Have You Sung a Psalm?

August 23, 2014

Have you sung a Psalm?  David was a man who used Psalms to express himself.  He shows how our most intimate feelings come from the heart.  Exactly what does the heart do?  It reflects the most innermost part of us.  The part of us that shows our morals and emotions, hopes and dreams.  The heart mirrors our joy, courage and pain, if we can find a way to express those emotions.  Our heart also makes it possible to live, and through David’s writings we see how he lived, how he felt, and how he loved God.  A Psalm models praise and prayer and allows individuals to share every part of their life with God.

Music sheetAdding Music to a Psalm

Putting music to a Psalm can make it mean more when listening or reading the words. One of my favorite songs is based on Psalms 51.  After David had sinned, he knew he had done wrong, and was truly sorry.  “Create in me a Clean Heart” sums up what David was trying to express; remorse and the strength to do better.

 “10Create in me a clean heart, O God,
and renew a steadfast spirit within me.
11Do not cast me from your presence
or take your Holy Spirit from me.
12Restore to me the joy of your salvation
and grant me a willing spirit, to sustain me.”

Although it is not known exactly how many Psalms David wrote, it is believed to be somewhere around 73.  They communicate what David thought of God and how God viewed David.  These writings express the many aspects of David’s heart; thankful, remorseful, open, believing, and humble.  David’s love for God is evidenced by him writing about God as the creator, being all-knowing, forgiving, loving, and omnipresent.

Perhaps if you need an outlet to express yourself, you too can read the Psalms, and be inspired to release that part of yourself that lies within your heart.

 

 

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InfluenceDo you ever hear just one sentence and it sets off a serious thought process in you head.  When we hear the word influence, do we really think about the powerful nature of this word.  Sitting in church this morning I heard the word and didn’t think much of it.  However, once I heard the following, I have thought about it all day:

The teacher was talking about a discussion between himself
and a child before services one morning.  He had never seen
the child, didn’t know who he belonged to, but the child came
up to him and asked him if he was a politician.  The teacher said “no, why do you ask?”  The child stated
“because you always wear the flag pin on your jacket.”

If something so small as a child noticing a pin on a jacket is noticed, what else is noticed by anyone so young or old.  Do we really think about how our actions or appearances can influence others?  If your like me the answer is no.  I try to act like I should, but we never know who around us is looking or listening.  When I really think about it, it can be kind of scary.  Influence is a pretty powerful word.  Within that word we hold a lot of power.  Are we using it to the fullest?  For those who go to church and have kids, do our kids dress modestly?  If not, are we or our kids allowing others to concentrate on us rather than paying attention to what’s being taught?  Although we may not use bad language or drink, by hanging out with those who do, are we being associated with them?  Do we realize that there may be a person out there that we don’t know, but, they have watched us at church, and respected us, because we don’t do the above mentioned things.  However, one night they are weak and see us with a rowdy group of individuals maybe not drinking, but the words coming from our table are clearly heard.  Does the person who is weak rethink what he is doing? Is he motivated to not live that life especially when he sees someone he admired, in with the same crowd he is.  We may have not used that language, or drank any alcohol, however by  being there listening, laughing, and going on with the group just sent the wrong message.  We unknowingly influenced him, and, never knew the person.

Something I Experienced

Years ago when I had just started a job I was invited to Tequila Thursday after work.  I always made excuses, and did not participate.  After about 10 times Mike came to me and asked if I didn’t like his group, because I never came to their function.  Talk about an awkward conversation, but I told him “I do like your group, I have three kids at home, my faith is important to me, and I don’t drink.”  I also said that “I need to be an example and a good influence to my husband and kids and to anyone who may know me.”  He was real quiet and said he understood, and respected me for that.  But, he was going to keep asking me every  Thursday, so I wouldn’t feel left out.  And, he did.

Influence is Power, and gift that we all hold.  Do we use it to our fullest capabilities.

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Living in today’s world can be stressful, or lets face it just plain difficult some days.  Time management is even more difficult than it was years ago.  As a result, it can be an effort to constantly remind ourselves that being grateful leads to peace.  1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 tells us to “Always be joyful.  Never stop praying.  Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.”

Not only is this verse a command, but it serves a purpose.  When we seek a positive out of a negative, we alleviate a lot of stress in our lives.  When we experience that feeling of being lost and compare it to a compass, we know that praying can lead us back home.  When life gets overwhelming, being grateful leads to peace.  Imagine driving with your family, being in a hurry, and someone runs a red light, barely missing you head on.  After shock, adrenaline rush, and anger, a simple first line access with God, “Thank you for allowing us to be safe.”  Isn’t that much better than all of the other thoughts that usually run through our mind?  Isn’t that better than wanting to turn the car around, follow the person, and give them a piece of your mind (be honest I know you have thought that).  We have the choice to be happy or negative.  Perhaps more praying, a more conscious effort at being thankful will lead to being grateful.  Like anything in life it takes practice.  Sometimes more practice that we bargained for.  However, the verse above should inspire us to try.  After all God has told us to do it, and God knows what is best for us.

A Simple Assignment

When you wake up in the morning before turning all the thoughts on for the day, say a Prayer.  It doesn’t have to be long, at least thank God for giving you another morning to look at.  All through the day make an effort whenever negativity creeps in to balance it out with a positive.  For all good and bad things, either thank God or ask for guidance, doesn’t have to be long, could be a simple sentence.  I think you will find that after practice, or maybe much practice, your outlook will be a little brighter.  You will be closer to God, and you will find that being grateful leads to peace.

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EastonHatKate

Digital Scrapbooking Page Idea – Mother and Son – Vintage - Title “I wish I could Squish”

 

 

 

 

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Eve a Woman of Firsts

March 5, 2014

Eve a woman of firsts.   The first woman who literally had it all.  She was also the first woman who lost it all.  How many of us dream of living in a beautiful place with no worries? Imagine having tranquility, beauty, a husband, and first line access to God. And, yet, in an instant it was all taken away.  Eve was created from Adam, a simple rib, a companion, and both created in the image of God.  Adam and the animals were created from the earth, however, Eve was created  from the living Adam.  Eve was the first woman.

They were instructed to tend the beautiful garden, but not eat of the tree of the knowledge of good and evil.  When the serpent approached Eve he planted a seed of doubt by telling her “You will not surely die.” Genesis 3:4. Eve had told the serpent that she was not allowed to eat of that tree.  She knew she shouldn’t, but let the serpent’s statement and her wanting something that looked pleasing to go against what she knew was right.  We know that since both Adam and Eve were created in Gods image, they had love, compassion, and the ability to discern what was expected of them.  In the end they both got the wisdom they were seeking, but in the wrong way. Some would ask “why God would create someone that would sin?”  He gave them a choice.  He gave them a conscience.   We know that because as soon as they did it they felt naked.  They knew they did wrong.   Eve committed the first sin.  Because of that sin she was the first women to be disciplined by God.  She was the first women who had to suffer in childbirth.  Eve suffered all because she didn’t trust that God was serious when he laid down the one simple rule that would affect the future.

Concluding Thoughts Based on Eve’s Actions

That sin changed the world forever.  Not only did Adam and Eve have to struggle to provide food, shelter etc., they set a the standard for how the world is today.  Every human created has inherited a sinful nature.  It cuts us off from God, just as he cut Adam and Eve out of the Garden.  However, in spite of the distance, and the sins that we commit, we have forgiveness that will bring us back to him.  Just as Eve a Woman of Firsts had a beautiful garden to live in before she chose to sin, we have a chance to be the first to inherit eternal life by living and knowing God, doing what he instructs and living according to the Bible.

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 February 2014 – Grandkids Vacation to North Carolina – Digital Scrapbook Pages

 

KaylaSmileFebVac

Adventure malachibus

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My Parents are the Gift that Keeps Giving

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