Friday, November 30, 2018

Truth from Ephesians 1

The following Scriptures are from Ephesians 1. Let us remember them during this season of Advent, as we approach Christmas and the New Year...
God has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ.
God blesses you with blessings. You are blessed with the things that last forever. They come to you from heaven and are placed within your heart. They are yours because you are in Christ. No blessing is withheld—No measure of mercy is missing, no depth of delight is lacking, no portion of peace is withheld. Through these spiritual blessings Jesus is saying to you, “I am giving you my heart…its holiness, its righteousness, its goodness, its faithfulness, its loveliness…live in Me as I live in you.”
God chose us in Him before the foundation of the world (that we should be holy and without blame before Him in love).

Long before you were born, God made a choice and said “yes” to you. It was a decision based upon His grace. When you said “yes” to Him, His “yes” was already there. It was His will, His purpose, and His plan to place you into the life of His Son. God’s boundless love said “yes” to you standing before Him blameless, clean, and holy, washed in the blood of the Lamb.

God has predestined us to adoption as sons (and daughters) by Jesus Christ to Himself, (according to the good pleasure of His will to the praise of the glory of His grace).

God wanted you to be a part of His family—A child who would grow into spiritual maturity under the nurturing presence of His grace. As your Father, He promised that His watch-care over you would never cease. He has never taken His eyes off of you, or turned His face away. His will is that your life will be a daily celebration of His grace.

God has made us accepted in the Beloved.

Because of God’s grace you are in Christ, the Beloved…You are highly favored, not put to shame; you are accepted, not rejected; you are welcomed, not ignored; you are family, not a stranger; you are God’s child, not an orphan; you have been brought near, not kept at a distance; you have been given a place of special honor, not disgrace; you have a seat at His table, not a place of isolation; you are royalty, not a pauper.

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow

Tuesday, November 27, 2018

The Front Porch: God's Love

God’s love is beneath you, above you, around you, upon you, within you, behind you, and before you. If fills every moment of your life, and will embrace you through all of eternity. . “That Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; that you, being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints what is the width and length and depth and height-- to know the love of Christ which passes knowledge; that you may be filled with all the fullness of God. Ephesians 3:17-19 (NKJV)
God is thinking about you at this very moment. He’s not just thinking one thought, but more thoughts than you can count. God’s mind is filled with thoughts about you because His heart is filled with love for you. . “Blessed is that man who makes the Lord his trust,…Many, O Lord my God, are Your wonderful works Which You have done; And Your thoughts toward us Cannot be recounted to You in order; If I would declare and speak of them, They are more than can be numbered.” Psalm 40:4-5 (NKJV)
. When God speaks to us about His hands He wants us to recognize His power,
When He speaks to us about His face He wants us to see His glory,
When He speaks to us about the cross He wants us to know His heart.
. He opened His arms to press you to His bosom; He opened His heart to welcome you there; He opened up all His Divine fullness of life and love, and offered to take you up into its fellowship, to make you wholly one with Himself. —Andrew Murray . God’s love is all embracing. And he arose and came to his father. But when he was still a great way off, his father saw him and had compassion, and ran and fell on his neck and kissed him. Luke 15:20 (NKJV)

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. Adapted from Come Sit Awhile, Roy Lessin. Used with permission.

Friday, November 23, 2018

Receiving Prayer: Matthew 6:9-13

For the remainder of the year, we will focus on prayer during our Friday devotions. May you be blessed by this short series, as we celebrate His birth through the Christmas season, and prepare our hearts to worship and walk with Him in the coming year…
Many prayers that are found in Scripture can be turned into a receiving prayer by us. Receiving prayer means that we are welcoming a specific prayer into our lives, personalizing it, and trusting God to fulfill it in us. Here is an example of a receiving prayer based upon what Jesus taught us in Matthew 6:9-13.

My Father in heaven- I receive You as My heavenly Father and I receive the blessing and privilege of what it means to be Your child. I receive my place in Your family, and my identity with all my brothers and sisters that You have given me in Christ. Thank You for all the blessings that have come into my life from Your Father’s heart.

Hallowed be Your name. I receive Your holiness, purity, and righteousness. I receive the beauty that Your holiness brings and the cleansing that is mine through the blood of Christ and the washing of Your Word. I receive every redemptive name that You have declared Yourself to be—The God who heals, saves, sanctifies, provides, and shepherds my life.

Your kingdom come. I receive Your kingdom. Your rule. Your reign. Your control. I receive the righteousness, peace, and joy of Your kingdom within me through the person and power of the Holy Spirit.

Your will be done on earth as it is in heaven.
I receive Your will as my will. I receive Your plans, Your purposes, Your guidance, Your timing, and Your wisdom. I receive all that it means for my heart to be in harmony with heaven.

Give me this day my daily bread.
I receive Your provision for today’s needs. I receive from Your generous hand that gives in abundance. Thank You for physical bread and spiritual bread, bread for the body and bread for the soul, bread that comes from the earth and bread that comes from Your daily presence in my life.  

And forgive my debts.
I receive Your forgiveness for my sin against You. Thank You for Your great, great mercy that has brought me reconciliation. Thank You for the blood of Jesus, Your Son, who died for me and paid the debt of my sin in full—it was a debt I could never pay.

As I forgive my debtors. I receive into my heart, the mercy and forgiveness that comes from Your heart. It is because of Your grace that I can extend mercy and forgiveness to others. I receive the freedom and healing that comes into my heart when I forgive others.

And do not lead me into temptation. I receive Your leading and the wisdom of Your ways. I know that as I follow You I will always be walking in the right direction and will not regret the steps I take.

But deliver me from the evil one.
I receive Your victory over the evil one—Your light that has overcome darkness, Your life that has conquered death, Your peace that stills the storm, Your joy that strengthens me in my journey.

For Yours is the kingdom.
I receive the righteousness, peace, and joy that defines Your kingdom. I receive the King of kings, and the Lord of lords, as my reason for living. I receive all that comes from Your hand that brings eternal life and meaning to all of life.

And the power.
I receive the power, anointing, filling, and enabling work of the Holy Spirit…the power to serve, to witness, and to live for Your glory.

And the glory forever.
I receive Your hope. Your glorious hope. Your blessed hope. I receive the hope of the return of Your Son, the hope of heaven, and the hope of enjoying You forever. Amen. 

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. All rights reserved.

Tuesday, November 20, 2018

From the Front Porch: Grace

Grace fills our lives with good things;

Grace is a gift from above—
Grace fills our home with beauty;
Grace fills our hearts with love.
Because God is love, there is grace…and because there is grace there is hope…and because there is hope we can put a song into our day, faith into prayers, joy into our obedience, and love into our actions.
In our own strength we can only do so much, in our own wisdom we can only know so much, in our own love we can only give so much. Jesus Christ said that He came to give us life and He gives it to us in overwhelming generosity and abundance. He wants us to daily focus on His resources, not our limitations. 
The heart of God will always move you on to new vistas of His goodness, new treasures of His grace, new understanding of His purposes, and to new discoveries of His love. He will do it with the beauty of His presence, with the affirmation of His promises, with the hand of His blessing, and with the endless assurance of His love.
-Paraphrase Ephesians 1:17,18
God’s blessings are endless, His grace is measureless, and His love is matchless.

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. Adapted from "Come Sit Awhile" by Roy Lessin. Used with permission. 

Friday, November 16, 2018

Have a Good Day!

 Oh, give thanks to the LORD, for He is good! Psalm 107:1 (NKJV)

The other day, as I walked toward the exit of our local bank, I heard a woman’s voice coming from one of the desks located near the front door. “Have a good day!” she called out. 

I turned and gave her a smile of appreciation. 

Even though it was a comment I had heard hundreds of times from numerous people, a new thought came to mind, “I need to receive what was just spoken to me.” Before I took another step I prayed this brief prayer, “Lord, I receive this day as a good day because You are good and I have You.” 

The prayer was a heart reminder of what it means to have a good day. A good day is not tied to good circumstances, but to a good person. It is tied to the character and nature of God. What does a good day look like for each of us? A good day is the presence of the Lord in our lives. To put it simply, “Jesus is our good day!”

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow

Tuesday, November 13, 2018

The Front Porch: God’s “One Another” Family it is with Christ’s body. We are many parts of one body, and we all belong to each other. Romans 12:5 NLT

God has given every true believer in Jesus Christ a membership in His family. In His family, each member belongs to one another, and needs each other. Your “one another” family is bigger than you’ve ever dreamed. You belong to the family of God around the world…and they belong to you. 

God has made us dependent upon one another. We have a built-in need for the fellowship, prayer, support, encouragement, and help of others in God’s family. God wants us to come to Him in prayer, but He also wants us to pray for one another. God loves us deeply and personally, but He often expresses His love to us through others. Think of all the times that you have felt God’s touch through the hands of others, heard God’s voice through the words of others, sensed God’s comfort through the support of others, and known God’s provision through the gift of others.

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. Adapted from Come Sit Awhile, Roy Lessin. Used with permission. 

Friday, November 9, 2018

The Spirit of Jesus

For I know that this will turn out for my deliverance through your prayer and the supply of the Spirit of Jesus Christ. Philippians 1:19 (NKJV)
The person of the Holy Spirit is sometimes referred to as the The Spirit of Jesus. The ministry of Jesus and the ministry of the Holy Spirit are knit together. They are so close that they cannot be separated. They work together in our lives in perfect harmony and agreement.
Before Jesus left this earth and ascended to His Father, He promised that He would send the Holy Spirit. This was a promise that both Jesus and the Holy Spirit were overjoyed to fulfill in our lives.
When Jesus poured out the Holy Spirit on His disciples on the day of Pentecost, The Holy Spirit didn’t linger or slowly descend, but rushed to them like a mighty wind. He will rush to fill your seeking heart today.
©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow

Tuesday, November 6, 2018

The Front Porch: Friends

I love to visit with a friend on my front porch in the early evening, when dusk transitions into nightfall. It is the perfect time of day to sit on our porch-rockers and talk as the stars begin to fill up the night sky. The conversations often vary between baseball, family, food, and the things that God is doing in our lives. One thing I especially enjoy is the unhurried atmosphere the porch creates as my friend and I enjoy the pleasures of each other’s company.
God is a loving, forgiving, restoring, embracing, caring, faithful Father.
There is no place beyond God’s boundaries to His limit to His shortage of His grace. He responds to us with lovingkindness and a multitude of tender mercies.
One day you will be amazed to discover the many ways that God has used your life to be a blessing to others.

The impact of one life upon another can bring change, comfort, hope, encouragement, and many other influences for good that will make an eternal difference.
It is in our times of deepest need that we find the depths to which the tenderness and grace of Jesus can reach. For who alone but Jesus can bring us comfort and assurance with His all-embracing love.
There’s something special about creating a new memory with an old friend.
The footprints of a friend will follow you into the valley as well as onto the mountaintop.
When you don’t feel that you have to be perfect to be accepted…When you are given the freedom to be yourself in every situation…when you can ask for an opinion knowing you’ll be given the truth…when you can share your heart without the risk of betrayal…when being together is more important than what you do…that is when you know that you are in the company of a friend.
God made us dependent on each other.  Even though He is with us and in us, He does not want us to walk alone. We need each other to help us grow in grace, to be supported in prayer, to express the Father’s love, to sense the Spirit’s comfort, and to know the Shepherd’s care. We need each other to be formed in character, to be encouraged in our fight of faith, and to persevere until that day when all our needs shall be fully met when we see Him.

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow, all rights reserved. Photo by Marina Bromley. Used with permission.

Friday, November 2, 2018

How It Happens...

Righteousness is how peace happens (Psalm 85:10)
Truth is how freedom happens (John 8:32)
Grace is how strength happens (2 Corinthians 12:9)
Abiding is how fruit happens (John 15:4)
Trust is how guidance happens (Proverbs 3:5-6)
Prayer is how receiving happens (Matthew 7:7)
Love is how obedience happens (John 14:15)
Holiness is how beauty happens (1 Chronicles 16:29)
Faith is how pleasing God happens (Hebrews 11:6)
Jesus is how it all happens! (Colossians 1:16-17)

©2018 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow,