Today I am posting “Desiderata” (Latin for “desired things”), a prose poem written in December 1933 by Max Ehrmann about attaining happiness in life. If you have never read it before, I’m sure you will find it uplifting.
Go placidly amid the noise and the haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even to the dull and the ignorant, they too have their story. Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexations to the spirit.
If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself. Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs, for the world is full of trickery. But let not this blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals, and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass. Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth.
Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. And whatever your labors and aspirations in the noisy confusion of life, keep peace in your soul. With all its sham, drudgery and broken dreams; it is still a beautiful world.
(Copied from Rylisms devotion 10 December from E-sword)
I was reading through the beatitudes for my devotions this morning. They are found in. Matthew 5:3-10.
As I was reading through today I realised afresh how God blesses us in our lives. Here are some of my notes.
1. When we recognise our need for Him – He gives us the Kingdom
2. When we mourn – He gives us comfort
3. When we are humble – He gives us the earth as an inheritance
4. When we hunger and thirst for justice – He gives us satisfaction
5. When we show mercy – He shows us mercy
6. When we are pure at heart – He shows us Himself
7. When we work for peace – He calls us His children
8. When we are persecuted – He gives us the Kingdom
So many blessings. So much favour. So much comfort.
One thing I also noticed today was the bookmarks at the beginning and the end. When we recognise our need for Him or are persecuted, He gives us the Kingdom.
Be blessed by the beatitudes today!
Psalm 36:5-9 NLT – Your unfailing love, O LORD, is as vast as the heavens; your faithfulness reaches beyond the clouds.  Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains, your justice like the ocean depths. You care for people and animals alike, O LORD.  How precious is your unfailing love, O God! All humanity finds shelter in the shadow of your wings.  You feed them from the abundance of your own house, letting them drink from your river of delights.  For you are the fountain of life, the light by which we see.
I read this passage as a part of my devotions this morning. I had to read it over and over. I love the way it talks about God’s unfailing love. It gives us a picture of just how deep and wide and vast it is. It even says that all humanity finds shelter in the shadow of His wings and He provides for us all out of His abundance. I couldn’t imagine a world without God. I wouldn’t want to! He truly is the fountain of life and the light by which we see.
Lord God, thank You for Your unfailing love. It is so precious to me. I thank You that You provide for our needs out of the abundance and I can find shelter under Your wings. You truly are the fountain of life and the light of my life. Amen.
Zechariah 14:9 NLT – And the LORD will be king over all the earth. On that day there will be one LORD-his name alone will be worshiped.
This verse talks about a day when all false gods that people worship and all false religions will be no more. There will be no cults, no worldly charismatic leaders who deceive people and no doubt who the true God is. It will be a day when only He is worshipped and He will rule and reign over all the earth. As a Jesus follower I look forward to this day. How about you?
Dear God, I thank You that You are the one true God who reigns supreme. You are far above all other false gods and worldly leaders. I look forward to the day when You come in power and glory and You alone are the one who is worshipped. Amen.
Ecclesiastes 4:9-12 NLT says, “Two people are better off than one, for they can help each other succeed.  If one person falls, the other can reach out and help. But someone who falls alone is in real trouble.  Likewise, two people lying close together can keep each other warm. But how can one be warm alone?  A person standing alone can be attacked and defeated, but two can stand back-to-back and conquer. Three are even better, for a triple-braided cord is not easily broken.”
I have found over the years it helps to have good people around you. Having family, friends, workmates who have your back makes a big difference. As today’s passage says having people around you can help you to succeed, help you up if you fall down, keep you warm in cold trying conditions, and even fight with you if needed. It reminds us of the importance of having good people around us by using the image of a triple-braided cord being stronger. Three interwoven cords are way stronger than a single thread.
Lord, I pray that I will always have good people around me. I thank You for the good people who are now in my life. I pray that You will help us to help each other and as we follow You. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Psalm 139:1-3 NLT – O LORD, you have examined my heart and know everything about me.  You know when I sit down or stand up. You know my thoughts even when I’m far away.  You see me when I travel and when I rest at home. You know everything I do.
God knows us inside out. He knows everything about us. These verses tell us He examines our hearts and knows our thoughts. In spite of knowing everything about us, He loves us deeply. So much so, that He moved heaven and earth to secure a place for us in heaven when Jesus died for us. It is reasurring that we don’t have to wear a mask with God like we do with people sometimes. He knows ALL and He loves ALL of us.
Dear God, thank You that You love me just as I am. It gives me comfort to know that You have examinded my heart and You know my thoughts, and You still love me. Thank You Jesus died for me and for preapring a place for me in heaven. Amen.
Psalm 71:5-6 NLT – O Lord, you alone are my hope. I’ve trusted you, O LORD, from childhood.  Yes, you have been with me from birth; from my mother’s womb you have cared for me. No wonder I am always praising you!
God has always been there. Even from before our birth. He has always cared for us, even though we may not have realised. I came to Christ in my early 20s. I have never really thought about God until then. But looking back I can see His fingerprints throughout my early life. He was there looking after me through the good times and the bad. He brought people into my life to help me and He gently nudged me in His direction. I am so thankful.
Dear God, thank You that You have always been there. Even before I was born You were there. Thank You for loving and caring for me right throughout my life. Amen.
Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT – Trust in the LORD with all your heart; do not depend on your own understanding.  Seek his will in all you do, and he will show you which path to take.
Today’s verses of the day in my Bible app were Proverbs 3:5-6. I can’t think of a better option than to trust in the Lord and seek His will for a new year. God knows our future and He knows us, so we can trust Him. These verses tell us that if we trust in the Lord and seek His will, He will show us the right path to take. This is in the small things and the big things. A great thought for 2019.
Dear God, help me to trust in You with all of my heart and seek Your will in all I do in 2019. I pray that as I follow Jesus and walk in Your ways, that You will show me the right paths to take. In Jesus’ name, Amen.
Psalm 119:143-144 NLT – As pressure and stress bear down on me, I find joy in your commands.  Your laws are always right; help me to understand them so I may live.
As the pressure closes in and we become stressed, it is important to press into God’s Word, the Bible. Like David we can find joy in His commands. The Bible shows there is more to this life than the current worries and concerns we may be facing. The Bible shows we are eternal and everything we face in this life will soon pass. The Bible shows will spend way more time in eternity that we do in this life.
Dear God, thank You that when I become stressed or worried about the problems of this life, I can run to You and Your Word. I pray that I will find joy and strength in Your commands. I pray that I will remember that I will spend way more time in eternity and the problems of this life are momentary compared to the glories of heaven. Amen
1 Timothy 6:10-12 NLT – For the love of money is the root of all kinds of evil. And some people, craving money, have wandered from the true faith and pierced themselves with many sorrows.  But you, Timothy, are a man of God; so run from all these evil things. Pursue righteousness and a godly life, along with faith, love, perseverance, and gentleness.  Fight the good fight for the true faith. Hold tightly to the eternal life to which God has called you, which you have declared so well before many witnesses.
Today in my devotions three things jumped out at me from these verses.
1. Don’t love and crave money as it can lead you astray – Money is important to be able to live on and bless others, but it can’t be the sole focus of our existence. Don’t let money take God’s first place in your life.
2. Be a true person of faith – Stay away from things that can lead you astray and pursue the things that keep you on track with God. Verse 11 shows us six things to pursue.
3. Hold tight to the hope you have in Christ – Jesus gave us eternal life by His death on the cross for our sin. When we accepted Jesus we gained that eternal life. Hold tight, stand firm, continue on and stay focused.
Dear God, please strengthen me and help me to fight the good fight of faith. Help me to stay away from the things that would lead me astray and pursue the things that will keep my faith strong. Help me to pursue righteousness, a godly life, faith, love, perseverance and gentleness. Amen