This weekend we celebrate a special day, Father's Day. Those of us who have been blessed to have a great father know what this day is all about. My Dad was a man of integrity, hard work, and showed me his love for me in many ways. It has been said almost any man can be a father but it takes a special man to be a "Dad". Being a Dad is a 24/7, 365 days a year job. He provides for his family, hopefully spiritually as well as physically. He protects his family from harm. It is also good if he prays for his family and with them.
In the Scripture, the word "father" is mentioned 140 times when it is applied to an earthly father but appears 280 times when it applies to God as our heavenly father. So, God, the Heavenly Father is concerned with earthly fathers, after all, he provided them for us children. My earthly father is no longer present in this world, but his teaching, love, and presence will always exist in my heart and mind. If you have a father I encourage you to recognize him this weekend, with something special, just a hug or "thanks Dad" would be great.
Advice to fathers (and children) from a wise father: I Chronicles 28:9 "As for you my son, know the God of your father and serve Him with a loyal heart and with a willing mind; for the Lord searches all hearts and understands all the intent of the thoughts. If you seek Him, He will be found by you."
It seems that almost every time we turn on the TV someone is talking about race. It appears to appear in most conversations about anything from Lego blocks to children's cartoons and songs. After doing some reading and studying it is my understanding that God created only one race –mankind.
The struggle between people who are different from each other goes back thousands of years. (What would the world look like if we were all the same, boring?) There is a solution to this whole problem it can be summed up in one word –Love. Jesus told the Pharisees (who hated Him) "Love your neighbor as yourself" Paul added "Love does no harm to a neighbor" James says, " If you fulfill the royal law according to the Scriptures You should love your neighbor as yourself you do well, but if you show partiality you sin." "God shows no partiality" so who is my neighbor that we should love without partiality? The answer –everyone. So how do we deal with this current "cultural" problem: with the love of God the love that "casts out all fear". Race isn't the problem, love is, love of God and fellow man.
What are your eyes focused on today? Social media and TV news want us to be absorbed with the negatives. They are so engrossed in the virus and violence it seems that is all we are thinking about or talking about. Is that what our attention is fixed on? Is that all we are seeing these days? It has been said that the eyes are the windows to the soul. If we only look at the negative things, the "bad" things in this world we are missing so many positive things. If our eyes are only looing down we are missing the beautiful sunsets and sunrises, the gorgeous rainbows, the pretty clouds, the beautiful flowers, the smiles of little children.
However, when you look up we see the hope of a better tomorrow. David said "I will lift up my eyes to the hills from whence comes my help, my help comes from the Lord." Even Jesus lifted His eyes as he was hanging on the cross to look at God for a better tomorrow. May we follow their example and lift our eyes to look up at the positive tomorrow that is coming to our world.
"Turn your eyes upon Jesus, Look full in His wonderful face. And the things of this world will grow strangely dim"
Today I have beautiful sunshine outside my window. We have had so much rain recently and clouds that this sunlight is very welcome. I want to go outside and plant something in my yard, however, water lilies or rice was not what I had in mind. As I reflected on the sunshine and clouds I was reminded that the sun is always shining, it's just behind the clouds part of the time. We can be sure that the sun is right where it has always been.
God promised in Genesis 8:22 "while the earth remains ……day and night shall not cease". That is like Jesus, our "Sonshine", He will never cease to be there for us. Sometimes we can't see Him because of the cloud over our eyes (or dark sunglasses we have intentionally put on) but He is there
This health issue has been present in our lives for what seems forever. Mothers are at home trying to juggle children's schoolwork (often at different grade levels), often with her work at home job, and perhaps Dad's stay at homework too. (Who knew third-grade math was so difficult?) If that isn't enough of a problem add the responsibility of cooking extra meals, cleaning, maintaining the home, and the seemingly other endless tasks, it's no wonder we are tired. There does not seem to be an end in sight for this situation.
One day we will look back on this time in our lives with amazement and wonder that we made it through it. But for now, we need the power to lift us above these problems. God has a better idea for us, "those who wait on the Lord shall renew their strength, they shall mount up with wings like eagles… run and not be weary… walk and not faint". I am told that when a storm is approaching an eagle that it will fly high above the storm and its wind and danger. God offers to carry us above the storms of life if we let Him. What about you are you ready to fly high, or are you willing to stay down below in the middle of the storms?
Are you one of those people who are having trouble sleeping now? Is the stress of your current condition causing you to toss and turn at night? Are you worried about the "what if's", you know the if this happens what will I do? We are told that most of the objects of your worrying never happen in real life. Trying to guess about the future can cause a lot of stress.
May I suggest another way to deal with these sleepless nights? Just put on your comfy jammies climb in your bed and close your eyes and let someone else do the watching -- God. In Psalms 121:3-4 we are told that "He who keeps you will not slumber … He shall neither slumber nor sleep". So if God is your night watchman you can rest easy and sleep. He has everything under control, and He doesn't need your worrying to help Him.
This weekend is Mother's Day, a day set aside to commemorate mothers. It is the day that sells more greeting cards than any other day of the year, the day when flower shops are running around in circles to deliver the beautiful tributes to mothers. It is good to recognize mothers, in fact, the Bible instructs us to "honor … mothers". They are true heroes every day.
Dr. Mom has healed physical problems like the "ouchies and boo-boos" of childhood, and the teenage love sickness as well. She seemed to always on duty 24/7. Mothers are God's gift to us. By the same token children are a blessing to Moms, "children are a gift from God". It is a two-way street Mom's love children, children love Moms. Also don't forget the other gifts God has given children, like grandparents who have open arms, and listening ears, who bake cookies and seem to have time for you when others are busy. There are also Moms of the heart who are not your Moms by birth but who play an important part in our lives. The love of God is the only thing in this world that is eternal, the love of Mom's is the only thing that lasts in this world. So tell Mom you love her those 3 little words will last a lifetime.
Things our mother's taught us
My mother taught me about RELIGION.
"You better pray that will come out of the carpet."
- My mother taught me about TIME TRAVEL.
"If you don’t straighten up, I’m going to knock you into the middle of next week!"
- My mother taught me LOGIC.
"Because I said so, that’s why."
- My mother taught me FORESIGHT.
"Make sure you wear clean underwear, in case you’re in an accident."
- My mother taught me IRONY.
"Keep crying, and I’ll give you something to cry about."
- My mother taught me about the science of OSMOSIS.
"Shut your mouth and eat your supper."
- My mother taught me about STAMINA.
"You’ll sit there until all that spinach is gone."
- My mother taught me about WEATHER.
"This room of yours looks as if a tornado went through it."
- My mother taught me the CIRCLE OF LIFE.
"I brought you into this world, and I can take you out."
- My mother taught me about BEHAVIOR MODIFICATION.
"Stop acting like your father!"
- My mother taught me about ENVY.
"There are millions of less fortunate children in this world who don’t have wonderful parents like you do."
- My mother taught me about ANTICIPATION.
"Just wait until we get home"
Things Our Mothers Taught Us
My mother taught me about RECEIVING.
"You are going to get it when you get home!"
- My mother taught me MEDICAL SCIENCE.
"If you don’t stop crossing your eyes, the wind will change and you will stay like that."
- My mother taught me HOW TO BECOME AN ADULT.
"If you don’t eat your vegetables, you’ll never grow up."
- My mother taught me GENETICS.
"You act just like your father."
- My mother taught me about my ROOTS.
"Shut that door behind you. Do you think you were born in a barn?"
- My mother taught me WISDOM.
"When you get to be my age, you’ll understand."
- My mother taught me about JUSTICE.
"One day you’ll have kids, and I hope they turn out just like you!"
Does your life seem to be in the middle of a whirlwind right now?? Is there turbulence of Health issues, money problems, family driving you up the wall? Is the strong wind more than you think you can bear?
I am reminded of some people who were in a boat when a terrific storm came up that they threatened their very lives. Just when they thought they were "goners" a voice came to them out of the storm and said "peace" and the storm subsided. Take a minute to close your eyes to the problems, take a deep breath and listen for that voice in the storm saying "peace".
When a bowl of Jello is shaken or moved around have you noticed that it "jiggles"? Children seem to enjoy watching Jello "jiggle". In this world of continuing crisis are there times when your knees are knocking and your heart is pounding with fear? I am reminded of that bowl of Jello, at least which might be a good description of how our insides feel, all in a turmoil.
A man by the name of David knew what it was like to live in a world full of one crisis after another. He knew the solution to that shaken problem in Psalm 91 he says "He is my refuge and my fortress, My God in Him will I trust….You shall not be afraid of the terror". Back to that bowl of Jello, even when it is shaken up it still holds together. Are you holding it all together?
A Friday Funny
I've gone to look for myself
If I should return before I get back
Please ask me to wait.
This morning I have been having a "missing" problem, things I looked for were "missing", at least I thought so. I had the choice of sitting and "stewing" about it or embracing it with laughter. I chose to look on the lighter side of it. Prov 17:22
" A merry heart does good, like medicine."" So I had a good dose of medicine this morning, how about your day?
PS My daughter found all I had "missing" for me.