Listening

“My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.

22 Do not merely listen to the word, and so deceive yourselves. Do what it says.”

James 1:19-22 NIV

Listening is a skill we all need to use more often and a way of communicating that could get us much closer to peace in our life.  If we were better at listening there would be less divorce and broken families…if we were better at listening there would be less violence and crime as hate and anger would not be stirred up so quickly.  Listening involves taking time to understand what the other person is saying, it involves empathy.  It means not being so quick to respond with your own will and desires as first priority…it takes humility to really listen…it takes a willingness to admit we don’t have all the answers.  Think about recent interactions in your life…when are you hearing and when are you listening?  I know I can do better.  Lastly, communicating with God takes more than just talking, if we are doing all the talking in prayer when do we take the time to listen to Him?  May we all be blessed with courage and humility to listen better.  Amen.

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“Show me your ways, O Lord, teach me your paths; guide me in your truth and teach me, for you are God my Savior, and my hope is in you all day long.”

Psalm 25:4-5 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2016 along Beartooth Pass in Montana)

Open Ended Praying

Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
    for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go,
    for to you I entrust my life.”

Psalm 143:8 NIV

When you pray leave room for God’s will and God’s plan to be the way you should go.  We tend to think we have things all figured out and we just need to top it off with a quick FYI to God to get Him on board.  Surrendering to God’s will and God’s plan means we are open to a new way for things to go…maybe in a way we haven’t considered or thought about yet…be open ended in your prayers…make room for God’s way in your life.  Amen.

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Rejoice in the Lord always. I will say it again: Rejoice! Let your gentleness be evident to all. The Lord is near. Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.”

Philippians 4:4-7 NIV

(This photo was taken in March of 2018 while traveling in southern New Mexico)

Listen…Learn

My dear brothers and sisters, pay attention to what I say. Everyone should be quick to listen. But they should be slow to speak. They should be slow to get angry. 20 Human anger doesn’t produce the holy life God wants. 21 So get rid of everything that is sinful. Get rid of the evil that is all around us. Don’t be too proud to accept the word that is planted in you. It can save you.”

James 1:19-21 NIRV

Lord, show me your ways.
    Teach me how to follow you.
Guide me in your truth. Teach me.
    You are God my Savior.
    I put my hope in you all day long.”

Psalm 25:4-5 NIRV

Wisdom is important in living…Wisdom comes from learning…learning comes from reading or listening to God’s Word…spend time with God, pray, be apart of worship in some way.  Put God first in your life…look for Him…listen for His guidance and learn how He wants you to live.  Amen.

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Your word is like a lamp that shows me the way.
    It is like a light that guides me.”

Psalm 119:105 NIRV

(This photo was taken in July of 2019 on a lake in northwestern Wisconsin)

Listen And Be Encouraged

This post was originally published in November of 2020…

My dear brothers and sisters, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry, 20 because human anger does not produce the righteousness that God desires. 21 Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you.”

James 1:19-21 NIV

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Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen. 30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God, with whom you were sealed for the day of redemption. 31 Get rid of all bitterness, rage and anger, brawling and slander, along with every form of malice. 32 Be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving each other, just as in Christ God forgave you.”

Ephesians 4:29-32 NIV

(This photo was taken in July of 2019 at a lake near Plymouth, Minnesota)

Listen…Learn

My dear brothers and sisters, pay attention to what I say. Everyone should be quick to listen. But they should be slow to speak. They should be slow to get angry. 20 Human anger doesn’t produce the holy life God wants. 21 So get rid of everything that is sinful. Get rid of the evil that is all around us. Don’t be too proud to accept the word that is planted in you. It can save you.”

James 1:19-21 NIRV

Lord, show me your ways.
    Teach me how to follow you.
Guide me in your truth. Teach me.
    You are God my Savior.
    I put my hope in you all day long.”

Psalm 25:4-5 NIRV

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Your word is like a lamp that shows me the way.
    It is like a light that guides me.”

Psalm 119:105 NIRV

(This photo was taken in July of 2019 on a lake in northwestern Wisconsin)

A Guide For Your Path

Your word is a lamp for my feet,
    a light on my path.”

Psalm 119:105

All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, 17 so that the servant of God[a] may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.”

2 Timothy 3:16-17

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I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go;
    I will counsel you with my loving eye on you.”

Psalm 32:8

(This photo was taken in July of 2016 on Beartooth Pass in Montana)

Prayer And Faith

“Have faith in God,” Jesus answered. 23 “Truly[a] I tell you, if anyone says to this mountain, ‘Go, throw yourself into the sea,’ and does not doubt in their heart but believes that what they say will happen, it will be done for them. 24 Therefore I tell you, whatever you ask for in prayer, believe that you have received it, and it will be yours.”

Mark 11:22-24

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If you remain in me and my words remain in you, ask whatever you wish, and it will be done for you. This is to my Father’s glory, that you bear much fruit, showing yourselves to be my disciples.”

John 15:7-8

(This photo was taken in May of 2020 along the North Shore of Lake Superior)

Relationship

The most important relationship in our lives is our relationship with Jesus Christ our Savior and Lord.  Like any relationship the most important element to having a good relationship is time…we need to devote time to be with Him, the talk with Him and to listen to Him.  Spend time with Jesus.  Amen.

“Rejoice always, 17 pray continually, 18 give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”

1 Thessalonians 5:16-18

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He says, “Be still, and know that I am God;
    I will be exalted among the nations,
    I will be exalted in the earth.”

Psalm 46:10

(This photo was taken in July of 2018 along the shore of Lake Superior near Ashland, Wisconsin)

Listen To God’s Word

Your word is a lamp for my feet,
    a light on my path.”

Psalm 119:105

The unfolding of your words gives light;
    it gives understanding to the simple.”

Psalm 119:130

You are my refuge and my shield;
    I have put my hope in your word.”

Psalm 119:114

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Trust in the Lord with all your heart
    and lean not on your own understanding;
in all your ways submit to him,
    and he will make your paths straight.”[a]

Proverbs 3:5-6

(This photo was taken in July of 2016 in Theodore Roosevelt National Park in North Dakota)

Quiet Time

It is so easy to fill all our time with this and that, going here and there especially at this time of the year…even during a pandemic.  We can be so busy that we hardly spend any time in the moment during this season.  The bible has several reminders that we need to spend time alone with God in peaceful quietness.  Jesus often went off alone to pray…give yourself time to renew your mind, body and spirit.  Spend time alone with God and you will find peace.  Amen.

The Lord is the everlasting God,
    the Creator of the ends of the earth.
He will not grow tired or weary,
    and his understanding no one can fathom.
29 He gives strength to the weary
    and increases the power of the weak.
30 Even youths grow tired and weary,
    and young men stumble and fall;
31 but those who hope in the Lord
    will renew their strength.

Isaiah 40:28-31

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“Come near to God and he will come near to you…”

James 4:8

(This photo was taken in July of 2019 at a lake in northwestern Wisconsin)