He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him. - Colossians 1:15-16

Friday, February 05, 2016

A Little Wrong

I know it may not be popular
Some might take offense
But can I just say
Perhaps I’ve gotten it a little wrong

We often see it passed along
A picture of a little girl
Straightening her crown, reminding herself
She is a daughter of the King

Something about the picture
And the sentiments expressed
Appeals to my nature and tendency
To make much of myself

Scripture tells me I am to humble myself
Under the mighty hand of God
I am to worship the Lord my God
Him only will I serve

Along with the other saints
I rejoice and give thanks to God my Father
Amazed that He has adopted me
Made me His own

Here and now
I don’t have a crown to wear
But a cross to carry
And orders follow Christ

One day if I run the race well
Empowered by the Holy Spirit
The Lord will graciously give me a crown
But it won’t remain on my head

Instead, I will fall before Christ
The King of Righteousness
The One who paid the price for my sin
Seated at the right hand of the Father

I will joyfully place my crown in the pile
Amidst many crowns from all the saints
As we bow down and worship the Lamb
We will cry Worthy is the Lamb

By Susan Wachtel
February 5, 2016

Praise God, by His mercy and grace He has made me one His own.  May I spend the rest of my life glorifying, honoring and singing the praises of Christ Jesus my Lord.

Monday, February 01, 2016

Election Confessions

Lord, I confess
As the election begins in earnest
There are times my heart is anxious
My mind filled with worry

I look around and see a nation
Seeped in sin and unrighteousness
Will You rightly and justly
Give us over to the judgment we deserve

Or will You respond with patience
In Your lovingkindness and mercy
Will You raise up a Josiah
Give us a godly leader who fears You

I see candidates of all kinds
Prideful, arrogant, rude
Contemptable, dishonest, liars
Who believe they are above reproach

Yet there are some
Men and women of integrity who fear You
Who desire to be upright and blameless
And humbly serve this nation

I see people deceived
Even believers have been taken in
I ask that You give Your people discernment
Help us to choose wisely

I confess my anxiety and worry are a sin
I have failed to trust You fully
But You are God who is sovereign and in control
You raise up kings and leaders and bring them down

When I feel anxious
Help me to repent and pray
Trust the One True and Living God
To whom we will all give an account one day

by Susan Wachtel
February 1, 2016

Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Blessings of a Different Sort

It’s pretty common these days on social media to see blessings being passed along that talk about good fortune, financially or relationally, coming your way. 

But there’s a blessing of a different sort that’s far better. 

That is the blessing of having the Lord walk beside you in good times and bad.  Never leaving, nor forsaking you.

It’s the blessing of having faithful friends come alongside you in prayer and help you when you are in need.

It’s the blessing of a friend, picking up the phone and just listening as you share your concerns.

It’s the blessing of a friend who gives you a hug in the parking lot and says she’ll pray for you and wipes your tears away.

It’s the blessing of a friend that you don’t know about who lifts you in prayer when the Lord burdens her heart for you.  But the Lord knows and hears her prayers.

It’s the blessing of picking up the Bible in the middle of the night when you can’t sleep and you read through David’s Psalms and receive comfort for your soul.

It’s the blessing when you need godly wisdom and you call your Pastor and he guides you to the Book, The Bible, and you hear from God how you should respond to that hurt of offense or when your children or marriage is in trouble.

It’s the blessing when your husband holds you close in the middle of the night and lets you cry and share your hurting heart.

It’s the blessing when you lose a loved one to cancer and in the midst of your grief you are comforted to know with confidence that you will one day see them again.  In that place where there is no more sorrow, sickness, pain, suffering or death. 

It’s the blessing when you realize you’ve really blow it big time and you go to your heavenly Father and confess your sin.  You repent and know with confidence the Lord God has forgiven you because of Christ and He will help you to walk in a manner worthy of your high calling.

It’s the blessing you receive when the Lord redeems the trials, sorrow and pain you’ve experienced and allows you to come alongside someone else and comfort them as you’ve been comforted. 

It’s a different kind of blessing that comes from God.  He has told us that in this life we will suffer persecution, trials and tribulation.  But we can be of good cheer for He, Jesus Christ, has overcome the world.

Let’s be honest, those other “blessings” don’t really come true. 

What kind of blessing do you need tonight?  Ask the Lord.

Thursday, January 21, 2016

What Defines You?

Does your sin define you?  Or does your repentance and faith in Jesus Christ, who died to save you from your sin, define you?

Friday, January 15, 2016

From Outside In

Depression is my name
I’m otherwise known as the blues

I quietly slip in
Sometimes unnoticed

Before long I consume a person’s life
From the outside in

Soon the person you love
Seems to have slipped away

Consumed within themselves
Unable to express their all-consuming pain

Their world has shrunk
From the outside in

All hope seems to be gone
For they can’t see beyond

Help can only come from the Compassionate One
In faith pray without ceasing for the one you love

For only God can break depression’s chains
From the outside in

by Susan Wachtel
January 8, 2016

This may seem like a dark way to start the New Year, but I felt led to write this poem after seeing someone struggle with depression.  I want to bring hope to those who feel helpless as they watch a loved one’s world shrink.  Truly God can break those chains and restore hope. 

Sunday, December 20, 2015

Climbing with Abraham by David Ramos – A Thoughtful and Encouraging Devotional

I was recently contacted by author David Ramos with an offer to read his newest devotional Climbing with Abraham.  After reading David’s brief bio on Amazon, I decided to give the book a try and I’m so glad that I did.

I appreciated the observations and insights that David shared from the life of Abraham.  Clearly he presents a high view of God and also shows how God cares for and knows each one of us individually.

David has a very warm and engaging writing style that invites the reader into the story.  As I was reading this devotional I found myself highlighting many sentences that jumped off the page at me.  Here are a few items that I highlighted: 

·      God’s promises will not fail. 
·      God’s patience is more powerful than our stumbles, and His love is as strong as we are fragile. 
·      God knows your frustrations; keep on believing. 
·      God saw Hagar when no one else did and He cared for her when no one else would. 

There were times when reading this book I felt like God was speaking to me.  On a particularly hard day I was encouraged from the story of Hagar.  David shared, “You are not stuck, you are not forgotten and you are not hopeless.”  I needed that strengthening reminder about God on that specific day.

It seems like no matter how many times I’ve read or studied Scripture I can learn something new or fresh every time.  That’s why I appreciate the insights that David shared from the life of Abraham.  This is the first book I’ve read by him, but I hope it’s not the last one.

One thing I would have liked to have seen included is the actual Scripture verses instead of just the chapter and verse references. 

I highly recommend Climbing with Abraham by author David Ramos.  You will be encouraged, strengthened and challenged as you read through the life of Abraham, a friend of God.

I would like to thank David Ramos for the opportunity to read Climbing with Abraham in exchange for an honest review.  I was under no obligation to give a favorable review.