Sunday, January 10, 2010

No Matter the Weather, the SON Always Shines!

It has been a dreary few weeks here in West Virginia. I don't think it has stopped snowing and the temperatures are about 25 degrees below normal. We haven't seen the sun in weeks - until today! I woke up this morning and looked out my window expecting to see what I have seen the last few weeks - snow on the ground and still falling. But to my surprise and delight I looked out to no snow falling and the sun shining. Granted it is still cold outside but we are supposed to have a high of 23 degrees today! But the sun is shining!

I immediately thought of how dreary the weather had been and how dreary it had made me start to feel. While I cannot always get out of the house due to physical limitations, it is still depressing to not be able to do anything even if I feel like it because of the weather. And for such a long period of time. I haven't even been able to celebrate the holidays with my daughter yet because of the weather.

But then I thought of no matter how dreary the weather is and no matter how long it is that we don't see the sun, God's SON always shines and is always there for us! What a comforting thought to know that God's son Jesus Christ is always there to help us through the cloudy times! He is our encourager when times are gray. He is our shelter from the storms of life. He can turn sadness into gladness, gloom and despair into hope and reassurance.

Lord, thank you for your SON who always shines. Thank you that no matter how dreary our lives may seem and no matter how many storms we may face, He is always there for us to brighten our day, to protect us, to love us, to shelter us. Thank you, Lord!

When Jesus spoke to the people, he said, "I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life." John 8:12

Friday, January 1, 2010


Happy New Year! Today is the day that we all make resolutions for the new year. We say we will lose weight, quit smoking, get out of debt, be kinder to our families and friends, just become a "new person"! But most of us rarely keep our resolutions. Usually within a few weeks we have quit our diet, started smoking again, pulled out the credit card and bought something we really wanted but truly didn't need, yelled at our kids, took our bad days out on our spouses.

But there is a way that we can start fresh and become new and that is through Christ Jesus. We can turn to Christ who truly gives us the opportunity to forget our past and truly become new. The thought of being able to do this truly fills me with joy! It means that we have a never ending supply of hope and endless opportunities to move forward! We can have the courage to deal with our past failures and move forward in Christ. We have the opportunity to lead more meaningful, Christ-centered lifes. We can look forward to a future of peace and security and hope that only Christ can give.

Lord, thank you for the opportunity to start this year anew with the hope that only you can give. Thank you for forgiving us our past defeats and helping us to live the life that you want us to live. Thank you, Lord, for your never ending supply of hope. Help us to live this year as you would have us live - showing you in everything we do and giving you the glory.

Brothers, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead. I press on on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus. Philippians 3:13-14

Saturday, December 19, 2009

Let God Be Your Snuggie

It is only six days until Christmas! It seems like it has come so fast. Even in the cold and snow, everyone is out trying to finish the last of the shopping, looking for that perfect gift. And it feels like everywhere you look, at every store, every commercial on TV, there are racks of Snuggies. Snuggies are apparently THE GIFT of the year for people and pets!

In case you have been hiding under a rock and haven't heard of Snuggies, they are the blankets with arms that you can wear to keep warm and still do other things with your hands! They come in adult sizes, kid sizes, pet sizes. They come in all different colors and prints. They even come in your favorite football teams colors. And they are everywhere! Everyone seems to be making fun of them but they are apparently selling like crazy. People are just embarrassed to admit how much they love Snuggies!

When I look at the Snuggie, I think of how God wraps His arms around us and keeps us warm and safe! God loves each of us no matter our colors, our sizes, our past - He loves us all! And we don't have to be embarrassed by our love for God! We should be out shouting his praises and thanking Him for his love for us.

Lord, thank you for your love and protection. Thank you for wrapping your arms around us and keeping us safe. We love you, Lord. Let us never be ashamed to shout out loud our praises to you and our thanks to you!

Be my rock of refuge, to which I can always go; give the command to save me, for you are my rock and my fortress. Psalm 71:3

Wednesday, December 9, 2009

Out of My Comfort Zone

Tomorrow night I am going to a Christmas dinner with my Hopekeeper's group. I am really looking forward to all the good food and fellowship! I am nervous, however. I have been asked to speak at the dinner. Anyone who knows me knows I love to talk! But I am not used to standing up in front of people and talking. What do I say? What do I talk about?

I have been praying for God's guidance on what He wants me to talk about. I am still not real sure but He is planting seeds in my mind and heart. I have decided not to worry about it, not to write down notes, not to memorize anything. I am just going to get up and say whatever God leads me to say! I know He will give me the right words.

Getting out of our comfort zone can very difficult. It is hard sometimes to meet new people, start a new job, do anything out of the ordinary for us. But who knows what we may be missing by not getting out of our comfort zone and by staying in the same routine we are always in? We may be missing blessings God has for us by refusing to step out of our comfort zone. And we may be causing others to miss God's blessings.

Jimmy Carter once said "Go out on the limb. That is where the fruit is." That is what I intend to do tomorrow. I am going to go on the limb, way out of my comfort zone, and see what blessings God has in store for me!

Lord, please help us to get out of our comfort zone and truly receive the blessings you have for us. Give us the courage and strength we need to get out of our comfort zone. I thank you, Lord, for the opportunity to speak tomorrow. Please give me the courage that I need to speak and I pray for the words you would have me say.

The unfolding of your words gives light; it gives understanding to the simple. I open my mouth and pant, longing for your commands. Psalm 119: 130-131

Monday, December 7, 2009

Don't Be Blind to God's Works!

It seems like there has been so much tragedy and illness in our community lately and with people I know and love. There have been tragic deaths, injuries, illnesses. We try to help others in need but often they say "I don't need help. God is in control. He will help me."

Well, that brings to mind a story of a man who was sitting on his roof during a flood. First, a boat came by to take him to safety. He refused help and said he trusted God to save him. Next, another boat came by and tried to take him to safety. He again refused and gave the same response. Finally, a helicopter came and tried to take him to safety. Again he refused, saying he trusted God to take care of him.

Finally, the man drowned and went to heaven. He had one pressing question - "Lord, I trusted in you. Why didn't you save me?" The Lord replied: "I tried - I sent two boats and a helicopter!"

The point to this story is don't be blind to the ways that God may be trying to help you! He may be sending friends your way to ease your load and to rescue you from your problems! And, on the other hand, if you see a way to do good and to help someone. Don't deny God the chance to use you as an instrument for his Kingdom!

Don't be fools; be wise: make the most of every opportunity you have for doing good.
Ephesians 5:16 (TLB)