Category Archives: Jesus Christ

I Just Don’t Care

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In response to his uncle’s teasing at a Thanksgiving celebration, our youngest grandson (three years old at the time) simply turned and walked away saying, “well, I just don’t care.” All of us burst out laughing and since that time, the phrase has become a common response in our family.

But something important happened. A small child evaluated the situation and reached a wise conclusion all in a matter of seconds.

Although I didn’t realize it at the time, I’ve had a year or so to consider how beautifully that little boy delivered a life lesson. His ability to clearly see a potentially awkward or uncomfortable encounter on the horizon enabled him to cut it off before it even had a chance to become anything. He wasn’t clouded by “what if’s” or “maybes”. He just stood his ground and declared truth.

We care too much, sometimes. We take on worries about stuff that doesn’t matter, and those worries weigh us down, cause stress, inhibit our growth, block opportunities, and they can immobilize us completely. We have all experienced a measure of that since Covid-19 changed the world. It’s hard to say we just don’t care when the crisis (real or manufactured) is thrown in our faces all the time.

Here’s the thing.

We have the Father God, who has given us His Holy Spirit to help us to discern what is worth caring about and what isn’t. We can rely on His direction when we don’t know whether or not to get involved in things that could potentially harm us or move us ahead. We have Jesus, the Counselor, who teaches us what we need to know, where to find answers, and when to act.

Keeping our eyes on Jesus Christ, the Author and Finisher of our faith, give us the confidence to say, “well, I just don’t care,” when the enemy lies to us, in whatever form that may take. And he will lie because deception is all the devil knows to do.

Care about the things that really matter. Walk away from the rest.

Don’t be pulled in different directions or worried about a thing. Be saturated in prayer throughout each day, offering your faith-filled requests before God with overflowing gratitude. Tell him every detail of your life, then God’s wonderful peace that transcends human understanding, will make the answers known to you through Jesus Christ.So keep your thoughts continually fixed on all that is authentic and real, honorable and admirable, beautiful and respectful, pure and holy, merciful and kind. And fasten your thoughts on every glorious work of God, praising him always. Philippians 4:6-8 (TPT)

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Get Your Own Word

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One of the “trademarks” of the Christian circles I was a part of for the past forty years was the overwhelming desire of many to receive a Word from God. People would flock to the prayer lines at the end of hours-long church services hoping that the pastor or guest speaker or someone would have a word from the Lord for them. When and if received, this word would presumably change their lives. For the better, of course.

Please understand that I absolutely believe God can and does give messages to people through others. I have delivered a few myself. But I also know how easy it would be to speak out something that sounds prophetic to someone standing in front of you, desperate to have God, through you, tell them what to do. I’ve been on the receiving end of “thus saith the Lord” a number of times, and I would have to say that at least half were definitely not God’s word. I knew it at the time and I still know it today.

I have to say, though, that while it is really, really awesome to have God speak to you this way, you don’t need to go to every church meeting in town to hear His voice. You can get your own word.

I am NOT saying that you shouldn’t go to church, or that you can’t hear from God while you are there. You should and you can. But a church building is not the only place God speaks. And the person in the pulpit is not the only person God speaks through. The Lord has things to say to you specifically when you take the time to talk with Him, to read what He has to say in the bible, and to listen for His voice. Become aware of Him. Notice His presence in you and around you all the time. Get your own word.

Learn to trust what you are hearing based on how you know the Father. Of course, you are going to trust the person closest to you, right? God is even closer than that closest person. He has no ulterior motives, no hidden agenda, and He doesn’t mess with your mind. What He tells you is always completely honest and true. You don’t have to second guess Him. Ever. He will speak things that are for your ears only, precious and wonderful things that He wants only you to know. His mysteries. His secrets. His heart. They are things between you and God and they are not for public scrutiny. Get your own word.

I have a picture in my head of God sitting on the edge of His seat, clapping His hands, and grinning in delight when I ask Him if He has time to talk. He always says yes. He has so much He wants to say to me and He’s so eager for me to know all His things. He’s thrilled that I want to listen – that I want to be with Him just like He wants to be with me. And He really wants to give me my own word.

He’s got a few for you too.

But God now unveils these profound realities to us by the Spirit. Yes, he has revealed to us his inmost heart and deepest mysteries through the Holy Spirit, who constantly explores all things. 1 Corinthians 2:10 (TPT)

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This We Believe

The denomination in which I was raised did not practice infant baptism, but rather, encouraged a personal decision to follow Jesus Christ, usually followed by baptism and church membership a few years later. I was eighteen years old and about to graduate from high school when I got baptized along with several of my friends.

Prior to baptism, all candidates were required to complete a catechism course (ours was taught by the truly awesome pastor of our church), and we studied a book called This We Believe, by James H. Waltner. I lost the original copy of my book somewhere along the way and it’s out of print now, but a few years ago I came across one at a thrift store, so I forked over fifty cents to go home with a piece of my past. My purpose? I wanted to trace my faith back to its roots to discover if what I believed, or was told to believe in that catechism class, was what I still believed today.

Reading the book has surprised me. First of all, the deep description of the Christian faith is remarkable. I’m pretty sure that as a teenager I never read the book with much serious thought about how and why my salvation was actually possible. It just was. Second of all – and this may sound like a contradiction to my first of all – the book barely scratches the surface of where my faith is today.

Does that mean I’ve made progress? I sure hope so. What I do know is that the more I study God’s Word and spend time with Him, the more I realize how much I don’t know. But instead of being frustrated by that knowledge, it motivates me to dig in and study more. Allowing the Holy Spirit to teach me the things I need for where I am right now is the absolute best place to be and the best way to grow spiritually.

It’s sad when people give up on their faith because they think God doesn’t hear them, or because reading the bible is too complicated, or following Him requires too much sacrifice. None of that is true. Sometimes, however, it requires a return to the basics to find out what you believe and why you believe it.

What do you believe.

For this is how much God loved the world – he gave his one and only, unique Son as a gift. So now everyone who believes in him will never perish but experience everlasting life. God did not send his Son into the world to judge and condemn the world, but to be its Savior and rescue it! John 3:16-17 (TPT)

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Ancient of Days

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We used to sing a song in our church that started like this:

Blessing and honor, glory and power, be unto the Ancient of Days . . .

Some of you nodding and humming the melody in your heads right now. It was a popular song in Christian circles during the 1990’s, and I still hear it occasionally. One of my favourites.

I hadn’t thought about this song for ages, but the other day I was driving in my car and for some reason, the words just popped into my head. Since then, I have been having conversations with God as to why. I’m certain it wasn’t random.

I wanted to find out where in scripture Ancient of Days was mentioned. Surprising to me, Daniel chapter 7 has the only three references in the entire bible – verses 9, 13, and 22. Okay then. The book of Daniel is primarily a prophetic one and my knowledge of its contents, I’m finding, is rather lacking.

Most commentators say that the Ancient of Days is God, the Father. In Daniel 7:9, He is preparing to judge, seated on a fiery throne wearing a garment white as snow and hair like pure wool. I get why we’d assume that we’re reading about God here. This fits our mental picture of Him, right? But one commentator made a good point. The Ancient of Days can be no other than the Son of Man, Jesus. What? In John 5:22, Jesus says, “For the Father judges no one, but has committed all judgment to the Son.” So, if there is to be judgment, the judging will be done by Jesus Christ.

The following description of Him in the book of Revelation corresponds to the one in Daniel.

When I turned to see the voice that was speaking to me, I saw seven golden lampstands.And walking among the lampstands, I saw someone like a son of man, wearing a full-length robe with a golden sash over his chest. His head and his hair were white like wool – white as glistening snow. And his eyes were like flames of fire!His feet were gleaming like bright metal, as though they were glowing in a fire, and his voice was like the roar of many rushing waters. Revelation 1:12-15 (TPT)

Stay with me here.

Daniel 7:13 and 22 mention the Ancient of Days again, but this time as God the Father. We know that because the Son of Man, Jesus, came to stand near Him. Two separate beings.

What does all of this have to do with anything, you ask?

The title, Ancient of Days, was used interchangeably, I believe, confirming Jesus’ statement in John 10:30; “The Father and I are one.” John 1:1 says, In the beginning was the Word (the Word is Jesus Christ), and the Word (Jesus) was with God, and the Word (Jesus) was God. They are One with the Holy Spirit, just as they are separate.

A lot of stuff in this post, I know, but the Ancient of Days, whether He be the Father or the Son or the Spirit, is everlasting – ancient. Outside of time and space. With complete clarity of the reality of all there is to know. He existed before days even were a thing.

This is what God wanted me to know: That He was here before all and will be here after all. He knows the before and the after and everything in between. About me. About you. His love surrounds us, flows in us, through us, and is for us. His love is ancient. It has never failed and it never will.

For none can compare to Your matchless worth! Sing unto the Ancient of Days.

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Perception

Now you see it, now you don't: what optical illusions tell us about our  brains

Years ago, someone had the wrong perception about me. They discovered that I was a long-time Beatles fan, which was an appalling flaw, apparently, since I was a leader in the church. Another time, someone was shocked to see me laughing and dancing around with my small grandchildren at a social event. They had the perception that Christians weren’t supposed to have fun. More recently, there have been some who frown upon my current lack of church affiliation, as if that were an indication of declining spiritual commitment. All these perceptions were and are based on people’s personal belief systems and not on actual conversations with me. In most cases, they didn’t really know me at all.

Perception: The act of perceiving or of receiving impressions by the senses; or that act or process of the mind which makes known an external object (Webster’s Dictionary 1828).

We all have notions and ideas – perceptions – that came along for the ride as we grew up. These were formed as a result of what we saw around us, what we were told by our parents, teachers, friends, or the media. While many of our perceptions may have been based on fact and are therefore correct, a whole lot of them were not. We act on those perceptions and they become what we believe. Then we become what we believe.

Think about God the Father and what you believe about Him. Is He going to reject you unless you come to Him in a certain way or believe the right things about Him? Will He love you less if you don’t measure up to the standards of the world, the church, your family, or most of all, His expectations of you? Does that specific sin cancel your ticket to heaven?

You probably answered no to those questions because, of course, everyone knows that God doesn’t operate that way, right? But come on, who hasn’t heard the “God is going to be so disappointed in you” phrase, whether it be a voice in your head or from someone else.

Perceptions.

And so, another question arises. Do you believe and know the Father God? Or do you perceive and so believe and trust something else?

Really knowing God for myself – not someone else’s perception of Him – is an ongoing game-changer. It’s an amazing process. I spent most of my life listening to other people tell me about God, the bible and what His will was for me, and I just accepted it all until it became my perception too. It was gaining knowledge about Him rather than an experience of knowing Him. There’s such a difference. When I allowed myself to respond to the nudging of the Holy Spirit and put aside all those notions and ideas (perceptions) of who I thought He was so I could know and experience Him for who He really is, I also began to know myself in Christ.

Discovering who you really are – who God created you to be in Him – will lead you out of old ways of thinking which keep you convinced that you aren’t who you are. These are Satan’s weapons. Deception. Lies. Surrendering old thought patterns (perceptions) can be scary to your mind, and the devil knows it. Who do you think put the fear there in the first place? When you introduce something new, the neurons in your brain throw up warning flags. It takes work to change how you think. It’s always easier to give up and not make the effort. But there is no victory in that.

For me, there was, and still is opposition. Opposition from others who cling tightly to their perceptions and tell me I’m heading down a dangerous path. Opposition from within – the fight to dredge up my own perceptions and look at them through God’s microscope. Change is hard. Questioning why I believe what I believe is hard, and it’s a process that doesn’t always have simple answers.

But I trust my Father, so I think I’m in pretty good hands. I know He is real. I know He hears me. I know He speaks to me. I know He is in me and around me all the time. I know He loves me and cares about what I think and feel and do.

He is good.

Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good; Blessed is the man who trusts in Him! Psalm 34:8 (NKJV)

Another translation puts it this way:

Drink deeply of the pleasures of this God. Experience for yourself the joyous mercies he gives to all who turn to hide themselves in him. Psalm 34:8 (TPT)

If you’re looking for me, I’m hiding in Him.

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Leaning

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Every year around Christmas we watch the 1995 romantic comedy, While You Were Sleeping. We’ve seen it so many times that we can pretty much recite every line from memory. In one scene, the main characters have a conversation about the word leaning as an action between a man and a woman who may be interested in each other. It’s funny, and we chuckle nearly every time we hear the word spoken in any context.

Today, however, I read about leaning toward Jesus – leaning into Him rather than leaning into a religious culture that portrays a vastly different Jesus than the One in the bible. That is, if Jesus is portrayed at all.

My Christian upbringing and subsequent “maturity” in the faith was a litany of Jesus-loves-me-this-I-know, John 3:16, and a steady stream of admonitions about my shortcomings. I am exaggerating a little, because I have also had some excellent bible teaching over the years, but I think you know what I mean. Although the focus seemed to be on Jesus and having a relationship with Him, the how-to was not clearly explained or demonstrated. And to be honest, I didn’t even realize it.

I had questions, though. Lots of them. I was afraid to voice some of those questions for fear of being told I was being disrespectful to God, or to the pastor/teacher/leader I wanted to ask. The few times I did gather up the courage, I was made to feel foolish for asking. Now there’s an example of religious culture. Believe what we tell you to believe and don’t ask questions. Period.

About four or five years ago, I allowed the Lord to begin unraveling some of the tangles in my beliefs, which weren’t wrong per se, but had some gaps and disconnects and a bit of unbiblical basis. I flipped between stubborn and fascinated. Some of the tangles were easy to comb out and it was so good to be free of the mess. But others, well, they required (and still do) continuous care and attention, uprooting and planting, clearing out junk and replacing with new things. The process is another story.

The point is that there was and is a constant.

Leaning.

Leaning on God, the Father. Leaning on Jesus, the Teacher. Leaning on the Holy Spirit, the Helper.

And as I lean on Him, He leans into me. He holds me up and sustains me. He moves through me, in me, and around me. He reveals Himself to me in His Word, with His Word, and around His Word. I am in Him and He is in me.

All. The. Time.

There are still tangles in my beliefs, to be sure, although not as many as before. And there are still gaps and disconnects. But leaning into Him and He into me? There is nowhere else I’d rather be.

But the Lord God has become my divine helper. He leans into my heart and lays his hands upon me! Psalm 54:4 (TPT)

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Okay, I’m a Feminist

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Years ago, I received an email from someone asking about my views on women in church leadership. There was no context provided for the question, but I assumed it was because this acquaintance knew I’d held positions of leadership for decades, both in the church and in the business world.

Furthermore, I was asked if I considered myself to be a feminist, in a tone that suggested it was blasphemous or something. My eyes narrowed at that point. Take note: If you ever want to get me riled up, go ahead and talk down to me like I’m “just a woman” and you’ll find yourself wishing you hadn’t.

Anyway . . .

How does one go about answering two questions like that? Straight forward and to the point, that’s how.

My view on women in church leadership positions: YES. That about says it. I may elaborate further in another post one day. Do I see myself as a feminist? YES. If I go with the dictionary definition of “feminist”, then that’s what I am.

Feminist: advocating social, political, legal, and economic rights for women equal to those of men.

Although I absolutely advocate all of the above, I am not a sign-carrying, protest-marching, yell-in-your-face feminist. I don’t have to be obnoxious or offensive to make a point. In considering the rights for women socially, politically, legally, and economically, yes, I believe in equality for all.

But – and there’s always a but, right? – I also believe that many women have simply accepted that they are diminished in the eyes of men even though it may not be true. Now, before you get your pantyhose in a knot (do women even wear those anymore?), hear me out. They see themselves as lesser than men, beneath men, not as smart as men, and not as capable as men. Who told them that? Their fathers, brothers, uncles, bosses, the church, or even their mothers and grandmothers? I don’t know, but it certainly wasn’t God.

And before you start giving me all kinds of scripture references to support the opposite, just understand that the Bible needs to be absorbed considering the time in which it was written. No, I’m not suggesting a re-interpretation of the Word to suit myself. Not at all. Don’t miss the point.

What I want you to see is that your spirit – that place where the Spirit of God dwells – has no gender. He speaks to you exactly the same as He does to anyone else, male or female (and no, there isn’t a third or fourth gender). God’s expectations of you are the same whether you are a man or a woman, and you are valuable to Him and His work regardless of your plumbing. He just loves YOU. And He wants you to love Him back.

I long to see women take their place in Christ – to know who they are in Him and to take on that identity instead of the false identities placed on them by well-meaning husbands or pastors or parents or friends or the world in general. I long to see more women stand up for truth and life. I long to see real women who have fought spiritual battles and won, and who aren’t afraid to call out the fakes. I long to see women who are done with the fluff (see my previous post That I May Know Him) and want to really know Him, to do His will, no matter what the cost. I know some of those women. They have have had revelation of this for years and years, and they live it out. I honour them.

So, does it really matter whether it is a man or a woman preaching in your church? No, not if that person is truly called of God to do so. Is there a problem with a woman in a church leadership position? No, not if that woman has the skill, desire, and support to serve in that role. Is a woman in leadership a feminist? She probably is (refer to definition), and I applaud her for that.

Circling back to the beginning of this post, you might be wondering what happened with the curious soul who asked me such pointed questions. Well, I provided a lot of scripture to present my case and thought I had done a rather good job of making it clear where I stood. When I followed up some months later, the person confessed that they hadn’t even read my response. Oh well.

Bottom line: It’s not about being a female church leader or a feminist or whatever label you want to use. It’s about Jesus and who you are in Him and who He is in you. Embrace it.

I leave you with Paul’s writing, which is my prayer for you.

So I kneel humbly in awe before the Father of our Lord Jesus, the Messiah, the perfect Father of every father and child in heaven and on the earth.  And I pray that he would unveil within you the unlimited riches of his glory and favor until supernatural strength floods your innermost being with his divine might and explosive power. Then, by constantly using your faith, the life of Christ will be released deep inside you, and the resting place of his love will become the very source and root of your life.

Then you will be empowered to discover what every holy one experiences—the great magnitude of the astonishing love of Christ in all its dimensions. How deeply intimate and far-reaching is his love! How enduring and inclusive it is! Endless love beyond measurement that transcends our understanding—this extravagant love pours into you until you are filled to overflowing with the fullness of God! Never doubt God’s mighty power to work in you and accomplish all this. He will achieve infinitely more than your greatest request, your most unbelievable dream, and exceed your wildest imagination! He will outdo them all, for his miraculous power constantly energizes you. Ephesians 3:14-19 (TPT)

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That I May Know Him

A few days ago, I posted the following on Facebook, requesting responses from my friends:

Do you regularly read content written by Christian authors (books – fiction or non-fiction, articles, blogs, etc.)? If so, what do you like about them? What don’t you like? If you do not read Christian authors, why not Can you give examples of authors you like and those you don’t?

The responses I got were not surprising to me but would perhaps be surprising to some Christian writers and publishers.

Most of those who answered the questions said yes, they did read Christian content, although not many had good things to say about Christian fiction, particularly women’s fiction because much of it tends to stereotype women into very traditional roles and thought patterns. I have found this to be true in my own reading. Several authors’ names did come up as exceptions, though.

Of the I-do-read-Christian-content responses, preferences were primarily well-researched non-fiction books and articles. Some of the authors are well-known and others more obscure. There was an almost overwhelming negative response toward the “feel good” books that play on emotions and fail to address and deal with the root of the issues. My friends who no longer read much Christian content have been disillusioned with the shallowness of what’s out there, the poor quality of the writing, or the false perceptions such material leaves with readers.

Now I’ll tell you why I have embarked on this research.

Recently, I was invited to participate in a webinar for Christian writers and bloggers. I was looking forward to it, as most of the writers’ conferences and seminars I’ve attended have not focused on Christian content. I should have skipped this one. Let’s just say that after the webinar I was not compelled to respond to the “rate us” email. There was no option to give a minus rating. It was horrible. Worse than horrible. Not once was the name of Jesus mentioned. Not once did the speakers talk about digging into the Bible for content, answers, or direction. Not once did I hear anyone say that the focus needed to be on God the Father. As a matter of fact, the “best” advice, they said, was to go to a local Christian bookstore, look around at what is offered there, and write that. Because it’s what’s popular. It’s what sells.

Are you kidding me???

Okay, I calmed down a little and then yesterday, I took myself off to a Christian bookstore – the only one within a 100 km radius that hasn’t gone out of business. As a point of reference, I am a former Christian bookstore owner and I know the pain of having to close the doors on a labour of love.

My fact-finding mission at the bookstore uncovered no surprises. The department occupying the greatest amount of floor space was giftware. Yeah, you know. All those cheesy ornaments with Bible verses on them. The next largest area was fiction, most of which looked eerily the same as my own bookstore did twelve years ago – a HUGE number of Amish romances, a good number of mysteries (also romances), and a few really good books by really good authors.

I moved on and turned the corner and my eyes widened. Rows and rows of floor-to-ceiling shelves of Women’s Interest books. Do publishers not know how bad pastel covers look en-masse? I wanted to run away screaming. While I’m certain there were some truly excellent ones in there, anyone would have been hard pressed to find them among the volumes of drivel.

(drivel – childish, silly, or meaningless talk or thinking; nonsense; twaddle)

Seriously. A good 50% of the books even had the smiling face of the author on the cover. Who are we worshipping here? And the titles! Don’t even get me started.

Here’s my point: Where is Jesus? Who is He? What is He for/to you? Why do you follow Him? How can you know Him and the power of His resurrection?

And I continually long to know the wonders of Jesus more fully and to experience the overflowing power of his resurrection working in me. Philippians 3:10 (TPT)

THIS is what we need. To know and experience the living Spirit of God moving through us, in us, around us. To understand what He is to us and for us. THIS is what it means to be alive in Christ.

Anything that does not point you to Jesus should be questioned. That goes for so-called Christian books that offer answers for every life problem – books that make you feel good about yourself and excuse you from having to actually deal with your issues without giving Jesus the liberty to work with you. I’ve read many of the books I’m generalizing about here. I know what’s in them. And for all the money I’ve spent, words I’ve read, and felt justified in my sanctimonious attitude, nothing, NOTHING worked until I let Jesus show me the areas in my life that needed work. He and I are still housecleaning in that regard.

My greatest desire is to write what the Father God puts on my heart. Not what sells the best. Not what makes readers feel good (aka fluff). Not what other people tell me I should write. I believe that when I write what God has burned in my spirit, lives will change, and He will be glorified.

My little Facebook research project is a good indication that there is an audience for authentic writers who truly hear from God and write what He says. So, if you’re one of those, GO!

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In the Beginning

Was it a coincidence that my copy of The Book of Genesis: Firstfruits (The Passion Translation) lay right there in front of me when I sat down at my desk this morning? I don’t think so. Not on this first day of 2021.

Aside from the obvious, there is something deeper.

When God created the heavens and the earth, the earth was completely formless and empty, with nothing but darkness draped over the deep. Genesis 1:1 (TPT)

Read it again. When God created . . . CREATED. This word, according to the footnotes in my Bible, is used exclusively in the Old Testament to describe God’s creativity, things only God can do. He created the earth and everything in it from nothing, after all. The very first sentence in the Bible establishes that God is a creator and, until that mind-blowing event occurred, there is no record of anything being created before.

I am so awed that the beginning words of the Bible reveal God’s creative nature. But there’s more.

So God created man and woman and shaped them with his image inside them. In his own beautiful image, he created his masterpiece. Yes, male and female he created them. Genesis 1:27 (TPT)

We are image-bearers of the Most High God. And because He shaped us with His image inside us, we have His creative nature. Our imaginations, our dreams, our abilities to make ideas a reality are a part of God’s nature in us.

All of this might sound elementary to those who may have already grasped the depth of what this means, but I think many have not. I want to encourage the ones who have given up, the ones who can’t see anything but a dismal future, the ones who don’t believe they are important, the ones who are hurting or lonely or full of sorrow.

God has created you in His image, with everything He is inside us. Everything. You are one with Him in Jesus Christ. Allow His peace and comfort and grace and love to flow through you.

In this beginning of a new year, leave the old behind and embrace the Father’s nature living in you, His masterpiece.

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Is It Christmas Eve Already?

25 Christmas Traditions and Their Origins - HISTORY

When I was a kid Christmas always seemed to take forever to arrive. Minutes dragged by with sloth-like speed and I’m pretty sure there were years when I’d convinced myself that the celestial timekeeper was slowing down time just to teach me patience. Things gradually picked up, though, and the years starting racing by. Now it’s Christmas Eve again and I’m fairly certain we just had that a couple of months ago. Didn’t we? Or maybe 2020 is finally showing a random act of kindness by getting us through the year as quickly as possible so we can start planning a future without masks and social distancing. It’s a thought.

This week my mind has been filled with memories of Christmases past. Taking part in the annual Christmas Eve program at my grandparents’ church, wearing a brand new prickly, scratchy, ruffly dress (I can still feel that starched crinoline), a multitude of relatives packed into the house, celebrating my Dad’s birthday (he would be 87 years old today if he hadn’t taken an early flight to heaven), and so many other traditions.

It’s different this year. Our nine grandchildren and their parents are having Christmas in their various homes instead of coming over to eat, laugh, and be a family together. We’ve all agreed to abide by the laws of the province. We understand the reasoning, but we don’t have to like it, right?

But, more than the familiar activities we’ve grown to expect year after year, the purpose for all the celebrating hasn’t changed. God was born in human form, to start the ball rolling and make a way for us to be with Him for eternity. That’s rather awesome.

Stop for a moment and think about this:

That night, in a field near Bethlehem, there were shepherds watching over their flocks. Suddenly, an angel of the Lord appeared in radiant splendor before them, lighting up the field with the blazing glory of God, and the shepherds were terrified! But the angel reassured them, saying, “Don’t be afraid. For I have come to bring you good news, the most joyous news the world has ever heard! And it is for everyone everywhere! For today in Bethlehem a rescuer was born for you. He is the Lord Yahweh, the Messiah. You will recognize him by this miracle sign: You will find a baby wrapped in strips of cloth and lying in a feeding trough!” Then all at once, a vast number of glorious angels appeared, the very armies of heaven! And they all praised God, singing: “Glory to God in the highest realms of heaven! For there is peace and a good hope given to the sons of men.” Luke 2:8-14 (TPT)

Prayers for a blessed Christmas are coming from our house to yours!

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Filed under Bible, Christian, Christmas, Eternity, God, Hope, Jesus Christ