Notice: register_sidebar was called incorrectly. No id was set in the arguments array for the "Sidebar" sidebar. Defaulting to "sidebar-1". Manually set the id to "sidebar-1" to silence this notice and keep existing sidebar content. Please see Debugging in WordPress for more information. (This message was added in version 4.2.0.) in /home/earnestly/public_html/maranatha/wp-includes/functions.php on line 5535
Nature – Pull Up A Chair

This beautiful flower, the Wild Columbine, can be found growing in the State of Wisconsin. It reminded me of a dear, precious sister in the Lord who lives there. Today’s devotional is for this dear friend. I am praying that the Lord would bless it and use it to encourage her.

Looking at this magnificent piece of God’s creation, I noticed that its colors are so vivid! The bright yellow center, like rays streaming from the sun, is surrounded by a beautiful reddish-dark pink blanket. It reminded me of Christ’s precious blood covering our sins and how His Spirit should shine forth in our lives. Christ’s agape love drove Him to die for us so that our sins would be covered! It sure opened my eyes to the true meaning of: And above all things have fervent charity among yourselves: for charity shall cover the multitude of sins. 1 Pe 4:8 

At its center lies the sweet nectar used in pollinating! Oh that our lives should be sweet nectar to the unsaved world! We should be ready with the sweet honey from the Word – ready to show them salvation through Jesus Christ. Doesn’t the entire flower look like a lantern bursting forth with light? This beautifully clad flower is an example to us that we should be a light to a lost and dying world. No man, when he hath lighted a candle, covereth it with a vessel, or putteth it under a bed; but setteth it on a candlestick, that they which enter in may see the light. Luk 8:16

The little buds on the same plant are waiting for the perfect time, God’s time, to open up and reveal the beautiful flower within. Our new life in Christ produces a spiritual bud which will burst forth as we grow in grace. When we are born again, we become new creatures. Therefore if any man be in Christ, he is a new creature: old things are passed away; behold, all things are become new. 2 Co 5:17 We possess the wonderful Holy Spirit who molds us and forms us into the image of Jesus Christ. And as we have borne the image of the earthy, we shall also bear the image of the heavenly. 1 Co 15:49

Buds on a plant pop up and grow at different times. The bud cannot survive without the plant – apart from the plant, this bud would die. I am the vine, ye are the branches: He that abideth in me, and I in him, the same bringeth forth much fruit: for without me ye can do nothing. Joh 15:5 As we view the life of a Christian as it relates to this plant, we see the new born again believer – he is like a new bud. The bud then begins to open, beginning its life as a flower – so the believer grows in grace and begins to look like his Saviour. The more the bud opens, the more it looks like the flower it is going to become. The same goes for Christians – the more we grow in Christ (through trial and tribulation), the more we become like Him.

Each bud belongs to the same plant just as each believer belongs to the Vine. Yet each is unique in its own way. They are all Wild Columbines but yet different in the time they bud and in their appearance. Some may have blotches due to disease – some may have little holes due to insects. Each Christian goes through life experiencing trials and tribulations which produce blotches. Each Christian will go through physical trials because of Adam’s sin. But we have encouragement in the Word because nothing is unique – somewhere, someone has been through the same trial (whether spiritual or physical) and we are not alone. There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. 1 Co 10:13 The Lord’s mercy is seen here – we can encourage one another during various trials so that a brother or sister does not get totally discouraged. We are to use the gift(s) God has given us to lift up those who desperately need to see the Lord. What a beautiful picture of the body of Christ it is when each Christian is using his gifts for His glory! The church works together as one to bring glory to the Son! All our gifts working together in harmony will form a church family that is ready to meet the needs of a lost and dying world. These same gifts will be as a healing salve for the hurting Christian. Just as these buds on the Wild Columbine plant contribute to the whole plant, so does each born again believer contribute to the Body of Christ!

Lastly, this beautiful flower reminds me that not all Christians are at the same place spiritually. We are all growing at different paces – we are a work in progress. We need to be patient with one another. We will not achieve perfection until we reach Heaven. In the mean time, our Heavenly Father is busy molding us into a vessel fit for His use. But now, O LORD, thou art our father; we are the clay, and thou our potter; and we all are the work of thy hand. Isa 64:8  As Christians, we will fail as we walk this pilgrim’s path. However, God’s Word promises that He can pick up the broken pieces and make something new fit for His use. And the vessel that he made of clay was marred in the hand of the potter: so he made it again another vessel, as seemed good to the potter to make it. Jer 18:4 Did you notice that the potter here did not throw away the marred vessel? Instead, he “made it again” into another vessel! God can take our sins, our mistakes, our messed up lives, and mold us into something new that he can use! He is the God of second chances – and, yes, third, fourth and even more!

Never did I dream when I started meditating on the beautiful Wild Columbine that I would walk away this blessed! Oh Lord, “Marvellous are thy works.” Ps. 139:14

Thank You, Lord (for saving my soul)
Words and Music by Mr. and Mrs. Seth Sykes

Some thank the Lord for friends and home,
For mercies sure and sweet;
But I would praise Him for His grace
In prayer I would repeat:

Chorus
Thank you, Lord, for saving my soul,
Thank you, Lord, for making me whole;
Thank you, Lord, for giving to me
Thy great salvation so rich and free.

Some thank Him for the flow’rs that grow,
Some for the stars that shine;
My heart is filled with joy and praise,
Because I know He’s mine.

Chorus

I trust in Him from day to day,
I prove His saving grace;
I’ll sing this song of praise to Him
Until I see His face.

Chorus

Dannspider

~Ecclesiastes 3:11 He hath made every thing beautiful in his time: also he hath set the world in their heart, so that no man can find out the work that God maketh from the beginning to the end.

God has given us such beauty to behold in His creation! Creation appeals to all of our senses. Not only can you see a Cardinal with his beautiful red feathers but you can hear his chirps. The ocean’s roar is accompanied by wave after wave crashing at the shoreline and its colors reflect God’s glorious sky!  The countless flowers given to us not only reflect the Lord’s love for colors, but His pleasure is found in the various scents given to them.

Each element of life on this earth emulate the Lord! We just need to take a moment to look and reflect!  Watching a spider spin its web teaches us tenacity, hard work, and patience.  If you don’t think so, try undoing his web – sit back and watch.  You will not have to wait but a few seconds and quickly comes to spin his new home.  To top it off, some spiders have five different silks they use for different needs.

How awesome is our God?!

~Nehemiah 9:5b …Stand up and bless the LORD your God for ever and ever: and blessed be thy glorious name, which is exalted above all blessing and praise.

A simple walk through the woods will give you countless opportunities to meditate on God’s Goodness through His creation.

~Psalm 150:2 Praise him for his mighty acts: praise him according to his excellent greatness.