Posts with the tag “red-sea-rules”

Stepping Out
by Faith Parry on August 12th, 2023
We've come the long way 'round with our Red Sea journey. I hope you've learned some things you can hold into through the crazy of life. I pray that God challenged you in some way through Israel's challenges in your life. I'd love to hear what God has said to you. You can comment below or send your thoughts directly to me.To close this series' devotions, consider this though: So whether you are on ...  Read More
Perspective of Praise
by Faith Parry on August 10th, 2023
A person's perspective in life is everything. For example, it will feel cool when you've been outside in 100º weather and walk into a room that is 76 or even 78 degrees. However, if you've been inside cleaning and working around the house and it's 76 degrees, it'll feel hot quickly. The home temperature's "comfort" depends on your perspective.The same thing can happen in our spiritual lives if we ...  Read More
Breathe and Praise
by Faith Parry on August 10th, 2023
Some things in life are given. For example, if we’re going to be healthy, we need to eat healthy food, drink lots of water, exercise, and get 8 hours of sleep at night. If we eat only junk food and soda, and sit on the couch watching binge-watching TV at 4:00 am, we’ll probably feel the effects of those life choices eventually.The same goes for our spiritual lives. Praise and thanking Good is good...  Read More
Singing our Praise
by Faith Parry on August 9th, 2023
Moses and Miriam’s songs in Exodus 15 are the first recorded Praise songs in the Bible. Ever since Egypt, God’s people (Jews and Christians alike) have been singing our praises to God. We sing when things are good and when they are bad. Some of our most potent songs come from hard times in life. “In the history of the Christian church, some of our greatest hymns have come in the darkest moments.” ...  Read More
Praising by Name
by Faith Parry on August 8th, 2023
Israel has done more than one thing right in this story! There are so many that are examples of how not to do something. This time they do the first time. They trusted God when they took steps of faith through the Red Sea, and after God redeemed them, they praised him. Picture it: a mute multitude gazing in stunned disbelief at a body of water whose powerful surges had first saved by saving, then ...  Read More
The Miracle is a Mistake
by Faith Parry on July 25th, 2023
I heard someone say that they didn't believe God does miracles anymore. I don't remember any other conversation details, but the statement stood out because it broke my heart. In my first year of seminary, my New Testament professor gave a 3-hour lecture all on stories he personally heard of people talking about personal miracle experiences. These two events couldn't be more different. In some way...  Read More
His Miraculous Ways
by Faith Parry on July 24th, 2023
We’ve finally gotten to the part of Exodus 14 that everyone loves! God does his miracle. Granted, this isn’t the first miracle God performs in Exodus, and it’s not his last. However, the parting of the Red Sea stands out often because it’s such a dramatic image. Israel goes to sleep, afraid because Egypt’s army is closing in. The wind howls throughout the night. When they wake, they discover they’...  Read More
Imitate God
by Faith Parry on July 21st, 2023
We finish up our ways to draw near to God today. Let's look at them all: “First, affirm His nearness in your heart…Second, visualize God’s presence in your mind…Third, access God’s nearness through prayer...Fourth, reflect His presence in your demeanor.” –The Red Sea Rules, by Robert J. Morgan (Rule 7)I mentioned in my sermon Sunday that I always find it funny that people apologize for certain thi...  Read More
God Through Prayer
by Faith Parry on July 20th, 2023
We’ve been looking at how to identify God’s nearness intentionally. We’re doing so with 4 steps, and today is step 3. “First, affirm His nearness in your heart…Second, visualize God’s presence in your mind…Third, access God’s nearness through prayer.” –The Red Sea Rules, by Robert J. Morgan (Rule 7)2 and 3 go hand in hand with my mind. When we have a concrete image of God in our minds, it makes pr...  Read More
Visualize God’s Presence
by Faith Parry on July 19th, 2023
Yesterday we started talking about how we can begin visualizing God’s presence. We do that by: “First, affirm His nearness in your heart…Second, visualize God’s presence in your mind.” –The Red Sea Rules, by Robert J. Morgan (Rule 7)Children have powerful imaginations. If we learned about God at a young age, we created an image of him. For those of us who were fortunate to live in a home that taug...  Read More
Affirm His Nearness
by Faith Parry on July 18th, 2023
Being close to God has been talked about throughout our relationship with him. Take Genesis as an example: “What’s more, I am with you, and I will protect you wherever you go. One day I will bring you back to this land. I will not leave you until I have finished giving you everything I have promised you.” –Genesis 28:15 NLTIn our United Methodist The Faith We Sing hymnal, there’s a song called “Ju...  Read More
God’s Presence in the Trial
by Faith Parry on July 17th, 2023
The harder life gets, the more God wants to make his presence known to us. For Israel, God made his presence known visually:“The Lord went ahead of them. He guided them during the day with a pillar of cloud, and he provided light at night with a pillar of fire. This allowed them to travel by day or by night.” –Exodus 13:21 NLTIn Israel’s most desperate season, God made his presence dramatically kn...  Read More
Moment by Moment
by Faith Parry on July 14th, 2023
Trust is hard because our life has taught us that we can’t trust. We’re born into this world trusting without another thought, but that trust gets broken as we grow. Sometimes, it’s little things, like a meal that looks good doesn’t always taste good. Then there are bigger things like some people we love don’t always return home to us.If we’re going to take the next step God has in front of us, th...  Read More
Faith or Feeling
by Faith Parry on July 12th, 2023
When you’re scared, the hardest thing to do is step in the direction you’re afraid to go. That’s why we say: take it one step at a time. I have no idea where that phrase came from, but it comes in handy in many situations. For example, when you’re tired and have to walk up a big hill, you can tell yourself just one step at a time. Or, when doing something terrifying, you can think about it one ste...  Read More
Day by Day
by Faith Parry on July 10th, 2023
Have you ever noticed how we’re fascinated by the lives of people who can’t see? In recent years, quite a few things have come out on TV about blind people. We have Daredevil in 2015, about many people’s favorite superhero who fights crime as a lawyer by day and as a blind vigilante by night. Then in 2019, Apple released two shoes: See and In the Dark. One is about humanity all becoming blind, and...  Read More
Not Your Battle
by Faith Parry on July 7th, 2023
I love the words of Surrounded by Michael W Smith: Some of the lyrics are:The word says"For the spirit of heavinessPut on the garment of praise” [Isaiah 61:3]That's how we fight our battles...This is how I fight my battlesIt may look like I'm surrounded but I'm surrounded by You What I love about this song is the last line I shared. When we feel surrounded by something against us, we need to remem...  Read More
Don’t Be Afraid
by Faith Parry on July 6th, 2023
Did you know that throughout the Bible, 365 different Bible verses talk about fear? I have never counted myself, but that number has been important to preachers for a long time because it means you could look at a passage every day of the year, reminding yourself not to be afraid.Morgan explains that when Scripture repeats something, it’s because it’s important to God: “In our distresses in life w...  Read More
Faith or Feeling
by Faith Parry on July 5th, 2023
When we grow deeper into our faith, one of the hardest things is to determine what is God’s guidance in our lives, when our emotions talking, and when they are the same thing. We’re taught we can’t trust our feelings because they cloud our judgment. From adults we expect a maturity that says, “Don’t trust your emotions, and never be controlled by them. We’re to walk by faith, not by feelings. Some...  Read More
Leave Room for God
by Faith Parry on July 4th, 2023
Waiting on God is fruitless if we’re not leaving room for him. Realize that I said fruitless and not pointless. I have received some of my most profound spiritual growth during waiting times. Some of those times have lasted years. (Sorry to some of you who are in waiting seasons.)My last waiting season was long because I had to heal from my hurt and pain. God was preparing me for where he wanted m...  Read More
by Faith Parry on July 3rd, 2023
There’s nothing worse than waiting. As a kid growing up, we were late to everything. One of my strongest memories is being late to church…OFTEN. My mom, brother, and I would walk in through the front doors of our enormous sanctuary (it was in my child’s eyes) and sit down on the front row. My dad sat at the platform (chancel), where he helped lead the service and would watch us as we walked in.I h...  Read More
Prayer Darts
by Faith Parry on June 30th, 2023
If you like to do any target games like darts, axe throwing, archery, etc., you know it takes practice to hit your target. Prayer is no different. The more we pray, the better we get at getting to the heart (center) of what we need to pray about and then earnestly repeating the topic.Faith and prayer go hand in hand. Sometimes, we have the faith to back up our prayers. Other times, we have to pray...  Read More
Positively Pray
by Faith Parry on June 29th, 2023
There is something to looking at the positive side of life. I consider myself a realist. You know the whole “Is it half full or half empty? Question? I see half a cup of water. Research shows that people who look for the positive side are happier.The same is true for prayer. If you pray positively, “God, use your power to do something amazing…” instead of, “God, stop anything bad from happening to...  Read More
Teach Me Lord
by Faith Parry on June 28th, 2023
Dr. F. B. Meyer taught the missionary Amy Carmichael to pray. The simple and impactful method kept God at the center of her life all the time: “Amy Carmichael developed many variations of that prayer. When meeting someone she didn’t like, she would silently pray, “Thy love, Lord.” In a crisis, she’d whisper, “Thy help, Lord,” or “Thy wisdom, Lord.” Sometimes when I’m worried, I just lift my heart ...  Read More
Earnest Prayer
by Faith Parry on June 28th, 2023
Have you ever thought about the idea of an Earnest prayer? There’s a lot in scripture about praying earnestly. When we pray earnestly, we’re in the company of many incredible people–Job, Jairus, Elijah, Jesus.James writes about the importance of earnest prayer within a Christian community; he says: “Confess your sins to each other and pray for each other so that you may be healed. The earnest pray...  Read More
Seaside Prayers
by Faith Parry on June 27th, 2023
We move on to Rule 4 this week: Pray! This is an easy rule to remember but isn’t as easy to do. “The Israelites were in crisis in Exodus 14, and their seaside cry was urgent, united, unfeigned, but unbelieving.” –The Red Sea Rules, by Robert J. Morgan (Rule 4)If we don’t believe that God will deliver us from our situation, then it doesn’t matter how much we cry out in urgency, and as a united grou...  Read More
Gods Protective Cloud
by Faith Parry on June 23rd, 2023
God will always look out for us. That’s his promise when we accept his grace and power. He gives us protection so that no matter what, we can stand strong against whatever is thrown our way. Our responsibility is not to have the strength to make it through but to have the strength to rely on God. Our strength can never withstand what the world throws our way, but God is always strong enough. Peter...  Read More
Look Where You Want to Go
by Faith Parry on June 22nd, 2023
If there’s one thing you take away this week, it’s where you’re looking when you are tempted or spiritually attacked. Our temptation is to focus on our enemy and know where the attack is coming from, but by doing so, we pull our focus from God.Our devotion puts it this way: “But we always make a mistake when we acknowledge the Lord and keep our eyes on Satan. Far better to acknowledge the devil wh...  Read More
A Dog Called Satan
by Faith Parry on June 21st, 2023
Paul writes a lot about Satan in his letter. If you read this week’s devotion, you’ll see a list of passages that point to Paul referencing Satan’s hand in the sins of people within the church and the community. Specifically, in Ephesians, he says: “For we are not fighting against flesh-and-blood enemies, but against evil rulers and authorities of the unseen world, against mighty powers in this da...  Read More
You Know Who
by Faith Parry on June 20th, 2023
We don’t talk about much in today’s church–the evil one. Think about it for a moment. We usually don’t even call him the Devil but call him the evil one. It’s like saying his name is bad. It’s like in Harry Potter, how the world is afraid to say Lord Voldemort‘s name. People respond quickly and fearfully whenever Harry says, “Don’t say his name.” They call him “You Know Who” or “He Who Must Not Be...  Read More
by Faith Parry on June 19th, 2023
Today we start the third rule. Even after God proved that Egypt’s gods couldn’t touch Israel, and he was bigger and stronger than they were with his show of power through the 10 plagues, Pharaoh still tried to regain his property. In the same way, Satan doesn’t give up his power on Earth easily. When we give our lives over to God, Satan fights to get us back. Our devotion says: "But Satan doesn’t ...  Read More
Questions Become Praise
by Faith Parry on June 6th, 2023
When we shift our mindset from praying for a way out to praying for a way to glorify, life changes dramatically. The biggest thing that changes is our perspective. We stop seeing life as something that’s happened to us, and we become something that happens to life. Every day becomes a chance to praise and worship God, whether good or bad. “His honor rose up in liquid walls before the wide-eyed Isr...  Read More
Asking the Right Questions
by Faith Parry on June 5th, 2023
It’s only human nature to ask ourselves, “How can I make this problem go away,” or, “How can I get myself out of this situation with the least hardship.” I’m not blaming anyone for thinking this. Let’s start by reading our passage for the week: “Then Pharaoh will think, ‘The Israelites are confused. They are trapped in the wilderness!’ And once again I will harden Pharaoh’s heart, and he will chas...  Read More
What is my Fault
by Faith Parry on June 2nd, 2023
Sometimes we're where we are because we've made a choice that's not positive and put ourselves in a bad spot. One of the hardest things a parent can do is let their children make mistakes. God is a perfect and loving parent. He doesn't do things to manipulate or control us. So, when we do things we should, he lets us experience the effects (or consequences) of those choices. "We sometimes cause ou...  Read More
Expect Difficulties
by Faith Parry on June 1st, 2023
Some of us are optimists, and some are pessimists. I believe those who, like me, are realists are weird birds. We're the type who looks like the "half cup" of water and sees half a cup. We're also the ones who look at the data, and if it says things will likely go wrong, then we start looking around for what's about to break loose.This isn't because we want something to go crazy or because we don'...  Read More
When You Find Yourself
by Faith Parry on May 31st, 2023
One of the hardest lessons I have learned in my Christian life is that life gets more challenging when we obey God. For some reason, no one taught me this in Sunday school or youth group. As a teenager, I obeyed God when he directed me to affirm my family’s call to leave my hometown and move to Florida. But then I resented him when it was hard, and I was miserable.No one prepared me for the strugg...  Read More
Stop and Pray
by Faith Parry on May 30th, 2023
Prayer in a challenging situation does more than any amount of worry. One thing I am so thankful for is that I was taught as a child to stop and pray about something when I was worried about something. As a “Type-A” person who wants every detail to be correct, I can sometimes drown under the weight of the worry. The pattern of praying about my fears, concerns, and whatever weighs on my mind has se...  Read More
by Faith Parry on May 29th, 2023
This week’s life rule is 1: Realize that God Means for you to be where you are. I’ll be honest: I was a bit offended the first time I read this years ago. After all, when I mess up and end up someplace because of my mistakes, God didn’t put me there; I did. I love the way Morgan puts it in his book: “When you are in a difficult place, realize that the Lord either placed you there or allowed you to...  Read More
Summer Devos
by Faith Parry on May 25th, 2023
Sunday, we start a new series called Rules of Life that will carry us all summer. This series pulls pieces from a book called The Red Sea Rules: 10 God-Given Strategies for Difficult Times by Robert J. Morgan. It's a powerful, short book that is a great way to stay connected to the church throughout the summer. We’ll spend most of the summer in Exodus Chapter 14.I am trying something new this summ...  Read More