“From Crown to Crown”

From Crown

Crown of Thorns

Crown of Thorns (Photo credit: Doug1021)

Jesus with a royal purple robe mocked and beat...

Jesus with a royal purple robe mocked and beaten as the King of the Jews, John 19:2-3. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

To Crown

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jesus_2 (Photo credit: biblevector)

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Love in Action

“Love in Action!” There’s no better way to say. We can learn many life lessons from the innocence and purity of a child’s heart. Let this story touch you as it did those in the waiting room on that day and may the example of this little boy become our example to the world!

Morning Story and Dilbert

Every eye in the doctor’s waiting room turned toward the weary-looking mother pushing a wheelchair into the room. A severely disabled boy lolled back in the chair.

Another boy sitting near the door smiled tentatively at the boy in the wheelchair, whose face was transformed as he smiled back. The boy sitting near the door stood and approached the wheelchair.

“Hi!” he said. “My name is Tim. What’s yours?”

The mother replied softly, “His name is Jerry. He can’t talk.”

Tim said, “That’s all right. I’ll just talk to him, if it’s okay.”

“I like your shoes, Jerry,” Tim continued. He lifted his foot so Jerry could see. “They’re almost like mine.”

Jerry smiled, and the two boys “talked” until Jerry was called back to see the doctor. Everyone in the waiting room was silent, awed by the love and acceptance Tim had exhibited in reaching out to Jerry.

God…

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“Recognizing Jesus”

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A clear vision of Jesus is imperative to our Christian faith! Photo Credit: Microsoft.com Click to view site

 

“And it came to pass, that, while they communed together and reasoned, Jesus himself drew near, and went with them. But their eyes were holden that they should not know him,” Luke 24:15-16, KJV

Can we even imagine what it must have been like for Christ’s disciples to witness His crucifixion? Many of them were eye-witness to the miraculous feats He did and the miracles He performed. So, how could it all end like this? He was the One, of this they were sure; why did this to happen to Him?

Dumbfounded and flabbergasted – just plain ole, “I can’t believe that just happened,” attitude. All of these emotions must have truly assailed the psyche of those who were closest to Jesus. There was so much hope tied up in who they believed He was, now all seems to be at a loss. “What more can we do?” With that, they carried their heavy laden hearts down the road, believing all to be lost for good.

It is sad to be in the presence of Jesus one moment, and the next, to be completely taken aback and wondering, “What in the world just happened?” If truth be told, we have all been there at one point or another. Everything is going peachy-fine, and the next, BAM! A side-blow of life has come and knocked our understanding of the way things were down.

These disciples were no different from most of us. Going through hard times of sadness and misunderstanding can obscure one’s view. Whether traveling with a buddy in this or going the road alone, it is sometimes hard to contemplate all the who’s, what’s and why’s of everything that has gone wrong.

Believe you me when I tell you, I know what it is to be sad. I know what it is to be hurt and confused; to be let down, disappointed and left to feel unloved, neglected and disrespected. I know what it is to be talked about and to have my name run over. Going through these particular events can leave us reeling with the same thought I penned to the disciples, “What in the world just happened?” And just like the disciples, sometimes it’s hard to see clearly.

Dealing with trials is like being in a crowd that’s taller than you and trying to see the main event. The crowd becomes all the things we put up with and the main event, of course, is Jesus. We know He’s there and we know what He can do, but to view Him is hard because of the crowd; because of the trials. We jump up to catch glimpses; we try to push our way through, but the crowd is unyielding, blocking our way.

Jesus was there, walking and talking with His disciples, but they didn’t recognize Him. They couldn’t see through the events they just witnessed to recognize that this is Jesus, Him of whom they are speaking. Tragedy has shielded their sight. That’s why I’m glad Jesus stepped up when He did, lest they would have felt all hope was gone.
A clear vision of Jesus, no matter where we find ourselves in life, is imperative to our Christian faith. That’s why I love the Word of God! When no one else can comfort me or help me through times of sadness, His Word is unfailing! It gives me a very clear view of who Jesus is, helping me to recognize Him even in the hardest of times. All of God’s Word is inspirational. In every book I have found help to keep grounded in Him, but there’s something special about the Psalms. In it is praise and worship, but also the cries of the human heart when life seems overwhelming.

Jesus used the Word to help with the dismay of His disciples at this tragic time (Luke 24:27).  I attempted to pick a few favorites to list, but was unable. I have too many highlighted and each one speaks to me on a personal level. I admonish you to prayerfully go through them for yourself. Find the ones that speak to you and make them your own to hold on to. I guarantee that there is more than one with your name on it. God’s Word can help you to clear out the crowd so that you can see the main event; so that you can recognize Him when everything and everybody else is trying to get in the way.

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A Bit of Humor – “I’m Normal!”

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There I was leaving the grocery store.  Pushing my cart to the car, I spotted her.  A woman dressed very nice and looking well put together.  Her car sparkled on the outside.  Getting out of her vehicle she looked successful, well-organized and very detail oriented.  She proceeded to the back of her SUV and popped it opened.  I didn’t mean to peer, but what I saw put a smile on my face.

A mess.  Disorganization.  It looked like the inside of my van!

I walked away smiling.  Not to make fun at all, but with the realization that I am completely normal.  No matter how well-organized we look on the outside, sometimes we all have a little mess to deal with 🙂  Still smiling 🙂

Photo Credit: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/results.aspx?qu=grocery%20cart&ex=2#ai:MC900022504|

A Bit of Humor – “Never Know Whatcha Gonna Find!”

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I went shopping at my local club warehouse this morning.  I walked past this!  I couldn’t help it.  I came back and took a picture.  I smiled . . . they sell just about anything in these places 🙂  Go in for waterbottles and stuff and come out with one of these 🙂  Never know whatcha gonna find!

“490 Acts of Love!”

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Jesus saith unto him, I say not unto thee, Until seven times: but, Until seventy times seven,” Matthew 18:22, KJV

Gulp!  Yes, forgiveness in any form can be a hard pill to swallow.  But, let me ask you this.  How many times has God said no to us whenever we sought healing and restoration for the wrongs we have done?  Exactly, He hasn’t!

Forgiveness, much like love, is nothing to be played with.  It is not a lip service to please others rather, it is a heart service to the Lord.  It is, in a sense, showing to others the same grace and mercy that God showed toward us.

Immediately following this verse, so that there were no misconceptions about the seriousness of this point that He was making, Jesus sealed it with a story of one who showed mercy and offered forgiveness and one who didn’t:

 “Therefore is the kingdom of heaven likened unto a certain king, which would take account of his servants.

 And when he had begun to reckon, one was brought unto him, which owed him ten thousand talents.

 But forasmuch as he had not to pay, his lord commanded him to be sold, and his wife, and children, and all that he had, and payment to be made.

 The servant therefore fell down, and worshipped him, saying, Lord, have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.

Then the lord of that servant was moved with compassion, and loosed him, and forgave him the debt.

But the same servant went out, and found one of his fellowservants, which owed him an hundred pence: and he laid hands on him, and took him by the throat, saying, Pay me that thou owest.

 And his fellowservant fell down at his feet, and besought him, saying, Have patience with me, and I will pay thee all.

 And he would not: but went and cast him into prison, till he should pay the debt.

 So when his fellowservants saw what was done, they were very sorry, and came and told unto their lord all that was done.

 Then his lord, after that he had called him, said unto him, O thou wicked servant, I forgave thee all that debt, because thou desiredst me:

 Shouldest not thou also have had compassion on thy fellowservant, even as I had pity on thee?

And his lord was wroth, and delivered him to the tormentors, till he should pay all that was due unto him.

So likewise shall my heavenly Father do also unto you, if ye from your hearts forgive not every one his brother their trespasses.” – Matthew 18:23-25, KJV

The seriousness of it all really comes to light when Jesus opens up the parable and comparing it to the kingdom of heaven.  Now, why did He go and do that?  Because the story He is about to tell so resembles what occurs in the spiritual realm that it would be easy for the people to relate to.

What would happen if today God sat down and “took account” of all the wrongs we have done?  What would it be like if we stood before Him unable to pay what we owe?  We were there!  Jesus knew the predicament that humanity was in.  He knew that man could never get himself out of the debt of sin, so here He stresses grace, mercy and compassion on those who don’t deserve it.

How often have we withheld those three precious gifts from another because our feelings were hurt?  Believe it or not, it’s the same thing.  We may not have choked out a man, demanding retribution, but if we are withholding the same mercies that God showed us than we are choking that man spiritually and emotionally.

“But if ye forgive not men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses,” (Matthew 6:15, KJV).  God will not allow us to act like that unjust servant.  Love has compelled Him to shower us love, at all cost to save us, just so that He could forgive us and restore us.  “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only begotten Son, that whosoever believeth in him should not perish, but have everlasting life,” (John 3:16, KJV).

It was an act of love.  An act of love that we now have the responsibility to pay it forward to another.  No, people may not deserve it.  But, then again, neither did we.  It was only through the eyes of a merciful God that we are given another chance.

Tell me, who in your life deserves that second or third or whatever the number may be, chance today?  Forgiveness IS NOT EASY!  But, it is an “Act of Love.”

“But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us,” (Romans 5:8, KJV).  I guarantee, if we were to look at ourselves, we could not fathom how many times our accounts would have gone unpaid had it not been for the blood of Christ.  More that 490 times?  But, thank God, He acted in love to save to us!

 

A Bit of Humor – “Run!”

MH900141341That moment when your fourth grader asks for help with a math problem you feel like you should know!!!

Photo Credit: http://office.microsoft.com/en-us/images/results.aspx?qu=running%20away&ex=2#ai:MC900141341|

“I Have To Believe This!”

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“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the LORD, thoughts of
peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end,” Jeremiah 29:11

Every day is a step into the unknown;

but, He knows.

I can’t always see where He’s taking me;

but, my eyes are ordained by faith in Him.

I don’t always understand every adversity and trial;

but, He’s already at my end.

I HAVE TO BELIEVE THIS!

Because, to make it to my end,

I have to beassured that He knows my end.

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“Proof of Love!”

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“Relationship With The Word!”

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“Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path,” Psalm 119:105, NKJV

“And so Betsie and I arrived in Barracks 8 in the small hours of that morning,  brining not only the Bible, but a new knowledge of the power of Him whose story it was,” Corrie Ten Boom, The Hiding Place, p. 214, Hendrickson Publishers, Copyright 1971, 1984, 2006.

The Hiding Place has been my favorite non-fiction books for years.  I am always amazed by the lives of Corrie and her family and the circumstances that God used in and through them.

The above quote was written after Betsie and Corrie were able to smuggle a Bible in one of the concentration camps.  The Bible could obviously be seen through her clothing, yet she was inspected and patted down like the rest before and after her.  She risked everything to carry that precious treasure of the Word into one of the darkest places known to humanity.

Why?

Because there is an indescribable value in the Word of God to them that believe and hold dear its truths.

This really struck me this morning as I was reading in Psalm 119, NKJV.  As a whole, this chapter speaks so much of the Word of God. It reminds of us of the importance and power of His Word and how we should not take it lightly.  We should treasure it and hold on to it and let it lead and guide us every day.

In His Word we find healing, promises, anointing, salvation, understanding and more.  We should not take lightly the gift of the Word:

  • “Blessed are those who keep His testimonies, who seek Him with the whole heart!” (vs. 2).
  • “You have commanded us to keep Your precepts diligently,” (vs. 4).
  • “Oh, that my ways were directed to keep Your statutes,” (vs. 5).
  • “Let me not wander from Your commandments!” (vs. 10)
  • “Your word I have hidden in my heart, that I might not sin against You,” (vs. 11).
  • “I have rejoiced in the way of Your testimonies, as much as in all riches,” (vs. 14).
  • “My soul breaks with longing for Your judgments at all times,” (vs. 20).
  • “Teach me, O LORD, the way of Your statutes, and I shall keep it to the end,” (vs. 33).
  • “Make me walk in the path of Your commandments, for I delight in it,” (vs. 35).
  • “Establish Your word to your servant, who is devoted to fearing You,” (vs. 38).
  • “Behold, I long for Your precepts; revive me in Your righteousness,” (vs. 40).
  • “Remember the word to Your servant, upon  which You have caused me to hope,” (vs. 49).
  • “Teach me good judgment and knowledge, for I believe Your commandments,” (vs. 66).
  • “I know, O LORD, that Your judgments are right,” (vs. 75).
  • “Forever, O LORD, Your word is settled in heaven,” (89).
  • “Unless Your law had been my delight, I would have perished in my affliction,” (vs. 92).
  • “You are my hiding place and shield; I hope in Your word,” (vs. 114).
  • “Direct my steps by Your word,” (vs. 133).
  • “Great peace have those who love Your law, and nothing causes them to stumble,” (vs. 165).

These are just a very few of the many written within that psalm and just a few of the many that I have personally highlighted.  What we read goes beyond just reading the word.  In these verses we see a Relationship With The Word.

Why was Corrie Ten Boom ready to sacrifice it all just to have a Bible in the prison camp with her.  From a young age her father taught her how to have a relationship and a dependency upon the Word.  It is as vital, if not more so, than anything else she could have smuggled in there.

In a many of dark times, the Word is what shines a light brighter than any sun.  In the Word we find comfort, solace and peace no matter the prisons that try to hold us.

I urge you to reevaluate your Relationship With The Word today.  Don’t look at it as something I have to get through because that’s what I am supposed to do.  Read it, absorb it for the treasure that it is.    “Open my eyes, that I may see wondrous things from Your law,” (vs. 18).  “Revive me according to Your word,” (vs. 25).

Let your relationship with the Word be renewed and revived today.

There was another point before this when Corrie Ten Boom fell sick and was unable to read the Word.  Then:

“As my health returned, I was able to use my eyes longer.  I had been sustaining myself from my Scriptures a verse at a time; now, like a starving man, I gulped entire Gospels at a reading, seeing whole the magnificent drama of salvation,” Corrie Ten Boom, The Hiding Place, p. 167, Hendrickson Publishers, Copyright 1971, 1984, 2006.

When was the last time we starved to have a Relationship With The Word?

Look at it as not a task that must be completed, but a source to be revered and treasured.  As it did for Corrie, it will “sustain” you also.  His Word does not fail!

If you have never read The Hiding Place, I urge you to do so.  I believe the lives and experiences written therein will inspire you in your Christian journey also.

Be blessed today!

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