Friday, July 29, 2016

God Gladdens the Heart.

There are many reasons for sorrow in this world. It is often difficult to be happy with all the hardness of life. But in the midst of it all, God can gladden the heart. He can give joy independent of circumstances.


Psalm 5:11
But let all who take refuge in you be glad; let them ever sing for joy. Spread your protection over them, that those who love your name may rejoice in you.



Psalm 9:2
I will be glad and rejoice in you; I will sing the praises of your name, O Most High.



Psalm 14:7
Oh, that salvation for Israel would come out of Zion! When the Lord restores his people, let Jacob rejoice and Israel be glad!



Psalm 21:6
Surely you have granted him unending blessings and made him glad with the joy of your presence.



Psalm 31:7
I will be glad and rejoice in your love, for you saw my affliction and knew the anguish of my soul.



Psalm 32:11
Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart!



Psalm 40:16
But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; may those who long for your saving help always say, “The Lord is great!”



Psalm 90:14
Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love, that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.



Psalm 118:24
The Lord has done it this very day; let us rejoice today and be glad.



Psalm 149:2
Let Israel rejoice in their Maker; let the people of Zion be glad in their King



Ecclesiastes 5:20
They seldom reflect on the days of their life, because God keeps them occupied with gladness of heart.



Isaiah 25:9
In that day they will say, “Surely this is our God; we trusted in him, and he saved us. This is the Lord, we trusted in him; let us rejoice and be glad in his salvation.”



Revelation 19:7
Let us rejoice and be glad and give him glory! For the wedding of the Lamb has come, and his bride has made herself ready.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

Doors: The Story of My Job

I submitted all my other applications first and wavered about the one. Little brother said, "You should apply for every job you can in the area you want to be, though." So I applied for the job: a college guidance coordinator position at a local charter high school. I felt qualified for this job because of my previous experience working in university financial aid, but this guidance job did not require a masters degree or facilitate professional licensing for counseling. I wondered if taking this job would be forsaking the calling I felt towards counseling, and I prayed that God would shut the door if so.


I got an e-mail from a recruiter for the school the next day asking for a phone interview. We talked that very afternoon. She told me that there were several people who had already interviewed for the job, but she would forward my information to the supervisor for the position, and I might hear back next week. I prayed that God would close the door and not allow me to get an interview if he did not want me to have the job.


Meanwhile, I got another e-mail about another application I submitted, this one for an actual counseling job. I wavered about the nature of the work, but scheduled an interview anyway. I needed a job.


I missed the first call from the school job supervisor. When I returned the call, I got voicemail. "This is a dead end, I thought." But then I got a call back, after 5 pm.


"Can you come in at 1 pm tomorrow?"


"Sure."


I got to the interview a little early and got left by the receptionist out in the hallway. I tried to smile at everyone who passed. I made small talk with a guy who couldn't get into his office due to carpet cleaning: "Well that inhibits the work you want to do, doesn't it?" I said.


Then the supervisor came out and told me to go into her office. The guy to whom I had spoken earlier introduced himself as the Director of Academic Programs. Oops! We started talking. Then the supervisor returned. The Director and Supervisor asked for copies of my resume, of which I providentially had two. We talked for 30 minutes and they asked if I could go to training the next day if I got hired. I quickly ran through my schedule in my head and calculated that I could if I canceled my other interview. "Yes," was my answer.


"We'll get back to you today," they said.


And I left. As I left, I prayed, "God, if they offer me this job, I think I'll take it. If you don't want me to take it, don't let them call me."


I got a call on my way home, a mere 15 minutes after I interviewed. Ironically, this was also the day that a third agency, with whom I had scheduled an interview months ago, told me they had no open positions. The door that had remained open for so long, shut firmly. I had hardly approached the door of this second job, and God swung this door I had not known wide open. I briefly conferenced with my family when I arrived home, and with no red flags, I accepted the college guidance position, canceled my other interview, and packed for training the next day.


That, friends, is the story of how I got my job, of doors closing and opening, and of a God who has a greater view of my life than I myself do. I've got a lot to learn, but thanks be to God, I've got a job.

Friday, July 22, 2016

God is Flawless.


From my readings today in Psalm 12:

God is flawless.
"Having no defects or faults;" "legally sound;" "having no discernible blemishes or shortcomings; perfect" (Dictionary.com, n.d.)


2 Samuel 22:31
As for God, his way is perfect: The Lord’s word is flawless; he shields all who take refuge in him.


Psalm 12:6
And the words of the Lord are flawless, like silver purified in a crucible, like gold refined seven times.


Proverbs 4:2
I give you sound learning, so do not forsake my teaching.


Proverbs 8:14
Counsel and sound judgment are mine; I have insight, I have power.


Colossians 1:22
But now he has reconciled you by Christ’s physical body through death to present you holy in his sight, without blemish and free from accusation


1 Peter 1:18-19
For you know that it was not with perishable things such as silver or gold that you were redeemed from the empty way of life handed down to you from your ancestors, but with the precious blood of Christ, a lamb without blemish or defect.

Reference:
Flawless. (n.d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged. Retrieved July 13, 2016 from http://www.dictionary.com/browse/flawless.

Friday, July 15, 2016

God Accepts Me as His Child.


Because of Jesus' sinless sacrifice, God accepts me as His child.
He receives me (Dictionary.com, n. d.)


Psalm 6:9
The Lord has heard my cry for mercy; the Lord accepts my prayer.


Psalm 119:108
Accept, Lord, the willing praise of my mouth, and teach me your laws.


Acts 15:8
God, who knows the heart, showed that he accepted them by giving the Holy Spirit to them, just as he did to us.


Romans 5:11
Not only is this so, but we also boast in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.


1 Thessalonians 5:9
For God did not appoint us to suffer wrath but to receive salvation through our Lord Jesus Christ.


Hebrews 12:6
The Lord disciplines the one he loves, and he chastens everyone he accepts as his son.

Reference:
Accept. (n.d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged. Retrieved July 06, 2016 from http://www.dictionary.com/browse/accept.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Thanksgiving for the Benevolent Goodness of the Lord


In the midst of the crazy state of the world right now, especially in the political arena, do you ever stop to thank God that He is a benevolent ruler, that He really cares about His children and wants good for them? I am amazed at how many times Scripture says to thank God for His goodness. Specifically, it uses the phrase first mentioned in 1 Chronicles 16:34, "Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; hHs love endures forever." So today's theme for thanksgiving is the benevolent goodness of the Lord.

"Characterized by or expressing goodwill or kindly feelings; desiring to help others; charitable; intended for benefits rather than profit" (Dictionary.com, n. d.).

1 Chronicles 16:34
Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; His love endures forever.

2 Chronicles 5:13
The trumpeters and musicians joined in unison to give praise and thanks to the Lord. Accompanied by trumpets, cymbals and other instruments, the singers raised their voices in praise to the Lord and sang: “He is good; His love endures forever.”

2 Chronicles 7:3
When all the Israelites saw the fire coming down and the glory of the Lord above the temple, they knelt on the pavement with their faces to the ground, and they worshiped and gave thanks to the Lord, saying, “He is good; his love endures forever.”

Ezra 3:11
With praise and thanksgiving they sang to the Lord: “He is good; His love toward Israel endures forever.” And all the people gave a great shout of praise to the Lord, because the foundation of the house of the Lord was laid.

Psalm 106:1
Praise the Lord. Give thanks to the Lord, for He is good; hHs love endures forever.

Jeremiah 33:10-11
Yet in the towns of Judah and the streets of Jerusalem that are deserted, inhabited by neither people nor animals, there will be heard once more the sounds of joy and gladness, the voices of bride and bridegroom, and the voices of those who bring thank offerings to the house of the Lord, saying, “Give thanks to the Lord Almighty, for the Lord is good; His love endures forever.” For I will restore the fortunes of the land as they were before,’ says the Lord.

1 Timothy 4:4
For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving.

Reference:
Benevolent. (n.d.). Dictionary.com. Unabridged. Retrieved June 27, 2016 from  http://www.dictionary.com/browse/benevolent.

Wednesday, July 6, 2016

June Update

It's been crazy, with a big event at work, training my replacement, and moving. My parents are graciously housing me, but my life is in all sorts of disarray. I've got no job, no schedule, and not a clue what's next. But God is with me, and I have many reasons to give thanks, including progress on THE LIST:

1) Go! On a cruise. Done!

2) Stop checking e-mail on my phone while at work. Well, I don't have a job anymore, but I left my personal e-mail off my phone so that I don't obsessively check it. I left my professional e-mail on to (hopefully) keep up with job application e-mails.

3) Use more glass storage containers and less plastic. Mom's all about the glass and has a vast supply of canning jars and lids. I think I'll improve on my glass usage here.

4) Find my rambunctious side again. Among other things, I have aspirations to learn to drive a pickup truck while I'm living at home. We'll see....

5) Memorize some new scripture, or at least review the old. I'm still working on Colossians. Let's be honest. I'm not memorizing much at all right now. My brain feels like mush, but would be better if I exercised it.

6) Clean out the pantry. Moving forced this. I used up all but my spices, some flour, a protein bar, and some Craisins. Thankfully my housemate supplemented my diet while I cleaned out the pantry. That meant I had protein and produce in addition to all the carbs I owned.

7) Purge excess. Soak up blessing. Once again, moving helped, but I still have SO much stuff. I am thankful for family who helped me move it, and a family friend who offered to store it.

8) Run a 5K. Race number two was the LGPA 5K. It was my favorite 5K and best time so far. Plus, we got great swag bags, including a CamelBack water bottle!

9) Embrace the quiet. I have a new night time quiet routine of reading the newspaper.

10) Pursue counseling licensure. I take the National Counseling Exam next week. Praise the Lord, and pray I pass!

11) Rest. I get to sleep in until 6 am while I'm not working.

12) Trim down the processed. Bulk up the produce. Salads are back in style thanks to the Arizona heat and Mom's pantry. I've got to stop eating sugar like I'm home on Christmas break, though. I live here now!

13) Bullet journal plan—streamline my to-do list. I have lists everywhere, on paper and in Excel. I need to get back to the planner.

14) Finish the books I have and read more. I read eight books in June. That was my coping tool.

15) Spend time with and love the people around me. My entire family (Dad, Mom, two brothers, sister-in-law, and Granddad) came to help me move. Now, I get to live with Dad, Mom, and one brother. I need to capitalize on this time.

16) Blog. Instagram. Something. I started an Instagram (@MyArizonaAdventure) to share this new journey of life with my Arkansas friends. (But others can follow, too.)

Friday, July 1, 2016

God Endures Forever.

By the time this posts, I will be on my way away from my home of 10 years. In the midst of all the goodbyes and the changes, I am thankful for a God who doesn't change, but endures forever!


Our God endures Forever.
Eternally, without end (Dictionary.com, n. d.).

Psalm 146:10
The Lord reigns forever, your God, O Zion, for all generations. Praise the Lord.

Daniel 6:26
For he is the living God and he endures forever; his kingdom will not be destroyed, his dominion will never end.

Luke 1:33
And he will reign over Jacob’s descendants forever; his kingdom will never end.

John 14:16
And I will ask the Father, and he will give you another advocate to help you and be with you forever.

Hebrews 7:3
Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, resembling the Son of God, he remains a priest forever.

Hebrews 7:24
But because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood.

Hebrews 13:8
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.

Reference:
Forever. (n. d.). Dictionary.com Unabridged. Retrieved June 21, 2016 from Dictionary.com website http://www.dictionary.com/browse/forever