Posted by: Anne | February 18, 2017

pampered, or purposed?

Many thanks to my Facebook friend, Caren, for this:

The Bible is such a wonder! You can read a passage over and over, and get something new from it every time. I was reading and studying Psalm 23, probably the most well known passage of the Bible. We all read it and see our Shepherd, how He takes care and provides for us, His sheep. But this time, I saw something totally different!

Yes, He is our Shepherd and He does take care of us as His sheep. But do we just see ourselves as pet sheep? That’s not what sheep were for in Bible times. Sheep were raised for 3 things. For wool, for food, and for sacrifice. The shepherd took care of his flock to prepare them for their purpose. Yes, the shepherd loved his sheep, he invested in his sheep, he protected his sheep and he led his sheep…for a purpose.

We are His sheep. We have a purpose. God loves us, invests in us, protects us, and leads us…for a purpose. We are not just spoiled pets. Our purpose isn’t just to be petted and pampered. We are to provide wool – taking care of needs of others. We are to provide meat – feeding the souls of others with the Word of God. We are to provide a sacrifice – living our lives for our Shepherd and others.

Are you just a pet sheep, or do you have a purpose?

Posted by: Anne | February 11, 2017

love is as love does

The Actions of Love

[Paul] uses the word, or the pronoun “it” to refer to love, thirteen times in the thirteen verses that make up I Corinthians 13. Unfortunately, Paul does not offer a tidy definition of the word “love”.  What Paul mostly offers in I Corinthians 13 is a description of what “love” does.

This observation in itself is a healthy corrective to much popular belief about the nature of love. In popular usage, “love” is often thought of as a state or a condition. It is viewed as feeling we possess, or do not possess. We can have love one minute and not have love another. We can “fall” into this feeling of love, or we can “fall” out of love. This state of love is unpredictable.

For Paul, love is not primarily a state; it is more accurately a choice. Love is an action word.

There are things love does and things love does not do.

Love does:
* live with patience
* behave kindly
* rejoice in the truth
* bear all things
* believe all things
* hope in all things
* endure all things

Love does not:
* act out of envy
* take a boastful attitude
* adopt an arrogant attitude
* behave in a way that is irritable
* give in to resentment
* rejoice in wrongdoing
* end

These actions run contrary to a prevailing romantic view of love. They are not particularly glamorous.

Most people probably are not going to sign up with enthusiasm for a life characterized by the need for patience.

But… Love comes dressed in the humble garments of our daily decisions to choose to be kind to one another, to delight in the goodness of life, and to avoid irritability and resentment.

The beauty of Paul’s vision of love is that it is lies within the reach of every person. It is always possible for us to “endure” just a little bit more. There is never a time when we need to abandon all hope. We are always capable of choosing to be patient just a moment longer…

Paul’s vision of love offers life-transforming choices we can make… Paul offers a vision of life in which we do not live constantly as the victim of our feelings. He encourages us to see that we are always able to manifest the actions of love and to respond to life from that deep place where “faith, hope, and love abide.”

Read the full article at the source:
https://inaspaciousplace.wordpress.com/2013/01/29/the-actions-of-love/

Posted by: Anne | February 4, 2017

true love

“This love of which I speak is slow to lose patience – it looks for a way of being constructive.
Love is not possessive.
Love is not anxious to impress nor does it cherish inflated ideas of its own ideas.
Love has good manners and does not pursue selfish advantage.
Love is not touchy.
Love does not keep account of evil or gloat over the wickedness of other people. On the contrary, it is glad with all good men when truth prevails.
Love knows no limits to its endurance, no end to its trust, no fading of its hope; it can outlast anything. It is, in fact, the one thing that stands when all else has fallen.”
– Elisabeth Elliot, Let Me Be a Woman

See also:
http://www.crosswalk.com/faith/bible-study/real-love-a-paraphrase-of-1-corinthians-13.html

https://inaspaciousplace.wordpress.com/2013/02/14/i-corinthians-13-valentines-day-paraphrase-love-is-a-choice/

Posted by: Anne | January 28, 2017

reframe with five simple words

“What else could it mean?”

How things affect us is usually by the meanings we give to those things. Reframing means that you… can give a fresh perspective, new meanings and ultimately what you feel about the event.

By asking “What else could it mean?” you open up options of possible meanings that you can give to the event. Ultimately what happens inside you is the result of your inner processing and choice. You can design the outcome of the circumstance, not leaving it to the default face value.

Read the full article at the source:
fitmindfitlife.com/2012/02/what-else-could-it-mean/

See also:
aspiretogreatness.net/what-else-could-it-mean/

Posted by: Anne | January 21, 2017

resolved: practice perspective

“What we do see depends mainly on what we look for. … In the same field the farmer will notice the crop, the geologists the fossils, botanists the flowers, artists the colouring, sportsmen the cover for the game. Though we may all look at the same things, it does not all follow that we should see them.” ― John Lubbock

Ways to Keep Life in Perspective

* Nothing in life has any inherent meaning; it only has the meaning you assign to it. Shakespeare once said, “There is nothing good or bad, but thinking makes it so.”
You can actively change the meaning of any circumstance in your life to one that empowers you. The way to do that is by asking empowering questions. Here are a few examples:
–What is good about this?
–What is funny about this?
–How is this making me stronger or smarter?
–How can this help me and others?

* A sense of gratitude can immediately increase your quality of life. Thinking about and being grateful for the things you have increases joy, happiness, and overall outlook on life. What you focus on expands and when you focus on what you have, you bring more of it into your life. This also cultivates an attitude of a sense of abundance. When you focus on what’s missing, you cultivate pessimism, cynicism, and quality of life goes down. This leads to a sense of scarcity and negativity.

* Focus on the things you can control, and do not focus on the things you cannot control. Allowing things that you cannot control to upset you will set you up for frustration and decrease your quality of life. There is absolutely no point in getting upset about things such as the weather, traffic, and other people. The one thing that you can always control is your attitude.

Read the full article at the source:
InspireMeToday.com/brilliance/6-ways-to-keep-life-in-perspective/

Posted by: Anne | January 14, 2017

facets of faith

“Faith has ‘patience’ and ‘perseverance’ woven in… even if we believe God’s promises, we are usually caught off guard by His timing.”
~ @seandunn

Posted by: Anne | January 7, 2017

resolved: one day at a time

One Day at a Time

“Each day has enough trouble of its own” — now there’s an understatement! Do you wake every day wondering what catastrophe is awaiting you? Perhaps it seems as if disasters have taken numbers and are standing in line just waiting to bombard your life.

The wonderful old song “One Day at a Time” offers the best solution for handling the struggles of life: “Just give me the strength to do every day what I have to do.” After all, that’s the only way life can be lived—one day at a time.

– It’s impossible to live in yesterday because yesterday is gone. You can’t get it back, no matter how appealing that may seem. The happy memories of yesterday are yours to treasure, but that time has elapsed, and you must move on.

– It’s also impossible to live tomorrow because it has not yet arrived. In truth tomorrow will never arrive because when it comes it is no longer tomorrow. Tomorrow is like a marvelous butterfly—beautiful to behold but illusive to capture.

Are you trading the rewarding moment of today for a fading picture of yesterday or the unpromised dream of tomorrow, perhaps to escape today’s reality? If so, you may be missing God’s blessing for today—his carefully wrapped present that can only be opened one day at a time.

Live in the moment! Celebrate today while it is still today. It is the dream you looked forward to yesterday, and tomorrow it will only be a memory—so make it a sweet one.

Mary Hollingsworth

Read the full article at the source:
https://www.bible.com/en-GB/reading-plans/1017-fulfilled-devotions-for-single-women/day/6

Posted by: Anne | December 31, 2016

starting point

“It’s that simple. You either take what has been dealt to you and allow it to make you a better person, or you allow it to tear you down. The choice does not belong to fate, it belongs to you.” ~ Josh Shipp

Posted by: Anne | December 24, 2016

Strange Way To Save The World

Strange Way To Save The World
by 4him

I’m sure he must have been surprised
At where this road had taken him
Cause never in a million lives
Would he have dreamed of Bethlehem

And standing at the manger
He saw with his own eyes
The message from the angel come to life
And Joseph said

CHORUS
Why me, I’m just a simple man of trade
Why Him with all the rulers in the world
Why here inside this stable filled with hay
Why her, she’s just an ordinary girl
Now I’m not one to second guess
What angels have to say
But this is such a strange way to save the
World

To think of how it could have been
If Jesus had come as He deserved
There would have been no Bethlehem
No lowly shepherds at His birth

But Joseph knew the
Reason love had to reach so far
And as he held the Savior in his arms
He must have thought

REPEAT CHORUS

Now, I’m not one to second guess
What angels have to say
But this is such a strange
Way to save the world
Such a strange way, this is
Such a strange way
A strange way to save the world
A strange way to save the world


Lyrics were found here:
www.lyricsmania.com/strange_way_to_save_the_world_lyrics_4him.html

Hear the song at YouTube:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YBCVIJBB7o4

Posted by: Anne | December 17, 2016

Christmas, given

What can we give, who have so little to offer?

Ourselves.

Remember – that’s what God loves so much. All He asks this Christmas is you. You with your failures, your sins, your problems, your fears. You.

This is Christmas – the real meaning of it.

God loving; searching; giving Himself – to us.

Man needing; receiving; giving himself – to God.

Redemptions’ glorious exchange of gifts! Without which we cannot live; without which we cannot give those we love anything of lasting value.

This is the meaning of Christmas – the wonder and glory of it.

Read more at the source:
billygrahamlibrary.org/this-too-i-shall-give-by-ruth-bell-graham/

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