Thursday, September 24, 2009


Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
September 24, 2009

This is my commandment: that you love one another [just] as I have loved you. No one has greater love [no one has shown stronger affection] than to lay down (give up) his own life for his friends. John 15:12-13 Amp

The definition of a friend is a person attached to another by feelings of affection or personal regard. It is nice to have a friend. Some friendships last a lifetime while others last for a little while. They each have their purpose. We can have friendships with almost anyone. The criteria for friendship is to be able to trust and respect each other as the mutual affection grows. Some of my little friends are school age while others are seniors who have lived their life and aren’t afraid to share their wisdom, thank heavens! The friends my own age keep me posted on current events and my younger friends, well I do my best to keep up with them! I think of my pets as friends, too. Friends touching lives and mine has surely been touched!

The deep friendships are the ones that mean you can call in the middle of the night and it is okay. You can tell your deepest secrets to that person and you know you won’t be judged. You can share your fears with them and they listen while you sort through it out loud. To have a friendship like this is one of the many joys in life. Some folks mistake acquaintances for friends, but if you have ever had or been a friend, you know the difference. Ralph Waldo Emerson is quoted as saying, “The only way to have a friend is to be one.” Words so true!

I am reminded of the old hymn, “What a Friend We Have in Jesus”. Some of the lyrics are, ”What a friend we have in Jesus, all our sins and griefs to bear! What a privilege to carry everything to God in prayer!” He is our truest friend. When friendships end or people pull away from us for unspoken reasons, it is a comfort to know that God is there for us. We are commanded by God to love at all times. Today, I will tell my friends that I love them and ask God’s Blessings over them.

Thursday, September 17, 2009


Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
September 17, 2009

Turn your ear to me, come quickly to my rescue; be my rock of refuge, a strong fortress to save me. Since you are my rock and my fortress, for the sake of your name lead me and guide me. Free me from the trap that is set for me, for you are my refuge. Into your hands I commit my spirit; redeem me, O Lord, the God of truth. -Psalm 31:2-5 (NIV)

For years, we have loved travelling up and down the “Beach Road” on the Outer Banks. Long ago, it was the main route north and south that could take you from the northern beaches of Southern Shores to the popular fishing spot of Oregon Inlet. We never tired of taking the straight and narrow two lane drive that ran parallel to the beach. There was always something to see, even the occasional glimpse of the ocean behind the sand fences. Now more roads have been built, plus bridges too. An old Proverb says that “You cannot be lost on a road that is straight”.

Direction is a word that doesn’t only apply to road or maps. It applies to our life, too. Seeking direction is equivalent to having a compass. You know where you are and you know where you want to go. The compass spells it out. But our life and circumstances requires more than a compass….we need God to show us the way.

Thursday, September 10, 2009


Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
September 10, 2009

You turned my wailing into dancing;
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing to you and not be silent. O Lord my God, I will give you thanks forever.
-Psalm 30:11-12 NIV

Seaweed is found in the oceans of the world. Even though seaweed has the appearance of being plant-like, it is a marine algae and not a plant at all. There are thousands of species of seaweed that are known. They are basically red, brown or green in coloration. Seaweed is very beneficial to us with many uses ranging from food to fertilizer. But they are primarily a food source for marine animals and even provide shelter for many fish. There are underwater forests dense with seaweed that are called kelp forests. Seaweed does not have roots but instead has a special anchor called a “holdfast” that keeps it in place. Sometimes heavy wave currents can break the anchor and send the seaweed to shore. I must admit that when I walk over the sand dune to find a shoreline full of seaweed, I am not overjoyed. Mounds of drying seaweed that litters the beach is an unexpected sight and it spoils the landscape. It means we have to step over it, walk around it or try to ignore it until it rolls out to sea in the next tide.

Things happen that attempt to spoil our joy on a daily basis. Little things and big things. It is inevitable. Disappointments seem to roll in to our life at times with the swiftness of an incoming tide. Sometimes we can ignore them but sometimes not. Before long we feel overwhelmed. Don’t let the enemy win! Focusing on our problems and circumstances can cloud our vision and rob us of our joy. God gives us a choice of how to approach these ‘twists and turns’ on the journey of life. We can choose to override the problems and face each day with a positive attitude and a heart full of gratitude. Or, we can complain and murmur and sink deeper into the problem at hand, taking loved ones with us in a downward spiral. Expecting a life free from challenges and problems means living unrealistically. But what we can expect is that God will show us ways to deal with and conquer the challenges we face today and those of the future. Our God is a God that helps, encourages, teaches, guides and comforts us in all times.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

New Steps

Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Glass

In his heart a man plans his course, but the Lord determines his steps. -Proverbs 16:9 NIV

I have heard it said that both the months of September and January represents the most transitional times of the year. It is thought that returning to school in September, after a summer break, can be stressful on children and parents, as they adjust to a more structured schedule. And in January, the New Year, equipped with a new attitude, goals and resolutions, it is often our tendency to want a fresh new beginning…to shake off the old and prepare for the new. I think this is largely true. Those moments of pondering our life and seeking His Will are important, so we can know which direction to take during times of transition.

Walking along the beach and watching the waves roll in, one after the other in its rhythmic pattern, is probably the best place I know to ponder life. There is peace and serenity that comes with being near the water. The salt air and sound of the waves seems to clear the mind giving one a fresh slate on which to dream the dreams. Mark Twain said, “Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do. So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover.”

Holding on to faith with one hand and our dreams with the other, we should take advantage of all the possibilities God brings before us. Moving forward into the future, trying new things, learning, and achieving is not any different than walking the beach….it takes one step at a time to accomplish both.