Wednesday, February 25, 2009


Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
February 25, 2009

So encourage each other and build each other up, just as you are already doing. -1 Thessalonians 5:11 NIV

The definition of encourage is to inspire with hope, courage, or confidence. Each year about this time when I see the daffodils begin to poke through the soil, I know that the season of spring is not far off. The anticipation of warmer weather and a new growing season wards off the winter chill. The seed catalogs are coming in the mail and many of us are mentally planning our gardens. I think of the daffodil and other early bulbs as encouragers. They are among the first to step out ahead of everything else that remains dormant. My spirit gets a lift when I see a daffodil or two. It gives me hope for new beginnings.

While we can be encouraged ourselves by things in nature, kind words from friends or praise, we are reminded that we are to encourage others too. Being patient with someone is a major encouragement to a person. It says we care and are willing to stand along side of them, as long as they need us to. Being joyful in all things and with each other is another way to encourage and be encouraged. It has been said that “each person has an ideal, a hope, a dream which represents the soul. We must give to it the warmth of love, the light of understanding and the essence of encouragement”. I believe that God would be so pleased if we took a moment to encourage someone who will cross our path today. Perhaps God will send someone to us today for that very purpose.

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Coastal Erosion

Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
February 18, 2009

Love must be sincere. Hate what is evil; cling to what is good. Be devoted to one another in brotherly love. Honor one another above yourselves. Never be lacking in zeal, but keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. Romans 12:9-11 NIV

The dictionary says that erosion is the group of natural processes, including weathering, dissolution, abrasion, corrosion, and transportation, by which material is worn away from the earth's surface. There are many different things that can cause coastal erosion, such as water, wind, currents, waves and storms. Erosion is a real concern to those that have invested in coastal property. The sea seems to claim more of the sand and beachfront than it gives back. There is not much that can be done when the ocean currents and strong waves align to undermine the beaches. The damage is done. We dislike erosion and how it affects our ability to enjoy the shrinking coastline. However, our love of the shore goes deeper than any erosion and we are appreciative of our beaches, big or small.

Erosion is not limited to the shoreline. It can occur in relationships too. The flowers of Valentine’s Day have wilted, the candy has been enjoyed and the cards put neatly in a drawer for safekeeping. Hopefully though, the spirit of love still lingers on. Everyday can’t be Valentine’s Day but there can be time set aside on a regular basis for showing love to our loved ones. So many things can erode a good relationship. God can bring loving people together, but the outside world can do great damage to spoil and undermine a union. Habits that develop over time that foster an indifferent attitude towards one another can slowly erode what was once good. This applies to marriages, relationship between parents and children, siblings and friendships. It takes a joint effort to have a successful relationship. Important things like going the extra mile, giving thoughtful consideration and having a lot of patience can all make a positive difference towards living in harmony. A relationship that has its roots in God’s laws is what we should strive for. I believe God would have us use the loving spirit He placed inside of us and love others through Him. Finally, all of you, live in harmony with one another; be sympathetic, love as brothers, be compassionate and humble. Do not repay evil with evil or insult with insult, but with blessing, because to this you were called so that you may inherit a blessing. 1 Peter 3:7-9NIV

Wednesday, February 11, 2009


Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
February 11, 2009

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good! His faithful love endures forever. – Psalm 136:1 NLT

There are so many things that I love about the Outer Banks. This season of winter is actually a beautiful time of year. There is a quiet solitude that envelopes the beach and its surroundings. Great peace and a time of reflection can be captured by a pier, a bench by the sound or from a seaside beach access. If there is a need to warm the soul, to be close to God, to feel His Peace and see the beauty He created, this is the place and the time of year to do it. The sky is so blue and often cloudless. The stars and moon at night sparkle with such clarity. Where else can one go and see dolphins feeding in the distance, seagulls flying overhead, waves rushing through a pier’s pilings and feel peace at the same time! God’s Love is present everywhere here. What a gift it is!

The Bible has much to say about love, but the two most important instructions are these from Mark 12:28-31 NIV which are “Hear, O Israel, the Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind and with all your strength” and “Love your neighbor as yourself”.

Perhaps today is the time to put the past aside and begin anew with Jesus’ instructions as our guide, to make each day one where love is given and love is received. I heard it said once that the beauty of life is while we cannot undo the past, we can learn from it and change. So that every new moment is spent not in regret or guilt, but in wisdom, understanding and love. The lyrics from an old hymn dated back to 1912 have been drifting in and out of my thoughts today. “Love lifted me…Love lifted me…When nothing else could help…Love lifted me.” God’s Love for us will lift us up and over our own problems and circumstances so that in turn we can be a blessing to others.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Morning Sunshine

Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
February 04, 2009

But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength. They will soar on wings like eagles; they will run and not grow weary, they will walk and not be faint. –Isaiah 40:31 NIV

Isn’t it wonderful to wake up to sun streaming in through the windows? There is nothing like a sunny morning to get the day started off right. Even when the weather seems too cold to venture out or the winds too brisk, if there is morning sunshine available, I try to enjoy it. This past week my Mother and I headed out to the pier to watch the waves and see the seagulls up close. The seagulls basked in the morning sun, the wind rippling their feathers. When a cold blast would come, they would burrow their heads in their chest or huddle together for warmth. The gulls depend on the heat from the sun to keep them warm and I realize that we do to. The cheery brightness of day often seems to add hope and encouragement to an ordinary day. I came across a little poem this week when I was going through my Dad’s desk. It was in his handwriting. Since my Dad was not a poet that I know of, he perhaps got this poem from a greeting card or an inspirational calendar. It left an impression on him, though. He liked it well enough to write it down on paper to save for perhaps someone like me to find it. When I first read it, I thought that it was a great way to greet each day. Maybe you will agree. It reads:

"Come, O Lord, like morning sunshine
Making all life new and fresh
For the daily tasks and challenges
May we rise renewed in Thee "

Each day is a new beginning. Like morning sunshine that turns darkness into light, God can pour out his blessings, refreshment and strength over us in a daily renewal of our mind, body and spirit. And we can renew our relationship with Him by inviting Him to be a part of each new day He blesses us with.