Complete

…and to have knowledge of the love of Christ which is outside all knowledge, so that you may be made complete as God himself is complete.  Ephesians 3:19 (Bible In Basic English)

 …you will know Christ’s love, which goes far beyond any knowledge. I am praying this so that you may be completely filled with God. Ephesians 3:19 (God’s Word Translation)

Most translations use fullness instead of completeness.  Both are correct but complete comes closer to the intent.  God’s completeness means that everything is finished.  Every part, bit, and nuance.

You and I are completely, completed creations because Jesus completed, finished, it. Finished in Greek is tetelestai.  It means paid in full.  Every bit of everything thing I owe because of my sin is tetelestai.  It is completed.

Being complete (in Christ) is not a someday thing. We are already complete.  We are totally, completely, whole.  We are completely redeemed, completely loved, completely chosen, completely equipped, and completely forgiven.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

I’m joining a flashmob of other writers at Five Minute Friday.  Come joins us!

 

 

I Am Woman…

I am woman, hear me roar… LOL  Every time I think of this subject these words cross my mind and make me smile.  Yes, I can be a roaring lioness at times. But, I am more than that. I am passionate about being a woman and becoming all that I can be for my Jesus.  I am also…

 

Isaiah 43:1b  Do not fear, for I have redeemed you;
I have summoned you by name; you are mine.

 

 

John 15:16  You did not choose me, but I chose you and appointed you so that you might go and bear fruit that will last—and so that whatever you ask in my name the Father will give you.

Matthew 6:14   For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.

 

 

Jeremiah 31:3   I have loved you with an everlasting love.

 

Romans 12:6   We have different gifts, according to the grace given to each of us. 

 

… and so much more!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

This post is joining an awesome group of bloggers for 5-Minute Friday.  Come join us!

Inclusive Or Exclusive

 

God’s Word is very clear about this subject.  Just as God includes everyone we are to do the same.  It does not matter whether we are male/female, rich/poor, educated, beautiful, young/old …

Look at James 2.  It’s really clear on the issue.  We are to welcome and love everyone who enters our ‘meeting’.  We are to be inclusive, not exclusive.

God loves us all the same.  So, if we’re truly trying to become more like Him, then, we are going to stop the favoritism game.  There’s a great song out right now by Mandisa, We All Bleed The Same, that says it all.  “…if we’re going to shout, let love be the cry.”

And so, in response to all he has done for us, let us outdo each other in being helpful and kind to each other and in doing good. (Hebrews 10:24) 

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

Sharing this post with many other awesome bloggers at  5-Minute Friday.

Who Are The Other People?

My thoughts and ponderings on this word led me to who are the ‘other’ people in our society?  In a social climate that prides itself on equality, we have certain ‘other’ people that are not counted among the equal.  People of color, any color actually, white, black, olive, pink… women, elderly, poor, rich, educated, homeless.  Every one of us fits in an ‘other’ category.

When I looked up the definition here’s what it said: used to refer to a person or thing that is different or distinct from one already mentioned or known about.  

What, then, does God say about it?

And as you wish that others would do to you, do so to them.  Luke 6:31 (I can still hear my mother’s voice… Do unto others as you would have them do to you.)

Let each of you look not only to his own interests but also to the interests of others.  Philippians 2:4 (I don’t think this verse would even be necessary if we would stop being all about ourselves.)

So, isn’t it time to start making the ‘other’ people in our lives more important than we are?

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

I’m sharing this with a group of writers who set aside 5 minutes each week to write about one word.  Why don’t you join us?  Five Minute Friday

What IF …

When was the last time you looked back a situation and said, “What if… ?”

From the time we’re very young we start having ‘regrets’. We start thinking what if I had not said that. What if I had not done that. What if I had chosen something different. Regret is one of the most common, negative feelings human beings experience.

Everyone has regrets!  Psalm 51 is a prayer about David’s regret over adultery and murder.  And what about Peter?  When he realized what he had done he went away and wept bitterly, Luke 22:61-62. (Can you even imagine what Jesus’ long glance did to him?)

The good thing about having regret is it shows we’re paying attention to our shortcomings, yes, even our sins.  It’s knowing that something went wrong, something’s not right.  Thinking what could I have done instead of what I did prepares us for the next time the situation occurs.

But then…  Get rid of it!  Take it to the cross and leave it there.  Quit mulling over it and over it and over it…  (satan loves that because it takes our focus off Jesus).  Pray David’s prayer:

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

(Click on the picture above to hear Keith Green’s beautiful rendition of this prayer.)

I’m joining many others at 5-Minute Friday.  Join us there!

 

 

 

 

 

True Beauty

Where is true beauty found?  In our looks, our jewelry, our homes/cars, our…   I think not!  Then is beauty in the ‘eye of the beholder’?  To some extent, but even that is based on personal bias.  Confucious said, “Everything has beauty, but not everyone sees it.”  In nature, in music, in work, in …  It truly is all around us.  We just have to train ourselves to look.

In the Song of Songs, Solomon tells his bride that she is beautiful because she has no flaws (Song of Songs 4:7).  Our culture is all about that.  If we are thin, rich, youthful, educated and successful we are considered perfect. But is that really what being beautiful is all about?

So what is beauty?   Have you ever met someone that is not physically beautiful but there’s just something about them that draws you in.  I really like the way the New Living Translation says 1 Peter 3:4, “You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God.”  There it is.  The confident, inner glow, that says I care about you, I know your struggle, I’ve been where you are …  The ability to be appreciative, forgiving and loving marks the beautiful person.

Beauty is not about perfect hair, (I’ve not had a perfect hair day in so long I’ve given up on it.) perfect body shape, perfect attire, perfect words, perfect home, perfect children…  It’s not about perfect anything!  It’s about the willingness to take the focus off yourself and place it on Jesus and those around us.  Only then, are we truly beautiful!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

I’m delighted to be writing with many others in response to the 5-Minute Friday word prompt.  You can join us, too!  Check it out at http://fiveminutefriday.com

My Story

Are you curious about me?  I certainly am about you?  Every one of us has a story that is peculiar (Yes, that’s the right usage of the word.) to us.  Here is a part of mine.  There is so much more…

aaaa

 

My greatest desire is to teach others how much God loves them and how to use His Word to live the life He has purposed for them.  In my home church, I co-direct Worship and Music, play all keyboards, and sing with the Worship Band.  God has seen fit to give me the gift of teaching, which I use for leading 3 Bible Study groups.  He specifically called me to writing/blogging about 5 years ago.

I have been married to the perfect partner, chosen for me by God, for more than 45 years. It was God’s plan that we would not have children but would be able to love in a unique way our nieces, nephews, and the hundreds of children who touched our lives through the years I spent in Public Education as a Music Specialist and Elementary Principal.  I hold a B.S. Degree in Music Education and Performance from Defiance College and an M.Ed. Degree in Administration and Supervision from Bowling Green State University.

Our family includes two cats named Smokey and Salem, three awesome sisters and one incredible brother, 7 sisters-in-law, 7 brothers-in-law, 36 nieces and nephews and their spouses, and many great nieces and nephews.

Music has been part of my life from my earliest years.  One of the greatest honors of my life was to be invited to sing in the Rose Garden of the Whitehouse with the Ohio Youth Choir at the invitation of then-President Richard Nixon.
As a 25+ year Cancer Survivor, I have been able to use that challenging time of my life to support others.  It was not easy but God knew there would be many who would need a listening ear, an understanding heart, and someone who understands the value of presence without words.

From the time I was old enough to hold needles, scissors, yarn, thread, fabric, you name it, I was ‘hooked’ on crafts, particularly those that are counted.   From painting count by number pictures to my grandmother teaching me to crochet, to my mother teaching me to embroider, to learning to do counted cross stitch, rug hooking, needlepoint and crewel my life has been filled with many happy hours of artful crafting.  I also enjoy sewing and often make my own clothing and things for my home.

I enjoy baking and decorating.  This hobby started when Ray and I owned a coffee shop/bakery called Maggi Raes.  (Maggie for the carved magnolias that were part of the shop’s decorations.)  I am certified in all the Wilton decorating levels and have done many wedding, birthday, and event cakes and cookies.

We love to travel, especially on cruise ships, and have been all over the Caribbean and are planning to go to Alaska for our next cruise.  We also enjoy taking a few days here and there in the Smokey Mountains, believing there is nothing like sitting on a rocker, on a back porch, on top of a mountain and enjoying the beauty of God’s creation.

God has given me a great life and I can’t thank Him enough for His love and provision.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

(BTW: The reason this only took 5 minutes is that I copied and pasted it from a much larger article. )

Common

 

common

Such an interesting word.  So many applications.

Common ground — when we are in agreement on an issue

Common sense–the ability to use what you know is right

Common law–personal actions over time leading to common ‘ownership’

Common cold–a health condition

Common chord–musical term

Common property–those items that are shared by 2 or more parties

Common denominator–mathematical term

Common noun–that which is not a proper noun

Common core–academic standards defining what a student should know

In common–a sense of mutual agreement

I am joining Kate Motaung and an incredibly talented group of writers for Five Minute Friday. One word prompt. Five minutes. No editing. Just writing!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

JOURNEY

 

When I saw today’s Five Minute Friday word, JOURNEY, this poem came to mind.

the-road-not-taken

Throughout this journey I have often chosen to take ‘the one less traveled by’ and it has certainly made a difference.

The decisions we make as we journey through life are like a tree as it grows its branches.  If you can imagine with me the start of the tree, just a little sapling, no branches yet. Then as the years go by growth allows branches to grow on branches from the original sapling.  As this tree of life, if you will, grows year after year, there is new life from the old.  Sometimes winter takes it’s toll and a few branches fall off.  Spring and summer storms may remove a few branches here and there.  The tree continues to withstand the buffeting of wind, maybe a few lightening strikes, perhaps a few children climb and play in it…  The journey continues…

My journey has been much like the tree.  Each new branch has been a fork in the road, a life change or decision has presented itself.  I’ve often chosen ‘the one less traveled’ and yes, it has made all the difference.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

The Green-eyed Monster

alien-29939_640Recently a friend purchased a new winter coat.  It was a beautiful purple wool with a silver fox collar.   I knew how good I would look in the coat and also knew I simply could not afford it.  So what happened…my eyes turned green with envy and I couldn’t even make myself tell her how nice she looked in it.  (BTW I’m not proud of my reaction!)

Whenever you envy another”s things, looks, or skills it causes problems for everyone involved.

When I got home I decided to search the Word for what God has to say about this issue.

James 3:14  But if you have bitter envy (jealousy) and contention in your hearts, do not brag, and do not lie against the truth. (New Testament Breakthrough V ersion)

1 Corinthians 13:4 Love is patient, love is kind, it does not envy, it does not boast, it is not proud. (New International Version)

The Message translates envy as the opposite of wisdom.

James 3:17-18 Real wisdom, God’s wisdom, begins with a holy life and is characterized by getting along with others. It is gentle and reasonable, overflowing with mercy and blessings, not hot one day and cold the next, not two-faced. You can develop a healthy, robust community that lives right with God and enjoy its results only if you do the hard work of getting along with each other, treating each other with dignity and honor.

End of 5 minutes…but continuing on.

So what is envy? Envy is the desire for some object, character trait or skill that another already possesses.  Why is it not a good thing?  Easy answer…because it takes our focus off of God.

God has told us clearly that He can and will supply everything we need.  All we have to do is ask.  Check out Philippians 4:19 and Matthew 7:7.  No one has more than God and His desire is to give it to us.

So then why do we envy?  Why do we desire what belongs to someone else?  Because satan knows, just like he did in Eden, that if he can get us to take our eyes off God and focus them on something else (the Green-eyed Monster) he wins.

Do not let this happen.  Do not let evil win.  Keep your focus on Jesus!  Here are some verses to memorize and keep in your arsenal to defeat the enemy.

 I love those who love me, And those who seek me diligently will find me.                                         Proverbs 8:17 NKJV

For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the LORD, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.  Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.  And you will seek Me and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.                           Jeremiah 29:11-13 NKJV

Click on the picture to hear these beautiful words set to music.

Click on the picture to hear these beautiful words set to music.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

I’m joining Kate Motaung for Five Minute Friday.  This week’s prompt is ‘green’.