October 17, 2017

My Story

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

If I told you my story,
You would hear hope, that wouldn’t let go
and if I told you my story,
you would hear Love that never gave up
and if I told you my story,
you would hear Life, but it wasn’t mine

If I should speak, then let it be
of the grace that is Greater than all my sin
of when justice was served, and where mercy wins!
of the kindness of Jesus, that draws me in
oh to tell you my story, is to tell of Him

If I told you my story,
you would hear victory over the enemy
and if I told you my story,
you would hear freedom that was won for me
and if I told you my story,
you would hear Life Overcome the grave

This is my story, this is my song
praising my Savior, all the day long
this is my story, this is my song
praising my Savior, all the day long

for the grace that is Greater, than all my sin
of where justice was served, and where mercy wins!
of the kindness of Jesus, that draws me in
o to tell you my story,
is to tell of the grace that is Greater, than all my sin
of where justice was served, and mercy wins!

of the kindness of Jesus, that draws me in
oh to tell you my story, is to tell of Him
oh to tell you my story, is to tell of Him

This is my story, this is my song
Praising my Savior all the day long

Big Daddy Weave
written by Jason Ingram and Mike Weaver

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

This is the time of year when we, as a nation, take time to focus on what we are thankful for.  We have—this beautiful land in which we live, our freedom to vote, our freedom to worship, our families, our friends, our jobs, and so much more.  We should be full of thanksgiving to our Lord, because He is the Provider of all good things.

And God will generously provide all you need.
Then you will always have everything you need
and plenty left over to share with others…
For God is the One who provides seed for the farmer and then bread to eat.
In the same way, He will provide and increase your resources
and then produce a great harvest of generosity in you.
2 Corinthians 9:8-10

The greatest gift that we should be thankful for is our salvation.  We have salvation when we don’t have freedom.  We have salvation when we don’t have family or friends.  We have salvation when we are out of work and have no income.  We have salvation even when we are in a Third World country.  Our salvation is not dependent on any of these things.

But don’t be so concerned about perishable things like food.
Spend your energy seeking the eternal life that the Son of Man can give you.
For God the Father has given Me the seal of His approval.
John 6:27

You see, it’s really Jesus’ story for which I am most thankful.  Our salvation is dependent on Jesus and His sacrifice on the Cross for us, each of us…not just a select few.  His provision to save us gives us grace, love, hope, life.  It gives us victory over the enemy, and freedom.  Out of His kindness, out of His story comes my story.  I have no story to tell if it were not for Jesus being willing to do His Father’s will and come to earth to live and die and be raised again to new life.

God saved you by His grace when you believed.
And you can’t take credit for this; it is a gift from God.
Salvation is not a reward for the good things we have done,
so none of us can boast about it.
Ephesians 2:8-9

For the wages of sin is death,
but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23

I can and want to praise my Savior “all the day long.”

  • He gave His love, which never gives up.
  • He provides hope, which won’t let go.
  • He gave His life, so I could have mine.

Oh, the kindness of the Lord compels me to tell/sing of His grace and mercy, which always wins!

In His kindness, God called you to share
in His eternal glory by means of Christ Jesus.
1 Peter 5:10

What are you thankful for during this Thanksgiving season?  Is your list long?  What’s at the top of that list? I’m praying that your salvation is number one.  I’m praying that your story is not based on the things you are thankful for, but on the One you are thankful to.  Tell me your story; I’d love to hear you tell me about Jesus.

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~  ♥   ~   *

With great thanksgiving, Lord, we come to You.  We come with our hearts bursting with the love and joy we have for You, knowing that all good things come from You.  Thank You for all of Your blessings.  We also come to thank You for our salvation.  Thank You, Jesus, for obeying Your Father’s will, so that we can experience new life with You.  The details of our individual stories may look different, but the truth of our stories is that it is Your story.  We are privileged to share Your Good News with others.  Help us by Your Holy Spirit to praise You all the day long so that others will hear Your story and come to You.  In Jesus’ Precious Name we pray, Amen.

Remembering and Deciding

 

Many of you have gone on Spring Break or are anticipating taking a vacation this summer. It is a time to refresh spirit, soul, and body. Over the next couple of weeks, our faithful bloggers will be taking a ‘spring break’ from writing so that they can come back to us refreshed and freshly anointed.
However, Girlfriends’ Coffee Hour website won’t ‘go black’! We will be revisiting some of our favorite blogs and daily devotions which have blessed us in the past. We pray that each of you, our faithful friends and readers, will continue to start your day meditating on the devotionals and songblogs, and be encouraged and blessed.

Let’s give each of our bloggers a big round of applause, a hug, and the rest they so deserve.
God bless you, ladies!

 

SeekingHimLogo

Remember Your word to Your servant,
for You have given me hope.
My comfort in my suffering is this:
Your promise preserves my life.
Psalms 119:49-50

Remember in the Disney movie, The Jungle Book, Mowgli meets the youngest elephant of a herd.  The leader of the herd, the young elephant’s father, proclaims that an elephant never forgets.  However, as the herd is leaving, the elephant’s mother ends up reminding the father that he is “forgetting” their son who is still talking to Mowgli.

Yet, we have a heavenly Father Who does not forget about us.  He brings us hope and love in the midst a life of sin and temptation.  He never leaves our side.  We can call out to Him, and He will answer us in the way that He thinks is best for us.

For the wages of sin is death
but the free gift of God
is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23

Yet we can find comfort in our Father who does not forget about us or His promises to us.  Remember John 3:16?  God gave us His Son so we would not perish if we believed in Him.  God sent His one and only Son here to die for our sins.  Jesus wiped away our penalty—death—for sinning against God.  Our punishment for sinning is death. However, if we believe in Jesus and proclaim Him as our Savior, our penalty has been paid.  We look forward to eternity in Heaven with God.

God’s promise of eternal life for acceptance of His Son as our Savior is very powerful. The war for our souls has been won once we repent and allow Jesus to come into our heart.  It is free.  All we have to do is make the decision and open our hearts.  God’s promise preserves our life and brings comfort to our weary life.  He brings healing and love to our broken hearts.  It is a comfort that we have such a wonderful Father.

*  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

Dear Heavenly Father: Thank You for remembering us—Your children.  You created us and know every thought and move before we do.  Your love has saved us from eternal condemnation and pain.  You bring us comfort, love, and healing. Thank You…in Jesus’ name, Amen.

Should’ve Been Me

Many of you have gone on Spring Break or are anticipating taking a vacation this summer. It is a time to refresh spirit, soul, and body. Over the next couple of weeks, our faithful bloggers will be taking a ‘spring break’ from writing so that they can come back to us refreshed and freshly anointed.
However, Girlfriends’ Coffee Hour website won’t ‘go black’! We will be revisiting some of our favorite blogs and daily devotions which have blessed us in the past. We pray that each of you, our faithful friends and readers, will continue to start your day meditating on the devotionals and songblogs, and be encouraged and blessed.

Let’s give each of our bloggers a big round of applause, a hug, and the rest they so deserve. God bless you, ladies!

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

I’ve read the story
I’ve seen the movie
I give to charity
And tithe my ten percent
These I remember
But I so easily forget
All these years never heard it like this

It should’ve been me
It should’ve been us
Should’ve been there hanging on a cross
All of this shame
All of these scars
Should’ve been stains that were never washed
Why do I hide
Why do You try
Over and over and over again
I guess it just leaves me saying thank God
It leaves me saying thank God, thank God
For the should’ve been

I live a good life
I love a great wife
Our kids are beautiful
We got friends down the street
If I’m so thankful
Why do I easily forget
That You died for all of this

For this heart You changed
This soul You raised
My God for taking my place

 Citizens Way
Written by Ben Calhoun

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

If I’m so thankful, why do I easily forget?’”

That question goes straight through my heart.  Oh, around Easter—I don’t forget.  But the rest of the year…it can be hit or miss.  How could I ever forget it should have been me?  That my sins nailed Christ to the cross?  How could I possibly take that for granted?

This song is my reminder. It reminds me —

  • He was handed over to die because of our <MY> sins, and He was raised to life to make us <ME> right with God.  Romans 4:25 NLT
  • God proves His own love for us <ME> in that while we <I> were still sinners, Christ died for us <ME>!  Romans 5:8 HCSB
  • For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our <MY> sin, so that we <I> could be made right with God through Christ.  2 Corinthians 5:21 NLT
  • And He Himself bore our <MY> sins in His body on the cross, so that we <I> might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you <I> were healed.  1 Peter 2:24 NASB

Take a minute and read back through those Scriptures substituting your name for the <pronouns>.   Makes it much more real and personal when you do that, doesn’t it?

As I was typing this, I kept thinking about the first two verses of the “Roman Road” I learned growing up….

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
Romans 3:23 HCSB

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23 HCSB

It really should have been me.  It REALLY should have been me!  The shame, the scars, the stains should have been mine.  How could I forget to thank God for the ‘should have been’?  Instead of being forgetful, let me make this my refrain:

For this heart You changed
This soul You raised
My God for taking my place
It leaves me saying thank God
For the should’ve been

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

Lord, thank You for Your never-ending mercy and grace.  Thank You for trying over and over again, especially when I become forgetful.  Most of all thank You for taking my place.  It should have been me. In Your precious name I pray – Amen, it is so!

Should’ve Been Me

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

I’ve read the story
I’ve seen the movie
I give to charity
And tithe my ten percent
These I remember
But I so easily forget
All these years never heard it like this

It should’ve been me
It should’ve been us
Should’ve been there hanging on a cross
All of this shame
All of these scars
Should’ve been stains that were never washed
Why do I hide
Why do You try
Over and over and over again
I guess it just leaves me saying thank God
It leaves me saying thank God, thank God
For the should’ve been

I live a good life
I love a great wife
Our kids are beautiful
We got friends down the street
If I’m so thankful
Why do I easily forget
That You died for all of this

For this heart You changed
This soul You raised
My God for taking my place

 Written by Ben Calhoun  ~ Performed by  Citizens Way

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

If I’m so thankful, why do I easily forget?’”

That question goes straight through my heart.  Oh, around Easter—I don’t forget. But the rest of the year…it can be hit or miss.  How could I ever forget it should have been me?  That my sins nailed Christ to the cross?  How could I possibly take that for granted?

This song is my reminder. It reminds me —

  • He was handed over to die because of our <MY> sins, and He was raised to life to make us <ME> right with God.  Romans 4:25 NLT
  • God proves His own love for us <ME> in that while we <I> were still sinners, Christ died for us <ME>!  Romans 5:8 HCSB
  • For God made Christ, who never sinned, to be the offering for our <MY> sin, so that we <I> could be made right with God through Christ.  2 Corinthians 5:21 NLT
  • And He Himself bore our <MY> sins in His body on the cross, so that we <I> might die to sin and live to righteousness; for by His wounds you <I> were healed.  1 Peter 2:24 NASB

Take a minute and read back through those Scriptures substituting your name for the <pronouns>.   Makes it much more real and personal when you do that, doesn’t it?

As I was typing this, I kept thinking about the first two verses of the “Roman Road” I learned growing up….

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God
Romans 3:23 HCSB

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23 HCSB

It really should have been me.  It REALLY should have been me!  The shame, the scars, the stains should have been mine.  How could I forget to thank God for the ‘should have been’?  Instead of being forgetful, let me make this my refrain:

“For this heart You changed
This soul You raised
My God for taking my place
It leaves me saying thank God
For the should’ve been”

*   ~   ♥   ~   ✞   ~   ♥   ~   *

Lord, thank You for Your never-ending mercy and grace.  Thank You for trying over and over again, especially when I become forgetful.  Most of all thank You for taking my place.  It should have been me. In Your precious name I pray – Amen, it is so!

Remembering and Deciding

SeekingHimLogo

Remember Your word to Your servant,
for You have given me hope.
My comfort in my suffering is this:
Your promise preserves my life.
Psalms 119:49-50

Remember in the Disney movie, The Jungle Book, Mowgli meets the youngest elephant of a herd.  The leader of the herd, the young elephant’s father, proclaims that an elephant never forgets.  However, as the herd is leaving, the elephant’s mother ends up reminding the father that he is “forgetting” their son who is still talking to Mowgli.

Yet, we have a heavenly Father Who does not forget about us.  He brings us hope and love in the midst a life of sin and temptation.  He never leaves our side.  We can call out to Him, and He will answer us in the way that He thinks is best for us.

For the wages of sin is death
but the free gift of God is eternal life through Christ Jesus our Lord.
Romans 6:23

Yet we can find comfort in our Father who does not forget about us or His promises to us.  Remember John 3:16?  God gave us His Son so we would not perish if we believed in Him.  God sent His one and only Son here to die for our sins.  Jesus wiped away our penalty—death—for sinning against God.  Our punishment for sinning is death. However, if we believe in Jesus and proclaim Him as our Savior, our penalty has been paid.  We look forward to eternity in Heaven with God.

God’s promise of eternal life for acceptance of His Son as our Savior is very powerful. The war for our souls has been won once we repent and allow Jesus to come into heart.  It is free.  All we have to do is make the decision and open our hearts.  God’s promise preserves our life and brings comfort to our weary life.  He brings healing and love to our broken hearts.  It is a comfort that we have such a wonderful Father.

*  ~  ♥  ~  ✞  ~  ♥  ~  *

Dear Heavenly Father: Thank You for remembering us—Your children. You created us and know every thought and move before we do. Your love has saved us from eternal condemnation and pain. You bring us comfort, love, and healing. Thank You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

We Believe

psalmshymnsspiritualsongskjv

In this time of desperation
When all we know is doubt and fear
There is only One Foundation
We believe, we believe
In this broken generation
When all is dark, You help us see
There is only One Salvation
We believe, we believe

We believe in God the Father
We believe in Jesus Christ
We believe in the Holy Spirit
And He’s given us new life
We believe in the Crucifixion
We believe that He conquered death
We believe in the Resurrection
And He’s comin’ back again, we believe

So, let our faith be more than anthems
Greater than the songs we sing
And in our weakness and temptations
We believe, we believe

Let the lost be found and the dead be raised
In the here and now, let love invade
Let the Church live love, our God will see
We believe, we believe
And the gates of hell will not prevail
For the power of God, has torn the veil
Now we know Your love will never fail
We believe, we believe

He’s comin’ back again
He’s comin’ back again
We believe, we believe

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

* ~ * ~ * ~ * ~ *  

I imagine you can say along with me that there have been times of desperation in your life.  At some time we have all experienced doubt and fear.  Those things happen in this broken generation, and in our weakness and temptations.

BUT GOD—

My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever
Psalm 73:26

But Thou, O Lord, art a God full of compassion, and gracious,
longsuffering, and plenteous in mercy and truth
Psalm 86:15

With God, our Triune God, we find our One Foundation, our One Salvation.

I get chills as I sing this song. It is my statement of faith, because I BELIEVE!  I believe in God the Father, I believe in Jesus Christ, I believe in His Holy Spirit.  I believe in Jesus’ crucifixion, and in His resurrection.  I believe in New Life through Jesus Christ. I have experienced it!  I believe He’s coming back for every believer (you and me.)

But as many as received Him, to them gave He power to become the sons of God,
even to them that believe on His name: Which were born, not of blood,
nor of the will of the flesh, nor of the will of man, but of God
John 1:12,13

Because I believe, I agree that The Church (you and I) need to live love that our God will see.  We need to stand against the gates of hell, because our God has torn the veil, and is The Power and The Love we can depend on to conquer sin and death.  We believers need to show and tell that Good News to those who don’t know God’s love yet.

But God commendeth His love toward us, in that,
while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us
Romans 5:7, 8

For the wages of sin is death; but the gift of God is eternal life
through Jesus Christ our Lord
Romans 6:23

Ladies, Jesus is coming back! Do you believe? If not, today is your day to surrender—and take a stand for the One and Only True Foundation and Salvation by which you can be saved, and live eternally with Him.

If you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord,
and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead,
you will be saved.
Romans 10:9

Esther – Chapter 4:12-14

Wk4_Esther_Fox

 When Mordecai hears that Esther is hesitating to go before the king because she doesn’t want to “get her head chopped off,” Mordecai replies, “Let me tell you, little miss (that is, my Queen), how it’s really going to come down if you don’t approach King Xerxes!  If you don’t go to the king and beg for mercy for your own people—with or without you—God will rescue them.”

Mordecai knew the history of the Jews.  He had heard and memorized the stories of God’s provision and protection for His People through battle after battle against enemy armies.  He knew the story of Gideon and his small army defeating the Midianites (Judges 7).  Then there was Jonathan and his armor-bearer against the Philistines (I Samuel 14), and the story of David and Goliath, and the defeat of the Philistines (I Samuel 17).  Mordecai had probably told these stories and many others to his family, including Esther, so she knew them too.  These stories built Mordecai’s faith in God.  His confidence that God always has a plan to save His own led him to say in Esther 4:14,

“For if you remain silent at this time, relief and deliverance for the Jews will arise from another place…”

So Esther had a choice to make, not for the Jews’ sake so much, but for herself and her family, because Mordecai goes on to say, “but you and your father’s family <that includes me> will perish” (Esther 4:14).  God was giving Esther—just a young lady with very little influence—the opportunity to be a big part of His amazing plan to save His people.  Did she remember the stories of the young David, Gideon, and Jonathan?  God had used these young men who had very little influence to play big parts in His plan to save His people and build the Jewish nation.  If she trusted Mordecai and shared in his confidence in God to save the Jews, then she could go into the throne room trusting that God was with her since she was one of His children.

Gideon and Jonathan had been where God intended them to be at the right time to do His Will and defeat the enemy.  David came to the frontlines of the battle against the Philistines at the right time to kill Goliath, send the Philistines packing, and save the Israelites.  That was part of God’s plan to get David into position to eventually become the king of the Jewish nation.  God knew all through Esther’s less than glamorous early life that she would end up in a Persian palace as the wife and queen of King Xerxes.  Now perhaps it was Esther’s turn to participate in  God’s plan.  She was at the right place at the right time…now, would she do the right thing?

And who knows but that you have come to royal position for such a time as this?
Esther 4:14

No Jew, including Esther, was immune from Haman’s decree of death.  None of us are immune from the judgment of sin.  Romans 3:23, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God.”

And Romans 6:23, “For the wages of sin is death.…”

BUT GOD (I love that!) always has a plan.  John 3:16, “For God so loved the world that He gave His one and only Son, (Jesus) that whoever believes in Him shall not perish but have eternal life.” God doesn’t want “anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance” (2 Peter 3:9).

I believe that most of us have accepted God’s plan of salvation for ourselves.  But we all have a “nation” around us.  It includes family members, neighbors, co-workers, and strangers in the marketplace.  “for such a time as this,” God has placed each of us in our “nation” to potentially make an eternal difference in people’s lives.

Romans 10:14, “How, then, can they call on the One they have not believed in? And how can they believe in the One of whom they have not heard? And how can they hear without someone preaching to <sharing with> them?”

God has a plan for your life.  Jeremiah 29:11, “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.”  Your life may be less than glamorous, and you may think that you don’t have enough clout to make a difference.  BUT GOD has positioned you where you are in life and He knows all about timing. Now, like Esther, it is your decision.  Will you step out in submission, faith, and confidence, and share God’s loving plan of salvation with those in your little “nation?” Darlene Schacht says, “when God gives us an opportunity to serve Him we must take it. It is an honor and a privilege to serve God.”

How beautiful are the feet of those who bring good news!
Romans 10:15

* * * * *

Let’s Pray:

Dear Lord, we come before You today with grateful hearts for all that You are doing in our lives as we grow in the knowledge and love of our Lord Jesus Christ.  Lord, through Your Word we see that You have great plans us, and we want to be submissive to You.  We know that You have our best interest in mind.  Through this study we also realize that within Your plan You have planned for us to share Your Good News with our little “nation” around us.  Holy Spirit, please help each of us to be willing to step out in faith and confidence to share when You give us opportunity. “For such a time as this” may be the day of salvation for a friend or a stranger.  In Jesus’ Name.

Amen.