clearance and lessons

I found two items in the clearance section at the back of the arts and crafts store – a chipped plate and a damaged sign.

The chipped plate reminded me that things do not have to be perfect for me to be grateful.

The damaged sign reminded me that I can be brave even when wounded.

The life lessons gleaned from the clearance items give them worth far beyond their original price. And just in case you appreciate a great deal, I will share the original prices of the items and what I paid for them: the plate was $8.99 and I paid .89 cents; the sign was $23.99 and I paid $2.39 (plus tax). Sweet.😃

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Take

“I. Can’t. Take. It. Anymore.” Rarely are these words uttered by someone overwhelmed by good things that are happening to her. Typically, they are the words of individuals who feel at their limit in the face of situations or circumstances that have taxed them beyond endurance.

“I. Can’t. Take. It. Anymore.” is frequently followed by, “I give up,” spoken verbally or via behaviors. But at the end of ourselves, God offers a promise, a hope that anchors our souls: “We all experience times of testing, which is normal for every human being. But God will be faithful to you. He will screen and filter the severity, nature, and timing of every test or trial you face so that you can bear it. And each test is an opportunity to trust him more, for along with every trial God has provided for you a way of escape that will bring you out of it victoriously” (1 Corinthians 10:13, TPT). Praises be to our gracious God. In our own strength we cannot. Through Him we can.

I am joining the Five Minute Friday writing community, hosted by Kate Motaung, for our weekly writing adventure (on a Saturday). Please click here to learn about Five Minute Friday. This week’s prompt is, “Take.”

Question

On a mountain in Galilee, His disciples came to Him and He taught them many things:

He had provision for the poor in spirit, those who mourn, the gentle, those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, the merciful, the pure in heart, the peacemakers, those persecuted for righteousness.

Believers are salt and light.

He, Christ, fulfilled the Law.

Murder begins in the heart and adultery can be committed in the heart without an adulterous act being performed.

He taught them to tell the truth, go the second mile, love their enemies, how to give, how to pray, how to fast, and where lasting treasure is to be stored.

But it was not until He taught them the cure for anxiety that He began to ask them questions. Questions such as, “Isn’t life more than food and the body more than clothing?”// Directing their attention to the birds of the sky, He informed the disciples that their heavenly Father feeds the birds then He asked them, “Aren’t you worth more than they?” His questions continued with, “Can any of you add a single cubit to his height by worrying? And why do you worry about clothes? Learn how the wildflowers of the field grow: they don’t labor or spin thread. Yet I tell you that not even Solomon in all his splendor was adorned like one of these! If that’s how God clothes the grass of the field, which is here today and thrown into the furnace tomorrow, won’t He do much more for you—you of little faith? So don’t worry, saying, ‘What will we eat?’ or ‘What will we drink?’ or ‘What will we wear?’ For the idolaters eagerly seek all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. But seek first the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be provided for you. Therefore don’t worry about tomorrow, because tomorrow will worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own” (Matthew 5:1-6:34, HCSB).

When we are tempted to worry or catch ourselves worrying, may we take a few doses of this antidote contained in Matthew 6:25-34, stretch out on His sure promises, and pull His promises up like a blanket to keep the chill of doubt and worry at bay. Our heavenly Father knows what we need and He is the perfect Father. Let us make seeking Him our priority for He who is our greatest need has promised to meet all other needs.

I am joining the Five Minute Friday writing community, hosted by Kate Motaung, for our weekly writing adventure (on a Saturday). Please click here to learn about Five Minute Friday. This week’s prompt is, “Question.” The content behind the // was added after 5 minutes were completed.

Name

The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous runs to it and is safe and set on high [far above evil] (Proverbs 18:10, AMP).”

The name of the LORD… What’s in a name? The Reformation Study Bible’s commentary on Proverbs 18:10, informed me that, “In Hebrew culture, a name was not a mere label, but usually an expression of the character of a person. God’s covenant name, ‘LORD,’ is associated with His character as Savior of His people …).

The name of the LORD is… He never changes and His names that represent His character never change.

The name of the LORD is a strong tower … The Reformation Study Bible also notes, “The security of the righteous is based on God’s character as a faithful Savior.”

“The name of the Lord is a strong tower; The righteous runs to it and is safe and set on high [far above evil] (Proverbs 18:10, AMP).”

“I bow before your holy Temple as I worship. I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness; for your promises are backed by all the honor of your name (Psalm 138:2, NLT).”

” You are my hiding place; You, Lord, protect me from trouble; You surround me with songs and shouts of deliverance. Selah (Psalm 32:7, AMP).”

I am joining (on a Sunday) the Five Minute Friday writing community, hosted by Kate Motaung, for our weekly writing adventure. Please click here to learn about Five Minute Friday. This week’s prompt is, “Name.” The video of the hymn, “A Mighty Fortress is Our God,” was added was added after 5 minutes were completed.


Opportunity

I can bewail missed opportunities.

Be stuck on what could have been.

Or begin looking for and make use of the opportunities God has woven into each new day.

Opportunities to begin again.

Chose life.

Choose Him

Extend grace.

Receive grace.

Draw closer to Him.

Overlook an offense.

Talk with Him.

Listen to Him.

Listen to others.

Love.

Forgive.

Learn.

Notice His goodness.

Give thanks…

I can bewail missed opportunities.

Be stuck on what could have been.

Or make use of the new ones God gives each day.

I am joining (on a Wednesday day) the Five Minute Friday writing community, hosted by Kate Motaung, for our weekly writing adventure. Please click here to learn about Five Minute Friday. The prompt is, “Oppprtunity.”

Lack

Elohim, You are God and You are only good. You have no “dark side.” You are God and You are only good, and always do good. As such, You are the only One who can define “good.” Not Merriam-Webster. Not the world. No created thing. Only You can define what good is. So what do I do when I read Psalm 34:10, “The young lions lack [food] and grow hungry, but they who seek the Lord will not lack any good thing (emphasis added), and see things I believe are good for me but are not present in my life? I must remember that You alone have the right to define what is good. And You always keep Your word. If something I believe is good is not in my life, it is either not good for me or not good for me in this season of my life. I can trust You.


I am joining (on a Saturday) the Five Minute Friday writing community, hosted by Kate Motaung, for our weekly writing adventure. Please click here to learn about Five Minute Friday. This week’s prompt is, “Lack.”

Confident

I am confident because …

  • Even before He made the world, God loved me and chose me in Christ to be holy and without fault in His eyes. God decided in advance to adopt me into His own family by bringing me to Himself through Jesus Christ. This is what He wanted to do, and it gave Him great pleasure (Ephesians 1:4-5, NLT).
  • I am fearfully and wonderfully made by God (Psalm 139:14).
  • God has blessed me with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, just as He chose me in Him before the foundation of the world, that I should be holy and without blame before Him in love,  having predestined me to adoption as His by Jesus Christ to Himself, and He made me accepted in the Beloved (Ephesians 1:3-6, NKJV).
  • God is working in me, giving me the desire and power to do what pleases Him (Philippians 2:13) and He will never give up on me. He is doing a good work in me and will continue working until Jesus returns (Philippians 1:6).

Because of these and other truths, I can be confident in every situation. My confidence is not self-based, it is God-based. As the Apostle Paul stated, “This is the kind of confidence we have in and through the Anointed toward our God. Don’t be mistaken; in and of ourselves we know we have little to offer, but any competence or value we have comes from God” (2 Corinthians 3:4-5, VOICE).

I am joining (on a Sunday) the Five Minute Friday writing community, hosted by Kate Motaung, for our weekly writing adventure. Please click here to learn about Five Minute Friday. This week’s prompt is, “Confident.” I am #speakingtruthtomyself today and sharing it, perchance you need to hear it also, as you face a new week. Take courage (my) heart.