Ready on Your Lips

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Ready on Your Lips

I love the wisdom I gain when I take the time to study, meditate upon, and apply the Word! It brings such joy to my heart, and joy is hard for many to find in these tumultuous times.

Proverbs has been one of my favorite books in the bible for many years. I can read it over and over and find new insights in it. I saw something in Proverbs 22:17-18 that really stood out to me.

“Incline your ear, and hear the words of the wise,
and apply your mind to my knowledge;
for it will be pleasant if you keep them within you,
if all of them are ready on your lips.” (RSV)

As I was pondering on this verse, I thought, “How can we have God’s Word ‘ready on our lips’ if we aren’t reading it, studying it, and meditating upon it?”

 

It is imperative for us to be in the Word of God in these times! Not only for ourselves, but for others! People are going to be asking some hard questions with the multitude of world events that are happening. We need to be gaining wisdom, insight, and direction from God’s Word so that we have answers.

 

I challenge you to start picking up your trusty sword and start studying it! You will never regret spending time in the Word of God! It is living and active, and God has so many treasures to reveal to you in His Word!

© 2018, Stacy R. Miller

 

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Such Details!

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Such Details!

You may have noticed a theme in my devotions the last few months.  Many focus on the importance of getting into the Word of God, reading, studying, and meditating upon it.

We are told in 2 Timothy 3:16 that all scripture profitable for doctrine, reproof, correction, and instruction in righteousness.  I am currently reading Exodus, where God gave very detailed, precise instructions for building the Ark of the Covenant and the tabernacle.  Before I started reading, I prayed for the Lord to speak to me through His Word.  However, I have to admit, as I read this portion, I was thinking, “What am I supposed to learn from this?”  Stick with me!  You are about to find out!

In Exodus 25-28, the Lord gave detailed instructions from the tabernacle to the courtyard, including the table, lampstand, framework, altar, and even the clothing for the priests! I couldn’t help but think, “Lord, now that is some high maintenance!”

He went into such great detail for the priest’s robe, stating how many rows of gemstones there were to be, which gemstones would go where, adding to put them in settings of gold, and what each gemstone stood for.

He then specified instructions for hem of the robe: There were to be pomegranates of not one, but three specific colors, with bells alternating between them.

This got me to thinking about when God gave Noah instructions for building the ark. In Genesis 6, the Lord told Noah how long, wide, and high the ark was to be, where to place a window and the door. He told him to cover the ark in pitch, what to take on the ark and how many. He even told Noah how many days it would rain.

Psalm 11:4 tells us the still rules from heaven, closely watching everything which happens on earth. God is still into details! We see this again in Psalm 139 where it tells us that He knows when we sit, stand, sleep, or awaken. He knows our thoughts before we speak. He even knew us before we were formed, having already written the number of our days in His book.

God went into such detail for the ark and the tabernacle – things which weren’t meant to last forever.  How much more do you think He cares about every detail of your life?  After all, you were made in His image.  Not only that, but He sent His only Son to die for you.  You can rest assured that, indeed, He really does care about every…. detail….of…. your….life.

I share all of this with you to show you that God does speak through His Word — even through those seemingly mundane, boring portions.  When we fail to read His Word, we not only miss out for ourselves, but we are missing out on what God may want to speak to us so that we can, in turn, speak to others, encouraging them! We can show them that God cares about every detail of their lives as well!
© 2018, Stacy R. Miller

Are You Resting?

If you feel overwhelmed with the burdens of life, this message is for you!

Are You Stable?

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Are You Stable?

I had a lively discussion with my cousin regarding the issue of biblical illiteracy among those who claim to be Christians. It is so prevalent these days, and honestly, it breaks my heart. Those who choose not to study the bible are missing some of the greatest treasures in life! After all, Psalm 138:2 tells us that God has magnified His Word above all.

Colossians 1:21-23 tells us what happens when we continue in our faith. “And you, who once were alienated and hostile in mind, doing evil deeds, he has now reconciled in his body of flesh by his death, in order to present you holy and blameless and above reproach before him, if indeed you continue in the faith, stable and steadfast, not shifting from the hope of the gospel that you heard.” (ESV, bolded text done by me)

One thing I have noticed throughout the years is that there are many things in the natural realm, which can be applied to our spiritual lives. This portion of scripture is a good example of that.

For example, when a person has high blood pressure, they take medication on a daily basis. By doing so, they stand a better chance of keeping their blood pressure at a stable level. In our spiritual lives, if we read, study, and meditate on the Word of God on a daily basis, our spiritual lives will be stable. God’s Word is like medicine to our soul. When we neglect that daily Word, we tend to follow our emotions instead of God’s truth. We become weak, and less able to stand against temptation’s snares.

If you have been neglecting the Word, I challenge you to pick up your sword and start reading it again. You will be amazed at what the Lord wants to reveal to you, how He wants to encourage you, and show you His immense love for you!

© 2018, Stacy R. Miller

 

The Spiritual Restaurant

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The Spiritual Restaurant

There are so many choices when we go out to eat. We can do fast food, drive through, buffets, or a fancy restaurant that has culinary foods.

Now when we do fast food or the drive through, it’s because we are usually in a hurry. We do it for the convenience, not because it’s good for us. If we do the buffet, it’s usually because we want a lot of choices. But there’s something else which often happens with a buffet – we usually eat way too much!

If we choose to go to the restaurant which offers culinary foods, we are going for the experience, the atmosphere, and to savor every bite. After all, it costs us a lot more money for an experience like that!

One thing common with all of these choices is that we don’t have to cook the food. It’s easier for us because someone else is taking care of the hard part.

Our spiritual lives can be much like eating out. Many people view their spiritual lives as just attending church, with it being where they get fed. Some people think it’s the job of the pastor to feed them. Some want a fast-food service, where they are in and out quickly. Others want a drive-through service, where they come once in a while, but they don’t plan to stay and get involved or connect with others. Many in this group don’t even read the Word the rest of the week. Yet, in the Lord’s prayer, Jesus said, “Give us this day our daily bread.” Getting into the Word and spending time with the Lord is to be done daily.

Now there are others who view church as a buffet. They will be there for every service, taking it all in. However, they don’t give back. They just hoard it for themselves. If we eat at a buffet every night, we are going to get fat. People who attend every service, just taking in and never getting back are the ones who become puffed up and proud. They are the ones who often become judgmental and legalistic. In their judgmental attitude, they will still read the Word, but they never see themselves in it – only others.

There is a third group of people who view their spiritual lives like culinary arts. When they go to a restaurant which serves culinary foods, they want to savor every bite. They want to relax, look around the restaurant, taking in the entire experience. They know there is a price to be paid for this kind of experience, so they want to get everything they can from it. This would be likened to those who have tasted and seen the Lord is good. They don’t just want church on Sunday. They want Jesus! They want daily bread and they are willing to get that bread for themselves by studying the Word. Because they spend so much time in the Word, learning it, savoring it, experiencing it in their daily lives, they can’t help but want to share the goodness of God with others!

In all honesty, I can look at these scenarios and recognize times in my life where I have fit into every one of them! Can you see me blush? The last group is where I currently fit and I have to tell you, it is so exciting! I quit reading many books and I stopped listening to the preaching on the television. I started digging into the Word for myself and really studying it. I have been doing this for over four years now. I can tell you – NOTHING compares to the time I have spent in the Word. I crave the Word of God! Now that I have truly tasted the true Word, it is what I desire. Forget the mega churches. Forget the popular books. Just give me Jesus!
© 2018, Stacy R. Miller

 

Out of Alignment

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Out of Alignment

Have you ever thrown your back out of alignment? It is a pain unlike any other. Sometimes a quick trip to the chiropractor will take care of it. Other times, it may require rest and a few more trips to the chiropractor before things are back to normal.
One of the common reasons for your back going out of alignment is improper lifting. The injury from that can leave you with a pain so intense that others can hear it in your voice.

Our spiritual lives can be much like this. We begin to carry heavy burdens, but we do so improperly. We aren’t to carry these loads ourselves. We are to turn them over to the Lord, for He tells us to cast our burdens on Him and He will sustain us. (Psalm 55:22)
Other times we find ourselves dealing with a lot of stress, but fail to come to Him and find rest. (Mark 6:31) This too, can cause us to be spiritually out of alignment.

There are also times when we are weighed down with worry. Instead, we should be praying and giving our requests to the Lord. He will then give us peace that passes all understanding. (Philippians 4:6-7)

Humans have a bad habit of trying to do everything for ourselves. We think we need to be busy all the time. This dependency upon ourselves can be destructive and cause us to be out of alignment. There are times when the Lord tells us to simply be still before Him and rest in the knowledge that He is God. (Psalm 46:10)

One of the best things you can do to help keep your back strong and healthy is to exercise and keep your core strong. In a spiritual sense, our exercise would be to stay in the Word and pray.

Have you let your spirit get out of alignment? If so, get back into the Word and let the Lord ‘align’ you again.
© 2018, Stacy R. Miller

“I Do It Myself!”

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“I Do It Myself”

When my daughter was a toddler, we would often try to help her with things, and hear the words, “I do it myself!” Can you relate?

In our Christian walk, we sometimes take on that same attitude of “I do it myself!” We may struggle in an area, and we don’t want anyone to know. It can be the shame of our sin, but most often, it is our own pride, which stops us from opening up to anyone.

However, there are times when we really need to reach out to a trusted friend who will agree with us in prayer. Sometimes our friend, who isn’t caught in the middle of the issue, can have valuable, wise insights to help us.

James 4:6 tells us that God opposes the proud but gives grace to those who are humble. James 5:16 tells us to confess our sins to one another so that we may be healed.

Sometimes, by simply being willing to step out and admit openly that you are struggling with something, the power of that secret sin begins to lessen. It can be much like someone who was sexually abused. Once they speak out, exposing the abuse, the power their abuser once had over them, diminishes. Many former victims admit that by speaking out, they finally felt like they had the power. The abuser lost his power over them.

It is often the same when Satan has lied to us about our own sin. I remember learning years ago that Satan’s greatest weapon against us is a lie. Don’t let his lies hold you back any longer. If you need help, pray for the Lord to lead you to a trusted friend who can help you get out of his web of deceit.

Don’t be like a toddler, who adamantly declares, “I do it myself!” Let Jesus help you! He is waiting and willing to set you free!
© 2018, Stacy R. Miller

 

 

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