Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Freshly Fallen Snow

Isaiah 1:18a
"Come now, let us reason together," says the LORD. "Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow …” (NIV)

The moonlight shining on the freshly fallen snow sparkles as brilliant diamonds. It lies upon the earth unmarked. The trees are dark shadows standing quietly in the background. Leaving paw prints in the snow, a small animal dashed through the yard.

It won’t be long before the smog and litter take over the luminous snow leaving it gray and dingy. For now, I can enjoy the purity. Just as the freshly fallen snow covers the earth; when I feel the cares of this world polluting me, I pray, asking forgiveness and let God’s Love and Mercy cover me.

When I confess my sins and stand before the Lord, He doesn’t see me as gray and dingy but as a brilliant diamond. Jesus has made the way for me to cleanse myself of unrighteousness. I am renewed by the Word.

Merciful Father, thank you for sending your Son so that my sins would be forgiven. You have blessed me with the gift of salvation.

© Copyright 2008 Marcella Panowicz

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Available to God

“Aaron and Hur held up his (Moses’) hands one on one side, and
the other on the other side; so his hands were steady until the going
down of the sun.” Exodus 17:12 (RSV

While deeply saddened over the death of my mother and my husband’s betrayal, I imagined everything was whispering invitations to die. My friend, Bonnie visited and brought a coffee cake. As we had coffee and cake, she read her favorite scripture verses on hope and God’s love.

A few days later, she asked me to go shopping. I really wanted to stay in and feel sorry for myself. Again she encouraged me to read my Bible. We prayed and did scripture searches. Through her prayers and guidance, I started reading my Bible regularly. Slowly my outlook turned from inward to upward. I learned to turn to the Word of God for help, strength and hope. I read about the struggles and victories of the Bible folks and, each time, a little slice of hope gave way to a new vision of hope for the future.

The story about Aaron and Hur holding up Moses’ hand to keep the enemy from prevailing impressed me. I thought about my friend and how she had lifted me with God’s Word. I had prevailed. I thanked God for her and prayed to be available for Him.

PRAYER: Our Father, thank you for your servants and thank you that the only ability we need is availability. In Jesus name, I pray. Amen

© 2009 L. Gosley

Friday, January 16, 2009


“Brethren, I do not regard myself as having laid hold of it yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead.”
Phil.3:13 NASB

The beginning of a new year is a time to let go of last year’s hurts, bad memories and failures. The Bible tells me that God forgives me when I confess my sins, so it is time for me to move in the direction of accepting and living in the light of His perfect forgiveness. I need a reminder of how God sees me, regardless of how I have allowed other people to define me. I need to take a fresh, new look at who I am as God’s child with the unique gifts and talents He gives me, and remember that He has a special purpose for my life. I choose to thank God for all that He brings into my life. This includes the positive as well as the negative circumstances and events that He will use to shape me into the woman He intends for me to become.

The story of Jesus’ meeting with Nicodemus in John 3 reminds us that new life in Christ gives us an opportunity to look forward to a new future. The young believer who accepts God’s gift of new life is making a decision to put the old life behind him and reach forward toward new hopes and dreams. Only God knows what this New Year holds, so let us live life to its fullest.

Dear Father: I pray for discernment to see the new opportunities You have for me this year. Grant me the courage to put the past behind me and the strength to step out boldly and embrace life. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

© 2009 Diane E. Hussey

Friday, January 9, 2009

The Power of a Secret Prayer

But, when you pray, go into your room, close the door and pray to your Father, who is unseen. Then your Father, who sees what is done in secret, will reward you. (Matthew 6:6 NIV)

When Joshua was born, one kidney did not function. The doctors ordered immediate surgery to save his life. His mother, Nancy, suffered from inexplicable internal bleeding. Jim, the husband and father, spent his time between his family in the hospital and home with an older son. The couple asked their church to pray for them. Many answered that call, not only covering them in prayers but also, springing into other actions. They visited the hospital, brought food to the house, and car-pooled the older son to school as well as to other events.

Every night, after visiting hours, Pastor Howard went to the hospital alone. In the quiet of the nursery, he would hold Joshua, walk him, rock him, and pray over him.

Joshua is four years old now. He tells his mother that he wants to be Pastor Howard when he grows up. He likes to stand on the platform, lean on the pulpit, and pretend to preach. Pastor Howard always has time to stop and talk to Joshua. They have a very special relationship that started after 10 o’clock at night four years ago in a hospital nursery. And, no one knows about it except Pastor Howard, Joshua, the night nurses, and God.

Prayer: Father God, help us to know when it is time for corporate prayer and when it is time to go to you in prayer secretly.

© copyright: Christy Struben 2009

Friday, January 2, 2009

Wonderfully Made

I praise you because I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful, I know that full well. Psalm 139:14 (NIV).

My daughter and my two sons were arguing one day and asked, "Who's your favorite child?" I had to think about that and came up with this answer. They are all my favorites because they were wonderfully made, but in different ways.

Christopher is my favorite because he is my first born. He is always willing to help me and others whenever a problem arises.

Cynthia is my favorite because she is my only daughter. She has a truly caring heart and pitches in whenever we serve others and the family.

James is my favorite because he is my baby. He is compassionate, relates to others and gives a listening ear when needed. It is their differences that make them wonderfully made to me.

When we read Psalm 139:13-16, we see that David is praising the Lord for creating him. His family did not think he was special. But, God did. Before David spent one moment on earth, his days were already planned and ordained.

My children were fearfully and wonderfully formed before they were even born. We can all sing praises to God because we are each fearfully and wonderfully made.

Prayer: Lord, thank you that we are all fearfully and wonderfully made in your image. Even before we spent one moment here on earth our days were ordanined by you. Like David, I praise you. Amen.

© Dawn M. Sexton