Friday, November 30, 2012

On This The Last Day of November

Hello Friends!

Hard to believe we are in the very last day of November, 2012.  It seems every year as Christmas draws ever closer, I find it hard to fathom that time has more than inched -- yes, sprinted -- away and we are at the close of another year.  Where does time go?  That mysterious element.  It comes and goes, yet nobody knows . . . . . except of course God, how exactly it works.  It truly is a mystery.  I find it intriguing.

Anyhow, something of a segue there!  I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving!  Our was pretty uneventful really.  Having no family nearby means, well, no family to spend Thanksgiving with! We did break tradition and have our turkey-day on the Saturday AFTER Thanksgiving! That was interesting.  But we have been busy on home improvement projects (think painting the walls of a room -- yes, it takes time and it's demanding!) and so the open days of Thursday and Friday just worked well for things needing to be tended to!  And when we did eat Thanksgiving supper, after I had cooked all day and was so tired and sore (yes I felt my age and then some!), it was well worth it.  The food was delicious!

So Christmas is right around the bend.  We have not even begun to put up any decorations whatsoever. Why? See aforementioned home improvements -- with the one room being painted, everything that room contained except the bed frame and springs has been transported to our front room.  The front room is where we usually erect the lovely Christmas tree and put out various little decorations, including one of my all time favorites, SNOWMEN!  Yes, I do love me some snowmen.  ;-)  At any rate, I know I will be glad when the room is finished up and all the contents moved back and the front room clear so we can put up our tree! THEN it will feel more like Christmas is coming again, for real!

What are your traditions surrounding the time between Thanksgiving and Christmas?  Do you typically have your tree up and decorated before Thanksgiving is through?  The day after?  The week after?  What other decorations do you love to put up, and which do you dislike (thinking of lights on the eaves, or on the roof . . . . most shudder at the thought!)?  I'd love to hear!

Thanks for stopping by.  I'm always glad someone takes an interest in my humble blog and am thankful for any and all who follow!  Have a lovely last day of November!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

Thanksgiving in Light of God's Goodness

Dear Friends,

No matter what I face every year, as Thanksgiving and then Christmas draw close I become excited.  I see with eyes made new all the blessings I actually have, and with a heart full of love for God I give thanks and rejoice.  I pray this Thanksgiving finds you feeling the same way . . . . that you discover yourself surrounded by people you love and people who love you, that you know for yourself the awesome love of our Savior Jesus Christ, and that you give thanks from a heart brimming over with joy as mine is this week!  We have so  many reasons to be thankful in our home, and I'm certain it's the same at yours if you only choose to see!

Happy Thanksgiving!

Oh, how great is Your goodness, which You have laid up for those who fear, revere, and worship You, goodness which You have wrought for those who trust and take refuge in You before the sons of men! 

Psalms 31:19 

Friday, November 9, 2012

When You Find Yourself Trespassed Against: God's Timely Word and My Broken Heart

My enemies say of me in malice, 
"When will he die and his name perish?"
When one of them comes to see me,
he speaks falsely, while his heart gathers slander;
then he goes out and spreads it around. 
But may you have mercy on me, Lord;
raise me up, that I may repay them.
I know that you are pleased with me,
for my enemy does not triumph over me. 
Because of my integrity you uphold me
and set me in your presence forever. 

- Psalms 41:5-6, 10-12 (Italics added by me)

Have you ever had one of those days when you felt led to read a certain passage of scripture in your morning quiet time with God, and then after reading it you thought, "Well, I don't know if that particular scripture applies for me at this moment.  But it's all inspired, Holy Word and absolutely important."  Then, before the day is even through, it hits you how astoundingly pertinent that particular passage actually is for your life?  Right now, at this moment?  

That happened to me.  Literally today.  I read Psalms 41 this morning.  Of course it brought me comfort, but I was also sitting there thinking, "Thankfully no one is acting like my enemy right now, at least not that I'm aware, outside of THE enemy of course.  Thank you Lord for being pleased with me, for helping me to have a kind heart toward the weak (that's how this chapter begins!), and for setting me in your wonderful presence forever."  

Little did I know I would find out that a person who does not even have the right to say they know me has recently spoken falsely about me.  And has actually gone out and spread it around (it's not nice at all to find out second or third-hand). 

These completely unnecessary, petty, rude, thoughtless and outright malicious actions simply baffle me.  I cannot fathom someone trespassing against another like that.  To put it simply, it breaks my heart into a million shattered pieces. 

What hurts the most is that a person would choose to be so ugly (putting it nicely) when I have done nothing wrong.  When I have done nothing to provoke or to give the impression that I am anything but enthusiastic about life, about loving others and showing that love, about living for my King, Jesus.  

And yet, I know deep down in my heart of hearts, that this world hates the light.  That the people who choose to live in darkness and not in the light of Jesus will never understand true love, true brotherhood, true harmony.  They will never attempt to refrain from speaking whatever they feel toward others, including malicious and untrue things.  They will not stop themselves from gathering slander and spreading it to others.  

Because I cannot and will not control others, I am left looking to a greater God.  And though my heart is literally broken right now, and fear is trying to pound down my door, I will look to Jesus.  I know without a shadow of a doubt that He loves me, that He will NOT allow my enemy to triumph over me, and that as I walk in integrity and in the love of Christ He will set me in his presence forever and uphold me so that I will not be taken down with all those who try to drag me down with them. 

Thank you, Lord. Thank you for Your Word and Your impeccable timing. Thank You for the protection You promise to give to Your children who seek Your face and attempt every day to live upright and in integrity, and to love our neighbors as ourselves which You said is the second greatest commandment after loving You.  Thank you, Lord.