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Archive for December, 2011

Sometimes I need to be reminded that all of God’s children are precious and each and every one fits into God’s plan.

I wonder if the eyes of my heart are as open to God’s glory as this young man?  Watch this Godtube video and be blessed today.

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Today, I decided to do something a little different. It has been a while since I read much from the minor prophets.  So I turned to Habakkuk.  I read through his questions to God and the resulting answers God offered him.

I was moved by the prophets honesty and transparency before God.  I caused me to think about how the prophet felt and what he might have been enduring.  There are so many similarities between the environment in which the prophet lived and ours today.  There is so much injustice in the world.  Particularly, in our society, our priorities are so messed up that we don’t even see the true picture of what goes on daily in our own communities.

But God answered Habakkuk’s cries with this, “Look at the nations and watch – and be utterly amazed.  For I am going to do something in your days that you would not believe, even if you were told.”

Do you ever think we need God to do something in our days that completely blows our minds?  I think we are there!

I think it is fitting during this Advent season, as we anticipate the celebration of Jesus’ coming to earth, that we lay our hearts before God, and join in with Habakkuk, asking God to move in a mighty way – not some day – now.

In Habakkuk 3, we are given a prayer that Habakkuk offered to God.  It begins, “Lord, I have heard of your fame; I stand in awe of your deeds, O Lord.  Renew them in our day, in our time make them known; in wrath remember mercy.”

That is my prayer today.

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I have a confession to make – – it is December 7 and we still don’t have our Christmas tree up at our house.  I realize this would be a travesty in some homes and I am feeling the guilt even as I write this.  Tomorrow night will be the first time we have been home as a family in the evening since Thanksgiving so I hope to at least begin the process then.

As I think about the whole “putting up the tree” event, I have to admit, the part I dislike the most is putting the lights on the tree – wrapping each branch individually – it gives me  a stomach ache just thinking about it.

But I can say with all honesty, the best part of decorating the tree is getting the ornaments out and hanging them.  Why?  Because just about each and every one has a story or special meaning.  Most are tied to each of our kids.  So as we go through the ornaments, we see each child’s first Christmas.  We see ornaments that each of the boys has made either in school or at church.  It makes the tree special!

Last night, I had a very moving and unique opportunity to be part of a wonderful Christmas tradition that one of the funeral homes does each year here in Littlefield.  They call it the Service of Remembrance.  It is a time for families who have lost loved ones over the past year to come and remember.  A part of that service is a reading of the names of all who have passed this past year.  And each name has an ornament which is then hung on the tree in remembrance of the person.

It was truly a moving experience.  So often, holidays are difficult for those who have lost loved ones recently.

If that is you today, don’t fight the feelings but don’t focus on the loss.  Today, focus on the gain.  Focus on what an impact your loved one has made on your life.  You are a better person because of them and, as believers, we will see them again some day.

Be blessed today.

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My Plan B

Yesterday, I made mention of the fact that the snow really did a number on the plans of many people.  You can read that post here.

But I found it interesting that today – a day that is just as icy and plan altering as yesterday – I got to the office and began to go through email and ran across a blog post by @MichaelHyatt he titled, Embracing Plan B.  (You can read it in full here).

In his post, he made the same point that I made yesterday – that we can’t control the world and sometimes our plans get changed.  A simple reminder that as badly as we would like to think we are – we are not really in control.

But the statement that caused me to sit back in my chair was this – “Over the years, I have learned that my Plan B is often God’s Plan A.”

Have you ever found that to be true in your life?  After you live through something that did not fit your plan, have you ever reached the conclusion that everything worked out just as it should have?  I am reminded that regardless of how thoroughly I plan something, it might just be that what I allow as a back-up plan, might just be how God planned it all along.

So today, as your day progresses – just remember that God has a plan and it is Plan A.  There is no Plan B with God.

There is hope and rest to be found in knowing that even when my plans don’t come about just as I expect, it will be OK.

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This morning, we awoke to snow on the ground.  I immediately turned on the TV to check school closings and delays.  I also wanted to see what the roads were like in our region.  I was planning on attending a workshop in Plainview today which is over any hour drive on clear roads.

So I was interested to see what I should expect.  It became apparent rather quickly that the winter weather hit harder north of us than it did at home.  Before leaving the house, I called the gentleman responsible for the workshop today and he informed me that the event had been postponed for a week due to weather.

I have to admit, with all I need to get done today, I was a bit relieved.  So I headed to the office.  As I drove, I noticed a huge difference in the amount of traffic on the road.  Most people were still at home.  Schools are starting later than normal to try and alleviate some of the traffic that is typical around 8:00 am.  Some businesses decided to open later as well.

As I have reflected on this morning, I have had to smile a bit.  Isn’t it amusing that in a world so developed with technological advances in transportation, weather forecasting and the like, a little snow still alters our entire existence.

Maybe we aren’t all that after all?!

God is still on the throne – and like it or not – we aren’t!

Just a thought.

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Paradox of a Sunrise

 

This morning I opened the garage door and as I was loading my computer in the car, I noticed that there was an amazing orange glow reflecting on the houses outside.  I knew it was going to be a glorious short commute this morning as I had the opportunity to watch the sun come up.  So I rushed back in to grab my coffee and tell everyone good-bye.

As I backed out of the garage and headed down the street, I was humbled by the sight of the sun beginning to peak over the horizon and the light reflect off the wispy, cotton-like clouds.  As I drove, I kept one eye on the road and one on the sunrise (well, maybe not literally).

It was a beautiful sight and I saw God at work in the scene.  As I reflected on this experience during my drive, it dawned on me that the sun comes up every day but it is not always as meaningful as it was today – the clouds, the visibility – all those things combined to make a fresh picture.  It happens everyday but it is fresh everyday.

Isn’t our Father like that?  A divine paradox.  God is unchanging but new every, single day!

Aren’t you glad?!

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