Is it a special holiday? No not really. Am I alive, breathing, eating, working, driving, moving, surviving? Yes, yes and yes and if you are reading this so are you!! Enjoy this new day! Brenda J Wood
It seems we will believe anything today. The more absurd, the more we want to take it in as truth. I include here some of the old timers that we fell for and still swallow. Turkey does not make you fall asleep on Thanksgiving. It is sheer gluttony and over indulgence.
Chocolate does not give you pimples. (What a relief to find this out!) Apples are not a miracle cure for anything. Honey, sugar, brown sugar, maple syrup, high fructose, etc. All have the same bodily effects. Autism is not caused by vaccinations.
Carrots don’t make your vision better. (Thank God, for I am not a fan of carrots!) Your brain cells aren’t stemmed by your age. Stuff your brain (not your stomach!) In spite of yogurt ads, yogurt can’t fix your stomach issues. Gum won’t clog your digestive system. What goes in, goes out.
Have I rocked your world? Challenged your common sense? Will you at least take Jesus’ word for it?
And Jesus called the people to Him and said to them, Listen and grasp and comprehend this: It is not what goes into the mouth of a man that makes him unclean and defiled, but what comes out of the mouth; this makes a man unclean and defiles him. (Matthew 15: 10-11, AMPC)
E- Eternal life – For the wages of sin is death, but the gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord. (From Romans 6:23, NIV)
A-Jesus arrested on our behalf- Then the detachment of soldiers and the Jewish officials arrested Jesus. They bound him. (From John 18:12, NIV)
S- Sold for silver- When Judas, who had betrayed him, saw that Jesus was condemned, he was seized with remorse and returned the thirty pieces of silver. “I have sinned,” he said, “for I have betrayed innocent blood.” (From Matthew 27:3-4)
T- Truth ignored- “What is truth?” retorted Pilate. He went again to the Jews and said, “I find no basis for a charge against him. (From John 18:38, NIV)
E- Earthquake- When the centurion and those with him who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified, and exclaimed, “Surely he was the Son of God!” (From Matthew 27:54, NIV)
R- Redeemed- Christ purchased our freedom and redeemed us from the curse of the Law and its condemnation by becoming a curse for us—for it is written, “Cursed is everyone who hangs crucified on a cross.” (From Galatians 3:13, AMPC)
This is my interpretation of John Wesley’s covenant service in 1775.
Dear God, I am not mine, but I am yours.
Give me to do, what you would have me do.
Give me things to do, let me suffer for you, working for you, or be set aside for you.
Lift me up or bring me to the lowest, all for you Lord
Whether I be full or empty,
Let me have everything or not one thing,
I live for your glory, your pleasure and at your disposal
Now God the Father, Christ the Son and the Holy Spirit,
All I have, all that I am, is yours
I promise you this here on earth, but pray that you ratify it in heaven. Amen
Even in Bible times, phonies and liars abounded. The advice there is still good today.
Yes, friends there are phonies in our midst. Here are the highlights from the Book of Jude. I suggest you prayerfully read the whole chapter on your own.
I’ve dropped everything to write you about this life of salvation that we have in common.
I write insisting—begging! —that you fight with everything you have in you for this faith.
Some people have infiltrated our ranks (our Scriptures warned us this would happen).
Beneath their pious skin are shameless scoundrels.
Their design is to replace the sheer grace of God with sheer license.
Which means doing away with Jesus Christ, our one and only Master.
I’m laying this out as clearly as I can.
Even though you once knew all this well enough and shouldn’t need reminding.
The Master saved a people out of Egypt. Later he destroyed those who defected.
These people sneer at anything they can’t understand.
Do whatever they feel like doing.
Live by animal instinct only—they participate in their own destruction.
They’re giving you a black eye.
These are the bellyachers, grabbing for the biggest piece of the pie.
Talking big, saying anything they think will get them ahead.
Make a religion of their own whims and lusts.”
These ones split churches, thinking only of themselves. There’s no sign of the Spirit! Friends I hope none of these are you. If it is, its not to late for prayer and repentance
We are living a religious syncretism
Syncretism is the blending of two or more religious belief systems into a new system, or the incorporation into a religious tradition of beliefs from unrelated traditions.
“Ah”, we say. “We would never do that!”
Oh, my friends we do this every time we bend the Word of God to suit ourselves.
The Bible says:
“Will a mere mortal rob God? Yet you rob me.” “But you ask, ‘How are we robbing you?’ In tithes and offerings. You are under a curse—your whole nation—because you are robbing me. Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Test me in this,” says the Lord Almighty, “and see if I will not throw open the floodgates of heaven and pour out so much blessing that there will not be room enough to store it. (Malachi 3:8-10, NIV)
But we say: “Sorry, God, I don’t believe in tithing. I am poor. I don’t have enough for myself,
And thus, we syncretize the Word of God.
Or we read that God says:
But I tell you, love your enemies and pray for those who persecute you, that you may be children of your Father in heaven. If you love those who love you, what reward will you get? Are not even the tax collectors doing that? And if you greet only your own people, what are you doing more than others? (From Matthew 5:43-48, NIV)
And we say, “I will love those who I want to, I will determine by other means who to love and not to love. I am smarter than God.”
Forget the world-wide syncretism of religions and faiths. It starts locally right in our own home.
To be a Christian means to know, love and obey Jesus. Otherwise we are liars. The truth is not in us.
Treat your masks as well as you treat your underwear. If this list confuses you, just substitute the word underwear every time I use the word mask. And remember your mom with laughter!
Always wear a clean mask every time you go out. You never know when you will end up in the hospital.
Your mask should be snug but not revealing. After all, some things are meant to be kept private.
Don’t pick or scratch at your mask in public. People will talk.
Don’t use the same mask two days in a row. You will smell. They have to be washed.
If your masks have the days of the week marked on them, be sure to wear the right one on the right day.
Never trade masks. Who knows where their mask has been!
If the mask gets ruined, has worn fabric or elastic, toss it out. Show some respect for yourself.
Discard your mask safely so that others don’t aren’t exposed to your ‘you know what.’
Don’t quit. Don’t cave in. It is all well worth it in the end. It is not success you are after in such times but survival. Be survivors! Before you’ve run out of options, the Son of Man will have arrived. (From Matthew 10:21-23, MSG)
Do you remember the good old days of you and Mother? Oh, weren’t they swell? Unless you remember the parts where she said things like this.
” You cannot wear that out of this house!”
“He’s not old enough to drive and no you are not going out with him.”
I don’t care what the other kids do, you are not doing it!”
To which we sometimes sneakily responded under our breath.
Lead me not into temptation? Ha! Follow me I know a short cut!
Then there were the promises of the future.
If you do the thing you need to do when you need to do it, then someday you can do the things you want to do when you want to do them. (Zig Ziglar)
Sigh. Oh yes, the good old days of Mother. Governor Andrew Cuomo said that there are two things in life that will never leave you, The eye of God and the love of a mother. Life comes with a manual called Mother!
But where are we now? Many of our mothers have passed on and we are bereft. Fear not. Google has risen to take her place! Bravely ask questions like this.
Where is the best place to eat in this city? (Lots of recommendations with warnings to check opening!)
Are fascinators in style again? (Apparently yes!)
Google your name to see what shows up. It’s like Mom calling instructions out the door after you!)
Am I too fat? (Like Mom, it says you are perfect just the way you are; if you check the right web site!)
Job openings? Google hints, just like Mom, that you can do anything you set your mind to do.)
Who will win the election? (Google and Mom say “Be sure that you vote!)
Google is my Mother.
Its heart in the right place.
Google is my Mother,
Though it doesn’t have her face.
Google is my Mother,
Through thick and tall and fat.
Google is my Mother.
It even knows where I am at!
The chips are down. The truth is out. All we really care about is the economy, not the people.
Listen to the news. Money, money; keep the economy going. Watch out for the stock market!
Folks they are all wrong in their yelling!
“Noise proves nothing. Often a hen who has merely laid an egg cackles as if she had laid an asteroid.” (Mark Twain)
Our evaluation of things is skewed. We’ve taught ourselves that more money equals better product. Not so.
Maybe that is why some still deny the Christ. He doesn’t charge an arm and a leg.
In fact Jesus gave his life freely for no other reason than that he loves us. He freely offers us forgiveness of sin and eternal life. Then he gives us the Holy Spirit to live in us.
And we say—“doesn’t cost enough…must not be worth much.” That is a lie.
Then you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”(John 8:32, NIV)
Prayer- Lord, forgive us for undervaluing your free gift to us, the most priceless gift ever offered to us. Amen.
It’s not a big issue really but I have one phone that sticks on the number 9. No matter when I try to dial a number, it always seems to have a nine in it. And the nine sticks firmly and throws off my dialing finger.
Now my phones came in a set of four so it’s not really a problem except that no matter where I am, that sticky phone seems to be the one I pick up!
I thought about how my life’s sticky keys; my trouble spots, that stir me into trouble every single day. Only if I turn my stickiness over to God will I ever get unstuck.
I think I will call myself nine…to remind myself that sticky doesn’t have to be me…only my phone.
Our isolation may have uncovered some of our stickiness. There is only one way to cope with our bad habits. .Let us not despair, for with God’s help we can conquer anything.
You might like to read Romans 8:26-37, but for now I offer you Romans 8:26, NIV.
In the same way, the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us through wordless groans. (Romans 8:26, NIV)
Prayer- Lord, you know our stuck-ness. Help us to be more like you! Amen.