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DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Refreshments Served

acts-3_19-refreshment

I love refreshments  served at church.  When I was a little girl growing up in church we always had some kind of refreshment in between service.  It was ginger snaps and lemonade after Sunday School and in the afternoon program services it was always cake and punch.  We would line up and wait patiently as we were served something light to help get us through the next service or to take home with us.  Now as I look back, they may not have been the healthiest of food choices but the main idea of leaving refreshed was a very healthy choice.  The story of the lame man being healed in Acts 3 is a refreshing one to me.  Peter and John had no silver or gold to give him, but they gave him Jesus Christ who was the healer.  The man’s feet and ankles were strengthened by Peter’s prayer in which he called on the name of Jesus.  God healed him and gave him refreshment, a testimony and a story to tell for the rest of his life.  In verse 19 of that same chapter in Acts, it tells us times of refreshing come from the presence of the Lord.  It is only when we repent of our sins and turn to God that we experience true refreshment.  Just like the Sunday snacks or light refreshments I was served at church, being in God’s presence always helps me get through life’s journey.  Some days I feel like I’m sitting at a gate just waiting for a miracle of some sort. I want someone to come by with refreshments.  I want to be offered something more that will cause me to rise up and walk.  My feet and ankles are tired, I get weak, both physically and mentally.  I want to just sit down sometimes and do nothing. No serving, no thinking, no feeling, no dreaming and no helping or encouraging.  That’s when I know I need refreshment.  I need to pray and spend time in the presence of the Lord.  Sometimes God sends people, a text or a phone call.  Sometimes I intentionally pause and take a few moments to pray.  I  ask God to strengthen and refresh me.  Are you sitting at a gate today?  Will you allow God’s presence to  provide you with  what you need to get through it all?  I guarantee His presence will have you leaping, walking and praising His name in no time.

Prayer: Dear Lord thank you for your presence today.  There really is nothing like it.  Refresh me and renew my strength today.  Help me walk again, strengthen my feet and my ankles when I feel like I’m collapsing or sitting down too long.  I confess my sins to you, for you alone are able to make me rise up in this situation. Give me hope and strength for today, in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

 

Categories
DEVOTIONAL WRITINGS

Lesson from A Bookshelf

reading nook. Build in the master bedroom. Plus sitting area on other side of bedroom.:  I have a confession to make.  I am addicted to books. I realized it when my bookshelf took a turn for the worse.  Too many books found their way on the shelves and the weight caused it to wobble and lean.  Eventually it’s going to collapse.  I haven’t replaced it yet so it’s still leaning.  I took some books off  the shelves and laid them down gently instead of standing them up tall.  It helps but it’s not good enough to stop it from leaning. The back particle board has come apart from the frame so there’s no support from behind.  It looks like a bookshelf but it’s not acting like one.  It has become defective. I know it’s still a bookshelf but the books aren’t being supported the right way.  It reminds me of my life ‘s bookmarks.  Sometime things get wobbly on the job or at home, I start to lean and sometimes I really feel like I could collapse.  The weight of dealing with everyday life, work, finances and family gets heavy. Sometimes I look like I’m living on pitch and doing ok but I’m not. I’m just living and leaning, wobbling and shifting.  One thing I’ve learned, when I’m feeling as if I’m about to collapse is God is my support.  My bookshelf taught me that one day.  I realized God has my back covered and he won’t let me fall off the shelf.  I can gently stack my burdens, problems and fears and lay them down before God.  I am renewed and refreshed by reading my Bible, taking time out for prayer and meditation so that I can stand up again.

Psalm 31: 1 (ESV) In you, O Lord do I take refuge; let me never be put to shame; in your righteousness deliver me!

Psalm 119:116-117 (ESV) Uphold me according to your promise that I may live, and let me not be put to shame in my hope!  Hold me up, that I may be safe and have regard for your statutes continually.