Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Do You Want The Best?

There once was a little girl who saved her allowance until she had enough money to buy a pretty plastic pearl necklace.  She loved that necklace so much that she wore them every day; only taking them off to take a bath.  

One day her daddy asked her, “Do you love me?” She replied, “Oh yes daddy, you know I love you.”  Daddy replied, “Then will you give me your pretty pearls?”  The little girl said, “No not my pearls! But you can have my teddy bear.  Daddy said, “That’s okay, I love you.”

A week later her daddy asked his daughter again, “Do you love me?” His little girl said, “Daddy, you know I love you!”  Daddy repeated again, “Then will you give me your beloved pearls?” “No daddy, not my pearls!  But I will give you my tea set”.  Daddy replied, “That’s okay, precious daughter, I love you.” 

This same routine continued over and over again for weeks until one day the little girl began to wonder, “If daddy loves me, why does he want to take away something I love?”
Then one day, with tears in her eyes, the little girl walked up to her daddy with those cherished plastic pearls in her hand and said, “Here, daddy.  This is for you.”

Her daddy reached out a hand to take the plastic pearl necklace, and then with the other hand he reached into his pocket and pulled out a beautiful case.  Inside that case was a strand of genuine pearls that he had chosen special for his daughter many weeks before.  He had been waiting for his precious daughter to give up what she had treasured so that he could give her something even better.  

The little girl in the above story had treasured something – but she was willing to give it up to her loving father.   She did not understand why he kept asking her to give up what she treasured in her heart, but she came to realize that she loved her daddy more than her precious pearls and with a broken contrite heart she was willing to give them to her beloved daddy.  

This story made me ponder; is there something or someone in my life that I am not willing to give up for my Heavenly Father?  Is there anything taking God’s place in my heart? Does my busy schedule, TV time, social media, phone, shopping, you name it - keep me from having my daily personal time of fellowship with my Lord through prayer and bible study?  

   In 1 John 5:20-21 (NLT) we read, “And we know that the Son of God has come, and he has given us understanding so that we can know the true God.  And now we live in fellowship with the true God because we live in fellowship with his Son, Jesus Christ.  He is the only true God, and he is eternal life.  Dear children, keep away from anything that might take God’s place in your heart.”  

Is there something that God is asking you to give up and you are trying to justify why you want to “keep it”?  

Dear Lord, I ask that you search my heart, and if there is anything that is taking Your place in my heart, may I be willing to remove it so that I can receive the best that You have to offer – true fellowship with You! 

Thursday, August 18, 2016

Hold Fast


“But you are to hold fast to the Lord your God, as you have until now." Joshua 23:8

When I saw this picture it reminded me of this scripture to hold fast to the Lord. Look closely to the little fingers of this precious child. Do you see what I first noticed? This child is holding on to that finger so tightly that her own finger tips are turning white! This baby does not want to let go of the one who is holding her. It's as though that baby is saying, "You will have to pry my fingers loose because I am not going to let go!"

What a beautiful picture of how we are to "hold fast" to our Lord! Too many times I find myself barely holding on to the Lord. As though only one finger is barely hooked to one of the Lord's fingers. Too many times when things go wrong in our lives we ask the Lord why He left us; or where did he go? The answer is clear; it was never the Lord who let go. For He promises to never leave us nor forsake us. No, for me I have found that in those moments it's me who let go of Him. When things were going so well I started to think I didn't need the Lord as much to help me along my journey. I would gradually loosen the grip I had on the Lord's hand and thought to myself, "I'm doing pretty well - I don't need the Lord's guidance as much I did before. I'm a big girl now - I can do this all by myself."

What foolish thoughts!

Dear Heavenly Father, when I start to lose my grip on Your mighty hand may You remind me of this precious picture that I am to always "hold fast" to You. It is in Your mighty power and strength that I can do anything and all things, not mine. Thank you gracious Father that You are my refuge and ever present help. In Jesus precious name, Amen.