Sunday, August 14

Manna Mondays: Do you Hunger for People to know the LORD?

(I will continue blogging as I can but my posts will have no pics because my laptop is broken.)

      " For whosoever shall call upon the name of the LORD shall be saved (Romans 10:13).

Do you really hunger for people to know Jesus? Do you have a burden for the lost? A heavy burden that leads you to pray and not lose heart for others to know Jesus and be set free from bondage in their sin?  Listen to this quote from the book, "One Thing You Can't Do In Heaven" by Mark Cahill. He make no bones about it when he describes a true Christian. Cahill asks,
"A true Christian will have a hunger for the things of God-for witnessing, prayer and Bible study.  Are you faithfully sharing Jesus with the lost? Are you seeking God's face every day in prayer?
Do you read the Word daily?"

A heart question to ask yourself is, "When was the last time I shared Jesus with someone?" That's a revealing question as well. If you can't remember sharing Jesus then you have to ask yourself, "Have I been in God's Word? Have I been digging deep into Bible study? How is my prayer life?"

Everyone needs Jesus. Everyone around us is looking for Him. They are looking for salvation. Think about it. Superman saved Lois Lane. Batman saved Gotham City. Salvation is the theme of movies- not Jesus salvation but the idea of having a greater power that saves.

You are salt and light. Salt is meant to be poured out and light is meant to be shone in a dark world. Are you pouring salt out to those around you? Are you shining the light of God's truth to your family, friends and co-workers? Look for opportunities. They are always there. Always waiting.

Sometimes I seize opportunities and sometimes I don't. When I reflect back on the times I don't it is because I haven't spent time in God's word. When I miss opportunities it's been because I have been focusing on myself and the agenda I have set for the day. I miss those opportunities because I am not thinking heavenward. I am thinking on earthly things.

The REAL Reason we don't share faith.....we want to be liked. We don't want to be rejected. We don't want to face someone and have them reject us face to face. I say expect rejection and keep on sharing Jesus. Picture standing before Jesus and Him asking you, "What did you share about Me?" Would you hear Him say to you, "Well done?"

What to do?
Pray. Ask God to give you a desire- a deep hunger- to meet with Him through Bible study and through prayer. Ask Him to equip you as you step out in faith to share the life changing gospel. Ask Him to bring you to the person He wants you to share truth with and open your eyes to see and seize the opportunity.
Don't try to win a debate. Just keep sowing seeds. God will do the rest!!!!

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Thursday, August 11

Hey Friends!
Joy Treasure may look a bit differently over the next few days. Please be patient with the site. I won't have many pictures in addition to my posts because my laptop mouse doesn't work anymore. Oh, did I mention its connected to my hard drive? Yep. $400-$500 for new hardware or a new computer. Gulp. So thank goodness I have this old desktop. Eight years this desktop has lasted me compared to my two years with a laptop. Oh well.

Free Art Friday
One of the things about blogging is that you can't take things personally. Some people don't like your blog while others do. But I have learned as you create, you have to see what your readers are looking for or are not looking for. The content I write here on Joy Treasure reveal things I am living, thinking and working through in my own life. Sometimes they are even things I see or hear my friends or other believers working through in their own lives. Sometimes they are just things I see in the world and try to go back and biblically find the answer to. Each post is my journey through scripture to bring it to life in my life.

One of the things I offer is Free Art Friday. This past week I opened up a week long opportunity to share Joy Treasure with your friends by having a Friend Sign Up Day. In humility, I have learned I don't think you all are looking to enter your friends and win a painting for you or your friend. Sounds like a good idea, but because no one entered this week- (which has never happened before here on Joy Treasure), I am thinking its not a good idea. So I humbly admit, I made a mistake in trying to change up the Free Art Friday  to Friend Sign Up Day. I know you share Joy Treasure with your friends and I thank you! Please continue to do that! But from here on out, Free Art Friday will continue to be a question for you to answer, a best idea, scripture or story, or simply leaving your name and letting my son draw it out of a bowl.

I take great pride in providing a blog that is encouraging that also uses the gifts God has given me. Sharing my art with you  is an outflow of my heart. Each painting is different and special to me. Its almost like having a child. I remember each one. I treasure each one and it brings joy to my heart to know a piece of art is hanging in your home that reminds you about Jesus. Art is not supposed to be kept to myself but to be used as an extension of my heart for the LORD. Thanks for your support. Blessings to each of you this weekend!
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Wednesday, August 10

Just for Women Wednesdays- Who I am at Home: Encourager

Today we continue the "Who I Am at Home" series. Last week I discussed how women's inward attitudes can impact the atmosphere inside their homes. This morning, I want to discuss how easy it is for women to encourage others outside the home than encouraging their own family. Whether you are single, married, divorced or widowed God calls all believers to encourage others. Sometimes we fail to consider our family as a ministry.

The thought occurred to me how it's sometimes easier to be a great encourager to other believers outside the home than to my own family. I can send cards, make calls, take meals, buy little presents or books to encourage others, but how good am I at encouraging my husband, child, or my parent
s. If I had siblings I would be encouraging them too but I am an only child but I mention them because a lot of you have siblings and have an opportunity to be encouraging them in the LORD no matter their age. What about you? How good a job are you doing building your family up in the LORD?

It's easy to take our families for granted. When times are good, we can easily fail to consider their needs, ask for prayer requests or even take time to consider what their needs may be. Because they don't come to us with a prayer request or tell us something they are struggling with, we can fail to see the need to encourage them like we should. In fact, we have countless opportunities to be encouraging them day after day. But encouragement requires time and energy. It requires us to pray, think, and consider how we can encourage our family and then be committed and deliberate in seeing it through. It requires us to consider their needs before our own. What if we woke up every morning thinking of others in our family before we ever thought about our self? Imagine how our homes would be transformed to be more like Christ?

The bible says, "Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing" (1 Thessalonians 5:11). Encouraging means we build others up. We don't tear them down. Sometimes in families, its easier to criticize (the material is never ending right!) and find fault with family members because we see everything. There is nothing they can hide from us or vice versa. It's an open book. Therefore its easier to find fault with them. But it's not biblical. It's selfish.

We encourage our spouse by saying nice things and replying in a gentle tone. We encourage them by telling them what we appreciate about them and what we see God doing in their life. We encourage them by saying 'thank you' and noticing things they have done to help around the house. We encourage them by leaving a note in their car, in their briefcase or in their bible. They don't expect it. It lets them know we think about them. Making time for them and giving them undivided attention lets them know we value what they have to say and aren't in a hurry being a superwoman multi-task master.

We encourage our parents by calling them and checking on them. We encourage them by telling them we appreciate all they have done for us to get us where we are today. We can still take a meal to them out of the blue or buy them gift cards if they don't cook anymore in their old age. It lets them know we think of them. If they are struggling with a disease, we can encourage them by telling them we are proud of how they live each day to the fullest despite their struggles and offer our help even when they never ask.

Kids are in need of encouragement all the time. They are growing each day and are faced with new opportunities to learn new things. It's hard growing up! They need to know they are doing a good job. Tell them what you see them doing right and that you notice it and you are proud of them. So many times we discipline them and at times all they hear is what they are doing 'wrong.'

Siblings either have a good relationship, a bad relationship or no relationship at all. Whether they are walking with the LORD or not, as a believer you will be accountable for how you treated them. Would God say 'well done' or 'why didn't you seize the opportunity?' For some of you, your sibling may be your best friend and you are a great encourager to them. For others, you haven't talked to your sibling in forever. There is much water under the bridge or they will not talk to you. Maybe you have tried to encourage them but you have been rejected. Remember, it's not about you! It's about you being faithful to Christ to build the body of believers up. I encourage you to reach out to them whether or not they reach back to you.

The Time is NOW
Oftentimes we have good intentions to encourage others but we procrastinate. The bible says,"But encourage one another daily, as long as it is called Today, so that none of you may be hardened by sin's deceitfulness" (Hebrews 3:13). Encourage your family today. Don't delay. You never know what tomorrow will bring.
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Monday, August 8

Manna Monday- Faith Leads to Faithfulness

Sometimes we need a good reminder about faith. I pray this post meets you where you are and encourages your faith walk for Christ.

What does it mean to have faith and how is it connected to faithfulness? Do you consider faith and faithfulness separately or do you view them as a whole. One leads to the other.

Faith is simply believing in a greater reality. It's believing in something you cannot see.
" is being sure of what we hope for and certain of what we do not see" (Hebrews 11:1).
But we do waver and at times walk by sight instead of faith. When we go back to the bible we are reminded that believers are to, "...walk by faith, not by sight" (2 Corinthians 5:7).

Faithfulness is an action. It reveals our inward beliefs. It's the outward proof that God is who we love and desire to obey.

On the road of life, faith is the driving force behind our faithfulness to God. If we are lacking faith in believing His word, our faithfulness to Him will waver. At other times we will be close behind Him because we are convinced of His truth and our faithfulness to Him will be solid and strong.

Romans 1:17 tells us that “The righteous shall live by faith.” Believers don't sometimes live by faith or kind of live by faith. They LIVE by faith. Live, move, and breathe by faith. I love how the great theologian John Wesley illustrated what it meant to walk by faith.
They that live by faith, walk by faith. But what is implied in this? They regulate all their judgments concerning good and evil, not with reference to visible and temporal things, but to things invisible and eternal. They think visible things to be of small value, because they pass away like a dream; but, on the contrary, they account invisible things to be of high value, because they will never pass away. Whatever is invisible is eternal; the things that are not seen, do not perish. So the Apostle: "The things that are seen are temporal; but the things that are not seen are eternal." Therefore, they that "walk by faith" do not desire the "things which are seen;" neither are they the object of their pursuit. They "set their affections on things above, not on things on the earth." They seek only the things which are "where Jesus sitteth at the right hand of God." Because they know, "the things that are seen are temporal," passing away like a shadow, therefore they "look not at them;" they desire them not; they account them as nothing; but "they look at the things which are not seen, that are eternal," that never pass away. By these they form their judgment of all things. They judge them to be good or evil, as they promote or hinder their welfare, not in time, but in eternity. They weigh whatever occurs in this balance: "What influence has it on my eternal state?" They regulate all their tempers and passions, all their desires, joys, and fears, by this standard. They regulate all their thoughts and designs, all their words and actions, so as to prepare them for that invisible and eternal world to which they are shortly going. (Source:
I love what he said, "What influence has it on my eternal state?" Do you ask this question when you make choices in life? Or do you make choices and never think about how today matters for eternity? Do you make choices to be faithful to God based on His word or based on how you feel? Do you consider your eternal future as somewhere down the road or do you consider it today, right now, in the present? Are you living day to day based on what you see OR are you living your life to prepare yourself for a greater reality of Heaven. WOW! A different way of thinking each day.

Last, life is hard and we face difficult times. It's easy for our faith to waver during these times. But what does the bible tell us to do with our eyes?  It says, "So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen. For what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal" (2 Corinthians 4:18).

Your faith walk reveals your faith.
Don't let it waver any more.
Fix your eyes back on Jesus.
Stay fixed on a greater reality.
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Monday, August 1

Manna Monday- Thoughts on a Ferry

(This post was born in my brain while sitting in a rental car on a ferry boat in the Caribbean this past June while my husband and I celebrated a milestone wedding anniversary.)

FYI-To get to the island we were vacationing on, we boarded a local ferry boat. To get back to the island where the airport was located at we boarded the same ferry boat again upon departure. 

Upon Arrival I didn't think much about having to ride on a ferry boat in our rental car to get to the island we were staying on. But because I'm a big girl I didn't lose my cool. I wasn't scared..really...I just had never experienced it before. I didn't know what to expect. (My first trip turned out great.)

Moving on....

Upon Departure we waited in line at the ferry dock to return to the island where the airport was located. Dockside, to my left, was a white, dirty, smelly garbage truck. Both the driver and the other worker were at a stand still with both doors opened. The worker on the passenger side sat with his propped up on the dash while the driver hunched over his steering wheel gazing at the ferry.

Me: "hmmmm.... I wonder what they are doing here?"

My husband: "I don't know. They probably will board the ferry."

Me: Surely not!

My husband: "Well, why else would they be here? They probably have other places on their route on the other island."

Me: thinking......

Me: thinking......

The Scene: car # 1 boards the ferry, #2, #3, #4, then our turn. We back up into the ferry and wait. The air is on keeping us cool- it's hot! It's a Sunday morning and we find a Christian channel on the radio- actually Moody radio! YAY!!! Enjoying the sermon that morning as the sun shines brightly while sitting in the rental car on the ferry. Still looking back at the garbage truck on the dockside and still thinking...

Garbage Truck: Still waiting by the dock. No movement. More cars are boarding the ferry boat.

Me: thinking. looking. wondering. listening to the sermon.

The Scene: A red dump truck drives up and waits behind the dump truck.

Me: thinking, "Not the dump truck too!!"

The Scene:Yep the garbage truck and the dump truck too! Guess who the dump truck parked next to on the ferry? hmm!!!

Me: Feeling a little claustrophobic. Need some fresh air. Must get out. Can't get out because the dump truck is so close to our car. One whiff of its smelly aroma reminded me it would not be a good idea to travel to the top of the ferry to seek fresh air. The air inside my car is just fine!!!

I felt trapped and frustrated. I wanted to SEE the ocean and SEE where the boat was headed and that I was going to be OK and make it across to the island.

Oh me of little faith!

But as I always say, God is always teaching us lessons if we will just pay attention. That's what He was doing with me that morning.

As I sat in the car feeling pinned in between the garbage truck, and the high wall of the boat, I began to think about faith. How trusting everyone was who boarded the ferry boat. It seemed easier for them to board the ferry than trust in Jesus. It was nothing to ride with the garbage truck for the locals. But for me, I couldn't see where we were going or if we would be alright. I felt out of control. Why did I feel this way? I think it was because of the largeness of both the garbage and dump truck. I kept thinking, "They are too big, what if they make us sink? What if something happens to the boat? What if the garbage truck doesn't have its parking brakes on and it smooshes into our car?"

Quickly, GOD reminded me of the verse, " for we walk by faith, not by sight" (2 Corinthians 5:7) ESV.

Me: Oh.... OK God! I get it.
I wasn't supposed to see the ocean that day. I wasn't supposed to get out of the car. I was supposed to trust God and enjoy the ride. It's easy to trust God when everything on the ferry boat looks good and normal. (My first ferry boat only had cars and pick up trucks.) But upon departure, things looked different. They looked big and large and I wondered how it would all work out. The largeness of it made me question if I would be OK?

Riding on the ferry boat is like life. God is in control of the boat. He knows what He can load and unload. He knows our direction and destination. He knows what we can handle and what we cannot. And through it all, we are supposed to trust Him completely by faith, not by sight. We are to look to Him in faith and not fear. We are to remember He is with us and is control. We aren't supposed to be fixated on our situation but solely on our God.

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