from Pearls of Wisdom (Agel and Glanze)
Your life was a blessing,
your memory a treasure;
you are loved beyond words,
and missed beyond measure.
People going through grief saying they think no one knows what they're going through.
It's not that I think people shouldn't grieve. They most certainly should, and do. But why assume that the condition of grief is constant? Why think that things will never change? When grief is fresh, it's the same as having an ever-present paper cut or a bruise that doesn't seem to heal.
Christmas...is music. This is one of my favorites. I prefer the version with Michael W. Smith singing with a choir, but this one is good, too.
Cravings — we all have them. There’s the classic appetite dualism of “Sweet vs. Savory” ― the yearning for sugar or salt. Then there is my crucial morning quest for caffeine disguised in a hot and oh, so delightful cup of coffee.
Cravings can go much deeper. Deep desires compel us to search for something or someone to quench the unyielding thirsts of our souls. The elusive quest has many labels. Acceptance, love, respect. High on the list, for nations and individuals, is peace. Civil war, ethnic conflicts, domestic violence, and divorce all create a growing hunger for peace. A famous entertainer quipped, “I would give my fortune for a moment of peace.”
Is it possible that God placed these universal desires in us to compel us to seek Him? Saint Augustine seemed to be convinced when he prayed, “You have made us for yourself, O Lord, and our heart is restless until it rests in you.”
Think of it for a moment: Jesus is the Prince of Peace. He told His followers, “Peace I leave with you; my peace I give you. I do not give to you as the world gives. Do not let your hearts be troubled and do not be afraid” (John 14:27). We can seek peace from other sources ― a walk in the woods, through strong friendships, and in the places we live — but the ultimate lasting peace does not come through circumstances. God’s peace is rooted in His unchanging character. Develop a craving for it, and He will satisfy you.
Jesus, thank you that you came to give the gift of peace to me and each person everywhere. You are truly the Prince of Peace. I invite you to transform my heart, soul, and mind with your peace. Amen.
|All of us, to some extent, borrow from others, from the culture around us. Ideas are in the air, and we may appropriate, often without realizing, the phrases and language of the times. We borrow language itself; we did not invent it. We found it, we grew up into it, though we may use it, interpret it, in very individual ways. What is at issue is not the fact of “borrowing” or “imitating,” of being “derivative,” being “influenced,” but what one does with what is borrowed or imitated or derived; how deeply one assimilates it, takes it into oneself, compounds it with one’s own experiences and thoughts and feelings, places it in relation to oneself, and expresses it in a new way, one’s own.|
-- Oliver Sacks, The River of Conciousness
All I had to do was to ask the recruiter one question.
It immediately brings back those weeks ahead of Christmas when the Sears and Montgomery Ward holiday catalogs would be delivered, and my sister and I would dog-ear the pages and circle images of toys we wanted for Christmas.
And yet we knew that out of the dozen or so things we marked we were only allowed to have one.
Just one wish...
This seems to be a trend in preaching today. A preacher becomes enamored with an idea they have picked up from the Word and after reflecting on the meaning of the scripture they have read or studied, a sermon is born.
Nothing wrong with that, right?