Goodness

For the Kingdom of God is not a matter of what we eat or drink,
but of living a life of goodness and peace and joy in the Holy Spirit.
Ro 14:17 nlt

As children of God, we are to live a life of goodness. That seems pretty simple and straightforward and it is but is it easy? The dictionary says goodness is a state or quality of being good; moral excellence; virtue; generosity; integrity; honesty.  Easy to read the definition of goodness and I would like to say it is easy for me to live it. But I often find it difficult to be an example of goodness.

When I find myself with thoughts that are not good or generous, less than honest or pure Iheartlight have a choice. I can follow through with those thoughts or I can turn away from the darkness of them and face the Light of my life.

For you were once darkness, but now you are light in the Lord.
Live as children of light
(for the fruit of the light consists in all goodness, righteousness and truth)
and find out what pleases the Lord.
Eph 5:8-10 niv

When I turn to Jesus I can see where the problem lies and do what I need to sweep it away. I may think I have kept my heart clean and well kept but in His light, I can see into all the nooks and crannies where dust and dirt have found their way and settled in. Then I know it is time for some housekeeping of my heart. There isn’t room for unwanted clutter in my heart. That stuff has to go to make room for more of the goodness of the Spirit.

A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in him,
and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in him.
Matt 12:35 niv

There was a time when I believed I was to be good, to have goodness shine through me to prove I was a child of God. The truth is I have no need to prove anything with whatever goodness I have in my heart. The goodness is there, has been put there so through me others can see God’s light, His goodness.

…You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession.
As a result, you can show others the goodness of God,
for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.
1 Pet 2:9 niv

Why would I let the light of life that dwells in my heart be masked with worthless thoughts? It is so easy to relax and let the light in my heart be veiled by my inattentiveness and selfishness. How sad is that?!

When I talk with Jesus He often reminds me of what I must be vigilant and aware;

Above all else, guard your heart,
for everything you do flows from it.
Prov 4:23 niv

Blessings this day of grace,
patricia

 

 

Yield, part 1

My word for 2017 is yield.  I don’t choose the word on my own. Usually, in October I start thinking about what the word will be and sometime in December a word just jumps out at me. It comes to me from what I read, conversations, and prayer. Most often the word that comes is not one that I am happy about. They are always a challenge and yield is no different. The words for 2015 and 2016 were patience and change. I wasn’t happy with those words either but I see now how they were preparing me for yield.

The definition of yield is:
to give up or surrender to a superior power or authority, to give as due or required, to mural-1347673_640relinquish or resign to, submit to

When it became apparent that yield is the word for this year I talked to Jesus about it. Truthfully, I argued and debated with Him against the word. And I complained about it. As always He listened patiently but then He sent me to 1 Samuel 15:22-23.

What is more pleasing to the LORD:
your burnt offerings and sacrifices
or your obedience to his voice?
Listen! Obedience is better than sacrifice,
and submission is better than offering the fat of rams.
Rebellion is as sinful as witchcraft,
and stubbornness as bad as worshiping idols.

I am a stubborn person. I like to have and do things my way. I want to be solely in charge of my life. See the difficulty I have with yield? One word for me is proud. I am not happy (or proud) to write that word to describe me but when I see what yield means and what I am the only conclusion is proud. This is what Jesus had to say about it sending me to Micah 6:8

…the LORD has told you what is good,
and this is what he requires of you:
to do what is right, to love mercy,
and to walk humbly with your God.

See that word humbly?  I have some work to do!

I know Jesus will be patient and compassionate (as He always is) when I talk to Him about this yield thing. And I do understand why I have been given this particular word. Still not happy about it, though.

There is a definition of yield other than the one I have shared here that I believe I will realize once I get the first working in my head and heart. I will tell you about it Thursday.

Blessings this day of grace,
patricia

Scripture from NLT

Beauty, Then and Now

When I am out and about I feel young and think I look younger than my years. But when I see my reflection in a mirror I am reminded I am no longer a young woman. What I see is an older woman. Why does this surprise me?  I have lived at least two-thirds of my life already. There are fewer years of life ahead of me than years past. I understand this and accept it. I understand that the way I look today is because I have lived more than a few years but this I find difficult to accept.

When I was a young woman I was told I was beautiful now I am told I am attractive. I want to be beautiful. I know it is shallow and superficial of me. I know there is more to sun-622740_640-1beauty than the physical aspect of it. Jesus and I have been having talks about this more often lately.  He reminds me, The LORD doesn’t see things the way you see them. People judge by outward appearance, but the LORD looks at the heart (1 Sam 16:7b) and Charm is deceptive, and beauty does not last; but a woman who fears the LORD will be greatly praised.(Prov 31:30)

Jesus has also reminded me of the gift He gave me long ago, the unfading beauty of a gentle and quiet spirit, which is so precious to God. I know physical beauty fades and we are not to be concerned about the outward beauty…You should clothe yourselves instead with the beauty that comes from within.(1 Pet 3:4)

Well, I am trying but it is hard!
I still want the beauty that faded.

Blessings this day of grace,
patricia

Image:pixaby