Posts Tagged ‘God’s blessings’

I hung up a bird feeder to see if I could attract birds, now that I no longer have cats. I poured in easy pickings especially blended for songbirds.

However, I am not sure I will attract any birds because the AC units are right outside of my apartment patio. One, in particular, services my neighbor upstairs. It is rather noisy. And he likes his place to be kept cool, so it kicks on all day and night.

This situation made me think about how many times the noise in my life keeps me from hearing the still, small voice of my loving Father as relayed through the Holy Spirit. How often do I miss out on His blessings because I am not intuned to His holy whispers?  When have I been so distracted seeking what I need that I have not seen what is right in front of me?

Will I fly by as I search for something else, or will I stop and perch in His presence, tasting that the Lord is good?

I hope little sparrows, cardinals, and finches find my feeder chock full of seeds. I’d even enjoy seeing a bushy-tailed squirrel precariously dangling on it trying to get the corn and sunflower husks. I hope they will find the good things and decide to partake, and not be distracted by the rattletraps humming below.

I also hope the same for you and me. May the noise of our world never drown out the wonderful, loving messages from our Lord.

My people, hear my teaching; listen to the words of my mouth. Psalm 78:1


P.S. Four days later: Three sparrows and two finches have found my feeder!

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DSCF8872Why is it that we seek after what we do not have?

Human nature tells us the grass is greener across the fence. I had been coveting one pasture for quite sometime. Lush, shady, secure. Prime real estate. If I ended up there, people would respect me, and maybe be a bit envious. The idea lured me. I even put my foot on the lower rung, ready to hoist myself over by my own strength.

I had a chance six months ago to chat with an acquisition editor employed by one of the most renown publishing houses. She dangled the carrot and I chased after it.  I’ve always been a mystery buff and several people had tickled my ear to try writing one. I presented my idea and she told me it seemed to have all the elements and submit it. I couldn’t wait for the conference to be over so I could dash back to my keyboard. I brainstormed three synopses and wrote the first three chapters of the first novel as a tickler to show her my style. She responded by email that she looked forward to reviewing it…

For days on end I’d check my in box. Nothing. A week went by, a month, three months. I emailed her again in case it had hit her spam file. Nothing. I kept writing and when I finished the first draft I sent her another correspondence. Yep, nary a response. My ego deflated like a whistling balloon.  I felt unworthy, questioned my writing ability and almost gave up.

God yanked me off that fence so fast I landed on my rear end. And it hurt.

But God knew what lay on the other side of the fence was not in my best interest.

I learned it meant sticking with the publisher I had. The one who treats me well, appreciates my writing, always responds quickly to every email I send, and is willing to promote me. DUH- why look elsewhere?

Even though mystery was not a genre they’d ever published, I  felt a strong urge to query the editor in chief. I gulped and hit “send.” Within two hours she replied very positively. In another five days, I had a contract in hand FOR ALL THREE novels!

The Hebrews whined they had no meat in the wilderness when they had flocks of animals with them. God provided. Even when they continued to whine. David couldn’t help watching the wife of his troop commander bathe, even though he had a loving wife, and his desires lead him to leap where he didn’t belong. Greener looking grass lures us every time.

If you find yourself focused on climbing the fence to get to that softer, verdant, shadier landscape you may be ignoring the wildflowers right underneath your feet. Sure, goals are important, but so is God’s timing and His purpose. His blessings are all around you. Seek those, thank Him for what He has provided, and trust that He will tell you when it is time to explore a new field of opportunity.

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We’ve been parched. Bubbling creeks had become sandy dry beds. Once green, grassy hills appeared straw-colored. The lake and river levels were dangerously low. A friend commented her back yard looked like the San Andreas fault in an earthquake movie – the cracks were huge, and growing.

dreamstimefree_127674For several days the skies taunted us with building clouds and overcast shadows. Then it came.  The sweet smell of moistened dirt. Soft, pelting rain pounded the landscape, filling the furrows and crevices…for hours and hours. 

People’s spirits lifted. The temperatures dropped from scorching nineties into  pleasant seventies.  Birds splashed in the puddles, fluffing their feathers and dipping their beaks.  Windshield wipers danced back and forth like concert attendees waving their hands in joy. Gutters drummed softly with the splatters from Heaven. Blessed relief. 

I will make them and the places surrounding my hill a blessing. I will send down showers in season; there will be showers of blessing. Ezekiel 34:26

Have you experienced a drought? Not the physical kind Texas has been having, but the spiritual kind. Most likely you have. It may have been a time of depression, of doubts, a string of bad luck we call a “Job-like season”, or the agonizing limbo feeling after at tragedy. It felt as if God had stopped blessing you. You thirsted for His presence. Your life cracked open. Your brow was furrowed and your eyes downcast.  But, deep inside you clung to the hope He was there, just as Job did.

Then it came.  Your prayers were finally answered. Your heart was drenched in peace.  His mercies rained down and your doubts and shame were sloughed down the gutter. Your spirit was bathed in His grace. You lifted your hands in relief.

The Newsboys wrote a song over twenty years ago called Let it Rain, from their “Going Public” album. It is Peter’s final prayer before being crucified upside down.  An ancient legend says the Heavens burst open when this apostle, Jesus called the Rock, took his final breath.  In their song, Peter prays, “Lord we’re waiting for Your rain to fall- bringing back the wonder of it all. I can see Your face again when You let it rain.”

Listen to the lyrics. Pray for His blessings.  Let His spirit fall afresh on you today. Be refreshed in the Power of His love.

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A good read from DiAne Gates- PUDDLES OF JOY.

DiAne looks at the bird’s splashing in a puddle on a hot August day, and it reminds her of God’s blessings.

“Did you know God provides puddles of refreshment for His kids too? Puddles of encouragement. Puddles of invigoration. Puddles of comfort. These oasis moments appear like the spontaneity of a summer shower…”

Today – Where will you find your puddles of joy to splash in God’s grace?

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dreamstimefree_97858I have a little bird feeder hanging on the tree outside of my balcony.  I fill it with a cup of seed each morning on the way to work. When I wake up in the morning, it is empty, ready for another cup.

Some of the birds perch on the feeder and eat. When they do, inevitably seeds scatter to the ground. The ground birds, doves, pigeons and the like, waddle in to eat the seeds that have fallen into the grass.  Everyone is happy.  Then it’s all used up.

The next morning, it seems as if they are lined up in the trees, waiting for me to come with my cup of seed. 

Can’t we relate this to God’s mercy and blessings which are new every morning? He presents us each day with a full cup. In fact, in Psalm 23 it says that cup runs over. How abundant are the blessings and mercies of the Lord.

It is up to us to receive those mercies and blessings as seeds of His love that can nourish us.  But do we, or do we flit by in search of what we think we are hungry for? What will fill us up – fame, promotions, accolades from our peers?

As we peck into our daily allotment of blessings and mercies, some will inevitably spread to others who need the love of Christ as well. That’s okay.  As followers of Jesus we are supposed to do that. There is more than enough for us, and whoever GOd brings to us during our day. Spread the love. Be merciful,  and bless others with your talents.

In the morning when you rise, anticipate (with humble thankfulness) God’s overflowing cup once again. It will be there.

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