Apple of Your Eye

Did you know the phrase “Apple of My Eye” comes from the Hebrew expression “little man of the eye”? It refers to the reflection of yourself that you can see in another person’s pupil. To be the apple of someone’s eye means you are entirely focused on that person in front of you.  Today I looked into my kids and wife’s eyes to the point I could see my reflection. I tried to have them see their reflection too.  While we shared a laugh at the request, the focus and proximity helped me draw close to this scripture.

Keep my commandments and live, and my law as the apple of your eye.  Proverbs 7:2

How do you approach your time with scripture? As a duty just to be completed as quickly as possible, or as an incredible opportunity to get to know God more? I pray to be more like David (from the Bible“Oh, how I love Your law!” Psalm 119:97

We live in an eye-appealing world.  A place that keeps us focused on entertainment, technology, or busyness.  In a dark place where it can all be about us, turn our eyes to God. Without becoming familiar with God’s Word and learning to shine a light on our problems, we will surely stumble in the dark.

Have a blessed day,

Preacher, promise, person, provision, proclamation, privilege

As a young writer who never loved to write but would do it when asked, I would often be asked to work on those run-on sentences. The ideas would get flowing, and the and’s would be used.  Too much to share and not enough sentences.  (haha) As I read Romans 1, I stopped after reading verses 1-7.  All one sentence.  But none of my sentences have ever been as profound as what Paul shares.

Paul, a servant[a] of Christ Jesus, called to be an apostle, set apart for the gospel of God, 2 which he promised beforehand through his prophets in the holy Scriptures, 3 concerning his Son, who was descended from David[b] according to the flesh 4 and was declared to be the Son of God in power according to the Spirit of holiness by his resurrection from the dead, Jesus Christ our Lord, 5 through whom we have received grace and apostleship to bring about the obedience of faith for the sake of his name among all the nations, 6 including you who are called to belong to Jesus Christ,7 To all those in Rome who are loved by God and called to be saints:Grace to you and peace from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ.

This greeting to the Roman Christians covers the whole gospel in these verses.  Sending an opening statement that sets our foundation for faith.  The commentary I read by Pastor John MacArthur broke these verses down by the following.

Verse 1  The preacher  Paul – preacher of the good news. 
Verse 2  The promise  Gospel promised in the Old Testament. The New Testament is the fulfillment of the Old Testament. 
Verse 3  The person  His Son – Jesus 
Verse 5 The provision  We will inherit grace and apostleship.  Grace that we can’t earn 
Verse 6 The proclamation To bring everyone to the obedience of faith. 
Verse 7  The privilege  God loves us, and we are called to salvation. 


So, we see the preacher of the good news, the promise of the good news, the person of the good news, the provision of the good news—grace and apostleship—the proclamation of the good news.  And it is a proclamation of obedience. Lastly, we are loved by God and called to salvation. 

What an opening statement to the Roman Christians.  What an opening statement to us today as we trust in the words of Paul in our lives today.  

I know God will be glorified in your life today as you respond to His good news and proclaim it to those we talk with today and have ears to hear.

I pray for our obedience and faith today.


Today’s Readings: 2 Samuel 15-17, Psalm 3, Psalm 63, Romans 1


Holy Spirit

Today’s Reading: 1 Samuel 28-29, 1 Chronicles 9, Acts 19

As I read the verses today, there were stories of mediums (1 Samuel 28) and evil spirits that beat up and ran out Jewish priests (Acts 19:14). I searched for connections.  As I continued to read, I came across a question that caused me to pause.  It was a question that caused me to reflect and take inventory.

Did you receive the Holy Spirit when you became believers?

This question made me reflect and look at the various commentaries on this question.  Paul found out that there were different stages of spiritual knowledge and understanding.

It made me think of our world. People have different thoughts about our Lord. Some people prefer the Ala-cart Lord, where we can select the part of the Bible we like to hear.  Some people are not familiar with Him at all. Some people have given their whole life to Him and have received the Holy Spirit.  This question makes me think of the Parable of the Sower Matthew 13:1-23. ( “Whoever has ears, let them hear.”)

When Christianity was established, and the new covenant was introduced, there were many Jews who found it very difficult to make all the transitions.  Some may say that transitioning from a life without the Lord to a life with the Lord is too hard.  I agree; it is hard when I try to do things myself.  When I rely on Him and the Holy Spirit — All things are possible.  Have you come into the fullness of experiencing all that God has provided for you? 

Here are a few additional verses that remind us that if you know God through Christ, the Spirit comes as a gift.

Romans 8:9 You, however, are not in the realm of the flesh but are in the realm of the Spirit, if indeed the Spirit of God lives in you. And if anyone does not have the Spirit of Christ, they do not belong to Christ. 

1 Corinthians 6:19  Do you not know that your bodies are temples of the Holy Spirit, who is in you, whom you have received from God? You are not your own; 

Ezekial 36:26 I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit in you; I will remove from you your heart of stone and give you a heart of flesh. 


Lord, our desire is to know the fullness of all that is granted through salvation.  We thank You for your Word and thank You for sending Your Holy Spirit to be the strength of our life.

The Story of Two Saul’s

1 Samuel 11-13, Psalm 38, Acts 9

Today as I read these passages, I heard the story of two Sauls.  I was familiar with them both, but reflecting on these two stories simultaneously was interesting.

1 Samuel 11-13

The Book of Samuel is a book of great beginnings…and tragic endings. The beginning of Saul’s life talked about his humble leadership (9:21; 10:22) and was God’s choice as Isreal’s first king (10:24). His early reign was marked by leadership (chapter 11).  I will hold on to details, but eventually, Saul disobeys God, becomes jealous and paranoid, and eventually has his kingship taken away by God.  Saul’s life continues after these chapters going downward.  Eventually, deciding to take his own life.  This story will capture the reign and decline of the first king of Isreal.

Acts 9

In Acts, we find another Saul who is on the road to Damascus.  Saul was a non-believer who pursued Christians to either put them in jail or have them killed.   But on this road, he was confronted by the Lord (9:3) and brought face-to-face with the truth of the Gospel.  Saul eventually turns into the apostle Paul we read about, who shapes the history of Christianity.

Sometimes God breaks into our lives spectacularly, or sometimes conversion may include a quiet conversation.  Either way, we read today about two journeys.  I think of how Lynden mentioned the journey of encouragement, adversity, and resolution.

What is going on in your journey today? Financial issues, health-related problems, raising children, issues with your job, marriage, all of the above?  What will you decide? Who will you believe? The world or the creator of the world?  None of these decisions will be easy, and they will take lots of faith in the Lord.  I see us on the same journey as both Saul’s we read about.  Will the world take you toward a downward spiral, or will you listen to the voice of the Lord?

Psalm 38

21 Forsake me not, O Lord: O my God, be not far from me.  22 Make hast to help me, O Lord my salvation.


And you shall remember that the Lord your God led you all the way these forty years in the wilderness, to humble you and test you, to know what was in your heart, whether you would keep his commandments or not.” Deuteronomy 8:2

Philippians 1:21 “For to me to live is Christ, and to die is gain.”


When we die?

Today’s Reading Joshua 18-21, Psalm 15, Luke 23 


This week as we remember, recognize, reflect, and celebrate the Lord and everything that happened this Holy Week, a portion of today’s readings focused on death. This led me to think about what happens when we die. I know this sounds pretty scary, morbid, or even a bit weird, but because of Adam and Eve and the choice to sin, every person ever since will eventually sin and die.  But wait…

Psalm 39:11 says Surely every man is a vapor.   So as the gray hair comes in, the wrinkles become more prominent, and the body can hurt from almost anything to nothing.  I’m reminded how our time passes with lightning speed. Unfortunately, this truth sadly includes the unforeseen events we have experienced with friends and family who have gone before us.  We are on this earth briefly, so we must diligently live wisely and well. 

The beginning of Romans says, “For the wages of sin is death….” 

What happens to people after death depends on the choices we make while we are alive. Those who don’t need God or those who decide they do.  The end of Romans gives us all hope from eternal death in hell.  Romans 6:23 says, “but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Jesus came over 2,000 years ago to die for the forgiveness of our sins. All we have to do to receive life in Heaven forever is believe that Jesus chose this Holy Week to die for us and that we choose to follow Him.  Even the criminal that was crucified next to Jesus was granted this gift in the last hours of his life.  

Luke 23 ends with the death of Jesus and being buried.  I’m thankful for this week. We get to celebrate what happens next.  We all will one day die.  I pray for many things to happen for myself and my family before this, but if I were to pray for one thing, it would be for us each to know our Lord so that in the day, whenever it may be, we will live eternally with Him in paradise.  

Truly, I say to you, today you will be with me in Paradise. Luke 23:43 


I Will Follow – Jon Guerra


Growing up, I can think of many phrases used by many adults when I decided to make some poor choices. I know I deserved many of these words and the consequences that came from the choices I made.   I don’t ever recall Deuteronomy 10:16 being quoted when being talked to. This verse has many versions, but I will use the Good News Version.

16 So then, from now on be obedient to the Lord and stop being stubborn.

Various mentors from churches and friends’ parents spoke to me in ways that helped plant a seed of truth and a seed to give hope to a disobedient person.  Today I still have those who speak life when the world presses in. Those who, instead of pointing to false hope, point to our true hope.  (I’m reflecting on a recent sermon I just heard)  Who speaks to you when you have any sense of doubt?

Deuteronomy 11:1-2 says, “Love the Lord your God and always obey all his laws. Remember today what you have learned about the Lord through your experiences with him. It was you, not your children, who had these experiences. You saw the Lord‘s greatness, his power, his might,

God is with you through it all.  We need to love, trust, and obey.  You may be asking, ” Can I wait?  What if I just put it off till another day or time? But…. as you read a little further.

26 “Today I am giving you the choice between a blessing and a curse— 27 a blessing, if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today; 28 but a curse, if you disobey these commands and turn away to worship other gods that you have never worshiped before. 

We have today.  This is your choice.  What will you choose?

But wait, how long will we have to obey? 

Deuteronomy 12:1  “Here are the laws that you are to obey as long as you live in the land that the Lord, the God of your ancestors, is giving you. Listen to them!

As long as we live. We have to listen, learn, trust, obey, and teach.  A while back, a friend of mine was talking about all the many amazing things he was doing to serve the Lord.  It is a true blessing how they were able to do so much.  My initial response based on what I had going on in my life was that I was praying to be more obedient.   I can tell the more obedience I have, the closer I feel to God.

“When that time comes, you must not do as you have been doing. Until now you have all been worshiping as you please, because you have not yet entered the land that the Lord your God is giving you, where you can live in peace. 

Dear Heavenly Father,

You know what we will all face, have faced, and are facing right now.  Let us each take time now to remember and lean in close to the love, grace, and true hope we only have in you.  Father, we know our disobedient selves need you, and nothing in this world will ever give us the true peace that comes from you.  We love you and submit our will to you today.  We need you. 


Today’s Reading: Deuteronomy 10-14, Psalm 5, Luke 8


Intimate Prayer

God loves us, coming to Him in prayer. There is no other time more intimate than prayer. He hears us when we silence the world and look only to Him.  Have you been able to experience this feeling yet today? The moments we all experience are full of anxiousness, joy, worry, gratefulness, and pain.  The list can go on depending on where you are in your current life stage and/or the circumstance you are walking through.

Psalm 28:6-7

Blessed be the Lord.

Because He has heard the voice of my supplications! The Lord is my strength and my shield. My heart trusted in Him, and I am helped. Therefore my heart greatly rejoices. And with my song I will praise Him.

Do you need strength?

Do you need protection?

Do you need help?

God is present right now.  It helps us stay close to God. We open our hearts to Him, and He can work in and through us.  Our relationship with Him grows closer with each prayer.

C.S. Lewis said, “I pray because I can’t help myself… I pray because the need flows out of me all the time, waking and sleeping. It doesn’t change God. It changes me.”

  • Delight yourself in Me; let Me become the Desire of your heart. Psalm 37:4
  • “And pray in the Spirit on all occasions with all kinds of prayers and requests. With this in mind, be alert and always keep praying for the Lords’ people. Ephesians 6:18
  • Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, faithful in prayer. Romans 12:12
  • Pray continually. 1 Thessalonians 5:17

Today’s Reading: Numbers 12-14, Psalm 28, Colossians 2


Writing for BibleJournal seven years ago seemed like a crazy idea initially.  Going through the bible in a year and having seven writers each week share their reflections, experiences, and wisdom they discovered as they dug into His Word and posted about it.  Yet, I was on fire for the Lord, and I had been able to see through my own and others’ life transformations in the making.  Still, to read through the Bible in a year and write about it all.  Not sure if I would be able to do this.  (I know to realize those thoughts come from the enemy speaking.)

Seven years later, we are still writing.  Like yesterday, when Lyden talked about the blueprint the Lord provides. Every day we get to share His Word, we provide blueprints to a well-lived life.  Whether we are reading, writing, praying, or listening to His Word, it is a day given to Him.

“Incline your ear and come to Me.
Listen, that you may live;
And I will make an everlasting covenant with you,
Isaiah 55:3

What about you? How does your morning, day, or night change when you are in His Word?   Let me count the ways…

Our reading today is Leviticus 12-14, Psalm 111, and Hebrews 5

The following verses grabbed my focus for today.

2Great are the works of the Lord,
    studied by all who delight in them.
Full of splendor and majesty is his work,
    and his righteousness endures forever.

We always take a detailed and focused interest in the projects and activities of those we deeply love.  So it is natural that we should love to study the Word of God, beginning with the Bible.

His Word is living and active (Hebrews 4:12)

Each day you spend reading, studying, and living out His Word is the opportunity to provide you with the weapons you need for our war.  You are given divine directions and instructions concerning anything you have going on in your life at this given moment.  The knowledge we receive in the Word leads to a direct path to eternal glory.

I thank you, Lord, for your Word; it is a lamp to our feet (Psalm 119:105 )


Have a blessed day!

Ten Commandments Then and Now

Today’s Reading: Exodus 19, 20, 21, Psalm 33, and Ephesians 5

As we read through today’s readings, we come upon the Ten Commandments. I pause and meditate to remind us of them and connect some of the new testament verses to the old.

“You shall have no other gods before[a] me.

“‘You shall worship the Lord your God, and him only shall you serve.’” Matthew 4:10 
“You shall not make idols.” “No servant can serve two masters.” Luke 16:13
You shall not take the name of the Lord your God in vain.” But I say to you, Do not take an oath at all, either by heaven, for it is the throne of God, Matthew 5:34 
“Remember the Sabbath day, to keep it holy.” “The Sabbath was made for man, not man for the Sabbath. Mark 2:27 
“Honor your father and your mother, that your days may be long in the land that the Lord your God is giving you.” Whoever loves father or mother more than me is not worthy of me, Matthew 10:37 
“You shall not murder” But I say to you that everyone who is angry with his brother[c] will be liable to judgment; Matthew 5:37 
“You shall not commit adultery. But I say to you that everyone who looks at a woman with lustful intent has already committed adultery with her in his heart. Matthew 5:28 
“You shall not steal.” And if anyone would sue you and take your tunic,[h] let him have your cloak as well. Matthew 5:40 
“You shall not bear false witness against your neighbor. I tell you, on the day of judgment, people will give account for every careless word they speak, Matthew 12:36 
“You shall not covet your neighbor’s house; you shall not covet your neighbor’s wife, or his male servant, or his female servant, or his ox, or his donkey, or anything that is your neighbor’s.”

“Take care, and be on your guard against all covetousness, for one’s life does not consist in the abundance of his possessions.” Luke 12:15 

Psalm 33:4  For the word of the Lord is upright,
    and all his work is done in faithfulness.

Trust, believe, and obey His words.  If you fall short, turn to Him, repent, and learn to live again.

Ephesians 5:1-2 Therefore be imitators of God, as beloved children. And walk in love, as Christ loved us and gave himself up for us.


Dear Lord, we pray for obedience.  Your laws were first created to provide us wisdom on how to live and show us how to serve one another.  Yet we often do fall short.  Lord, you then sent your son to model and spoke the truth.  Help us to live these commands out for You and a future place in your Kingdom.  Amen

Are we Confused yet?

Have you ever been confused? Silly question, I know. Merriam-Webster defines confused as; disturbing in mind or purpose.  As I reflected on the world today, many people and things can pull you in a direction that can lead you down a path of confusion outside of His Word and purpose for life.

Today’s Reading: Genesis 38-39, Psalm 108, and Galatians 1

I recently talked to a friend about the tug of various influences in my life that had me feeling overwhelmed and confused about what direction to approach.  We then got into the conversation of spiritual warfare and its impact on all of us.  We talked about the devil and his schemes to make us a question and feel confused when things are not going as planned.  We reminded each other that the devil is searching for ways to impact our walk with the Lord daily.  I left the time we shared with an additional resource to keep from this temporary state of confusion. One that I plan to get started on today.  The Weapons of Our Warfare by Kenneth Scott.

I share this recent conversation and resource because of the reminders shared by David and Paul today in our reading.

Psalm 108:12-13 O give us help against those who hate us. For the help of man is worth nothing. 13 With God’s help we will do great things. And He will break under His feet those who fight against us.

Galatians 1:6-7 I am surprised you are leaving Christ so soon. You were chosen through His loving-favor. But now you are turning and listening to another kind of good news. 7 No! There is not another kind of good news. There are some who would like to lead you in the wrong way. They want to change the Good News about Christ.

The Truth and importance of not straying from His Word.  Trying to figure it out myself, relying on my resources, or not seeking His direction through prayer can confuse me.  Our Peace, Hope, and Truth can only come from Him.  Nothing in the world can provide what we think we are looking for.  An enemy is prowling daily, trying to get us confused about what we should believe, trust, and understand about our lives.

Our Father in heaven, hallowed be your name, your kingdom come, your will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us today our daily bread. Forgive us our debts, as we also have forgiven our debtors. And lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from the evil one. Matthew 6:9-13