Archive | December, 2015
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New Year 2016 -One Word – Savor His Presence

30 Dec

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SAVOR – Vocabulary.com – derive or receive pleasure from; get enjoyment from; take pleasure in

Synonyms – Dictionary.com – admire, adore, applaud, cherish, love, praise, treasure, appreciate

This past year –  2015,  the word savor constantly came to mind.  It seemed when I would blog, that word appeared, and so I believe it is the word that God wants me to focus on in 2016.

As I sit here this morning sipping my steaming coffee with gingerbread creamer smelling it, lingering over it, I reflect on that word “savor” a moment and what it has meant this past year.

  • In January we were blessed with our second grandson after many years of prayer and infertility.  Savoring, praising and treasuring that gift from God.
  • We lost a dear aunt with cancer and savored some time with her in her last days being able to visit and talk as she lay in bed her final weeks treasuring final days with her.
  • I have to tell you children and grandchildren have not come easy for myself and my kids family.  We’ve walked through miscarriages, infertility and one baby with a skin disease, but through it all God has shown us He is faithful, He performs miracles when the doctors say different, and we have been shown how truly precious the birth of a child is.
  • Christmas this year was a reminder of the loss of family, and the reminder to truly savor every moment of this time of the year – His birth and keeping it holy – decorating, cleaning, baking, wrapping, e cards and every moment of it.  I wanted to savor time with family so much more this Christmas.  In fact, I have savored so much I haven’t wanted to take the decorations down so I can just enjoy the moments.  I turned all the tree and outside lights on this morning before my grandson arrived, and just sit here savoring time with my Savior.
  • This past Saturday ten tornadoes hit the metroplex area.  That can cause us all to reflect on what we have and what is important and that is family.  I stood watching the weather and the approaching tornadoes (two of them in our area) and praying that God would keep us safe.  He did, at least in our area, but there were over a hundred homes damaged and totaled including some friends and our children’s minister at church who lost everything but what is important and what we need to savor and that is not things but others.  I look at the destruction and how close it was to us and our children, and what could have been if they had turned because they were within a mile or two of all of us.  Thankful, praising, adoring and treasuring His love and watch care over us this weekend and every single day.

In 2016,  I want to savor His presence more than ever before.  I want to savor the time in the dark stillness of the morning reading His Word, studying with my on-line study sisters with Proverbs 31 ministries, underlining verses, memorizing, verse mapping,  and savoring each word of a verse every week, singing a verse, and turning  scriptures into prayer.  It seems lately I can’t get enough and could study all day long.  It seems lately my reflection is on Him all day long, and I sometimes wonder if He is preparing me for something that may come.

I want to savor His goodness as I sit each morning in prayer and reflect on how He has blessed our family, how He has shown us miracle after miracle, and blessed us with two children, two children in laws, and two grandsons.  Life is so good and so very precious.

I want to slow down, be still, delight in Him, and savor His presence in 2016 like never before!

 

 

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Advent – Week 3 – The Joy of Christmas

18 Dec

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I am joining Kate Motaung today, and the word is our choice.  How can I not choose my favorite word – JOY?  It’s the last five-minute Friday of the year. Where did 2015 go?  Now to write for five minutes.

This week of Advent is about the joy we have because Christ entered the world.  That is what Christmas is all about – Jesus’ birth and Jesus in us  -not only at Christmas but every moment.  Jesus is our joy and without Him I am not sure how you hang on to joy.  I know I could not.

How do we smile through tears?  How do we find joy during storms?  How do we keep Christmas joy in the hustle and bustle of the season or in the midst of pain and turmoil, or when there is no money to buy the kids presents?  It’s not about presents, it’s about having Him present in our lives, and walking in joy no matter what season we are in.  As the song goes, He is with us ALWAYS.

Have you lost your joy?  Beth Moore tells us it’s right where we left it – in His presence.  She says to anticipate it, expect it and share it.

Jesus talked about rejoicing to His disciples in John 16:24 that even though He was leaving them and they would be distressed that their joy would be complete when He returned.  Anticipate His return, expect it and share it.

Philippians 4:4 (NLT)  tells us to ALWAYS  be full of joy in the Lord. I and   1 Thess 5:18 says to rejoice ALWAYS give thanks in ALL circumstances.  There is no sometimes, tomorrow, next year when things are better.  The verses tell us to ALWAYS be full of joy and to ALWAYS give thanks no matter what season of life we are in.

Jesus is our JOY!  Seek the joy of knowing Him this Christmas.

JOY to the world because the Lord has come!

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REFLECTING ON A NOT SO BUSY, HURRIED CHRISTMAS’

11 Dec

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Today has been a time of reflection because well that’s the word we are writing 5 minutes about on Kate Matoung.

I sit here this morning with my 2-year old grandson who spent the night.  As soon as we walked in the dark den, I asked him if he wanted me to turn on the Christmas tree lights.  He did, and I paused to show him a couple of ornaments with Santa kneeling down worshiping Baby Jesus.

This time of the year we can get so burdened – burdened with loss of loved ones and burdened with all that we as women are doing to make our homes and hearts ready for Christmas.  I even get a little teary eyed putting up the tree each year because many of my ornaments were from Mom, and that little gold one up near the top is an ornament my baby sister made me one Christmas with Mom, Dad and us three girls when we were little.  I’ll get teary eyed in a bit when I put that beautiful Avon Christmas nativity set my Mom gave me that fills up the top of our piano.  But God has blessed me with precious memories, and I want to bless my family with memories when I am gone.

I’m not reflecting this morning on busy, hurried, frantic Christmas’.  This year is different.  I’ve slowed down and there is still much to do,BUT I’m savoring it all – taking it in and keeping it about Him.  My husband even commented about the tree and how it reflects Him and as he prayed the other night He asked God to bless others as they come to the house and see it.  I found some beautiful ribbon at Hobby Lobby with the names of Jesus, and have so many ornaments now that say peace, and faith and joy and a couple of crowns and lots of crosses.

As you take some time to worship with Him in the morning while looking at your tree, think on the things that keep Him in Christmas, think of the things you “get” to do, not what you have to do.  We “get” to do Christmas.  We “get” to bless others.  We “get” to wake up each morning.  We “get” to celebrate another year of Jesus’ birth.

Reflect this year on whose you are and spend time with family and friends.  One thing I’ve learned someone we love can be gone in an unexpected moment.  Make some memories this year.  Love like you’ve never loved before.

Merry Christmas as you reflect on what is important.

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Advent – Week 2 – Peace

8 Dec

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Not only are we in week 2 of Advent, but the calendar continues to count down to Christmas.  I love it.  I love every single thing about it.   I love the cards, the recipes, the decorations, the shopping, the cooking, the Hallmark Christmas movies, the Christmas music, wrapping gifts, and last week watching our two-year old grandson smile when I said Nanna and PaPa bought you presents for Christmas and hear him say Christmas.  Confession – No gifts wrapped yet, but some were put in the mail yesterday for sweet friends.

The older I grow, and the more we lose dear loved one, the more special Christmas becomes.  Actually, every single day becomes more special.  We don’t get do-overs, but oh how I wish we did so I live for each moment, each day to savor with loved ones.

I know this time of the year can be hard for so many.   Trust me I have been there.  The first year my Dad died I so dreaded Christmas and having all my family here and Mom coming in that door without him.  Oh it was tough for a moment, but she brought angel pins for us 3 girls, one of my sister’s wrote a poem (Dad always did) and gave each of the grandchildren one of Dad’s clocks and read the poem.

In reading about Advent this year, I learned that the wreath represents God’s never-ending love for you and me.  The evergreens represent His gift to us of eternal life.  The candles remind us Jesus is the Light of the World.This week of advent represents peace.  I did not know until I started researching that Shalom means peace.  How cool is that?  Jesus came to be the Prince of Peace.

Blog - Isaiah 96

SHALOM!

 

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THIS CHRISTMAS SEASON I WILL NOT BE SHAKEN

3 Dec

Blog John 1511

This Christmas season I will not be shaken, nor today.  His joy will be in me.  Joy is probably my most favorite word.

I will not be shaken because God is in control.  He is at my right hand. WOW!  Do these verses give you chill bumps?

I keep my eyes always on the Lord. With him at my right hand, I will not be shaken.  Psalm 16:8 (NIV)

Truly he is my rock and my salvation; he is my fortress, I will never be shaken.  Psalm 62:2 (NIV)

What does shaken mean?  Thesaurus.com says “rattled, upset, overcome, flustered……”. Well, I have definitely been all that, but God continues to do a work in me the longer I know Him, and the more I stay in His Word.

This Christmas season I will not be shaken.  We women get so caught up in the shopping, the cleaning, the cooking the decorating, the wrapping, the parties and on an on.  I have pledged I am not going to be shaken this Christmas.

I will not be shaken because I am taking it slow and easy, and I am doing what is important in the Kingdom.  I am staying in my Bible studies.  I am taking care of grandsons who are much more important than having the tree up.  And, no it is not up.  On a normal year the decorating starts the day after Thanksgiving but we were out of town so I got a late start.  On a normal year, I would be shaken.

I will not be shaken if the house is not quiet clean enough, not organized enough, not the biggest house in town because it is not my house.  It is the house that God blessed me with.  It’s the load that He’s given me because He knows what I can handle.  This one is hard enough to keep clean.

I will not be shaken when the phone rings and my to-do list is totally changed for the day or week.  I realize my to-do list is not necessarily His to-do list.

I will not be shaken when the calendar is full.  Oh how blessed we are that we have a life where our calendars are full of love and we have the health to do all there is to do.  I am blessed I “can do” all those things.

I will not be shaken when someone rides my bumper or nearly runs me off the road.  You bet I would have sometime back, but today I pray for them.  I pray they will find God in their hearts and thank Him that I am able to pray for them because of them crossing my path.

I will not be shaken at solicitors.  Oh they have upset me and honestly more than so many things.  I can’t wait to answer the phone right now and say no, thank you and I wish you a Merry Christmas or God bless you after Christmas.

No, this Christmas I will not be shaken because He is at my right hand and His joy fills me up.

Joining Suzanne Eller at #livefreeThursday and Kate Matoung at #FiveMinuteFriday

 

 

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