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Christmas Haiku 2015 Countdown 1

For to us a child is born, to us a son is given,
and the government will be on his shoulders.
And he will be called Wonderful Counselor,
Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.
~ Isaiah 9:6

Tomorrow’s the day
Celebration of Christ’s birth
Beautiful Savior

Are YoU LivInG?

The thief comes only to steal and kill and destroy;
I have come that they may have life, and have it to the full.
~ John 10:10 ~

yolo

YOLO! Yep, that’s right You Only Live ONCE!!  What are you doing with the life that God has so richly blessed you with? Are you looking at all the bad in life and letting it bring you down, or are you choosing to see the rainbow midst the storms? Do you let the world drown you with its waves of chaos and despair, or do you call upon the One True God that can cause you to walk on the water? Do you sit on the throne of selfishness and greed, or do you humble yourself in the joy of giving and loving?

Life indeed throws us turbulence and turmoil frequently, and we often have exceedingly difficult choices to make, but we as Christians know that there is more than the insanity this world offers us, and we assuredly know that all the choices we make have lingering consequences both here and now that echo into the eternity to come! When the Lord leads your life, there is hope, there is freedom, there is mercy, there is light, and there is overwhelming love!

Yes, there will be sad times, times of anger and pain, and times where the mind is downcast, but Psalm 126:5 states, “Those who sow with tears will reap with songs of joy.” God is true, just, and holy, and all that he allows to occur while we walk the face of this fragile world are to mold and shape us into the righteousness of Christ! He fulfills his promises of joy, peace and comfort daily….all you need do is trust and lean on him!

My son, do not forget my teaching, but let your heart keep my commandments;
For length of days and years of life and peace they will add to you.
Do not let kindness and truth leave you; bind them around your neck,
Write them on the tablet of your heart.
So you will find favor and good repute in the sight of God and man.
Trust in the LORD with all your heart and do not lean on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge Him, and He will make your paths straight.
Do not be wise in your own eyes; fear the LORD and turn away from evil.
It will be healing to your body and refreshment to your bones.
~ Proverbs 3:1-8 ~

No matter what you face, no matter how big the storm, no matter how hindering the mountain…God has you! He is in control and he will bring joy each and every day!  Choose to praise despite the chaos.  Choose to see the beauty and blessings of life instead of dwelling on the disparity and ugliness.  What you choose will bring you life or it will destroy your life!

Sing praise to the LORD, you His godly ones,
And give thanks to His holy name.
For His anger is but for a moment,
His favor is for a lifetime;
Weeping may last for the night,
But a shout of joy comes in the morning.
Now as for me, I said in my prosperity,
“I will never be moved.”
O LORD, by Your favor You have made my mountain to stand strong;
You hid Your face, I was dismayed.
To You, O LORD, I called,
And to the Lord I made supplication:
“What profit is there in my blood, if I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise You? Will it declare Your faithfulness?
“Hear, O LORD, and be gracious to me;
O LORD, be my helper.”
You have turned for me my mourning into dancing;
You have loosed my sackcloth and girded me with gladness,
That my soul may sing praise to You and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give thanks to You forever.
~ Psalm 30:4-12 ~

Be the light of God’s love and the beacon of eternal hope to a desperate and hurting people! Choose to LIVE and live FULLY. Choose to LOVE and love DEEPLY. Choose to HOPE and hope ENDLESSLY. Choose to REJOICE and rejoice with SINGING. Choose to SERVE and serve HUMBLY.

May God grant you joy every morning and hope each day! May he bring you peace beyond measure and shower you with love overflowing! May your heart and mind always be set in eternity and not the here and now, and may you find the strength and courage of Christ to help you through the trials and persecution.

All my love!

Lord You Are

I will sing to the LORD as long as I live;
I will sing praise to my God while I have my being.
May my meditation be sweet to Him;
I will be glad in the LORD.
May sinners be consumed from the earth, and the wicked no more.
Bless the LORD, O my soul!
Praise the LORD!
Psalm 104:33-35

surrender 2

Lord You Are

You are The Almighty God
Thinking of You takes my breath away

You are my Morning Star
Greeting me each day

You are my Bridegroom
The steady man in my life

You are my Creator
Breathing life into my very being

You are my Deliverer
The One who frees me from my sin

You are my Refuge
The One I run to when I need help

You are my Counselor
Giving advice to steer my path

You are my Shelter
My safety from the raging, chaotic world

You are my Door
Giving me a way to escape temptation

You are my Light
Shining so I won’t lose my way

You are my King
Ruler of my heart and soul

You are my Shield
Protecting me from life’s arrows

You are my Prince of Peace
Contentment for my heart, mind, and soul

You are my Hiding Place
Where I go to rest from the pain

You are my Friend
Always listening when I need to talk

You are my Father
Disciplining and directing me

You are my Love
To whom I give all of my heart

You are my Comfort
The warm place to lay my worries down

You are my Shepherd
Gently holding me in Your hands

You are my Lion
Fiercely protecting me from Satan’s snares

You are my Caddy
Carrying my burdens of shame and doubt

You are my Contractor
Building a home for me in the heavenly places

You are my Hope
Encouraging me when I stumble and fear

You are my Vine
Helping me reach out to others

You are my Beginning
Forming me in my mother’s womb

You are my End
Holding every day of my life in Your hands

You are my Fire
Igniting passion in my heart for more of You

You are my Savior
Giving the gift of eternal life

You are my Inspiration
Indeed You are my All in All

Growing Pains

As another crazy, yet blessed year comes to a close, I find myself glancing back at what I have accomplished, how far I have come, and how much I have grown. I think it is truly amazing how God uses all things to bring growth and glory in my life, and in the lives of all his children (including you!).

This past year, like so many before it, has seen its share of pain and anguish: the death of my father, my uncle, and a close friend, family chaos and fighting (which often sadly occurs when death comes), broken relationship and a shattered heart, an unexpected move, and financial strain. Yet, oddly enough, this year brought beauty, healing, love, and provision through it all.

You see, despite the pain and suffering, God was in it all, working his will, his plan, his glory through all of it. Pain and suffering is a normal part of life and an integral part of spiritual growth.

John 16:33 These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you have tribulation, but take courage; I have overcome the world.

Hebrews 5:5-8 So also Christ did not glorify Himself so as to become a high priest, but He who said to Him, “YOU ARE MY SON, TODAY I HAVE BEGOTTEN YOU”; just as He says also in another passage, “YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OF MELCHIZEDEK.” In the days of His flesh, He offered up both prayers and supplications with loud crying and tears to the One able to save Him from death, and He was heard because of His piety. Although He was a Son, He learned obedience from the things which He suffered.

Jesus Christ Himself was not exempt from the pain and suffering of this world. Pain and suffering in your life is one way that God prunes you, building you up and making you stronger. Much like a great work out at the gym, there is often pain afterward (even during the workout as you push yourself), but the results are wonderful in the long run if you keep working out and building up muscles that increase your strength. Another example is the olive tree. A farmer must cut (or prune) the branches back in order for the tree to produce a more abundant crop the next season. If it is not pruned, it grows unkempt, producing less fruit, and therefore yielding less profit for the farmer.

John 15:1-3 I am the true vine, and My Father is the vinedresser. Every branch in Me that does not bear fruit, He takes away; and every branch that bears fruit, He prunes it so that it may bear more fruit.

You and I are the branches on the tree of life, and if we are not pruned, we tend to not bear the fruit of righteousness, purity, or holiness. We become weak, wild, and unkempt, losing sight of what we are here for–to produce fruit that brings honor and glory to the Lord, bringing others into his kingdom, showing the light of God for all to see.

Pain and suffering in this life are also motivators for growth. When you get stuck in the mundane routines of life–work, family, home, friends, etc., it is easy to get comfortable and not change or stretch outside of your comfort zone. Going back to the workout example, if you keep doing the same exercise routine day in and day out, you will see results, but eventually they will plateau and your workout routine will be only for maintaining, rather than continued strengthening. Even weight loss will fade if the workout routine stays the same. You have to change things up to see continued results, to build more muscle mass, to thin out more, and to tone consistently.

Spiritual growth is similar. If church and scripture become mundane routines, the same thing day in and day out, you will get stuck, your spiritual growth will plateau. God wants your spiritual growth to excel, to continue to grow each and every day. This means that you have to be forced out of your comfort zone sometimes, and often the only way to get you to do that is through pain and suffering. When life is grand, going smoothly, and you have no worries or stress, God tends to be put on the back seat. Ever notice that your prayer life and devotional time picks up a great deal when there is pain, suffering, trials, or tribulations in your life. That is because during those times, your reliance on God is stronger and more evident. You can’t fix things, make them better, or change them, and thus you seek God, seek His will, His discernment and wisdom to handle all that you are facing. You may even reach out to others in your community–church, work, home, neighborhood–for help and guidance.

Often during the most painful times in our lives, we are forced to take responsibility for our failures and learn how to adapt and change so as to not make the same mistakes next time. Other times, we are confronted with requests that take us out of our cushy comfortable place to become a witness and light for God. It may be that you are asked to forgive someone who has hurt or betrayed you. Perhaps you are being called to share your pain with someone in order to show the glory of God as he brings you through it. Maybe the pain in your life is building perseverance, patience, or other spiritual fruits in your own life. Whatever it may by, God is using the pain and suffering to motivate change and growth in your life.

James 1:2-4 Consider it all joy, my brethren, when you encounter various trials, knowing that the testing of your faith produces endurance. And let endurance have its perfect result, so that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.

James 5:11 As you know, we count as blessed those who have persevered. You have heard of Job’s perseverance and have seen what the Lord finally brought about. The Lord is full of compassion and mercy.

Romans 5:3-5 And not only this, but we also exult in our tribulations, knowing that tribulation brings about perseverance; and perseverance, proven character; and proven character, hope; and hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us.

1 Peter 1:6-7 In this you greatly rejoice, even though now for a little while, if necessary, you have been distressed by various trials, so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which is perishable, even though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise and glory and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ

Though I faced my share of pain and suffering in 2014, I can look back on each and every moment and see God’s mighty hand at work through the entire event. Through the deaths that came into my life, I was able to find courage and strength to do what was right midst the chaos and family fighting. Though my heart was broken and a relationship ruined, I was given comfort and wisdom midst the storm, making a few of the toughest decisions of my life, which ultimately brought peace to me and my son. Even through the financial difficulties, God changed my view of budgeting, helping me save more than I have before. In the moments of pain and suffering, I didn’t always see his mighty hand at work, but looking back on the year, it is evident he was with me, guiding, building, refining, and growing me into the woman of God he designed.

So, my friends, fret not when you are facing pain, trials, tribulations, or suffering, for in time, God will produce an abundance of fruit, helping you change the old patterns of life, enabling you to grow spiritually! With that said, I look forward to another year and what may come–the good, the bad, and the ugly! Bring it on, for with God, we can all rest assured that good will come, hope will be renewed, and the future will be bright.

Jeremiah 29:11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the LORD, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future.

God bless and keep you in the coming year and always! May you rejoice midst the pain and suffering, knowing that God is working all things for your good! He is with you always and forever, and will never leave you nor forsake you, providing all you need to face all that comes your way.

In Christ’s Love ❤

19 Days of Christmas

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fanpop.com

Let the heavens be glad
And let the earth rejoice,
And let them say among the nations,
“The LORD reigns.”
~ 1 Chronicles 16:31 ~

Angels sing His praise
Oceans roar, the rocks cry out
To the King of Kings

Thank You Ever So

May you be thankful for all you have, for all you can do, for all who love you. May you enjoy the blessing God so richly bestows, and may your heart be filled with joy and comfort despite the storms.  We are called to praise God through all circumstances, in all things. May your praises ring out and be sweet music to the Lord!

sivienna.wordpress.com

sivienna.wordpress.com

All my love and prayers for a wonderful Christmas season!

Rejoice always
Pray without ceasing
In everything give thanks
For this God’s will for you in Christ Jesus
~ 1 Thessalonians 5:16-18 ~

Thank You Ever So

So thankful I am for all I have
A home filled with warmth
A cozy bed to snuggle in
Food to eat each and every day

So thankful I am for those in my life
Family I hold dear to my heart
Friends that lift me and love me no matter what
Acquaintances that make me smile each day

So thankful I am for blessings abounding
Water that runs at my beck and call
A car that gets me to and fro
Music that brings joy to me any day

So thankful I am for all I have
Blessed beyond measure
My cup overflows
Dear Lord, thank you ever so

Let the Seas Resound

Let the heavens rejoice, let the earth be glad;
let them say among the nations, “The LORD reigns!”
Let the sea resound, and all that is in it;
let the fields be jubilant, and everything in them!
~ 1 Chronicles 16:31-32

motivational moments-vwo.blogspot.com

motivational moments-vwo.blogspot.com

Let the Seas Resound

The seas resound with glory unto the Lord
Lifting up their voice with thunderous waves
Wide and vast their magnificence flows
A shimmering witness of God’s splendor
Brilliant crests of sapphire and cerulean
Crashing upon rocks and shore
Giving praise to the One True God
Joyously the waves ebb and flow
Singing praises to the Lord Almighty
A beautiful symphony of glistening admiration

Simple, yet True…God is with YOU!

“Before I formed you in the womb I knew you,
before you were born I set you apart;
I appointed you as a prophet to the nations.” Jeremiah 1:5

God is glorious, victorious in all.   He provides grace sufficient to cover the worst of sins (2 Corinthians 12:9).  He constantly shelters those who trust and seek him (Isaiah 25:4, Psalm 91:4, Psalm 28:7).   He builds the nations up and burns them down according to his good and righteous plan (Ezekiel 36:36, Proverbs 15:25, Acts 17:26).   He is the be all, end all (Revelation 1:8, Revelation 22:13).   He is Creator of the universe (Genesis 1:1), the maker of every human who walks the earth (Genesis 2:7, Isaiah 45:12).   He knows you by name, every hair on your head, and the number of days set for you (Isaiah 43:1-7)!   He knows your thoughts before you do (Psalm 139:2, Proverbs 15:3)!   He thinks of you more than the grains of sand that exist on earth (Psalm 139:17-18)!   You are the apple of His eye (Psalm 17:8, Zechariah 2:8)!   How special and dear you are to him, so much so that he rejoices over you (Isaiah 62:5, Zephaniah 3:17)!

A thought to always hold tight to–you were created on purpose for a purpose (Ephesians 2:10).   There are no coincidences in this world, only orchestrated events that lead each and every heart through God’s good and glorious plan!

Have faith, hold tight to peace knowing God has you always and will never let you go..for you are His and He is yours.

“Go therefore and make disciples of all the nations, baptizing them in the name of the Father and the Son and the Holy Spirit, teaching them to observe all that I commanded you; and lo, I am with you always, even to the end of the age.” Matthew 28:20

The LORD himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged. Deuteronomy 31:8

Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the LORD your God will be with you wherever you go.” Joshua 1:9

God bless and keep you always and may your trust in the Lord draw you closer to His presence and glory! All my love ❤

Pure

Shout for joy to the Lord, all the Earth.
Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs.
Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his.
We are his people, the sheep of his pasture.
Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise.
Give thanks to him and praise his name.
For the Lord is good and his love endures forever;
his faithfulness continues through all generations.
Psalm 100

oslcslc.org

oslcslc.org

Pure

Seek in pure dedication
Desiring to know the word of God
Yearning for Him above all things

Surrender in pure adulation
Giving yourself completely to the Lord
Yielding utterly to the King of Kings

Repent in pure veneration
Laying your sins at the foot of the Cross
Receiving grace that freely flows

Worship in pure adoration
Singing unto the Lord of Hosts
Conveying joyful shouts unto God Almighty

Rejoice in pure exaltation
Entering his courts with praise
Entering his gates with thanksgiving

Exalt in pure appreciation
Lift His name above all others
Glorify the Lord with dancing and singing

Bless in pure recognition
Knowing He is the One True God
Honoring with heart, soul, strength, and mind

Praise in pure affection
Cherishing the Lord for all He has done
Bringing love and grace to all mankind