I'm amazed at how my Savior can take any and every circumstance around me to show me more about him. My prayer has always been that this journey of life I'm on would continually bring honor and glory to him, so by using every opportunity; my mistakes, my successes, and my day-to-day adventures, he teaches me how to use it for his glory. This life he blessed me with is ALL about him! So, these are my thoughts, my heart cries, and my lessons from his glorious Word. These are the teachable moments from my Savior!

Psalm 25:4-5 "Show me your ways, LORD, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long."

Friday, August 1, 2014

Think on these things...

Callie and I visited the bookstore the other day as she wanted to pick up some new reading material. She had a particular book in mind and we had looked up reviews but didn't find anything that seemed questionable. So, she made the purchase and later in the evening started her book. After a little bit, she came downstairs with the book to tell me that she got to the second chapter and felt, from the language, that she shouldn't be reading it. She offered to pay me back and apologized. Sweet girl! But I told her to put it back in the bag and we would see if we could return it for another book. We talked about it and she explained that she just didn't feel right reading it. Though the book was funny, she knew that wasn't something she should be putting into her mind. Wow! Praise the Lord!

I was so proud of Callie for recognizing that what she was reading wouldn't be pleasing to the Lord and putting it aside. It's hard for us adults to do that sometimes. I pray that each of my kids follow the prompting of the Holy Spirit when it comes to things they watch or read because in this day and time, the bad stuff is so easy to come by. There will be obstacles at every turn and it will get harder to do the right thing. It was a lesson for me as well to always pray before reading or watching something and to have the courage to walk away when the Spirit leads.

Today, I praise God for discernment through his Holy Spirit and for his Word that gives clear guidance and direction on anything we put into our minds. God's Word says this:

"Fix your thoughts on what is true, and honorable, and right, and pure, and lovely, and admirable. Think about things that are excellent and worthy of praise."
Philippians 4:8 (NLT)

I pray that Callie (and all my kids) will continue to listen for that still small voice that will lead her in the way she should go. God desires first place in our lives and it is there where peace abounds. We need to stay in scripture to know what is true and spend time with God through prayer as he directs our paths.

"Do not be conformed to this present world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may test and approve what is the will of God – what is good and well-pleasing and perfect."
Romans 12:2 (NET)

Lord, give us the courage to do the right thing as the Holy Spirit prompts our hearts even though it may not always be the popular choice. Renew our minds afresh to your will and fix our eyes on that which is pleasing to you!

Thursday, July 31, 2014

~ Be Strong and Courageous ~

"Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.” 
Joshua 1:9 (NIV84)

This passage of scripture jumps off the pages into my core this morning! You see, when you get to that place of total abandon in your life to do the will of the Father, every day is a walk of faith and requires strength and courage. That is where I am, that is where I've been for some time now. Walking with God can sometimes take us to places that are out of our comfort zones, places that go against what our flesh wants to do. But he promises to be with us every step of the way. It is a time to be strong and courageous.

I woke up this morning feeling as though God was drawing me to this passage. As a little history, Moses has just passed away and now God is calling Joshua to take over and lead the Israelites on to the Promised Land. First up, crossing the Jordan River.  Now, I have to just ponder here for a minute on what Joshua was probably mulling around in his head. I mean, these were pretty big shoes to fill. I imagine there was some fear he was battling and probably some feelings of unworthiness, but I love what God says to him here in verse 5,

"No one will be able to stand up against you all the days of your life. As I was with Moses, so I will be with you; I will never leave you nor forsake you."
Joshua 1:5 (NIV84)

What assurance from our Lord! He called Joshua to this huge task but also promised that he would never leave him and also protect him. That is just like our God! No matter what the task he calls us to, he will be there every step of the way and protect us through it all. The next four verses really grabbed my attention this morning.

“Be strong and courageous, because you will lead these people to inherit the land I swore to their forefathers to give them. Be strong and very courageous. Be careful to obey all the law my servant Moses gave you; do not turn from it to the right or to the left, that you may be successful wherever you go. Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful. Have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous. Do not be terrified; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.”
Joshua 1:6-9 (NIV84)

In these four verses, God tells Joshua three times to be strong and courageous. The first time, "be strong and courageous", then he says "be strong and VERY courageous", and finally, "have I not commanded you? Be strong and courageous."

Ok, it's just my opinion here, but I have found that if God repeats something in scripture, He REALLY wants us to get it. Here, he repeats himself three times. Joshua, are you getting this? He is commanding you to be strong and courageous! Now, here is where I come in. When God is calling me to go, wherever it is he leads, he commands me to do the same thing. "Be strong and courageous, Allison." Wow!

You know, he doesn't just leave Joshua there. He tells him to follow his guide map that he has given to him.  Verses 7 & 8 he tells Joshua to obey the Law and not turn from it. Do not let it depart from his mouth. Meditate on it day and night. If he does that, then he will be prosperous and successful.

He has given me the same guide map. Do I just go blindly? No! He has given me his Book and I am to obey it, meditate on it day and night, and not turn from it. That is the only way I will be prosperous and successful. If I follow the  "gospel according to Allison Jordan", I am going to fall flat on my face. But if I go with strength and courage armed with God's Word that I have immersed myself in, then I can be successful for the glory of God!

Oh, what I need today! Strength and courage for the journey! Am I still willing to go where He calls me to go? I have to stay in the Word and trust my God, even when that journey is alone...me and God.  I have to daily remember that if He calls me to it, He will see me through it. And, YES, I will go where He wants me to go! 
So, I grab hold of his hand and go...wherever he leads! 

This journey is yours, Lord. Wherever you lead, I will follow. I will meditate on your Word. I will be strong and courageous and I will find comfort that you will never leave me nor forsake me! It's all about YOU!

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

More Than Just a Doughnut!

Callie and I went into town for a couple errands yesterday and decided to surprise the boys before heading home with a stop by Dunkin Donuts. We had our BOGO coupon and were picking out favorites for the boys. As we were about to pay, the manager comes out and says, "I hope you enjoy these. They were just baked fresh!" Well, who doesn't like a fresh-made doughnut? What really struck me was the amount of pride he had for this product he just finished for his customers. He was the epitome of what a good worker is to me. He was passionate and stood behind his product to give the absolute best to his customers. He also took time to talk to us and let us know why this product was great. Let me say, that really impressed me! It also rubbed off on his employee because she too had a bubbly personality and showed great customer service. I expressed to him my gratitude for such wonderful customer service and Callie and I both left with smiles and excitement to support them and enjoy these freshly baked doughnuts!

Shouldn't that be how we all are with our jobs? Shouldn't we all display that kind of excitement and passion about what we do? As a child of God, my ultimate responsibility is to work for the Lord. All I do should honor and glorify him so I should give it my all....with a good attitude.

This passage of scripture from Colossians addresses just how we are to work:

"Servants, do what you’re told by your earthly masters. And don’t just do the minimum that will get you by. Do your best. Work from the heart for your real Master, for God, confident that you’ll get paid in full when you come into your inheritance. Keep in mind always that the ultimate Master you’re serving is Christ. The sullen servant who does shoddy work will be held responsible. Being a follower of Jesus doesn’t cover up bad work."
Colossians 3:22-25 (MSG)

No matter what our jobs are, whether out in the work force or right at home, we are to honor God first in all we do!

What a beautiful testimony yesterday by that sweet man in Dunkin Donuts! He blessed my heart with his passion! And he was right...that doughnut was AMAZING! ;)

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

What if...

This morning I sit on my front porch, Bible on my lap, coffee in hand and bask in the wonderful temperature God has blessed us with. Of course, my big Golden Retriever is again at my feet as he loves to come to "our" spot on the front porch. So, I sit, and rock, and pray, and read, and pray some more, and then I sit in silence and just be still before my Lord. No other place I would rather be than in the presence of my Lord!
On my heart today, I ponder some "what if's":
What if we truly lived each day with lives surrendered to the will of God? Matthew 16:24-25
What if we woke up every morning, laid down our "wants" and asked God to make our desires HIS desires? Psalm 37:4
What if we set out to live this day by "your Word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path"? Psalm 119:105
What if we truly lived "love the Lord your God with all your heart, soul, mind & strength and love your neighbor as yourself"? Matthew 22:37-39
What if we lived our lives as praise offerings to Jesus instead of ourselves? Hebrews 13:15
What if we woke up each day with a burning passion to tell others the gospel message? Matthew 28:18-20
What if we surrendered our "entitlement attitude" and replaced it with a genuine humility that we are blessed with another breath on this earth to praise and serve the ONE TRUE GOD? Philippians 2:3-11
What if........
Yes, that's a lot to ponder for a Tuesday morning. I think I'll make another cup of coffee. Lol!
Then I'll take these "what if's" on my face before my God and know that it starts with me.
Lord, change my heart and make it beat in tune with yours. Wipe away the dirt and grime so my life shines brightly for YOU. May the beautiful aroma that is YOU seep out of every pore of my body so that others don't see me but see YOU in me. Help me love as YOU love. Let my life be a pleasing sacrifice to YOU, precious Lord. I thank YOU for your mercy and your grace. I praise YOU, Father, because YOU are worthy and I lift my heart and hands in surrender, today, to YOUR will. I will walk in your Word as it guides and corrects my path. Let every breath from my mouth echo your goodness and ignite a passion in me like never before to share the good news to all around me. This life....belongs to YOU, Lord, and, today, I surrender ALL to YOU! Have YOUR way in me!

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Life is Hard, BUT GOD is Good!

Saturday morning! The day my family gets to sleep in and my time on the front porch with Jesus lasts a little longer. Oh, how needed it is this morning! You know those days that are just hard? And then you have those days that are even harder than that?

Yep, that was my week.

Life is hard, BUT GOD is good! ALWAYS!

BUT GOD!! Hallelujah!

This morning I picked up my Bible to head outside and it was like my soul felt so content as soon as my hands wrapped around that precious book. Feeling the weight of all those pages infused with the breath of my Father and holding his love note to me was, in itself, so healing and comforting. And as soon as I walked outside, this verse of scripture came to my mind:

"The grass withers, the flower fades, But the word of our God stands forever.”
Isaiah 40:8 (NKJV)

This life on earth is temporary. Flowers will fade, grass withers up, discouragement will come, people will disappoint, sickness happens, death is mourned....Yes, life is hard! But I have to remember that this is not my home. I'm just passing through until I spend eternity with my Father in heaven. So when things on this earth disappoint and I feel discouraged, as I have so much this week, I have to continually immerse myself in truths of God's Word and depend on him to see me through. So many times I look through the lens of my own eyes and I see the hurt and evil in this world but when I look through the lens of my Father, I see a whole different view. I see the beauty of his creation, I see the blessings shining brighter than any pain, and I see the hope of glory! We are here for His glory and to fulfill His purpose for our lives and though it may be hard, the reward of eternal life with Him will be so worth it!

"You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever."
Psalms 16:11 (NLT)

So, today, I will look through the lens of my Father. I want to see others the way he does. I want to see his glory all around me and look for ways to be the blessing to others. I will wait patiently on him during these seasons of "wait" and trust his heart. I will praise HIM because he is so worthy! Because the same God I praise on the mountaintops is the same God who carries me through each valley!

I'm HIS child. Redeemed by HIS blood. Walking in HIS grace. Living for HIS glory! Hallelujah!

"Have you not known? Have you not heard? The everlasting God, the LORD, The Creator of the ends of the earth, Neither faints nor is weary. His understanding is unsearchable. He gives power to the weak, And to those who have no might He increases strength. Even the youths shall faint and be weary, And the young men shall utterly fall, But those who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint."
Isaiah 40:28-31 (NKJV)

Saturday, June 21, 2014

The Longest Day of the Year

Well, today is the longest day of the year....summer solstice. The day when the sun stays up longer and nighttime is the shortest. It, of course, is also the first day of SUMMER!

That word invokes a lot of feelings in people. Haha! From happiness that school is out to dread when those electric bills of non-stop A/C start rolling in. Here in the southern NC area, these temps have already reached the 100 mark and the humidity has been so thick that just walking through it takes extra effort. Lol! But, this is summer in ILM and we get used to it.

As I'm sitting on my front porch this morning, I'm enjoying all the sounds of nature during my quiet time. The frogs singing the birds chirping and, of course, Louie panting at my feet. Ha! I see the raindrops drip off the house from the huge downpours we had throughout the night and I'm thankful they brought in the cooler temperature this morning!

As I rock in my rocking chair, I love to imagine my Jesus sitting beside me in the other and I just talk. I love to share my heart with him and tell him all about the day. It brings comfort to tell him my hurts and share with him my joys. I imagine him speaking to me and then through His Word, I sit in silence as I hear His voice in my spirit. I hear His promises from those beautiful pages of scripture. Promises of comfort, provision, grace and mercy. Promises that He will never leave me and of His incredible love. And it's in these moments that I could rock forever!! O, how I love my Jesus!

Today, I as I begin this longest day of the year, I lay it at His beautiful feet. I ask him to show me how to use this day for HIS glory. It really is all about him and His will for my life so, today, I will choose HIM!

What about YOU?

Let's go forward in HIS will and see amazing things happen! Happy summer to YOU!

"But make sure that you don’t get so absorbed and exhausted in taking care of all your day-by-day obligations that you lose track of the time and doze off, oblivious to God. The night is about over, dawn is about to break. Be up and awake to what God is doing! God is putting the finishing touches on the salvation work he began when we first believed. We can’t afford to waste a minute, must not squander these precious daylight hours in frivolity and indulgence, in sleeping around and dissipation, in bickering and grabbing everything in sight. Get out of bed and get dressed! Don’t loiter and linger, waiting until the very last minute. Dress yourselves in Christ, and be up and about!"
Romans 13:11-14 (MSG)

Friday, June 20, 2014

Home Sweet Home

Lord, today I thank you for my home! I thank you for the happiness that I find here and for the comfort it brings when I drive in my driveway. I thank you for the voices I hear as I walk from room to room, my husband and precious children. I thank you for the rest that my soul finds here as I break away from the world.  I thank you for the reminders of sweet life that dwell here as I see the nicks on the wall and markers of my children's growth on the doorframe. I thank you for the dinners around our family table where memories are shared and days are hashed out. I thank you for our beds that comfort our weary bodies at night. I thank you for our living room where we welcome guests, have family worship time, and do life. I thank you for my kitchen where many memories are shared like cooking meals, heart-to-heart talks, sweet embraces from my husband, and random dance parties with the family. I thank you for our little schoolroom where I get the honor of teaching my kids and watching them learn. I thank you for my laundry room to clean the clothes that we do life in. I thank you for my front door where I watch my husband pull in the driveway from work and welcome him with a hug and kiss. I thank you for our backyard where I watch my kids play ball and our crazy dog run around. I thank you for my front porch where I spend those weekend and summer mornings in your Word and watch the deer across the field. I thank you for our garage where my husband and son do chores with K-LOVE blaring in the background. I thank you for bathrooms where we can shower and brush our teeth.  I thank you for each bedroom and the rest and comfort there. I thank you for the stairwell, top and bottom, where hugs and “I love yous” are shared with each family member.  I thank you for your Word that covers each wall whether by framed print or by handwritten notes.  I thank you for each nook and cranny because it is where precious life is done.

Lord, I thank you for this home…our home! It may not be perfect because it inhabits imperfect people and it may not be perfectly clean but it is HOME. It is the place our family dwells and life lessons are learned. It is the place where we cry together, laugh together, pray together, and grow together. It is the place where you have blessed us immensely and, today Lord, I want to give YOU praise for it all!

“But as for me and my house, we will serve the Lord.”
Joshua 24:15b