A Joyful Reorganization

Trust in the Lord with all your heart;
    do not depend on your own understanding.
Seek his will in all you do,
    and he will show you which path to take.

(Proverbs 3:5-6 NLT)

According to neuroscientist Caroline Leaf, author of Think, Learn, Succeed,  and other neuroscientists, newborn brain cells are available to us each morning. Like baby goslings or ducklings, they need direction. By our thinking, we direct them to form either toxic or healthy neural pathways. Negative thoughts, based on lies and fear are toxic. Positive thoughts based on truth and love are healthy.

My book, Emotional Freedom: The Choices We Must Make, incorporates and applies these concepts. In it, I explain how to move from pathways of dysfunctional anger into pathways of self-control; how to move from pathways of resentment into pathways of joy; and how to move from pathways of revenge into pathways of forgiveness and mercy. It’s available at Amazon.

The following poem reflects these concepts, as well as the wisdom I gained through studying and meditating on Scripture.

 A Joyful Reorganization
As his Spirit reigns in me,
I live my life as Jesus did—
Listen to my Father’s voice
And honor him in every choice.
I receive the message Jesus speaks
 And instruct my DNA
To manage pathways in my brain
So they’re useful to my King.
Every morning baby neurons
Appear and wonder where to go.
I direct and instruct them
So that with truth they flow
Into the valleys and the hills
Of my ever-changing brain!
As this transformation continues,
I’m not bound by my past habits.
Increasingly, peace and order
Become the hallmarks of my life,
And with joy, I accomplish
The work God calls me to;
Treasures that I once ran after
Mean nothing to me, now.
My soul is filled with laughter
As to Jesus Christ I bow.

Share Your Awesomeness

Don’t bury yourself and your talent in a snowdrift of fear!

“Do you know that I am awesome? That I am amazing?” These were the words the speaker began with, as she addressed the children who’d gathered at the front of the church to hear their sermon.

“Do you know why I am awesome?” she continued. “Because God says I am.” The point of her sermon was that because of the way God made us and gifted us, we are all awesome; however, no one will know how awesome we are unless we do something with what we’ve been given.

I don’t know how much the children needed that little pep talk but I needed it. I grew up believing it was wrong to talk about my accomplishments because “you are not supposed to blow your own horn.” Also, I interpreted Scriptures that talked about self-denial to mean that I must quietly remain in the background and wait for someone else to discover that I have something to offer.

If we do nothing with our gift, if we hide it, then we will be cheating others who would benefit from it. We need to “fan into flame” the gift God has given to us. (2 Timothy 1:6)

I am sharing my poems because I don’t want to hide the gift God has given me. Do you have a gift that you are hiding? Someone needs it. I hope that this year you will gain the courage to share your gift. I hope you will be a risk-taker and . . .

Try something different
Try something new
Try something you’ve been wanting to do
Take the first step
Make an attempt
It doesn’t have to be written in cement
You can be flexible
You can make changes
Learning occurs most often in stages
Try something different
Try something new
Do what the Spirit has been calling you to
Trust in the Father
Rely on the grace
Given by Jesus who stood in your place
Move out with courage
Do it with zest
You don’t have to be perfect
Just give it your best!

Jane Ault

What it Means to Choose God

Who are those who fear the Lord? He will show them the path they should choose.
(Psalm 25:12 NLT)

This year, I will be posting poetry or song lyrics which I’ve written in the past or am currently writing. This is the easiest, most enjoyable, and possibly the most effective way for me to express my heart and mind.

I think my poetry speaks for itself. So without further explanation, here is my poem for this week.

Choosing God means choosing prayer,
Not for a few minutes in the morning
But periodically and intentionally going there
Throughout the day, throughout the night.

Choosing God means choosing grace
Placing my confidence in him—in Jesus,
In his ability to direct and correct me
By his Spirit, through his Word.
Choosing God means choosing truth
Seeking it, loving it, owning it,
Internalizing his word, digesting it,
Adjusting to it— renovating my brain.
Choosing God means choosing action,
Standing against lies of the evil one,
Never passively accepting them,
Standing up for others, helping them stand.
Choosing God means choosing pain,
Saying “goodbye” to some people,
Some positions, some profits I could gain,
Seeing all pleasures inferior to Christ.
Choosing God means choosing joy,
Moving forward in my pursuit of him,
In my desire to know him, to become like him,
Doing it intentionally, willingly, constantly.
Choosing God means choosing love,
Learning from him what that is,
Loving him, loving myself, loving others,
Every sister, every brother, rejecting no one.
Jane Ault

A New Year’s Day Prayer

My primary focus for this year

A dear friend gave me this journal, which I started using this morning. At the top of each page, there is a Scripture verse on which to focus. The verse for today, January 1, is from the Old Testament book, Jeremiah: “For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future” (Jeremiah 29:11 NIV).

The following poem is my response to this promise from God. Perhaps you may want to use it as your prayer. Or better yet, read the Scripture and write your own prayer response.

The meaning of the word “prosperity” in this text refers to our total well-being, based on the original Hebrew word “shalom”. (Thanks to my husband for his contribution, here.)

 I thank you, Lord, for morning light
For peaceful sleep throughout the night,
For all your goodness this past year,
And hope to face the one that’s here.
Lord, I believe you are honest;
I can depend on your promise.
Prosperity will come to me,
If I obey you, every day—
Acknowledging my need for you,
In everything I plan to do.
In all my ways and all my days
I want my works to bring you praise.
I will receive your wise instruction,
Listen to your kind correction,
Joyfully, do the things you show me
Faithfully, write the words you give me
I thank you, Lord, for morning light
For peaceful sleep throughout the night,
For all your goodness this past year,
With hope, I face the one that’s here.

Jane Ault