PC: Weebly stock photo
You’ve done it yourself. Open the refrigerator door, close the refrigerator door. Check the cupboards. Back to the refrigerator. The produce drawer, the back of the middle shelf. Maybe you’ll find what you’re looking for in the freezer. Ice cream? No, not even ice cream will satisfy. Not today.
What is there to gain from grief?
With grief that follows death, we enter into suffering in a small way what the Father experienced upon the death of his son in a big way. We feel the oppression from the weight of the separation between heaven and hell, between the curse of death and the glory of eternity in heaven. We mourn the trials and affliction ahead on the road through life without our loved one.
The image this word brings to your mind is probably like mine -- one of prisoners chained together, marching off to prison, beaten down, demoralized.
Surrendered over to the enemy. No hope. No future. No freedom.
PC: The Nativity Story, the movie
It was an experiment last year; I wanted to see if I could write every day for a month. In the end, I could chalk the experiment up as successful, but more so, the spiritual and personal benefits were immeasurable.
It was known as From Thanks 2 Giving, "a Thanksgiving-to-Christmas dubsmash of musings, devotions and praise." Topics ranged from the Incarnation to Christmas memories, from heart-tugging commercials to the hymnody of the season, from Christmas stories to biblical encouragement. Dredging deep into a heart that had been layered with cynicism and despair over the torture Christmas has gone through in the past decades, the Lord emptied the memory vault and refired the sensory receptors, ushering me through a season seen with new eyes and experienced with a revitalized enthusiasm. I loved Christmas for the first time in years -- the whole season, every bit of it, every color, every tradition, every sensation. And it seemed like every day, the Lord was opening my eyes to His masterful and loving plan of redemption through the event that we now know to be the Incarnation, the intersection of linear and abstract, the day spiritual warfare came to earth.
As the season of joy rolls around this year, I want to focus on Jesus, the greatest Gift of all, and how in Him we have received an abundance of treasures in spiritual and material ways. With Jesus we have a new family; with Jesus we have the gift of faith; with Jesus we see the majestic sovereignty of God; and so on.
So, starting on December 1, keep your eyes open for what's happening at
Thanksgiving is the most hospitable of days.
It’s probably not how we usually think of the purpose of the day, after all, THANKS giving.
However, if you’re like me, if you’re at all involved in the preparation for the events that traditionally accompany the day, I bet you know what I’m saying. After the flurry of dishes have been pulled from the oven and last minute details -- salt and pepper at each end, a spoon for the cranberry sauce -- have been set on the table, and you hosts and hostesses sit down at the table laden with foods for feasting and decor for admiring, when you are prompted along with the rest to share what you are thankful for, you may find, like I do sometimes, that it takes a minute for you to shift your function from one of giving to thanking.
What is time? When Christmas tree lights twinkle and the air smells like pine and wassail, to a child, time stretches for eternity. The minute hand crawls around the disc of the clock, even seconds mock the anticipation!
PC: Facebook, Luke Buleya
The Gospel Coalition International Outreach offers a means for churches, mission organizations, ministries and individuals to participate in providing theological famine relief to pastors and ministry organizations overseas through their Packing Hope projects. This story about how the Lord used the resources provided through Packing Hope to bear fruit in Zambia first appeared on TGC's website on October 27, 2016. Details about Packing Hope follow this article. More information about TGC-IO's efforts is available at their website.
Zambia is a so-called Christian nation, and many believers accept an adulterated form of Christianity.
I am going to write about self-awareness in the Christian, but since the phrase may be unfamiliar to or used differently by some, I offer a cultural illustration to make sure we’re all on the same page.
Vulgarity is no substitute for wit.
I sit here humbled at the grace and mercy the Lord extends. While I am weak and deficient, thick-brained and muddling through an understanding of His word in preparation to lead a Bible study, He yet releases a trickle of breathless beauty and heavenly majesty from His word, enough to quench my thirst and more than enough to share with those who thirst after righteousness.
Praise be to God.
Before the month slips away, here in our first few hours of Autumn 2016, I'm sharing a favorite post from last September (9/5/15). It's a bittersweet season for me. I love my PSLs and plaids and boots and scarves, but as Summer slides away, so does the last of any delusion that life can remain the same.
Children are grown, the rooms are silent, the calendar even more sparse with entries. A new season to find grace in change, joy in service, hope in an identity rooted in Christ alone and not . . . my season.
© lauraenglandmiller, #thereyougothinkingagain, Laura E Miller
2015-2016. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of written material and images without express and written permission from this blog’s author is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to #thereyougothinkingagain, lauraenglandmiller, or Laura E Miller with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.