Scripture Verse of the Day

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Random Reflective Musings of 2014 into 2015

Wow. The year 2014 expediently draws to a close tonight. We're in for a fresh start...a fresh slate...a fresh beginning...a fresh realization that the year is mostly what we make of it, and it behooves us to look in the mirror and see what we can and, perhaps, should do differently to make 2015 the best year we can possibly ever have...or not...depending on how content you are with your station in life.

I'm not necessarily talking about New Year's Resolutions, although there is nothing wrong with that. New Year's Resolutions don't seem to resonate for me. However, I have some loose goals that I'd like to achieve, all with the knowledge that God is known to shake things up a bit in my life, sometimes for the seeming worse but, ultimately, for the better. Jeremiah 29:11-13 readily comes to mind:
11 For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.12 Then shall ye call upon me, and ye shall go and pray unto me, and I will hearken unto you.13 And ye shall seek me, and find me, when ye shall search for me with all your heart. 
I've lost count how many times I've thought things were not going right, not going to *my* plan, but when I employ patience to ride the times out, things DO miraculously work out, and the results are better than I ever could've imagined. 

There's a lot to be said about changing what you can change and having the wisdom to accept what you cannot change. Nationally, we're living in religious and political upheaval affecting a variety of social facets, horrifically void of true balance. On both extremes, accusations and charges are hurled at each other, leaving the American people at a point in which something WILL give--the American people are on the brink of being fed up of being ignored and essentially abandoned. Globally? Oh, wow, where do I start? Sometimes the advent of the Internet (thanks, Al Gore, lol) is a horrible thing. Eeeeeeev-er-y-th-ing is on the Internet--the good, the bad, and the ugly. It's good that there is technology to find out what the bad guys are doing, but it's bad when you cannot do anything about the situations, especially when it deeply matters to you. The few-millennia-old Middle East conflicts that are enjoying another swell of resurgence are enough to make anyone fearful and crazy. Growing world battles affecting America is reaching another all-time high.Will there ever be an end? I believe in God's due time, there will be. I'm resting in that promise because there is nothing else I can do.
My all-time favorite passage that discusses what we should have on our minds comes from Philippians 4:4-9, but specifically verse 8:
Rejoice in the Lord always: and again I say, Rejoice.Let your moderation be known unto all men. The Lord is at hand.Be careful for nothing; but in every thing by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known unto God.And the peace of God, which passeth all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, think on these things.Those things, which ye have both learned, and received, and heard, and seen in me, do: and the God of peace shall be with you. 
If I concentrated on the news the way some of my friends do, I would be committed into an insane asylum. No joke. I don't have it in me to be saturated by such horrible news, as seems prevalent in this world. That does not mean I'm devoid of news...not at all. I just tend to put up a filter that keeps negative news from staying on my mind. If there is any way I can help with bad news, I'm more than happy to do it, but when I can't, I can't afford to be worried about what I cannot try to change. Pray without ceasing. I think that's what Paul says. THAT I can do!

Amidst all the seeming evils in this world are people who make a positive difference in the lives of others. YouTube has been flooded with joyful moments that make you think, wonder, admire, laugh, and share. I think I've seen more animal YouTubes this year than reading all of National Geographic magazines I read as a kid, or watching all the Animal Planet shows combined. Animals are great teachers...sometimes not in such good ways, but teachers, nonetheless. Individually, but en masse,  people have really good hearts, and there's so much joy watching people be good to each other. I think the theme of 2014 in some ways is, Pay It Forward. People are interested in the well-being of others. People want to lift other's spirits when they can. One person may not make that much of a difference to many, but for many that one person makes all the difference in the world.

There are a few things I'd like to accomplish for 2015. There are a few places I'd like to go. There are a few things I'd like to learn. There are a few things that inspire me, and I'd like to be an inspiration to others. I like making people feel better, even if the only thing I can do is listen or say a prayer. In 2015, I'd like to do more of that. 
I'm content with my home life. There's always room for improvement, but I'm blessed in having a home when so many do not. Married life is good. Parenthood? Well, I could use some wisdom and grace to make me a better parent. With a teen and a tween in the house, things are liable to be a little bumpy in 2015, but I can put on my seatbelt and hang on like the next parent! I'm still entrusted to help raise them! (God help them, lol). I suspect my walk with my Lord will be a little challenging this year. I welcome the challenge. I may drag my feet in the gravel, but I'll eventually surrender and realize that this will help me have the best 2015 ever! My soul already prospers, now for my life to prosper, too, as in 3 John 2:

Beloved, I wish above all things that thou mayest prosper and be in health, even as thy soul prospereth.


Monday, December 22, 2014


Sigh, my typical Christmas activities haven't gone quite like I was hoping, but that's gonna be alright. There's not gonna be many goodies this year (I usually bake all kinds of cookies and breads--ain't happening). I don't have near the decorations up I normally do, but at least Hubby put out my Christmas lights. I HAVE gotten to enjoy my Christmas music. Some Christmas cards, believe it or not, are still waiting to be written! :O I still have no Christmas tree. Nuff said 'bout THAT! 

Still, with my list of "Not Done" slowly turning into, "Ain't Gonna Get Done," I've greatly enjoyed a wonderful season that's "technically" drawing to a close in just a coupla of days. Since the birth of my younger son twelve years ago tomorrow, Christmas season kind of explodes with his birthday celebration as well as that of Jesus' birthday celebration.. 

I can't even say that my work has slowed me down from enjoying this season. It's been very comfortably slow. I guess I've just not had the sense of urgency to get things done this year. That could be a good thing or a bad thing, I suppose. I've read more. I've listened more. I've given more attention to people than I usually do. So many people are hurting this year. They've lost loved ones. They've had hard times. They've been sick. Some of them have passed away. I pray for God's Comfort which seems soooo especially needed during this time of year. 

So what is it about Christmas that is so special to me? It's a celebration of when Jesus was born. No, he was most likely NOT "born" on December 25th, but that is what day was chosen by ancient Christians to celebrate the coming of the Light of the World. While the world lived on, a special Newborn Babe became born to Mary for Mankind  in the City of David, Bethlehem, celestially marked by a special star. Simeon and Anna recognized that He was born to die for us and our sins, go to hell and back, and be resurrected in reconciliation between God and Man. God loved the world so much that He GAVE His only begotten Son as a Gift of Salvation--a cleansing from sin and a cancellation of its wage, death.. Jesus momentarily gave up his glory to come humbly in human flesh to teach God's Love for each and every one of us. His coming marked the beginning of the end of the Law and the beginning of a new heart and Spirit containing His Grace and Truth. Because of Jesus, we have the ability to enjoy a resurrection into eternal life, as well.. 

I can't say that I constantly think on these things, but when I do, I am overwhelmed with joy, peace, and love that my Savior has for me. Yes, I can confidently say that He loves me. He loves you, too! 

There is a story about when Jesus visited sisters Martha and Mary. Martha became overly concerned about making sure that everything was done and done right to impress her company, but Mary merely sat at His feet to listen to Him. Jesus told Martha that she is worried too much and that Mary chose the needful thing at the time. The dishes can wait, the dust can become an art display, and I'm sure the laundry can use another tumble w/ a wet rag to dewrinkle before wearing. The cookies don't have to be made. The tree does not have to be up. The cards just might be ready for next year. And the music can always be played!  It may be more needful to contemplate what Christmas is really all about. It may be needful to share His love with others. It may be more needful to be a vessel of comfort for someone else in need, be it fulfilling a need for them or being encouragement to them. 

In the meantime, I wish each one of you a most blessed and MERRY CHRISTMAS.

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Friday, April 18, 2014


There are so many thoughts about Good Friday. Many perspectives weigh in on one of a Christian's most reverent holy day. 

A dear friend of mine said, last Sunday--Palm Sunday, her pastor asked a very thought-provoking question: This represents the LAST WEEK of Jesus' life on earth as the Son of man. If we knew that we only had a few days left to live, how would we spend them? Ouch. This is an excellent question. What if we knew what we had to face before we died? Could we do it? even if it was torturous?
I'm not about to sit here and tell you that I could undergo the torture our Saviour experienced between a possible Thursday and Friday before his crucifixion. I admit that I have a hard time standing accused of anything I did not do. If I did as I'm accused, I would like to think I'd be as the admonishing thief on the cross who reminded the scoffing thief that they are experiencing a just death, while Jesus was not. My threshold of pain is extremely weak, I'll readily admit. I could not endure the beatings and the scourging that took place during His trial. I am not physically strong. After becoming a walking pile of raw flesh, I could not comprehend ANY of His ability to carry his cross, with or without assistance. The crucifixion? What a final insult from mankind. I praise God that Jesus could see past all of this and ask of his Father, "Forgive them, Father, for they know not what they do." He knew The Divine Plan, and through His Father's might, was able to endure the sins of the world; past, present, and future; once and for all. He became the final sacrifice that did not just cover sins, but removed the bondage of sin once and for all.

Now comes the good news. The disciples had been with Jesus for a little over three years, and like the Israelites of the OT, and *I* today, they easily succumb to despair, hopelessness, and emptiness.What now? We gave up three years to follow This Man, and now He's dead. We gave up our livelihood to follow Jesus, and for what? Whether lack of faith or fleeting lack of memory (for me, oftentimes it's both), they have forgotten Jesus' Promise that He Will Rise Again on the Third Day!

I'm so thankful for that Third Day, Resurrection Day! It's the most marvelous day of all time and human history! The Man Who knew no sin became sin for all of mankind  He went into the depths of hell so that we would not have to. He paid the ultimate price for our sins, and resurrected victorious, just as He promised His disciples! As believers in Christ Jesus, WE are victorious, too! We have a place in heaven. We have eternal life. Our sins are pardoned, and Grace and Truth brings us "real life." Our spiritual life manifests into our physical life. Our born-again spirits enables us to share with others what it means to be a Christian. How has Jesus' death, burial, and resurrection affected your life? Will you spend your last few days rejoicing in what Jesus has done for you, for me, for all of mankind? 

If you knew these were your last days on earth, how would you spend them?