Is What I’m Hearing From God?

BibleIn her book, What Happens When Women Say Yes to God, Lysa Terkeurst suggests there are five key questions we should ask our self when we wonder, Is what I’m hearing from God?

  1. Does what I’m hearing line up with Scripture?
  2. Is it consistent with God’s character?
  3. Is it being confirmed through messages I’m hearing at church or studying in my quiet time?
  4. Is it beyond me?
  5. Would it please God?

Does what I’m hearing line up with Scripture? God will not tell us to do something that contradicts his Word. That sounds easy enough, but if we aren’t spending time reading and studying God’s Word, how will we be able to discern if what we’re hearing lines up with what God said? We have to know what the Scriptures say. Knowing the Scriptures doesn’t necessarily mean memorizing chapter and verse, it means reading the Bible for our self. As we read, ask what it says to us. Ask what it says about God.

Is it consistent with God’s character? God won’t tell us to do anything that doesn’t line up with who he is. A good starting point into God’s character is the list of the Fruit of the Spirit found in Galatians 5:22-23. The Fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Is it being confirmed? My cousin William always told me to look for three confirmations whenever I wonder how to proceed in something I feel God is saying to me. Yesterday, a verse of Scripture I read in my Sunday school lesson earlier that week popped up in four separate unconnected things I read. You think God’s trying to tell me something? I sure do. Now I need to figure out exactly what.

Is it beyond me? Do we sense God is calling us to do something beyond our ability? Something we can only accomplish through his strength? If so, this is an opportunity to watch him work through us. Think Moses leading the Israelites out of Egypt to the Promised Land. That was way beyond Moses’ ability to be sure.

Would it please God? For this final question, I like how Lysa puts it. You see, if what you are doing pleases God, then even if what you thought you heard from him wasn’t his voice, you still please him. Pause and read that sentence again. As long as what we do pleases God, it’s all good, right?

In conclusion to Lysa’s list she adds, These five questions are your starting place. The more you practice listening for God’s voice, the more it becomes a natural part of your daily life. God wants you to hear from him.

How marvelous is that? The Creator God who spoke the world into being and knit us together in our mother’s womb wants a personal relationship with us. He wants us to hear when he speaks to us. He wants us to know we are loved, and know that his perfect love casts out all fear. Even the fear of stepping out in faith to do what he calls us to do.

Are there any of Lysa’s key questions you go to first when deciding if what you’re hearing is from God?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

But the fruit produced by the Holy Spirit within you is divine love in all its varied expressions: joy that overflows, peace that subdues, patience that endures, kindness in action, a life full of virtue, faith that prevails, gentleness of heart, and strength of spirit. Never set the law above these qualities, for they are meant to be limitless. Galatians 5:22-23 (TPT)

You can find my November Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Photo by Rod Long on Unsplash

Jesus Love Us

statue of Jesus with childrenLast month Pilot and I returned to our monthly ministry of assisting with church service at a local assisted-living facility. He leads singing. I give a devotion. Because of COVID shutdowns over the past year and a half, we’ve not been able to be there.

What a joy to be back with these dear saints in the Lord. Mixed with the joy, is the sadness that comes with knowing some of our sweet friends are now at home with the Lord.

Usually, near the end of our time together, Pilot asks if anyone has a song they’d like to sing. One song I suggest we sing is Jesus Loves Me. It warms my heart and makes my eyes misty to hear these beloved souls sing with all they have in them, the words to a song some learned as children close to a century ago.

But the biggest thing about their singing is this: some of those in attendance reside in the Memory Care Unit of the facility. They may not remember many things, but they remember Jesus loves them.

Jesus tells us we are to humble ourselves and become like little children before him. We are also told to welcome children, because when we do, we welcome Jesus.

Some may look at the group of senior adults who assemble in our little worship service, and dismiss their worth or their value. But I’m here to tell you, their worth is beyond measure. They are valuable. And although some may now have child-like minds, they are more than welcome in the Kingdom of Heaven. Amen?

Was Jesus Loves Me one of the songs you learned as a child?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

About that time the disciples came to Jesus to ask which of them would be greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven!

Jesus called a small child over to him and set the little fellow down among them, and said, “Unless you turn to God from your sins and become as little children, you will never get into the Kingdom of Heaven. Therefore anyone who humbles himself as this little child is the greatest in the Kingdom of Heaven. And any of you who welcomes a little child like this because you are mine is welcoming me and caring for me. But if any of you causes one of these little ones who trusts in me to lose his faith, it would be better for you to have a rock tied to your neck and be thrown into the sea. Matthew 18:1-6 (TLB)

Jesus love me!

This I know,

For the Bible tells me so.

Little ones to Him belong;

They are weak but He is strong.

Jesus loves me!

He will stay

Close beside me all the way.

Thou hast bled and died for me;

I will henceforth live for Thee.

Chorus:
Yes, Jesus loves me!
Yes, Jesus loves me!
Yes, Jesus loves me!
The Bible tells me so.

–Anna B. Warner, 1820 -1915

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Just Getting Started Book Review

Just Getting Started by Wendy Peter is not a book to rush through. At least it wasn’t for me. Filled with helpful information and encouragement to reach for dreams which may have become hidden, or which feel out of reach, Wendy shows ways to move past your false finish line and re-imagine the next season of your life, identify and awaken your true purpose and step with courage into your calling, and create a road map to get your dreams off the ground.

Her hope as you work through the book by reading and answering the chapter questions, is that God does three things:

  • Changes the way you think.
  • Resurrects some old dreams.
  • Conceives some new dreams in you.

Some of the material in Just Getting Started may not apply to where you are at this point in time, but I believe there may be enough information within the pages to make the book worth your while.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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Prime the Pump

hand water pumpAlthough my grandparents in Georgia had indoor plumbing, they also had an outdoor hand pump on the back porch. As someone who grew up in the suburbs of Washington, D. C., that pump fascinated me. If you are unfamiliar with the way a hand pump works, you have to prime the pump first.

To do that, you pour a glassful of water into the pump. If not, it won’t matter how much you pump the handle, you won’t produce a drop of water from the well. Once the water starts to flow, you need to keep pumping the pump handle until you have all the water you want.

But one thing to remember, make sure you fill a glass with water for the next time before you quit pumping. That is extremely important. You can’t pump water if you don’t have that water to get it started.

By now you may be wondering where I’m going with this, so I’ll tell you.

Love.

In 1 John, John goes a little bit around in a circle to tell us as children of God, we must love one another, because God is love, and love comes from God. Sort of like the water in a hand pump. We can ask God to help us love others, but it isn’t until we make the effort to love that it will be accomplished. We have to use our glass of love that came from God’s well and prime the pump with it, so God’s love will flow through us to others.

God takes that little glass of love we reserved from the love he gives, and brings up love from his never-ending well for us to give to others. Before you know it, the love is pouring freely.

We could stand at that pump all day long, pumping our little hearts out, but unless we prime the pump first, experience the love of the Father, we won’t draw anything from our well.

If we love one another, God lives in us, and his love is made complete in us. That’s what John tells us.

As a child on my grandparent’s back porch, to my small arms, getting that water started was quite the chore. Sometimes, an older relative stepped in to help get the water flowing.

Sometimes, as a child of God, it is difficult to prime the pump to get the flow of love started. Especially when God calls us to love those who have hurt us, those co-workers or neighbors who drive us absolutely crazy, those who don’t share our religious belief, those who don’t share our values-political or otherwise. It can be difficult.

That’s when we call on the God who is love. The God who loved us first. The God who demonstrated his love for us the day he allowed his precious son to die in our place.

So, my friends, we may never have the opportunity to prime a hand pump to draw water, but since God so loved us, we do have the opportunity to prime the pump of his love and draw from his deep well. But when we do, it’s important to remember, you can’t pump water, or love, if you don’t have a glassful in the first place.

It’s a circle. God is love. Love comes from God. Since God loved us, we are to love others. If we love others, God lives in us, and his love is brought to fullness in us.

Have you ever primed a pump to draw water? If so, did you do it because you wanted to, or because you had to?

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

Dear friends, let us love one another, because love comes from God. Whoever loves is a child of God and knows God. Whoever does not love does not know God, for God is love. And God showed his love for us by sending his only Son into the world, so that we might have life through him. This is what love is: it is not that we have loved God, but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the means by which our sins are forgiven. 1 John 4:7-10 (GNT)

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Image by Markus Distelrath from Pixabay

God is My Hiding Place Book Review

Based on the writings of Holocaust concentration camp survivor, Corrie Ten Boom, God is My Hiding Place is a collection of 40 timeless devotions which are as applicable today as they were when Corrie wrote them before her death on her 91st birthday in 1983.

Full of encouragement and simple truths, this is a devotional book to keep close by on a shelf to read over and over.

Within the 40 devotions are rich pull-out quotes gems to hold onto. One of my favorites is The center of God’s will is the safest place for me to be. In this devotion, Corrie relates how during the war, after she was released from Ravensbruck, a man asked Corrie to go back to the prison with him to seek release for a friend. Through circumstances while there, she realized this was not the work God had called her to. She says, We must be careful not to hold on to what we had when God calls us to move on.

But the devotional thought I hold dearest is this. When we are willing and obedient, He bestows upon us the wisdom, strength and courage of heaven. We are never too old to begin something new when we do it with Him.

I highly recommend God is My Hiding Place to all those in search of devotions to strengthen their faith.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Sunday, Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks!

Pause for Poetry-Dear Restless Heart

Dear restless heart, be still; don’t fret and worry so;

God has a thousand ways His love and help to show;

Just trust, and trust, and trust, until His will you know.

 

Dear restless heart, be still, for peace is God’s own smile,

His love can every wrong and sorrow reconcile;

Just love, and love, and love, and calmly wait awhile.

 

Dear restless heart, be brave; don’t moan and sorrow so,

He hath a meaning kind in chilly winds that blow;

Just hope, and hope, and hope, until you braver grow.

 

Dear restless heart, repose upon His breast this hour,

His grace is strength and life, His love is bloom and flower;

Just rest, and rest, and rest, within His tender power.

 

Dear restless heart, be still! Don’t struggle to be free;

God’s life is in your life, from Him you may not flee;

Just pray, and pray, and pray, till you have faith to see.

Edith Willis Linn

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think
others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media
buttons.

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

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God the Righteous Judge

balance scalesRight now, I’m reading through the Old Testament prophets. In these pages God, the Righteous Judge, lifted up and tore down kingdoms to accomplish his divine plan. He punished those who turned their lives against him, and blessed those who turned their lives toward him.

God was not to blame for handing down his judgement upon his people then, and he isn’t to blame for handing down his judgement now.

In one of Billy Graham’s devotions in his devotional, Hope for Each Day, Rev. Graham asks who’s to blame; the judge for sentencing the criminal, or the criminal for committing the crime? He goes on to ask if someone deliberately commits a crime and is caught, is the judge to blame for sentencing the criminal, or is the criminal to blame for the sentence he receives?

Yes. The judge is the one who hands down the sentence, but he did so by following the law. The judge is not the one who broke the law.

At the time of the Old Testament prophets, the Israelites worshiped multiple gods, made altars and sacrificed to those gods. Sometimes, they even offered their children as burnt sacrifices. They turned their back on the One True Living God and worshiped idols made by man. They still wanted and expected God’s blessing, but they wanted to do whatever they pleased while receiving it.

Time and time again, God sent warnings to his people. He gave them opportunity after opportunity to repent, get rid of the things in their lives that displeased God, and be restored to a relationship with him. But they refused.

God, The Righteous Judge, sent his rebellious people into captivity. He never stopped loving them, but there were consequences for their actions. His plan all along was to restore them to a relationship with himself, but it would be on his terms.

Like an earthly judge, God hands down the sentence and consequences we, the criminals, deserve. As in Billy Graham’s example, when we break God’s laws, we can’t blame God for the punishment we receive. It’s our fault we sinned, not God’s.

But thanks be to God, when we belong to Jesus and claim him as our Lord and Savior, we don’t have to pay the penalty for our sins. Jesus took our debt upon his perfect sinless self and paid the debt we owed, but could never pay. He paid our sin-debt with his blood sacrifice on the cross of Calvary.

We deserve the punishment, but the Righteous Judge made a way for us to be spared when he didn’t spare his own son.

God loved the world so much he sent his only son to this world to die a horrible death for us. As the Righteous Judge, God is not to blame if we don’t accept his perfect gift.

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

For God did not send His Son into the world to say it is guilty. He sent His Son so the world might be saved from the punishment of sin by Him. John 3:17 (NLV)

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

A View Most Glorious Book Review

woman in the mountainsA View Most Glorious by Regina Scott is the story of Coraline Baxter, her quest to summit Mount Rainier to promote Votes for Women in 1893 Tacoma, Washington, and Nathan Hardee, the man who reluctantly agrees to guide her to the top. The stakes are as high as the mountain itself. If Cora fails, she must marry the man her mother is forcing on her. Not at all agreeable to Cora, so she must summit regardless of the hardship to do so.

Cora and Nathan’s relationship develops as they learn to depend on each other while they tackle the mountain together. And in the end, they each must decide what is most important.

If you enjoy historical fiction with a touch of romance and a hero and heroine to root for, than A View Most Glorious may just be the book for you.

I received a complimentary copy of this book from Revell for a fair and honest review, which is exactly what I gave.

Have you read this book? If so, what was your impression of it?

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Cowboy Poetry – Cowboy in Snakeskin Boots

cowboy bootsThe following poem, Cowboy in Snakeskin Boots, is written by Brad Curtis. If you’d like to read another of his poems here on the blog, how about The Last Ranch Revival and the story of Jonah? You can find this and other poems in Brad’s book of Christian cowboy poems, He Holds the Reigns.

Cowboy in Snakeskin Boots

Never been a soorier cowboy

Than ol’ Devil Red.

He started out as a puncher

On the big sky spread.

When he hired on

D.R. was the best.

Not a better cowboy

In all of the west.

Now when it came to ridin’,

D.R. was a champ.

A top hand for sure.

Not some saddle tramp.

Rope ’em on the run.

Turn one on a dime.

A cow didn’t have a chance,

When D.R. threw his twine.

Always packin’ iron,

He never had to draw.

Fast as blue lightnin’.

The quickest I ever saw.

Now this cowboy

Was perfect in every way.

Cowboyin’ was his life.

He’d do it for no pay.

But the longer he was there

Riding for The Brand,

The more he began to talk,

How he was the best in the land.

Then the day came

While breaking a bad hoss.

D.R. told the boys

I think I’ll be the boss.

He said, “Boys, I’m takin’ over.

Gonna rustle the herd.

My pistols are loaded.

You can pass the word.”

That’s when the Boss rode in,

Said, “D.R., I’ll break your pride.

You’re headed down below.

On the big sky, you’ll never ride.”

“You were my top hand.

Now you’re as sorry as can be.

You’ll work on a ranch,

But not one for me.”

“The ranch that you will work

Is hot as the sun.

No water anywhere.

Grass…well, there’s none.”

“Yep, you’ll be the boss

Of your own spread.

But it is a place

Where everything is dead.”

“So pack up your gear.

That nag you’re ridin’ you can take.

You’re headin’ down below,

You ol’ sorry snake.”

Brad Curtis

Just like Ol’ Devil Red in this cowboy poem, Lucifer thought he was hot stuff. Best in the land. His pride became his downfall. Satan figured he’d take over the reigns in heaven. He figured no one could stop him. But the LORD God Almighty, Ruler of Heaven and Earth, LORD of Heaven’s Armies, told the devil otherwise.

Satan rules alright, but not in heaven. That snakeskin boot wearer is destined to eat dust all his days in a land where there is no light. A land of eternal darkness absent from the Father’s glorious presence.

Leave a comment below to share your thoughts on the subject. If you think others would appreciate reading this, please share it through the social media buttons.

How you are fallen from heaven, O Lucifer, son of the morning! How you are cut down to the ground—mighty though you were against the nations of the world. For you said to yourself, “I will ascend to heaven and rule the angels. I will take the highest throne. I will preside on the Mount of Assembly far away in the north. I will climb to the highest heavens and be like the Most High.” Isaiah 14:12-14 (TLB)

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy

Please enter your email address on the form located on the right sidebar to sign up to receive posts every Tuesday and Thursday. Thanks!

Gluten-free Fiesta Chicken Casserole Recipe

This gluten-free Fiesta Chicken Casserole recipe contains chicken, pasta, corn, shredded cheese, and black beans. Delicious.

  • 2 1/2 cups uncooked gluten-free Rotini pasta
  • 2 1/2 cups cooked chicken
  • 2 cups shredded Cheddar cheese (or Mexican blend)
  • 15 oz can black beans, rinsed and drained
  • 15 oz can corn, drained
  • 1 cup sour cream
  • 1 cup salsa
  • 1 package Taco seasoning
  • 1/2 teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
  • cilantro and avocado for garnish

Heat oven to 350 degrees F. Grease 9X13 baking dish with cooking spray.

Cook pasta as per directions.

Combine sour cream, salsa, Taco seasoning, cumin, garlic powder, and onion powder.

Drain pasta. Add to sour cream mixture.

Add corn, beans, and chicken. Stir to combine.

Add 1 cup cheese.

Pour into baking dish.

Sprinkle remaining cup of cheese on top.

Cover with foil. Cook 20 minutes.

Remove foil. Cook additional 5 minutes.

Garnish with sour cream, salsa, cilantro, and avocado.

Enjoy!

You can find my October Inspire a Fire post here. Please stop by and read it.

I wish you well.

Sandy