Christmas Cheer

My favorite time of year to decorate.

Keeping it simple – most of my ornaments are handmade by our son from when he was in elementary school, some are from my sister, and some are from my mom. 🙂

I love putting up the tree and set out my village sets.

North Pole – Not sure if you can see him or not but the pup won the race beating out Santa and Mrs. Claus and Santa’s workers. 🙂
The Village – After all the elves need a place to shop when they aren’t working. 🙂

Putting out the village sets, I was like a kid in the candy store trying to pick out his or her favorite candy only to discover that all of the candy are favorites. It’s a good thing you weren’t here as I decorated. I’m sure you would have shaken your head in wonder. I was talking to the villages telling each piece where it would be placed and how, when you arrive at the train station, you had to be sure to stop by the radio station before making your way to the church. I even told the pup that won the race, that next week he would come in last, so one of Santa’s workers could have a shot at first place. Of course they will all eventually make it to first place it’s only fair. That’s right, a kid in the candy store.

As I was decorating, setting each piece out with care, making sure to find just the right spot, I thought about the time and care that God took when He created the universe and mankind. I could almost visualize His eyes twinkling with anticipation as He rubbed His chin thinking about every detail and the love He would put into it all. Can you see it? Can you imagine the canvas and palette of colors as he created the universe? The loving details He placed in each one of us? Oh to see the joy on His face as He created His masterpieces. I can imagine Him whispering to each us Jeremiah 29:11 reminding us of the things He wants for us.

Jeremiah 29:11 “For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, says the Lord, thoughts of peace and not of evil, to give you a future and a hope.”

One of my favorite verses, it is a perfect reminder of what He wants for us. Peace. Future. Hope.

It is my prayer that if you don’t already have it, that you will find your peace, your future, and your hope in Him. God bless!

Happy Thanksforgiving

It’s that time of year again, when we set aside a day to remember all the things that we are thankful for. I am thankful for my health, my family, a roof over our head, my wonderful precious friend who encouraged me to take a step of faith and begin this blog. I am also thankful for the visitors and my followers, may you be blessed beyond measure. Mostly and most important of all, I am thankful for God’s mercy and grace that He extends every day. For Jesus who chose to give up everything and come to earth as a baby; grow to be a man and die on the cross that we might have eternal life with the Father.

John 3:16 For God so loved the world that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him should not perish but have everlasting life.

Thanksgiving is a time to reflect not only on the things we are thankful for but also to extend forgiveness to those who may have hurt us. Forgiving isn’t always easy to do. The hurt may run to deep to think you could ever forgive. However, forgiving others isn’t for their benefit but for yours. It sets you free from the hurt you experienced giving you a cleansing breath of fresh air that comes from forgiveness. You know, like when you’re in the mountains, and you take that deep breath of clean air that’s so refreshing and sweet. As you sit around the table today enjoying family and fellowship be thankful for the good things and take a minute to reflect if there is someone you may need to forgive. Big or small when you hurt and it stays with you then it’s time to take it out and examine if it’s worth holding on to the hurt.

Ephesians 4:32 Be kind to one another, tender-hearted, forgiving each other, just as God in Christ also has forgiven you.

Thanks for stopping by. Happy Thanksgiving and God bless!

Hooked

It doesn’t take much these days to become hooked on games. I checked out some of the more popular games played and wasn’t surprised to find quite a few were fighting type games, sports, and a some fun looking games that upon closer inspection were also fighting games just made to look innocent. The titles alone for some of them make you wonder, why on earth people would even play such a game. Whatever happened to Mario Kart? Whatever game, your children (whether young or older) play or even if you play them yourself, if you aren’t careful you may find yourself hooked. It can consume you to the point where you neglect those around you and even yourself. I should know. I’m hooked on games and I’m not even considered a gamer. My games are mostly puzzle gaming apps that you download to your phone, you know, the ones that aren’t addictive? Right. Keep telling yourself that.

“I can stop anytime I want.” “Just one more level and I’ll quit.” “What’s the harm?” “At least I’m not out running the streets.” Excuses and poor ones at that. But still excuses nonetheless. Do you hear the enemy whispering in your ear? Did you know that a person could end up spending hundreds of dollars on those In-app purchases that come with phone games? (And for the record, no I don’t spend money on the In-app purchases for that very reason.) There’s even a new incentive out there nowadays, look it up and you’ll see what I’m talking about.

The enemy will take something tantalizing to use to lure you away from Christ. Away from studying the Bible, from praying, even from your family. Games are one thing he uses and in this day and age it’s easy enough to use to distract you. If I were your enemy, I would delve into the deepest darkest areas of your life looking for that one thing that could lure you away from the Lord. It could be anything. Temptation comes in many forms. For me eBooks are my weakness, worse than the games on my phone, and the enemy uses it against me every chance he gets. As I write this post, I discovered that I have actually gone five months without purchasing a book. A record for me considering I would buy anywhere from four to eight books a month! Temptation can be something that seems good on the surface but in reality it isn’t. Sound familiar?

James 1:14 says “But each one is tempted when he is drawn away by his own desires and enticed.”

Matthew 26:41 says “Watch and pray, lest you enter into temptation. The spirit indeed is willing, but the flesh is weak.”

It’s no wonder we are given instruction to watch and pray.

Decide today to carve out time for you and your family. Reconnect with each other. More importantly, be sure to take the time to reconnect with God through prayer, reading and planting His word deep in your heart and mind. Talk to Him like He is a friend or even family and not some unreachable person that you can’t talk too. He’s reachable, you need only to seek Him out. God bless!