Maundy Thursday

Maundy Thursday or Holy Thursday is the Thursday before Easter. Maundy is derived from the Latin word for “command,” and refers to Jesus’ commandment to the disciples to “Love one another as I have loved you.” He showed his disciples his servant love by washing their feet and having one last meal together known as the last supper. This is the time that Jesus told the disciples of his death, and that one of them would betray him. They still at this point did not see the big picture or the purpose of Jesus’ mission. I have always wondered if the angels understood what was happening. They are messengers and do the tasks needed as directed by God. But do they see the big picture. We know they were joyous at his birth but did they understand the purpose of his death? I have written a fictional short story to give ideas of what I think may have gone on. Please do not be offended by my imagination, it is not meant to prove any point of truth but only to spark a question of wonder what they were going through.

A Celestial Perspective

Over in the corners you could hear all of their hushed and frantic whispers. “Did you hear what they said He was going to do?”

“Yes. This makes no sense. Why is He doing this? He knows that all He has to do is call us and we would be there in an instant,” one angel said. “Legions of us.”

“I am going to disrupt this nonsense right now,” said a large, impressive angel with brilliant white wings and flowing robes.

“No. Stay your thoughts,” said the Father quietly as he raised a loving hand.  “While your motives may be admirable, they do not serve my purpose.”

“How can His dying serve a purpose?” the angel tried to lovingly argue as some other angels crumbled weakly on the floor. “These creatures are killing Him because of their ridiculous lies.”

“And you and He are…well, Father and Son. Don’t they understand who He is?” said another angel as he wrestled with the unfathomable actions they were all witnessing.

“You…He…are Elohim,” a different angel pleaded, “majestic ruler of all creation.”

“He is their Lord and Master as well. He is Yahweh. Don’t they see that?” pleaded yet another angel as he ran back and forth between watching and pleading at the throne.

“He is Adonai, creator of everything, the heavens, the earth, us…even them. He is in charge of all of creation. Don’t they get that? How dare they do this horrendous deed!” anguished another angel in tears.

“Are you seeing what they are doing?” they asked the Father as they huddled together, fearfully watching the events unfold.

“I cannot,” said the Father as he slowly and sadly turned His back.

“Then why?” they pleaded in total disbelief of what they were witnessing trying desperately to understand how this could ever serve a good purpose.

“It’s all part of the plan. It’s how it has to be,” the Father said quietly. “It’s the only way…for I love them. I must save them from themselves.”

The panicked murmurs stopped as they stood helplessly staring first at each other, then turning their attention down at the horror below. They moaned quietly, for over three hours, as they paced back and forth. Mentally they were not able to watch the entire event. With each passing minute of agony on the cross, they watched with fear and trembling as their beloved suffered, with an unattainable ability to understanding why.

Finally, just before Jesus took His last breath, they watched in anguish as he looked up to heaven and spoke one last time. “It is finished.” As His last words left his mouth, the air with them flew to the heavens and rushed past them. They could feel His love and warmth as the air flew by them and then circle around the throne.

“What was that?” an angel asked quietly as he looked toward the throne.

“His spirit,” said the Father with a deep sense of loss.

Shocked gasps went through the crowd of angels that were standing watching the earth below. Then in amazement, they watched as total chaos broke out with the earth splitting apar. Some of the buildings were crumbling and falling. And deep in the temple, the curtain that separated the sanctuary from Holy of Holies was ripped in two. This was a place of ultimate honor only used for the presence of God, and now it was destroyed.

The angels were scared, shocked and lost in knowing what to do as they slowly gather near the throne. “Now what?” one angel dared to quietly mutter.

“We wait,” was all the Father said as he quietly stood and left the throne room.

The angels looked at each other as the Father left the room. “Wait for what?” they bewilderedly asked each other.

So, the vigil of watching and waiting began of a cold tomb sealed with a large boulder. Each hour a different set of angels came to watch and wonder what was to happen. As day 1 slipped by in time, the angels quietly looked down in wonder of what possibly could happen. His spirit had returned. They felt it as it flew by them on its way to the throne. What were they waiting for? Their hearts were broken and sad at this tragic loss. And what did this mean for the Father. They thought they understood the Trinity. But now a part of it was no more. What did all of this mean?

Day two was more of the same as that of day 1. Quiet groups of angels changed places as they were watching and waiting. The quietness of heaven could be felt, as a coldness seemed to engulf them. And nothing was being heard, no sound at all. Total quiet stretched all through the mass existence of the heaven. The beauty and brightness were now dull and lifeless.

Before the light of dawn broke for the third day, they were all quickly and quietly summoned to the throne. They stood with bated breath as the Father began to speak. There was light back in His eyes. There seemed to be joy back in His voice. He spoke of renewal, of new life, a new beginning. The Son was not gone but was very much still alive. He would come out from the tomb before the dawn broke. The warmth of heaven began to be felt again and joyous melodies were again being heard throughout all of heaven.  The Father spoke of important tasks for his angels, as key messengers would be needed. He would need two to three angels to roll away the stone for the Son to emerge out from the tomb. Then He would need one or two angels to remain behind to meet the women that at that moment were on their way to the tomb. The proper burial rights were not made per their customs and the women knew it was a must to perform this duty.  And they were chosen to be the first to know the great news. They were the first to witness and to inform the others that a new way of life had begun.

The brightness and love of heaven was again making its presence known as some of it reflected its way down to earth in the brightness of a new day. But earth itself had no clue what was about to happen. The people had no clue of the beauty that was about to be witnessed on earth. They had no clue of the tasks that were now ahead of these men and women, these followers of Jesus. They had no clue of how God’s love would now always be there for them. They had no clue of their importance of spreading the good news of a joyous way of life. They all had no clue of the love and joy that was about to surround the earth, and always be available to anyone just for the asking. They just had no clue.

Each angel had hoped that they would be one of those chosen for these magnificent tasks. Their joys and duties of heaven were now fully back in place. Light was flashing all through heaven and the sounds of rejoicing echoed everywhere. But the angels still wondered…who would be that extra special angel that would get to announce…     “He is not here. He has risen.”  Matthew 28:6

Today the earth is still unsure of the beauty and majesty that happened on that third day when the announcement was made, and the time of newness had begun.  All of mankind would now be able to feel the love of God when they allow Him to dwell within their hearts.  From that day onward they would also be able to share in the beauty and rejoicing of heaven.

People, even back then, did not understand that this new beginning is also the beginning of the end. The beginning of the end when Jesus again would, one day, come back to earth to start His reign. People today, still do not understand this phenomenon of love that one day will come. This day will be a time of separation of hearts, a time when astounding love will fill the earth as it does in heaven for all of those willing to accept it. This love was God’s initial plan.

Remember the importance of today as it starts a chain of heart breaking events that ends in a glory we could never fully comprehend. Have a safe and blessed Easter and remember as always to show the kindness as Christ did in giving us salvation when we did not deserve it.

For Dog Lovers

Dittims, aka Junior

This is a picture of Dittims. His given name was Junior but he had so many handicaps that he earned the nickname of Dittims. Dittims was a 185 pound Harlequin Great Dane. A marvelous breed. I wish I had discovered the breed sooner as they are gentle giants that think they are lap dogs. They can be clowns and some individual ones are very protective of the home. Due to Dittims’ being mostly deaf, fully blind in one eye, only 80% vision of in the other, this made him an unbelievable gentle spirit…that loved to sit in your lap; front legs fully planted on the floor but his butt would be in your lap. Those who are familiar with danes know this is a fun quirk that many of them do.

How many of you know what the Rainbow Bridge is? Is it real? Could it really happen? Those of us who are avid dog lovers pray and believe it is a real possibility. Two years ago I started writing a book about the fun adventures of my life for my children through the eyes of the dogs I had all through my life. The book’s main character was Dittims at his arrival in heaven at the Rainbow Bridge. Once he was in heaven, he met with all previous dogs I had had and they told him stories of my life while they were with me. The book also brings in God’s love of all creation and how God uses all creation for his purpose of showing love and kindness. The book, Our Home of Love, got such great reviews from friends that read it that I wrote a sequel about Dittims further adventures in heaven. The sequel includes many of my friends dogs that they loved that have gone to heaven and how they are all working together to enrich all of heaven with the canine love all of us dog lovers know is a real thing. This book, A New Understanding, is more about the Christian beliefs of what we believe is God’s love of all of creation. None of us really know what heaven will be like but studying the scriptures gives us a glimpse. I took the opportunity to try to explain God’s love of all creation from an animal’s point of view to give some fun and truth together to show God’s infinity love for all of us. We are his creation.

If you recently lost a furry member of your family, this fun book may bring you a little comfort. While I am not one to push my books on anyone, a neighbor told me that I needed to share with others in case they may be interested and need the comfort. So here you go, including few pictures from the book of friends Dittims meets in heaven.

And as always, remember the value of kindness. It may be the one thin g that get a person through the day. Always be kind.

JusJoJan, 1/14/20, Publish

What an interesting prompt Linda gave us for today, a place where we publish our thoughts with each post to anyone who may read them. So here we go…

In November of 2019, my first book was published. A silly book to some, a funny book to others and a hopeful book to many who loved their dogs who are no longer here. A book of dogs in heaven and the fun they are having playing with friends and waiting on their owner to come to heaven. You know the pictures you have seen of all your dogs waiting for you once you get to heaven…

dogs in heavdn

Yes, they are waiting.

Book 2, the sequel, 1st draft was finished on Saturday, now for the long edit process. Hope to be finished by end of month and book published by spring.

This is what happens when you retire and have nothing to do…you write, or at least I do. So find a fun thing to do and remember in all that you do… be KIND.

kind flower

kind3

Sky equals 1st Heaven, #Time To Write

Sadje threw out a challenge prompt with Time to Write with the word “Sky”. So I think I will give that a try as it ties in with a conversation I had today.

The young swallow, Twelson sat on the branch watching his fellow birds swirl though the late afternoon sky catching the small night bugs as they also took to the sky preparing for their evening flights. He looked down a few branches and saw Wisowl watching the swirling birds as well. Wisowl was the sage old member of their group with many a story to tell the younger swallows of distant and fascinating lands.

Twelson flew down to rest on a limb withing speaking distance to the revered member of the group to asked him a question but not actually land on the same limb. One did not disturb the limbs of the revered members of the group.

“Master Wisowl, do our journeys ever take us to the glowing ball in the sky?”

Quietness engulfed the two as Wisowl pondered the best way to explain the heavens to the young swallow.  After some time, the glowing ball began to slowly slip towards the line where the sky met the land. Stretching out his wings and wrapping them closer around his body he looked toward Twelson as he began to speak. 

“The glowing ball is beyond the line where the sky meets the land. It is located in the second heaven with many other fabled bodies much like the night ball that lights the sky once the glowing ball goes beyond the line.”

“Have you ever been able to get to the line to look over it into the sky?”

“No, the line moves ever before you leading you onward as you follow the land before it meets the sky. I do not think the maker of all things needs us to go beyond that line.”

“Is there more sky beyond the second heaven?” asked young Twelson.

“Only the third and final heaven where the maker of all things lives. It is there where all questions will be fully and finally answered.”

The two sat quietly as the last bit of light from the glowing ball slipped beyond the line and darkness surrounded all the land.

If you would like to follow along with Sadje and Time to Write, come along with your version of Sky.

And as always with all of my post, remember to be kind. The kindness you share may be the only kindness that a recipient may feel on any given day, so always be kind.

kind8

The ABC’s of Christ’s Love for Me

I ran across this the other day and it helped me understand and reflect on “My Identity in Christ” listing many of the ways we can see how we are a new creation of His making as  we go through the ABCs of His guidance for us. I did not write this but I am sharing it as I think it is so much worth the share. Hope you enjoy and realize how you too are blessed with the same love and guidance given by Him to you.

First day
His true love for us

I AM…

  • Accepted in His beloved grace
  • Blessed with all spiritual blessings
  • Chosen in Him before the world’s foundation
  • Delivered from the powers of darkness
  • Elevated to heavenly places
  • Forgiven from all my sin
  • God’s masterpiece
  • Healed by Jesus’ stripes
  • In Him…forever
  • Justified by faith
  • Kept by the power of God
  • Loved unconditionally
  • More than a conqueror
  • Not condemned
  • Overcoming the world through faith
  • Predestined to Sonship
  • Quickened together in Christ
  • Redeemed from the curses of the law
  • Sealed with the Holy Spirit of promise
  • To His praise
  • Unto His glory
  • Victorious through Him
  • Washed from my sin through His own blood
  • X “Crucified” with Christ
  • Yoked together with other believers
  • Zealous to do good works

 

And as I remind myself and anyone else, remember to be kind. Kindness is a gift to be shared and spread thick wherever you go.

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The Value of a Hug

When we chose to get married, we wear a ring to symbolize the love we share with another individual. We wear this ring on our left hand on our “ring” finger. Do you know why its called the ring finger? This finger has blood flow from a single vein that goes straight to the heart – where we say love  must come from. We can have love in various forms as the different love languages tells us but all forms of love come from a commitment of the heart. And I believe all forms of love are shown through some form of touch. A hug is the quintessential form in expressing whichever form of love you are expressing.

hug1
Hugs from our spouse

hug2
Hugs between parents and children

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Group Hug

 All though the scriptures God tell us to love because He is loved us first.

First day

But we are not the only specie that understands the value of a hug. All of the animal kingdom understands the value of hugging to express love, tenderness, compassion, friendliness.

And even with inter-species there are various forms of hugging.

 

Hugging takes kindness and those who read me know I am a big fan of being kind. So in closing, I remind myself and anyone else to always be kind and if you get the chance, hug someone or a favorite animal today.

PS – I want to shout out to all photographers who have the ability to take marvelous photos and add them to the internet where those of us who do have have abilities or access to the many places you go. Thank you for sharing you love for all of us to enjoy.

World Day of Communion

handshake

We have all gotten use to the special days of recognition like Mother’s Day, Father’s day, Grandparent’s, Kids Day and then commercialization really got hold of it to the digression of Pizza day, really?

But today is World Communion Day. How awesome is that? Think about it. All Christ based churches came together today to share communion on the same day to honor our God for giving us Christ; to honor Christ for giving us salvation and to honor the act of Remembrance of Him in sharing the loaf and the cup. All denominations who honor Christ have details in their service that they do differently. Some use wine, some use juice, some have bread, some have wafers but they do it toward the same purpose – to honor our LORD and what He did for us.

communion1

All four Gospels tell of the story of the last supper and as Jesus broke the bread he explained that it represented His body and as He passed the wine how it represented His blood shed for all and that this communion between mind, body and spirit with God was to be done as a remembrance of His love.

What an awesome thing for the world to do in coming together as one as we each spread our outstretched hands of love for fellow Christians…across the world. May all feel the love He has shown for us everyday and may we come together in one heart of love for Him and fellow Christians across the world.

And in closing, as I always remind myself and others,  Be Kind. Let you kindness be ripples of love as they flow across the waters of life never ceasing.

ripples

For the Love of…God & Heaven

First day
First Day In Heaven

Let this picture sink in for a minute. What do you see?

Due to circumstances that happened in the last couple of weeks and the challenge of my pastor this morning of us being good stewards of our faith, I felt this picture, which has been floating around on Facebook for awhile, needed to be coupled with just a few of the thoughts that were shared this morning.

How gracious and magnificent is your love OF me and FOR me O, Lord.

  1. Do you know how much you are loved?  Psalm 139:14 says …I am fearfully and wonderfully made; your works are wonderful. Verse 13 explains that He knew us and made our inmost being while still in our mother’s womb. You are His child, He made you, warts and all. Even though you may have challenges, He does not leave you to get through them alone.
  2. Do you know that He is always there for us? Psalm 139:5, You hem me in – behind and before.  There is no where we can go that He can not reach us. Check out vs 7-10. God loves us so much and He is thinking about us all the time, ever guiding and filled with adoration for us.
  3. When it is your time for your life to be complete, He is there waiting for you as in the picture above. But remember He is the only one who knows how many days you are to have. We all have a set time according to His purpose.

The books of the Psalms are filled with His love and guidance for us. My favorite is Psalm 119. Its the longest Psalm and the longest chapter in the entire bible. But it is broken down into 8 verse sections of poem and prayer. Each section starts off with a different letter of the Hebrew alphabet. I challenge you to read it and learn of His love for you.

And in all things be Kind.