We have just celebrated the 241st birthday of our country, the United States of America. She is not perfect, but she has done much good and I love her. One of my favorite songs is God Bless America.
God bless America,
Land that I love,
Stand beside her and guide her
Thru the night with a light from above;
From the mountains, to the prairies,
To the oceans white with foam,
God bless America,
My home, sweet home.
God bless America,
My home, sweet home.
One of the things I am especially thankful for is our Constitution. It has allowed such freedom for 241 years. What a blessing.
The first amendment is the guarantee to practice our religion without interference. It says: “Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.”
Some are trying to say that this amendment puts a wall between the state and the free exercise of religion. They take that from a letter Thomas Jefferson, third president, wrote. I am saddened that they misunderstand this amendment and try to stop our freedom to speak publicly about things we believe!
I am very thankful that God has blessed us with such a marvelous document as our Constitution.
Jesus’s entry into Jerusalem–the King of the Jews prophesied in Zechariah 9:9 in the Bible: “Rejoice, greatly, O Daughter of Zion! Shout, Daughter of Jerusalem! See your king comes to you, righteous and having salvation, gentle and riding on a donkey, on a colt, the foal of a donkey.” The people who greeted him spread palm branches and cried, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest” (Matthew 21:9). Their actions were based on a hope for physical victory over their Roman captors. However, Jesus, God incarnate, came to die and then rise, king of a spiritual kingdom; the prophecies about physical victory are yet for the future. As I go through trials and suffering, I know that these are not all my life consists of. Because Jesus came then as a king and because he will rule physically as a king when he comes again, I know good things are ahead! Restoration to life of all things is coming!
Some saw the picture of our “Cat Bird.” The other day, she was back in the tree. It inspired a poem!
Sitting in the tree
silent as can be:
the Cat Bird
waiting for her prey,
her dinner if you please.
Silently she waits,
her stillness is the bait.
Alas, her wait
has no reward.
stay far away
and sit another place.
Many years ago, my husband and I walked through a Japanese Tea Garden. It was a lovely, peaceful place. The land had been landscaped and the trees trimmed. It had been transformed.
So with my life. As I go through rough times, I am prone to dwell in fear or anger. It doesn’t help the situation, but it is hard not to react that way when I don’t the pain and grief.
But like the gardener who does beautiful things with the land, God is a gardener who does beautiful things with my life. He can give me peace in the midst of His trimmings and diggings. He has given me a promise that has become dear to my heart: Proverbs 3:5-8. “Trust in the Lord with all your heart and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge Him and He will make your way straight. Do not be wise in your own eyes. Fear the Lord and shun evil. This will bring health to your body and nourishment to your bones.”
Recently a friend told me her mother had died of brain cancer about four years ago. She had quoted those verses to her daughter many times. It was her life verse. Now, during this difficult time, she clung to it. It gave her peace and strength.
As I have experienced trials, God has used them to minister and strengthen others. I am grateful. I often think how God gave His Son so we may have life. Can I do less than suffer graciously so I can give comfort to others–maybe even life?
God alone knows where the trials lead and how they will end. I’m glad He does. Someday I can ask Him about those things. Meanwhile, I ask for grace to trust Him and experience His peace through all the stormy skies and rough roads.
The other day my grandson and I were in his dining room while he was studying. I looked out the window and laughed as I called his attention to what I saw. It gave us both a giggle and a praise to God for His marvelous creation! There, in a small tree not too far from the house, sat a large–we decided to call it–catbird.
Well – God gave many of us beautiful gifts, however are we taking care of our (kids) gifts correctly?
Psalm 127:3 – (KJV)Lo, children are an heritage of the Lord: and the fruit of the womb is his reward.
To be honest I have been reminded of this verse for the past two days now. I love my children all 3 of them very much, however lately they have felt more like a burden than a gift. The Devil is a liar. It’s not easy to raise 3 kids by yourself, however thats no valid excuse to see your kids any other way then a gift of God. God’s words are true and if God calls our children gifts from him then they are gifts indeed.
God has reminded me several times during the past two days that: My kids are a gift from God.
Someday perhaps I will see my great grandchildren. My sister, who is a year younger, has several great grandchildren. My oldest grandson is 16 (I hope he waits a few years before blessing me in that area!).
Someday I may see 100. I am feeling good at 73; hopefully, if the Lord wills, my health will hold up!
Someday I am looking forward to heaven. Jesus has blessed my life and I look forward to His blessings for eternity! I may not see my great grandchildren in this life. I may not see 100. But I do plan on seeing my Lord Jesus!
Thoughts have been flowing, so I don’t mean to bombard my Facebook page and other social media. I just know that some of those who will read this are going to continue to live in the mistakes and hardships of 2016 and not let go. I want to declare to you today that your financial mistakes this year do not have to define you. Bad relationships in 2016 don’t have to define you. Horrible things you said and did don’t have to define you. A divorce, a straying child, or anything that happened in 2016 does not have to define you.
The consequences may still exist, but you don’t have to live in guilt if this stems from something you have done wrong. The blood of Jesus Christ can cleanse anything if you confess and turn from it. If this relates to something that happened to you that is out…