Saturday, December 31, 2016

For the New Year

New for post 10a

"God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died of us. Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him. For if while we were enemies, we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life." Romans 5:8-10

"If you confess with your mouth Jesus as Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him from the dead, you shall be saved, for with the heart man believes, resulting in righteousness, and with the mouth he confesses, resulting in salvation." Romans 10-9-10

"Therefore, having been justified by faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ. " Romans 5:1

"Now may the God of hope fill you with all joy and peace in believing, that you may abound in hope by the power of the Holy Spirit." Romans 15:13

We all do wrong things. Whether in thought or deed, I have sinned against God in my life. I am so thankful that the gift of God is free, and that Christ's death on the cross was atonement for my sins.

Will you let Christ's ransom be applied to you?? If so, you can pray.........

Dear Lord, I know that I am a sinner and in need of Your forgiveness of my sins. I know I deserve judgment in hell. I understand that I can only receive this forgiveness through Your Son, Jesus Christ, who died for my sins and rose from the dead that I might spend all of eternity with You in Heaven. I now invite Jesus Christ to come into my life as my Savior. Thank you in Jesus' precious name. Amen.

"For whosoever shall call upon the name of the Lord shall be saved." Romans 10:13

Sunday, December 25, 2016

Words to Live By

May the celebration of our Savior's birth inspire us all to rejoice and to serve Him with humble hearts. May we always remember the "reason for the season".

Our Heavenly Father loved us so much that He gave His beloved Son to this fallen world, to die for our sins so that we may live forever with Him (John 3:16) It's a gift that cannot be earned or worked for. It's free to all men.

May your hearts be filled with love and joy this Christmas season.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas

Cards are sent. Gifts are wrapped. Food is cooked. Preparations are done. 

All that remains is the fellowship of family and friends. 

Wishing you a Blessed and Merry Christmas

Monday, December 19, 2016

The beauty of God's earth

Living in the deep south, we never see snow. A few years ago our family experienced the beautiful mountains of West Virginia. It always overwhelms me how the beauty of God's earth declares His holiness.

"Holy, holy, holy is the Lord of hosts;
the whole earth is full of his glory!"

Isaiah 6:

Monday, December 12, 2016

Comfort ye

Comfort ye, comfort ye my people, saith your God"

George Frideric Handel wrote the oratorio "Messiah".

"Every valley shall be exalted, and every mountain and hill made low, the crooked straight, and the rough places plain."

In 1741, Handel was deeply in debt, his health was failing and he seemed certain to land in debtor's prison.

"And the glory of the Lord shall be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together, for the mouth of the Lord hath spoken it."

Charles Jennens, gave Handel a libretto based on the life of Christ, to set to music.

"Thus saith the Lord of Hosts: Yet once a little while, and I will shake the heavens, and the earth, the sea and the dry land, and I will shake all nations; and the desire of all nations shall come." The Lord, whom ye seek, shall suddenly come to His temple; even the messenger of the covenant, whom ye delight in, behold he shall come, saith the Lord of Hosts."

Handel began composing on August 22, 1741. He grew so absorbed, he rarely left his room, hardly stopping to eat.

"And He shall purify the sons of Levi that they may offer unto the Lord an offering in righteousness"

The structure of the text follows a chronological portrayal of the biblical story of the Messiah.

"Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call His name Emmanuel."

The work is in three parts. Part I contains the broad themes of Messiah's coming foretold.

""O thou that tellest good tidings to Zion, get thee up into the high mountain; lift up thy voice with strength; lift it up, be not afraid; say unto the cities of Judah, Behold you God!"

His birth, life, and ministry.

"For unto us a child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government shall be upon His shoulder; and His name shall be called Wonderful, Counselor, the Might God, the Everlasting Father, the Prince of Peace."

Part II features Messiah's passion and resurrection, Pentecost, and the birth of the Church.

"Behold the Lamb of God, tha taketh away the sin of the world."

This section ends with the celebratory "Hallelujah Chorus" proclaiming Messiah's ultimate victory.

"Hallelujah! for the Lord God omnipotent reigneth." "The kingdom of this world is become the kingdom of our Lord and of His Christ; and He shall reign for ever and ever. King of Kings and Lord of Lords."

Part III is the believer's personalized response, expressing the hope of those redeemed by the Messiah.

" I know that my Redeemer liveth, and that He shall stand at the latter day upon the earth; And though worms destroy this body, yet in my flesh shall I see God."

This section ends in a hymn of praise to the eternal, reigning Messiah.

"Worthy is the Lamb that was slain and hath redeemed us to God by His Blood, to receive power, and riches, and wisdom, and strength, and honor, and glory, and blessing. Blessing and honor, glory and power, be unto Him that sitteth upon the throne, and unto the Lamb for ever and ever."

Several years ago we attended a presentation of Messiah at my son's college. It was an outstanding performance by some very talented students. But the thing that continues to strike me every time I hear this, although many believe that Handel's work is not inspired, I continue to see how his music has been played through the years in honor of the Son of God. When I listen to the classical music stations (which in our area is housed by a liberal university) I am praising God for HIS Words that are filtering through their airwaves.


Monday, December 5, 2016

What's your word?

For the last few years I've seen bloggers post their one word for the coming year. It's been an interesting concept, one that takes the place of a New Year's resolution. I tried doing it a couple of times. The problem was, I'm not sure I followed through. What's really funny is I can't even remember what those words were.

So tell me, do you have a new word for 2017? Did your one word encourage you to fulfill your goals in 2016? I'd like to hear how your one word for 2016 motivated you throughout the year. And then share your new one word for 2017.

If I were to choose one word I think it might be "edit." I've written two novels. They need a lot of work. After submitting them to a writing contest, I've been kind of at a loss for the next step. Websters defines the word "edit" - compile, revise, rewrite, adapt. And I must say my manuscripts need a lot of that!

words text in wood type against background of letterpress printing blocks
Okay, your turn! What's your one word?

Sunday, December 4, 2016

Words to Live By

 "All I  have seen teaches me to trust the Creator for all I have not seen."
Ralph Waldo Emerson

Thursday, December 1, 2016

A Simple Gift

The other day I heard about a random act of kindness at a coffee drive-thru. Someone paid for the coffee of the one behind him in the drive-thru. That driver then paid for the one behind him. The simple act of goodwill spread six cars back. I love stories like that. I don't think that I am a giving person often enough, but yet when I hear stories like that I want to be a giver. I want to be kind to strangers. Giving inspires giving. Kindness inspires kindness.

Typically simple acts of kindness and giving are more prevalent during this time of year. When you are kind, you inspire kindness in others. Have you ever walked past someone who looked unhappy? By sharing a smile with them, they in turn smile back. It is is a simple act of kindness and in a way a simple gift. When you give to others, you infect them with a generous spirit. The next 25 days before Christmas are going to be full and busy, and maybe even a little hectic at times. It is easy to miss the chance to give a simple gift.

I am thankful for simple gifts. A hug from a child, a smile from a stranger, kind words that encourage.

As we walk out on this first day of December, share a simple gift :-)