Psalm 33:22

November 3, 2013 Leave a comment

“Let your unfailing love surround us Lord for our hope is in you alone.”

This is an easy verse to memorize that is a great simple prayer. It lets God know we desire His love and can only do life through Him. It is also reassuring to us and reminds us that His love is indeed unfailing. What a comforting thought.

Proverbs 4:24

“Avoid all perverse talk, stay away from perverse speech.” 26 “Mark out a straight path for your feet, stay on the safe path.”

This proverb speaks to me because I work in a high school. I hear perverse speech all day long and sometimes it’s in my head and comes out. Yesterday I was shopping with my daughter in Winnipeg and we were leaving Polo Park. We were walking along the road to cross over the other parking lot and their was a biker behind us who was irritated that we were in his way and screamed quite loudly behind us.  It scared both of us and on impulse I yelled a not very nice word at him. It could have been much worse but what bothered me was that my first impulse was to be nasty back. I was angry that he scared us so badly. Nonetheless, we are to be salt and light and I was definitely not either.

Working in a high school makes it very difficult to keep my thoughts pure and holy. I have to constantly keep myself in check about how I am coming across to others. Even if others are nasty and rude doesn’t mean it’s okay for me to be nasty back. Boy that’s a hard one sometimes. I can handle long lines and other inconveniences but when I get flustered and things aren’t going my way?…I need to work on that. What I find hard sometimes is that I can pray first thing in the morning, “God keep a guard on my tongue and help me not to lose self control,” and within the next hour something comes out of my mouth. I’m still working on this weakness.

–Alison

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Did you Feel the Spirit Moving Sunday?

I don’t think I have ever heard that “still small voice” as clearly as I did on Sunday, May 6, 2013. I am pretty sure I have heard it before, but this time it was an experience that I know was from God. I am pretty sure that I know it was from God.

Okay, I am still not quite sure that I heard from God. When Nathan, Mike and Chris were talking about their experience in California looking for someone who’s right ear needed healing, I had the impression that the reason I was turned down for a disability tax credit this year was because God was going to heal me. I have thought before that God was going to heal me, but He has not. Was this thought really God’s voice?RainbowHands

Then during the last song, I got the idea that I should raise my left hand. The Parkinson’s affects my left side more than my right, so usually if I would raise my left hand it would be shaking and my arm would feel too heavy to raise for more than a few seconds. But I raised my left hand. It didn’t shake or feel heavy. My shoulder felt warm and loose.

I haven’t gone forward for prayer for a very long time. To be honest, it’s been a long time since I have prayed for physical healing for myself. I tell myself that I have accepted this affliction and focused on the good things that God has done for me because of Parkinson’s. My writing “career” for example. (Can you call it a career if you earn less than $1 some months?)

Maybe I’ve just been lazy. Having an affliction is a good way of getting out of work. I’ve often said that except for the constant pain and the inability to do much of anything it’s a pretty good life.

I still have people who I know are praying for me. I have received phone calls from strangers who have read about me thanks to Terrie Todd, and emails from people who have read stuff that I have written. But I feel guilty when want to lay hands on me and pray, and nothing happens. I sometimes wonder if it is my complacency that is standing in the way.

But last Sunday, I think I heard God telling me to go up for prayer. God even threw a fleece my way, He told me to go to Shanon Weselake. So when I went forward and Shanon wasn’t there, I started thinking that I just imagined the voice. Someone said that Shanon wasn’t even in church that morning, he had seen Larry come in alone. So Marsha started to pray for me, and someone touched my shoulder. It was Shanon! Maybe I wasn’t imagining the voice after all.

For the rest of the day, my shoulder stayed warm and I was walking with less pain than usual. On Monday and Tuesday, I didn’t have any morning muscle spasms or cramps, and other than getting tired in the evening (which I should interpret as a sign to get to bed), I had very good days. Until today Wednesday. I had muscle dystonia this morning, and as I write this my whole body is writhing, and screaming for me to get to bed.

I have decided that I am not going to make myself insane with asking myself if this pain is less than usual, or feeling guilty for not having enough faith to be healed. Right now I am going to take a nap.

—Karen Gross

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One Verse at a Time

I can get easily overwhelmed by thinking about all the verses I should memorize and then I don’t memorize anything. Today I am going to memorize one. Ephesians 4:22 …”throw off your old sinful nature and your former way of  life, which is corrupted by lust and deception. Instead let the Spirit renew your thoughts and attitudes.”

My thoughts and attitudes need constant renewal so I thought this would be a good reminder and would help me get my mind off of myself. I know I can’t change my attitude on my own and I think it’s about time I made more of an effort to dance on Satan’s head. Anybody with me? One verse at a time.

 

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False Arguments: What to do with them.

2 Corinthians 10:4

“We use God’s mighty weapons, not worldly weapons, to knock down the strongholds of human reasoning and to destroy false arguments.”

Do you have false arguments frequently traveling through your mind like I do? So many times I have negative thoughts drifting in and out of my mind and I don’t use the right weapons to get rid of them. They are not my thoughts, they are from Satan but they are still in my head if I do not purposely force them to exit, stage left! Worldly weapons like distraction with a book, or game or something else that is only temporary is simply that…temporary. 2 Corinthians says that we need to use God’s weapons. Scripture is a good one and having scripture in my memory bank sure helps when I’m struggling with negative nagging thoughts. I know this in my head but rarely do I speak it out loud. I’m going to make an effort to do that.

God’s richest blessings on your day.

—Alison

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Proverbs 9:10

I was reading Proverbs 9 tonight and what jumped out at me this evening was 9:10, “Knowledge of the Holy One results in good judgment.”

Sometimes I go through a period of a few days where my judgment is way off base and the things I’m thinking or the things coming out of my mouth are less than pleasing to God. I feel stuck in a rut and frustrated that I’m being so careless but reading this reminds me that if I’m not daily in God’s word, I don’t have a good foundation for my day. I’m counting on my own strength and knowledge to get me by and that never works for long.

Proverbs 9:12 also says, “If you become wise, you will be the one to benefit. If you scorn wisdom, you will be the one to suffer.”  Wisdom sounds good to me.

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Proverbs 29:25

Here is a proverb for the day.

“Fearing people is a dangerous trap but trusting the Lord means safety.”

This is very true in my own life. My biggest weakness is fear of people so I become a people pleaser. The last 10 years of my life have been devoted to getting rid of that fear. Instead I need to fear God and what He thinks of what I’m doing.  I am very hard on myself when I make mistakes whether in conversation or  in what I’m doing at work and I think that everyone else is going to be as harsh as I am. 95% of the time this is not the case. Fear of people is a trap because it leads to anxiety and need of being in control. If God is not in the drivers seat, I’m set up for a miserable day.

This is a comforting proverb for me because it tells me I don’t have to be afraid of people and reminds me to put my fear in the right place.

–Alison

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Measureless Love

I am coming out of a dry season of my faith and so you might see some blog posts more frequently as I learn new things. Part of the reason I’ve been frustrated is that when I read the Bible on my own I have trouble really grasping I”m reading or it seems old and familiar.  There ARE times when I research if I don’t understand something or want a bigger picture.

Recently, a friend whom I’ve been meeting regularly with told me about an online site, Living Proof. This site has tons of audio sessions from Beth Moore, a lady I can very much relate to. I am on my second series now and am loving my time learning more about living a Christian life and about God’s measureless love.

One session I listened to recently talked about jealousy and how this is rooted in our own insecurity. She asks three tough questions to help you unpack what that looks like in your life.

1) Who are we trying to measure up to?  Who in our lives do we think has it all together and who do we wish we were?

2) Who are we trying to measure up for? Whomever we’re trying to please we are becoming a servant of.

3) Who do we have God confused with? Who is the person we are trying to get approval from?

Trying to measure up to the standards of others is exhausting and will leave you feeling empty every time, just as seeking approval from others will. Fulfillment will only come from God and spending time with him, seeking His approval and measuring up to His standards. Personally I find it a relief that I only need God’s approval. It’s much easier to get.  Here is the lesson: Beth Moore Beth is vulnerable, honest, funny and easy to listen to. If you struggle with jealousy, this is the message for you.

2 Corinthians 10:12

—Alison Lehman

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