Tuesday, December 29, 2015

This world is not our home!

Hebrews 13:14 

For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come.  (KJV)

For we have no permanent city here, but we are longing for the city which is soon to be ours.  (Weymouth NT)

For this world is not our permanent home; we are looking forward to a home yet to come.  (NLT)

I Can't Feel at Home in this World Anymore (Jim Reeves)

[photo by  http://www.rgbstock.com]

Friday, December 25, 2015

In the Fullness of Time

Some folks thrive with living by the clock. I'm not so much one of them.
Preferred or not, most of us have learned to live with daily constraints that keep our eyes on what time it is, how much time we have left, how much time until, or how behind time we're going to be.
Few folks have the pleasure of living "on their own time" and doing as they please without notice of the clock. Even if I tried this, my disregard for time would soon impact someone else negatively.

One of the most difficult lessons to be learned about time is to wait, delaying receipt of whatever we want until "the right time." We want what we want when we want it! We deserve it and need it and have to have it (whatever "it" is) now.

As we gathered today before lunch to open presents, I reminded my grandchildren that when I was at my granny's back in the day, we had to wait until after lunch to open presents. I tried to announce (in fun) that we would do that today...to no avail. Delaying gratification is not something that comes easily to children.

Our Heavenly Father, however, is not bound by our impatience and self-indulgence. He does what is best..not what is expedient for the moment. It pleased God to wait hundreds of years from the time in Genesis 3:15, when the world first needed a promised Savior, until that promise was satisfied at the birth of the Christ child. It pleased God to reveal more and more about the coming Messiah until finally His birth, life, death and resurrection fulfilled over 350 Old Testament prophecies (http://www.accordingtothescriptures.org/prophecy/353prophecies.html).

God waited...waited...waited until He was sure "the right time came" (Galatians 4:4, NLT). Another translation says: "But when the set time had fully come" (Galatians 4:4, NIV).
His appearance was not early, it was not late, but it was right on time! "But when the fullness of time was come, God sent forth his son..." (Gal. 4:4, KJV).

Thursday, December 24, 2015

Granny's Chili Recipe*

Brown 2-3 lbs of hamburger and drain
Add goodly amounts of chili powder and garlic powder
Add crushed red pepper to taste (I like it hot)
Add several spoonfuls of mild banana pepper rings (whole or cut up—can also use hot rings, if brave)
Add 2 cans of crushed tomatoes (made for chili mix or with onions/green peppers in mix)
Add large can of kidney beans (drained) or pinto beans (drained)
Add plenty of ketchup to make a mixture that is easily stirred and to the chili texture you prefer (can use ½ and ½ ketchup and tomato paste—but use plenty of ketchup as that gives the chili a good, strong tangy taste—but you don’t want it too “soupy”)
Stir mixture well
Heat mixture either on stove top, in oven or in crock pot until hot
(if on stove top, be careful as mixture burns easily)
When hot and to the texture you prefer—not too sloppy—enjoy.
Keep experimenting until the balance of ingredients suits your tastes. I like mine strong and hot.

 (*Sorry, I don’t measure ingredients when I fix chili)

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Seek Him

Have you ever noticed how much “seeking” there is in the Christmas story?
The shepherds came seeking the birthplace of the Savior after their visit by the angels.
Let’s go to Bethlehem and see this thing that has happened,
which the Lord has told us about.
  (Luke 2:15)

Later, the wise men came seeking the young king.
Where is the one who has been born King of the Jews?
We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.
(Matthew 1:2)
The Heavenly Father of this Christ child tells us he wants his followers to do the same thing…seek Him. How do I know? The Bible tells me so.
God wants us to seek Him.
Now devote your heart and soul to seeking the Lord your God. (I Chronicles22:19)
Look to the Lord and his strength; seek his face always.
(I Chronicles 16:11)
God wants us to be serious and purposeful about seeking Him.
But if from there you seek the Lord your God, you will find him if you seek him with all your heart and with all your soul. (Deuteronomy 4:29)
You, God, are my God, earnestly I seek you; I thirst for you, my whole being longs for you, in a dry and parched land where there is no water. (Psalm 63:1)
God will reward us if we seek Him with the right spirit.
I love those who love me, and those who seek me find me.  (Proverbs 8:17)
You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart. (Jeremiah 29:13)
The Lord is good to those whose hope is in him, to the one who seeks him; (Lamentations 3:25)
Ask and it will be given to you; seek and you will find; knock and the door will be opened to you. (Luke 11:9)if my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land. (II Chronicles 7:14)
There are consequences for not seeking Him.
If you seek him, he will be found by you; but if you forsake him, he will reject you forever. (I Chronicles 28:9)
He did evil because he had not set his heart on seeking the Lord.  (II Chronicles 12:14)
All who seek will not find.
Then Herod called the Magi secretly and found out from them the exact time the star had appeared.  He sent them to Bethlehem and said, “Go and search carefully for the child. As soon as you find him, report to me, so that I too may go and worship him.”
On coming to the house, they saw the child with his mother Mary, and they bowed down and worshiped him. And having been warned in a dream not to go back to Herod, they returned to their country by another route.
  (Matthew 2:7, 11-12)

Let us acknowledge the Lord;
    let us press on to acknowledge him.
As surely as the sun rises,
    he will appear;
he will come to us like the winter rains,
    like the spring rains that water the earth

(Hosea 6:3)

Sunday, November 22, 2015

What I am thankful I likely will not have for Thanksgiving:

What are you pleased to say you will miss out on this Thanksgiving?   

·       Cousin Merle’s grape hull pie?

·       Aunt C’s spinach dip that gets browner as it moves faithfully from party to party?

·       Mama Hazel’s special boiled chicken delight?

·       Ms. Civi’s cabbage pizza appetizer bites?

·       Ms. Myrtle’s boxed lemon cake with canned chocolate icing? 
  • That dip that everybody is raving over but you know what went into it?     

 Every holiday has its inherent plusses and minuses…especially when “we the people” are involved.  

We are all duly asked to list off things we are thankful for this time of year. It’s easy to be cavalier and off hand about it. We have so much.


I decided to think about what I am thankful I likely will not have for this Thanksgiving season, through no merit of my own. Here’s my list so far …

What I am thankful I likely will not have for Thanksgiving
in 2015:
Nothing to eat
“Some 795 million people in the world do not have enough food to lead a healthy active life.”
No place to sleep
“More than 100 million people worldwide are homeless. About one in four people live in conditions that harm their health, safety, prosperity and opportunities.”
No money/possessions
Almost half the world — over three billion people — live on less than $2.50 a day.”
No family

It is estimated that 153 million children worldwide, ranging from infants to teenagers, have lost one or both parents… Over 7 million children are in institutional care worldwide”
No friends
“there is a friend [Christ Jesus] who sticks closer than a brother.” (Proverbs 18:24)
No love

Jesus loves me! This I know, For the Bible tells me so. (WB Bradbury, 1862)
But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us.” (Romans 5:8)
No purpose

Sing to the LORD a new song … Tell of His glory among the nations, His wonderful deeds among all the peoples.” (Psalm 96:1, 3)
“in humility value others above yourselves,  not looking to your own interests but each of you to the interests of the others.” (Philippians 2:304)
No paralyzing fear
The Lord is my light and my salvation—whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life— of whom shall I be afraid?” (Psalm 27:1)
“When I am afraid, I will trust in you.” (Psalm 56:3)
No hope

“Praise be to the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead” (I Peter 1:3)
What I deserve
“It's your sins that have cut you off from God. Because of your sins, he has turned away and will not listen anymore.” (Isaiah 59:2)
“For the payoff of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.
(Romans 6:23)