It's All Grace

Amazing things can happen when you allow the Lord to work in your life.

Glory Days

“I’m bored,” complained my oldest son.  “I don’t have anything to do.” Normally, those words created images of countless tasks to give my son during our homeschool day.  However, today I sensed the Lord asking me to teach a lesson from His Word instead.

“Mountaintop experiences don’t happen every day,” I said.  “You’ll find that life is usually 80% ordinary and 20% extraordinary.  Most of your life will involve being faithful in the normal everyday routine, but when God chooses, He will give something that changes your life forever.”

Exciting experiences can be bought in this life, but the life-changing moments that give true satisfaction and fulfillment come only through the power of the Holy Spirit.  Think of Mary, the mother of Jesus, who faithfully lived a quiet life until the angel Gabriel told her she would give birth to the Savior.  Joseph became ruler over Egypt after years of suffering and separation from his family.  Moses met God through a burning bush after 40 years of isolated living as a shepherd.

Looking back on your life, how many extraordinary moments have you had? Faithfully serving God in the ordinary makes you a candidate to serve God in the extraordinary.  “His lord said unto him, Well done, thou good and faithful servant: thou hast been faithful over a few things, I will make thee ruler over many things: enter thou into the joy of thy lord” (Matthew 25:21).

Father, help me remember that You have a special plan and purpose for my life. May I be found faithful in the everyday things, so I am ready for the extraordinary moments when they come. In Jesus’ name, Amen.

AOP Homeschooling Devotions

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My Friends Mary & Martha

Lord, help me to be LESS of Martha and MORE like Mary!

In Luke 10:38 Martha opened her home to Jesus! She was the hostess with the mostest-the sister with an extraordinary flair for hospitality.  Can you just imagine this highly organized, efficient woman as she flies into action, giving orders and demanding all that is to be done?  Bread kneaded and baked, meat prepared and grilled, veggies scrubbed and boiled, floors , table set, drinks poured, etc.

As you read, you sense things aren’t falling together quite right, as you watch Mary begin to get edgy and agitated.  Perhaps it was when she forgot to set the timer and the rolls burned that Martha’s simmering frustration finally began to boil as she looked around and realized that her younger sister was nowhere to be found!  Martha was DISTRACTED by all the preparations that had to be made.

As she began to demand, “Where’s Mary!”  Then she realized she’s in the living room with the men!  When the explosion came, it was NOT directed at Mary, but at Jesus.

When we become preoccupied with earthly things rather than eternal matters, we become resentful, self-centered and angry. Our party turns into a pity-party, and we start to believe that no one-not even Jesus-knows or cares about all the sacrifices we’ve made!

I can almost hear Jesus saying to Martha, “We don’t have to have a five-course meal tonight.  It’s OK with Me if we just have soup and crackers.  It’s OK if dinner’s late, if the rolls get burned, or even if we don’t have dinner at all.  None of that really matters. What DOES matter, is My relationship with you!  That’s why I came to your house!  That’s why I came to this world.  Your company means more to Me than your cooking.  YOU are more important to Me than anything you can do for Me.”

The Lord has given me the gift of Hospitality as well as the gift of Exhortation.  I have found myself from time to time getting out of balance in the area of Hospitality because I love to serve.  However, worldly business is a snare to us when it hinders us from serving God and gaining food for our souls.

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Blessings and Trauma

Do you ever wonder what Mary’s prayers consisted of?  Did she pray for blessings and if so, did she realize that the blessings would bring traumatic experiences to her physical life and her heart?

It’s easy to pray with your mouth “not thy will but Thine”, but does your heart and soul truly follow suit?

Even though Mary’s news from the angel was a blessing and she submitted to the Lord . . . do you think it was also traumatic?  Whether it is traumatic will all be determined by your perspective.

Some of the greatest blessings in our life can also bring trauma, yet the trauma as well as blessings each have an eternal purpose.  May we have a new perspective on answered prayers — accepting that which the Lord has “blessed” us with.

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