Sunday, March 1, 2015

Grace Answers! (A Taste of Grace - Lesson 1)



ARE YOU READY FOR SOME ANSWERS?


If you did the study, wouldn't you agree that grace is MORE than
"a way of moving that is smooth and attractive and that is not stiff or awkward"!

What is Grace?

When I was growing up as a “Preacher’s Kid”,
I remember being shown this acrostic:
God’s  
Riches
At
Christ’s
Expense.
Another definition I remember was
“undeserved favor”.

“The Age of Grace” began at the cross of Jesus Christ,
but I had no idea there was so much grace shown in the Old Testament. God wanted to show people His grace.

Most of the time in the Old Testament the word GRACE seems to mean
“to find favor in the eyes of someone,
to be acceptable to him”.
(Blue Letter Bible Tools)
This would apply to Noah in Genesis 6:8, where it says,
“Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.”

Moses also found this kind of grace or favor when he asked of God
“…Show me now your way,
that I may know You
and that I may find grace in Your sight.” 
(Exodus 33:13)
A manifestation of this grace to Moses was His Presence.
“My Presence will go with you, and I will give you rest.”
(Exodus 33:14)

Although Moses asked for God’s favor,
God showed him another side of grace.
“And the LORD passed before him and proclaimed,
‘The LORD, the LORD God,
merciful and gracious, longsuffering,
and abounding in goodness and truth.’”
(Exodus 34:6)
Word study in NKJV says that goodness/grace here represents God’s character of mercy, loving kindness   …and a loyal, steadfast, voluntary, faithful and intimate love as in marriage!



One of the words David had for grace was LOVINGKINDNESS.
“How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God!
Therefore the children of men put their trust
under the shadow of Your wings.”
(Psalm 36:7)

And in Psalm 63:3 he says because God’s LOVINGKINDNESS
“is better than life, my lips shall praise You.”

According to David, God’s grace
RESTORES JOY - Psalm 51:12
HEALS - Psalm 103:3
REDEEMS - Psalm 103:4
RENEWS - Psalm 103:5



There are a couple of Old Testament terms for grace
that really made me smile.
One of them is found in Deuteronomy 1:30-31 where it talks about the LORD carrying or nourishing Israel, carrying them like a son,
but in the New Testament where it refers to this passage, it says God
“PUT UP WITH” their ways in the wilderness.  (Acts 13:18)
I’m glad that God “puts up with” me!


Another one to make you smile is that God’s grace is
SLOW TO ANGER or literally “LONG OF NOSE” !
This comes from Jonah 4:2 where it says,
“I know that You are a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger,
and abundant in loving kindness, One who relents from doing harm.”
Word study from NKJV study Bible says
“The Hebrew idiom for patient or slow to anger is literally
‘long of nose’. “
It says that the nose is symbolic of anger because an angry person breathes heavily or noisily and the nose becomes hot!


And last of all in this session of “What is Grace?”,
GRACE IS LOVE.
No ordinary love.
One commentary said “To love from the womb”,
to LOVE DEEPLY,
to have mercy, to have compassion,
to have tender affection,
to be soft, soothing, gentle…
In other words, LOVE beyond description!

Jeremiah wrote, “Though He causes grief, yet He will show compassion according to the multitude of His mercies.”  Lamentations 3:32

The prophet Micah said, “Who is a God like You,
pardoning iniquity and passing over the transgression…
He delights in mercy.
He will again have compassion on us…”
Micah 7:18-19



******************

Have you memorized  2 Peter 3:18  yet?
“But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  To Him be glory both now and forever. Amen.”

GRACE - What is it? (Lesson 1 in "A Taste of Grace")



What do you think of when you hear the word "GRACE"?
Is it what Webster says in its first definition...
"a way of moving that is smooth and attractive and that is not stiff or awkward"?
Or do we need to scroll a little further down the page...
"unmerited divine assistance given humans for their regeneration or sanctification,
a virtue coming from God"?

What is Grace?
This is a study sheet that I've prepared for a class 
that I'm leading beginning this Wednesday night to study GRACE.
I don't have all the answers, but I'm learning!
Do you want to come along and learn with me?

I've used the New King James Version to prepare this,
and if you can't figure it out, I will post the answers on a separate post
entitled "GRACE ANSWERS".

When I was growing up as a “Preacher’s Kid”,
I remember being shown this acrostic:
G___________  
R___________
A___________
C___________
E___________.
Another definition I remember was
“_____________    _____________”.

“The Age of Grace” began at the cross of Jesus Christ,
but I had no idea there was so much grace shown in the Old Testament. God wanted to show people His grace.

Most of the time in the Old Testament the word GRACE seems to mean
“to find ____________in the eyes of someone,
to be ________________ to him”.
(Blue Letter Bible Tools)
This would apply to Noah in Genesis 6:8, where it says,
“Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD.”

Moses also found this kind of grace or favor when he asked of God
“…Show me now your way,
that I may know You
and that I may find grace in Your sight.” 
(Exodus 33:13)
A manifestation of this grace to Moses was _____  ____________________.
“My ______________will go with you, and I will give you rest.”
(Exodus 33:14)

Although Moses asked for God’s favor,
God showed him another side of grace.
“And the LORD passed before him and proclaimed,
‘The LORD, the LORD God,
merciful and gracious, longsuffering,
and abounding in _________________and truth.’”
(Exodus 34:6)
Word study in NKJV says that goodness/grace here represents God’s character of mercy, loving kindness   …and a loyal, steadfast, voluntary, faithful and intimate love as in marriage!



One of the words David had for grace was ___________________.
“How precious is Your ___________________, O God!
Therefore the children of men put their trust
under the shadow of Your wings.”
(Psalm 36:7)

And in Psalm 63:3 he says because God’s ____________________
“is better than life, my lips shall praise You.”

According to David, God’s grace
_________________________ - Psalm 51:12
__________ _______________- Psalm 103:3
_________________________ - Psalm 103:4
________________________   - Psalm 103:5




There are a couple of Old Testament terms for grace
that really made me smile.
One of them is found in Deuteronomy 1:30-31 where it talks about the LORD carrying or nourishing Israel, carrying them like a son,
but in the New Testament where it refers to this passage, it says God
____________________________their ways in the wilderness.  (Acts 13:18)
I’m glad that God “puts up with” me!

Another one to make you smile is that God’s grace is
____________________ or literally ___________________!
This comes from Jonah 4:2 where it says,
“I know that You are a gracious and merciful God, slow to anger,
and abundant in loving kindness, One who relents from doing harm.”
Word study from NKJV study Bible says
“The Hebrew idiom for ______________or slow to anger is literally
‘long of nose’. “
It says that the nose is symbolic of anger because an angry person breathes heavily or noisily and the nose becomes hot!



And last of all in this session of “What is Grace?”,
___________  ___  ___________.
No ordinary love.
One commentary said “To love from the womb”,
to ___________   ______________,
to have mercy, to have compassion,
to have tender affection,
to be soft, soothing, gentle…
In other words, __________ beyond description!

Jeremiah wrote, “Though He causes grief, 
yet He will show compassion according to the multitude of His mercies.”  Lamentations 3:32

The prophet Micah said, “Who is a God like You,
pardoning iniquity and passing over the transgression…
He delights in mercy.
He will again have compassion on us…”
Micah 7:18-19


******************


Next week we’ll look at what GRACE means in the New Testament,
especially looking at Peter and Paul.

Before next class, please try to memorize
2 Peter 3:18
“But grow in the grace and knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ.  To Him be glory both now and forever. Amen.”

Also, be aware of how God shows you His grace this week.
(In case you’re worried, sharing this with the group will be optional!)



To view the answers, CLICK HERE!


And if you haven't checked out my Names of God on Rocks for awhile,
CLICK HERE to see Rock4Today!

Saturday, February 28, 2015

Saying Grace!




...Or "Saving Grace"?


This little squirrel looked like he was saying grace,
thanking God for the abundance of seeds
that had been scattered by the birds from my feeder!


"Saying Grace"

Could it be that when we "Say Grace" over our meals,
thanking God for His provision of food,
(and asking Him to bless it)
that "Saying Grace" actually becomes "Saving Grace"?

“But you—you serve your God
 and He’ll bless your food and your water.
 I’ll get rid of the sickness among you; 
 ...I’ll make sure you live full and complete lives."
(From The Message translation)

"The Spirit makes it clear that as time goes on,
 some are going to give up on the faith 
and chase after demonic illusions
 put forth by professional liars. 
These liars have lied so well and for so long 
that they’ve lost their capacity for truth...
 They’ll tell you not to eat this or that food—
perfectly good food God created to be eaten heartily 
and with thanksgiving by believers who know better! 
Everything God created is good, 
and to be received with thanks.
 Nothing is to be sneered at and thrown out. 
God’s Word and our prayers
 make every item in creation holy."
(This is from The Message translation)


I'm not talking here about "saving grace" that saves our souls from eternal punishment.
I'm just wondering if we've gone a bit over-board on touting health foods,
placing too much value on the healing power of the food
instead of on the God in Heaven who made the food?

This is something that I personally have done at times...
but am trying, by God's grace, to have balance and get the right perspective.

What do you think?
I'd love to hear your opinion!





Monday, February 16, 2015

Birds of the Ozarks



With the drastic change in weather,
my bird feeder had a flutter of activity today!


Here are just a few of my visitors!

The white-throated sparrow

The rufous sided towhee
and
the House Finch

The Cardinal

The Fox Sparrow

Both of my feeders were busy...

...With a variety of birds...

...And plenty more on the ground to pick up
the seeds which fell to the ground.


That's one of the beauties of snow...
Seeing all God's beautiful feathery creatures come to visit!
And it's a reminder that if God's eye is on the sparrow,
He will surely care for me as well!
And that's my Joy4Today!


I think I'm almost finished with Simon Peter's Names for our Lord
Today's post featured several names.
To see them, click on Rock4Today to take you there.

Thanks for dropping by!

Wednesday, February 11, 2015

Brother Bill's Bachelor Quarters --- Nearly 50 years ago!



I was going to do a "Birding" post this time...
...But recently while studying and researching for an "Affinity Class"
that I will be leading, I stumbled upon my old Bible College records.
Although they stirred up my allergies a bit,
my curiosity pushed me to peruse them despite the sneezes they produced!

One of the treasures I found is from "Theme Writing" class,
and I decided to share it.


  I dedicate this post to my sister-in-law who took up the challenge
to change my brother's bachelor status into that of a family man!


 When you read this,
you can only guess how strict the rules were!
Fraternizing with the opposite sex was frowned on!






Although I'm not sure I deserved it,
the grade I received was a B+ ...just in case you were wondering!

We were privileged to enjoy Bill's company for 49 years 
before he entered his heavenly home.

 "But let me tell you something wonderful, a mystery I’ll probably never fully understand. We’re not all going to die—but we are all going to be changed. You hear a blast to end all blasts from a trumpet, and in the time that you look up and blink your eyes—it’s over. On signal from that trumpet from heaven, the dead will be up and out of their graves, beyond the reach of death, never to die again. At the same moment and in the same way, we’ll all be changed. In the resurrection scheme of things, this has to happen: everything perishable taken off the shelves and replaced by the imperishable, this mortal replaced by the immortal. Then the saying will come true:

In Memory of
William (Bill) Edward Grusing
Born January 21, 1944
Died December 20, 1993




If you haven't stopped by Rock4Today in awhile,
click on the highlighted letters above to find out what I've been up to!

Thanks for dropping by!


Sunday, January 25, 2015

Bird Scouts!


I heard that the birds are already out scouting
for places to raise their babies when spring comes.
If you want residents in your birdhouses,
probably you need to get them in place!

Last year a little wren, a chickadee, and a tufted titmouse
checked out my little birdhouse that is hung
 in the cherry tree that is quite near our house.
The wren started to build a nest, but then changed locations.


Today I was surprised to have a pileated woodpecker
checking it out!

My granddaughter and I laughed as he tried to stick his head inside,

...even turned his head upside down while trying to look inside.

He didn't give up easily...

and finally started pecking the house apart!

For some reason it reminded me of the verse from Proverbs 14:1 that says,
"A wise woman builds her home,
but a foolish woman tears it down with her own hands."

I guess the woodpecker thought if he couldn't fit in the little house,
then he'd just tear it up so no one else could use it!

Not a very nice philosophy!

Or maybe he was just looking for bugs to eat...

I've been doing a lot of Bible Study for an "Affinity Class" 
that I'll be teaching in March and April,
called "A Taste of Grace".
Consequently, I haven't painted a ROCK lately for
Don't give up on me!
I hope to get a post done later this week!

Saturday, January 17, 2015

Old-Fashioned Barn Restoration!





It was fairly early when neighbors started gathering
to help with preparations to pour a concrete floor
in the old barn that my husband has been having restored.

And they were ready when the truck delivering concrete arrived.

The gravel subfloor, plastic, and grids had been laid.

The truck backed in till the chute would reach
to the back of the barn.

It amazed me how long the chute could be made.


Then the back-breaking job of spreading the concrete began.

First raking it as smooth as possible...


Then smoothing it with a trowel.

Finally the last bit was poured...

Smoothed...

And smoothed...

Then it was time for clean-up of the truck...

...and the boots!

Lots of hard work,
and aching backs!
But a new concrete floor in place!

One of the biggest challenges had been keeping the dogs
from making their foot prints in the fresh concrete!

And in case you're wondering...
Sarah Bella is no longer doing hair!
She's gone back to college in pursuit of another occupation!
Just couldn't throw away the sign!!!

I haven't got another rock painted yet this week,
so check back later on Rock4Today
to see my Names of God on Rocks, okay?