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Idle Words

Mathew 12:36 (KJV) But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.

This week an ALME reader asked the question: “What is considered an idle word?”, after reading the Daily Scripture on Facebook.  The question got me to thinking, prompting today’s weekly post.

There are countless books and articles written on the subject of the power of the spoken word.   A quick review of Mathew 12:36 in several translations of the bible provide insight into our question.  Words, phrases and definitions for idle included:

careless, useless, thoughtless, untrue, inoperative, nonworking, vain, lazy, unemployed, barren

Quite a vivid picture!  I had to chuckle, however, at the thoughts that came to my own mind after my research.  Driving tractor has forever changed the way I see things.

I imagined myself in Beauty, our big farm tractor. Instead of taking off and driving with purpose, I was just sitting with the engine running idle.  I was not going anywhere or putting her to good use. With the gears resting in the neutral position, I wasn’t accomplishing a thing. I was just wasting time and burning fuel.

This tractor has 280 horse power. We have used her to tear out weeds, plant good seed, and even to pull the pickup up the road when it was too muddy or snowy to navigate. There was so much power available to me, yet I did nothing with the power I had been given.

The Lord entrusted us with a great responsibility when He gave us the gift of speech. May our tongue be used with purpose and care.  May we keep our list of idle, careless, thoughtless, useless, words, very very short.

So I pray:
“Lord Jesus, please forgive me for the times I have spoken carelessly and without thought.  For words I have spoken that were untrue.  I ask that You help me to speak words that sow good seed and that bring forth life in others.  Help me Lord, to be aware of every word that I am to say.  May You be pleased with that which I have spoken, one day when I stand before You.”
In Jesus’ Name~ Amen

James 12:9-10 (NKJV) 9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.

Proverbs (KJV) 18:21 Death and life are in the power of the tongue: and they that love it shall eat the fruit thereof.

Ephesians 4:29 (IJV) let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.

 

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Well THAT Was Exciting!

I have just returned home from helping my husband drive a 1960’s 4020 John Deere tractor on a VERY busy road to a shop for repair.  While the distance of the trip is just over a mile, it is far from my favorite thing to do.  In spite of this fact I took a deep breath as we headed down the driveway and prepared to follow in the pickup with flashers flashing and the whirly gig whizzing on top.

The speed limit on the road is 55 mph, while the tractor will travel at 10-15mph tops.  There is a wide shoulder and a turn lane in the middle that allows impatient drivers to pass.  Today however, there was a school bus that decided not to take advantage of either.  As I looked in the rear view mirror to survey traffic, it was filled with a mass of yellow that had caught up and was right behind me.  There were four cars behind this  cautious driver, followed by a large city bus.  Behind that, I would estimate that  there were another 20 cars lined up traveling at our slow speed.  While our caravan didn’t actually last too long, it seemed like it lasted forever.  I was ever so grateful as we made it to the turn lane and exited into the parking lot so that everyone could pass on by.  In spite of my trepidation, we had arrived at our destination safe and sound.

Pulling into the driveway after our adventure, I couldn’t help but be thankful for the faithfulness of God.  He is with us, and maybe especially, when we have hard things to do.  I recalled the break in traffic He provided as we pulled both of our vehicles onto the road and  I remembered my “thank You” as we took the short side road that gave us a reprieve from the long string of cars.  I felt grateful for the turn lane that came into sight just as the back up was becoming alarmingly long.  When it was all said and done, no one shook a fist, elevated their middle finger, or gave us an angry horn honk.

Our success doesn’t mean that it is always easy, however.  Years ago I was flagging a “new to us” Combine home on back country roads and somehow managed to slide the pickup off into a ditch.  I couldn’t drive it out in spite of the fact it was 4-wheel drive, so we (my husband and I) had to use the Combine to pull it back onto the road.  Oops!  One thing is for certain: whether hard or easy, I would rather have Jesus riding with me than to try to handle my life without Him.

Do you have something that is not your favorite thing to do?  Then don’t forget to bring Jesus with you!!!

 

Joshua 1:9 (KJV)  Have not I commanded thee? Be strong and of a good courage; be not afraid, neither be thou dismayed: for the Lord thy God is with thee whithersoever thou goest.

Deuteronomy 31:6 Be strong and of a good courage, fear not, nor be afraid of them: for the LORD thy God, he it is that doth go with thee; he will not fail thee, nor forsake thee.

Psalm 139:7-10 Whither shall I go from thy spirit? or whither shall I flee from thy presence? 8If I ascend up into heaven, thou art there: if I make my bed in hell, behold, thou art there. 9If I take the wings of the morning, and dwell in the uttermost parts of the sea; 10Even there shall thy hand lead me, and thy right hand shall hold me.

 

 

 

 

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We Have No Idea

Recently I was having a conversation with someone I do business with.  Things had not gone as smoothly as anticipated for either one of us in our dealings.  As we were discussing our situation she said, “you have no idea” in regards to the troubles that she had experienced in the last several months.  She recounted a couple of incidences about which I was unaware.  She was right.  I had had no idea.  My heart was filled with compassion.  I had a new understanding of her circumstance.  Yet, I could not help but think about her comment and reply silently to myself; “and you have no idea about mine.”

Every day we interact with people.  Family.  Friends.  Those  we walk by on the street, or with whom we share the highway as we drive our cars…and we have no idea.  We cannot see the trials and tribulations, the joys and the triumphs that they are going through.  We cannot know all of the factors that give them their perspective.  Neither can they know and see all of ours.  But Jesus can.

Jesus sees the reason behind anger, impatience on the freeway, or the cause of a fallen tear.  He sees past wounds causing current behaviors.  He has heard words that have been spoken, some harsh and others kind.  He sees beyond a person’s emotions and behaviors.  He sees the person’s heart.

“Lord thank You that You do not see as we see, but that You see into our hearts. Please help us not to judge others, but grant us grace to understand.  May we not be easily offended, but able to see another’s point of view.  Help us to bless and pray for one another, for we really ‘have no idea’.”

1 Samuel 16:7b…for the LORD seeth not as man seeth; for man looketh on the outward appearance, but the LORD looketh on the heart.”

Colossians 3:12 (NKJV)Therefore, as the elect of God, holy and beloved, put on tender mercies, kindness, humility, meekness, longsuffering; 13 bearing with one another, and forgiving one another, if anyone has a complaint against another; even as Christ forgave you, so you also must do. 14 But above all these things put on love, which is the bond of perfection.

1 Peter 3:8 8Finally, be ye all of one mind, having compassion one of another, love as brethren, be pitiful, be courteous:

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The “Crabby Cloud”

My husband and I work many weekends at The Ranch House, but when possible we watch our favorite professional football team on television.  It is something we enjoy doing together.   Lately we have begun watching his college alma mater as well.  While my interest doesn’t extend to college sports, I have decided to join in to help root the team on.

While watching the game last weekend I found myself feeling particularly restless.  I began grumbling to myself about being bored.  I started thinking of the other things I could be doing, when in reality I really didn’t want to be doing them either.  I was a crabby mess.  Then The Lord in His goodness reminded me that He was there with us, and that He had some important things I could be doing  for Him.  I could be thankful.  I could pray for someone in need.

So I started expressing my thanks to Jesus.  I thanked Him for a husband who actually likes my company and wants me to be near him during football.  I gave thanks to Jesus for His kindness and provision; for His Presence in my life.  I remembered a baby having surgery this week, and the woman whose husband had just died.  I was reminded of the son of a friend who was going through a tough time, and the grandson of another who needed help.  Jesus reminded me of His Love for them, and that I have been given the privilege of prayer.  Soon my “crabby cloud” lifted, and I was content to be right where I was.  Peace began to surround me.  I was no longer bored.

Jesus has a call and a purpose for each one of us.  One of the most important pieces of our call is to pray.  Our prayers are powerful.  Our prayers make a difference.  They can even make a crabby cloud disappear!

Philippians 4:6-7 (KJV) 6Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 7And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

1 Timothy 2:1 (KJV) 1 I exhort therefore, that, first of all, supplications, prayers, intercessions, [and] giving of thanks, be made for all men;

1 Thessalonians 5:17 (KJV) Pray without ceasing.

Revelation 8:4 (KJV) 4And the smoke of the incense, which came with the prayers of the saints, ascended up before God out of the angel’s hand.

James 5:16 (KJV) 16Confess your faults one to another, and pray one for another, that ye may be healed. The effectual fervent prayer of a righteous man availeth much.

 

 

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Chew On This!

I am reposting the following article because I need to read it myself!!!  This week I goofed.  I didn’t trust God.  I allowed fear to step in.

Now I have a choice.  What am I going to think about?  Will I think upon the goodness of The Lord, no matter how big my mistake?   Or am I going to think on my mistake, playing it over and over in my mind?

I am choosing to think on The Goodness of God.  I am going to trust Jesus to help me to do better next time.  I am going to remember He loves me no matter what.  I am going to release my mistake to Him.

Chew On This!

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Jesus Does Not Change

Lately, while working at The Ranch House I have noticed that something is missing.  In the past when I was driving tractor and staying there alone at night, there were three lights across the canyons.  These lights that provided comfort in the still of the darkened night.  At the end of the day before going to bed I would look at them, each spaced far from the other, and smile as I imagined the people who must live inside.

Two years later, there is only one light shining in the distance.  My husband now sits next to me at the end of the day.   I miss the lights that are no longer there, yet the light that remains is a fond reminder of days gone by.  It reminds me that nothing stays the same.  Our children grow.  Our bodies age as we get older.  Relationships come and go and transform.  Yet there is One who stays the same forever.  His Name is Jesus.

Today, if you are facing good times, remember to cherish them.  Give thanks to The Lord for His goodness.  If this is a season filled with challenges,  know that they will pass.  Cling to The Lord and ask Him to give you His strength.  Know that His power to save will never wane.  His offer of forgiveness is ever be present.  His love for you does not falter.  While others may fail you rest assured; Jesus never will.  He is wise and sees your beginning and your end.  He is faithful.  You can trust Him.  Jesus will not change.

Hebrews 13:8 (KJV) Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. 

Malachi 3:6  (KJV)  For I am the Lord, I change not;

Revelation 22:13 (KJV) I am Alpha and Omega, the beginning and the end, the first and the last.

 

 

 

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The Plank

There has been so much strife around  lately.  One person saying this about someone, another saying that.  That is not what Jesus wants from us.  He would have us remember that we are all so very human, and asks us to see the best in one another.  He asks us to forgive.  He asks us to love because of His great Love for us.

Following is an article I wrote in 2011 about this very topic.  This week may we have vision that comes from a heavenly point of view.

 

The Plank In My Eye

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The Wicker Basket

I have a wicker basket.  It was left at The Ranch House by the previous owners when they moved.  While it’s too pretty to throw away, the basket isn’t quite big enough to serve as a dirty clothes hamper.  It hasn’t worked for storage, nor for any other purpose I have tried.  Not knowing quite what to do with it or where to put it, I brought it home and placed it in our storage room.  It has been there, out of the way and at rest, for more than a year.

Like so many people, my life has been filled with numerous “cares” as of late.  Cares that I have unknowingly been allowing to steal the peace I walk in when I remember to give my troubles to Jesus.  Cares that there is really nothing I am able to do anything about.  Cares that have been running over and over in my mind for far too long.  Until last week, that is, when The Lord graciously helped me to recognize what was happening.   It is not His will  that we should be weighted down by worries that rob us of our joy.

As I pondered this revelation, a picture of the wicker basket came to me.  In my mind I could see myself walking over to the basket, lifting the lid and throwing my cares inside.  I slammed the lid back down and walked away.  I then determined to leave them with Jesus to deal with instead of endlessly trying to fix them on my own.

The wicker basket is out of the store room now.  It is in my office, available for me to go to when I realize I have need.  Sometimes I write my cares down on paper.  Other times I just use my imagination.  Either way, I talk them over with Jesus and pray, then I toss them on in. When troubling thoughts try to revisit me, I refuse them.  Instead, I remember that I have placed those things in the wicker basket for Jesus to manage.  I have given them to Him.

Today I would like to offer to share my basket with you.  May The Lord bring it to mind when you find yourself ruminating on those things that are troubling you.  Perhaps you already have something that you would like to set out and use as your own “care container”.   Either way, cast all your cares upon Him, for He cares for you.  He can handle them.  He will help.  He is worthy of the Trust you place in Him.

1 Peter 5:7 KJV Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

Philippians KJV 4:6-7 6Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. 7And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus. 

Psalm 138:3 NKJV  In the day when I cried out, You answered me, And made me bold with strength in my soul.  

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Reflections of God

From the Summit of Lone Mountain in Big Sky Montana


I love nature.  It reveals the wisdom and care, the power and might of Our Lord.  He is awesome.  He is mighty.  He is the maker of heaven and earth.

This week I would like to share  several pictures from our recent trip through Montana and Yellowstone.  September 2 was our 40th wedding anniversary so we extended my husband’s business trip  a few days to enjoy the surrounding area.  I was in awe of the magnificence around me.  It was a true a reflection of the Power and Majesty of Our God.

Beehive Trail Near Big Sky Montana




Yellowstone Park, Wyoming

                                                                    

After I started posting pictures, I couldn’t resist sharing the following from our ranch and home as well.

Beauty At The Ranch



Beauty At Home



                Have a wonderful week as you enjoy creation around you!

***Note-  If you would like to see any of the images larger, you can click on them and they will open in another page.  🙂

Jeremiah 32:17  (KJV). 17 Ah Lord God! behold, thou hast made the heaven and the earth by thy great power and stretched out arm, and there is nothing too hard for thee:

Psalm 19:1 (KJV)  The heavens declare the glory of God; and the firmament sheweth his handywork.

Romans 1:20 (NKJV) 20 For since the creation of the world His invisible attributes are clearly seen, being understood by the things that are made, even His eternal power and [a]Godhead

Psalm 146:6  (KJV)  6 Which made heaven, and earth, the sea, and all that therein is: which keepeth truth for ever: