Thanksgiving thought – 2021

Such a blessing during this time of the year
to read all the thoughts people write
about what they are thankful for and

how it really is rooted in forgiveness,
the gift GOD has given us—

I can’t be thankful if I feel the weight of my imperfections
and focus on my inability to get it all “right”
(impossible for me, of course)
which is why God through the ages has found
many ways to show us
He Loves us, picks us up, dusts us off and
wants relationship with His Creation—with us . . . with me!

When my heart is opened to the value of what I really have,
I am filled with thanks—thank-FULL—and
accepting God’s forgiveness is the ultimate way
to open my heart and put things in perspective!!!
Forgiveness means to GIVE freedom to the captive
(that includes me),
to release all that blocks my heart from
accepting the gifts of others including God Himself.

Thanksgiving is my focus in the Fall of the year,
when the leaves are changing colors and
it seems most plants/animals are going into hibernation
to await Spring when life renews and
the colors of life flow into all things living.

SO—maybe thanks flows more when Fall makes me think
about the transition from life to death and
the promise of life’s cycle of renewal seems obvious
in all of nature . . . and in my heart—
and “thankFULLness” and “forGIVEness”
flow out into THANKSgiving
when I remember the Truth of whose I am
that draws me to be who I am and
my heart overflows with THANKSGIVING IN EVERY DAY!
(not always FOR everything, but IN every day and
that gives me HOPE for tomorrow . . .
a heart filled with thanks for an awesome GOD!)

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Connected by Humanity . . .

CONNECTED BY OUR HUMANITY . . .
but, sometimes
we don’t understand our differences

perhaps
instead of trying to figure it out,
we need to just LISTEN
to each other RESPECTFULLY
and
SHARE HONESTLY
why we feel the way we do

if I can tell you what I
really fear
and you can listen
without judgement
and respectfully
acknowledge my fear
as being real for me . . .

perhaps
we can work together
to face the challenges—
those unseen demons
that drive our fears
and seem to put us
on different sides

if I can accept that
you are person
with needs just like me
and everybody else
and not some evil being
out to destroy me,
then we can talk . . .

perhaps
we can open our HEARTS again
to life for all human beings
and close our MINDS to the
hate-filled, fear-creating
words and thoughts
that divide to gain power

if I can hold onto
HOPE in our destiny of life
and see the basic needs
of food and shelter for all
as a part of “we the people”
our country was built on
and a union created . . .

perhaps
we can open up a way
to the best path
that explores all our fears
and works on building
a world
connected by our humanity

perhaps . . .

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Storms, Rainbows, and Light

In the midst of storms in my life,
I often choose to sit down and give up!
Storms can be overwhelming and,
when I cannot see anything but
the dark clouds all around me,
I climb into that dark pit of despair and
mix my tears with the heavy rain falling everywhere . . .
BUT GOD—

God has made promises and
I can look back in my life and
see times when I have come
through other storms and I REMEMBER—

God put a rainbow in the sky
to confirm the Covenant,
the promise made to mankind t
hat no storm would destroy all life on earth again . . .
and one day, after a really strong storm,
I saw the rainbow in the sky and then,
as I watched the rainbow fade away,
an amazing display of glorious light
came into that same sky and I THOUGHT—

The rainbow confirmed God’s promise and
the “glorious light” confirmed God’s presence
through the storm and after the storm . . .
my heart was filled with an assurance that God
was showing me a “cycle” that I could trust
in my own life: the storm, the rainbow, the light . . .
when storms are what I see and
fear fills my heart and mind, I KNOW—

• the storm
(I can see that!)
• the rainbow
(I can trust the promises of God) and
• the light and
(I can know God will never leave me)
SO, the cycle confirming
God’s Word and
God’s Presence
continues in my life . . . SO I—

look to God and believe . . .
Wait on the Lord:
be of good courage, and
he shall strengthen thine heart:
wait, I say, on the Lord.
(Psalm 27:14)
it’s all about GOD . . .
our amazing GOD!

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Me, God, a dot in the Universe

back BEFORE the “basic” questions
I have asked, I have come to realize
that there is a question I need to ask
and answer before those “basic”
thoughts –
the foundation of what I need to know:
does GOD see me and hear me?

The universe that man knows exists
is SO vast, so beyond all imagination . . .
and there is SO much more that we
do not know exists—
does the Creator of all this immense,
overwhelming, mysterious
evidence of an inexplicable life force
flowing through more than science
can explain, more than mankind
can understand—
DOES this Creator,
CAN this Creator have interest in this
one miniscule container of the common
life force put in place throughout a
universe so vast outside time and space . . .

To equate the Creator with a parent,
I can grasp how I can love the child I
“produced” no matter how many millions
of other children are in the world,
BUT what if I had billions of children
crying out for my attention . . . it is
beyond my ability to comprehend and,
SO, I ask the questions
and I wait in uncomfortable silence
for the answer I need deep within . . .

GOD, do you see me?
GOD, do you hear me?
GOD . . . dare I ask it . . .
do you love ME?

and my heart “hears”
a gentle whisper,
“yes, my child,
I love you . . .”
and, for a moment, I feel the
life flowing through my heart
and I know . . .

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Undermining Trust in God–Pride of Mankind

C.S. Lewis, Mere Christianity—
According to Christian teachers,
the essential vice, the utmost evil,
is PRIDE.

Unchastity, anger, greed, drunkenness, and
all that, are mere flea bites in comparison:
it was through Pride that the devil became
the devil: Pride leads to every other vice:
it is the complete anti-God state of mind…
—-
So where is the wise philosopher
who understands?
Where is the expert scholar
who comprehends?
And where is the skilled debater
of our time
who could win a debate with God?
Hasn’t God demonstrated that
the wisdom of this world system
is utter foolishness?
(based on 1 Corinthians 1:20)
—-

Recently confronted with a video by a self-proclaimed “scholar”
who used Aristotelian logic to “explain” GOD and God’s motives
putting forth his conclusion that basically made God like humans
(can you believe it?)—I was very disturbed by the potential impact
of this man’s conclusions as his claim questioned the very nature
of GOD while claiming he was “explaining” God and “evil.”
He assigned motives to God of unbelievable self-centeredness.
My discomfort in listening to this man was that his conclusions
would undermine my trust in GOD – why would I trust someone
who, like me, has a human nature and not as GOD is described
in Exodus 34:6—much like the powers of darkness in the
story of the garden of Eden, this man displayed remarkable
arrogance and PRIDE in his claim of a “knowledge” of God
so he could “explain” to the world the motives of GOD . . .
as if any man could? My heart breaks because he is a good
speaker and could convince a lot of people by his oratory skills.

HOW, I ask, can any man presume to tell me that GOD is not
“merciful and compassionate, slow to anger,
rich in grace and truth”
BUT tell me that GOD is motivated the the very human
characteristic of creating forces the HARM people
just SO there will be more “glory” for GOD!
NO! God is not like humans and God does not
misuse power for personal glory!
This is what happens when humans try to explain
what humans cannot understand.
GOD dealt with Job’s accusations against God because
of what had happened to him by giving Job a sample of
questions that were beyond the ability of man to answer . . .
The wisdom of God makes man’s “wisdom” foolishness.

I fear that this man’s arrogance would make him think he could answer God’s queries
for he would not, I fear, be able to say “I don’t know” to any questions posed to him, even by GOD–that’s PRIDE, that’s arrogance. Stand toe to toe with GOD???

Amazingly, this man used really good marketing skills
in that he ended his disturbing diatribe by referencing
Job’s interactions with God and saying in closing:
“let God be God” which makes it sound like his
conclusions were “good,” just like the deceiving spirit
did in the garden of Eden. BUT, no one can “explain” GOD,
we can only share opinions and ideas about our experiences.

MY GOD is merciful and compassionate,
slow to anger, and rich in Grace and Truth
and NO MAN will convince me of the truth of
anything that undermines that understanding
or makes me question God’s motives which
I cannot always understand or explain, BUT
I TRUST GOD and GOD’s motives are ALWAYS
for my good (Romans 8:28 And we know that
God causes all things to work together for good
to those who love God, to those who are called
according to His purpose.)

=======
Woe to those who call evil good
and good evil,
who change darkness into light
and light into darkness,
who change bitter into sweet
and sweet into bitter!
Woe to those seeing themselves as wise,
esteeming themselves as clever.
(Isaiah 5:20-21 Complete Jewish Bible)
=======

It is SO important to be careful what we listen to and be sure we are not
being drawn in by an “expert” claiming to be able to explain GOD!
Prayer and Scripture should be our
primary diet . . . 2 Corinthians 10:3-5

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Darkness and God

thoughts . . .

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2021 Birthday Thoughts

each year at the time of my birthday,
I pray for a word, a thought,
a Scripture, a quotation
to guide my focus for the coming year:

paths – a journey . . .

Scripture references-source, Christian Bible:
(innocence) Truly I say to you, unless you change and become like children, you will not enter the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 18:3


(faith – life of Abraham) Is this blessing then on the circumcised, or on the uncircumcised also? For we say, “Faith was credited to Abraham as righteousness.” Romans 4:9


(faith – guide) I will ask the Father, and He will give you another Helper, so that He may be with you forever; the Helper is the Spirit of truth, whom the world cannot receive, because it does not see Him or know Him; but you know Him because He remains with you and will be in you. John 14:16-17


(paths) Make me know your ways, Adonai, teach me your paths. Guide me in your truth, and teach me; for you are the God who saves me, my hope is in you all day long. Psalm 25:4-5

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Personal Journey — Week 3 Advent Thoughts

Restore

Day 1 — Exodus 20

Day 2 — Psalm 19

Day 3 — 1 Corinthians 1:18-25

Day 4 — John 2:13-25

Day 5 — Summary

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Personal Journey – Week 2 Advent thoughts

Repent — turn from, turn to, turn inward

Day 1 — Genesis 22

Day 2 — Psalm 116

Day 3 — Romans 8:31-34

Day 4 — Mark 9

Day 5 — Summary

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Personal Journey – Week 1 Advent thoughts

Week 1 — Reflect

Day 1 Genesis 9

Day 2 — Psalm 25

Day 3 — I Peter 3-4:2

Day 4 — Mark 1

Day 5 — Summary

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