6 Biblical Ways To Have A Life That God Will Bless

Every time I read through the Bible  I find new and usable insights.  Isaiah is telling the Israelites to get their act together because their lives are not what God expects. In the middle of Chapter 33, I came across six solid, Biblical ways to have a life that God will bless.  (BTW, I don’t try to read through in a year.  I like to do it at my own pace, without the pressure and stress of specific assignments.)

Raise your standard of living

1 – Live right.  Simply said make the right choices.  Know God’s voice and really listen.  As Proverbs 3:5 says, ‘Trust in the Lord with all your heart and don’t lean on your own understanding.

2 – Speak the truth.  The concept of truth is in so many verses but my favorite is in the 10 Commandments.  Exodus 20:16 says no false witness.  In other words, don’t lie.

3 – Despise exploitation.   How about some synonyms here; misuse, abuse, unfair treatment, oppression.  Take a stand on these issues.  This world is full of people who mistreat others.  Don’t let yourself get caught up in thinking your way is the only way.  Only God’s way is the only way!

4 – Refuse bribes.   If you ______ , then I _________.  Bribes are not always about monetary gain.  Actually, in the simplest way to explain, a bribe tries to get a person what they want by whatever means they can.

5 – Reject violence.  This one is so simple, but so hard to accomplish in this world.  Can you walk away from television, computers, movies, books, magazines, newspapers?  Can you walk away, not read, not listen.  It will be hard, but if you want to raise your personal standard of life then you may have to take a serious, personal inventory of what you are reading, seeing, and hearing. Then make the hard choice to reject violence.

6 – Avoid evil amusements.  Entertainment, pleasure, interest. Essentially we are to avoid those activities that cause us to sin or fall into sin.  There are several lists of these types of activities.  Check out 1 Corinthians 6:9-10, Galatians 5:19-21, Ephesians 5:3-6, or Revelation 22:12-15.  Then do what you have to.

Your standard of living and my standard of living are two different things.  I think we can agree that if we add these six to that standard we can be ‘safe and stable’, ‘nourished and satisfied.”

Oh, LORD, I live in this world.  I know what You want. Help me to take a stand.  Help me to model what is right.  Plant your Word in my heart, nourish me with it, guide me to a healthy, satisfying, moral life.  Make it so in Jesus’ name.

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

Wisdom Whispers Review

I am delighted to be part of the Launch Team for Wisdom Whispers.  It is thought-provoking and easy to read.  It gave me much new insight into one of God’s chosen.

Sarah writes in such a way that the words get into your mind and heart.  Wisdom (and understanding) grows with each days lesson.

I have a new appreciation of King Solomon and his writings thanks to Wisdom Whispers. As I completed each day of this study I was struck with how much he was like a real person, with real struggles, just like me. Even though Solomon was incredibly blessed by God he fell into the trap of great riches and power not recognizing his blessings were from God and not of his own making. This resulted in life choices that changed him from a devoted man of God to a contriving man of the world. (i.e., 700 wives of whom many were princesses of other realms married for political purposes.)

Whether you go through this study alone or invite a group of people into your home you will find the time spent in this segment of God’s word worth it.

I hope you’ll check it out.  IT’S FREE! You won’t regret it!

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

 

 

Do You Know All You Need To Know?

How do you read through the Bible? Do you use a plan to do it in a year? 3 months? 6 months?  Any way you choose to do it is the right way if it works for you.  I choose to read at my own pace.  Sometimes a few verses, a couple of chapters, a whole book…  Today as I was reading, (I’ve reached 1st Corinthians.) the Word spoke loudly to me on what I need to know.  Check out 1 Corinthians 8:1-3.

1-corinthians-81-3

I saw myself in this verse and knew I needed to make a change.  I do not want to be a know-it-all, or even come across that way.  So how do I fix this issue?  First and foremost,  Only God is omnipotent, all knowing.  Verse 3 tells us clearly that we really don’t know anything until we recognize that God knows everything.

What does that mean?  It’s all wrapped up in our puffed-up, ‘there’s nothing new under the sun’, academically arrogant minds.  When questions of what we believe come up we think we have the inside scoop because we’ve experienced it, read about it…  Friends, that’s just not so!

Paul is referring to a reoccurring question that keeps popping up among the Christians of His time.  Should we, can we, eat meat that was offered to idols.  In our own time it could be should I accept a party invitation where I know they’re serving alcohol? Should I be part of a conversation that blasphemes God? Should I fit in or stand out?

We know how we would respond to those questions.  Yet are we being insensitive to the needs of other believers?  If I choose to go to a popular, local restaurant that serves really good Mexican food and alcohol am I causing another Believer to question their own beliefs? To stumble?  We can cause confusion in the mind of another believer by the things we think, do, and say.

So the real question is does it really matter?  The final verses in Chapter 8 give the perfect answer. (I’ve put it in my own words for you.)

Jesus gave up His own life for everyone, believers and non-believers.  Our choices make a difference.  Would you want to hurt your friend, perhaps cause him to go to hell because you confused the real issue?  Keep this in mind, Christ hurts when we hurt others by our words, actions, deeds… Nothing is worth causing any of our brothers and sisters to stumble.  Nothing!

And so, there it is.  Do you know all you need to know?

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie

3 Words

three

Have you noticed how many 3 word admonishments, commands, and connections there are in the Word?  Starting with the Father, Son, and Spirit before time began.  (Actually, ending with the Holy Threesome when time ends.)  Three wise men.  Noah had three sons.  Job had three daughters.  Daniel prayed three times a day.  Jesus answered satan’s three temptations by answering with three scriptures.  Mary stayed with Elizabeth for three months.  Three witnessed the transfiguration.  Three heavens. Three crosses.  Jesus rose on the third day.

The number three is significant because it represents completeness.  Not just the single number but all its multiples.  For example there 27 books in the New Testament which is represented mathematically as 3x3x3. God’s completeness is shown in many ways.  Time is shown through yesterday, today, and tomorrow.  God’s people are called, chosen, and elect.  Man is body, soul, and spirit.  We serve God in thought, word, and deed.

God’s word is full of three phrase commands.  Take a look at these…

Micah 6:8 tells us to live justly, love mercy, and walk humbly.

In 2 Timothy 1:7(The Message) we are to be bold, loving, and sensible with what (gifts) God has given us.  In the same chapter, we are to not be afraid because the Spirit gives us power, love, and self-discipline.

How about Deuteronomy 30:16?  For I command you today to love the Lord your God, to walk in obedience to Him, and to keep His commands, decrees and laws; then you will live and increase, and the Lord your God will bless you in the land you are entering to possess.  This one is a command with a promise…

Love. Obey. Keep.  =  Life.  Increase.  Blessings.

And just one more three to complete this post.  The only attribute of God that is mentioned in groups of three in the Word is Holy, Holy, Holy.

Blessings upon blessings to you and yours!

Marie

 

 

 

 

Search Me

bible-1089930__180Search me, O God, and know my heart;  test me and know my anxious thoughts.  See if there is any offensive (wicked) way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting.   Psalm 139:23-24

When was the last time you dedicated time to searching your heart for offense and wickedness?  What would happen if we were to do that on a regular basis?   If you’re ready to do a little (a lot of) soul searching read on.

Many times our anxious thoughts come from an unforgiving heart.  If we are refusing to forgive, for any reason, that is offensive to God.

bible-216962__180For if you forgive other people when they sin against you, your heavenly Father will also forgive you.  But if you do not forgive others their sins, your Father will not forgive your sins.  Matthew 6:14-15

Did you notice verse 15.  If I (you) do not forgive others He will not forgive me (you). Those are powerful words.  I can’t bear the thought of not being forgiven, can you?

Are there situations and issues in your life that you think are unfair and you are unwilling to forgive those who have harmed you?  Of course, there are.  Everyone has them.  There are people and actions that seem, or really are, unfair and out of our control at the time they happen.  What should we be doing about that?  Let God have total control of all that happens to us, against, for us, without us…   Give it to God!   Ask Him to make you totally aware of any anger, bitterness, resentment, or envy you are harboring against anyone.  Only when the burden is given to Him can we move forward and forgive.

bible-102684_960_720Create in me a clean heart, oh God, and renew a right spirit in me.  Psalm 51:10

Blessings to you and yours!

Marie