How Priceless!

How priceless is Your unfailing love, O God!
    People take refuge in the shadow of Your wings. Psalm 36:7 (NIV)

Our little kindergartner Joel is into money now.  One of his favorite games is The Allowance Game where players try to be the first person to earn $20.  Sometimes when you roll the die, you are sent to spend $2.25 on school supplies, when you’d rather wash the car to earn $1.30.  But eventually, with enough odd jobs, birthdays, and swinging past home for your $3 allowance, you can earn the $20 needed to win the game.

Joel also has his oldest brother’s savings bank.  This bank has three compartments, one for the church, one for the bank, and one for the store. We paid Joel a nickel for every nail he found in our yard after the house we rent was resided.  Joel takes great pride in dividing up his earnings and taking an offering to Sunday school each week.  Money is lots of fun.

But there are some things on which you just can’t put a price.  Number One is Jesus’ love.  Psalm 36:7 proclaims, “How priceless is Your unfailing love.”  Isn’t that so true!  God stepped out of heaven as Jesus the Son, just to live and die and live again for us.  His disciple Judas Iscariot thought he could put a price on Jesus, giving away Jesus’ location for thirty pieces of silver.  But even that was the wrong price, as Judas regretfully learned.  No price can be put on the love God has for us.  You can’t buy His love.  It’s a free gift.  He offers it to you, My TEA CUPP friend.  Hold out your heart and let God fill it with His priceless love.

But God, who is rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved).  Ephesians 2:4-5 (NKJV)

This reminds me of an old camp song we used to sing, “Lord, You are more precious than silver, Lord, You are more costly than gold, Lord, You are more beautiful than diamonds, and nothing I desire compares with You!”

Today’s TEA CUPP: Today, tell Jesus how priceless He is to you…O Jesus, how priceless is Your unfailing love!  I love You, but Your love is so much greater.  You died for us.  You care about every detail of our lives.  You are preparing a place for us in heaven.  O Jesus, I love and praise You!

For you were bought at a price; therefore glorify God in your body and in your spirit, which are God’s. 1 Corinthians 6:20 (NKJV)

The law of Your mouth is better to me
Than thousands of coins of gold and silver. Psalm 119:72 (NKJV)

(NIV) Scripture from Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011

(NKJV) Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.

Rock Tower

rock tower2Take for yourselves twelve stones from here, out of the midst of the Jordan Joshua 4:3 (NKJV)

Finding new ways to praise Jesus always brings me joy, and I hope it brings Him joy, too.  Since I like to journal my prayers, I write my verses for exalting and praising the Lord right in my journal. One day I read the story of God parting the Jordan River so Joshua could lead the Israelites into the Promised Land. Before the waters returned to the Jordan, Joshua had the leaders of each of the twelve tribes bring a rock from the river bed to create a tower as a reminder of their miraculous crossing.  So, I drew a simple rock tower in my prayer journal with twelve rocks.

Then I chose these prayer verses from the Psalms, underlining the words that describe God:

I will love You, O Lord, my strength.
The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer;
My God, my strength, in whom I will trust;
My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
I will call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised;
So shall I be saved from my enemies. Psalm 18:1-3 (NKJV)

Each of the underlined verses I wrote on the twelve rocks in my prayer journal sketch, raising my own Ebenezer of praise and remembrance to Jesus.  We don’t worship the rocks, but we worship the One who is the Rock, who has brought us thus far. We can trust Him to guard and guide us forever.   Rock Tower

As I exalted my Jesus, He also showed me I had nothing to fear as I faced the tasks of the day. With such a Rock tower as my Friend, I could hide in Him and be safe.  He would be my shield and fortress and strength through another busy day. My praise to Him became a promise from God for me.

For who is God, except the Lord?
And who is a rock, except our God?  Psalm 18:31 (NKJV)

Today’s TEA CUPP: Try drawing your own rock tower in your prayer journal today.  Draw 12 stones in a pile.  On each stone write a word describing God or giving Him praise.  Claim God’s promise to be your Rock throughout the day.

No one is holy like the Lord,
For there is none besides You,
Nor is there any rock like our God.  1 Samuel 2:2 (NKJV)

 Then Samuel took a stone and set it up between Mizpah and Shen, and called its name Ebenezer, saying, “Thus far the Lord has helped us.” 1 Samuel 7:12 (NKJV)

Scripture from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson

Isn’t He Amazing?

amazing2Your mercy, O Lord, is in the heavens;
Your faithfulness reaches to the clouds.
Your righteousness is like the great mountains;
Your judgments are a great deep;
O Lord, You preserve man and beast.
Psalm 36:5-6 (NKJV)

“Mommy look there! Daddy look here!” Joel exclaimed while walking the West Thumb boardwalk in Yellowstone National Park.  His four-and-a-half-year old hands pointed from one side to another at mud pots, fumaroles, geysers, and hot springs.  A tourist from perhaps India was walking toward us.  Upon hearing Joel he smiled and remarked, “Isn’t it amazing?”

“Yes!” I replied, returning his smile, wanting to say so much more, wanting to say, “Isn’t He amazing!  Isn’t God who made all this amazing!”  He put all these cool things to see in our own backyard.  People come from all over the world to witness His creativity and majesty.  (By the way, if you need tips on visiting Yellowstone, the West Thumb area has all the features, and from there it is just a short drive to the peaceful and beautiful Grand Tetons).amazing1

This awesome scenery wasn’t the only time we saw God working on our annual Labor Day weekend camping trip. The very first night we were lost on a dirt road, looking for a forest service campground.  The road was under construction, so all signs marking the campground had been removed.  My husband said a quick prayer to Jesus for help.  Before long we came upon an old car parked sideways in the road we had already traveled.  We asked if they knew the way to the campground. The two ladies beckoned, “Follow us!”

As we tailed their vehicle, I noticed the Florida license plates and wondered allowed, “Why are we following two ladies from Florida to find a campground in Wyoming?”  It was just like the old TV show Touched by An Angel, when the ladies took a turn and said, “Here you are.”  And then they were gone.

A day or two later we were at Colter Bay Campground in the Grand Tetons.  Our campsite was just across the road from the restrooms.  I was setting out food at our picnic table and little Joel was returning from the restroom with his Daddy. Joel ran ahead to greet me when just at that moment a car came along the road, stopping at a water hydrant.  It was God’s angels again who halted that car before it could hit our Joel.

amazing4Yes, God is amazing! We were touched by three angels, enjoyed His beautiful creation, had great family time making s’mores around the campfire, and made it safely home.  Thank you, Jesus!

Today’s TEA CUPP:  Where do you see God’s amazing work in your life?  Exalt Jesus today with the Psalms.

O Lord, our Lord,
How excellent is Your name in all the earth,
Who have set Your glory above the heavens! Psalm 8:1 (NKJV)

The Lord lives!
Blessed be my Rock!
Let the God of my salvation be exalted. Psalm 18:46 (NKJV)

Oh, magnify the Lord with me,
And let us exalt His name together. Psalm 34:3 (NKJV)

amazing3

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson.