and the One who walks with me on it.

Saturday, September 21, 2013


       Before we set off on our anniversary trip, we went through many brochures and websites to find the things we wanted to see.  One of the places looked charming, but I wasn't sure if we should take the time out as we only had four days and so much to see.  And so it was, on our way down to the town we would reside in, we stopped in a little town called Orville, OH to see the Smucker's store.
       When we first saw it I thought of how it truly looked like a postcard; almost too cute to be real, and wondered why the building was so large for a store that sells jam.  When we got inside, I felt like I was in the Wizard of Oz movie- a colourful setting with 'lots going on'.  Little did I know they have several name brands including Folgers, Crisco, Pillsbury, Jif, etc., and their products were also on display.  There I was able to find pink lemonade and rootbeer flavoured hard crack ice cream topping, mango jam and an adorable 'box of strawberries' that are really spreaders.  We actually spent over an hour looking around.
        I think that people are like the Smucker's store.  (Okay, some of us don't look that cute, but...)  It's like we look one way on the outside and so people set their expectations based on how we look, but yet, we can be very different on the inside.  For example, some people thought I looked snotty as a kid, but inside I was very shy and fearful.  As a result, they never got to see the cool, awesome, colourful things in me.  And just like the store carries all of it's brands, I have many facets of my persona, plus, inside me there are unique treasures to be found.
       A few years ago I heard a wise young lady say to another young lady, 'You're unique and special just like everyone else.'  God created each of us to be unique.  He thinks each of us is special.  So what she said is true; we are each unique and special just like everyone else.
Me and my special friend!!!
And God said, Let Us make man in Our image, after Our likeness... Gn. 1:26
   -each of us are made in His image.
Now you are the body of Christ and individually members of it. 1Cr. 12:27 ESV
   -God is okay with us being individuals, so shouldn't we be?
Keep me as the apple of your eye... Ps. 17:8 ESV
   -apple or center.  In the middle of His sight.  We keep a close eye on those we love.
...Jehovah your God has chosen you to be a special people to Himself... Dt. 7:6

   -Not just for the Jews because Christians are the seed of Abraham. (Gl. 3:7,29)
       We all look however we look, but inside are colourful and interesting facets, talents, skills, etc. that make friendship with us desirable.  That is why we need to stop judging people based on their outside looks and treating them how we think they are.  We need to make effort and give time to truly get to know them.
       Just imagine the great treasures we may find in unexpected places!
As each has received a gift, use it to serve one another, as good stewards of God's varied grace: 1Pt. 4:10 ESV
   -each of us has gifts differing from one person to the next
Do not judge according to sight, but judge righteous judgment. Jh. 7:24

But Jehovah said to Samuel, Do not look on his face, nor on his height... For man looks on the outward appearance, but Jehovah looks on the heart. 1Sm. 16:17 

Wednesday, September 18, 2013


       There is a part of my body laying on the floor next to me.  It has been ripped out, my wound is bleeding and it throbs.  It isn't my heart, because I feel it aching in my chest, but nonetheless, it is a part of me.  I don't want to function without it, and certainly won't be complete without it, but there it lies no longer a part of me.
       I want to pick it up and put it back where it belongs.  I want to feel completely whole again, but that is not to be for now at least.  Ah, you say, it must not be an important part of you for you have not died for loss of it.  But the gaping wound pours out my life blood and if it is not stemmed by the grace and love of my Lord, I will surely die.
       Right now there is a gaping wound in my local church body.  It throbs in pain and spills its blood in the community.  Many are walking around now incomplete, like they have suffered tragic loss, and truly, we all have had a loss of one type or another, or many.
For as the body is one and has many members, and all the members of that one body, being many, are one body; so also is Christ. 1Cr. 12:12
And the eye cannot say to the hand, I have no need of you; nor again the head to the feet, I have no need of you. (v.21)
       Though I cannot get into specifics, I will say that it is easy to be disappointed in our brothers and sisters and we must work hard to keep from being offended.  We need to remember our own weaknesses, that we also fail and disappoint others in our words and actions, and so we should show mercy on one another.  In difficult times where a particular body is hurting, wounded and bleeding, we must show more care for each and every person while yet speaking God's truth, as always, IN LOVE (Ep. 4:15).
       May the church NEVER be like the soldiers in some wars that went out after the battle to kill every wounded enemy on the field.  Our brothers and sisters are NOT our enemy (even when we believe they err in some matters of faith or judgment) but our fellow soldiers (2Tm. 2:3,4) in Christ Jesus.  We must fight the good fight (1Tm. 6:12) while remaining as one in Christ Jesus, and love each other as Jesus loves us. 
...members should have the same care for one another. And if one member suffers, all the members suffer with it... 1Cr. 12:25,26
For you are all sons of God through faith in Christ Jesus. Gl. 3:26
...for you are all one in Christ Jesus. (v.28)
I give you a new commandment, that you love one another. As I have loved you, you should also love one another. Jh. 13:34
...with all lowliness and meekness, with long-suffering, forbearing one another in love, endeavoring to keep the unity of the Spirit in the bond of peace. Ep. 4:2,3
Do not let each man look upon his own things, but each man also on the things of others. Php. 2:4

When broken- remember,

He heals the broken-hearted, and binds up their wounds.Ps. 147:3

Jehovah is near to the broken-hearted;
and saves those who are of a contrite spirit. Ps. 34:18

Monday, September 16, 2013


       There are a lot of commercials out there that try to tell us priceless* things can be achieved by spending money on one item or another.  My guess is that what we actually consider priceless though has more to do with what or whom we love.  We would give up anything for the lives /health of our spouse, our children or ourselves in whatever order we deem most important to our emotional stability and yet we know that human bodies are just temporary anyway. 
And God has reserved for his children the priceless gift of eternal life; it is kept in heaven for you, pure and undefiled, beyond the reach of change and decay. 1Pt. 1:4 TLB
       Here Peter writes about a priceless gift meant for us, and it is the eternal life promised us by God our Father.  It's value is beyond measure because we simply can't even comprehend the vastness of its glory, its perfection, its purity, and its beauty.  It goes beyond all we can conceive.  Here is the MKJV.
to an inheritance incorruptible and undefiled, and unfading, reserved in Heaven for you by the power of God... 1Pt. 1:4,5
Incorruptible- not liable to corruption or decay, imperishable, immortal
Undefiled- unsoiled, pure, free from that by which the nature of a thing is deformed and debased, or its force and vigour impaired
Unfading- perpetual, does not fade away
       This priceless gift of eternal life is kept, held fast for us in Heaven by the power of Almighty God- the only all powerful One.  It will not rust away or fall apart before we get there, but will last forever.  It is a place of purity, free of all unnatural things, defects, irregularities, absurdities, gross deviations, (even in character).  Nothing and no one will have impaired life force / energy / vigour.  It won't disappear a few centuries after we get there, or be destroyed by our idiocy, the enemy, or natural disasters.
       There can be no greater gift than to be with our Lord and greatest Love forever, except that we will also be surrounded by others who love Him too, and which we hope includes our loved ones.  And this priceless gift of eternal life is brought to us by our sponsor, the Lord Jesus Christ and the precious blood He shed for us on the cross of Golgotha (or Roman Calvary).
       Coming down to earth as a helpless baby
       Living in obscurity
       Then having a three years-ish ministry
              Being rejected
              Murder attempts
              Desired mostly for healings and miracles
       Tortured, dying, blood pouring out on the ground.
       Salvation now available for all
       To Jesus, our salvation was priceless.
(Jesus) ...who for the joy that was set before Him endured the cross, despising the shame, and sat down at the right of the throne of God.  Heb. 12:2

*Priceless- So precious that its value cannot be determined.