The answer is No. It is our past that makes our present. Scripture tells us that through our trials we gain strength and preserver onward. While trials, problem or difficulties we may come across can be hard we have a choice – we own it or it owns us. I chose to be the owner and through the grace of God, preserver.
If you live in the US, may you have a wonderful Thanksgiving. If you do not then have a wonderful week and may you remember to always be kind.
What is it all about, this season that makes me love it so?
Is it the hustle and bustle of the people as we hurry to and fro?
Maybe it’s all the lights that sparkle and twinkle and glow,
Or the funny old man in red when he giggles Ho, Ho, Ho.
Maybe it’s something totally different as we zoom to our many places,
The joys of seeing and greeting others with the smiles on all of our faces
As fresh cut evergreens fill the air, a wonderful smell the season embraces
With glittering balls and tinsel aglow and angels draped in laces.
Are these real reasons, to enjoy this season, a season surrounded by love,
The birth of a baby, the birth of our salvation, as soft as a coo of a dove
Laying in a manger, a food trough for animals, a precious gift from above
Although he was King, he came as a slave, to show us the fullness of love.
As you enter this holiday season, remember, its not Happy Holidays, although it is a happy time, its Christmas – Christ Mass – a time for celebrating His birth, remembering why He came, what He has done for us and we should reflect His love through the season. And always try to be kind.
As we approach the marvelous day of Thanksgiving, with the love of family, food and gratefulness for where we are at this point of our lives, we need to remember to always give thanks to our heavenly Father.
Sarah Young of Jesus Calling reminds us today that when our mind is occupied with thanking Him we have no time left for worry or complaining.
I Thessalonians 5:16-18 reminds us “Rejoice always, pray continually, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus.”
My hope for you today comes from Romans 15:13 – “May the God of Hope fill you with all Joy and Peace as you trust Him, so that you may overflow with Hope by the power of the Holy Spirit.”
And as His love and peace surrounds you, let the effects of it ripple out from you in kindness waves to others and have a Happy Thanksgiving.
Today was the Festival of Trees Parade. This is the kickoff of the Christmas season for Quad Cities(Iowa/Illinois). In the Davenport Civic Center is where the Festival of Trees is sponsored – a fantastic array of fully decorated trees created by businesses for bidding on as a charity event. It has some amazing artistic display for those who are crafty to get their ideas turning for their own trees.
But the event is kicked off in the morning with the Festival of Trees Parade with huge balloons, bands, and I am told hot chocolate but have yet to find it.
But what this does for me is get me fully in Christmas mode. Today I decorated outside, so the only thing left to do is the mantle above the fireplace in my bedroom. I will get that finished tomorrow.
But for today’s fun post, I will start showing off more of my Christmas. I will start with the “formal” tree that is in the living room. This tree has only white lights and white or silver ornaments, some with a touch of color. I have it on top of the coffee table to keep the puppy’s interest out of reach. It also has the painted ceramic puppies I painted this year beneath it and the other normal other things that are usually under this tree.
For today’s featured piece of my village, I give you the municipal buildings, ie. City Hall, Lawyer office and the police station. I enjoyed doing these as my father and my brother both are in the corporate legal filed.
The string of lights running under the little building makes them a little off centered, but I really like the lights shining through the windows. It reminds me of the verse from II Corinthians 4:6 saying to let the light shine out of the darkness. I think that is what Christmas does for me, a reminder of Jesus light and how he was us to shine our love and kindness the way that he did.
I come this morning to share again my thoughts inspired by Sarah Young and her devotion book, Jesus Calling.
As we are in the season of Thanksgiving, it is important to be thankful in all things, even the bad things because through the tough trials we gain strength. Psalm 46:1 tells us God is our refuge and our strength, an ever present help when we need it.
A thankful attitude opens windows of heaven. Spiritual blessings fall freely onto you through those openings into eternity. Thankfulness is a language of LOVE.
Plus looking up gives us a glimpse of His Glory shining through those windows down to us.
So I remind you this morning, to sit quietly in His presence and let Him fill your heart and mind with thankfulness. It helps you build a foundation of gratitude, a foundation that our troubles can not shake lose.
For me, when circumstances seem to crowd out my peace and thankfulness, I take a turn in the quietness of my back yard…that is not at all quiet but alive with God’s creation. He assures me in the buzzing of the bee, the chirping of the birds, even the barking of the neighbor’s dog that He is there. I just need to lean over and reopen that window and let His love surround me in thankfulness of all that I have and the beauty surrounding me. As you go through your day, look for Him. He is there in the tiniest of beings assuring you that He is always with you to show you the way. So glance through that window and offer Him a gift of thankfulness with your grateful heart of peace that surrounds you.
And as always, remember His gift of kindness and shine with it like a beam of light that never stops.
I find it kind of interesting as this is only my second year at blogging and while I have learned better what to do, I am still green as a gourd with blogging skills. I do find it encouraging that even at the beginning of blogging, my closing theme is still the same…Be Kind.
If you have been reading me lately, then you know I am all about Christmas at this time of year and this date 1 year ago was about…you guessed it, Christmas.
And Startup for Christmas Begins 11/22/18
Christmas is filled with religious meanings and family traditions that echo our love toward the season and mankind. There are many stories or ideals we all share that originally came from myth or folklore and then get sprinkled with embellishments that make us love the story or the tradition even more. One of these for me is the candy cane.
There are so many stories about the origin of this coming from a Christian perspective but they always seem to get debunked as untruths. Lets go through a few of these myths and at least enjoy them for the tale that they are.
In Germany over 250 years ago a white straight stick of candy was created for the supposed holiday season. There was some stories that were told the the white symbolized the purity of Christ but that evidently can not be substantiated. Then in 1670, in the USA, in the state of Indiana, a choirmaster made similar candy using the same symbol of white for purity but he added a “J” shape to the cane to represent the staff of a shepherd and the “J” of Jesus’ name. His thought was to give the children something to remember about Christ and to help keep them quiet during the nativity play.
It was not until the 1900’s that the stripes and the peppermint were added and the Christian meanings/myths were increased and are believed as true.
The white represents the purity of Christ. The “J” still represents the shepherd staff for us lost lambs and for his name as well. There are two types of stripes on the candy cane, a large thick stripe and three small thin stripes. The small stripes represent His scourging for by His stripes we are healed. I have also heard they represent the trinity, Father, Son and Holy Spirit. The large stripe represents His blood that was shed on the cross for us. The peppermint represents hyssop which was used as purity in biblical times.
I don’t understand why someone wants to worry so much about proving the factual truth of a wonderful story concerning Christmas instead of enjoying the beauty it represents today. At the end of the day it is a candy cane. Especially when people use this to look for extra reason to show their love of Christ or find ways to energize the imagination of a child to help them understand the intricate details on the meaning of Christmas. It a joyous time of year. Have a candy cane.
And remember this season of thankfulness as it springboards us in the joyous season of Christmas. Its a time of year where we can share extra doses of kindness to all creation. Remember that no act of kindness is ever wasted but can create a ripple effect that spread across the world.
Ludwig created a fun and interesting post for Mondays similar to Norm’s Thursday Doors – Monday Windows. Do go by and check both sites out for some beautiful photographs.
I have not posted on this in a bit as I have been busy but I had been showing you the beautiful windows from my church. The church was built in the 1800’s and the windows were dedicated to founding members in the late 1800’s. My favorite one I am posting today as it symbolizes who we are and who Jesus is. We are the sheep, sometime lost, and he is the shepherd, always ready to pull us out of harms way.
For all the blessing he has done for us, he always did them kindly, therefore we must turn in like and always be kind.
I enjoy sharing the peace I feel when studying Jesus Calling by Sarah Young. She has a wonderful way in telling God’s story that really connects with me each morning to help me get ready for the day. Today she reminds us of the peace we have in Christ.
Come to Me and rest in my peace. My face is shining upon you in rays of peace. What a wonderful way to start the day realizing and feeling his peace envelope us as we begin the challenges of the day. We all have challenges, some small some large. So lean on Christ and let his peace comfort and shine all around you.
May God be gracious to us and bless us and cause his face to shine upon us. Psalm 67:1
Make your face shine upon your servant; save me by your loving devotion. Psalm 31:16
My personal favorite – The Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you. Numbers 6:25
As Philippians say in 4:7, May the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, guard your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.
I hope this day brings you the brightest of His light and the comfort of His peace. And as stated often in scripture, greet each other in love and kindness and reflect the love of Christ.
As I am literally waiting for the paint containers(face paints) to dry as I needed to clean them before heading to the church for another face painting party, I am reflecting on how busy I have been thus far for November. Not even much time to write and post here.
October was busy as well as we had to get ready for the fall parties, give the yard a last once over before it got cold not counting the ridiculous snow on Halloween which cancelled outdoor fun due to the extreme cold. Snow you can deal with but temps in the 20’s is too cold for little ones to be out begging for candy.
And of course football(college) was beginning to get interesting across the country. Unknowns rising with the foam of the Heisman search, expected candidates dropping to the wayside. Fall can really a fun time of year. Today will be a nail bitter for us as it has championship possibilities. Go Dawgs.
November brought on the usual for me of getting the plan together for decorating for Christmas, my favorite time of year. Plus my book is in process of getting printed. I received the initial press run copies so the reality of this happening is kind of overwhelming. Hopefully it will be available in stores in a few weeks. My church is throwing me a book signing party on Dec 1 so I am getting excited.
Its a story of a dog’s journey when he gets to heaven with people and other dogs friends. Its different because I want all the dogs I lived with growing up to be with me in heaven so I wrote a book making it so. LOL. I am not telling you all this to get you to go buy my book, I just want you to come along and enjoy the fun I am having. The sequel is about 3/4 written, so maybe next summer it will come out.
And as I promised when I posted the pictures of the entire village, I am periodically including a highlighted section so you can see the details.
This is one of the first pieces I painted. Over the years I added the trees, the pump, the well and the wood pile and this year I added the horse and the bears after the honey. I told my daughter it is spreading everywhere like Peyton Manning’s on the insurance commercial. LOL
I think it would be cool to have one warehouse size to bring in all the kids at Christmas with Santa and cookies and fun activities. That would be a fun dream. So as you smile at my fun dreams, share that smile during the season and spread the kindness it reflects.