Monday, May 31

Coming Clean -Part 3

1. Pursue a Clean Heart
Isaiah 1:16 says, "Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean; remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes; cease to do evil,..." (ESV)

Like dirty cars and dirty dishes, uncleanness needs constant action and attention. That's why our quiet times with God are vital for growing in grace. Just like we know when its time to pull over for a car wash, we know when our hearts are in need of a good cleansing. Although our cars don't need cleansing everyday, our hearts do. Clean hearts respond quicker to God's word. Clean hearts are ready to be used. They don't have to wait to be washed because they already are washed.

2. Come Clean Quickly

David delayed in confessing his sin of adultery. Becuase he delayed, he invited sin to rule over his heart and committed more sin on top of the adultery. His heart was filthy. But what is so encouraging is that even when he had let sin go too far, his heart was not completely hopeless. He responded to the confrontation by Nathan the prophet. In Psalm 51:1-3 David confesses to God,

"Have mercy on me,O God, according to your steadfast love;
according to your abundant mercy blot out my transgressions.
Wash me thoroughly from my iniquity,and cleanse me from my sin!
For I know my transgressions,and my sin is ever before me." (ESV)

3. Keep God's Word in View

The only thing that can wash our hearts is God's word. Keep it in view. Don't let it out of your sight. Find a place where you keep it in view so you will have no excuse to not open it.

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Sunday, May 30

Thank you to all the new followers who signed up this week!

Please share joytreasure with your friends and family. I am working on some free art to give away very soon but only to followers!

Thank you!

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Saturday, May 29

Preparing for the LORD's day

Hey friends! Joy 2 U this Sunday morning. (The Coming Clean Post part three will run Monday.)

Praise be to God who saved us!
Oh the wonderful cross of Jesus!

I get excited every Saturday thinking about the Sunday to come. Worshipping God with fellow believers makes me think of heaven- my eternal home.

I want to encourage you to anticipate with joy entering into the LORD's house this Sunday.

Thank God for you church, pastor, sunday school class, and for having a place to worship. Praise Him for His salvation, mercy and goodness. Remember all He has done for you this month, this week, this day. Confess all your sin to Him. Prepare your clothes for Sunday morning. Pray for God to open your heart and mind to His word. Come ready to worship. Ask Him to help you hear something new in His word.

I leave you with a quote from one of my favorite authors, Oswald Chambers.
He says,"Remember Whose you are and Whom you serve" (Feb 11th page in Utmost for His Highest).

My most favorite thing to paint are crosses. Each one always turns out different. The colors in this cross represent salvation. Yellow- light of Christ, Green- life, Blue- Living Water, Red- Blood shed for sinner, Black- death of Christ over sin. White- Heaven.
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Coming Clean- Part 2

What sin in your heart do you need to confess to God today?

Isaiah 1:15-17 says,"When you spread out your hands,I will hide my eyes from you;
even though you make many prayers,I will not listen;your hands are full of blood.
Wash yourselves; make yourselves clean;remove the evil of your deeds from before my eyes;cease to do evil,learn to do good;seek justice,correct oppression;bring justice to the fatherless,plead the widow’s cause." (ESV)

I want my heart to be clean before God. I want Him to get the dirt off. I don't want for my sin to hinder my relationship with Him. But there are days that there is sin I don't confess. I know it. I ignore it. It's like where Paul talked about in Romans where he knows what he should do but doesn't do it. Obedience to God's word is surrending ourselves daily first to come honestly before Him by asking Him to wash our hearts clean.

Try this in your quiet time today:
1. Come quietly before God. Think about the Names of God. Praise Him for who He is.
2. Ask Him to open your eyes to unconfessed sin. Wait for Him to reveal it to you. Is there a scripture that the Holy Spirit brings to mind? Write it down and focus on it all day.
3. Ask for His forgiveness. Thank Him for bringing you back to Himself with a clean heart.

Waiting before God is surrendering to Him. It's easier to tell God what you desire than to be still before Him. Don't come telling Him what you want today. Get your heart in order first.
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Friday, May 28

Coming Clean- Part 1

You know it's time for a car wash when you're front bumper's plastered with bugs. That's the case with my car this week.

This is a picture of the wash cycle in the car wash. Look at the water covering the windshield. What a picture of how God's word covers our hearts and penetrates down into the deepest part cleansing and renewing our lives from the inside out.

As I was pondering spending time in God's word, I immediately thought about the bronze basin of the tabernacle. The priests had to come clean before God by washing their hands and feet before moving further inside the tabernacle. They couldn't minister before God with dirty hands and feet. They had to come clean. I like what Matthew Henry says in his commentary about the washing,

"This was to teach them purity in all their services, and to dread the pollution of sin. They must not only wash and be made clean, when first made priests, but must wash and be kept clean, whenever they went to minister. It teaches us daily to attend upon God, daily to renew our repentance for sin,and our looking to the blood of Christ for remission; for in many things we daily offend."

"The LORD said to Moses,You shall also make a basin of bronze, with its stand of bronze, for washing. You shall put it between the tent of meeting and the altar, and you shall put water in it, with which Aaron and his sons shall wash their hands and their feet." (Ex 30:22-38)ESV

As you go about your day, think about all the times you have to wash something. Then ask yourself, "Have I washed my heart and mind in God's word today?"

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Thursday, May 27

Enjoying God's Creation

There is nothing more beautiful than a glorious rainbow.
Every time I see one I cannot help but remember God's word in Genesis 9.

"Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant with between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life." Genesis 9:14-15

A couple of days ago, my son spotted a rainbow in the sky. He was so excited and talked about it all day and night. SO I thought, "why not paint one!" So we did!

Painting God's creation is an easy way to teach children about God's word. It's a way for them to use most of their senses as they focus on the painting. Just because you're not an artist doesn't mean you can't paint with your child. They love that you are spending time with them and that's all that matters!

Here's what kids can learn when painting God's creation:
1. God made creation- Use a verse on creation and say it all week. Place the painting somewhere you can see it. Look back at the rainbow and talk about the colors and what it means.
2. Colors- Mixing colors is fun to them!! They love to see the water change colors. Books tell how to mix colors but kids learn by doing it.
3. Independence- Letting them decide where to place the rainbow on the canvas and choose what color comes next fosters confidence in making choices.
4. How to finish - One quality I desire for my son to know is how to complete something. Just becuase he is not 15 doesn't mean I wait til he's 15 to teach him that. Finishing a painting teaches you to be patient and see something through.

I hope you have enjoyed today's post.
Tell me how you teach God's word to your child(no matter the age!)
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Wednesday, May 26

Believing in an Unbelieving World

Dr. Al Mohler asked this question tonight when he spoke at our church.
His topic was "Believing in an Unbelieving World." His text was Romans 11:33-36, 12:1-2.

Romans 12:1-2 says
"I appeal to you therefore, brothers,by the mercies of God,to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.Do not be conformed to this world,but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect."

Mohler stated christians have to be,"intentional in knowing we have to think and act different. The great scandal to the cross is that the gospel is conformed."

"Before we act, the first act is to think and the word is the means to how believers learn how Christ thinks, acts," Mohler said.

Mohler ended his sermon saying,"if we aren't careful we will pick up the world's thoughts, emotions, economics, education, sports, merchandising, beauty. We need to be hoping, praying, thinking and living the word of God."

For more info about Dr. Al Mohler go to his blog on my favorites list.
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Making your life COUNT

Enjoying God everyday and living out the joy HE has placed in our hearts is never more evident to the world around us than when we pour our lives into the lives of others. Time spent in God's word and prayer will not stay stagnat in our hearts but will fill our hearts and overflow into the lives of others. A dry heart has nothing to give. But a heart refreshed by God's word always has something to share.

Dr. Charles Stanley writes about this in his May 2010 Pastor's Heart letter. He says," can make an extraordinary difference right where you are. You don’t need special training to serve God—you can have a tremendous influence on others just by how you live in obedience to Him. You have an opportunity to share the powerful principles the Lord has used to strengthen your walk with Him. God simply wants you to allow the Holy Spirit to work through you, showing His unconditional love to those you know."

We walk away from experiencing God's joy when we let sin rule our hearts. The greatest barrier to making a difference in the lives of others is ourself! Our sin. Our selfish desires. Our greatest purpose in life is to be the vessel God can use to draw others to himself. When we say,"I don't know what to say" or "I don't have any gift God can use" we cut ourselves off from experiencing God's great purpose.

God will draw men to Himself. Jesus said "And I, if and when I am lifted up from the earth [on the cross], will draw and attract all men [Gentiles as well as Jews] to Myself." John 12:32 Amplified Bible (AMP)

Placing the focus on your inabilities and insecurities and away from God only steals the joy of being able to be a part of God's work and see Him work in the lives of others. So you say, "where do I begin?" Here's some questions you can ask yourself daily to help you become sensitive to becoming a vessel God can use.

1. Who can I encourage today using God's word? My Husband, child, parents, friend, fellow church member, a person in need, someone in passing? My boss, a co-worker...
2. How can my attitude reflect God's character? Humility, loving, compassionate, slow to anger, ready to listen, consistent..
3. Am I really listening for opportunities to share God's truth to others?

Let's stay faithful and experience great joy by being about God's business. I hope you are encouraged today! Tell me how asking these questions has helped you become more mindful of being about God's purpose.
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Flowers Fade

Isaiah 40:7-9 says"The grass withers, the flower fades when the breath of the LORD blows on it;surely the people are grass. The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God will stand forever."ESV

Everyday we're reminded we live in a fallen world. Flowers fade. BUT God's word will stand forever.

Think about the certainty of God's word.
Think about the power of God's word.
Think about the life God's word brings to living.

If the bible tells us God's word will stand forever, then why do we walk away from spending time in it? Busyness, laziness, apathy, and plain rebellion to turn our eyes away from God's word are just a few reasons we turn away. Today, don't leave your bible on the shelf. Open it. Come looking to hear a word from God through scripture. It is HIS very word. Pray and ask God to open your eyes to see things you have never seen before in the bible today.

Hope you enjoy the view today!

This painting took me forever! Sometimes an artist has to put a project aside becuase you get tired of looking at it. The break proved to be productive for I was able to finish and really loved the finished product.

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Monday, May 24

Hope that doesn't Dissappoint

I've been having so much fun lately painting scripture. A joy to my heart! It makes me happy to think about what it will look like when it's finished.

Our only hope is Christ. That's a truth to rejoice over today.

The scripture on this painting comes from Romans 5:2. As you further read the text, Roman's 5:5 explains more about hope saying, "and hope does not dissapoint, because the love of God has been poured out within our hearts through the Holy Spirit who was given to us." WOW! I don't know about you, but I could use a little meditation on the phrase,"love of God has been poured out within our hearts..." Praise God for His amazing WORD! Praise God for His living hope! Praise God that he would look on me and pour his perfect love inside this sinful heart.

I pray you will consider the hope of Jesus today. It's real. It won't leave us disaapointed. You can count on that! We are to rejoice over it today and everyday.
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Joy on Vacation

Aghhh. the beach. I love it! What a picture of how big our God is! When I am there, I am always reminded there is nothing He cannot do, nothing He does not know and nothing too impossible or outside of His grasp.

This week I wanted to praise God for his creation. I was reminded of this verse:

Psalm 148:7 (New International Version)

7 "Praise the LORD from the earth,
you great sea creatures and all ocean depths,.."

Vacation was great but getting tonsilitis was not so great. Being sick away from home made me appreciate the little things I take for granted. Thankfully, we found a doctor and got the medicine I needed.

Two things I learned this vacation:
#1-if you think you'll really sick, find a doctor.
#2-enjoy the time you have left on vacation.

Joy on vacation is being thankful you have time to spend with family and a place to relax away from home. It doesn't mean you get to have the perfect vacation every time. Last year we went to the beach and it rained with 20 mph winds the entire time. This year I got sick for half of it. One of the things I am learning is how to not create such big expectations that cannot be fulfilled. To enjoy the day for what it is and for who I am with. If I think about tomorrow, I miss today. If I think about what I missed out on yesterday, I miss today. All God gives us is today. Enjoy it. Treasure Christ and embrace each moment.
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Wednesday, May 12

No Other Name

Acts 4:12 says, "And there is salvation in no one else; for there is no other name under heaven that has been given among men by which we must be saved." (NASB)

I painted this picture from the scripture above. It makes me think about the joy Christ has placed inside my heart. Why? Because treasuring the joy of Christ begins by remembering the salvation He has given us. Salvation brings the joy of Christ inside our hearts. Without it, there is no true joy there. Only an emptiness that is longing to be filled. As a believer, I get frustrated at how busy I can get going about my days. When I find myself frazzled about life, I realize I am not remembering what ALL I have been given through Jesus-- eternity! When I stop and refocus my thoughts on the name of Jesus, I begin to find the joy again in daily living. What about you? Have you come to the place where you find yourself too busy to remember what ALL Christ has done for you?

Consider a few of the names of Christ today:

The Branch- Zech. 3:8

Deliverer- Rom.11:26

Father of Eternity-Isaiah 9:6

Fountain- Zech. 13:11

Mediator- 1 Tim. 2:5

Beginning of Creation- Rev. 3:14

Image of God- Hebrews 1:3

Guide- Psalm 48:14

Joy awaits you every morning through Jesus. But, when you and I choose to go our own way and let sin take over our day we forfeit treasuring Christ and the joylife he has for us.

Which name of Christ speaks to you today? Let me hear from you
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Thursday, May 6

What does God Desire?

Sometimes I find myself thinking, "this is not the way God intended life to be!" Watching a friend live a life away from the LORD is painful and frustrating.
So what do you do? How do you reach out to them but not condone their lifestyle?


The greatest way I can get in on God's Kingdom Work is to pray--praying for His will to be done on earth as it is in Heaven in my life and in other people's lives.

The problem with that is that sometimes, I become weary in praying for others close to me when their complicated life seems to become only more complicated and messy. I just want to give up and give in. My flesh says, "there's no way out" but God's spirit in my heart says, "God still changes lives!"

Recently, I found something simple and effective that has helped to re-energize my intercession prayer life.

I simply ask myself:
"What does God desire for this person's life?"
"What does God desire for this person to know about who HE is?"
"What does God desire for this person's life to look like?"

When I ask these simple questions, I remove my emotions and opinions and invite God's word to rule over my prayer life. The energy ushered into my prayer life is a complete 180compared to before.

If you know God has called you to pray for someone yet find yourself looking at their lives thinking, "How LORD? I don't see how LORD?" then get out of the way and ask, "LORD, what do you desire for their life?" What are they in need of today? How would you have me respond to them?" By taking the focus off of what we think about their lives, we surrender to God and get in on His work by asking Him what He would desire for their life. When we get out of the way we can let the Spirit lead us to scripture we can pray over their life. Our weariness becomes energized by God when we take time to come and ask what God would desire for this person instead of what we think should happen to their lives. Instead of weariness experienced in our prayers, we gain fresh purpose and focus.

We all have people in our lives that we become tired of praying for. If you've found yourself tired and worn out from praying for a family member, a loved one, friend, neighbor, or co-worker, ask God,"What do desire for their life?"

Jesus said in the LORD's prayer, "thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven." He was praying for heaven to come to earth. For God's ways to be carried out on earth.

Don't give up on those who don't know Jesus. Don't call it hopeless and turn your heart away from those God has called you to pray for. God has a reason for us to be there in their life. We must look to Him and not ourselves.
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Tuesday, May 4

Habits follow Action

One of my favorite passages in the bible is Psalm 119.
I go there continually because I am reminded of the benefits of God's word.
I know that passage will help me draw back to God. Every time I read it, God opens my eyes to new treasures in His truth. So what does it REALLY take for bible study and prayer to become a part of your daily routine? How does it happen?

The Reverend Thomas Manton was born in England in the county of Somerset in 1620. Needless to say his sermons on Psalm 119 are very old but timeless.
Upon reading the section on Psalm 119: 35, "Make me go in the path of thy commandments; for therin do I delight." Manton said this, "Direction is necessary becuase of the blindness of our minds; and the effectual impulsions of grace are necessary because of the weakness of our hearts. It will not answer our duty to have a naked notion of truths, unless we embrace and pursue them." He then goes on to say this about habits,"Acquired habits follow action, for frequent acts beget a habit, as often as swimming makes us an expert in swimming, and much writing makes us an expert in writing."

When it comes to cultivating an intimate effectual prayer life and knowing God more, it requires action. It's not merely talking about how you would wish you could know God more or how you wish you could pray more. It is a daily dose of doing. We have no excuse.

What about you? How will you find time for God today? The first step in application is to do it today. Don't wait til tomorrow. Open His word today. Ask God to open your eyes to see His truth and your heart to humbly receiving His truth.

Habit will follow action. Don't worry about how you will make a habit. Just dive in and start swimming!

Let me hear from you about how you are acquiring the habit of following God with your whole heart.
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Monday, May 3


My favorite devotional is ,"My Utmost for His Highest" by Oswald Chambers. It was a Christmas present given to me 11 years ago by my aunt and uncle.

On April 28th Oswald writes, "Are you prepared to let God take you into union with Himself, and pay no more attention to what you call great things? Are you prepared to abandon entirely and let go? The test of abandonment is refusing to say--"Well what about this?" Beware of suppositions. Immediately you allow--What about this?-- it means you have not abandoned, you really do not trust God. Immmediately you do abandon, you think no more about what God is going to do. Abandon means to refuse yourself the luxury of asking any questions.

How many times do we find ourselves saying, "well, what about this?"

My human nature wants to ask 'why' because my human nature is selfish. At the heart of selfishness is a desire to be in control and rely on self and not on God. God doesn't want me to rely on myself. I am sinful. He wants me to depend on Him and His limitless ability.

Instead of asking "why or what" say "yes Lord." Imagine what can happen when you and I truly abandon the luxury of asking questions and fall toward trusting God and his Word.

Let me hear from you about this application in abandonment. What does this look like in your life?
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