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Posted By Nan

17:1
Over the past month I have found myself in the midst of quarrelling, back biting, petty jealousies and maliciousness. It has been a really difficult time. I am a person who believes in honesty and fair treatment of others. I believe in resolving conflicts, even when it is hard to do. So to find myself in the middle of this nastiness and having some directed at me has been really hard.
This is why I love this bible verse.
“Better a dry crust with peace and quiet, than a house full of feasting with strife.”
From my family of origin with the constant nastiness, abuse, niggling and toxicity to these people I have encountered. I. Just. Want. That. Dry. Crust. But it seems I may not get it just yet. So I turn to God for the patience and wisdom to weave a path through the strife and trust that peace will come. And I turn to God constantly to resist the temptation to become embroiled in the maliciousness. And I stand on Holy Ground, trusting God will prepare a table for me in the presence of my enemies (Psalm 23).
In all this I remember that it is better to have that crust in peace but that is not always the way the path leads. Despite that, I know I can remain firm on the path and have my peace in the midst of the turmoil. I can trust God to watch over me and give me strength in the unpleasantness. I can trust His wisdom to guide my path.
The Lord is my Shepherd.
 

 
Posted By Nan

This blog is late and it is another departure from my study of Proverbs. But sometimes God asks me to post something else and today is one of those times. May this bless you.

Every year I ask God for a word to focus on for the coming year. The word for 2016 was trust. To trust God. I had taken the leap of faith to open my own counselling practice. I needed trust then and I need it now. After studying trust for a year it is now time to study another word.
This year God has selected patience. Patience to wait for God’s promises. Patience as such an essential part of trust.
So I commenced my study of patience and consulted my concordance. I have come up with six pages of verses. I am still prayerfully working my way through that list.
The verses are so varied and there is so much to learn. Following is a short list of them, unless otherwise indicated all are from the NIV.
The verses range from the beautiful:
“Love is patient …” 1Corinthians 13:4 NIV
To the instructional:
“Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.” Proverbs 14:29.
There are the practical:
“Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer.” Romans 12:12.
And the hopeful:
“Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up.” Galatians 6:9.
There are the encouraging:
“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways, when they carry out their wicked schemes.” Psalm 37:7.
And the supportive:
“The Lord will fight for you, you need only to be still.” Exodus 14:14.
To those full of love:
“For I know the plans I have for you, declared the Lord, plans for welfare and not for evil, to give you a future and a hope.” Jeremiah 29:11 ESV.
There are those that remind us patience is a gift of God:
“For the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience …” Galatians 5:22.
And that faith requires patience:
“Be still and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:20.
I particularly love:
“I wait for the Lord, my soul waits in and his word I hope.” Psalm 130:5.
Patience covers so much and I am looking forward to the teaching God has for me around patience in 2017.
What word does God want you to focus on this year?
 

 
Posted By Nan

Have you ever had one of those days when everything goes wrong and it seems the whole world is against you? You cry to God. You try to understand what He is saying through the terrible storm. You realise your house is built on the solid foundation of Jesus so you will survive this. You realise the quiet voice in the tumult is telling you He wants you to walk away. But there is hurt. Betrayal. And so many people you think matter seem to be against you. And you are crying into the howling wind for someone to acknowledge the pain they are causing you. But no one does. And you see that even your trusted friends are walking away. And you feel overwhelmed and so upset. And that quiet voice says:
“You asked me to guide your steps when you accepted my decision about this. And I said I would. You handed it over to me. And you are trying to grab it back. But this is not where I want you to be. Trust me. I know what I am doing. I have a plan for you and it is not here. All the things you think are important are not. Trust me to show you the way. Trust me to guide you. I have a plan. I love you. My plans for you are beautiful. Stop swimming against the current. Stop fighting. Trust me. My precious child I delight in you. I want what is best for you. What I know you need. Not what you think you need. Rest in me. Let me take the hurt on my shoulders. The ones that carried a cross. When it is over you will shine brighter than the sun because I will be in you. Trust me. Don’t worry about what others say or think about you. I know you work hard to be the best person you can. Your righteousness shines like a beautiful flower before me. Let me deal with those people. Let me deal with your reputation. What matters is your reputation in heaven. That is truth. Not what this fallen world says. Stay by my side. Rest. Stop trying so hard. All I require of you is to wait. I love you. I delight in you. I love the changes I see in you. Changes that grow you day by day closer to me. Trust me. Be patient.”
I am having one of those days and this is what God told me. And this is what He wants me to share with you today. May it give you comfort when you are clinging to that rock. Never forget, you never lose your grip on the rock because Jesus holds His hands over yours and holds you fast to the rock. And His grip cannot be broken.
 

 
Posted By Nan

16:18-33
If I was to use one word to summarise the message from these verses, it would be ‘humility’. Here is a warning to choose humility over pride and arrogance. To value humility more than wealth.
What is humility in God’s eyes?

  • The humble person is:
  • One who deals wisely with others,
  • Reads the Bible and obeys it,
  • Seeks wise counsel from God when making difficult decisions,
  • Relies on God, trusts Him and believes His promises,
  • Thinks carefully before making a decision about another person,
  • Seeks to understand the viewpoint of others,
  • Seeks to learn and teach others respectfully,
  • Responds to situations after careful thought instead of the reaction of the fool who rushes in without thinking,
  • Does not gossip about others or spread malicious rumours,
  • Does not seek to make trouble for others,
  • Does not argue needlessly with others,
  • Is not greedy,
  • Is not violent or aggressive,
  • Does not plot against others or keep secrets,
  • Seeks righteousness,
  • Is slow to anger and self controlled,
  • Accepts God’s authority and control over his life.

This is what we should seek to be.
 

 
Posted By Nan

16:10-17
These verses are attributed to a King, but they really apply to all of us when in a position of authority over others. This includes parenthood.
A good leader is one who seeks to motivate others. There are no put downs, no subterfuge, no exploitation. There is respect and good communication.
God cares about the way we treat others, especially when in a position of authority. You have a responsibility to God when you exert authority over others. In line with God’s concerns is His abhorrence of wrongdoing and evil acts. A leader after God’s heart seeks righteousness and justice.
God delights in honesty and expects leaders to seek the honest as co-workers as well. A bad leader destroys motivation and causes dissent. A good leader encourages and refreshes. Such a leader is like a gentle spring shower and sunshine. Refreshing and welcome.
Wisdom is worth more than money, so don’t be sucked in by the worldly obsession with money. Seek to guard your steps, ensuring they are the way of God, and in so doing, you will guard your life.
 

 


 
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Nan
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