Shine: Proverbs 4:18

Remembering Spring – Flowering Cherry Tree

18 The path of the righteous is like the morning sun,
    shining ever brighter till the full light of day.

Proverbs 4:18 (NIV)

While following your path, do you reflect enough light so that others see you shine? Take time to review your day, do a check, see if your righteousness is showing. Christmas season is a wonderful time to brighten someone’s day, be kind, helpful, in sharing God’s love. As you walk your path, today try to shine ever brighter until you glow, like a Son lit day.

Would a stranger recognize you as a Christian by your actions?

Prayer: Our gracious God, we thank you for Your forgiveness and blessings. Teach us to glow in righteousness as the cherry blossoms glow in the sun. As the lovely pink cherry blossoms brighten Sping days, let us reflect God’s light and shine brightly. In Jesus’ holy name. Amen

Gods Care: Psalm 63:7-8

smooth blue aster

Because you have helped me,  I sing in the shadow of your wings. I hold on to you tightly.  Your powerful right hand takes good care of me.

Psalm 63:7-8 (NIVR)

       because you have always been my help. In the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.I cling to you, and your hand keeps me safe.

Psalm 63:7-8 (GNT)

Safety, security, comfort, and care are found nestled under the shadow of God’s wing. Happiness abounds, and we cling tightly, singing with joy for we are God’s people. God takes care of us. We are safe in His powerful hands and surrounded by His unconditional love. Jesus is our help in times of need and our hope for days to come. Our salvation.

When have you received God’s help and care?

Prayer: Our heavenly Father, we thank you for your help and your guidance. Lord, we praise You for Your care of us. Like the bright blossoms of the aster, we lift our faces toward you. We sing with joy because you love us and take care of us. Let us reflect your glory like the flower petals reflect sunlight. Teach us to rest in your safety Lord, and spread Your love. In Jesus’ name. Amen

Strength and Peace: Psalm 29:11

Vinca blooms after rain

The LORD gives strength to his people; the LORD blesses his people with peace.

Psalm 29:11 NIV

This verse speaks of qualities many are searching for. Strength to continue through the next hour, day, week, or year. Often we rely on our capabilities instead of asking God for strength. Asking God for His strength and assistance leads to peace. As Jesus said, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you (John 14:17a).” If you need strength or peace, ask Jesus.

Where do you find peace during the holidays?

Prayer: Thank you, Lord, for your many blessing teach us to go to You for strength. Your sunshine and rain bring blossoms to plants. Teach us, in turn, to rely on You, so our peace grows and blooms. Like the tranquil beauty of the white vinca flowers, help us to be serene in Your unconditional love. In Jesus’ holy name. Amen

Give Thanks: Psalm 107:8

A Festive Street Display

Let them give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for mankind,

Psalm 107:8 (NIV)

Autumn is a wonderful time to be thankful. The fruits and flowers of summer are on bright display. The trees put on a colorful symphony, highlighting the beauty of God’s abundant nature. We are truly blessed! Take time today and every day to praise and thank the Lord for his unfailing love and wonderful deeds.

Where do you see God’s beauty?

Maple – Crabapple – Dogwood

Prayer: Our Father, how great is your bounty to us. Thank you for your compassion, grace, and unconditional love. Our Lord, how great You are! When we call your name you listen, when we ask You forgive us, and when we believe, You save us. Abba Father, we praise and love You. We thank you for all the amazing things you have done. Amen

Have a happy and safe Thanksgiving!

*A special thank you to Dawn at Drawing Closer to Christ for nominating me for the Sunshine Blogger award. Her blog is great, and her posts are thoughtful, loving, and encouraging.  

Faith: Hebrews 11:1-2

Heavenly Blue Morning Glory

 1-2 The fundamental fact of existence is that this trust in God, this faith, is the firm foundation under everything that makes life worth living. It’s our handle on what we can’t see.

Hebrews 11:1-2The Message (MSG)

Faith, to me, is personal a relationship with God. I think I’ve always had faith, but at times my faith was immature. It was more about what I wanted than trusting God. During my early years, I didn’t feel God’s love for me even though it was there. As I have grown and matured in faith, I now feel surrounded in God’s love. My faith has changed me from being needy and feeling alone, to basking in God’s love and wanting to share it. To me, faith is trusting in God, our firm foundation, our hope for things to come. Faith does make life worth living.

How firm is your foundation in faith?

Prayer: Dear Lord, teach us to put our faith in You. Help us to faithfully build our foundation on You and Your word. The beautiful colors of the “heavenly blue morning glory” look like the sun radiating out into the clouds and sky. Teach us in faith to reflect the radiating love and compassion of Jesus Son of God. Thank you for making our lives worth living. We praise you. Amen

Delivered: Psalm 34:3-4

3Glorify the Lord with me;
    let us exalt his name together. I sought the Lord, and he answered me;
    he delivered me from all my fears. Psalm 34:3-4

David, the psalmist wrote, “I sought the Lord and he answered me.” Our first step is to reach out to God in prayer. God loves us and wants a relationship with us. Praying opens our communication with God. Prayer is an opportunity to give God our worries and fears. In turn, He delivers us, from our fears, and grants us peace. Let us praise and glorify our benevolent, loving God.

What fear can God help you with?

Prayer: Dear Lord, we glorify and praise you. We thank you for your forgiveness and grace. Like the bright rose petals, open and reaching toward the sun, teach us to open our hearts to You and our neighbors. Help us to shine brightly with Your light. In the name of Your son, Jesus Christ. Amen

Child of Light: Ephesians 5:8-10

autumn flowers

for you were at one time darkness, but now you are light in the Lord. Walk as children of the light— for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness, and truth— 10 trying to learn what is pleasing to the Lord.

Ephesians 5:8-10 (NET Bible)

Now we are light in the Lord, no longer part of darkness, we are children of the light. We need to focus our light and shine it in goodness, righteousness, and truth. Walk as a child of light, let your light glow and let it shine to illuminate the darkness. Spread God’s love and be a beacon of hope to all those around you.

In what way are you being God’s light and illuminating the darkness?

Prayer: Lord, we thank you for bringing light into our world. Teach us to glow with Your light, like the mums and vinca glow in the sunshine. As children of light, help us to join together and present a glorious landscape full of goodness, righteousness, and truth. Our Father, thank you for enlightening us and showing us our path. In the loving name of Jesus. Amen

Loving-Kindness: Lamentations 3:22-23

22 The Lord’s lovingkindnesses indeed never cease,
For His compassions never fail.
23 They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.

Lamentations 3:22-23 (NASB)

Oh Lord, great is thy faithfulness. Reading this verse from Lamentations the hymn “Great is Your Faithfulness” came to mind. Upon checking the lyrics of the hymn, are based on Lamentations 3:22-23. What a wonderful feeling to know that God’s compassion for us never fails. As the hymn says, His compassions are new every morning, summer and winter springtime and fall (harvest). Other things in our life change. However, God’s loving-kindness doesn’t change. God provides, He is faithful, He is loving, He is merciful. Lord, we praise and thank you for your infinite faithfulness.

How would God view your faithfulness to Him?

Prayer: Dear Lord, we thank you for your faithful loving-kindness toward us. May our love toward you be bright and sunny like the bright yellow mums. Teach us to realize and accept that You will take care of us. As the blossoms of the mum gather together, let us gather together in praise for You. In the name of Jesus. Amen.

A link to Chris Rice singing Great Is Thy Faithfulness, written by Thomas Chisholm.

Confused: Proverbs 3:5

PJM Rhodendron – Early Blooms

Trust in the Lord with all your heart,
    and do not depend on your own understanding.
In all your ways acknowledge him,
    and he will make your paths straight.

Proverbs 3:5-6 (ISV)

Often when I find myself confused, trying to figure out why things aren’t going my way, or things aren’t following my well-laid plans. I realize that I am relying on my understanding. Currently, the PJM rhododendron in my backyard is blooming, because autumn sunlight and temperature have fooled it into thinking that it’s spring. The spring flower bud has opened and the blooms have appeared, but it’s autumn. Often, I also get confused, not allowing myself to seek God and ask for His direction, to let Him guide me to make my paths straight. My goal is to learn to trust the Lord with all my heart.

Where are you confused, and need God to set your path straight?

Prayer: Dear Lord, teach us to trust you with all our hearts. Like the PJM Rhodendron, with its red autumn leaves and unseasonal pink blossoms, we are often traveling a confused path. Lord, we acknowledge your loving guidance and wisdom and ask You to make our paths straight. In Jesus’s holy name. Amen

Power: 2 Timothy 1:7

Orange Tithonia

I’m writing to encourage you to fan into a flame and rekindle the fire of the spiritual gift God imparted to you when I laid my hands upon you. For God will never give you the spirit of fear, but the Holy Spirit who gives you mighty power, love, and self-control.

2 Timothy 1:6-7 The Passion Translation (TPT)

Paul is writing to Timothy to encourage. It is necessary to let go of fear to feel the mighty power of the Spirit of God. To fan into a flame, rekindling the fire of the Spirit inside of us. To grasp courage and let go of fear. To hold tight to self-discipline and follow God’s path for us. To feel and share God’s love.

What fear are you ready release to let go of and let God handle?

Prayer: Dear Loving Father, We thank you for your many gifts to us. Like the bright orange sturdy Tithonian flowers, help us to be strong and stalwart in our faith. As the flowers shine and reflect the sun, teach us, Lord Jesus, to shine bright. May your mighty power propel us forward in courage, strength, and love. In Jesus’s holy name. Amen