Monday, December 26, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Receiving What God Has For You in 2017


Receiving What God Has For You in 2017
Roy Lessin

Even though we don’t know exactly what is ahead in the coming year, here are some redemptive ways we can move forward and fulfill what God has for us.

Enter the New Year free of any spiritual baggage. The first thing is to let go of the baggage of the past. Release your grip upon any old hurts, wounds, or disappointments. They can bring with them the weights of bitterness, resentment, and unforgiveness. These are the things that your soul can not afford to lug around for another year.


The next thing is to not pick up the baggage of the future.
God does not want you weighed down with cares, anxiety, and worry. Live each day, moment by moment, in the sufficiency of His grace, and trust Him in all things for tomorrow’s needs.

With hands free to receive what God has for you, focus your faith on these five things...

You can read the rest of the article at the DaySpring website.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Anna: A Praying Heart That Trusts God's Word

Anna: A Praying Heart That Trusts God's Word
-Roy Lessin
One of the things that has always stirred my heart during the Christmas season is the depth of meaning found in the lyrics of many classic Christmas carols. In a little known carol written in 1781, The People That in Darkness Sat, is this brief prayer, “Lord Jesus reign in us, we pray, And make us Thine alone.”
This prayer seeks to have Jesus in His proper place in our lives. The Christ child was born to be King, not just of the Jews, but also to be the King of our hearts. We were born to belong to Him, to know Him, to adore Him, and to live for Him. This prayer of surrender to the Lordship of Christ was evident in the life of Anna. Her heart was set upon the Lord, and her life was set apart to the Lord, long before Jesus came into the world...
Read the rest of Roy's devotional, the last in this Christmas Series from DaySpring.com, here...

Monday, December 19, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Prayer of Grace

Prayer of Grace
-Roy Lessin

Lord, thank You for Your grace. It is by grace that my heart was drawn to You—grace that was extended, not in limited measure, but in abundance; not sprinkled down, but poured out; not just enough to get me by, but more than enough to bring me through as more than a conqueror.


I receive Your grace—I run to it, welcome it, embrace it. Thank You for not putting Your grace on hold or hiding it away for safe keeping. Thank You for making it available to me now, when I need it most.

Your grace brings me riches in my poverty; sufficiency in my inadequacy; abundance in my lack. I thank You for being so gracious—for your heart of grace that is reaching out, for Your throne of grace that invites me in, and for Your gift of grace. Thank You for Your only begotten Son, who has embraced me in His arms of mercy, and who brings to me the fullness of grace and truth.

And God is able to make all grace abound toward you; that ye, always having all sufficiency in all things, may abound to every good work. II Corinthians 9:8 KJV

©2016 Roy Lessin, Drawing Near Christian Journal, available at DaySpring.com Photo by Marina Bromley, Marina's Kitchen Table.

Friday, December 16, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Prayer of Hope

Prayer of Hope
- Roy Lessin

Father, thank You for being the God of hope and my hope. You alone are the source and the reason for my hope. Because of You, I can pray in hope; walk in hope; believe in hope; endure in hope; overcome in hope; live in hope.


When I look to the future I have hope because You are already in the future. I have a future that is secure because You are my future. Father, it is Your hope that frees from the despair of hopelessness and the insecurity of false hope.

When I look ahead, I do not see the details clearly, but I see You, the One who is in all the details of what is ahead. I believe in Your plan and purpose for my life. You have assured me that I will never be disappointed as I trust in You.

Thank You for the confidence Your hope gives me to be faithful today and to move forward in the pathway You have for my tomorrows. I put my expectations, not in others, but in You. I am confident that all Your desires for me are good. The hope You give me brings happiness and rejoicing to my heart.

Thank You, Father, for being the author of all the chapters of my life that are yet to come. Thank You that my life will have a happy ending because I will be with You forever, in the place that You have prepared for me and for all those who have put their trust in Your salvation through Jesus Christ. Amen.

©2016 Roy Lessin, used with permission. From "Drawing Near;  Prayers, Blessings, Promises." A devotional prayer journal by Roy Lessin. Available through DaySpring.com and your favorite Christian retailers.

Wednesday, December 14, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Simeon: A Peaceful Heart That Holds Salvation

Simeon: A Peaceful Heart That Holds Salvation
-Roy Lessin
A well-known line from a frequently sung Christmas carol includes these powerful words of hope and consolation, “Peace on earth and mercy mild, God and sinners reconciled!" It is a truth that was upon the lips of Simeon long before it appeared in a carol.
Simeon was quite a man! In eight short verses from the Gospel of Luke we learn what was in his heart, and the treasures of grace that were in his life. The first thing we learn is that he is identified as a man. No other title. He may not have been a nobleman, but he was a gentleman; he may not have had great wealth, but He had heaven’s riches; he may not have been known by the multitudes, but He was known by God.
Simeon’s relationship to God meant everything. He took his commitment to God seriously, and that commitment shaped his character. The Scriptures tell us that he was a just and devout man. Simeon lived to do the right thing before God and others. If he was your neighbor, you could count on him to be a person of integrity... 
Read the rest of Roy's devotion here at DaySpring.com...

Monday, December 12, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Fret Busters

Fret Busters
- Roy Lessin

Fret buster #16:
The government (the rule and reign of your life) is upon His shoulders. He hasn’t placed any of it on yours. He has a plan and purpose for your life and He not only knows where He is taking you, but He also knows how to get you there.

Fret buster #17:
God is in control. Things won’t always be the way they are right now.
God knows how and when to bring about change. Trust His timing, He doesn’t make mistakes.


Fret buster #18:
“Be still, and know that I am God;” Psalm 46:10

©2016 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. This post first appeared online in 12/2008

Friday, December 9, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: "Have Joy"

“Have Joy”
-Roy Lessin

“Have a good time” and “have fun” are common sayings we use with one another. It’s not a bad thing to say to someone, but it does have its limitations.

I would like to see a different saying become more common among God’s people. How about if we replace “have fun” with “have joy”? Joy is one of the greatest things we can possess on earth and differs greatly from fun.


“Fun” is fine, but we can’t always have fun. Fun depends so much on where we are in a given moment and what we are doing. It’s not fun to be caught in a traffic jam, to have a financial set back, to go through a difficult trial, to be without heat in the winter, or to have a mechanical breakdown when you are trying to meet a deadline. It’s fun to go skiing, but it’s not fun to break your leg; it’s fun to watch a baseball game, but it’s not fun to watch your team lose; it’s fun to eat at a nice restaurant, but it’s not fun to get food poisoning; it’s fun to hook a big trout, but it’s not fun to have it get away.

Joy is a grace gift from God, not the result of a particular circumstance that happens in our lives. Joy touches our spirits, fun touches our emotions; joy abides, fun comes and goes; joy flows like deeps waters, fun skips along like a rock upon the water’s surface.

Joy is amazing and strength giving. Joy isn’t just for the good times, but for the hard times as well. Jesus knew joy even while going through the agony and suffering of the cross. The joy that Jesus knew is the joy we need to know as we face every circumstance of life—hard or easy, bad or good, pleasant or difficult—and it is His joy that He gives to us.

The Lord has blessed by wife with the gift and ministry of hospitality. Early on, the Lord taught her an important lesson about this ministry. She was once served a meal of tortillas and eggs by a Christian woman who lived in an adobe house with dirt floors, in the back country of Mexico. To this day, my wife has never been served more graciously. Her hostess had so little to offer materially and yet she radiated joy in everything she did. 

It would be fun if my wife had a super gourmet kitchen to work in and the latest fine china to put at each place setting, but that has nothing to do with her ministry or her joy. Her joy comes from the Lord, not our kitchen or our dishes. At the end of the evening it may not be fun to face a stack of dirty dishes, but for my wife, the time at the sink is a time of joy. It has become something she looks forward to; it is here that she celebrates her calling, reflects upon the evening, and recalls the ministry of the Lord to those who were in our home.

Whatever your day might be, “Have joy”; whatever your circumstances, “Have joy”; whatever you need, “Have joy.” Have God’s joy. Have it in abundance. Have it in its fullness. Be filled with joy. Have the joy of His presence, and the joy of His salvation. May His joy greet at the start of each step of obedience, meet you at the end of every tear, cover you in every trial, and sustain you in every labor of love. May His joy remain.

“Have joy!”


“Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy…” Romans 15:13

©2016 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow, Marina Bromley, Marina's Kitchen Table. This first appeared online in 12/2008. 

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: The Shepherds: A Praising Heart That Celebrates God's Presence

The Shepherds: A Praising Heart That Celebrates God's Presence
- Roy Lessin 

For some shepherds in the fields near Bethlehem, a routine night of watching their flocks was about to turn into the most glorious night in history. An angel of the Lord, to be followed by a great number of the heavenly host, all filling the air with praises to God, were far beyond anything they could have expected to visit them that evening. And the message that was delivered to them from heaven was far beyond anything they could have imagined. Yeshua, (the Savior) is born? The Messiah? Now? To us? Here? In a manger? ... 



Read the rest of Roy's post over at DaySpring.com's page... 


Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Prayer

Since last Spring, my heart has been tuned to prayer. I want to read about it, about others who do it, and I spend time in it (nearly more than ever before). It's like getting a new cd, playing it over and over, learning new lyrics and hearing instruments in the background I never noticed before.
Last month I had a few praying experiences that really blessed me... with a new friend I had never prayed with before, and with an old friend I hadn't prayed with in person for over a year.


Praying using technology can be tricky, but is also a blessing. It's necessary as the church becomes more global and we get spread around to evangelize. Many of the same "in person" rules apply; things like overcoming distractions, waiting for God prompts, being comfortable in the silences of prayer as we wait for those prompts, and letting the Holy Spirit groan when we have no words to speak our pain.
I ran across this quote from a few years back, and it motivated me to share these thoughts with you...
"The essence of prayer does not consist in asking God for something but in opening our hearts to God, in speaking with Him, and living with Him in perpetual communion. Prayer is continual abandonment to God. Prayer does not mean asking God for all kinds of things we want; it is rather the desire for God Himself, the only Giver of Life, Prayer is not asking, but union with God. Prayer is not a painful effort to gain from God help in the varying needs of our lives. Prayer is the desire to possess God Himself, the Source of all life. The true spirit of prayer does not consist in asking for blessings, but in receiving Him who is the giver of all blessings, and in living a life of fellowship with Him." --Sadhu Sundar Singh, Christian Missionary (from Harvest Prayer Ministries)
If you would like to have a prayer partner in the new year (or a prayer group?), let's talk! Then let's pray about it... I've shared before how praying with someone is like dancing with someone ... it's an incredible experience when God moves two or more in prayer...

If you would like some great resources on prayer, please visit Harvest Prayer Ministries, and for prayer resources focused on missions, check out Team Expansion's Prayer Ministry, and their Facebook page for Prayer Force Blog here. You can subscribe for FREE updates to be emailed to you (or follow on Facebook). 

Monday, December 5, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Bread

Bread 
- Roy Lessin

Our forefathers ate the manna in the wilderness; as the Scripture says, He gave them bread out of heaven to eat. Jesus then said to them, I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, Moses did not give you the Bread from heaven [what Moses gave you was not the Bread from heaven], but it is My Father Who gives you the true heavenly Bread. For the Bread of God is He Who comes down out of heaven and gives life to the world. Then they said to Him, Lord, give us this bread always (all the time)! Jesus replied, I am the Bread of Life. He who comes to Me will never be hungry, John 6:31-35 AMP


Jesus is Bread. 

He doesn’t have bread to give us; He is the Bread He gives us.
He is the Bread of the Passover—Unleavened. Striped. Pierced.
He is the Bread of the Tabernacle—Made with fine flour. Bread of the assembly and Bread of the individual. The Bread of God’s presence, whose face shines upon you.
He is the Bread of Bethlehem—Sent from Heaven. Given for all who receive.
He is the broken Bread—the Bread of Emmaus, the Bread of Melchizedek, the Bread of the wilderness.

Bread is not made to be displayed, to be admired, to be studied, to be analyzed, to be compared with other breads, to be used as a center piece, or to be packaged. Bread is not made to educate or entertain; it is made to sustain. Bread is to be eaten.

Jesus is the Living Bread. He is the Bread of communion, the Bread of fellowship, the Bread of covenant, the Bread of healing and wholeness, the Bread of intimacy, the Bread of revelation, and the Bread of blessing.

By faith, receive Him, eat of Him, delight in Him, partake of Him. He is fresh Bread, daily Bread.
Take as much as you can, again and again, there will always be enough and more than enough.
Jesus is Bread baked in the oven of  affliction. The Bread of our sorrows and the Bread of our tears. He is the Bread of all mercies, the Bread of all compassion, and the Bread of all grace.

Bread of life.
Bread of glory.
Bread of beauty.
Bread of health.
Bread of deliverance.
Bread of joyful journeys.


Bread of Heaven, feed me…nourish my soul…fill my hunger… be my strength. Be in every fiber of my being, in every heartbeat, in every longing, in every hope, in every work, in every step, in every plan, in every purpose.

©2016 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow, photo by Marina Bromley, Marina's Kitchen Table. Reprint permissions at meadowrequests@gmail.com  This post first appeared online in 12/2008. 

Friday, December 2, 2016

Meeting in the Meadow: Our Home

Our Home
by Roy Lessin

That is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.” But it was to us that God revealed these things by his Spirit. For his Spirit searches out everything and shows us God’s deep secrets. 

Jesus came to us from heaven, lived among us, and returned to heaven. Heaven is His home and it is ours. Jesus talked a lot about heaven and told us that He was going there to prepare a place for us, and what a place it must be!


One of the things that the Holy Spirit is working within the hearts of God’s people is the knowledge that heaven is greater than anything we have ever thought about or imagined. Reading books about heaven, looking at paintings about heaven, or even listening to stories about heaven don’t help us very much. These sources are much too limited to give us a full account.

The Bible mentions heaven many times, but it does not tell us a lot about the details of heaven. The Scripture passage in 1 Corinthians 2:9-10 may explain why. It appears that the subject of heaven and what God has ahead for us is so big, so great, so awesome, and so overwhelmingly magnificent that God could only say, “If I painted it, your eye couldn’t grasp it all; if I told it, your ear couldn’t absorb it all; if I wrote it; your mind couldn’t imagine it all.”

Often, people who do not listen to what the Holy Spirit is saying, tend to minimize heaven. They think that life here on earth (based on what they have seen, heard, or imagined) is as good as it gets. Their concept of heaven is not very exciting, but rather dull, monotonous and boring; they know nothing of the language, the sounds, the sights, and the realities of heaven.

What is God saying to you in 1 Corinthians 2:9-10? He is saying, “Have you seen snow capped mountains, rushing rivers, white-sand beaches, rain forests, or redwood forests? Have you been to Yosemite, the Grand Canyon, Niagara Falls, or Yellowstone? Have you toured the seven natural wonders of the world? Even if you have seen them all, they cannot begin to describe what your eyes will see in heaven. You will have to see it for yourself, for even if I used every word you can presently understand, or let your imagination explore its farthest boundaries, you would not grasp it. I have sent the Holy Spirit to let you in on some of my secrets; to let you know that it’s all true; to assure you that its better than you think; to fan the flame of your hope; to give you a foretaste of things to come; and to assure you that at my right hand there are pleasures forevermore.” 


“There is no need to be worried by facetious people who try to make the Christian hope of ‘Heaven’ ridiculous by saying they do not want ‘to spend eternity playing harps’. The answer to such people is that if they cannot understand books written for grown-ups, they should not talk about them.”
-C.S. Lewis.

© 2016 Roy Lessin, Meeting in the Meadow. Used with permission. Photo property of Marina Bromley, Marina's Kitchen Table. For reprint information, please email meadowrequests@gmail.com