April 2009 Archives

April 30th

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Psalm 60

God, are you there? Have you turned away from me? Have you ever had a time in your life (or maybe several) when you thought or asked that of the Lord? I have to admit that I have. In Psalm 60:10 we see David asking the Lord "Have you rejected us, O God? Will you no longer march with our armies?"

So how should we proceed when something like this happens? I can think of several different responses, but I'm interested in yours. Tell me what's on your mind and then tomorrow, I'll let you know some of my thoughts. Have a good one!! Tami W.

April 29th

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Psalm 59

David was anything but a wall flower. In fact, he was quite the communicator. I never cease to be amazed at how boldly he speaks to God. (see Psalm 59:11-13, for example) No matter what the situation, he seems to tell it like it is and doesn't beat around the bush asking for what he wants. Yet, in the middle of all this candid communication David always recognizes who God is and gives Him reverence and praise. A good example.

David's way of communicating with God is a good indicator for us about his relationship with God. We don't typically speak to someone so freely unless we know them and trust them. So that led me to ask "How do I communicate with God? And what does that tell me?" Well, sometimes my communication with God is right on. But other times, it's too me focused. So I need to work on that. How about joining me? Ask yourself these questions and then tell me what you come up with. Tami W.

April 28th

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I made the news today--and even in full color!! This week (May 1 to be exact) is Back to the Bible's 70th anniversary. So on Friday we're having our First Annual Center for Bible Engagement Lecture Series and a special banquet. As part of these activities, I was interviewed by the Lincoln Journal Star about Back to the Bible, its roots and where we're headed. I talked all about the importance of getting into God's Word, the research we're doing at our Center for Bible Engagement and, of course, having and growing our relationship with the Lord. (P4 even got a little mention.) I thought you might like to take a look so here's the link. Tami W.

P.S. What did you draw from Psalm 58 today?

April 27th

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Psalm 57

Did you wake the dawn with a song this morning? (La, la, la, la) And, no, I'm not kidding. Psalm 57 is a great example of how we should live--regardless of our situation. The first 6 verses of Psalm 57 are David laying out awful circumstances (Saul chasing after him for his life). But then we get to verses 7-11 (which I love BTW) and we see David going off about singing praises and exalting God's name. David even tells us that he will wake the dawn with his song. He talks about his confidence in God and how he will give thanks and sing praises among the nations.

So how are you doing today, this week, this month? If you're experiencing some hard times, you can still praise God and, yes, wake the dawn with your song. If that's not the norm for you, why not try it? You might be surprised at how it lifts you up and helps you get through your day. Tami W.

P.S. We'd also love to pray for you. So if you have requests, send them in.

April 26th

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Psalm 56

AFRAID and trust--those are key words for me today in Psalm 56. There was a period in my life when anxiety controlled me. I had panic attacks and I was afraid a lot. So when I read Psalm 56, it speaks to me. It tells me straight up that I don't need to fear because God is on my side and I can trust Him. That is such a relief and comfort. It also shows me that there will be times when I will be afraid and that I'm not alone in having those feelings (even David had them).

I'd love to tell you that I never have anxiety anymore, but sometimes I still do. But today I'm better equipped to handle it. Now, much more than before, I'm in God's Word. And, I have God's promise that I can give it over to him and that He will sustain me (Psalm 55:22). Thank you Lord. How I love You! Tami W.

April 25th

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Psalm 55

What an incredible promise. Psalm 55:22 tells us to cast our burdens on the Lord and that He will sustain us. Well I don't know about you, but on any given day I have a variety of burdens, sometimes big and other times small. Either way, based on Psalm 55 I should be giving them all over to the Lord. Yet, I don't always do that. Or it takes me a little while to let go and really give it over. Now I'm guessing I'm not alone here, right?? Do any of you do this? So what's up? Why aren't we taking full advantage of this awesome promise? And what can we do to change that? Tami W.

April 24th

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Today we're in Psalm 54.

Help!! I need rescued! When was the last time you cried out to God saying "Rescue me Lord"? (In case you're wondering, for me it was in the last couple of weeks). We all experience hard and overwhelming situations. So I'm thankful to know that God is there through it all and I can call on Him. But here's my question--when we call out to God with our request to "rescue me" or "save me" what response are we expecting? And, then, how do we respond or what do we do when God's response doesn't line up with ours? Tami W.

April 23rd

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Psalm 53

"No one does good, not a single one." What???? Ok, I'm keeping it short and sweet today and I'm gonna ask you to do a little thinking. Here goes. What do think David is talking about here in Psalm 53 when he tells us there is none that does good--not even one? If you're anything like me you want to respond with But I think I'm a pretty good person so this can't refer to me. But does it? Let me hear you. Tami W.

April 22nd

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Today we're in Psalm 52.

Who is Doeg the Edomite? Did you know Psalm 52 is talking about him? One of the things that I like about reading my Bible (but that can also be a little tricky) is that there are a lot of cross referencing and layering (events recorded in several places or talking about the same thing in different books and by different people, for example). We see that in Psalm 52. Doeg was evil and did some horrible things. But if you're not familiar with Doeg or the part he played in Saul's and David's exchanges, you won't understand what you're reading as well.

So, want the low down on Doeg? Read 1 Samuel 21-22. Doeg isn't mentioned until the middle of chapter 21 and about 2/3 of the way down in chapter 22, but to get the whole context, you really need to read the whole thing. Have fun reading--and, let me know what you think. Tami W.

April 21st

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Today we're reading the Book of Philemon...don't worry, it's only one chapter!

Good things come in small packages. Have you ever heard that? Well it's true--especially when it comes to the Book of Philemon. This "small" letter really has some great stuff in it. I absolutely love the example Paul sets for me in dealing with other people and particularly Christians. Listen to this, "though I am bold enough in Christ to command you to do what is required, yet for love's sake I prefer to appeal to you. . . ." That verse tells me that I should at least consider a soft tactic before I take action. Doesn't always mean that's the way I will go, but I should at least contemplate it. Makes a lot of sense.

Any verse or passage of Philemon jump off the page as you read? Did Paul's letter speak to you? Tami W.

April 20th

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Proverbs 6:20-35

"Don't play with fire because you'll end up getting burned." That was a familiar warning from my parents growing up. (They were obviously familiar with Proverbs 6:27-28.) The message from Proverbs and from my parents was the same--stay away from tempting situations whenever possible. Wise advice because temptation is a powerful thing and it can take us down before we even realize it.

But, we can't always avoid temptation. So what then? I've found that the more I'm in the Word, the better equipped I am. And I truly believe that reading my Bible first thing in the morning really gets me in the right mindset for my day which always includes some sort of temptation. So what's your experience? How does being in God's Word affect you? Tami W.

April 19th

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Proverbs 6:1-19

Have you watched any ants lately? They are really quite fascinating. I love all things outdoors so as odd as this may sound, I have taken notice of ants, even as recently as this week. Solomon wrote about ants in Proverbs 6:6-11. When you first read these verses, you can't help but think Why are we reading about ants? But really, it makes sense when you think about it. The thing that always intrigues me about ants is that they're focused and diligent about whatever they are trying to accomplish. Hmm....If only I was so determined and devoted in my Christian walk.

So what do think about Solomon's ant commentary? Is there something in these verses that you might work on or put into practice? Tami W.

April 18th

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We're in Proverbs 5 today.

Wise words from a wise man--for men--or is it really? There's no doubt that Proverbs 5 is full of wise advice from a wise man, but I definitely think it applies to men and women alike. There are quite a few take aways in this loaded chapter. As a married person, verses 15-20 speak loud and clear to me about being and staying committed to my husband and loving him fully. Yet, there's plenty of advice for singles too.

So did any particular verse or segment speak to you? What did you take away from Proverbs 5? Tami W.

April 17th

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What does God want from me? How many times have you found yourself asking that question? If you're anything like me--enough--which is kind of well...silly, because God lets us know pretty clearly in His Word.

Psalm 50 gives us one answer. It's actually one that I lose sight of sometimes. God wants us to give thanks to Him as our sacrifice. Psalm 50: 14 says "Offer to God a sacrifice of thanksgiving, and perform your vows to the Most High." And verse 23 really sums it up for me. "The one who offers thanksgiving as his sacrifice glorifies me."

So what does our sacrifice of thanksgiving look like? And what are some other things you can give to God? Tami W.

April 16th

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Psalm 49

Psalm 49:5 tells us we don't have to be fearful when trouble comes. How about a big AMEN to that? I've been stressed about a variety of circumstances over the past week or so and I've let it affect my thinking and my attitude--kind of stupid on my part, but nonetheless, I still let it happen. So when I read Psalm 49 this week, it hit me head on. It was like God was saying to me, Tami, what are you so uptight about? I've got it all under control and that includes you.

So how did Psalm 49 hit you? Anyone in my camp? Or did God show you something different? Tami W.

April 15th

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We're in Psalm 48 today.

What in the world is Zion??? Have you ever wondered What exactly are we referring to when we talk about Zion? If you have, you're not alone. Zion appears many places in the Bible, but it doesn't always refer to the same thing. Here are just a few examples: Zion hears and rejoices; Gates of Zion; Zion, the City of David; Mount Zion; Zion, my holy hill; daughter of Zion; and Great is the Lord in Zion.

So my question for you--what exactly is Zion? Look around some in your Bible and send me your thoughts. Then tomorrow, I'll post some information on Zion. Have fun digging!!! Tami W.

Psalm 47 is on our menu today.

Sing, sing, sing!!! And in case you missed it, SING--even if you're not in tune!! :) I lead worship at my church, so I find Psalm 47, and particularly verse 6, wonderful. I absolutely love singing to, and about, the Lord. In fact, most of the time I have my radio cranked in the car and I'm singing away. And, yes, I do occasionally get weird looks from other drivers (in case you're wondering). But that's just fine with me because I'm not singing for them anyway. So if you haven't sung today--what are you waiting for? We could make a joyful "noise" together. What do you think? Tami W.

Our reading for today is Proverbs 4:10-27.

Our hearts are key. Solomon tells us in Proverbs 4:23 to guard our hearts above all else for it determines the course of our lives. That is so true. One of the best ways I've found to guard my heart is to read my Bible and be involved in activities with other Christians. It seems like the more I take in God's Word, study it and talk about it, the better equipped I am to deal with things that hit me during the day.

So with that said, thank you for being part of Powered by 4. It helps me and I hope it helps you too. I love learning and growing together!! Tami W.

Proverbs 4:1-9

Happy Easter Everyone! Well in case you missed it on Friday (Proverbs 3:13-23), Solomon is back talking about wisdom in Proverbs 4. Just another indicator of how important wisdom is. On Friday's blog, I asked how we get wisdom. If you haven't looked at that yet, take a minute to read Proverbs 3:13-23 along with Proverbs 4:1-9 and then send me your thoughts. Here are a couple of mine. The first and primary place I need to go to find wisdom is the Bible. It's full of it. I've also learned from a handful of wise people who have come along side me over the years--kind of a mentor relationship. Observing wisdom modeled in real life situations has taught me much. Tami W.

Today is another dose of wisdom from Proverbs 3:12-35.

One thing's for sure--Solomon had wisdom. So when he talks about it, we should take note. Proverbs 3:13-23 really lays out the value of wisdom and how having it is a benefit and advantage. You can't really read these verses and not think wow, I need to have that. I need to be a wise person. So how do we accomplish that? Tami W.

Today's reading is Proverbs 3:1-12.

I frequently get asked if I have a life verse. I've never really selected one, so my answer is typically something non-committal. But as I read Proverbs 3 today (Friday) it dawned on me that I do have a handful of verses that are special to me. Proverbs 3:5-6 fall into that category. "Trust in the Lord with all your heart; and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your path." Whenever I start feeling anxious or my circumstances feel like they're getting out of control, these two verses are foundational for me. They just make so much sense, and they comfort me.

So do you have a particular verse or passage that you like to turn to? Or maybe you have a special verse you use to start each day. I'd love to hear about it and, of course, why it's meaningful to you. Tami W.

Romans 16

If Paul were alive today, he'd have a bunch of friends on Facebook! In Romans 16 Paul sends his greetings to 29 (as I count them) specific people. Then at the end of the chapter, there are another 8 people listed who join in his greeting. This comes immediately after 15 chapters of heavy doctrinal stuff. Hmmmm.....So why do you think we're given this glimpse into Paul's life? And, what do we do with it? Tami W.

Today we're in Romans 15:14-32.

We can all use a little reminder. No matter how well you know something--your job, a hobby, a person, the Bible--sometimes a reminder can be really helpful. Paul knew that. Romans 15:15 says, "I have been bold enough to write about some of these points, knowing that all you need is a reminder." (NLT) So when you hit a scripture passage or even a verse that you've read a hundred times, resist the temptation to skim over it. Instead, ask God to make it new to you. Read it again thoroughly. Read it out loud. It just might be the reminder you need for that day! Tami W.

Romans 15:1-13

We've been reading a bunch lately about unity, loving one another and today about harmony between believers in Romans 15. So does that mean that we shouldn't disagree or that conflict within the Body is wrong? And, if not, then when is it appropriate? I have plenty of thoughts on this, but today, I'm interested in yours. Let's hear them. Tami W.

We're reading Romans 14:13-23 for today.

We shouldn't be a stumbling block. I used to hate those words growing up because that's what I'd hear from my parents whenever I'd ask about why they didn't want me to go certain places or do certain things. I didn't agree with it or them. Well, that was then, and now, as I've grown older and hopefully wiser, my perspective has changed. So even though I believe that I have many freedoms in Christ, if I know someone has a particular belief, routine or whatever that differs from mine, then I try to respect that. It goes the other way too. Maybe I'm with someone and they do something I'm not comfortable with. If it's not something clearly wrong or sinful, then I try to be gracious. I don't always get it right but the bottom line is the more unity and building up we can do as part of the Body the better. Tami W.

Have you read Romans 14:1-12 yet?

We're all on the same team, so don't make a mountain out of a mole hill!! Have you ever done that--majored on a minor? Cause I sure have. I was raised in a conservative, Bible-teaching church, and I pretty much thought that what our church taught was right--period. So when I got older, moved out of the house and started attending other churches, I was a little surprised and sometimes put off when things weren't just like what I was used to. It eventually dawned on me, though, that there are a lot of areas of our Christians lives that don't have incredibly specific guidelines in the Bible. So now when something concerns me I try to step back and ask is this concern over a preference or is it foundational (concerning salvation, what it means and how to get saved) and then I proceed from there. Tami W.

Today we're in Romans 13:8-14

How often do you think about Christ returning? And when you do, does it prompt you to act or live differently? Romans 13:11-12 gives us a little instruction in this area. It says "Wake up, for our salvation is nearer now than when we first believed. The night is almost gone; the day of salvation will soon be here. So remove your dark deeds like dirty clothes, and put on the shining armor of right living." You know Dr. Kroll frequently says that we should start our day at the Judgment Seat of Christ and work backwards. So what does that look like for us? How do you make the most of every day? Let me know your thoughts. Tami W.

Romans 13:1-7

Obey and pray.

It seems like there are a lot of people out there who are unhappy with our country's leaders. So as Christians, how do we deal with that? Romans 13 tells us point blank that "The authorities that exist have been established by God" and that if we rebel against that authority we're rebelling against God. (Romans 13:1-2) Strong words. So that tells me I need to recognize, respect and obey government authorities--no matter what--even if I don't care for the people in authority and what they are putting in place as laws. At the same time, though, I also need to be actively praying for our leaders and our country, not to mention exercising my right to vote (what a privilege).

Today is April 3, and the National Day of Prayer is May 7. That's just about one month. I haven't been very good up to this point about praying for my country and leaders. L So my goal is to change that starting today. Will you join me? Let's make praying for our nation and leaders part of our prayers each week up to the National Day of Prayer. Our nation and its leadership need the power of our prayers behind them. Tami W.

P.S. If you're not from the US, pray for your country and leaders. They need it too.

It's all about love!! Sounds great doesn't it? I sure like to be loved--but, I don't always love others with the same enthusiasm as when I'm the one being loved. Sound familiar?

Today (Thursday) we're reading Romans 12:9-21. This is really a good passage. Every time I read it, it refreshes my memory about how I need to be approaching people. The difficulty is that what Paul is telling us goes against what our flesh wants to do. My flesh says I don't want to love everyone--I mean, after all, does God really know some of the people He's asking me to love? (The answer is absolutely BTW). And when someone persecutes or hurts me, my first reaction is to hurt back, not to bless that person. Well, thankfully, we are no longer controlled by our flesh. We have the Holy Spirit and His supernatural power residing in us. That doesn't mean we won't ever stumble and sin, because we will. But if we tap into that power, we can love the unlovable, help others and live in a manner pleasing to God. Catch you again tomorrow. Tami W.

Today (Wednesday), we're reading Romans 12:1-8.

So what part of the body are you? Think about that and then read on. . . Romans 12 is absolutely clear that each and every Christ-follower has been given at least one spiritual gift. Do you know what yours is? And if you do, what are you doing with it? Are you putting it to full use? There is no doubt that my strongest spiritual gift is administration. I love organizing and overseeing events and projects and making sure that everything that needs to happen, happens (the bigger the better, and more fun). But that kind of thing really drives other people crazy, and for some, they couldn't even imagine where to start. I say hooray to that because if we were all gifted similarly, the Body of Christ would be dysfunctional (not to mention I probably wouldn't be able to use my gift fully). So once again we see how wise God is in how He works things together.

If you have a few minutes today flip on over to 1 Corinthians 12. It's all about spiritual gifts. Verses 12-29 give a great explanation of how all of us with all of our gifts need each other to function together. Have fun reading, thinking and maybe even discovering your gift(s)! Tami W.

P.S. In case you're wondering, my husband (Jeff) and I did make it home back to Lincoln early Tuesday morning. Over 30 hours of airport and traveling--ugh. It is so nice to be home.

About Me

Hi, my name is Tami Weissert, the P4 facilitator and the "voice" behind the blogs. I'm passionate about helping people grow spiritually and actively encourage Bible engagement through conference speaking and writing. I also served as co-host of the Back to the Bible radio program for over 8 years. A little about me. I'm married to Jeff, and we love scuba diving, playing with our 3 dachshunds and going to Husker football games. I also love growing orchids, singing and Diet Pepsi. I hope you'll join in the conversation as we read the Bible and grow together.

About My Blog

I'm passionate about engaging God's Word! And my blog is about just that--giving you opportunities to receive, reflect on and respond to Scripture. Each day you'll find a short passage as well as thoughts, challenges and application questions for you to think about and respond to. I look forward to interacting with you and learning together, so post comments as often as you'd like. You can even sign up to get the blogs delivered to your inbox each day!

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This page is an archive of entries from April 2009 listed from newest to oldest.

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