Living Life in a Fish Bowl!

Gloria’s take on life.

grace upon grace

God’s Grace
 
John 1:15-17 The Passion Translation (TPT)
“John taught the truth about him
when he announced to the people,
“He’s the One! Set your hearts on him!
I told you he would come after me,
even though he ranks far above me,
for he existed before I was even born.”
And now out of his fullness we are fulfilled!
And from him we receive grace heaped upon more grace!
Moses gave us the Law, but Jesus, the Anointed One,
unveils truth wrapped in tender mercy.”
 
“And now from him we receive grace heaped upon more grace!” — From my teenage years through the present – I am very much aware of my own shortcomings. Somewhere along the way, though, I began to realize God’s grace is deeper. This is not an excuse for my failings. Rather it is an understanding of truth.
 
I Need God!
 
It is through Christ that I change. (Psalm 51) In my weakness, He is my strength. (2 Cor 12:9) I am not a victim. I am victorious in Christ. (1 Cor 15:57)
 
Today I am meditating on God’s grace. What a powerful attitude changer.
 
Walking in God’s grace,
til next time
 
 
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June 6, 2019 Posted by | Pastor's wife, relationships, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

finish strong

What happened to Asa?
We’ve spent two days discussing Asa from 2 Chronicles.
 
Thursday – “And Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God.” “… And the kingdom had rest under him.” (2 Chron 14:5)
 
Friday – the warning – “Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin: The Lord is with you while you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you” (chapter 15)
 
Asa had ever reason to  trust God.   Yet in chapter 16 we find him seeking help from the Syrian King. What about us? When trouble is coming at us, who do we turn to? Where do we place our trust?
 
When a prophet of the Lord came to rebuke Asa, instead of recognizing his error, he became angry.
 
“Asa became so angry with Hanani for saying this that he threw him into prison and put him in stocks. At that time Asa also began to oppress some of his people.” 1 Chron 16:10 NLT
 
Here we see the spiral of sin. First he didn’t rely on God. Then he refused to acknowledge his behavior and repent. Next his treatment of others took a turn for the worse. Oh, how far he has come from doing what is good and right in the sight of God.
 
At the end of his life we find that Asa developed a serious foot disease.
 
“In the thirty-ninth year of his reign, Asa developed a serious foot disease. Yet even with the severity of his disease, he did not seek the Lord’s help but turned only to his physicians.” 2 Chron 16:12 NLT
 
I am reminded of the scripture “Therefore let anyone who thinks that he stands take heed lest he fall.” 1 Cor 10:12 ESV
 
Let us seek the Lord!  Let us finish strong!
til next time
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June 1, 2019 Posted by | bible story, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

what are you seeking?

Yesterday we looked at Asa in 2 Chronicles 14. Chapter 15 finds him given this warning.
 
“Hear me, Asa, and all Judah and Benjamin: The Lord is with you while you are with him. If you seek him, he will be found by you, but if you forsake him, he will forsake you”
 
As soon as Asa heard this, he took action. He got rid of any idols, repaired the altar of the Lord and gathered the people.
 
” And they entered into a covenant to seek the Lord, the God of their fathers, with all their heart and with all their soul,” (verse 12)
 
He went so far as to remove the Queen because she had made a detestable image. (verse 16)
 
It is still true today. If we seek God, we will find Him.
 
The question today is — Are you seeking Him?
 
til next time
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May 31, 2019 Posted by | Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

peace

Peace – you can’t put a price tag on it. Even if you could, you can’t buy it. Yet, it can be yours. God offers peace – peace that goes beyond our understanding, our reasoning. (Phil 4:4-7)
 
Let’s look at 2 Chronicles 14. Here we find Asa. Verse 2
“And Asa did what was good and right in the eyes of the Lord his God.” “… And the kingdom had rest under him.” (verse 5)
 
I believe there is a connection between doing what is good and right in God’s eyes and having rest/peace.
 
As we read on in the story of Asa we find that he had a mighty army of 580,000 men of valor. When along comes Zerah the Ethiopian. He has an army of a million. The battle line is drawn.
 
Verse 11 “And Asa cried to the Lord his God, “O Lord, there is none like you to help, between the mighty and the weak. Help us, O Lord our God, for we rely on you, and in your name we have come against this multitude. O Lord, you are our God; let not man prevail against you.”
 
Not only was the Ethiopian army defeated – not one of them remained alive.
 
Who do you rely on?
til next time
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May 30, 2019 Posted by | just thinking about stuff, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

God smiles

God smiles. “For the Lord takes pleasure in his people…” (Psalm 149:4 ESV)
 
Some people have a distorted view of God. They see Him as distant, angry, and/or uninvolved. This couldn’t be farther from the truth.
 
God loves us. He has desired a relationship from the very beginning. He would walk with Adam and Eve in the cool of the day. (Genesis 3) — He gave His Son to pay the price we couldn’t pay. (John 3:16) — We are told to seek Him. (Psalm 27:8) — Yes, God wants a relationship with us.
 
“Submit yourselves therefore to God. Resist the devil, and he will flee from you. 8 Draw near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands, you sinners, and purify your hearts, you double-minded.” James 4:7-8 ESV
 
What about you? Where is your relationship with God?
 
Thy will be done,
til next time
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April 26, 2019 Posted by | Pastor's wife, relationships, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

eyes wide open

Numbers 6:24-26 (NLT) is often used as a blessing at the end of a church service. I will use it as a prayer for someone that I know is going through a difficult time. it is my prayer for you today.

‘May the Lord bless you
and protect you.
May the Lord smile on you
and be gracious to you.
May the Lord show you his favor
and give you his peace.’

May today find you noticing the blessings of God. Blessings are all around us. He is with us and He will make a way where there may seem to be no way. (Isaiah 43:19)

We don’t have to look far to see how gracious God is to us. His grace (getting what we don’t deserve) and His mercy (not getting what we deserve) are examples of His great love for us.

Favor and peace – Thank you God! He is working all things out for our good. (Romans 8:28) He is able to do more than we can even begin to imagine. (Eph 3:20) His grace is enough. (2 Cor 12:9)

Throughout the day stop, look up and thank Him for the big and the small things. It is also good for us to remember that He blesses us to be a blessing to others. (Gen 12:2) Let your light shine. Let them see Jesus in you. How about looking for ways to be generous.

May God bless you today and may we not forget that it is God.

til next time

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April 25, 2019 Posted by | ministry, Pastor's wife, relationships, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

betrayal

Holy Week
The Lord’s Supper

It wasn’t just any ordinary meal.

It is here that Jesus speaks of the upcoming betrayal.

“And as they were reclining at table and eating, Jesus said, “Truly, I say to you, one of you will betray me, one who is eating with me.” Mark 14:18 ESV

Jesus understands betrayal.

Jesus knew who it was and yet did not treat him in such a way so that others knew. (Mark 14:19 “They began to be sorrowful and to say to him one after another, “Is it I?”)

Truly this wasn’t an ordinary meal. This one would be remembered through the ages.

“And he took bread, and when he had given thanks, he broke it and gave it to them, saying, “This is my body, which is given for you. Do this in remembrance of me.” And likewise the cup after they had eaten, saying, “This cup that is poured out for you is the new covenant in my blood.” Luke 22:19-20 ESV
(For additional reading – 1 Corinthians 11:23-30)

With a heart filled with gratitude!
til next time

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April 18, 2019 Posted by | ministry, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , | Leave a comment

weeping – cleansing

Holy Week

Weeping and Cleansing

We’ve talked about the  triumphal entry into Jerusalem.  Today we will look at weeping and cleansing.

“And when he drew near and saw the city, he wept over it” Luke 19:41 ESV

It is here that Jesus speaks of the coming destruction of Jerusalem. They refused to recognize God’s offer of salvation. (41-44)

I wonder how much impact it would make on our lives if we spent more time weeping over those who don’t know Jesus and are living in darkness? When was the last time you prayed for someone to accept Jesus as their Savior and Lord? I am reminded of a line from a song that I love — “Break my heart for what breaks Yours.”

We then find Jesus entering the temple.

“And he entered the temple and began to drive out those who sold, saying to them, “It is written, ‘My house shall be a house of prayer,’ but you have made it a den of robbers.” Luke 19:45-46 ESV

“A den of robbers” indicates that unfair dealings were taking place. Even though animals were needed for the sacrifices, selling them inside the temple was not acceptable. I believe it was also a prophetic action that sacrifices were no longer going to be needed. Jesus would become the sacrifice once and for all.

Weeping and cleansing — let’s take some time today and pray for those who are living with out hope. Let’s take some time to ask Jesus if there is a cleansing that needs to take place in us. Maybe it’s a negative attitude, a destructive habit, a stingy mindset, a laziness of sorts, complacency, pride, envy, a lying tongue…. is there something that is standing in the way of us being all that God intends us to be?

“Search me, O God, and know my heart;
test me and know my anxious thoughts.
Point out anything in me that offends you,
and lead me along the path of everlasting life.”
Psalm 19:23-24 NLT

til next time

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April 18, 2019 Posted by | Pastor's wife, relationships, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

not just any parade

Holy Week
Triumphal Entry (click here for part 1)

Parades bring excitement – This was an unusual parade.

Returning from war, Roman emperors would not choose a colt but a fine prancing horse for their parade. There would be warriors, prisoners in chains, and a great display of the spoils of war. Instead Jesus came riding on a colt, no warriors, no prisoners and no spoils of war.

John 12:12-15 “The next day a great multitude that had come to the feast, when they heard that Jesus was coming to Jerusalem, took branches of palm trees and went out to meet Him, and cried out: “Hosanna! ‘Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord!’ The King of Israel!” Then Jesus, when He had found a young donkey, sat on it; as it is written: “Fear not, daughter of Zion; Behold, your King is coming, Sitting on a donkey’s colt.”

The crowd took action and rolled out the red carpet. Here comes this man riding on a colt (fulfilling Zech 9:9) They laid down branches which was a sign of victory and success. (Rev 7:9)

(The other 3 gospels mention laying down clothing – custom of that day – when God would appoint a King. see 2 Kings 9:13)

THE CROWD WAS LOUD
They were looking to Him for deliverance.

“Hosanna Blessed is He who comes in the name of the Lord.” (Psalm 118:26 – 29)

EXCITEMENT IS BUILDING.
The word is out. He raised a dead man, he healed the sick, the lame walk, the blind see – surely He can free us from Rome. Finally Rome will be overthrown.

EXPECTATIONS WERE HIGH
They thought they knew what should be done – what was best.

If we aren’t careful we can fall into that trap easily – thinking we know what is truly best instead of trusting God.

How much frustration would be eliminated if we placed our expectations in the hands of Jesus and trusted Him with outcome?

Not my will but Yours be done!

til next time

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April 17, 2019 Posted by | ministry, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Triumphal entry

Holy Week
The triumphal entry (part 1)

Jesus is leaving Jericho heading to Jerusalem – 17 miles Three times He tells his disciples what will happen there – death and resurrection. They don’t get it.

As he left Jericho a great crowd follows him. Two blind men sitting by the road cried out to Him. The multitude tried to quiet them. They got all the louder. “Have mercy on us, O Lord, Son of David.”

What did Jesus do?

“So Jesus stood still and called them, and said, “What do you want Me to do for you?” They said to Him, “Lord, that our eyes may be opened.” So Jesus had compassion and touched their eyes. And immediately their eyes received sight, and they followed Him.” Matthew 20:32-33

V 32 He stood still, and called them, He was on His way to Jerusalem, He knew what was ahead and yet he stood still. He met them in that moment.

What Do We Do? Are we in such a hurry that we don’t hear or see what is going on around us? We should be willing to stop, stand still and do good.

Lord, help me to not be so focused on my agenda, in such a hurry to get to the next thing that I don’t see the need right in front of me. Help me to be Your hand extended today.

Let them see You in me,

til next time

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April 17, 2019 Posted by | ministry, Pastor's wife, spiritual reflections, Woman Pastor | , , , , , , | 1 Comment