Tag Results For :: "freedom"




Away

August 21st, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“Who will give me wings,” I ask—
“wings like a dove?”
Get me out of here on dove wings;
I want some peace and quiet.
I want a walk in the country,
I want a cabin in the woods.

— Psalm 55:6, The Message

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Sometimes, I still picture this: Sitting out on Mission Peninsula, surrounded by the greens and blues of northern Michigan, where the cool clear day and a glass of iced tea brought a moment’s respite from real life—the place where I actually live.

The thing about being away is that you don’t belong there. It’s great while it lasts. But it doesn’t last.

So, instead I think I’ll aim to live here:

I call to God;
God will help me.
At dusk, dawn, and noon I sigh
deep sighs—he hears, he rescues.
My life is well and whole, secure
in the middle of danger
Even while thousands
are lined up against me.

— Psalm 55:16, The Message

Lord, I’m looking to You today, waiting on Your help and direction, drawing close to Your promises and peace. Show me the way ahead in the midst of this day’s surroundings—in Christ, I pray.

Pile your troubles on God’s shoulders—
he’ll carry your load, he’ll help you out.

— Psalm 55:22, The Message



Bouyant

April 25th, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Seek to cultivate a buoyant, joyous sense of the crowded kindnesses of God in your daily life. 

—Alexander MacLaren (1826-1910)

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“Joy, not grit, is the hallmark of holy obedience. We need to be light-hearted in what we do to avoid taking ourselves too seriously. It is a cheerful revolt against self and pride. Our work is jubilant, carefree, merry. Utter abandonment to God is done freely and with celebration. And so I urge you to enjoy this ministry of self-surrender. Don’t push too hard. Hold this work lightly, joyfully.”

—Richard J. Foster

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Be joyful always; pray continually; give thanks in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus. 

—1 Thessalonians 5:16, NIV



Morning Colors

April 17th, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

“If God gives such attention to the appearance of wildflowers—most of which are never even seen—don’t you think he’ll attend to you, take pride in you, do his best for you? What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied withgettingso you can respond to God’s giving. People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met.” — Matthew 6:30-33, The Message
 

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After visiting the Lady BIrd Johnson Wildflower Center for a photo shoot, I closed my eyes for a moment. Nothing in my closet or in any clothing store can compare with to the colors I saw this morning, lit by the sunlight under a cloudless blue sky.

Lord, You are my portion and my peace. Will you help me keep remembering where to find true beauty?

 

Everything we call a trial, a sorrow, a duty: believe me. That angel’s hand is there, the gift is there, and the wonder of an overshadowing Presence. Our joys too: be not content with them as joys. They too conceal diviner gifts. Life is so full of meaning and purpose, so full of beauty beneath its covering, that you will find earth but cloaks your heaven. Courage, then, to claim it, that is all! But courage you have, and the knowledge that we are pilgrims wending through unknown country on our way home.

—Fra Angelico (1387-1455)

 



Real and Eternal

April 5th, 2012 | Tags: • , , , , , , , , , , , , , ,

Jesus said these things. Then, raising his eyes in prayer, he said: “Father, it’s time. Display the bright splendor of your Son so the Son in turn may show your bright splendor. You put him in charge of everything human so he might give real and eternal life to all in his charge. And this is the real and eternal life: That they know you, the one and only true God, and Jesus Christ, whom you sent.” — John 17:1-3, MSG

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Is it not truly amazing how simple it is to impose limits on God’s immeasurable love for us without even realizing what we are doing?

When our Savior’s love seems remote, we may sometimes find ourselves discounting His promises as we push ourselves harder and harder to prove that we are worthy of the Lord’s forgiveness and acceptance. We may somehow think that the love of Christ can be bartered for—earned in exchange for our good works and godly behavior.

The Bible assures us that the Lord’s love for us is permanently dependable—solid, secure, and unshakable. Believing this truth opens up our life in Christ in remarkable and unforeseen ways.

The Savior who invites us to abide in Him also makes it possible for us to draw near to Him by covering our weakness and bearing our pain with and for us. But we must choose: Surrendering our heart to Christ requires our cooperation with the Holy Spirit’s bondage-breaking, liberating, life-giving power.

When rugged circumstances cause the ground beneath us to feel as if the earth is going to slip away, when we know for certain that we cannot stand up by ourselves any longer, when we realize we do not have enough strength or wisdom to cope with our current situation, where will we look for help?