June 15, 2009

Very fitting verse of the day...

On my Facebook page I have the verse of the day. Today's verse comes from Proverbs 23:12 and says, "Apply your heart to instruction, and your ears to words of knowledge."

How very fitting this verse is in relation to my challenge from yesterday. I have challenged myself to help others around me without expecting anything but hoping for a blessing. I feel this verse was sent to me straight from God; He is telling me to open my heart and my ears and He will give me what I need.

The Hebrew word for instruction can be translated as "discipline." In order to really listen to what God is telling us, we must discipline ourselves to hear Him speaking. We have to apply ourselves to anything we do and serving God, and others, is no different. We have to open our heart in order to see, and feel, what the person needs without them having to tell us.

June 14, 2009


Blessings come to those who least expect them. They come in many different forms and through many different people. Everyday we wake up should be counted as a blessing but many times the first thought is "what all do I have to get done today?" If we would take a moment when we wake up to remember that the fact we woke up is the first blessing we get everyday, I feel the day would turn out a lot different.

The outlook I have had on life in the past and the one I have now are two very different things. In the past I have seen only what I wanted to see and felt things should revolve around me and my needs; I knew that God was there but didn't realize He wanted to use me for something greater than myself. I must admit that some days I am still like that but I am learning and improving each day. I am a selfish person but I am on the path to recovery!

Today was youth Sunday at church and what they spoke about really hit home with me. The passages of scripture used were 2 Timothy 3:1-5 and Philippians 2:1-4.

2 Timothy 3:1-5 says, "But know this, that in the last days perilous times will come: For men will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boasters, proud, blasphemers, disobedient to parents, unthankful, unholy, unloving, unforgiving, slanderers, without self-control, brutal, despisers of good, traitors, headstrong, haughty, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having a form of godliness but denying its power. And from such people turn away!"

Sadly enough, if we step back and look at the world today, this is what we see. People do not put God first because "life" gets in the way. Kids have extracurricular activities that take them away from the church and parents allow this to happen; parents work all hours of the day and night and feel that is the most important thing for their families. But, though we have to have money to live, the Bible tells us if we do our part for God he will take care of our needs. As Christians we need to step back and let God take control; let Him point us in the direction we are to go. While we enjoy the good things in life we must remember that everything comes from God. The fact that we have a job, a home, friends, family...all of this is a blessing and a gift from God!

Philippians 2:1-4 says
, "Therefore if there is any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any affection and mercy, fulfill my joy by being like-minded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind. Let nothing be done through selfish ambition or conceit, but in lowliness of mind let each esteem others better than himself. Let each of you look out not only for his own interests but also for the interests of others."

This is the one that really hit home for me. A lot of times what we do, even though it be for someone else, is because we are going to get something out of it. As Christian we should want to help each other and uphold each other without wondering what we get; what we should get is the satisfaction of knowing we spread God's love, not necessarily through words, but through action. "Actions speak louder than words" is definitely something Christians, and everyone, should think about in their daily walk.

My challenge to myself this week is to help others without expecting anything but also hoping for a blessing from it. Blessings come from unusual places sometimes if we just open our eyes, minds, and hearts to receive them!

June 8, 2009

Made In His Image

Yesterday was a great day! It started off as a typical Sunday - church. During the service, Charlie announced his appointment at Mulberry Gap and Jones Chapel. The church is very supportive of us as we begin this new chapter in our lives and we are very lucky to have such a wonderful church family.

After church it was the usual lunch at Nana's (minus Dad who is out of town). Then, Charlie and I decided to go to Sevierville to the book outlet (I know - we own a bookstore...haha). Well, Lawson decided he needed to go with us even though we told him he would have more fun at Nana's...he soon found out we were right. Anyway, we had a great trip to the bookstore, stopped at a couple of other places to shop around and then headed back home to rest for a bit before Sunday evening services.

Here is where the day gets better. I laid down for a while and fell asleep; I woke up just in time to get dressed and make it to church. My first thought when I woke up was "I don't really want to go to church tonight." I laid there for a moment but decided to get up and go anyway. And, it never fails...when I don't want to go is when I receive the greatest blessing!

Mark Hicks - pastor of two local Methodist churches - was asked to preach at the service last night. I have always enjoyed his sermons and this evening was no different. His sermon was about how we are all made in the image of God. I want to share with you what this said to me and how much I needed to hear it!

Genesis 1:27 says "So God created man in his own image, in the image of God he created him; male and female he created them."

As he began to speak about this verse he asked - hypothetically - what we felt the image of God was. Does he have 10 fingers, 10 toes, arms, legs, etc.? If so, then when an accident happens to someone and they lose a part of their body, are they no longer and image of God? Wow...what an awful thing to imagine; you are made in the image of God and something tragic happens to you then you are no longer and image of Him.

He went on to speak about this image. What if we are a spiritual image of God? God is a spiritual being so, he has no finger, toes, arms, legs, etc.

Genesis 2:7 says "the Lord God formed the man from the dust of the ground and breathed into his nostrils the breath of life, and the man became a living being." God breathed the breathe of life into us which to me means He breathed His spirit into us to make us a living person. Makes sense, right?

Mark used the analogy of a baseball size diamond. If someone takes that diamond and rolls it around in the dirt and mud, do you still want it? OF COURSE...it is a baseball size diamond! We are that same "diamond" to God. Even as we are rolled around in the dirt and mud of life we are still the image of God underneath all of it.

As I begin to be "washed in the word" I feel this was a wonderful sermon for me to hear. It does not matter what life throws at me, or how much "mud" covers me, underneath all of it I am still made in the image of God; I am His child and he wants all of me!

June 6, 2009

Water and the Word

Ephesians 5:26 says "to make her holy, cleansing her by the washing with water through the word"

This verse is the inspiration for my blog name. I am beginning a journey in my faith and this is exactly what I need; I need to be washed in the word! I need the Lord to cleanse me by giving me the words He wants me to hear. I need Him to continuously guide me on this road to understanding.

I wanted to begin this journey a year ago and felt it was the right time. As life happened and things got in the way I began to push this aside as something I could do later. Later is NOW! I am determined to make this change in my life and let God take control.