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Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Inside-Out Transformation

What is it about the word transform that is so intriguing?  Even when I was young, I felt that a new dress was my way of transforming myself.  Add a pair of shoes and I felt I was changed.  Later I felt the need to change the position of the furniture in my room environment.  Then came the need of learning to do something.  Always, it was a need to transform what is, to what it could be.  Somehow, new Easter clothes and shoes was satisfying for a time, especially at the Spring season when earth was transformed into brilliant colors of delight. 
The outward physical appearance has to maintain its continual renewal, being transformed.  Then I read this verse…Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind….
Is this just education?  Is this learning more and more, this renewal of your mind?  That would be easy to just continue going to school, right?  Wait. Do not be conformed to the world – test what the will of God is, which is good, acceptable and perfect. 
That sounds as if I should control my body…to do some things and not do others.  But everyone knows I lose my temper, it is normal.  And I just need some chemical help to get me through some irritating happening.  Especially when others do such stupid things that I can’t stand.  It is impossible to refrain from some things.
Now I will read all of Romans 12:1-3.
 I appeal to you therefore, brothers, by the mercies of God, to present your bodies as a living sacrifice, holy and acceptable to God, which is your spiritual worship.  Do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewal of your mind, that by testing you may discern what is the will of God, what is good and acceptable and perfect.  For by the grace given to me I say to everyone among you not to think of himself more highly than he ought to think, but to think with sober judgment, each according to the measure of faith that God has assigned.  Romans 12:1-3
I cannot do this transforming by simply renewing my mind.  I will have to change my whole life.  Right, even when I know this is what I need, I am overwhelmed.  Nothing is going right in my life.  I know I need to change but how? First of all, get rid of the “I’s”.  It is God that transforms through Jesus Christ.
Practice Gratitude.  Be thankful.  This begins transformation.  Recognize the Grace of Jesus.  Recognize and know – heart-deep – what Love is.  The Grace Basics:  God created us and our World.  He loves us with a steadfastness so great that He sent his One and Only Son Jesus into our world to live here and die for our sins.  Jesus conquered death and rose again.  Why?  That we might live with Him, and be saved from a sin-filled world.
How important is God’s love?  So now faith, hope, and love abide, these three; but the greatest of these is love. I Corinthians 13:13.  Love makes the world go around (lyrics). Love makes us free from the fetters of sin and hatred.  Love creates life and a future, where there was none.  Love creates Grace – and the forgiveness of our sins as we forgive others.

Just as God loves us, we can love others, a huge helping of non-judgmental love, covered with forgiveness and a promise of joy and peace.  Love is a delightful feast for living everyday.  Love goes around, giving hope in this life and for the next life with Jesus. 

As we tiptoe into the unknown territory of 2015, let’s allow God to transform us into a ‘child of light’.   We long to follow the easy 10 step method of transformation.  The magazine and books proliferate with 10 easy steps to change parts of our lives.  However, this change is from the inside-out from our very soul.  This is of the spirit.  One dose of gratitude is just a beginning and needs to be repeated often.  For every critical judgment, there needs to be a blessing.  You will be surprised at how often a blessing goes unheeded.  It is because our recognition of God working in our lives at times can be painful.  We simply want to blame someone, never ourselves. 
Now, look around.  See something not to your liking?  What is the blessing of that one thing.  It is a beginning, to recognize a blessing.  God’s blessings abound.  Surround yourself with God’s people. This transformation happens together with others who love Jesus.  Whisper the name Jesus, and hear the voices of Heaven praise Him.  The name of Jesus is precious because of Who He is.  He loves us. He died for us.  He will take us home to Heaven.  He knows the number of hairs on our head.  He was there when earth was created.  He and His Father God and the Holy Spirit are with us. 
The name of Jesus….is so sweet.  Think of how God named the stars.  That is love.  Not just a bunch of stars twinkling on cue – those are God’s creation.  He cares.  It is the same for everyone who has ever been born.  We are given a name and that name is precious to God, for He made each of us. With every birth, God rejoices.  With every re-birth by baptism into Jesus Christ our Savior, the angels fill the heavens with rejoicing.
On the eve of the New Year, prepare yourself to be transformed…from the Inside-Out!
Put on then, as God's chosen ones, holy and beloved, compassionate hearts, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience, bearing with one another and, if one has a complaint against another, forgiving each other; as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive.  Colossians 3:12-13
But our citizenship is in heaven, and from it we await a Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ, who will transform our lowly body to be like his glorious body, by the power that enables him even to subject all things to himself.  Philippians 3:20-21
 Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom. And we all, with unveiled face, beholding the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from one degree of glory to another. For this comes from the Lord who is the Spirit.  II Corinthians 3:17-18
  

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Tuesday, December 23, 2014

The Message!

A messenger is one who delivers a message, or as the dictionary says – a messenger is a person who carries a message or goes on an errand for another especially as a matter of duty or business.  Just to be sure, let’s see what the thesaurus says: emissary, forerunner, courier, go-between, crier, harbinger, herald, or envoy.

Once, before tech-times, a teacher asked me to take a message to a foreign land, known as The Principal’s Office.  I thought I had grown two more feet in stature and was surprised my head didn’t reach the top of the doorway of the office.  It is an honor to be chosen to be a messenger, for trust is involved.

Being a messenger is an important task, and this a beginning of a higher calling. When I read Romans 10:15, I began looking at feet of messengers. “How beautiful are the feet of messengers who bring good news!  To my astonishment, everyone who gave messages had feet just like every one else. Whether the message was good news or not.   Beautiful feet must mean something else.  At the least, I expected glitter-adorned feet!

Pondering further, I wondered if an important message would be lost with inappropriate facial expressions and body language?  A messenger has an important work to clearly speak the message.

A Messenger is the delegate of the one who sends the message.  A courier may deliver a plan for battle, or may give direction to follow a different path, be summoned for a specific purpose.  Elisha sent a messenger to Naaman telling him to dip himself in the Jordan River seven times to rid himself of leprosy. (2 Kings 5:9-11)  Naaman received the message with anger.  The message was meaningless to him. Eventually Naaman’s officers convinced Naaman to follow the instructions of the prophet and the leprosy was healed.  When Naaman tried to pay Elisha, he would not accept the gifts.

There are more than one hundred references for Messenger or Messengers in the Bible. Some Messengers come as angels and some Messengers are appointed by God and walk this earth..  At times the messages were welcome, some sound foolish, some are dreaded, some are not heeded, and some are followed.  

God has a message of a lifetime, He wants us to know He loves us. He needed a messenger.  For the Children of Israel, he chose Moses to be the Messenger.  In this instance God chose Jesus to make the ultimate sacrifice on the cross to cleanse our sins.

Hebrews 3:1-3 - And so, dear brothers and sisters who belong to God and are partners with those called to heaven, think carefully about this Jesus whom we declare to be God’s messenger and High Priest.  For he was faithful to God, who appointed him, just as Moses served faithfully when he was entrusted with God’s entire house.  But Jesus deserves far more glory than Moses, just as a person who builds a house deserves more praise than the house itself.
Hebrews, written to the Hebrew people contains the words above. God wants us to know and believe and sent His Only Son.  The ultimate messenger of God wrote this to all who read or hear God’s Word.
The Message of God supersedes any earthly message that ever existed. It is the Message of Eternity.  God’s Word survives because it comes from God Himself and is alive.  Hebrews 4:12-13 - For the word of God is alive and powerful. It is sharper than the sharpest two-edged sword, cutting between soul and spirit, between joint and marrow. It exposes our innermost thoughts and desires. Nothing in all creation is hidden from God. Everything is naked and exposed before his eyes, and he is the one to whom we are accountable.

What good is the Word from God if it is ignored or changed, added to, or forgotten?  The Word of God can be tossed into the Circular File away from our minds and hearts and lives.  It is an intentional choice we make every day.  We fill our lives with other things, and the messages from the Lord God often take the back seat or disappear from our hearts.  Sometimes we simply change the message God has given us and try to place ourselves in the ‘god-seat’.
Sometimes we wonder why our way is not easy, but filled with troubles. James wrote:
Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing.  If you need wisdom, ask our generous God, and he will give it to you. He will not rebuke you for asking. But when you ask him, be sure that your faith is in God alone. Do not waver, for a person with divided loyalty is as unsettled as a wave of the sea that is blown and tossed by the wind. Such people should not expect to receive anything from the Lord.
What is the greatest message ever given to man?  but the angel reassured them. “Don’t be afraid!” he said. “I bring you good news that will bring great joy to all people. The Savior—yes, the Messiah, the Lord—has been born today in Bethlehem, the city of David!  And you will recognize him by this sign: You will find a baby wrapped snugly in strips of cloth, lying in a manger.”  Suddenly, the angel was joined by a vast host of others—the armies of heaven —praising God and saying, “Glory to God in highest heaven, and peace on earth to those with whom God is pleased.”  Luke 2:10-14
If you are wise and understand God’s ways, prove it by living an honorable life, doing good works with the humility that comes from wisdom. James 3:13
Oh, how great are God’s riches and wisdom and knowledge! How impossible it is for us to understand his decisions and his ways!  Romans 11:33


In this blessed season of celebrating the birth of Jesus, May we remember the greatest message of all and live a life that honors our Lord.  God gave us the greatest gift of all, His Son.  Raise up and sing Glory, Glory to God in the Highest.  Be a messenger of God with every thought, action and word that we live! 
Christmas Eve Addendum:  Have you ever felt as if you could dance all day?  Throw your arms up and lift your eyes to the sky and just sing?  That is called JOY!  Jesus JOY!  Suddenly life is sweet because you know Jesus, you love Jesus, there is only room for Jesus and that joy captures everyone.  That joy is because of love — Love that overflows and forgives others as God’s love forgives us.
This is what Christmas is all about – the recognition of that Joy can only be found in Jesus.  As I left my husband in the care of our daughter-in-law, I wondered if I had the strength to shop one more time for groceries.  Little did I know that in the produce aisle I would receive a Gift of Joy wrapped up in a song that day.  Since I know few people in this city we moved to recently, I do not expect to see anyone I know today.  As I stopped at the Roma Tomato bin, I was vaguely aware of a man standing near me and he was humming.  All I remember are grey whiskers on a black face and the song he was humming.
I realized I knew that song.  “Just a closer walk with Thee, Grant it Jesus is my plea, Daily walking close to Thee, Let it be, dear Lord, let it be.”  That’s not a Christmas Carol, I thought, and then suddenly I began humming and smiling.  Maybe it IS a Christmas Carol! The words sang themselves to me, and I felt my spirit come alive.  I laughed out loud.  Nothing matters except loving Jesus.  The fact that my husband is slipping away in a dementia fog, or our oldest son died with brain cancer last February, living in a new place, impending surgeries in the new year.  Nothing matters.  The words of the song became a feast of joy — a feast of thanksgiving.  Eighty-five year old women don’t dance in the middle of the grocery store, but I felt the rhythm all the way through my body as I stood by the display of the bananas.
What a Christmas Gift from a stranger…a heart filled with joy.  A blessing beyond measure.  At this Christmas Time, I send you the Joy of Christmas and be glad!  Lift up your praise to our Lord!  He is coming!
Let the heavens be glad, and the earth rejoice! Let the sea and everything in it shout his praise! Let the fields and their crops burst out with joy! Let the trees of the forest sing for joy before the Lord, for he is coming! He is coming to judge the earth.  He will judge the world with justice, and the nations with his truth. Psalm 96:11-13


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Tuesday, December 16, 2014

Lost

Is it a dream or is it real?  Being lost takes on many faces in this world.  Being lost is worse when we don’t realize we have lost our way.  Let me paint a picture of long ago, say more than 80 years ago.

Dad worked during the night delivering mail (special delivery) and slept during the day.  With three small children five, four and two years old, sleep was almost impossible.  Mom took the three of us for a ride.  The purpose was to get lost in the country.  Mom had an adventurous streak.  We piled into the little Ford car and turned many times on unpaved country roads until we didn’t know where we were.  Totally lost.  Suddenly Mom was no longer our tour guide.  She stopped talking and stopped the car.  Leaving the car, she said she was going to check the road ahead.  When she came back she said, “It is a good thing I stopped, the bridge ahead is out.”

What a relief to know we adverted danger, but going on ‘an adventure’ had lost its allure for me.  The danger of the unknown made an adventure a fearful thing.  Adventure is to be avoided with diligence; I decided at five
 years old.

Being lost can happen in a building, in the country, in the city or within us.  Each day a person with dementia feels totally lost day after day.  My dear husband walks each day in total confusion of fog each day.  Rooms do not stay in the same place; night is day, and the day is night.  Time becomes nebulous – with a minute stretching into hours.  Imaginary people become more real that his family.  Lunch becomes breakfast, or it can be supper.  Hunger doesn’t tell time.  He perceives his age from 19 to 89.  He is lost.

Being lost causes angst, confusion and fear.  Being lost is that disconcerting feeling that one is in the wrong place at the wrong time.  Lost is defined as no longer in possession of relating to friends, children or articles.  A lost way, a lost or wasted opportunity is another definition.  Another use of lost is a lost war as in being defeated.  Being lost is walking in darkness, being found is walking in the light.

The opposite of ‘lost’ is ‘found’, walking in the light.  Despair describes ‘lost’. Joy describes ‘found’.  Both are described in the teaching parables taught by Jesus in Luke 15.  The lost  sheep of ninety-nine, the woman who loses one coin of 10 golden coins, and the lost son.  Celebrations were held when the one lamb is found, when the one golden coin is found.  The most poignant memorable description of ‘the found’ is in Luke 15:32,  “We had to celebrate this happy day. For your brother was dead and has come back to life! He was lost, but now he is found!’”

The mission of Jesus here on earth is described in Luke 19:9-11 - Jesus responded, “Salvation has come to this home today, for this man has shown himself to be a true son of Abraham. For the Son of Man came to seek and save those who are lost.”

The terrifying state of ‘lost-ness’ is spiritual limbo.  This is when one searches for deep joy in every place, except in Jesus Christ.  Discounting Jesus is like denying the existence of the sun, moon and stars.  Denying God is like rejecting the existence of the universe.
God is love!  Jesus loves us.  Unconditional love is the foundation of their nature.  They made us; they love us, and when we try to find peace and joy in this world, we do not succeed.  For only in Jesus, can we find these treasures.  When our state of pride and the refusal to believe is when we have lost our way.

In this season of the celebration of the birth of Jesus, the only Son of God, let us not forget the rest of the story.  Our being found by Jesus is the greatest gift we can give Him who gave His life for us on the cross.  Being in Jesus is the gift that keeps on giving to our friends and our family.  We find true joy and peace in being us.

When we see a red bow, let us remember that that our salvation from the darkness, tied in the red blood Jesus shed on the cross. 

 “The kingdom of the world has become the kingdom of our Lord and of his Christ, and he shall reign forever and ever.”  Revelation 11:15
Hallelujah! - Salvation and glory and power belong to our God, Revelation 19:1b
“Hallelujah!  For the Lord our God the Almighty reigns.”  Revelation 19:6b




 






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Tuesday, December 09, 2014

Prepare, Preparing, Prepared

It was 1938.  Grandpa and Grandma Suderman communicated that they were coming to visit.  Mother marshalled the troops, my two brothers, eight and six years old and me to begin preparing the house.  Dusting, vacuuming, washing the kitchen floor, clean bedding and sweeping the basement was on our radar.  I remember the relief when the last of the dirt was swept toward the back door, and a small porch was swept.

The main preparation happened in the kitchen. Mom’s culinary skills produced baked chicken, several custard pies (aya pei), chocolate cake, molasses cookies, and jars of canned vegetables were brought up from the basement in readiness. Potatoes are peeled and ready to boil.

It was a daunting exercise in preparedness.  And all was in readiness. The anticipation grew when it grew time to see our grandparents.  Each time they brought a small brown sack of candy, smiles and hugs for each of us.  We gathered after dinner around the upright piano on the east wall of the living room and sang hymns.  We caught up on the news about Mom’s brothers and sisters in Hillsboro.  We pictured Grandpa and Grandma and our uncles and aunts on the farm doing chores, singing and gathered around the table.

After we had prepared, a reward was ours.  So it is with life.  For every great event, there is the state of preparing. Whether it be a recital, a wedding, a new baby, visits,  a new job or school year. A daunting move across the country, a test or a different stage of life and death can be on the horizon.  Sometimes the preparation is accompanied by intent anticipation and sometimes with a heart-deep longing.  The lack of preparedness brings recrimination and the inevitable questions of Why, I should have, I could have, Why didn’t I?  The sadness of self-incrimination digs deep into our souls.

God is the God of Preparation.  God prepared our world, and He has given those who love Him a place to live, work to do, and leads us through this earth’s maze of snares and dangers. I Corinthians 2:9 - “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”
Hebrews 11:15-16 -  If they had longed for the country they came from, they could have gone back.  But they were looking for a better place, a heavenly homeland. That is why God is not ashamed to be called their God, for He has prepared a city for them.

When we clearly see God’s Work in our lives and how He cares for us and loves us from birth to death.  We are in awe and marvel at His Goodness. We do not have to stay in the fallen state of man, for God has prepared a way of salvation that begins in this world through Jesus and his death, burial and resurrection.  To some this is foolishness, but to those who see with their hearts through faith, it is the treasure of life that begins at our new birth.

“Look, I am sending my messenger ahead of you, and he will prepare your way. He is a voice shouting in the wilderness, Prepare the way for the LORD’s coming! Clear the road for him!’” Mark 1:2b-3.  God prepared the way for the messenger, John the Baptist, through Zechariah and Elizabeth. In Luke 1:41 - At the sound of Mary’s greeting, Elizabeth’s child leaped within her, and Elizabeth was filled with the Holy Spirit. 

These verses say one thing gloriously…God is at work in us before we are born.  Even as early as Genesis 4:21 - His brother’s name was Jubal, the first of all who play the harp and flute. Special gifts and a ‘calling’ is given to all of us.  Can we hear that calling?  Are we listening and wondering?  Are we prepared to hear?

Samuel was awakened from sleep by a voice calling, “Samuel!”  Samuel did not yet know the LORD because never before had he had a message from the LORD.  So the LORD called a third time, and once more Samuel got up and went to Eli. “Here I am. Did you call me?” Then Eli realized it was the LORD who was calling the boy.  So he said to Samuel, “Go and lie down again, and if someone calls again, say, ‘Speak, LORD, your servant is listening.’” So Samuel went back to bed. I Samuel 3:7-9
And we know that God causes everything to work together for the good of those who love God and are called according to his purpose for them.  Romans 8:28
Jesus called his twelve disciples together and gave them authority to cast out evil spirits and to heal every kind of disease and illness.  Matthew 10:1

It was by faith that Abraham obeyed when God called him to leave home and go to another land that God would give him as his inheritance. He went without knowing where he was going. Hebrews 11:8

Therefore I, a prisoner for serving the Lord, beg you to lead a life worthy of your calling, for you are called by God. Always be humble and gentle. Be patient with each other, making allowance for each other’s faults because of your love.  Make every effort to keep yourselves united in the Spirit, binding yourselves together with peace.  Ephesians 4: 1-3

Just as God called these men, Jubal, Samuel, Abraham and Apostle Paul to serve God, we, too, are called to prepare for living in peace.  Some days that peace seems unattainable and we must look beyond the world.  In the mercy and love of God, it is ours for an eternity.  Prepare yourself to listen for His Voice, in prayer, peace, joy and service.  In the ultimate preparation of our lives is our promise in John 14: 1-2 - “Don’t let your hearts be troubled. Trust in God, and trust also in me.  There is more than enough room in my Father’s home. If this were not so, would I have told you that I am going to prepare a place for you?

Preach the word of God. Be prepared, whether the time is favorable or not. Patiently correct, rebuke, and encourage your people with good teaching.  2 Peter 4:2

While we live in these earthly bodies, we groan and sigh, but it’s not that we want to die and get rid of these bodies that clothe us. Rather, we want to put on our new bodies so that these dying bodies will be swallowed up by life.  God himself has prepared us for this, and as a guarantee he has given us his Holy Spirit.  So we are always confident, even though we know that as long as we live in these bodies we are not at home with the Lord. 2 Corinthians 5:3-5

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Tuesday, December 02, 2014

How Long?

Oh, how we fret when we must wait.  Somehow how culture has created a 'hunger' in us to hurry, to speed through life in every aspect of existence.  We ignore the thousand years is a day for God – Rome wasn’t built in a day – and we hurry to the finish line.  We wait until we go to school and then plod impatiently through the 12 years of learning.  We rush to become an adult, until we see all the laws and regulations that are required to be grown up.  There are taxes, the first job, the first car and the marriage. 

And then there are the children.  Nine months of expectantly waiting?  And still that isn’t enough to know a lifetime of responsibility that happens after nine months of waiting for the birth.  The first twenty years is hands-on care and then comes the years of prayer as the children find their way in life.  The next part of the package is when the grandchildren arrive who tug on the heart strings.  And much more prayer fills our lives..

How long?  Each stage of life has its wait-time priorities.  How a baby frets when food is not readily available, and it continue through life.  Needs to be met change, as also the wants also change with time.

Then comes the time of asking, how long do I have to live?  Illness and disease toward the end of life gives us reason to ask, “How Long?”  How long do I have until I am well?  I watched my Grosmom Siemens sit for hours on our front porch rocking and singing.  Somehow I knew she was waiting.  As she rocked in rhythm of the song she sang, I wondered what she was thinking… “Shall we gather at the river, the beautiful, the beautiful river? Gather with the saints at the river that flows by the throne of God!  Did she see her parents, her husband, Jacob Siemens, or her little Annaka who crossed the river in years past and were in the presence of God?  Then the diminutive Grosmom, who loved to give us molasses cookies, lay dying after a stroke. I sat by her bed as the fan tried to cool the room from the intense Oklahoma August sun.  How long would it be?  I thought about all the stories she told me about coming to this country from Saratov, Russia.  And now her soul was waiting to be called home. 

Later, I watched my Mom enter that final waiting period.  She was impatiently waiting, crying out to God.  Mom knew her ‘exit lane’ from this life.  She was not afraid. She did not like the processing of waiting.

Last Sunday I heard our pastor paint a word picture of Simeon who waited for the Messiah to come to rescue Israel (Luke 2:26)   Did he wait impatiently?  Did he want to do something while he waited?  No, Simeon just waited.  He did not groan and call out to the Lord, How Long?  When Joseph and Mary came to the temple, he took the Baby into his arms and said….”Sovereign Lord, now let your servant die in peace as you have promised.  I have seen your salvation, which you have prepared for all people.  He is the Light to reveal God to the nations, and He is the glory of your people Israel!”  Luke 2:29-32.

Waiting is Worship!  is the thought attributed to Dietrich Bonhoeffer, a German Lutheran pastor, who was part of the resistance movement against Nazism and executed in April 1945.

The key is, how do we wait?  Impatiently?  Or do we wait patiently at the doctor’s office, at a stoplight or for something to finish baking, or to feel better, a wedding, a baby, to receive an important letter or email?  Whatever kind of waiting we experience, it is the kind or quality of waiting that makes the difference.

Impatiently waiting is to whine out messages, “How long must I wait?”  With King David, we cry, I am sick at heart.  How long, O LORD, until you restore me? Psalm 6:3.  Or with Habakkuk we groan, ‘How long, O LORD, must I call for help? But you do not listen! “Violence is everywhere!” I cry,  but you do not come to save.’ Habakkuk 1:2

Waiting is Worship!  Waiting with patience is a virtue.  Waiting with patience is a Fruit of the Spirit. (Galatians 5:22-23) But the Holy Spirit produces this kind of fruit in our lives: love, joy, peace, patience, kindness, goodness, faithfulness,  gentleness, and self-control. There is no law against these things!

But we are citizens of heaven, where the Lord Jesus Christ lives. And we are eagerly waiting for him to return as our Savior.   Philippians 3:20
• And so, dear friends, while you are waiting for these things to happen, make every effort to be found living peaceful lives that are pure and blameless in his sight. 2 Peter 3:14
• So also Christ was offered once for all time as a sacrifice to take away the sins of many people. He will come again, not to deal with our sins, but to bring salvation to all who are eagerly waiting for him. Hebrews 9:28

Waiting is the essence of the Advent, the birth of Jesus Christ.  We count down the days to the coming of Christmas, the celebration of the birth of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Hope of the world.  What makes waiting easier?  Prayer.  Prayer for patience and that the Lord speaks to us of eternal things.  May our moments and days of waiting be moments with our Lord. 

Waiting is worship.
Waiting is understanding that we are not in control.  
Waiting is looking up with reverence to the Greatest of all.
Waiting is realizing that the door is shut and can only be opened from the outside by the Holy One himself; God in the child in the manger; Jesus.  

God is coming; the Lord Jesus is coming; Christmas is coming.  Wait in hope.  And rejoice!*
(Thank you, Randy Boltinghouse.)



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