SPARKLE

by Tammy Phillips
February 24, 2021

They looked unto Him and were lightened: and their faces were not ashamed. (Psalm 34:5 KJV)

I thought I would go to the word to see if sparkle was in the Bible. What treasure I found!  It amazed me!  Let’s study the word lightened in this verse. In Hebrew “lightened” is the word, nahar.  It only occurs one time in the Bible with the meaning: to shine; to beam; to light; to burn; be radiant; TO SPARKLE! 

Say what?! 

2 Corinthians 3:18  states:

“And all of us, as with unveiled face, [because we] continued to behold [in the Word of God] as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into His very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another; [for this comes] from the Lord [Who is] the Spirit.”

We have two scriptures that tell us when we look to Him that we reflect His image, His glory.  We sparkle.

The Webster’s 1828 definition defines sparkle perfectly:

As a noun…

  • A spark.
  • A luminous particle.
  • A light.
  • Radiant.

As a verb…

  • Emit sparks.
  • Spirit and energy are contagious.
  • Send off small, ignited particles
  • Glisten
  • Twinkle and shine.

More importantly, both Psalms 34:5 and 2 Corinthians 3:18 define what it means to sparkle.    

You will sparkle and shine because you look to Him first.
You will look to Him instead of running away.
You will look to Him to help you in every way.
You will look to Him and his word.
You will look to Him to meet your needs.
You will look to Him to meet the needs of others.
You will look to Him for song.
You will look to Him for dance.
You will look to Him for joy.
You will look to Him and trust Him no matter.
You will look to Him and you are lightened.
You will look to Him and are not ashamed.
You will look to Him and reflect his glory.
You will look to Him and you will SPARKLE.

I enCOURAGE you to always look to Him and to continue  to SPARKLE.

 

HEARD AND DELIVERED

by Tammy Phillips
February 23, 2021

I sought the LORD, and he heard me, and delivered me from all my fears. (Psalms 34:4 KJV)

I SOUGHT:

  • Seek
  • Resort to
  • Frequent
  • Investigate
  • Enquire
  • Require
  • Tread to a place
  • Seek in prayer
  • Worship
  • Study
  • Follow

THE LORD.

HE HEARD:  

  • Listened
  • Paid Attention          
  • Responded  
  • Spoke
  • Sang
  • Shouted        

HE DELIVERED:

  • Snatched away       
  • Pulled Out    
  • Preserved     
  • Saved
  • Rescued       
  • Took Away   

FROM ALL MY FEARS.

David resorted to the Lord God Almighty, Creator of All, and the Lord paid attention to what David had to say.  He answered him.  God even sang and shouted over him. Our Father snatched David away from every fear.  All means all.  All fear gone.  He did it for David. He will do it for us!

I enCOURAGE you to follow David’s example.  Resort to the Lord! (I am resorting to the Lord on my faith-cation this week.  He and I are getting away together.)  Seek the Lord. He will rescue you from every fear! 

BE A MAGNIFYING UNIT

by Tammy. Phillips
February 22, 2021

O magnify the LORD with me and let us exalt his name together. (Psalms 34:3 KJV)

Just like an amplifier amplifies the strums of a guitar, David asks us to join him and magnify the Lord.  The Hebrew translation of the word “magnify” is much more interesting than its English significance. The word isgadal which means to twist, as in a cord, to make firmer and stronger, or like wrestlers who twist their bodies together and grow stronger.  David was saying let’s get together and make God more famous. Is that even possible? He is God.

David continues to say,  “let us exalt and raise His name together.”  There is strength in numbers. “Together” is the Hebrew word, yahad, which means union of time and place.  It comes from the root word that means united or joined together.

Along with David, I ask you to join me, united.

I enCOURAGE you to be a MAGNIFYING UNIT.  Let’s strum our vocal cords together and spread the fame of our Lord.

BOAST in the LORD

by Tammy Phillips
February 21, 2021

My soul makes its boast in the LORD; The humble and downtrodden will hear it and rejoice… (Psalms 34:2 NKJV)

This verse could be our mission statement every morning.  Translated it means something like this to me.  “Hey, look at God! Isn’t He something? We have to tell everybody about how good He is.  He will change your life.  He is something else”

Seriously, let’s look at a couple of words from Psalm 34.  First, “boast” translated is halal…like hallelujah.  It means to be brilliant; to be clear; to shine; to flash forth light; to make a show; to act foolish; to rave; to celebrate; to commend; glory; praise.

We really should not boast about anything other than God because He is really the only thing worthy of our hallelujah’s.

“What scope there is for holy boasting in Jehovah! His person, attributes, covenant, promises, works, and a thousand things besides, are all incomparable, unparalleled, and matchless”- Charles Spurgeon

And, whomever we come in contact with, benefits from our hallelujah’s. The greatest thing about acting a fool for God is its life-changing:

The downtrodden…
The afflicted…
The depressed…
The occupied…
The brow-beaten…
The Eeyore’s of the world…

will HEAR about our God and rejoice!

When we boast in Him, the sad turns glad.
When we boast in Him, the humble rejoice.

Samach is the Hebrew word for rejoice. It literally means to brighten up.

I enCOURAGE you to continually boast, praise and glory in the Lord because your “extra” literally brightens the days of others. 

The Great Fixer Upper (2)

by Tammy Phillips
February 21, 2021

Therefore, we do not become discouraged [utterly spiritless, exhausted, disappointed and wearied out through fear]. Though our outer man is [progressively] decaying and wasting away, yet our inner self is being [progressively] changed [renewed, renovated, into a new kind as opposed to the former corrupt state] day after day. (2 Corinthians 4:16 AMP)

Who renovates us from the inside out?  Jesus, the Word, he was a carpenter by trade! Who better?  Who does this work in us?

Looking unto Jesus the Author and Finisher, Perfecter of our faith… (Hebrews 12:2)

He finishes what He starts.  He is the Chief of Completeness (Prince of Peace, Isaiah 9:6)  He always has a plan.  In Jeremiah 29:11 the word of God says:

 For I know the thoughts and plans that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of peace (completeness), and not of evil, to give you an expected end.

He gets it done.  He has the vision and sees it to completion.

Not only did God begin the project of you, but He also pursues you.  He works on you and for you tirelessly each and every day. Why? Because you are precious to Him! He is always thinking about you.

Your eyes saw my unformed substance, and in Your book all the days [of my life] were written before ever they took shape, when as yet there was none of them. 17 How precious and weighty also are Your thoughts to me, O God! How vast is the sum of them! 18 If I could count them, they would be more in number than the sand. When I awoke, [could I count to the end] I would still be with You. (Psalm 139:16-18 AMPC)

God has the plan to complete us and to perfect us into who we ought to be. He renovates us from the inside out by his Word.  Reading and obeying God’s word will renovate your life.  It will change us into who we are meant to be.

Renovations can be messy, costly and exhausting. We have to trust the Chief that He has the plan and that in the long run the “reno” will be worth it!  Trust the Great Fixer Upper with the renovation of your life.  Catch His vision. You see imperfect.  He sees perfect.  You see walls falling down and your world falling apart.  He sees a hope and a future. Trust him!  He will turn the imperfect, out of date, dilapidated into a fresh thing of beauty reflecting His Glory!

I am convinced and confident of this very thing, that He who has begun a good work in you will [continue to] perfect and complete it until the day of Christ Jesus [the time of His return]. (Philippians 1:6)

I enCOURAGE you to let the word of God renew and renovate your life.  Embrace the work He is doing in and through you from glory to glory.  He does really good work.  I can definitely recommend Him.

THE GREAT FIXER UPPER

January 23, 2018 -Our House. It has been frigid here and I haven’t got out and taken a new snow pic of the latest snow fall which is much, much more.

by Tammy Phillips
February 19, 2021

Therefore, if anyone is in Christ [that is, grafted in, joined to Him by faith in Him as Savior], he is a new creature [reborn and renewed by the Holy Spirit; a fresh new building, establishment]; the old things [the previous moral and spiritual condition] have passed away. Behold, new things have come [because spiritual awakening brings a new life]. (2 Corinthians 5:17 AMP)

I enjoyed watching Chip and Joanna Gaines tv show, “Fixer Upper.” Their bio states that they turned “run-down, out-of-date, dilapidated” houses into beautiful homes. They also acted as part-time counselors to clients who could not see the structure’s beauty beyond its blemishes. They saved homes that look hopeless and renovated the imperfect to simple perfection.

Isn’t that exactly what God does in the life of believers? Jesus is the Great Fixer Upper!

One of my best friends and her husband are constantly doing something to their houses. They desire for their house to be the best it can be.  They want it up-to-date and they constantly work at it.  If they are not painting, they are refinishing the wood floors.  They have updated no less than seven bathrooms.  Their continual projects wear me out.  However, their home looks like something out of a magazine.  It seems perfect to me.  However, they see things differently.  They are always renovating to make their home a better place in which to live.  God does that in our life.  If we are seeking Him first, He is forever at work in us, changing us into His image, perfection, from glory to glory.

I enCOURAGE you to let God “fix you up.”  What areas of your life need an update?  Jesus after all was a carpenter and I have a few in which He is drawn into.

I DO DECLARE

Nanny Abney “I do declaring” with biscuit hands. I have no idea why she is in my paint shirt! (She would spank my bottom if she knew I was sharing this picture with the world.)

by Tammy Phillips
February 18, 2020

One generation shall praise Your works to another and shall declare Your mighty and remarkable acts.  Psalms 145:4AMP

 When I read this verse, I immediately thought of my two truly Southern grandmothers, Nanny Lowe and Nanny Abney and my great grandmother, Nanny Hewell.  These three women greatly influenced my life.  All showed me the unconditional love of God and declared His mighty works.  The focus verse reminded me of phrase they all used: “I do declare…

They used this phrase to express amazement, amusement, surprise, happiness and exclamatory truth.  I believe we should do the same.  According to Psalms 145:4, their generations declared God’s mighty works to our generation.  Our assignment is to pass on the “I do declare’s…” to the next generation.  If God said it, I believe.  I take His promises and declare them as truths.

Here are a few of my favorite “I do declare’s…”:

  • I do declare I am a child of the Most High God.
  • I do declare I am seated in heavenly places.
  • I do declare I have the mind of Christ.
  • I do declare I have faith in God.
  • I do declare I have the faith of God.
  • I do declare I am loved.
  • I do declare I am saved by grace.
  • I do declare that Jesus is Lord.
  • I do declare that I am healed, whole, and complete in Him.
  • I do declare that I am patient and kind.
  • I do declare that I am strong.
  • I do declare that I am brave.
  • I do declare that I am courageous.
  • I do declare that I can do all things through Christ.
  • I do declare that I can do nothing without him.
  • I do declare that I am resolute.
  • I do declare that I am an overcomer.
  • I do declare that I do not have a spirit of fear.
  • I do declare that I have a spirit of power, love & sound mind.
  • I do declare that God gives me the victory in Christ Jesus.
  • I do declare that God shall meet my needs according to His riches in glory.
  • I do declare that God is Creator of heaven and earth.
  • I do declare that He is Worthy of all praise and glory.
  • I do declare that He is my Rock and my Refuge.
  • I do declare that Jesus was born of virgin.
  • I do declare that Jesus died on a cross.
  • I do declare that Jesus rose from the dead.
  • I do declare that Jesus is coming back for His bride.

What do you declare? 

I enCOURAGE you to come up with your own list of “I DO DECLARES” for yourself and to pass on to the next generation! Or me…😊

STRETCH:  REACHING FORWARD

by Tammy Phillips
February 17, 2021

“Brothers and sisters, I do not consider that I have made it my own yet; but one thing I do: forgetting what lies behind and reaching forward to what lies ahead,” (Philippians 3:13 AMP)

I ran/walked my very first 5k, the 2020 Hot Chocolate in Nashville, TN.   Honestly, I walk all the time.  When we were last in D.C., we put about 8 miles in the book. It was not a problem.  I thought the race would be easy-peasy with hot chocolate waiting at the finish line.

Kris also ran the Hot Chocolate, but the 15k race.  My only goal was to finish the 5k before he finished the 15K.  What I had not realized is that walking is really different than racing.  This was not a stroll along the streets of Nashville.

I was ok with some people passing me, but there was one group I picked out that I was not going to let pass.  As I focused forward, I sat more goals along the trek.   The race was a stretch for me.  I did not get the luxury of taking a break, nor taking pics of Nashville along the course.  It was not easy-peasy!

As I raced, I could care less about the mile that was behind me.  My goal was one more step, one more mile.  I stretched myself with each incline I climbed and every turn and burn that I made.

I, like Paul, forgot what was behind, “the past mistakes, the not-good-enough’s, the you-cannot-do-this” and reached forward to what lay ahead. I chose to do the same.

The phrase “reaching forward” is the Greek word epekteinomai.  It means to stretch forward with every effort. This is what I had to do to finish the race.  I had to push with everything in me.  I even had to run along the way.  I was so happy to see mile marker #1. It was behind me!  Mile marker #2, check, it was soon behind me.  Then I passed #3 and then the finish line!  I made it to the finish line without stopping.  I quoted the word of God and mustered all the strength I could to keep going.  My eyes were focused on the goal—finish strong and do my very best.

I believed I would finish that race or I would never have started it.  However, it was the stretch that surprised me.  It was not good enough just to finish. I was competing to reach the goal set before me and it was not easy!  I had to stretch.

I encourage you that when life challenges you, keep going.  When you are broken, keep going.   When offense comes, keep going.  When you are deeply hurt, keep going.  When your past mistakes attempt to haunt you, keep going.   When you think you cannot take one more step nor go around that same old mountain one more time, forget the past and stretch forward to the great things that lie ahead.  It will be worth it.

REST IN THE LORD

by Tammy Phillips
February 16, 2021

Rest in the LORD, and wait patiently for him… Psalms 37:7 (KJV)

REST:

  • Be silent.
  • Stand still.
  • Cease.
  • Stop.
  • Hold your peace.
  • Be dumb.
  • Be astonished.
  • Be amazed.

When we don’t know what to say, when we don’t know what to do, we need to do the word. We need to rest in the Lord. We need to wait patiently for him.

WAIT:

  • Twist.
  • Turn.
  • Whirl.
  • Dance.
  • Writhe.
  • Travail.
  • Grieve.
  • Be strong.

(Who knew there was such action in waiting?)

I enCOURAGE you to rest in Him when you do not know what to do.  I encourage you to wait on Him when you do not know what to say.

 

SWEET SLEEP

by Tammy Phillips
February 15, 2021

When you lie down, you will not be afraid; Yes, you will lie down, and your sleep will be sweet. (Proverbs 3:24 NKJV)

The race of life is hard.  There are hills and valleys, twists and turns.  Life has challenges and disappointments.  Life has fears and concerns.  Sometimes sleep is hard to come by.  The word of the Lord says, “When you lie down…” First, we must trust Him enough to lie down and rest.  We must trust Him for recovery.  We must trust His word!  We must not be afraid of anything that life brings us.  Worry is fear and a thief of sleep.   Do not worry.   Lie down in the confidence that every thing is going to be alright.  This promise for us is not just sleep, but sweet, agreeable sleep. 

I enCOURAGE you to trust His word for sweet sleep in your nights.  You need the time for the muscles of the body, the soul and spirit to repair and restore themselves.  SWEET SLEEP!  God says so!