Sunday, 31 October 2010

“Become Like Me”

“When they saw the courage of Peter and John and realized that they were unschooled, ordinary men, they were astonished and they took note that these men had been with Jesus” (Acts 4, 13 NIV).

I recently had a dream that I would like to share with you. In this dream was a young boy that I know who is about 6 years old who was preaching to a group of children his age. As I observed him in this dream, I thought that this is not like he usually behaves. His talk was bold and it seemed to me that he felt totally confident and consumed by this new and more mature character that had become his. He so much reminded me of his 25 year old big brother. And in my dream, as I was thinking about why he had become like his big brother, I realized two important things; Firstly, I knew that he loved and admired his brother very much. Secondly, the more time that he spent with this brother that he loved, the more he became like him. He spoke like him and he acted like him.

This is the great joy we also have as brothers and sisters in Christ. The more time we spend with Jesus Christ, the lover of our souls, the more we become like Him. So the more time that you spend in His Word and listen to the leading of the Holy Spirit, the more you will reflect Him in your walk and talk. This is what the world needs! They need to see and experience the reality of Jesus Christ in you, the hope of Glory. I tell you, chose to invest time in your relationship with Him each and every day of your life and you will start to experience a transformation of your own personality. You will talk like Him, you will act like Him and you will greatly impact the lives of others and point them to Jesus.

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Suzanne Tanner

Saturday, 23 October 2010

“There Is Strength In Weakness”

“But he said to me, ‘My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.’ Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ's power may rest on me"(2 Corinthians 12:9).

I recently had such a liberating experience about weakness which I would like to share with you today. We got together as a group of women to learn all about the benefits of walking as a source of fitness. One of the things we received for attending this orientation was a free pedometer. This is a little instrument you attach close to your hip and when you start walking it counts how many steps you take and how many calories you can burn. The funny thing about this tool was that when were holding it in our hands and given the instructions how to set the parameters, you could just see on all our foreheads an invisible big question mark. One woman had the boldness or perhaps it was just her meek nature to ask, “I don’t understand how it works, please help me.” This powerful statement broke the ice instantly and I could just sense such a relief, freedom and ease as we all could admit that we were weak in this area and were in desperate help. The help was right there and our instructor was most willing to set the parameters for us and help us operate our pedometer.

It seems like a paradox doesn’t it, but there is strength in weakness! Why? Because when you admit that you are weak, an immediate strength will replace a wall of insecurity. You know you don’t have to be insecure or fear rejection anymore because the power and freedom of Christ will come and overshadow and cover you. Ask the Holy Spirit for help in every weak situation and I promise you that you will experience the power of Christ resting on you. This is when you will be made perfect and others will follow your example!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Suzanne Tanner

Sunday, 17 October 2010

"When Thankfulness Enters Your Heart"

“When I consider your heavens, the work of your fingers, the moon and the stars, which you have set in place, what is man that you are mindful of him, the son of man that you care for him?” (Psalm 8: 3 & 4 NIV).

I know I have been writing a lot of devotionals about my experiences in the garden, but I have to tell you that I learned a lot of principles of God just by observing and working in the yard. One of the things I have learned is to be thankful to God for all He gives to us.

Recently I reflected on our raised garden beds and the growth of our squash plant. We basically just sowed a couple of seeds and then waited. And now a few days ago we were able to harvest our first huge squash. When I looked at it I was reminded that I had invested practically no work at all. This vegetable literally grew on its own by the grace and hand of God. He was the one that gave the seed in the first place, and He sent the rain and put the sun into place. He did it all and who am I that He would be mindful of me and take care of me?

I just felt today that I wanted to encourage you with the growth of my squash. Thankfulness is truly a gift of God isn’t it? As you see how big God really is and that He is so mindful of you and takes such good care of you, you will experience what it means to know that you were created to worship the one and only true living God. Whatever it might be, put your entire trust in Him and then watch Him perform miracle after miracle in your life. That is the way of worship and that is the life God intends for you.

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Suzanne Tanner

Wednesday, 13 October 2010

"All About Hidden Things"

"He reveals deep and hidden things; he knows what lies in darkness, and light dwells with him" (Daniel 2:22 NIV).

One good thing about having your whole backyard nearly torn up is that you get to see how a good size garage is being built. It was very interesting for me to watch the construction workers doing their job. I thought that there is such a lot of preparation to be done before they can pour the concrete onto the ground. Exact measurements are made, a framework is put into place and thick steel wires are installed that will hold the concrete together and guarantee a strong foundation. In the process of this construction I also got to see what the drainage really looks like before it is buried in the ground.

So this leads me to think that some things are completely hidden to the human eye like the steel wire and some things like the drainage that are only partly visible. I think that the French author Antoine de Saint-Exupéry rightly concluded "We see well only with our hearts. The important things are invisible to the eyes." As a child of God you have the benefit and privilege to access the Spirit of God that will lead you into all truth. Can you imagine this huge realm of deep and hidden secrets that waits to be unveiled to you? All you need to do is open your eyes and ears to the Holy Spirit and expect that what you see is only part of the puzzle. The LORD holds in His hands all other pieces and sees the whole picture. This is a good starting point as this is the foundation for your walk in the Spirit!

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Suzanne Tanner

Saturday, 2 October 2010

"Read the Manual!"

“Do not let this Book of the Law depart from your mouth; meditate on it day and night, so that you may be careful to do everything written in it. Then you will be prosperous and successful”(Joshua 1:8 NIV).

Are you perhaps someone that doesn’t like to read manuals and directions? Are you somebody that wants to unpack the equipment or appliance as soon as you get home and use it right away without delay? If that’s you, then that makes two of us.

Well I have some failure stories to tell you today. The first story was the one of our washing machine that broke down and the second one was the kitchen mixer that all of a sudden stopped working. Why? Well, it was mainly my lack of patience and interest which led to ignorance and failure. I tell you I won’t make these same mistakes again. From now on I will take the time to read the directions and handle my appliances with better care and insight. I know now that this will lead to a longer life span of my appliances, and besides, it is just a good thing to be knowledgeable, don’t you think so?

I just couldn’t help but think about what the Lord had said to Joshua. As he filled himself with the Word of God, Joshua became prosperous and successful. He became strong and courageous, and the one and only successor of Moses that would lead the people of Israel into the Promised Land. The same applies for you today too! Take time daily to meditate on God’s manual – the Bible - by turning your ear to wisdom and applying your heart to understanding. This is God’s way to let you grow in stability, insight and wisdom so that you can take good care of eternal matters here and now.

Have a wonderfully blessed day!

Suzanne Tanner