Monday’s Musings #251 & Delightful Serving

Delightful Serving & Monday's Musings #251 | What Joy Is Mine

Do you serve in your church? Do you find it delightful?

Delight defined is “to receive great pleasure in.”

Scripture says we are to “work heartily, as for the Lord and not for men, knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward. You are serving Christ.” (Colossians 3:23, 24) When I read this scripture, it tells me how we are to serve. We are to serve as unto the Lord and not men.

Well, for one, this command means we are to serve with our eyes and heart focused on God. This means our serving has nothing to do with us and everything to do with Him. With this on the forefront of our minds and in the center of our heart, we are free to serve others as Jesus would have. It then becomes a delight to serve. “For God is not unjust so as to overlook your work and the love that you have shown for his name in serving the saints, as you still do.” (Hebrews 6:10)

Second, it means we are to serve in obedience to God. When He calls us to serve at our church, we are to do so willingly and with joy. We are not to be slothful or do it with feelings of dread. True obedience to the calling of God, does not complain or whine. Instead, we serve with a desire to please our Lord through delightful obedience. As Peter and apostles stressed in Acts 5:29, “We must obey God rather than men.”

Thirdly, this verse reminds us that unto the Lord is serving Christ. Paraphrasing Matthew Henry’s words, it sanctifies a servant’s work when it is done with the approach that it is Christ we are serving and not men only. If we could just sit on that point every time we serve in our church, what an incredible experience it would be to serve. It would go beyond duty and fill us with delight.

Most importantly, Colossians 3:23,24 goes on to tell us the benefit of serving unto the Lord. “Knowing that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward.” As we serve Christ, we will one day have our glorious reward. The Lord, our ultimate giver of good things, will reward us. This heavenly inheritance promised is not earned by works done but more by the heart in which we have done them. It is all by His grace. It is not an earthly reward although God can bless us when we walk in obedience to Him in all things.

Serving in our church ought to be delightful, something we take pleasure in, not for personal satisfaction or recognition but unto the glory of God. It is for Him that we serve knowing that it pleases Him greatly and our reward is the heavenly inheritance that only He can give by His grace. Thomas Watson says, “The more we enjoy of God [including serving in the church], the more we are ravished with delight.” (Brackets mine)

January is just flying by, at least for me. I am so grateful you are have found Monday’s Musings and look forward to what you will be sharing. Blessings to you.

Monday's Musings #251 | What Joy Is Mine

Monday’s Musings Purpose:

To have others share encouragement about being a child of God, being a godly wife, motherhood, homemaking, homeschooling, healthy recipes, modest dress, etc. (I reserve the right to remove anything I deem unacceptable. Keep in mind this is a Christian blog.)

Monday’s Musings Must Dos:

1. Please link directly to the post you’re sharing. Be sure to link back here by using a text link or the logo in the side bar.

2. This link up party stays open until Wednesday evening. Know that sometimes I share your posts on Pinterest, Twitter and/or Facebook because I desire for our readers to be blessed.

3. It would be so awesome if you could encourage another by visiting their post and leaving a kind comment. Builds community, too. Thank you for visiting and linking up. Now, let’s get to sharing. Link following this post. Grab my link button in the side bar and place on your blog so others know about our community and can join in.

What Joy Is Mine Blog

 

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**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. Photo credit


Monday’s Musings #232 & Self Denial

 Self Denial & Monday's Musings | What Joy Is Mine

Self denial is a rarity in our society. Selfishness is more the order of the day than not. Yet, in Luke 9:23, Jesus says, “If anyone would come after me, he must deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me.” Simply put, it is a command for self denial–first–then we can take up our cross and follow Him. So, what is true self denial? There are a few questions to ask ourselves that will help us know if we live selfishly or in self denial.

1. What is it you live for? What pushes you out of your bed every day?

2. What principally tugs at your heart the most? Your marriage? Your children? Your job? Your faith?

3. What do you most prize? What sits predominately on the throne of your heart?

After we answer these questions, we must ask ourselves this final question: Is it glorifying to God?

When Jesus said, “he must deny himself,” it is a call for self denial. Self denial is “the denial of one’s interests and needs.” The sin of selfishness will cause us to stumble in this command given by Jesus. Selfishness replaces God on the throne of our hearts with other things or persons to steal away our attention from Him. “Where God’s interests are the strongest, there self denial is sincere,” wrote famous theologian, Richard Baxter.

So, God must be the single focus of our heart. The way we live, speak, think, act, etc., ought to be done to the glory of God and to please Him. Denying ourselves and putting the Lord first enables us to live for Him and not ourselves. True self denial for a follower of Jesus lives to prize their salvation and God’s presence in their life. Whereas, selfishness of heart chooses to gratify the flesh and all it desires.

We experience self denial by removing everything that replaces the Lord in our lives. Now, our hearts can be ruled by God, His Holy Word, and His Holy Spirit, which we receive upon accepting Jesus as our Savior. Our carnal self is no longer satisfied. Instead, we have an amazing Father who draws our heart to Himself. He is our focus and real love. He is now the master of our lives.

In a word, true self denial is procured by the knowledge and love of God.” (Richard Baxter) We can only come by this in having a personal relationship with Him and seeking to be in His presence daily by reading, studying and hiding His Word in our heart. When we love the Lord “with all our heart, with all our soul, and with all our mind” (Matthew 22:37), we won’t want anything else to be on the throne of our heart.

Search now and try your heart to know if you possess the necessary grace of self denial. Then, live it daily. “Examine yourselves, to see whether you are in the faith. Test yourselves. Or do you not realize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you?—unless indeed you fail to meet the test!” (2 Corinthians 13:5)

Hello again friends. We are officially in the month of September and today is probably a day off for most due to it being Labor Day. However, I hope we get a good turn out. Thank you so much for visiting and for commenting. I enjoy hearing from you on both accounts. Well, let’s get to it.

Monday's Musings | What Joy Is Mine

Monday’s Musings Purpose:

To have others share encouragement about being a child of God, being a godly wife, motherhood, homemaking, homeschooling, healthy recipes, modest dress, etc. (I reserve the right to remove anything I deem unacceptable. Keep in mind this is a Christian blog.)

Monday’s Musings Must Dos:

1. Please link directly to the post you’re sharing. Be sure to link back here by using a text link or the logo in the side bar.

2. This link up party stays open until Wednesday evening. Know that sometimes I share your posts on Pinterest, Twitter and/or Facebook because I desire for our readers to be blessed.

3. It would be so awesome if you could encourage another by visiting their post and leaving a kind comment. Builds community, too.

Thank you for visiting and linking up. Now, let’s get to sharing. Link following this post. Grab my link button in the side bar and place on your blog so others know about our community and can join in.

 

What Joy Is Mine Blog

 

Get connected!! 
Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
This post might contain affiliates. Read our disclosure.
Thank you for supporting this site and our family.
You might find me sharing at these link ups during the week.

 

**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. Photo Source.


Monday’s Musings #225 & How To Enjoy God

How To Enjoy God & Monday's Musings #225 | What Joy Is Mine

Our family is in the middle of studying the Westminster Shorter Catechism (WSC). If you’re not familiar with it, the Westminster Shorter Catechism is a form of reformed Christian faith instruction by means of questions and answers written in 1646 and 1647 by the Westminster Assembly to educate followers of Jesus Christ about God as Creator, the original sin and the fallen state of man’s nature, the sacraments of Holy Communion and Baptism, the Ten Commandments and the Lord’s Prayer. It has been a blessing to our family and our faith.

The very first question in the WSC is probably the most popular. “What is the chief end of man?“. The answer is “Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and enjoy Him forever.” Really, the answer given contains two answers in one. The first part addresses living a life that glorifies God. The second part addresses enjoying God forever. I want to share my thoughts on the latter part of the answer.

What does it mean to enjoy God? Enjoy defined is “to take pleasure or satisfaction in the possession or experience of.” When we enjoy something or someone we are completely delighted in it or them. There is a satisfaction we receive. Concerning our Father, enjoying Him is a matter of acknowledging who He is in this world, in our lives and in the life to come.

In this world, we enjoy Him as Creator. Creator of all things. We agree  “For by him all things were created, in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities—all things were created through him and for him.” (Colossians 1:16) All is His and created by Him. Creation reflects who He is and His glory always and forever.

In our lives, we enjoy Him as our Father, who sent a Savior, Jesus Christ, to rescue us. “Yet for us there is one God, the Father, from whom are all things and for whom we exist, and one Lord, Jesus Christ, through whom are all things and through whom we exist.” (1 Corinthians 8:6) Because He has redeemed us, we can enjoy Him and all He is to us daily. We can embrace His steadfast love for us with rejoicing and seek His face in everyday doings. God is present in our lives and we ought to take great care in enjoying Him in all things. Our hearts should be like David’s, “O God, you are my God; earnestly I seek you; my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.” (Psalm 63:1) Listen, what are all the enjoyments of the world without the enjoyment of God? “And there is nothing on earth that I desire besides you.” (Psalm 73:25)

In the life to come, we enjoy Him eternally forever. Not just in this life but in the heavenly realms where He is seated. We remind ourselves, “Whom have I in heaven but you?” (Psalm 73:25) To enjoy Him eternally means we must have conformity with Him in grace first. In other words, we have been adopted into His family through His Son Jesus, who paid our debt of sin on the cross and by His resurrection. “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life. (John 3:16)

So, how do we enjoy God? Bringing this to a more applicable way of thinking:

~As we open our eyes to greet the day ahead, we ought to thank God for another day of life and breath, knowing we serve and love an awesome Lord without whom we would not have our being. 

~As we put our feet on the floor to rise and begin our daily tasks, we ought to ask God for strength, wisdom, and joy as we face a new day and all it will hold including any trials that might come upon us. 

~As we eat our first meal, we ought to thank God for daily provisions as we need to survive and thrive.

~As we mother our children, we ought to seek Him for direction and wisdom to raise our children to further His kingdom.

~As we love our husbands, we ought to ask God to show us how to be the helpers He created us to be towards our husbands at all times. 

~As we lay our heads down to rest, we ought to reflect on our day, confessing and asking for forgiveness of sins, being grateful for blessings and daily care, praying over people and situations laid on our heart, and closing our eyes knowing the peace, mercy and love of our Lord is ours for all the days of our lives.

Today, let’s start anew, enjoying our God with a heart that believes without doubt that He is present in our lives through all situations and events, loving us with a steadfast love.

I pray you had a fabulous week. As we embark on a new week, I always look forward to Mondays because you visit and share much encouragement. Thank you.

Monday's Musings | What Joy Is Mine

Monday’s Musings Purpose: I would LOVE! to have you share encouragement about being a child of God, being a godly wife, motherhood, homemaking, homeschooling, healthy recipes, modest dress, etc. (I reserve the right to remove anything I deem unacceptable. Keep in mind this is a Christian blog.) Please link directly to the post you’re sharing. Be sure to link back here by using a text link or the logo below. This link up party stays open until Wednesday evening. Oh, and sometimes I share your posts on Pinterest, Twitter and/or Facebook because I desire for our readers to be blessed. Thank you for visiting and linking up. Now, let’s get to sharing. Link following this post. Grab my link button in the side bar and place on your blog so others know about our community and can join in.

What Joy Is Mine Blog

 

Get connected!! 
Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
This post might contain affiliates. Read our disclosure.
Thank you for supporting this site and our family.
You might find me sharing at these link ups during the week.

 

**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. Photo Source.


Monday’s Musings #212 & 3 Purposes of Bible Study

Monday's Musings #212 & 3 Purposes of Bible Study | What Joy Is Mine

Let me be the first to admit it. Sometimes, I don’t get around to my Bible study. I go to bed with good intentions but then I wake up the next morning and it doesn’t get done. Sometimes that’s my own doing. Other times life happens unexpectedly. No matter how, missing my time with the Lord leaves me feeling like I missed something.

You know how you feel when you’ve missed something? You are disappointed. Well, let me share with you why we should honestly try not to miss our time with the Lord.

Bible study is a threefold blessing: Upward, Inward and Outward. A blessing to us, not God. He doesn’t need us, we need Him. And our time with Him blesses us in three specific ways.

First, we experience an upward blessing. By upward, our aim is to focus our heart on God and nothing else when we read the Word of God. When we open our Bible to read it, we get to see for ourselves a good God, a gracious and merciful God and a loving Father. It is in knowing this, we praise His holy Name. We can’t help but Praise the Lord! Praise God in his sanctuary; praise him in his mighty heavens! Praise him for his mighty deeds; praise him according to his excellent greatness” when we spend time with Him. (Psalm 150:1,2) 

We learn that He is so deserving of unending praise and devotion from us–the broken sinner in need of a faithful and sovereign God. It’s in His presence we enjoy Him and bask in His steadfast love towards us. This upward emphasis brought about when we dig into the Word for study, encourages the foundation of who we are in Christ.

Secondly, we experience inward blessing. Opening the Word of God and really digging in allows us to embrace the truth of scripture which points in every way to Jesus, the cross and our need of Him.  Reading and studying the Bible will purposely embed in our hearts biblical wisdom and knowledge for life and for every situation we endure. We can always count on God’s words to guide, teach, reproof and train the believer in righteousness. (2 Timothy 3:16) We will never walk away hungry because the Bread of life will fill us up to overflowing. Jesus said to them, “I am the bread of life; whoever comes to me shall not hunger, and whoever believes in me shall never thirst.” (John 6:35)

When we spend time in the Word of God, we must have a receptive heart ready to receive what the Lord wants us to know. This inward blessing of daily Bible study will grow us up in Him and give us the tools to live godly lives unto His glory and our good.Like newborn infants, long for the pure spiritual milk, that by it you may grow up into salvation.” (1 Peter 2:2)

This leads me to the third blessing of daily Bible reading and studying: outward blessing. This is the desire to live outwardly what God teaches us inwardly. We ought to be overjoyed to go out into the world and apply what we are gleaning. It is exciting to put the teachings of God to work in our lives and in the lives of others, taking it beyond the pages and putting it into action.

This includes how we speak as much as how we act. It encompasses what we do for another. Most importantly, this outward blessing can give us the opportunity, when God designs it, to share the Gospel with others whether verbally or actively living it out. Simply put, we are applying the Word of God in the world. “And he [Jesus] said to them, “Go into all the world and proclaim the gospel to the whole creation.(Mark 16:15)

We pass up so much when we miss our time with the Lord. Thankfully, there is grace when it can’t be helped. Yet let’s keep in mind that even five minutes grows our faith when we can’t fit in our regular time. The Lord is always available. Remember He tells us, “Behold, I stand at the door and knock. If anyone hears my voice and opens the door, I will come in to him and eat with him, and he with me. (Revelation 3:20) Let’s make every effort to come into His presence and embrace His grace, mercy and love for us.

Today, how will you make sure you don’t miss your time with God and His Word?

Now, it’s time to share your posts and I’m looking forward to some good reading.

Monday's Musings #212 & 3 Purposes For Bible Study | What Joy Is MIne

Monday’s Musings Purpose: I would LOVE! to have you share encouragement about being a child of God, being a godly wife, motherhood, homemaking, homeschooling, healthy recipes, modest dress, etc. (I reserve the right to remove anything I deem unacceptable. Keep in mind this is a Christian blog.) Please link directly to the post you’re sharing. Be sure to link back here by using a text link or the logo below. This link up party stays open until Wednesday evening. Oh, and sometimes I share your posts on Pinterest, Twitter and/or Facebook because I desire for our readers to be blessed. Thank you for visiting and linking up. Now, let’s get to sharing. Link following this post. Grab my link button in the side bar and place on your blog so others know about our community and can join in.

2015Siggy2

 

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Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
This post might contain affiliates. Read our disclosure.
Thank you for supporting this site and our family.

 

**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. Photo Source


What Saying “Amen” Really Means

 What Saying "Amen" Really Means | What Joy Is Mine

It is a word we say following prayer. “In Jesus’ name. Amen.” Yet have you ever thought about what you’re saying when you say it? I think it has become so routine with prayer that we don’t really think about what it means to say amen. Amen defined, “As a verb, it signifies to confirm, establish, verify; to trust, or give confidence; as a noun, truth, firmness, trust, confidence; as an adjective, firm, stable. In English, it is used generally at the end of declarations and prayers, in the sense of, be it firm, be it established.

The word amen appears 78 times in the KJV of the Bible applied for different reasons. Different ways amen is used is found in these following verses:

~Deuteronomy 27 – The Israelites were told the curses (consequences, that is) tied in with certain sins and the people were instructed to say amen in acceptance of these curses. Matthew Henry states why saying amen was important here: “All the people, by saying this Amen, became bound for one another, that they would observe God’s laws, by which every man was obliged, as far as he could, to prevent his neighbour from breaking these laws.”

~ 1 Chronicles 16:7-36 – Amen is expressed in praising the Lord. “When the Levites had finished this psalm or prayer and praise, then, and not till then, the people that attended signified their consent and concurrence by saying, Amen.” (Matthew Henry)

~ Psalm 72:19 – David is confirming his honor of God and the desire for His glories to fill the earth. He says amen not once but twice. “Amen and amen,” again and again, he says,” let it be established”.

~ Matthew 6:13 – Amen follows the Lord’s prayer. Jesus’ example of prayer ends with amen meaning “so be it.” “It was of old the practice of good people to say, Amen, audibly at the end of every prayer, and it is a commendable practice, provided it be done with understanding, and uprightly, with life and liveliness, and inward expressions, answerable to that outward expression of desire and confidence.” (Matthew Henry)

~ Romans 11:36 – Paul reassures us that God is over all and he sealed that realization with an amen meaning “be it firm.”

So, in these five examples we see amen used to accept what God has put down as law, to encourage our heart in praising and honoring the Lord even more, to determine our prayers to be answered as requested, and to acknowledge the certainty of God’s sovereignty over all things.

Amen is a power-filled answer that trusts, believes and has confidence in a holy and mighty God. When we say amen at the end of prayer, we believe He can (and possibly will) do what we are asking. When we say amen in answer to a praise situation, we are recognizing God’s hand and purpose as being perfect. When we utter amen in a storm of life, we are demonstrating confidence in Him that the outcome will be for our good and His glory.

For all the promises of God in Him are Yes, and in Him Amen, to the glory of God through us.(2 Cor. 1:20). We say amen believing in a powerful God and that He is more than able to do what we ask as well recognizing His greatness in all things.

 Siggy2015

Get connected!! 
Stop by on Mondays to link up at Monday’s Musings.
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**Some photos on my blog are my own labeled NCPhotography. If any of my photos anywhere on my blog catch your eye, please email me for permission to use them in any way. I appreciate your cooperation in helping my photography stay protected and properly credited. Thank you. Photo Source
 
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