31 Days: The God Who Is

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31 Days of Adoration

Its always a struggle for me to think of one topic that I want to write about for 31 days – that I also think will be a benefit to others.  I mean, I could talk about how I love my mister and our two sons, I could tell you 31 things to do in ATL with children (you get the drift) – but those are very specific topics.  I usually like to choose something that will be both edifying to me as I write each day and edifying to the reader.

The past two times I’ve read through Psalm 51 I’ve written down all the characteristics that the psalmist David says about God – the God who forgives him of his great and infamous sin with Bathsheba.  Most people today think of that chapter in the Bible as a how-to for repentance or asking forgiveness.  It is that.  But, I don’t think it has that one idea as its main theme.  I think its main theme is the God who does the forgiving.

So, I’ve read through and written down 31 characteristics that the Bible (God, the author) tells us about Himself in those 19 verses.  I hope you will join along on my journey.

God’s Design for Beauty out of Brokenness

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Beauty out of Brokenness

Do you realize that we are ALL broken people?  This isn’t a blog post just for the people who have major problems in life and their lives are falling apart.  This post is for every single person in the world.

And do you know that we serve an amazingly beautiful Creator who takes everything that is broken and turns it into a beautiful thing for his glory?  That is one of the aspects of God that I love the most.  That He takes the broken and makes beautiful wholeness out of it.

We see the God of beauty shining through all of Scripture.  Just a few:

1.  Nehemiah and his getting the wall rebuilt.  Nehemiah knew of the broken down wall in Jerusalem and he wasn’t even there.  So he went and saw the rubble.  And he prayed.  And he got normal every day joe people to work on the wall.  And you know what – God restored that wall.  He showed that His beauty could shine again around the walls of the city for His own people.

2.  King David.  A lot of people mentioned that he was a man after God’s own heart.  Which he was.  But he was also a murderer and an unfaithful husband.  But God used him to write amazing worship songs and lead God’s people – and he is an integral part in the history of redemption.

3.  The Apostle Paul who wrote a good portion of the New Testament and his letters are still an encouragement to us today.  He was in charge of the people who stoned one of the early deacons of the local church – and hated Christians – even though he knew the law of God and was really smart.

4.  And the most broken story of all.  The perfect Jesus being broken on a cross to pay for the sins of those who believed.  God chose Him to bear our burden.  To pay for our sins.


1.  I’ve seen women who have longed for babies have their arms full of precious ones even when doctors said it was impossible.

2.  I’ve seen marriages restored when unfaithfulness has been relationship-dominating.

3.  I’ve seen teenagers come to know Christ and then go on the mission field and lead churches for the glory of God.

4.  I’ve seen the bonds of addiction broken because of the glory of the gospel.

5.  I’ve seen orphans taken into families and loved on because of the gospel.

In Cynthia Ruchti’s new book, Tattered and Mended, she brings so many Scriptural highlights and life-giving words to help bring life to brokenness.  I really love her thematic way she set up her chapters in different forms of art and restoration.  Such a good thing for a creative to do.  I love her use of Scripture.  And that she brings out a very personal side of God – His healing power!

If you are in a season of brokenness – don’t despair (think of your favorite Anne of Green Gables quote).  Believe in him.  Wait on him.  You will see beauty because God is faithful and never changes.

This post is sponsored by Litfuse who sent me Ruchti’s book to review.  All opinions are my own.

Teaching Children Theology: Jesus Loves Me

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Jesus Loves Me

Music.  You know that song that gets stuck in your head and you sing it for the next 4 days…as you bide your time waiting for another song to take its place?!

Its a small world…

This is the song that never ends…

Any Christmas carol…

One of the very first songs that most church kids learn is Jesus Loves Me.  Simple.  Catchy.  Memorizable.

As I’ve been singing this with my children as we sit at the table or drive around town (Atlanta traffic usually offers much time for sitting in the car…still…on the interstate or at traffic lights)…I always get stuck on one line.

“For the Bible tell me so…”

Such a powerful truth of this song that is oft overlooked – and one that we as Christian parents need to teach our children from the beginning.

The Authority and Truthfulness of the Word of God.

If you don’t believe the Word is accurate and truthful and without error in what it says – then why believe it?  That is precisely why I hate political ads in our country.  You can never believe what is being said.  There is no use even trying to figure it out.  The good thing with the Bible is you don’t have to figure it out.

God said that the Word is true, living, active, useful for instruction.

The best thing the Bible teaches us is the Gospel.  No other way will we know that we need a Savior but by the Word of God.  And if we don’t believe what it says than how are we to believe what it says about us, or about Jesus, or about his love for us, His Children?

So, while you have the chance (Deuteronomy 6), please teach your children that God gave us His Word and it can be wholly believed and rested upon as they grow up, walk with Christ, and serve him in anyway He has for them.


Read This: Jim Hamilton’s What is Biblical Theology?

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If you check any seminary bookstore – you will find a plethora of theology books.  I suppose that is a good thing because we need to study theology and most of us, like me, love to have help in that department.

I remember being in seminary at Southeastern, I was asked to read Erickson’s for my theology class, and Thomas Oden.  But, when I got out of seminary and started teaching a college girl’s bible study, I wanted to read Grudem’s Bible Doctrines.

I like a theology book to be solid and based on the gospel – of course.  But, I also want it to readable for the every-day person – meaning a person who doesn’t have seminary background necessarily and they can still understand it.  And I also want to know something of the author and know that he is applying this study of theology to his own life.  I remember working at SBTS where Dr. Hamilton is a professor, seeing him walk down the hall, interact with students and colleagues, and witness a humility that can only come from studying the Scripture and knowing the God of the Bible.

Hamilton’s What is Biblical Theology isn’t going to be a starter theology book – I would highly recommend Grudem’s that I mentioned above.  However, it will take you to a deeper love and trust and knowledge of your Bible if you dare go there.  Especially as a writer, Dr. Hamilton points out the Bibles literary pieces and bigger themes.  God was the writer that we should all strive to be!  You can trust this book.  You can learn from it.  And Psalm 119 tells us that knowing the Word of God is a blessed way to live a life that pleases God!


Knowing God #OT14

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God in the Wilderness

God has been so kind and gracious to me, teaching me more about Himself even in the books of Leviticus and Numbers. Here are several things that I learned in this week’s readings:

1. The Lord demands offerings. He demanded, commanded, offerings from his people. Even though we as post-Cross Christians don’t live under the demands of the Law, we still serve a God who desires us to make offerings. This may be our very lives. Our church is having a missions conference coming up. Serving in foreign countries may be exactly what God is wanting you to do – but it may be sacrificing and offering your gifts and talents to those less fortunate in an opportune way to share the gospel.

2. The Lord desires acceptable worship. He has told us already what he desires of us: Micah 6.8 How are we living that truth out as acceptable worship in spirit and in truth under the freedom of the gospel?

3.  God frees us!  We are no longer in Egypt.  We no longer make bricks with no straw.  We are free to love Him and serve Him and follow Him because He first loved us!  Isn’t that glorious news!

4.  The Lord sanctifies us!  I’ll be talking about this more when I do a write up on Ephesians 5 – but let this be a gracious thing in your life – not one that you despise!  He is a good and gracious God in his sanctification of his children.

5.  The Lord desires rest for his people.  In Hebrews it says that’s what Jesus us.  In the gospels it says that Jesus wants us to come to him and rest.  Don’t you see how Jesus fulfills all of the Old Testament – everything that was prophesied of him or that we can’t do for ourselves – the answer is Jesus!

6.  The Lord speaks to us in our wilderness.  Do you ever feel like you are wandering?  Call out to him!  He hears us.  He speaks to us in the dry and dusty places where there doesn’t seem to be any water!

7.  The Lord requires a Mediator.  See #5.  Christ is that wonderful forever mediator for us!

8.  The Lord does what He says He will do.  He is faithful.  If he says he will do something, even though we don’t know the when or how – we can rest assured in his character that he will do it!

In your reading of the Word this week, what has God been teaching you about himself?

Knowing God in the OT #3

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The God Who Is

I’m a little behind, but I am still loving this study of the OT.  When I come across the written accounts throughout history of what God did – and who He was – I know that He is the same very God today and we can believe Him!

These are some of the ones that stood out to me in my readings:

1.  God cares for his children.

2.  God’s Word is true.

3.  God speaks to His people.

4.  The Word of the Lord is to be feared.

5.  The Lord brought His people out of slavery.

6.  The Lord will fight for you.

7.  The Lord triumphs gloriously.

8.  The Lord is my banner in my war.

9.  The Lord is greater than all Gods.

10.  The Lord is compassionate.

May these truths remind of who God is for you today!

A Christian’s Response to Death

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Christian's Response to Death

There is so much heart ache in this world.  As I’ve been reading the Old Testament this morning, specifically Genesis and Exodus so far – there is much death in those books.  However, one key theme I see run across all those pages – and even the pages of my life today: the faithfulness of God.  There is hurt, there is weeping.  Those are right responses.  Death is traumatic because we weren’t created (in the beginning) to face it.  But…

He promises.

He keeps.

He covenants.

He remembers.

He is the same.

He never changes.

He is the giver of life.

He is the taker of life.

He is good.  He is faithful.  When all else fails.  Including Death.

Knowing God in the OT: Week 2

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This morning I stood in the surf of the Atlantic Ocean on New Smyrna Beach. As I stood there with the cold water saturating my feet (that desperately need a pedicure coming soon thanks to friends), tears filled my eyes when I thought of the faithfulness of God. I thought to myself of all the men and women of old who I’m reading about in the book of Genesis and remembered that God never changes. So the faithfulness of God then – is the faithfulness of God now.
Here is what I learned in this week’s readings:

1. God is a God of perfect timing.
2. The Lord answers questions
3. The Lord looks on our affliction.
4. God is a gracious giver.
5. God is just.
6. God orchestrates all things in our lives.
7. God is the Almighty.

Knowing God in the OT: Week 1

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God is...

This year I am working my way through the Old Testament.  How did this goal come about?

I was driving on I-40, listening to an Andrew Peterson song with a ton of names.  I thought to myself all of those people knew God somehow.  They all had an encounter with God.  I wanted to know more about that God.

So, I am reading through an OT reading plan.  With each day I’m jotting down my thoughts, and what I learn about God, who He is.  By the end of they year I plan to take photos, quotes from reading, journal thought and compose an ebook out of it.  I am looking forward to this journey.

Each week I will share a snippet with you.  I hope you enjoy.

1.  God is a seeking God.

2.  God is a faithful God.

3.  God is the sustainer and giver of all of life.

4. God is extravagant

5. God makes covenants with us.

Believing God for Future Faith Because of Former Faith

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Do you believe God? Not – do you believe in God, but do you believe God?
So many people (but not enough) believe in God, especially here in the Bible Belt. But, how many of us live our lives every day as if we really do believe God.
We read of this belief in the Christmas narration in Luke’s gospel.
Zechariah, the husband of Elizabeth who was barren but now was going to the mom of John the Baptist, declared the God’s redemption plan had happened. That’s right…past tense…and he hadn’t even met Jesus yet. This was 33 plus years before the cross. How was this man so confident in the redemption work of God?
Because God had ALREADY DONE great things for him. God had given him a son. Not just any son either. Sons were big deals in the time of the Bible.
So, what do we as post-cross Christians need for us to believe God? I’m not talking about saving faith – which actually only comes as a gift from God (Eph 2), but living, active, everyday faith.
1. We need to know the Bible. For us to know the God of the Bible, and to take Him at His Word, we need to know His Word. How can you claim what God has said He will do for you if you don’t know what He said? He has already told us what He will do for us.
2. We need to reject doubt. Doubt is sin. We doubt because we don’t trust. We don’t trust because we allow the cares of this world to crowd out the truths that God has already given us.
Look at all that God has already done for you. Hasn’t He come through? Hasn’t He been good to you? Do you really think He is going to stop now? You can look at the ways God has worked in your life in the past and believe Him for what He will surely do in the future. Your future.
What do you want God to do for you, in you, through you? Has God already said He will do it? If so, then you can count on Him to do exactly what He has said.
Take Him at His Word.  Hebrews 11.6 lived out!