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Sunday, July 31, 2016

Sunday Snippets: New Eyes

John 5:39 "Search the scriptures; for in them ye think ye have eternal life: and they are they which testify of me."

So...I don't even know where to start. We've been having a conference at our church, and I promise you I am going to do a post, and possibly a series of posts, on the subjects we've talked about. But right now I can't because my mind has been blown. I've lost count of how many times. I wouldn't be able to formulate a coherent post at all!

I feel like about 1,000 lightbulbs have turned on, my eyes have been opened, and I've seen God's Word in an entirely new perspective. I am not even sure how to articulate, or put into words exactly what God's been doing in my life, but I'll tell you it's amazing. Brother Johnny Nixon and Joshua Agan from Born That Way ministries have been preaching the conference, as well as staying with us...they have been SUCH a huge blessing!!! Just how huge, they may never know! We've all stayed up into the wee hours every night talking, and I have loved every minute of it. 

Today, all I can do is praise God for how He has worked in my life lately, and to encourage you in one thing:

I've been a child of God for over 9 years, and within a few days I have seen things in God's Word that I have read probably hundreds of times and never truly understood. I know The Bible fairly well! Or at least I thought I did. Which is the problem. I think sometimes we get so comfortable with our knowledge level, almost an "I have arrived" attitude, that we miss out on brilliant, beautiful, vital truths that God is wanting us to see from His Word! If for once we would just look at God's Word with open hearts and minds, and a DESIRE to hear new things from Him, we would learn so. much. This week as you read God's Word, try to look at it afresh. Think about the words and phrases, and how God placed them. Nothing is in The Bible on accident!! Not one single word. Ask Him for new eyes to see with. :)

Thursday, July 28, 2016

Sunday Snippets: All Are Precious in His Sight

Acts 17:24-26 "God that made the world and all things therein, seeing that he is Lord of heaven and earth, dwelleth not in temples made with hands; Neither is worshipped with men's hands, as though he needed any thing, seeing he giveth to all life, and breath, and all things; And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation;" (emphasis mine)

Within the last couple of years, there have been tragic events that, with increasing frequency, are causing an immense amount of criticism of our law enforcement here in the U.S. Racism claims and accusations are flying, with little regard for the plain truth of what the events were, and who was involved. I do not follow the news really at all to be honest, but this has been such a major issue, who hasn't heard about it? 

So many people go on and on about "race". So and so is of this race, I am of that one. On applications they ask what your race is. Such and such couple was an interracial marriage. The list goes on. Obviously we as Christians are to base our worldview on The Bible, not on society's thinking. (Which is pretty messed up, by the way). So let me ask you this: is there any such thing as different races? 

In the passage above, Paul is preaching on Mars Hill. I'm sure there was a huge diversity of people listening at the time; after all, they were busy worshipping literally every god known to man and more. There had to be a lot of people from different regions. One of the first things Paul says is that God made "of one blood" all nations. So to answer my own there any such thing as different races? No. There is one race living on this planet. The human race. So when people talk about a group of people as being a different "race", they are incorrect in the very groundwork of their thinking.

So how does knowing that there is only ONE race translate into our daily lives? First of all, we need to realize that within every single people group and skin color on this earth, there are people who live wickedly, and people who live "morally" by the world's standards. But does that mean that the moral ones are on their way to heaven? No!! God's plan of salvation is the same across the board...if someone hasn't accepted Christ as their personal Saviour, they are lost, no matter how they live their daily life--moral or otherwise. What I'm trying to say is, that we have our focus all wrong. We look at the situations in the news and say "The cop ended up doing this and the other guy did that, and this or that one was black, so there must have been a racial issue, yada yada..." what we are forgetting is that red or yellow, black or white, every single one of them needs Jesus Christ! It doesn't matter who was right or wrong, who was black or white, who had a racial slant going and who didn't: they are all human beings with immortal souls that need salvation.

As followers of Jesus, let's not get caught up in racial disputes or discrimination claims. He hath made of one blood all nations. We are called to share the love of Christ, and the message of His Gospel, with every creature; and it does not matter what color skin they may have. Man looks at the outward appearance, but God searches the hearts of men. Let's get out there and start sharing what He's done for us, and what He can do for others! That message of grace is the only one that can bring peace to people with war and hate in their hearts.
P.S. Please bear with me, as I am doing some revamping on the blog design...a couple of posts may show up out of order and/or repost previous articles again. I'm having a few technical difficulties with that. ;) Thank you for your patience!

Fun Post: July Favorites!

Hey Guys!
So last month I did a post about all the random things I had been up to, and it got a good response from everyone, so I think I'll keep it up! ;) I've been:

The Bronze Bow by Elizabeth George Speare. Seriously, this book....I'm not going to lie, I cried. And I don't honestly cry over books that often. It has to be a REALLY good book. ;) And this was!! I had heard of it for a long time, and it just went under my radar. I came across it at work, and of course had to check it out; SO glad I did!! At the link above, it's $3.59. For less than a cup of coffee, you can get it: go do it. :D

A lot. As a substitute, there is actually a set amount of hours per month that I am allowed to work. Well, there is a position open that they haven't been able to fill yet, so I actually had to get special permission to go over my allotted hours of work time. I've spent a lot of time at the library this past month. ;P

Getting ready for...
A special meeting/conference at church! We are having the two guest speakers stay with us for about a week, so I've been getting the guest area all ready. We are really looking forward to having them.

Carrot Sheet cake. Oh. My. Goodness. That stuff, with cream cheese frosting, warm out of the oven...someone please stop me, because I cannot stop myself!!! :O Another baking exploit of mine this month: homemade, from scratch dark chocolate ice cream, with homemade, from scratch chocolate chip cookie dough mixed in. AAAAAHHHH. 

My new fitness tracker watch. (You know, to help me out after that ice cream and cake? Haha!) It tells steps taken, miles, calories, time, date, and tracks sleep patterns. It sets a new goal for me every day, which I love, because it continually pushes me to get a little bit more active. It really helps at work, because a lot of times I just forget to move around after a while. :)

Hanging out in...
My hammock!! It's honestly been like a childhood dream of mine forever to have a hammock. This is the first house we've lived in where there are actually trees strong enough, and close enough together to put one up. SO AWESOME. ;) I've been relaxing out there when I have a spare two seconds, which hasn't been too often, but that's ok. 

Some American Ninja Warrior clips on YouTube. They motivate me when I'm on the elliptical machine, lol! ;)

Were it Not for Grace. I couldn't find a very good version on YT right off, but it is a really good song. It's one of those that once I start singing it, I'll have it in my head for at least a few days to a week. :P

Hand lettering. I'm improving oh-so-slowly, but I wish I had more time to work on it! I'm enjoying figuring out new styles and trying to add to my repertoire. Letters can be so beautiful!

How very much stuff I collect, and how much I need to go through and dump a lot of it. Also procrastinating on that. *guilty look*. ;)

Well, I hope you enjoyed the list of rather mediocre happenings lately! I feel like I've been really busy, but as I try to think of things to add to the list, nothing that thrilling comes to mind. Just work and doing stuff at home! :) I can't believe 2016 is over half finished. Wow. I also can't believe I'll be turning 20 years old in less than 3 months. Double wow with a horrified look of realization and I feel incredibly ancient and wait a second how can this POSSIBLY BE HAPPENING TO ME?!?! Sorry. Mental explosion there for a second. ;D What's been the highlight of your July? :)

Monday, July 25, 2016

Sunday Snippets: Count Your Many Blessings!

Psalm 103:1-2 "Bless the LORD, O my soul: and all that is within me, bless his holy name. Bless the LORD, O my soul, and forget not all his benefits:"

I'm sure pretty much all of you have heard the song this post is named after: "Count your many blessings, name them one by one! Count your blessings, see what God hath done!" and so on. :) It's a wonderful song, and an even more wonderful thing to do. So today I'm simply going to thank The Lord for a few of the many thousands upon thousands of things He has done for me. I would highly encourage you to make your own is a great exercise in gratitude! :) I feel like I do a lot of posts on praising and thanking God, but what better or more glorifying thing can we do than that?? What is more pleasing to God than to hear His children speaking of His excellent greatness? I don't do it enough, I don't think anyone really does. But today I am going to try.

Thank you, Lord, for my salvation first of all. Thank you for your grace and mercy in saving a wretch like me. Thank you for my loving, kind parents who have trained me up in Your Word, as well as seven younger siblings to love and strive to be an example to. For a church family that supports us as we do Your work in Eastern Washington. Thank you for the new church plant we are seeing established here, and the sweet spirit of those attending. Thank you for giving me a voice to speak and opportunity to be a witness for You. Thank you for the way you are growing and changing me through every circumstance you bring into my life. For my incredible circle of friends, and how diverse and special each one is.

Thank you for the lovely sunshine and blue skies, and for the bright moon and stars that show your handiwork. Thank you for the birds that sing during the daylight hours, and the insects that praise you in the night. Thank you for the beauty and majesty of your creation, even in it's fallen state from our sin. For the fact that the sun rises and sets every day, the stars stay in their courses, and the seasons continue their endless steady cycles through your command. 

Thank you for the gifts you've given me. For the gift of music, that I can use to glorify you and encourage others. Thank you for my job, and the many relationships I've been able to form through it. For a home that is warm in the winter, and cool in the summer, with furniture and light and water and electricity.

Thank you for all the simple pleasures I can enjoy every single day. For delicious foods of all cultures and flavors, for coffee and ice cream and peanut butter. :) For mangoes and apples, and grapes from our backyard, and boysenberries that hang over our fence, and for the beautiful tall trees that give lovely shade. Thank you for my hammock, and cozy sweaters, and trips with friends, and good books, and my blue piano, and singing in the car. Thank you for giving me the opportunities that I've had to travel and minister to people in different areas of the world.

Thank you most of all for your precious Word. For preserving it down through the ages of history, keeping it from the hundreds of people who have tried to annihilate both it and it's followers. Thank you for revealing Yourself and Your will to us through it. And for making a way that we can spend eternity with you, even though we deserve to be forever in hell. Thank you for your compassion and love to us. Thank you.

Thank You, Lord.


Friday, July 22, 2016

In the Right Place at the Right Time: Guest Post by Elizabeth

Happy weekend, friends! I hope you have had a lovely week so far. Today I am excited to present a guest post by a long distance friend of mine, Elizabeth! She has been reading this blog almost since I started it, (which I appreciate so much!!), so I thought it would be awesome to feature a post by her. She has been such an example and encouragement to me in the time that we've talked via email, blogger, etc. :) Without further ado, here is her post!

In the Right Place at the Right Time
Esther 2:2,8 "Then said the king's servants that ministered unto him, Let there be fair young virgins sought for the king: So it came to pass, when the king's commandment and his decree was heard, and when many maidens were gathered together unto Shushan the palace, to the custody of Hegai, that Esther was brought also unto the king's house, to the custody of Hegai, keeper of the women."

I won't go into every detail of the story of Esther, so if it's been a while since you've read it, I highly recommend reading through it again! Esther wasn't in the king's palace by choice. She just so happened to be one of the virgins taken there at that time. This was a very volatile time for her people. Haman hated the Jews and wanted them all killed! This wasn't a situation to handle lightly. I can't imagine being in her position! But if you read the whole story, you will see how everything worked out just the right way, in just the right time. The verse that sticks out to me the most in this whole book, and the one I want to focus on, is in the last part of verse 14, in chapter 4, when Mordecai exhorts Esther "And who knoweth whether thou art come to the kingdom for such a time as this?" I love reading this story, because you can obviously see that it was no coincidence that Esther was there at this particular time. It always amazes me how, throughout all of the Bible, God places His people at just the right place at a particular time to accomplish His purposes.

How can we apply this story to our lives? I'm sure there are a number of ways, but I want to focus on the theme of Esther 4:14b. We ALL find ourselves in difficult situations from time to time, and often it's a circumstance that we didn't choose. It may be a difficult situation with your church, your family, your health, your job, etc. It may cause you to be frustrated, confused, lonely, disappointed, name it. And it's so easy to see a change in our circumstances as the perfect solution. And trust me, I'm as guilty of that as anyone else!

And let me go ahead and clarify. There may very well be times when God does want you to leave your job, change your ministry, move to a new church, or a new town, etc. And the seasons of your life will often change. But there are also going to be times when God wants you right where you are, for such a time as this. I know it's not easy to stick it out during those times. I know how easy it is to feel stuck where you are. But God knows exactly where you are, and it's no accident that you're there! And never underestimate what God can do through you, if you just stay faithful to Him. As Mykaela pointed out in a past blog post, God isn't just looking for talented, amazing, creative, Christians. He's looking for FAITHFUL Christians. Will you be faithful where He has you today?
Wow...I don't know about you guys, but this post was really thought provoking to me. You may have heard this quote, but I love it:
God may not be changing your circumstances because he wants to change you through them.
All things work together for good to God's people, especially when they honor him in whatever position they find themselves in! I really appreciate Elizabeth taking the time and effort to write this post for me. I hope you all are as blessed by it as I was!

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Sunday Snippets: Praising Pitifully or Proportionally?

Psalm 150:2 "Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness."

As I'm sure you are aware, there are a lot of words that have changed over time. The word "conversation", for example. Today, it means a dialogue between two or more people. In the Bible, it means the way someone lives their daily life. Or something even simpler: the word "meat". It used to mean food in general, but now it refers specifically to the flesh of animals. Words continually undergo changes over time. 

In this verse, what do you think the phrase "according to" means? Most of you are probably thinking along the lines of "praise Him FOR his excellent greatness" or "because of" His excellent greatness...want to know what it actually means? (Both in this verse and throughout most of the Bible!)

In proportion to.

We are supposed to praise God in proportion to His excellent greatness. That changes the whole feel of this verse!!

An excellent example of what this means is the story of Jesus watching the offerings being given at the Temple. The rich men who went up there giving gold and jewels were merely giving in proportion to their wealth. If I walked up to you and handed you $500, that might seem like a lot. If I was a multi-billionaire, however, it wouldn't even be a drop in the bucket. I wouldn't even miss it from my pocket. And hence, it would be a lot less of a big deal. The widow who put in her two mites was giving EVERYTHING she had! She was not giving in proportion to what she had, because that WAS all she had. 

So here is the question. How big, grand, vast, amazing IS God's excellent greatness? We all know the answer to that--God is infinitely great!! His glory and majesty is eternally bigger than we can ever fathom with finite human minds. And we are to praise him in proportion to that. Do you see where I'm going with this? For us to praise God IN PROPORTION to His greatness, we would have to praise Him for ever and ever and ever and get the point. We can never praise Him enough to measure up to how great He is!

All through the Bible, we are commanded to praise and glorify God with our words, actions, and thoughts. Why? Because He deserves SO much more praise and honor than we could ever give Him in this life, or in eternity. He created us to have a relationship with Him, and to bring Him glory. When we as Christians walk around like sour old grumps with nothing good to say about the gift of life that He's given us, do you think that is pleasing to Him? I would venture to guess not. At all. 

A little bonus verse to think about: "But my God shall supply all your need according to his riches in glory by Christ Jesus." (Philippians 4:19) So my needs are going to be supplied in proportion to God's riches in glory?! He owns the cattle on a thousand hills...I think I'll be ok! ;) With The Lord as my Shepherd, I shall never want! :) 

I would challenge you to make sure that when you read God's Word, you know what the words and phrases are actually saying. We can really miss some blessings if we don't fully comprehend what God is telling us! This week, let's try to praise Him in proportion to what He's done for us. His excellent greatness is everlasting!

Thursday, July 14, 2016

A Controversial and Possibly Unpopular Post

I want to start this post off with this: everything I say today I truly believe is right based on Scripture. If you disagree with me, I do not hate you. :P I do encourage you, however, to examine the Bible carefully on this issue, and judge whether I am right or wrong.

This November, the United States of America will be electing a new leader for our country. This year's elections have been as hotly debated as ever, among all circles. Much discussion goes on every election season about how we, as children of God, should vote for our leaders. I want to give what I believe is the Biblical stand we should take on this.

In the beginning, there were four governments instituted by God for mankind.
  • Self-Government (instituted at Creation) Genesis 2:16-17
  • Family Government (instituted after the fall) Genesis 3:16-19
  • Church Government 1 Timothy 3, Titus 1
  • Civil Government Exodus 18:21, Deuteronomy 1:13

Before the flood, God did not allow men to set up civil government. When Cain killed Abel, for instance, God pronounced Cain's judgement and set a mark on him to prevent others from killing him. He did not let man rule over man. However, after the flood, God ordained that leaders should be set up to rule, in order to secure a temporal good: protecting mankind from violence. James Madison once said that the only reason civil government is necessary is because man will not conform to reasonable laws without restraint. How true this is! Whether they be the laws of God or of the land, people just HAVE to break them. In any case, each of these governments that God set up are to fulfill the goals God has for them. As Christians, we should be applying God's Word in every area of our lives, including what we do with our ballot. The policies we support or reject, and who we choose to represent us: these all should be guided by our faith in Christ.

Deuteronomy 1:13 Take you wise men, and understanding, and known among your tribes, and I will make them rulers over you.

As citizens of the U.S., it is our privilege, but more importantly, our responsibility to provide able leaders for our country. Listen to this quote:

“Let each citizen remember at the moment he is offering his vote that he is not making a present or a compliment to please an individual — or at least that he ought not so to do; but that he is executing one of the most solemn trusts in human society for which he is accountable to God and his country.” — Samuel Adams, The Writings of Samuel Adams, 1781

Did you catch that? We are accountable to God for how we vote. Sobering. 

“In selecting men for office, let principle be your guide. Regard not the particular sect or denomination of the candidate — look to his character.” — Noah Webster

So then, what are the Biblical guidelines for how we need to place our vote? 

Exodus 18:21 Moreover thou shalt provide out of all the people able men, such as fear God, men of truth, hating covetousness; and place such over them, to be rulers of thousands, and rulers of hundreds, rulers of fifties, and rulers of tens:

1. The candidate must be naturally competent.
Note where it says "able" men. This word means strong, valiant, and virtuous. This would seem obvious, but many of those filling positions of authority today are NOT able men! They will simply vote with their party, even on things that are totally unconstitutional. Some of them can't even balance their personal checkbook, and we are allowing them access and responsibility with billions of dollars worth of assets. Smart.
Important Note: Natural competency is not enough. Just like in church government, we can't ordain a pastor just because he has a good speaking voice, and knows how to write a great outline. There are other important factors to consider besides the fact that this guy knows his stuff. Moral and spiritual aspects are much more important than ability.
2. The candidate needs to be personally conscientious.
"Men of truth, hating covetousness" 
  • Conscientious in the area of morality: Job 29:16 "I was a father to the poor: and the cause which I knew not I searched out." How many times do politicians put their stamp of approval or disapproval on something they haven't even read?? That's immorality! Proverbs 25:2 "It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter." Proverbs 29:7 "The righteous considereth the cause of the poor: but the wicked regardeth not to know it."
  • Conscientious in the area of money: Many that go into office are simply there to see how much they can get out of it. Ridiculously large salaries, lavish vacations, etc., are not the right thing for these people to be focused on! 1 Timothy 6:9-10 "But they that will be rich fall into temptation and a snare, and into many foolish and hurtful lusts, which drown men in destruction and perdition. For the love of money is the root of all evil: which while some coveted after, they have erred from the faith, and pierced themselves through with many sorrows."
3. The candidate must be spiritually conditioned.
"Such as fear God"
Proverbs 29:2 When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.

2 Samuel 23:3 The God of Israel said, the Rock of Israel spake to me, He that ruleth over men must be just, ruling in the fear of God.
Nehemiah 7:2 That I gave my brother Hanani, and Hananiah the ruler of the palace, charge over Jerusalem: for he was a faithful man, and feared God above many.

“Look well to the characters and qualifications of those you elect and raise to office and places of trust.” — Matthias Burnett, Pastor of the First Baptist Church in Norwalk, An Election Sermon, Preached at Hartford, on the Day of the Anniversary Election, May 12, 1803

So we have talked about all these things that the candidate should be: how do we apply it? Keep in mind that "The fear of the LORD is to hate evil: pride, and arrogancy, and the evil way, and the froward mouth, do I hate." (Proverbs 8:13) The statement "I don't want to waste my vote, so I'll just vote for the lesser of two evils" is completely unscriptural. Christians should not vote for evil, period! When we look at a candidate, if they do not meet these qualifications, we should not vote for them. If there is literally no other options, vote for the best one. BUT. This is rarely the case! With the presidential election this year, neither candidate for the main parties is Godly. I'm just going to say that right out. So...what does that mean? We need to research, and find who is the best person to vote for according to God's Word. If that means voting for a third-party candidate (gasp!), then what's it to you? If you are honoring God, isn't that more important than going for who you think will win? God will bless if Christians choose to please Him with their votes, regardless of the odds. My vote is not wasted if I am obedient to God. I will not compromise Biblical truth in order to vote for a man who may have a better chance of winning, but who is not qualified naturally, personally, and spiritually. Let me give you a couple more verses to think about.

Psalms 75:6-7 "For promotion cometh neither from the east, nor from the west, nor from the south. 
But God is the judge: he putteth down one, and setteth up another."

Proverbs 16:33 "The lot is cast into the lap; but the whole disposing thereof is of the LORD."

Your vote is in God's hands, not yours! He is in control: choose to obey, and leave the results up to Him. He will bless you for it.

I realize this was a long post, and controversial to boot, but I think it is such an important issue. Many Christians tend to gloss over it, or just decide not to vote at all. I do not condone that! (See my introduction :) I want to thank my dad for his extensive research on this issue. The quotes and Scriptures in this post I borrowed largely from his work in finding them. The convictions I have stated are wholly my own, however. I would encourage you to study this issue out with an open mind. There are SO many more Scriptures I could have put in, but couldn't due to time/length. I would love to hear your comments, but please do keep them respectful. :) I am simply stating what I believe is right.

I hope you all have a lovely weekend! Enjoy the sunshine and/or scorching heat wherever you live! ;D

Saturday, July 2, 2016

Sunday Snippets: What's So Special About Your Fish?

Matthew 14:17-18, 20-21 "And they say unto him, We have here but five loaves, and two fishes. He said, Bring them hither to me. And they did all eat, and were filled: and they took up of the fragments that remained twelve baskets full. And they that had eaten were about five thousand men, beside women and children."

John 21:9-10, 12 "As soon then as they were come to land, they saw a fire of coals there, and fish laid thereon, and bread. Jesus saith unto them, Bring of the fish which ye have now caught."

Luke 24:41-43 "And while they yet believed not for joy, and wondered, he said unto them, Have ye here any meat? And they gave him a piece of a broiled fish, and of an honeycomb. And he took it, and did eat before them."

I know there are a lot of Scriptures there to read, but please do take the time, or my points aren't going to make that much sense. (They might not anyways, so please just give me the best chance you can, haha! ;) 

This past week I was feeling a bit discouraged because sometimes I feel like I am not using my abilities to their fullest potential to serve The Lord. I do what I can, but sometimes it can feel very small! As I was working out one evening, I was reading the story of Jesus feeding the five thousand, and it struck me again how the sweet humility of a little boy who shared his fish with The Master blessed thousands of people. Thousands. I highly doubt he could have guessed that on the day he walked out to see Jesus, carrying the little lunch his mama packed for him, that he would be used of God to bless that many people with a satisfying meal AND the incredible privilege of seeing a miracle!! He simply gave his fish to Jesus, trusting that they would be used how He willed. 

The second story took place after Christ's resurrection, when the disciples went back to their old occupation of fishing. (Not for men). Having caught nothing at all during the night, they were returning wearily when Jesus called out to them from shore, asking if they had caught anything. When they replied in the negative, He told them to throw their nets on the other side. We know the story from there...they did, and the nets were filled to breaking with fish. When Peter realized Who the man on the shore was, he jumped overboard and swam to meet Him. After they all got there, Jesus had cooked fish waiting, but He also asked them to give some of the fish that they had caught. The small group of disciples then ate a meal with Jesus.

My last example is from right after the resurrection, when Christ went into the room where the disciples were gathered and mourning His death. They couldn't believe that it was truly Him, and were afraid that it was a ghost! To prove to them that He was real flesh and blood, Jesus ate fish and honey in front of them. 

You can probably see where I'm going with this by now. Let's compare our talents, abilities, and resources to fish. When we give them to God to use as He wants to, does it really matter what He chooses to do with them? If I were to write a song, and God used it to bless thousands of people, what a wonderful thing!! However, if it only encouraged a small handful of believers, or if I just sang it in my heart as a song of praise to The Lord, is it any less wonderful? I don't believe so! Or what if someone was an amazing carpenter or builder, and wanted to use his talent for God: If he constructed a massive church building that could hold hundreds, and with the same humble attitude of giving, put on a new roof for a struggling family in the church, I don't believe God would be any less pleased with him for the "smaller" service.

If I sent someone a gift of money on their birthday, would I text or call them every single day after they got it, to make sure that they were spending it how I wanted them to?? Of course not! That would be totally ridiculous! So if I'm giving God everything I have in me, should I be worrying about how He uses it? Nope. If He decides to lift up and encourage just one single person through me, it's worth it. It will always be worth it to give my all to Him. Whether my fish are big or tiny, beautiful or rather smelly, weird looking fish, I want to be willing to let Him have them! :)

This week, let's give our fishes to Jesus, and leave them in His hand to use...Let's not take them back because He's not feeding five thousand with them! Maybe He wants you to give your fishes to Him just as a test of your love! May we always give of our best to The Master.