  ~  ★    *

Today, I would like to leave you with Philippians 4:7 as my prayer because God puts it much more eloquently than I can.

Dear Lord, please let Your peace, which surpasses all comprehension, guard our hearts and our minds in Christ Jesus.  Amen – It Is So!

~   ♥   ~

May the Lord turn His face toward you
and give you peace this Christmas season and all year long.
2 Thessalonians 3:16

Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.
Ephesians 1:2

When You Need Rest

encouragementbloggraphicromans15

Then, because so many people were coming and going
that they did not even have a chance to eat, He said to them,
‘Come with Me by yourselves to a quiet place and get some rest’
Mark 6:31

I love rainy mornings and lit candles and quiet moments with just me and Him. The world quiets, cell phones and all screens are turned off, and I am His. I read His love letter to me and we talk endlessly.  I catch Him up on my week (like He doesn’t already know).  I tell Him how great and amazing He is. And He pours into me, and I know I am loved.  My own prayer retreat right here.

In the verse above, Jesus’ disciples had been preaching and driving out demons and healing people all day.  They anointed people with oil in His name.  They were pumped up, can’t you just imagine?  Yet Jesus knew they were exhausted and needed some downtime.  He told them to go with Him to a quiet place and rest.

Now, rest can look different to all of us. It can be quietly reading a book, or running on your favorite path, or putting your feet in the sand.  Just a retreat with your Maker. It must be important to Him since the word ‘rest‘ in mentioned 585 times in the King James Version.  Here are just a couple of the ones I found:

Psalms 55:6, 7
Oh, that I had wings like a dove; then I would fly away and rest! I would fly far away to the quiet of the wilderness.

Exodus 33:14
The Lord replied,”I will personally go with you, Moses, and I will give you rest-everything will be fine for you.”

I feel so refreshed and so loved by God right now.  His words are so comforting, ‘everything will be fine for you’, He means you!  He wants you to be with Him and we are the ones that benefit. Psalm 4:8 tells us, “I will lie down and sleep in peace, for You alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.”

What do you need rest from today?  Have you been struggling with a stronghold that has overtaken your life?  It started out as fun but now it is out of control.  Or maybe you’re the only one fighting for your marriage and you’re exhausted and ready to quit. Maybe you’re a single mom and you love your children but you just need one minute to yourself…or you could very well lose it.  Even the bathroom isn’t private enough.  Maybe you just need to get back in to having that quiet time alone with Him everyday. Whichever situation you are in today, He is calling you to lay at His feet and leave all your baggage at the foot of the Cross—at the feet of Jesus.  There is nothing in the world more important than spending time with Him…reading His Word, and listening to what He has to tell you, and just talking together.

  *   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

Do you know Him?  Is He Lord of your life?  If your answer is no, I encourage you to ask Him today to come into your heart.  Would you pray this prayer with me?

Dear God, I know that I am a sinner. I need forgiveness. I believe that You sent Your Son to die on the Cross to save me from my sins. Please, Jesus, come into my life today to be my Lord and Savior.  Walk with me through this life.  I don’t know all there is to know about You but I’m ready to be Yours.  In Jesus’ name I pray, amen.

Cradle Me (Patsy’s Lullaby)

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

Cradle me in midnight mercies
Fill me with Your day starlight
Adorn me with thanksgiving
Strengthen me with might
Guide me with Your holy kindness
Into yet another day
Lead me on to glory, Jesus
In Your everlasting way

Through valleys, through darkest night
You guard me, speed my enemy to flight
Be the lifter of my head in sorrow
Mend my broken heart today
and heal up my tomorrow

Pillow me with Your Presence
Comfort me in Your holy rest
Surround me with your angels’ songs
Sleep safe in Your shelter of my Father’s arms

~  Sing this song with me as our prayer and worship today.  ~

~Lyrics by Patsy Clairmont / Melody and Arrangement by Mandisa and Ron Rawls~

Have you listened to this beautiful lullaby yet?  If not…please do; go ahead…we’ll wait right here for you.

So beautiful…so calming…just as a lullaby should do!  A lullaby, by definition, is a song which quiets; and in particular, quiets babies.  This song does just that for me!  And why?  For one, the tune—the melody—is written in such a way that it evokes peaceful feelings.  And the instruments that were chosen to play this peaceful tune…the cello, the piano, violins…all communicate to our sense of hearing in a gentle way.  Along with the instrument of Mandisa’s beautiful voice!  All of a God-inspired design. But mostly I think it is the words that are sung that communicate Truth that calms and settles our minds and hearts.  These are encouraging words, for sure, but not in a compelling or powerful manner. Rather, they encourage in a comforting way that causes one to feel safe and sheltered.

These words bring reminders to me of some of the phrases about sleep and peace that are written in the Book of Psalms.

In peace I will both lie down and sleep, for You, Lord, alone
make me dwell in safety and confident trust.
Psalm 4:8

By day the Lord commands His steadfast love,
and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life.
Psalm 42:8

In the Scriptures, we are told time after time, of the ways in which God guards and protects and blesses us. I love the promises given to us in Psalm 91.  Here are just three of them:

Because you have made the Lord your dwelling place—the Most High, who is my Refuge—
No evil shall be allowed to befall you (1), no plague come near your tent (2).
For He will command His angels concerning you to guard you in all your ways (3).
Psalms 91:9-11

God’s heart is to care for us now…while we still live in this ever-changing world, on this earth that is diminishing and daily being destroyed by the ways of man.  And He accomplishes this in ways that show us how perfectly He will care for us throughout eternity!  He wants us to be assured that He can be trusted to provide all we need…and that we, ourselves, cannot do this successfully on our own.

It is vain for you to rise up early, to retire late,
To eat the bread of painful labors;
for He gives to His beloved <blessings> even in his sleep.
Psalm 127:2

So learn of His promises, fill your heart and mind with the Truth , and meditate on God and His faithfulness to provide. Praise Him and thank Him and bless Him!

Because Your loving-kindness is better than life, my lips shall praise You.
So will I bless You while I live; I will lift up my hands in Your name.
My whole being shall be satisfied as with marrow and fatness;
and my mouth shall praise You with joyful lips
When I remember You upon my bed and meditate on You in the night watches.
For You have been my help, and in the shadow of Your wings will I rejoice.
Psalms 63:3-7

Perhaps tonight when you lay your head down, you will remember the words of this beautiful song, and will sing “Pillow me with Your Presence…comfort me in Your holy rest.”  May you “Sleep safe in the shelter of your Father’s arms.”  God bless you and keep you…and give you peace (Numbers 6:24-25).

 

Glorious Living w/ Coach Megan: Trusting God {a prayer exercise}

GL header

Dear Megan,

Lately I have really been struggling with trusting God and I feel horrible about it. In my heart, I know what I need to do, but my mind is fighting me every step of the way. I don’t know if you can help, but I just don’t know where to begin.

~T

My dear T, we have all walked through these seasons and I am so happy you have reached out for help. In addition to being in the Word daily and having as much quiet time with the Lord as possible, I have found this prayer exercise to be very helpful in training my heart to work with my mind in letting go and trusting God with every single little thing. I pray this is a blessing to you.

Trusting God {a prayer exercise}

A five-minute exercise you can do anytime you need to.

Your heavenly Father promises relief from adversity for those

who honor him, have faith, and trust him.

A word from scripture:

Even in darkness, light dawns for the upright. Psalm 112:4 (NIV)

 ***

The way of the righteous is like the first gleam of dawn,

which shines ever brighter until the full light of day. Proverbs 4:18 (NLT)

Meditation Guidance:

 1. Tell your Heavenly Father that you are looking to Him for relief, like the dawn, to come. Talk about your faith and trust in Him. Speak of your doubts also. Use these scriptures to shape your prayer:

I rise early, before the sun is up; I cry out for help and put my hope in your words.

I stay awake through the night, thinking about your promise.

In your faithful love, O Lord, hear my cry; let me be revived

by following your regulations.

Psalm 119:147-149 (NLT)

***

Desperate, I throw myself on you: you are my God! Psalm 31:14 (MSG)

***

To you, O Lord, I offer my prayer; in you, my God, I trust. Psalm 25:1-2a (GNT)

***

But even when I am afraid, I keep on trusting you. Psalm 56:3 (CEV)

***

Even if I go through the deepest darkness, I will not be afraid, Lord, for you are with me.

Psalm 23:4 (GNT)

2. Talk to your heavenly Father about the despair and darkness in your life. Cry out to God. Use these scriptures to help you:

O Lord, hear me as I pray; pay attention to my groaning.

Listen to my cry for help, my King and my God, for I pray to no one but you.

Psalm 5:1-2 (NLT)

***

Listen, God, I’m calling at the top of my lungs: “Be good to me! Answer me!”

Psalm 27:9 (MSG)

***

Hurry with your answer, God! I’m nearly at the end of my rope.

Don’t turn away; don’t ignore me!

Psalm 143:7 (MSG)

***

Look on me and answer, Lord my God. Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death.

Psalm 13:3 (NIV)

 

3. As you wait for your heavenly Father to answer your prayer, meditate on these scriptures to strengthen you:

Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him. Psalm 37:7 (NIV)

 ***

Only God gives inward peace, and I depend on him. Psalm 62:5 (CEV)

***

You, Lord, are my shepherd. I will never be in need. You let me rest in fields of green grass.

You lead me to streams of peaceful water, and you refresh my life.

You are true to your name, and you lead me along the right paths.

Psalm 23:1-3 (CEV)

***

I can lie down and sleep soundly because you, Lord, will keep me safe.

Psalm 4:8 (CEV)

 ***

I know that I will live to see the Lord’s goodness in this present life.

Psalm 27:13 (GNT)

4. Repeat as often as needed and let each and every word in the Scriptures penetrate the depths of your soul. Breathe  in the truth of God’s Word and let satan’s lies tumble on out.

Your assignment: give one thing over to God today to trust Him with.  It can be as small or as big as you want it to be…just give it to Him.  Once you do, it is not yours anymore.  Do this exercise to keep that thing out of your imperfect hands and safely in the magnificent hands of our Lord and Savior!

Blessings,

Megan 🙂