Goodness

 

God promises to work ALL things for the GOOD

 

for those of us who love Him

and have been called by Him

 

He takes our mistakes

our heartache

our everything

 

and brings purpose and good

 

Beauty from ashes

from all that happens in our lives

 

No exceptions

because of unconditional love

 

How unimaginably gracious!

 

 

So, what if you and I sought to do that

for people?

 

What if we were to respond with grace

when wronged,

bringing the good

to that situation?

 

And what if we loved

when it makes more sense

to hate?

 

And what if we took awful circumstances,

and inserted compassion

and truth

instead of criticism?

 

What if we responded with patience

when it isn’t warranted?

 

What if we sought,

by God’s Spirit,

the good

in everything?

 

What if we showed His goodness,

by His power,

with His Light,

in the darkness?

– Susie Stewart

 

 

And we know that in all things God works for the good of those who love Him, who have been called according to His purpose.

– Romans 8:28 (NIV)

 

…we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.

– Romans 8:28 (MSG)

 

And we all, with unveiled face, continually seeing as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are progressively being transformed into His image from [one degree of] glory to [even more] glory, which comes from the Lord, [who is] the Spirit.

– 2 Corinthians 3:18 (AMP)

 

To all who mourn in Israel, He will give a crown of beauty for ashes, a joyous blessing instead of mourning, festive praise instead of despair.  In their righteousness, they will be like great oak that the Lord has planted for His own glory.

– Isaiah 61:3 (NLT)

 

Photo taken by Susie Stewart

 

 

 

ChoiSes

I was jogging along this morning,

got to the end of a sidewalk where it forked two ways,

and I came across this:

Image

Hmmm…..  Which would YOU choose?  Seems pretty obvious.  Unfortunately my house was in the direction of the “worst” choise.  I wasn’t about to run the long way to get back home so I went right.

It made me think about choises, large and small, that we make throughout our lifetimes.

Selflessness <     YOUR CHOISE      > Selfishness

Soft Answer <     YOUR CHOISE     > Harsh Words

Listening Much <     YOUR CHOISE     > Talking Much About Myself

Disunity <     YOUR CHOISE     > Unity

Love <     YOUR CHOISE     > Hate

Truth <     YOUR CHOISE      > Lie

React <     YOUR CHOISE     > Respond

Violence <     YOUR CHOISE     > Peace

Addiction <     YOUR CHOISE     > Freedom

Give <     YOUR CHOISE     > Hoard

Cheerfulness <     YOUR CHOISE     > Negativity

And the list goes on and on.

I have definitely made my share of wrong choises.  Some that I seriously regret, but can’t take back.  Every one of us has.

Throughout this blog, I deliberately spelled “choice” with an “s” just like our young chalk artist.  Spelling it the wrong way on purpose  reminds me of how we all make deliberate wrong choices.

Deliberate AND wrong — those are the “worst” choices.

I know better and I choose wrongly.

Praise God,  love covers over a multitude of sins (1 Peter 4:8), but when I do make the wrong choices, and it’s usually because of self, there is strain, relational scars, and consequences.

But here’s a choice that has ETERNAL consequences:

Love God <     YOUR CHOICE     > Reject God

If you love God and you believe Him when He says Jesus is the only way to the Father (1 John 14:6), then you make that choice to believe and follow.

The choice is simple, yet SO profound.

Eternity with God <     YOUR CHOICE     >  Eternity apart from God.

I made the choice to be blunt, because it’s important.

Lord,  help us make right choices.  Give us discernment and a grounded sense of right and wrong

from your Word and Your Spirit.

– Susie Stewart


  Your Word is a lamp for my feet, a light on my path.

-Psalm 119:105

Photo taken by Susie Stewart