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Posts Tagged ‘Christ’

Spring-Flowers-Wallpapers-4[1]

34 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.

Today begins my birthday week.  Every day that I awake, I have a reason to be thankful.  With each breath taken, with or without difficulty, I am grateful.  In the grand scheme of things, God cares about me so much that He touches and wakes me up everyday, for these 50+ years.

Grateful I am to serve in His vineyard, delighted to do as He bids. With joy, I thank God for this hour, this day and this week in which He gave me life!

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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English: Man Made in the Image of God, as in G...

English: Man Made in the Image of God, as in Genesis 1:26 to 2:3, illustration from a Bible card published 1906 by the Providence Lithograph Company (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Genesis 2:15 (NIV)

15 The Lord God took the man and put him in the Garden of Eden to work it and take care of it.

Reading the above text, it struck me that God is highly in favor of work!  Not only is He in favor of it, He put Adam in the garden to “work and take care” of it.  In other words God told Adam to “Get to work!”

This holiday break has been an absolute blessing but it is over and now and time to go back to work.  Time to be about completing and undertaking tasks purposed by God for me.  These periods of respite away from the daily grind have a way of providing more than just physical and emotional rest.  Ok, so maybe I did a bit more knitting than actual resting, but those long uninterrupted periods of knitting provided quiet moments of reflection and contemplation.

Rested, ready, reliable and responsive,  let us go into the next phase of our tasks, whatever work we do, give glory to God while working!  Be grateful to be employed and understand that God employs us to be emissaries on behalf of the Kingdom!  Now, it is time to get back to work!  

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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Photo: I am donating these full and leftover skeins to Ree's Needle Arts For Hope Initiative: Virginia10221 Krause Rd., #73 Chesterfield,Virginia 23832 where yarns are needed.

John 14:14 (NIV)

14 You may ask me for anything in my name, and I will do it.

The season of giving is upon us once again and for weeks I have been praying, even more diligently than usual for strength and yarn.

Over the past few weeks and months  I have been watching my two bags of yarn slowly dwindle to just pieces.    As the list  of needs expands and exceeds my meager stockpile, I did the only three things I know how to… pray, post a request on Facebook and keep knitting.  Afterall, the Bible says that if we ask for anything in Christ’s name and He will do it.

This period has caused me to become a lot more creative as I pull together hats and scarves from remnants left overy yarn from previously knit projects in order to create a single piece that would wrap someone in a warmth and love.  The blending of  mismatched pieces of yarn from my stash provides a level of excitement because the final outcome is not always visible or known.  Yet, what is known is that these remnant, left over pieces create a whole that are vital and have a  very important mission.

Were my prayers answered?  Absolutely and spectacularly!  I received a note from Emily’s Hats for Hope Initiative HQ that someone was sending me yarn.    Imagine my delight when I received this picture and the words that it was not only whole skeins but “partial” skeins.   As I write the tears began to flow because I am again reminded that in God’s hands all broken, discarded,  mismatched, damaged remnant materials  willing to be used by the Master’s hands can fashioned into a whole, able to further and share the message of God’s Love.   Those partial pieces can create beauty and warmth which can be worn.  My thanks to Nimara & Japarta  (Please go like their Facebook page!)  for your generosity and the generosity of others who have opened their stashes and hearts to share with Ree’s Needle Arts for Hope Initiative Virginia!   With each item and gift we truly are…

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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Rear-view mirror showing cars parked behind th...

Rear-view mirror showing cars parked behind the vehicle containing the mirror (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Isaiah 43:18 (NIV)

18 “Forget the former things; do not dwell on the past.

 

There is a malady that causes people to live their lives eyes fixed and staring through the rear view mirrors.

Hearing and being a witness to this caused me to ponder, what really is the purpose of a rear-view mirror?

Wikipedia states, “A rear-view mirror is a mirror in automobiles and other vehicles, designed to allow the driver to see rearward through the vehicle’s backlight (rear windshield or windscreen).” (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Rear-view_mirror)”

Hmmmm, so this tool is in place to give a quick backward glance to the rear while moving forward.  In this  lifetime I have seen cars driving along that contained side mirrors but clearly the spot where the rear-view mirror was supposed to be affixed was absolutely vacant.

Corinthians 5:17 (NIV)  17 Therefore, if anyone is in Christ, the new creation has come:[a] The old has gone, the new is here!

Once we surrender our lives to the Lord we become new creatures, all of our sins, secret and confessed lovingly covered by the blood if Jesus!  This new creation is free to move ahead! Rear view mirror living should only provide a brief look back so there is a reference point to enable us to see where God has brought us from and not hinder us from rolling forward and toward His purpose for our lives!

Today let us vow to only glance in those mirrors gain perspective and focus our eyes on God!

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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19 Now therefore, ye are strangers and foreigners no more, but fellow citizens with the saints, and of the household of God.

English: First_Japanese_passport_1866

English: First_Japanese_passport_1866 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

On any given day, we carry at least several forms of  identification proving who we are. Driver’s licenses provided by various states acknowledging a rudimentary ability to operate vehicles on the dangerous roads.

Individuals proud of their new countries, or those required by governing agencies, carry passports everywhere signifying their rights of citizenship.

Fingers encircled by rings of gold, platinum, silver or stainless steel given by loved ones as  tangible witness of eternal fidelity and love.  To belong and be loved, honored and cherished.  These unions produce children who are able to claim all rights and privileges family membership affords.

This snap-shot view does not include many dropped into fractured, dysfunctional or toxic familial relationships.  Cast adrift battered and bouncing through life unaffiliated and unloved.

Reading Ephesians 2:19-22 (MSG) I got excited because by faith and believing the truth is that you are not alone!  19-22  “That’s plain enough, isn’t it? You’re no longer wandering exiles. This kingdom of faith is now your home country. You’re no longer strangers or outsiders. You belong here, with as much right to the name Christian as anyone. God is building a home. He’s using us all—irrespective of how we got here—in what he is building. He used the apostles and prophets for the foundation. Now he’s using you, fitting you in brick by brick, stone by stone, with Christ Jesus as the cornerstone that holds all the parts together. We see it taking shape day after day—a holy temple built by God, all of us built into it, a temple in which God is quite at home.”

Every family member has assigned duties and purposes!  Christian’s this is not our permanent home and we are to be about our Father’s business and welcoming our brothers and sisters!  Let there be no doubt, your birth certificate and how-to for life is the Holy Bible!  Within those pages are found the rich stories of our heritage, history and legacies as promised by God, Our Father.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

 

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Mary Magdalene, in a dramatic 19th-century pop...

Mary Magdalene, in a dramatic 19th-century popular image of penitence painted by Ary Scheffer. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

2 Corinthians 12:9 (KJV)

9 And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.

Ok so it isn’t actually a new word, it is and has been in the dictionary for quite sometime, but the full understanding of it is new enough to earn it a spot in it f my very own vocabulary.  That word is Malaise , for purposes of this note, definition numbers 1 and 2.

malaise

  1. feeling of unease or depression
  2. a mild sickness, not symptomatic of any disease or ailment
  3. a complex of problems affecting a country, economy, etc: Bulgaria’s economic malaise
  4. [C18: from Old French, from mal  bad + aise ease ]

For months I had been wrestling, struggling, weighed down by something I just could not  put a finger on.  On the outside it may have appeared that everything was fine but on the inside there was a malaise.  I was not depressed in a way that should have me trundled off to the closest psychiatrist, therapist or sanitarium, yet something  was just not right for longer than a moment.

As life continued to move forward, carrying me along bobbing and floating among the waves and ripples I prayed to understand what this particular version of plague was assailing me.   I had been praying.  I had been reading but still the murky cloud (this malaise) persisted.

Were my prayers unanswered?  Was there substance lacking from my worship?  What was the reason this malaise continued that felt more like  a cellophane veil?   Then my a-ha moment while reading 2 Corinthians 12:9, in my weakness, blahs, cloudy moments, rely on the strength, will and might of my Lord to carry me through.  Depend on the whispering of the Holy Spirit to inspire and spur me onward  and keep my eyes continually focusted on God.  As I prayed and thanked God for clarity a pin-sized hole grew larger and larger as He reached down to gently clear away the murky haze.

Lay it all on Him, releasing doubts, questions, insecurities and trust Him even more fully.   Take that leap, make that step and fall forward knowing that He will catch me.  Understanding that the path He has for me, is for me and that trusting in Him is never a mistake!  Greater is He that is in me!

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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English: Skagit Valley Tulips

Philippians 4:11 (NIV)

11 I am not saying this because I am in need, for I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances.

Being surrounded by the noise of daily life can at times remove the ability to just be content.  There are often such pressing needs to have, obtain and move  that we can forget about the simple pleasure of being content.

This past weekend I found delight and contentment in being surrounded by precious and rarefied laughter of family visiting for the first time.   There was joy in seeing beloved faces lit with pure joy and fellowship,  and enjoyed some of the most incredible wings I have ever eaten (thanks Honey!)

Sitting and reflecting upon the weekend I am moved by the words in Philippians 4.  There have been days and seemingly at times months of lack, yet by God’s grace there was peace and contentment.

Thank you Lord that I can rejoice no matter what the situation, no matter what comes my way for you truly are worthy of all my praise and the reason for my contentment.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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English: Fotherley Love High Fotherley Farm in...

Luke 15:4 (ESV)

“What man of you, having a hundred sheep, if he has lost one of them, does not leave the ninety-nine in the open country, and go after the one that is lost, until he finds it?

 

The behavior was tantamount to stalking!  Honest, what innocently began as my routine daily call to my Mommy morphed into slow building frantic behavior when I did not reach her.  Every few minutes for hours, I dialed, then dialed again and again, oh and again!

With each unanswered call my anxiety and blood pressure  levels climbed.  Call after call, my overly creative imagination formulated a plethora of  “what if’s”, I was a wreck.  Then I called in the big guns, my daughter, who just so happened to be walking through the door of the house and was able to witness the picture of  mom sitting quietly and innocentlyon the couch.  Blissfully, safe, sound, relaxed and unaware that I was a basket case.  Confession, I broke down and cried like a child lost in the mall surrounded by well-meaning adults, none of whom were my beloved and I just wanted my mommy.

Occupying a much calmer place in my mind while meditating,  I felt the tap of the Shepherd’s staff on my brain!  Hey, that is how God loves us!  Granted,  He is infinitely more patient and definitely calmer yet He continually and consistently seeks to have a relationship with us.   He knocks.  He sends the Holy Spirit to whisper, entreating us to come, to feel His Love and trust in Him.  This morning I am grateful for the Love of my Savior who hunts those who are lost, offering not only unconditional love but the promises of eternal life and a heavenly home!

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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An almost burnt-down lit candle on a candle ho...

An almost burnt-down lit candle on a candle holder. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

11 The light of his favor shines on those who do what is right.
Joy comes to those whose hearts are honest. Psalm 97:11 (NIRV)

Growing up I was always be amazed while watching pioneer or any period (old)  movie, how one little candle fragment held aloft in a holder, touched by a piece of tinder illuminated the entire cabin. Every corner bathed in fingers of light from that one candle nub.

That simple vision fascinated and cheered me. Rooms awash in the flickering glow of warmth, soon to be filled with family and overflowing with love.

To be that little light, shining in corners of darkness and hopelessness. As a child I sang “Jesus wants me for a Sunbeam” and “This little Light of Mine”.  I sang from the depths of my little heart because I so wanted to be that sunbeam.  There have been  moments when the candle flickered and sputtered and was nearly extinguished, yet God breaths on us encouraging us to shine on and to brighten the hearts of those around us.

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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Smith's later theology described Jesus and God...

Smith’s later theology described Jesus and God the Father as two distinct physical beings. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Romans 6:4 (NIV)

 

We were therefore buried with Him through baptism into death in order that, just as Christ was raised from the dead through the glory of the Father, we too may live a new life.

 

I woke up this morning with a happy prayer on my lips!  Joyfully thanking God for the breath flowing through my lungs.  Brushing  my teeth and washing my face I was able to see the gray hairs and etching of life thereon and what a blessing, I have sight.

 

By all accounts I am healthy, yet I know that without the steady life-sustaining presence of God in my life I would surely perish. I am on life support.

 

My life support team works on me daily, providing necessary infusions to keep me going!  The Holy Spirit whispers to direct me on the right path and causes me to prayerfully and patiently think about the choices I make each moment of every day.

 

Jesus, my friend and example provides an active model of living a supported life.  Our Father, God carries me when it seems I just cannot move one inch more and bids me to ” Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you.” 1 Peter 5:7 (NIV).   Humbly and gratefully, I chose to remain on life support!

 

Making His praise glorious!

 

Ree

 

 

 

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