Let God Fight Your Battles

                                “The Lord will fight for you; you have only to keep still.”                                   Exodus 14:14 Sometimes we work too hard to fix or change things. Maybe we just need to do our best, then let God fight our battles. It has been said, “When life gets tough, the tough get going.” But there is a limit to what any of us can do. Sometimes circumstances are simply out of our control, and we seem to have run out of steam, and seemingly options, as well. We can’t always change our circumstances, or other people. It is possible that at times, things seem impossible. During these times, we need to consider the following wisdom excerpt from a writing by Reinhold Niebuhr, often used by Alcoholics Anonymous and other similar groups. It is noteworthy that the author turns to God for help: ~ The Serenity Prayer ~ “God, grant me the serenity to accept the things I cannot change, the courage to change the things I can,  and the wisdom                               to know the difference.” Clearly, there are times when we are all up against the wall. We have trouble accepting the things we can’t change. We lose our courage and are lacking in the wisdom to discern the right thing, the right way we should go. But what we do—and don’t do– makes the difference. God...

Whatever You Do

by Adele M. Gill                              “Whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God.”                     I Corinthians 10:31   Sometimes, in our humanness, we mistakenly take credit for God’s work. We may even claim ‘coincidence’ for what He does for us and those around us. We need to give Him the glory in every circumstance. We should always give God credit when credit is due, as He has His hand in every aspect of our daily lives. For it is God’s Only Son, Jesus,  the Great Healer, Provider and Savior that makes all things possible–not us. Whatever you do, do everything for the glory of God. The Arrogant Pharisee We need to humbly thank God for both good things in our life, and even for the difficulties and challenges that help us grow. For living a life of gratitude to God, regardless of circumstances, is the cornerstone of sound spiritual, physical, and mental well-being: Jesus said: “Two people went up to the temple area to pray; one was a Pharisee and the other was a tax collector. The Pharisee took up his position and spoke this prayer to himself, ‘”O God, I thank you that I am not like the rest of humanity–greedy, dishonest, adulterous — or even like this tax collector. I fast twice a week, and I pay tithes on my whole income.'” ‘But the tax collector stood off at a distance and would not even raise his eyes to heaven but beat his...

The Bible: Stories vs Indisputable Truth

Greetings From Adele’s Inspiration Cafe! Today’s post: The Bible: Simply Stories or Indisputable Truth? https://theinspirationcafeblog.net/blog/    “Therefore, put on the armor of God…So stand fast with your loins girded in truth, clothed with righteousness as a breastplate, and your feet shod in readiness for the gospel of peace. In all circumstances, hold faith as a shield, to quench all [the] flaming arrows of the evil one …and take the helmet of salvation and the sword of the Spirit, which is the Word of God.”                                                 Ephesians 6:13-17                                                     New American Bible (NABRE) I have a friend who mistakenly believes that the Bible is nothing more than a collection of stories, a series of parables not to be taken literally. However, I believe it is a grave mistake in being dismissive of the Bible; as it provides indisputable truth, Light in darkness, and divine guidance. Moreover, the Bible is our primary source of encouragement, and unlocks our direct power source, the Holy Spirit. It is one of our greatest, blessed gifts from God, not to be minimized.   The Bible: Our Best Help The Bible is our best how-to help in dealing with everything from mind-body infirmity to enemies to temptation. The New Testament, in particular, is chock-full of God’s promises, Jesus’ timeless directives, designed to help us to follow Him. It provides practical help...

Calm in the Storm

Calm in the storm: Jesus said, “Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find;        knock and the door will be opened to you.” Luke 11:9   Rough Seas and Cruise Turbulence: 3 Hurricanes Recently, my husband and I went on a cruise. In the works for 10 months, unfortunately, we did not realize it was hurricane season, but it was. We went, together with 10 family members, to Bermuda and the Bahamas anyway. Day one and day two, we found ourselves in very turbulent waters with 30 foot tall ocean swells. It was scary, and hard to even stay upright while walking on the ship as the ship was being tossed about in the ocean. The drawers in our cabin, and even the latched, heavy bathroom door were swinging open and closed with a loud bang day and night, and I remember wondering how long it would last, praying I would not fall or roll out of bed. At the end of the cruise, the Captain told us over the PA something we had not known:  He admitted he had never before dodged three hurricanes on one cruise! All I can say is that I am so glad I didn’t really understand what was all around us. After the storm calmed, the islands we visited were beautiful, though powerlines were down and there was debris everywhere in both Bermuda and the Bahamas. The rest of the trip was smooth sailing. Jesus: Gatekeeper & Captain of Your Ship This experience was a reminder to me that Jesus is the one who gives us calm in the...

Don’t Let Anyone Steal Your Joy!

Greetings from the Inspiration Cafe! Today’s blog post: Don’t Let Anyone Steal Your Joy! https://theinspirationcafeblog.net/blog/    Then Jesus said: “…I will see you again and you will rejoice, and no one will take away your joy…Very truly I tell you, my Father will give you whatever you ask in my name. Until now you have not asked for anything in my name. Ask and you will receive, and your joy will be complete.”  John 16:22-24 NIV (New International Version)   Trying to win the Approval of Others Don’t let anyone steal your joy! At times, so many of us are people pleasers. That is, we try to please other people through what we say and do. Certainly there are times when we need to try to please others, as is the case at work with one’s employer. That is important to do to succeed in the workplace and keep your job—it impacts your livelihood. But here I am talking about how we deal with personal relationships with family, friends, business associates, acquaintances, communities, and even, at times, strangers. It is in these areas that we spend way too much time and energy trying to conform to and live up to the standards of other people to get their stamp of approval, prestige, affection, respect, and admiration, to our own detriment. By so doing, we are usually frustrated by our own efforts to win the approval of other people as we try to guess what they expect from us, and live accordingly. These approval seeking efforts can be exhausting, even producing self-loathing and resentment, as we often unsuccessfully try to please...

How to Have Your Plans Succeed

“Entrust your works to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.”          Proverbs 16:3 (NABRE: New American Bible Revised Edition) https://theinspirationcafeblog.net Hoping Your Plans Will Succeed? Hoping your plans will succeed? Every plan needs goals, and a firm foundation to grow on, to build on. Sure, you can go about doing all the planning and implementation and hope for the best outcome. The world tells us that hard work is all that is needed to succeed in this life. True, hard work is necessary for anything we embark on to succeed. But that is just part of the story.   A Team Approach Certainly, we also need to depend on funding and finding the materials and resources to do the job. Often times our plans include other people, as well, so you will want to identify and surround yourself with honest, skilled people to help. Depending on the job at hand, many plans include building a team approach to tackle and implement all the details that you have laid out for the goals you have set. You’ll likely try to find the brightest minds, those with the highest skills, and backers with the appropriate financial assets. With all that in place, the stage is set for success as you stand at the helm of every project or job that comes along. There is nothing else you could possibly need…Or is there?   Learning to Depend on God The above scripture from Proverbs 16:3 tells us simply to, “Entrust your works to the Lord, and your plans will succeed.” It does not say we have all the answers and everything we...

The 7 Promises of God

                                     THE INSPIRATION CAFÉ BLOG                                        https://theinspirationcafeblog.net  ************************************************* The 7 Promises of God Chaplain Adele M. Gill “I am with you and will watch over you wherever you go…                             I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”   Genesis 28:15    The 7 Promises of God. It really is such a blessing to know that God, Our Creator, is with us wherever we go; that we are not on our own! We are never beyond his view, and he is there with us to love, comfort, guide, and protect us in our daily lives. No one could ever know us better than God, and His love for each of us is unmatched, unconditional, and never ending! Sometimes when we pray, it seems like no one is listening. It feels like a futile attempt to reach out to a God who is not listening. Yet, other times, it seems that the heavens open up and we are profoundly blessed with answers to our prayer. However, we must not lose heart when our prayers are not answered straight away, as God continues to work out all of details  we are unaware of. It is important to pray with great anticipation and trust that God will do what He has promised according to Holy Scripture. No, that does not mean life will be perfect, but...

How to Be Content in Any Circumstance

Adele M. Gill “I know what it is to be in need, and I know what it is to have plenty. I have learned the secret of being content in any and every situation,              whether well fed or hungry, whether living in plenty or in want.”  Philippians 4:12 When Things Go Awry It is easy to walk in fear and dread when things go awry. When things go wrong, we too often focus squarely on the issue at hand, whether health problems, job insecurity, broken relationships, financial challenges, or some other unwelcome situation, that befalls us, leaving us feeling vulnerable. But our perspective and bringing God into it as much as is humanly possible, regardless of situation, can and does, make a huge difference. That is not to say that God causes these things. Actually, many times it is bad decisions that we make that are the culprit causing mishaps and mayhem in our daily lives. Poor nutrition, high risk behavior, a poor work ethic, selfishness in relationships, over spending are just a few examples of using our free will poorly and getting in over our heads. And sometimes it just ‘is what it is;’ there is no one to blame. But consider this… Easy to Blame  It is easy to blame others or even God for what befalls us. And tough circumstances can and often do provoke questions that can rarely be answered: “Why did God do this to me?” “Why is God punishing me?” These questions are sometimes asked by people who are angry when they have serious physical illnesses or...

Prayerful Encouragement

“Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.”    Matthew 5:3 Prayerful Encouragement. Recently, I was approached at the local soup kitchen by three homeless men. Two of them I know quite well. They were eager to tell me about the third man, Vinny, who was newly homeless, and really struggling. It turns out they were very concerned about him. For three weeks he had been drinking heavily and sleeping on the pavement in front of a popular local pub. He was sorely in need of help in every way. He said he hadn’t eaten in four days, and hadn’t bathed or changed his clothes in a month, and I had reason to believe what he said was true on both counts. Never Beyond Help As I listened to Vinny sobbing and talking about his plight, I couldn’t help but notice he continually told me he was beyond help. Certainly to the naked eye, that appeared to be the case, as even his friends who were trying to help him soon agreed with him that he was beyond help.  Vinny presented excuse after excuse as to why he could not be helped. He sobbed all the harder as he picked at his lunch as after going a few days without food, his appetite was greatly diminished.    “Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.” Matthew 25:45   God’s Holy Intervention As Vinny spoke, I prayed asking for God’s holy intervention in his life. I prayed that God would somehow give me the words to comfort, and help...

Not Just Passing Through

Not Just Passing Through Chaplain Adele M. Gill 20 “But our citizenship is in heaven.  And we eagerly await a Savior from there, the Lord Jesus Christ, 21 who, by the power that enables him to bring everything under his control, will transform our lowly bodies so that they will be like his glorious body.” Philippians 3:20-21 As Christians, our citizenship is really in Heaven. Our passport? Love of God and others, and how we use our God-given free-will. Could that be why we as believing Christians, sojourners even, we are set apart to some degree; often uncomfortable here as the world is spinning out of control and away from God’s commands? Could it be that in actuality, we are just passing through this life on our way (by the grace of God) to Eternal Life. Citizens of Heaven Could it be this life is just the audition, the waiting room, if you will, for living the afterlife with God?  We are here on earth for such a short time, and we need to make the most of each day as we are not just passing through this life. We are need to be preparing for Eternal Life. As believing Christians, we are actually citizens of Heaven in process. It is very important not to forfeit ones heavenly passport! Through God’s grace and mercy, and our own free will to love God and others–or not–the choices we make about what we believe and how live our lives set the stage for where we spend eternity. Recently, the topic of Eternal Life has come up in discussion, as has the topic of Hell....