Tag Archives: remembering

Judges 1-3; Psalms 16; Luke 20

7The people of Israel served the Lord as long as Joshua was alive. They continued serving the Lord during the lifetimes of the elders who lived on after Joshua. These men had seen all the great things the Lord had done for Israel…
10After those people had died, their children grew up. They did not know the Lord or what he had done for Israel. 11So they did evil and worshiped the Baal idols. They did what the Lord said was wrong. Judges 2:7; 10-11 (ICB)
Over the years, both on and off of the mission field, I have come to understand the importance of sharing testimonies. It is easy to get discouraged by attacks from the enemy, fiery darts thrown by people I thought cared, being blindsided by life not happening the way I expected, and even frustrated at the difference between what my idea of good timing versus God’s timing.
Testimonies keep me going, strengthening my faith, helping me trust that God’s holding me in his hand and has a good plan. It is vital to hear how God has moved in the past and hear how He is moving today, not just in others’ lives, but also in my own. Those stories of God’s goodness, propel me into the future with an extra measure of hope and help me put my eyes on Him in the midst of the ups and downs of life’s roller coaster.
It is easy to get caught up in the day to day and not think about the ways God is moving on my behalf, the ways He is protecting me and providing for me. It is good when I am reminded with 20/20, razor-sharp hindsight, that He is always there for me, especially when I don’t fully understand in the moment.
As I am leading my children on this journey with Jesus, I want to be certain that they don’t forget what He has done for them either. I want them to remember the sacrifice of the cross. I want them to remember the glory of His resurrection. I want them to remember His promises. And, I want them to remember the “little” things that He does for them, meaningful whispers of His love.
5No, the Lord is all I need.
He takes care of me.
6My share in life has been pleasant.
My part has been beautiful.
7I praise the Lord because he guides me.
Even at night, I feel his leading.
8I keep the Lord before me always.
Because he is close by my side
I will not be hurt. Psalm 16:5-8 (ICB)
Yesappa, Thank You for always being there for me, for never leaving nor forsaking me. Help me to remember Your goodness always. Give me more and more personal testimonies of Your love, grace, and mercy that will ever serve as reminders to my children and future generations, so they will never forget who You are. In Jesus’ name. Amen.
Blessings,
Julie

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Filed under 66 Books, Bible in a year reading plan, Judges, Luke, New Testament, Old Testament, Psalms

Hosea 11-13; Matthew 19

If you want to give it all you’ve got,” Jesus replied, “go sell your possessions; give everything to the poor. All your wealth will then be in Heaven. Then come follow me.” That was the last thing the young man expected to hear. And so, crestfallen, he walked away. He was holding on tight to a lot of things, and he couldn’t bear to let go. As he watched him go, Jesus told His disciples, “Do you have any idea how difficult it is for the rich to enter God’s kingdom? Let me tell you, it’s easier to gallop a camel through a needle’s eye than for the rich to enter God’s kingdom.” The disciples were staggered. “Then who has any chance at all?” Jesus looked hard at them and said, “No chance at all if you think you can pull it off yourself. Every chance in the world if you trust God to do it.” Matthew 19:21-26 MSG

I had considered myself a generous person, until I let the words of Matthew soak in. I couldn’t help but ask myself, “What am I holding onto?” Most of the time, it’s the condition of my heart that comes out through other ways. That is when I start to rely on myself and replace trust with worry.  Though, I have seen God give back to me more and in abundance when I give something away. Like the time I reluctantly made a meal for someone else, even though I was wondering how I was going to feed my own family on a limited budget. The next week, my husband came home from work with a pile of boxed pizzas that were given to him. We couldn’t even fit them all in our freezer.  But, it’s  not always tangible…it’s also when I don’t think I have anymore of myself to give, He sustains me.   I am thankful for those times of His faithfulness to help me remember. Because, just like Israel, I can be so forgetful.

I’m still your God, the God who saved you out of Egypt. I’m the only real God you’ve ever known. I’m the one and only God who delivers. I took care of you during the wilderness hard times, those years when you had nothing. I took care of you, took care of all your needs, gave you everything you needed. You were spoiled. You thought you didn’t need me. You forgot me.” Hosea 13:4-6 MSG

Sometimes, I just need to return to Him. And remember that only He will satisfy me.

Then Peter chimed in, “We left everything and followed You. What do we get out of it?” Jesus replied, “…This is the Great Reversal: many of the first ending up last, and the last fist.”Matthew 19:30 MSG

Thank you Father, how You have provided for me and my family. You have given me so much,  that I don’t deserve.   I pray that my heart’s desire would be to give it all back to You, because it Is ALL Yours. Thank You for Your faithfulness. Amen.

Amy(amyctanner)

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Numbers 19-21; Colossions 4

There was no water there for the community, so they ganged up on Moses and Aaron. They attacked Moses: “We wish we’d died when the rest of our brothers died before God. Why did you haul this congregation of God out here into this wilderness to die, people and cattle alike? Any why did you take us out of Egypt in the first place, dragging us into this miserable country? No grain, no figs, no grapevines, no pomegranates-and now not even any water!” Moses and Aaron walked away from the assembled congregation to the Tent of Meeting and threw themselves face down on the ground. And they saw the glory of God.” Numbers 20:2-6 MSG

I remember a pastor saying that the biggest sin in the bible is forgetfulness. I think about that often. Especially in my own life and how forgetful I can be. I think about how forgetful the Israelites were, but God had patience with them and kept answering their prayers.

Israel vowed a vow to God: “If you will give this people into our power, we’ll destroy their towns and present the ruins to you as a holy destruction.” God listened to Israel’s prayer and gave them the Canaanites. They destroyed both them and their towns, a holy destruction. They named the place Hormah (Holy Destruction).” Numbers 21:2&3 MSG

This is one of those big answers that they should write down or mark as a stone of remembrance. I think of my journal that way. Stones piled up to remind me of God’s faithfulness. More often than not, I can forget to be grateful. I always know when those times are because I get more cranky. I am irritated by the sometimes mundane that use to bring me joy.

Pray diligently. Stay alert, with your eyes wide open with gratitude. Don’t forget to pray for us, that God will open doors for telling the mystery of Christ, even while I’m locked up in this jail. Pray that every time I open my mouth I’ll be able to make Christ plain as day to them. Use your heads as you live and work among outsiders. Don’t miss a trick. Make the most of every opportunity. Be gracious in your speech. The goal is to bring out the best in others in a conversation, not put them down, not cut them out.” Colossions 4:2-6 MSG

Dear Father, Thank you for your patience with me. For always meeting me where I am. For going before me. I want to have a heart like Moses and Aaron, bowing in humility before You. I don’t deserve the gifts that You give me. But, like a loving Father You desire to lavish them on me. Help me to have a thankful heart. Amen.

Amy(amyctanner)

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Filed under 66 Books, Colossians, Numbers

Psalm 105, 106; Romans 15:1-20

Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon his name;

make known his deeds among the peoples!

Sing to him, sing praises to him;

tell of all his wondrous works!

Glory in his holy name;

let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice!

Seek the Lord and his strength;

seek his presence continually!

Remember the wondrous works that he has done,

his miracles, and the judgments he uttered… Psalm 105:1-5

 

Praise the Lord!

Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good,

for his steadfast love endures forever!

Who can utter the mighty deeds of the Lord,

or declare all his praise? Psalm 106:1-2

For some reason it seems that I fall into complaining way more often than praising God for what He has done for me in my life. I try not to grumble, but sometimes I catch myself acting like a wandering Israelite in the desert, unsatisfied with manna and quail meat, nostalgic for the past, even if that meant enslavement.

In the midst of the general chaos of day to day life as a single mom (temporarily as we are working on getting my husband to the states in the next 6 months or so) to two very active, high-spirited preschoolers and pregnant with number three, it is easy to forget the ways that God has taken care of me over the years. Heck, there are some days when I can’t even remember the last time I took a shower, if I brushed my teeth, or if took my prenatal vitamins.

But when I do remember, it makes a world of difference to my outlook of my circumstances. It lifts me up; it encourages me and reminds me that I really am not alone, that I follow Jehovah Jireh.

So, I am going to take this opportunity to give thanks to the Lord and make His deeds known. I am going to remember His wondrous works, just a few of the many ways He has taken care of me since I made the choice to live by faith and “GO” into the nations:

  • There is always a need for finances for traveling. God has provided through some of the most unexpected sources and ways. Once, a stranger (a friend of a friend) donated frequent flyer miles to me when I was struggling to raise the needed funds to get back to India. Another time, one person wrote the check for the whole amount need to pay for airfare. Last year, I needed nearly $600 to be able to pay an unanticipated price difference for a flight, and as the need was being prayed for, the exact amount was deposited into my PayPal account.
  • On one trip to India, I was concerned about how to handle my luggage during the 12 hour layover between my international and domestic flights. When I went to collect my luggage everything was missing, ‘lost’ somewhere between the US and France. I had nothing but my carry-on bag to deal while waiting; an effective answer to prayer. All of my luggage was delivered to our local airport less than 24 hours later.
  • I had miscalculated the dates I could be in India and I wasn’t scheduled to depart until 3 days later than my visa allowed. I ended up needing to cancel my reservation and rebook with a new airline because there were no more seats available with my original airline. The journey was uneventful and relaxing, the service was very good. The next day after arriving safely in the U.S., I heard on the news that all of the British Airways flights, both in and out of the country, had been grounded due to Icelandic volcanic ash in the air. This would have kept me in India longer than I could legally be there, but the flight pattern of the new airline avoided the ash and got me home safely.

There have been countless times when I wasn’t sure how I would pay a bill, how I would provide food for my family, or how our ministry in India would be able to accomplish an outreach that had been planned. Though fear tries to creep in, resulting in pointless murmuring, in those times I have still held on to my faith in God’s goodness and trusted in His love for me.

He knows the smallest of details, even when I can’t see the big picture. He knows every hair on my head. He knows all of my needs. He cares about me. And even though His provision often happens in unpredictable, surprising ways, He always gives me exactly what I need, exactly when I need it.

Yesappa, Thank You!

 

Blessings – Julie (writing from the U.S.A.)

 

Unless otherwise indicated, all scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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Filed under 66 Books, ESV Through the Bible in a Year, New Testament, Old Testament, Psalms, Romans

Judges 21; Acts 25; Jer 35; Psalm 78

I took my kids to a Family Fun Night where they put their names in a raffle to win bikes.  All four of my kids got to have one try.  I was really hoping at least one of them would win, but they didn’t.  My 5 yr old son was the saddest.  He cried, because he really wanted the police bike.  I had to remind him at least three times that he had won a bike last year in a library raffle.  I think about how short-sighted his little mind can be, and how God was using him to show me how mine is as well…

It seems like the people of Jerusalem and Judah struggled with the same stubborness that I do. God sent Jeremiah to give them a message,”God-of-the Angel-Armies, the God of Israel says, “Why won’t you learn your lesson and do what I tell you?” God’s Decree, “The commands of Johadab son of Recab to his sons have been carried out to the letter.  He told them not to drink wine, and they haven’t touched a drop to this very day. They honored and obeyed their ancestor’s command. But look at you! I have gone to a lot of trouble to get your attention and you ignored me.  I sent prophet after prophet to you, all of them my servants, to tell you from early morning to late at night to change your life, make a clean break with your evil past and do what is right, to not take up with every Tom, Dick and Harry of a God that comes down the pike, but settle down and be faithful in this country I gave your ancestors.  “And, what do I get from you? Deaf ears.” Jeremiah 35  MSG

I am thankful for God’s patience with me. He knows me and He will do whatever it takes to get my attention and show mercy and love while doing it.  I want to remind me kids of God’s faithfulness in our lives, whenever I have the chance….

“We’re not keeping this to ourselves, we’re passing it along to the next generation-God’s fame and fortune, the marvelous things he has done.  He planted a witness in Jacob, set His word firmly in Israel, Then commanded our parents to teach it to their children, So, the next generation would know, and all the generations to come- Know the truth and tell the stories, so their children can trust in God, Never forget the works of God, but keep his commandments to the letter.  Heaven forbid they should be like their parents, bullheaded and bad, a fickle and faithless bunch who never stayed true to God…They forgot what He had done-marvels he’d done right before their eyes…But, God helped them anyway.” Psalm 7: 1-25 MSG

Dear Jesus, Forgive me when I am so forgetful of your faithfulness in my life. Thank you for the big and little ways that you remind me.  And help me to be diligent in keeping a record for myself, so that I will never grow weary of telling my kids about You and Your marvelous works, Amen.

Amy(amyctanner)

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Filed under 66 Books, Acts, Jeremiah, Judges, M'Cheyne Bible reading plan, New Testament, Old Testament, Psalms, Uncategorized