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Hope in the intangible

Hope: The feeling that something we want or need can actually be had or achieved; to look forward to with reasonable confidence that a desire will come to pass. We all have some form of hope in our lives, or at least I wish this for each of you. We need things to look forward to - to get excited about and to invest a little of our passion into achieving. Have you ever placed your hope in the wrong thing? There are a lot of stories told of men and women who wanted to get rich quick and made unwise investments. Their hopes of becoming rich overnight dashed and their bank accounts drained. There are others who have lived long lives with simpler hopes, realizing not all of those smaller and simpler hopes would come to pass either. There are just some somethings that we hope for - not really bad things at all - but they aren't to come to pass in our lives. Why? God knows how those things would have affected our lives if we had them - so maybe he was just protecting us from what it is w…
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God's got it

I know it is not Christmas yet, but it never hurts to consider some of the things that make you go, "Hmmm...now what happened to....", especially when you consider something like the shepherds seeing a big star one night and then just up and leaving to follow that star. What happened to the sheep? I have to ask that question, because sheep without a shepherd are at huge risk and to leave them would endanger the livelihood of the families who counted on the income from their sale, or to increase their own flocks. Angels singing, star glowing bright above, and your best buddies all say, "Let's go for it!" In a moment, their world changed and their lives were about to change forever. The "common" among men were visited by the heavenly realm - than in and of itself was pretty awesome! Their first response - they were overwhelmed with fear! A thing like this did not happen to "everyday men" just minding their business in the fields! Maybe it w…

How about yours?

Just before mom's passing, I found myself crying at the drop of a hat. You might just say something, then almost imperceptibly, the tears would begin to well up and there you are, leaking tears I've never been one of those individuals who "leaks" tears very often, but a good cry does something to cleanse our soul, doesn't it? The most precious tears are often shed right when I least expect them and in times of either anticipated loss, or those times when loss has occurred. Sometimes it doesn't even have to be loss that drives me to tears. I can be driving down the road, listening to the Christian station, when a song comes on which "hits" me right where I am in life. The words do more than carry me along - they minister to my heart. In turn, I might just "leak" a little! Truth is, I like to laugh much better than I enjoy crying! Yet, there are some definite "types" of tears which I think say much more than any amount of laugh…

It is fine - rest for a while

Life comes at us hard and it comes fast. The journey gets a little rough - too hard to handle alone. We get fatigued - worn out by the constant pressures and worries. Sometimes we just need a break because the battle has been long and hard - that moment of solitude when we just sit back and let the worries of the battle pass from us. Notice, I did not say we let the battle pass us by, but rather we 'regroup' and 'repair' for what is next to come. Regardless of the reason for needing to be "carried", there are times when we just cannot go it alone.There are times in life when we just need a little "carrying". I find encouragement in this passage today. The "unchanging" GOD is ALL strength for his people, AMPLE refuge for his chosen, SAVIOR of his people, and the one who BLESSES his heritage. In him, we find CARE and the open, welcoming arms to be CARRIED for a while. The one who's promises to us never fail - he has us in his care. The…

Who vs. What

Who are you? If someone asked you that question today, how would you respond? You might start with telling the person your name, but then you may launch into a little 'description' of yourself, such as "I am a nurse, working in the Quality Improvement department of a large metropolitan hospital." We might be full-time stay at home moms raising two boys, or out in the day to day workforce 'bringing home the bacon' in some form. So, when someone asks who we are, we tell them we are an accountant, restaurant manager, author, or housekeeper. Now, describe who your best friend is - go ahead, their name and a little about that person. It is not uncommon that we associate 'who' we are with 'what we do' in life. If that is the case, I wonder what Simon Peter was really saying about Jesus when he made this observation about Christ:
He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (Matthe…

Assume the position!

Moments come when we just need to 'assume the position'. If you are presently in the military, or are ex-military, you understand the meaning of that statement. Our drill sergeants would ask us to assume the position just before we began our daily workout session, better known to some as the "Army Daily Dozen". Stop for a moment to consider that there is a 'position' and a 'posture' to just about everything we do. There is a posture, as well as a position to worship we often do not consider. The psalms are great "stopping spots" for discovering words of encouragement, utterances of praise, and moments to just "rest" in adoration of our King of Kings and Lord of Lords. This morning, let's consider the words of Psalm 95. It begins with "Come, let’s shout praises to God, raise the roof for the Rock who saved us!

Let’s march into his presence singing praises, lifting the rafters with our hymns!" Then it goes on to proc…

Tuning in and tuning up

Lots of medical places have people stationed to check temperatures as you walk in the door and even cameras that can detect thermal temp as they scan your body. This spread of Coronavirus has businesses changing how they do business! Back in the day, before thermometers were a common thing in each medicine cabinet, parents used to "test" their children for fever by placing their lips on the forehead of the child. It seemed like an odd way to do it since we have seen people repeatedly use their hands laid across the forehead to "evaluate" the feverishness of another. Yet, it was a pretty doggone accurate process! More accurate than the hand - and the closest to the true determination of "fever" than anything other than a thermometer. The lips have a great deal of "sensitivity" receptors which allow them to be pretty accurate at interpreting what touches them, so fever was more easily detected using the receptors there. As mom lost her eyesigh…