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Old 01-04-2017, 05:06 PM   #1
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Icon24 Weekly Spiritual Meditations - January 6

Look ahead with expectation and joy. Our King & Friend walks with us into the new year.

Regardless of your past, God will take the life that you offer Him and use it for His glory.

What our Lord did was done with this intent, and this alone, that He might be with us and we with Him. --Meister Eckhart

If God is your co-pilot, swap seats!

God desires that we give thanks as an act of faith and obedience. We can learn to trust that God will walk with us through whatever lies ahead. If we feel ourselves slipping into a pit of sorrow, we can trust that God will hold us up.

Today let's celebrate and embrace what God is doing in our lives.

God is always present.

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Imagine you and the Lord Jesus are walking down the road together. For much of the way, the Lord's footprints go along steadily, consistently, rarely varying the pace. But your footprints are a disorganized stream of zigzags, starts, stops, turnarounds, circles, departures and returns.
For much of the way, it seems to go like this, but gradually your footprints come more in line with the Lord's, soon paralleling His consistently. You and Jesus are walking as true friends! This seems perfect, but then an interesting thing happens: Your footprints, that once etched the sand next to Jesus', are now walking precisely in His steps.
Inside His larger footprints are your smaller ones, you and Jesus are becoming one. This goes on for many miles, but gradually you notice another change. The footprints inside the large footprints seem to grow larger.
Eventually they disappear altogether.
There is only one set of footprints: they have become one. This goes on for a long time, but suddenly the second set of footprints are back. This time it seems even worse! Zigzags all over the place. Stops. Starts. Deep gashes in the sand. A veritable mess of prints.
You are amazed and shocked. Your dream ends. Now you pray: "Lord, I understand the first scene with zigzags and fits. I was a new Christian; I was just learning. But you walked on through the storm and helped me learn to walk with you."
"That is correct."
" ... and when the smaller footprints were inside of Yours, I was actually learning to walk in Your steps; followed you very closely."
"Very good. You have understood everything so far."
"... when the smaller footprints grew and filled in Yours, I suppose that I was becoming like you in every way."
"So, Lord, was there a regression or something? The footprints separated, and this time it was worse than at first."
There is a pause as the Lord answers with a smile in his voice. "You don't know? That was when we danced."
"To everything there is a season, a time for every purpose under Heaven. A time to weep, a time to laugh; A time to mourn, and a time to dance." Ecclesiastes 3:1,4

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A little girl walked to and from school daily. Though the weather that morning was questionable and clouds were forming, she made her daily trek to the elementary school. As the afternoon progressed, the winds whipped up, along with thunder and lightning. The mother of the little girl felt concerned that her daughter would be frightened as she walked home from school and she herself feared that the electrical storm might harm her child.
Following the roar of thunder, lightning, like a flaming sword, would cut through the sky. Full of concern, the mother quickly got into her car and drove along the route to her child's school. As she did so, she saw her little girl walking along, but at each flash of lightning, the child would stop, look up and smile. Another and another were to follow quickly and with each the little girl would look at the streak of light and smile.
When the mother's car drove up beside the child she lowered the window and called to her, "What are you doing? Why do you keep stopping?"
The child answered, "I am trying to look pretty, God keeps taking my picture.
May God bless you today as you face the storms that come your way.
And don't forget to SMILE!

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Upside Down by Sally I. Kennedy
"I am the Lord, and I do not change." Malachi 3:6
"Righteousness and justice are the foundation of your throne; steadfast love and faithfulness go before you." Psalm 89:14
Have you ever laid on the grass and looked at all the stars when it’s really dark outside? Or leaned way back and gazed up at a deep, blue clear sky, the leafy tree tops and the puffy white clouds?
Things look different when you look at them upside down. They look really cool! Seriously, if you haven’t tried it….try it! It’s a little dizzying but it’s neat.
When things are upside down in our personal worlds, well. that’s not so nifty, and not so cool. Upside down in our lives seems to come in sneaky and unexpected ways, taking us unaware and by surprise. It’s not a stretch to easily get confused, upset, irritated or even panicky. Given a little time, though, most things sort themselves out.
And the good news here is even if your world does turn upside down there is always someone you can turn to who is rock solid. You can always look to the Lord. Our Father God is consistent, ever-faithful, relentless, constantly-pursuing, lavish, and extravagant love. And, He is always there for YOU.
Believe me this is good news when things turn upside down.

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I AM PREPARING YOU for what is on the road ahead, just around the bend. Take time to be still in My Presence so that I can strengthen you. The busier you become, the more you need this time apart with Me. So many people think that time spent with Me is a luxury they cannot afford. As a result, they live and work in their own strength—until that becomes depleted. Then they either cry out to Me for help or turn away in bitterness.
How much better it is to walk close to Me, depending on My strength and trusting Me in every situation. If you live in this way, you will do less but accomplish far more. Your unhurried pace of living will stand out in this rush-crazed age. Some people may deem you lazy, but many more will be blessed by your peacefulness. Walk in the Light with Me, and you will reflect Me to the watching world.
ISAIAH 64:4 Since ancient times no one has heard, no ear has perceived, no eye has seen any God besides you, who acts on behalf of those who wait for him.
JOHN 15:5 “I am the vine; you are the branches. If a man remains in me and I in him, he will bear much fruit; apart from me you can do nothing.”
PSALM 36:9 For with you is the fountain of life; in your light we see light.

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Forget the Former Things by Tom
These passages from an Old Testament prophet and a New Testament apostle always seem to have relevance, but especially at this time of year.
This is what the Lord says—
He who made a way through the sea, a path through the mighty waters, forget the former things; do not dwell on the past. See, I am doing a new thing! Now it springs up; do you not perceive it? I am making a way in the wilderness and streams in the wasteland. (Isaiah 43:16, 18-19, NIV)
Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come: The old has gone, the new is here! (2 Corinthians 5:17, NIV)
Not that I have already obtained all this, or have already arrived at my goal, but I press on to take hold of that for which Christ Jesus took hold of me. Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead, I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. (Philippians 3:12-14, NIV)
The message is simple. The wisdom is timeless. The practice is challenging.
It is one thing to celebrate the end of a year and the beginning of a new with parties and fireworks, it is quite another to follow through with your plans to do things differently in the New Year.
It is much easier to make a New Year’s resolution to lose weight than it is to have the discipline to resist the Snicker’s bar in the cabinet ten feet from you.
It is much easier to say you are going to exercise more than it is to put those walking shoes on and head out the door.
It is much easier to say you are going to let go of your bitterness and resentment than it is to go to the person who hurt you and say, “I forgive you.”
And, it is much easier to say, “I forgive you” than it is to actually forgive.
It is much easier to say you plan to trust God more in the New Year than it is to simply trust Him.
It is important to make the promises and resolutions to do things better. It is equally as important to forget and leave the past behind. The passage from Isaiah says, “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.”
You must forget and leave behind your failures. You messed up. Move on. Start over. Forgive yourself. Stop dwelling on the past.
Things did not go as well as you had hoped they would. Okay. Try again. Stop dwelling on the past.
You were hurt deeply. I am sorry. As long as you interact with people there is as risk of getting hurt. Keep interacting. Stop dwelling on the past.
You did great things last year. Good for you! Do not rest on those accomplishments. Do even greater things this year. Stop dwelling on the past.
Stop dwelling on the past, look for the new things God is doing, and join Him.

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Walking with Women through the Word
Hello 2017
Goodbye 2016….hello 2017
As I pursue social media I see all manner of quick witted quotes and poetic phrases about the new year. Everyone is creating goals and writing resolutions.
Me? I’ve never been big on making resolutions or setting goals. To be honest, by mid-January I’ve failed so I let myself forget about the remaining 11½ months. Maybe you can relate.
Several years ago, as one year closed and new approached, the Lord pricked my heart with a Bible verse. This verse kept showing up over and over again. In songs. In sermons. In my daily Bible study. The repetition got my attention. I knew God wanted the verse to be my focus for the upcoming year. Every year God has faithfully given me what I call a spotlight verse.
This year my spotlight verse John 21:22, Jesus replied, If I want him to remain alive until I return, what is that to you? As for you, follow me. Jesus was speaking to Peter who at time was concerned about what was going to happen with John.
God wants me to follow Him and not be concerned about or compete with what He is doing in or through those around me.
No catchy one-liners for me simply follow Him.
What does God require of you in 2017?

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The only survivor of a shipwreck was washed up on a small, uninhabited island. He prayed feverishly for God to rescue him, and every day he scanned the horizon for help, but none seemed forthcoming.
Exhausted, he eventually managed to build a little hut out of driftwood to protect him from the elements, and to store his few possessions. But then one day, after scavenging for food, he arrived home to find his little hut in flames, the smoke rolling up to the sky. The worst had happened; everything was lost. He was stunned with grief and anger. "God, how could you do this to me!" he cried.
Early the next day, however, he was awakened by the sound of a ship that was approaching the island. It had come to rescue him. "How did you know I was here?" asked the weary man of his rescuers. "We saw your smoke signal," they replied.
It is easy to get discouraged when things are going bad. But we shouldn't lose heart, because God is at work in our lives, even in the midst of pain and suffering. Remember, next time your little hut is burning to the ground ---- it just may be a smoke signal that summons the grace of God.

************************************************** *********

Top Ten Predictions For 2017 Author Unknown
1. The Bible will still have all the answers.
2. Prayer will still work.
3. The Holy Spirit will still move.
4. God will still inhabit the praises of His people.
5. There will still be God-anointed preaching.
6. There will still be singing of praise to God.
7. God will still pour out blessings upon His people.
8. There will still be room at the Cross.
9. Jesus will still love you.
10. Jesus will still save the lost.
God whispers in your soul and speaks to your mind. Sometimes when you don't have time to listen, He has to throw a brick at you. It's your choice: Listen to the whisper, or wait for the brick.
I pray in this new year God gives you:
12 Month of Happiness,
52 Weeks of Fun,
365 Days Success,
8,760 Hours Good Health,
52,600 Minutes Good Luck,
3,153,600 Seconds of Joy!

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Small Straws In A Soft Wind by Marsha Burns
You will have a tendency to feel disoriented and overwhelmed. Take time to stop and evaluate where you are, and know that I am with you to help you in all things. Nothing is too difficult for Me. Trust Me to bring you through every difficulty, says the Lord. Just be calm and take one step at a time. Philippians 4:13 I can do all things through Christ who strengthens me.

Set yourself to be strong. My strength is sufficient. Just when you think you cannot do another thing, My presence will bring peace and power. Rely on Me, says the Lord. I will bring you through every challenge regardless of how daunting. 2 Corinthians 12:9 And He said to me, "My grace is sufficient for you, for My strength is made perfect in weakness."

Examine yourself and identify the place where you lost confidence. You must see and know the truth of that incident before you can regain your sense of power and ability to succeed. Begin to see yourself through spiritual eyes of possibility instead of failure. I will lift you up to stand on higher ground, says the Lord, if you will believe it. Mark 5:36b "Do not be afraid; only believe."

“You have come through unprecedented changes in the past few years. Do not mourn what you perceive as loss, but rather enter into an uncluttered and more honest existence. I am preparing you for a reward in the days ahead that you would have lost without making the necessary changes.
“It is time to rediscover the truth of My Word and to resolutely walk in the path that I have set before you; the rule of that path is light. Walk in the light and refuse to walk in any darkness at all.
1 John 1:7 But if we walk in the light as He is in the light, we have fellowship with one another, and the blood of Jesus Christ His Son cleanses us from all sin.
“Position yourself in a way that will allow you to receive My perspective and wisdom in every situation and circumstance. Let Me lead you in the way of righteousness, peace, and joy.
“Be sensitive to the conviction that comes when you deviate from the path that I have set you on, and be ready to punish disobedience by being obedient to My leading. I have a plan and purpose for your life, which will require complete submission to My word.
“I am releasing a new wave of creativity for those who possess a sensitivity to nuance. Some of you have put away your gifting because you did not deem it to be worthy or worthwhile. Now is the time to pick it up again and use your creativity as a form of worship instead of a form of personal satisfaction.
“Many of you have sown selfless seeds of blessing in the lives of others. This will be a time when you begin to reap the harvest of those seeds sown.
“Old ceilings will become new floors for those of you who have been diligent to do what I have given you to do. You can now move on up as you establish yourself on the revelation of My purposes for your life, says the Lord.”

Look for and receive My blessings. It is My heart's desire to bless you more than you could even imagine. You belong to Me, and I will look after you as long as you will seek Me with a whole heart and allow Me to intervene into your life, says the Lord. Let Me bring correction when necessary as you live and walk in the Spirit. Ephesians 3:20-21 Now to Him who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that works in us, to Him be glory in the church by Christ Jesus to all generations, forever and ever.

There are problems to be solved and situations that need to be resolved, but you cannot do this alone. You need My help and My wisdom. Seek Me before you proceed in any endeavor and wait until you have clear direction. I will show you the way, says the Lord. James 1:5 If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask of God, who gives to all liberally and without reproach, and it will be given to him.

************************************************** *********

The Trumpet by Bill Burns
"Set the trumpet to your mouth!" Hosea 8:1
Come and connect with Me, so we can go on this journey together. For, I will lead and guide you. I will bring prosperity and healing into your life. Be one with Me. You can be stronger spiritually this year than you have ever been before. You can fight the good fight of faith in a renewed way. You will be able to defeat the enemy as you go in My power and by the faith that I am energizing within you. Learn to live in My presence so that great joy and great faith will become that which you will manifest in the season that is before you, says the Lord.

You will experience a greater measure of clarity than you have ever known. I will begin to reveal to you the hidden mysteries that have been saved for this time. I have some things to teach you and to show you. Get ready, for My work is about to be demonstrated in you. Watch! Learn! Listen! Obey! For, you shall be well pleased with the demonstration of My power that will flow into your life like a wind that is blowing through the tops of the trees, says the Lord.

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Lean On Me (Author Unknown)
As the road ahead seems rugged
and the path is getting steep,
I feel that I can't make it
so my heart begins to weep.
Then my eyes are suddenly opened
to One beside me on my way
I see it is my Lord
and He slowly turns to say,
"Lean on me.....
when you have no strength to stand.
When you feel you're going under,
hold tighter to my hand.
Lean on me......
when your heart begins to bleed.
When you know I'm all you have,
then you'll find I'm all you need."
Then when I felt that no one cared
if I lived or died,
and no one bothered asking why
I'd go alone to cry.
When the burden got so heavy
I could barely face the day,
I felt His arms around me
as I gently heard Him say,
"Lean on me......
when you have no strength to stand.
When you feel you're going under,
hold tighter to my hand.
Lean on me......
when your heart begins to bleed.
When you come to know I'm all you have,
then you'll find I'm all you need."

************************************************** *********

As I was walking down life's
highway many years ago
I came upon a sign that read
Heavens Grocery Store.
When I got a little closer
the doors swung open wide
And when I came to myself
I was standing inside.
I saw a host of angels.
They were standing everywhere
One handed me a basket and said
"My child, shop with care."
Everything a human needed
was in that grocery store
And what you could not carry
you could come back for more.
First I got some Patience.
Love was in that same row.
Further down was Understanding,
you need that everywhere you go.
I got a box or two of Wisdom
and Faith a bag or two.
And Charity, of course,
I would need some of that, too.
I couldn't miss the Holy Ghost
It was all over the place.
And then some Strength and Courage
to help me run this race.
My basket was getting full but I remembered I needed Grace,
And then I chose Salvation for
Salvation was for free
I tried to get enough of that to do for you and me.
Then I started to the counter
to pay my grocery bill,
For I thought I had everything
to do the Masters will.
As I went up the aisle I saw
Prayer and put that in,
For I knew when I stepped outside
I would run into sin.
Peace and Joy were plentiful,
the last things on the shelf.
Song and Praise were hanging near
so I just helped myself.
Then I said to the angel
"How much do I owe?"
He smiled and said
"Just take them everywhere you go."
Again I asked "Really now,
how much do I owe?"
"My child " he said,
"God paid your bill a long, long time ago

************************************************** *********

Psalm 143:10 Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your good Spirit lead me on level ground

I will give thanks to You, for the greatness of the way I was made brings awe. Your works are great and my soul knows it very well. Psalm 139:14

This is the day which the Lord has brought about; we will rejoice and be glad in it. Psalm 118:24

Matthew 11:28 – [Jesus said,] "Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest."

John 14:1-3 – [Jesus said,] "Do not let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God; trust also in me. In my Father's house are many rooms; if it were not so, I would have told you. I am going there to prepare a place for you. And if I go and prepare a place for you, I will come back and take you to be with me that you also may be where I am." (NIV)

Do not be anxious about anything, but in everything, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your mind. Philippians 4:6-7

Psalms 42 1 As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 4 These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty Onewith shouts of joy and praise among the festive throng. 5 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

Hebrews 13:5 – Keep your lives free from the love of money and be content with what you have, because God has said, "Never will I leave you; never will I forsake you."

************************************************** *********

Jesus the Savior by Adrian Rogers
“And she shall bring forth a son, and thou shalt call his name Jesus: for He shall save His
people from their sins.” Matthew 1:21
One day I drove my car off the hot pavement out into a grassy area because I knew where there was a persimmon tree. I love persimmons and I thought, “Well, this is about the time those persimmons would be ripe.” But I got impossibly stuck in the mud. I got a board and tried to dig myself out. I found a piece of carpet there in the woods and put that under the tires. My tires only sunk deeper.
I prayed, “Lord, I’m in the mud. I need your help. I’m helpless here. Lord, get me out.” And almost at the same time, a man came by in a four-wheel vehicle. With that mighty truck he pulled me slowly out of the mud. I was back on solid ground.
I was so grateful. I hadn’t known what to do, but God sent someone in a four-wheel truck with a cable. That’s so much like salvation. We’re looking for the things of this world and sinking in the mud. We say, “Well, I can get myself out of this.” And the more we try to handle it, the deeper and deeper we sink. We need somebody who will see us, care for us, come to us, and get us out. Jesus is a Savior. He has what it takes to extricate us from the mud we’ve gotten in.
When I got home, my car was covered with mud. I got out the hose and began to get the mud off. That man got me out of the mud, but it was up to me to deal with the mud that was still on there. When I got saved I was covered with mud. But since then I’ve been letting Jesus, the water of life, clean me up.
You can struggle all you want, but all you’re going to do is sink deeper. Stop the struggle. Surrender to Christ. You do not have what it takes to get out unless someone takes you out. And that one is Jesus. His name is wonderful. He is the mighty God, the everlasting Father, the Prince of peace.

************************************************** *********

Lord, be a tower of strength, a place of refuge and a defense against the enemy. Let your comfort support and strengthen us, your mercy keep us, and your grace guide us. Amen

************************************************** *********

Read Through The Bible
Psalm 48
1 Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised in the city of our God, in the mountain of his holiness. 2 Beautiful for situation, the joy of the whole earth, is mount Zion, on the sides of the north, the city of the great King. 3 God is known in her palaces for a refuge. 4 For, lo, the kings were assembled, they passed by together. 5 They saw it, and so they marvelled; they were troubled, and hasted away. 6 Fear took hold upon them there, and pain, as of a woman in travail. 7 Thou breakest the ships of Tarshish with an east wind. 8 As we have heard, so have we seen in the city of the Lord of hosts, in the city of our God: God will establish it for ever. Selah. 9 We have thought of thy lovingkindness, O God, in the midst of thy temple. 10 According to thy name, O God, so is thy praise unto the ends of the earth: thy right hand is full of righteousness. 11 Let mount Zion rejoice, let the daughters of Judah be glad, because of thy judgments. 12 Walk about Zion, and go round about her: tell the towers thereof. 13 Mark ye well her bulwarks, consider her palaces; that ye may tell it to the generation following. 14 For this God is our God for ever and ever: he will be our guide even unto death.

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Lord, take me where You want me to go, let me meet who You want me to meet, tell me what You want me to say, and keep me out of Your way. ~Father Mychal J.

Wherever you are in life, whatever you've done, you can begin again. If you do not have Jesus in your life and wish to ask Jesus into your life please go to this link now to do so: .
Jesus is calling you to live a life that matters.
"No matter what you have done up to this moment, you get 24 brand-new hours to spend every single day." --Brian Tracy
AA gives us an opportunity to recreate ourselves, with God's help, one day at a time. --Rufus K.
When you get to the end of your rope, tie a knot and hang on. --Franklin D. Roosevelt
We stay sober and clean together - one day at a time!
God says that each of us is worth loving.
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