Middle Age Ramblings

Where I Share My Thoughts On This Journey Called Life

Archive for the category “Christianity”

VOTE!

I haven’t been blogging any this year. I realize that my audience has probably vanished. There is, however, something I need to say today.

VOTE

Many have said that we don’t have any choices in this election. That neither of the candidates are acceptable. I hear your objections clearly, but it is vital that we all exercise our right to vote.

There may come a day when that right is taken away. There may come a day when that right is greatly restricted compared to now. It’s simple. I may not agree with every one who reads this post, but I would fight if necessary to defend our right to say what is on our minds even if we don’t agree. So speak up! Go Vote!

 

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The Sky Shouts!

When I was younger, I loved to fish. Some of my favorite times spent fishing were very early in the morning just as the sun was coming up over the horizon.

Most of those times, I was awestruck by the burst of color in the early morning sky. I may have missed catching a few fish, but I had the opportunity to see the awesomeness of God’s creation.

I think I understand a little of what the Psalmist was thinking when he wrote these words:

The heavens declare the glory of God,

and the sky above proclaims his handiwork.  Psalm 19:1

Life moves so fast that we often miss those times when God pulls back the curtain and allows us to see a glimpse of His glory. May we learn to slow down when possible and look for the hand of God in His creation!

I Have An Announcement

The phrase “I have an announcement” is often used in our culture when someone wants to announce an event that is about to happen. Everyone from major corporations to people with a social media account make announcements every day. Some of these announcements affect large groups of people. Many times, however, the announcements only affect a small group.

There was 1 announcement made a long time ago to the most unlikely group of people to receive such message. This announcement began a series of events that would forever change the world.

The announcement took place in  a very small town in a small country to a group of people who were the outcasts of society. Nobody wanted to have anything to do with them. The smelled different from everyone else, they didn’t dress like everyone else either.

You see, this announcement was made to a group of shepherds, outside if Bethlehem, in Israel. The announcement was so big that it was sent from God. He didn’t just send 1 angel to make the announcement. He had a whole sky full of angels making this announcement!

This announcement was amazing! There was a baby born in Bethlehem. Not just any baby though, this baby was the Son of God! God became human, lived a perfect life, and gave his life that we could be free from the penalty of sin, which is death! What an amazing announcement! What an amazing God!

The greatest announcement ever made was made to a group of outcast shepherds. the announcement was made to the entire world. Just like the shepherds, we need to spread the announcement to all we come in contact with.

He Is Risen!

Today is Easter Sunday. It is the day on which we Christians celebrate Jesus’ resurrection. As I think about the events of that weekend some 2000 years ago, I am reminded of the raw human emotion in this story.

Think about that first Easter for a moment. The disciples were hiding. They thought they would be next to be killed. They feared for their lives and at the same time, they grieved because their leader was no longer with them. Just sit for a moment and get a picture in your mind of the scene in that upper room. The same room where they had just celebrated the passover.

It is no wonder that morning when the women who had gone to the tomb came bursting into the room with the news that Jesus’ body was gone that they felt apprehension. I’m certain that was much confusion and doubt in their minds.

Than Mary came running in with the news that she had seen Jesus! All of the confusion, the fear, the grief all came to a fever pitch.

We tend to be too rough on the disciples and their doubt. I would imagine that we would feel the same way if placed in the same situation.

Soon, however, Jesus would appear to them and put all of their fears to rest right? Hardly the Bible tells us in Matthew 28:17 that a few days later, Jesus appeared to them in Galilee. They worshiped, but some doubted.

People still doubt today! They don’t believe that a dead man got up and walked! Yet the evidence is clear. His tomb is empty!

We must shout it from the housetops. HE IS RISEN! Throw a party, celebrate! He is Risen, and I believe HE is coming again very soon!

 

Rainy Mondays- A Good Day To Do Nothing

I think I’ve written about this subject before, but this is one of those days that I just can’t pass it up. It has rained all morning here in North Mississippi where I live and work. Just a lazy kind of day. There’s not much going on here at work either and that makes it even worse.

Actually, I’m usually pretty tired on Mondays. I attend a small church in my home town. As with most small churches, Sundays are extremely busy. I teach a class of adults ranging in age from close to 30 to my age, I’m 55.  Then during worship service I play bass in our praise team and sing. We use a variety of music in our church from the great hymns of the past, to some of the new worship music of the present.

After church there is lunch at my mom’s house, I’ve written about that before in a post titled “Sunday Dinner”. I do usually get a short power nap in before going back to church for praise team practice, and Sunday night services.

After church on Sunday night, our 2 daughters, their husbands and children all come to our house for Sunday night supper. Our 3 grandsons, ages 4, 2 1/2, & 6 weeks are something else. It usually turns into a 3 ring circus before we are through. My wife and I wouldn’t trade it for anything.

By 10 PM, I am ready to fall into bed. Monday mornings, come way too soon for me. Today is no exception. I am just having trouble getting motivated to do anything. I’ve got a project to complete this afternoon so I guess I’ll put a stop to my complaining and get on with it.

Don’t get me wrong, I really enjoy serving in my church. Sundays are such a blessing from God. But it makes for a long Monday.

 

A Son Shall Be Born

http://bible.com/72/LUK1.30.HCSB Then the angel told her: Do not be afraid, Mary, for you have found favor with God. Now listen: You will conceive and give birth to a son, and you will call His name Jesus. He will be great and will be called the Son of the Most High, and the Lord God will give Him the throne of His father David. He will reign over the house of Jacob forever, and His kingdom will have no end. Mary asked the angel, “How can this be, since I have not been intimate with a man? ” The angel replied to her: “The Holy Spirit will come upon you, and the power of the Most High will overshadow you. Therefore, the holy One to be born will be called the Son of God. And consider your relative Elizabeth — even she has conceived a son in her old age, and this is the sixth month for her who was called childless. For nothing will be impossible with God.” “I am the Lord’s slave,” said Mary. “May it be done to me according to your word.” Then the angel left her.
Bible.com/app

Hiding Behind A Mask

Halloween Costumes 1980

Today is Halloween. This is the time of the year that children and some adults think about dressing up in all kinds of costumes, going out door to door and getting candy. Most of the costumes for children have some type of mask with them. Thus making it easier to pretend to be someone else for a short time.

I wonder how many Christians are hiding behind masks all the time? Hiding who we really are to act like what we believe a Christian is supposed to act.

We live in a culture today where 2 families can come to the same church every Sunday, sit in the same pew with each other every week, and yet not have a clue about the struggles and problems the other family is going through.

We think that because we are Christians we are supposed to have it all together. We are not supposed to have any problems. Guess what? That’s the wrong answer!

Listen! We still live in this sin cursed world! We are not home yet! To borrow a line from Steve Brown, we are beggars telling other beggars where we found bread. While we are here, we need to reach out to one another and lean on one another.

We need to take off our mask and admit to the world that we are lonely and needy. That we sometimes say things we shouldn’t and even do things we shouldn’t.

Who knows? Revival might just break out in the church! And our Father would be pleased.

Monday Mornings

I don’t know why, but Mondays are rough. I’m usually still tired  from Sunday even though I get a good nights sleep.

Sunday is one of my busiest days of the week. Between serving on the Worship Team at church, teaching a class, and chasing grandkids in the afternoon. It makes for along day. Especially if you tack on a couple of meeting s during the day on
Sunday.

However, it how I choose to spend my day. I love music especially God’s music. It’s a joy to serve in my church even if it means having meeting to attend. And I love spending time with my grandsons!

When Monday rolls around, it usually takes me until middle of the morning to get going. I just feel like I’m walking in quicksand. After I get through that, however, I make it pretty good through the day.

I just have to get through Mondays!

Join the conversation! Share your Monday morning stories in the comments!

Learning To Trust

One of the hardest lessons for me to learn in my Christian walk is learning to trust God in all situations. Not a blind trust, but a trust developed through experience. Yet, I need to be reminded constantly of the Father’s consistent working in my life.

I remember many years ago when my children were younger, we went through a tough time with my job. I was working for a major furniture manufacturer when business took a downturn. It got so bad that we were only working 3 days a week. I was out looking around our small town for  a second job and wasn’t finding one. I finally realized that God was trying to tell me to trust Him. To be patient and rest in Him. It was amazing to watch God work through other Christians and sometimes in ways that I couldn’t understand to meet our needs.

Proverbs 3:5-6 became very important in my life because of this season in my life.

Trust in the Lord with all your heart and do  not lean on your own understanding.

In all your ways acknowledge him and he will make straight your paths. ESV

There are times in our lives though that we don’t think about past victories and we fail to remember how God has helped us in the past. Maybe we should follow more closely the commands that God gave the children of Israel when he told them to teach the children in their household the truths of God’s law and the way God helped them get to the promised land.

It’s difficult to learn to trust God completely. In our culture, individualism is encouraged. There is pressure to look out for number 1, ourselves, and not think about others. We as followers of Christ, must learn in these difficult days to trust in God for all of our needs. We must realize that God, not the government is the source of all we have. It’s difficult to learn. I’m still working on it, but god is faithful to remind me daily of all He’s done for me. I just have to listen.

Please share some of your experiences in learning to trust God in the comments below.

 

It’s Hard To Slow Down

Saturday with Friends and Family  028

I’ve been trying to slow down. Between work, church, and other activities I have  found it very difficult to do this. Even though I have felt that God was leading me to do this for my own good, I have found it difficult to do.

However, I have to slow down now. I have battled the Shingles for about a week now. The pain is bad enough, but the fatigue has been horrible. I have slowed down this week.

Since I work from home, I am able to leave the office several times a day and get some rest. I had gotten to the point where I would work all day, help my wife fix diner,  then after dinner go back into the office and work until 8:30 or 9:00 at night.

Now I leave my office in the back of the house at 4:30 and I don’t go back to it unless there is a deadline on a job that I am about to miss.

I actually take time to rest now and I don’t work on Saturday, which used to be an every Saturday occurrence.

We live in a society where many people are driven to excel to the point of pushing themselves to exhaustion. I have done this for a couple of years.

Through these experiences, there are a couple of things I am learning to do.

1. I have to learn to say NO!

Learning to say no in a nice way is important. When I get several thing pulling me in different directions, I have to learn to set priorities and say no to the others.

2. Make extra time during the day and the week to rest.

God took 6 days to create this universe and then rested on the 7th day. This wasn’t because God was tired, He was setting the example for all of us to follow. Our society moves so fast, and stays so busy that it is difficult to make time to rest. I know some people who claim they cannot just sit around and do nothing. I would suggest a hobby that is not stressful to do. I have found hobbies to be very restful.

Maybe some of you have other suggestions on how to slow down your life? Please leave a comment with your suggestions.

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