Wednesday, February 15, 2017

BEAUTY

     Grasses, fences, trees clothed in crystal, glistened in the early morning sunlight as we drove to school. Still air overnight had allowed hoarfrost, a sheer coating of water vapour, to freeze over everything. 

     The writer of Ecclesiastes tells us that God created everything beautiful in its time. (Eccl. 3:11 AMP) We need beauty. It lifts our spirits. It cheers and brightens and delights us. The hoarfrost transformed dry, brown grasses into a charming scene along the roadside.

     We may be quicker to notice outward beauty. Father God treasures the inward beauty of a meek and quiet spirit. (I Peter 3:4) He promises to "beautify the meek with salvation." (Psalm 149:4 KJV) So often even that change is visible. 

     Someone who has just accepted Jesus as their personal Saviour can't hide the transformation. The new life the individual has received radiates through them. Like a bride on her wedding day, God's love causes the newly born-again to shine.

     Father God delights in turning ashes, anything Satan plans to destroy, into beauty. (Isaiah 61:3) The ugly cross on which the Lord Jesus died is displayed throughout the world as a symbol of triumph over sin and death.

    The aspen and spruce trees on our campus lost their sparkle before midday. The glory of God's love is forever. We enjoy the beauty of His creation now. One day every believer will behold the beauty of the Lord.

Wednesday, February 1, 2017

IT"S OURS!

     My home church in Ontario, Canada has just completed a First Fruits Fast. Separated by 1600 miles, attending the special prayer gatherings was not an option, but I did participate in 21 days of skipping meats and sweets and other things. It's a precious time of focusing on God's goodness, and, after all the holiday feasting, our bodies say, "Thank you!".

     The first weeks of the new year also find many determined to follow a fitness routine. Some invest in expensive equipment designed to strengthen muscles and trim fat. It can be tough to maintain the enthusiasm that inspires folks at first. 

     A mini trampoline and a couple of one pound weights has been enough for me for many years. I have found a simple program of 12 exercises done 12 times each morning is great. The routine only takes about ten minutes. I just have to step on and bounce away. Whether my modest gizmo or elaborate computerized contraptions, we don't benefit unless we use them.

     If we struggle to make use of what we have in the natural world, the battle is often greater in the spiritual. In the latter, most are not aware of what is theirs. Every blessing promised in Deuteronomy 28 belongs to God's children. They are true whether visible or not. 

     Promised prosperity is a fact. If the bank statement differs we can agree with God and His word and expect a turn around. Health is a fact. We can know that lying symptoms must disappear because by Jesus' stripes we are healed. Father does not require us to do anything He won't help us to do, so we can love those who don't love us as His love flows through His people to others.

     Just as human parents want their little ones to enjoy what they've provided, Father God longs to see His children experience all He has for them. In Isaiah 30:18 (Amplified) the prophet says the Lord waits and longs to be gracious to us. He wants us to receive what we are seeking even more than we do ourselves.

     Like a table that is spread with sumptuous delights, our Father has every good thing we could desire laid out ready for the taking. It is ours. All are welcome. Dig in. Enjoy!