Too Good To Be True

Do you ever take time to actually listen to and watch commercials on tv or social media? They are all offering us something that they claim is sure to change our lives.

This anti-aging cream will take 10 years off your face. This pill will take 10 inches off your waist. This food will add 10 years to your life.

If you buy this car, this vacation package, this house, you will be happy. If you have this job, this education, these clothes, these shoes, you will be important.

If you take this drug, drink another drink, have more sex, eat more food, all the pain will go away.

Sound too good to be true? That’s because it is. How do I know? Because I’ve tried them. They only left me wanting more and never lived up to their claims.

What are we all searching for? The fountain of youth? A trouble-free life? Purpose? Happiness? Peace? Love? Hope? Security? Acceptance?

We are all searching for something that’s real and lasts forever. Some of us are willing to pay any price to get it.

What if I told you the most important things in life are not for sale? What if I told you that the most important things in life are free for you and for me? They’ve already been paid for.

We can live forever. We can have peace, love, joy, and purpose. There is hope. And it doesn’t cost us a thing.

God gave us eternal life. The definition of eternal is ageless, dateless, everlasting, immortal, imperishable, timeless, undying. Who wouldn’t want that? It’s ours for the taking!

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.

Jesus gave us His peace.

John 14:27 Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid.

God gives us unconditional, complete, unchanging love.

No one will ever love us like our heavenly Father loves us. He is love. People can only give us as much love as they have in themselves to give. They can’t give us what they don’t have. Human love is imperfect but God’s love is perfect and nothing can separate us from it.

Romans 8:39 Neither height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God that is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

God gave us joy.

Joy is not happiness. Happiness depends on what is happening in our lives. So we can be happy one minute and sad the next. Happiness is fickle.

Joy doesn’t depend on what is going on around us. It has more to do with what’s going on inside of us. Joy is a calm consistent delight.

1 Peter 1:8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with inexpressible and glorious joy.

God gave us hope.

Joy and peace are a result of hope. God fills us with hope. Hope is always looking forward and expecting better. God always keeps His promises and this alone is our source of great hope.

Romans 15:13 May the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace as you trust in him, so that you may overflow with hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.

God gave us purpose. Life without purpose is meaningless. Life without God is meaningless.

Ephesians 2:10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.

All we have to do is accept the gift of forgiveness for our sins through Christ Jesus to enjoy all of the amazing benefits of the cross; eternal life, peace, joy, love, hope, and purpose.

You may think that this offer is too good to be true. It is the one thing that will ever be offered to you that is not too good to be true. How do I know? Because I live it every day and so can you.

It is so good and so true! 

How have you experienced disappointment in what the world has to offer? How have you experienced the amazing benefits of the cross that God offers? Share in the comments below!

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

Mending Power

Recently, my oldest son introduced me to the mending power of Gorilla Glue. He helped me fix a dining chair with a wobbly leg the week before Thanksgiving.

Then, when one of my new Christmas Santas was knocked over and broke in half, I knew that Gorilla Glue was what I could depend on to put it back together. It’s proven to be very reliable.

A few days ago, one of my flip flops broke. The little piece that fits between my toes snapped in half. That was the third flip flop I had broken in the last two months. I guess I’m pretty rough on my flip flops.

I was about to throw the flip flops in the trash and then I remembered the mending power of Gorilla Glue and wondered if it could fix my broken shoe. So, I decided to give it a try. I mean after all, what did I have to lose?

To my surprise, the glue worked and I am wearing my flip flops again. Gorilla Glue works great!

But what should we do about those broken non-material things in our lives? Is there a reliable mending source for those intangibles that are far more valuable than chairs, flip flops, and Santa figurines?

Yes! God’s word is the number one reliable mender of all things broken.

Do you have broken relationships? Any scripture about love and forgiveness will mend relationships if applied as directed consistently.

Ephesians 4:2 “Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.”

Colossians 3:13 Bear with each other and forgive one another if any of you has a grievance against someone. Forgive as the Lord forgave you.

Is your heart broken?

Psalms 34:18 The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.

Are you crumbling under the weight of debt?

Luke 14:28 Suppose one of you wants to build a tower. Won’t you first sit down and estimate the cost to see if you have enough money to complete it?

Hebrews 13:5a Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have.

Is your reputation broken?

Acts 24:16 “In view of this, I also do my best to maintain always a blameless conscience both before God and men.”

Is your career broken?

Colossians 3:23-24 Whatever you do, work at it with all your heart, as working for the Lord, not for human masters, since you know that you will receive an inheritance from the Lord as a reward. It is the Lord Christ you are serving.

Maybe you had plans for your life but something happened that was out of your control or you made mistakes that broke your plans apart.

Proverbs 3:5-6 Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding; in all your ways submit to him, and he will make your paths straight.

The list of broken things in our lives could go on and on. But the good news is that the Lord addresses all of those broken situations in His word. All we have to do is find the scripture that pertains to our particular brokenness and apply it.

What do you depend on to mend the broken things in your life? Alcohol, drugs, social media, complaining, or advice from others who are just as broken? Those are all temporary fixes that will only leave us more broken.

The mending power of God’s word is always reliable and lasts forever!

Matthew 24:35 Heaven and earth will pass away, but my words will never pass away.

I have personally experienced the mending power of God’s word in my own life. I was once bitter, resentful, angry, and had trouble forgiving others blaming them for my problems.

Through the daily application of God’s word, prayer, and reliance on the Holy Spirit, those broken areas of my life are now mended. Now I live a life full of joy, peace, compassion, and love for others.

God’s word works! We just have to use it.

Pray and ask the Lord to help you with whatever is broken in your life. Then go to God’s word to find the solutions and do what God tells you to do.

Luke 11:28 He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.”

Believe me, I know it’s not easy to do God’s word all the time but I also know that it is possible through the power of the Holy Spirit. One of the Holy Spirit’s jobs is to help us obey God’s word, so ask Him to help you. He will!

John 14:16-17a Jesus said, “And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever–the Spirit of truth.”

I’d love to hear the go-to scriptures that God has used or is using to mend your brokenness. Please share them so we can benefit from them as well. Thank you and God bless you!

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

Stay Close

At the end of 2019 and the very start of 2020, the questions, “What are your goals for 2020?” and “What is your “word” for this new year?” were all over social media. If people weren’t asking about our “word” or goals they were telling us what their goals and word for the new year are.

It makes me feel a little pressured thinking I have to come up with these goals and words. Don’t get me wrong, I am always wanting to improve on the previous year. Therefore, I pray for direction from the Lord about what action to take if any.

This year, as I considered some changes and improvements I would like to make in different areas of my life, the Lord has been showing me one thing; “stay close.” My two words and goal for 2020 are to “stay close” to the Lord.

John 15:4 Remain in me, as I also remain in you. No branch can bear fruit by itself; it must remain in the vine. Likewise, you can bear no fruit unless you remain in me.

I don’t know about you, but the last thing I want to be in 2020 is unfruitful or unproductive.

To remain means to abide, dwell, hang around, stay, stick around, and to tarry. [Merriam-Webster Dictionary App]

How can we stay close to the Lord?

We can read and study God’s word daily getting to know Him better. When we know God better we will trust Him more.

We can also spend time with the Lord every day in prayer. Not just talking to Him but also being quiet and listening to what He is speaking into our spirit.

You may say, “I’m too busy to spend time in prayer and reading the Bible.”

We all have the same 24 hours in a day. We all get to choose how we spend those 24 hours. If spending time with our Creator and Savior is not a priority in those 24 hours then those 24 hours will have been unproductive and unfruitful.

“If you have not chosen the Kingdom of God first, it will, in the end, make no difference what you have chosen instead.” ~ William Law

It’s our choice! We get to choose how close we will be to the Lord. He doesn’t move away from us, we move away from Him.

James 4:8a Come near to God and he will come near to you.

What are the benefits of staying close to the Lord?

  • Lack of fear
  • Spiritual growth
  • A greater understanding and knowledge of God’s word
  • Increased wisdom and discernment
  • Increased love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control
  • Increased faith
  • Eternal assurance
  • Increased hope
  • Increased obedience to God’s word
  • Decreased compromise of God’s word
  • Not so easily deceived
  • Direction

The list could go on and on.

The sky is the limit for those who stay close to the Creator of heaven and earth. To the One who knows the beginning and the end. To the One who is in control of all things. To the One who loves us so much that He gave His one and only Son as a sacrifice for our sins.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Whatever your “word” or your goal for 2020 is, I encourage you to stay close to the Lord. There is no safer place to be. There is no more productive or fruitful place to be.

Colossians 1:9-11 … that you may be filled with the knowledge of His will in all wisdom and spiritual understanding; that you may walk worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing Him, being fruitful in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God, strengthened with all might, according to His glorious power, for all patience and longsuffering with joy.

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

Follow the Leader

You may know by now that my husband and I have a dog named Autumn. She has been the subject of a few of my blogs. Maybe you’ve read some of them. She definitely has some interesting behaviors.

Autumn’s newest interesting behavior is that she follows my husband everywhere he goes in the house. When he moves, she moves. When he is standing still, she stands still keeping her eyes on him and waiting for his next move.

Sometimes I’ll say, “Autumn is playing follow the leader again.” We laugh, but in reality, we know that she just loves my husband and feels secure in his presence.

Autumn’s behavior reminds me of a time when the nation of Israel was in the wilderness. God led them with a pillar of fire by night and a cloud by day.

When the fire or cloud moved, Israel moved. When the fire or cloud was still, Israel was still. The fire by night or the cloud by day was always in front of them. [Exodus 13:21-22]

The fire and the cloud were the presence of God. He was always with them. Leading them, protecting them, and providing for them. As long as they followed the Lord, they were safe, secure, and always headed in the right direction.

Israel was following the Leader!

Today, God doesn’t lead us with pillars of fire or clouds but He does still lead us. He leads us through His word-the Bible-and through His Holy Spirit.

Psalms 119:105 Your word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.

John 16:13 “But when He, the Spirit of truth, comes, He will guide you into all the truth; for He will not speak on His own initiative, but whatever He hears, He will speak; and He will disclose to you what is to come.”

Maybe you have accepted Christ as your savior but you feel afraid, insecure, alone, and confused. You’ve lost your peace and your joy. Get back into the presence of God!

Keep God’s word before your eyes and in your hearing. Spend time worshiping the Lord, even when you don’t feel like it. Fellowship with other believers who will encourage you and pray with you and for you.

Maybe you are not a believer or follower of Jesus and you feel afraid, insecure, lost, alone and confused. You are not in the presence of God because your sin separates you from Him. I invite you to pray the prayer at the end of this blog.

There is only one access to God’s presence and that’s through Jesus. Jesus paid for all sin for all time when He gave His life as a sacrifice for our sins. When we accept Jesus’ payment for our sins we have full access to God, eternal life, peace, and joy.

John 14:6 Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.”

There is no excuse for any of us to not be in God’s presence. He invites us to be with Him. He’s made a way for us to be with Him. In His presence, we are safe, secure, and never alone.

Deuteronomy 31:8 The Lord himself goes before you and will be with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged.

Likewise, there is no reason for us to feel lost or confused. God has given us His word and His Spirit to lead us and guide us into all truth.

Let’s follow the Leader. Let’s follow the Lord into the new year. Let’s resolve to stay in His presence and to allow His word and His Spirit to lead us and guide us into His purpose and His plan for our lives this year and every year.

I pray you all will have a safe and happy 2020. God bless you all!

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Most Important Choice You Will Ever Make

This past week there were two accidents on the road that runs in front of our house. Well, two that I know of. One resulted in injury and a totaled car. The other resulted in death.

I was talking to one of my friends about the two accidents and she commented, “Things happen so fast that can change lives forever.”

That got me thinking about the person that died in the accident. They woke up the morning of the accident thinking that day was going to be like any other day.

They probably had a particular plan for that day. They were obviously headed someplace and may have been planning what they would do once they got there.

In a moment everything changed.

Psalm 146:4 When their spirit departs, they return to the ground; on that very day their plans come to nothing.

We never know what is going to happen from one moment to the next. The fact is we go through life thinking we will be here another second, another minute, hour, day, month, and year but in reality, we don’t know how long we will be here.

For the person who died in the accident, they had no idea they would be standing in front of their creator that day.

Was that person ready? Are you ready?

Hebrews 9:27 Just as people are destined to die once, and after that to face judgment.

We have all sinned and fall short of God’s glory [Romans 3:23]. But on the cross, Jesus paid the penalty for all sin for all time. It is God’s gift to us.

1 John 2:2 He [Jesus] is the atoning sacrifice for our sins, and not only for ours but also for the sins of the whole world.

If we do not accept the gift of Jesus’ sacrificial payment for our sins, we will be charged for our own sins.

Romans 6:23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.

There is physical death and there is spiritual death. Spiritual death is eternal separation from God.

2 Thessalonians 1:9 They will suffer the punishment of eternal destruction, away from the presence of the Lord and from the glory of his might.

The good news is that we get to choose. We don’t have to be separated from God’s love, joy, peace, or light forever. We can choose to live in the presence of God for eternity starting right now.

Revelation 7:16-17 Never again will they hunger; never again will they thirst. The sun will not beat down on them, nor any scorching heat. For the Lamb at the center of the throne will be their shepherd; he will lead them to springs of living water. And God will wipe away every tear from their eyes.

The most important gift that you could choose to receive this Christmas is the gift of eternal life; the gift of forgiveness of sins; the gift of Jesus.

John 11:25 Jesus said to her, “I am the resurrection and the life. The one who believes in me will live, even though they die.”

You may be wondering, what do I have to do to receive this most important gift?

First, you have to realize you are a sinner in need of salvation from sin. Then Pray the prayer at the end of this post and mean it with all of your heart. That’s it!

Romans 10:9-10 If you declare with your mouth, “Jesus is Lord,” and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved. For it is with your heart that you believe and are justified, and it is with your mouth that you profess your faith and are saved.

What’s next?

Start reading your bible. If you don’t have one, get one. The book of John is always a great place to start.

Find a bible-teaching church. Get involved in a bible study. Surround yourself with bible-believing people.

Pray every day asking the Holy Spirit to help you understand what you read in God’s word and to live according to what you read and understand.

We don’t know how long we will live on this earth but we can have peace in knowing where we will spend eternity when our time here is up.

Don’t be caught dead without Jesus. You get to choose now. If you wait until tomorrow, it may be too late. Jesus is the most important gift you’ll ever choose.

Deuteronomy 30:19 This day I call the heavens and the earth as witnesses against you that I have set before you life and death, blessings and curses. Now choose life, so that you and your children may live.

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

It Takes as Long as it Takes

Back in the early 1990s, a friend of mine was in a gift shop buying a gift for someone and having it wrapped. My friend asked the store clerk how long it would take to wrap the gift because she had someplace else to be. The clerk replied, “It takes as long as it takes.”

My friend was initially a little upset by the clerk’s answer but now we get a good laugh out of it.

Sometimes I find myself asking God the same question. How long will it take for so and so to change? How long will it take for me to change? How long will it take for my circumstances to change?

When will my body be healed? When will Your promises come to pass? When will You come back to get Your people? How long will it take Lord?

Recently I was praying and I found myself asking God that “how long will it take” question. That’s when I remembered the answer the clerk gave my friend, “It takes as long as it takes.”

It’s as if God is saying to each of us, “I’m working in your situation in ways you can’t see. But trust me, I am working and these things take time.”

Sometimes the wait is longer than we expected but the best outcomes in the worst situations take time.

John 13:7 Jesus replied, “You do not realize now what I am doing, but later you will understand.”

As a young boy, Joseph had a dream that his dad and brothers would bow in reverence to him. This made his brothers hate him even more. They wanted to kill him but ended up selling him as a slave instead. They told their dad Joseph was dead.

Meanwhile, Joseph ended up in Egypt as a slave in the house of an official. The official’s wife wanted to have an affair with Joseph but Joseph refused. To make a long story short, she accused Joseph of rape and he ended up in prison for a long time.

While in prison, Joseph interpreted the dreams of a couple other prisoners. His interpretation of their dreams came to pass and one of the prisoners that were being release promised to put in a good word for Joseph but instead, he was forgotten.

Ok, at this point I’m sure Joseph had thought to himself many times, “How long Lord? How long will I have to be a slave? How long will I be in prison? How long before I get to see my dad again? When will my dream come to pass? How long does it take Lord?”

About 13 years after Joseph had been sold as a slave, he was finally remembered as the one who interprets dreams and was released from prison to interpret the Pharoah’s dream. After doing so, Joseph was made right-hand man to Pharoah and saved many lives from starvation.

Eventually, he was reunited with his father and brothers as they went to Egypt looking for food. Joseph’s dream had come to pass, his father and brothers bowed in reverence to him [Genesis 37-50].

There was a lot that God had to do to work things out in Joseph’s life for the best outcome; His purpose and His plan. There was a lot going on behind the scenes that Joseph and his family couldn’t see or understand.

Joseph had to go to Egypt to save many lives from starvation. Joseph’s family had to survive the famine to become the 12 tribes of Israel; the nation of Israel. Jesus had to be born from the tribe of Juda, one of Joseph’s brothers. Most importantly, Jesus had to be born to die for our sins.

Joseph finally understood what God was up to. He told his brothers, “As for you, you meant evil against me, but God meant it for good in order to bring about this present result, to preserve many people’s lives [Genesis 50:20].

God is always working. He’s working things out for our good, the good of those around us, and for His glory.

God cares about every detail of our lives and He’s working each one of them out. Nothing happens by chance. It’s all part of His plan.

Romans 8:28 And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love him, who have been called according to his purpose.

Joseph may not have understood God’s plan while God was working out all of the details but Joseph trusted God and never gave up hope and that’s what we have to do.

It takes as long as it takes!

Galatians 6:9 And let us not grow weary of doing good, for in due season we will reap if we do not give up.

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

Practicing Patience

This past Saturday, my husband and I went to see the movie, ‘A Beautiful Day in the Neighborhood.’ I’ll try not to give away too much about the movie, just in case you haven’t seen it yet. I will say that it’s a great movie and I hope you get a chance to see it.

There are many words that could be used to describe Mr. Rogers. My husband and I tried to come up with one word that best described him. The word my husband chose was patience.

It wasn’t until the next day, while sitting in church, that my word to describe Mr. Rogers came to me; godly. He displayed many attributes of God in his daily life.

Patience is one of the attributes of God. It’s also listed as one of the fruits of the Spirit. Fruit meaning it is the evidence that the Holy Spirit abides in us as believers.

Galatians 5:22-23 But the fruit of the Spirit is love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness, and self-control.

Patience is an act of humility, gentleness, and love.

Ephesians 4:2 Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love.

Patience is not just about waiting but it’s about waiting well.

Psalms 37:7 Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for him; do not fret when people succeed in their ways; when they carry out their wicked schemes.

A patient person is a wise person.

Proverbs 14:29 Whoever is patient has great understanding, but one who is quick-tempered displays folly.

A patient person is a peaceful person.

Proverbs 15:18 A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel.

The thing I noticed about the patience of Mr. Rogers is that it made an impact on the lives of the people around him and his own life. His wife said that he had to practice at being the kind of person he wanted to be.

We all need to practice at being better people; more patient people.

We have plenty of opportunities to practice patience on a daily basis. Like when we are in traffic. Or when someone makes a mistake and that mistake affects us or our schedules.

Or how about while we are doing our holiday shopping in a crowded store and there are 10 checkout lanes but only 3 are open and your cashier is new and slow?

Or how about when we try to show someone how to do something and they don’t understand right away?

We have many opportunities every day to make a difference in someone else’s life by just being patient with them.

Who’s life could you impact with patience? Your spouse or children? A coworker? A student? An aging parent?

Who has impacted your life with patience? A teacher? An employer? A parent? A stranger?

No one has been more patient with us than God.

2 Peter 3:9 The Lord is not slow in keeping his promise, as some understand slowness. Instead, he is patient with you, not wanting anyone to perish, but everyone to come to repentance.

Considering how patient God is with us, how much more should we be patient with others?

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Attitude Adjustment

A couple of weeks ago I noticed I was feeling discontented with the way things in my life are going. My discontent was resulting in a bad attitude.

I knew there was a problem with my attitude and needed an attitude adjustment. I began praying about it, asking God to help me. But not much was changing. It was during my prayer time one morning that the Lord showed me the answer to my problem.

In my experience, when I pray about a problem and ask God to help me He usually shows me things I’m doing wrong or changes I need to make. In this case, I needed to adjust my focus.

I was focusing on all that was going wrong instead of all that was going right. My misdirected focus was causing ungratefulness resulting in a bad attitude.

When we focus on what we don’t have or all that’s going wrong instead of our many blessings, we end up with a discontented dissatisfied heart that surfaces in our attitude.

A bad attitude affects our relationship with those closest to us and the Lord. It causes us to distance ourselves from both. We unwittingly blame them for all that’s going wrong.

Once I redirected my focus, joy and gratefulness returned. My circumstances hadn’t changed but my view had.

Psalm 103:1-5 Praise the Lord, my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name. Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits- who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit and crowns you with love and compassion, who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagles.

When we focus on all the good in our lives our complaining turns to praise, our discontent turns to satisfaction, and our ungratefulness turns to appreciation.

1 Thessalonians 5:18 “Give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

Are you feeling discontented with life? Do you find yourself complaining a lot or maybe feeling a little depressed?

I’d like to challenge you to list the good things in your life. Now, just begin to thank God for all He has blessed you with. You will begin to notice that joy is replacing sadness.

Proverbs 17:22a A cheerful heart is a good medicine.

This is Thanksgiving week. Let’s focus on the good in our lives. Let’s thank God for all that He’s given us, done for us, and brought us through. Not just this one time of the year but every day of the year.

James 1:17 “Every good and perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of the heavenly lights, who does not change like shifting shadows.”

I pray you all will have a wonderful Thanksgiving and that your hearts and homes will be filled with joy and praise. God bless you all!

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

Love = Time

What makes you feel loved? Does receiving a gift or help make you feel loved? How about hugs and kisses? Maybe you feel loved when someone tells you you look nice or that you did a great job on a project.

For me, the thing that makes me feel most loved is uninterruptable time and undivided attention.

Time is a priceless irreplaceable commodity. To give someone our time and full attention is to say, “You are valuable to me.”

In this busy, overly stimulated, entertainment addicted world, giving others time and attention is an extream rarity. That is why it’s such an amazing way to express our love for one another. Because it actually takes effort.

What might giving someone our time and attention look like?

It may look like actually looking at the person while they are speaking to us instead of a phone or a laptop. Or maybe it looks like turning off the television and actually having a meaningful conversation with someone.

Luke 6:31 Do to others as you would have them do to you.

Likewise, we can express our love for God by giving Him uninterruptable time and undivided attention. We can turn off our phones, computers, and televisions and talk to Him and listen to Him through His Word and His Spirit.

We will never be able to repay God for all He’s done for us but we can show Him that we love Him and that we are thankful by spending quality time with Him.

King David knew how to express his love for God.

Psalms 63:1,6,8 You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. On my bed I remember you; I think of you through the watches of the night. I cling to you; your right hand upholds me.

We could all learn a thing or two about showing others and God how much we love them.

How about you? How do you express your love for others? Do you give them your uninterruptable time? Do you give them your undivided attention?

Do you make time to spend with God? Do you turn your electronic devices off and just focus on the One who loves you so much that He gave His one and only Son to be sacrificed for your sins so He could be in a relationship with you and spend eternity with you?

Don’t waste your irreplaceable commodity -time- on things that aren’t worth it. Spend it on the ones you love and the One that loves you unconditionally, perfectly, and completely.

Matthew 22:37-39 Jesus replied: “Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind. This is the first and greatest commandment. And the second is like it: love your neighbor as yourself.”

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

False Advertisement

Have you ever purchased something online only to be disappointed when it arrived? Or maybe you watched a commercial about a particular food making it sound enticingly delicious only to bite into something that left you dissatisfied. You’re not alone. My husband and I fell prey to this trickery recently.

At the beginning of October, I was determined to visit a pumpkin patch to purchase pumpkins for my outdoor fall decorating. I went online to find a pumpkin patch nearby. My search was successful. On a beautiful Saturday morning, my husband and I set out to the pumpkin patch.

Upon our arrival, we didn’t see a pumpkin patch so we went into the information office to be pointed in the right direction. The kind lady behind the desk informed us that there was no pumpkin patch but was quick to point out other things they offered at that location.

Needless to say, we left unfulfilled; not finding what we had been searching for and what had been promised. We were victims of false advertisement.

A lot of us fall prey to another form of false advertisement; sin.

Hebrews 11:25 defines sin as fleeting pleasure.

We are tempted to sin with the promise that it can deliver pleasure, satisfaction, and happiness. However, instead, we are left discontented, unfulfilled, and miserable.

There is an old song by the Cathedral Quartet titled ‘Sin Will Take You Farther’. Some of the lyrics are:

Sin will take you farther than you wanna go. Slowly but wholly taking control. Sin will leave you longer than you wanna stay. Sin will cost you more than you wanna pay.

This reminds me of an incident in the Bible with a king named David. One night David was on his rooftop where he saw a beautiful woman bathing. He inquired about her and discovered that she was married and that her husband was away at war. He was not deterred. David sent for her and spent the night with her. The woman became pregnant. So David, trying to cover up his sin, sent for the woman’s husband in hopes that he would go home and sleep with his wife. Things didn’t go as David had planned so he went to plan B; he had the husband killed in battle. Wow! [2 Samuel 11]

David had gone further than he wanted to go and paid more than he wanted to pay. A family was destroyed, a young woman was now a widow, and an innocent man was dead. All for the selfish hopes of pleasure, satisfaction, and happiness. Sin is definitely a false advertisement!

Are you trapped in sin? Have you fallen for its false advertisement? There is hope! You don’t have to stay in that miserable unsatisfied condition.

1 John 1:9 If we confess our sins, he is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins and purify us from all unrighteousness.

Once we confess our sins, repent, and ask for forgiveness, we can ask God to help us to stay away from sin through the power of the Holy Spirit.

1 Corinthians 10:13 No temptation has overtaken you except what is common to mankind. And God is faithful; he will not let you be tempted beyond what you can bear. But when you are tempted, he will also provide a way out so that you can bear it.

We also have God’s word to help during times of temptation.

1 Thessalonians 2:13 And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is indeed at work in you who believe.

We all need a trusted friend who we can open up to, who will keep us accountable, and who will pray with us and for us.

James 5:16 Therefore confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous person is powerful and effective.

There is no excuse to live one more day miserable and dissatisfied in a life of sin. God has provided all that we need to say “no” to sin and “yes” to true joy and true fulfillment.

God always delivers on His promises. He always keeps His word. With God, you never have to worry about false advertisement.

Psalms 119:89-90 Your word, Lord, is eternal; it stands firm in the heavens. Your faithfulness continues through all generations; you established the earth, and it endures.

~Patrice Maguire

Dear God, I know I am a sinner, and I ask for Your forgiveness. I believe Jesus Christ is Your Son. I believe that He died for my sin and that You raised Him to life. I want to trust Him as my Savior and follow Him as Lord, from this day forward. Guide my life and help me to do Your will through the power of Your Holy Spirit. I pray this in the name of Jesus. Amen.