Helping Us Along The Way (3 short verses)

Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right alongside helping us along. 

If we don’t know how 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 us far better than we know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present before God.

 That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives of love for God is worked into something good.
Romans 8:26‭-‬28 MSG

Enough said, Beetle


The Trained Eye (Winter OLYMPICS 2018)

While watching, gasping and shouting an occasional, “OH!!!” & “AWE!!!!” And an occasional “OUCH!!!!!” during the winter Olympics snow boarding  I heard the commentators explaining, pointing out, what the judges would notice that the untrained eye would see as a good or even what appeared to be a perfect run.

Never having gone snow boarding I’d be blessed just to make it to the bottom of a small hill, let alone get down a mountain with metal rails and huge bowels carved into the snow.

More is expected of the trained athletes who compete for the prize and they are trying to impress several judges.

I’m sure there are many comparisons & contrast we can make in our Spiritual lives as we compete for The Prize and focus on pleasing our one and only true judge.

As I practice my faith I rely fully on Christ my saviour to get me to the finish so that I may finish well.

Protections From Now Until Forever From Now

I raise my eyes toward the mountains. Where will my help come from? 

My help comes from the LORD , the maker of heaven and earth. 

God won’t let your foot slip

Your protector won’t fall asleep on the job. 

No! Israel’s protector never sleeps or rests! 

The LORD is your protector

the LORD is your shade right beside you. 

The sun won’t strike you during the day; 

neither will the moon at night. 

The LORD will protect you from all evil; God will protect your very life. 

The LORD will protect you on your journeys— whether going or coming— from now until forever from now.
Psalms 121:1‭-‬8 CEB


Read The Book. Don’t Wait For The Movie

Read The Book. Don’t wait for the movie.

The book is always going to be better than the movie, especially when it comes to God’s Word.

God’s Word (The Bible) is alive & He can allow it to dwell in us to make us more alive & well. He doesn’t force Himself on us. We must accept Him & all He is. Prayer is one way to open up our hearts to Him. Reading His Word is another way He uses to enter our lives.

I do appreciate the movies and videos made that try to portrait things that happen & are recorded in The Bible but they are always going to fall short compared to how it really was. There is nothing like reading it for yourself & asking God to help you understand it all.

As we read The Bible God can paint a much better picture than Hollywood ever could.

Here are some Bible verses I hold dear to my heart that explain how much better God’s Word is than anything I could ever see in a drawing or motion picture…

When Jesus was in the wilderness, tempted by the devil He not only answered the devil, Jesus answered by quoting Deuteronomy, “It takes more than bread to stay alive. It takes a steady stream of words from God’s mouth.” (Matthew 4:4 MSG)

God’s Word lives: “For the word of God is alive and active. Sharper than any double-edged sword, it penetrates even to dividing soul and spirit, joints and marrow; it judges the thoughts and attitudes of the heart.” (Hebrews 4:12 NIV)
The Word of God is like a seed:  In Matt. 13 & Luke 8 Jesus tells a story with a deeper meaning & explains that The Truth (The Word of God) falls on different hearts (soil) just like seeds. For some souls the seed never goes deeper than the surface, some souls are too shallow, some let materialistic, temporary things choked it out, some accept it. “This is the meaning of the parable: The seed is the word of God. (to read more go to Luke 8:11 NIV)
God’s Word can come alive in our hearts and live forever, beyond our physical bodies: For you have been born again, not of perishable seed, but of imperishable, through the living and enduring word of God. For, “All people are like grass, and all their glory is like the flowers of the field; the grass withers and the flowers fall,  but the word of the Lord endures forever.” And this is the word that was preached to you. (1 Peter 1:23‭-‬25 NIV)
Jesus Christ is The Word of God: In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was in the beginning with God. All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being. In Him was life, and the life was the Light of men. The Light shines in the darkness, and the darkness did not comprehend it. (John 1:1‭-‬5 NASB)
He lived among us: The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the one and only Son, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:14 NIV)
God’s Word is designed to live in us and for us to live according to it,
As Jesus was saying these things, a woman in the crowd called out, “Blessed is the mother who gave you birth and nursed you.”  He replied, “Blessed rather are those who hear the word of God and obey it.” (Luke 11:27‭-‬28 NIV)

Jesus explained that God’s Word defines God’s ways and what’s more important than the physical food we eat & traditions beyond how we eat it (traditions at our tables) is how we feast on Him, The Bread of Life, The Living Word of God. 

You are what you eat.

Jesus said, “ ‘These people honor me with their lips,  but their hearts are far from me.   They worship me in vain;  their teachings are merely human rules.’   ”  Jesus called the crowd to him and said, “Listen and understand.  What goes into someone’s mouth does not defile them, but what comes out of their mouth, that is what defiles them.” (Matthew 15:8‭-‬11 NIV)

Again, God’s Word goes beyond the things we know in this life & on into the next life (life after death). His Word in us lives on. It is not simply a motion picture with a beginning and and end. He sets life, real life, eternal life into motion and it goes on and one…world without end.
When asked about marriage and questioned about what happens when a spouse dies and someone remarries: Jesus replied, “The people of this age marry and are given in marriage.  But those who are considered worthy of taking part in the age to come and in the resurrection from the dead will neither marry nor be given in marriage,  and they can no longer die; for they are like the angels. They are God’s children, since they are children of the resurrection.  But in the account of the burning bush, even Moses showed that the dead rise, for he calls the Lord ‘the God of Abraham, and the God of Isaac, and the God of Jacob.’  He is not the God of the dead, but of the living, for to him all are alive.” (Luke 20:34‭-‬38 NIV)

When God’s living word lives in us we may still be in this world but we are not of it. We just don’t fit the same way we use to. We no longer conform to things of this world but we are transformed by the renewing of our spirit (Romans 12 type Christians) Our citizenship is vested in His Kingdom and we are members of the next age, not overly concerned or invested in this age.
We still live here but heaven is our home and we are under His Lordship. This life will pass away but The Word of God, living in us, will carry on.

Jesus showed us first hand that He alone is able to resurrect from the dead: After his suffering, he presented himself to them and gave many convincing proofs that he was alive. He appeared to them over a period of forty days and spoke about the kingdom of God. (Acts 1:3 NIV)

God’s Word needs to be accepted by us for it to live, grow and mature in us and it is not just for the Jewish race who were initially handed His Word but for all:  The apostles and the believers throughout Judea heard that the Gentiles also had received the word of God. (Acts 11:1 NIV)
There is no movie rating, limiting His Word. There is no numbered star rating or “likes” needed.

A true believer receives The Word of God as from God not just something humans wrote or reviewed: And we also thank God continually because, when you received the word of God, which you heard from us, you accepted it not as a human word, but as it actually is, the word of God, which is indeed  at work  in you who believe. (1 Thessalonians 2:13 NIV)

The entire Bible comes together to form one big picture, continually in motion. 

God inspired and told humans what to write and continues to inspire us to live according to what is written: All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work. (2 Timothy 3:16‭-‬17 NIV)
As we read and drink in His Word we ask that He interprets it correctly for us so we can live it out: Do your best to present yourself to God as one approved, a worker who does not need to be ashamed and who correctly handles the word of truth. (2 Timothy 2:15 NIV)
God’s Word should not be used for personal gain of power and financial security: Unlike so many, we do not peddle the word of God for profit. On the contrary, in Christ we speak before God with sincerity, as those sent from God. (2 Corinthians 2:17 NIV)
God trusts us to let His Word be perfected in us so we are living His Word (our old man is dead when His Word is alive in us): Therefore, since through God’s mercy we have this ministry, we do not lose heart. Rather, we have renounced secret and shameful ways; we do not use deception, nor do we distort the word of God. On the contrary, by setting forth the truth plainly we commend ourselves to everyone’s conscience in the sight of God. And even if our gospel is veiled, it is veiled to those who are perishing. The god of this age has blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel that displays the glory of Christ, who is the image of God. For what we preach is not ourselves, but Jesus Christ as Lord, and ourselves as your servants for Jesus’ sake. For God, who said, “Let light shine out of darkness,” made his light shine in our hearts to give us the light of the knowledge of God’s glory displayed in the face of Christ.  
It is written: “I believed; therefore I have spoken.” Since we have that same spirit of faith, we also believe and therefore speak, because we know that the one who raised the Lord Jesus from the dead will also raise us with Jesus and present us with you to himself. All this is for your benefit, so that the grace that is reaching more and more people may cause thanksgiving to overflow to the glory of God.  

So we fix our eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen, since what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal. (2 Corinthians 4:1‭-‬6‭, ‬13‭-‬15‭, ‬18 NIV)

God’s Word can shine through our lives to reach others. 

Sometimes God’s Children should be seen more than heard.

 Our actions should mirror & reflect what His Word confirms and if we speak our words should match His Word: If anyone speaks, they should do so as one who speaks the very words of God. If anyone serves, they should do so with the strength God provides, so that in all things God may be praised through Jesus Christ. To him be the glory and the power for ever and ever. Amen. (1 Peter 4:11 NIV)
God’s Word is given to us, put into our hands and ultimately our hearts, entrusted to us as stewards: I write to you, dear children, because you know the Father. I write to you, fathers, because you know him who is from the beginning. I write to you, young men, because you are strong, and the word of God lives in you, and you have overcome the evil one. (1 John 2:14 NIV)
God gives us His Word so we are not deceived by other’s words: Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of such things God’s wrath comes on those who are disobedient. Therefore do not be partners with them.  
Be very careful, then, how you live—not as unwise but as wise, making the most of every opportunity, because the days are evil.

 Therefore do not be foolish, but understand what the Lord’s will is. (Ephesians 5:6‭-‬7‭, ‬15‭-‬17 NIV)

God’s Word can be used like a plumbrod, measuring out the truth so we are not easily persuade to live otherwise: 
The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons. Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron. They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth. For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer.  If you point these things out to the brothers and sisters, you will be a good minister of Christ Jesus, nourished on the truths of the faith and of the good teaching that you have followed. Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives’ tales; rather, train yourself to be godly. For physical training is of some value, but godliness has value for all things, holding promise for both the present life and the life to come. That is why we labor and strive, because we have put our hope in the living God, who is the Savior of all people, and especially of those who believe. (1 Timothy 4:1‭-‬8‭, ‬10 NIV)

We are to be doers not just hearers. Living out the picture God has put into motion: Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says. (James 1:22 NIV)
God’s Word is part of the armour He gives for us to stand & fight: Take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God. (Ephesians 6:17 NIV)
In conclusion for this post: 

The one who comes from above is above all; the one who is from the earth belongs to the earth, and speaks as one from the earth. The one who comes from heaven is above all. He testifies to what he has seen and heard, but no one accepts his testimony. Whoever has accepted it has certified that God is truthful. For the one whom God has sent speaks the words of God, for God gives the Spirit without limit. The Father loves the Son and has placed everything in HIS hands. Whoever believes in the Son has eternal life, but whoever rejects the Son will not see life, for God’s wrath remains on them. (John 3:31‭-‬36 NIV)

Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. (Psalm 34:8 NIV)

I hear you’re getting into The Word. Is it getting into you?

Read the book. Don’t wait for the movie.

Prayer: From whom every family in heaven and on earth derives its name. I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. 

And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.  

Now to him who is able to do immeasurably more than all we ask or imagine, according to his power that is at work within us, to Him be glory in the church and in Christ Jesus throughout all generations, for ever and ever! Amen. Ephesians 3:15‭-‬21 NIV

Mercy Me “I Can Only Imagine” 

Still waiting for a movie or “The Movie” that will touch your life dramatically, drastically and eternally? Read the book, God’s good book. It truly is better than any movie that could ever be made.

You Can’t Get To Heaven On Roller Skate

Here is a great old Sunday School Chorus: 

I remember singing these verse and more along with this chorus at the top of my lungs while banging on my drums many early sunday mornings…

Oh you can’t get to Heaven on roller skates, you will roll right past those Pearly Gates!

 Oh you can’t get to heaven in a limousine, the Lord don’t sell no gasoline!

Oh you can’t get to heaven on a pogo stick. All that jumping gonna make you sick!!

Oh you can’t get to heaven in a rusty old car. A rusty old car won’t go that far!!!! 

I’ve been redeemed by the blood of the Lamb!!!

It’s all about where our redemption comes from.

There are several ways people will try to enter heaven, mostly by their own means, thinking it is on their own merit, their own good behavior…”Just live right, be on your own best behavior and you’ll make it to heaven.” However, according to God’s Word (The Bible) Jesus said, Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me. (John 14:6 NIV)

Take a close look at those words from Jesus and the context: 

“Do not let your hearts be troubled. You believe in God; believe also in me.  My Father’s house has many rooms; if that were not so, would I have told you that 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.  You know the way to the place where I am going.”  Thomas said to him, “Lord, we don’t know where you are going, so how can we know the way?”  Jesus answered, “I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me.  If you really know me, you will know my Father as well. From now on, you do know him and have seen him.”

John 14:1‭-‬7 NIV

Today’s verse of the day is all about

Redemption & Remission Ephesians 1:7

In Him (Christ Jesus) we have redemption (deliverance and salvation) through His blood, the remission (forgiveness) of our offenses (shortcomings and trespasses), in accordance with the riches and the generosity of His gracious favor,
Ephesians 1:7 AMPC

Extra: John answered, “It’s not possible for a person to succeed—I’m talking about eternal success—without heaven’s help. 

You yourselves were there when I made it public that I was not the Messiah but simply the one sent ahead of him to get things ready. 

The one who gets the bride is, by definition, the bridegroom. And the bridegroom’s friend, his ‘best man’—that’s me—in place at his side where he can hear every word, is genuinely happy. 

How could he be jealous when he knows that the wedding is finished and the marriage is off to a good start?

 “That’s why my cup is running over. This is the assigned moment for him to move into the center, while I slip off to the sidelines.

John 3:27‭-‬29 MSG

Cute Children’s (similar verses, different chorus) song:  

Slightly Hokey version but great lyrics:

Mary’s Journal

But Mary treasured up all these things, pondering them in her heart.
Luke 2:19 ESV

As I journey through life I try to log things that are in my heart onto paper in the midst of my journals.

Journaling can help us ponder important events & even mundane tasks that get us through life.

Mary, the mother of Jesus Christ, ponderd and kept things in her heart. To my knowledge she didn’t write anything down but thanks be to God Mathew, Mark, Luke, John, Paul, more a few others did.

God inspired so many people to write & record things. He still does today and The Bible is readily available for us to crack it open, get into it, let it get into us and then intern we also can write & record our journey with Him.

May I encourage you to Journal something today.

Every day is a journal page, something worth recording, even what seems to be mundane is more of a blessing than we often even realize.

Song by Chris Rice “Life Means So Much” :

Knowing The Difference 

When my legs stoped working right I knew there had to be something wrong with the discs in my back again. 

I went to several doctors and they sent me to get several scans (CTs, MRIs). They also referred me to pain management Doctors, as well as a specialist.

One specialist told me the only solution was to implant a Spinal Cord Stimulator and that any other surgery was not possible because of past scar tissue.

I knew then I needed a 2nd opinion.

Had the doctor told me nothing at all was wrong with me I would have also known it’s time to find a new Doctor.

Having been through such pain before I knew it was not going to get better on its own and that there had to be some type of surgery that would free up the pain, specifically in my sciatica.

Sometime we try to deny pain and just press through everything as if we are fine or will be fine even when things get worse.


Other times we experience pain and know deep down that the pain we have will pass as we do our part in eating, sleeping & exercise (all in the right amount -balanced).

Just as our bodies physically react when something is not right so also our souls react when things just aren’t right.

That is why Christ sent His Holy Spirit 

Jesus said, “All this I have spoken while still with you.  But the Advocate, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in my name, will teach you all things and will remind you of everything I have said to you. (John 14:25‭-‬26 NIV)

Finding serenity in our lives starts with knowing we need to ask God to help us and then actually asking God…

God, grant me the serenity to accept the things i can not change, the courage to change the things i can and the wisdom to know the difference. -The A.A. Book

For me looking to Christ during calm times and calamity has always been the key, especially since 1982 when I made a conscious decision to make Him my Lord.

Since then I’ve been made well aware of my own short comings & weaknesses. I am able to fully know the consequences of my own decisions and also see where the devil attacks (no more back door entry for him pretending to be my friend & pleasure provider). I also acknowledge God’s ability to be so much greater & able than me, this world & the great deciever.

Never underestimate evil forces.

Scripture: Be alert and of sober mind. Your enemy the devil prowls around like a roaring lion looking for someone to devour. Resist him, standing firm in the faith, because you know that the family of believers throughout the world is undergoing the same kind of sufferings. (1 Peter 5:8‭-‬9 NIV)

He is just a wounded snake looking for children to bite!
-DeGarmo & Key (Song Rock Solid)

Knowing The One who has already destroyed the destroyer will give us victory. 

Scripture: He (The Lord Jesus Christ) has saved us and called us to a holy life—not because of anything we have done but because of his own purpose and grace. This grace was given us in Christ Jesus before the beginning of time, but it has now been revealed through the appearing of our Savior, Christ Jesus, who has destroyed death and has brought life and immortality to light through the gospel. (2 Timothy 1:9‭-‬10 NIV)

There is no sense in confessing sins Christ has already forgiven & forgotten and there is no sense giving into the same temptations that always trip us up.

What we need is God’s surgery & healing.

One definition of insanity is doing the same thing over and over again; expecting a different result.

As we grow & mature in The Lord we realize, we know without a doubt, that if we let Him be our master we are no longer a slave to sin and we know when the great deciever is trying to confuse & capture us once again.

Regardless of our physical and mental pain we will spiritually overcome this life we now know. He will perfect us for His good will.

Know that!


The @YouVersion Plan “When The Devil Knocks.” Check it out here:

Stretcher Bearers (living)

Watch “Live It Well – Official Music Video – SWITCHFOOT” on YouTube

Mark 2:4 Since they could not get him to Jesus because of the crowd, they made an opening in the roof above Jesus by digging through it and then lowered the mat the man was lying on. When Jesus saw their faith, he said to the paralyzed man, “Son, your sins are forgiven.”

Mark 2:4‭-‬5 NIV


Banyan Tree

Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness.
Colossians 2:7 NLT

While visiting Key West we came across many Banyon trees. I recall seeing a lot of them in St. Petersburg, Florida too, near where I spent my teen years. We’d play massive games of hide n’ seek as we explored the cave like trunks.

The unique thing about this type of tree is that it drops roots from its limbs and those roots go down into the soil and form another trunk!

The one I admired in Key West grew up and over the side walk & dropped back down. Then it grew up and over two different driveways and dropped back down. The new trunks of the same tree grew up again and went over the house, dropped more roots from its limbs and was now growing in the backyard too (all part of the same tree).

I heard the largest one in the world is in inda. I had to look up more info & found Wikipedia helpful. From there I grabbed a link and I read a brief description in an article from business Insider:     

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A Tree In India Is Bigger Than The Average Wal-Mart

great banyan tree kolkata indiaWikipedia

It may sound hard to believe, but the world’s widest tree, located near Kolkata, India, is bigger than the average Wal-Mart.

The gigantic Banyan tree may look like a forest from far away, but it’s actually comprised of a myriad of aerial roots that cover 3.5 square acres of land, which equals roughly 156,000 square feet, or 14,400 square meters.

Compare that to data from the most recent unit count and square footage report from Wal-Mart, which says that the average store size (that’s not a Supercenter) is just under 105,000 square feet or 9,750 square meters.

Great Banyan Tree vs WalmartMike Nudelman/Business Insider

The Great Banyan Tree’s canopy is made up of 3,511 aerial prop roots that connect to the earth, which make them look like individual trees, according to the Times of India. The tree made it into “The Guinness Book of World Records” as the world’s widest tree, and has even been featured on stamps in India.

Visitors can see it at the Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic Garden in Shibpur, Kolkata, and walk around the .2-mile-long road built around the tree’s circumference (the Great Banyan Tree has continued to expand beyond the road, creating a sort of tunnel).

India Kolkata Great Banyan TreeWikimedia Commons

Scientists are surprised that the tree is still alive. In 1884 and again in 1886, cyclones hit the Great Banyan Tree, breaking it open and exposing its main trunk to a fungal attack. In 1925, the main trunk (at that time measuring over 50 feet wide) was decaying and had to be removed.

Yet even without its trunk, the tree survives — and flourishes — to this day. See more pictures of the natural wonder below.

The aerial roots are supported by other roots connecting to the ground, causing this singular banyan tree to look more like a forest.

India Kolkata Great Banyan TreeWikimedia Commons

And here’s a closer look at those roots.

India Kolkata Great Banyan TreeWikimedia Commons.


As the Banyan tree continues to grow up it is continually dropping roots from its branches. What a good example for us.

(Above photo from Key West)

Extra: Wkipedia- The banyan tree (Ficus benghalensis) located in Acharya Jagadish Chandra Bose Indian Botanic GardenHowrah, near Kolkata, India has a 330-metre-long (1,080 ft) road built around its circumference, but the tree continues to spread beyond it

The Extra Ordinary Boy & Misunderstanding Parent (Luke 2:39-52)

When they finished everything required by God in the Law, they returned to Galilee and their own town, Nazareth. 

There the child grew strong in body and wise in spirit. And the grace of God was on him.

 Every year Jesus’ parents traveled to Jerusalem for the Feast of Passover. 

When he was twelve years old, they went up as they always did for the Feast. 

When it was over and they left for home, the child Jesus stayed behind in Jerusalem, but his parents didn’t know it. Thinking he was somewhere in the company of pilgrims, they journeyed for a whole day and then began looking for him among relatives and neighbors. 

When they didn’t find him, they went back to Jerusalem looking for him. The next day they found him in the Temple seated among the teachers, listening to them and asking questions. 

The teachers were all quite taken with him, impressed with the sharpness of his answers. But his parents were not impressed
; they were upset and hurt

His mother said, “Young man, why have you done this to us? Your father and I have been half out of our minds looking for you.” 

He said, “Why were you looking for me? Didn’t you know that I had to be here, dealing with the things of my Father?” 

But they had no idea what he was talking about. 

So he went back to Nazareth with them, and lived obediently with them. 

His mother held these things dearly, deep within herself. And Jesus matured, growing up in both body and spirit, blessed by both God and people.
Luke 2:39‭-‬52 MSG

Just before my Son died we were working on a story together about how it must have been for Jesus growing up. 

Go to: In Due Time for the 1st Three short chapters.