Search

Dayle's Blog

Month

August 2019

31 Aug- Plant A Seed

I love spring. It is a yearly visual reminder all around us in creation of how life works, and the spiritual principles that govern our world.

Spring is all about the simplicity of planting a seed, taking care of it and seeing that tiny seed grow, multiply and then produce a harvest. Why? Because it’s designed to.

It is the same for every area of our lives. The Bible says in Galatians 6:7 “For whatever a man sows, that and that only is what he will reap.”

What and who we welcome (sow), and allow into our lives is what is going to be produced in our life (reap). If we allow attitudes, actions or even individuals into our life, which aren’t good or profitable for our spiritual, emotional, mental or physical health then those are the “seeds” which are going to start to produce in our lives. Those “seeds” will in time produce a harvest – either for good or for bad depending on what we have sown.

God says to choose life and blessing and if we don’t like what our life has been producing then all we need do is start sowing into those things that are profitable and good for us; those things we actually want to have in our lives.

The bible says it this way, “Don’t be misled: No one makes a fool of God. What a person plants, he will harvest. The person who plants selfishness, ignoring the needs of others—ignoring God harvests a crop of weeds. All he’ll have to show for his life is weeds! But the one who plants in response to God, letting God’s Spirit do the growth work in him, harvests a crop of real life, eternal life.

So let’s not allow ourselves to get fatigued doing good. At the right time we will harvest a good crop if we don’t give up, or quit. Right now, therefore, every time we get the chance, let us work for the benefit of all, starting with the people closest to us in the community of faith.” (Galatians 6:7-10 Message Bible)

Start sowing seeds today for the harvest you want, for as you sow so shall you reap.

Prayer: Lord help me to choose a life of peace and blessing so that I will receive a harvest of these things in my life, instead of the weeds of anger, bitterness and strife. I choose to sow good seeds today. In Jesus name Amen.

 

30 August – True Feelings

images (48)

Feelings or emotions are great and our emotional responses are usually a positive good thing in our lives. Yet as amazing and important as our emotions are they may not be indicative of facts or truth.

Actually our emotions alone should not be relied upon to gauge truth as there is no end to the varying amount of both positive and negatives feelings that can flow through our life on a daily basis. Our daily emotions can be positive, but they can also be in response to misunderstandings, fears, negative thoughts, lies, or even our fantasies.

The key is to learn how to differentiate between feelings that originate out of our own imaginations and fears, and those that originate out of truth and reality.

We discover how to do this and how to remain emotionally balanced by regularly keeping a check on our feelings and the thoughts behind them. Challenge thoughts and emotions and question their validity and accuracy, rather than simply believing that every feeling must be speaking the truth. We don’t give up feeling, but we can give up on being governed by our emotions and especially those ones which seek to scare, drag us back to the past or lead us astray.

Feelings aren’t necessarily indicative of facts unless they are based in truth and even if they seem to be “our” truth they’re usually not the whole truth.

The bible says that, “A fool gives full vent to his spirit, but a wise man quietly holds it back.” (Proverbs 29:11)

The wisest check on our feelings is to choose to base our thoughts and emotions in who God says we are in His Word and what He says our future holds, rather than being tossed about by every thought, hormone or circumstance we “feel”. Our day will be much more enjoyable and those who live with us will probably breath a sigh of relief at our new emotional equilibrium.

Today I encourage you to base how you think and feel upon God’s word and who He says you are. Then go and have a great day!

“Then we will no longer be immature like children. We won’t be tossed and blown about by every wind of new teaching. We will not be influenced when people try to trick us with lies so clever they sound like the truth. Instead, we will speak the truth in love, growing in every way more and more like Christ, who is the head of his body, the church. He makes the whole body fit together perfectly. As each part does its own special work, it helps the other parts grow, so that the whole body is healthy and growing and full of love.”(Ephesians 4:14-15)

“A glad heart makes a cheerful face, but by sorrow of heart the spirit is crushed.” (Proverbs 15:13)

Prayer: Lord please help me to be balanced in my emotions and not to let my feelings rule my life, but rather the truth of what you say about my circumstances and who you say I am. In Jesus name Amen.

 

 

29 August – Surrender

images (47)
We can all perhaps be tempted to believe that if we try really hard to be better and strive, work and push ourselves we can do whatever we put our mind and will to. We can overcome our weaknesses, addiction and bad habits. We can make it all happen in life. All sounds reasonable enough, except that the most powerful tool we actually have to a victorious, successful life is not simply trying harder or even exerting our will in a situation or struggle. No, one of our most powerful abilities is to surrender.

The 12 steps programme followed worldwide by recovery groups lays out a way of life that is a highly effective path to freedom for addicts… however the 12 steps do not say, “try really hard to not drink or now decide not to drink or participate in that behaviour.”

Amazingly the most powerful tool against addiction and strongholds in our lives isn’t asking people to decide to stop doing what is destroying their lives. Instead of mobilising their will, followers surrender their will. Try to overcome any addiction by our will or own power and it will beat us. Surrender our will, and sobriety and freedom from addictions, habits, strongholds and any sin in general becomes possible.

Jesus taught that if we want to experience victory we begin and position ourselves daily in a place of surrender and he demonstrated this by his own surrender in giving His life. As he struggled with the enormity of what was before him in being crucified on a Cross he prayed, “Not my will Father, but yours be done”. (Luke 22:42) In surrendering his life he won the greatest victory known in the universe; he defeated the power and control of evil and its consequences over mankind. To access that freedom however we are asked to follow Jesus’ example and surrender our lives also.
It is possible to live being the person we long to be and who God sees and created us to be. However to do so we will be required to move out of the drivers seat, hand over the keys and surrender to Jesus.
Surrender which we often see as passivity and defeat turns out to be the way to victory. We lose a life to gain a life – a life far better than the one we lost. 
Today I encourage you to surrender. Not as someone who is fatalistic and defeated, but so that Jesus can take the wheel and connect and direct you to your best life. He’s driving and He’s asking that you ride with Him.

Whoever finds their life will lose it, and whoever loses their life for my sake will find it.” ( Matthee 10:39)

Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.” (Matthew 16:24)
Prayer: Lord forgive me where I have been taking the wheel when you wanted to drive. Today I surrender the controls and my ceaseless exerting of my will to make things happen. Please take my life and make it how you’ve always planned it to be Lord. In Jesus name Amen

28 August – Get Rid Of The Clutter

images (46).jpeg

It’s very hard to stay focused, and feel free when our lives are overflowing with clutter and excess baggage. It’s not really how we’ve been designed to live. I’ve found that when God encourages us to de-clutter it’s like He takes everything out and “puts it on the back lawn” so to speak. We can then look and say, “Wow, I have a fresh canvas and what do I actually want to put on it? Do I want any of this “stuff” or do I want to take advantage of this fresh start?”

When we declutter a room or area of our house a good way to get motivated and have direction is to spend a few minutes visualising the room and how we want it to look. What are the most essential pieces of furniture? What doesn’t belong in the room but has just gravitated there? What is on the floor and what is on the other flat surfaces? Once we’ve visualised how the room will look uncluttered and figured out what is essential we can get rid of the rest.

The same can be said for our lives. It’s good to spend some time looking at our life and how we want it to look. What’s valuable, what do we really want and what has just gravitated into our lives? What is crowding and cluttering our life, like unnecessary things on a floor?

This is where I find it helpful to ask God to reveal his design for my life. What does it look like to Him when I’m uncluttered, focused and free. What does He say is essential and what do I need to surrender to Him? I ask for a release of vision, because once I can visualise how my life will look uncluttered, I am far more likely to let God move in my world and to let go of my clutter.

When our home is filled with clutter, trying to tackle a mountain of stuff can be quite overwhelming. Many advise to start with just five minutes. These baby steps are important; they are a start, and tomorrow we can take another five minutes And another the next day. Before we know it, we’ll have cleared a whole cupboard then a a room and soon our whole house. 

The same can be said for starting the decluttering process in our emotional, spiritual and mental lives. Start with taking five minutes today to ask God where you can de-clutter your life. Then tomorrow do it again and then the next until you grow to love and value the de-cluttered look in your life, the freedom it brings and the new room decluttering creates in your heart and mind for what really matters.

Let us throw off every encumbrance and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with endurance the race set out for us.”(Hebrews 12:1)

“Casting all your care on him; for he cares for you.” (1 Peter 5:7)

Therefore do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will worry about itself. Today has enough trouble of its own.” (Matthew 6:24)

Prayer: Lord thank you that you want me to live a life that is full of life and freedom. Help me to de-clutter my life, whether that be both physically in my home, work, my inner world or other areas of my life. Please give me wisdom and clarity to know what to hold onto to, what to let go of and what to throw in the rubbish. In Jesus Name Amen.

27 August – Soft And Squishy

create in me a clean heart.jpg

What sort of heart do you want to have? I sometimes picture mine being soft and squishy like a marshmallow. But I know at times life can cause my heart to harden up and become brittle and over sensitive due to experiences, hurts, disappointments, un-forgiveness and offence.

The great thing is that God understands that and more than anything He says at those times when we have clutter and hardness in our hearts to, “Come to Me, all who are weary and heavy-laden, and I will give you rest. “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls“…(Matthew 11:28)

Jesus did not condemn Matthew as a tax collector who was despised by his own people, but chose him as a disciple and simply said “Follow me” (Matthew 9:9-13).

He didn’t despise the adulterous woman that everyone else was ready to stone to death. He loved her and saved her life (John 8:1-11).

He chose Zaccheus, a thief and one of the most unpopular people in town to go and have dinner with him, forgiving and changing his course of life forever in the process. (Luke 19:1-10)

Jesus doesn’t reject us when we are feeling bruised and battered or when life seems too hard or empty. Even when our hearts are cluttered, angry, fed-up and burdened,  He simply says, “Come to me”.

Jesus is the cure for hard, battered and closed off hearts and His love never fails. When we experience and accept this love and subsequently the love of others He directs into our lives this love softens our hearts.

In fact His love received will change our life completely over time and any life that you pass that love onto.

Here are a few things I have learnt which help to keep our hearts soft and subsequently healed up:

  1. Deal with anything you know is not right before God. Sin causes hearts to grow hard, especially continual and unrepentant sin. Now we know that “if we confess our sins, [Jesus] is faithful and just and will forgive us our sins” (1 John 1:9) However, if we choose to keep on doing things our way and don’t turn away from sin and seek to change there will be a de-sensitizing effect on our conscience and hearts making it eventually difficult to even distinguish right from wrong. This sinful and hardened heart will over time cause us to have a “seared conscience”.  God’s word makes it clear that if we relentlessly continue to engage in sin, (those things not right before God and His Word) there will come a time when God will give us over to our “debased mind” and let us have it our way. (1 Timothy 4:1-2 
  2. Keep short accounts – Walk in forgiveness.  It is powerful to forgive others and to receive  forgiveness. We let go and let God in and as we do we let His love wash all the “rocks” and hardness out, making room for His love.”Therefore, laying aside falsehood, speak truth each one of you with his neighbor… do not let the sun go down on your anger (Ephesians 4:26)
  3. Find out who you are in Jesus. If we can get a God view of who we and how much we are loved it will change how we see ourselves, those around us and bring perspective to what is really important. You are a new creation (2 Corinthians 5:17)
  4. Worship – God inhabits the praises of His people. (Psalm 22:3) Take time to be thankful and invite God into every area of your life. “He is not far from each one of us; for in Him we live and move and exist. (Acts 17:28) 
  5. God’s best for us is a soft uncluttered heart. Of all the things in our life that we spend our time seeking after and working towards perhaps the most important is to, “Watch over our heart with all diligence, for from it flow the springs of life. For the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. A good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and an evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart”. (Matt 15:18)

Prayer: Lord please forgive me where I have hardened my heart towards you and others and have held onto sin and my ways. Would you create in me a clean and soft heart free from offence and sin. I make room to let your love in today. In Jesus Name Amen

 

26 August – Getting Rid Of The Sludge In Your Soul

praise the lord

Recently something happened that made me really mad. Primarily because it involved my youngest child being hurt, confused and upset through the behaviour of someone else. I’ve realised I am like the Mama Bear who is highly protective of her cubs – you don’t want to mess with her babies. I for all intents and purposes am quite a mild, easy going person until it comes to someone I love and especially my children – mess with them and you kinda better watch out.

However I also know that God is sovereign and that He is ultimately in control of everything. Plus He will only allow us to be pushed so far before He comes in doing His Papa Bear thing. At times when circumstances and people are pushing my buttons and limits I am often told to be silent, to wait and to trust and be still.

There’s moments to stand, fight, and speak and there are times to walk away; to remain silent and simply leave people and circumstances alone and keep running our own race.

This morning after one of those Mama Bear weekends where I just wanted to get in and “fix” some things I heard God speak and tell me to focus. Actually His exact words were, “Focus, focus, focus, it’s all about where you focus. You can sit on your anger and resentment or look at me and let my goodness and grace flood through you”.

There are times when anger and disappointment can feel like sludge in our souls and we need God to move in our lives so He can remove any mess from the hidden places and corners of our soul and renew and improve our focus. We don’t have to struggle and stress for that to happen, because as I discovered this morning there is a great antidote to sludge and negative focus. It’s called praise. Praise will flood our souls and spirits with God’s light and goodness and cause rivers of living water to turn our bitter into sweet.

Praise silences the enemy. Praise reminds us of God’s goodness. Praise brings perspective that God is far bigger than any problem, person or circumstance. Praise invites God on the scene because He inhabits the praises of His people.

Praise activates our spirits and helps remind us of God’s promises and that, “all things work together for our good and that no weapon formed against us will prosper”. Praise helps us focus on the good and to let go of the bad.

Today praise worked and as I focused on God’s goodness and His promises praise began to flush out the sludge that had been sitting in the corner of my soul and I was able to focus on.

Praise is powerful. Try it and let God turn your bitter into sweet and cause you to rest in His promises today.

“Through the praise of children and infants you have established a stronghold against your enemies, to silence the foe and the avenger.” (Psalm 8:2 NIV)

“And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.” (Psalm 8:28 NLT)

Prayer: Lord thank you that you know all about me. Please help me to focus on your goodness and to know that all things work together for my good. I ask for your light to shine into every corner of my life and to turn my bitter into sweet and my mourning into dancing. In Jesus name Amen.

 

 

 

25 August – Wise Up

wisdom-is-the-principal-things.jpg

I have a saying that “nothing in life is ever wasted if we choose to learn from it”. However if we keep doing the same things over and over while hoping for a different result that would be the height of foolishness.

Wisdom learns, reflects, and takes note of what life lessons and God is saying and trying to reveal to us, so that we continually grow. Wisdom helps prevent us from getting stuck in the same bad habits, toxic relationships, financial worries and other challenges over and over again. Wisdom essentially rescues us from “going around and around the mountain”, yet never managing to get fully to where we want to go.

The word “wisdom” is used over 200 times in the Bible. It is translated from the Hebrew word “chokmah,” meaning shrewdness, prudence, skill and wit.”

I love the scripture in Proverbs 24:3-4 which says, “Through wisdom a house is built, And by understanding it is established; By knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant riches.”

In building our lives and our homes it pays to have a solid foundation and I can’t think of a better foundation to build our lives on than wisdom. Personally I have discovered a wealth of wisdom to be found in God’s word. It teaches me how to be a loving, strong, trustworthy person and wife, parent, friend, and leader. I have discovered the knowledge, comfort and understanding in God’s word to navigate through some of the toughest times in my life. The wisdom in God’s word has brought me through death, loss, failure, financial worries, and parenting challenges.

There have been many times when I was unsure of what to do when it came to decisions with one or all of our six children, or with other relationships, work, and our future. However when I have chosen to stop and quiet my heart and mind so that I can seek God for His wisdom He always leads me to the right course of action.

We all like to think we’re making wise choices. Whether it’s in our relationships, difficult decisions or just everyday life. Here are 3 ways wisdom can be established in our life:

1. Live by the wisdom you have already been given:

God’s word is full of wisdom and it’s been given to us. Read it and do what it says.

Plus reflect and learn from your experiences and mistakes. Perhaps start a notebook entitled “The things I’ve learnt” to help you remember.

Listen to wisdom, and do your best to understand. Ask for good judgment. Cry out for understanding. Look for wisdom like silver. Search for it like hidden treasure. If you do this, you will understand what it means to respect the Lord, and you will come to know God. The Lord is the source of wisdom; knowledge and understanding come from his mouth.

“Delight is in the law (word) of the Lord, And in His law meditate day and night, then whatever you do shall prosper.” (Proverbs 2:1-4; Psalm 1:2-3)

2. Get input from those who demonstrate wisdom:

Become wise by walking with the wise; Hang out with fools and watch your life fall to pieces.” (Proverbs 13:20 The Message)

Folly is joy to him who lacks sense, But a man of understanding walks straight. Without consultation, plans are frustrated, but with counsellors they succeed” (Proverbs 15:22)

3. Be open to correction:

How do you respond to correction? Do you get offended? Do you feel rejected? Do you get defensive or indulge in a bout of self-pity? When we value and seek wisdom we need people who’ll be honest with us. Why? Because we often get blinded by our own motives and ego’s. When God corrects or sends someone else to correct us, it’s because He wants what’s best for us. Be teachable, willing, quick to learn and open to counsel.

So don’t feel sorry for yourselves. Or have you forgotten how good parents treat children, and that God regards you as his children? 

My dear child, don’t shrug off God’s discipline, but don’t be crushed by it either.

It’s the child he loves that he disciplines; the child he embraces, he also corrects.

God is educating you; that’s why you must never drop out. He’s treating you as dear children”. (Hebrews 12:4-11 The Message)

Choose the way of wisdom today, because with wisdom you will also find long life, peace,  riches and honour. (Proverbs 3:13-18)

Prayer: Lord please help me to build my house and life on wisdom and that by understanding and knowledge it will be filled with peace, joy, love and an abundance of precious and pleasant riches. In Jesus Name Amen.

24 August – Dad’s Nuggets

life lessons.jpg

It was my Dad’s birthday this week and I was remembering his habit when visiting me of tapping on the kitchen window with his keys to announce his arrival. He freaked our kids out many a time with his tapping and hand suddenly appearing at the window.

One of the things Dad got frustrated with often was the failure of the younger generation to learn from older peoples experiences and mistakes. Dad lived and worked in the gold mining town of Kalgoorlie for quite a few years so I call Dads “pearls of wisdom” that he liked to share, “Dads nuggets”. Just like a nugget of gold needs dusting off and examining closely to see its value, so also do my “Dads nuggets.”  Today I’d like to share some of his classics.

1. Everyone doesn’t have to see that!
Dad loved the beach and working on getting an “all over tan”. However this led to seeing some interesting sights, both for Dad and for those sharing the beach with him! However a piece of wisdom Dad gleaned from his “sunbathing” is that not everyone looks good naked and one should consider whether everyone really needs to see that! That he believed went for sunbathing and your everyday choice of clothing.

2. Buy quality.
Dad may not always have been “flush with cash”, but he was a firm believer in buying the best you can afford. He pushed against the poverty mentality and spirit that often limits people from seeking to be the best they can be and always hoped and encouraged others to be and expect better.

3. Dream.
My Dad was the ultimate dreamer. He was extremely creative and an ideas person. He wasn’t afraid to think outside the box and nothing was too crazy for him. I’m really grateful for having that permission to “dream” from an early age and to know that it’s ok to have an imagination. God, I’ve discovered gave us that ability to dream and imagine, and even says He will do far more for us than we can ask, dream, hope or imagine. (Ephesians 3:20).

Allowing and encouraging dreams also increases our capacity and motivation to get back up after a disappointment or set-back. Dad experienced many disappointments in life, but I think his ability to keep dreaming helped him be one of the most tenacious people I’ve ever met.

4. Travel as much as possible, to as many places as possible.
Dad loved going places and believed travelling makes you “bigger on the inside”. People can become “small minded” if they only stay at home in their comfort zone. Travelling causes us to explore, to grow, to believe for something, to try new things and to trust both ourselves and God more.

5. Run to God, not away.
Dad was often frustrated with people not learning from other’s mistakes. He faced loss and disappointment, but kept dreaming and hoping anyway. However the one thing I did learn from a mistake my Dad I think made is that when we suffer hardship and life feels like it is throwing “curve balls” don’t run from God, run to Him. Dad unfortunately spent a fair amount of time being annoyed at and running from God. He figured it out in the end, but I think He would have been happier and far more peaceful in his life if he’d spent more time running towards God, rather than away from Him.

Its a good thing to learn from others, especially those older than us. We can learn both from their experiences, achievments and mistakes. Their hope is that the next generation will dream bigger, go further and achieve greater things than they ever did. That was one of my Dad’s dreams, and today I know He’s watching from heaven and cheering us on to keep running, to keep dreaming and to never give up.

Therefore, since we are surrounded by such a great cloud of witnesses, let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles. And let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.” (Hebrews 12:1)

Prayer: Lord please help me to learn from those who have gone before me. Thank you that all of heaven is cheering me on today as I run my race. In Jesus name Amen.

23 August – Refuse To Give Up!

refuse to give up

When you read the story of the Wright Brothers – the two American brothers and aviation pioneers generally credited with inventing, building and flying the world’s first successful aeroplane you can’t help but be inspired.

On reading their story you’d perhaps be tempted to wonder why they bothered. Their bicycle shop was very successful so they didn’t need the money or prestige, so why bother with trying to fly?

“Do you really think man can fly? Man wasn’t meant to fly! Leave flying to the birds and get a grip on reality.”

Or so went the traditional wisdom of the day. But a small band of determined inventors dreamt of the day that man would take to the skies and were determined to make that dream a reality. Amongst these dreamers were Orville and Wilbur Wright.

In many ways their quest was ridiculous as little was understood about aerodynamics. Birds flew and kites flew, but precisely what made either possible was still largely a mystery. However this lack of knowledge didn’t deter the Wrights. They had a dream and somehow, although they didn’t at first know how, they believed it could be done and set about to learn whatever was necessary to make their dream of controlled sustained flight a reality.

Their quest began in earnest in the winter of 1900, but it was not until December 17, 1903 that the first successful controlled flight was made. It lasted 12 seconds.

From that first 36.5 meter, 12 second flight, we have progressed a long way. Not in their wildest dreams could Wilbur and Orville Wright have foreseen the progress that would be made in powered flight. Yet as amazing as the invention of the aeroplane was these two men and the many others who have also dreamt big dreams, goes far beyond the  the ingenuity of flight. What their success can teach us is the lessons and benefits of perseverance.

Through mishaps, discomfort, accidents, and the countless hours spent studying and perfecting their flying machine these two brothers are both astounding examples of the power of belief and perseverance. Quite frankly they just refused to give up.

Today if you have a dream, know that just because everyone may think it’s impossible and even laugh at you, does not mean you are crazy or have a problem. Know that with God all things are possible and that He gives us strength to keep going and to keep persevering.

Two bicycle mechanics with a dream changed our concept of travel and consequently our view of the world simply because they refused give up or to listen to those who said it couldn’t be done.

The Inscription on the Wright memorial reads, “In commemoration of the conquest of the air by the brothers Wilbur and Orville Wright. Conceived by genius. Achieved by dauntless resolution and unconquerable faith.”

There will always be two groups of people in the world: those who point out and talk about what’s possible and those who set out to achieve it. Today I encourage you to be the latter and determine to be someone who has dauntless resolution and unconquerable faith! 

Know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance. Let perseverance finish its work so that you may be mature and complete, not lacking anything.” (James 1:2-4)

“You created earth and sky by your great power – by merely stretching out your arm! There is nothing you can’t do.” (Jeremiah 32:17 NIV)

Prayer: Lord thank you for the amazing ability you have placed within us to persevere. Help me to strengthen this resolve in me to keep going, to persevere and to not give up. In Jesus Name Amen.

Blog at WordPress.com.

Up ↑