Sunday, December 30, 2012

Retrospect 2012

“No snowflake ever falls in the wrong place.”  The Zen masters had it right, when they stated that.  God’s plan is perfect.  It’s a truth worth keeping in mind.  Somehow, there’s always a point in time where we tend to reflect on the past and look forward to the future.  Here we are, almost at the end of 2012, considering our experiences, with face set like a flint (Isaiah 50:7), staring at the future, imagining what it may have in store.  Let’s look together.

Friday, December 28, 2012

Love Stretches Out the Good Stuff

Do you remember, as a kid, trying to start Christmas early.  And stretching Christmas as far past December twenty fifth as you could get away with?  I know I did.  We’re kind of doing that, here, this year.  Last week, I treated myself to a copy of Bob Goff’s Love Does.  It’s a great book and I want to share my thoughts on it.  You may have noticed one of Bob’s quotes on our masthead.  And, for that reason, you’d be right if you thought I was prejudiced in favor of what Bob had to say.  But with good reason.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

A Christmas Gift

Here’s a Christmas meditation from our friend, Todd Parsons:

Today we are celebrating the gift of God born unto us, Is.9:6.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

From the Christmas Tree to His Heavenly Abode

water tree

Merry Christmas to all of our readers and their families and friends.  As usual, the image at the top got some thoughts going.  The picture is from a Facebook community that allows free sharing of their images with friends and family, etc.  As I looked at the image a free form thought stream began about Christ and Christmas.  I’d like to share some of that with you.

Friday, December 21, 2012

And the World Asks “Why?” - Part 3

Stormy Land -- Saija
“Stormy Land”.  It’s a powerful image taken by Saija Lehtonen.  And reminds me of the stormy atmosphere of today’s world, making our surroundings less inviting than they should be.  There are several reasons for that.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

And the World Asks “Why?” - Part 2

Stormy Land -- Saija
Again, the picture is what I’ve titled “Stormy Land”, by Saija Lehtonen.  I chose it because it demonstrates a truth.  The storm clouds bring a sense of impending gloom and doom.  The landscape no longer has the same inviting look that it would on a bright, sunny day.  That’s true for our intellectual and emotional state, as well.  Bring in a bad economy or a situation like the Sandy Hook shootings and our outlook is closer to gloom and doom than bright cheerfulness.  Last time, we did a brief survey of US history up to the ‘60s.  So far, we’re not seeing signs of much evolutionary improvement.  But there’s still some 40-50 years to go.

Sunday, December 16, 2012

And the World Asks “Why?”– Part 1

Stormy Land -- Saija
Saija Lehtonen’s image, which I’ve titled Stormy Land to go with today’s discussion, highlights the emotional state we’re all in after the shooting at Sandy Hook, CT.  Storm laden clouds darkening what appears to be possibly dangerous flatlands.  For me, this is the toughest post I’ve had to write.  Once again, we experienced another mass shooting, this time at a K-4 elementary school. There are 28 dead, with 20 of those being students at the school, and one more related killing. Our heart and prayers are with the survivors and the families of all involved.  And the world asks, “Why?”.  They don’t have an answer.

Friday, December 14, 2012

A Pure Heart?

It's been awhile since we've shared a Todd Parsons devotional.  This one's brief, but definitely to the point.

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In John 8:3-12, we see the adulterous woman before Jesus... Stones in hands raised high, Jesus speaks the Word, "he that is without sin among you, let him cast the first stone."  This picture was brought to my heart by Pr.20:9,10; "Who can say, I have made my heart clean, I am pure from my sin? Divers weights and divers measures, both of them are alike abomination to the Lord."  Only the Lord has the authority and judgment to declare a man to be clean and O how merciful and gracious He is (to the humble), to those who look to His judgments, His weights, and His measures... 


Of So Great Love, we are, tjp 

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A Savior Is Born

Luke 2:11 For to you is born today, in the city of David, a Savior, who is Christ the Lord.

In this Christmas season, we hear that verse often. It’s interesting that the human mind tends to create blocks of thought, categories. And, come December, we think of all the ramifications of that verse and separate it from the rest of Christ’s earthly existence, as if that’s actually possible in reality. My pastor shared some things in a recent service that highlighted that fact for me. And got me to do a little more research.


Tuesday, December 11, 2012

God Never Quits - Carl H. Stevens GGWO


We are beginning something new, here on the blog.  Periodically, we'll be posting video clips of varying lengths of some of those who have influenced my walk with God.  We're believing they'll be as much of a blessing to you as they have been to me.




Sunday, December 9, 2012

The End?

A friend of mine commented that he’s read there is a spike in gun sales, partly fueled by fears of an impending end of the world.  He wondered if people were really that stupid.  But fear can do strange things to our thinking.  And our fallen nature leans in that direction, anyway.  Look at what I mean:

Friday, December 7, 2012

Who’s My Master?

Pastor Allan Leitner is a great friend and, like Abraham, a friend of God.  Whenever I get to spend time with Him, I go away knowing I’ve gained something to enhance my relationship with God.  We’ll be sharing some of Pastor Allan’s writings, from time to time.  Read on and see what God gives you from his insights.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

A Jesus Kind of Love

One of the people I interact with on Google+, Rodney Moore, made an interesting response in a discussion of our previous post.  He said, “pray, read, do, pray, read, do, pray, read, do...... or if you prefer, read, pray, do, read, pray, do, read, pray, do...... is that a short enough sermon?”.  The “do” part brings up some really interesting thoughts.  There’s a whole line of spiritual thinking that, on the surface, appears to oppose itself.  Take a look.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

God Equipped

From the moment your eyes opened God equipped you for today. In His strength and wisdom, you can face today in the joy of the Lord. – Katherine Spann

Have you ever seen someone deal with a task in some really unique but totally off the wall way?  And when you ask them why they didn’t just use the appropriate tool, the answer always seems to be that they didn’t feel like walking out to their truck for that particular tool.  Which makes you look at them in amazement because the job would have taken a quarter of the time, including the walk to and from the truck, if only they’d used the proper tool.  We can all get that way spiritually.  Here’s what I mean: