Friday, December 25, 2015

Merry Christmas Mamas!

         Because they don’t know to and they are a bit too excited this morning, please let me say, Thank you!  Thank you for all the gifts, all the time it took shopping and deciding what to buy and what you could afford.   Thank you for setting up and putting together toys for your little ones.  Thank you for smiling even when you were awakened by their clatter way before “the sun got up.”
         This day in years past have passed quickly, as will today.
         This is the day the Lord has blessed us with.
         My prayer is you will, “live the life out of this Christmas day.”  Don’t miss a thing.
         The laughter and sounds of the wrapping paper tearing, the smell of sweet potatoes cooking and how it feels to sit on the couch holding a beloved stuffed animal as the children squeal over their new toys.  Make note of each of these stimulates and ask the Lord to help you remember and cherish every moment as a mom.
         Just as Mary the mother of our divine Savior did, she treasured all these things in her heart.  Mary can certainly recall the details of being pregnant as a very young teen and raising a perfect child.  Mary was keeping (at minimal) a mental log of her precious first-born.  She saw His capabilities and watched Him grow in wisdom and stature.

         Treasure the moments of today, of each child.  Thank the Lord for the blessing of being a mother and keep (at minimal) a record of God at work in your home.  Treasure Him in your heart, share Him as often as His Spirit leads you. Enjoy your children and have a very merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Two Masters

"No one can serve two masters; for either he will hate the one and love the other, or else he will be loyal to the one and despise the other. You cannot serve God and mammon." Matthew 6:24

As we celebrate the season of Advent, Christmas Eve & Day and then New Year’s, etc. this one truth keeps coming in front of me, head on— You can’t serve two masters. We ought not get caught up in the stuff of the world while we call ourselves followers of our Lord, Jesus Christ.  If we read His love letter to us we will certainly see that He did not get caught up in it but participated in the things that would please His Father.  Hmm, what about me?

Every time we drive through our neighborhood leaving home or coming back our kids call out the decorations they notice on people’s houses and lawns.   Matthew noticed a strange thing to him on some of the lawns and just had to proclaim, “What?! How can they have a manger scene and a Santa on the same lawn?? … You can’t serve two masters.” 

So true, I thought.  Am I serving two masters, getting caught up in this whole hustle and bustle of Christmas fever?

The radio announcer told us about their feature story on their web page about giving the gift of Presence in our Presents.  Making sure you are choosing the right gifts for your kids that will not take all their attention away from spending time with family.  Right on, preach it! 

Lord, above all may we reflect Your love during this season.  May we invite others to know You not just as the gleaming baby between Mary and Joseph but the One who resides in us and with us.  Please help us to read to our kids about the one and only wonderful You.  In Jesus name, Amen.

Friday, December 18, 2015

Do you see what I see?

         This week Greg and I experienced the 4D ultrasound image of our first grandchild. It was exciting and fascinating to be able to see such detail. (I question, is there any place of privacy in this world anymore?)
         That said we loved seeing her pudgy cheeks and beautiful shaped lips and her nose was perfect and tiny. We have much to look forward to!
         Greg was so wise when he drew the parallel of our granddaughter’s “snapshot” to the passages from Isaiah as he prophesied what the world had to look forward to…
The Messiah.

The government will be upon His shoulder. His name will be Wonderful. Counselor. Mighty God. Everlasting father. Prince of Peace.

         This was the snapshot of what would be fulfilled 700 years later as the Messiah was born.  The Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace, was born as a baby, in a stable, without a doctor, or warm blankets. Born to a mom and dad whom the angels had spoken.
         The fulfillment of that snapshot was taken 700 years prior. What did the shepherds find? What did the wise men find? Did that baby look like what they had expected from the snapshot?  Is He what you are expecting? God's plans are not our plans nor are His ways, our ways. The truth is His plans, hopes and dreams for us and our children far exceed any snapshot we can try to decipher. We need to trust the master photographer. I pray that your snapshot for this Christmas season will exceed your expectations!

A fun practical activity for your children this week; Go through last years (or any prior years) Christmas pictures/cards or “snapshots” with your children.  Have them look at their friends and relatives and talk about how their friends and family have changed and how they imagine they will change in the years to come.  Turn the conversation to spiritual characteristics of themselves that cannot be seen and help them to set goals for their future “snapshots.”

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Shake it off!

Defeated? Depressed? Doubting? Disillusioned?

There is a very real spiritual battle going on. The devil and his minions relentlessly attack with lies, broken relationships, chaos, confusion, etc... the same old tricks they've been using from the beginning of time. They rigorously cause division, destruction and despair and their efforts are persistent.  They never sleep.  These evil forces know they have ultimately lost the war, but hate God (and us) so much they will try everything in their power to keep us from the Great Commission.

Because they can't steal our eternal position in Christ, they try to render our efforts paralyzed.  If they can keep us focused on ourselves via doubt, disillusionment, fear, etc., they keep us from proactively sharing Jesus' love with others.  Our self focus will cause us to miss what He has for us to do and that is their plan.  They act as though they are victorious, but the ultimate authority, the Holy Word of God, declares them foiled.  The devil and his minions pretend like they have succeeded, but in reality they are completely defeated, and on their way to eternal damnation.

According to the Word, we, children and heirs of the Most High God are victors. The outcome is already certain.  Unfortunately there are times we live like we are defeated!


That's right. We look at the impossibilities and obstacles instead of the One who is able! We waiver, lose hope and give up, instead of standing firm on the truth of the Word.

Ladies, we worship the omnipotent Creator of the universe.  He is the great I AM! He is the Beginning and the End! He is able and He is willing!

Ask, seek, knock and repeat!  Believe on Him for all things!  Shake off the lies of the enemy like you would flick away a pesky little bug.  Declare victory in Jesus' name and be steadfast in your trust of Him.  We are victorious warriors and there is ground to be taken!