Every Morning!

Every Morning!

Yet this I call to mind and therefore I have hope:Because of the LORD’s great love we are not consumed, for his compassions never fail. They are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. I say to myself, “The LORD is my portion; therefore I will wait for him.” The LORD is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; it is good to wait quietly for the salvation of the LORD. Lamentations 3:21-26 NIV

Every morning when I wake

I’m reminded of His Love,

No matter what happened the day before,

A new day and new mercies is what I hope for.

Every morning when I rise,

My sacrifice of praise starts my day,

Even with joints ache with eyes blurred,

I give thanks for strength to endure.

Every morning that I see,

Is another opportunity for me

Spread love, spread the Gospel of Jesus Christ,

Live as a demonstration of a changed life

In Him. Every morning!

No matter what else has happened to us, no matter what disappointments come our way, we can and should start each new day with praise unto Him who is the reason we live and move.

Sometimes, life’s difficulties tend to distract from the facts–God is love and His love and mercy endure forever–no matter how often the enemy attacks.

When we know we have received His love into our hearts, nothing the enemy does should tear us apart from knowing the battle is not ours, but His and in Him, we always win. Victory is more than a battle cry, but a lifestyle we can and should live–so we make the enemy quake every morning when we rise.

We cannot change yesterday or even the last minute, and only He knows what the future holds, but when we know He holds our future in His hands, we can live without fear or doubt and move to the rooftops–with a shout–Jesus is Lord and no weapon formed against us shall ever prosper!

It is morning time and time to rise–giving Him praise for the victories we shall know all the day long!

When We Learn!

When We Learn!

A gentle answer turns away wrath, but a harsh word stirs up anger. The tongue of the wise adorns knowledge, but the mouth of the fool gushes folly. The eyes of the LORD are everywhere, keeping watch on the wicked and the good. The soothing tongue is a tree of life, but a perverse tongue crushes the spirit. A fool spurns a parent’s discipline, but whoever heeds correction shows prudence. The house of the righteous contains great treasure, but the income of the wicked brings ruin. The lips of the wise spread knowledge, but the hearts of fools are not upright.  Proverbs 15:1-7 NIV

Though many may mock proverbs’ lessons,

Wisdom arriving late is better than never.

Keeping thoughts focused on the task at-hand,

Reins in the tongue and zips the lips before they speak.

What fills our hearts from within–

Bigotry, hate, empathy, sympathy, love

Flowing from beneath or showering from above.

Better to be slow to speak

And quick to listen, getting the facts

And forgetting the fiction.

Understanding that once words flow through the air,

There’s no going back, and all criticism is fair.

When we learn–that life is not just about us,

But the environment in which we  live

And those in whom we trust.

When we learn to exercise prudence and wisdom

In all we do, we’ll set the table for peace and harmony,

Respecting all we meet and greet with no acrimony,

But heralding love–enduring and unconditional–

Receiving, enjoying all of God’s best–mercy and grace

Not withering attacks from afar–and not in our face,

But remembering “The Golden Rule” from the first,

Treating others like we treat ourselves or better.

When we learn!

 

 

The Lord Will Not Ignore Us!

The Lord Will Not Ignore Us!

But the LORD reigns forever,
executing judgment from his throne.

He will judge the world with justice
and rule the nations with fairness.

The LORD is a shelter for the oppressed,
a refuge in times of trouble.

Those who know your name trust in you,
for you, O LORD, do not abandon those who search for you.

Sing praises to the LORD who reigns in Jerusalem.
Tell the world about his unforgettable deeds.

For he who avenges murder cares for the helpless.
He does not ignore the cries of those who suffer. Psalm 9:7-12 NIV

Every morning when I rise,

His goodness is seen through my eyes,

His love is felt in all I see

His mercy, forever there for me.

Not  for me alone does He reign

But in every heart where His love remains,

Full to overflowing, onto all who will receive,

And share with others, praying on their knees,

Knowing He never abandons,

Never forgets or ignores,

Those who are His, Those He adores.

We praise for His might acts,

For His love, mercy, and grace,

Seeking wisdom, finding Him in His place,

High above the heavens, waiting for us!

What we need, He knows and provides,

From our despair, He’ll never hide,

But through His Word, we have a guide

To get through this journey called life,

Without anger, hatred or strife.

Let’s Build Bridges!

Let’s Build Bridges!

My command is this: Love each other as I have loved you.Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one’s life for one’s friends. You are my friends if you do what I command. This is my command: Love each other. John 15:12-14, 17 NIV

Instead of building walls that isolate

Let’s build bridges that reciprocate

Integrity, honor, and respect,

Giving to get what we expect.

What makes it so difficult for us love?

Did we not receive it from Him above?

Are our hearts not filled from within,

Enough love and respect for all men?

God’s love flows continuously from Him to all,

Not hindered by hate or discriminating wall,

With the message of love preached and all receive,

The world will know–In Him, We Believe!

 

Is Your Foundation Intact?

Is Your Foundation Intact?

When the foundations are being destroyed, what can the righteous do?” The LORD is in his holy temple; the LORD is on his heavenly throne. He observes everyone on earth; his eyes examine them. The LORD examines the righteous, but the wicked, those who love violence, he hates with a passion. On the wicked he will rain fiery coals and burning sulfur; a scorching wind will be their lot. For the LORD is righteous, he loves justice; the upright will see his face. Psalm 11:3-7 NIV

If we don’t build on solid foundations,

Of love, hope, and respect for all

We set the stage for destruction of nations,

Both far and near, within, without not hearing the call,

Of God’s Word to relieve oppression for all generations.

We need to fill the cracks, restoring foundations,

Building bridges, cementing partnerships, not building a wall,

Promoting hatred, distrust, fear and division, in all relations–

Ignoring the one truth we seem to have forgotten,

God knows when we we’re good and He knows when we’re rotten.

We are One Blood, One Nation, One Race–All His Creation!

 

He’s Watching!

He’s Watching!

The eyes of the LORD are in every place, beholding the evil and the good. Proverbs 15:3 KJV

God sees and He knows

We cannot hide our hearts

Our thoughts, our deeds;

Before we think them, He knows!

Praise Him Anyhow!

Praise Him Anyhow!

Praise the LORD.Praise the LORD from the heavens; praise him in the heights above. Praise him, all his angels; praise him, all his heavenly hosts.Praise him, sun and moon; praise him, all you shining stars. Praise him, you highest heavens and you waters above the skies. Let them praise the name of the LORD, for at his command they were created,and he established them for ever and ever— he issued a decree that will never pass away.  Psalm 148:1-6 NIV

If we can look around and see–all that God created–and understand how they (the non-human creations) praise Him, we should be able to praise Him no matter what happens.

There are things that will happen in the earth, upon the earth and around the earth that we may never understand, but we can still praise The Lord!

There are phenomena that occur–all around us and within us–that we simply cannot explain, but we can still praise The Lord!

There are situations–that on the surface–seem self-evident and are not, but we can still praise The Lord!

No matter what happens or who it happens to or through–we can still praise The Lord for His goodness and mercy are everlasting–and nothing and nobody can ever change that!

Yes, this is a time for praying as is always, but when we stop praying–talking to Him and listening–we can praise Him for the solution that only He has. And though we may not see it–He has already worked it out!

So, praise Him anyhow!

Through the press of heartache and prayer–Praise Him!

Through the valleys of despair–Praise Him!

When it seems like hope is gone–Praise Him!

If everyone abandons us, and we’re left alone–Praise Him!

The sun doesn’t rise on a new day until the darkness of night has passed away–Praise Him!

Weeping–watching the tears flow like a river–will soon run dry–Praise Him!

Grief–enough to break a heart into–will pass and we’ll laugh again–Praise Him!

If we have use of our limbs and can use the bathroom on our own–Praise Him!

In the middle of the battle–in the mind or in actuality–there is one reality–we can do our victory dance in the midst of our praises–no weapon formed against us shall ever prosper!

No lies or liars, no despot or dictator, no narcissist or egomaniac, no fear-monger or hatemonger, no bigot or back-pedaller, no politician or polluter–nothing and no one shall ever suppress our praises to You, O Lord!

Our hope is in Jesus and our faith will never waver no matter how dreary life may seem, we will Praise Him Anyhow!

 

The Wisdom of The Wise!

The lips of the wise broadcast knowledge,

but not so the heart of fools. Proverbs 15: 7

A mocker doesn’t love one who corrects him;

he will not consult the wise. Proverbs 15:12

He who is wise listens,

He who is foolish, scorns and mocks.

He who receives correction earns respect,

He who mocks correction earns disdain.

He who seeks The Lord first is encouraged,

He who ignores The Lord is dismayed.

Those who praise God in the beauty of Holiness,

Are filled with hope and never despair.

Those who know–God–not just about Him,

Are blessed to be His children.

Is it wisdom or fate to speak what God says,

To obey when God speaks, and receive what God has?

The wisdom of the wise keeps flowing freely

While the ignorance of fools keeps them enslaved.

Are you wise or foolish, blessed or cursed?

And A Mother Is…

And A Mother Is…

But we were gentle among you, just as a nursing mother cherishes her own children. I Thessalonians 2:7 NKJV

There are so many references in The Word regarding a mother or mothers that I had difficulty choosing one, but I think this one is a stand-out, for more than one reason.

A nursing mother holds her child close and dear,

Desiring only for the child to be healthy and know love,

She cares for herself because everything she eats or drinks,

Flows into the child in her arms–lovingly and the child grows.

As the child gets older, a mother’s love never stops,

But regroups her methods to make sure the child knows,

Right from wrong and wrong from right, disciplining, teaching,

Loving no matter what happens, knowing when the time is right,

To allow the child to take steps on his/her own, praying, seeing them grown.

And when they are grown, her love never stops, but spreads deep within

Without, making room for the grands and great-grands, the fruit of the child,

Once nestled in the curve of her arms, now strong enough to hold his/her mother

As they begin their own journey into parenthood.

 

At every stage and age a mother is whatever we need for that moment,

So we must cherish the time we have with them so memories will never fade,

And we share with our children’s children all the sacrifices she made,

For us to live life–loved and challenged to be all we can be–making a difference.

If We Love…

If We Love…

Why is there so much hatred
Just because skin tones vary
And faith reigns in the multiplicity
Of cultural, ethnic, and social beliefs?

Why can’t parents raise children
With respect and discipline, knowing
How to receive love and love in return?

Why is it that parents who claim to love,
Abuse and misuse the children they brought into this world?
How can they not see the damage and lifelong misery
They cause with their neglectful, hateful ways?

Why do we need guns to settle differences
When all we need is communication—listening and hearing,
To one another, accepting differing perceptions of life, wrong and right,
Rather than creating a mockery of justice by taking lives?

Why do we need to self-medicate on drugs of choice,
Instead of seeking assistance, allowing pain to be our voice
In the deserts of waste and want and desire to arise,
Above current situations, seeing what we could be in a different light.

Why do we allow corrupt politicians to legislate
Laws that do nothing to help forward movement, but
Do everything to hinder justice for all, igniting even more
Hatred—fueling frustrations, igniting detonators lying deep within
The hearts of those who refuse to bend to the Will of God?
If we love as God loves—why can’t we do as God does—
Love unconditionally without thought to race, religion or doubt,
Just ready to love and forgive the slights shown to us, by those
Who don’t know Him, but we do— and should not act as those who don’t.

If we love our parents, why can’t we care for them in their hour of need,
Just as they took care of us, until we could care for ourselves,
Or do we just look inwardly and think only of self, not caring for others,
Despising and distancing ourselves from fathers and mothers,
Who even if they were wrong—the parent-child relationship should remain strong.

If we love our neighbors as ourselves,
Why can’t we see their hurt and need and allow compassion
And kindness to reign in our hearts as we tend to their comfort,
Knowing, what we do for others will be done unto us.

If we love, why can’t we sit down and talk about differences
And those needs we have in common—shelter, clothing and food,
Joy, peace, happiness, more love and all things good,
That guarantee the continual perpetuation of humanity,
Without the continual perpetration of abuse and misuse?

If we love, why can’t we love ourselves enough to see,
Where we need to grow up and mature, behaving responsibly?
Looking deep inside, outside and all around us—noting changes
That require movement on our part to sustain us and those
We say we love.

If we love…

© 2015 Mary M. Hall-Rayford