Posted in Christianity, Observations, Uncategorized

Spiritual Lessons From The Sugar Maple

Psalm 57:1-3

“Be merciful unto me, O God, be merciful unto me: for my soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of thy wings will I make my refuge, until  these calamities be over past. I will cry unto God most high; unto God that performeth all things for me. He shall send from heaven, and save me from the reproach of him that would swallow me up. Selah. God shall send forth his mercy and his truth.”

Sometimes God will draw our attention to the most amazing truth while in His Presence in prayer and meditation on His Word. There are times – sometimes long stretches of time – where we wonder if God is really involved at all in our life or in the outrageous affairs of humanity. We drift along on edgy faith, when all of a sudden, He will let us know He’s right here right now – because we simply need to know it.

The foregoing was the focus of prayer and meditation time this morning, yet rather than going into any sort of deep exploration of it, my attention was drawn to a pattern in the Psalms of the King who was after God’s own heart. There are three things present in the Psalms: Supplication – bringing our issues before the Lord; Affirmation – where the supplicant affirms, based on God’s promises and his experiences with them, that the Lord will answer and intervene; and Praise – a continual flow of gratitude and thanksgiving in the confident tone of the psalmist’s prayerful songs – no matter what the circumstances, and before the needed divine intervention occurs.

It was then that I realized that the first letters of these words make up an acronym: “SAP”: Supplication. Affirmation. Praise. I also felt strongly prompted to do a search on the word “sap,” in terms of maple trees and how they produce the sap that is made into sweet, delicious maple syrup.

This begs the question, that if I’m “frozen” in circumstances, but I’d really like to be a prayer warrior like the King was, and have victory, how do I “get the SAP running”, so to speak?

As I read along I was profoundly delighted at what was revealed. It became obvious that God has always used nature to reveal His ways. But before we get to that, we may want to notice that as David cried out to the Lord about his very real and very serious problems, we see him always affirming right behind that, without a doubt, that the Lord would answer and save. In faith he got the SAP running and never doubted that God would move on his behalf – as Soon As Possible (SAP again!) – from God’s perspective, timing, and at His leading.

Likewise we upon whom the culmination of the ages has come in Jesus Christ, the Messiah the Son of God, ought therefore all the more confidently call out and draw near to God, as we affirm His answer even before it materializes, giving Him the praise and glory due His name.

Rejoice in the Lord alway: and again I say, Rejoice. Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand. Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds throughChrist Jesus.Philippians 4:4-7

We can rejoice in His ever present presiding over all things. In so doing – and then in gratefulness moving with the Holy Spirit by faith (our “sacrifice” of praise!) – we confidently and successfully not only resist the evil one, but send him packing. Out with the bad, in with the good! (And a note of caution: faith is often not about feelings.)

According to the Massachusetts Maple Producers Association, temperatures above 32 cause positive pressure within the wood of the maple tree. It is the pressure within that makes the SAP flow!

When we are under pressure, that’s the time to stop pouting and start praying. In fact, we should get into the pattern of praying without ceasing whether or not we’re under pressure. That way we’re in the habit when the going gets rough. May the Holy Spirit cause us to see the pressures of our life in this light of prayer at all times – sometimes pressures are the wakeup call from God to get the SAP flowing. Now there’s a lesson about King David’s kind of praying!

Did he have pressure? The Psalms are his prayer hymnal about that very thing. We can also read his story in 1 Samuel 16 through 1 Kings 2:11.

The Psalms are still the very best and most relevant “prayer hymnal” for the people of God under pressure to pray today as they were then. Especially when we may feel tongue tied in our praying – the “frozen chosen.” So we can bring on the SAP through Supplication, Affirmation, and Praise – in concert with Israel’s foremost king and songwriter!

This is just my thought, but it seems like the Sugar Maple might be a very good Tree of Life symbol. We can rejoice that His intention toward us is “To appoint unto them that mourn in Zion, to give unto them beauty for ashes, the oil of joy for mourning, the garment of praise for the spirit of heaviness; that they might be called trees of righteousness, the planting of the LORD, that he might be glorified.” Isaiah 61:3

How sweet it is! “O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him. O fear the LORD, ye his saints: for there is no want to them that fear him.” Psalm 34:8,9.

( You can read all about maple trees and sap here: )

Posted in Christianity, Spirituality, Uncategorized

Prayer Request

May we all who are so inclined give thanks, pray, and agree together that God’s hand will keep in check the severe winter storms headed for our Great Lakes region and other areas of the USA. May He Who has power over wind and wave protect especially the poor, the homeless, the marginalized, the frail and elderly living alone, who have little or nothing, those who are ill, and also all lost or abandoned animals, or any in danger of losing their life due to exposure to the elements such as farm animals and wildlife. If He wishes to provide for any need through us during this time, may it be so. May the Almighty One also protect the utilities, power lines, and all infrastructures which we so often take for granted to keep our homes and places of business warm, well lit, and safe. And let’s give thanks for His lovingkindness always. Amen.

Posted in Christianity, Spirituality, Uncategorized

His Workmanship

Cross : His Workmanship.png


Father God, Who is Love – let us never forget Whose we are, by virtue of Your creation and re-creation of us in our Lord Jesus Christ, to Whom belongs all authority in heaven and on earth. Please pour out Your Holy Spirit upon us, so that we may always think, speak, and act according to Your nature and will in Him Who loved us and gave Himself for us, to rescue us from this present evil age. Amen.

Posted in Christianity, Spirituality, Uncategorized

You Gotta Have Heart; But Whose?

The title of this writing refers back to entertainer Peggy Lee and her hit from the 1950s – You Gotta Have Heart. It’s basically the typical pep talk song from that era. And the theme of the meme has not changed much since then. Certainly it’s a cute, peppy little song of self encouragement and self reliance. But…

Follow your heart? Trust your heart? Over and over this meme is tossed out into the consciousness of the world. Many who say they follow Christ buy into this idea. But is this the truth from God’s Word? Let’s take a look.

“The heart is deceitful above all things and beyond cure – who can understand it? ” Jeremiah 17:9.

“But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these things defile a man. For out of the heart come evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual immorality, theft, false testimony, and slander.” Matthew 15:18,19.

Can such a heart be trusted?

Really, there’s only one cure for our natural (fallen, corrupt) heart condition, a “spiritual heart transplant” by the Holy Spirit. Keep on asking, seeking, knocking. Seek His cure! King David realized how his heart led him down the path of destruction. He needed a turn around that he could not generate. So he prayed, not only for forgiveness, but – “Create in me a clean heart, O God, and renew a right spirit within me.” Psalm 51:10. (This entire Psalm makes an excellent daily prayer, by the way.)

God’s promise:

“When they return to it, they will remove from it all its detestable things and all its abominations. And I will give them singleness of heart and put a new spirit within them; I will remove their heart of stone and give them a heart of flesh, so that they may follow My statutes, keep My ordinances, and practice them. Then they will be My people, and I will be their God.” Ezekiel 11:18-20. (This heart exchange was to take place after a considerable captivity, where a purge took place. Then God’s people returned to their homeland.)

“I will give them a heart to know Me, that I am the LORD. They will be My people, and I will be their God, for they will return to Me with all their heart.” Jeremiah 24:7.

“This is the covenant I will make with them after those days, declares the Lord. I will put My Laws in their hearts and inscribe them on their minds.” Hebrews 10:16.

There’s significant participation in this for us if we wish to have this new heart. And it comes by way of the Holy Spirit’s continuing intervention in our life.

“So I say to you, ask, and it will be given to you; seek, and you will find; knock, and it will be opened to you. For everyone who asks, receives; and he who seeks, finds; and to him who knocks, it will be opened. Now suppose one of you fathers is asked by his son for a fish; he will not give him a snake instead of a fish, will he? Or if he is asked for an egg, he will not give him a scorpion, will he? If you then, being evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your heavenly Father give the Holy Spirit to those who ask Him?” Luke 11:9-13.

The foregoing means a continual asking, seeking, and knocking. Unless we can connect with the need for a new clean heart and a right spirit, there’s no practice of ongoing repentance, because there is no sense of need. We need to perceive how greatly we need this, so we keep on asking, seeking, knocking, and repenting of reliance on our foolish, fallen, fickle heart!

At the end of the day, the natural heart cannot be trusted and is always in need of divine intervention and transformation. It therefore must be surrendered to the Lord Jesus Christ, uncompromisingly and consistently – each and every day of our life, so that Christ may be formed in us. His heart in place of our heart.

The heart is the center and core of our being. It’s not a physical organ, although there seems to be some correspondence between the spiritual heart and the blood pumping organ, since joy or discord seem to register in the physical heart, and we can become “heartsick.” We could call the spiritual heart the throne room of our life. Who sits enthroned there is questionable in the natural human being, living his or her life without the transforming work and direction of the Holy Spirit – each and every day!

Who sits on your heart throne? The cares and concerns of this world and all that is passing away seem to be “reigning” with most people. This is not anything new. Jesus directs us to deal with it this way: “For the pagans strive after all these things, and your Heavenly Father knows that you need them, But SEEK FIRST the kingdom of God and His righteousness, and all these things will be added unto you.”

How seriously do we take Him?

It’s not dependent on us telling ourselves “You gotta have heart.” It’s about surrendering our cares to the One Who invites us, “Take My yoke upon you and learn from Me; for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. For My yoke is easy and My burden is light.” Matthew 11:29,30.

The foregoing has been like a bullet point sketch, but it can be used for some honest pondering, seeking, and self evaluation – elicited by the question, Have I bought into the “follow your heart” meme, or am I going to surrender myself “wholeheartedly” to God’s plan for my heart and the rest of my life? What’s required is that I surrender my natural and corrupt heart to Him and let Him replace it with the pure Heart of the Lord Jesus Christ. Daily. Continually. Then His heart becomes my heart! His is the only heart worthy to guide my life on the Heavenly Way.

PS: It is advised that all the foregoing Scripture Passages be studied, contemplated, and prayed over in their context and many cross references, against the backdrop of the whole counsel of God’s Word.

Posted in animals, Christianity, Uncategorized

Human And Grateful, But…

fed up with memes that talk about Human Beings being the cruelest “animals” on the planet. Are you who are posting this stuff aware of who generates those memes – that they are all about trying to get you to feel guilty about yourself, to demoralize you, get your buy in about “what’s best for Mother Earth,” yet have as their agenda the elimination of the human population down to the “manageable” amount of 500 million?

These are the same people who promote abortion on demand and genocide every way they can. They run the world with war, which kills more military and civilians than anything else, and lines their coffers with gold. They support Human trafficking. They talk of peace but have no intention of allowing that to happen, but keep us all stirred up with propaganda against one another. This too makes their self imposed management easier – a divide and conquer strategy.

They are all about getting rid of whoever they decide is a “useless eater” or a drain on the system because they are old or disabled. And when your turn comes, they will think nothing of eliminating you too. So they really have to work hard at making it look like all Human Beings are devils who don’t care about animals.

The fact is – that the Human haters are the cruelest “animals” on earth, because they do not tell the whole truth about Human Beings, but try to make us all look bad to suit their draconian plans, as they wear a hypocrite’s mask that makes them look good. Don’t fall for it.

Certainly there are evil people. Certainly there are some people who will go to these marches and protests and make absolute fools of themselves. (Guess who they work for and don’t know it? The Human haters actually call them “useful idiots.”)

But there are also some very good people who care about BOTH people AND animals and all of life and the earth. For us, it’s not one against the other, and never was. But you won’t hear that.

Nor will you hear that man was created in God’s image and likeness, and that makes us Human Beings not animals at all! Because mankind has fallen, that likeness of God is in need of restoration through Jesus Christ’s redemption and His plan of salvation for humanity.

You won’t hear that either, because these half baked meme starters work for the dark side, which despises our Creator and His Human children. Why? They want complete control over God’s creation – which is not theirs to control at all, since God’s “Prime Directive” was for Human Beings to lovingly administrate and care for the Earth and all its inhabitants. God’s Way is to serve, not to dominate!

But in true psychopathic fashion these predator type Human haters blame everybody else for what they’re doing. So the next time you are tempted to post a meme on how nasty Human Beings are, with a lovely photo of a wolf or tiger or whatever, realize who and what you’re supporting and promoting, and don’t hit the send button. Realize that a lot of the Human haters also engage in blood sport and killing these precious animals just for the sport of it. But they keep that well hidden too.

So don’t blindly repost every meme you see along these lines. Think first.

(PS: You’re possibly wondering why I capitalize the words Human Being. If so, here’s why – because Human Beings are meant to be Sons of God in the making, heirs and joint heirs in Jesus Christ. It’s just an honorarium of God’s love for us and the vision He has of us! So let’s see ourselves through His eyes, and not let the Human haters define who we are any longer.)


Posted in Christianity, Observations

Commandment 1

Dropping by for a short thought –

I just saw a meme that said, “In America we worship God, not government.” I really wonder. And beyond that, what other gods are enthroned in our hearts? This is why the USA is in so much trouble. We have forsaken our God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ for a pantheon of political idols, not the least of which is self, and who we think will best serve our personal self interests. Everyone is doing what is right in his or her own eyes, but not according to the Way of Christ. This is the way of the world, and Christians have bought it and swallowed it. When we do this, we put ourselves outside of God’s protection. Then it matters not how much military might think we have, or who’s in charge of the country. The outcome of that direction is never a very good one. It’s simple demand and supply. So be careful what you wish for; it may be what you wind up worshiping.