WHERE IS JOY FOUND

joy

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PSALM 1

1

Oh, the joys of those who do not
follow the advice of the wicked,
or stand around with sinners,
or join in with mockers.

2

But they delight in the law of the Lord,
meditating on it day and night.

3

 They are like trees planted along the riverbank,
bearing fruit each season.
Their leaves never wither,
and they prosper in all they do.

4

But not the wicked!
They are like worthless chaff, scattered by the wind.

5

They will be condemned at the time of judgment.
Sinners will have no place among the godly.

6

For the Lord watches over the path of the godly,
but the path of the wicked leads to destruction.

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And Then There Was The Time The Angel Spoke With Mary

LUKE 1:26-38

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i-am-the-lords-servant

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26 In the sixth month of Elizabeth’s pregnancy, God sent the angel Gabriel to Nazareth, a village in Galilee, 27 to a virgin named Mary. She was engaged to be married to a man named Joseph, a descendant of King David. 28 Gabriel appeared to her and said, “Greetings, favored woman! The Lord is with you.”

29 Confused and disturbed, Mary tried to think what the angel could mean. 30 “Don’t be afraid, Mary,” the angel told her, “for you have found favor with God! 31 You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will name him Jesus. 32 He will be very great and will be called the Son of the Most High. The Lord God will give him the throne of his ancestor David. 33 And he will reign over Israel forever; his Kingdom will never end!”

34 Mary asked the angel, “But how can this happen? I am a virgin.”

35 The angel replied, “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. So the baby to be born will be holy, and he will be called the Son of God. 36 What’s more, your relative Elizabeth has become pregnant in her old age! People used to say she was barren, but she has conceived a son and is now in her sixth month. 37 For the word of God will never fail.”

38 Mary responded, “I am the Lord’s servant. May everything you have said about me come true.” And then the angel left her.

John The Baptist Who Would Prepare People For The Coming of the Lord

LUKE 1:5-25

prepare

 

When Herod was king of Judea, there was a Jewish priest named Zechariah. He was a member of the priestly order of Abijah, and his wife, Elizabeth, was also from the priestly line of Aaron. Zechariah and Elizabeth were righteous in God’s eyes, careful to obey all of the Lord’s commandments and regulations.They had no children because Elizabeth was unable to conceive, and they were both very old.

One day Zechariah was serving God in the Temple, for his order was on duty that week. As was the custom of the priests, he was chosen by lot to enter the sanctuary of the Lord and burn incense. 10 While the incense was being burned, a great crowd stood outside, praying.

11 While Zechariah was in the sanctuary, an angel of the Lord appeared to him, standing to the right of the incense altar.12 Zechariah was shaken and overwhelmed with fear when he saw him. 13 But the angel said, “Don’t be afraid, Zechariah! God has heard your prayer. Your wife, Elizabeth, will give you a son, and you are to name him John. 14 You will have great joy and gladness, and many will rejoice at his birth, 15 for he will be great in the eyes of the Lord. He must never touch wine or other alcoholic drinks. He will be filled with the Holy Spirit, even before his birth. 16 And he will turn many Israelites to the Lord their God. 17 He will be a man with the spirit and power of Elijah. He will prepare the people for the coming of the Lord. He will turn the hearts of the fathers to their children, and he will cause those who are rebellious to accept the wisdom of the godly.”

18 Zechariah said to the angel, “How can I be sure this will happen? I’m an old man now, and my wife is also well along in years.”

19 Then the angel said, “I am Gabriel! I stand in the very presence of God. It was he who sent me to bring you this good news! 20 But now, since you didn’t believe what I said, you will be silent and unable to speak until the child is born. For my words will certainly be fulfilled at the proper time.”

21 Meanwhile, the people were waiting for Zechariah to come out of the sanctuary, wondering why he was taking so long. 22 When he finally did come out, he couldn’t speak to them. Then they realized from his gestures and his silence that he must have seen a vision in the sanctuary.

23 When Zechariah’s week of service in the Temple was over, he returned home. 24 Soon afterward his wife, Elizabeth, became pregnant and went into seclusion for five months. 25 “How kind the Lord is!” she exclaimed. “He has taken away my disgrace of having no children.”

Psalm 117 – Forever Faithful

As we close out the month of November, remember to daily to always come into the presence of your God with thanksgiving and praise which flows out of your heart.  Let the fruit of your lips be filled with praise and honor to the King of kings.  Allow yourself to continue developing an attitude of gratitude, focusing on His goodness, and always remember as a child of God, thanksgiving is not just for one day of the year.  We are to give thanks to God every day.

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praise-the-lord

 

PSALM 117

Praise the Lord, all nations!

Extol him, all peoples!

For great is his steadfast love toward us,

and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever.

Praise the Lord!

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Much love to you all,

Linda A. Knowles

Executive Director, Thread of Hope, Inc.

Psalm 42

deer

PSALM 42

As a deer pants for flowing streams,

so pants my soul for you, O God.

My soul thirsts for God,

for the living God.

When shall I come and appear before God?

My tears have been my food

day and night,

while they say to me all the day long,

“Where is your God?”

These things I remember,

as I pour out my soul:

how I would go with the throng

and lead them in procession to the house of God

with glad shouts and songs of praise,

a multitude keeping festival.

Why are you cast down, O my soul,

and why are you in turmoil within me?

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,

my salvation and my God.

My soul is cast down within me;

therefore I remember you

from the land of Jordan and of Hermon,

from Mount Mizar.

Deep calls to deep

at the roar of your waterfalls;

all your breakers and your waves have gone over me.

By day the Lord commands his steadfast love,

and at night his song is with me,

a prayer to the God of my life.

I say to God, my rock:

“Why have you forgotten me?

Why do I go mourning

because of the oppression of the enemy?”

As with a deadly wound in my bones,

my adversaries taunt me,

while they say to me all the day long,

“Where is your God?”

Why are you cast down, O my soul,

and why are you in turmoil within me?

Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,

my salvation and my God.

Psalm 103

praise-him-all-the-time

A psalm of David.

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Let all that I am praise the Lord;
    with my whole heart, I will praise his holy name.

Let all that I am praise the Lord;
    may I never forget the good things he does for me.

He forgives all my sins
and heals all my diseases.

He redeems me from death
    and crowns me with love and tender mercies.

He fills my life with good things.
    My youth is renewed like the eagle’s!

The Lord gives righteousness
    and justice to all who are treated unfairly.

He revealed his character to Moses
and his deeds to the people of Israel.

The Lord is compassionate and merciful,
    slow to get angry and filled with unfailing love.

He will not constantly accuse us,
nor remain angry forever.

He does not punish us for all our sins;
he does not deal harshly with us, as we deserve.

For his unfailing love toward those who fear him
is as great as the height of the heavens above the earth.

He has removed our sins as far from us
as the east is from the west.

The Lord is like a father to his children,
tender and compassionate to those who fear him.

For he knows how weak we are;
he remembers we are only dust.

Our days on earth are like grass;
    like wildflowers, we bloom and die.

The wind blows, and we are gone—
as though we had never been here.

But the love of the Lord remains forever
with those who fear him.

His salvation extends to the children’s children
of those who are faithful to his covenant,
of those who obey his commandments!

The Lord has made the heavens his throne;
from there he rules over everything.

Praise the Lord, you angels,
you mighty ones who carry out his plans,
listening for each of his commands.

Yes, praise the Lord, you armies of angels
who serve him and do his will!

Praise the Lord, everything he has created,
everything in all his kingdom.

Let all that I am praise the Lord.

Romans & Proverbs – Small Portion

AW Tozer 4“Now, dear brothers and sisters—you who are familiar with the law—don’t you know that the law applies only while a person is living?  For example, when a woman marries, the law binds her to her husband as long as he is alive. But if he dies, the laws of marriage no longer apply to her.  So while her husband is alive, she would be committing adultery if she married another man. But if her husband dies, she is free from that law and does not commit adultery when she remarries.  So, my dear brothers and sisters, this is the point: You died to the power of the law when you died with Christ. And now you are united with the one who was raised from the dead. As a result, we can produce a harvest of good deeds for God.  When we were controlled by our old nature, sinful desires were at work within us, and the law aroused these evil desires that produced a harvest of sinful deeds, resulting in death.  But now we have been released from the law, for we died to it and are no longer captive to its power. Now we can serve God, not in the old way of obeying the letter of the law, but in the new way of living in the Spirit.”  -Romans 7:1-6

“Get security from someone who guarantees a stranger’s debt.  Get a deposit if he does it for foreigners.  Stolen bread tastes sweet, but it turns to gravel in the mouth.” -Proverbs 20:16-17