Apples of Gold

Proverbs 25:11

A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in settings of silver.

Apples of gold in a silver setting? Doesn’t that create a beautiful word picture? Golden apples in a silver bowl–sounds lovely to me. And that’s what the Bible likens our words to if they are fitly spoken.

So what exactly are fitly spoken words? 

I’m sure everyone has a different defintion of that that phrase might mean. To me it’s about speaking kindly to others. Sometimes we may in a position of having to say something that may be unpleasant to another person. But we can always do it with kindness. 

And sometimes the kindest words are the words not spoken. We don’t always have to say everything on our mind in every situation with every person. 

Words fitly spoen are those that we speak after examining ourselves, our motives, and  our attitudes. If the words pass all those tests, then speak them, but speak them in the kindest, most loving way you can.

The world is filled with angry, hars, hurtful, critical, and  hateful words. We don’t have to add to that. As Christians, let’s create apples of gold in silver settings.

UNTIL NEXT TIME…GOD BLESS & GOOD READING!

Time To Say…

Ecclesiastes 3:1

There is a time for everything, and a season for every activity under heaven

As the verse says, there is a time for everything. It doesn’t say that every activity we choose to do must last forever.

And so it is that I say good-bye to this blog–FOR NOW. Lately, it’s been a struggle for me to come up with a topic for my devotions. And that hasn’t happened before. I love writing devotions so I can only conclude that my time for writing this blog may be coming to an end.

At least for now.

Who knows what the future holds?

If and when God wants me to start writing devotions for this blog again, I will be overjoyed to do so.

In the meantime, I plan to include devotions on my other blog, Tiaras & Tennis Shoes at www.lillian-duncan.com.  Tiaras & Tennis Shoes is more focused on my writing life, my books, other people’s books,  and whatever strikes my fancy. Lately, I’ve been sharing my writing journey. It’s been a fun look back at how I became a published writer. So if you’re not following Tiaras & Tennis Shoes yet, come on over and join the fun!

Thanks for all the support you’ve all shown me throughout the past few years. And like the verse said, there is a time for everything, and there may come a time again for this blog.

My blessings to you and to all you love!

MUSIC MOMENT: I CAN ONLY IMAGINE

I love this song–I Can Only Imagine. Now, I consider myself having a fairly good imagination. After all I’ve written dozens of books and been blessed to have several of them published. But when it comes to heaven, my imagination fails me.

I can really imagine it.

I can’t imagine how amazing it will be to see Jesus!

I can’t imagine what it means to live forever!

I can’t imagine no more pain, no more sorrow, no more tears!

Maybe, I can’t imagine it right now, but I sure am looking forward to it!!

I hope you enjoy the video.

YOU TUBE VIDEO-I CAN ONLY IMAGINE sung by MercyMe

Try It–You’ll Like It!

Psalm 34: 8

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed in the man who takes refuge in Him.

When I read this verse, it immediately took me to a TV commercial. You know the one I mean. Try it, Mikey…you’ll like it! His big brothers were sure he wouldn’t like it. After all, it was supposed to be good for you. And we all know that things that are meant for our good, aren’t actually meant to be enjoyed but rather to be endured.

Right?

Wrong!  Mike took the bite and liked it.

Developing a relationship with God is much the same way. So many run from a relationship with God. Not because they don’t believe He exists, but because they assume being a Christian isn’t  something to be enjoyed but rather to be endured.

Right?

Wrong! Being a Christian has brought me unspeakable joy. Being a Christian has given me the strength to endure life’s challenges–like bilateral brain tumors. Being a Christian has brought me peace in spite of the difficult things life has thrown at me.

So like Mikey’s brothers I issue you a challenge. Try it…I guarantee you’ll like it.  No–you’ll love it.

But being a Christian isn’t a guarantee that you won’t have problems in your life. In fact, I can guarantee that as well. Jesus assured us that we will have problems. And that’s where the second part of the verse comes in–blessed in the man who takes refuge in Him. 

When life gets difficult (and it will), that’s the time to run to God. To take refuge in Him, not to turn away in anger because you didn’t get your way. It’s the time to remind yourself over and over that God loves you and that His love is perfect.  Romans 8:28 says that God will work all things for the good of those who love Him.

Taking refuge in God means trusting God’s love for us and His promises. It may not be easy to do, especially when we don’t get the happy ending we want, but God promises those of us who take refuge in Him will be blessed.

As for me, I believe Him!

He is my refuge!

I’d love to hear about a time when you took refuge in God.

Celebrating God!

There’s all sorts of ways to celebrate God. I celebrate God with my writing. Others celebrate with their painting, their sculpting, their acts of kindness to others. And certainly one way to celebrate God is through music.

I admit that I’ve never been a big music lover. Sure I had a few favorite singers and enjoyed their music. Now, my husband is a music lover. He loves music of all sorts. Rock. Hard Rock. Heavy Metal. 50’s music. Bluegrass. Country. Hymns. Praise Music. It doesn’t matter what type of music–he loves it. And unlike me, he usually knows the words!

But I do love one genre of music. Music that celebrates God.

And Chris Tomlin is up at the top of my list of favorite musicians that celebrate God. Of course, there are others on the list.

Anyway, here’s a great song to celebrate God today!

YouTube Video–Our God Is Greater sung by Chris Tomlin

I Don’t Understand!

Proverbs 3: 5

Trust in the Lord with all your heart not on your own understanding.

 

Why am I sick, Lord? Why did I lose my loved one? Why did I lose the job I loved?

When bad things happen to us, we want to understand why the bad thing happened to us. But do we really need to know that? In most cases, we don’t. Will understanding the why make a difference? You’ll still be sick, your loved one will still be gone, or you still won’t have that job you loved so much.

I think when we ask why, we are really asking is why me? Why did this happen to me? Are you mad at me? Don’t you care about what happens to me? Don’t you love me?

This is where studying the Bible and, especially, passages relating to God’s love for us will get you through the bad times. Once you understand the depth of God’s love for each of us, then you can trust Him which will lead you to accept His sovereignty.

This is when you have to go back to His Word—His promises. The Bible assures us that God loves us. It says so in so many different ways. If you think of God as your father, then you know that He loves you and wants the best for you.

When you ask why again and again, it will rob you of your peace and joy.

Trusting God means forgetting about the why.

Trusting God means moving forward.

Trusting God means giving the problem to God.

Trusting God means that you believe His promises.

Trusting God will restore your peace and joy.

We don’t need to understand why each bad thing happens to us–unless it’s of our own making. If bad things happen as a result of our own actions, then it’s good to know that and learn from it. But when bad things happen for no reason that we can understand, that’s when it’s time to trust God and His promises.

So today when that why word rears its ugly head. Banish it from your thoughts. Instead, tell yourself and God over and over—I trust you. I know you love me.

It will do wonders!

 

PAUL’S PRAYERS

Today’s guest writer is Sandy Smith. Sandy is  a long time member of my church and teaches the Women’s Bible Study Class. Thanks, Sandy, for sharing with us.

 

PAUL’S PRAYERS by Sandy Smith

 

Colossians 1:9  (Amplified Bible)

For this reason we also, from the day we heard of it, have not ceased to pray and make [[aspecial] request for you, [asking] that you may be filled with the [b]full (deep and clear) knowledge of His will in all spiritual wisdom [[c]in comprehensive insight into the ways and purposes of God] and in understanding and discernment of spiritual things—

 

When you don’t know how to pray for others follow Paul’s example.

PRAY…..

  • They understand God’s will
  • They gain spiritual wisdom
  • They please God in every area of their life
  • They bear fruit
  • They grow in the knowledge of God
  • They be filled with God’s strength so they can endure whatever comes their way
  • They rejoice and give thanks
  • They grow in grace

 

Prayer is a mighty ministry that any believer can have—anytime, anywhere, in any circumstances. Don’t forget to focus your prayers on spiritual concerns. The spiritual condition of that person will determine how well she/he is able to cope with life’s issues, whether those issues are physical or emotional.