Wednesday, November 27, 2013



O Give thanks unto the Lord, for He is good: for His mercy endureth for ever.

-Psalm 107:1



Thanksgiving is the time of year that makes me think of simpler times. I think of the first Thanksgiving where the history books say the menu included wild turkey, pumpkin and grains from Indian corn.  The first Thanksgiving was intended not only as a celebration of the harvest, but as a day of prayer as well to thank God for the crops.  It is written that we should hem our blessings with thankfulness so they don't unravel. When the women of that time made their long hand-sown dresses, I wonder if they thought of their blessings with every stitch they sewed.


Their world was probably as complex to them as ours seems to us today. While the times have changed from a primitive world to a more modern one, the meaning of Thanksgiving has never changed.  Thanksgiving is nationally honored in our country and is an official holiday. The origin of the word “holiday” comes from the phrase “holy day”. That is a good reminder to celebrate our holidays with reverence. But how do you do that, starting with Thanksgiving? Maybe you have never said a blessing over a meal before, or maybe you will be in a large crowd and are uncomfortable praying out loud. That is okay. Perhaps you can read scripture from the Bible or find a God-inspired Thanksgiving poem from the bookshelf to read. Try sharing a collaborative prayer where everyone takes a turn at the table saying one thing they are thankful to God for. Perhaps you could enjoy taking a walk on the beach to see God's beauty while giving thanks to Him in private. Whatever the action, I believe God would want to be a part of our Thanksgiving holiday to make it more of a holy day. We should show our thankfulness through our example. President John F. Kennedy said, “As we express our gratitude, we must never forget that the highest appreciation is not to utter words, but to live by them.” 

Saturday, November 16, 2013

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. "Honor your father and mother"—which is the first commandment with a promise— "that it may go well with you and that you may enjoy long life on the earth."[ Ephesians 6:1-3 NIV
I like the book of Ephesians in the Bible. Six short chapters but filled with guidelines and the “do’s and don’ts of Christian living. For me, it is the book of the Bible that puts in all in order. We are guided as to our relationship and obedience to God, our relationship to the church, our spouses and children. Chapter 6 begins by telling the children to obey their parents for it is right. In my youth I tried to do what I was told but didn’t always like it. I thought that my parents enjoyed controlling my actions and my thinking.  And I was quick to dream of what it would be like when I could do what I wanted, when I wanted to do it. Well, that is overrated. ‘Know that now - ‘didn’t know that then!! Actually this command to obey our parents is part of God’s law. Children need wisdom, guidance, structure, discipline and most of all a good, godly example to follow. Anyone that attempts to undermine this most important relationship between parent and child is going against God.  Grandparents sometimes do this and it teaches the child to be disobedient or to not trust their parents. It plants seeds of doubt in the mind of the child.  God set up the order of things and we are to follow if we are to be obedient. We are blessed to have grandparents that honor parents and love the children. That is how it should be.
 Growing up, it was my relationship with my grandparents that sustained me at times. Our time together was short but the memories everlasting. I always knew that when I could be a grandparent, I would model myself after my dear grandmother that I called, Nanny. She taught me about God, we drew pictures of Jesus from old church bulletins, she walked with me along the beach and we picked up sticks of driftwood for the evening fire. It is no wonder I love the beach so much. It represents unconditional love.
Now that I am a grandparent myself I must choose my words and actions carefully.  To not cross boundaries, undermine the parents’ authority, to respect them and their parenting and to be silent when things may not be my business. I raised my children and am proud of what my husband and I did. It is now my children’s turn to raise their families. I must always remember my place and that is one of support to both parents and grandchildren. My grandchildren are loved, adored, disciplined and encouraged to be the best they can be.
Grandparents are the most trusted and cherished group of people ever!! It is with good reason. Grandparents love without condition. They overlook the latest trend, trying to see the person inside that is searching so hard to find an identity. They give freely and expect nothing. They offer serenity and a peace that only comes with experience and wisdom for the years that they have lived.  Grandparents can be the towering lighthouse in the family with the light of love and God that protects everyone. I believe our only job as a grandparent is to be sure our grandchildren see God’s Light shining through us in the way we love them and honor their parents, treat them, and care for them and nurture their family. Is there any grandparent that has never prayed with their grandchild? Do it.  It is the sweetest voice in the world to hear a child talk to God.

Thursday, November 7, 2013



Consequently, faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word about Christ. –Romans 10:17 NIV

This is the time of year that I love to take a few loaves of bread to one of the piers to feed the seagulls. I guess I think they need a little extra nourishment on the cold days and I am more than happy to oblige. They seem to be waiting for me and their feeding frenzy begins at the first scattering of bread. Some gulls are patient and wait for me to throw bread directly to them. Others are aggressive and will catch the bread in mid-air practically taking it out of my hand. They are so hungry for it. Some are content to eat if there is any left over and then there are those that are simply uninterested.

Isn’t it that way with us too? We know we should feed our faith. Some people are very hungry for the Word, others are lukewarm and then some simply don’t care to be bothered.  You might be wondering, I’d like to feed my faith but how do you do that? Today’s scripture tells us that faith comes from hearing. Hearing what? Hearing the Word of God. Just by opening the Bible and beginning to read puts us on the right path. You might say that the Bible is big and I am not sure where to begin. I have heard it said by more than one person that Psalms is a great place to begin; Proverbs gives wisdom and in the New Testament, start reading the four gospels which are Matthew, Mark, Luke and John. That is a terrific way to begin and a good plan.

So, why the importance of feeding ones faith? What is the point? God’s Words and Instruction, His Promises are all things that will build our faith and provide a compass for our life. Knowing and learning God’s Word is the beginning and then we can boldly declare it as our faith builds and develops.  When faith builds, we are then able to store these teachings in our heart for the day we are in need through circumstances or situations that comes against us.  Psalm 51 talks about having a pure heart and a steadfast spirit within. Today could be a fresh start when we purposefully leave the past behind and set out on a new path to find deeper faith.