Tuesday, December 30, 2014

You're Always a Role Model to Somebody #19




















"My [children], if you accept my words 
and store up my commands within you, 
turning your ear to wisdom 
and applying your heart to understanding, 
and if you call out for insight 
and cry aloud for understanding, 
and if you look for it as for silver 
and search for it as for hidden treasure, 
then you will understand the fear of the LORD 
and find the knowledge of God.  
For the LORD gives wisdom, 
and from His mouth come knowledge and understanding.  
He holds victory in store for the upright, 
His is a shield to those whose walk is blameless, 
for He guards the course of the just 
and protects the way of His faithful ones."
Proverbs 2:1-8


Wisdom from a snowman










Rose is Rose
by Pat Brady


Sunday, December 28, 2014

Cults and their devastation and destruction


Legalisms, manipulations, and the controlling of others has been around since sometime after the fall.  I could probably say that most of us know of someone who is a leader of, or in a Sociological cult (lead by a leader who uses psychologically controlling ways on their group of people by intimidation, shunning, punishment, manipulations, etc.), or someone who is a leader of, or in a Theological cult (same dynamics, but with a religion mixed in). 

Both of these types of people with evil intentions   cause great devastation and destruction in so many people's lives. 

This philosopher's quote, "To learn who rules over you, simply find out who you are not allowed to criticize",  is a great question to ask yourself if you have an inkling that you or someone else you love may be in a dangerous relationship.  

If you have an answer for Voltaire's statement, then this is called a RED FLAG.  Your relationship with this person or persons is dangerous. You need to begin to pull away and ask a godly someone who is outside of this controlling person's influence some very pointed questions.  You have most probably been controlled and manipulated, and you are not thinking clearly.   

Godly, wise counsel is what you need to consider to be able to truly escape from the manipulator's grasp.

"May mercy and peace and love be multiplied to you."
Jude 2

*

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Treasures from God


PLUGGERS by Brookins
*
I remember my precious mother in so many ways. 

She would take us grocery shopping, etc. and I remember the excitement of her receiving “Green Stamps” with her change.  As we became older she would give us the job of  getting them home and putting them in the kitchen drawer.  At the time we only knew that this was a saving thing to do.  When she would get enough stamps, then she  could use them as “money”.

I know she did “buy” things with her stash of Green Stamps, although I can not remember what.  I just remember the excitement of it all.  Eventually, she would have gotten out all of her stamps when we were not around, and licked them into the saving books.  The books were fat with full pages of stamps and then rubber-banded, ready to go to the redemption store which was an hour away from us.  Unbeknownst to us, that day would come and something new was in the house from her trek.

In June 1976 I came home from school for the summer, and Mom said to go and get the stamps out of the kitchen drawer.  So I found every stamp stuffed in there for years, plus everything else---a complete disaster!  I laboriously licked every sheet of stamps and every single stamp, wondering what my mother was planning on “buying“.

When I was finally finished, I asked what she was saving up for, and she said it was all for me!  I was completely surprised!  Her plan was to take me and every fat, filled, rubber-banded book of stamps to the redemption center for me to use up her “stash” on things for my soon-to be-new household as I was getting married that summer.

How can I express the joy it was for me to be blessed with the love of a mother so caring and thoughtful.  I had grown up knowing the Green Stamps were so valuable, and here she was giving me more than I had ever seen in my life.

The trek to the big city was one of conversations, giggles; such sweet memories!  Walking into the redemption center, I was in awe, as I had never gone with her before.  It was set up just like a store with one of everything they had for redemption.  We walked around “window shopping” until we began to pick things out for me to set up my house.

There were so many things which her savings acquired for me and my husband-to -be: an iron, the ironing board, a toaster, a set of three plastic mixing bowls, and so many other things which I am ashamed I do not remember.  If she were here, she would be remembering it all, sharing and laughing at the fun we had together!

After almost 4 decades of use the two remaining treasures I have left are the ironing board and one small plastic mixing bowl.  The ironing board is still used often, and the small mixing bowl is pulled out of everyday use and stacked with my varied, treasured, serving bowls as if it is made of lead crystal.

Of all of these things, my most special treasure is my mother.

Thank you, Lord! For my precious mother!


*


Friday, December 26, 2014

Take your picture? Just don't ask me to do it!



















Christmas Kitty


The sun finally shines!
*



The Wrong shall fail, The Right prevail

I have often contemplated the "whys" of this evil world and how it keeps going.  These terrible things which continue to happen, these other terrible things which never stop happening.  None of it is fair or right.  

I know that God is working and His victory is sure, and this is my hope and my safety.  

My safety is in Him.

But real life continues and it is tough; bitterness can surely creep in.   

I am not alone. All through time, in this fallen world, agonies continue.  People long before me have also trusted in the Name above all names.  Our trust in Him, in the midst of our agonies, glorifies His name!

"God is not dead, nor doth He sleep!"

Glorify God in your life!  

May it be so today, and all of our tomorrows. 

His mercies are new every morning!

*

I heard the bells on Christmas Day
Their old, familiar carols play,
and wild and sweet
The words repeat
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along
The unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Till ringing, singing on its way,
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime,
A chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

Then from each black, accursed mouth
The cannon thundered in the South,
And with the sound
The carols drowned
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

It was as if an earthquake rent
The hearth-stones of a continent,
And made forlorn
The households born
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!

And in despair I bowed my head;
“There is no peace on earth,” I said;
“For hate is strong,
And mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good-will to men!”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The Wrong shall fail,
The Right prevail,

With peace on earth, good-will to men.”

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

*






Thursday, December 25, 2014

Wednesday, December 24, 2014

My breath, my sunshine, my all in all!
























Down from His glory,
  Ever living story,
My God and Savior came,
  And Jesus was His name.
Born in a manger,
  To His own a stranger,
A Man of sorrows, tears and agony.

O how I love Him! How I adore Him!
My breath, my sunshine, my all in all!
The great Creator became my Savior,
  And all God’s fulness dwelleth in Him.

What condescension,
  Bringing us redemption;
That in the dead of night,
  Not one faint hope in sight,
God, gracious, tender,
  Laid aside His splendor,
Stooping to woo, to win, to save my soul.

O how I love Him! How I adore Him!
My breath, my sunshine, my all in all!
The great Creator became my Savior,
  And all God’s fulness dwelleth in Him.

Without reluctance,
  Flesh and blood His substance
He took the form of man,
  Revealed the hidden plan.
O glorious myst’ry,
  Sacrifice of Calv’ry,
And now I know Thou art the great “I AM.”



Down From His Glory by William E. Booth-Clibborn

Painting by the Dutch artist Gerard van Honthorst (1592-1656) 





Young people are completely isolated

























HT to J.L. Pattison


Messing with their heads




















Romans 12:9-21

"...Do not be overcome by evil, but overcome evil with good."


Monday, December 22, 2014

My Evening Prayer

If I have wounded any soul today,
If I have caused one foot to go astray,
If I have walked in my own willful way —
Good Lord, forgive!

If I have uttered idle words or vain,
If I have turned aside from want or pain,
Lest I myself should suffer through the strain —
Good Lord, forgive!

If I have craved for joys that are not mine, 
If I have let my wayward heart repine,
Dwelling on things of earth, not things divine —
Good Lord, forgive!

If I have been perverse, or hard, or cold,
If I have longed for shelter in Thy fold,
When Thou has given me some part to hold —
Good Lord, forgive.

Forgive the sins I have confessed to Thee,
Forgive the secret sins I do not see,
That which I know not, Father, teach Thou me —
Help me to live.


Charles H. Gabriel
from The Best Loved Poems of the American People


The new scratching post



























Sunday, December 21, 2014

You're Always a Role Model to Somebody #18

















"The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, 
and knowledge of the Holy One is understanding.  
For through me [wisdom] your days will be many, 
and years will be added to your life.  
If you are wise, your wisdom will reward you; 
if you are a mocker, you alone will suffer."
Proverbs 9:10-12


Sweeter than Honey










MUTTS
by Patrick McDonnell



Somebody's Mother

The woman was old and ragged and gray
And bent with the chill of the Winter’s day.
The street was wet with a recent snow
And the woman’s feet were aged and slow.

She stood at the crossing and waited long, 
Alone, uncared for, amid the throng
Of human beings who passed her by
Nor heeded the glance of her anxious eye.

Down the street, with laughter and shout,
Glad in the freedom of “school let out,”
Came the boys like a flock of sheep,
Hailing the snow piled white and deep.

Past the woman so old and gray
Hastened the children on their way.
Nor offered a helping hand to her —
So meek, so timid, afraid to stir
Lest the carriage wheels or the horse’s feet
Should crowd her down in the slippery street.

At last came one of the merry troop,
The gayest laddie of all the group;
He paused beside her and whispered low,
“I’ll help you cross, if you wish to go.”

Here aged hand on his strong young arm
She placed, and so, without hurt or harm,
He guided the trembling feet along,
Proud that his own were firm and strong.

Then back again to his friends he went, 
His young heart happy and well content.

“She’s somebody’s mother, boys, you know,
For all she’s aged and poor and slow,
And I hope some fellow will lend a hand
To help my mother, you understand,
If ever she’s poor and old and gray,
When her own dear boy is far away.”

And “somebody’s mother” bowed her head
In her home that night, and the prayer she said
Was, “God be kind to the noble boy,
Who is somebody’s son, and pride and joy!”


Mary Dow Brine
From The Best Loved Poems of the American people


Parenting is difficult










Rose is Rose
by Pat Brady


Do you believe this?

In John 11:24-26 Martha makes a statement to Jesus. 

Jesus says to her,

 “I am the resurrection and the life; he who believes in Me will live even if he dies, and everyone who lives and believes in Me will never die." 

And then Jesus asks her, "Do you believe this?”


And so as our world groans in birth pangs, I ask you, Do you believe this?

*

"Now I say, as long as the heir is a child, he does not differ at all from a slave although he is owner of everything, 
but he is under guardians and managers until the date set by the father. 
So also we, while we were children, were held in bondage under the elemental things of the world. 
But when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, 
so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons. 
Because you are sons, God has sent forth the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying, “Abba! Father!” 
Therefore you are no longer a slave, but a son; and if a son, then an heir through God.
Galatians 4:1-7

*
If you are a slave to sin, let yourself be set free! 

You must believe!

“if you confess with your mouth Jesus is Lord, and believe in your heart that God raised Him form the dead, you will be saved.”
Romans 10:9


Sunday, December 14, 2014

Warm Tummy











Calvin and Hobbes
by Bill Waterson


You're Always a Role Model to Somebody #17




















My [child], keep my words 
and store up my commands within you.  
Keep my commands and you will live; 
guard my teachings as the apple of your eye.  
Bind them on your fingers; 
write them on the tablet of your heart.  
Say to wisdom, "You are my sister," 
and call understanding your kinsman; "
Proverbs 7:1-5a

*


Bananas in the Gutter

Stopping at the store today we parked near a bunch of bananas which were in the gutter.  They looked like they had been there a day, turning brown in our mild, winter weather. Most probably the bunch were accidentally dropped out of a grocery bag and not even noticed.
Side note:  I can remember when businesses took care of their properties in the past, and that these bananas would have been picked up yesterday as they cleaned up their parking lot….but instead let's talk about…

...the wonderful sermon we had just heard on who Jesus is, why He came, what He did for us.  For me, this bunch of bananas in the gutter brought thoughts of we humans.  Here we are in this fallen world, for thousands of years of humanity and we have lived and struggled.

Even so God gave us hope of a Savior right away,

"I will put enmity between you and the woman, and between your offspring and hers;  He will crush your head, and you will strike his heel."
Genesis 3:15

As time went by the Savior did come and He was our sacrifice so that we would be set free from our sins!

“when the fullness of the time came, God sent forth His Son, born of a woman,”
Galatians 4:4

“Christ died for our sins according to the Scriptures, and He was buried, and He was raised on the third day…”  
1 Corinthians 15:3-4

Now we, who have been saved by the Blood of the Lamb (precious!), live in the days where we rely on Him for our strength and comfort as we wait for His imminent return.  We joyfully live our lives for Him in this hope.

“whatever you do, do your work heartily, as for the LORD, rather than for men.”
Colossians 3:23

But sometimes this life is really tough, and we feel like an old bunch of bananas forgotten in the gutter.  We feel like we are nothing. No one sees us, no one notices us.  What are we worth?  We feel worthless.

We need to remember! Who God is! 

“For God so love the world (that’s you and me), that He gave (sacrificed!) His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him (accepts Jesus as our sacrifice for our sins) shall not perish (eternal separation from God), but have eternal life (be in His presence forever).  For God did not send the Son into the world to judge the world, but that the world might be saved through Him (we are set free from our sins!)."
John 3:16-17

“God demonstrates His own love for us in this:  While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.”
Romans 5:8

“How great is the love the Father has lavished on us, that we should be called children of God.”

1 John 3:1a

Ladies, if you (saved or unsaved) feel like a bunch of old bananas in the gutter, if you feel like you have been forgotten by everyone else, but mostly, you feel forgotten by God, it is time for a reality check.

You are dearly loved by the God of the universe.  Look what He has done for you?!  He did not do this for everyone else, but for you also. Don't put yourself up on a pedestal, but realize how precious you are to the King of Kings!  He adopted you when you chose to accept Jesus' salvation for yourself!

"For He chose us in Him before the creation of the world to be holy and blameless in His sight. In love He predestined us to be adopted as His sons through Jesus Christ in accordance with His pleasure and will ---to the praise of His glorious grace, which He has freely given us in the One He loves. In Him we have redemption through His blood, the forgiveness of sins, in accordance with the riches of God's grace that He lavished on us with all wisdom and understanding."
Ephesians 1:4-9

As you learn to live in this reality check remember,

"those who are led by the Spirit of God are sons (daughters) of God.  For you did not receive a spirit that makes you a slave again to fear, but you received the Spirit of sonship. And by Him we cry, "Abba Father." (as a saved daughter of God, you are in a close, precious relationship with God who loves you so)  The Spirit Himself testifies with our sprit that we are God's children. (adopted by the King of Kings!)  Now if we are children, then we are heirs --- heirs of God and so-heirs with Christ, if indeed we share in His sufferings in order that we may also share in His glory."
Romans 8:14-17

One way to keep our minds in the right place (reality) is to do all things for Him.  This keeps our minds on Him. 

"Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is seated at the right hand of God.  Set your minds on things above, not on earthly things.  For you died, and your life is now hidden with Christ in God."
Colossians 3:1-3

"For we are God's workmanship, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do."
Ephesians 2:10

Praising the LORD with you!

*

Saturday, December 6, 2014

A Prayer

Lord, let me live like a Regular Man,
With Regular friends and true;
Let me play the game on a Regular plan
And play it that way all through;
Let me win or lose with a Regular Smile
And never be know to whine,
For that is a Regular Fellow’s style
And I want to make it mine!

Oh, give me a Regular chance in life,
The same as the rest, I pray,
And give me a Regular girl for a wife
To help me along the way;
Let us know the lot of humanity,
Its regular woes and joys,
And raise a Regular family
Of Regular girls and boys!

Let me live to a Regular good old age,
With Regular snow-white hair,
Having done my labor and earned my wage
And played my game for fair;
And so at last when the people scan
My face on its peaceful bier,
They’ll say, “Well, he was a Regular Man!”
And drop a Regular tear!


by Berton Braley 
from “The Best Love Poems of the American People”


Self-esteem Calvin's way










Calvin and Hobbes
by Bill Waterson


You're Always a Role Model to Somebody #16

















"Above all else, guard your heart, for it is the wellspring of life."
Proverbs 4:23


"It is not what you have lost, but what you have left that counts."


—-Harold John Russell


*

2 Corinthians 12:9-10

And He has said to me, 
“My grace is sufficient for you, 
for power is perfected in weakness.” 
Most gladly, therefore, I will rather boast about my weaknesses, 
so that the power of Christ may dwell in me. 
Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, 
with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, 
for Christ’s sake; 
for when I am weak, then I am strong.


Wednesday, December 3, 2014

"Calm before the whine"










Rose is Rose
by Pat Brady


Give us Men!


Give us men!
Men—from every rank,
Fresh and free and frank;
Men of thought and reading,
Men of light and leading,
Men of loyal breeding,
The nation’s welfare speeding;
Men of faith and not of fiction,
Men of lofty aim in action;
Give us Men—I say again,
Give us Men!

Strong and stalwart ones;
Men whom highest hope inspires,
Men whom purest honor fires,
Men who trample self beneath them,
Men who make their country wreathe them
As her nobel son,
Worthy of their sires;
Men who never shame their mothers,
Men who never fail their brothers,
True, however false are others;
Give us Men — I say again, 
Give us Men!

Give us Men!
Men who, when the tempest gathers,
Grasp the standard of their fathers
In the thickest fight;
Men who strike for home and altar,
(Let the coward cringe and falter), 
God defend the right!
True as truth the lorn and lonely,
Tender, as the brave are only;
Men who tread where saints have trod,
Men for Country, Home—and God:
Give us Men! I say again — again—
Give us Men!


by Josiah Gilbert Holland

Saturday, November 29, 2014