Always Giving Thanks

 

 

 

 After work today, I decided to stop by the grocery store.

Since it had been awhile since I had been shopping, I needed several items.

 I pushed my rather full cart out the store building doors to find that it was raining.

Not a downpour, but a steady, light rain, nevertheless.

A disparaging thought came to my mind about not looking forward to loading groceries into the car in the rain.

As I was pushing the cart in the parking lot, a man with a very young boy came walking toward me to enter the store.

The boy was about four years old.

He was smiling and saying, "It’s raining!" with a voice brimming with pleased wonderment.

I began to realize that it’s all about attitude.

Not exactly upset about my circumstances, I hadn’t been happy about the rain, either.

As I stood at the trunk of my car loading the bags of food, the rain was making little dimples in the boxed items I had purchased.

My clothes were getting wet.

I looked up to see a young woman who had just gotten out of a car near me.

She had a little girl with her, perhaps 7 or 8 years old.

The girl was dressed as a princess with a pink tiara on her head.

Pausing for a moment to look at her, I watched as she walked toward the store with both hands outstretched, palms up, feeling each drop of rain as it gently fell to her skin.

Attitude.

There it was again.

Rain?

Yes! Isn’t it wonderful?

Watering the earth.

Dripping on all the food that God blessed me with.

Sometimes, I just need to change my attitude.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

This Is The Day

 

 

 

My son has a new kitten.

That means that at least for now, I also have a new kitten.

She’s very precious, really.

She wants to play and explore and see everything–all at once!

Lately, I have been trying to consider making some changes in my life.

Changes like trying to enjoy the moment I’m in.

Living in the present.

This past weekend, I was fast asleep at 5:51 a.m.

That is, until something suddenly walked onto my neck and stayed there.

Sleepily, I woke up just enough to realize that the kitten was trying to awaken my face to the morning.

The pre-dawn morning.

Remembering, even in my groggy state, that I needed to live in the moment, I began to tell myself to do just that, right then.

Here was a sweet kitten that wanted to come see me.

Planted on my neck, I began to appreciate her as she began to take a small nap there, allowing me a few more moments of sleep.

The next morning, I was once again sleeping–this time at 5:35.

The gray and black ball of fur found her way to my neck to wake me up—for the second day in a row.

No problem.

I needed to enjoy the moment.

And the love.

And the curious playfulness of an innocent kitten.

 

 This is the day the Lord has brought about.
We will be happy and rejoice in it.

—Psalm 118:24

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

What I Do Have

 

 

A friend gave me a very colorful bag some time ago.

It’s quite roomy, able to hold many things.

What I put in it is up to me.

I get to choose.

Once I put the items that I have chosen into my bag, they are mine to take out and give away, if I decide to.

Though I may wish to, I cannot give away what I do not have, however.

Since we live in a "social media" society, we have the priviledge to share our thoughts and needs with a great many people online.

There are times when we see needs presented regarding illness or some other serious circumstance on a social media page.

Comments toward that need can be quite varied.

Why?

Most friends are sympathetic to a posted need and they want to give encouragement and hope.

They each have a spiritual "bag" just as you and I do, to draw from in situations like these.

When a need is posted, or even if we learn of a need from a phone call or visit, we reach into our bags and look to see what we can offer.

Some of us will reach into our bags and find worldly wisdom–logic and reason:

"This is only a short period of difficulty for you. Things can get better. Put more effort into solving this."

Others of us will reach in and discover trusted, yet ultimately powerless knowledge:

"I am sending you positive thoughts."

There are some who will look into their bags and find prayer:

"I will pray for you every day."

There are bags holding large portions of faith in God’s goodness, mercy and love:

"Here is my prayer for you—‘Dear Jesus, come and fill my friend’s heart and mind with Your peace during this time. May they feel Your comfort and love and know beyond a shadow of a doubt that You are with them.’"

Of course, we can never truly know the contents of anyone else’s bag just by reading online comments or even talking directly to them.

What is really in their bag is between them and God.

What is in our own bags is between us and God, as well.

Still, the truth remains—-we cannot give what we do not have.

If we do not have the knowledge of the love of God and salvation through Jesus, we cannot give that knowledge away.

As recorded in Acts, chapter 3, Peter did not have money to give.

Instead, his bag was filled with the faith of knowing Jesus Christ.

When seeing a man who was lame from birth, he gave what he had:

 One day Peter and John were going up to the temple at the time of prayer—at three in the afternoon.  Now a man who was lame from birth was being carried to the temple gate called Beautiful, where he was put every day to beg from those going into the temple courts.  When he saw Peter and John about to enter, he asked them for money.  Peter looked straight at him, as did John. Then Peter said, “Look at us!” So the man gave them his attention, expecting to get something from them.

 Then Peter said, “Silver or gold I do not have, but what I do have I give you. In the name of Jesus Christ of Nazareth, walk.”  Taking him by the right hand, he helped him up, and instantly the man’s feet and ankles became strong.

—Acts 3:1-7

 

We each have a spiritual bag.

What’s in yours?

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

All Of You Together

 

 

 

 The wild flower was growing beside the road.

A blending of red, yellow and green shades harmonized perfectly to make it a beautifully appealing plant.

Each color and individual part was important to the whole.

As believers, we each have a special purpose.

I Corinthians 12:27 says,

"All of you together are Christ’s body, and each of you is a part of it."

Earlier in that same chapter we find:

The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ.  Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit.

 Yes, the body has many different parts, not just one part.  If the foot says, “I am not a part of the body because I am not a hand,” that does not make it any less a part of the body.  And if the ear says, “I am not part of the body because I am not an eye,” would that make it any less a part of the body?  If the whole body were an eye, how would you hear? Or if your whole body were an ear, how would you smell anything?

—I Corinthians 12:12-17

God wants to use each of us.

We may be a yellow or red bloom, a green leaf or the stalk of a plant.

We are all the family of God.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
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Flooded With Light

 

 

 

It was a quiet morning as I sat reading in the back room.

I had eaten breakfast and decided to just have a few calm moments to myself.

At one point, I was reading something about how in order for the sunlight to come into your life, you need to raise the blinds.

After seeing these words, I looked up and noticed that the blinds on the window directly in front of me were closed.

The brightest sunlight was mostly blocked except for a tiny strip that was allowed to break through in an uncovered spot.

There was a lesson for me both in what I was reading and in what I was experiencing.

I don’t want to block out the light that God has for me.

But do I still have blinds pulled down in areas of my life, not allowing what’s best?

 

I pray that your hearts will be flooded with light so that you can understand the confident hope he has given to those he called–his holy people who are his rich and glorious inheritance.
 I also pray that you will understand the incredible greatness of God’s power for us who believe him. This is the same mighty power  that raised Christ from the dead and seated him in the place of honor at God’s right hand in the heavenly realms.

—Ephesians 1:18-20

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

Forgetting

 

 

 

 

 

The old bicycle was parked on the grounds of the seed company.

Just how old was it?

That would be hard to tell.

Its wheels and frame once provided transportation for someone.

The basket on the handlebars had carried belongings safely.

But that was in the past.

Now, the wire framed basket holds flowers and the weathered bicycle remains forever stationary, yet still maintaining a purpose as it mixes beauty and nostalgia, rust and elegance.

I’ve been challenged lately with the idea of changing the past.

The only way the past can really seem to change is in movies where time travel is possible.

Even then, it is not only the past that changes.

A changed past equals a changed future.

I don’t live in a world of fiction, so I must adhere to the reality of time.

The past is gone and I cannot change it.

The future will be given to me as God allows.

Right now is super important.

It is what I have.

I’m afraid that I have wasted many precious hours considering ways to make my past better.

It didn’t really feel like that at the time, though.

I just thought I was considering how to make now better.

Thinking too much about the past can keep me from enjoying and appreciating now.

There are things that God wants me to experience now.

There are things that He wants me to do in His service now.

If I am not careful, I will squander the opportunities of today by spending too much time considering the missed opportunities of yesterday.

 

 

 Brothers and sisters, I do not consider myself yet to have taken hold of it. But one thing I do: Forgetting what is behind and straining toward what is ahead,  I press on toward the goal to win the prize for which God has called me heavenward in Christ Jesus.

—Philippians 3:13-14

 

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

Never Leave You

 

 

 

 

It was my very first time to visit the park.

An inner city place of quiet and a mix of community and solitude.

Quiet joggers punctuated the circular stone walkway that led around a lake.

Part of the trek merged into a wooden bridge beside the water.

People sat on park benches while others walked their dogs—-big and small.

Different types of birds had grown accustomed to the clientele of the park.

Showing little concern or regard for the humans who were crowding their space, they didn’t mind if one walked near them.

As I stood by the water, I noticed a baby duck.

So fuzzy and innocent looking.

Nearby was the Momma.

It would seem strange and out of place to see a baby duck just all out by itself somewhere.

We expect to see the mother monitoring the welfare of her young.

Would it seem strange and out of place to think that we are just all out by ourselves somewhere without Jesus?

Could that happen?

A baby duck could actually be separated from its parent by means of some unforeseen danger.

We can never be separated from Jesus.

We may look like we are out on the water alone, but it will never be so.

We are encouraged by these words from Hebrews, chapter 13:

Keep your life free from love of money, and be content with what you have, for he has said, “I will never leave you nor forsake you.” So we can confidently say,

“The Lord is my helper;
    I will not fear;
what can man do to me?”

(verses 5-6)

 

If you feel small and insignificant, like you’re paddling in an uncharted pond, know this: Jesus is with you.

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

A Place for You

 

 

 

When I took the picture, I hadn’t realized what I’d been looking at.

It was only afterwards, when I saw the photograph that it became clear to me.

Two birds flying very closely to one another seem to be touching wings.

It’s almost as if they were "holding hands."

I’ve seen photos and videos of skydivers holding hands as they plummet to earth.

But what about holding hands as you leave the earth?

When we die, God will be in charge of the journey.

Completely.

No effort of our own will be needed.

Will His angels escort us to His presence?

Will only one angel come?

Will we just immediately find ourselves in Heaven?

These are questions we can’t quite answer yet.

Still, I wonder….

If an angel is sent to accompany us on our journey, will they hold our hand as we travel?

As children, the loving adults in our lives held our hands as we walked.

They comforted us and assured us of their watchcare over us.

It brings a smile to my face to imagine flying away to Heaven, holding hands (or touching the wing) of an angel.

Jesus has prepared a place for us.

One day, we will fly away and be with Him forever.

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Invited to the Wedding Supper

 

 

 

Then I heard what sounded like a great multitude, like the roar of rushing waters and like loud peals of thunder, shouting:

“Hallelujah!
    For our Lord God Almighty reigns.
 Let us rejoice and be glad
    and give him glory!
For the wedding of the Lamb has come,
    and his bride has made herself ready.
 Fine linen, bright and clean,
    was given her to wear.”

(Fine linen stands for the righteous acts of God’s holy people.)

 

Then the angel said to me, “Write this: Blessed are those who are invited to the wedding supper of the Lamb!” And he added, “These are the true words of God.”

 —Revelation 19:6-9

 

Who is the bride of Christ?

All those who have put their faith and trust in Jesus.

Are you invitied to the wedding supper of the Lamb?

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Pure in Heart

 

 

 

 “Blessed are the poor in spirit, for theirs is the kingdom of heaven.

 “Blessed are those who mourn, for they shall be comforted.

 “Blessed are the meek, for they shall inherit the earth.

 “Blessed are those who hunger and thirst for righteousness, for they shall be satisfied.

 “Blessed are the merciful, for they shall receive mercy.

“Blessed are the pure in heart, for they shall see God.

 “Blessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called sons of God.

—Matthew 5:3-9

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

Victory

 

 

 

The white flowers blooming near the metal cross and the flame caught my eye as I stood on the church lawn.

Easter Sunday.

A day to remember what Jesus did for us.

A day to remember what we cannot do for ourselves.

A day to remember that God can do all things—even bring the dead to life.

I know there must be a lot of people who have trouble considering that God can raise the dead.

Is it more difficult to believe that God can bring what is dead to life or to believe that God can create life?

Every living thing is a mystery too vast to completely understand.

Those who put their trust in Jesus will have eternal life.

This, too, is a mystery too vast to completely understand, yet we can trust in God’s power.

 

 

Behold! I tell you a mystery. We shall not all sleep, but we shall all be changed,  in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, at the last trumpet. For the trumpet will sound, and the dead will be raised imperishable, and we shall be changed.  For this perishable body must put on the imperishable, and this mortal body must put on immortality.  When the perishable puts on the imperishable, and the mortal puts on immortality, then shall come to pass the saying that is written:

“Death is swallowed up in victory.”
 “O death, where is your victory?
    O death, where is your sting?”

The sting of death is sin, and the power of sin is the law.  But thanks be to God, who gives us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ.

—I Corinthians 15:51-57

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

Truly

 

 

 

 

 At the end of the Good Friday service I attended last night, everyone walked in silence to the outside of the building.

There, on the lawn, stood a wooden cross.

The pastor took a black cloth and draped it all around.

We stood there, looking, reminded of what Jesus had done to pay the penalty for our sins.

After a time of personal refection, those in attendance began to leave, one by one.

When Jesus died, the Bible tells us that this happened:

And behold, the curtain of the temple was torn in two, from top to bottom. And the earth shook, and the rocks were split.  The tombs also were opened. And many bodies of the saints who had fallen asleep were raised,  and coming out of the tombs after his resurrection they went into the holy city and appeared to many.  When the centurion and those who were with him, keeping watch over Jesus, saw the earthquake and what took place, they were filled with awe and said, “Truly this was the Son of God!”

–Matthew 27:51-54

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

With You

 

 

 

 

The day of Unleavened Bread had come.

Jesus talked to Peter and to John, telling them to make preparations to eat the Passover.

They asked Him where they should do this:

 

 He replied, “As you enter the city, a man carrying a jar of water will meet you. Follow him to the house that he enters,  and say to the owner of the house, ‘The Teacher asks: Where is the guest room, where I may eat the Passover with my disciples?’  He will show you a large room upstairs, all furnished. Make preparations there.”

 They left and found things just as Jesus had told them. So they prepared the Passover.

  When the hour came, Jesus and his apostles reclined at the table.  And he said to them, “I have eagerly desired to eat this Passover with you before I suffer. For I tell you, I will not eat it again until it finds fulfillment in the kingdom of God.”

—Luke 22:10-16

 

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

Purity of Heart

 

 

 

Who are your friends?

Who are mine?

What is the condition of my heart?

When others think of the words that come from my mouth, what kind of attitude is the most prevalent?

 

 

He who loves

purity of heart,

and whose speech

is gracious,

will have the king

as his friend.

—Proverbs 22:11

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myras
thoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

What Is Good

 

 

 

 

He was the first bumblebee I think I have seen this spring.

Buzzing around the Lantana bush in my backyard, I watched him for several moments.

As the flowers return in spring, so do the bees.

God is faithful to give us what is good.

 

 Show us your unfailing love, Lord,
    and grant us your salvation.

 I will listen to what God the Lord says;
    he promises peace to his people, his faithful servants—
    but let them not turn to folly.
 Surely his salvation is near those who fear him,
    that his glory may dwell in our land.

 Love and faithfulness meet together;
    righteousness and peace kiss each other.
 Faithfulness springs forth from the earth,
    and righteousness looks down from heaven.
 The Lord will indeed give what is good,
    and our land will yield its harvest.
 Righteousness goes before him
    and prepares the way for his steps.

–Psalm 85:7-13


 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

You Who Have Made the Heavens

 

 

 

Last night, the moon was full and bright.

As I was walking my dog, I noticed that the moonlight was creating a rainbow-like area in another part of the sky.

Hurrying inside to get my camera, I found that it was gone when I returned.

Looking at another area of the sky, I was thrilled to find the same phenomenon happening again!

There, in the black sky with only a few clouds, color adorned the blackness.

God has made such beauty and He allows us to see it!

 

Ah, Lord God! It is you who have made the heavens and the earth by your great power and by your outstretched arm! Nothing is too hard for you.

–Jeremiah 32:17

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Can A Man Hide?

 

 

The little bird kept coming to the plant stalk, nibbling.

I took several photographs of him as he was flitting about.

One of the pictures could almost suggest that he was trying to hide.

When I am very upset over a matter, it is not my general inclination to get on the phone and call someone.

I don’t want to get into my car and drive to a friend’s home to talk it out.

If I am at work, going into a coworker’s area to share my thoughts just isn’t what I normallly do.

 

Learning to share with a select group of trusted friends when troubles come my way would certainly be a good thing.

I am coming to understand that hiding things like hurt and illness creates a false "me" that others believe.

Although I may want to hide my feelings and the situations behind them, I cannot hide from God.

He knows everything already.

Trying to hide from God would be more like hiding behind a thin plant stalk and hoping no one noticed me.

Since God is aware of everything in my life and in yours, it’s okay to talk to Him about it.

There’s no need to try to hide.

 

 

 "Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him?" declares the LORD. "Do I not fill heaven and earth?" declares the LORD.

—Jeremiah 23-24

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

time

 

 

 

 

When I am very upset over a matter, it is not my general inclination to get on the phone and call someone.

I don’t want to get into my car and drive to a friend’s home to talk it out.

If I am at work, going into a coworker’s area to share my thoughts just isn’t what I normallly do.

 

Learning to share with a select group of trusted friends when troubles come my way would certainly be a good thing.

I am coming to understand that hiding things like hurt and illness creates a false "me" that others believe.

Although I may want to hide my feelings and the situations behind them, I cannot hide from God.

 

 

 Can a man hide himself in secret places so that I cannot see him? declares the LORD. Do I not fill heaven and earth? declares the LORD.

—Jeremiah 23-24

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

All Are Justified

 

 

 

 

I have sinned.

So have you.

We have fallen short of the glory of God.

You and I.

The good news?

We are justified freely.

How?

By God’s grace through redemption.

What kind of redemption?

The redemption that came by Jesus.

 

But now apart from the law the righteousness of God has been made known, to which the Law and the Prophets testify.  This righteousness is given through faith in Jesus Christ to all who believe. There is no difference between Jew and Gentile,  for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,  and all are justified freely by his grace through the redemption that came by Christ Jesus.

–Romans 3:21-24

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

And Buys It

 

 

 

I hadn’t noticed her at first.

A woman was out in the open field.

It was the middle of the day and the sun was bright.

What was she doing?

It was hard to tell from a distance.

Could she have been taking samples of the wildflowers?

Gathering seeds?

Checking the soil?

Whatever the reason, she was out and about and taking care of her task.

Proverbs 31 speaks of a woman who is busy:

“She picks out a field and buys it.
    She plants a vineyard from the profits she has earned.
 She puts on strength like a belt
    and goes to work with energy."

–Proverbs 31:16-17

 

Not only busy, but proactive and assertive.

Not only assertive, but confident.

What things would God want me to be confident about?

What things should I be busy doing?

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

May He Bend Our Hearts

 

 

 

 When Solomon finished praying this prayer for mercy to the Lord, he stood in front of the Lord’s altar, where he had been kneeling with his hands stretched out toward heaven.  Then he stood and in a loud voice blessed the entire assembly of Israel, “Thanks be to the Lord! He has given his people Israel rest, as he had promised. None of the good promises he made through his servant Moses has failed to come true.  May the Lord our God be with us as he was with our ancestors. May he never leave us or abandon us.  May he bend our hearts toward him. Then we will follow him and keep his commands, laws, and rules, which he commanded our ancestors to keep May these words which I have prayed to the Lord be near the Lord our God day and night. Then he will give me and his people Israel justice every day as it is needed.  In this way all the people of the world will know that the Lord is God and there is no other god."

—I Kings 8:54-60

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

Before Each Person

 

 

 

 It’s not like every movie I see makes a great impact on me.

I don’t watch movies often, but when I do, I am hopeful that there will be some significant meaning to the experience.

Still, there are the really good ones and then there are the so-so ones.

This past week, a character on a currently popular film helped me visualize a lesson from the Bible.

In fact, I don’t think I will ever forget it.

The images are still with me.

In Proverbs 16:25, we are given these words:

There is a path before each person that seems right,
    but it ends in death.

The character in the movie I watched just knew what he was hoping for in the future.

He could see himself in his new setting, even visualizing what it would be like.

Several scenes portrayed what his thoughts were as he daydreamed about what he would be experiencing.

This, in and of itself, is not such a bad thing.

It helps to think and plan about the future, considering the outcome of our hopes and dreams.

Because it was a movie and not real life, the audience could clearly tell that what this character hoped for would bring about his eventual end.

There was no doubt about it.

The character simply had too limited an understanding of himself and of the consequences surrounding choices that would bring him closer to his "dream."

What was obvious to anyone watching was completely imperceptible to him.

Will I ever be able to forget such a vivid example of wishing for something that God knows will bring me harm?

My thoughts are tiny and obscure; God’s thoughts are unfathomable.

When I think that I know what I want, I need to listen for God’s voice.

Is He in agreement with me—

or is He advising me against that which will lead to my harm?

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

Of the Aged

 

 

Seasons of life.

We cannot escape them, for they are a part of what living really is.

It is easy to wish away certain seasons, wishing to be old enough to have certain freedoms when we are still young and yearning for younger, healthier days when we grow old.

It is God who put the seasons of our lives in motion.

As adults, we are allowed to see our children and get a glimpse of who we once were.

Our children see us grow older and get a glimpse of who they will become.

Each season is a blessing from God and each holds precious moments that can only be experienced in that time.

Whatever season you are in at this moment, consider it a gift.

Are you looking forward into the future from the eyes of a youth?

Are you looking back at life with knowing eyes, savoring memories more valuable than any worldly possession?

Whether your hands are smooth or wrinkled with age, reach out to others with God’s love.

This is the season to live.

 

 

 

 

 Grandchildren are the crowning glory of the aged; parents are the pride of their children.

—Proverbs 17:6

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Name of Jesus

 

 

 

 

Driving to work today, I heard a song on the radio.

The singer’s words spoke of waking up in Heaven one day, proclaiming the Name of Jesus.

While we are here on Earth, we have the opportunity to choose Jesus.

We care about what other people think of us—if they love us or respect us.

But, caring about having a relationship with Jesus or not is the most important.

The great love we had for our parents won’t get us into Heaven.

The great love we had for our children won’t, either.

Not even the love we had for our spouses.

The only love that we can have that will be the deciding factor in our eternal destination will be our love for Jesus and the acceptance of His gift of life.

One day, as we enter Heaven, we will be filled with joy as we see those we love who are believers there with us.

Together, we will proclaim the Name of Jesus.

 

 

Yours will be the only Name that matters to me
The only One Whose favor I seek
The only Name that matters to me

 

 When I wake up in the Land of Glory
And with the saints I will tell my story
There will be one Name that I proclaim

Jesus, Jesus, Jesus, just that Name

(Big Daddy Weave–The Only Name)

 

 

 

In your relationships with one another, have the same mindset as Christ Jesus:

 Who, being in very nature God,
    did not consider equality with God something to be used to his own advantage;
 rather, he made himself nothing
    by taking the very nature of a servant,
    being made in human likeness.
 And being found in appearance as a man,
    he humbled himself
    by becoming obedient to death—
        even death on a cross!

 Therefore God exalted him to the highest place
    and gave him the name that is above every name,
 that at the name of Jesus every knee should bow,
    in heaven and on earth and under the earth,
 and every tongue acknowledge that Jesus Christ is Lord,
    to the glory of God the Father.

—Philippians 2:5-11

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

 

 

 

 

Every Green Plant

 

 

 

I saw him from a distance.

A beautiful red winged blackbird.

Carefully, I tried to photograph him before he decided to fly away.

The bright red and yellow coloring of just a section of his feathers was so striking.

He didn’t belong to anyone in particular, except to say that he was God’s bird.

He was just living his life out in the grass and trees, meeting each day with his Creator’s provision.

 

And to all the beasts of the earth and all the birds in the sky and all the creatures that move along the ground—everything that has the breath of life in it—I give every green plant for food.” And it was so.

—Genesis 1:30

 

 

 

 

**It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com

 

 

A Friend Loves

 

 

The two chairs sat empty near the lake.

Located near lofty shade trees on the hotel property, they issue a silent invitation to come and relax.

Relax with someone.

It is a great blessing to have good friends.

To have someone to call when you are happy.

To have someone to call when you are not.

To have a friend who will be there for you either way.

It is also a great blessing to be the friend that someone needs.

 

A friend loves at all times, and a brother is born for a time of adversity.

–Proverbs 17:17

 

Building Others Up

 

 

 

 

It was an exquisitely constructed building.

As I stood inside, looking up at the windows, I decided to photograph my surroundings.

Being a tall structure, it was easily visible outside from a distance.

Layer after layer of materials had been finely crafted in order to create such architecture.

We are not so different from buildings, are we?

Although we don’t really change our height once we enter adulthood, our spiritual and emotional stature can change.

Isn’t it interesting how we describe ourselves and others with words like up and down?

We can feel so down about losing our job and feel so up and excited about our wedding engagement.

We can build others up or bring them down….

with our words or our actions–or both.

With encouraging and loving words, we can help to build them up, so that they stand tall, with a renewed sense of worth.

Layer after layer of support from friends and mentors serve to build us up, making our hearts tall and visible as we then interact with the world around us.

 

Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.

–Ephesians 4:29

 

 

 

 

 

***It would be a privilege to hear YOUR thoughts! If you would like to comment on what you’ve just read, please send an email to me at this address:

 
                         myrasthoughts@yahoo.com