Sunday, November 30, 2014

Reflecting God's Love

"If we say we love God, but hate others, we are liars. For we cannot love God, whom we have not seen, if we do not love others, whom we have seen.” 1 John 4:20 

Is our lifestyle reflecting the Love of God? The Bible says that whoever doesn't LOVE, doesn't know God.

Because God loves us and forgives us we can forgive others. When we find someone in our life who doesn't forgive and is self righteous it's usually because they don't feel loved themselves. Because we have experienced the LOVE of God then we are able to let people off the hook. Love compensates for our sin. In other words, when we make a mistake God wants to know that we LOVE. When others sin against us God wants to know that we LOVE!

God uses imperfect people like us to show His LOVE. God doesn't expect us to be perfect but He does expect us to LOVE. If we do that then it will hide a multitude of sins. We all fail and make mistakes but God can use us if we LOVE. 

Let's LOVE Him and LOVE others because of the LOVE He has for us.

I Corinthians 13:13 tells us that LOVE echoes into eternity. It's the only thing that we do that will last for eternity. “Three things will continue forever: faith, hope, and LOVE. And the greatest of these is LOVE.”

People will forget all our work, our wealth, our hobbies, our trophies, our awards, etc. The only thing that will last forever is the LOVE we show for Him and for others. 

After work, pop pop still takes time to play! January 2014

Saturday, November 29, 2014

Perfection!

“Most important of all, continue to show deep love for each other, for love covers a multitude of sins.” 1 Peter 4:8


God is more interested in our love for Him and our love for others than he is in our trying to be perfect.  It is impossible to be perfect. No matter how much we try, we will fail at perfection. It simply isn't possible to be perfect but it is possible to love.


Yet, we all strive to be perfect at something. Such as our jobs, in our churches, with our hobbies, in our academics and many other areas. These are all good things and we can be great at some and not so great at others. Yes, we should all strive to do our best but the Bible tells us that “No matter what I say, what I believe, and what I do, I’m bankrupt without love.” 1 Cor. 13:3


Nothing can take the place 
of love and relationships!
 A picture taken of my Aunt and Uncle taken December 2013. They have always made me feel loved and adored.

Tuesday, November 18, 2014

Weakness

Therefore I take pleasure in infirmities, in reproaches, in needs, in persecutions, in distresses, for Christ’s sake. For when I am weak, then I am strong. 2 Cor. 12:10

There was a time in my life that I used to cover up how I felt because I didn't want to appear weak or discouraging. The wonderful thing about being over 50 is that you learn that weakness isn't something that needs to be hidden. Everyone has weaknesses and everyone has strengths. The wonderful thing about being weak is being able to understand others with weaknesses. When we lay aside our worries about what others may think and begin to be authentic with others, God can use us. 


We need to value and believe in others in spite of their weaknesses like Jesus does. God doesn't see us like we see ourselves. He can see our potential. We have to trust God with our strengths and our weaknesses. When we give God our weaknesses He is able to do something that we never dreamed possible.


When we begin to be authentic about ourselves we risk losing family and friends who may have difficulty with our weaknesses. Don't let the way you feel about you be determined by others. I believe God can use us more because of our weaknesses. Our life is not about our popularity but it is about God's Kingdom. Our weaknesses are sometimes more useful for God's Kingdom.


My prayer: Lord, help me to see myself as you see me and help me to see others as you do.


 And let us consider one another in order to stir up love and good works... Heb. 10:24 


  This picture was taken, at night, by my niece Theresa in Delaware during a snow storm. Her photography has always been such an inspiration to me personally!

Monday, November 17, 2014

~Wearing Woes~

Finally, brethren, whatever things are true, whatever things are noble, whatever things are just, whatever things are pure, whatever things are lovely, whatever things are of good report, if there is any virtue and if there is anything praiseworthy—meditate on these things. Philippians 4:8

We need to remember that everyone has problems, fears, anxiety, betrayal, and this list is endless. No one is immune to difficult circumstances. No one has the monopoly on problems and issues in this world either. There is enough to go around. We can't control the difficult circumstances that come into our life and we can't always control how we wear our woes.

woes

definition
1. grievous distress, affliction, or trouble.

All the positive thinking in the world will not work to help overcome the wounds life may bring but God can heal us in ways we don't expect.

When in the midst of conflict or problems in my own life, God sends reminders to me of all that is good. For example, I can hang around one of my grand kids who hugs me so tenderly and tells me they love me and all is well in my world. My husband and I have moments when the young adults at church will say or do something for us that our hearts become overwhelmed with joy. God has provided nieces and nephews in our life that lift us up just by hanging around them. We thank God constantly for the sweet relationships He gives us each day. My husband and I remind ourselves to take time to reflect on all the good that God has provided and we want to wear our gratefulness. Is our life perfect? Of course not, but most days it feels pretty close because of the relationships God gives to us who become the hands and feet of Jesus in our life.

My prayer today is to thank God for all that is good today and to trust Him with all that is not...

 This picture was taken by my mom in Spain of a poppy field in 2006.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Courage and Blessing!

Now there was a man in Maon whose business was in Carmel, and the man was very rich. He had three thousand sheep and a thousand goats. And he was shearing his sheep in Carmel. The name of the man was Nabal, and the name of his wife Abigail. And she was a woman of good understanding and beautiful appearance; but the man was harsh and evil in his doings. He was of the house of Caleb. I Samuel 25:2-3

Abigail was intelligent and beautiful but her husband Nabal was a fool and cruel according to these verses. How many times have we seen two people married where one is delightful and the other grates our nerves? 

David was still on the run at this time from King Saul and was in the area where Nabal had his sheep so they protected them from any harm. It was customary at that time to be compensated for the protection of your flock but instead Nabal was rude, critical and refused to do anything for David and his men.

David was upset and set out to go up against Nabal for his foolishness. Abigail met him on the road with her servants and compensation for David and his men's protection of their flock without her husband knowing. When she told her husband the next day about what she had done he was so upset he had a heart attack and died. David found out what happened to Abigails husband and asked her to be his wife and they were married.

This is a great love story but more than that it is about a woman who had the courage to do right and God blessed!

This picture was taken while visiting Longwood Gardens in Pennsylvania, October 2014.

Monday, November 10, 2014

~It's Okay To Grieve~

Blessed are those who mourn,
    For they shall be comforted. Matthew 5:4

There are days that the storm is in our own life and other days when the storm is in the lives of those around us. Is it appropriate for us to walk around with a smile on our face in the midst of the storms? Not at all even though there are smiles and blessings even in the midst of the storms when we handle our emotions properly.

These past few years have been my season to grieve. If I walked around acting as if it never happened and as if my heart is not broken then I would be deceiving others and myself. If I didn't admit my heartache then I would act it out in some other way.

Healthy grieving is good for us and will keep us healthy. When we don't grieve properly then we will get stuck emotionally. We need to allow ourselves to feel and grieve the loss. I have learned that the more we love the more we will grieve. 

Taken on my walk on the beach which is one of my favorite places
 to grieve and pray.