Friday, 29 November 2019

Thursday, 28 November 2019

Gaelic Prayer

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I am bending my knee
In the eye of the Father who created me,
In the eye of the Son who purchased me,
In the eye of the Spirit who cleansed me,
In friendship and affection.

Through Your own Anointed One, O God,
Bestow upon us fullness in our need,
Love towards God,
The affection of God,
The smile of God,
The wisdom of God,
The grace of God,
The fear of God,
And the will of God
To do on the world of the Three,
As angels and saints
Do in heaven;

Each shade and light,
Each day and night,
Each time in kindness,
Give Thou us Thy Spirit.

– From the Carmina Gedalica, a collection of Celtic prayers and hymns by Alexander Carmichael 1832–1912AD

Hope you enjoyed this prayer.

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Wednesday, 27 November 2019

Coping with Anxiety

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As we draw near to the beginning of Advent and the Christmas season you may be dealing with your own worries and great stress. Here is an article I wrote this week for Scripture Union Magazine entitled Coping with Stress. 

You may find it interesting. A lot of it is written from my own personal experience. Hope you enjoy it and find it helpful. Bless you.


Living in Grace
D3LM3

Tuesday, 26 November 2019

Renew my will

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The simplest prayers are often the best. When Charlotte Elliot wrote these lines for her prayer, little did she know that they would carry so much challenge and depth to them.

"Renew my will from day to day,
Blend it with Thine, and take away
All that now makes it hard to say,
Thy will be done."

We say the words of the Lord's prayer so often that we can easily forget the meaning of the words:
"Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done!"

Mark 3:35 - "The person who obeys God’s will is my brother and sister and mother.”

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Monday, 25 November 2019

Time is short

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"All we have to decide is what to do with the time that is given to us." - JRR Tolkien

I have been sharing in a number of funerals of late and each time I hear the family tributes and eulogies I am reminded at how brief life is. We should make use of every moment we get from the Lord. Every breath is a gift to us from Jesus.

1 Peter 1:24 - "All people are like grass,
    and all their glory is like the flowers of the field;
the grass withers and the flowers fall, but the word of the Lord endures forever.”


What are doing with the time given to you?

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Saturday, 23 November 2019

When all is lost

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J.R.R. Tolkien wrote: “Oft hope is born when all is forlorn.” 

This simple quote brings together the hope of each one of us. When all seems lost and forlorn, that is when we are ready to receive the hope that comes from Jesus. 

"For in this hope we were saved. But hope that is seen is no hope at all. Who hopes for what they already have?" - Romans 8:24

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Friday, 22 November 2019

Do what you can

do-what-you-can-with-all-you-have

Don't try and do everything, but rather do what you can and do it with passion and excellence. There is always something 'good' that can be done.

"Servants, do what you’re told by your earthly masters. And don’t just do the minimum that will get you by. Do your best. Work from the heart for your real Master, for God, confident that you’ll get paid in full when you come into your inheritance. Keep in mind always that the ultimate Master you’re serving is Christ. The sullen servant who does shoddy work will be held responsible. Being a follower of Jesus doesn’t cover up bad work." - Colossians 3:23-25 (Message)

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Wednesday, 20 November 2019

Get a grip

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Ever heard the saying, "Just get a grip on things?!"
It can mean a few different things depending on our contexts, but I want to share it in light of this passage from 2 Thessalonians 2.

"...dear brothers and sisters, STAND FIRM and keep a strong grip on everything we taught you both in person and by letter.” – v.15 (NLT)

"So then, our friends, stand firm and hold on to those truths which we taught you, both in our preaching and in our letter." (Good News)

"With all these things in mind, dear brothers, stand firm and keep a strong grip on the truth that we taught you" (Living Bible)

We are encouraged to hold onto the word of God. It is this life-giving word that keeps us going and helps us stay on the path that God has called us to walk on.

How is your grip today?

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Tuesday, 19 November 2019

Not Reactive Love

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In her wonderful book Radical Optimism, Beatrice Bruteau has this to say about God's love:

"God does not love you or me because we are worthy, desirable, or attractive. God's love is not a reactive love, not a choice-love. God is the author of all that is. Everything starts in and with God whose action and love are never determined or elicited by anything in the environment."

What this reminds me of is that God looks on us with love even before we have made ourselves presentable. He sees us as worthy enough, even to die for each one of us. And this is before we have scrubbed ourselves clean.  

Romans 5:6-8 says it best:

6-8 Christ arrives right on time to make this happen. He didn’t, and doesn’t, wait for us to get ready. He presented himself for this sacrificial death when we were far too weak and rebellious to do anything to get ourselves ready. And even if we hadn’t been so weak, we wouldn’t have known what to do anyway. We can understand someone dying for a person worth dying for, and we can understand how someone good and noble could inspire us to selfless sacrifice. But God put his love on the line for us by offering his Son in sacrificial death while we were of no use whatever to him.

Come to God as you are today and find his embrace life-changing

Living in Grace
D3LM3



Monday, 18 November 2019

Give you strength

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“May our Lord Jesus Christ and God our Father, who loved us and in his special favour gave us everlasting comfort and good hope, comfort your hearts and give you strength in every good thing you do and say.”- 2 Thessalonians 2:16

When we need comfort in any situation it is awesome to know that God draws near to us and stands with us.

Hold onto these words today.

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Friday, 15 November 2019

Losing Hair

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What does Jesus mean when he says "but not a hair of your head will perish" (Luke 21:18) and then "and even the very hairs of your head are all numbered" (Matthew 10:30)? And what does this mean for those of us who are losing our hair on a daily basis?

Well, very simply it means that God has got all the details of our lives covered - even the smallest things. As Eugene Peterson wrote: 

"Every detail of your body and soul—even the hairs of your head!—is in my care" (Luke 21:18 - The Message)

This may be hard for some of us to believe, but why should it be impossible? If the Lord cares for the sparrow and the smallest creatures on our planet then surely he will take care of us?

I trust that these words will offer you hope and encouragement today.

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Thursday, 14 November 2019

Losing heart

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If you ever feel as if you are losing heart then follows these wonderful words of advice from Paul:

"Consider him who endured such opposition from sinners, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart." - Hebrews 12:3

He tells us to think about Jesus (consider him) and all that he went through. When we do this we remind ourselves that Christ is for us and that he will be with us. 

Jesus is our overcomer!

"Don't lose heart if it's very difficult at times, everything will come out all right..." - Vincent van Gogh

Living in Grace
D3LM3


Wednesday, 13 November 2019

Perseverance

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At this time of the year we all need a special dose of Perseverance. It is exam time in our schools; time for budgets in many companies; meetings and planning for next year needs to be finalised; Christmas shopping lists are starting to be drawn up and last minute holiday plans are being made. Perseverance is a huge necessity for most of us.

A definition of Perseverance is "persistence in doing something despite difficulty or delay in achieving success." This can apply to most things that we deal with, but certainly also applies to our faith. We need to ask God to help us persevere when difficulties arise or when we are delayed in achieving our goals.

"Perseverance is the hard work you do after you get tired of doing the hard work you already did."
-Newt Gingrich

Hebrews 10:36 -  "You need to persevere so that when you have done the will of God, you will receive what he has promised."

Keep Going! May God grant you strength for each new day.

Living in Grace
D3LM3

Tuesday, 12 November 2019

When things don't go as planned

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What do you do when things don't go as planned? Get upset? Feel frustrated? Get angry with someone? Resign yourself to God's bigger perspective?

The other evening we planned an event at our church where we invited a whole lot of people to watch a DVD presentation by Bear Grylls. It was going to be great and there was much excitement. We had tested the DVD in the week before and all was good and so on the night things we going to be perfect - or so we thought.

We struggled for over an hour before the start to try and get the DVD to work - it refused to work at all. Every other presentation on the DVD worked perfectly, except the one we wanted! Can you imagine our frustration?!

In the end we had to apologise to people, explain the predicament and watch the "Plan B" presentation. I was upset and deeply frustrated, but I had to resign myself to the fact that we had done all we could - perhaps God had another plan in mind.

What was rewarding in the end was to have people come up to us and say that they "just needed to hear that specific message." Our Plan B was the message that God needed to use for specific people that night. Go figure! God's ways are not my ways.

So, what do you do when things don't go to plan? Is there perhaps something else that God has in mind for you?

Job 37:5 - God’s voice thunders in marvelous ways; he does great things beyond our understanding.
 
Living in Grace
D3LM3

Monday, 11 November 2019

Remember

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Today (11th November) is always a significant day for many people as we remember people who died in any war, but especially the First and Second World Wars.  It is hard to conceive of the vast number of people who gave their lives to a bigger cause, all for the hope of making the world a better place. I suppose it was the promise of HOPE that motivated many to fight for their countries.

When Jeremiah wrote in Lamentations he told people that it was a good thing to REMEMBER, but also to look for Hope. He said:

"I’ll never forget the trouble, the utter lostness, the taste of ashes, the poison I’ve swallowed. I remember it all—oh, how well I remember— the feeling of hitting the bottom. But there’s one other thing I remember, and remembering, I keep a grip on hope..." (Lamentations 3:19-21 - The Message). 

As you remember all the good and bad in your life, but you continue to 'grip onto Hope.'

Living in Grace
D3LM3