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Archive for the ‘heart’ Category

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Blessed are the pure in heart
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for they will see God.
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Matthew 5:8
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Being “pure in heart” seems to be an impossible goal, but with God all things are possible (Matthew 19:26). A part of being pure boils down to the choices we make each day. This past Sunday, I had the privilege of listening to a presentation by Eric Tooley, president and founder of Noble Choices. Eric shared his story of his struggle with pornography. His nonprofit organization is speaking boldly about sexual topics. I would like to pass on his challenge to you: make noble choices in all areas of your life.
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Below is an excerpt from the Noble Choices web site. I encourage you to invite Eric to speak at the your schools and churches. 
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Noble Choices is a nonprofit organization that helps people see all of their choices and empowers them to choose the highest quality of life.

Noble Choices believes that people make good choices when they have good information.

  • We help people see all of their choices.
  • We help people evaluate the outcome of each choice on their own goals and dreams.
  • We help people minimize or eliminate bad consequences.

Noble Choices’ Truth About Sex programs for schools and churches specializes in programs on sexual abstinence, pornographysocial media, and cultural discernment.

 

Jesus looked at them intently and said,
“Humanly speaking, it is impossible.
But with God everything is possible.” 
 Matthew 19:26
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Remember to reach out to those who are 
lonely and hurting on Valentine’s Day!

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Comfort Overflows

For just as the sufferings of Christ
flow over into our lives, so also through
Christ our comfort overflows.
 
2 Corinthians 1:5
 
 
Suffering does have a purpose
Though it hurts beyond words
He endured the pain
All the rejection and shame
Physical – Emotional
His heart was like wax
that melted away
He then died for me
 
I fall on my knees
His story touches my soul
Takes me to the heart of God
Embraces my pain
Gives me power to love
 
I seek the silence
When I am quiet I hear
The whisper
Of a love larger than me
Surrounding my soul with joy
 
Do you hear the invitation
To come and rest in His peace
To drink the living water
Receive Divine Love
 
Terry S. Smith
my precious daddy
 
My heart has turned to wax; it has melted away within me ….  But you, O Lord, be not far off; O my Strength, come quickly to help me.  Psalm 22:13-14,19
 

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A Valentine from God

 
 You are
 
 Precious
 
and
 
Honored…
 
 
 I love you.
 
Isaiah 43:4 
 
 

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Cultivate inner beauty
 
The gentle, gracious kind
 
That God delights in.
 
1 Peter 3:4
 
 
My friend Steena is “face blind” which means she has extreme difficulty identifying faces.  (Prosopagnosia is the medical term.)  Steena sees beauty differently than the average person.  Her “face blindness” helps her to see inner beauty clearly.  Outward appearance in not important to Steena compared to recognizing internal depth, strength, and dignity.
 
God also evaluates beauty differently than we do.  “Men and women look at the face: God looks into the heart” (1Samuel 16:7).  God delights in gracious and gentle inner beauty (1 Peter 3:4).  Although it takes time and effort to cultivate this type of beauty, everyone has an equal opportunity to be astonishingly beautiful. 
 
“Our physical being is gradually decaying, yet our spiritual being is being renewed day after day ….  What can be seen lasts only for a time, but what cannot be seen lasts forever” (2 Corinthians 4:16 & 18).
 
Beauty that is eternal is not physical.
 

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How GREAT is the love
the Father has
LAVISHED
on us.
1 John 3:1
 
 
Do you know, on an emotional level, that God passionately loves you? 
 
When we are facing difficult circumstances, it is tempting to think the difficulties indicate an absence of God’s love.  Equating circumstances with the quality or quantity of God’s love is damaging to our hearts.  God’s love remains the same, regardless of life being painful or comfortable.
  
“God has an intense love for us, and He wants our love in return.”   My friend Catrina A.
  
 
Dedicated to Cindy W. for inspiring this post. 
 

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a crown of thorns

They twisted together a crown of thorns
And set it on His head.
Matthew 27:28-29
 
 
 
Once I heard a song of sweetness,
As it filled the morning air,
Sounding in its blest completeness,
Like a tender, pleading prayer;
And I fought to find the singer,
Where the wondrous song was borne;
And I found a bird quite wounded,
Pinned down by a cruel thorn.
 
I have seen a soul sadness,
While its wings with pain were furled,
Giving hope, and cheer and gladness
That should bless a weeping world
And I knew that life of sweetness,
Was of pain and sorrow borne,
And a stricken soul was singing,
With its heart against a thorn.
 
You are told of One who loved you,
Of a Savior crucified,
You are told of nails that held Him,
And a spear that pierced His side;
You are told of cruel scourging,
Of a Savior bearing scorn,
And He died for your salvation,
With His brow against a thorn.
 
You “are not above the Master.”
Will you breathe a sweet refrain?
And His grace will be sufficient,
When your heart is pierced with pain.
Will you live to bless His loved ones,
Though your life be bruised and torn,
Like the bird that sang so sweetly,
With its heart against thorn?
 
 L.B. Cowman

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Let the peace of Christ rule in your heart,
Since as members of one body
 You were called to peace.
And be thankful.
Colossians 3:15
 
 
My three-year old son Sterling is very affectionate.  He gives my husband and me kisses and hugs for no other reason but to show his love.  It is nice to be appreciated for who you are and not just for the things that you do.  In the same way, I believe God likes to be noticed and appreciated just for who He is.  Our praises and thankfulness are our way of giving God “hugs and kisses”. 
 
I have a long history with the book, My Utmost for His Highest, by Oswald Chambers.  In 1996, I first highlighted his July 12th devotional.  It has continued to be one of the most challenging and inspiring devotionals that I have read.  
           
 My Utmost for His Highest — July 12
We are not here to develop a spiritual life of our own, or to enjoy a quiet retreat. We are here to have the full realization of Jesus Christ, for the purpose of building up his body.
 
Am I building up the body of Christ, or am I only concerned about my own personal development?  The essential thing is my personal relationship with Jesus Christ — “… that I may know Him.” (Philippians 3:10).  To fulfill God’s perfect design for me requires my total surrender–complete abandonment of myself to Him.  Whenever I only want things for myself, the relationship is distorted.  And I will suffer great humiliation once I come to acknowledge and understand that I have not really been concerned about realizing Jesus Christ Himself, but only concerned with knowing what He has done for me.
 
My goal is God Himself, not joy and peace,
Nor even blessing, but Himself, my God.
From Him the whole body … grows and builds itself up in love, as each part does its work. Ephesians 4:16
 

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