Death

ED14CE5E-684C-4D44-9C2E-F4956EEF22DC“”For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.”
‭‭John‬ ‭3:16‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Death

Since Cain killed Abel, every human has died, save Enoch and Elijah. When I heard the news about Kobe Bryant’s tragic death, my first thought was that life is a precious gift that can end at any time. We all must be ready. Now I acknowledge that everyone has their religious freedom and I respect that choice. I believe God gave us that choice because He wants us to choose Him—what a beautiful gift of life and an extraordinary option of eternal life. Praise be to God!!

Joy to the World

ED3A1AC2-5E5E-417C-A8F7-8103C15A3AD3Joy to the World

This Christmas I really want to celebrate the joy that was brought to earth when Jesus was born in a manger.  I have witnessed so many decorations and commercials and wondered what the world would be like if we proclaimed the Good News as much.  I have experienced the hustle and bustle of traffic and shoppers and wondered how different it would be if we rushed to serve others as much.  Ultimately everyone seems to come together and experience a part of the joy of Christmas.  It seems that there are many others like me who long for the full joy of Christmas.  We live in a culture that promotes the material gifts and fanfare, but discourages Christianity.  What if we all loved God with all our soul and all our heart and all our might and loved others as ourselves every day?

Rejoice

4D93DD2C-F5CE-4852-8732-5AEC1B13EDC8Rejoice
What a beautiful word that describes the fruits of a joyful heart! In the middle of the night, someone described me as a “badass” in the good sense—someone who energetically plows forward. Though my feelings might not always be so pleasant, I rejoice in the hope of Our Savior. I realize that helping others is my calling and healing is my gift. Even when our healthcare system is anything but caring, I still have to care with deeds, not logos and advertisements and scores. I recall a song’s words from my childhood, “though I felt confused and lonely, God felt my anxious tears; now my heart adores my Savior and my soul is filled with praise.” Let us rejoice in His goodness and mercy!

Sacrifice

DE80CA3B-1070-48F8-AF49-9B5B76039381“Then I looked, and I heard around the throne and the living creatures and the elders the voice of many angels, numbering myriads of myriads and thousands of thousands, saying with a loud voice, “Worthy is the Lamb who was slain, to receive power and wealth and wisdom and might and honor and glory and blessing!””
‭‭Revelation‬ ‭5:11-12‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Sacrifice

In a world full of materialism and self-centeredness, it is miraculous that many people do actually sacrifice for others. Often these extreme acts of love and kindness are overlooked. As a parent, I now know how parents often sacrifice so much for their children; but, it happens with perfect strangers as well. The ultimate sacrifice is giving one’s life to save others and while that occasionally happens in our modern day world, nothing compares to what Christ did for everyone on The Cross. He died to cover our sins and make us righteous to God. My mind cannot comprehend such love, but my heart can feel the joy of salvation.

 

Path of Righteousness

CEF38A05-C71E-4B44-B9B7-C165159CABE8“So you will walk in the way of the good and keep to the paths of the righteous. For the upright will inhabit the land, and those with integrity will remain in it,”
‭‭Proverbs‬ ‭2:20-21‬ ‭ESV‬‬

Path of Righteousness

Everyday I try to walk in the path of righteousness, but there are so many temptations from our world. We now live in a society that has strayed far from the path and tries to condone sinful behavior as okay. We have to remember to love the sinner and hate the sin. All of us fall short of righteous so we should try not to be self righteous. Thankfully we live in hope by faith and that is all we need.

Wine

97B1C982-4688-49E5-976A-D169A51966F1“(No longer drink only water, but use a little wine for the sake of your stomach and your frequent ailments.)”
‭‭1 Timothy‬ ‭5:23‬ ‭ESV

The first miracle that Jesus performed was turning ordinary water into the finest wine at a wedding. We are all just “ordinary water” that only He can transform into our finest state. Clearly there is lots of symbolism in this story, but I like to think how glorious it will be to dine with our Savior and enjoy tasting His perfect wine. Last night as we celebrated the marriage of our friends and shared some fine wine, I envisioned my departed family and friends toasting us in Paradise. Some claim that Benjamin Franklin said, “I know that God loves me because He created wine.” Whether he said this or not, I believe the concept is valid—He loves us and wants us to be happy.

End of Time

D420BA52-7C5D-40F8-BF72-72D50E830863“But understand this, that in the last days there will come times of difficulty. For people will be lovers of self, lovers of money, proud, arrogant, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not loving good, treacherous, reckless, swollen with conceit, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, having the appearance of godliness, but denying its power. Avoid such people.”
‭‭2 Timothy‬ ‭3:1-5‬ ‭ESV‬‬

End of Time

In my teenage years, I had this recurrent dream of the end of time. It vividly captured the moment of Christ’s return as I collapsed to my knees.  My dream accurately depicted Biblical verses that I had yet to read and understand, but somehow subconsciously I knew.  Last night, the above Bible verses seemed to beckon me from someone’s Facebook page to pause and take notice.  This morning, some crazed man kept tailgating me on the highway and flashing his bright lights and passing while using obscene gestures and then slowing down in front of me, and repeating the cycle until I called 911 and got state trooper assistance.  I cannot help but think that the end of time is upon us, as I consider how our society has embraced so much evil.