Precious Treasures and Promises

God’s Bank Account verse:

Psalm 50:14-15 “Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving and pay your vows to the most High; and (then) call upon me in the day of trouble and I will deliver you and you shall glorify me.”

What does this mean to me:

During the everyday disappointments of daily life- being thankful for EVERYTHING- Saying “Thank you Lord for allowing this to happen and help me to see the blessing in it” Based on Thess. 5:18 and Romans 8:28.

We raised our children on these verses. They are the key of making Jesus real in our home. It is like depositing in the Bank of Faith- your sacrifices of thanksgiving- even if you don’t feel like it. It will really build your faith as you see that “all things DO work together for good.”

Then when the bad things do come into your life, you can call upon the Lord and you have built an account of faith and you know that He will deliver you in the big things too.


Pray about everything in your life, little things, big things. Ask him about all the details. Our children have said they felt one of the biggest reasons they became Christians was that Jesus was made real in our home. And this is how He can be made real. To pray about everything and allow the children to see that He does answer and He does care. We would always pray in the car as we left together to go to the mountain, on any little trip. Pray before we went shopping, that the Lord would help us find the perfect things at the perfect prices. Pray for all sporting events. Pray at the exact time of school tests. Pray for personal relationship, for disappointments, for finding things, and this could go on and on. Allowing the Lord to be part of EVERYTHING you do.

Guidance for Praying

John 15:7 “If you abide in me, and my words abide in you, ask whatever you will, and it shall be done for you.”

James 1:6-8 ” But let him ask in faith, with no doubting, for he who doubts is like a wave of the sea that is driven and tossed by the wind. For that person must not suppose that a double minded man, unstable in all his ways, will receive anything from the Lord.”

I John 3:21-22 “Beloved, if our hearts do not condemn us, we have confidence before God; and we receive from him whatever we ask, because we keep his commandments.”

Matthew 21:22 “And whatever you ask in prayer, you will receive, if you have faith.”

James 5:16 “Therefore confess your sins to one another, and pray for one another, that you may be healed. The prayer of a righteous man has great power in its effects.”

Psalms 91:14-15 “Because he cleaves to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name. When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will rescue him and honor him.”

Proverbs 28:13 “He who conceals his transgressions will not prosper, but he who confesses and forsakes them will obtain mercy.”

Proverbs 28:9 “If one turns away his ear from hearing the law, even his prayer is an abomination.”

Psalms 66:18 “If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened.”

Psalms 34:17 “When the righteous cry for help, the Lord hears, and delivers them our of all their troubles.”

Sometimes I feel overwhelmed by these verses…… and then I claim Romans 8:26-27 “Likewise the Spirit help us in our weakness for we do not know ho to pray as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with signs too deep for words, and he who searches the hearts of men knows what is the mind of the Spirit, because the Spirit intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.”

Message version: “If we don’t know who or what to pray, it doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God.”


This entry was posted in Prayer.

Helpful Lessons Learned From Philippians 4:4-10

Over twenty years ago these thoughts were given to me by Claudia Rowe, a Young life leader, and they have been very helpful to me over the years. They come from the following passages:

Philippians 4:4-10 RVSRejoice in the Lord always; again I will say, Rejoice.  Let all men know your forbearance. The Lord is at hand. Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to God.  And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.  Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things.  What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, do; and the God of peace will be with you.”

Philippians 4:4-10 J.B. Phillips Translation “Delight yourselves in the Lord, yes, find your joy in him at all times. Have a reputation for gentleness, and never forget the nearness of your Lord. Don’t worry over anything whatsoever; tell God every detail of your needs in earnest and thankful prayer, and the peace of God, which transcends human understanding, will keep constant guard over your hearts and minds as they rest in Christ Jesus. Here is a last piece of advice. If you believe in goodness and if you value the approval of God, fix your minds on whatever is true and honorable and just and pure and lovely and praiseworthy. Model your conduct on what you heave learned from me, on what I have told you and shown you, and you will find that the God of peace will be with you.”

We are told to give our requests and anxieties to the Lord, with prayer and supplication and with thanksgiving. And then the promise that the Peace of God will keep our hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

See the picture of our heart and mind emptied of our anxieties. Then in verse 8-10 we are told what to fill that void with. If we leave it empty it is too easy for the anxious thoughts to return. We are to think about all that is true, and just and pure and lovely. When the anxious thoughts start to return quickly think of what is “true” in that situation. There is always a true fact to state that is positive and will give us something to think about in that situation.

I always think of the lady who always had something positive to say about everyone. Someone said to her, “I think you could find something positive to say about the devil”. She thought a minute and then said, “Well, he is persistent”.

So with us we can usually think of some true positive thing to think about in any anxious situation. When we do this God will put a “guard” around our hearts and minds to help the thoughts and anxieties from returning. But we must do our part.

Enjoying Life…..Along the Way

After I have committed the day to the Lord and asked Him to establish my plans, especially when its a day of errands and seeing many people, I ask the Lord to help me to totally enjoy each visit and each errand. Not to be in the attitude of “I want to get this over so I can move on to the next thing”, but to keep my mind totally on the moment and the person and enjoying it and not just trying to get it over with. When I am able to do this with the Lord’s help, the day is so much more fun.

Knowing that the day is in His hands and that I will accomplish what He wants me to accomplish that day. It’s fun to take a little surprise breaks and give myself little treats on these busy errands days too. It might be bringing a book along and taking a little reading break in the Safeway parking lot, or having coffee at Target just to enjoy people watching, or having a real cup of tea at a tea shop. Talking to the Lord along the way the whole day. Asking Him to direct me to the right store and the right purchase so I don’t waste time.

Ecc 2:22 “What has a man from all the toil and strain with which he toils beneath the sun? For all his days are full of pain, and his works is a vexation; even in the night his mind does not rest.”

John 10:10b “I came that they may have life, and have it abundantly.”

Ex. 23:12 “Six days you shall do your work, but on the seventh day you shall rest.”

Matthew 11:28-30 “Come to me, all who labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you and learn from me; for I am gentle and lowly in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light.”

May we all learn truly what it means to “rest in God”. Amen

This entry was posted in Prayer.

The Precious Present

Psalm 118:24 “This is the day the Lord has made, let us rejoice and be glad in it.”

Don’t look BACKWARD: Phil 3:13 “…Forgetting what lies behind.”

Don’t look FORWARD: Matt 6:34 “Therefore do not be anxious about tomorrow for tomorrow will be anxious for itself. Let the days own trouble be sufficient for the day. ”

But look UPWARD (today): Isaiah 26:3 “Thou dost keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee.”

What if I don’t have things to rejoice over this day?

1 Thessalonians 5:18 “Give thanks in ALL circumstance.”

Romans 8:28 “All things work together for good, with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.”

Romans 8:38 “For I am sure that neither death not life not… nor THINGS PRESENT… will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”

Hebrews 13:8 “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever.”

Romans 8:18 “I consider that the sufferings of this present time are not worth comparing with the glory that is to be revealed to us.”

We must learn to trust the Lord each day, for our needs for that day!

Matthew 6:11 “Give us this day, our daily bread.”

Exodus 16:4 “Then the Lord said to Moses, Behold I will rain bread from heaven for you, and the people shall go out and gather a day’s portion every day….

Exodus 16:21 “Morning by morning they gathered it, each as much as he could eat, but when the sun grew hot it melted.”

What is the secret?

Phil. 4:11-13 “Not that I complain of want- for I have learned in whatever state I am to be content. I know how to be abased and I know how to abound, in any and all circumstances I have learned the secret of facing plenty and hunger and abundance and want- I can do all things through Him who gives me strengthens me.”

Lesson: Be a more positive person, not a grumbler and complainer and also a lesson on forgiveness.

The more I thought of these I realized how they really are tied together. If we grumble and complain we often have the attitude of not wanting to forgive someone or being unable to forgive ourselves.

First I think we must ask ourselves- “Do we really believe He is ABLE?”

Able to make me a more positive person

Able to forgive me

Able to help me to forgive others

Able to care for my needs

Able to help me give up resentment

We sing, “He’s able, he’s able, I know he’s able. I know my Lord is able to carry me through.”

Jude 24 “Now to him who is able to keep you from falling and to present you without blemish before the presence of his glory with rejoicing, to the only God, our Savior through Jesus Christ our Lord, be glory, majesty, dominion and authority, before all time, now and forever. Amen.”

Romans 16:25 “Now to him who is able to strengthen you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ…”

Ephesians 3:20.21 “Now to him who by the power at work within is able to do far more abundantly than all that we ask or think, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus to all generations, for ever and ever, Amen.”

But do we really believe it? Would we really complain so much about our situations if we really believe that Jesus could change it for us- give us peace in the midst of it- and work it all out for good?

The life verses that I claimed for my family, Romans 8:28 along with 1 Thess 5:18- I think helped me to look on the positive side of things instead of negative.

Romans 8:28 “We know that in everything God works for good with those who love him, who are called according to his purpose.”

1 Thess. 5:18 “Give thanks in all circumstance for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you.”

I really think these are companion verses and if used together and really claimed and used they will change your life and your outlook. You begin in every bad situation to think, “this is a good one Lord, how will you ever work for good in this?” And then you begin to look and wonder and your eyes are turned upon him and what he is going to do, and not on the bad things that could happen.

This is what Pollyanna did in the movie and book “Pollyanna”. People make fun of her and her name has been used with a goody-goody person who only sees the good. This is sad because being content is scriptural.

My Becky has claimed these verses with her life and family and is a very positive person and I know some people make fun of her too and call her Pollyanna but she has a beautiful life and family and spirit to show for it. It can be almost a game- looking forward with anticipation to what good shall come from this. Also, Phil 4:8,9 can be very helpful to make us a positive person and looking on the positive side of things. I use this verse in the lesson on worry and Becky uses it in talking about husbands. Even if 95% of things are bad and 5% are good, think on the 5% and the Lord will bless you and your marriage for it.

“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. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, do; and the God of peace will be with you.”

We can choose to focus on the 5% good, on the one lovely thing, on the one true thing in the situation and claim Isaiah 26:3 “Thou dost keep him in perfect peace whose mind is stayed on thee. He will give us that perfect peace as we CHOOSE to look to him, and be positive and then receive his perfect peace”. How can we be grumblers and complainers if we are experiencing God’s perfect peace? Or we can CHOOSE to grumble and complain about the situation and allow a root of bitterness to grow and allow many people- innocent members of our family- to be defiled.

Hebrews 12:15 ” See to it that no one fail to obtain the grace of God; that no ‘root of bitterness’ springs up and cause trouble and by it the many become defiled.”

The Bible talks of complaining:

  • Psalm 77
  • Jude 16
  • John 6:43

We don’t want to be grumblers and complainers. Let us look to Jesus and receive all that He has for us and believe that he is ABLE to change our hearts. Let us look to what the Bible stays about forgiveness. Usually if we are complaining it is because of a person, something someone has done to us, something someone has not done for you. If we are able to forgive that person, would it not stop our complaining about him also.

  • Matthew 5:23,24
  • Collosians 3:12-15
  • Jeremiah 31:34

Let us really try to put these verses to work in our lives- and become the more positive forgiving woman of God that He would have us be.

Being Led By the Spirit

“For all who are led by the Spirit of God are the sons of God.” Romans 8:14

Do you ever ask yourself: How do we apply this to our lives? Can we really know what God would have us do?

Yes! But FIRST we must Listen, learn to Listen, and take time to listen….

  • Matthew 17:05
  • John 9:47
  • Job 15
  • John 10:14
  • John 10:27
  • Isaiah 55:3a
  • Matthew 11:15
  • Ecclesiastes 5:1a
  • Proverbs 1:23&33

SECOND: How do we know what we hear is God speaking and not our own thoughts or Satan?

Knowing the voice of God is a very personal and different thing to each person. I am going to give you some guidelines from various people and myself for you to wrestle with. Also this ability to know when God is speaking to you does not come instantly. It takes time. Time of praying, time of reading and meditating on the word, time of listening and time to PRACTICE listening. Let us not be like the scribes or Pharisees of whom Jesus spoke in Matthew 23:3 “…. for they preach but they do not practice”.

So please take the following as guidelines to help you in your search of knowing when God is speaking to you.

1. Test the spirits: In 1 John 4:1-3 we are told not to “believe everything we hear”.

“Beloved, do not believe every spirit, but test the spirits to see whether they are of God; for many false prophets have done out into the world. By this you know the Spirit of God; every spirit which confesses that Jesus Christ has come in the flesh is of God, and every spirit which does not confess Jesus is not of God…”

BUT- even if the enemy is taunting you with something that is true such as past sin, or something not pleasing in your life to the Lord, remember 1 John 2:1 “My little children I am writing this that you may not sin; but if any one does sin, we have an advocate with the Father, Jesus Christ the righteous.

Also remember Romans 8:1 “There is therefore now no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus.”

2. God promised in the Old Testament that He would be our guide. Psalm 48:14 “That this is God, out God for ever and ever. He will be our guide forever.”

The third part of the Trinity was sent to be our guide.

  • 1 John 5:7
  • 2 Timothy 1:14
  • 1 Corinthians 3:16
  • Psalm 25:4,5

Ok, so God’s spirit is now in us- How can the Holy Spirit get our attention and tell us what he wants us to do?

This is a very childlike example of God’s plan for us.

But remember the verse: Matthew 18:3 “…Truly I say to you, unless you turn and become like children, you will never enter the kingdom of heaven.”

Childlike Version

God was looking out at his beautiful world all messed up by men. He thought “How can I tell them I love them so they will understand?” So He decided to send his Son as a human to talk to them in their own language and to die on the cross for their sins. Some listened and some did not. But when Jesus died for our sins and rose again and then went to be with His Father, God did not want us to be left alone. Sooooo he sent the third part of the trinity. He sent the Holy Spirit to come inside those who would believe.

John 16:13 “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all the truth; for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.”

I John 5:7 “And the Spirit is the witness, because the Spirit is the truth”.

NOW… we know that the Holy Spirit is in us and has promised to guide us. But how do we know what the Spirit is telling us?

We need to quiet our Spirit and get into a quiet place if possible to listen to what the Spirit is telling us. 1 Kings tells us that God speaks in a still small voice. With the noise of the world all around us and our minds spinning, are we able to hear that still small voice?

Psalm 46:10 tells us “Be still and know that I am God.”

 Two wonderful promises of the Holy Spirit’s guidance are found in Galations 5:16 & 25

“I advise you to obey only the Holy Spirit’s instructions. He will tell you where to go and what to do, and then you wont always be doing the wrong things your evil nature wants you to do.”

” If we are living now by the Holy Spirit’s power, let us follow the Holy Spirit’s leading in every part of our lives. Then we wont need to look for honors and popularity which lead to jealousy and hard feelings.”

The following are thoughts from a tape by Kenneth Hagin entitled “How to Train the Human Spirit”. This tape has been very helpful to me and a blessing in my life as I searched for how to know when God was leading me. I know that Kenneth Hagin has been getting some bad press lately as perhaps into the Prosperity Gospel preaching, but I want to point our to you, that many men are used by God at various times in their lives and are a blessing to many, and perhaps at another time go off on a tangent, but that doesn’t take away from their early ministry. I have also been blessed by Robert Schuller who is given bad press many times in Christian circles. But there again let the spirit guide you and not necessarily believe everything one man tells us or disbelieve another. Measure it up to scripture and ask God to show you. Anyway for what it is worth there are some of his thoughts. May they be a blessing to you as you search out this subject.

He is basing these thoughts on Pro. 20:27 “The spirit of man is the lamp of the Lord, searching all his innermost parts. And also basing his thoughts on Joshua 1:8 “This book of the law shall not depart out of your mouth, but you shall meditate on it day and night, that you may be careful to do according to all that is written in it, for then you shall make your way prosperous, and then you shall have good success.”

Often we are very diligent to build up our minds and our bodies but neglect our spirits. These are four rules which will help us to build up our spirits.

  1. Comes by meditation in the Word
  2. Comes by practicing the Word
  3. Comes by giving the Word first place in our lives
  4. Comes by instantly obeying the voice of our spirit

Proverbs 20:27 tells us that God and the Holy Spirit will use OUR own spirits to enlighten us and that our own conscience can be guides.

BUT our conscience can only be right guides as we follow the 4 rules.


Realize the value and power of quiet meditation. We cannot spend 5 minutes in the world each day and 5 hours watching TV and reading magazines and expect our spirit to be growing in the things of the Lord.


Be doers of the Word. James 1:22 “But be doers of the word, and not hearers only, deceiving yourselves.” Many Christians are in Praise of the Word, rejoice in the Word, and Talk about the Word…. But how many are DOERS of the word? This does not mean keeping the 10 commandments, for we have a new commandment, we are to love one another and walk in love.

If we are able to DO what it says in Phil. 4:6,7 we are promised peace and no anxiety. “Have no anxiety about anything, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God. And the peace of God which passes all understanding will keep your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Phil 4:8,9 tells us what to DO to obtain peace. “Finally, brethren whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, lovely, gracious, if there is anything excellent, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, DO; and the God of peace will be with you.”

The more you talk about some negative thing the more it becomes true. Use Phil. 4:8 as a guide.

We give place to the devil by thinking negative thoughts. The devil wants to enter our thought life. Our spirit is God’s when we ask him in. But we can voluntarily give our thoughts place to Satan.

Matt 12:34 says”…for our of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaks.” I often take this verse when people say something unkind or negative and then say, “I’m only kidding”. I think that is what is really in their heart and it is coming forth. But the same can be true when we are complaining and telling our worries to others. It shows our heart is full of anxiety instead of peace as we are promised by the Lord.


Pro. 4:20-22 “My son, be attentive to my words; incline your ear to my saying. Let them not escape from your sight; keep them within your heart. For they are life to him who finds them, and healing to all his flesh.”

What a promise. When you hold that with Joshua 1:8 we really have some promises for listening and doing the words of God.

Also Matt. 6:33 “But seek first his kingdom and his righteousness and all these things shall be yours as well.”


The human spirit has a voice. We call it conscience, and sometimes a “gut feeling”, “woman’s intuition”, “hunch” or “inner voice”.

Every mans spirit has a voice whether he is saved or not. But when we are born again all parts of us are made new and turned over to God. 2 Cor. 5:17 says, “Therefore if anyone is in Christ he is a new creation, the old has passed away, behold the new has come.” (Also see 2 Cor 4:16, 1 Peter 3:4, Eze. 11:19, 1 John 4:4)

Your spirit can be trained to be a true guide of the Holy Spirit’s direction. The devil doesn’t dwell in you and God isn’t in your head,  he is in your heart. The spirit of God within you. Learn to obey your spirit. The conscience can be a safe guide in the believer when it is trained by meditating and educated by God’s word. Our conscience isn’t educated by TV or R rated movies. What are you feeding your inner spirit?

Here are the verses that talk about a “seared” or “corrupted” conscience: 1 Tim 4:2 & Titus 1:15

But when a Christian is meditating in the word and feeding and building up their spirits by doing the word, these verses bear witness to the fact that then our conscience can be a safe guide:

Romans 2:15…”Their conscience also bears witness….” Paul also adds in Romans 9:1 that his conscience is used by God… “I am speaking the truth in Christ, I am not lying; my conscience bears me witness in the Holy Spirit.”

And to me this was the most convincing verse that when we have trained our spirit, we should listen to it: 1 Timothy 1:19 “holding faith and a good conscience. By rejecting conscience, certain persons have made shipwreck of their faith.”

Inward voice can be the voice of Your spirit. We will miss that voice by putting out fleeces. Satan can be counterfeit and he is out there. Inside your spirit is much safer, when Christ is dwelling within.

What a wonderful promise of the Holy Spirit’s guidance in John 16:13 “When the Spirit of truth comes, he will guide you into all truth; for he will not speak on his own authority, but whatever he hears he will speak, and he will declare to you the things that are to come.”

One of the greatest tests if it is the Lord speaking to us is if we feel PEACE about what we are being led to do. Phil 4:7 talks about the peace of God which surpasses all understanding. It is so wonderful you have to experience it to know what he is talking about. But when you do, it is real and it is something Satan cannot counterfeit, because it is the confirmation of the Holy Spirit within us.

LEARN to obey the voice of your spirit. Practice the 4 rules often. We are able to get guidance in the minor details of our life as well as the major ones. But it does not happen overnight. It takes time, training, and patience. Follow the rules and exciting things will happen for you!

Lesson on Discernment

Discernment: A power to see what is not evident to the average mind. Discernment stresses accuracy as in reading character and motives.


Discrimination: Stressed power to distinguish or select the excellent, the true

Perception: Direct acquaintance with anything through the senses. An immediate or intuitive cognition or judgment

Insight: Keen discernment or understanding. Immediate apprehension or cognition

Verses Regarding Discernment:

  1. Proverbs 16:21
  2. Isaiah 27:11
  3. Philippians 1:9-11

Breaking it down:

Paul’s prayer- “That you will overflow with love, knowledge, discernment, insight.”

Why? “So that you will always see clearly the difference between right and wrong and to be inwardly clean.”

Also: “That we will be filled with the fruits of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ.”

Hebrews 5:14 RSV “But solid food is for the mature, for those who have their faculties trained by practice to distinguish good from evil.”

Hebrews 5:14 Living “You will never be able to eat solid spiritual food and understand the deeper things of God’s word until you become Christians and learn right from wrong by practicing doing right.”

The main thought seems to be: Distinguishing good from evil is the same as discernment. Also, that until we are able to distinguish good from evil, or have discernment, we will not be able to eat the solid food of a mature Christian. Until we “train our faculties” and “learn right from wrong by practicing doing right” we will never obtain discernment.

It appears as though the Lord is saying:

  1. We need to train and practice by asking the Lord to show us and reveal the difference between good and evil.
  2. As we listen and follow his direction, it will become easier to discern the difference
  3. Little by little as we practice “doing right” it will be easier to “discern” what is the good and right thing to do in the next situation placed before us.

Consider Phil 4:8,9 “Finally brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is gracious, if there is any excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think about these things. What you have learned and received and heard and seen in me, do; and the God of peace will be with you.”

May we, with God’s help become wise and discerning children of God. Amen.