Have You Been Overwhelmed By Bad Reports?

Have you been overwhelmed by bad reports

Or dismayed by news of horrible aborts?

If so, you’re not alone. For the Israelites couldn’t enter

The promised land. That’s because many a venter

    (i.e. “I need to vent!”),

As in “those who spied the land out”, just saw giants.

You know – gangs of fierce, un-wieldly “self-reliants”

Who, it seems, looked on them with disdain,

Prompting them to sing this sad refrain:

“We look like grasshoppers to such big guys,

To whom we can’t compare in might or size.

Though Caleb may command faith to arise,  

We cannot climb above such mighty lies.”

(Our forms, you know, they truly do despise)

“Their bad reports are too much to endure,

Bombarding us with thoughts that are impure

And that hit us in the face like pizza pie.

However, when that pizza hits your eye,

You know it’s not AMORE but Amor-ITES,

The guys that have a knack for un-sound bites.

What’s more, they proudly fuss about wrong ‘rights,’

Just like Hittites, Jebusites and Canaanites.”

(And we’re not talking “knight in shining armor” knights)

And so, the men were overwhelmed by bad reports.

Dismayed by news of possible aborts,

Which tempted them severely to give up

Because they tasted of the bitter cup

That’s mixed with too much doubt to trust God’s Word,

Despite the mighty signs they’d seen and heard –

Such as manna rained upon them from above.

And yet they dared to question God’s great love.

Because they lacked the faith to enter in

To the land God had prepared for them,

He told them not to go. And yet they went.

Sadly, Moses couldn’t get them to relent.

Thus it ended in disaster: soldiers killed

Because they did not do as God had willed

But trusted in their own strength so unjust.

In fact, God knew they lacked the needed trust

To win the battle. Guilt had such a grip

Upon their hearts, it caused their feet to slip.     

But it’s not wise on one’s own flesh to rely,

Regardless of the saying “Do or die.”

  Yet God invites the weary soul to buy. . .

  The food which we can eat and never die. . .

With songs of praise to overwhelm a bad report

So that no one in their right mind will fall short.

Therefore, thank God for His promises each day,

Because Jesus helps us listen and obey.

Due to the fact that He listened diligently,

He has the power to help us hear clearly

So that finally, we too can understand

The awesome things that God for us has planned.

(Based on the story in Numbers chapters 13 and 14)

Relevant scriptures: Isaiah 55:1-3, Deuteronomy 8:3, Matthew 4:4 (God’s Word: our food), Psalm 7:17, Psalm 8:2 (Psalm 32:7 (songs of deliverance),

Starve Out the Spirit of Death

Starve out the spirit of death.

Don’t give it any glory.

Focus not on tragedy

But on the gospel story.

Easier said than done sometimes,

But joy comes after mourning,

Although we know it takes a while

When grief strikes without warning.

Because so many questions: “Why?”

Wage war against belief,

And when folks offer platitudes

It magnifies the grief.

However, when Jesus was born,

Angels proclaimed His glory.

They starved the spirit of death

By dwelling on the gospel story.

“Joy to the world” they sang,

Prompting the shepherds to rejoice.

Then later in the temple,

There were just two who raised their voice.

Two prophets, Simeon and Anna,

Recognized and spoke of Him

Right under Herod’s nose

When Christ was in Jerusalem.

Then wise men came and brought their gifts,

But Herod was distressed.

His life was soaked in tragedy.

He wanted to be blessed.

No king would rule over him.

This babe was going down!

God warned Joseph, who fled with him,

Escaping his hometown.

But Bethlehem knew tragedy.

It was a sorry day:

Rachel weeping for her children,

Grief that wouldn’t go away.

And yes, there is a time to mourn,

As when Jesus died,

Our sins to nail upon a cross.

Behold His bleeding side!  

He died to set us free,

But He was also resurrected.

For joy He did endure the cross

Though nobody suspected

That he could really do that.

Yet it happened. Can you see?

Amid your tragedy, can you

Behold His victory?

Though you might have to sing through tears,

Just aching to survive,

By praising Him you give the

spirit of death No room to thrive.

Consider Him who reigns on high

And wields the two-edged sword,

Proclaiming “Starve the spirit of death

And magnify the Lord!”

The Gifts God Gives to us are Excellent

God’s gifts to us are excellent, absolutely excellent!

The gifts that we receive from Him are glorious to behold.

He spoke to what He made and called it good – yes, very good.

And when we trust in Him, we have good reason to be bold.

 

Those who believe in Christ will do the same works He has done,

Because His gifts are excellent, and giving them is fun.

Such gifts, which God dispenses, can result in signs and wonders,

Because, though man may fail you, our Lord Jesus makes no blunders.

 

He never doubted who He was but spoke with clarity.

The teachings that he fed the crowds rang with authority.

“For if you who are evil know to give your kids good stuff,

Your Father who’s in heaven will supply more than enough

 

Of what you need to live a joyful life upon the earth.

The love He lavishes is of immeasurable worth.”

In order to accept it, though, you need to know it’s real,

That using spiritual gifts does not depend on how you feel.

 

They are not based what you feel or think that you deserve.

The strength you need to offer them does not require raw nerve,

But a love for excellence you know can only come from God.

So, let that be the shoe with which your gospel feet are shod,

 

With praise poured through an earthen vessel resting on His Word,

And acts of faith well-grounded in the truths that you have heard.

For healing comes by being fortified in His great might,

So, take the time to edify yourself before you fight

 

By knowing that’s He’s excellent. His gifts to your are excellent.

The gifts that you receive from Him are glorious to behold.

He spoke to what He made and called it good – yes, very good.

And when you trust in Him, you have good reason to be bold.

https://atomic-temporary-102676306.wpcomstaging.com/healing/hardest-part-ask-seek-knock/

At the Cusp of a New Beginning

I. A New Beginning

 

I’m at the cusp of a new beginning.

What to take? What to let go?

For as I head toward a new place,

Old cursed ways will have to go.

 

I can’t pin down this new beginning though,

Nor forge the path alone,

But friendliness is my best bet

To set the proper tone.

 

Before arising like an eagle

To soar past mountains decked with snow,

I first desire to see your glory, Lord.

That’s all I want to know.

 

For to rest in your sweet presence

Is my one true destination.

So, to follow after you

Let me have zero hesitation.

 

Because to fly, I must be free from

Heavy weights that bring me down.

But as I rise, though, let me not seek honor

Or my own renown.

 

Rather, let me give you praise

And carry me upon your wings

While I surrender to your goodness

With a song of joy that sings.

 

II. God Makes it Possible

 

You help me zip past stumbling blocks

That seek to block my path,

Rocks of unreal expectations

Glued to jealousy and wrath.

 

So, as you bring this new beginning,

Shine your light and heal my soul,

That past hurts might not dictate.

Impart fresh vision, make me whole.

 

Show me your easy yoke that

Frees me up to do your will,

Releases me from worry,

Gives me strength to climb each hill.

 

It protects me from all danger,

Never focuses on my sin,

And in every bitter struggle

Causes peace to reign within.

 

Lord, I thank you, you are great

No matter what  I face.

I’ll conquer every obstacle

By leaning on your grace.

 

Not looking to past failures

Or consumed with hurt and pain,

Though willing to  endure suffering

For the sake of your great name.

 

Because godliness with contentment

Results in greatest gain,

And as I seek to do your will

There is no need to strain.

 

https://miracle-times.com/poetry/give-thanks-every-circumstance/

https://www.barnesandnoble.com/speed-of-sight-c-r-flamingbush/112879

 

 

The Very Best Miracle Cure for Depression

Oh no, I can’t take one more depression session,

For when I dwell on failures, it’s like a recession.

What good is the power of a positive confession

If dwelling on pain has become an obsession?

 

I once thought it wise my mad feelings to vent

But that never caused my fierce pain to relent.

Nor did vengeance allot me a worthwhile cure,

Though it did feed my anger. Of that I am sure.

Through lava-like tears, all I saw was the blur

 

That my life had become, for I loved misery.

Taking comfort in sorrow, I could never get free.

Too depressed to seek counsel, I just didn’t see

Any way to escape my sad soul’s poverty

 

Because I desired manmade sympathy,

But man condemned me – to the umpteenth degree!

Christians bound to the law threw dirt on my distress.

“It’s your own fault you landed yourself in this mess!”

 

The depression ballooned because I couldn’t share

My heart’s deepest woes with those who did not care.

I beat myself to bring them to grief over their unbelief.

“I’m too hurt to be wounded more. What I need is relief!”

 

But it just made them mad. They looked down on my pain.

“Self-torture is stupid. You’ve nothing to gain.”

I didn’t know why they had zero compassion,

Or why they called me selfish, as if I’d no passion.

 

Like Job, I rubbed my “boils” raw with a shard

In a closet that felt like a cold prison yard.

Like a woman rejected, I lacked needed might

To forgive those in my life who caused the harsh blight

Of soul wounds that I had no more strength to fight.

 

But I cried out to God and the godly said, “Praise!”

Though I didn’t feel like it, I praised anyways,

And somehow that praise to God opened a door,

For next Sunday His presence I couldn’t ignore

 

And when prayer was offered, I rushed to the front,

Brushing past fears that God would say something so blunt

His reproof would condemn me and crush my lost soul.

But to my amazement, my soul was made whole.

 

He replaced my depression with joy that can’t speak.

I found myself laughing, released from the creek

Of despair I had sunk in so loud and so long.

Instead of “Poor Nancy,” I sang a new song.

 

Overcoming depression isn’t easy but giving God a sacrifice of praise can help you rise out of that pity party pit.

“The joy of the Lord is your strength.” Nehemiah 8:10

“For by grace are ye saved through faith, and that not of yourselves: It is the gift of God, not of works, lest any man should boast.” Ephesians 2:8

 

Feel free to leave a comment on this article.

Praise, Not Punishment, Is the Best Cure

I know what it’s like to hurt inside – I mean, really hurt. Self-hatred has been a big issue for me. I used to think that to make myself feel better I needed to vent. After all, I saw other people vent, people with horrible tempers. Venting got them attention, and I wanted attention.  I wanted to demand that people like me, because I was in so much pain. I was looking to imperfect people for the comfort I desperately needed, but I thought somehow it ought to work. After all, it worked for them. Why shouldn’t it work for me? I wanted to be noticed. I wanted to be heard, but in a good way. But if people wouldn’t be nice to me, then I wanted to be left alone. I figured that if I punched myself or scratched myself or inflicted physical pain upon myself, that the people who were bullying me would see I was suffering enough and show me some sympathy.   Unfortunately, all it did was make them blame me, which in turn made me feel ashamed. Feeling ashamed made me angrier. It was a vicious cycle.

I didn’t understand what was behind this awful cycle until God opened up the scriptures to me and revealed that self-punishment was actually a form of Baal worship. You can see it in I Kings chapter 18 when the true prophet Elijah challenged the Baal worshippers to a contest. Each side was to prepare a sacrifice to but light no fire to it. Then they were each to call upon the name of their god and see which one answered by sending fire.

Elijah let the Baal worshippers go first. And so, they prepared their sacrifice. There were many of them, so it probably didn’t take very long. Then they called upon Baal to answer them, but he didn’t. They shouted louder. No one heard. Then they began to cut themselves – not just a little, but a lot. They cut and slashed until the blood was flowing.

Imagine for a moment the strong longing those worshippers felt. This was a competition. Much was at stake. To gain the people’s approval, they must prove themselves right. Sounds a bit political, doesn’t it? And then, to their chagrin, it didn’t work. They needed the people’s approval and their god was letting them down. Oh, what self-hatred, what anger, what guilt they must have felt inside! When you feel that way, you kind of want to riot. You want to blame someone. But does blaming others ever really make you feel better?

The worshippers’ self-inflicted pain drained them. The blood they lost was spilled in vain. That is what self-punishment is like, I felt God say to me.  It doesn’t help you overcome hurt feelings. All it does is hurt you more.  A merry heart does good like a medicine (Proverbs 17:22) but depression can make you sick. I should know. I’ve been there. The blood you spill will be in vain.

But the blood of Jesus spilled upon the cross was not in vain.

For “He was wounded for our transgressions, He was bruised for our iniquities. The chastisement of our peace was upon Him and by His stripes we are healed.” Isaiah 53:5.

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God (Romans 3:23). The guilt of being sinners before a holy God is what brings us so much pain. Beating up on yourself won’t make it any better. Being forgiven is what makes us better.

“Be of good cheer,” Jesus told the paralyzed man. “Your sins are forgiven… Rise up and walk.” (see Matthew 9:2-7)

“He bore our griefs and carried our sorrows (Isaiah 53:4).”

Many things in life can make us sad, but despair is not of God. Man’s wrath does not work the righteousness of God (James 1:20), but “Go so loved the world, He gave His only begotten Son, that whosoever believes in Him should not perish but have eternal life.” (John 3:16)

“Worthy is the Lamb that was slain.” (Revelation 5:12)  He’s the One we need to worship. Lift Him up and praise His name, for He is the one who will baptize you with the Holy Spirit and with fire. Trust in Him and you will find the comfort that you seek, for “Whosoever offers praise glorifies me: and to him that orders his conversation aright will I show the salvation of God.” (Psalm 50:23)