Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Holy Week

Holy Week
Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
March 28, 2012

The disciples went and did as Jesus had instructed them. They brought the donkey and the colt and placed their cloaks on them for Jesus to sit on. A very large crowd spread their cloaks on the road, while others cut branches from the trees and spread them on the road. The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted, “Hosanna to the Son of David!” “Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!” “Hosanna[ in the highest heaven!” When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, “Who is this?” The crowds answered, “This is Jesus, the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee.” Matthew 21:6-11 NIV

We are approaching the beginning of Holy Week which begins with Palm Sunday and ends on Easter Sunday. The significance of Palm Sunday celebrates the triumphal entry of Jesus into Jerusalem, which was the week before He died and His resurrection. The Bible reveals that when Jesus entered Jerusalem on a donkey, which is a symbol of peace, the crowds greeted Him by waving palm branches, thereby the significance of calling it “Palm Sunday”. Almost immediately following this time of celebration in the ministry of Jesus, He begins His journey to the cross followed by the Resurrection which is celebrated on Easter Sunday.

Many Christians will honor this time with reverence and by attending services to commemorate the week made holy by Jesus. No matter how each religious denomination honors these holy days, as Christians we are all unified with the knowledge of the love that Jesus has for us all. Reading the Book of Mark can offer a very concise timeline of Jesus’ life and resurrection. I know that I will pay more attention next week by being more prayerful, reading the Bible to follow Jesus’ last steps and walking my journey with gratitude for the gift of Jesus’ love. If you don’t regularly attend a church, just try it once and see what you think. If you do attend church, ask someone to come as your guest. There may be someone who wants to be invited so they can say yes to you and yes to God. Let’s glorify God and be mindful of Jesus in everything we do this coming week.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012


Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Ore Glass
March 21, 2012

And God said, "Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate the day from the night, and let them serve as signs to mark seasons and days and years. Genesis 1:14 NIV

Although the official start of spring was just a few days ago, it feels like it has already arrived. The spring season will last about three months and is a season that most people look forward to. It is the tilt of the Earth that causes the rising change in temperature and also the longer days of daylight. This time of year represents a renewal in many ways. Lawns appear to come back to life, flowers and bulbs bloom in a kaleidoscope of color and the foliage of trees and branches spring forth in greenery. God has given us beauty beyond words on this Earth. It is the natural scenery that surrounds us that is so captivating. The bold yellow of daffodils, the majestic purple of hyacinths and wiry forsythia branches all contribute to the colors of Spring. For some blooms, it means “a coming back to life, a “rebirth,” and for others, it is a “new beginning, a brand new start.”
The mild winter is now behind us and we can spring to life too. It’s the season for sprucing things up like painting the house, bringing out the lawn furniture, or getting our hands in the flowerbeds, to work the soil. But these are all material things. So what about our lives? What lies deep inside of us waiting to be born? That is a question to take to prayer. Real change takes place in the depths of ones soul. For a person to seek a new beginning, it may take getting rid of old mindsets and adapting to different ideas or thoughts. To some, it may mean seizing the opportunity to learn something fresh and exciting through a book or class, that stirs a passion. Or it could be that it is time to give back, by volunteering time and God-given talents, to help others in need. Making positive changes in daily living has its rewards that are reflected in our mind, body and soul. But in making adjustments, it is important also to stay in balance to be sure there is ample time for prayer, work, rest and play. Spring is a good time to launch into action and accomplish a goal or a dream. But we should not forget that God has given us life and we are His. Prayerfully taking our lives to God, and asking for His lead on what to do in the next season of our life, is a starting point. He will bring us direction if we earnestly seek it. The hibernation of winter is past and it is time to awaken our lives in a way that is pleasing to God. Search Him for guidance to a “fresh start” this Spring and delight in the joy that awaits us.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012



The Lord watches over you-
the Lord is your shade at your right hand;
the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
The Lord will keep you from all harm-
he will watch over your life;
the Lord will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.
-Psalm 121:5-8 NIV

At this time of year, waking up to a day with sunshine always brightens my spirit. In contrast to the gray days of winter, a sunny day gives me that extra motivation to get things done so I can step outside to enjoy it, if only for a few moments, before retreating back inside. One day it is winter coat weather and the next day it feels like Spring! I think the key word here is being adaptable in what awaits us each day, no matter what it is.

To adapt suggests that we modify, conform to or accommodate what lies before us. We often get thrust into situations that we would prefer didn’t exist. Like being confronted, being misunderstood or misjudged. Circumstances like this, no one enjoys, but sometimes they cannot be avoided. We are not responsible for other’s actions towards us but we are held accountable for how we treat our accusers. When unpleasant things come up and have to be dealt with, just remember that Jesus had to deal with situations too and He was mistreated. We can gain strength from His example. Take heart and know that God knows everything. It is also important to teach our children to listen, to be fair-minded and Christian in their actions and reactions to people and situations. If we all do this, then we will know that we have taken the high road and God will give us His peace

Thursday, March 8, 2012


Reflections by the Sea © Betsy Glass
March 08, 2012

My brothers and sisters, if one of you should wander from the truth and someone should bring that person back, remember this: Whoever turns a sinner from the error of their way will save them from death and cover over a multitude of sins. James 5:19-20 (NIV)

My puppy loves to go on walks whether it is our neighborhood, the park or the marina. But he must always be on a leash. I call it his “lifeline”. Without the leash, his explorations and wandering curiosity would surely put him in harms way like chasing squirrels into traffic or losing his way and not being able to find his way back home. Or worse yet, falling in the water. While he seems quiet and restful lying at the foot of a park bench, it would only take a second for him to wander off and we couldn’t risk losing him. When my dog and I go to the marina for walks, we notice all the boats are tied up with lines and the boats have life jackets on board. Anchors are used to keep from drifting when out on the open water and some of the larger boats even have life rafts. Lifelines are essential.

I just finished a wonderful Bible study on the book of James. There are so many nuggets of wisdom in that book. Too many to mention actually but worth the time to delve into it. Today’s’ verse is the one that really spoke to me and it is a “call to action”. Many of us, me included, will sometimes shy away from speaking to a loved one or a good friend when we see them taking the wrong road. We rationalize that they are old enough to know what they are doing and we look the other way and hope for the best. That is not what we are being called to do. If after praying for wisdom, seeking God’s Will and we show ourselves willing to help, God may equip us with the courage and strength to bring a person back from sin. We have to be careful here because we can become righteous for the wrong reasons, but when God asks us to help to offer a lifeline to one of His people, we should step up. What comes to mind are teenagers that are overwhelmed with choices and temptations and often times succumb to the wrong influences in their life…and there is no one to notice or say anything. That is just one example. Good people that get out of balance with too much of a bad thing needs a loving friend to tap them on the shoulder and pull them back. We can love someone back in a loving way with dignity rather than preaching, taking a superior tone or threats. We can be the lifeline that brings someone back to God which saves them and their soul. Biblically, we are responsible to help if we can.