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Posts Tagged ‘Family’

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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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Matthew 25:44-45 (NIV)

44 “They also will answer, ‘Lord, when did we see you hungry or thirsty or a stranger or needing clothes or sick or in prison, and did not help you?’ 45 “He will reply, ‘Truly I tell you, whatever you did not do for one of the least of these, you did not do for me.’

With each passing year, words to songs heard as children keep resurfacing and becoming meaningful and relevant to my own life.  Life experiences cause us to understand the stories behind those songs.  Songs of overcoming, rejoicing and making a difference.   The lyrics  to this particular song caused me to search my own heart and question if my life has meaning and question, if my life is vain.

When Christ returns, I do not want to have, “I coulda, shoulda , woulda” on my lips.  It is my desire to maintain a sense of urgency so that I am able to hear the words “Well done…”

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

Lyrics to If I Can Help Somebody :

If I can help somebody, as I pass along,
If I can cheer somebody, with a word or song,
If I can show somebody, how they’re travelling wrong,
Then my living shall not be in vain.Chorus:
My living shall not be in vain,
Then my living shall not be in vain
If I can help somebody, as I pass along,
Then my living shall not be in vain.If I can do my duty, as a good man ought,
If I can bring back beauty, to a world up wrought,
If I can spread love’s message, as the Master taught,
Then my living shall not be in vain.

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Psalm 116:16 (NIV)

16 Truly I am your servant, Lord;  I serve you just as my mother did; you have freed me from my chains.

I had the pleasure of being the “surprise” gift at my Mom’s 70th birthday dinner.   Understand this, I speak with my mother and daughter every single day and keeping a secret of this magnitude from both of them was incredibly difficult.

My sister, an incredible planner, had everything planned to the minute but as is often the case, things did not go exactly according to plan.  As so often happens in life, we plan and arrange and orchestrate everything down to the smallest detail, yet God often steps in and with a slight nudge changes our simple plan into something extraordinary.

I planned to take pictures to capture the faces of my mother and daughter but it was difficult to do so when all I wanted to do was hold and hug all of the loved ones I had not seen in many months.  That entire weekend was all about celebrating the life of our wonderful mother, grandmother and friend.  Mommy, a true giver,  was able to listen and receive as the attendees showered her with flowery bouquets of words typically reserved for the end of a life, when the impact hits the hearts of the remaining family members.  I was awed hearing the many ways she continually touches lives. The hugs shared, advice given but most of all the elegance and grace exhibited as a woman who loves the Lord quietly, gently and consistently.

Striving to be a woman of God I am honored to have been raised by such and awesome, grace-filled woman.  Lord, I thank you for the precious gift of celebrating my mother’s life and having her as an example of a life lived for You!
Making His praise glorious!

Ree

 

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11 Both the one who makes people holy and those who are made holy are of the same family. So Jesus is not ashamed to call them brothers and sisters.    Hebrews 2:11 (NIV)

Footnotes:
  1. Hebrews 2:11 The Greek word for brothers and sisters (adelphoi) refers here to believers, both men and women, as part of God’s family; also in verse 12; and in 3:1, 12; 10:19; 13:22.

Growing up most of us were taught to be mindful of how we represented the family.  When we stepped out that front or back door, the family reputation good or bad was in our hands.  For many that was a pretty heady and heavy responsibility. One misstep in word or deed could tarnish the family name and credibility with the repercussions affecting generations.

The legacy of zealously guarding and upholding family honor is not new.  People killed or were killed to do so.   Understanding the importance of family affiliation, as I walk out of the door, I understand that I represent more than just the family into which I was born or married.  As God’s daughter and a sister of Christ, I must be ever aware that my words, my actions and even looks reflect upon my family heritage.  have an idea of where I would be without the direction and guidance of my Father and the love He has for me.   As a result, I would not want to do anything to cause anyone to miss out on being woven into the fabric of this family by becoming a cherished brother or sister!

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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He makes me to lie down in green pastures; He leads me beside still waters. Psalms 23:2

The last week has been filled with incredibly emotional ups and downs. The peaks and valleys from one moment to the next have been exhausting. Yet, through these times God has truly led and provided still waters. He has sent angels to minister to us by bringing food, spending time and offering to open their homes so that we could recharge close to the hospital. He placed others around for whom we were able to pray, comfort and encourage.

Because of His love we have been blessed and able to be a blessing to others. The road is long but we, as a family, know Jesus and that God designed the map!

Making His praise glorious!
Ree

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DSC_4081

Image by hunzas via Flickr

Romans 14:9  For this very reason, Christ died and returned to life so that he might be the Lord of both the dead and the living.

It been two days since we celebrated the life of Mama Jean and the celebration has not ended!  What an incredible few days it has been.  The life celebration was full of family, extended family and friends all connected by the passing years and her phenomenal life.  Once the majority of the folks had departed the next generation of children and grandchildren remained.   We had a birthday in in the midst that had not yet been celebrated.   Just a few beats and the most melodious rendition of “Happy Birthday” was sung.   This family can sing!!!  At the  moment the mouths opened a glimpse of heaven was provided.  If these few voices are but a hint of the choir when Christ returns, oh glory!!!  It did not end there!  Yesterday at the house with Dad, the voices of Aunts, Grandfather and Uncle raised in song!  Though this journey  began as a celebration of life we continually and constantly celebrate the love and presence of God, in all things!

Making His praise glorious!

Ree

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