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Sunday, July 27, 2014

Wash Day

മലയാളം: Charcoal Iron Box for ironing the clothes
മലയാളം: Charcoal Iron Box for ironing the clothes (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
When I was growing up, my mother had chores for each day of the week, much like in the little poem below. Some of you may have seen it before, but the words are so cute and so worthy of reflection, I couldn't help posting it on my site. The author is unknown. Read and be blessed.

Monday - Wash Day

Lord, help me wash away all my selfishness and

Vanity, so I may serve you with perfect humility

Through the week ahead.

Tuesday - Ironing Day

Dear Lord, help me iron out all the wrinkles

Of prejudice I have collected through the years

So that I may see the beauty in others.

Wednesday - Mending Day

O God, help me mend my ways so I will not

Set a bad example for others

Thursday - Cleaning Day

Lord Jesus, help me to dust out all the many faults

I have been hiding in the secret corners of my heart.

Friday - Shopping Day

O God, give me the grace to shop wisely so I may purchase

eternal happiness for myself and all others in need of love.

Saturday - Cooking Day

Help me, my Savior, to brew a big kettle of brotherly

Love and serve it with clean, sweet bread of human kindness.

Sunday - The Lord's Day

O God, I have prepared my house for you. Please

Come into my heart so I may spend the day and the

Rest of my life in your presence.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Would You Like A Name Change?

Gheorghe Tattarescu - Magdalena,
Gheorghe Tattarescu - Magdalena, (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Jesus said to her, "Mary." She turned toward him and cried out in Aramaic, "Rabboni!" (which means Teacher).

Some people find it convenient to change their name for whatever reason. It may be because of marriage, divorce, or they may not like their name or for a host of other reasons. Some writers use a pen name or pseudonym to conceal their identity. Since the Bible is such a relevant book, it too features persons who had their names changed. The only difference is, they didn't do it, God did.

In the focus verse above, the woman referred to is Mary Magdalene, a woman who became a follower of Jesus after He delivered her from demon possession. Some accounts of her life state that she was a native of Magdala, a seaside city whose women were known to be prostitutes.  The Bible does not say that Mary Magdalene was a prostitute, but it does distinguish her from the other Mary(s) mentioned in the Bible by always referring to her by her first and last name.  

However, on that resurrection morning when Jesus arose from the grave and saw her standing there, her expression anxious and fearful, He said to her, "Mary." At that moment she was just Mary. Not Mary Magdalene, "out of whom went seven devils," (Luke 8: 2) or any past descriptions she may have had. Jesus put all of that aside and saw her only as someone who belonged to Him and someone whom He loved.

Hebrews 8: 12 says, "For I will forgive their wickedness and will remember their sins no more." People will always remember your past, no matter how much you have changed. You can sing in the choir or serve on the ushers' board, but they still see you as Mary Magdalene. But Our Lord forgets our past, forgets our sins and doesn't bring them up anymore.  Know this: if you have given your life to Jesus Christ, you have a new name, "written in the Lamb's book of life" (Revelation 21: 27). You are not Mary Magdalene anymore, you are "Mary."

You can read more about Mary Magdalene in my book Women For All Seasons available  here

Sunday, July 13, 2014

Winners And Losers

FIFA World Cup 2014 logo.
FIFA World Cup 2014 logo. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Well, World Cup 2014 has just come to an end, and if you were following it, you know that Germany emerged the winner after more than 100 minutes of excrutiating, nail-biting play. While the German fans celebrate in the stands, the Argentinians wear long, sad faces. I even saw one of the players crying. I feel sorry for them because I know it's not easy to be on the losing side.

Soccer, sport, life itself always has its winning and losing moments. But for us Christians, we don't have to be sad, even when our team loses or we ourselves lose at something. Because in Jesus Christ we are always winners. Remember that the next time you face stiff competition and the odds seem against you. You may lose in this life, but as long as you accepted Christ as your Savior, you are a winner all the way. Your crown is laid up for you in heaven. Isn't that wonderful?

Sunday, July 06, 2014

Through A Child's Eyes

English: fireworks seen across the at Washingt...
English: fireworks seen across the at Washington, D.C., USA. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
Fourth of July celebrations here in South Florida usually involve barbecues, picnics on the beach and, of course, watching the fireworks at night. This year, with all the rain we've been having, barbecues and picnics were out of the question. And when night came, we had to be content with trying to get glimpses of the fireworks from our patio.

Still, that didn't stop my five-year-old granddaughter from enjoying the display. Every time the fireworks burst into view, she would clap her little hands and say, "I love fourth of July." Her excitement was infectious, and helped to improve our mood that had been dampened by the dreary weather.

How easy it is for us adults to become dulled by the vicissitudes of life! Fourth of July, Thanksgiving and even Christmas have become occasions to just take a break from our normal routine, and little else. Can we look at a sunset, a beautiful flower or a newborn baby without feeling in awe of its Creator? If the answer is yes, then we need to take another look at ourselves, our values and our relationship with the God of the universe.

Jesus said,  "Verily I say unto you, Except ye be converted , and become as little children, ye shall not enter into the kingdom of heaven" (Matthew 18: 3). On another occasion He said, "Suffer little children, and forbid them not, to come unto me: for of such is the kingdom of heaven" (19: 14).

We are to become as little children. What does that mean? I think it means we must maintain our sense of awe and wonder at who God is and all that He has done for us. We must have that same childlike faith and trust that children have in their parents.  Many of us have become bitter, cynical and disenchanted with life. Nothing gets us excited anymore. Notice how a child runs to her parent with joy and excitement each time the parent comes home or picks her up from school. We are to run to our Maker in the same way. If we have lost that joy, let's ask God to "Restore unto me the joy of thy salvation; and uphold me with thy free spirit" (Psalm 51: 12).