Tag Archive | Buddy

Light Of The World, John 8:12

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I’m always a bit sad when Christmas Season is over and the lights start going out in our neighborhood. The holiday lights add so much bright cheer and color to the darkness of winter. I wish that we had a holiday in January called “Sparkle Day” where we’d decorate our houses and shirts with sparkling, glowing snowflakes. The fake kind, not the real kind. Thank goodness we haven’t had any snow in the SE Seattle area yet this winter: Because of our very hilly terrain, it can be very frightening to drive on icy streets.

Jesus said,

“I am the light of the world; he who follows Me will not walk in the darkness, but will have the Light of Life.”–John 8:12

Often people think of Jesus as lighting up the world by showing us the proper path to walk, how to live: delivering us from the consequences of sin as we turn our lives about and start living in ways that are beneficial.

But, I also believe and have discovered that…

The Spirit of Jesus Christ, also known as the Holy Spirit, lights up the souls of believers. He lifts the darkness of depression and gloom in our spirits and adds lightness to our souls. God promises to inhabit the praises of His people. When you believe in Christ and feel gloomy or the world gets you down, just start singing praises to God. Or pull out a Bible and start reciting the Psalms back to Him. You will feel an actual lift in your spirit as joy begins to dissipate the soggy wet rag of sadness.

When Apostle Peter stepped out of the boat in the middle of a stormy lake to join Jesus, he was able to walk on the water as long as He kept His eyes on the Lord. When he started looking at the angry, threatening waves, he began to sink.

Where we focus our attention really affects our attitude. Also, I believe that praising God chases away evil, as the devil cannot tolerate hearing God praised, desiring all praise and attention and devotion for himself.

Keep your eyes on Jesus this year and He will help keep you in good spirits, whatever 2019 may bring.

May 2019 bring blessing and and many more good days than bad, health and friendship and love.

Happy New Year!

Love from Dawn and Buddy

PS> I am referring to non-medical depression or melancholy.

***

Without a personal relationship with God through Jesus Christ, the Holy Spirit is not present to dissipate the darkness in your soul. Please consider accepting Jesus into your heart by faith and letting His Spirit lead and guide your life. It’ll be the best New Year’s gift you could give yourself. The God of the Bible is real and lives and is knocking on the door of your heart, waiting for you to give Him permission to enter in (Revelation 3:20). The atheists are wrong and deceived.

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to him…”–Jesus

 

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Peace On Earth? Where? Matthew 10:34-36

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Buddy wasn’t “Ho Ho Ho-ing” when I pinned the Christmas bow on top of his head. But, out of love for me, he stood still and let me take his picture even though he hates the camera.

Christians joyfully celebrate the birth of Jesus Christ, whose virgin birth was prophesied 700 years previously by the prophet Isaiah: “For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace. There will be no end to the increase of His government or of peace.”–Isaiah 9:6-7

“Behind, a virgin will be with child and bear a son, and she will call His name Immanuel,”–Isaiah 7:14

“Which translated means, ‘God with us.'”–Matthew 1:23

Yet, we look around the world and there is no peace. In fact, Jesus even told His disciples that:

“When you hear of wars and disturbances, do not be terrified…Nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom, and there will be great earthquakes, and in various places plagues and famines; and there will be terrors and great signs from heaven. But before all these things, they will lay their hands on you and will persecute you, delivering you to the synagogues and prisons, bringing you before kings and governors for My name’s sake…you will be betrayed by parents and brothers and relatives and friends, and they will put some of you to death, and you will be hated by all because of My name.”–Jesus, Luke 21:9-12, 16-17

And,

“Do not think that I came to bring peace on the earth; I did not come to bring peace, but a sword. For I came to set a man against his father, and a daughter against her mother, and a daughter-in-law against her mother-in-law; and a man’s enemies will be the members of his household.”–Jesus, Matthew 10:34-36

Since Jesus promised that there would be wars and enmity even with a family, what peace are we celebrating on Christmas with the birth of Christ, the Messiah?

We’re celebrating the coming of PEACE WITH GOD HIMSELF.

Jesus came to the earth to die for our sins. Why? Because God’s wrath abides on humankind for our ungodly deeds. God is perfectly holy and must punish evil. But He sent Jesus to take the punishment instead, so that we don’t have to suffer the penalty for God’s anger against our sin.

“For He rescued us from the domain of darkness and transferred us to the kingdom of His beloved Son, in whom we have redemption, the FORGIVENESS of sins. He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn of all creation…and through Him to RECONCILE all things to Himself, having made PEACE through the blood of His Cross; through Him…And although you were formerly alienated and hostile in mind, engaged in evil deeds, yet He has now RECONCILED you in His fleshly body through death in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach…” Apostle Paul, Colossians 1: 13-15, 20-22 (Emphasis mine in all caps.)

Forgiveness is a free gift of love from God, bought with the blood of Jesus. It is why He came: He loves us so much that He doesn’t want to be alienated from any of us. He became flesh and dwelt amongst us (John 1:1, Matthew 1:23) and suffered God’s wrath on the Cross for our sins.

We don’t earn it by being good, because it’s impossible to meet God’s standard of entering Heaven–perfection. (Matthew 5:48)

The only thing a person needs to do to be at peace with God is the most difficult thing for anyone to do: to humble oneself, to admit I am sinful and need God’s guidance and direction in my life–that He is Lord and not myself. Adam and Eve rejected His Lordship, so that their descendants are all born spiritually dead and alienated from God. It is up to us to individually accept Him.

Will you do that today? Give yourself the very best and merriest Christmas gift of all?

A relationship with God?

Peace and Joy in the heart, freedom from shame and guilt? A change in direction from Hell to Heaven?

Merry Christmas and love from Dawn and Buddy

***

If you’re ready, please pray this prayer:

Lord, I realize that I fall short of your perfect standard of holiness. I cannot earn salvation nor a right standing with you. By faith I accept that Jesus died for my sins and ask that the Holy Spirit enter into my life and direct me. I accept that Jesus is God in the Flesh, Immanuel, and ask You to be the Lord of my life. Thank you for hearing my prayer. In Jesus’ name, amen.

If you prayed this prayer, you are born-again. Please obtain a Bible to learn more about God and His ways, and a Bible-based church where God’s grace is preached.

I personally prefer the New American Standard version (NASB), but there are many good translations.

God bless you. Love, Dawn

 

Lamest Sermon Ever! Jonah 3:1-10

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I can’t say that I’m always eager to take Buddy for a walk when I return home from work. He’s always so excited to see me, however, that I “suck it up” for his sake and we trudge out into the rain and/or cold weather to please him.

Probably everyone knows the spectacular aspect of Jonah’s story, that he was swallowed by a whale. What the average person doesn’t know is why. God told Jonah to travel to Nineveh, which was in ancient Assyria, and preach that they repent of their sins or face God’s judgment. Jonah, however, hated the Ninevites because they were cruel and wicked people: He wanted God to judge and destroy them.

However, it seems that Jonah didn’t know God too well. He takes a ship to Tarshish in the opposite direction of Nineveh, to escape “from the presence of God” (Jonah 1:3). Seems he didn’t know God was omnipresent, i.e. everywhere. God tosses the ship around in a violent storm because of Jonah’s disobedience, so the crewmen reluctantly throw Jonah overboard. Here’s the big irony: The pagans did everything they could to save Jonah’s life as they didn’t want to toss him overboard to his death. When the sea suddenly calmed when Jonah hit the water, the seamen repented and acknowledged God as their savior from the storm. These pagans had more compassion on Jonah, even though he caused them great distress, than Jonah, one of God’s representatives, had on the Ninevites.

A whale swallows Jonah, saving him from drowning. After he finally repents of his disobedience after three days and nights in its belly (this was one stubborn dude), the whale vomits him up onto dry land. God then commands Jonah once again to go preach to the Ninevites to repent of their sin, “120,000 persons (Jonah 4:11).” Jonah obeys, but with a sullen attitude. He walks an entire day through Nineveh, proclaiming this greatest of all sermons:

“Yet forty days and Nineveh will be overthrown.”–Jonah 3:3

That’s it. Charles Spurgeon or Martin Luther probably produced greater sermons during their sneezes.

Yet the King orders everyone to fast and put on sackcloth as a sign of repentance–even the animals were clothed with sackcloth:

“When the word reached the king of Nineveh, he arose from his throne, laid aside his robe from him, covered himself with sackcloth and sat on the ashes. He issued a proclamation and it said, ‘In Nineveh by the decree of the king and his nobles: Do not let man, beast, herd or flock taste a thing. Do not let them eat or drink water. But both man and beast must be covered with sackcloth; and let men call on God earnestly that each may turn from his wicked way and from the violence which is in his hands. Who knows, God may turn and relent and withdraw His burning anger so that we will not perish.’

And when God saw their deeds, that they turned from their wicked way, then God relented concerning the calamity which He had declared He would bring upon them. And He did not do it.”–Jonah 3:6-10

God loved the Ninevites, despite their wickedness, and didn’t want to destroy them. He wanted to give them a chance to repent.

Jonah was very angry that the city repented, but that’s another point for later. What I want to emphasize now is that Jesus encourages us to pray and promises to answer our prayers. “And all things you ask in prayer, believing, you will receive. (Matthew 21:22)” But we often think that we aren’t eloquent or fervent enough to be heard, or that we aren’t important enough to warrant God’s notice or don’t know how to spin out long-winded prayers that convince God to respond. We might read the Psalms of King David and think, “I fall far short. I sound really lame compared to him.”

Our prayers may be puny or weak–or maybe just two heartfelt words, “Help, Jesus!” What we just need to do is only this: pray to the One True and Living God.

“…whatever you ask of the FATHER in MY NAME HE may give to you (John10:16b)”. Because “All authority has been given to ME (Jesus) in heaven and on earth (Mark 28:18)”. (CAPS mine for emphasis.)

The Ninevites repented because God’s power was already at work in their hearts; it was His desire to see them repent or He wouldn’t have bothered to send Jonah. He could’ve just zapped them all with fire and brimstone, like Sodom and Gomorrah, and gotten it over with.

I truly believe that Jesus was not able to do “many miracles there (Nazareth) because of their unbelief (Matthew 13:58)” as the people in His hometown of Nazareth didn’t believe that He was the Lord God in the flesh, Immanuel, having lived with him since his childhood, so they didn’t ask. They didn’t realize that He was the Incarnation that the prophet Isaiah prophesied about, even though Jesus had declared Himself to be the fulfillment of Isaiah’s prophecies regarding the coming Messiah in the synagogue of Nazareth (Luke 4:17-21) at the beginning of His ministry.

About 700 years before Christ’s birth in Bethlehem, Isaiah prophesied that God would become flesh and dwell amongst us (Matthew 1:23):

“For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us; And the government will rest on His shoulders; And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God, Eternal Father, Prince of Peace…”–Isaiah 9:6

So the point I’m trying to make is: Pray and trust God to work. The power is not in how eloquent or long or interesting your prayers are; the power flows from The Lord Of Hosts (Lord of Angel Armies) Who answers your prayers. And proclaim Christ as Lord, trusting not in your power and effort but in God’s power that works in the hearts of people.

“God rules over the nations.”–Psalm 47:8

“The earth is the Lord’s, and all it contains; The world, and those who dwell in it.”–Psalm 24:1

“The Lord is King forever and ever; Nations have perished from His land. O Lord, You have heard the desire of the humble; You will strengthen their heart, You will incline Your ear…” Psalm 10:16-17

Pray your feeble prayers and trust an all powerful, loving God to answer.

***

It’s my prayer that this blog blesses you. If I was relying upon my eloquence and not the hope that God is using my words, I’d despair because I often feel like I’m falling short. God wants us to honor Him, not honor ourselves. Not because He’s arrogant but because Dawn cannot save your soul; only He can redeem you. If your prayers aren’t being answered, are you sure that you’re praying to the true and living God as depicted in the Bible? Many people deny the Deity of Christ, but He clearly instructs us to pray to the Father in His name. Would you please consider who your faith is in: yourself or Jesus, the loving Savior? The One Who died for your sins so that you don’t have to pay for them yourself on Judgment Day. Your efforts, your works–or His work?

God bless you. Dawn and Buddy

 

Wagging Tail, 1 Thessalonians 5:16

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I intended to write on another topic tonight, but when I was in the bathroom this morning, Buddy joyously greeted me with a wagging tail because I had returned from attending church. He was happy just to see me and be in my company. And it made me feel good because my dog cares about me and wants me around.

It got me thinking, “Am I happy just be in God’s company? Am I rejoicing because I’m  a child of God and know that, through my relationship with Jesus Christ, I will be “rescued from the wrath to come” (1 Thessalonians 1:10)? Am I enjoying God for Who He is and not just what He can give me and those I pray for? Or do in this world?

Jude says that one day I will stand before Him in the Afterlife, “blameless with great joy. (Jude 1:24).” Apostle Paul also echoes this in Colossians 1:22, “He has now reconciled you in His fleshly body through death, in order to present you before Him holy and blameless and beyond reproach.”

Because Jesus died for my sin, I don’t have to fear approaching God. He now sees me clothed in the “righteousness of Christ” and “as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us (Psalm 103: 12).” Jesus encouraged prayer and making requests of God. To see Him as our Father, our encourager and our comforter. King David often poured his heart out to God to find comfort and strength in his suffering and travails, as written down in the Psalms. Apostle John frequently emphasized in his letters that God is love and loves us: “See how great a love the Father has bestowed on us, that we would be called children of God (1 John 3:1).”

Apostle Peter also encouraged us to open our hearts in prayer to God, “casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you (1 Peter 5:7).”

After the walls of Jerusalem were rebuilt, the Jewish people wept because of their nation’s sin which had caused God to allow the destruction of their city by the Babylonians in 586 BC. But God admonished them, telling them to rejoice instead. “Do not be grieved, for the joy of the Lord is your strength.”–Nehemiah 8:10

I know Psalm 100 by heart. But it’s time that I try harder to apply, with God’s guidance, this great Psalm’s encouragement to enjoy God:

“Shout joyfully to the Lord, all the earth. Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before Him with joyful singing…Enter His gates with thanksgiving and His courts with praise. Give thanks to Him, bless His name. For the Lord is good; His lovingkindness is everlasting and His faithfulness to all generations.”

Because God is good and loves me, I can enjoy His presence: through prayer and giving thanks, rejoicing in my blessings, in this beautiful world and family and friends and living in a wonderful country. Instead of focusing on the hurt and trouble and evil in the world.

Or as the shorter version of the Westminster Catechism teaches:

“Man’s chief end is to glorify God and to enjoy him forever.”

Have a blessed week.

***

God loves you and sent Jesus to die for your sins. You can become a child of God and enjoy His presence by admitting you are a sinner. Why must you do that? Because, when Adam and Eve ate the apple, they were telling God that they didn’t need His advice on how to live, they were going to decide it for themselves. As a result of rejecting Him, God’s Holy Spirit left the human race and so every generation has been born separated from God since. When you ask God to forgive your sin, you’re admitting to Him that you don’t have all the answers and want His guidance and presence in your life, that you want Him to be your great Shepherd and leader. Please ask Him to forgive your sins and ask Him to fill you with the Holy Spirit, to guide your through His Word, the Bible, on how to live this life. He’s waiting for your invitation to let Him enter into your life and heart.

“Behold, I stand at the door and knock; if anyone hears My voice and opens the door, I will come in to Him, and will dine with him, and he with Me.”–Revelation 3:20

Please open your heart to Him for “God is love” (1 John 4:16).

 

 

 

Why Adam and Eve Still Matter, Genesis 3:1

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Sometimes Buddy is reluctant to obey when I call him into the house. He loves snooping around the backyard, investigating whether some doggoned possum, cat, mouse or rat has been intruding upon his territory. But, when I’m insistent, he listens to me and comes through the back door. I make sure that I praise him profusely to encourage him to continue to obey me. He obeys me because he loves and trusts me.

Why is Adam and Eve still relevant today?

The main point of the story about the Temptation and Fall of Humanity when Adam and Eve disobeyed God and ate the fruit from the Tree of the Knowledge of Good and Evil is: They stopped trusting God and wanted to determine for themselves what was right and wrong, instead of listening to what the God of Love (1 John 4:16) defined what was right and wrong.

Satan began his temptation with the statement, “Indeed, has God said,…?”–Genesis 3:1

Lucifer tempted Adam and Eve to distrust that God was truthful and knew what was best for them, that He was a good God Who should be obeyed.

I think our society is in chaos right now because too many people no longer believe that the Bible is the standard for defining what is right and wrong. They have become their own gods, defining morality for themselves.

“Thou shalt not bear false witness”  —Indeed, has God said? (Exodus 20:16)

“You should not slander.”–Indeed, has God said? (Leviticus 19:16)

“You shall not hate your fellow countryman in your heart;”–Indeed, has God said? (Leviticus 19:17)

Justice is to be impartial, not favoring the poor nor deferring to the great.–Indeed, has God said? (Leviticus 19:15)

Humankind, male and female, are made by God in His image.–Indeed, has God said? (Genesis 1:27)

“Every careless word that people speak, they shall give an accounting for it in the day of judgment.”–Indeed, has God said? (Jesus, Matthew 12:36)

There will be a great Judgment of everyone after death, “everyone was judged according to their deeds.”–Indeed, has God said? (Revelation 20:12-16)

Jesus is God in the flesh.–Indeed, has God said? (Matthew 1:23)

Judgment can be escaped through faith in Jesus Christ, which is not earned, but a gift from God.–INDEED, HAS GOD SAID? Satan screams. (Ephesians 2:8-9)

Jesus took upon Himself the punishment for our sins on the Cross and was resurrected to give us eternal life.–INDEED, HAS GOD SAID??? (John 3:16)

God is love. We don’t need to be afraid of Him.–I HATE GOD!! Satan screams. (Luke 1:74)

God bless you from Dawn and Buddy

***

Truly, my life was transformed after I gave my heart to Jesus March 7th, 1989. I’m far from perfect, but when I obey what is right as defined in the Bible, the greatest book of Wisdom ever written, rather than follow my selfish desires, my life’s path is less rocky than it would be otherwise. Please consider asking Jesus into your life right now, to be your Lord and forgive your sins. Becoming a born-again Christian won’t guarantee you an easy life, but it’s a decision you will never regret making.

 

Unbiblical View Of Nature, Genesis 2:15

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I recently vacationed at Ocean Shores, an ocean beach in Washington State. I was walking Buddy in the back of our hotel when he refused to move. It turned out that the grass was full of some sort of stickle burrs. I carried him back to our room and used a pair of tweezers to pull the thorns out of his paw pads. He didn’t squeal once and remained still while I pulled the thorns out of his paws. What really upset me was that there were no warning signs not to walk your dog on the grass. I subsequently warned every dog owner I saw about the bad lawns.

This is going to be a little controversial but why blog if everything I say is predictably boring?

“Then the Lord God took the man and put him into the garden of Eden to cultivate it and keep it.”–Genesis 2:15

One of the very first jobs God gave Adam and Eve was to tend and care for their natural environment which was perfect. The Fall and separation of humankind from God, the source of life, had not yet occurred. Yet, nature required tending.

Nature was never created, nor intended, to be a HANDS OFF project.

God intended for us to care for the planet. Not to let it “go natural”.

If a perfect environment, an Eden, required maintenance to keep it healthy, why would a fallen world not require EVEN MORE work to keep it functioning properly?

Years ago I heard about a piece of property that a nature conservancy group purchased to let it go natural and untouched. It was “hands off” to humanity. What occurred is that the undergrowth went wild and choked off the plants that the forest needed to keep it healthy. The forest began to die.

In the Seattle area our air has been unhealthy for over two weeks because of the wild fires burning in our state and the air being blown down southward from the wildfires in Canada. Dead wood and debris was allowed to accumulate in our forests to create the perfect massive acreage of kindling for potential fires.

I’ve also heard in the past about how the native Americans used to tend our forests to keep them healthy. They did not consider the forests “Hands Off” territory but ensured that they were well maintained. Sadly, as they were forced into reservations, their maintenance of the forests ended.

My main point is, and will always underline all that I blog about on this site, that every single problem we face can be traced back to a rejection or neglect of some Biblical command or principle.

ALWAYS.

God bless you. Have a wonderful weekend. And please stay safe.

PS. I realize I’ve made some claims about what I’ve heard or read in the past, but I didn’t want to spend a lot of time finding the material to document this blog post for you. I really want to get to bed on time tonight!

Are You Waiting For Something Good to Happen? Psalm 27:13-14

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Buddy was jumping up on me the other night, begging me to take him for a walk.

“Buddy, it’s too hot.  You have to wait. We’ll go later when it cools down a bit.”

Then it suddenly hit me: I’m like Buddy.

Many hundreds of times the past years I’ve cried out to God to answer two particular prayers which seemingly go unanswered. I feel like Buddy in this picture: tied to a post and not able to escape. I want my circumstances to change, to improve, but for some reason God is keeping me “stuck” in place.

When I get frustrated, I try to do three things:

  1. Recall my blessings;
  2. Remind myself of times I didn’t trust God’s timing, forged ahead and regretted it; and
  3. Remind myself of who God is.

The first two don’t need any further explanation. But regarding #3:

I have to remind myself that God is omnipotent, omniscient and omnipresent. He knows the future and I don’t. His plans for me are good (Jeremiah 29:11) and I have to trust that He’s making me wait because I’m either not ready for the blessing at this time or He’s still arranging the circumstances in my favor. (God normally works His will through the natural realm of things and not with a spectacular miracle.)

Additionally, there may be people He wants me to influence or help where I’m at currently. Or the experiences I’m enduring now, or have yet to encounter, will bring glory to Him and help others. It’s not always about me and what I want, but what God wants to do in the lives of others around me, too.

It could also be that I need to grow in the fruit of the Spirit (Galatians 5:22) and the only way for God to encourage me to become a better person is to make me endure some suffering or hardship.

This is one of my favorite verses, which I quote when I feel discouraged and stuck:

“I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living.”–Psalm 27:13

It doesn’t build your faith when everything goes your way. Only when things seemingly go awry or our plans are frustrated or we’re opposed in some manner in reaching our goals do we need to rely on God’s promises detailed in the Bible.

It’s hard to trust when you can’t see an invisible God at work in the background. God knows waiting is really hard.

“Wait for the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.”–Psalm 27:14

God never promised us an easy path in this life (Jesus, John 16:33).

In Psalm 27, the Psalmist David reminds himself why we can wait upon God with confidence:

vs. 1, 5: We don’t need to fear because He’s our light and salvation and our defense. He will light our path and rescue us.

vs. 2-4: Evil people WILL oppose us. But we can be confident that God will cause them to stumble and fall.

vs. 8-9: God promises to answer us when we seek Him.

vs. 10: Even our family may abandon us, but God never will forsake us. (Hebrews 13:5-6)

vs. 12-13: Evil people may rise against us, outnumber us, lie about us, slander us, threaten us, but God will arise to our aid if we are

WILLING TO WAIT.

And I tell you what: Waiting is HARD, HARD, HARD!!!

Eventually, when it cooled down, Buddy got his walkie.

***

Experts claim that memorizing poems is good for you. I decided to memorize some Biblical psalms because it is not only good for my brain, but also my soul. So many times I’ve felt distressed and felt better after reciting a psalm to myself or praying through it aloud to God. Please give it a try. Psalm 100 or 23 are good poems to start with as they are fairly short. But Psalm 27 is also a very good one to memorize too.

God bless you from Dawn and Buddy