R. I.P.

Psalm 100 Shout for joy to the Lord, all the earth. Worship the Lord with gladness; come before him with joyful songs. Know that the Lord is God. It is he who made us, and we are his; we are his people, the sheep of his pasture. Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the Lord is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.

My mother-in-law was laid to rest yesterday. We have experienced a week filled with tears and laughter. We have enjoyed sharing Pat stories amongst family and friends. Every story told revolved around her big heart filled with unconditional love for everyone she met. What a legacy this remarkable woman has left for her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren. While we are left grieving, heaven is rejoicing. Until we meet again, I will love you always.

Happy New Year

Job 28:23-28 God understands the way to it (wisdom) and he alone knows where it dwells, for he views the ends of the earth and sees everything under the heavens. When he established the force of the wind and measured out the waters, when he made a decree for the rain and a path for the thunderstorm, then he looked at wisdom and appraised it; he confirmed it and tested it. And he said to man, “The fear of the Lord – that is wisdom, and to shun evil is understanding.”

Happy New Year from our home to yours. How did you ring in the new year? I saw people smashing plates, burning notebooks, lighting fireworks and many just going to bed early, hoping to wake to a fresh start in the new year. So many things we took for granted have changed during the pandemic of 2020. We have been forced to change the way we live by slowing down and getting back to the basics of life.

As things begin to transition to our new normal, make wise choices. Choose what is important and leave the rest behind you. May God bless you with love and laughter and grant you wisdom as we coast into 2021.

HOPE 2021

Romans 15:4 For everything that was written in the past was written to teach us, so that through endurance and the encouragement of the Scriptures we might have hope.

As we roll into 2021 this week, let’s take the time to look back at how 2020 has changed our lives, and the lessons we learned from those “inconveniences”. For sure, we were all forced to slow down, stay at home more and travel differently when we did go out.

Did 2020 draw you closer to Jesus, or did you drift away with no spiritual structured? How did you become creative with your worship? Although I miss the hugs and fellowship of our congregation, I have enjoyed more personal quiet time with Jesus as I read through the Bible in 2020.

What is your hope for 2021? Of course we all hope to loose 10 pounds, but what is your spiritual hope for the upcoming year? Find your hope in the scriptures. God is speaking to you through the encouragement and endurance of His word. If you are looking for an aid for your reading, let me know. I would be happy to send you my book “Walking in the Word, A Daily Journey Through the New Testament” for just $10. God Bless your new year. May it be filled with hope!

JOY

Luke 2:9-11 An angel of the Lord appeared to them, and the glory of the Lord shone around them, and they were terrified. But the angel said to them, “Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all the people. Today in the town of David a Savior has been born to you; he is Christ the Lord.”

It is Christmas week! Are you ready? Even as an adult, the anticipation of Christmas morning grows stronger every day. I just can’t wait to witness the joy on my children’s faces as they open that special gift from under the tree.

Christmas gifts bring great joy because they are given with love. In the same way, the angel told of the great joy given to everyone….. The gift of Jesus Christ. The joyful luster of our Christmas gifts fade over time, but we can find everlasting joy in the gift of Jesus.

This week we hang our stockings and wait for the big man in red (Santa) to fill them with trinkets and candy. This year, let’s hang our trust on the baby Jesus who came into this crazy world to bring joy to all.

God Bless You and have a Joyful Christmas!

Mary Christmas

Luke 10:38-42 As Jesus and his disciples were on their way, he came to a village where a woman named Martha opened her home to him. She had a sister called Mary, who sat at the Lord’s feet listening to what he said. But Martha was distracted by all the preparations that had to be made. She came to him and asked, “Lord, don’t you care that my sister has left me to do the work by myself? Tell her to help me!” “Martha, Martha,” the Lord answered, “you are worried and upset about many things, but only one thing is needed. Mary has chosen what is better, and it will not be taken away from her.”

Are you reading through the 24 chapters of Luke during advent? As Mike was reading Luke 10 at the dinner table 3 days ago, he read the verses above. Wow! I think Luke was writing to me in my 2020 advent season. It is easy to become overwhelmed by the preparations for Christmas. I find lists I have written all through the house. Lists for baking ingredients, lists for gifts to purchase and wrap, lists for decorating ideas, lists for Christmas movies I want to watch, lists for lighted neighborhoods I want to visit……

It is easy to become overwhelmed by the preparations of Christmas. But, Mary chose what was better as she sat at her Lord’s feet. Mary’s focus never left Jesus. This Christmas, give yourself a break. Instead of getting wrapped up in creating the perfect Pinterest Christmas, focus on what is important. Stay at the feet of Jesus.

From my half decorated house to yours, I wish you a very “Mary Christmas”!

The Light

Matthew 2:2 “Where is the one who has been born king of the Jews? We saw his star in the east and have come to worship him.”

Christmas lights are popping up everywhere. As I drive through neighborhoods this year, I have seen more Christmas lights than I ever have. I don’t know if people have more time to decorate because they are staying home, or if everyone needs a little more Christmas this year. Either way, Christ is shining as bright as the star in the east. In this world of darkness, may the Christmas lights point you in the direction of Christ to worship Him not only on Christmas morning, but all year long.

Christmas blessings to you and your family!

Christmas Time

Luke 1:1-2 Many have undertaken to draw up an account of the things that have been fulfilled among us, just as thy were handed down to us by those who from the first were eyewitnesses and servants of the word.

Christmas, like most things in 2020 is going to look different this year. Many of the Christmas traditions we celebrate every year in preparation for Jesus’ birthday will be canceled. There will be no Christmas pageants to attend or concerts to experience or cookie exchanges to eat our way through.

We Zoomed with my family on Thanksgiving, after our gathering was canceled. My sweet niece who is two weeks away from delivering her third was on the call. She is prepared to have this child, pandemic or not. During these difficult days, how are you preparing for the birth of our Lord and Savior, Christ Jesus?

This year we have been blessed with the gift of fewer gatherings and more quiet time at home. During the time I have been given, I am partnering with Faith Radio to read the 24 books of Luke during December. Every night during dinner, we will read a book from Luke. Please join me as we spend more time in the WORD and less time in the WORLD.

Happy Thanksgiving

Thanksgiving Blessings to you and your family!

Thanksgiving Is Canceled

1 Chronicles 16:34 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.

2020 continues to be a rough year. This week the Governor of Minnesota shut down the entire state due to the virus spiking to all time high in our state. At midnight on Friday all bars and restaurants closed. Youth and adult sports along with health clubs were halted. But the worst restriction was no indoor gatherings of more than one household. We were planning to host my entire family for thanksgiving. My parents, sisters, nieces and nephews were traveling here from several states to celebrate not only Thanksgiving, but our Dad’s 80th birthday which happens to fall on Thanksgiving this year. (If you see my dad this week, make sure to wish him a happy birthday) On Friday we decided to cancel our family Thanksgiving celebration. It was a difficult situation, but the health of my parents and siblings had to come first. We will have a huge reunion once things get under control.

So, instead of feeling sorry for myself, I have decided to invite Jesus to our thanksgiving table. I will prepare a feast of turkey and pumpkin pie that we will eat until we are stuffed, all the while giving thanks to the Lord for he is good: his love endures forever. We have so much to be thankful for even during a worldwide pandemic. Spend your thanksgiving counting your blessings instead of wallowing in what you are missing.

May you all have a very happy Thanksgiving!

Shelter

Psalm 61:4-5 I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings. For you have heard my vows, O God; you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name.

Shelters come in many forms for all people and animals. But, to shelter in the wings of God is the most comforting type of shelter there is. Those who have loved the Lord from generation to generation pave the way for us to find our way to the shelter of God’s wings.

Because we have the record of God’s amazing power and unwavering faithfulness to previous generations, we can be confident that everything he promised to those who came before us will be ours as well. God has called each of us to be distinctly their own. We all have a godly heritage that is important to pass down from generation to generation.

Take comfort with your loved ones in the wings of the Lord this week as you share God’s personal story from your life.