The Dry Bones Live

The hand of the LORD came upon me and brought me out in the Spirit of the LORD,and set me down in the midst of the valley; and it was full of bones. 2 Then He caused me to pass by them all around, and behold, there were very many in the open valley; and indeed they were very dry. 3 And He said to me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”

So I answered, “O Lord GOD,You know.”

4 Again He said to me, “Prophesy to these bones, and say to them, ‘O dry bones, hear the word of the LORD! 5 Thus says the Lord GOD to these bones: “Surely I will cause breath to enter into you, and you shall live. 6 I will put sinews on you and bring flesh upon you, cover you with skin and put breath in you; and you shall live. Then you shall know that I am the LORD.”’”

7 So I prophesied as I was commanded; and as I prophesied, there was a noise, and suddenly a rattling; and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8 Indeed, as I looked, the sinews and the flesh came upon them, and the skin covered them over; but there was no breath in them.

9 Also He said to me, “Prophesy to the breath, prophesy, son of man, and say to the breath, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “Come from the four winds, O breath, and breathe on these slain, that they may live.”’” 10 So I prophesied as He commanded me, and breath came into them, and they lived, and stood upon their feet, an exceedingly great army.

11 Then He said to me, “Son of man, these bones are the whole house of Israel. They indeed say, ‘Our bones are dry, our hope is lost, and we ourselves are cut off!’ 12 Therefore prophesy and say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord GOD: “Behold, O My people, I will open your graves and cause you to come up from your graves, and bring you into the land of Israel. 13 Then you shall know that I am the LORD, when I have opened your graves, O My people, and brought you up from your graves. 14 I will put My Spirit in you, and you shall live, and I will place you in your own land. Then you shall know that I, the LORD,have spoken it and performed it,” says the LORD.’”

Ezekiel 38

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Sing to Him, Sing Praise to Him!

Give thanks to the LORD, call on his name; make known among the nations what he has done. Sing to him, sing praise to him; tell of all his wonderful acts. Glory in his holy name; let the hearts of those who seek the LORD rejoice. Look to the LORD and his strength; seek his face always. Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced, O descendants of Israel his servant, O sons of Jacob, his chosen ones.

1 Chronicles 16:8-13

The glory of the whole earth belongs to God, the Creator, Lord, and Savior. All my talents and successes and happiness and are due to Him who blesses me and strengthens me. Amen!

Work

“[ Work] is, or should be, the full expression of the worker’s faculties, the thing in which he finds spiritual, mental and bodily satisfaction, and the medium in which he offers himself to God.”

-Dorothy Lee Sayers

Praise and thanks to God for blessing me with the skills and abilities, passion, and opportunities to do the work that I love. For your glory, Lord!

Success

“success\\suk-ses\\n 1: the attainment of wealth and favor.” The world generally defines success and prosperity in terms of money. Is God’s definition different? You bet it is. According to God, Hezekiah prospered. It had nothing to do with money and everything to do with his heart. Hezekiah wanted to faithfully honor God inall things. He sought God and served him wholeheartedly. “And so he prospered.” Do you define success by the clothes you wear, the car you drive and the balance in your bank account? Maybe it’s time you start defining it by the state of your heart.

NIV True Identity: The Bible for Women: Becoming Who You Are in Christ

Set The Lord Before Me

”I have set the LORD always before me; because he is at my right hand, I shall not be shaken. Therefore my heart is glad, and my whole being rejoices; my flesh also dwells secure.” (Psalms 16:8-9)

New Heavens and a New Earth!

Isaiah 65:17-25 NIV

See, I will create
new heavens and a new earth.
The former things will not be remembered,
nor will they come to mind. But be glad and rejoice forever
in what I will create,
for I will create Jerusalem to be a delight
and its people a joy. I will rejoice over Jerusalem
and take delight in my people;
the sound of weeping and of crying
will be heard in it no more. “Never again will there be in it
an infant who lives but a few days,
or an old man who does not live out his years;
the one who dies at a hundred
will be thought a mere child;
the one who fails to reach a hundred
will be considered accursed. They will build houses and dwell in them;
they will plant vineyards and eat their fruit. No longer will they build houses and others live in them,
or plant and others eat.
For as the days of a tree,
so will be the days of my people;
my chosen ones will long enjoy
the work of their hands. They will not labor in vain,
nor will they bear children doomed to misfortune;
for they will be a people blessed by the Lord ,
they and their descendants with them. Before they call I will answer;
while they are still speaking I will hear. The wolf and the lamb will feed together,
and the lion will eat straw like the ox,
and dust will be the serpent’s food.
They will neither harm nor destroy
on all my holy mountain,”
says the Lord.

My Savior

Listen to the LORD who created you:
The one who formed you says,
“Do not be afraid, for I have ransomed you.
I have called you by name; you are mine.
When you go through deep waters,
I will be with you.
When you go through rivers of difficulty,
you will not drown.
When you walk through the fire of oppression,
you will not be burned up;
the flames will not consume you. For I am the LORD, your God,
the Holy One of Israel, your Savior.

(Isaiah 43:1-3)

I love the LORD because he hears my voice and my prayer for mercy. Because he bends down to listen, I will pray as long as I have breath! Death wrapped its ropes around me; the terrors of the grave overtook me. I saw only trouble and sorrow. Then I called on the name of the LORD: “Please, LORD,save me!” How kind the LORD is! How good he is! So merciful, this God of ours! The LORD protects those of childlike faith; I was facing death, and he saved me. Let my soul be at rest again, for the LORD has been good to me. He has saved me from death, my eyes from tears, my feet from stumbling. And so I walk in the LORD’s presence as I live here on earth! I believed in you, so I said, “I am deeply troubled, LORD.” In my anxiety I cried out to you, “These people are all liars!” What can I offer the LORD for all he has done for me? I will lift up the cup of salvation and praise the LORD’s name for saving me. I will keep my promises to the LORD in the presence of all his people.

The LORD cares deeply when his loved ones die. O LORD, I am your servant; yes, I am your servant, born into your household; you have freed me from my chains. I will offer you a sacrifice of thanksgiving and call on the name of the LORD. I will fulfill my vows to the LORD  in the presence of all his people—in the house of the LORD in the heart of Jerusalem.

Praise the LORD!
(Psalm 116)

Praise the LORD, all you nations.
Praise him, all you people of the earth.
For he loves us with unfailing love;
the LORD’s faithfulness endures forever.

Praise the LORD!
(Psalm 117)

Oh Lord my God, how great you are!

O LORD my God, how great you are!
You are robed with honor and majesty.
You are dressed in a robe of light.
You stretch out the starry curtain of the heavens;
you lay out the rafters of your home in the rain clouds.
You make the clouds your chariot;
you ride upon the wings of the wind.
The winds are your messengers;
flames of fire are your servants.

Psalm 104: 1-4

God Finishes What He Starts

6 God began to do a good work in you. And I am sure that he will keep on doing it until he has finished it. He will keep on until the day Jesus Christ comes again.

(Philippians 1 : 6 – WE)

Fairest Lord Jesus

Fairest Lord Jesus, Ruler of all nature,
O Thou of God and man the Son,
Thee will I cherish, Thee will I honor,
Thou, my soul’s glory, joy and crown.

Fair are the meadows, fairer still the woodlands,
Robed in the blooming garb of spring;
Jesus is fairer, Jesus is purer,
Who makes the woeful heart to sing.

Fair is the sunshine, fairer still the moonlight,
And all the twinkling starry host;
Jesus shines brighter, Jesus shines purer
Than all the angels heaven can boast.

All fairest beauty, heavenly and earthly,
Wondrously, Jesus, is found in Thee;
None can be nearer, fairer or dearer,
Than Thou, my Savior, art to me.

Beautiful Savior! Lord of all the nations!
Son of God and Son of Man!
Glory and honor, praise, adoration,
Now and forever more be Thine!

-Munster Gesengruch, 1677,
Translated by Joseph August Seiss

Guard Your Heart

Guard your heart above all else,
for it determines the course of your life.

Proverbs 4:23

Shine Like The Noonday Sun

3 Trust in the LORD and do good.
Then you will live safely in the land and prosper.
4 Take delight in the LORD,
and he will give you your heart’s desires.
5 Commit everything you do to the LORD.
Trust him, and he will help you.
6 He will make your innocence radiate like the dawn,
And the justice of your cause will shine like the noonday sun.
28 Trust him, and he will help you. For the LORD loves justice,
and he will never abandon the godly.
29 He will keep them safe forever.

Psalm 37

Hope Deferred

Hope deferred makes the heart sick but a dream fulfilled is a tree of life.

Proverbs 13:12

The Mystery Of Faith

Each spring gardens across the country come to life with color and fragrance. From the stark cold of winter’s rest the longer, warmer days of spring bid the earth to awaken. The earth’s seasonal changes are mysterious and are a miracle beyond understanding to behold.

Likewise, God came to earth as a human, his birth announced by angels. He grew to be a man, a teacher, and a friend to all. He was crucified, died, placed into a tomb, and then arose resurrected into new life. This I believe. What God went through to reach us is a mystery to many. How can I explain my faith and my beliefs to others? How do I begin to convey what I feel deep in my heart?

The wind sets things into motion but I cannot see it. I can only see the effect it has on that which it touches. Though I can’t hold it in my hands, I can hold my hands out and feel it’s power. I cannot touch my Lord any more than I can hold the wind but I am a witness to how Jesus can change people and alter circumstances. The mystery of the Christian faith is great, but I don’t have to understand it to prove it. I don’t need to see it or be able to touch it because I already feel it and simply know it’s true.

-Anna Seden

A Prayer for Spiritual Revival

Disturb us, Lord, to dare more boldly
To venture on wider seas where storms will show your mastery;
Where losing sight of land, we shall find the stars.
We ask You to push back the horizons of our hopes;
And to push into the future in strength, courage, hope, and love.
Because we have dreamed too little,
When we arrived safely because we sailed too close to the shore.
Disturb us, Lord, when with the abundance of things we possess
We have lost our thirst for the waters of life;
Having fallen in love with life, we have ceased to dream of eternity
And in our efforts to build a new earth,
We have allowed our vision of the new Heaven to dim.
Amen.

Sir Francis Drake
(1540 – 1596)

I Am The True Vine

I am the true vine, and my Father is the gardener. He cuts off every branch in me that bears no fruit, while every branch that does bear fruit he prunes so that it will be even more fruitful. You are already clean because of the word I have spoken to you. Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Neither can you bear fruit unless you remain in me. I am the vine; you are the branches. If you remain in me and I in you, you will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing. If you do not remain in me, you are like a branch that is thrown away and withers; such branches are picked up, thrown into the fire and burned. If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.

John 15: 1-8 NIV

Living by man’s way and God’s Way

Ephesians 4:17-24 (NIV) So I tell you this, and insist on it in the Lord, that you must no longer live as the Gentiles do, in the futility of their thinking. They are darkened in their understanding and separated from the life of God because of ignorance that is in them due to the hardening of their hearts. Having lost all sensitivity, they have given themselves over to sensuality so as to indulge in every kind of impurity, with a continual lust for more. You, however, did not come to know Christ that way. Surely you heard of him and were taught in him in accordance with the truth that is in Jesus. You were taught, with regard to your former way of life, to put off the old self, which is being corrupted by its deceitful desires; to be made new in the attitude of your minds; and to put on the new self, created to be like God in true righteousness and holiness.

Ephesians 2:1-3 (Phi) You were spiritually dead through your sins and failures, all the time you followed this world’s ideas of living, and obeyed the evil ruler of the spiritual realm, who is indeed fully operative today in those who disobey God. We all lived like that in the past, and followed the desires and imaginings of our lower natures, being, in fact, under the wrath of God by nature, like everyone else.

Galatians 5:16 (NIV) So I say, live by the Spirit, and you will not gratify the desires of the sinful nature.

I died with Jesus to the power of sin

1 What shall we say then? Shall we keep on doing wrong things so that God will be more kind to us?
2 No, surely not! We died to our wrong ways and no longer live in them.
3 All of us have been baptised in water. This means we are joined to Christ Jesus. We were baptised into his death. Do you know that?
4 We were buried when he was buried because we were baptised into his death. Christ was raised from death by the wonderful power of the Father. So we also must live a new life.
5 Have we shared with Christ and died as he died? Then we shall share with him by rising from death as he arose.
6 We know this is true. The old person we used to be was nailed to the cross with him, so that our bodies which do wrong things would die. Then we will no longer be like slaves to the wrong things we used to do.

(Romans 6 : 1-6 – WE)

Show Me Your Ways

1 In you, LORD my God, I put my trust.

2 I trust in you; do not let me be put to shame, nor let my enemies triumph over me.
3 No one who hopes in you will ever be put to shame, but shame will come on those who are treacherous without cause.

4 Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths.
5 Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.
6 Remember, LORD, your great mercy and love, for they are from of old.
7 Do not remember the sins of my youth and my rebellious ways; according to your love remember me, for you, LORD, are good.

8 Good and upright is the LORD; therefore he instructs sinners in his ways.
9 He guides the humble in what is right and teaches them his way.
10 All the ways of the LORD are loving and faithful toward those who keep the demands of his covenant.
11 For the sake of your name, LORD, forgive my iniquity, though it is great.

12 Who, then, are those who fear the LORD? He will instruct them in the ways they should choose.
13 They will spend their days in prosperity, and their descendants will inherit the land.
14 The LORD confides in those who fear him; he makes his covenant known to them.
15 My eyes are ever on the LORD, for only he will release my feet from the snare.

16 Turn to me and be gracious to me, for I am lonely and afflicted.
17 Relieve the troubles of my heart and free me from my anguish.
18 Look on my affliction and my distress and take away all my sins. 19 See how numerous are my enemies and how fiercely they hate me!

20 Guard my life and rescue me; do not let me be put to shame, for I take refuge in you.
21 May integrity and uprightness protect me, because my hope, LORD, is in you.

22 Deliver Israel, O God, from all their troubles!

(Psalm 25 – NIV)

The Beatitudes

2 And he opened his mouth and taught them, saying:
3 ‘Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
4 ‘Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.
5 ‘Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.
6 ‘Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.
7 ‘Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.
8 ‘Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.
9 ‘Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.
10 ‘Blessed are those who are persecuted for righteousness’ sake, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.
11 ‘Blessed are you when others revile you and persecute you and utter all kinds of evil against you falsely on my account.
12 Rejoice and be glad, for your reward is great in heaven, for so they persecuted the prophets who were before you.

(Matthew 5 : 2 – 12 – ESV)

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