Wednesday, June 29, 2011

God's Grace


Last Thursday I did a teaching at the nursing home about God's grace.  I think sometimes we forget about God's grace or how important it is.  Do you even know what his grace means on our lives. 

Grace is basically undeserved favor of God.  As Christians most of us know that all that God has already given us we do not deserve it.  When we deserved death he gave us life.  While we were yet sinners Christ died for us. Romans 5:8.  This is so awesome because While we were still in our mess God decided to still save us anyway.  I like to always think of when Jesus went to the cross for you and I.  We know that he knew all things while he was here and he knew that so many would reject him and not believe that he was the Son Of Man but he still went to the cross for those also.  That is pure Love.  He did not have to do what he did but he did.  God shows he grace to us each day we wake up.  It was by his grace that we see each day that we see.  It is by his grace that we are able to serve him without feeling guilt of what we have done in out past.  It is by his grace and his grace alone. His grace bought upon salvation.  We are saved by Grace.  Ephesians 2:8.  Does not matter how many days a week you go to church, how many bible tracks you give out, how many times a day you pray but by his grace alone you are saved.  Throughout the bible you can see God's grace in each situation but today I would like to look at the Israelites.  

The Israelites were a people that God showed his Grace upon.   These were a people that God showed Undeserved favor upon.  They did not believe in him, they did not pray to God, they had nothing to do with God but he decided to chose these people as a nation that he would make Abram a father of.  He promised Abram and he did not turn away from that promise.   How familiar that sound?  think of how long you were an unbeliever and God still showed his Grace.  Just look back on what he has already done and the amount of Grace he has shown your from the time you were young until now.

How did God show his Grace upon these people?  He delivered them from Pharaoh, He protected the first born Sons of the Israelites, he protected them at the red sea from Pharaoh's army, he provided manna from heaven for them to eat, they were provided by the Egyptians goods for them and their families.   God showed all this Grace to them and they still murmured and complained.  How many times have we murmured and complained even when God's grace is being active right then and there in our lives.  He gave them everything they needed to survive but it was not how they wanted it to be so they were still unhappy.  Why what God has already done in out lives never enough?  Ask yourself that question today.  Why is it that from the time I was young until today I can see how much grace God has shown me yet I still mummer and complain?  Even in our murmuring and  complaining God Grace abounds even more.  The bible says in Romans 5:20-21 where sin abounds grace abounds even more.  How much love is that?  The more the Israelites complained the more God did for them.  Think of the shoes.  They walked that desert for 40 years and their shoes did not wear out.  That is Grace right there.  You are wearing shoes daily walking around a huge desert and you were still taken care of.  That is how God does us today.  He takes care of us year after year while he waits for us to trust him more, serve him more,  study his word more, pray to him more, honor him more....

Today let's see God's Grace in our lives.  Let's reflect on what he has already done for us.  2 Cor 12:9 states that his grace is sufficient enough.  His Grace alone is enough why because his grace brought his precious son to the cross for you and I.

Prayer:  God I thank you for your Grace.  I thank you that your Grace is sufficient enough for me.  Please help me to see your grace in my life.  If you did not do another thing for me I am happy with what you have already done for me in my life.  Help me to understand your grace and how free of a gift it is.  Thank you for not giving me what I deserve but for giving me according to the potential that is in me as a servant.  I love you with all of my heart.  Bless me with your Grace tonight.  It renews every morning and I receive it.  In Jesus name I pray Amen.

Tuesday, June 21, 2011

Dwelling In the Shelter


 


“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty.”
Psalm 91:1

 I just found this scripture and I can think of so many ways to show how this is so true.  Dwelling in his shelter is being covered in his goodness, his likeness, his promises, his mercies and grace.  We find shelter in knowing that he is a good God all the time.  We find shelter knowing that his promises are true that when we read them in his word we can hold them as truth and know that they will come to pass.

When a child is in the shelter of their mother they know that when they are with them they are safe even if they feel they are in an unsafe place. When there are tornados and hurricanes we know that they shelter that they provide for us is safer than being in our home so we go there.  The same and better it is with God.  We know that this shelter is from the Most High God.  We know that if we are dwelling in the shelter of the Almighty we will surely rest in it.  To rest in his shelter is to be comfortable and at home.  To know that you are safe.  to know that when you lay your burdens, your cares upon him you can rest knowing that he has them covered.  That is is working everything out for your good.   Tonight I am going to rest in the shadow of the Almighty because I dwell with the Most High God and in any situation I can find rest. 

Prayer

Father God I thank you that you are the Most High God, that no other gods compare to you. I thank you that you give me rest in you. That if I am a yours and if I dwell in the shelter of the Most High I can find rest in the you!  During my times of uncertanity give me rest because I am your child.  I love you and want all the rest you are willing to give me if I just dwell in you.  In Jesus Name I Pray Amen

Monday, June 20, 2011

Daily Verse

Above all else, guard your heart,
   for everything you do flows from it.

Proverbs 4:23

Verse Of The Day

Verse of The Day
“What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul?”
Mark 8:36

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Some Health Tips

I have had my bout with some a health issue and one of by bouts was High blood pressure.  I had a problem with it because Of having such an allergic reaction to a medication that I was on that it took my pressure through the roof.  Now I was borderline hypertensive because of the foods that I was eating.  before my medication scare my pressure reading would show 130-140 / 85- 89.  Of course I was eating sausage and bacon and things like that before I would go but no one ever told me that this was so dangerous.  Not until I was getting readings 154/ 100 one day when I went to the emergence room.  I had to get on medication for it and the medication made me feel so bad that my quality of life was disappearing.  I was always sick from the medication even 21/2 months of taking it.  I decide that I had to do something about this naturally and that there had to be some ways to do so.  I started searching on line and starting finding out things that I could do naturally to help me.  I have such low tolerance for medication that I had to do something.  I searched for weeks and found info everywhere but this site I used most of the tips here and I now get readings averaging around 110/73.  I used some of them daily and the others about 3 days a weeks.  These helped me.  There are about two that I did not use and one that was N/A. 

 

*1. Go for power walks 


Hypertensive patients who walked at a brisk pace lowered pressure by almost 8 mmhg over 6 mmhg. Exercise helps the heart use oxygen more efficiently, so it doesn’t work as hard to pump blood. Get a vigorous cardio workout of at least 30 minutes on most days of the week. Try increasing speed or distance so you keep challenging your ticker.  



2. Breathe deeply


Slow breathing and meditative practices such as qigong, yoga, and tai chi decrease stress hormones, which elevate renin, a kidney enzyme that raises blood pressure. Try 5 minutes in the morning and at night. Inhale deeply and expand your belly. Exhale and release all of your tension.



3. Pick potassium-rich produce


Loading up on potassium-rich fruits and vegetables is an important part of any blood pressure–lowering program, says Linda Van Horn, PhD, RD, professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medical. Aim for potassium levels of 2,000 to 4,000 mg a day, she says. Top sources of potassium-rich produce include sweet potatoes, tomatoes, orange juice, potatoes, bananas, kidney beans, peas, cantaloupe, honeydew melon, and dried fruits such as prunes and raisins.



4. Read food labels for sodium


Certain groups of people—the elderly, African Americans, and those with a family history of high blood pressure—are more likely than others to have blood pressure that's particularly salt (or sodium) sensitive. But because there's no way to tell whether any one individual is sodium sensitive, everyone should lower his sodium intake, says Eva Obarzanek, PhD, a research nutritionist at the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute. How far? To 1,500 mg daily, about half the average American intake, she says. (Half a teaspoon of salt contains about 1,200 mg of sodium.)

Cutting sodium means more than going easy on the saltshaker, which contributes just 15% of the sodium in the typical American diet. Watch for sodium in processed foods, Obarzanek warns. That’s where most of the sodium in your diet comes from, she says. Season foods with spices, herbs, lemon, and salt-free seasoning blends.



5. Indulge in dark chocolate


Dark varieties contain flavanols that make blood vessels more elastic. In one study, 18% of patients who ate it every day saw blood pressure decrease. Have 1/2 ounce daily (make sure it contains at least 70% cocoa).



6. Take a supplement


In a review of 12 studies, researchers found that coenzyme Q10 reduced blood pressure by up to 17 mmhg over 10 mmhg. The antioxidant, required for energy production, dilates blood vessels. Ask your doctor about taking a 60 to 100 mg supplement up to 3 times a day.



7. Drink alcohol—but not too much


According to a review of 15 studies, the less you drink, the lower your blood pressure will drop—to a point. A study of women at Boston's Brigham and Women's Hospital, for example, found that light drinking (defined as one-quarter to one-half a drink per day for a woman) may actually reduce blood pressure more than no drinks per day. One "drink" is 12 ounces of beer, 5 ounces of wine, or 1.5 ounces of spirits.

Other studies have also found that moderate drinking—up to one drink a day for a woman, two for a man—can lower risks of heart disease. "High levels of alcohol are clearly detrimental," says Obarzanek. "But moderate alcohol is protective of the heart. If you are going to drink, drink moderately."

8. Go decaf


Scientists have long debated the effects of caffeine on blood pressure. Some studies have shown no effect, but one from Duke University Medical Center found that caffeine consumption of 500 mg—roughly three 8-ounce cups of coffee—increased blood pressure by 4 mmhg, and that effect lasted until bedtime. For reference, 8 ounces of drip coffee contain 100 to 125 mg; the same amount of tea, 50 mg; an equal quantity of cola, about 40 mg.

Caffeine can raise blood pressure by tightening blood vessels and by magnifying the effects of stress, says Jim Lane, PhD, associate research professor at Duke and the lead author of the study. "When you're under stress, your heart starts pumping a lot more blood, boosting blood pressure," he says. "And caffeine exaggerates that effect." If you drink a lot of joe, pour more decaf to protect your ticker.



9. Take up tea


Lowering high blood pressure is as easy as one, two, tea: Study participants who sipped 3 cups of a hibiscus tea daily lowered systolic blood pressure by 7 points in 6 weeks on average, say researchers from Tufts University—results on par with many prescription medications. Those who received a placebo drink improved their reading by only 1 point.

The phytochemicals in hibiscus are probably responsible for the large reduction in high blood pressure, say the study authors. Many herbal teas contain hibiscus; look for blends that list it near the top of the chart of ingredients—this often indicates a higher concentration per serving.





10. Work (a little) less


Putting in more than 41 hours per week at the office raises your risk of hypertension by 15%, according to a University of California, Irvine, study of 24,205 California residents. Overtime makes it hard to exercise and eat healthy, says Haiou Yang, PhD, the lead researcher. It may be difficult to clock out super early in today’s tough economic times, but try to leave at a decent hour—so you can go to the gym or cook a healthy meal—as often as possible. Set an end-of-day message on your computer as a reminder to turn it off and go home.



11. Relax with music


Need to bring down your blood pressure a bit more than medication or lifestyle changes can do alone? The right tunes can help, according to researchers at the University of Florence in Italy. They asked 28 adults who were already taking hypertension pills to listen to soothing classical, Celtic, or Indian music for 30 minutes daily while breathing slowly. After a week, the listeners had lowered their average systolic reading by 3.2 points; a month later, readings were down 4.4 points.



12. Seek help for snoring


It’s time to heed your partner’s complaints and get that snoring checked out. Loud, incessant snores are one of the main symptoms of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA). University of Alabama researchers found that many sleep apnea sufferers also had high levels of aldosterone, a hormone that can boost blood pressure. In fact, it’s estimated that half of all people with sleep apnea have high blood pressure.

If you have sleep apnea, you may experience many brief yet potentially life-threatening interruptions in your breathing while you sleep. In addition to loud snoring, excessive daytime tiredness and early morning headaches are also good clues. If you have high blood pressure, ask your doctor if OSA could be behind it; treating sleep apnea may lower aldosterone levels and improve BP.

 

*Please Consult your physician before changing your diet or getting on any time of exercise schedule or taking supplements.


I hope this help you as it has helped me. Stay in prayer about your body and health and if you desire to be more health God will help you. 

Dear friend, I pray that you may enjoy good health and that all may go well with you, even as your soul is getting along well.  3John 1:2 NIV

Sunday, June 5, 2011

A Poem From The Heart

I have been asking those that I know love God to share their gifts and talents that he has given them.  This one person that I am about to share with you is a wonderful Woman.  I have know her for about two years.   We have never met in person but we met when we  were designers on the same scrapbooking site and then moved to another scrapbooking site that was called Christian Crafters were our layouts and creations were based on God and his precious son.  I have learned that she is a very talented poet.  She writes these wonderful poems that uplift me heart.  I love her because she Loves Christ and is not defined by what the world says that makes you a Christian but what the bible says about what makes you a Christian.  I love that because with myself I do what the bible teaches and I try to stay away from what man says.  you have to know to go to your word and make sure what someone is telling you are the same standard that are in the Book.  So I hope that Devonne does not mind me talking about her so much but she is wonderful and she is an inspiration to me because She is one of those that say I am not my hair I am not my skin but I am who God says I am.  So here is one of the many great poems that she has given me to display on Beautiful Awakening and I am sure that it will bless someone.  I am not going to comment after the poem but i want it to minister to you however it will.  Here is a poem from Devonne Morgan!!!

Friday, June 3, 2011

Practice What You Preach

 Matthew 23:1-4

 THEN JESUS said to the multitudes and to His disciples,
    The scribes and Pharisees sit on Moses' seat [of authority].
    So observe and practice all they tell you; but do not do what they do, for they preach, but do not practice.
    They tie up heavy loads, hard to bear, and place them on men's shoulders, but they themselves will not lift a finger to help bear them.

It is very important that we are practicing what we are preaching to others.  Jesus warned of this.  The one things that has always bothered me the most is that someone tried to share the word of God with me and then were not living anything that they were trying to teach me.  We as believers have to be careful of this.  Doing what the Pharisees were doing can cause people to distance themselves from God.  It can cause unbelievers to never want anything to do with God and that is where we will have to give an account one day for that.  Be sure today in this devotional that when you are at work, at the gym in the grocery store or wherever you are you are living and practicing what you are preaching.

God Bless Toccara

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

DevotionalJune 1st

Some trust in and boast in Chariots and some in horses, but we will trust in and boast of the name of the Lord our God.  Psalm 20:7

This day is the day of a brand new month, if yesterday your were boasting about things you  cannot take with you to glory one day choose today to put this scripture into practice.   Paul once said "Not that I have already obtained all this... He stated that although he had accomplished many things for God and that he was rooted and grounded in Christ, he did not Boast in his accomplishments but he kept working as if he had not obtained anything.  He boasted in the Lord, he boasted in God's goodness, he mercies, and his grace.  So be careful what you are boasting in and make sure that whatever you are boasting in that is is from trust in God and that his name is being exalted.

God Bless,

Toccara