Tag Archives: bible

I Will Rise

IMG_3276
Since we have the same spirit of faith according to what has been written, “I believed, and so I spoke,” we also believe, and so we also speak, knowing that he who raised the Lord Jesus will raise us also with Jesus and bring us with you into his presence. For it is all for your sake, so that as grace extends to more and more people it may increase thanksgiving, to the glory of God.
2 Corinthians 4:13-15
Good morning!  This week my heart has been quite heavy and my prayers filled with more pleads than usual.  Not an easy topic to address for some, but one if addressed through the WORD, provides so much hope and promise.

 

This week a family member is nearing the end of their time on earth.  And thoughts of death and heaven have filled my prayers and conversations.  This person has not outwardly declared Jesus as their LORD and Savior, but our prayers have been that they have an inward knowledge of their maker and can find peace and comfort as they prepare to leave their earthly body.

 

Death is scary and sad and emotional, and I could only imagine if I didn’t have the knowledge of what was next and thought that this life was it, it would be even more so.  But as followers of Jesus – isn’t death what we live for?  It sounds morbid writing it out, but Jesus promises eternal life.  I know when this life gets tough, the hope of that perfect Eden is quite encouraging.

 

Now don’t get me wrong, I’m not ready to leave things here, but I can only pray that when God calls my name , I will run open-armed into His arms knowing He will take care of me and we will all be together once again in heaven very soon.

 

Heaven has been a topic that my LL has been asking a lot about lately.  Who she knows in heaven, what they are doing, what it will be like?  I can only go off of what the Bible promises, but we talk about it as a place filled with love, and singing, and dancing.  A place where all doggies and kitties have homes.  A place where everyone can be a princess or a superhero.  A place where no one cries, no one is mean, no one is ever hurting.  What is in your heaven?  How do you talk to your kids about it?

 

He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.
Revelation 21:4

IMG_3298

but they who wait for the Lord shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings like eagles; they shall run and not be weary; they shall walk and not faint.
Isaiah 40:31

And if you know me, ofcourse a song inspired this post.  I thought about I Can Only Imagine which depicts what it would be like to meet Jesus and be with him in heaven.  But thought Chris Tomlin’s I Will Rise (video and lyrics below) was more appropriate.  I pray that I will rise when my name is called, knowing that what is ahead is beyond anything I could have imagined through the words of the Bible and through amazing songs like this one.

 

For the person I mentioned at the beginning of this post, I will continue to pray and ask for your prayers as well.  For peace and to know this excitement that God promises us for eternity, that this life is not it.  And for those still here with us, for peace as well, that this person is no longer suffering, and the only pain and sorrow will be in our mourning.  As always God will come through on His promises and His love will prevail.

 

Thank you for reading and stopping by today.  Have a blessed day.  Amen.

 

So we do not lose heart. Though our outer self[is wasting away, our inner self is being renewed day by day. For this light momentary affliction is preparing for us an eternal weight of glory beyond all comparison, as we look not to the things that are seen but to the things that are unseen. For the things that are seen are transient, but the things that are unseen are eternal.
2 Corinthians 4:16-18
I Will Rise
Chris Tomlin
There’s a peace I’ve come to know
Though my heart and flesh may fail
There’s an anchor for my soul
I can say “It is well” Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He is risen from the dead And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles’ wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise There’s a day that’s drawing near
When this darkness breaks to light
And the shadows disappear
And my faith shall be my eyes Jesus has overcome
And the grave is overwhelmed
The victory is won
He is risen from the dead And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles’ wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise And I hear the voice of many angels sing,
“Worthy is the Lamb”
And I hear the cry of every longing heart,
“Worthy is the Lamb” And I will rise when He calls my name
No more sorrow, no more pain
I will rise on eagles’ wings
Before my God fall on my knees
And rise
I will rise

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Calling, Celebrations

Kids Book Review: Angels by Lumbard & Weedn


Angels
by Alexis York Lumbard  (Author) , Flavia Weedn (Illustrator)
This book was received free from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review

Cute book.  Pretty pictures.  Good message, but would have liked more of a religious message.  (Hopefully “way up there” is alluding to heaven.)  The book actually sent me on a search through the Bible on what it says about angels.  And that is a lot!  I saw that angels are referenced 273 times.  And in tons of songs (like this one here.)  Probably better inspiration for another post, but always a good sign when I book prompts further investigation (at least for me!)  Probably good for kids as well, as long as their parents have the answers.  Thank goodness for Google (and the Bible.)

I’ll leave that discussion with one bible verse (Psalm 68:17 KJV) and maybe revisit this topic later on my blog.  But simply wanted to mention there could be a perceived “missed” opportunity to not add God into the book.  But then again it opened the door for a whole other conversation with my daughter, so not necessarily a bad thing.

The-chariots-of-God-w

Back to the book.  Although I read it online, I love when hard copy books have a dedication page, as books are such treasured gifts and I always write a message if I give a book as a gift!  Beautiful artwork, not a lot of words, make it perfect for little ones.  Love the rhymes and prose of the book.  And overall a very cute book.

Although I believe angels can come in any form, people, animals, and a lot of times they are invisible and only felt, the book makes them more glamorous (for lack of a better word.)  Shiny, bright, flying.  But gets back to my point, they can come in any shape, size, form.  (As we talked more, my LL pointed out that our “puppy dog” sleeps with her at night and is her angel!)

I liked it, it was short, like a perfect young children’s book should be, so I don’t have too much else to add (and I’ve already way over-analyzed a children’s book!)

Leave a comment

Filed under Calling, Canines, Chapters, Children

Have a glorious, wondrous Sunday!

IMG_3735

Happy Sunday and Labor Day weekend!  I’m going to keep this short today.  We spent this AM out at Power’s Pavillion for the Power’s Festival in West Newnan.  A beautiful shaded setting to enjoy live music, good (but maybe not healthy) food, arts & crafts, and people watching.  Although now it is finally feeling like our typical humid Georgia summers, it is still great to be outside and bask in God’s creations.  Whether walking through the woods or even a crowded festival, being outside I am the happiest and feel closest to God.  So I’m just going to leave you with a few pictures and a verse on this beautiful Sunday!

052213 (35)

On the glorious splendor of your majesty,
and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.
Psalm 145:5

A few pictures from this AM at Power’s Fest:

IMG_3723

Enjoying all natural homemade ice cream from Country Cabins Sweets & Treats and we can’t go to a festival without face (well arm) painting!  (I loved it last week when LL told me she didn’t want her face painted because she couldn’t see it!)

IMG_3728LL is getting good with the camera – so we have more pictures of us these days!

 
IMG_3730Me and my LL!

 
IMG_3738And ofcourse my happy little man!

May you and yours meditate on God’s wonders in this world this Sunday.  Happy 3-day weekend!  Amen!

Leave a comment

Filed under Calling, Celebrations, Children

God so loved the world…you know the rest!

Good Sunday to you!  Hope you are doing great.   I can hardly believe many of my teacher friends and those with school-age kids are getting ready to return back to school already.  Seems so early, as I still think school shouldn’t start until after Labor Day growing up in the Northeast.  Not the case here in Georgia, so better get used to it!  Actually heading to New Church later today for the contemporary service, so no message (I know, I’m a church slacker lately) to base this post off of, but wanted to focus on THE most quoted and popular verse from the Bible, I’m guessing you may have heard it!

“For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life.”
John 3:16 (KJV)

This verse has been stuck in my head all week as it was one of the verses which was taught to the kids at VBS this week (more on this later).  This is the preschool class that LL was in at SonWest Roundup VBS this past week at The New Church of Peachtree City.  Maybe the pigtails and cowboy hat didn’t go great together (she’s the one in the pink cowboy boots), as she spent most of the song adjusting, but this is just too precious not to share. (And bonus – she knows John 3:16 now!)

This verse/song, so often quoted, repeated, seen (Tim Tebow any sports fans?),  because it is so powerful and the basis for everything we believe.  The “Gospel in a nutshell” as quoted on Wikipedia.  Just rest in that thought that our Father loved US so much that He gave HIS very own son, so that WE will have everlasting life (KJV), eternal life (NIV), eternal life & never die (CEV), whole and lasting life (The Message), life that lasts forever (NLV).  I’m enjoying reading all the different translations, but they all make the same point, because of Jesus, we get to live forever in God’s kingdom.  And to put it lightly, that’s pretty cool!

I know there have been many “popular” songs based of of this verse too, as I can’t leave you without a song.  I spent way too long on YouTube reviewing many of those, from kids versions, to amateur musicians, to popular artists.  But I thought this version by Aaron Shust was just simple and beautiful, so I will leave you with it today.  Praise to the Father, Son, and Holy Ghost, who gave so much for US, may we praise that and glorify Him always.  Amen.  Have a beautiful week!

Leave a comment

Filed under Calling, Celebrations, Children

I will follow – will you?

“Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said:

“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me.”
Mark 8:34

Happy Sunday!  Today I wanted to share a song that I have heard a few times this week that I really feel God has placed on my heart as I am trying to listen.  It is Chris Tomlin’s “I Will Follow”, and as always I have included the YouTube video below.

I’ve been feeling restless lately.  As the kids are getting older and a bit more independent, I’m trying to figure out what to do with my [free] time.  Part of that was starting this blog.  I am hoping that by organizing how I spend my time and documenting trips, activities, and whatever occupies our time, maybe my true calling (purpose) will appear.  At least that is my prayer.  God speaks to me through music, as each Sunday I have been posting a song that either goes along with that days sermon or one that God has laid on my heart.

This week it was “I Will Follow”.  I always hope and try to follow the desires God places on my heart, but as I am entering a period of unknowns and possibly some tough choices (nothing serious, I will elaborate at a later time), I need to, now more than ever, place my trust in God and follow.  Where HE goes, I go, where HE stays, I stay, where HE moves, I move…you get the point.  I know things are not always clear – but I’m praying for a clear answer right now! (Wouldn’t that be nice!?)  I know in time, it will come, so I pray for patience in the meantime (something I pray for daily)  I will TRUST in HIM, SEEK HIM, and my joy will follow.

Recently, I’ve enjoyed reading stories behind songs, and found this article here with Chris on the meaning behind this song.  It comes from the story of Peter.  Peter was a follower of Jesus, but also a man of the world, and while he wanted to follow wholeheartedly, he was hoping for a different version of the story.  Sound familiar?  (It does to me!)  Following Jesus means setting aside your own wants and obeying.

“Isn’t that still what it means for anyone to follow Jesus? It means that we lay down our own agendas and hopes and dreams, and faithfully obey day by day. It’s a daily dying to self—the crucifying of our own petty and self-centered desires so that we might more clearly reflect Christ to the people around us. In the end, it’s not about bravado and bold statements. It’s about simple, ongoing obedience to the words of our Lord. To say “I will follow” is really not so different from saying “Help me every hour to die to my own desires, Jesus, so that you can live more fully through me.”” [Excerpt from article linked above with Chris Tomlin]

I pray this week (and always) that I can set aside MY expectations and MY agenda and fully open up my heart and mind to the word of God and follow HIM with my whole heart, while trusting HIM, and praising HIM always.  In HIM I will be free and find my joy, if I will just follow.

Amen – have a great week!  (Looking forward to a fun and God filled week here as we host VBS at our church!)

I Will Follow
Chris Tomlin

1 Comment

Filed under Calling

Book Review: Bread & Wine: A Love Letter to Life Around the Table with Recipes by Shauna Niequist (plus WIN THIS BOOK!)

Bread & Wine: A Love Letter to Life Around the Table With Recipes (click book for description)
by Shauna Niequist
BookSneeze® has provided me with a complimentary copy of this book

Despite my long break of book reviews, I have been reading, and actually finished this book in just a few nights.  I loved it.  I will admit – it took me awhile to open up.  But as soon as I did, I didn’t want to put it down.  It is a glimpse into the life of the author, so vividly described that I felt as if I were a guest at her table and could taste and smell the recipes she prepared.  I will be copying most of these recipes too before someone pries (I mean wins) this book from me!  Or I may just need to pick up my own copy!

So many things I loved about this book.  One is that the author is not a trained chef, she simply enjoys cooking and enjoys having a full table.  Many of the recipes are also modified for her husband, who is gluten-free, so many of the recipes are also clean (yay!)  She is a Christian and I actually expected the book to have more references to the Bible, but I think she found the right mix.  She mentions that she finds God through food and asks the reader where they find God?  Even if not through food, this book will motivate you to find God in what you love doing! I love the introduction where she mentions to role of food in our lives and the role of food in the Bible (bread and wine anyone?)  And also poses the question – what you would serve/eat at your last supper?

Each chapter is a different story/time in her life.  Some fun, some tough, some will make your heart hurt, while others will make your heart smile.  She has fun telling stories and sharing where each recipe came from and even gives the reader ideas of an easy dinner party, a meal for a new baby, or for a grieving friend.  I love when she points out that we all go to food to show care.

winnie the pooh quotes what is for breakfast

This book challenged me to look at food and the act of eating together in a new light.  “The table is where time stops.  It’s where we look people in the eye, were we tell the truth about how hard it is, where we make space to listen to the whole story, not the textable sound bite.”

I really liked this book.  Just flipping through looking at the recipes, they look good, but didn’t really stand out and make me want to cook them until I read the text to go with them.  Now I will be copying most of them and trying them out soon!  Maybe for some of you – as I’m also more motivated to open up our table to friends and family often (and it doesn’t hurt that I enjoy cooking too!)

You can win this beautiful hardcover book!
Simply enter your name, email, and “Giveaway” in the comments!
Contest closes at noon (EST) on 8/1/13 and winner will be announced on the blog and notified via email.
Thanks and good luck!

Thanks for all the entries!  Congrats to Casey H. for winning!

Leave a comment

Filed under Celebrations, Chapters, Clean Eating

Let your light shine!

I am the light of the world, whoever follows me will not walk in darkness but will have the light of life.
John 8:12

Good afternoon!  Happy Sunday!  I’m exhausted after preparing for and hosting a garage sale this past week.  Stay tuned for my “Garage Sale Musings” as I had no idea how much I would learn (or observe) from hosting a simple garage sale (note: I will attempt to be funny – so just cut me some slack as that may not come naturally!)

Today I wanted to give you some simple scripture and another favorite song to get a new week started.  Praise for our very own Pastor David, who became a Grandfather (for the first time) to a precious baby girl this week!  So standing in for him at New Church this AM was Ike Thurston, our Director of Youth & Young Adult Ministries, which was very exciting as it was his first time preaching – way to go Ike!  Always a good sermon for me that starts with a dog story, although his was not a “happy” one, but prayers to his pooch Scout for a quick recovery from her run in with a copperhead (eke!).

And before I get into that – this is a little jewel for Ms. Pam, our Children’s director, who reminds us that our faith should be like that of a little child.  Here is my precious LL with the song she preached about to the children this AM:

Ike preached about the “Power of Perception” and being a light among the darkness.  As we know, Jesus is the way, the truth, and the LIGHT (John 14:6).  And we are all His “ambassadors” (see 2 Corinthians verse at bottom) to be lights in this world especially to non-believers.   I don’t think a lot of “Christians” think about how their actions impact non-believers and how many people it keeps away from the church or leaves a bad taste in their mouth of Christ followers.  Ike used a great example of the harshest slave owners being the most devout Christians.  Simple enough premise – yet poorly executed by many – practice what you preach/believe.  Be a light for Christ in whatever situation you are in.

This week may you be a “Candle in the Darkness” and  “mirror that reflects Your endless love”.  God bless and Amen!

Natalie Grant
I Will Be

Today’s Scripture Reading:

Our firm decision is to work from this focused center: One man died for everyone. That puts everyone in the same boat. He included everyone in his death so that everyone could also be included in his life, a resurrection life, a far better life than people ever lived on their own.  Because of this decision we don’t evaluate people by what they have or how they look. We looked at the Messiah that way once and got it all wrong, as you know. We certainly don’t look at him that way anymore. Now we look inside, and what we see is that anyone united with the Messiah gets a fresh start, is created new. The old life is gone; a new life burgeons! Look at it! All this comes from the God who settled the relationship between us and him, and then called us to settle our relationships with each other. God put the world square with himself through the Messiah, giving the world a fresh start by offering forgiveness of sins. God has given us the task of telling everyone what he is doing. We’re Christ’s representatives. God uses us to persuade men and women to drop their differences and enter into God’s work of making things right between them. We’re speaking for Christ himself now: Become friends with God; he’s already a friend with you.
2 Corinthians 5:14-20 (The Message)

1 Comment

Filed under Calling, Canines, Children