Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Joy and Adoration

Easter Sunday by George Hitchcock (1850-1913)

Song of Solomon 2:11-12  English Standard Version (ESV)

11 for behold, the winter is past;
    the rain is over and gone.
12 The flowers appear on the earth,
    the time of singing[a] has come,
and the voice of the turtledove
    is heard in our land.

Joyful, Joyful - Casting Crowns

God's Unchanging Hand // Franz Family

Sola Gratia...

...Grace Alone.  A comment by a television character has had me thinking about grace today.  What love!  What grace! 

But for Grace - Matt Papa

Sunday, March 29, 2015

That Our Great God...

1 John 4:4 New International Version (NIV)
4 You, dear children, are from God and have overcome them, because the one who is in you is greater than the one who is in the world.

Romans 5:8 English Standard Version (ESV)
8 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.

Ephesians 4:32 English Standard Version (ESV)
32 Be kind to one another, tenderhearted, forgiving one another, as God in Christ forgave you.

...has redeemed us, such weak little children that we are, is both a wondrous mystery and a most clear and undeniable demonstration of His great grace and love.  I spent some time today uploading a song that I love, "Greater" by MercyMe.  I am so thankful He calls me Redeemed.

Greater- MercyMe

It's Palm Sunday!

Matthew 21:9 English Standard Version (ESV)
9 And the crowds that went before him and that followed him were shouting, “Hosanna to the Son of David! Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord! Hosanna in the highest!”

HOSANNA - Phil Driscoll 

Friday, March 27, 2015

Bridge Out Ahead!

Mark 16:16 English Standard Version (ESV)
16 Whoever believes and is baptized will be saved, but whoever does not believe will be condemned.

Isaiah 55:6-7 New International Version (NIV)
6 Seek the Lord while he may be found;
    call on him while he is near.
7 Let the wicked forsake their ways
    and the unrighteous their thoughts.
Let them turn to the Lord, and he will have mercy on them,
    and to our God, for he will freely pardon.

Hebrews 10:24-27 English Standard Version (ESV)
24 And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, 25 not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

26 For if we go on sinning deliberately after receiving the knowledge of the truth, there no longer remains a sacrifice for sins, 27 but a fearful expectation of judgment, and a fury of fire that will consume the adversaries.

Acts 22:16 New International Version (NIV)
16 And now what are you waiting for? Get up, be baptized and wash your sins away, calling on his name.’

Ephesians 6:19 English Standard Version (ESV)
19 and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel,

I witness a little like this sign does, pointing out the inconsequential, while nearly hiding the consequential.  I should be shouting, "THE BRIDGE IS OUT AHEAD!  STOP!  CHANGE YOUR DIRECTION AND YOU WILL BE SAVED!" I need a holy boldness, the willingness to share the Gospel even if others think me strange.  It feels safer to be an in-house Christian, sharing with others who are like minded, singing in their choir, teaching their children, perhaps going so far as to invite a neighbor to Easter Service or a Christmas program, and feeling a little, somewhat shamefully, relieved if they don't accept. Some call it life style evangelism, the hope that our Christian lifestyle will somehow rub off on our neighbors.  I learned this week that a nephew is actively seeking out and bringing homeless people into his home for a night's sleep.   Now that's bold and I love him for it; even if it's something I'd be afraid to do.  He's worker on the bridge Jesus build between God and man.  I could learn from him.

I like this bold song by Buddy Miller and the Blind Boys of Alabama are always good.

Fall On The Rock - Buddy Miller 

Jesus Built a Bridge to Heaven - The Blind Boys of Alabama

Gaither Vocal Band - The Night Before Easter (Live)

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

I Like This Verse...

...for my God is my firm foundation.

Chelsea Moon with the Franz Brothers - How Firm a Foundation

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Down to the River All Sinners

Matthew 28:18-20 English Standard Version (ESV)

18 And Jesus came and said to them, “All authority in heaven and on earth has been given to me. 19 Go therefore and make disciples of all nations, baptizing them in[a] the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Spirit, 20 teaching them to observe all that I have commanded you. And behold, I am with you always, to the end of the age.”

Romans 3:23 New International Version (NIV)
23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,

Romans 6:23 New International Version (NIV)
23 For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in[a] Christ Jesus our Lord.

Down to the River - Dustin Kensrue

Monday, March 23, 2015

Onward, Christians

If you read history you will find that the Christians who did most for the present world were precisely those who thought most of the next. It is since Christians have largely ceased to think of the other world that they have become so ineffective in this.
C. S. Lewis

Onward Christian Soldiers / We're Marching to Zion (Medle...

" Tightrope" | Drew Holcomb and the Neighbors | VIDEO

Sunday, March 22, 2015


Matthew 11:28-30 New International Version (NIV)

28 “Come to me, all you who are weary and burdened, and I will give you rest. 29 Take my yoke upon you and learn from me, for I am gentle and humble in heart, and you will find rest for your souls. 30 For my yoke is easy and my burden is light.”

Psalm 23
A psalm of David.
1 The Lord is my shepherd, I lack nothing.
2     He makes me lie down in green pastures,
he leads me beside quiet waters,
3     he refreshes my soul.
He guides me along the right paths
    for his name’s sake.
4 Even though I walk
    through the darkest valley,[a]
I will fear no evil,
    for you are with me;
your rod and your staff,
    they comfort me.
5 You prepare a table before me
    in the presence of my enemies.
You anoint my head with oil;
    my cup overflows.
6 Surely your goodness and love will follow me
    all the days of my life,
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord

As thankful as I am for all the good gifts from my Lord, when I am hurting with rheumatoid arthritis, I become very thankful for rest.  It's a sweet relief from pain and allows me to believe that this yoke is indeed easy and the burden is light.  It's why I like the new song Matt Maher  simply  calls "Rest."

Rest - Matt Maher

Soweto Gospel Choir - I Bid You Goodnight

It's Sunday!

Sir John Everett Millais, 1863, My First Sermon. Millais's daughter Effie born in 1858

Effie's Second Sermon

Friday, March 20, 2015

Selah - You Amaze Us (Acoustic Performance)

Old Wives Tell Tales

I Timothy 4:7 New International Version
Have nothing to do with godless myths and old wives' tales; rather, train yourself to be godly.

Zechariah 8:16 English Standard Version (ESV)
16 These are the things that you shall do: Speak the truth to one another; render in your gates judgments that are true and make for peace;

I realized earlier today that I was probably telling an old wives' tale.  Well, I guess I am an old wife with tales to tell and there may be some truth to them...maybe...but are they helpful?   Although I do know for sure that if I roll my eyes too many times that they won't get stuck in the back of my head, but, if, at the same time, it helped me not to roll my eyes in disrespect, then it has some value.  Now we old wives good have a whole new avenue for our tales, internet blogs.  Are we using them for godliness?   Old wives strive for the truth that brings peace.  Also aspirin and tender sympathy goes a long ways too.

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Flame On

1 Peter 1:6-8 New International Version (NIV)
6 In all this you greatly rejoice, though now for a little while you may have had to suffer grief in all kinds of trials. 7 These have come so that the proven genuineness of your faith—of greater worth than gold, which perishes even though refined by fire—may result in praise, glory and honor when Jesus Christ is revealed. 8 Though you have not seen him, you love him; and even though you do not see him now, you believe in him and are filled with an inexpressible and glorious joy,

Isaiah 43:2New International Version (NIV)
2 When you pass through the waters,
    I will be with you;
and when you pass through the rivers,
    they will not sweep over you.
When you walk through the fire,
    you will not be burned;
    the flames will not set you ablaze.

My husband especially likes Third Day's new song, "Soul on Fire," so I uploaded it today to Youtube.  It seemed to be a young person's song, someone with the fervor and the energy to be a "soul on fire;" and I am not young or energetic.  Then I found this verse in Isaiah and recognized in myself being in the furnace of affliction, not silver but gold, rather of more worth than gold.  Amazing, isn't it?  Admittedly I'm not one to relish the refiner's fire, inclined to believe that silver is still pretty good . . . close enough; but I'll seek to cherish it, to want what my Lord has chosen for me, and to find my comfort in knowing that Jesus will always, always walk through the fire with me.

Soul On Fire (feat. All Sons & Daughters) - Third Day

It's March Madness!

Ecclesiastes 3:1 New International Version (NIV)

A Time for Everything
3 There is a time for everything,
    and a season for every activity under the heavens:

My computer was in use last night by the man who does live in my house and had to fill out his brackets.  Sigh.  There's a reason it's called madness.  

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Hawk Nelson - Diamonds (Official Lyric Video)

Today I've Been Considering Stars...

Good Night by Kira Yustak

Psalm 8:3-4 English Standard Version (ESV)
3 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
    the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
4 what is man that you are mindful of him,
    and the son of man that you care for him?

Isaiah 40:26 English Standard Version (ESV)
26 Lift up your eyes on high and see:
    who created these?
He who brings out their host by number,
    calling them all by name,
by the greatness of his might,
    and because he is strong in power
    not one is missing.

Job 11:7 New International Version (NIV)
7 “Can you fathom the mysteries of God?
    Can you probe the limits of the Almighty?

...and the mysteries of God.  Tomorrow morning the young man who now lives in the dorm but has been home for Spring Break will be returning to the university.  In his studies he has learned things that I can hardly fathom.  Today I watched as he explained to a young boy why bubbles float and answered other questions that he had.  If his brain is able to contain such knowledge how much more does the God who created him know?  I expect an eternity will not be long enough for me to understand the mysteries of God but I'm looking forward to trying.   

Monday, March 16, 2015

My Thorns On His Brow

1 John 4:19 King James Version (KJV)

19 We love him, because he first loved us.

Strange, isn't it, that God first loved us, no matter how awkward or goofy we feel?  Feeling out of place?  You place is in God's heart.  Today I uploaded to Youtube Casting Crowns' version of the hymn that originated in the heart of a boy, William Ralph Featherston, who wrote the words as a poem.  (Unfortunately the video is blocked from viewing in this country.) Young William died at the age of 27 before his words had become this beloved hymn of the church.  It is also thought to be his only published work.  God loved the young man and had His plan for his life.  It's not strange, it's amazing God's loving us first.  That we would wear my thorns on his brow is a testament of that astonishing love.  I am both humbled and incredibly grateful but also deeply in love with my Jesus.

My Jesus, I Love Thee
My Jesus, I love Thee, I know Thou art mine;
For Thee all the follies of sin I resign;
My gracious Redeemer, my Savior art Thou;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.
I love Thee because Thou hast first loved me,
And purchased my pardon on Calvary’s tree;
I love Thee for wearing the thorns on Thy brow;
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.
I’ll love Thee in life, I will love Thee in death,
And praise Thee as long as Thou lendest me breath;
And say when the death dew lies cold on my brow,
If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.
In mansions of glory and endless delight,
I’ll ever adore Thee in heaven so bright;
I’ll sing with the glittering crown on my brow,

If ever I loved Thee, my Jesus, ’tis now.

A. W. Tozer's Prayer

Bible Verses For Widows

The Widow’s Prayer - Frederic Leighton 1865

1 Timothy 5:5 English Standard Version (ESV)
5 She who is truly a widow, left all alone, has set her hope on God and continues in supplications and prayers night and day,

Isaiah 54:4-5 English Standard Version (ESV)
4 “Fear not, for you will not be ashamed;
    be not confounded, for you will not be disgraced;
for you will forget the shame of your youth,
    and the reproach of your widowhood you will remember no more.
5 For your Maker is your husband,
    the Lord of hosts is his name;
and the Holy One of Israel is your Redeemer,
    the God of the whole earth he is called.

Psalm 68:5English Standard Version (ESV)
5 Father of the fatherless and protector of widows
    is God in his holy habitation.

Sunday, March 15, 2015

It's Sunday!

Doris Ullman
Take your burdens to the Lord and leave them there.

BLIND BOYS OF ALABAMA "Take Your Burden To The Lord and Leave It There"

Saturday, March 14, 2015

Chris Tomlin - Jesus Loves Me (Love Ran Red Acoustic Sessions)

Verses For a Birthday Girl!

Numbers 6:24-26 English Standard Version (ESV)
24 The Lord bless you and keep you;
25 the Lord make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you;
26 the Lord lift up his countenance[a] upon you and give you peace.

Proverbs 9:11 English Standard Version (ESV)
11 For by me your days will be multiplied,
    and years will be added to your life.

James 1:17 English Standard Version (ESV)
17 Every good gift and every perfect gift is from above, coming down from the Father of lights with whom there is no variation or shadow due to change.[a]

Psalm 118:24 English Standard Version (ESV)
24 This is the day that the Lord has made;
    let us rejoice and be glad in it.

Psalm 20:4 English Standard Version (ESV)
4 May he grant you your heart's desire
    and fulfill all your plans!

You know who you are...

Happy Birthday Polka - Sons of The Pioneers

Friday, March 13, 2015

My God Who Gives Rest

Good Night - Elizabeth Adela Stanhope Forbes

Matthew 11:28 King James Version (KJV)
28 Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest.

As one who suffers from fatiguing illnesses, rest can seem the sweetest of God's promises.  As I close out an active day, I am thankful. 

I Bid You Goodnight - The Dixie Hummingbirds 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Blest Be the Tie

Acts 1:14 New American Standard Bible (NASB)
14 These all with one mind were continually devoting themselves to prayer, along with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with His brothers.

Acts 1:14King James Version (KJV)
14 These all continued with one accord in prayer and supplication, with the women, and Mary the mother of Jesus, and with his brethren.

I don't know the women in this picture but I love their mutual enjoyment in each other's company...and their aprons.  I love their aprons.  When did women stop wearing them?  In these days of wash and wear is it simpler just to toss our clothes in the wash?  As I look at their feet I can see an extra pair belonging to a girl in anklets and mary janes who almost hidden there behind the pot lid and the dish towel.  She is learning from the women how to be a woman.  I know that women weren't just to be relegated  to the kitchen.  The scripture in Acts tells us they were right there with the men devoting themselves to prayer.   It's good to join one another in prayer, but those apron's with their ties that bind are also oh so sweet.  
Blest Be The Tie That Binds

Wednesday, March 11, 2015

Loved Just As We Are

John 13:34 English Standard Version (ESV)
34 A new commandment I give to you, that you love one another: just as I have loved you, you also are to love one another.

1 John 4:19-21 English Standard Version (ESV)
19 We love because he first loved us. 20 If anyone says, “I love God,” and hates his brother, he is a liar; for he who does not love his brother whom he has seen cannot[a] love God whom he has not seen. 21 And this commandment we have from him: whoever loves God must also love his brother.

Matthew 22:39 English Standard Version (ESV)
39 And a second is like it: You shall love your neighbor as yourself.

I've been contemplating my need to love others as they are and without an expectation of change, to love through the eyes of Jesus, even those who seem to be truer strangers and aliens in this world then I am myself.   Jesus who touched the leper is the same Jesus who touched my heart and made me whole.      If Jesus didn't love me just as I am then where would I be?

Just As I Am, Eden's Bridge 

Finding Favour - Say Amen (Official Music Video)

Tuesday, March 10, 2015

Some Roads Are Just Better...

James 1:13-14 English Standard Version (ESV)

13 Let no one say when he is tempted, “I am being tempted by God,” for God cannot be tempted with evil, and he himself tempts no one. 14 But each person is tempted when he is lured and enticed by his own desire.

Matthew 6:13 English Standard Version (ESV)
13 And lead us not into temptation,
    but deliver us from evil.[a]

Numbers 32:23 New King James Version (NKJV)
23 But if you do not do so, then take note, you have sinned against the Lord; and be sure your sin will find you out.

...not to go down not matter how tempting.

How Blessed Is The Man - Lenny Smith

for King and Country "Shoulders" LIVE at Air1

So Sleep Already!

Sunday, March 8, 2015

The Good Shepherd Is Good Indeed

John 10:11-18 New International Version (NIV)

11 “I am the good shepherd. The good shepherd lays down his life for the sheep. 12 The hired hand is not the shepherd and does not own the sheep. So when he sees the wolf coming, he abandons the sheep and runs away. Then the wolf attacks the flock and scatters it. 13 The man runs away because he is a hired hand and cares nothing for the sheep.

14 “I am the good shepherd; I know my sheep and my sheep know me— 15 just as the Father knows me and I know the Father—and I lay down my life for the sheep. 16 I have other sheep that are not of this sheep pen. I must bring them also. They too will listen to my voice, and there shall be one flock and one shepherd. 17 The reason my Father loves me is that I lay down my life—only to take it up again. 18 No one takes it from me, but I lay it down of my own accord. I have authority to lay it down and authority to take it up again. This command I received from my Father.”

"May You Find A Light" from The Brilliance (OFFICIAL LYRIC VIDEO)

Saturday, March 7, 2015

O Great God - Sovereign Grace

It's Sunday Already!

Turn your clocks ahead!  The first service is going to be the extra early service and the second service the early one.

On Finding the Right Words

Ecclesiastes 12:10 New International Version (NIV)
10 The Teacher searched to find just the right words, and what he wrote was upright and true.

I've been playing Scrabble on my iPad this past week with the computer as my opponent.  I have mixed feelings about it's built-in humility feature.  First I'll play my word then the computer will tell me how I could have done better.  Or it will say, "That's hard to beat!" and go on to beat it.  Sigh.  I suppose it's better to be annoyed with the computer than my husband, my usual partner.  I liked this picture of Dwight and Mamie Eisenhower playing Scrabble.  She's probably the only one who could tell the leader of the free world he could have done better then go on to outplay him.  
In my daily life, outside of Scrabble, I'm often thinking about how I could have done better or, probably worse, how someone else could have done better.  It's good and right to leave some thoughts unsaid.  My parents had a little plaque with a poem hung in my childhood house.  It said, "The head of this house is Jesus.  He knows each heart and mind.  So when you speak, be sure your words are true and pure and kind."  
Amen, Mom and Dad, Amen.

Thursday, March 5, 2015

Because Sometimes God Just...

...wants us to share our potatoes.  I get it, though, there are some things I try to hang onto with all my own strength, instead of letting my very strong God hold onto them for me and trusting that He not only has more potatoes but also even better things to fill my hands.  

Wednesday, March 4, 2015

O Me of Little Faith

Matthew 8:26 New Living Translation (NLT)

26 Jesus responded, “Why are you afraid? You have so little faith!” Then he got up and rebuked the wind and waves, and suddenly there was a great calm.

More times than I want to admit, I've been in the boat with Jesus afraid of the storm, even though I know the sea yet listens to Him.  Yes, I have an awfully little faith for one who has such a big God!  I needed this song by Third Day tonight.  
The One I Love - Third Day

SerialBox Presents: THAD COCKRELL [Rosalyn]

Tuesday, March 3, 2015

My Father's House

Genesis 28:15 English Standard Version (ESV)
15 Behold, I am with you and will keep you wherever you go, and will bring you back to this land. For I will not leave you until I have done what I have promised you.”

John 14:2 English Standard Version (ESV)
2 In my Father's house are many rooms. If it were not so, would I have told you that I go to prepare a place for you?[a]

Isaiah 32:18 New Living Translation (NLT)
18 My people will live in safety, quietly at home.
    They will be at rest.
I love this precious picture of the dad embracing his soldier son.  We do find love at home, most often flawed love, but still sweet. The divine love of God expressed as the father of the prodigal tells me of the perfect love that awaits the repentant sinner.  In the Father's arms I know love and it is the Father's love that brings me home.
Love Will Bring You Home - Drew Holcomb & The Neighbors 

Because I Still Like Cows...

...and especially ones with hearts.  

Sunday, March 1, 2015