Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Praying the Psalms -Psalm 15-

 29.4.12


©Shiloh Photography*

Psalm 15

O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent?
Who shall dwell on your holy hill?

He who walks blamelessly
         and does what is right
         and speaks truth in his heart;
who does not slander with his tongue;
        and does no evil to his neighbor,
        nor takes up a reproach against his friend;
in whose eyes a vile person is despised,
       but who honors those who fear the Lord;
who swears to his own hurt and does not change;
who does not put out his money at interest and does not take a bribe against the innocent.

He who does these things shall never be moved. 


O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? 
Who shall dwell on your holy hill? 
 
You know my ways, O Lord,
You know that I am not blameless.
You know my heart and discern my thoughts.
How I have sinned against you,
when many, many times I don't do
what I know is right;
What you have demanded from me.
My sins of omission are many, O Lord.

From my mouth not only sweet water drips,
but bitter one, like the one in Marah;
water that doesn't heal but brings death.
My words do not always build those whom I love,
many times with my words I them bring down.
The words of my mouth are a fire;
a world of unrighteousness.
They stain my whole body,
and set on fire the entire course of my life.
So hard to tame this tongue,
this small member who boasts of great things.

The thoughts of my heart are not always according to Truth;
I sin when I entertain thoughts that encourage
fear and doubts.
I sin when I set my mind on earthly things;
when I think on what is not honorable,
on what is unjust,
when my thoughts are not on the things that are pure,
when my my mind is busy thinking on all those things
that are not driven by love,
that are not excellent,
and not worthy of praise.

O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? 
Who shall dwell on your holy hill? 

I like to tell myself that I do not evil to my neighbor,
but in my omission,
in my passing by and not stretching my hand out towards her,
in my neglecting him,
am I not sinning?
Am I not guilty of not doing evil against him,
when I remain blind to his needs?

O Lord, so many friends you have given me,
and I am not always a godly influence.
I do not always pray fervently for them,
I do not always give them wise words.
I do not always love them without reproach.

O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? 
Who shall dwell on your holy hill? 

Father, I have said that I honor those who fear you,
but have forgotten what someone just reminded me,
that "honor must start in the heart, but if it ends there,
it isn’t honor.
Honor must be expressed through words,
symbols, actions, or gestures.
Honor is among the most incarnational of the virtues.
It must have feet and hands."


O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? 
Who shall dwell on your holy hill? 

O God, I hold tight to the anchor of my life,
to the Word of Life,
and yet hard winds come,
and temptations arise against me,
and I do not always remain unchanged,
unmoved;
the seams of my robe are torn,
and I feel undone; not longer of one piece. 

He who does these things shall never be moved. 
 
O Lord, who shall sojourn in your tent? 
Who shall dwell on your holy hill? 

But God, even though I am a broken vessel,
I will sojourn in your tent.
I will dwell on your holy hill.
Not because of my deeds which are filthy,
but because of my Jesus,
my Savior,
my Redeemer.

He has done all these things.
He shall never be moved. 
It has pleased Him to forgive me,
and call me his own.

He  took the penalty of my sins,
my guilt he bore on the cross.
His righteousness is my mine.
In my place He stood,
and now I live.

O Father,
to be able to call you Father!

Thank you for Jesus,
for the forgiveness of my sins,
and the hope of eternal life.

Amen



post signature


*used with permission

Read more...

Avoiding Controversies and Quarrels -Titus 3: 8-11-

 24.4.12


©Katie Lloyd Photography

"The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people. But avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned." Titus 3:8-11 ESV 

Some more thoughts on Titus (I am sure you don't mind, right?), but I have just been thinking on these words a lot.

"We struggle with these commands to 'avoid.... arguments' because we know there are things worth disputing, and because it seems divisive to separate from divisive people... there is a difference between needing to divide and loving to divide. A divisive person loves to fight. The differences are usually observable. A person who loves the peace and purity of the church may be forced into division, but it is not his character. He enters arguments regrettably and infrequently. When forced to argue, he remains fair, truthful, and loving in his responses. He grieves to have to disagree with a brother. Those who are divisive by nature lust for the fray, incite its onset, and delight in being able to conquer another person. For them victory means everything. so in an argument they twist words, call names, threaten, manipulate procedures, and attempt to extend the debate as long as possible and along as many fronts as possible.

Divisive persons frequent the debates of the church. As a result the same voices and personalities tend to appear over and over again, even though the issues change. Paul's words caution us about the seriousness of being 'divisive.' Though ego and entertainment may be served by argument, such engagement damages the church and should be avoided unless it is absolutely necessary.

At times we must fight (1:9). But if we love the fight, we must question if we are following God's priorities. Do we really want to devote our lives to quarreling, criticism, and argument? The man of God must not strive (2 Timothy 2:24. 25). He is by nature peaceable and gentle (Titus 1:7; 2:1; 3:2). He stands where he must, but he takes no delight in debates among brethren and does not make them the priorities of his ministry. Nothing other than grace must be the priority of the gospel-centered church."
 Bryan Chapell


Only God our Father can help us find the balance which is much needed today.













Read more...

Grateful for God's Infinite Liberality

 23.4.12

"However many blessings we expect from God, His infinite liberality will always exceed all our wishes and our thoughts."  John Calvin

#1490- 1509

A week away with my Beloved.




Tulips in bloom



Having lunch with a dear friend of our family, a godly young man we love very much.



Meeting with friends we hadn't seen in almost 13 years! What a blessing it was to share a meal, good laughs; talk about our children, our memories, our plans, and our love for our God.


Our little one visiting with a beautiful family. How many memories to treasure!

This smile.


Spending time with wonderful friends and enjoying a great meal.


Telly.

Tears in the car and and a lump in the throat.

Hope.

Sunlight coming through the window. Beautiful.



My Beloved and I holding hands in the plane.

My little one falling a sleep on my lap.

Books that make me think and others that make me cry.

A big embrace from our children back at home.

Grandparents loving our kids.

The Word of God, my anchor in life.

The Holy Spirit, drawing me to the Father.

The Father, hearing my pleas.

The Son, interceding for me.


May we always have a grateful heart,

"Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you." I Thessalonians 5:18

post signature

Read more...

Praying the Psalms -Psalm 11-

 22.4.12

©Shiloh Photography

Psalm 11

To the choirmaster. Of David.

In the Lord I take refuge;
how can you say to my soul,
“Flee like a bird to your mountain,
for behold, the wicked bend the bow;
they have fitted their arrow to the string
to shoot in the dark at the upright in heart;
if the foundations are destroyed,
what can the righteous do?”

The Lord is in his holy temple;
the Lord's throne is in heaven;
his eyes see, his eyelids test the children of man.
The Lord tests the righteous,
but his soul hates the wicked and the one who loves violence.
Let him rain coals on the wicked;
fire and sulfur and a scorching wind shall be the portion of their cup.
For the Lord is righteous;
he loves righteous deeds;
the upright shall behold his face.

Father of all Comforts, I come to you with a most grateful heart because you have opened a way for your children to approach you. You have invited us to come and lay our hearts open before you. Thank you for opening a way to your Throne of Mercy through Jesus Christ our Lord and Savior.

Father, so many times when the trials come, and I cannot see clearly what is it that you are doing, and the hand of my enemies, those sins that hunt me, rise with fury against me, my heart wishes to flee.

And I see this same things happens to my fellow brothers and sisters; when the devil attacks, many times we just want to flee away. How fool of us! Instead of running to you, instead of praying more and reading the bible more, and meditate on it even more. Instead of running to our Strong Tower, we long to flee! And then we found ourselves in a desolate place where all is cold and quiet; and there in the hiding place we have made ourselves, we cry to You and ask why You are not close, why You feel so distant. We are full of fears, full of doubts and the longer we stay there, the farther you seem to be, and yet we don't open our Bibles, we don't pray, we just grumble and despair. Our foundations seem to fall apart, our faith is weary. What can we do now? Father, we are yours, we cannot remain in the dark of own hiding place much longer, we belong to you, O Father of Light, help us see that every time we flee from our enemies, if we don't flee towards You, the pain will only grow deeper and become unbearable, and our faith will start to shatter into a thousand little pieces. O Holy Spirit draw us to the Father!

Wonderful Father, you have shown us where to find You, you have opened the way for us, You have bid us to come to you. Many situations may swirl around us, and yet You remain the same. Sovereign God, always sited in your throne, in your holy temple. Nothing moves You, nothing can hinder your plans. You are above all of us reigning sovereignly. Your eyes are watching us, even there when we are alone in that secret hiding place that we have foolishly made "far away" from You. You see us and test us. How long until we come to our senses and understand that is in You, only in You that we will find rest? It is only when we abide in your presence that we can fight and conquer sin. It is not in running away from You with shame and guilt that we will be safe; but it is only when we come to you in prayer, asking forgiveness for our sins, that we will be safe, that we will be strengthen, that our foundation will not be destroyed but made even stronger.O Father, draw us near to the cross, draw us to Jesus, draw us to see to empty tomb and our Savior risen! Strengthen our faith, O Lord!

We pray, destroy our enemies, O Lord, and help us fight the good fight of faith. Help us hate all wickedness and love righteousness. Help us run to you in times of need.

O Lord, that we may behold your face.

Amen


post signature

Read more...

On Titus 3: 1-15 Living Out Grace

 21.4.12


Remind them to be submissive to rulers and authorities, to be obedient, to be ready for every good work, to speak evil of no one, to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and to show perfect courtesy toward all people. For we ourselves were once foolish, disobedient, led astray, slaves to various passions and pleasures, passing our days in malice and envy, hated by others and hating one another. But when the goodness and loving kindness of God our Savior appeared, he saved us, not because of works done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life. The saying is trustworthy, and I want you to insist on these things, so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works. These things are excellent and profitable for people. But avoid foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about the law, for they are unprofitable and worthless. As for a person who stirs up division, after warning him once and then twice, have nothing more to do with him, knowing that such a person is warped and sinful; he is self-condemned.

When I send Artemas or Tychicus to you, do your best to come to me at Nicopolis, for I have decided to spend the winter there. Do your best to speed Zenas the lawyer and Apollos on their way; see that they lack nothing. And let our people learn to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not be unfruitful.

All who are with me send greetings to you. Greet those who love us in the faith.

Grace be with you all.


How we need these reminders, to be submissive to the authorities God has appointed over us, starting with our own husband, and keep an obedient heart is pretty easy to forget. And this is specially difficult when the wife seems to be the one studying and reading all the books, and even being more concerned for the spiritual life of the family. If this is your case, sister, I want to encourage you to get rid of a mind-set that wants you to rise above your husband. He is God's authority appointed in your home. Always pray for him, honor him, give him your advice, share your thoughts but at the end, bless his decision and hold his hand tight.

Another word on submission and obedience is that we must be extremely careful not to give any kind advice to any of our friends against the authority God has placed over them.  If your friend comes and asks you some advice, make sure that she is not only trying to find in you an ally against her husband's decisions. This is a very delicate matter. We don't want to sow disagreement between our friend and the authorities God has placed over her. The same principle applies if a young woman asks you some kind of an advice only to find more support to rebel against her parents. The odds are that her parents know a side of the story that you don't.

Next we have some characteristics that should govern all our relationships.  Attitudes through which we'll show all others, Christians and non-Christians alike,  the Grace of God in our lives.

Consider them carefully:

* Be ready for every good work.
* Speak evil of no one.
* Avoid quarreling.
* Be gentle.
* Show perfectly courtesy toward all people.

The easiest way to live a life that is always giving grace, is remembering our own condition. Not forgetting how our former lives without Christ looked like will keep us humble, and always with a desire to give and serve more and more.

Don't judge the one who denies Truth; 
you once were fool like that.

Be merciful to the disobedient; 
you once lived loving anarchism.

Don't quit on those who are being led astray by false teachers; 
you once were one of them.

Love those who are slaves to various passions and pleasures; 
don't forget how much you loved your own sins.

Don't forget those who pass their days in malice and envy; 
remember how you used to spend your days, your nights.

Give grace to those who only know how to hate; 
you once hated the Light, Jesus. 

Don't forget how grace appeared to you in Jesus.

Don't forget how goodness and loving kindness reached for you 
when you were in the most desolate pit.

Don't forget how "when the goodness and loving kindness of God and Savior appeared to save us not because of work done by us in righteousness, but according to his own mercy, by the washing of regeneration and renewal of the Holy Spirit, whom he poured out on us richly through Jesus Christ our Savior, so that being justified by his grace we might become heirs according to the hope of eternal life."

All this "remembering" is so that we may keep ourselves humble, grateful, and "so that those who have believed in God may be careful to devote themselves to good works." It is interesting to note the words Paul chooses, "be careful to devote themselves..." If we are not careful, most likely we will soon find ourselves caught up in foolish controversies, genealogies, dissensions, and quarrels about all kind of Theological issues, while loving to stir up division and hating our neighbor in need by neglecting him. Sin of omission is real and it is very subtle, beware of its presence; it crawls in the heart and feeds on pride and arrogance.


Again on verse 14 Paul says it again, "let our people learn to devote themselves to good works, so as to help cases of urgent need, and not be unfruitful." If it is mentioned twice, it must be urgent. Let us not forget that this is the way we live grace, devoting ourselves to good works, loving the unlovable, and reaching to the one in need. This is not easy, at least it is not for me. The excuses are always there, but light has shown in the darkest corner of my heart and now those excuses, have been exposed by God's Word; I must repent and reach with grace towards those around me, in a more significant way.

Thank God, for His Word, and for the wonderful gifts He has given us: Memories to remember His Word, hearts in which to treasaure it and daily lives to practice it.

Grace be with you all,


post signature

Read more...

Vanilla, The Totonac Lands and The Rest of the World

 11.4.12

Source


I think I have not shared with you how much I enjoy reading books about food; so now that you know let me tell you that I am in the middle of a book -with a very beautiful cover- called Vanilla, Travels in the Search of The Ice Cream Orchid. Some facts are interesting enough to share with you, so here they go, enjoy reading them and then go get some vanilla ice cream!

"The vanilla orchid is not a showy flower; it has only a slight scent, with no element of vanilla flavour or aroma... The growing process lasts up to nine months, but only when the pods turn brown after being dried and cured do they develop the distinctive aroma we call vanilla."

"The Aztecs, like the Maya before them, knew that the black pods could be dried and ground up as flavouring for xocoatl, the bitter liquid made from cacao, which we know today as chocolate. It was a drink reserved for the aristocracy, or for soldiers about to go into battle."

"The vanilla story begins in the salt-thick air of Veracruz. Here, the first vanilla plants were cultivated and tended by the people who called themselves Totonac. These people found the wild orchids and called them xa'nat. The Totonac say that the flowers and their scented seed pods sprang from blood. Not just ordinary blood, but the blood of a princess who was so beautiful and so pure in spirit that her father decided she would never be possesed by any mortal man... According to the legend... Princess Tzacopontziza and her lover committed a mortal sin, and the priests decapitated them both... after some days a bush sprang from the ground where their blood had spilled. Very soon an orchid was seen growing among its branches. The plant grew... When the beans matured they darkened, eventually emitting an exquisite perfume more beautiful than anything the subjects of  King Teniztli had ever known before. People believed that the scent was the pure sweet soul of the dead Princess and the orchid that grew in the mountains was declared sacred."

"More than half of all the world's vanilla beans end up in the United States."


What about those little specks you get in vanilla ice cream?

"That's just cosmetic... It's just a marketing thing; sometimes they don't use the seeds just tiny specks of exhausted beans."


"There are more than a hundred different species of vanilla orchid, and they grow all over the tropics with the exception of Australia... but only a few species bear the large aromatic pods which can be used commercially."

"At the end of her life. Queen Elizabeth I developed a taste for puddings containing vanilla."

"Vanilla planters cannot rely on natural pollinators to fertilize their orchids. They must do the job themselves."



"If legend is to be believed, Cortés became the first European to taste vanilla, an ingredient in xocoatl, which Moctezuma presented to him in a gilded goblet carved from tortoiseshell."

Well, I am off to read some more and find some vanilla ice cream as a mid-day snack.


Hope you are having a wonderful day!


post signature

Read more...

A Prayer On the Necessities of Friendship

 9.4.12



The Necessities of Friendship from A Barclay Prayer Book

Keep us, O God, from all the things which make friendship impossible.

Keep us from
          The sarcastic tongue;
          The critical eye;
          The ears which love malicious gossip;
          The mind which thinks the worst;
          The heart whose only love is self-love.

Give us the things which enable friendship to flourish.

Give us
         The ability to bear one another's burdens and to forgive one another's faults;
         The sympathetic, the unselfish and the understanding heart;
         The temper and the tongue which are always under control;
         The determination to treat others as we would have them treat us;
         The tolerance which can always see the pint of view of others.

Help us to live remembering that in you we live and move and have our being,
             and that life is always in your sight.

**********************

Today I am making this prayer mine as I thank God for the friends He has given me, and as I ask Him to give me the grace I need to be a good friend to them.



post signature

Read more...

A Prayer on the The Resurrection Day

 8.4.12

The Disciples Peter and John Running to the Sepulchre on the Morning of the Resurrection by Eugène Burnard


O LORD,
I marvel that thou shouldst become incarnate,
be crucified, dead, and buried.

The sepulchre calls forth my adoring wonder,
for it is empty and thou art risen;
the four-fold gospel attests it,
the living witnesses prove it,
my heart's experience knows it.

Give me to die with thee that I may rise to new life,
for I wish to be as dead and buried
to sin, to selfishness, to the world;
that I might not hear the voice of the charmer,
and might be delivered from his lusts.

O Lord, there is so much ill about me -crucify it,
much flesh within me -mortify it.
Purge me from selfishness, the fear of man, the love of approbation,
the shame of being thought old-fashioned,
the desire to be cultivated or modern.

Let me reckon my old life dead because of crucifixion,
and never feed it as a living thing.
Grant me to stand with my dying Savior,
to be content to be rejected,
to be willing to take up unpopular truths,
and to hold fast despised teachings until death.

Help me to be resolute and Christ-contained.
Never let me wander from the path of obedience to thy will.
Strengthen me for the battles ahead.
Give me courage for all the trials, and grace for all the joys.
Help me to be a holy, happy person,
free from every wrong desire,
from everything contrary to thy mind.

Grant me more and more of the resurrection life:
may it rule me.
may I walk in its power, and be strengthen through its influence.

Give me the assurance that in Christ I died, in Him I rose,
in His life I live, in His victory I triumph,
in His ascension I shall be glorified.

Adorable Redeemer,
Thous who wast lifted up upon a cross
art ascended to highest heaven.
Thou, who as a man of sorrows wast crowned with thorns,
art now as Lord of life wreathed with glory.

What more could be done that thou hast done!
Thy death is my life,
thy resurrection my peace,
thy ascension my hope,
thy prayers my comfort.

Amen

Because in Him we live,




post signature


*From the Valley of Vision's prayers: Resurrection and, Crucifixion and Resurrection.

Read more...

Repentance Should be Noticed -Notes from my Reading Corner-

 6.4.12

Buy at Monergism Books
I have been reading these past few days Dan Phillip's book, The World-Tilting Gospel, and I have certainly enjoyed it very much. This is a book that I recommend to anyone who professes to be a Christian but cannot explain the basics of his faith: what is the Gospel for example,  and what does it mean -and why it matters so much- to have a Biblical worldview. On the other hand, it is a book that I  recommend to those who already know the answers to those questions, but love the Gospel so much that reading about the wonderful truths in it is always a joy, a refreshment. It is like taking the time to sit back on a lovely day and be reminded of all its beauty, and once more, fall in love with it.

Yesterday I read what Phillips writes about repentance; and it made me think about the beauty of it. O what a wonderful gift it is to us! Yet, just like we do with many other of the gifts we receive from God, at times we despise it.  How many times have we used this word only as an excuse to hide the sin we love? We say "I repent, forgive me," only to keep on doing exactly the same thing, over and over again; making no effort to kill that sin; making no attempt to mortify the sin that wants to rule our conduct and destroy our relationships.

Phillips says,

"Sticking with just the words translated "repent/ repentance" in the Greek NT, we start with the term's fundamental idea: 'Change your mind.' However, I must issue an immediate warning: Beware mistaking 'change your mind' as meaning simply 'shift an opinion or two.' The 'change' is a radical, top-to-bottom change; and it is the 'mind' that must change, not merely some individual notion."

"Maybe a better explanation of repentance would be a transformed mind, or a transformed way of thinking that issues in a transformed life.

We are exposed to the Word of God; and as a result, the way we look at and think about everything is transformed."
"Everything is transformed," this just hits hard. If we are still in this body, we are still struggling with our sinful nature, that is true. But, if we are true believers, repentance should be part of our daily walk with the Lord, which in turns means that we should be transformed every day in all things, in our attitudes, in the way we see things, in the way we look at the world. Always walking forward toward the goal: our sanctification.

Change and transformation must be part of our daily life. I don't want to be the same person that I am today in ten years, or two months, or three weeks from now; not even when I go to bed tonight.

Phillips explains, taking the example of the Churches at Ephesus and Thessalonica, how when they repented, "their fundamental beliefs changed, and their loves changed -in costly, practical ways." "They turned from the dead false idols they served, and to the living and true God, to a life centered around their hope in the Lord."

"One cannot seek God or turn to Him without by that act turning away from sin. it is impossible to lie in the arms of sin as lover, or serve sin as master, and at the same time love and serve God. One cannot turn to God without turning away from sin."
And this truth not only refers to the first time we are called out of darkness into His admirable light. This is true for today, in our Christian walk. Today I cannot turn to God without turning away from sin.

Today as we look at the Cross and take time to examine our heart, I pray we will truly grasp by the Spirit of God, what true repentance means so that, in turn, we may be changed into his likeness.

Under His grace,



post signature


If you are interested, you can read a more thorough review of this book at Douglas Wilson's Blog.

More on repentance:

"All too frequently repentance is either not taught at all or it is in the fine print. We somehow feel that if we get a person to "receive Christ as their personal Savior" it will automatically change their heart. We don't bother to find out if the person wants a changed heart. The Greek word for repentance simply means to change your mind. Do the people we "lead to Christ" want HIm to change their minds? Sad to say, frequently they do not. Too many people today think that it is possible to believe in God and be a Christian without turning to God and away from their sin. This is not the gospel message of Paul."
Douglas Wilson, Beginning with Repentance


***********************

Read more...

On Titus 2: 11-15 -When God's Grace Appears the Training Starts-

 4.4.12


For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions, and to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age, waiting for our blessed hope, the appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior Jesus Christ, who gave himself for us to redeem us from all lawlessness and to purify for himself a people for his own possession who are zealous for good works.

Declare these things; exhort and rebuke with all authority. Let no one disregard you.

These verses are incredible, and studying them has brought to me a greater and more in depth understanding of the meaning of grace, and how it look like in a day to day basis. Isn't it wonderful how the Word of God is alive? How it speaks to us? No matter how many times in my life I have read Titus; this is the first time I see this:

"[T]he grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation for all people, training us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions"

If the grace of God has appeared -and it has appeared- then it means that I did not expect it come. I was not waiting for it. It just appeared; all of a sudden. It broke right in the middle of my situation and did not ask me permission. It appeared, just like the angel appeared to Mary, and her life was abruptly changed. Grace appears at the moment when the world seems to be falling apart, and hope seems impossible. The Grace of God appeared in the person of Jesus.  "Grace is not some abstract doctrine or theological construct. Grace comes as Christ does. Grace is as personal as He is."

God's grace comes in the person of Jesus to bring salvation to His people and to train us to renounce ungodliness and worldly passions. WOW! I had never seen this! The grace of God not only saves us, but trains us to renounce  ungodliness and worldly passions. How many admonitions and instructions Paul has given to the church through Titus; at times it seems impossible to live up to those standards; but here is the key: Just as Grace appeared to save us; it has appeared to train us in holiness.

Bryan Chapell says,

"Such grace should make us so in love with God that we cannot stand whatever in our lives re-soil us and offends him. Biblical grace makes us intolerant of evil in our lives."
This grace of God that appears the moment we are drowning in sin, saves us and trains us to say no to sin. Saying "No" to ungodliness and worldly passions is possible only because the grace of God has appeared. Only because of Jesus.

"When we see God clearly in the appearance of His grace, we have an intense awareness of our unholiness... A true apprehension of grace instructs us of the magnitude and repugnance of our sin." Bryan Chapell

But is not enough to say "no" to all ungodliness and worldly passions;  we must, by God's grace, say "yes" to God's requirements: to live self-controlled, upright, and godly lives in the present age. (v.12b)

I love the way Chapell explains this,

"If being a Christian only involved self-control over passions and upright' behavior before others, we might get the idea that the Christian life was only a matter of living according to certain rules or performing in an acceptable way. By adding the word godly to the ways of grace teaches us to live, the apostle reminds us that the Christian life is one of dependence on God. Godliness is not a consequence of human resolution or willpower. It is a relationship with God that results in a life honoring to God."

And in this grace we live. "Godliness remains our obligation until Jesus returns." It is in this state of training, of working in godliness that we wait for our blessed hope. Let us persevere in this training always depending on his perfect grace.




post signature

Read more...

Praying the Psalms -Psalm 8-

 1.4.12



Psalm 8

To the choirmaster: according to The Gittith. A Psalm of David.

O Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.
Out of the mouth of babies and infants,
you have established strength because of your foes,
to still the enemy and the avenger.

When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
what is man that you are mindful of him,
and the son of man that you care for him?

Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings
and crowned him with glory and honor.
You have given him dominion over the works of your hands;
you have put all things under his feet,
all sheep and oxen,
and also the beasts of the field,
the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea,
whatever passes along the paths of the seas.

O Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!


O my Lord, how majestic is your name in all the earth!
Among your people, your name is exalted,
among the nations, all of them, Your name is great.
Your name is above all those who love you,
and above all those who hate you.
Your name, Your character,
is majestic because it is who You are.
Your name is majestic;
Rock of Ages,
Great I Am,
Conqueror,
Victorious,
King of Kings,
Strong Tower,
O Lord, You have established strength,
over your enemies.
We pray for our babies and infants,
for our sons and daughters,
let your praise be in their lips,
let them sing of the glories of your Name!


Lord, seeing your creation,
the perfection of it;
seeing the order with which you have created all of it,
draws me to your feet.
Father, why did it please you to look at me?
Why did you turn your eyes toward me to save me?
I am one. So little. A sinful one. Guilty.
And yet, You are mindful of me?
You care for me?
Lord, that is amazing!
Your name is majestic:
Savior,
Merciful Father,
Messiah,
Intercessor,
Mediator,
The Amen.

O LORD,
      how majestic is your name in all the earth!


Amen




post signature

Related Series: Celebrating the Excellencies of His Name


*********************

Read more...
Do you want to browse and ponder over older entries?

Click here to visit my former WordPress blog, On My Way to Heaven, there are 255 entries to read!

One day, hopefully, I will import it here!

You can subscribe to receive the almost-daily entries in your favorite reader, or you can become a sojourner; join me on this journey at the right bottom of the page, where it says "sojourners". I would love to "see" your face there.



Thank you for visiting!


I am a contributor here...

Who is Becky?

My Photo
Becky
If I am happy it is because of God! God, in His sovereign grace, has called me out of darkness into His Admirable light. He has opened my eyes and has shown me the way to Eternal Life. He has set my feet on a journey, and now I am walking Daily on My Way to Heaven. I did not find Jesus, He found me. I did not seek Him, yet He called me. I did not love Him, yet He loved me. I deserved death and He gave me Life. This is the place where I keep a journal of my life under His sun and by His grace!
View my complete profile

Borrowed Words

"It becomes us to spend this life only as a journey toward heaven... to which we should subordinate all other concerns of life. Why should we labor for or set our hearts on anything else, but that which is our proper end and true happiness?"

Jonathan Edwards

"I am still pondering God's greatness in His creation. I have so many questions that I would like to ask the Lord about the universe, creation, the fall of man... But when I'm in heaven, I wonder if I will even remember them. At that time, being in the presence of God will be enough. I'm thankful that I can look forward to that day."

-Persis

“Heaven is not here, it’s There. If we were given all we wanted here, our hearts would settle for this world rather than the next. God is forever luring us up and away from this one, wooing us to Himself and His still invisible Kingdom, where we will certainly find what we so keenly long for.”

- Elisabeth Elliot, Keep a Quiet Heart



May I kindly ask, if you wish to use any image or text from this space to email me to get written permission? These are our family pics. Our journal in pixels and few words.
Thank you.

-All photos and words on this website are protected by copyright. Do not download for use in anyway without consent. -

My email is

dailyonmywaytoheaven {at} yahoo {dot} com

Recent Posts

Copyright

All rights reserved©Becky Pliego 2009- 2010. All images and texts are property of the author unless otherwise mentioned.

Back to TOP