May the Lord richly bless you today as you delight in the One who gave Himself for us!
“Neither let your own accusing conscience, nor Satan the accuser of the brethren, hinder you any longer from Christ. For what though they should accuse you of pride, infidelity, covetousness, lust, anger, envy, and hypocrisy? Yea, what though they should accuse you of whoredom, theft, drunkenness, and such like? Yea, do what they can, they can make no worse a man of you than a sinner, or chief of sinners, or an ungodly person; and so, consequently, such a one Christ came to justify and save; so that in every deed, if you do rightly consider it, they do you more good than hurt by their accusations.”—Edward Fisher in The Marrow of Modern Divinity
"In short, you are not satisfied with any of your religious feelings and it is well that you are not so; for, if you were, you must have a very high idea of your self and a very low idea of what both law and gospel expect of you. You are, no doubt, right in not being satisfied with the state of your feelings, but what has this to do with the great duty of immediately believing on the Son of God? If the gospel is nothing to you till you have got your feelings all set right it is no gospel for the sinner at all. But this is its special fitness and glory, that it takes you up at the very point where you are at this moment, and brings you glad tidings in spite of your feelings being altogether wrong.All these difficulties of yours have their root in the self-esteem of our natures, which makes us refuse to be counted altogether sinners, and which shrinks from going to God, save with some personal recommendation to make acceptance likely. Utter want of goodness is what we are slow to acknowledge. Give up these attempts to be satisfied with yourself in anything, great or small, faith, feeling, or action. The Holy Spirit's work in convincing you of sin is to make you dissatisfied with yourself, and will you pursue a course which can only grieve Him away? God can never be satisfied with you on account of any goodness about you; and why should you attempt to be satisfied with anything which will not satisfy Him?....There is but one thing with which He is entirely satisfied- the person and work of His only-begotten Son It is with Him that He wants you to be satisfied, not with yourself...."This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased." Be pleased with Him in whom the Father is pleased, and all is well." ~Horatius Bonar
"Many dark and disturbing thoughts are apt to arise in this thing. Few can carry up their hearts and minds to this height by faith, as to rest their souls in the love of the Father; they live below it, in the troublesome region of hopes and fears, storms and clouds. All here is serene and quiet. But how to attain to this pitch they know not. This is the will of God, that he may always be eyed as benign, kind, tender, loving, and unchangeable therein; and that peculiarly as the Father, as the great fountain and spring of all gracious communications and fruits of love. This is that which Christ came to reveal, — God as a Father..."
~ John Owen, from Communion with God the Father
"Attempting to comprehend the depths of this love, one may compare [Zephaniah 3:16-17] this Old Testament version of John 3:16 to a child on the seashore, digging a sandy trench to the limitless expanses of the ocean. The child stretches out her arms to gather the ocean's depths into her shallow pool."
~ O. Palmer Robertson
A debtor to mercy alone, of covenant mercy I sing;
Nor fear, with Thy righteousness on, my person and off’ring to bring.
The terrors of law and of God with me can have nothing to do;
My Savior’s obedience and blood hide all my transgressions from view.
The work which His goodness began, the arm of His strength will complete;
His promise is Yea and Amen, and never was forfeited yet.
Things future, nor things that are now, nor all things below or above,
Can make Him His purpose forgo, or sever my soul from His love.
My name from the palms of His hands eternity will not erase;
Impressed on His heart it remains, in marks of indelible grace.
Yes, I to the end shall endure, as sure as the earnest is giv’n;
More happy, but not more secure, the glorified spirits in Heav’n.
Keep the altar of private prayer burning. This is the very life of all piety. The sanctuary and family altars borrow their fires here, therefore let this burn well. Secret devotion is the very essence, evidence, and barometer, of vital and experimental religion.
Burn here the fat of your sacrifices. Let your closet seasons be, if possible, regular, frequent, and undisturbed. Effectual prayer availeth much. Have you nothing to pray for? Let us suggest the Church, the ministry, your own soul, your children, your relations, your neighbours, your country, and the cause of God and truth throughout the world. Let us examine ourselves on this important matter. Do we engage with lukewarmness in private devotion? Is the fire of devotion burning dimly in our hearts? Do the chariot wheels drag heavily? If so, let us be alarmed at this sign of decay. Let us go with weeping, and ask for the Spirit of grace and of supplications. Let us set apart special seasons for extraordinary prayer. For if this fire should be smothered beneath the ashes of a worldly conformity, it will dim the fire on the family altar, and lessen our influence both in the Church and in the world.
The text will also apply to the altar of the heart. This is a golden altar indeed. God loves to see the hearts of his people glowing towards himself. Let us give to God our hearts, all blazing with love, and seek his grace, that the fire may never be quenched; for it will not burn if the Lord does not keep it burning. Many foes will attempt to extinguish it; but if the unseen hand behind the wall pour thereon the sacred oil, it will blaze higher and higher. Let us use texts of Scripture as fuel for our heart’s fire, they are live coals; let us attend sermons, but above all, let us be much alone with Jesus.
"If you wanted the biggest kick-in-the-pants to your sanctification, I suggest you pick up Owen's works, Volume Two and read pages 17-40 without delay, every 6 months for the rest of your Christian life. It will serve you so well..."
"Though there be no light for us but in the beams, yet we may by beams see the sun, which is the fountain of it. Though all our refreshment actually lie in the streams, yet by them we are led up unto the fountain. Jesus Christ, in respect of the love of the Father, is but the beam, the stream; wherein though actually all our light, our refreshment lies, yet by him we are led to the fountain, the sun of eternal love itself."
No wise man can expect that...God should diet us with a continual feast. It would neither suit with our health, nor the condition of this pilgrimage. Live, therefore, on your peace of conscience as your ordinary diet; when this is wanting, know that God appointeth you a fast for you health; and when you have a feast of high joys, feed on it and be thankful! But when they are taken from you, gape not after them as the disciples did after Christ at His ascension; but return thankfully to your ordinary diet of peace.
somewhere in here, get dressed/shower.around 10:30 piano til lunch
have breakfast and tend to Tebow (our puppy) and Josie (our old doggie)
family worship (maybe if daddy isn't on a conference call)
get some laundry started, maybe.
water plants inside and outside.
neaten up the common room.
more laundry1:30 get some school done (On Mondays, house-work before teaching piano)
tend to doggies
answer emails, work on things for deadlines (any papers, assignments, church bulletin, etc)
get stuff done with daddyaround 10:30 or 11:00 go to bed and read a little maybe
"By ["examine himself"], as I understand, [Paul] means that each individual should descend into himself, and consider, first, whether, with inward confidence of heart, [you] lean on the salvation btained by Christ, and with confession of the mouth, acknowledge it; and secondly, whether with zeal for purity and holness [you] aspire to imitate Christ; whether, after His example, [you] are prepared to give [yourself] to [your] brethren, and to hold [yourself] in common with those with whom [you] have Christ in common; whether as [you yourself] are regarded by Christ, [you] in [your] turn regard all [your] brethren as members of [your] body, or, like [your] members, desire to cherish, defend, and assist them, not that the duties of faith and charity can now be perfected in us, but because it behooves us to contend and seek, with all our heart, daily to increase our faith."
Blooming trees - especially dogwood and cherry
Spring green leaves and the multi-green woods
Lilacs and azaleas
Breezy warmth (low 70s weather)
Smell of newly turned soil
Neighborhood and nature awakening
Open windows and street noise
Herbal tea on the deck
Warm season clothes
Sunday walks on neighborhood trails