It Makes a Difference

My life is short.

My life is fragile.

My life is a tiny flicker of light that can be extinguished in an instant.

This fact is more real to me since I hit an antelope while driving on a rural road in Wyoming last week. I had this exact thought when I realized I was going to hit him- “This could be it.” The end.

It wasn’t ‘it’ because the antelope bounced off and ran into the bush after poking a big hole in my car – which was still drivable.

It wasn’t ‘it’ but it could have been.

God tells us through Isaiah that ‘Surely the people are grass. The grass withers and the flowers fade but the Word of our God endures forever.” Isaiah 40: 7 & 8.

Forever.

When I sit here with my Bible open on my lap, I am letting the only truth of all the ages soak into my mind. God’s Word has been the one thing that is right and good since time began. How amazing that this is so readily available to me every hour of every day!

How amazing that the Eternal Creator of the Universe speaks to me personally through these words!

How amazing that this entire book is a love story written to me by God. It’s God’s revelation of how much he loves me and you.

My life is short and fragile and just a small flicker of light in the big picture. I’m so glad that I know that my Father God sees me as his precious daughter who is so important to him that he made a way that I could live with him in my forever home in heaven.

My life may be short and fragile but I’m important to God….

and that makes all the difference.

Thank you, Abba Father.

The Only Way Out

I’ve been there – a place where there’s no way out.

When there is nothing I can do to even try to fix it.

A total dead end.

This is when the only way out is up.

King Hezekiah knew all about this place thousands of years ago when a huge Assyrian army came to Jerusalem and camped right outside the city walls.

The Assyrian King told Hezekiah that the LORD had told him to destroy Jerusalem.

What?

King Hezekiah was wise enough to recognize a big lie when he heard it so he went to the prophet Isaiah to get the truth. The Lord told Isaiah that King Hezekiah should not be disturbed by what the Assyrians were saying –  God was going to move against them himself.

Next, the Assyrians send a letter warning King Hezekiah that he should not be deceived by God’s promises to protect him.  (There were serious mind games going on here.) The Assyrians had been completely destroying everyone in their path and that’s what the Assyrian king was planning to do to Jerusalem.

King Hezekiah knew that was exactly what the Assyrians had been doing – destroying everyone and everything and no one had been able stop them.

So Hezekiah took the Assyrian’s letter to the temple and spread it out before the Lord.  He laid out his concerns to God and asked him to rescue them so that all the nations of the world would know that he was God.

I visualize Hezekiah on his knees spreading out this scroll full of scarey and deadly threats.  Then he totally lays himself down on the floor in front of the scroll as he asks God to save his people.

How interesting – he doesn’t summon the commander of his army.  He doesn’t consult with anyone.  He and his people are facing annihilation and he prostrates himself before God.

I’ve been there several times in my life – when there is no way out but up.   Faced with massive issues that were extremely beyond my control, I have laid it all out before God and asked him to take care of it.  I didn’t know how he would do it and I told him I didn’t care what he did – I was just placing it all in his hands and trusting in his promise that he is working all things out for my good.

It worked for me just like it worked for Hezekiah thousands of years ago.  God heard Hezekiah’s prayer and took care of the situation. God always hears my prayers and he answers by orchestrating situations in his way with his power to benefit me.

I have discovered I don’t have big issues for long when I have a huge God.

Thank you, Abba Father.

My Path

Life can feel like a roller coaster ride of emotions – up and down and sometimes upside down.

Or

it can feel more like a smooth, level path.

What makes the difference?

A better question is – WHO makes the difference?

God stopped me today as I read Isaiah 26:7, “The path of the righteous is level; You, the Upright One, make the way of the righteous smooth.”

I’ll admit, I have had many emotional roller coaster rides these last 5 years since my son, David Glasser, who was a Phoenix Police Officer, was killed in the line of duty. I have had more crazy extreme feelings of grief, loss, sadness, and heart break than I have every had before.

And I have learned that the quicker I turn to God for his comfort, love and direction, the faster the roller coaster ride slows down. My emotions settle and the fog of pain in my mind gradually disappears.

Just to be clear – I am ‘righteous’ because of what Jesus did for me, not because of anything I have done. God sees me as ‘righteous’ because I have accepted salvation through his son, Jesus.

I know my Father God is walking closely beside me, smoothing out my path and leveling the mountains of emotions. I still have all the feelings but I face them with peace in my soul as I am held, grounded and secure, within my Father’s strong arms.

I have learned to trust God at a whole new level and I am totally confident that he is working all things out for my good.

I may not understand it all, but I know it’s true.

Thank you, Abba Father.

Dedicated

Purifying the temple

Consecrating the articles of the temple.

Sacrifices of sin offerings.

When we read about these things in the Old Testament, we can easily think “What does any of this have to do with me? How can God speak to me through these parts of the Bible?”

The fact is that God speaks to us through all parts of the Bible. The Holy Spirit can make it all relevant to our lives today ….. if we open our minds and listen.

I am reading 2 Chronicles about all the religious reforms King Hezekiah made when he became king. He purified the temple. He consecrated the articles of the temple and he led the people in all types of sacrifices and offerings. When they were done, he told them, “You have now dedicated yourselves to the LORD.” 2 Chronicles 29:31.

As I read, God talks to me about consecrating my life since Jesus’ death and resurrection has made me a temple of God’s Spirit. This means cleansing my life – taking anything out that is not helping me grow my relationship with God. One of my favorite phrases – ‘what we feed, grows.” This might mean changing channels on the TV or changing sites that we check out on our computers. It could mean stopping magazine subscriptions or avoiding the types of the books we used to read. Maybe we need to change the kind of music we listen to? There might be people in our lives that we should give less time and less influence.

Consecrating and dedicating my life to God also means laying my desires and dreams down before my Eternal King and letting him take control.

I want to live my life your way from now on, Abba Father.

Unity

“The hand of God was on the people to give them unity of mind….” 2 Chronicles 30:12.

Unity comes from God.

When we are all well-connected to God, we can hear his directions for us.  He gives us insight and understanding. He tells all of us the same thing so that we can move together, as his united people.

If I am not well-connected to God, following my own desires can cause disunity.  When I put what I want in front of what God wants, I can create dissension. 

Do you ever find yourself being stubborn? Determined to get your way? God calls this being “hard-hearted.   When we are focused on making ourselves happy rather than making God happy, we become part of the problem, not the solution.

Over 40 years of being married to a Christian man who is the polar opposite of me has taught me a lot about how God provides unity.  My husband and I have significantly different perspectives on the world and extremely different ideas about how to make decisions and determine next steps.  So I have learned to let God provide the unity.  When I am listening to God and my husband is listening to God, God directs us onto the same path.

If there are big decisions to be made, I’m usually the instigator of the conversation between my husband and I but, when we run into a wall because we process things so differently, we take some time to pray about it individually and eventually God tells us both the same thing.  Done.  It’s much easier to move forward together when God confirms the direction to each of us.

God does this in relationships and in businesses and in churches if people will turn to him and listen. I’ve seen it happen.

God desires that we have unity so he will make it happen –

if we let him.

Thank you, Abba Father.

God’s Math

God has a supernatural math when it comes to our generosity with our money and time in supporting the work of his kingdom.

His math is not like our math where 1+1=2.

God’s math makes 1+1=100.  Or 1000.  Or 1,000,000 if he wants it to be.

God’s blessing + our giving = everybody wins.

When we give to God, we don’t have less.  We have more.  Don’t ask me to explain it – it’s just the truth.  I’ve experienced it many times.  We truly cannot out give God.

God’s math has been true for thousands of years.   In 2 Chronicles, after the Israelites started  to bring their contributions to the Temple of the Lord, they found that they had plenty to eat with plenty to spare.  God multiplied their generosity by giving them back more – a lot more.  “When Hezekiah and his officials came and saw the heaps (of contributions), they praised the LORD and blessed his people Israel.” 2 Chronicles 31:8.   The king built large storerooms for all of the leftover contributions and put the Levites in charge of distributing the gifts in other towns.

See how God’s math works?  Their generosity just kept multiplying and spreading.  Now their neighbors were being blessed.

God does the same thing today.  If you haven’t personally experienced this, test him and see.

Thank you, Abba Father.

He Knows

How often are we on ‘auto-pilot’ when it comes to our relationship with God?

Just going through the motions?

In Isaiah 29, God tells his people that their worship was meaningless because it was based on human rules but their hearts aren’t engaged.  They are saying the right words but they didn’t mean them. “The LORD says: ‘These people come near me with their mouth and honor me with their lips, but their hearts are far from me.” Isaiah 29:13.

God can tell the difference.  He knows when I are focused on him with all of my heart.  He knows my thoughts and intentions. He knows when my thinking wanders away from him – even if my Bible is laying open on my lap. He knows when I am just saying things I have been taught to say but there is no passion and love behind them.

My love for God shines bright when its authentic. When its real. When its based on a personal relationship, not just traditions that I have been taught by others.

God sees right into my heart and he knows. He knows if I’m serious about my faith.

There is no ‘faking it’ with God.

Please help me worship you and love you like you want me to, Abba Father

He Loves Us This Much

Seven hundred years before he was born, Isaiah spoke a stunningly accurate prophesy about Jesus.

Here’s my 2021 response to parts of Isaiah’s prophecy in Isaiah 53: 2-6 –

Jesus was not a good-looking man.  The pictures we have of him where he looks like a movie star are totally inaccurate.

People despised him but he was used to pain and sorrow – that was his life.  A lot of people ignored him and avoided him when possible.

Yet he took on more pain – the pain that was meant for us.  He paid the price for our rebellion and selfishness and anger – all the sins of all the world.

Some people were confused when they saw all the problems Jesus had – they thought God was punishing him.  Their eyes just weren’t open to the truth.

The truth is that Jesus loves us so much that he took all of the punishment that we deserved…

so he could be our Savior…

so we could have peace…..

so we could be healed.

You and I have sinned.  And we keep sinning.

Have I said anything out of frustration or lack of patience today?  Not yet – but it’s early.

Have you thought of anything unkind or unforgiving today?  God also knows our thoughts – that’s a tough one.

Jesus paid the price for all of our sins for all time….

so he could offer us salvation.  For free.  For eternity.

Thank you, Jesus!

He is the Light

I love how accurate Isaiah’s prophecies about the Messiah were even though he spoke them 700 years before Jesus was born.  This shouldn’t surprise me – God knows everything and is in control of everything – including my future.

Isaiah’s prophecy in the 9th chapter of his book was fulfilled when Jesus came to earth, died on the cross for our sins and rose again in victory over death.

Isaiah’s prophecy came true –

People who were walking in darkness saw a Great Light.  Lost in deep darkness, they saw the Light as it dawned.  This Light gave them success and joy.  They celebrated the Light just like they celebrated a great harvest.  They celebrated just like warriors who are dividing the plunder after a victorious battle.

This Light’s name is Jesus.

He forever shattered the yoke of sin and shame in our lives.  There is no need for war in his kingdom.

For he came to us as a child, the Son of God.  And we call him –

Wonderful,

Counselor,

Mighty God,

Everlasting Father,

Prince of Peace.

He is reigning forever victorious and there is no end to the peace he gives to those who put their faith in him.

He reigns in justice and righteousness –

now and forever.

The LORD Almighty has done it all for us.

Thank you, Abba Father

My Peace

He will be our peace.

Seven hundred years before the birth of Jesus, Micah prophesied about the birth of Jesus saying that a ruler would come from Bethlehem, “And he will be our peace.” Micah 5:5.

Notice – it doesn’t say ‘a source of peace’.

Jesus is our peace. Period.

Do you feel that in your life?

I do.

I don’t find peace in the things that so many people here on earth think are so important.

I have not found peace with money and success.

I have not found it in relationships other than my relationship with God.

Buying things has definitely not given me peace since things break and grow old – no longer shiny, no longer ‘the latest’.

I have not found peace in education and achievements.

I love to travel and experience new things but that is not where I find peace.

Jesus is my only source of real Peace. I feel the peace he gives me down in the center of my soul.

I can trust him with everything and he has a perfect love for me.  He has proven his love for me over and over in my life.  He who never sinned became sin for me on the cross so that the price for my sins was paid and I can live with him forever.

My eternal life with Jesus has already started on this earth –

as he fills my life with the peace only he can give.

Thank you, Jesus