And I am convinced that nothing can ever separate us from God’s love. Neither death nor life, neither angels nor demons, neither our fears for today nor our worries about tomorrow—not even the powers of hell can separate us from God’s love. No power in the sky above or in the earth below—indeed, nothing in all creation will ever be able to separate us from the love of God that is revealed in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 8:38-39
Nothing can separate us from the love of God. Yesterday as we were walking out to the camper for Bible Study I was attacked by a wasp. Mark and I love to read the Bible together and share about what it says to us. Since God talks to each of us as the OOAK individual that He created, it’s amazingly beautiful to see His Grace at work! Unfortunately we never got there – I got stung. I’m severely allergic to bee venom and now I guess that includes any of those flying biting insects. We live 25 minutes from the doctors office- They’re not always open so it was like a shot in the dark whether or not help would be there. My first reaction to the sting was shock but peace came one second later. God was with me. What do I have to fear? Nothing! I was fascinated to see how He would bring good out of this situation. God brings good out of everything for every person. I carry an Epi-pen wherever we go, so Mark administered that and I keep Benadryl pills in my handbag for the same reason. These measures will get you to the doctor’s office or hospital but they can not save you from a full blown episode. Anyone allergic to bees should have these readily available. The nurse was in and she saw me first. In her questioning of how it happened I related that we were on our way to study the Bible together when it stung me. Hmm-mm, do you think maybe God wanted her and the other person standing by her to hear that studying the Bible is good reading? I was given a shot of a corticosteroid and waited patiently for the affect to start. She discussed what was to be done with the doctor, I imagined that because I never saw the doctor, then she came back with a paper to deliver to the hospital where I was to go and wait for a possible second reaction to happen. The second reaction is iffy at best. Never having suffered from a dreaded second reaction I went shopping instead, retail therapy, all the stores were close or within sight of the hospital. I bumped into one of my favorite people, Chuck our assistant fire chief (at the first store), who was told the story with full details and checked me out giving me some wonderful advice about the itch that was beginning. Chuck was the second person to hear that reading the Bible and learning about God is a good thing to do daily. I bought a toy duck for my dog (she loved it) and a battery kill switch for the fire department’s brush truck. Mark stayed with me the entire time and made me chicken noodle soup when we finally got home. I found myself talking to God and thinking about him all day! This relates only a small fraction of the great good God does through one tiny wasp sting. Whatever happens to you each and every day can be read like a chapter in God’s Bible, when you look at it keeping in mind how God works his everyday miracles with love and attention to details.
“Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.” James 1:22
Our convictions derived from the word of God should be a guide that we follow courageously. If we just do mere lip service we have no faith. Do what it says!
Father , please grant us the courage to follow your word faithfully, through your Son Jesus I pray.
I am going to share something very intimate that happened to me years ago. God spoke to me in a chapel in Maine. He said “Television takes away from prayer and meditation.” This post required more courage than I ever thought I would have. Most people don’t believe God still talks to us. I think God may have told me because I’m a sinner in great need of His love and mercy, not a saint. I’m sharing this because I believe this is for everyone not me exclusively. The last thing I want is to stand before Him and not to have shared this message with you. Maybe this is the job that was given to me. If that’s the case, I can handle any ridicule I might receive.
He who digs a pit will fall into it, And he who rolls a stone, it will come back on him. Proverbs 26:27
I am about to repeat myself with this one. Lying and spreading vicious stories about another is analogous to the story of the hole digger “digging holes for others to fall into” and how the only one to fall into that hole is the digger. This analogy impressed me strongly because, as an artist, I’m visual. Whenever we set out to hurt others by telling lies about them or exposing some hurtful episodes (that are none of our business), we dig a pit, ditch, trench, hole to bury ourselves in. We all make errors in judgement and we all sin. Why not move on, onto holy ground. Be grounded by the words of God in the Bible. Lead a life that reflects love for your neighbor, friend, associate, fellow firefighter or family member. It is so much easier, sweeter and more palatable to tell the truth and live with it than to spread a lie and suffer the consequence.
“speaking to one another with psalms, hymns and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord, always giving thanks to God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ.” …Ephesians 5:19-20
Speaking sweetly and encouraging others, who may need to be lifted up in Spirit because they are negative, downright mean or abrasive, might not be my first thought. If I can speak to them from the Spirit under those conditions I’m certain it is pleasing to God, and from God’s grace. Thanking God the Father for everything, in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ, makes it possible to speak encouragingly.
When evil comes your way, just call on Jesus and watch fear and sadness turn to strength and joy!
“Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good.” …Romans 12:21
Jesus is the King of Good, since all good comes from God alone!
“Woe to those who call evil good and good evil, who put darkness for light and light for darkness, who put bitter for sweet and sweet for bitter!” …Isaiah 5:20
So when you think good!, think God!
I did a series of paintings on the blue lady inspired by a beautiful woman washing her clothes in the public baths in L’Antigua, Guatemala. It felt sacred there. The three active volcanoes surrounding it definitely made you think of God. They seemed to live on a quiet edge of eternity.
While exploring God’s goodness, I have found the most pleasure focusing on His attributes of goodness, justice, patience, beauty, love, grace, holiness and mercy. His loving kindness sustains me. Let His goodness be a gift you give yourself!