A Receptive Heart

Mark 11:23 has always been a verse I turned to, since way back in my 20’s. I had prayed and read that specifically, since I was young I didn’t  understand everything though, I think my heart always did, my head didn’t. I thought He didn’t answer it, maybe that is not what He wanted me to have, or that it was just  too dangerous a place for me to go. And I lived in Atlanta, crime was all around. It meant a move.

Needless to say I was disappointed, heartbroken is more the word when I later learned that principle does work and my words, prayers and faith are all tied to love. What was, I thought, an unanswered prayer turn in spiritual warfare, and while I deceived myself that my pain was about something else entirely, and that I would get it worked out, something else would happen, more spiritual warfare.

I had to rethink and study my faith out, to even walk it out was getting hard. I realized I had a very receptive and expectant heart, and it could easily be hurt. But the Lord stood beside me and strengthened me. ( my heart ) 2 Timothy 4:17. I was glad He did, I have learned over the years that  I can trust Him and not rely own my own self or strength. sometimes I have to make myself not jump into Phillipians 4:13 and try to do all things. I am able to do what He wants me to but I don’t have to do everything I need His rest.

I have to admit some hurt and angst with the Charismatic teaching, a lot of it was just hard and practically impossible but that is the point, He does the impossible. It wasn’t that I didn’t always pray or confess healing, expect from God the things I prayed for, the spiritual warfare was just constant. Faith does work by love and His peace is a gift. If your faith or watching what you say to the point of excess is wearing you to a frazzle and fraying your last nerve, you are not receiving His rest, you are not receiving His peace and likely not healing or answers to prayer.

” Have faith in God. Truly, I say to you, whoever says to this mountain, ‘Be taken up and thrown into the sea,’ and does not doubt in his heart, but believes that what he says will come to pass, it will be done for him. Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours. And whenever you stand praying, forgive, if you have anything against anyone, so that your Father also who is in heaven may forgive you your trespasses.” Mark 11:23-25

You are supposed to believe you receive when you pray. I did. I also started to learn about fear and got into warfare. There is more than simply believing. Let me explain, Jesus had previously cursed a fig tree. The disciples were amazed it had dried up at the root.  Now, there is a backstory to that, In Hebraic study, I discovered that the fig tree had leaves but no fruit, just like a lot of people claiming to know Him. In effect, they still operate under a curse. Jesus’ crucifixion preceded by the agony in the garden broke curses,

When we are saved, He will break them off, though they may be a part of warfare. The woman who followed Him asking for her daughter to be healed was pretending to be a Jew, when she persisted and dropped the act, He healed the daughter. We can’t fake Christianity, He knows hearts, He knows we believe, and He knows when and how to answer. He has perfect timing.

If you read on in the chapter, Jesus is immediately confronted about His authority. Remember, He was a carpenter’s son, so they thought. People will challenge your spiritual authority, the devil will, children will. But we know how to have a receptive heart.

Jesus’ knew what we would face as believers and went through everything as God in human form. He knows how to help us receive, but believe it when you pray. He keeps promised and makes it beautiful at the right time don’t let unbelieving, hard or selfish hearts keep you from His love.

I want to pray for you today to have a teachable spirit, for the Holy Spirit to quicken you as to healing and having prayers answered, to cancel enemy assignments, for angels to be commanded over you and to not only protect you but to help you receive, His grace, peace and love, as you have a receptive heart in Jesus name.

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Jesus, Your Heart Healer


Do you feel you have to make things up to Jesus? Your miserable life before you knew Him or perhaps, even afterward? Does something sort of click in your head like doing penance or flagellation? I think it has in mine and I didn’t really realize it. That is not something Jesus would have you carry on a born again heart. I think we are to keep a repentant one and that true believers are not always sinning but may have some of omission. The Holy Spirit teaches and guides you and you do not want to hurt the one who heals your heart.

I tried to make up for a lot of things, and I just couldn’t do it. I could not change people’s past or their feelings or fix their hurts. Not with words, even though I’m good with them. I always felt that I had an understanding and forgiving heart.  I was still letting old problems hurt my heart. And I thought I could explain things with compassion, and even see different points of view. The enemy has a way of skewing things though, doesn’t he?

The Lord has impressed on me the difference of perception and deception. Jesus perceived things, even thoughts. He impresses us with His Spirit though. Like a magician, the enemy is full of tricks and will throw them at you. There was children’s song I used to sing and it still rings true it goes.

1,23…..the devil’s after me. 4,5,6, he’s always throwing sticks, 7,8,9, he misses every time, hallelujah, hallelujah, amen.

1,23…..the devil’s after me. 4,5,6, he’s always pulling tricks, 7,8,9, he misses every time, hallelujah, hallelujah, amen.

Somehow, I feel like I might got have hit lately though, and maybe it was bricks. You don’t need a piano to fall on your head to know that God’s Word is real and there is a real enemy. We have nothing to prove to anyone or Jesus, He knows if you love Him.

Jesus is not expecting you to pay for His gift of salvation, you could never repay Him. It would not be grace, and He loved us enough to do it and we do not want to take His precious gift lightly. He is enough for us and is not condemning but correcting us. If you, like me, are carrying around something in your heart, roll it over on Him.

I did not even realize some of the angst that was there, the blaming myself, the shame and guilt thinking I was not a good enough example as a Christian, years of evil whispers and accusations hurled by the enemy and the world even other Christians. But Jesus heals broken hearts, doesn’t He?

He expects us to guard it and our words, even what we think. But He knows hearts, he wants them to be both strong and tender, that can get you hurt, but with His Spirit we will learn and to let Him heal all heart wounds. They really can run deep, I still catch myself thinking, ” If I had done or said this or that. ” It would not matter when people don’t agree, see your point or love like you.

I felt I needed to make up for lost time with Jesus. But I haven’t lost any time with Him. Was I always doing what He wanted? Yes and no. He had made a better way. And He was watching over His Word to perform it. Isaiah 55:11. It was never my assignment to make up to Jesus for what He did for me. He did it out of love. I just loved Him and tried to over do.

Lots of parents even expect to be paid back. My mother isn’t one of them, I know what she did for me was out of love and she worked too hard, I fell into that trap. I could not fix other people even following Jesus, no matter how closely. No matter the intimacy with the person or the Lord. Some things they have to talk to Him about, it is their business, even though I always told people I didn’t need to know all about them.

I found the deception of drug users disconcerting. Their lies hurt my family and theirs. I pray for requests still but I always tell people that the person has to want to change, the Lord forces His love on no one, it is a choice. Even the decision not to foster, was hard because I really tried to help with them. The Lord told me it was not a failure.

I prayed for people with back pain because of mine. For babies, because I never had one. Comforted people over losses. I never thought I was trying to be super Christian or a know it all. I never felt I was trying to make up for things I had not done, the sins of omission, but maybe I was. I had to be and Jesus doesn’t expect repayment. He paid a debt He did not owe, one I could not pay or repay. He purchased and redeemed me from hell, and I just so wanted others to know that for themselves, but just because I want better for them, maybe they don’t.

I really taught about healing, and felt awful if someone wasn’t. I was losing my health over helping others, it happens. I want us to take a step back and rethink our walks. I never was doing things for my glory but His, I just was overdoing. We need His rest and His peace, don’t let the enemy trick you out of the joy of helping others, but realize there are choices to make and His ways are higher and better, and what we might see as failure or defeat but He had made a way of escape. He can make a way where there none. And He can heal hearts.

He expects us to do the works He prepared for us, not everything or everyone will be that work. Let Him guide you, and let Him carry you in His rest. His yoke is easy and light not bondage or slavery. You are not a Christian doormat or maid, your answers are yes and no. Maybe, a few no’s are in order. Polite, no’s. Anger is a terrible, it keeps you up nights, even if it is not yours.

And making it up to Jesus, He forgives you for trying to control things out of your control, all He expects is our love. He heals the brokenhearted and binds their wounds. Psalm 147:3 I am doing a little writing and editing on Valentine’s Day, and I am including a piece of artwork from one of my many heart boards on Pinterest, stop by and visit me. Maybe this is how God looks at hearts that heal.

Valerie Elash . Unsplash Check out here great pictures. And others.


Selfish Hearts?


Don’t stop reading after the title. I read quite a few blogs, I like to see family pictures, vacations, and even the nice clothes. I don’t care if you rock in a new outfit, I’ve seen some great colors and boots, but I am concerned that the ease of a phone and the tempation can sometimes outweigh judgement. The vanity, pride and selfishness that sometimes accompanies bad decisions and can sneak up on even good ones.

How much of your life do you want made public, even if you are a public person? All I suggest is to give it some thought and don’t be so quick with a camera.  I love taking pictures, but I don’t have to share everything. Most of the time I might be in T shirts and jeans, anyway. But what is the example we are setting?

Young people can really get caught up in that and parents have to know what is going on with them and what they are sharing. I think screen times should be limited, although I realize the need for them to be doing something while you either cook dinner or work from home, still it deserves another look.

Children can be selfish over toys, electronics or even food. They are so much more adept at computers and even phones than I am. And letting them have too much social media time, takes attention away from the parent child relationship, even husband and wife. We can truly open selfish doors, especially with a little attention. And that is not a bad thing in itself, we all need and deserve love and attention, just how we react to it is what I am saying.

We often put so much emphasis on our lives, what we do, have worked for, and take the focus off the Lord who has blessed us. Are we adding captions, like blessed or God’s Girl, or Be the Beloved. Young girls need that wisdom and instruction.We really need to get children focused on Jesus and not themselves. I know that can be a daunting task when it is a hard thing even adults to overcome.

How do prevent selfish, self absorbed heart without compromising a kind one that gets overworked and leans to people pleasing and not taking care to guard that heart or even let Jesus do it? It will take some rethinking and soul searching won’t it?

I avoided social media for long time. But a Pinterest friend encouraged me to go on FB. I was reluctant, but I am here, And I am writing about the love of Jesus, if people want to read it. I have avoided what I can unless it is important or needs addressing. Jesus has a great way of maturing us.

I only use names if I am given permission. You will see the phrase appearing, not heir real name. I just had to tell some stories to warn people of dangerous schemes of the enemy. Some traps are easier to fall into. There are pits with branches over them, and fall in with a lion. Others may have deady spikes or vipers.

Don’t think for a minute that the snare of the fowler is not at work. Why we need Psalm 91. He is our righteousness because He hung on a cross. Galatians 3:13. But that is what we have to know as a certainty, not giving up ourselves but finding the self that Jesus died for and God created us to be.

With so many wonderful ways to use our imagination and create images with our computers, why not take another look and put Christ out front. He never minds us being in the picture. And whether or not we have picture perfect Pinterest houses or wardrobes, they are picture perfect with Him. He makes it beautiful in His time.

For where you have envy and selfish ambition, there you find disorder and every evil practice. James 3:16

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Merry Hearts


We all know the proverbs about a merry heart being like a medicine and that it has a continual feast. Well, it is true. I know that more than ever, now. And I am sorry to be admitting that so late in my life. I should have known it even through the days of exhaustion and struggle, I think my heart knew it even if my mind wasn’t getting the message.

Everyone has something they think is funny, we used to sing silly songs in daycare like. ” You can’t get to heaven on roller skates. ” And then there is a favorite movie or sitcom, I prefer the older ones. I had a couple of things I would literally gravitate toward and when your favorites don’t make you laugh or smile, you are in trouble. I have had that happen. Maybe you have too but I hope not.

Part of the roller skate song is also, ” ain’t gonna grieve my Lord no more. ” And we can grieve Him, a lack of the joy of His salvation surely pains the Lord who died and told us to ask that our joy may be full. So we don’t want to grieve His Spirit by refusing to be cheered up, or to maintain that merry heart which is like a medicine, and keeps our spirit from breaking and our hearts.

Those deep wounds will need healing even to be cheered up, it will take some reconciliation between mind and heart, and the Holy Spirit to count it all joy, I found it hard to laugh when I was in so much physical pain, mental anguish is another story. There are people who love to torment and cause it, that takes discernment, some people do it out of ignorance, and I have had others hurt me by talking about themselves so negatively, I saw myself that way too or worse. There are some people you will have to deal with, but others you can avoid.

When Jesus was born it was said of Him that He would be a joy and delight. He was also a man of sorrows and acquainted with grief, He above anyone else, understands and has the answers. He knows when you have to laugh to keep from crying, and He has our tears in a bottle. Psalm 56:8 For years I misread the Psalm 51, it is not restoring David’s joy, but the Lord’s joy.

We can all experience natural joy, which to me is happiness, but this is pure joy from the Lord, one of His many spiritual gifts and benefits we are loaded with daily as believers in the giver of abundant life and joy. So if life is getting you down, and even a favorite show or song won’t cheer you up, remember He said to be of good cheer. He overcame the world so we could.

Merry hearts feast on His words, His goodness, and find humor in the mundane, I am always walking with toilet paper or something stuck to my shoe. I have made some funny typos. My Yorkie makes me laugh. Merry hearts continually feast on joy because they have learned not to allow bitterness, brokenness and bad days to bring them to their knees except to pray.

I hope your learn from your mistakes as much as I do. I try to pass along that to save you some trouble. I know we are to encourage each other and build ourselves up in the Lord. And we need to share a laugh along the way, I really do have a good sense of humor although I don’t appreciate everything some consider comedic.

God created joy and He knows funny from frivolous or even cruel and hurtful, we can all laugh at ourselves but not cave to condemnation when He loves us so. Jesus is our joy and He is the healer, so of course He wants us to have merry heart and a continual feast, even if we have to learn to see the humor of life, it is there, and you can get to heaven on roller skates, you won’t roll right by those pearly gates. I don’t want to grieve my Lord, He is my joy and heart, my merry heart.

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Troubled Hearts

Jesus was not a man who minced words. It really pays as a believer, especially, a woman of faith, to listen and walk in obedience. Go back and read how He spoke to people, the gentleness and the firm tone, righteous anger, but under control,  He was very human as well as God and had to control Himself by the Spirit.

Isaiah 53, the basis for all Scripture in a way, and one of my go to chapters on Jesus, tells us He was a man of sorrow and acquainted with grief. They weren’t emotions or spirits that were His friends, He had to look to God. And He had to not let His heart be troubled also.

How in the world did He do that? The same way we do. We trust in God and His promises. We have to rest in the knowledge that He will keep them, even in a better time. We are all too quick to want it now, and I agree that it should not take forever as some people made me think but He does make it beautiful in His time.

Let’s look at our verse.

Peace I leave with you, my peace I give you do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid. John 14:27

His peace is not like the world’s peace at all, it is a gift. Read it in several translations, some are different but it gives you a clear picture. So we are not to have a troubled heart, not a fearful one. Not fear in a bad way but respectful one. Jesus meant it! He told us what it was He had to do Himself in order to keep His peace.

His peace is not worrying.

His peace is not being afraid.

His peace is not overthinking.

His peace is not overdoing it, people pleasing or trying to fix what you have prayed about.

His peace is not trying to control things, especially other people, God gives a free will.

His peace is protection.

His peace is safety.

His peace is a healing place.

His peace is a peace of mind.

His peace keeps joy from being stolen.

I do want you not have a troubled heart, nor does Jesus, and He’s the only way not to and by keeping our hearts and minds on Him, He keeps us in perfect peace. Isaiah 26:3

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A Valentine Heart

Happy Valentines’ Day, everyone. What do you really know about St. Valentine? If you are like me, probably not much. I knew he was a martyr.  So let’s look at St. Valentine and how we ourselves can have a Valentine heart. Actually, there are said to be three or more St. Valentines but I’m going with the main one. Although there are two Valentines, one from Terni, both put to death on February 14th in different years.

St. Valentine lived in ancient Rome, at the time the Roman emperor, Claudius II was building a strong army. And he would not allow soldiers to marry. The Romans were pagans and worshiped many gods, the celebrated Februato Juno and a feast called Lupercalia. They made sacrifices to their gods, and believed flogging women would make them fertile. Instead of a cute card and box of candy, the young girls were given billets to write their name on and they were drawn, they were what we call today friends with benefits the rest of the year. But occasionally they got married.

The Catholic church wanted to change these festivals when Constantine ruled but it was still years after until it changed and Februato Juno was renamed as a Feast for Mary and in 496 Pope Gelasius renamed Lupercalia in honor the martyred St. Valentine. Instead of drawing names young men were allowed to write love notes. Many say the church whitewashed the pagan holidays, I’ll give you my take on it later, So how did the change come about?

Eventually, young men would fall in love, enter St. Valentine, he held mass and married couples in secret so they could still practice their faith in Christ, and not worship all the Roman gods as the emperor demanded. There were believers in spite of the Christians that were martyred, personally, I had to stop reading Foxes’ Book of Martyrs and I really had no interest in all those perverse traditions, but some things you need to know, for these spirits are at work still. The emperor ordered him arrested and killed.

It was also believed that Valentine could have been a physician as well as a bishop he was known as healer, but there was possibly more to that, perhaps he operated in the spiritual gift of healing, I can’t say for certain. Soon Valentine was imprisoned, he became friends with a jailer’s daughter. She may have sat with her father as she was blind, possibly, she could have handed him food or a drink of water.

It was likely she talked to him mostly and he was kind to her even though he was mistreated. Supposedly, he had even fallen in love with her himself one story tells it that way. Though he was about forty three at the time she was perhaps half his age. It is entirely possible that he did lead her to Christ and her sight was restored. Or did someone read is letters to her? I think not.

Still, the Valentine from Umbria, was beaten with clubs, beheaded and buried hurriedly and under the cover of darkness, but sent the girl one last night note, signed your Valentine. There are so many versions that the church stop celebrating him in 1969, but he is still regarded as a saint.

Now, my take, I do like the love story true or not, it is plausible that man with a gift for healing and drawing people to Christ was indeed persecuted and martyred. However, God is not authoring confusion and perhaps that answer lies in heaven. I hope they are together though.

As for all the paganism, it runs through society today, erotic love is fleshly and carnal, and will destroy your life while God’s agape will give life and healing. There are differing opinions about celebrating Valentine’s Day, I think it is fine because you are celebrating true love as a believer, candy and flowers are one thing but do we really give our hearts to the point that St, Valentine did? To the point Jesus did?

As for pagan beliefs and Cupid  shooting love arrows, he  was probably a lot more mischievous than cute driving the erotic passions, I put some up but called them cherubs instead because God uses angels to bring about love. The little Victorian cherubs are a softer representation though they were also interested in spiritualism.

Also Cupid and his bow is compared to Nimrod, the mighty hunter with a bow, Valentine, meaning strong and mighty, Nimrod corrupted astronomy, into astrology, a sort father of false religions. But we have the Lord who is incorruptible so I don’t think he minds a card or cherub.

I pray we can have a Valentine heart, though we may never experience that much sorrow a gruesome death, because Jesus and those who followed Him we can be free. Jesus came to bring the devil to nothing, He alway has and will. He shaped St. Valentine’s heart too.

Laura / Unsplash Adobe Spark

Valentine - preacher - healer - martyr. Saint Valentine is a third century saint commemorated on February 14 (the date of his martyrdom).



Light Hearts

I have a confession. I didn’t know what it really was to be lighthearted. I knew His burden was supposed to be easy and light. I loved Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas, let your heart be light. But so often mine wasn’t. I did have a burden to pray for people and that will lift but there were the pesky cares of the world and just the personalities and bitterness of others that weighed it down.

There is a good reason Jesus says to be of good cheer. He has overcome so we could. And why He said to not let your heart be troubled or afraid. He knows it affects our hearts. Hearts that were broken by the story of the crucifixion and filled with His love, hearts that do their best to love others as He did. These hearts, that love can be very hurt, just like Jesus.

Imagine His poor heart, though all God, He was human. How it must have broken as He wept over Jerusalem, over us, and on the cross. It was breaking in Gethsemane. The enemy wanted Him dead before He could make the sacrifice that would save us, He wanted to grip Him in the grasp of terror.

His sweat became as great drops of blood and fell to the ground breaking Adam’s curse, for those who would believe. He still had the power to stand up and say I AM Jesus, when He was arrested, knocking soldiers back, just as He holds back all that is evil in our lives as we pray.

Even through all that, He carried a cross and so much more for our peace and forgiveness. And His heart was again broken and pierced with water and blood pouring forth. Just like a natural birth, that sacrifice gave us a new birth. A spiritual one if we accept Him as Lord. You must be born again, He told Nicodemus, and I am telling you if don’t know Him. Please do, He is love personified.

For years I tried to identify with Him, I suffered a lot I am certain He did not intend it. Though people may disagree, I don’t believe He died for me to suffer. I believe He died for me to live, and really, not to suffer. Which is why we are to see Him as as risen Lord having overcome so we can.

Jesus’ heart must have been heavy so ours could be light. Joy can make us light hearted and He is our joy, He is our peace. He is the light of the world, and our light should shine because of Him.  His light shines through us and surely we should be light hearted.

That does not mean we can be careless, but more carefree. It does not mean we ignore important things, just the enemy and his deceiving ways, relying on Jesus, not being ignorant of devices that are weighing our hearts down. I like to say I live in the Book of John, it is all about love.

Jesus is light and love, now wonder our hearts should be light.

Scarred Hearts

I don’t know a lot about medical terms, but sometimes I hear about people having trouble with scar tissue after surgery. So even if  problem is corrected, the intrusion into the body and a natural healing process can leave scar tissue. Then it can cause  problems.

Fortunately, God is the healer of all hearts and scars, and brokenness. Physical scars are healed, they may long incisions on the body or slight ones.  I have  one from having the chicken pox and one from a lawn chair folding on my leg, the only surgery I ever had was a tonsillectomy and it hasn’t helped sinus pressure, I still had attacks of bronchitis. We do live in a fallen world.

And though I truly believe that ” no plague will come near your dwelling. ” from Psalm 91, I do believe He protects us from far worse than we know, even if we are not always prayed up or walking in divine health. I don’t believe God gives you sickness  to teach you a lesson, He will allow you to learn and grow from it. John 10:10 reveals God in the New Testament. It is the thief who comes to kill, steal and destroy. But thank God, Jesus came to give life, and life more abundantly.

Like little scars and larger ones, we can carry around a lot more than we know. I knew God would heal me, but I kept having setbacks, the so called little foxes were spoiling things for me, other people’s unbelief and even unkind words for having faith, a lot of things piled on my heart, and I praise Him that I have never needed a heart operation.

It is both the natural ones and physical ones that have scar tissue. And we can carry it around like baggage. And we should not do that. Jesus carried so much on the cross. He does not want us to keep carrying things around that He forgave, and He wants us to forgive, so we will not carry the sins of others around in our heart. He is who we should look to and not the past or the hurts, and I know how difficult that can be, especially, if you are still having to deal with that person.

Scarred hearts can be so for many reasons, I don’t have to name them for you. If you read this you probably already know what you are carrying, whether it is from something that really happened to you leaving you physically or emotionally scarred, or it was something cruel or spiritual warfare. Don’t forget the spiritual scars, even from Christians or ministers, they can be harsh at times. I know I have been harder on people who should know better, but now I just back off and let God deal with some people, I had to let go or keep having a scarred heart.

If you have been healed or delivered of something, let it go and don’t take it back. Praise Him everyday for it, and even before you see a manifestation of it. Don’t keep it on your mind or heart continually and allow scar tissue to build up. It may end up worse that before.

Believe me, scarred hearts can be hard hearts and only a real revelation of God’ love will melt that away. I invite you ask Jesus into your heart, if you are carrying scars of the heart. And if you already know Him, let Him love you well and be free of all your heart scars.

Bless Your Heart

Down south it is not uncommon to hear women say, ” Bless your heart. “, about most anything. But how does God bless our hearts? By changing them when we become believers in Christ and as we grow in grace. Sometimes, He will have to prune the branches a little or even a lot, so we can stay connected to the heart of the vine.

I watched a Jewish program, the messianic teachers, one of whom went to be with the Lord last year, explained blessings in detail, the Numbers blessing was said in Hebrew, actually, it is known as the Aaronic or priestly blessing, but they also blessed people individually, like Jews do their children on  Fridays at Sabbath.

It was something like,

” If you are a teacher, I bless you in the name of Yeshua/ Jesus to be the best teacher you can be. ‘

You can easily substitute a name and profession, or even write them. The Hebrew word for bless is barak, to kneel.

And the same with, doctor, nurse, pastor, parents and whatever you you do, we are to do it heartily as unto the Lord. Colossians 3:23 And you think blessings are just a simple southern saying, not hardly. It is way more than a God bless you over a sneeze or just that casual saying that is really habitual and often not even heartfelt.

In Deuteronomy 28, God sets before us life and death, blessings and curses. He gives us a choice and a free will. While everything may not always be clear cut to us, it really is to God, He works with us every way to bless us but He cannot bless sin, He gives grace but we are not to abuse that.

I know it has been hard for me to bless some people, you know the ones who persecute you and say things. Surely, Jesus did not mean for us to bless them in their persecution and evil doing, but to bless them to  have the opportunity to know His love. Read the Beatitudes in the sermon on the mount, He talks about who is blessed, peacemakers, among others, and some will not want peace, but we are to seek it.

Don’t take blessings lightly, be careful who and what you bless. Jews administered blessing at the Sabbath, they laid hands on the heads of their children, it is usually the father, but a grandfather or uncle can do it. Women can and should be blessing their children. Let’s look at few more blessing verses. And I hope it blesses your heart.

The LORD spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to Aaron and his sons, saying, Thus you shall bless the people of Israel: you shall say to them, The LORD bless you and keep you, the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you the LORD lift up his countenance upon you and give you peace. “So shall they put my name upon the people of Israel, and I will bless them.”  Numbers 6:22-27

May you be blessed by the LORD, the Maker of heaven and earth. Psalm 115:15

Blessed is the one whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Psalm 32:1

I will bless the LORD at all times; his praise shall continually be in my mouth. Psalm 34:1

Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all His benefits. Psalm 103:2 Be sure and keep reading the benefits.

The LORD remembers us and will bless us. Psalm 115:12

Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it. Luke 11:28 Jesus to a woman blessing Mary.

When we bless the cup at the Lord’s Table, aren’t we sharing in the blood of Christ? And when we break the bread, aren’t we sharing in the body of Christ? 1 Corinthians 10:16  Communion

And God is able to bless you abundantly, so that in all things at all times, having all that you need, you will abound in every good work. 2 Corinthians 9:8

There are many more, and we are blessed if we don’t walk in unwise counsel. Be blessed.

This post is dedicated to my aunt on her 80th birthday.

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Heart Shaped

We see them all year, heart shapes, but mostly at Valentine’s Day, though I have a few Christmas ornaments that are. I love the Dove dark truffles, and a lot of candies are heart shaped. There are rings, earring, necklaces, I have one, and all sorts of jewelry.  They still make Valentines and cards, but more people probably send e-mail.

You can buy heart shaped bags or boxes to put gifts in. I have three velvet heart boxes, and a dresser set that is a double heart. For those of you not old enough to know what a dresser set is, it is a box with a brush, and accessories. Mine is from the 1940’s  and has movie star pictures in the top that is why I can date it so closely.

It was a treasured gift from my mother from the antique show. Someone even offered her double what she paid and I have seen them, but not like mine, selling for a few hundred dollars. So while we enjoy our heart gifts and chocolates, and all kinds of heart shapes, we should think about what is shaping ours.

You know you see heart shapes in nature on Pinterest, in flowers. A friend sent me a heart shaped rose. I have seen rocks and leaves and even hearts on pets, in their fur and markings. And I have a heart shaped potato in my freezer. I just couldn’t cook it. Here’s our verse…..

From His dwelling place He gazes on all who inhabit the earth. He shapes the hearts of each; He considers all their works. Psalm 33:14,15

This was one I was not familiar with but I used in Healing Hearts and thought it was a good verse to focus on. Our families and friends shape our hearts and values, our environment, even education. And our religious or spiritual training shapes us as well, but whose opinion do we value most? God’s or man?

We know God told Samuel that He looked at hearts, and here we have that same heart, David writing this that God from His dwelling place, the secret place of the Most High, He gazes on and shapes the hearts of us all. While I do think He give people certain qualities, I think this is more true of believers,

He shapes our hearts from the inside now because Jesus has come into our hearts. He called David a man after His own heart though he lusted after women, sent a man to his death and didn’t always have authority of his children. He was under the law, forgiven, and God forgives and forgets.

David was peaceful and a warrior, poetic, loving, sounds like God minus the sin. Those were days of sacrifice and the Holy Spirit coming on people, both men and women. Now the Holy Spirit is in you as you believe in Jesus, He is in you heart, which is sometime interchangeable with heart and gives spiritual gifts, maybe even heart shaped one.

I have been reading some things I should not really, criticism of ministers who;s teaching has help me. It condemned the teaching as false that the Holy Spirit isn’t always just pointing out sin. I have to agree, He is there to teach and correct not to condemn. Romans 8:1 and even John 3:17 attest to the fact that He is not condemning us.

I had a lot of trouble with that, I was condemning myself, when Jesus didn’t, other Christians did because I didn’t see it their way, and even some ministries. As I grew and learned, I had to deal with this and here is the answer. If our hearts condemn us, God is greater.

Little children, let us love not in word and speech, but in action and truth. This is how we know that we belong to the truth and how we set our hearts at rest in His presence. If our hearts condemn us, God is greater than our hearts, and He knows all things.1 John 3:18,19, 20

Another thing I read that was criticism about repenting, I used to do that all the time and over the same things because I didn’t understand  why things were not working or prayers not answered. I was so busy repenting over already forgiven sins I was missing what God was saying to me.

I am not telling you not to keep that repentant heart or not to confess it to Him, just to know that is under the blood and we are not to make His sacrifice common or profane by not accepting His word on it. He was the once and for all sacrifice, it is forgiven and forgotten in a sea of forgetfulness, it is drowned in the blood of Jesus. God could remember but chooses not to, but to love.

We don’t need sacrifice any longer, Jesus was more than enough. He overpaid a debt we could never repay and salvation is a gift, and it is grace. If we had to earn it, it is not grace. I am not saying you can sin but if you do you know it and keeping a repentant heart that God has shaped will you let know it and accept forgiveness and correction.

It will also help you to forgive. We deal with all kinds of hearts and people who are not receptive to God and His love are often very deceived and deceptive. You will have to deal with unbelievers and people with all sorts of things in their hearts. Only can can change them, they may have to face consequences, but we know we are overcomers.

Why not take this week to let God shape  or reshape our thinking and our hearts. With all the focus on health and shaping up how about our hearts, they fail for not taking care of our spiritual health as well. From His dwelling place, we are in His gaze and He shapes our hearts.

Muhammad Syahroyni