Verse For 2022~~~ Isaiah 26:3

Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Isaiah 26:3

 I’m not sure how or when it came to me, but somewhere in the past couple of weeks I knew that my word for the year would be ‘Trust’.  What else could it be? This past year has definitely been a reminder to me that the only way to get through each day is to trust in God. This world and our lives are in his hands, so what else can we do but to trust that he has a plan in everything we go through? 

As I contemplated what I should write today, I was reminded of something I learned shortly after I came to know Jesus as my Saviour back in 1985. We’d begun home schooling out kids and in one of Dana’s Bible study books the lesson was on the account of Joseph’s life in Genesis. I think I may have gotten more out of that lesson than Dana did! It made such an impression on me as a baby Christian that years later I included it in my book. 


Who would have thought that God had a part in Joseph’s brothers selling him into slavery? I’m sure when he was going through it all, even Joseph didn’t understand why all these things were happening to him, but he remained faithful to God nonetheless. It took many years before God’s plan became evident, but in Genesis 45:8a Joseph tells his brothers, “so, now it was not you that sent me hither, but God:” God had a plan for Joseph’s life, even though it meant he would have to endure pain and suffering. It’s so comforting to know that no matter how confusing, or how difficult the circumstances of my life may be, God is in control. 


I also read a quote from Charles Spurgeon’s message, A Happy Christian.


“And you, friend, when you are in good full work, and wages are high, and the house is well-furnished, and the cupboard is full, it is very easy then for you to kneel down at family-prayer and thank God for his kindness; but how about it when the husband is sick, when the funds have got very low, and when the little children look at their father wondering where the next meal will come from — to be satisfied even then that it is all right! Oh this is a grand thing! This is just the mark of difference between the Christian and the worldling. The worldling blesses God while he gives him plenty, but the Christian blesses him when he smites him: he believes him to be too wise to err and too good to be unkind; he trusts him where he cannot trace him, looks up to him in the darkest hour, and believes that all is well. O Christian, if your heart is right, you will understand this spiritual satisfaction, and your soul will be satisfied in times of drought.”


As I thought about these things, I came across this verse that seems to best portray what I want my focus to be in the coming year:


Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee. Isaiah 26:3

There’s also a song based on Spurgeon’s words. It’s been a favourite for years, so I thought I’d include it.


Trust His Heart

https://youtu.be/XWk8DRwDYDc 



Reflecting On 2021


Continuing my yearly tradition of looking back over the past year.

 1. What were the highlights or accomplishments of the past year?

The highlight of the year was the birth of our granddaughter, Emilia. Another highlight was Jeremy moving back to Manitoba and starting work at a gold mine in Snow Lake.

Reconnecting with old friends through our fundraisers was a highlight…as well as meeting new people. Aside form those there weren’t a lot of highlights this year!


2. What were the major themes of the past year?

Illness seemed to be the theme of the year…covid in January, then Emberley’s leukemia diagnosis in March and continuing treatment, illnesses and hospitalization have taken up the year. 


3. What disappointments or regrets did you experience?

No personal regrets, but the whole year has been disappointing….disappointing circumstances, disappointing relationships.


4. What was missing from the past year?

That’s a hard question. I guess I’m missing just having a normal life, one where I don’t have a granddaughter with cancer.


5. What did you learn from the past year?

You learn a lot when you have a crisis in your life. Most important is that with God we can get through anything. Second..life can change in a moment, we have no guarantee of tomorrow, so don’t take anything for granted. Third, you learn a lot about who you can count on and unfortunately, who you can’t. Covid had already revealed the true nature and character of many. But when our granddaughter was diagnosed with Leukemia some of the people I thought would be there to support us, encourage us and just be there to talk….or listen, were nowhere to be found. But at the same time, people I never would have thought of stepped up and stood in that gap…some were old friends, some just acquaintances and many were complete strangers. Until you go through something like this you don’t realize just how much a kind word can help. A phone call, a text message, a face book comment or even just a virtual hug and praying hands mean so much. 

I hope I’ve learned to be that kind of person for others as well. I’ve never been good at knowing what to say to someone going through a rough time, but I’ve realized it doesn’t really matter what you say. It’s just taking the time to show that you care that makes all the difference. Years ago I wrote a song that speaks of this very thing.


Words Fitly Spoken


When you see someone that's hurting, do you say, 

“Friend, come let’s pray,”
and do you share their burden, and brighten up their day?
Do you give them some comfort, as the word of God you share,
or do you ease their heartache, by showing that you care?

When we heed the Spirit’s prodding
to share God’s love and grace,
we’ll never have regrets for the choices we have made.
And we may never know what a few words fitly spoken,
may do to lift the load of one who’s heart is broken.

When a loved one who’s estranged seems to be 
weighing on your heart,
don’t let the moment pass by; just call or send that card.
You’ll quickly mend some fences 
when you take that step of faith,
for there’s no wound or chasm too deep for God’s great grace.

When we heed the Spirit’s prodding 
to share God’s love and grace,
we’ll never have regrets for the choices we have made.
And we may never know what a few words fitly spoken,
may do to lift the load of one who’s heart is broken.

When a long forgotten friend suddenly comes into your mind,
don’t push that thought aside; don’t say I’ll waste my time.
A friendly hand extended may just help someone in need,
so kindle an old friendship, and allow the Lord to lead.

When we heed the Spirit’s prodding 
to share God’s love and grace,
we’ll never have regrets for the choices we have made.
And we may never know what a few words fitly spoken,
may do to lift the load of one who’s heart is broken.
We can make a difference with a few words fitly spoken.
~~~

Galatians 6:2 Bear ye one another’s burdens, and so fulfil the law of Christ.
Philippians 2:1,2 If there be therefore any consolation in Christ, if any comfort of love, if any fellowship of the Spirit, if any bowels and mercies, Fulfil ye my joy, that ye be likeminded, having the same love, being of one accord, of one mind.
Proverbs 25:11 A word fitly spoken is like apples of gold in pictures of silver.

A new year is about to begin and although I’m praying it will be better than this year has been, I know that whatever comes, God is in control and He’s already there waiting to walk us through whatever lies ahead.

Rejoicing In God’s Miracles

Lord give me the eyes of a child;
To see your hand in every gift and trial,
To marvel at your works, to wonder at your grace,
To stand in awe and glorify your name.

I just saw one of God’s miracles


I wrote the song God's Miracles many years ago.


The words above are from that song, inspired by a post written by a friend.

This is an excerpt from her post:

We were driving to church when our son yelled out excitedly from the back seat, "Momma, I just saw one of God's miracles!" I can't even remember exactly what he saw. Regardless, I just haven't been able to shake that statement.

Everyday, God does wonderful, amazing things all around us and we just keep on going like it was nothing. Young children see things differently. I suppose that's one of the reasons we've been admonished to have faith like a child. Our son often marvels over things that seem so everyday to me. I was reading in the Psalms to the kids a few nights ago when he just couldn't get over the fact that God, the Almighty God, wants to be his God too. I remember last Easter when he found a little purple flower growing in the middle of a huge field. He wondered that the Creator of the Universe put that little flower right there for him to enjoy. This morning, he said he was  so thankful that God helped him to sleep all night long. Every day brings some new revelation to strengthen his faith in the I AM. 

Everyday God puts miracles -- not chance circumstances, not coincidences -- but MIRACLES in our lives. How often do we recognize them? Big things like miraculous healings, well, those are the ones we can't wait until testimony time to share. For some reason, we often convince ourselves that "big" miracles are a sign of God's approval on our lives. Yet, we diminish the importance of what we consider "little blessings" as inconsequential. Even when we do value them, we are embarrassed to share them because it seems childish to think of such things as miracles. Consider this -- ALL of God's miracles are for the simple reason of bringing glory to GOD. Don't be afraid to share them.

Let me ask you this, "What is a miracle?" This may seem over simplified, but -- miracles are something only God can do. It took no more of God's power to heal my dad than it did to put a little blue flower in a field in just the right spot for a little boy to learn that God cares about him. It takes the same power to save a sinful soul from Hell that it does to keep you breathing.

"Momma, I just saw one of God's miracles!" Have you seen a miracle lately?

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Lord give me the eyes of a child...

As adults our lives can become so cluttered with our every day duties and commitments that we can become oblivious to God working and we often don’t recognize those little miracles. Sure we notice the big things; someone getting saved, a health issue resolved, big news from a mission field…but a flower in the middle of the field? And yet, it’s those little things we need to be paying attention to. Those are the things a life of faith are made up of, the things that show that our God is concerned about even the smallest details of our lives. I remember as a new Christian having an experience during a baseball game of all things that made me marvel at the fact that God was truly interested in every aspect of my life. I still had the eyes of a child!

To see your hand in every gift and trial...

Perhaps we do recognize God's hand in something as simple as a little blue flower in the middle of a field...but what about the weeds in our garden? Do we see God in the difficulties of life? I was listening to a devotion the other day about looking for lessons in the valley, asking God, "What do you want me to learn from this trial?" When we look at difficult situations from this perspective we start to see God's hand even in the hard times. 
I recently went through such a time. I was terribly hurt by someone close to me and it was hard to see past the disappointment, but when I heard that message, God opened my heart to see that he was wanting to show me some things. Yes, I still felt the sting but I was able to take my focus off myself and learn from the situation.

To marvel at your works…

On Sunday I heard a message preached about how when things become common we tend to take them for granted. He used the Israelites as an example. They probably marvelled the first few weeks of God providing manna, but what about after a month, a year, 20 years? It was definitely a miracle but eventually it became common place and they just took for granted it would be there. I wonder how many even gave much thought to who was providing it. But aren’t we the same? We may even acknowledge these blessings and miracles are from God but we no longer marvel at his works.

To wonder at your grace…

Do I really wonder at God's grace or do I just take it for granted? I'm ashamed to admit how many times I've strayed and yet God is always there offering grace and forgiveness. No matter how many times I lose my way, he’s always there when I finally get my focus back on him. His long suffering toward me is truly a wonder!

To stand in awe and glorify your name…

Yes, give me the eyes of a child, Lord! Let me see your hand in every gift and trial. As I write this I’ve been marvelling at how God has used the preaching of his word as well as this song, chosen many months ago, for just the time I would need it to help me through a difficult time. Lord, I just saw one of your miracles! I stand in awe and glorify your name!

Are not two sparrows sold for a copper coin? And not one of them falls to the ground apart from your Father's will. But the very hairs of your head are all numbered. Do not fear therefore; you are of more value than many sparrows. Matthew 10:29-31

God's Miracles



(©2009 Deborah Bolack)
(stop at end of song)
Play bar may not work on mobile devices
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

Momma, I just saw one of God's miracles!
And I know he did it just for me.
He planted that blue flower in the middle of the field,
Just to tell me how much he cares for me.
~
Lord give me the eyes of a child;
To see your hand in every gift and trial,
To marvel at your works, to wonder at your grace,
To stand in awe and glorify your name.
~
Every day we experience God's miracles,
but we're quick to simply brush them aside.
We count them little blessings, and we say a prayer of thanks,
as we go on about our busy lives.
~
Lord give me the eyes of a child;
To see your hand in every gift and trial,
To marvel at your works, to wonder at your grace,
To stand in awe and glorify your name.
~
Everyone wants to tell of God's miracles;
of great healings, and of reaching lost souls.
But greater is the message of a simple childlike faith,
crying, "I just saw one of our God's miracles!"
~
Lord give me the eyes of a child;
To see your hand in every gift and trial,
To marvel at your works, to wonder at your grace,
To stand in awe and glorify your name.
~
Lord, I just saw one of your miracles!
I stand in awe and glorify your name!
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
God’s Miracles /Lyric Devotions

Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say rejoice!


Rejoicing In God's Mercies: New Every Day

 Where do I begin to write about such a vast topic as the mercy of God?


It's easy to take a few verses of scripture and put them into a song lyric, but to expound on the mercies of God is an overwhelming thought and one I feel completely inadequate to express. As I read through Psalm 145 I'm so overcome by the goodness of our God. When writing the song "New Every day" I based it in part on this Psalm, but the lyrics only touch on such a small portion of scripture to convey its message. There is so much more to be found that an entire songbook could not possibly express it all. So rather than just include a few of those scriptures I feel I need to include the whole Psalm and let it speak for itself.


Psalm 145 Psalm 145 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.


Psalm 145

I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever.

Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever.

Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; and his greatness is unsearchable.

One generation shall praise thy works to another, and shall declare thy mighty acts.

I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.

And men shall speak of the might of thy terrible acts: and I will declare thy greatness.

They shall abundantly utter the memory of thy great goodness, and shall sing of thy righteousness.

The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy.

The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.

All thy works shall praise thee, O Lord; and thy saints shall bless thee.

They shall speak of the glory of thy kingdom, and talk of thy power;

To make known to the sons of men his mighty acts, and the glorious majesty of his kingdom.

Thy kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, and thy dominion endureth throughout all generations.

The Lord upholdeth all that fall, and raiseth up all those that be bowed down.

The eyes of all wait upon thee; and thou givest them their meat in due season.

Thou openest thine hand, and satisfiest the desire of every living thing.

The Lord is righteous in all his ways, and holy in all his works.

The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon him, to all that call upon him in truth.

He will fulfil the desire of them that fear him: he also will hear their cry, and will save them.

The Lord preserveth all them that love him: but all the wicked will he destroy.

My mouth shall speak the praise of the Lord: and let all flesh bless his holy name for ever and ever.

As I read through Psalm 145 one more time, some of the words that stood out to me were verses 8 & 9:

 
The Lord is gracious, and full of compassion; slow to anger, and of great mercy. The Lord is good to all: and his tender mercies are over all his works.

Along with another portion of scripture:

Lamentations 3:22,23 It is of the Lord's mercies that we are not consumed, because his compassions fail not. They are new every morning: great is thy faithfulness.

I marvel at the longsuffering of our Lord; that if not for His mercies we would be consumed. He is slow to anger...how thankful we should be that He is. And every morning His compassions are new... because great is HIS faithfulness.

I will extol thee, my God, O king; and I will bless thy name for ever and ever. Every day will I bless thee; and I will praise thy name for ever and ever. I will speak of the glorious honour of thy majesty, and of thy wondrous works.....and I will declare thy greatness.


New Every Day

©DeborahBolack2010


Oh, gracious is our Lord and blessed be His name.
Holy in all His works and righteous in all His ways.
Great is our Lord, and greatly to be praised.
His compassions never fail; they're new every day.


New every day, new every day.
New mercies every morning, fall like dew by God's grace.
New every day, new every day.
God's compassions, His mercies, are new every day.

God upholds me when I fall; lifts me up when I'm bowed down,
opens up His hand; there satisfaction is found.
Faithful is our Lord, extending His great grace.
His compassions never fail; they're new every day.

New every day, new every day.
New mercies every morning, fall like dew by God's grace.
New every day, new every day.
God's compassions, His mercies, are new every day.


More posts on the topic of Rejoicing


Psalm 145


Rejoicing In Song: I Will Sing

Last month, when I wrote about my song for the month, I also went through my calendar and added a post title to each song, each one starting with Rejoicing In... When I sat down to write this post and read the title, "Rejoicing In Song" a verse came to mind...

Psalm 137:4 How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?


Psalm 137:4 How shall we sing the Lord's song in a strange land?

For the past week, I've been living in a strange land indeed; completely unfamiliar territory. I woke up Monday morning, excited to see one of my sons off to start a new job. I went to bed that night with my mind spinning with the word Leukemia. Two days later we had a diagnosis...our 5 year old granddaughter has B-ALL Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia, with chemo treatments expected to last 2 1/2 years.

How shall we sing? By remembering the Lord; His mercy and grace, His comfort, His love, joy and peace, His glory, His victory, His power, His wondrous works.

Philippians 4:7 And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.

I had no idea at the beginning of the year why God led me to choose a verse about rejoicing in Him, or why I chose a song of praise for each month, or why I chose a word or phrase to focus that praise, but I can see now that this is what I will need to carry me through...a reminder to always be looking to my Lord and Saviour, trusting in Him and holding tight to His hand; telling of His wondrous works and glorying in His name. 

My song for this month:

I Will Sing

Jesus sought me and redeemed me with His precious blood.
Forever I will sing His praise.
I’ll rejoice, for Jesus loves me and abides in me.
I will sing of His mercy and grace.

Yes, I’ll sing of the mercy and grace of God;
of His comfort, His love, joy and peace.
I will sing of His glory, His victory, His power.
I will sing till He comes back for me.

When I’m walking through a valley, Jesus takes my hand,
and guides me to the pastures green.
Then He leads me by still waters, and restores my soul.
Of His comfort and love I will sing.

Yes, I’ll sing of the mercy and grace of God;
of his comfort, his love, joy and peace.
I will sing of his glory, his victory, his power.
I will sing till he comes back for me.

I commit my way to Jesus, and I trust in him,
for He will always meet my needs.
God’s peace keeps my heart and mind through Jesus Christ, my Lord.
I will sing of His joy and His peace.

Yes, I’ll sing of the mercy and grace of God;
of His comfort, His love, joy and peace.
I will sing of His glory, His victory, His power.
I will sing till He comes back for me.

The creator, precious Saviour, Jesus Christ, my Lord,
the Lamb of God, the King of kings.
I will tell His wondrous works, and glory in His name.
Of His victory and power I will sing.

Yes, I’ll sing of the mercy and grace of God;
of His comfort, His love, joy and peace.
I will sing of His glory, His victory, His power.
I will sing till He comes back for me.

I will sing.
~~~

Psalm 23:2-4 He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: he leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for his name’s sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me; thy rod and thy staff they comfort me.

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