Tuesday September 30, 2014 A Wonderful Life

Posted September 30, 2014 by bgovanus
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Job spoke out and said: Perish the day on which I was born, the night when they said, “The child is a boy!”  Why did I not perish at birth, come forth from the womb and expire?  Job 3:2-3

My favorite movie is “It’s a Wonderful Life!” I think the author of the story must have gotten the idea from Job.  Someone who is put upon with many struggles and who becomes hopeless, often might wish, he had never been born.  Frank Capra skillfully portrays the story of what life would be like if George Bailey had never been born.  Life in Bedford Falls would have been completely different if George hadn’t arrived on the planet!

It is important to me to look back often and assess how the world would be if I had not entered it. The difference I make on a daily basis is miniscule but an accumulation of kind acts, do leave an indelible imprint on the world and each one affects the lives of so many.  I know that God gives me opportunities to be an advocate for Him, to touch a person and make each experience better by a smile, a touch or a considerate remark.  Sometimes, that is all that He asks of me.  I know that I fail often to even give that much.  I am so grateful that God is patient with my shortcomings!

When the final judgment occurs, I am praying that God will be able to review my life and see that the world has been made better because I was on the planet. I hope He will say, You really did have a Wonderful Life!

Lord I am grateful for the times of testing as they give me a chance to look around and appreciate all You are doing in my life. Help me pay attention to the opportunities that You place before me to be an influence for change and faith.  To act as George did, selflessly putting family, community and Your will before His own.  I am grateful for my Wonderful Life. 

Monday September 29, 2014 Pain

Posted September 29, 2014 by bgovanus
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Our personal troubles are small and won’t last very long. Yet they produce for us a glory that vastly outweighs them and will last forever.  2 Corinthians 4:17

It is remarkable how often the devil attacks me in my body. Pain in the neck, in my back, in my knees are the hallmark of Fibromyalgia.  It seems like when I most need to be on my game, that is when the pain is most interruptive.  I am sad to say, I let pain slow me down, especially when I forget what St Paul taught.  It is with a humble heart that I ask God to release me from pain but then I recall the pain of St Paul.  He asked for the thorn in his side to be removed three times and God told him that he would be perfected in weakness.

God promises me everlasting joy. He does not tell me when it will begin.  I know that my eternal home will be pain free.  Joy will abound and surround me.  So these moments of pain that test me and create an opportunity for me to grow in fortitude and patience are important lessons in love.  God’s glory is revealed when I am hurting and still able to function.  He sees me through the personal troubles that are short lived.

God, I am grateful for Your love and l know that the troubles that I face are temporary. Your strength is enough for me.  Let me pain produce glory and help me to grow stronger in my commitment to serve You and only You. 

Sunday September 28, 2014 Lender

Posted September 28, 2014 by bgovanus
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He who has compassion on the poor lends to the Lord, and He will repay him for his good deed.  Proverbs 19:17

The feast day of St Vincent de Paul was celebrated around the globe yesterday. He began several organizations in the 1600s that live on today feeding the hungry, clothing the naked, visiting the imprisoned and serving those who are needy in this world.  I can never begin to imagine how God has repaid Vincent for the good works done in his name.  The funny thing is that Vincent did not seek recognition or repayment.  He created Societies based on humility and gifting.  Serving first and always.

There is much blessing for those who are compassionate. Even though the world tries to recognize those who give thru tax deductions, plaques and awards for those who have donated large sums… the biggest gift is often the smallest amount.  The poor widow from the Gospel who gave everything she had was repaid by the Lord but His generosity is never to be outdone.  Jesus does not tell us how she was rewarded but I am sure her life was altered in a significant way.

God says He will never be outdone in generosity. Vincent inspires me today to live a life of compassion.  Once I have accepted this belief and choose to take action, I will be forever changed.  I move into the Lender position, which is a pretty special place to be.  Who would not want to be in God’s debt.

Lord, Help me to be compassionate and generous to the poor. Recognizing those who need me to acknowledge them… seeing them is the beginning of opportunity to do good.  I cannot be generous if I go through life with blinders on.  Open my heart to do and be who you are calling me to be. 

Friday September 26, 2014 Seasons

Posted September 26, 2014 by bgovanus
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There is an appointed time for everything, and a time for everything under the heavens.  Ecclesiastes 3:1

Sometimes I wonder when a friend dies suddenly… what can God be thinking. Did He look away for a second and this young person loses his life in a car accident by accident?  It is never easy to lose someone who is beloved and young with so much life ahead, or so I thought.  I never took any consolation when people said, God must need another angel… or now you have someone watching over you.  No consolation whatsoever.  But when I listen to the song made from this passage from Ecclesiastes or read the passage myself… I feel comforted.

Belief that there is a plan helps me to cope. I know that I cannot see the big picture but my belief that God has one makes me much more comfortable with the tragedies in this world.  There is a Seasonality to life that does not alter any of my preconceived notions of what is “right”.  But it does help me to feel comfortable in my own skin.  Spring is a time of planting and new birth.  Summer is a time for growing and feeding.  Fall is a time for harvesting and reaping what was sown.  Winter is a time to die and in some cases rise again.  Some plants that appear dead return and come alive again in the Spring to begin again.

I believe in reinvention and renewal inside God’s plan. He can make triumph out of tragedy.  He can renew the face of the earth so He can certainly plant joy in my barren soul.

Lord help me be open to all the Seasons of my life. I know there is a time to be born and a time to die.  Help me to serve YOU through each of them. 

Thursday September 25, 2014 See Him

Posted September 25, 2014 by bgovanus
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But Herod said, : Who then is this about whom I hear such things?” And he kept trying to see Him.  Luke 9:9

Herod imprisoned John the Baptist but visited him almost every day to listen to him. He was curious and challenged.  When his wife and step daughter conspired to have John’s head on a platter… Herod was stuck between a rock and a hard place.  So when Herod heard about Jesus he wanted to “See” Him.  Not out of faith but curiosity.  He was amazed and intrigued but could not believe.

Too often I was stumbling through life and was desperately seeking answers. I knew I wanted and needed something but did not know what that was.  When I finally discovered what was missing in my life, and asked for the Faith to believe,  I was able to see the Lord.  Not just the corpus hanging on the cross but Jesus alive in the people I meet.  Those who are needy, those who are celebrating new life in a baby or a marriage.  Those who are dying and those who are jobless, homeless or who are living witnesses of His gracious gifts.

I know that God lives and breathes and has His being in each person that I meet. When I can SEE Him in others… and acknowledge His presence, my Joy will be complete.

Lord open my eyes to see You!

Wednesday September 24, 2014 Enough

Posted September 24, 2014 by bgovanus
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Keep deception and lies far from me, Give me neither poverty nor riches; Feed me with the food that is my portion,  That I not be full and deny You and say, “Who is the Lord?”  Or that I not be in want and steal, And profane the name of my God.  Proverbs 30:8-9

I have been drawn lately to the simple truths in Proverbs. Today’s verses spoke to me of my nature to be complacent.  When I have an abundance, I get comfortable and forget that God is the source and giver of all good things… not me.  Enough is an important concept in balancing!  Eating enough of the right foods, instead of overindulging, helps me to stay lean and healthy. Enough work to do gives me purpose and provides for my family. Enough laughter and joy makes me happy and fun to be around… when I am morose or sad, it is hard for people to be in my presence.  If I am feeling the lack or pushed to make a sale, I could be tempted to lie to a client or at the very least overpromise and under deliver just to reach the point where I could have enough.

God in His wisdom provides ENOUGH! He knows what I need and I often forget to trust Him to make a clear path.  When I believe that there is a balance in my world… I work hard, but do not bury myself.  I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.  Life is a balancing act and God alone knows the right mixture of stress and calm;  pleasure and pain to keep me at the top of my game.

Lord I ask You, today to help me always be grateful for the bounty You have given me. Help me to realize that it is enough.  As I come to a closer walk with You, I know that my life here on earth is just a tiny blip on the road to eternity… give me the Kingdom Perspective when life seems overwhelming or out of whack. 

Tuesday September 23, 2014 Encountering Trials

Posted September 23, 2014 by bgovanus
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“Consider it all joy, my brothers, when you encounter various trials, for you know that the testing of your faith produces perseverance.” James 1:2-3

It seems like these days, every encounter is fraught with a trial of some kind. Not the kind where the rug is completely ripped out from under me but the type where I am thrown off balance and feel like I am flailing and grabbing at air. I know the plans He has for me are to prosper me but when I don’t see the same goal He has for me, I tend to question myself. The important thing for me to keep in mind is that God is the Weaver of the rug!

It does not matter what I want to have happen or what I think is the right thing… it is my job to accept and adjust to the situations that I am living and choose always to serve Him. I realize that sidestepping and finding ways to get things done that are not what I planned build character and resourcefulness. God enables me to do His will with creativity and ability that I do not possess. He shows me new ways to be an advocate when I get to a brick wall, He helps me go over, around or under.

There is no possible way for me to see my way clearly in the darkness. I must depend upon Him to guide me and trust that He is with me through it all. I will persevere.

Lord, You know when I sit and when I stand. You know when I am feeling out of control and at a loss to carry on. Be with me through the trials and help me to never question Your love.

 


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