Archive for Daily Encouragements

Two Hands While Learning

When I was learning to catch a baseball, my dad always told me, “Use two hands while learning.” He said when the ball hit my mitt, put my other hand over it to make sure it couldn’t pop back out of the mitt. It was good advice.

This morning, I was thinking of another saying that’s popular with some of us rednecks; “Here, hold my beer and watch this.” But how these two came together in my mind is interesting. I was thinking about how we are tempted all day, every day, by the world and it’s shiny and exciting things and adventures. We do our best to keep our hand in God’s, so he will help us not to succumb to the temptations, but sometimes we literally look at him and say, “Just this once?” I picture Him smiling as he lets go and lets us make whatever mistake we’re going to make, but I also realize He’s wanting us to not only not let go of His hand, but give Him our other hand as well.

 

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I Think I’m Ready Now

I'm readyI was a frightened little boy, an angry young man, and then I was, for all intents and purposes, lost for many years. Then, God sent the person—my wife Sherry—He knew could soothe my soul and help Him prepare me to do the job He’d trained me to do. Yes, all those things I went through, all those things I did, both good and bad, were simply His method of training me, and in some cases—maybe most of them—allowing me to learn things the hard way.

Now… I’m an old man and I just want to spend the rest of my days in peace and try to be a good man, doing whatever it is He wants me to do. But it turns out… it’s harder than it looks and I’m not very good at it. Maybe it’s too late—too much damage done—I don’t know. I’m definitely going to have to let him lead me to whatever it is I’m supposed to do.

Sometimes, I think maybe if I write it all down—all the mistakes and hurts I caused—maybe I might help someone else to not get lost; to not hurt other people as they navigate this mess called life. But maybe that’s not my job. Maybe we all learn the hard way, while we try to do it our way.

And so, I will just keep my eyes on Jesus, and hope He and our heavenly Father will continue to have patience with me, as I await their instructions. I think I’m ready now.

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Stop It!

I can hardly grasp what God has done for us. Knowing we could not save ourselves He sent His Son to take all our sins upon Himself. This is a miracle bigger than healing the sick, raising the dead, walking on water, or feeding five-thousand people with five loaves and two fish. It is the ultimate demonstration of God’s power and love. We are forgiven! We are loved!

So, what’s the problem today? Why do we live in fear? Why are we sad? Yes, we all have fears, insecurities, and sadness but we don’t have to. In John 3:17, Jesus said, “For God did not send His Son into the world to condemn the world, but to save the world through Him.

a man - forgiven

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The Little Congregation

It happens quite often to me; I wake in the morning with a song in my head. The strange thing about it is that the song is often an obscure song, or at the least, one I haven’t heard for years. Such was the case this morning when I awoke with the song, “Little Jimmy Brown” doing a continuous loop in my head. Where in the world did that come from?

Anyway, I felt I needed to share it with you. In light of our current situation, especially with regard to churches closing temporarily. Many will gather in small groups in their homes to worship and praise God, and I offer this–the slightly altered chorus of the song–as encouragement.

Little Jimmy Brown

Here’s a link to the song if you’d like to listen to it:

Little Jimmy Brown

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The Big Lie

I’m Not Worthy

In this day when truth seems to have lost its luster, there are two sides to the coin. On one side there’s the ego, typically an opinion of one’s self which hasn’t been earned, and, in most cases, isn’t deserved. On the other side of the proverbial coin is the tendency most of us have to deem ourselves unworthy. Both are lies, but, surprisingly, the latter has more truth to it than the other.

a penny's worthWe’re not worthy of God’s unconditional love, and there’s nothing we can do to change that fact. Except, that is, to believe Jesus is the son of God.

And so, not because we have earned it—not because of what we might say, think, or do—we are worthy, because God has given us the gift of grace. And, once we accept His gift, when He looks at us all He sees… is His awesome Son.

 

For all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God. Romans 3:23

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No Strings Attached

a peaceful solution

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Found Money

I push aside worn shirts looking for my suit. I hate going to these “parties”, but not as much as I hate wearing a suit and tie. I’ll get over it—always do—but the thing is… well, as usual, we’re so broke we can’t pay attention.

The car’s got less than a quarter tank in it, and I got a buck or three to my name until payday. I couldn’t sleep last night, but her! She just gave my shoulder a pat, then slipped right off to dreamland. Then, as I was finally drifting off to sleep, I heard Mom’s voice; “Don’t worry, Charlie. God will provide.” I groaned and answered out loud, “Sure, Mom. Is He gonna leave a twenty under my pillow?”

serendipityThen! Tonight, we’re getting ready and when I shove my wallet into the inside pocket of my suit jacket I feel something. “No way,” I whisper. But yes way! I pull the wallet out, reach back in, and stare at a folded twenty-dollar bill.

She’s in front of the mirror, checking her hair—again—and I grin at her.

“What?” she says, returning the grin.

I give her a playful pat—not on the shoulder—and say, “You look gorgeous. But come on, we have to stop for gas.”

Copyright © 2013 C Mashburn

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Two Wolves

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I tend to expound on the people and things that shaped me into who I am, and the Cherokee legend of the two wolves hits the nail on the head. For too much of my life, I fed the evil within me and allowed it to guide my steps. Fortunately, the good was the more powerful force, and as time went on, I began to feed it, and watched in amazement as it easily overpowered the evil I’d given control to. Looking back, I realize the good wolf within me was made strong by the good people God placed in my path. People like Judge Billy Meck who taught my Sunday school class when I was around the age of ten. It wasn’t just the things he taught me in that class, but even more so, it was the kind of man he was. Truth is, I don’t even know what kind of man Judge Meck was, but I know what kind of man I saw when I was a boy, and that’s how I will always remember him. 

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Still Climbing

I was raised by a man who was constantly ranting about how this person, or that group, was out to get him, and life just wasn’t fair. I seldom saw him at peace. Unfortunately, his ways rubbed off on me, and I spent much of my life fighting against the world. As a result, I had no peace within my soul.

trees trip quoteI didn’t learn to be at peace, and I didn’t one day figure out how to defeat those I perceived to be against me; God delivered me from my enemies—many of them imaginary—and delivered peace unto my soul. That’s not to say I am in a constant state of perfect peace, but I’m learning to let go of things quicker than I used to and turn to God for relief from the battles—whether perceived or real—of this world.

He has delivered my soul in peace from the battle that was against me: for there were many against me. Psalms 55:18

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No Doubt About It

It’s not all about us. it’s about God’s plan. We have nothing to fear because whether we know it or not, we’re doing God’s work. There are times we wonder why we’re doing what we do. Maybe we feel like our job is meaningless and we feel like we’re just spinning our wheels in a world gone mad. The thing is, God’s will is in even the smallest thing we do. We’re a part of His plan! I compare it to a line in the poem, Desiderata: desiderata picWhat we have to remember is, It’s God’s universe. No doubt about it!

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