Wednesday, November 27, 2013

Ushered In By Thanksgiving

“Enter His gates with thanksgiving
and His courts with praise;
give thanks to Him and praise His name.” 
Psalm 100:4

Happy Thanksgiving!

A heart of genuine thanksgiving and praise ushers us across His threshold so we can dwell in the Lord’s presence throughout the day. As we seek to abide in Him, our thankful hearts prepare the way for us. With a grateful and reverent posture before the Lord, we can expect to hear His still, small voice and sense His presence. “The eyes of the Lord are on those who fear Him, on those who hope in His unfailing love.” Psalm 33:18 (NIV)

“In all thy ways acknowledge Him, and He shall direct thy paths.” Proverbs 3:7 (KJV
) Genuine thankfulness flows from a humble and reverent heart before the Lord. As we go to Him with gratitude and acknowledging Him in all things, our hearts are postured to receive direction from Him. Then, as we commune with Him from the depths of our hearts throughout the day, we can bring Him our petitions, our fears and our struggles. With the humility of thankfulness as a backdrop, our hearts are poised reverently before Him. He will guide us and lead us. “I know that it will go better with God-fearing men, who are reverent before God.” Ecc. 8:12

When my children approach me with a humble and thankful heart, it is much easier for me to talk with them, rejoice with them, pray with them and guide them. Their hearts are ready. But when they are being selfish, stubborn, prideful and entitled, they don’t hear and are not ready for my instruction and help. The condition of their heart is key to our communication.

It is the same with us and our Heavenly Father, who loves His children perfectly. When our hearts are right before Him, He can minister His Truth to us and reason with us. He can encourage and equip us. He can commune with us.“He who sacrifices thank offerings honors me, and he prepares the way so that I may show him the salvation of God.” Psalm 50:23 (NIV)

Let’s make it routine not just to count our blessings, but to continually give thanks to God for them. To acknowledge Him in all our ways. To bow before Him with sincerity, thankfulness and reverence. We will dwell in His presence, commune with Him and receive His encouragement and love. Then we'll have“sincerity of heart and reverence for the Lord.” Col. 3:22 (NIV)

Gracious Father, You are the giver of all good things. By Your grace, keep my heart poised humbly before You in sincerity, reverence and thankfulness. I want to enter your courts with praise in my heart. Usher me in with a thankful heart. Remind me to acknowledge You in all of my ways. Thank you for loving me perfectly and for Your redemption. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

What are YOU thanking Him for this Thanksgiving season?
I am thankful for my Redeemer, my family and my friends. I am thankful for His truth and faithfulness. 
(This post was originally posted on 11/24/08.)

“Joy and gladness will be found in her,
thanksgiving and the sound of singing.”
Isaiah 51:3 (NIV)

“I will praise God’s name in song and
glorify Him with thanksgiving.”
Psalm 69:30

“Ascribe to the Lord the glory due His name;
worship the Lord in the splendor of His holiness.”
Psalm 29:2

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

The Phone Is In The Oven!!!

"...he prepares his meal, 
he roasts his meat and eats his fill."
Isaiah 44:16

Six words I never imagined I would hear myself screaming:  "The phone is in the oven!!!" But there I was on a Sunday afternoon screaming them.

I was trying to do too many things at once. My sweet mom was spending the day with us so I was caring for her, I took a call from a neighbor while busy preparing side dishes for dinner and managing two roasts that I had put in the oven an hour before. 

Crooking my neck and holding the phone between my right ear and my right shoulder, I opened the oven door to put an aluminum foil tent over the roasts so they didn't brown too much. My right hand accidentally met with the side of the scorching hot oven and two of my fingers got burned. Natural reflex jolted my hand and body away from the hot oven and the phone went flying away from where it was tentatively perched on my shoulder. At first I wasn't sure where the phone went, but then I saw it in the roasting pan comfortably sitting next to one of the roasts! 

A phone never knew life could be so good.

More concerned that the phone would ignite and start a fire than ruin my roast or itself, I proclaimed and then planned in the midst of panic.

"The phone is in the oven!  The phone is in the oven!  The phone is in the oven!"

Screaming the alarming news flash for my family, my husband and children came running from different directions in the house. All with jaws dropped and, not sure whether to laugh or scream themselves, they stood shocked. All of us were bent over staring at the savory site before our eyes.

Indeed, the phone was in the oven.

With a quick strategical search and rescue mission underway, I picked up the long metal tongs from the counter top and pulled the wire oven shelf out as far it would come. With the tongs, I grabbed the marinating phone and placed it on a towel. My husband dried the outside of the phone off and then disassembled it so the insides could drain and dry.

Phone au jus.  Not what I had planned for dinner.

Nursing my burned fingers under cold water for several minutes, I realized where I had gone wrong:  Doing too many things at one time. Had I slowed down just a bit I would have waited until I was off of the phone to handle the roasts in a hot oven. Or I could have returned the call to my neighbor later that evening when things were more settled.

Everything I was doing was "good" ~ caring for my mom, preparing dinner for my family and taking time to talk to my neighbor on the phone. But sometimes we do too many good things at one time, and we get burned.

In His sweet goodness, God whispered to my heart through this now-funny kitchen mishap. Keep in step with Me.

By His grace, God lovingly leads us through our days. He is faithful to show us how to spend our time and our labors of love. He invites us To LET.IT.GO. and allow Him to guide our steps. We need to only ask and yield. "He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them His way." ~ Psalm 25:9 

Ask and yield. Humility and surrender. Letting it go and allowing God to lead. A daily, moment-by-moment surrender.

I encourage you to begin your day today, or pause in the middle of it, and open His Word. Need a place to start? Read Psalm 119. His Word is the essential lamp to our feet and a light to our path.


"I guide you in the way of wisdom
and lead you along straight paths."
Proverbs 4:11

Saturday, November 16, 2013


"...a sweet friendship refreshes the soul."
Proverbs 27:9

Happy Saturday everyone! My very sweet friend PAT LAYTON is hosting me today at her beautiful blog! We are also giving away a copy of my book SerenDIPity ~ Celebrating Dips, Faith & Friendship! Grab another cup of coffee and visit Pat's blog by clicking here. 

Be sure to leave a comment to enter to win a SerenDIPity book!

“He that is of a merry heart hath a continual feast…” ~ Proverbs 15:15