The Influence (#jammed daily devo, day 241)

August #jammed: Reflecting on Grace.

Day 241: Trouble comes in waves.

“Troublemakers have arisen among you and have led the people of their town
astray.” Deuteronomy 13:13 NIV

August 29

Like hard times come in seasons, trouble comes in waves. The tricky part about determining who’s a bad influence is picking them out despite our assumptions. We tend to honor older people as wiser, louder people as ones that deserve our ear, younger people as having nothing to add to our experience, and so on and so on. We all kind of jockey around for position in this life, don’t we? And when it get’s turned on it’s head, it makes us feel uncomfortable and confused. It often blindsides us, and sometimes traps us.

Before we allow our lives to be swayed, it’s wise to determine the direction of the waves. Captains navigate following seas, a shallow-water chop and oncoming rollers differently. So should we, expect to handle, recognize, or navigate trouble.

troublemaker-a person who causes difficulties, distress, worry, etc., for others, especially one who does so habitually as a matter of malice. -dictionary.com

Trouble doesn’t always announce itself. Quite the opposite, it often looks appealing and sounds very convincing. Today’s verse takes us back to a time in the Old Testament when God’s people were being warned of ‘troublemakers.’ Those that attempted to pry people away …maliciously or not, from God.

“Troublemaker,” translated to “worthless” in the New American Standard Bible, is taken from the Hebrew word B@liya`al, which means, worthlessness …worthless, good for nothing, unprofitable, base fellow …wicked …ruin, destruction. 

What happens when trouble is permitted to seep through a leaky crack? As the definition above states: destruction. Just because we didn’t realize trouble when we followed it doesn’t mean we’re not liable for what we do under it’s influence.

Walking with Christ allows us to double check for trouble, including a scan of our own thoughts and intentions. Jesus died to open the flood gates of forgiveness, in an extension of God’s grace. When we know Him, the Spirit stirs us. To warn us, nudge us, and protect us. But we have to be listening to head the warning. We have to be in the Word and in prayerful conversation with Him. When we let go of His hand we leave space for trouble to cause trouble.

Later, this word (beliyya’al in Hebrew) was used as a name for Satan (2Co 6:15; Greek Beliar, a variant of Belial), who is the personification of wickedness and lawlessness. -NIV Study Bible Notes.

Wickedness and lawlessness. That’s not what I want creeping in the back door of my awareness. But it does. And he will …the little devil. He will take every advantage of our thrown-down guard, our relationships, and every weakness he can get his hands on in order to  trample and ruin as much as he can. As followers of Christ, it’s wise to be very wary of who we entertain and encourage.

“Pray about everything,” and that’s how we’ll know what to do.

#jammed click to tweet jun:jul:aug

Father, Praise You for altering us to danger …to trouble. Thank You for Jesus, that we may receive Your guidance in conversation through the gift of Your Holy Spirit. We confess letting trouble sneak up on us, on account of our lack of listening skills. Please bless us to make time for You and Your Word, so that we can hear You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 

#greatgrace17

Happy Influencing,

Megs

Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80. 

The Last Wave (#jammed daily devo, day 70)

March #jammed: Grace Revealed.

Day 70: When good-bye isn’t really good-bye.

“I now realize that this is our last good-bye.” Acts 20:25post-image-70

“Paul had survived shipwrecks, a stoning, beatings and long nights in jail, and fear had never stopped him …The more I read about Paul, the more I discover that much like the things he endured,  his emotional intensity was a little overly dramatic.

In his typical brazen style, Paul asked to address the unruly crowd, using the occasion to confront them with his life’s testimony. The crowd listened until he got to the part about his mission to the Gentiles; then it erupted.” -NIV Student Bible Notes

It’s hard to say good-bye, and even a brazen Paul appeared seemed emotionally moved at saying good-bye to his friends. “You have been like family in all my travels to proclaim the kingdom of God, but after today none of you will see my face again.” Acts 20:25

Allowing our inner dramatics to reveal authentic emotion is the key to being real. Whether it’s sadness, shock, or jubilee, the initial rush of reaction reveals an important piece of our human character.  Packed-down emotions cause problems inside and out. We want the sweet souls God blessed us with to know how much we care, as I’m sure Paul did as he said good-bye. It’s OK to release the “Jesus freak” in display of our passion for the Him. Raw emotion can produce fast-flying testimony.

“Keeping ourselves in the love of God is the way to end well.” Judah Smith, Life Is __.

It’s important to embrace the Truth in God’s Word, and take our dramatics to Him in prayer as we process change healthily. Sometimes, doors close completely. Other times, space is a blessing. Good-bye isn’t always good-bye. Even in death. For we know that good-bye, for all those who hold Jesus so tightly in their hearts, will be wiped away in glorious reunion in heaven.

jammed-tweet-blueFather, You are wise to grow us beyond our understanding. Praise You for the lessons born out of heartache and trial, for they produce such character and love. Down paths we may never have traveled, we discover blessing beyond measure. Forgive us for drawing in frustration instead of embracing You. Bless us to seek Your truth in times of sad good-byes. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

What brings out your inner drama momma? Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 

#greatgrace17

Happy Waving,

Megs

Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80. 

 

 

The Influence (#jammed daily devo, day 241)

August #jammed: Reflecting on Grace.

Day 241: Trouble comes in waves.

“Troublemakers have arisen among you and have led the people of their town
astray.” Deuteronomy 13:13 NIV

August 29

Like hard times come in seasons, trouble comes in waves. The tricky part about determining who’s a bad influence is picking them out despite our assumptions. We tend to honor older people as wiser, louder people as ones that deserve our ear, younger people as having nothing to add to our experience, and so on and so on. We all kind of jockey around for position in this life, don’t we? And when it get’s turned on it’s head, it makes us feel uncomfortable and confused. It often blindsides us, and sometimes traps us.

Before we allow our lives to be swayed, it’s wise to determine the direction of the waves. Captains navigate following seas, a shallow-water chop and oncoming rollers differently. So should we, expect to handle, recognize, or navigate trouble.

troublemaker-a person who causes difficulties, distress, worry, etc., for others, especially one who does so habitually as a matter of malice. -dictionary.com

Trouble doesn’t always announce itself. Quite the opposite, it often looks appealing and sounds very convincing. Today’s verse takes us back to a time in the Old Testament when God’s people were being warned of ‘troublemakers.’ Those that attempted to pry people away …maliciously or not, from God.

“Troublemaker,” translated to “worthless” in the New American Standard Bible, is taken from the Hebrew word B@liya`al, which means, worthlessness …worthless, good for nothing, unprofitable, base fellow …wicked …ruin, destruction. 

What happens when trouble is permitted to seep through a leaky crack? As the definition above states: destruction. Just because we didn’t realize trouble when we followed it doesn’t mean we’re not liable for what we do under it’s influence.

Walking with Christ allows us to double check for trouble, including a scan of our own thoughts and intentions. Jesus died to open the flood gates of forgiveness, in an extension of God’s grace. When we know Him, the Spirit stirs us. To warn us, nudge us, and protect us. But we have to be listening to head the warning. We have to be in the Word and in prayerful conversation with Him. When we let go of His hand we leave space for trouble to cause trouble.

Later, this word (beliyya’al in Hebrew) was used as a name for Satan (2Co 6:15; Greek Beliar, a variant of Belial), who is the personification of wickedness and lawlessness. -NIV Study Bible Notes.

Wickedness and lawlessness. That’s not what I want creeping in the back door of my awareness. But it does. And he will …the little devil. He will take every advantage of our thrown-down guard, our relationships, and every weakness he can get his hands on in order to  trample and ruin as much as he can. As followers of Christ, it’s wise to be very wary of who we entertain and encourage.

“Pray about everything,” and that’s how we’ll know what to do.

#jammed click to tweet jun:jul:aug

Father, Praise You for altering us to danger …to trouble. Thank You for Jesus, that we may receive Your guidance in conversation through the gift of Your Holy Spirit. We confess letting trouble sneak up on us, on account of our lack of listening skills. Please bless us to make time for You and Your Word, so that we can hear You. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 

#greatgrace17

Happy Influencing,

Megs

Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80. 

The Last Wave (#jammed daily devo, day 70)

March #jammed: Grace Revealed.

Day 70: When good-bye isn’t really good-bye.

“I now realize that this is our last good-bye.” Acts 20:25post-image-70

“Paul had survived shipwrecks, a stoning, beatings and long nights in jail, and fear had never stopped him …The more I read about Paul, the more I discover that much like the things he endured,  his emotional intensity was a little overly dramatic.

In his typical brazen style, Paul asked to address the unruly crowd, using the occasion to confront them with his life’s testimony. The crowd listened until he got to the part about his mission to the Gentiles; then it erupted.” -NIV Student Bible Notes

It’s hard to say good-bye, and even a brazen Paul appeared seemed emotionally moved at saying good-bye to his friends. “You have been like family in all my travels to proclaim the kingdom of God, but after today none of you will see my face again.” Acts 20:25

Allowing our inner dramatics to reveal authentic emotion is the key to being real. Whether it’s sadness, shock, or jubilee, the initial rush of reaction reveals an important piece of our human character.  Packed-down emotions cause problems inside and out. We want the sweet souls God blessed us with to know how much we care, as I’m sure Paul did as he said good-bye. It’s OK to release the “Jesus freak” in display of our passion for the Him. Raw emotion can produce fast-flying testimony.

“Keeping ourselves in the love of God is the way to end well.” Judah Smith, Life Is __.

It’s important to embrace the Truth in God’s Word, and take our dramatics to Him in prayer as we process change healthily. Sometimes, doors close completely. Other times, space is a blessing. Good-bye isn’t always good-bye. Even in death. For we know that good-bye, for all those who hold Jesus so tightly in their hearts, will be wiped away in glorious reunion in heaven.

jammed-tweet-blueFather, You are wise to grow us beyond our understanding. Praise You for the lessons born out of heartache and trial, for they produce such character and love. Down paths we may never have traveled, we discover blessing beyond measure. Forgive us for drawing in frustration instead of embracing You. Bless us to seek Your truth in times of sad good-byes. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.

What brings out your inner drama momma? Get the conversation started by commenting below, and let’s encourage one another as we face life in 2017 armed with grace! 

#greatgrace17

Happy Waving,

Megs

Get the #jammed Daily Devo sent straight to your inbox each morning, by subscribing to Sunny&80.