Genesis 5020

My Story for His Glory

Desperate to Know His Commands August 31, 2018

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 5:33 pm
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I don’t think I posted last week but I will just do the four verses I read this week from Psalm 119:

25 I lie in the dust;
    revive me by your word.
26 I told you my plans, and you answered.
    Now teach me your decrees.
27 Help me understand the meaning of your commandments,
    and I will meditate on your wonderful deeds.
28 I weep with sorrow;
    encourage me by your word.

A reoccurring theme in these verses is David’s desperate desire to know and understand God’s word, his commands, his decrees.

How did David get to the point of wanting to know them so badly? Sometimes I think it might be better if I don’t know, that way I don’t know if I screwed up. Just being real here.

But I know that is not what God desires. He wants an intimate relationship with us and the only for that to happen is to fully understand Him.

So I make these verses my prayer and know that God is faithful to answer.

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A Desire For God’s Instructions August 18, 2018

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 4:59 pm
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rhand-mccoy-754715-unsplashI read my four verses last week, just forgot to post them. So we will cover eight verses today. Here they are:

Psalm 119:13-20

13 I have recited aloud
    all the regulations you have given us.
14 I have rejoiced in your laws
    as much as in riches.
15 I will study your commandments
    and reflect on your ways.
16 I will delight in your decrees
    and not forget your word.

17 Be good to your servant,
    that I may live and obey your word.
18 Open my eyes to see
    the wonderful truths in your instructions.
19 I am only a foreigner in the land.
    Don’t hide your commands from me!
20 I am always overwhelmed
    with a desire for your regulations.

Right from the start of verse 13 it is telling us something important. It is vital to speak scripture out loud. To make decrees and declaration over your life. Speaking the words out loud might feel odd at first but I believe there is power in that act and verse 13 makes that clear.

As I read these scriptures and write them down I speak them as well and I make them my prayer. This has been powerful.

The writer has such a hunger for God’s instructions, he wants to know God’s heart. He rejoices in God’s law as much as in riches.

One thing God has been showing me lately is to not read the Word to see how I fail (I think we Christians do that too often) but to see how I can grow. God doesn’t want me beating myself up as I read these Words, he wants me to see that I can have this same desire. To be overwhelmed with wanting to know His heart more. So we pray into that.

Father, I want to be overwhelmed with a desire for your instructions. Don’t hide your commands from me but open my eyes that I may see all You want to reveal to me. In Jesus’ Name, Amen. 

 

Prone to Wander August 4, 2018

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 12:39 pm
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We are continuing on our journey of Psalm 119.  Below is what I read this week.

Psalm 119:9-12 New Living Translation (NLT)

How can a young person stay pure?
    By obeying your word.
10 I have tried hard to find you—
    don’t let me wander from your commands.
11 I have hidden your word in my heart,
    that I might not sin against you.
12 I praise you, O Lord;
    teach me your decrees.

I could focus on each verse but I won’t. Instead verse 10 kept getting me.

How many times have I cried out to God and said, “Hey, I’m trying to find you and I am not seeing you and I feel like I am going to wander off the the path you have for me.”

Have you had that desperate moment? And honestly, sometimes they are truly desperate and I am screaming at Him. It’s a good thing He’s a big God.

I  have the words from Come Thou Fount in my head as I read that verse:

Prone to wander, Lord I feel, prone to leave the God I love.

What heart-felt words, and so true. Without God continually guiding us we are prone to wander from the path he has for us, prone to turn our backs on all we know is true.

How do we stay on the path?

These verses make it clear.

Hide His Word in our heart. Jesus is the Word, so we can look at this a couple of ways. Have Jesus in our hearts and have scripture in our hearts, at the ready.

My go to scripture when I feel like I could wander is: Create in me a clean heart and renew a right spirit within me. (Psalm 51)

Do you have a scripture hidden in your heart you go to when you feel you could be pulled into old habits or away from something you know God has called you to? I would love to hear your verses. Feel free to share!

 

Please Don’t Give Up July 27, 2018

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 2:56 pm
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Last week I started sharing Psalm 119 with you. We talked about being joyful and what that looks like. Click here if you want to revisit that post.

This week we are looking at Psalm 119:5-8

Psalm 119:5-8 New Living Translation (NLT)

Oh, that my actions would consistently
    reflect your decrees!
Then I will not be ashamed
    when I compare my life with your commands.
As I learn your righteous regulations,
    I will thank you by living as I should!
I will obey your decrees.
    Please don’t give up on me!

For me the very first verse grabs me, “Oh, that my actions would CONSISTENTLY reflect your decrees!”

Consistently is a tough one. I like how the first verse is confessing to God that we want our actions to reflect his decrees.

When I think of decrees I think of rules. But I looked up the definition and there is a theological definition and it says:

One of the eternal purposes of God, by which events are foreordained. (Dictionary.com)

May my actions consistently reflect the eternal purposes of God.

Puts a different spin on it doesn’t it? I stirs something within my heart when I restate the verse like that.

And then these verses end with “I will obey your decrees (the eternal purposes of God). Please don’t give up on me!”

I love this heart cry at the end, “Please don’t give up on me!”

The psalmist knew he would screw up, stumble and fall but his heart’s desire is to obey the eternal purposes of God and he cries out “Don’t give up on me when I mess up.”

Also, notice verse six says we are to compare our lives with God’s commands. How many of us try to compare ourselves to other people? Yeah, we can look a lot better or worse compared to other people but we are to compare ourselves to God’s Word. Not to make us feel bad but to give us hope. God’s Word is life, a promise. If the Word says we can live according to God’s eternal purposes we can. Every day we move and grow in that direction.

My prayer every morning this week has been: Let my actions rconsistently reflect your decrees. Honestly, I have sucked at it but I am asking God: Please don’t give up on me.

Even when you stumble and fail remember God will not give up on you so don’t give up on Him and His Word.

 

Joyful are . . . July 20, 2018

Filed under: Melissa's devotions/articles,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 3:30 pm
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I read something this week (I can’t remember what) that made me take a look at Psalm 119 and felt compelled to really study it. Each day I am looking at a new verse, writing it down and reflecting.

The beginning of this chapter talks about those who are joyful. Read below.

Psalm 119 NLV

Joyful are people of integrity,
    who follow the instructions of the Lord.
Joyful are those who obey his laws
    and search for him with all their hearts.
They do not compromise with evil,
    and they walk only in his paths.
You have charged us
    to keep your commandments carefully.

So basically Joyful people are people with integrity, follow God instructions, obey his law, search for him with all your heart, don’t compromise with evil and walk in his paths.

Joy all boils down to following God. Hearing what he says and doing it.

Here is the crazy thing. Since I have been studying these verse I have been dealing with a lot of anger. I am getting angry and irritated very easily, mostly with my children. I’m not sure where this anger is coming from, it’s so no like me but I feel it rise up and I don’t know what to do with it. I have to leave the room before I say things I will later regret.

This tells me I am on to something the enemy doesn’t want me to figure out.

The enemy doesn’t want us to figure out the key to joy, but it’s right here in Psalm 119.

Yes, this all seems like a tall order, to follow what these verses say, but let’s not write it off because it seems hard. Let’s make it our goal, what we strive for, or even fight for when need be.

Let’s be people of integrity, who do the right thing even when no one else will see or hear us, let’s follow God’s instructions and seek him with all our hearts. Let’s not compromise with evil, even in our thoughts, which honestly is the most dangerous place to do so.

I hope you’ll embark with me on this journey into Psalm 119 and discover what God has for us.

 

I Found A Lump July 13, 2018

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Photo by Catherine McMahon on Unsplash

It was about six weeks ago now.

When I first felt it I felt like I was going to vomit, it couldn’t be. I seriously felt sick to my stomach. I had to stop feeling it. And I did for a few weeks. I ignored it hoping it would go away.

When I finally had the courage to see if it was still there about two weeks later, it was.

My husband and I had a vacation planned to Mackinac Island to celebrate our 20th anniversary so I decided to wait until after that to make an appointment. I didn’t want bad news and be consumed with it on our vacation.

Let me tell you the first lie the enemy whispered in my ear:

“You lost all this weight because you have had a cancer the whole time, not because you have changed the way you eat and are exercising.”

I almost laugh now at the craziness of that lie. But at the time it seemed like it could be true.

The day after my vacation I called the doctor and I got an appointment for the next day.

I honestly hadn’t had any freak out moments up to that point. I kept telling myself, “You don’t know what it is. There is no reason to freak out until you have answers.”

The night before my appointment I had a freak out. I laid in bed unable to sleep. I started to recite scripture but still my mind started to play scenes in my head of telling my kids I have cancer, how my life will look different. Would I be able to direct the musical? I started thinking of friends who had breast cancer I could reach out to.

I didn’t tell too many people about this because I didn’t want anyone to worry. I knew my parents would worry and they didn’t need that. I only told a couple of friends who I do my Bible Study with.

I laid in bed and cried that night. I finally grabbed my iPad and researched lumps. I found that only 20% of lumps are actually cancer, and that they are usually not circular. Mine felt pretty circular and now I had an 80% chance of it not being cancer.

I went to my appointment. My doctor said she thought it was a cyst but there was no way to know for sure until we had a mammogram.

We scheduled an appointment for the next week.

Again, I didn’t worry all week long but when I got in the car to go I was nervous and that is why I wrote the blog I wrote two weeks ago and shared those songs about fear. God is so good, giving me those songs as I drove to this appointment.

I will say the ladies that did my mammogram and then ultrasound were very serious, but nice. I was getting worried again as I sat there. This seemed all so real. I could have cancer.

The radiologist came into the room and looked serious too. He said he was pretty sure it was a fibroid something or other (can’t remember the name). But the only way to know for sure was to have a biopsy.

I went into another room and met the consultant, a wonderful woman. She was so kind. We chatted about the Upper Peninsula, which I love, her family lives up there.

But as she was telling me what to expect when had the biopsy she told me the results take about 3-5, so I didn’t have to wait too long. Then she said with confidence, “But you don’t have to worry. You’re not worried, are you?”

I started crying then with the relief that washed over me. I felt her words were prophetic, I didn’t have to worry.

I called Patrick and started crying again, overwhelmed but the kindness I had been shown and knowing that ultimately it came from the Lord.

The next week I had my biopsy. Patrick went with me. We prayed before hand. I felt pretty peaceful.

When the doctor came into the room he looked at my ultrasound and said, “Oh, this isn’t anything to worry about.”

Do you sense a theme?

He was so kind, as were the nurses.

After he was done I had to stay there while a nurse held compression. We started talking and wouldn’t you know God would show off some more? Through our conversation it came out that she was a Christian.

Honestly, after that appointment I was pretty confident that this wasn’t cancer and two days later I got the news that it wasn’t.

Jesus was so present through this whole thing. He just kept showing up through people and music and circumstances. He is so good.

I also needed this wake up call in my spirit as I have been sort of asleep for a long time. I needed to a reminder of God’s goodness, that He is always there, not matter what the results would be.

I share this because I want woman to know that 80% of lumps aren’t cancer (from what I read online, this could be off of course). As I started telling others what I was going through so many other women told me that had lumps too.

Why aren’t we talking about this?

We only hear about the women who find a lump and it’s cancer. Let’s start talking about the lumps we find that aren’t cancer so we don’t freak out. Yes, not everyone will get the news I did but most will.

Also, I found my lump through a self exam, which I don’t do enough, it was completely random that I even did it when I did it six weeks ago. I encourage you to do your self exams.

So ladies (and men, if you are reading, encourage your wife to take care of herself), I’m telling you, I’m sharing my story, most lumps aren’t cancer.

Any other stories out there?

 

 

 

How Is Your Fear Level? June 29, 2018

Filed under: Melissa's Genesis 5020,Uncategorized — Melissa Finnegan @ 12:30 pm
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Yesterday I got in my car to drive somewhere I really didn’t want to go. As soon as I turned up K-Love this song started playing that I had never heard. They never said the name of the song but I was sure I would remember enough to figure it out.

I didn’t. But I really needed to hear it again. It spoke about getting rid of fear and the place I was driving could easily lead me down a path of fear.

The song I didn’t know was quickly followed by “Whom Shall I Fear.” Which I know well. I sang along loud and proud.

But when I got home I wanted to hear the first song. Thank goodness for Google. I remembered partial lyrics and I got it!

It’s called “The Breakup Song” by Francesca Battistelli. Love it!

Eventually I will share where I was driving and why these songs where so important. But I don’t have all the answers yet. When I do have a complete story I will share.

In the meantime, how is your fear level? Is there something you are fearing? Do you struggle with fear regularly?

Listen to this song.

Then if you still need some more reminders I will link some other great songs to strengthen you. Remember God has this. We are His.

The Breakup Song

Whom Shall I Fear

No Longer Slaves

Fear Is A Liar If you have never watched this video do it, have a tissue with you. Wow.