Monday, January 23, 2017

The Peace That Passes All Understanding

Have you seen countenances that look troubled and full of concern? I have, and you know what?  Just a smile can change that for them.  I try to smile at everyone I meet, I forget sometimes when I'm thinking about what I'm doing, but everyone deserves a smile.  Everyone deserves kindness, try letting someone go ahead of you at the check out and see how much they appreciate it, they only have two or three items and I have a basket full.  I always receive a grateful thank you.  It does my heart good too.  You may have made their day.  It's hard to tell how far a little kindness will go.  But we are going to talk about a peace that passes all understanding today.  Almost everyone needs a peaceful heart, just look around you and you will see their need.  You may need peace and I know I do, so let's check it out.  We'll go back to the check out line in another blog.

Philippians 4:7  "And the peace of God which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus."

Psalm 29:11  "The Lord will give strength to His people; the Lord will bless His people with peace."

Psalm 119:165  "Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing shall offend them."

Isaiah 26:3  "You will keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on You.  Because he trusts in You."

John 14:27  "Peace I leave with you, My peace I give to you; not as the world gives do I give to you.  Let not your heart be troubled neither let it be afraid."

Isaiah 54:10  "For the mountains shall depart and the hills be removed, but My kindness shall not depart from you, nor shall My covenant of peace be removed; says the Lord who has mercy on you."

Romans 5:1 "Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ.

Romans 8:6  "For to be carnally minded is death, but to be spiritually minded is life and peace."

Romans 12:18  "If it is possible, as much as depends on you, live peaceably with all men."

Romans 15:13  "Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit."

I hope this little study has given you peace and that you realize how much our Heavenly Father wants us to have the peace that we cannot even understand though we try so hard to grasp it.  It is through believing that He has promised to give us joy and peace and hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.
May God bless you with the peace of heaven.  Grandma Joan

Saturday, January 21, 2017

A Relentless pursuit

Have you every been pursued by a policeman, or by a boyfriend or girlfriend?  If so you know what it's like.  When my boys tried the world out for a while, they use to tell me how they ducked cops and escaped their pursuit and I heard it so much there for a while, that I would dream of being pursued by the cops and escaping.  That may sound funny and I guess it was but it helps me understand what being pursued is all about.

Luke 15:4-6  "What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he loses one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the wilderness and go after the one which is lost until he finds it?  And when He has found it, He lays it on His shoulders, rejoicing.  And when He comes home, He calls together his friends and neighbors, saying to them, 'Rejoice with Me, for I have found My sheep that was lost." This is the story of Jesus relentlessly searching for that one lost sheep. And when it is found He carries it home on His shoulders, rejoicing that He has found me or you and there is rejoicing in heaven over our being found.

John 10:14  "I am the Good Shepherd; and I know My Sheep, and am known by My own.  As the Father knows Me, even so I know the Father, and I lay down My life for the sheep."

Jesus is the Good Shepherd and He knows who are His and He laid down His life for the sheep, not just His sheep but all the sheep.

John 10:27,28  "My sheep hear My voice, and I know them, and they follow Me.  And I give them eternal life, and they shall never perish; neither shall anyone snatch them out of My hand."

His sheep hear His voice and He knows them and they follow Him and His gift to them is eternal life and they will never perish.  Why? because they follow Him and no one can snatch them out of His hand.

Study the life of Jesus through the gospels of Matthew, Mark, Luke and John and you will see the meaning of following Him.  This will give you a little or big study to do on your own.  Jesus is a gentle Shepherd.

Isaiah 40:11  "He will feed His flock like a shepherd; He will gather the lambs with His arms, And carry them in His bosom.  And gently lead those who are with young."  See how loving and gentle He is and how relentlessly He pursues us till we surrender to Him and He can take complete care of us and change us into His likeness.

I don't want you to think it is a quick fix to surrender our all to Jesus.  It is not.  It can be the hardest task you have ever undertaken and it will probably be the work of a lifetime, because we live in a world overtaken with evil and hate and just about every evil that you can think of.  We see it, and hear some of it every day and some of us have been completely overcome by some of it or all of it.  I don't know your circumstances but I do know how to obtain eternal life and even here have all the joys that God has planned for those that follow him.  I am a happy Christian, do I fall?  oh yes, but not like I use to.  There is great joy in following Jesus and the closer we come to Him through our study of His word, the less of the world we appreciate, seriously, we learn what to avoid and what to hold on to.

My prayers are with each one of you that read my blog.  I don't know your names or your circum-stances but I do know that the shape this old world is in, most of us desire a better land where all this evil is put in the past.  I do and that is what my prayer will be for you that you will desire Christ so much that you can't turn Him down in His relentless search for you.  Grandma Joan

In Christ

It is such a privilege to be 'In Christ', I don't know if I can give this little study justice, but I will try.  I may have to continue on to the next blog.  We will see.  I will try to get my meaning across with some of the things that have happened to me, that  I feel are miraculous.  I'm sure many of you have similar stories, and it would be nice to hear them.

2 Corinthians 5:17  "Therefore if anyone is in Christ, he is a new creation:  Old things have passed away; behold, all things have become new."

Ezekiel 36: 25-28  "Then I will sprinkle clean water on you, and you shall be clean;  I will cleanse you from all your filthiness and from all your idols. I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh.  I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes, and you will keep My judgements and do them."

How does all this take place, don't ask me but I know from experience that it does.  For example, it has always been hard for me to see someone prosper and for me not to prosper as they have.  Call it whatever you want.  Without thinking, I find myself now rejoicing over others prosperity, even big corporations, it doesn't seem to matter who, it is always a pleasure for me to see it.  I didn't ask for that, when my heart changed so did my thinking.  When my stony heart was removed and replaced with a heart of flesh, I find myself more friendly and loving to everyone.  This is very exciting to me.
Before I was critical, cold, and nearly friendless.  Now I love everyone, am warm and friendly and try very hard not to pick up on my critical spirit. I hated crowds and didn't like church, or much of anything that had to do with people. I can't describe it but I sure can describe the way I am now and I take no credit for it because all I have done to be like this is to surrender it all to Jesus and He has done the rest, I didn't even know some of it was happening until it happened. This is the truth.

1 Peter 2:24,25  "Who Himself bore out sins in His own body on the tree, that we having died to sins, (surrendering our sins) might live for righteousness by whose stripes we are healed.  For you were like sheep going astray, but have now returned to the Shepherd and Overseer of your soul." I have returned.  I guess I was lukewarm and didn't take God's promises for real, but now I know they are real and for me and for you.  Don't be lukewarm, be on fire with the blessings He bestows when you surrender your sins to Him.  I have a story to tell and an experience to share.  Praise God.

Do you see what  happened to our sins?  Christ bore them in His own body on the cross so we could die to ours and in doing this we might be healed by His stripes, (the floggings He received).  Have you received His healing power in your life, if you have I praise the Lord, if you haven't I beg you to let go of your selfish ways and submit to Christ's ways, it's totally wonderful.  I haven't attained yet but I believe I am on my way.  More later.  Grandma Joan

Friday, January 20, 2017

Pardon Me, Lord

I have noticed lately that the President of our country has been handing out pardons quite freely.  I really have no opinion on it one way or another, but I was thinking about how they must feel to be granted such a blessing after years in prison.  I hope they appreciate the freedom they will be experiencing and will stay away from their life of crime.  Some of them may end up going right back to prison again.  I hope not.

You know, sometimes we end up in a prison that we make for ourselves, like a prison of hate, anger, pornography, overeating, sugar, did you know that most people that give up meat in their diet fall for the sugar addiction, it's true, I have observed that over and over. There are addictions of all kinds, some of which do not seem bad to us but could end up wasting a lot of our time which we could spend getting acquainted with Jesus or sharing or doing something that needs done and we just don't want to do it  Movies, Facebook, texting which are good things, well, I don't no about movies being a good thing but for me Facebook is my social outlet and I was spending way too much time on it and by God's help it is much better.  I don't do much texting.  I don't like movies because they are a waste of time and the swearing and filth that is in most of them does affect us whether we believe it or not. "I will set nothing wicked before my eyes." Psalm 101:3. What are you spending time in prison for?  All of these things are addictions of some kind.

Here's the best part, we can ask our heavenly Father to pardon us from these prison sources and be free at last.  Do you believe that?  Let me share some promises with you so you can receive an abundant pardon from your prison house.

Isaiah 55:7  "Let the wicked forsake his way, and the unrighteous man his thoughts, let him return to the Lord, and He will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon."

Isaiah 43:25  "I, even I,am He who blots out your transgressions for My sake; and I will not remember your sins."

I have a question to ask myself mostly but it may apply to you.  Why after we ask for pardon or forgiveness do we keep allowing satan to bring up our past and keep condemning us for something God has pardoned us from?  That is a good question. It just now came to my mind as I am considering this subject. I just realized that it is called unbelief.  Wow!  I am ashamed for the times I have shown disbelief in the pardoning love of my Lord.  What do you think about that?   I am so glad that God has brought me back to blogging again, I am learning more by sharing with you than maybe even you are.  Praise the Lord for His patience with me.

Psalm 86:5  "For You Lord are good, and ready to forgive, and abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You."

1 John 1:9  "If we confess our sins He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."

Nehemiah 9:17  "They (the Israelites) refused to obey, and they were not mindful of Your wonders that you did among them.  But they hardened their necks and in their rebellion they appointed a leader to return to their bondage.  But You are God, ready to pardon, gracious and merciful, slow to anger, abundant in kindness, and did not forsake them."

How long are you going to stay in your prison of addiction? Pardon is just a prayer of confession away.  Don't be like me. Don't let Satan intimidate you with your past, let Jesus wash it all away and forget about it. What promises of pardon and freedom and peace! Believe them and be free.
Grandma Joan

PS.  Let's not go back to prison.  What do you say?

Thursday, January 19, 2017

Benefits received from the Word of God

There are all kinds of benefits, Insurance benefits, job benefits, health benefits, government benefits, VA benefits, Social Security benefits, death benefits and then there is Spiritual Benefits.  All of those are good benefits usually but the Spiritual benefits are the best of all because there is nothing left out  that will benefit our spiritual life.  I would like to encourage you today by listing some of these excellent benefits from the Word of God.  The first     are from Psalm 119.  A benefit is something that is an advantage to us or is for our well-being, or something we can gain.  So lets see what some of them are.

Psalm 119:18  "Open mine eyes that I may see wondrous things from your law."  We are asking Him to open our eyes so that He may reveal things to us from His law.  A Revelation.

Psalm 119:25  "Revive me according to your Word". According to His word we can have a revival."

Psalm 119:28  "Strengthen me according to your Word."  We will receive strength from His word.

Psalm 119:99  "I have more understanding then all my teachers, for Your testimonies are my meditation."  We will receive wisdom from His word.

Psalm 119:105  "Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path."  His word is a light to guide us.

Psalm 119:165  "Great peace have they that love your law, and nothing shall offend the."  His word gives us peace.

These verses reveal to us the benefits that we will receive through His word.  They are: We will have a revelation of things from His word.  We can have a revival from His word.  We can be strengthened by reading His word.  We will receive wisdom by reading His word. His word is a light to guide us through life, and we can have great peace so that nothing can offend us.

It seems to me that this covers a lot of areas of our life.  A lot more than earthly benefits do, at least in my humble opinion.  Our heavenly benefits are priceless, are they not? I challenge you to apply His words to your life and watch these benefits come to life.  It's worth every effort.  I have even noticed things changing in my life that I didn't ask for and it is wonderful to see how God works each day as we submit our will into His will.  Grandma Joan

Wednesday, January 18, 2017

Five Steps to Eternity

Have you ever wondered what you have to do to live forever with your God?  Is there certain things we must do?  Well, I have to tell you this, Heaven is a perfect place that we may enter upon obeying God's requirements.  He will never, ever allow sin to enter there.  That's a hard saying isn't it?  Yes, I know it is, but I also know this, I don't want to go there if I have to suffer like I have suffered here in this world, and I doubt that you would want to go through your suffering again or something of the same order.  There is a saying, that I agree with and it says: 'It is easier to be saved than to be lost.'
I know that you probably don't agree with that and neither did I to begin with but through study of God's word I can understand it better now.  I humbly submit to you that I don't have all the answers as you must have read in my last blog, but I have to believe what God has told us in His word.

Step #1  Recognize that we have a problem.  How hard is that?  Acknowledge that we are sinners.  How hard is that?  I know I have problems and I also know that I am a sinner saved by grace not by my own doings.
Romans 3:23 says, "For all have sinned and come short of the glory of God."  All includes each of us.
Isaiah 53:6 says, "All we like sheep have gone astray, We have turned everyone to his own way; and the Lord has laid on Him the iniquity of us all."  God has laid on Jesus the iniquity of us all, all of us.

Step #2  Believe you can be saved.  That might be hard for some of us who have fallen far from grace but the Scripture promises us that "He who believes in the Son has everlasting life; and He who does not believe the Son shall not have life, but the wrath of God abides on Him." John 3:36. So my advice for myself and others is pray for Belief and God will give us the belief that we need.

Step #3  Confess and Repent.  1 John 1:9 says, "If we confess our sins, He is faithful and just to forgive us our sins and to cleanse us from all unrighteousness."  Isaiah 55:6,7 also says, "Seek the Lord while He may be found, call upon Him while He is near, Let the wicked forsake His way, and the unrighteous man His thoughts; let him return to the Lord , and he will have mercy on him; and to our God, for He will abundantly pardon."  No matter how far we have fallen from His grace, we are told that He will ABUNDANTLY pardon, so lets show sorrow for our sin and confess and repent, He is faithful and just to cleanse us from ALL unrighteousness.

Step #4  "Willing to receive Jesus as our personal Savior and trusting in the instruction He has given us.  John 3:16 says, "For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son that we might not perish but have everlasting life."  And 2 Cor. 5:17 says, "Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, he is a new Creation, old things have passed away; behold all things have become new."  Rev. 3:20 says, "Behold, I stand at the door and knock.  If anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to Him and dine with Him and He with me."  He is asking us to be willing to come, is that hard to do?

Step #5  Confess Jesus as your Lord and Savior. And share Him with others.  We don't just want to be in heaven without our friends and family, do we?  We must share.  We can share our experience and what God has done for us.  Romans 10:9,10 says, "If you confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus and believe in your heart that God has raised Him from the dead, you will be saved.  For with the heart one believes unto righteousness, and with the mouth confession is made unto salvation.  Mark 8:34 says, "Whoever desires to come after Me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow Me."

How do we follow these steps? There is only one way and that is submit to God's calling and remember in Hebrews 13:5 He has said, 'I WILL NEVER LEAVE YOU NOR FORSAKE YOU."

Check this one out for encouragement.  2 Thess. 5:23,24  "Now may the God of peace Himself sanctify you completely; and may your whole spirit, soul, and body be preserved blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. HE WHO CALLS YOU WILL ALSO DO IT."

Our duty is to stay surrendered to His will and humbly follow His leading as you search the scriptures to know His will.  Pray for strength to be able to surrender your will.  That is the hardest part of our journey to His kingdom, to surrender self and live in His will.  God bless as you journey on to know your Lord.  Grandma Joan

For this study I give credit to Doug Batchelor, I thought it was worth sharing.

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Humility after Submitting

Hello Friends, I want to tell you a little story about humility.  I had a young friend that was always asking for advice from me and I was very willing to give it.  One day she asked me a  question and as always I was there for her and to give her my opinion or advice.  I don't remember what the question was but I do remember what her answer to me was after receiving my advice.  She said, ' You always have an answer don't you?'  At that moment, I didn't have anything to say, it struck me that I was always willing to give my advice and should have been giving her godly advice and that I had a bit of pride that I needed to remedy.  I NEEDED HUMILITY.

Micah 6:8  "He has shown you, O man, what is good; And what does the Lord require of you, but to do justly, to love mercy, and to walk humbly with your God."

The Lord's requirements are:  'to do justly'.  It means to do what is morally right, to be fair, to deal honestly, to do righteously.  Sometimes I don't think before I speak and it comes out all wrong. So it might do me some good to think before speaking.  'To love mercy' to have compassion, give grace, to show kindness.  Always show kindness with love and forbearance. It sounds so easy, but is it?  "To walk humbly with your God.'  Every day submit to His will for the day, that's what it is to walk humbly with your God, surrender your day and plans to Him, how hard is that?  Well, it is pretty hard for those of us who are use to doing our own thing all the time without thought to what He might want us to be doing.  Yet, I have found that if I submit to His will every morning, I CAN walk humbly with my God, but if I forget, Oh my, how I love my own way and my own will and it ALWAYS gets me into trouble.  Have you discovered that?  It really is a great discovery and causes me to want to do His will and not my own.  My own is always a disaster in some form or another.

So my young friend taught me a good lesson that day that I have reviewed over and over again.  Before giving advice, ask God to give you His advice and the reception will be much different, specially if they know you have asked God's advice first before answering.  Humility is a great asset and comes along after submitting your will to Him first, then, you can walk humbly with your God.  Do you agree?