Be A Lotus


This is a very emotional time for our country.

     – Many people believe that of the two people running for president neither is qualified.       – Freedoms and liberties of Americans is being pushed aside.
– Being able to go to the movies, gather with friends, going to any public place has become dangerous.
–  Many Americans live in fear of terrorists.
–  Rather than being tolerant in what do do not like in others, and having what I call “put-up-with-it-ness”, folks are down right mean.

The list could go on and I’m sure you have other items that you would list.
In the past several weeks, I have heard tempers flare and more name calling than middle school.  Listen, we are grown up adult people. We are not all alike. We do not have the same beliefs. We do not have the same ideas on everything from parenting to political views. Therefore, we will disagree. Because someone disagrees with you or me does not make them of lesser intelligence.  They are voicing their opinion from their own beliefs and life experiences.  There seems to be a need to put others down.  To even acknowledge that we have 5 more months of this political rhetoric is more than I can even think about.  People are unfriending each other.  Discussion becomes bitterness.

The blossoms of the lotus and water lily are just beautiful.  They can grow in some really murky, nasty water.  But when it’s time to bloom, it pushes about an inch above the nasty water and then presents that beautiful blossom.  It’s time to push an inch above the junk going on and and allow others to have their own opinions and express their own views without acting like middle school.  Make your point.  Do not press it.  Accept what others say.  You do not have to like or agree.  Just let it rest.  It’s time grown up, intelligent people take a simple lesson from the lotus blossom.  Just push an inch above!!!

Deep Roots

deep roots graphicI hear people talking about their roots. Some spend hours researching and even paying exorbitant amounts of money for DNA background testing just to discover what part of the world holds their roots.

I can save everybody some money and time. Isaiah 11:1 tells us about our roots. “There shall come forth a shoot from the stump of Jesse, and a branch from his roots shall bear fruit.

Y’all know I am not sharing anything that is new. But sometimes I need to remind myself and I’m thinking I’m not the only one who needs reminding.

Christians refer to “accepting Jesus” and please understand that I am not condemning that phrase. But I found one that works better for me and I’m gonna share! Romans 15:7 says that Jesus accepts us just the way we are indicating that we do not have to “be good enough” for Him to love us. When it comes to our relationship with Jesus, I read words like “put on the Lord……”. Romans 13:14 (ESV) “But put on the Lord Jesus Christ, and make no provision for the flesh, to gratify its desires.”

Now, let me bore you with a little bit of a word study. When we say “put on”, we are talking about clothes, jacket – things that we will take off when finished wearing. Many times, when the Bible writers say “put on”, that means to be glued to like skin. We do not take our skin off and on like clothes. It’s there and it stays!! So, what Paul is telling us in Romans 13 is that we put Jesus on to be glued like skin. “Put on” is used many times in our New Testaments and often is has to do with the character and qualities we “put on” when we become a Christian.

The storms of life are coming. Peter 4:11 tells us not to be surprised when life throws bad things our way. It’s going to happen. Now listen, I’m not saying we are going to love the storms! Storms can be quite scary and can even test our faith. But when our roots are deep and secure in Jesus, we can endure and overcome.

What is the result when we put Jesus on? Ephesians 3:17 (ESV) ”… so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith—that you, being rooted and grounded in love,…”. There’s probably a storm brewing somewhere – check those roots!!

Be Careful Little Mouth

I have noticed for several years that our language has pretty much gone downhill.   Believe it or not, there was a time when one could get their mouth washed out for saying the “Rhett Butler word”.  In some groups, it was spelled and not said out loud!!

What happened?  How have we become so very conditioned to profanity being the norm in language?  How have we become so limited in our vocabulary that we can’t seem to communicate our frustration or anger without blasting useless words?

I was taught the significance of this section of Scripture very early in life.  James 3:9–10 (NIV) “9 With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. 10 Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.”  This reading goes on to describe that fresh water and bitter water does not come from the same fountain!  It’s either one or the other.

What really concerns me is that Christians have become so conditioned to the words we hear from others everyday, that there is no shock left!  It does not seem to bother us.  I was on the phone at work one day and the man who had called our department could not talk without profanity every other word.  I finally stopped him and in a very nice voice, I said, “Sir, I do not want to hurt your feelings.  But I can not concentrate on what you are trying to say because your language is so offensive!!  Believe it or not, he apologized and cleaned up his mouth and asked his questions and I was able to give him the help he needed.  As we were hanging up, he offered another apology for his language.  I told him that I knew he was upset, but that was NOT helping me help him!!

In my growing up years, we sang that little song “be careful little mouth what you say for the Father up above is looking down on you with love, so be careful little mouth what you say”.  Our Father “up above” knows the words on our lips before they even come out.  I wonder how many times a day He cringes?  (Psalm 139:4 (NIV) “4 Before a word is on my tongue you, Lord, know it completely.”

Think about what you say.  If you are stuck in that rut of thinking profanity is cool, makes a point, is expressive, let me encourage you to rethink that.  Find a way to express yourself without “cussin”.  Decide what kind of fountain you want to be!!

Just A Few Years

We have an inside joke at our household.  The word “few” indicates  8.  If you ask for “a few grapes”, the reply will be “you want eight?”.  This is because of a Bible verse.  1 Peter 3:20 (NIV)  “to those who were disobedient long ago when God waited patiently in the days of Noah while the ark was being built. In it only a few people, eight in all, were saved through water”.

I can honestly say that I started the process of a blog a few years ago!!!  My email address and username was already registered.  Umm – yes, I had to request the password be reset!!

Since retirement and some physical limitations, I have focused on some devotional thoughts.  Some may be shorter than others.  Some may be more challenging than others.  Some may not be anything new (because Solomon said nothing is new) but just a refresher for us!

At any rate, I look forward to beginning this journey and ask you to follow with me.  ljd