Tag Archives: Jesus

Death In His Grave (a song for the Easter Season)

Happy Sunday!  Happy Lenten season!  I haven’t posted a song in quite a while, been focusing more on books here on the blog.  But still such an influence in my life and faith and this AM at church I heard an amazing one that I just had to share.  It appears it released in 2010 – but I just heard it for this first time this AM at Bay Pres by our amazing worship team.  It has a little bit of twang, a raw feeling to it, and just hit me a little harder this Sunday that I had to share.

Timely song for this Easter season about Jesus’ death and resurrection .  The emotions it provoked for me were so raw and the lyrics – well just read below – are so powerful.  Friday a thief on the cross, Sunday the King of Kings given the keys to heaven.  All for us.  For our sins, our wages, our rent, our debts, our ransom, He went through hell so all so we can be FREE and have ETERNAL LIFE!  Wow.

For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. Romans 6:23

That’s it for today – keeping it short and to the point.  Just something I know I need to meditate on this season leading up to Easter when we get to rejoice in the news that HE IS RISEN!!  Love and prayers – thanks for reading today!

Stay tuned for my next book review (One Last Thing) which coincidentally tied in perfect to our sermon this AM on the power of confession and being free from guilt.

Death In His Grave
By John Mark McMillan

Though the earth cried
Out for blood
Satisfied her hunger was
Billows calmed on raging seas
For the souls of men she craved
Sun and moon from balcony
Turned their head in disbelief
Their precious love would taste
The sting
Disfigured and disdained

On Friday a thief
On Sunday a king
Laid down in grief
But woke with the keys
Of hell on that day
The first born of the slain
The man Jesus Christ laid
Death in his grave

So three days in darkness slept
The morning sun
Of righteousness
But rose to shame
The throws of death
And overturn his rule
Now daughters
And the sons of men
Would pay not their dues again
The debt of blood
They owed was rent
When the day rolled anew

On Friday a thief
On Sunday a king
Laid down in grief
But woke holding keys
To hell on that day
The first born of the slain
The man Jesus Christ laid
Death in his grave

On Friday a thief
On Sunday a king
Laid down in grief
But woke with the keys
Of hell on that day
The first born of the slain
The man Jesus Christ laid
Death in his grave

He has cheated hell
And seated us above the fall
In desperate places he paid our
Wages one time once and for all

Lyrics copied from here

Download here on Amazon: (free to Prime members)

 

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I Will Rise

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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

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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

 

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My Lighthouse

“I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life.” John 8:12

Happy Monday.  Back to school here in OH (finally!  I know all our GA started weeks ago!)  Looking forward to getting back into a routine and figuring out our new normal.  With that, I am hoping (but don’t hold me too it) to get back into regular blogging.  Right now this is my little outlet when the kids have quiet time to reflect on books I read, prayers I have, or really just whatever I want.  If I can reach even just one person, it is worth it, even if that person is myself!

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One of our anthems of the summer, on repeat in the car, was “My Lighthouse” by Rend Collective.  A catchy song that you will often hear me and the kids blurting out (loudly) while driving down Lake Road with the windows down.  But one, the more I reflect on (or hear), that really has a lot of meaning and significance, now and always.  The obvious, we live at the lake now, so we do get to see lighthouses often.   But also God/Jesus as a lighthouse is a wonderful metaphor.  And then we all have opportunities to be a lighthouse to those around us.  And lastly we probably have lighthouses in our lives (other people or places that reflect the light of God on earth.)

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Living along Lake Erie, daily being able to catch a glimpse of the water, is an amazing thing.  But also has made me realize how many verses are centered around nautical things.  Seas, waves, fish, anchors, floods…visual reminders I see each and every day.  Trying to make a better effort to reflect on them as a message from God, who is our lighthouse, who will lead us safe to shore each and every day or with each trip through the troubled sea. (The lighthouse above is in Cleveland, the one below is in Hilton Head, SC.)

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And then today as I was thinking about this post, I read the news of Truett Cathy passing away.  Founder of Chick-fil-A, a company that I was blessed to call my work home for 5 years, and a company like none other.  Truett was a man of great faith, lead by example, humble, had a huge heart, treated his employees like friends, wanted his customers treated the same, and left this world a better place.  To me because of his values (and HIS values), Chick-fil-A, will always be a lighthouse in my life.  Especially since moving away from GA, CFA is a place that reminds me of home.  The taste, the service, the playground, even my kids are more comfortable in a Chick-fil-A restaurant than most other places.   Truett truly practiced what he/CFA stood for and left the world a better place.  Saying many extra prayers today for his family, both blood, and employees alike.  Our hearts are all much heavier today thinking of him, but have peace knowing he is rejoicing in heaven.  (The picture below was at the 2010 Christmas party in his office/treehouse.)

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Take a listen to the song below (I’m including the lyrics too and a bonus video if you scroll all the way down.) And reflect on this simple message of truth; God will always be there to guide you, to keep you safe, be your peace, and be the brightest light in your life, if you invite Him to do so.  Look for Him in the darkness, and He will deliver, He always does.  Amen.

My Lighthouse
Rend Collective

In my wrestling and in my doubts
In my failures You won’t walk out
You’re great love will lead me through
You are the peace in my troubled sea
You are the peace in my troubled sea

In the silence You won’t let go
In the questions Your truth will hold
Your great love will lead me through
You are the peace in my troubled sea
You are the peace in my troubled sea

My lighthouse
My lighthouse
Shining in the darkness I will follow You

My lighthouse
My lighthouse
I will trust the promise
You will carry me safe to shore
Safe to shore

I won’t fear what tomorrow brings
With each morning I’ll rise and sing
My God’s love will lead me through
You are the peace in my troubled sea
You are the peace in my troubled sea

Fire before us You’re the brightest
You will lead us through the storms

*Lighthouse print at very top is available on Etsy – click on picture.

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This is Amazing Grace; Happy Palm Sunday!

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Happy Palm Sunday!  Great church service this AM.  Following a tough week.  Nothing crazy, just frustrating.  Tired of waiting.  Waiting for our house to sell, so then we can pack, move, and work on getting settled in and most importantly get our family back together.  I have never felt so out of control, a slave to real estate.

Many are the plans in the mind of a man,
    but it is the purpose of the Lord that will stand.
Proverbs 19:21

BUT this morning I was reminded of something I know, something I pray about daily, but something I need to be told every second of every day.  I am NOT in control, but God is, and He is capable of miracles.  This morning Pastor David at Evergreen Church, preached about another life-changing event (part 6 or 7 in a series of life-changing events throughout the Bible).  Today was the blind man who Jesus made see (John 9.)

Jesus is capable of performing miracles, life-changing ones.  But in time.  And I’m not good at waiting.  Are you?  Probably not, but let’s chat if you are.  Some days I can be optimistic.  Other days I want to throw a tantrum and yell at anyone who will listen.  I know it could be worse but I find myself pleading with God.  And I keep being told to wait, a little longer.  I continue to go back to my guiding verse.  Jeremiah 29.  He knows the plans for ME, and they aren’t meant to harm me, He wants me to prosper, and have a future.  But when?

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.
Jeremiah 29:11

I’m posting this more for me than anyone (but I hope you can use it too.)  He has proven time and time again, He will prevail, and IT WILL BE GOOD!  And this week as we enter into Holy week.  A week that defines everything we believe in.  I need to take a step back and put things in perspective.  Our LORD, sent His son JESUS to wear our crown, take our sins, and set us free.  And we can soon declare “HE IS RISEN!”  Wow.

This is Amazing Grace.  And love, and so much more.  This song came to mind today as the verses from the original Amazing Grace sang through my mind hearing the story of the blind man “I once was blind but now I see.”  I love this new take on it.  He can do amazing things that no one else can or can even imagine.  Meditate on this song today and this week.  I know I will be as I wait.

*And the picture at top was made by my LL of Jesus surrounded by Palms  – after what she learned at church today!  This makes my heart melt!

This is Amazing Grace
by Phil Wickham

Who breaks the power of sin and darkness
Whose love is mighty and so much stronger
The King of Glory, the King above all kings

Who shakes the whole earth with holy thunder
And leaves us breathless in awe and wonder
The King of Glory, the King above all kings

This is amazing grace
This is unfailing love
That You would take my place
That You would bear my cross
You lay down Your life
That I would be set free
Oh, Jesus, I sing for
All that You’ve done for me

Who brings our chaos back into order
Who makes the orphan a son and daughter
The King of Glory, the King of Glory

Who rules the nations with truth and justice
Shines like the sun in all of its brilliance
The King of Glory, the King above all kings

Worthy is the Lamb who was slain
Worthy is the King who conquered the grave
Worthy is the Lamb who was slain
Worthy is the King who conquered the grave
Worthy is the Lamb who was slain
Worthy is the King who conquered the grave
Worthy is the Lamb who was slain
Worthy, worthy, worthy
Oh

 

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Merry Christmas! (Conclusion of Advent Series)

How could I forget about the Christ candle?  The 5th candle in the center of the Advent wreath, which we light on Christmas Eve.  We’ve made it to the long-awaited day, the day the Christ was born.

And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.
And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.

Luke 2:9-14

I cannot think of a more beautiful song to leave you with to conclude this season.  “O Holy Night”  Although my husband claims each and every year that Eric Cartman (from South Park) ruined this song for him (sorry if I just did the same for you – you can view it here, although I highly advice against it!), it is still one of the most beautiful and most meaningful songs of the Christmas season for me.

Please enjoy this version and carry with you this knowledge each and every day of the coming year.  On this Holy night, many years ago, a baby was born who changed it all.  Amen and Merry Christmas!

O Holy night, the stars are brightly shining
It is the night of our dear Savior’s birth
Long lay the world in sin and error pining
‘Til He appeared and the soul felt its worth
A thrill of hope the weary world rejoices
For yonder breaks a new and glorious morn
Fall on your knees

O hear the angel voices
O night divine!
O night when Christ was born
O night divine!
O night, O night divine!

Truly He taught us to love one another,
His law is love and His gospel is peace.
Chains He shall break, for the slave is our brother.

And in His name, all oppression shall cease

Sweet hymns of joy in grateful chorus raise we
Let all within us praise His holy name
Christ is the Lord!
Their name forever praise we

Noel, Noel
O night, O night divine
Noel, Noel
O night, O night divine
Noel, Noel
O night, O holy night

See the first 4 weeks of Advent here:  (Thanks for keeping up for my very first blog series!)
HOPE
PEACE
JOY
LOVE
And one last favorite Christmas song!

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Winter Snow (Bonus Christmas Song!)

“But you came like a winter snow, quite, soft, and slow.  Falling from the sky in the night, to the earth below.”

In addition to my Advent Song Series (see last one here), I wanted to through in one bonus song.  Actually I wanted to throw in a bunch, but this is one of my favorite, so I thought I would do a special mid-week post just for it.

I first heard it at church by the beautiful Abby Akins a few years ago.  I woke up singing it the other day and asked Abby at church if it was on the agenda for any of the Advent services, and much to my delight (and spoiler alert!) I was told it may be performed on Christmas Eve at our newly named Evergreen Church!  (Here is our flyer below for anyone local – we would LOVE to have you at our Community Wide Christmas Eve service at 5:30pm at Starrs Mill High School!)

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But back to the song.  It’s just beautiful with a simple, yet powerful message.  Jesus could have come blazing into the world, like a storm or hurricane, you know those grand entrances (think royal baby this past year?).  Couldn’t you just picture it today? It would be the buzz on Facebook, Twitter, on every news outlet, camera crews outside the barn, pining for that first picture.  But Jesus came like the winter snow, paints a beautiful picture in your head.  Quiet.  Soft.  Slow.  In the middle of the night, in a barn, so humble for our King.  The King of Kings.  Our Savior.  Our Lord.

Meditate over this song.  Close your eyes and let the words sink in.  Beautiful.  I hope you enjoy as much as I do if you haven’t heard before (or even if you have.)  Thanks for stopping by, and stay tuned for a post on LOVE coming this 4th Sunday of Advent!  Amen.

Winter Snow (Feat. Audrey Assad)
Chris Tomlin

Could’ve come like a mighty storm
With all the strength of a hurricane
You could’ve come like a forest fire
With the power of Heaven in Your flame

But You came like a winter snow
Quiet and soft and slow
Falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below

You could’ve swept in like a tidal wave
Or an ocean to ravish our hearts
You could have come through like a roaring flood
To wipe away the things we’ve scarred

But You came like a winter snow, yes, You did
You were quiet, You were soft and slow
Falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below

Ooh no, Your voice wasn’t in a bush burning
No, Your voice wasn’t in a rushing wind
It was still, it was small, it was hidden

Oh, You came like a winter snow
Quiet and soft and slow
Falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below

Falling, oh yeah, to the earth below
You came falling from the sky in the night
To the earth below

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Hope for Christmas (Advent Series Part I)

May the God of HOPE fill you with all JOY & PEACE as you trust in Him so that you Overflow with HOPE by the power of the Holy Spirit. 
Romans 15:13

I’m a bit late.  But I  wanted to try out writing a series for a change.  I see many bloggers do it – so here goes my attempt.  It’s the season of Advent, the time of waiting, preparing, and, at least for me, of often losing sight of what this season is all about.  So I wanted to bring it back to what it is all about – the arrival of the newborn King, our Lord and Savior – Jesus Christ!

Each Sunday of Advent (or Friday as I’m a bit late for the first one!) I wanted a reminder of which Sunday it is, include a verse, and as I like to do – a song!  As I did a little research on Advent, I learned that each Sunday (or each candle) may have many different meanings or colors depending on which denomination you practice.  I’ll stay with my own Presbyterianism and bring to you Hope, Peace, Joy, and Love.

The first Sunday, the candle of HOPE was lit.  See the verse from Romans above and this next one below.  God has given us the gift of HOPE.  We may not know what is ahead for us, but God does and give us HOPE in that.  HOPE is a foundation of my faith and in my guiding verse (Jeremiah 29:11.)  It give us something to look forward to, even if we don’t know what it is or even what it will be.  But God knows and it will be good and worth the wait.  Without HOPE, I don’t know how I would get through each day.

We were saved with this hope ahead of us. Now hope means we are waiting for something we do not have. How can a man hope for something he already has? But if we hope for something we do not yet see, we must learn how to wait for it.
Romans 8:24-5 (NLV)

I will start things off, and leave you for today, with probably the most popular Advent song.  “O Come, Emmanuel”  I found this beautiful instrumental Piano and Cello version online and the video to accompany even gave me goosebumps (as this is the Christmas version of the song!).  I HOPE you enjoy as well and can meditate on the true meaning of Advent, the most amazing gift we could ever be given of which nothing will ever compare, and remembering that each and every day this December (and always).  Amen.

 

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Christmas in Atlanta Bucket List

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I love Christmas time.  Maybe even more than fall, so that’s a lot for me if you saw all my posts from this fall.

There are so many amazing and fun things to do to get in the Christmas spirit (I guess you can say holiday, but no filters here – I’m a Christian and I celebrate the birth of my LORD and SAVIOR this time of year!)

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I started thinking about the realistic things we will check off our list this year, but also thought I would add a few more either because we have gone in the past, or may in the future (as kids get older, or just to spread out the fun!)

New this year in Atlanta, and top of my list is the Global Winter Wonderland at Turner Field.  This opens November 21st – January 5th from 5pm-11pm daily, and is $24.99 for adult tickets, $16.99 for kids, and best deal for us this year, kids 4 & under are FREE!  It appears they have made many of the world’s most well-known landmarks into light displays (some up to 7 stories high according to the video!) in the Global Village.  Also traditional Christmas light displays, a dinosaur maze, carnival rides, daily entertainment (including Christian artist Aaron Shust one night!), meet & greet with Santa, and more to be announced!  Wow – I really can’t wait.  Review definitely to come – stay tuned!
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Stone Mountain Christmas – I keep saying I want to go here, for all seasons.  I’ve already missed the Pumpkin Festival and the Yellow Daisy festival – so maybe we’ll make it for Christmas!  So much to do including (but not limited to); shows, parades, 4D theater, shopping, characters, Santa, and every night there is a snowfall and fireworks!  All of this in addition to their usual activities (which is a ton!)  I haven’t been in a good number of years, so maybe it’s time for a return trip and this sounds like a pretty good time of year to go!
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Macy’s Pink Pig at Macy’s Lenox Sqaure – An Atlanta tradition (so I’ve been told).  Have yet to go – but the kids seem good ages to maybe check this out.

For more than 50 years, Atlantans have started their holiday traditions by riding the Macy’s Pink Pig. Kids of all ages are now invited to ride the Macy’s Pink Pig train on top of the Lenox Square Mall. Atlanta’s most unique and beloved holiday tradition rides beneath the signature 170-foot, 1950’s themed Pink Pig Tent.Since 1953, Macy’s Pink Pig has been delighting generations of Atlantans. Come ride Priscilla the Pink Pig on train tracks through a life-sized storybook featuring Priscilla and her friends. Tickets are available at the Macy’s Pink Pig kiosk inside the East mall entrance at Lenox Square. A portion of the ride’s proceeds will benefit Children’s Healthcare of Atlanta.

Atlanta Botanical Gardens Lights, Holiday Nights.  We just joined the garden (see our last visit here!), and while this is not included in our membership, we do get a discount, and we can’t wait to go back!  Last time we checked this out was actually it’s first year, and the weekend before our LM was born!  Beautiful lights adorn all the gardens.  There is also a Holiday Model Train Show (LM will like this!)  Also during the day throughout the season there are many kids activities (including a ride-on train) that sound great too!garden_lights_storza_by_joey_ivansco_1

Callaway Gardens – Fantasy in Lights.  Another great holiday light display.  I took LL last year with some family for a ride on the “Jolly Trolley”.  You can also drive your own car through, but for little ones the trolley is a nice way to make sure they can see everything.  Be sure to bundle up though, and hang on, it can get cold and bumpy, but its beautiful (especially by the lake) and we loved it!  There is also a big indoor and outdoor area to shop, eat, drink, and meet St. Nick.  Will definitely go back, probably not this year with everything else we want to check out – but maybe next, and definitely recommend.  Also they had a Groupon – keep your eye out for another if you’re planning going to save some $$!

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Magical Nights of Lights at Lake Lanier Islands – I’ll list this as a “someday” activity.  We are not very close to Lake Lanier, but I would love to go up there once the kids are older.  This sounds like another great light display.  Anyone been?  I’d love to hear your thoughts!  Looks like they have ice skating, a live nativity, Santa, and carnival rides.

A few honorable mentions:
Holiday in Lights at Centennial Olympic Park (maybe even check out SkyView?)
Lights at Life University (Marietta)
Season of Magic (Piedmont Park)
Gift of Lights at Atlanta Motor Speedway

I’m sure I’m missing a million other things, but thought I would share our Christmas bucket list.  Updates to come throughout the season!  What’s on yours?

Merry Christmas Season – bless you and your family this special time of year, and may you keep in the front of your hearts and mind the TRUE meaning.  Amen and have fun!

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TRUST by Jay and Abby Akins

(Click on Album to be directed to Amazon to hear samples and BUY!)
Trust
Jay & Abby Akins
Release Date: October 1st 2013

I am SO excited to be finally sharing this with you all.  This is Jay & Abby’s 1st album, it came out today on Amazon and iTunes, and it is AMAZING!  Filled with 8 catchy songs that will move you to dance, sing along, and praise GOD above all.  Call me a groupie or just a dedicated friend and fan, but Jay & Abby inspired this post HERE. They are some of my inspiration as I search to find what I am called to do, as they clearly have found and are living out their calling.  And this one here where we hosted them in our backyard to introduce some of these very songs!

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Their passion for music and Jesus come through in each and every song.   I’m so happy for them and am proclaiming my bragging rights here and now that we knew them BEFORE they were big time!!  But check it out – share it – tell friends, you won’t be disappointed!  My favorites are #2 – I Stand in Awe and #4 – Trust (but they all are really great!)

Congrats Jay & Abby!  You guys are amazing, encouraging, and 2 of the best people I am blessed to know and call friends!

Read more about Jay & Abby, stories behind the songs, and much more on their website:

JayandAbbyMusic.com

Aren’t they stinkin’ adorable (borrowed this from their website too!)

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Just be Yourself! Living a Life of Freedom.

“Now you are the body of Christ and each one of your is a part of it.”
1 Corinthians 12:27

Happy Sunday!  Beautiful day out here in GA!  We are getting ready for LL’s first day of 3-year old preschool tomorrow and really getting ready to be back on a schedule!  (Yes that does make a Type A person very excited!)  And I’m learning that kids are creatures of habit.  While flexibility is good, knowing what each day holds is also a nice thing.  We attended the early service at New Church of Peachtree City this AM as Pastor David continued his mini-sermon series titled “Living a Life of Freedom”.  Last week I missed most of the sermon on building a foundation for freedom (you can see why here).  Steven kindly took some notes for me.  The building blocks for freedom’s foundation that David presented are:

  1. Our Status (where we center our life)
  2. Our Security (physical v. through Jesus)
  3. Christ’s Strength (not our own)

So this week, David continued by discussing personal aspects, specifically who we are?  He mentioned that we tend to reflect the model of persons we admire, but that may not be what God created us to be.  Again, this hits home as I am trying to figure out who God created me to be.  I do feel that in my maturing age I am becoming so much more comfortable in my own skin, but like everyone, have a long way to go.  But so much of that is not only being comfortable in the body God gave me, but in the skills (or lack thereof), passions, roles, and places He also gave me or put me in.  God created us as we are to be who we are.  David gave 1 Corinthians 1:5 as a verse.  And in my new-found quest for deeper biblical understanding, I looked a few translations and found this one I love from “The Message”:

Every time I think of you—and I think of you often!—I thank God for your lives of free and open access to God, given by Jesus. There’s no end to what has happened in you—it’s beyond speech, beyond knowledge. The evidence of Christ has been clearly verified in your lives.
1 Corinthians 1:4-6 (The Message)

In Presbyterian fashion, David gave us 3 bullet points on how to live a life a freedom:

  1. Know Yourself
    Just as a body, though one, has many parts, but all its many parts form one body, so it is with Christ.
    1 Corinthians 12:12
  2. Be Yourself
    But in fact God has placed the parts in the body, every one of them, just as he wanted them to be.
    1 Corinthians 12:18
  3. Enjoy Yourself
    But we have this treasure in jars of clay to show that this all-surpassing power is from God and not from us.
    2 Corinthians 4:7

The full verse (as linked to above) relates God’s people/believers to a body.  Each person has a function, eyes, ears, hands, feet, heart…none is any less important that any other and they all need to work together to function.  A pretty cool image, can’t you just visualize it?  It got me thinking as to what part I am and how I can do the best I can do.  And then how I want everyone else to do they best they can, so we all can be a huge functioning body to worship, praise, spread the good word, and live the lives God intended us to.  Just think how amazing we all could be together! What part of God’s body are you?

The song that came to mind for this week is “If we are the body” by Casting Crowns.  Take a listen and look below.  Thanks for reading.  May your week ahead be blessed!  Amen!

If We are the Body
Casting Crowns

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