Monthly Archives: September 2011

Mirrors, Swords, and Tiaras

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Last week I was invited to speak to the ladies basketball team at Oklahoma Wesleyan University okwu.edu. Not because I am special but because I am the head coach’s mom. I thought to myself, “what an incredible opportunity and honor.” I couldn’t  figure out what I was supposed to say to  thirty young student athletes. So, I decided to tell them what I wish someone had told me. I knew I had their attention when I handed out mirrors, swords, and tiaras.

The main points are below. As you ponder the verses, you can fill in the white space.  There are four distinct lessons to learn. Genesis 1:27, You are created in God’s image. You are an image bearer. Genesis 2:18, You are created for a specific purpose. You are an ezer (helper). Genesis 2:22, You are special because you are a woman. You are hand-crafted by God.  John 3:3 and Revelation 19:7-8, You are royalty. IF you have a relationship with Jesus Christ, then you are born again into the royal kingdom, and someday you will marry into the royal kingdom.

I bet you are asking yourself, what about those mirrors, swords, and tiaras?

I told the young women to look in the mirror and remember who they are: Image Bearers, Ezers (helpers, strong and mighty defenders), and Royalty. I challenged them to pick up the sword of an Ezer and to defend and help one another. Finally, if they are believers, I encouraged them to put on that tiara that marks them as royalty and to hold their heads high because of their royal position.

After I finished with a short prayer, I looked at those image bearing, royal ezers and  I saw pure potential. It’s going to be a fun basketball season but it’s also going to be a great year! Join me in praying for these young women, Heavenly Father, help them to  remember who they really are, so they can live with fearless passion. In Jesus Name, Amen 

 archived devotionals are available at http://circleofsavings.com/Devotional.aspx

And the Lord Heard It!

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Have you ever read one short sentence in the Bible and the Lord lifts it straight off the pages and aims His Word directly at your heart? That happened to me on Sunday. Five little words got my attention. “…And the Lord heard it.” (Numbers 12:2)

When Miriam and Aaron spoke against their brother (Moses) for marrying a Cushite woman, “the Lord heard it.” What did the Lord do when He heard their criticism? Well, what would any loving father do?  The Lord called  an immediate  family meeting and He met with all three siblings at the doorway of the tent. He gave Miriam and Aaron a huge piece of His holy mind (Numbers 12:6-8). His anger burned against them as He defended His servant Moses. He left Miriam with a visual aid to help her remember. When the Lord withdrew His presence, Miriam was as white as snow with leprosy. She was kept away from others, isolated outside the camp for seven days. Then, the Lord  healed her as a result of Moses’ prayer.

How did Miriam get to this place of sin? This is the same Miriam who led worship after the Lord dried up the Red Sea. (Exodus 15:20-21). The same Miriam that once had lips filled with praise used the same mouth as a weapon against her brother.

Isn’t that just like us as women? We use so many words. One minute our mouths are praising and building up and the next minute they are criticizing and  tearing down? I’ve fallen prey to women using hurtful critical words. Being a non-confrontational person, I embrace the situation by not saying a word and stuffing it deep down within my heart knowing that ultimately the Lord will deal with it. BUT NOW! NOW, I know that when someone criticizes, gossips, or murmurs against me, I can know for sure the Lord will hear it.

Somehow that gives me great comfort. Maybe the next time I am confronted with undeserved criticism, I will whisper to the Lord (as I turn and walk away) Hey Jesus, did you hear that?

Have you ever been the victim of unwarranted verbal criticism? How did you respond? How will you respond now? How carefully do you weigh your words? What will you remember when you are tempted to murmur and criticize another?

Heavenly Father, Guard our lips and let no unwholesome words proceed from our mouths, help us to use our words in a manner that honors others and glorifies you. (Ephesians 4:29) In Jesus Name, Amen

archived devotionals:  http://circleofsavings.com/Devotional.aspx

In the Gutter

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Sunday afternoon was so warm and breezy that I had the screen door open to the patio. I was reading and I heard a scratching noise. I couldn’t figure out where it was coming from so I ignored it. In a few minutes, I noticed a little wren up on roof right by the gutter. She was pecking and pulling at the wire cover. She became extremely agitated and pretty soon there were other wrens who joined her. They too, pecked and pulled at the gutter screen. When I would go out to the patio, the birds would fly away but the scratching sound became louder.

Mark  got a ladder and found a little wren was trapped down in the gutter under the mesh. It was fighting but without Mark’s help there was no way the bird would fly free. Finally, Mark gently lifted her to safety.

As I watched, I couldn’t help but think about what I saw. The birds were desperately trying to free their feathered friend but it didn’t work. But, as they cried out, they alerted us to their dilemma and we were able to help them. I asked myself, what would I do if I had a friend in the gutter of life, trapped in a hopeless situation? Would I come to their aid? Would I cry out for the help they need. Odds are my first reaction would be, “I shouldn’t get involved” or “they need help that I’m not qualified to give” or “I wouldn’t know what to say.”

Proverbs 17:17 says, “A friends loves at all times, ”  I think ALL includes the “in the gutter” times of life. Look at your friends, is there anyone in the gutter? Maybe the gutter of depression, addiction, illness, or loneliness? How can you love them and help through this time where they feel trapped and helpless?

Heavenly Father, thank you for the gift of friendship. Teach us to be friends who love at all times,  during the good times and in the gutter times.  Amen

archived devotionals:  http://circleofsavings.com/Devotional.aspx

Young and Old, Past, Present, Future

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As you might imagine, I’ve read a lot of blogs lately. I noticed one thing immediately, there is a distinct difference between the way a “younger” person writes and the way an “older” person writes.

The younger crowd writes about today. They share with the world what they “are” doing, the big things, the small things, their challenges, their victories and lots of daily details. The older crowd writes more about yesterday. They share with a select few what they “have” done and mostly it’s the bigger things. Young people say, “Some day I’m gonna…” but the older crowd says, “I  remember when…”

When did it happen?  When did my “some day I’m gonna,” turn into “I remember when?” I had a birthday this month and there is nothing like a year being added to your age. It makes you pause, ponder, and plan. Even though I am blessed with numerous “I remember whens…” I want to be sure and have lots of “some day I’m gonnas.”

Psalm 103:15-16, “As for man, his days are like grass; As a flower of the field, so he flourishes. When the wind has passed over it, it is no more.”

Life is short. We must remember the past, live in today, and dream of tomorrow. Lord, teach us how to live.