Oct 31, 2012

Wednesday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Matthew 23

Happy Worship Wednesday, SHINE girls!! Oh, and Happy Halloween!!

If you know me, you know that I LOVE this time of year! Every October I get all of my Halloween decorations out and spend the whole day decorating while the kids are at school.

The MOST fun thing in the world is surprising them and seeing their faces when they walk through the door after school. They LOVE seeing the house all tacky with black and orange Halloween stuff everywhere...and I do mean, everywhere! ;) Don't believe me? Come see for yourself! 

Okay, so what does this post have to do with our reading in Matthew? Ummm, well nothing I suppose. I just wanted to share a little of my heart with all of you precious SHINE sisters. 

Well, actually, on second thought--there is a point to this post. :)

Today is Worship Wednesday. How do I worship the Lord most days? Not just in music that I jam out to in the car, but in loving the living daylights out of my family! Relate? I know you can! 

Aren't we worshiping Him when we treasure and find JOY in the peeps He puts into our lives to take care of? This is worshiping Him, right? :)

Worship Him today, girls. Worship Him in all you do by doing it ALL with a smile and giving Him all the praise!

I love you, and I LOVE worshiping our Lord and Savior right along with you!

celebrating Him,

jill

**Here's a few past Halloween memories in hopes to put a little smile on your pretty little faces:

My little Halloween babies

my handsome hunk--with a mullet :)




Indiana Jones (doing the Elvis lip curl) &
 Super girl

we LOVE trick or treating!

my spider girl!

oh, now this brings tears!
look how little!

snow white (presley) &
the big ugly witch--me! :)

yes, we all get into the fun!


a happy witch and skeleton boy

country bumpkin and pirate girl


Wilma and Fred (Lem and Me!)
2011
Super girl shows off her strength


Oct 30, 2012

Tuesday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Matthew 22

Good morning, SHINE girls! I sure hope you are staying connected with our reading. Oh my goodness, it is insatiably delicious. I'm licking my lips as I read it. Such goodness found here.

Are you feeling the same way? I sure hope so.

My sweet and precious friend, Lisa, is posting today. This girl speaks the truth and gets to the nitty gritty. Don't we like nitty gritty?

Oh, I sure do. I have never been good at small talk. Ever. I like realness, openness, and deep down conversations. Don't you?

Be blessed today, sweet SHINE sisters. The Holy Spirit sure speaks through this girl. Get ready. :)

Blue Powerade
by: Lisa Inlow


Hey Y'all.  Going to share a story with you today.  A part of my journey of giving it my all, to be all I can be for my husband and children, first and foremost, prior to any other humans.  And I love and adore all the other humans in my life, but have gently moved them to my peripheral (near the surface or outside of; external.)

I did a Bible study Summer 2009 where the author, in the first chapter, explained how my husband should get the best of my day.  Excuse me??  You mean when he who walks in the door at 5:30 PM !!  At this time I had a toddler and a little girl barely 1 year old.

My first thoughts were this was crazy because of the business of life with 2 small children...

But the longer I thought about it, (and the Spirit tugged at my heart) I started to look at what I allowed to zap my "Lisa-goods" all day.  Of course, caring for little ones, but my kids were healthy, good sleepers (finally!), both took naps at the same time. My days were not bad at all.

What was I allowing to dip into my Blue Powerade.  Yes, explanation needed!  :-)

The further along in the study I went, I started to see this, albeit wacky, word picture.

When I get up in the morning, I picture myself full-up of Blue Powerade.  Why Blue Powerade? I couldn't tell you, I actually love Orange G2!!

Then I started thinking about the straws dipping in drinking up Lisa-goods, ie, my emotions, energy, mental time, physical time...

Of course my husband and children, home and all that entails.  They had first dibs and could take from me all day, every day.  I loved this, welcomed it, no problem here. (But did they have first dibs?)

Then I noticed there were some straws I was freely giving out to others.  And some, I had a drawer full of back-up straws for them, in case they left theirs at home and needed some of me.  I could not imagine not being accessible by them...I needed them to need me.

What about those things I signed up for, said yes too, committed myself too.  Not one who (used) to say "no" easily, and if I did, had tremendous guilt.  "I can do it all..."

Prior to this realization, when my husband would come home, my Blue Powerade bottle was bone dry.  I had allowed other humans (remember I love these humans) to dip their straw in all day and take all my Lisa-goods; emotions, time, mental energy, away from me, then I had nothing left.  And remember too, I had back-up straws for them.  I had to be "fed" by their need for me.

This dry Blue Powerade bottle caused me to be short or cranky. Not very warm or welcoming.  Possibly impatient, maybe some sighing or eye-rolling. (So not cool for the hubs to come home too.)

Things were topsy-turvy for sure.

Along this same time, I found this verse, 1 Thessalonians 4:11, and it was not in my Bible study, it's just one the Lord put in front of me:  Make it your ambition to lead a quiet life, to mind your own business and to work with your hands, just as we told you...

I made this verse my screen saver.  I was convicted y'all, flat out, in my face convicted.  Cuz let's be real here, leading a quiet life is the opposite of how the world pushes us to live.  How 'bout minding our own business?  Yowzers.  I was so busted by the Lord!

And to be brutally honest here, when I was minding my own business, well, others weren't checking in on me either...not near enough.  I can't speak for any of you, but for me, I realized I needed to be too involved with others...I was feeding a need I had, to be needed.

But who really needed me?

Oh for goodness sake, what about my Savior?  Who wanted to be my Everything!  Was I spending my 15 minutes with Him, then moving quickly along to human relationships to get my tank full?

What about that broad-shouldered man I married who I really, really dig?

How about those precious babies, at this time, more a little 2 1/2 year old boy who was really needing a fully-emotionally-available mommy.

I had to step back, way back, and take a long hard look at who and what I was allowing to take my Lisa-goods from me.  Lisa-goods that needed to be saved for the peeps who live under my roof.  They deserved, needed and desired, the best of me.  And I really wanted to deliver.

Of course I didn't cut people out of my life, become a hermit and disconnect my phone.

I did however, make some changes.

And most importantly, I started praying.  I asked the Lord to keep showing me where I could tighten up my belt in this area.  I told Him I desired a quiet life, "please show me how to do that..."  I told Him that I knew I was too needy of others interactions...I knew I needed Him to fill me up to over-flowing.

So who's drinking up your Blue Powerade?  Do you have back-up straws for those who you can't imagine not needing you?

It's hard to take a look that deep within and be honest with yourself.  But, for me, so, so worth it.  I have been more at peace.  Oh ladies, the peace, it's crazy good!

Dear Father, show Yourself to us.  Are there areas of our lives that are out of balance?  Do we need an emotional tune-up?  Guide us Father.  May we see all we are in You first, then in our loved ones.  We praise You for who You are.  We thank You for Your unconditional love.  May we seek You and let You show us Your perfect way for us.  Amen.

Oct 29, 2012

Monday SHINE.....

Reading plan for week of 10/29-11/02:

  • Monday 10/29: Matthew 21
  • Tuesday 10/30: Matthew 22
  • Wednesday 10/31: Matthew 23
  • Thursday 11/01: Matthew 24
  • Friday 11/02: Matthew 25
Good  Monday morning, SHINE girls! Don't you just love fresh starts? This is what I LOVE about Mondays! Fresh starts galore!!

It's the same exact way with the Lord. Every single second can be a fresh start. He knows, more than anyone, how flesh-y we are. We mess up. Big time. 

He forgives us. Even bigger time. 

What are you beating yourself up about? Whatever it is, do me a favor. Stop it right now.

Trust me, I am the queen of big mistakes, and then beating myself up afterwards. The beatings would go on and on and on and on. Exhausting, right?

Finally, the Lord bopped me on the head one day and said: "Jill, why are you still stuck there? Get over it, already. I have already forgotten it, but you keep reminding me because you refuse to move past it. You are not doing anyone any favors by wallowing in your self-pity. Get up and move on. Now."

So, the Lord didn't care that I was still beating myself up and wallowing in my guilt? 

Of course He cares. He cares about me enough to speak truth to me and tell me to take my eyes off of self and move on--for Heaven's sake.

What's keeping you stuck, girls?

Whatever it is, it's not where the Lord wants you to be. Nope, not for one more second. 

Get up, wipe off your bottom, and get going today. 

**Presley is watching me type and giggled when I told you to wipe off your bottoms. :-)

Today is your fresh start, pretty girl. Right this very second.

Father,

Thank you for Your Word that speaks Truth and Life to our little hearts. We need it every single day. It is nourishment to our weary souls.

Forgive us for focusing on ourselves so many times and not focusing on You and Your Promises.

We believe You, we trust You, we love You, Father.

Today, we are following You and not looking back. You have a future and a plan for us. A future that is beyond our wildest imaginations! Thank You, Father. Thank You.

In Jesus name,

Amen

"Great is his faithfulness; his mercies begin afresh each morning."
Lamentations 3:23

Oct 28, 2012

Prayer Requests and Praises for the week of 10/28-11/03

Thank you for posting your prayer requests and praises here!
We will be lifting our SHINE girls up all week long.

Love you girls, SHINE on..... 
:)

 

Oct 26, 2012

Friday SHINE....


  Today's Reading: Matthew 20


Hey, y'all! It's Rebekah, here. (Insert my radio voice here.) Happy Fun Friday, evvvvvvery--body! :) I hope you all are having an awesome start to your weeks-end finale!!! 

Since it's Friday, it's also signaling time for a Fun Friday Challenge... Ready????

Angie's post on Tuesday was such an inspiration to me. 

Praying, promising to pray and keeping focused on prayer are such important commitments.

I feel like I have "floating prayer requests" in my brain. They float in and around, they float by the forefront of my mind all day long. I am praying for A LOT of people and things. Do you ever ask yourself the question-- Who am I praying for again? Am I remembering everybody? I ask the Lord this, but I might be the only one??!!

 For Fun Friday... our challenge is: to add our prayer requests all in one spot, all visible to you during the day. Let's post these requests above the kitchen sink or on the bathroom mirror (or both!) Keep the requests in the car?! I love to pray in the car.

Wherever your prayer requests land, I pray that we can stay committed to pray and pray for those we've promised to lift up to the LORD. :)

Thank you Angie, let's be inspired to pray,

Rebekah




Oct 25, 2012

Thursday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Matthew 19

Happy Serve Day Thursday, SHINE girls!

We all know what we do today, right? We serve! Someone in our life today needs a helping hand, a word of encouragement, or a listening ear. Seek them out today and serve them by letting Christ work though that little heart of yours to theirs.

There is just so much to cover in our reading. I mean, seriously, where do I even begin? The thing I love MOST about God's Word is how each of us receive it differently depending on the season we are in. True?

You and I can read the exact same scripture and get two completely different applications from it. This is because His Word is living and breathing! It's not old, stale, and pasty. NO way!

The Lord keeps bringing to my mind something that happened while my friend Kelly and I were in Target on Tuesday. We were checking out when suddenly we heard some commotion. We looked over at the doors and the security guard had thrown a man to the ground. The man that was thrown to the ground was bigger than the guard, so 2 other Target employees jumped in to help.

It was like a scene straight out of a movie. Our eyes could not leave the action. It was riveting!

Finally, they were able to get hand cuffs on the man. It took several minutes for them to get him off the ground. This man was determined.

When the man stood up, hands cuffed together behind his back, stolen items started falling out of his pants. His pants were stuffed with all kinds of things.

I could only see this mans back, but my goodness it was the saddest thing in the world.

He hung his head low as the items were falling out of his pants. Humiliated. Embarrassed. Everyone was watching him. By now a crowd had formed encircling the chaos.

If I could have talked to the man, I would have asked him this: "Why? Why did you steal? Don't you know there are security cameras everywhere? Was this all really worth it?"

Maybe my high school longing of wanting to be a journalist kicked in, but I wanted to talk to him. I wanted to look in his eyes and ask him why he was so desperate to steal. How had his life turned out like this? What went wrong?

As Kelly and I headed back home, I could not forget seeing this man's back hunched over and head held low. Unforgettable.

This man is someone's son. He may even be someone's husband or father or brother.

What he did was wrong. Very wrong. There is no excuse for stealing. Ever.

However, I think about the rotten choices that I have made. Some may have not been quite as publicly known as this man's, but oh I have made some doozies.

What is the common ground for this man and I?

I think I know. Desperation.

When we are desperate, our senses get out of whack. We cannot separate truth from lies. Our minds get blurry and in our desperation we grasp for something. Anything.

Satan loves when we are desperate. He knows the One thing we need and he will stop at nothing to make sure we don't grasp that One thing---the Father.

We all do dumb things in our life. Things that makes us shudder. Things that we would die if others knew.

However, I bet someone along the way showed us grace. They showed us mercy and forgiveness. They made us feel "normal", even despite our bad choice or choices.

They showed us the Love of the Father. Even when we didn't deserve it.

Sometimes I think it's easier show Grace when we have messed up and someone has shown us this  kind of Love and Grace.  It seems a whole lot easier to extend it back it out again when we have been on the receiving end. Doesn't it?

On occasion I have been accused of being "stupid" and "naive" for extending Grace to someone that others thought were not worthy of such Grace. You know what I always, always say? "I only can extend Grace  because Grace has been so greatly lavished upon me time after time. I have walked in that persons shoes more times than I can even begin to count."

 There is nothing stupid about extending Grace. In fact, it takes a whole heck of a lot more strength to show Grace than to turn our backs. Would you agree?

Who in your life needs this kind of Grace?

Maybe the person is you. Maybe you are the only one still holding your hands behind your back, holding yourself hostage, when the hand cuffs were severed long ago.

Or, maybe you are holding the key to someones hand cuffs. Maybe you need to turn the key and set them free.

Pray about this. Ask for the Lord to show you how this applies to you today.

Go out of your way and show Grace today. Even if they don't deserve it. Do any of us?


swallowed up by His Grace,


jill


"Just then a man came up to Jesus and asked, “Teacher, what good thing must I do to get eternal life?”

“Why do you ask me about what is good?” Jesus replied. “There is only One who is good. If you want to enter life, keep the commandments.”
Matthew 19:17


Oct 24, 2012

Wednesday SHINE....




Today’s Reading: Matthew 18

Our Road-map

Good morning, SHINE girls! This is Rebekah Vepraskas. :) How are y’all?  Bright eyed, loving your Savior and off to a great morning? Indeed...! :)

Well, hold on to your caps because Jesus comes on strong in Matthew 18 today, girlies. Wow!

Every word sinks right down to your bones; every slice has really good teaching we can take to heart. He even steps on some toes here, or he steps on mine…

Keep in mind that the disciples are having a petty fight when Jesus is asked in verse (1), “Who gets the highest rank in God’s kingdom?”

He responds in a lengthy explanation, challenging them to humble themselves like children, resist all forms of temptation, give children the attention they seek from us, engage in conflict resolution, forgive in all cases, and he talks about the good Shepherd seeking out one wayward sheep.  

Verse 12: If a man has a hundred sheep, and one of them has gone astray, does he not leave the ninety-nine on the mountains and go in search of the one that went astray? 13 And if he finds it, truly, I say to you, he rejoices over it more than over the ninety-nine that never went astray.”


Recently, I heard a teacher say that the Lord gave us commandments not to make life hard, but to make life easier.  Wow! That's a novel perspective!! But... it kinda makes sense.

 He gave us a road map through His teaching to show us the way. He didn’t teach these things to give us an unattainable standard to live by. He loves us. He was fully human, too. He gets us. He knows that things like forgiveness are hard to exercise, but vitally important. He knows that giving children the direction and attention they deserve is a huge responsibility, but vitally important. He cautions us to resist temptation because it will make life easier for us if we do. He tells us to humble ourselves because he knows it’s not our nature, but again, it’s vitally important.

In the middle of all of these cautionary topics that Jesus lays out, He tells us how desperately He seeks us.   

Wow… 

He doesn’t want His teachings to create space and distance between us and Him. He wants to make life better and smoother for us.  
  
It's OK for Jesus to give us a road-map without us having to buck Him back. The road map is for us, not HIM. He loves us the same, regardless, we never earned that love.

If we have slipped away, only for a second and only because we weren’t paying attention, He doesn’t want us using His road-map as an excuse to stay away. 

...Maybe you’re really far away; He is still on the side of the mountain searching for you, His irreplaceable sheep.  That road-map is our notes/cheat sheet to the open book test of life. We are being deceived by satan if we believe that Jesus’ road map is a reason to stay away from our Good Shepherd.

Ok, I don't know about you, but to me-- that's good news!

I love Matthew 18 because it’s a road map with a real big hug right smack-dab in the middle.  The Lord has his arms open, let’s run back to Him with whatever we’re facing in our path. He is so ready to guide us again.


Stringing a bell around my neck (so he can find me),

Rebekah :)



Oct 23, 2012

Tuesday SHINE...

Today's Reading: Matthew 17

Good morning, SHINE girls! Are we so in love with Jesus or what? If the book of Matthew doesn't just make you fall head over red-high-heels, then I don't know what will!

Jesus is my the MAN! Oh my goodness. I seriously cannot get enough of Jesus and I know you all feel the same way. :)

Today, my friend Angie Ludlow is posting. Angie posted a couple of months ago, so if you missed it go here and check it out.

Her post today was exactly what my dried-out little heart needed. After reading it, I thanked the Lord over and over for speaking through her to me. I will bet my favorite Mary Kay lipgloss that you all feel the same way after reading.

Be blessed, sweet girls.


Prayer Matters
by: Angie Ludlow

We all have said it... “I’ll pray for you”, but are we truly praying to the Lord and making our requests heard out loud?

Last year when I lost my grandmother I finally picked up the book I had heard so much about, Heaven is for Real by Todd Burpo. The book is about his son, Colton, who during an emergency hospital trip, journeys to heaven and back. I purchased the book at the airport on the way to my grandmother’s memorial and finished it before landing. It was a simple read with a simple message…Heaven IS for real. But I got a bit more out of it than that. What I took away was prayer…it matters.

Colton talks about being in heaven and watching his father pray before he gave his sermons. (Time is not the same in heaven as it is on Earth so Colton witnessed events that had happened, were currently happening and that had yet to occur.) He stated that he saw the Lord answer his father’s prayers by sending a beam of light or power down upon his father…just like that.

That simple. The man asked…the Lord beamed it down. That was such a visual for me. I could see something like the bat signal blasting through the sky and resting upon this man. It was God’s OK. His blessing…you ask, He gives.

The book also talks about the prayers being raised up while he was in the hospital as well as prayers for him to show signs of recovery from a surgery. Each time the prayers were answered. Again, I see the Lord sending his beam of approval down to Earth.

Obviously the plan all along was for this boy to spread the message that heaven is for real. I had known that, what I was lacking, apparently, was the reality that God listens to and answers prayers…for real.

Not long after reading this book and making the personal commitment to truly pray when I say I will, our very own Jill had asked that we pray for her friend David. I did not know David. Never met him and knew I never would. But he needed prayers sent up. So I prayed. I sent up my prayer along with the countless others. Anytime I thought about this man’s story I wouldn’t think that’s so sad…I would pray. And pray hard. He needed it.

David was delivered by his illness, or disease. And thus the prayer for him to be delivered through his disease was not answered. God took David home instead. Does that mean our prayers didn't work? Does that mean they didn't matter? Why would He answer one man’s prayer but not another? Maybe some one much more wise than I knows the answer to this. All I know for sure I that prayer does matter. They do get answered and we should pray.

I have started a personal journey in my faith walk by making a commitment to prayer for others.

(*Note: I hesitate to share this little piece of me for various reasons, but feel I need to use this as an example, not in anyway intended to be boastful*) 

I have joined the intercessory prayer team at my church, dedicating myself to show up every week and pray for the various requests made by members of the church. At first I was excited to make this commitment, not really feeling it was about others but about me. That makes sense right? Well see, I have this dear friend… Jill ;)…who often times reminds me that when we pour into others, blessings pour into us. I was all ready for some blessings to be “poured” my way. So my reasons were completely selfish to start this journey.  But when I first sat down with the list of prayer requests I was taken aback. I had not given it any thought as to what I would be praying for….sad story after sad story. I could also see the past requests and how a prayer for healing would be updated with a simple note: They have passed.

Uh oh. This might be a bit more depressing than I had bargained for. But by this point all the realizations I had once made about prayer came flooding to the forefront. It didn't matter how disheartening this would be….they need prayers…. I would send them.

It’s not easy to not bring a persons story home. I could easily carry around the “that could be us” or “this world is so sad” feelings all day. But that is truth….that COULD be us. And wouldn't I want as many prayers as possible going to heaven for me? Wouldn't you?

When talking to my mom about the subject she asked the question…”Don’t you think that could get to you after a while?”... And it was in answering her I realized where I truly stand on the matter.

“Yes, it’s depressing. But it’s not about me. I take my prayer seriously.”

“Bless your heart”, “Y’all come back”, and “Heavens to Betsy”….These are simple expressions. “I’ll pray for you” shouldn't be. Let’s take this seriously.

Prayer matters.




Oct 22, 2012

Monday SHINE....

Reading Plan for the week of 10/22-10/26:


  • Monday 10/22: Matthew 16
  • Tuesday 10/23: Matthew 17
  • Wednesday 10/24: Matthew 18
  • Thursday 10/25: Matthew 19
  • Friday 10/26: Matthew 20


Hey Sweet SHINE sisters! I hope you enjoyed this fabulous Fall weekend! Don't you love changing into this new season of cooler weather, sweaters and boots? Me too! :)

So, during my little hiatus last week, I felt the Lord tugging on my heart for SHINE to really focus on serving in the upcoming holiday months. He has been SO faithful to us daily as He teaches us in His word.

The colder months can be excruciating for our poverty stricken and homeless friends. A little on our part can make a HUGE difference in the life of others. Huge.

As the Lord leads, I will be posting serving opportunities for us SHINE sisters. You may be able to participate in some of them, or you may not. Let the Lord lead you to serve where He is calling you. However, please pray over these opportunities. Pray that these ministries will be able to make an impact for His Kingdom and spread the Gospel of Christ like never before!

Of course, as the Lord is preparing my heart to write this post, I receive an email from my church regarding an opportunity to serve. He's always right on time, isn't He? :)

Every year our church collects shoe boxes of goodies to give to Operation Christmas Child. These shoe boxes are flown to countries where children are very needy. It is the biggest blessing to be able to participate in this program! It's also something you can do with your children or grandchildren as well. It is a very hands-on opportunity to serve others.

Preparing a shoe box is simple.  Here is an email I received from our church explaining exactly how it works:

“What is the power of a simple gift? Can a shoe box really make a difference?”

Yes… Simple things like toy cars, pencils, toothbrushes and socks (things that most American children might take for granted) can make a huge difference for children living in desperate situations around the world. For our current E-town mission project, we’re supporting Operation Christmas Child, a ministry of Samaritan’s Purse International Relief. Operation Christmas Child brings joy, hope and the Good News of the Gospel!
On Sunday, November 11, we’ll be collecting Operation Christmas Child shoe boxes. Below is a list of suggested items your child can include in the box:
  • Toys & fun items like small hot-wheel cars, balls, dolls, stuffed animals, musical instruments, jump ropes, yo-yos, stickers, etc.
  • School & craft supplies like pens, pencils, crayons, makers, stamps, ink pads, solar calculators, coloring books, etc.
  • Hygiene items like toothbrushes, toothpaste, bar soap, combs, washcloth, etc.
  • Other items like T-shirts, socks, ball caps, sunglasses, toy jewelry, hair clips, watches, flashlights with batteries, etc.
  • A personal note may also be included from your child or family. If you include your name and address, the child receiving your shoe box may write back!
It’s easy to participate. Just pack everything in an empty shoe box, and follow the directions found on the “How to Pack a Shoe Box” brochure we will be sending home with your child this Sunday.
For additional information, please visit Samaritan’s Purse at the following website… http://www.samaritanspurse.org/index.php/OCC/index/


If you visit their website you can print off a label with the age of the boy or girl and the age group you choose. Simple!

Or, we can provide you with the label. :) The website also explains that each box will need a $7.00 donation to cover shipping expenses. You can make that directly out  to "Samaritans Purse", or you can donate the shipping cost online on their site.

**I will be happy to pick up the box from you. OR, you can drop it off at our church, Eastridge Community Church in Covington, Ga. OR, you can find a drop-off location in your area to drop your box off. :)

As we approach the Thanksgiving and Christmas season, let's be in tune with the needs of those around us. A very small gesture, can make a HUGE impact in the life of another and for His Kingdom.

More serving opportunities to come, stay tuned.

I love you, sweet girls!

Thank you for your hearts that serve!

thankful for YOU,

jill

**Email me directly if you have any questions regarding Operation Christmas Child. I will be happy to help answer them! shinegirlsshine@gmail.com



Oct 21, 2012

Prayer Requests and Praises for the week of 10/21-10/27


We are praying, girls!  Please post your prayer requests and praises here this week... The Lord is working in our lives today and we are so excited to pray for you and with you.

God bless each SHINE girl this very moment. Help us to pray, Lord, and draw closer to You, in Jesus' name. Amen.

Love you all so much! 

 

Oct 19, 2012

Friday SHINE....

Today's Reading: Matthew 15

Happy Fun Friday, SHINE girls! I've missed y'all so much!

I hope you have all been diving into Matthew and floating around a while in the cool, calm waters found there.

Seriously, I cannot get enough. Do you find yourself reading the passages over and over again? Yes, me too. Almost like licking my plate after a delicious meal. :)

I hope you have had the chance to catch up this week, or maybe even get ahead in our reading. One friend told me that she went back and read previous posts that she had not been able to read and how blessed she was. Our God is never stale is He? His Word is always fresh and on time!

Let's get straight to our Fun Friday Challenge:

This verse from our reading today hit me like a ton of bricks:


 “Are you still so dull?” Jesus asked them. 17 “Don’t you see that whatever enters the mouth goes into the stomach and then out of the body? 18 But the things that come out of a person’s mouth come from the heart, and these defile them. 19 For out of the heart come evil thoughts—murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, slander. 20 These are what defile a person; but eating with unwashed hands does not defile them.” Matt. 15:16-20

Here's how it breaks down in my blonde head: I can read the Bible day in and day out, go to church every time the doors open, give my time to the poor and the needy, look really Christian-y on the outside...

However,  what is coming out of my mouth? Oh, yikes.

Let me repeat this: What is coming out of our mouths?

"The good man brings good things out of the good stored up in his heart, and the evil man brings evil things out of the evil stored up in his heart. For out of the overflow of his heart his mouth speaks." Luke 6:45

Today, on this beautiful Fall Friday, let's be extra aware of what comes out of that pretty little mouth of ours.  God makes it very clear that our words are a reflection of our heart.

If you are like me, you may have to super glue your lips together some days. Seriously.

As if this weren't enough, as I was reading the daily Psalm--which is 19--for today being the 19th, I came across this verse:


"May these words of my mouth and this meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight,
Lord, my Rock and my Redeemer."
Psalm 19:14

Hello! I think the Lord really wants us to get this. (or maybe it's just me!) :)


Let's focus on pleasing our Father today by the words that come out of our mouths. Let's encourage, lift up, exhort, and praise others today around us. Regardless of the mood we are in or the emotions we are feeling. Let's speak goodness today.

Are you with me?

taming my tongue,

jill