Tag: Jesus

He’s More Than a Play Caller.

Doomsday.  The Monday after the last regular-season game in the NFL.  Coaches dropping like flies!  Do owners and GM’s just not care?  “It’s business”, they say. But really it’s more than business to the players and coaches.

I watched as my team lost Coach Pagano today.  I watched Coach Del Rio, Coach Caldwell and Coach Fox be added to the unemployment list.  Then I saw players interviewed and realized it’s not “just business” to those who don’t sit in the front office.

“He was more than a coach to me,” said one player.  “When I came on this team I had a lot of family problems and he listened to me and helped me.”

“I was a rookie and he helped me learn the ropes with patience.”
“He was more than just a coach.  He was a friend.”
And on and on.  Players talked about how coaches were more than just play callers and helmet-patting sideline men.

As Christians, we have one of those irreplaceable not-just-a-coach on our team.  Jesus cares about what’s going on with your family.  He leads you everyday as if you are still a rookie Christian.  He not only helps lead your decisions in your everyday life, He is also your friend.

It’s not just a game to these NFL coaches.  It’s a big family; a group of believers, individuals, who need someone to listen and guide them on and off the field.  And a lot of these football coaches do just that.  Invite Jesus to be YOUR coach today and let Him guide you throughout every play of your life.

Dinner’s Ready!

I walked in the door to an invitation to come straight to the kitchen to sit down.  Morgan and Roger had prepared dinner for me.  The table was set; the water glasses were full; ranch chicken, mashed potatoes, green beans and rolls were waiting for me.  What a wonderful welcome!

It was like heaven on earth.  I  didn’t have to do anything except sit down and enjoy what those two had prepared for me.  What a gift it was!

Jesus gives us the same invitation only instead of food, it is eternity in the real heaven.  We come just as we are.  It doesn’t matter what we’ve done, where we’ve been or who we were with.  He just wants us to come to His table and dine with Him.  He’s done all the work for us.  It truly is a gift.  Accept the invitation and you can dine with Christ in heaven for eternity.  You can talk to Him day and night and He will be with you every moment from right now and forever in eternity helping you through each day.

Dinner’s ready.  Will you join us?

‘Twas The Night Before the First Christmas

‘Twas the night before the first Christmas and all through the town
Folks were sleeping in hotel beds while Mary and Joseph walked around.

The people were ready for the census to be done
In hopes to return soon to their precious homes.

The animals were nestled all snug in the hay
Just minding their own business on this particular day.

And Mary in her nightgown and Joseph with his staff
Were settling in for a long night with no naps.

When out in the field there arose such a clatter.
The shepherds fell to their knees for a message that would matter.

The angel told them to be calm for he had an announcement to make.
And the shepherds bowed down as their bodies began to shake.

“You should go to Bethlehem even though it may be far.
A king has been born.  You must follow the star.”

The shepherds arose, to their sheep gave a whistle;
And away they all went, walking fast as a missile.

They followed the star to Bethlehem town
Where animals were feeding and all lying down.

When what to their wondering eyes should appear
But a baby wrapped in rags with straw up to his ears.

With mom and dad and a baby with no bling
They knew in a moment it was the prophesied King.

Mary invited them in to hold his sweet little hand.
“His name is Jesus,” she said.  “He’s a special little man.”

The shepherds wanted to shout and tell all the nations.
So they left with their hearts filled and lots of inspiration.

This same little baby is today’s reason for Christmas cheer.
Invite Him into your heart and you, too, can celebrate Christmas all year.

No Manger Mattress.

Away in a manger, no crib for a bed.
The little Lord Jesus lay down His sweet head.
The stars in the sky look down where He lay.
The little Lord Jesus asleep on the hay.

It’s hard to imagine putting a baby on sticky, prickly straw.

As we prepare for our newborn babies to enter this world, we scope out every baby specialty store in the country to find just the perfect crib and matching sheet sets.  The crib has to be ergonomically correct with no lead paint on the finish.

The mattress must have three-inch thick foam and be waterproof.  The sheets must be all cotton, hand sewn and made in the USA.  The crib sheet needs to match the comforter and bumper pad which should coordinate with the wall hanging and the character mobile.

The bedding should all be washed in chemical-free laundry detergent and hung to dry in the fresh air and spritzed with lavender essential oil made from the organic lavender grown in the field that has been “naturally fertilized” by the range-free chickens.

But Jesus, the King of the World, the one who can save us from our sinful self; the One who can change our heart and life with the snap of a finger, was born in a barn, wrapped with soft rags and gently placed on sticky, prickly straw.  No crib.  No mattress.  No matching comforter.  No lavender-spritzed sheet.  Yet it was good enough for a King.  Our King.

That baby lying on that sticky straw is why we even have Christmas to celebrate.  Let us remember Him as we go through this Christmas season and maybe think a little differently as we sing “away in a manger, no crib for a bed”.

Sometimes Things Just Sell Themselves.

Have you ever loved something so much you just wanted to tell everyone about it so they could be excited, too?  Maybe it’s a new household hack you saw on a TV show or a new product that makes your life easier and saves valuable time.

Maybe it’s a new recipe that is healthy yet tastes good (I doubt it but maybe!  hahah)  Maybe it’s an essential oil or vitamin that has cured an ache or ailment.

Whatever the case, you want to tell everyone about it even though you aren’t selling it!  You know that if people would just give it a try, it would sell itself and they could be excited, too.  You want everyone to have the same good experiences that you have had, but until someone uses the technique or product, they can’t see the benefits personally.

That’s how it is with Jesus.  We can live the life, tell others about Him, reap the rewards and share the blessings but until someone can personally experience Him, they will never know the awesome joy and reap all of the benefits He has for them.

If we live our life for Jesus, people will see there is something different about us.  They will want to know our secret to joy.  We don’t have to work hard to “sell” Him because once someone hears about Him and gets to know Him, He just sells Himself.  No Jesus.  No Peace.  Know Jesus.  Know Peace.

Dear Santa…

The real Santa was always at my Uncle Joe’s house.  We would take our girls there to see the Christmas lights display that those from near and far would come to see.  But we were special.  We got to go inside and have a one-on-one visit with the real Santa.

He knew everything Kiersten and Morgan had asked for in their Santa letter because he had really received it (via a little help from Elf Joe).  Their eyes were wide with excitement and amazement as he would personally address their wish list and spend special time with just the two of them.

How fun it is to watch a child visit Santa and offer up their wish list to him.  Some children receive letters back from the North Pole.  Some children send their wish list to Santa by phone, fax or email now.  WOW we’ve come a long way!

I often wonder if children send thank you notes to Santa.  I don’t believe we ever remembered to do that.  Getting the wish list out there was very important but once the wish was granted, I’m not sure a thank you ever went back to the North Pole.

Sometimes we are like that with Jesus, too.  We send up our wish lists of wants and prayer requests.  We promise to be good little Christians if He will just give us our desires.  Then we receive answers to our prayers, responses to our wants and needs and sometimes we forget to thank Him.

Let’s stop today and send up a prayer of thanksgiving for the most important gift ever received.

Dear Santa, thank you for giving me the gift of Jesus.

Wake Up!

I was sleeping so soundly when my alarm went off this morning.  I usually awake a few minutes before the alarm, no matter what time I set it.  But not today.  I was really tired.  You see, I don’t like to go to bed.  I know I’ve said that in my blogs before, but I don’t like to sleep.  I like to get things done or enjoy life and sleeping to me is just wasting time! haha

So I end up staying up too late of an evening or getting up too early in the mornings in order to pack in everything I want to get done so I feel productive at the end of the day.  The older I get I realize that it’s not a wise choice.

Ten o’clock rolls around and I know in order to get the 7-8 hours of good sleep my body needs, I need to be heading to bed.  But I think I will do just one more thing or read one more chapter in my book or finish watching one more episode of Everybody Loves Raymond.  I usually head to bed around 10:00 or 10:30 but end up reading or looking at the emails on my phone before I go to sleep.

Then when the alarm goes off early the next morning, I am so exhausted and vow to go to bed earlier the next night.  But 10:00 pm rolls around and I forget that promise to myself.  I forget how tired I am going to feel the next morning if I don’t get the proper sleep.

How many times do we go down this same path with other things in our lives.  We know what we need to do but we just push the sin envelope a little further.  Alarms go off and we know we should do things differently but we start over the next day in the same destructive pattern.

What bad habit are you dealing with today that you know every time you go down that path that you shouldn’t be doing it?  What alarm goes off in your head trying to warn you and you just ignore it?  What consequences are you paying from your behavior that you know you need to change?

I know the one I mentioned is an easy fix – go to bed earlier!  Some other habits we deal with and decisions we avoid are NOT so easy fixes, but the Almighty Fixer is waiting to help you break that habit and get you on the right path to peace.  It’s time to wake up and quit ignoring the alarm.  Consider this reading a sign for us all to make the necessary changes to living in harmony with the Spirit and not against it.  It is in this we find freedom and peace ……and perhaps, even a little more rest.

Romans 8:5 – Those who live according to the sinful nature have their minds set on what that nature desires; but those who live in accordance with the Spirit have their minds set on what the Spirit desires.  Clock Clip Art

 

It’s Gonna Be OK.

The more things change, the more they stay the same.

This old French saying seems like someone talking out of both sides of their mouth.  Someone who is confused and not making sense.  Changing but staying the same.  What does that even mean?

As election day is upon us, I can tell you what I think that means.  History will be made today no matter who wins the Presidential election.  Either someone with no formal government experience will be president or the first female president will be elected.   The sentiment across America seems to be one of fear for whoever will be in charge.  Things are changing in America.

But Isaiah 41:10 says “So do not fear, for I am with you; do not be dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you and help you; I will uphold you with my righteous right hand.”

No matter who is elected President of this great country or elected to any office in this country, God is still in control.  He continues to show Himself to us everywhere – in the big things and in the little things.  No matter if your choice of candidate wins or not, don’t give up on America.  Don’t give up on God.  He has a plan.  Jeremiah 29:11 says “For I know the plans I have for you”, declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm  you, plans to give you hope and a future.”

But God doesn’t stop at verse 11.  He continues in verse 12 calling us to action.  “Then you will call upon me and come and pray to me and I will listen to you.  You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.”

It doesn’t mean we will always get our way, but God will listen and no matter what, His plans are not to harm us, but to give us hope and a future. He will make good out of anything.  He WILL be glorified in it all.  Look around today and see His mighty hand at work.  Hebrews 13:8 declares “Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.”

God is on the throne, folks.  The more things change, the more GOD stays the same. And when we all realize that, this country will be great again.

jesus-is-king

Whack-A-Mole

whackamole

Have you ever played this game?  Whack-a-Mole?  You seriously just keep pounding these moles back down into their hole with a big ole hammer and they keep popping their ugly heads up and you have to keep on pounding them back down.  It can be intense, frustrating and a continuous nag until the game time is over and you start a new game!

This reminds me of the devil.  He just keeps popping up in all different directions and from all kinds of places and I don’t know which one he is coming into next and I just keep trying to smack him down and be on the lookout and try to stay one step ahead of him.  It gets intense.  It gets frustrating and he just keeps popping his ugly head up all over the place.  I try to take care of him by myself and then I remember……I HAVE THE BIGGEST HAMMER IN THE WORLD!

Jesus is right there waiting for you to come over and pick Him up and let Him help you “whack the mole” right down into the depths of hell.

Don’t try to handle problems on your own.  Grab the big ole hammer and WHACK A MOLE right down in the hole he came from.  Because in the end…………you win!!

*Reprinted from Bucket Buddies Mission blog from October, 2014.

F-I-I-I-R-R-R-E!!!

ALARMS.

We have all kinds of alarms that signal something specific to us.

Fire alarms are sounded when smoke or fire is suspected.
Alarm clocks signal it’s time to get up and get moving.
Alarms on our phone may go off signaling a reminder to do something.
Bell alarms ring at school signaling time to end one class and go to another.
A horn may be used as an alarm to bring kids in from recess.
A long alarm sounds in a community to warn of a potential tornado.
Car alarms blare indicating someone may be touching a vehicle without permission.
Burglar alarms sound when someone is taking something that is not theirs to take.

We hear these alarms constantly.  At first we are scared and our adrenaline pumps forcing us into action to go to safety, get out of the way or move on.  We may even jump and then move quickly or find someone to help.

But after a while we become immune to alarms and may choose to ignore them or worse yet, not even hear them.  We hear car alarms all the time and they just become annoying.  Statistics show that people don’t heed the warning of fire alarms because they think it’s a false alarm and it’s not likely a fire would be in the place where they are.  People think tornado alarms are just being tested so they tend to ignore the real ones.  People think “it wouldn’t happen to me.”

When our alarm of temptation goes off, don’t ignore it.  When your conscience tells you that this is a bad thing, don’t stay put or ignore the warning signs.  If you feel your temptation alarm go off, get out quickly.  Step into action and head straight to safety into the arms of the One who can help you – Jesus.  Maybe it’s the temptation of gossip, food, alcohol, drugs or adultery.  Whatever the temptation, RUN when the alarm sounds.

Get as far away from the fire of  temptation as you can.  Physically move.  Open your Bible and read.  Get on your knees and pray.  But for heaven’s sake, don’t ignore it!!!  The alarm of temptation is the devil in disguise.  And heeding to the devil is ignoring the biggest FIRE ALARM of eternity.  Don’t ignore it.  Get to safety .  Get to the One who can save your life!

If you hear that temptation alarm today, take action.  It could seriously save your life.

Day #5 – Thankful Journey – I am thankful for beautiful weather, green grass and some down time.

Day #5 – Kindness Journey – Give a treat to a furry friend today.  If you don’t have a pet, consider donating to the local Humane Society.  A list of needed items is probably on their website.