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Divine Note #57 - Saturday, Sept. 25, 2010

God is approachable
Genesis 17:18-19a (NIRV) 18 Abraham said to God, "I wish Ishmael could receive your blessing!" 19a Then God said, "I will bless Ishmael.” …

Just a little background in case you’re not familiar with this story, Abraham and his wife, Sarah, decided to get ahead of God’s plans. Sarah arranged for her maid, Hagar, to have Abraham’s child instead of waiting to have her own baby as God had promised. This had incredible consequences. As you know or can imagine, things don’t work out when we don’t obey God. But God remains the same. God never changes.

Many sermons have been written about this wonderful story, and as I sit here about to write this message, I can think of two more messages, but this is what God put in my heart: “You can talk to me instead of keeping the storm churning in your heart.” The Holy Spirit led me to this Scripture early this morning as all the things that are happening in my life started to creep up and ruin my day. Instead, I opened my Bible and God showed me that Abraham really messed things up by having an illegitimate son, but that didn’t stop Abraham from talking to God and moving ahead. Abraham told God that he wished that Ishmael (the illegitimate son) could receive God’s blessing! God responded by saying, “I will bless Ishmael.” WOW!
  • That tells me that we need to keep that connection to God open and honest regardless of what we’re dealing with in our imperfect lives. I don’t know about you, but I tend to start thinking about things in my mind and I forget to lay them down in front of God.
  • Don’t think that you can’t approach God because you are sinful or unworthy! None of us are worthy, but we have a God who is always willing to listen and forgive us! This is especially true if you grew up in a strict “religion” or if people made you think or believe that you were unworthy or are worthless. You are loved by God! That is the truth and there is nothing you can do that will surprise him!

Why can you approach God?
Genesis 15:6 Abram believed the Lord. The Lord accepted Abram because he believed. So his faith made him right with the Lord.

This message only applies to those who have a personal relationship with the Lord. This means that you must have faith, so that you can communicate and be connected to God who is so powerful, so personal and so loving. We can approach him when things look scary, sad, bad, negative because we know he cares and we know that he will work things out for our benefit (but that’s another Note).

God knows we aren’t perfect. I struggle with this and I also struggle with wanting to control things in my life. When I goof up, I start to put on that “holy cloak” which inevitably overwhelms and discourages me. Instead of making things hard for ourselves, go to God in prayer and …
  • Don’t keep things in your heart
  • Don’t go talk to 10 different people who will give you 10 different opinions
  • Don’t make your own rash decisions
Make a decision to learn how to discern God’s voice, so that life won’t overwhelm you. God wants to hear what is in your heart and in your mind. But he’s waiting for you to connect with him. God will respond.

Blessings and Big God Hugs,
Love, 
Blanca

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Scriptures for life

Compiled December 2011
These are a few of my favorite Scriptures. I cannot live my life without God and his word. I keep a 3x5 wire bound note diary of verses that pop off the pages of my Bibles. This helps me in case I need to comfort someone with a specific verse. Start your own collection!


Comfort

Psalm 119:76 Comfort me with your love, as you promised me, your servant.
Job 4:4 Your words have comforted those who fell, and you have strengthened those who could not stand.
Strength

Psalm 18:1 I love you, LORD. You give me strength.
Psalm 29:11 The Lord gives his people strength. The Lord blesses them with peace.
Psalm 118:14 The Lord gives me strength and a song. He has saved me.
Isaiah 40:29 The LORD gives strength to those who are weary.
Deuteronomy 33:27 The eternal God is your shelter, and his everlasting arms support you.
1 Corinthians 15:58 … don’t let anyone move you off the foundation of your faith.
Psalm 31:24 Be strong, all who wait with hope for the LORD, and let your heart be courag…

Sin on the journey

Before I know it, sin drips from my mouth and floods my mind. Oh the struggle.
Romans 7:22-23 I love to do God’s will so far as my new nature is concerned; but there is something else deep within me, in my lower nature, that is at war with my mind and wins the fight and makes me a slave to the sin that is still within me. In my mind I want to be God’s willing servant, but instead I find myself still enslaved to sin. So you see how it is: my new life tells me to do right, but the old nature that is still inside me loves to sin. Oh, what a terrible predicament I’m in! Who will free me from my slavery to this deadly lower nature? Thank God! It has been done by Jesus Christ our Lord. He has set me free. 
My current struggle is in not easily recognizing the extent of my sinfulness. I can easily preach it, but continuous righteous living eludes me.
Ouch. It hurts. I reveal this because I love the Lord with all my heart, mind and soul, but the sinner in me wins. It's the same struggle the A…