7 Reasons why you are Valuable

I think everyone goes through a period of time when they do not understand their true value. It may be during your adolescent years, or even as an adult. After I graduated from high school, I went through a very difficult, and lonely time.  My friends got married and went off to college, and I had no one to spend my time with.

For some reason I could not seem to make new friends; my severe acne did not help.  I gained weight and lowered my eyes whenever I met someone in passing.  I wondered why anyone would like me, especially a guy.

An attitude of, “I don’t care,” was my brand, but it simply wasn’t true.  My heart was full of pain, loneliness, and depression.

After about two years, I surrendered and cried out to God “I can’t take this anymore Lord.  What do you want me to do?  I will do it.”

That was the beginning of a wondrous time.  The Lord directed me to a very good church family, and I began to learn how much the Lord values me from Psalm 139.

If you suffer from low self-esteem, I have wonderful news for you.  You are fearfully and wonderfully made.  That means you are an “awesome wonder,” (The New King James Bible notes, p 1236).  In other words, you are a magnificent creation (Psalm 139:14)!

7 Reasons why you are Valuable

  • God was thinking about you before he created heaven and earth.
  • He planned every part of you.
  • He gave you a purpose and everything you need to accomplish it.
  • He knows and understands all of your thoughts.
  • He is all around you and will protect you on every side.
  • He knew you before you were born and watched as you were formed.
  • He goes with you, no matter where you go.

I learned that am not measured by others, especially bullies.  Their opinions should not affect the way I see myself.  My self-esteem should always come from how God sees me. Likewise, your self-esteem should always come from how God sees you.

You have the choice to love God.  He predestined you to become his child before he made the world!  No matter who you are, or what you have done, God loves you.

He has a patient and loving attitude towards you, even though you are not perfect. Jesus, God’s Son, wants to make your life better.  He is waiting for you to come to him, but he gave you the choice.  Come to him today (Romans 8:1).

5 Ways to Tune Up your Spiritual Brakes

How do you know if your spiritual brakes are working as well as they should?

Suzy gripped the steering wheel until her knuckles turned white. The lump in her throat prevented speech, as she scrutinized the steep downgrade. She was tense, and Kirby could see it, “What is wrong?” he asked.

“The brakes aren’t working right,” she replied.

“A… your Dad just had them fixed. Pull over and let me drive.”

The car barreled down the gravel road

He jumped in the driver’s seat, but it wasn’t long before he realized she was right.  The car barreled down the gravel road while rocks flew from under the tires. In the back seat, I made note of the treacherous drop offs, devoid of guard rails. There was nothing to prevent us from careening over the edge.

Now was the time for Kirby to make use of his father’s teaching.  It was a good thing he listened; that knowledge could save our lives. He ignored possible damage to the car, and forced the automatic transmission into low gear. The engine hunkered down and slowed ever so slightly as we rounded the next curve.

We lurched forward

Then he spotted a slight incline on the berm and headed toward it.  As the car climbed uphill, he stomped on the emergency brake and slammed the gearshift into park. Of course, we lurched forward and jerked to a sudden halt in a cloud of dust, but we were safe!

Believers face the peril of temptation every day.  Are your spiritual brakes in good working order?  Learn to apply your heart to the counsel and knowledge of Wisdom, she will keep you from falling over the edge.

Five Ways to Tune Up Your Spiritual Brakes

  1. Pay attention to wisdom
  2. Tune your ear to the sayings of the wise
  3. Apply your heart to what wisdom teaches
  4. Keep them in your heart
  5. Have them ready on your lips

“Pay attention and turn your ear to the sayings of the wise; apply your heart to what I teach, for it is pleasing when you keep them in your heart and have all of them ready on your lips.” (Proverbs 22:17-18 NIV).

Thirty Wise Sayings of King Solomon  (Proverbs 22:17 – Proverbs 24:22)   Saying 1

A Shocking 80% to 90% of People Panic in an Emergency

Does your child know what to do in an emergency? Teach them to act in faith, and not to panic.

Danger was in the air

We traipsed along the narrow path toward the deeper end of the pond, our fishing poles pointed towards the sky. “If anyone falls in, I will jump in and save them,” announced Tommy. “I am a boy scout.” I looked down and saw a timber rattler slither between two logs as I stepped over them. As the oldest I warned, “Watch out for the snake!” Danger was in the air.

Soon, we reached our destination, and I looked into the deep slimy water.  It was full of green algae, but I didn’t hesitate to bait my hook and cast my line.  Gail, Jackie and I found a nice comfortable spot to stand while we fished, but Sue decided to climb an embankment and fish from a high rock.

She plunged into the murky water

As she stepped forward on the rock; she picked up momentum, and plunged into the murky water.  Immediately, I let out blood curdling scream as fear took over.  I saw a woman on the other side of the pond begin to run as fast as she could, and some kids we didn’t know removing their shoes and socks.  In the meantime Sue signaled us by bouncing up and raising one finger, then two.  All of us understood her signal from the cartoons of our day. She was quickly running out of time.

“I’m going for help,” Tommy yelled, and took off, while our youngest sister Jackie watched. Apprehension was written across her face, but everything changed in the blink of an eye. Gail calmly stretched out her arm, and placed the end of her pole into the water.  Wa-lah! Sue grabbed the end of the pole, and Gail towed her in close to shore.

She was covered with green slime

Once I saw the danger subside, I stopped screaming and took action. When Sue was close enough, Gail grabbed one of Sue’s hands and I grabbed the other. Sue’s face portrayed the relief we all felt.  Her beautiful pink sweater, embroidered with pearls was covered with green slime, but no one cared.  We just laughed and sloshed all the way back to the cabin.  Sue and Gail walked arm in arm and declared their love for one another.  “You saved my life,” Sue blurted out. “I love you!” exclaimed Gail with heartfelt emotion.  (They usually fought like cats and dogs, but today they were best friends, all because Gail came to the rescue. lol)  Of course, we were all relieved that the danger was past.

However, danger is always in the air, and often we must stretch out our hand to Jesus, while obeying his commands.  The devil is like a roaring lion who roams about seeking anyone he can devour.  Matthew 14:22-33 tells the story of Peter who obeyed the Lord as he stepped out onto the stormy sea. Then he noticed that the wind was strong, and he was afraid. Immediately he started to sink, but he cried out, “Save me, Lord!”

Stretch out your hand when you are afraid

Peter obviously felt the danger, but Jesus reached out and grabbed hold of him. “What little faith you have!  Why did you doubt?” asked Jesus (Matthew 14:31).

  • Never doubt the Lord, but if you do, stretch out your hand.
  • He will pull you out of the slime
  • He will steady you
  • He will  put your feet back on solid ground.

Benefits of Wisdom

The Benefits of Wisdom will Exceed your Wildest Imagination

“A litmus test for how much you value and believe the Word of God is how much you prize and seek after obtaining godly wisdom.”  Pastor Brian Hillsong, from Hillsong.com collected blog.

This true story illustrates a way to relate to the Lord, and to find the wisdom and knowledge of God. From left to right:  Ginger, Sue, Helen, Jackie, Gail

“We’re here,” said Dad. It was Sunday afternoon, and we were on another family outing. I was around eleven and my three sisters ranged from six to nine years of age. Everyone piled out of the car onto the desert floor, including our parents, John and Helen. It was a mild, picturesque day in Arizona, and lunch was to be roasted weenies!

“We need to build a camp fire to roast the weenies, and we need fuel for the fire,” began our Dad, as he removed a small shovel from the trunk.

As he knelt to dig a small pit, he said, “I’ll teach you girls how to start this fire without a match!”

I was eager to see how he would perform his feat

We were all ears, and I was eager to see how he would perform his feat.

“We need dry grass for tinder, twigs for kindling, wood to put on top that will burn easily, and some bigger sticks that will keep burning so we can cook. In addition, we need some rocks to put around this pit to keep the fire under control. We don’t want to start a wild fire.” The vegetation was sparse and there was little concern, yet he wanted to teach us survival skills and safety protocols.

We all listened with labored patience, because we had already learned how to construct a campfire in girls clubs. Yet, we adored our father, and gave him our rapt attention.

When he said, “Go!” we joyfully raced out into the desert to find all of the necessary elements he described. Dad continued to carefully dig, and Mom noticed the smug, hidden grin on his face. All the activity turned into a major production as we came running back, each with our own special find. “That’s good honey, but we need some more,” he directed, and so we hurried back to the desert and hunted for the next treasure.

The suspense mounted

He urged and cheered us on for about half an hour until enough material was on hand. The suspense mounted as he defined the basics of building a fire, of first laying out the grass, and methodically placing each twig, “just so.” My eyes were glued to the process while he performed each step and explained everything in careful detail, because he was our beloved father.

Finally, he was ready! However, he did a curious thing. He took a rifle shell from his pocket, and delicately removed the bullet with his knife; then gingerly poured the gunpowder from the shell casing onto the tee pee shaped structure. Casually, he stood to take a break and light a cigarette. He made small talk, while we anxiously waited to see how he would start the fire. “Are you girls hungry?” he teased, knowing that we had worked up an appetite.

“Yes,” we shrieked in unison.

We watched with unsuspecting awe

“Okay, let’s get this fire started.” We watched with unsuspecting awe when he bent over the fire pit and ignited it by simply touching the gunpowder with the tip of his cigarette. The fire blazed in mere seconds.  His familiar ornery smile appeared openly as our chagrin set in.

“Ah Dad,” we whinned, “We thought you were going to rub two sticks together,” and giggled somewhat disappointed. All of us had fallen for his fantastic scheme: “hook, line, and sinker”. Then everyone, including our Mom knew that Dad already had his so- called “picnic.” He feasted on every second of our dismay.

“Helen, where are those wieners?” he howled.

“Right here,” she beamed, “We need some sticks to roast the weenies on.”

Dad laughed outright with infectious glee, as he said, “Come on girls, let’s go cut those sticks.” We bounded after him while Mom kept a watchful eye on the fire.

We wanted so much to please Dad on that family outing, and the materials we searched for were “treasures” to us. Why? Our Daddy was giving us his undivided attention, and we wanted to spend time with him. It was great fun!

Rainbows are one of many treasures found in the desert.

Picture by Sue Newbanks

Our Dad demonstrated love when he taught us how to avoid starting wild fires in the desert. In a similar fashion, our LORD wants us to live an abundant life without “wild fires” that can so easily get out of control.

 

  • “Wild fires” are circumstances that we set into motion by making wrong choices, often made out of ignorance or arrogance. Whatever the reason for the choice, consequences can be long and painful. By following God’s precepts or principles, “wild fires” may be avoided.

 

  • If we seek wisdom, our lives will change and we will experience many benefits, which will exceed our wildest imagination. God promises!

 

  • As we begin our search for wisdom, we must become like little children, running around in the desert searching for treasures in order to learn the lessons that our Father has prepared to teach us. So let us gather the tinder, kindling, and wood, dig the pit, surround it with stones, and build our “bonfire”.

Can You Solve Solomon’s Riddle?

Are you exhibiting God’s character in your life?

 The Bible says that wisdom has the advantage of success (Ecclesiastes 10:10 NASB).

If you are looking for an edge that will alter your life; simply apply wisdom.  Victory will come your way, but remember, victory will be within the confines of what the Lord knows is best for you.

Victory may not come in the way you perceive it, because we all have lessons to learn. Remember, the Lord takes all of your individual circumstances into consideration. You can make wise decisions

Wisdom is the principle thing…(Proverbs 4:7 KJV). It is more valuable than the highest quality of gold or fine jewels.  True success is fantastic, but hardship and adversity can ravage your soul.   You can make wise decisions with training and practice (I Timothy 2:15 KJV).

The Definition of Wisdom

What is wisdom you ask? Wisdom is the teaching of a personal God who is holy and just and expects those who know him to exhibit his character in many practical affairs of life…wisdom is expressed in shrewdness (Harris, Archer & Waltke, 1980, The Wordbook of the Old Testament, Vol. I, p 283).

Wisdom has Seven Pillars

According to the words of KIng Solomon and other writers of scripture, wisdom has a house built on seven pillars (Proverbs 9:1 NASB). What are wisdom’s seven pillars?

A pillar is a foundation that something rests on to make it secure, such as a house or a skyscraper.

What are wisdom’s seven pillars? The author of Proverbs does not immediately answer the question; but it is a riddle that is meant to be solved. Perhaps he chuckled a little when he wrote the verse.

What if the pillars and the purpose are the same? Sort of a dual purpose. That would be tricky, just like a riddle.

If so, it can be deduced from the book of wisdom that the pillars are as follows along with the logic behind our theory.

Understanding

You can’t get understanding until you know God.

       Instruction in wise behavior

You can’t exhibit wise behavior without understanding.

       Righteousness

You must be willing to listen and be ready to receive instruction in righteousness.

      Justice

Do you want justice? In truth, you and I deserve punishment for our sinful nature.

      Equity

Do you want everything to be fair? Believers would be punished, except for one thing:

Jesus took our punishment.

       Prudence for the naive

You must be cautious or prudent, not naïve; when you make decisions.

      Knowledge and discretion for youth

You must learn to use knowledge and discretion to avoid disaster.

We believe these are the 7 pillars of wisdom that provide a very firm foundation for wisdom.

We welcome your comments.  Please join us as we begin to explore wisdom, and discover exciting spiritual treasures.

Other websites define wisdom’s 7 pillars differently. For a another perspective visit The Seven Pillars of Wisdom | The Institute for Creation Research or

The Seven Pillars of Wisdom – Around the Word in 365 Days – Charisma Devotionals

How to Receive God’s Free Gift of Love

How do you know where you will spend eternity? Jesus took the punishment for the sins of the whole world.

 

God’s gift is a precious, but you have to accept the gift for it to become yours.

God loves you. It doesn’t matter what you’ve done, or what’s been done to you. There are no perfect people in God’s kingdom, and He wants it that way. Your weaknesses give you an incredible ability to serve by helping  others that have similar struggles. God wants you to know you are loved, and to share his love and gift with others.

What is this free gift?

This gift is always portrayed as only one gift, but in truth it is many gifts. You have probably heard that God’s gift is eternal life, but it is so much more than that. He also offers forgiveness, adoption, a family, a position, a future, and help. When we choose to accept God’s gift, we are get more than we ever dreamed possible.

When God created us, he desired a relationship with us, just as we desire relationships with our kids, or our parents. He created us to be with Him. He walked and talked with Adam and Eve in the garden on a daily basis. However, He also gave us the ability to make choices for ourselves. He wanted us to have free will. When He set up paradise for Adam and Eve, He only gave them one rule. He told them;  all of this is yours, but don’t eat from one tree. Our generous God even Adam and Eve them what would happen if they did. He didn’t just say, “because I said so.”

“…you are free to eat from any tree in the garden; but you must not eat from the tree of the knowledge of good and evil, for when you eat from it;  you will certainly die.”

Adam and Eve chose to break that rule, and the consequences  impacted all of us. Because they chose to disobey; they passed on the sin nature to us. Their choice separated all of us from God.  When someone we love breaks our trust, it causes a separation.  Reconciliation requires forgiveness and healing.

Have you ever chosen to forgive someone that could care less that they hurt you? God did. He did not want His children separated from Him, so he created a bridge.  He sacrificed his own Son to bridge the gap.

For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that who-ever believes in Him should not perish, but have everlasting life (John 3:16 KJV).

Jesus, God’s Son, was the only person that could live a perfect life because he is God. He was the only one that could make us right before God the Father.  He gave up his life willingly, and endured all the things that we struggle with.  He knows our struggles!  He was tempted, he wept over the loss of a friend, he was betrayed by someone close to him, and he was abandoned in his greatest time of need.

Because of his perfect life, death could not hold him!  After he was buried for three days, he rose again and was seen by over 500 witnesses.

Jesus said, I am the way, the truth, and the life; no man comes unto the Father, but by me (John 14:6 KJV).

All you need to do is confess with your mouth, and believe in your heart what the Bible says about him; the you will receive these wonderful gifts from God.

For if you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved.

For with the heart man believes unto righteousness; and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation (Romans 10:9-10).

There is nothing you can do to earn these gifts. You are saved by grace, through faith and not of yourself; it is the gift of God, not of works so that no man can boast.

These are  gifts are an inheritance of all those who believe.