The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year

That’s what they say about this time of year from Thanksgiving to January 1st.Although I’d like to share with you that just because it titled “The Most Wonderful Time Of The Year “ it doesn’t mean it is. Actually for more people than we will know it is the most depressing time of the year. Life doesn’t stop with bad news, tragedy or loss of any kind when the calendar turns to this time of the year. Quite the contrary, the bad news comes, tragedy hits and loss happens. For some loss has already happened and this time of the year makes it harder to bear. For those in mourning it doesn’t turn into laughter and joy just because the song is being sung. The loss of a loved one is a very real and traumatic thing that happens to us all. Whether it’s expected or unexpected it’s all trauma and it hurts. So what does one do during such a time as this when there is no joy? First of all it’s OK to cry. There is healing in tears and second don’t deny the pain and heartache you feel, for in denial one tends to withdraw within themselves. When this happens it’s much harder for one to reach out for the comfort that is so desperately needed. Lets reflect on a story in the scriptures that is a very good example. In John 11:17-45. This is the story of Martha and Mary when their brother Lazarus died. They both were very troubled and mourning his death when Jesus came back into town. In the story Jesus called forth Lazarus from the dead but that is not the part I want to talk about. It’s that place that yes they questioned where Jesus was and why he wasn’t there when their brother was dying but it’s also the part of the scripture that tells us how they in their loss and heartache allowed Jesus into that place to comfort them and help them. It’s that place that we so often close off to God and to others when we are hurting so bad that we can only see the darkness. Mourning the loss of a loved one is inevitable, we are humans living in a fallen world. It’s a part of being human, not the best part but most definitely a part. Before Jesus ascended to the Father he told us he would send us a comforter. Jesus himself said I will give you peace that passes all understanding. Jesus himself is peace. Jesus came to give us life and life more abundantly. How then does the trauma of loss and bad news bring us such despair and rob us of life and peace, and keep us form being comforted?

Another example I would like to point out is when Jesus was on the cross and at that moment the he bore all of our sins on himself and the Father looked away because in him there is no sin. Jesus cried out in agony to the Father saying “My God My God why have you forsaken me?” It was the sin that separated Jesus from the Father and that brought the most agonizing reality to our savior because the presence of the Father wasn’t with him. Jesus died to reconcile us to the Father and nothing will stand in the way of that relationship unless we let it. We are loved with a perfect love and we are given the keys to the kingdom. We shouldn’t be moved away from that gift, that reality and that relationship by what happens here. Yes it hurts beyond words and yes it feels like the life has been sucked out of us. But it hasn’t if we don’t let it. Just like Mary and Martha, they took their sorrow, heartache and loss to Jesus. They still had questions but they allowed him into that place in their hearts. For me the holidays have brought great sorrow. My brother had big plans to join us on Thanksgiving after being away for several years in the service, and as the day grew closer and the excitement was mounting we lost him to a drunk driver in another state. During the holidays that was the most festive time for my mother. Her body could not fight the cancer and the battle was lost on new years day, and for my youngest sister of forty who was a widow and the mother of four young children, her battle to cancer was lost on January 29th. The lights still shine and the music still plays “It’s the most wonderful time of the year!” and it doesn’t stop the loss and the heartache. But with my heart open to the one who is peace and the comforter whom Jesus sent to me. I’m one with the Father and yes it still hurts and yes I miss my family but my joy is complete and my life is full. I’ve been given the keys to the kingdom and lights are bright and the songs are being sung, because I’ve chosen life. Life here in the now and life eternal. For those who are mourning loss of any kind, its ok to cry, it’s ok to mourn and it’s ok to ask a question but take all of that to the one who came to give us life more abundant here and eternally. Be honest with yourself and with God so in that confession there is no denial and your heart opens up to the life giver. No matter what time of the year it is, it can be the most wonderful time if we allow ourselves life to overcome the loss. Blessings to you in whatever time of the year you are in and may you allow the giver of life into your life.

 

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A Poem of Love

Good morning to you. This is Thanksgiving week and I’m sure most of you are busy with

Preparations. For me everyday is a day of thanksgiving, I am so very thankful for my family and friends as well as my church family but most of all so thankful for my saviour Jesus Christ. Without his sacrifice on the cross I would be doomed but now my hope and salvation is in him alone. What a glorious life everyday is with Jesus. I will be working retail again this year and from today until Saturday I will be very busy. Except of course Thursday. The retail place I work fortunately is closed all of Thursday. A blessing! I want to share with you a poem I wrote many years ago. I hope you enjoy it and it blesses you.

 

Forest of Love

 

In the wonder of the warmth, I stand in all my Glory grounded in richness,

Anchored in strength and clothed in the beauty that comes from within. The

Essence of my created form reaching to the heavens in an expression of praise

To the one who created me.

 

It’s in this season that the thickness of my nature hides life with-in, it is fed

Nurtured, protected and multiplied.

 

It is during mid-life that the beauty of my nature comes forth. I am arrayed

In the natural wonder of earthly color. The life with-in is preparing for the

Next stage of life.

 

It is at this stage that I stand bare before the world. My stature comes in many

Different forms. Tall and lean, short and round, bold and mighty. The life with-in

That has been so well hidden in my youth now stands exposed to all.

 

My glory and beauty that once waved praises to my creator, now lays blanketed

At my feet in solemn silence. My life is stilled for a time of rest, only to come

Vibrantly back to life-bearing testimony of my creator.

 

Happy Thanksgiving to you all may every day be a happy thanksgiving to our Lord Jesus! Blessings!

Commit thy Way

Psalm 37:5

Commit your way to the Lord; Trust also in Him, and He will do it.

And God did it!

It’s been a year since I started this blog! It’s my anniversary and I’m more than excited

That I made it a year. I have loved blogging and hope all of you that have read and followed have enjoyed it also. Thank you to you all for reading my thoughts and heart on life as I live it and see it. Today as I write I have so much going on in several areas of my life. On the home front my husband is stable and working. He is in remission and we are thankful for every day that God gives us. We are working toward that retirement. With friends I seem to have many who are going through very stressful health issues. My prayer closet has a revolving door and that’s ok by me. Besides all the issues we have in our country and world kneepads are a blessing! On the other hand here we are at the beginning of November with Thanksgiving and Christmas upon us and as usual sewing jobs and sewing presents are piled high. Every year I tell myself “self you need to start these projects much earlier in the year” but here I am telling myself the same thing and still hoping and praying for the time and endurance to complete them all. Would I really thrive any other way at the holidays? Noodles to make, baking to do, needles to thread, I will not dread. So thankful for it all. As you logged on today you probably noticed a different picture. My friend so graciously took this photo as I worshipped with my flags by the water. I love to worship with my flags I get lost in Jesus and next to the water barefoot in the sand was marvelous. As we begin a season of festive blessings and family may the reality of Gods presence be so very real to each one of us at all times.  Hoping this second year will be as wonderful as this first year. Thank you all again. Blessings.

I Pledge My Allegiance

Just what does allegiance mean? It means “loyalty or commitment to a superior or to a group or cause.”  When I say I pledge my allegiance I am making even more than a statement I am making a proclamation of declaring my total support to someone, something or a cause. As a born again Christian and believer in Jesus Christ and a believer in the one true God my first allegiance is to the one true God of this universe, my Savior and Lord Jesus Christ. With that, he has birthed me in a great nation that proclaims its allegiance to be a nation under God. I have stood many times for the pledge of allegiance. many times as my sons have stood before playing in a game or at a college or pro game. I stand proudly and with god bumps up and down my body. I am proud to pledge my loyalty to first my God and second my nation flying the flag of freedom. Just as my savior shed his blood for my salvation and freedom, the blood of great men and women who have shed their blood for my freedom flies the flag. Declaring by not standing for our freedom both spiritually and in this nation sets a precedence of display for a totally different cause. Racial injustice is a cause that begins with each one of us individually. We have to look at ourselves in the mirror and examine our hearts personally to see if we are part of this social racial injustice. Just as we have to look at ourselves in the mirror and search our hearts for sin that we may repent and receive our savior. When this happens with each one of us individually we then take measures to stop the injustice we are causing. Oh people wake up and look at yourselves in the mirror and take out the log in your own eyes before you so visibly make a declaration against an innocent flag, people and nation. None of us are without sin, but to declare one cause against our flag and nation that negates the meaning and purpose of respect for the freedom it represents brings a division that destroys not helps or heals.  Oh the visual message that this is giving our young people is so opposite of what Christ did for us as well as for what the men and women who fought for us did. By taking a knee is rebellion to every one of us who loves this nation. But rest assured every knee shall bow and every tongue will confess that Jesus Christ is Lord. So whether those who bow their knee here on earth for whatever cause or before the one who sits on the throne I encourage everyone to search their soul as to why you are bowing your knee and for what and to whom. 

All things work together for our Good

I’d like to share with you today about a test I just had done. One would think that at retirement age you would be done with allergies getting worse but that doesn’t seem to be the case with me. I have always had an allergy to fragrance and sulfa and for the last 35 years I have been plagued with eczema. Now to me these were quite enough to deal with and I had them pretty much under control. But then about three year ago the eczema decided to show up on my hands. Being a seamstress and working in a fabric store I discovered that fabric and eczema collided. On top of that for the past many months the itching and my skin being on fire started creeping in. With my regular doctor being clueless and my dermatologist just giving me cream to apply I decided I would see an allergist. I had no clue what that allergy test would uncover but I was totally not prepared for what I learned. I had the full panel, which is foods and outside. With outside they told me I might want to think about a bubble in the spring, summer and fall and with foods out of sixty- nine I tested positive for sixty- two. I find this to be quite a surprise to say the least. So how does one go forward with such a report? Now I must go into my deep gratification that this is not fatal or even life threatening or me. I have friends who are celiac and have know them to have to be hospitalized at times. I have a son with Asthma and that is life threatening and I have another son with an allergy to Tylenol that is also life threatening. So I’m not complaining a bit. I am thankful that I now know what I’m dealing with and to be honest I know it will take me quite awhile to figure this food thing out. So once again Gods word in has come alive in me. Romans 8:28 And we know that to them that love God all things work together for good, even to them that are called according to his purpose. I know that I love God and he has a purpose for me. As I work through all that I can’t have and rely fully on God with what I can have, it will all work together for my good. I truly can do all things through Christ who strengthens me. Out of the seven things that I can have, I can have chocolate, pineapple, bacon and tea. What’s not good about that? And that’s living life

Trust in the Lord with All your heart

Today I’d like to talk about trusting the Lord. This is what you always hear when your struggling with something, like finances, addiction, marital problems, children, your job.  All the areas of life. So how does something so cliché and simple work? Is it really as simple as trusting God? The things I mentioned above are only a few areas of the things we can trust God in. Proverbs 3:5 says “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not unto your own understanding”. The meaning of trust is the assured reliance on the strength, ability and truth of God and nothing else.  I’ve been a believer for a long time and I thought I trusted my Lord in all the areas I needed to. But I just found out different. Oh how I love how the Holy Spirit continually reveals to me things that are keeping me from that fullness or complete relationship with my God. Let me explain with a visual that has helped me over the years. At salvation we ask Jesus into our lives and he comes to live in our hearts. So I’ve actually pictured the Lord in my heart. This is my literal sense of being. One day many years ago I was standing in my living room and It was as if I saw Jesus stand up on the inside of me and stretch his arms and legs out and say to me, “get the garbage out.” Wow that was interesting since Jesus forgives our sins and it’s removed, but at the same time I knew there were things in my life I was struggling with even with Jesus on the inside and he was telling me they were in his way. Or in his space, so to speak. Well obviously, it’s been years later and I’m still “getting the garbage out”. Oh how I am so thankful for grace and mercy. So periodically I’ve asked the Holy Spirit to reveal anything that is in the way of my relationship with my Lord, so I can deal with it and “get it out”. So here’s another visual that has helped me. I picture my heart as having many chambers. The chambers represent each area of my life. The scripture says to trust God with ALL your heart. As the Holy Spirit reveals an area in my heart that I’m not trusting God, He also reveals with such love my sin of not trusting God in that area and how I’ve been holding on to that area and in what ways. So the other day this happened. I was so shocked because I thought I was trusting God in this particular place. So after repentance and awe I gave that place or chamber up and let my Lord into that place in my heart. It’s an awesome feeling of Gods love, grace, mercy and peace when this happens. So I know now that Jesus my Lord is getting all my heart. It may be in pieces as it’s revealed to me but it’s my will for him to get it all. So you can ask the Holy Spirit also if there is an area in your life that is hindering your relationship with your Lord, so you also can let him into that place in your heart. And that’s living life.

Until Crist be formed in You

As a believer who has a burden for the lost, God blessed me with a sister in Christ who is also a prayer warrior with me. We spend much time in prayer for our families, friends and even our foes. We have a huge outreach at our church for the nations and praying for all those listed is endless. Nonetheless God has our hearts in this and we are relentless warriors on the behalf of many. I’d like to say that every family member near and far are truly Gods own and I’m sure those of you reading this can say the same thing but truth be told the answer is no. I wish, trusting God and God is faithful, and Jesus is the Savior are but a few phrases we use as we wait for salvation for those we are praying for. A couple weeks ago we were praying over one of our children again, and the scripture came to me in Galatians 4:19 My little children, of whom I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you. I decided to read the whole chapter to get a better perspective as to what Paul was saying. Paul begins the chapter reflecting on the law in the Old Testament. Then moves into the fullness of time when Christ was sent as the Messiah to bear our sins and bring us eternal life with God in heaven. Throughout Paul talks about the bondage we were in without Christ and the freedom we have in Christ. He share his own body scars from being tortured and imprisoned and his thankfulness for the love of the body who had not judged him but embraced him to the point of wanting to give all they had for him. Paul is writing to a body that he is not physically close to him and he has learned that they are falling back under the law, not believing and living under Gods grace. In verse 19 he is in agony for them as he says “ I am again in travail for you until Christ be formed in you.” It seems there are some in our prayer time that we truly travail for in agony until Christ be formed in them. Those who know the truth and the way of salvation, but don’t seem to have that revelation that gives them the power to stay the course. In scripture I can always find where God has set the course before us and a brother or sister in Christ has had the same heartache as I am experiencing. Paul said it well “ I am again in travail until Christ be formed in you”. I will stay the course and stay in travail until Christ be formed in those God has given me to pray for. It’s the Holy Spirit who brings conviction and draws people unto Jesus. It’s the Holy Spirit who brings us into all truth, teaches us and brings revelation to us. So together with the Holy Spirit I will travail, believe and trust for Christ to be formed in them to stay the course to eternity.