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Old 10-29-2017, 11:47 AM   #1
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Icon24 Weekly Spiritual Meditations - October 29

If you're headed in the wrong direction . . . God does allow U-Turns!

When you feel alone and afraid, remember who accompanies you! Turn to God for the comfort of His presence and the calming of your fears. He will embrace you as a friend with His word. God will protect you--He is behind, alongside, and ahead of you. --Susan Miller

Live in such a way that those who know you but don’t know God will come to know God because they know you. --Unknown

"But then one day I found the water that I had sought for. Like the hart found that brook in the forest, so my heart found God! I discovered, as the woman at the well did, that Jesus is the water that we all thirst for. He's what keeps our spirit from drying up and burning to a crisp. Blessed be God who satisfies the thirst of His people! --Taken from the book "Over The Misty Mountains"

I hope you'll remember today that God is there,
giving you His love and care.
He's lending you His strength, sending many blessings your way,
and giving you the gift of a bright new day.

God didn't promise days without pain, laughter without sorrow, sun without rain, but He did promise strength for the day, comfort for the tears, and light for the way.

Like a babe born to a family, or bud on a stem, God brought me forth into His family. Thank You, Lord, for choosing me, for drawing me irresistibly, to be Your child.

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Give Thanks To The Lord by Joel Jongkind
Psalm 105:1a – Oh, give thanks to the Lord! Call upon His name; Make known His deeds among the peoples! (NKJV)
On the afternoon and evening of September 29th, we had a violent storm here in southern Ontario, Canada. Early in the afternoon, the branches on the trees in front of our house started to whip around. As time progressed, the wind became violent, and some of the leaves, still green, were torn off the branches. Pieces of dead branches began to be broken off by the now raging winds. I moved my car just in case one of the trees would fall over. At 5:30, we started to prepare for our evening meal and then the electricity went off. We waited awhile, and not knowing how long the power outage would last, we decided to have a sandwich instead. As it got dark, we lit some candles and tried to read our books. We then realized that without electricity, we could do nothing: no hot meals, no television, no Internet, no heat, even our telephones did not work. Why is it that we are thankful for our everyday blessings only after we lose them?
Mark chapter 4 tells of just such a storm. After Jesus had taught the crowds by way of parables beside the Sea of Galilee, He and the disciples set out by boat to the other side.
Mark 4:37-41 – And a great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that it was already filling. But He was in the stern, asleep on a pillow. And they awoke Him and said to Him, "Teacher, do You not care that we are perishing?" Then He arose and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "Peace, be still!" And the wind ceased and there was a great calm. But He said to them, "Why are you so fearful? How is it that you have no faith?" And they feared exceedingly, and said to one another, "Who can this be, that even the wind and the sea obey Him!" (NKJV)
There are so many times when there are storms in our lives: storms of illness, storms of grief, storms of frustration, storms of old age, and storms of boredom. At such times, we know that we can come to Jesus in prayer, and He will hear us and bring calm into our lives. Unlike the disciples during the storm, what a blessing it is that we do know Who He is and what He can do. As we approach Thanksgiving, we should indeed be thankful for all the blessings that we have in our lives.
Prayer: Our Father in heaven, we have so many things for which to be thankful, and we know that in all the storms of life, we can come to You in prayer and be assured that You will hear us. We thank You, in Jesus' name. Amen.

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A Self-Imposed Fog by Kathy Cheek
I read a devotional the other day on trusting God through the fog, the writer recounting a difficult drive down a foggy mountain road and trusting God to take her safely home.
I have not had that experience of driving down a foggy mountain road. And yet, recently ... I created my own fog on a bright sunny day.
Nothing had changed. A blinding fog did not roll in and obscure my view.
I just took my eyes off what God can do and let circumstances overwhelm me with doubt and fear. I was not a friend to myself. I was a saboteur of my own journey.
For a while I let a thick fog swirl around me and swallow up my hope and faith and pull me into a dark place where discouragement filled my heart.
We all have those days when praying, waiting, and working toward something are met with discouragement. We often find we derail our confidence in the Lord with our own weakness and wrong thinking because for a while we take our eyes off of Him and instead let a fog of doubt and worry surround us. The fog comes rolling in when I take my eyes off of the Lord.
It is a miserable place to be when we feel like we have lost our way and can’t find a clear solution.
There are multiple possibilities for our discouragement. Here are just a few:
We become impatient because we have already waited a very long time for answers.
We might convince ourselves we have asked for too much or too big and back down from our asking.
We don’t see any signs of change in our difficult situation and hopelessness leads to great frustration.
Our task looks too complicated to complete and we feel like giving up.
We will all go through discouragement when faced with the above type scenarios. But will we let discouragement rule our lives or will we place our trust in God to work those things that we can’t comprehend? Will we remind ourselves how He has worked for our good in other difficult times?
When I realized that all the negativity I was experiencing was a product of my own doing and my reasons for discouragement were based on feelings and emotions run amuck, the fog began to lift and clear thinking prevailed. I stood my ground with faith and trust and let the sun break through all the fog.
When my self-imposed fog lifted and I experienced the fresh air of hope and faith once more, I truly felt a wave of energy surge through my body, heart, and soul. God’s indwelling spirit renewed me and I welcomed His faithfulness to me as His strength overcame my weakness and I felt strong and whole. The sky was blue again, the sun was shining, and all fog had lifted away.
But those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.Isaiah 40:31 NKJV

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I heard about a farmer who was detained for questioning about an election scandal. The attorney asked him, "Did you sell your vote?"
The farmer said, "No sir, not me. I voted for that there fella 'cause I liked him."
The attorney said, "Come, now, I have evidence that he gave you fifty dollars for a vote."
The farmer said, "Well, now, it's plain common sense that when a fella gives you fifty dollars you like him."
I suppose that’s one way to define a friend. In fact, Solomon said, "Many entreat the favor of the nobility, and every man is a friend to one who gives gifts." (Proverbs 19:6).
But, a true friend involves a depth of relationship. It's someone you enjoy doing things with, someone you enjoy talking with, someone you wouldn’t hesitate to turn to in times of need. I like how I once heard someone describe a friend as someone you could call at 2:00 a.m. if you needed something. Solomon lets us know how important friends are in the difficult times of life:
"Two are better than one, because they have a good reward for their labor. For if they fall, one will lift up his companion. But woe to him who is alone when he falls, for he has no one to help him up. Again, if two lie down together, they will keep warm; But how can one be warm alone? Though one may be overpowered by another, two can withstand him. And a threefold cord is not quickly broken." (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12)
Give thanks to God for the friends who are a blessing in your life. And let those friends know how special they are to you! Have a great day! Alan Smith

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Take refuge in the shelter of My wings, where you are absolutely secure. — Jesus Calling by Sarah Young
When You Feel Out of Control by Sarah Young, from Jesus Calling
I am the Potter; you are My clay. I designed you before the foundation of the world. I arrange the events of each day to form you into this preconceived pattern. My everlasting Love is at work in every event of your life. On some days your will and Mine flow smoothly together. You tend to feel in control of your life when our wills are in harmony. On other days you feel as if you are swimming upstream, against the current of My purposes. When that happens, stop and seek My Face. The opposition you feel may be from Me, or it may be from the evil one.
Talk with Me about what you are experiencing. Let My Spirit guide you through treacherous waters. As you move through the turbulent stream with Me, let circumstances mold you into the one I desire you to be. Say yes to your Potter as you go through this day.
Yet, O Lord, You are our Father. We are the clay, You are the potter; we are all the work of Your hand. — Isaiah 64:8
My heart says of you, “Seek His face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek. — Psalm 27:8
Trust Me, and don’t be afraid. Many things feel out of control. Your routines are not running smoothly. You tend to feel more secure when your life is predictable. Let Me lead you to the rock that is higher than you and your circumstances. Take refuge in the shelter of My wings, where you are absolutely secure.
When you are shaken out of your comfortable routines, grip My hand tightly and look for growth opportunities. Instead of bemoaning the loss of your comfort, accept the challenge of something new. I lead you on from glory to glory, making you fit for My kingdom. Say yes to the ways I work in your life.
Trust Me, and don’t be afraid.
Surely God is my salvation; I will trust and not be afraid. The Lord, the Lord, is my strength and my song; He has become my salvation. — Isaiah 12:2
From the ends of the earth I call to You, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For You have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe. I long to dwell in Your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of Your wings. — Psalm 61:2-4
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as by the Spirit of the Lord. — 2 Corinthians 3:18 NKJV
Your Turn: Do you feel out of control today? Are you swimming upstream? Today, choose to trust Jesus. Trust that He is in full control of your life and that His plan is good!

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Jesus is always with you By Caroline Naoroji
I was blessed with my 1st son, David, 6 years ago; he is a wonderful boy. He listens to me and obeys me, whatever I teach him he never forgets, and he holds onto it like a treasure. So I felt impressed in my heart that I needed to speak with him more about the Lord, so that he can always have the fear of the Lord and the love of the Lord in him. When he was about three he use to be very scared of lightning, so I told him not to be afraid and that Jesus is in his heart, and that whenever he was afraid all he had to do was touch his heart with his hand and say "Jesus I love you and thank you for being with me." Ever since then, whenever David was scared I saw him touch his heart with his hand and then smile.
Last month I was going through a lot of turmoil -- my husband had been laid off from his job for 5 months, we were getting financially drained, and I was totally confused and overwhelmed. So I put both of my two boys (I have a 6-month-old boy also) to bed and went into the living room, and was waiting for my husband who had gone to the store. I was feeling lonely and I just started crying my eyes out. Then I heard the bedroom door opening and I saw David walking towards me. I immediately wiped my tears and smiled at him. He knew something was wrong as he walked up to me and said, "Mommy are you alright? Are you afraid of something?" I said, "yes honey mommy is a little afraid." Immediately he took my right hand and placed it on my heart and said, "Jesus is with you mommy, He is always with you, don't be afraid, He will take care of you mommy, and I will take care of you too."
When I heard him, tears of joy just flooded my face. I hugged him, and then I looked upward to Heaven and said, "Father forgive me, for I was NOT looking at my blessings, joy, and your security, but instead I was looking at the storm. Thank you Lord for being there for me."
Jesus is always with you and He will take care of you. Next time you are afraid, just place your hand on heart and you will immediately know that Jesus is there for you. Remember Isaiah 43:5, where the Lord says: "Do not be afraid, for I am with you . . ."

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Instead of being consumed by a hurtful past, I want to focus on a brighter future. — Jesus, I Need You
The Mess I Make... and a Brighter Future from Jesus, I Need You
Let God's light shine through you
Editor's note: Have you written a letter to Jesus? Or cried out a prayer for help? Do you have conversations with Him regularly? This new devotional, Jesus, I Need You, is a collection of prayers to Jesus, written as letters, that will inspire you to have unwavering faith in any circumstance, in every season. Each letter is followed by a short devotional and encouraging message. We pray that this inspires you to write a letter to Jesus this week - He longs to hear from you!
What a Mess
Dear Jesus, I’ve made a mess of things. I’ve said and done things without seeking Your will. Now I’ve made everything so much worse. The situation was not mine; it was hers to work through. My intentions were good, Jesus. I stepped in wanting to help, but I went about it all wrong. I betrayed her confidence, shared her secret, and brought someone else into a private situation. I gave advice that was unsolicited, unwanted, and wrong. Now I am suffering from a broken relationship and a guilty conscience. Jesus, I have asked her for forgiveness, and now I ask for Yours. Please forgive me for not turning to You for guidance. Forgive me for barging into a situation that was private between You and her. Forgive me for thinking that I knew how to help better than You.
Please, Jesus, take this sin and guilt away from me. And thank You for forgiving me.
Though your sins are like scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they are red as crimson, they shall be like wool. — Isaiah 1:18
It’s so important to talk to God about solving a problem before you dive in. Acting impulsively — even with good intentions — can lead to a mess. But mercy and forgiveness are wonderful parts of God’s grace. When you’ve done something wrong, run to Him instead of away from Him. Is there something you need to be forgiven for? Psalm 51 is David’s plea for forgiveness. How does it echo your own needs?
Brighter Future
Dear Jesus,
It’s so easy to let myself be haunted by the past. Old memories of not-so-good times swirl around in my mind. Why is it so hard to let go? I have forgiven past transgressions, but I haven’t forgotten. Perhaps I never will. Lord, help me at least to set them aside and not dwell on them.
You’ve forgiven my sins, and You want me to forgive the sins of others. I think I’ve done that, but the pain remains. I still hurt. Heal me, Lord. I want to let go. Instead of being consumed by a hurtful past, I want to focus on a brighter future.
Today, I will turn my thoughts toward You and what lies ahead. And whenever the past rises up to haunt me, I will send it away with thoughts of Your good plans for me. Jesus, open the door to my future today. Hold my hand, and help me to walk through the door with You.
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. — Philippians 3:13
Yesterday’s pain serves only to dim Christ’s light today. Give past hurts to Him, and allow His light to shine brightly in your heart. Ask Jesus to heal your wounds and set you on the path to an abundant future. Read Romans 5:3-5. How might God be using past hurts to shape you for His abundant life? What signs of that abundant life do you see blooming in your life today?
Your Turn: Lord, thank You for forgiving us of our sins, the harm we’ve done to others, the ways we’ve missed the mark and failed to be Christlike. Help us to relate carefully and prayerfully to honor those You love. We need You. And when old stories of shame come whispering at us again, help us to remember that You came to bring us life and life to the full! Help us to lay down our hurts and receive the good You have planned for us

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Do You Feel There Is No Hope? By Christine Chipman
In your times of deep despair,
Do you feel there is no hope?
As the darkness closes in on you,
Do you feel you cannot cope?
As you struggle on through every trial,
Do you say "When will it end"?
As you cry yourself to sleep at night,
Do you wish you had a friend?
When your body's racked with aches and pains,
Do you feel you are alone?
When you think about the future,
Do you fear the great unknown?
There is someone who really cares,
And He hears your every cry.
His arms are reaching out to you,
And on Him you can rely.
When things close in around you,
He sees your fear and doubt -
He wants to hold you in His arms,
And He will never cast you out.
As you stumble through the darkness,
He will be your guiding light.
He wants to wipe away your tears,
For you are precious in His sight.
Reach out right now to Jesus,
And let Him take complete control -
He'll take that heavy burden,
And He'll touch and make you whole.
He's reaching out His arms to you,
And He wants to be your friend.
Let Him take you in His loving arms,
For His love will never end.

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The Morning Glory by Sandra Lewis Pringle
I awaken to the glory of the morn',
sunshine streaking, birds cheerfully cheeping,
another day is born.
The Morning Glory inaudibly climbs,
and shares its shy beauty, so rare.
And, we know that behind its mystery,
Our Creative God is there.
He blesses us with sunshine,
He blesses us with rain,
because it's only through the showers,
that do we not, remain the same.
So, as this new day awakens,
and I'm cradled securely in Your arms,
May Your love forever keep me safe,
and sheltered from all storms.

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

2 Samuel 22:29 You, LORD, are my lamp; the LORD turns my darkness into light.

Be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD. — Psalm 27:14

Faith by itself, if it is not accompanied by action, is dead. — James 2:17

Paul wrote, “My God will meet your every need out of his riches in the glory that is found in Christ Jesus.” — Philippians 4:19

Paul wrote, “I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.” — Philippians 3:14

The psalmist wrote, “My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.” — Psalm 73:26

The Lord said to Paul, “My grace is sufficient for you, for power is made perfect in weakness.” — 2 Corinthians 12:9

Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your minds. — Romans 12:2

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THE GOD OF PEACE by Tom Norvell
The headlines from the last few weeks have included hurricanes, earthquakes, racial protests and riots, major tensions with Korea, terrorist bombings, and then someone predicted the world was going to end. If that does not make your blood pressure rise, think about your own stuff: your boss puts you in charge of a huge project with a very short turnaround; your child gets sick at school and then gets sick again in your car on the way home; your dog has to go to the vet; a strange light appears on your car’s dashboard; you forgot to pay your electric bill; a crown comes off your tooth; and you realize the milk has gone bad just after you started drinking it. This is the world I live in. How about you?
You rush to get things done only to discover you have more to do. You feel stressed, rushed, over committed, overworked, and overwhelmed. You cannot concentrate, you have trouble sleeping, you can’t find time to exercise, and you want to eat everything in sight.
I can relate. I get that way too sometimes. But usually, after I fume and stew for a while, frustrated that I cannot fix everything, I eventually realize that God is nudging me back toward Philippians 4. So, I read it again.
5 Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. 6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.8 Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things. 9 Whatever you have learned or received or heard from me, or seen in me—put it into practice. And the God of peace will be with you. (Philippians 4:5−9, NIV)
Then, I read it again, asking God to show me what He wants me to see. And this is what He shows me.
Remember to be gentle to everyone. When you are under stress, you may get angry, irritated, and frustrated and forget the fact that I am near. Be gentle with yourself. Be gentle with others. I am near you. (5)
Relax, takes a few deep breaths, give all your anxieties to me so that you can receive and enjoy the peace I have for you. (6-7)
You cannot handle all of this alone. I can. Let me take it from you in exchange for my peace.
Get your head back where it needs to be. You have drifted away from healthy thinking. Think about the lovely things and lovely people. Think about truth, nobility, and purity. Focus on things and people who are worth admiring and strive toward excellence. Think about these things, focus on these things, and take time to meditate on them. (8)
Live the way you have learned. You have had been taught by good people, and you have learned well the things of God. Stay true to that. (8)
Enjoy my peace. I am with you. I am always with you. I am near you. My peace is your peace because you belong to me. (8)
Does it seem like the world is going crazy? Does it feel like the things you cherish most are slipping away from you? The fact that you are reading this is proof that it is not too late to make some changes. Try reading Philippians 4 a few times, and let the peace of God work into your heart.

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Holy Father, Help us to put our past wrongs behind us. Create in us clean hearts and begin new life in us. Amen.

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Read Through The Bible
Psalm 80
1 Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, thou that leadest Joseph like a flock; thou that dwellest between the cherubims, shine forth. 2 Before Ephraim and Benjamin and Manasseh stir up thy strength, and come and save us. 3 Turn us again, O God, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved. 4 O Lord God of hosts, how long wilt thou be angry against the prayer of thy people? 5 Thou feedest them with the bread of tears; and givest them tears to drink in great measure. 6 Thou makest us a strife unto our neighbours: and our enemies laugh among themselves. 7 Turn us again, O God of hosts, and cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved. 8 Thou hast brought a vine out of Egypt: thou hast cast out the heathen, and planted it. 9 Thou preparedst room before it, and didst cause it to take deep root, and it filled the land. 10 The hills were covered with the shadow of it, and the boughs thereof were like the goodly cedars. 11 She sent out her boughs unto the sea, and her branches unto the river. 12 Why hast thou then broken down her hedges, so that all they which pass by the way do pluck her? 13 The boar out of the wood doth waste it, and the wild beast of the field doth devour it. 14 Return, we beseech thee, O God of hosts: look down from heaven, and behold, and visit this vine; 15 And the vineyard which thy right hand hath planted, and the branch that thou madest strong for thyself. 16 It is burned with fire, it is cut down: they perish at the rebuke of thy countenance. 17 Let thy hand be upon the man of thy right hand, upon the son of man whom thou madest strong for thyself. 18 So will not we go back from thee: quicken us, and we will call upon thy name. 19 Turn us again, O Lord God of hosts, cause thy face to shine; and we shall be saved.

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Merciful God, Help us learn to trust you in all the seasons of our lives, knowing that you want the best for us. May your joy fill our lives today. Amen.

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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