Archives For God

After the flood God said to Noah…

“I now establish my covenant with you and with your descendants after you and with every living creature that was with you – the birds, the livestock and all the wild animals, all those that came out of the ark with you – every living creature on earth. I establish my covenant with you: Never again will all life be cut off by the waters of a flood; never again will there be a flood to destroy the earth.”

And God said, “This is the sign of the covenant I am making between me and you and every living creature with you, a covenant for all generations to come: I have set my rainbow in the clouds, and it will be the sign of the covenant between me and the earth. Whenever I bring clouds over the earth and a rainbow appears in the clouds, I will remember my covenant between me and you and all living creatures of every kind. Never again will the waters become a flood to destroy all life. Whenever the rainbow appears in the clouds, I will see it and remember the everlasting covenant between God and all living creatures of every kind on the earth.” Genesis 9:9-16.

Everybody reads this and knows about the flood… the covenant… and the rainbow. However, buried within these verses, there is goodness that may just help you through the season of winter.

This covenant is mentioned as “a covenant for all generations to come” … it’s “everlasting” … it’s a promise. The rainbow is simply a reminder to God himself… and a reassurance to man.

beauty abounds even in winter!

We’re heading into the heart of winter here in the northern hemisphere. This can be a gloomy time of year for many… short, cold days… no more football… overweight from the holiday cheer… extra bills to pay… the empty memories of Valentine’s past… the list could go on and on…

Just as we have the rainbow as a reminder of God’s covenant, we can also count on the seasons coming and going. This is His assurance for all generations to come… it’s everlasting.

I like the winter season in the same what that I like a rainy day. Rainy days really don’t bring me down. I look at rainy days as an opportunity… an opportunity to do something different. If I spend a rainy Saturday lounging around in my jammies and reading a book, going to the movies or playing a board game with my family… it’s typically been a really good day!

I believe that God created the winter season for much the same reason… a time of reflection… a time to be still… to think… and a time to learn.

This winter season, instead of looking around and seeing darkness…

be still…

look back and reflect…

look around and be thankful…

look ahead and see the bright beaming sunlight…

because even on the darkest, gloomiest day of winter…

there’s still something good going on…

you can count on it…

just like the rainbow!

Talent. We are all exceptionally good at something.

For each of us, it may be something very different from the next person. We all have some sort of talent. I’m not really thinking about our spiritual gifts here… you may remember I wrote about Our Greatest Gift recently. This talent that we’re exceptionally good at… it is most likely completely unrelated to our ¬†spiritual gift.

Practice hones our ability to perfect our talent. Michael Jordan was given the physical ability to excel at basketball… a whole lot of practice and hard work helped him be one of the greatest players ever!

Ok, so you know I have a personal example…

I grew up in Vero Beach, Florida. “Where the tropics begin.” Vero has changed a wee bit through the years. Back in the day Vero was one large orange grove. Of course, there were the intermittent irrigation canals and fruit packing houses. Otherwise, yep, just one big grove… row after row after row of oranges and grapefruit… everywhere the succulent aroma of orange blossoms! It was in the grove that I found one of my talents… I have a real flair for peeling oranges. Everyone knows if you want to eat an orange you have to peel the fruit first. Yes, most anyone can do this… however, there is somewhat of an art to it. I developed a flair for peeling oranges in the grove.

Being really good at it means that sooner or later… other people are going to find out about your talent. Then what? Well, they may just want you to peel their fruit for them, too. Before you know it your aptitude turns legendary… and that’s all she wrote… Katie bar the door… they’ll be coming in droves to your local grove… and therein lies the (potential) problemo!

You may wish not so many people knew you have a way with fruit. Ok, so my example is going to be slightly ¬†ridiculous now because no one will believe me if I say people are knocking on my door asking me to peel their fruit. However, if you’re really good at… say… shucking oysters… you may find yourself parked next to a burlap bag for the entire evening at the fall oyster roast (just sayin’). And back to MJ… yes, he made a fistful of $$ playing a game. Nothing wrong with that, right?

The down side?

The down side for MJ… the oyster shucker… and for me, the fruit man?

You may remember I wrote How God’s Using My Booty To Keep My Ego In Check. God uses my ridiculously underwhelming booty to keep my ego in check.¬†This thought on our talents and the down side is sort of the polar opposite… If talent + practice makes me really good at peeling oranges then I have to keep constant vigil on my ego lest I may become prideful about my ability.

Whatever it is that you’re exceptionally good at, you need to be humble about it. If you’re humble people will admire you for your talent. Humility ends in honor…

“Before his downfall a man’s heart is proud, but humility comes before honor.” Proverbs 17:12.

The down side of being exceptionally good at your talent? There may not be one… if you stay humble about it.

What is your special talent? Have you experienced God using your talent to help keep you humble?

Believe

January 2, 2012 — 12 Comments

believing that one can fly? maybe... with a jetpack.

Believe.

It’s one word that defines our faith.

It’s the biggest word in possibly the most important verse in all of the Gospel…

“For God so loved that world that he gave his one and only Son, that whoever believes in him shall not perish but have eternal life.”

John 3:16.

Believe.

I think it’s the biggest word in the Bible.

It’s the foundation for laying out our trust and confidence in our Lord and Savior.

It defines our understanding of and capacity to love.

It defines everything.

Believe.

That’s my one word for 2012.

I want to learn and know more.

That’s my focus.

What’s your focus for 2012?

created w/ wordle.net

Happy New Year 2012!!!

Here’s the list of the top commenters for the month of December 2011:

Carol Peterson (13)
Christine Niles (11)
Joe Lalonde (10)
Adam (5)
Dan Black (4)
Loren Pinilis (3)
Allen Madding (1)
Andrew Z (1)
Arny Slight (1)
Benjer McVeigh (1)

Please click on the links to visit these blogs, some really awesome goodness going on and some of my personal favorites!!

#52: Thankful It’s A Keeper

December 27, 2011 — 6 Comments

All I can say is wow, what a year!

Everyone writes inspiration this time of year, a time of reflection. I try to come up with inspiration once a week.

As I thought about what inspiration to write this week I came up with just one thought:

Thankful.

Today I’m thankful for my readers. The people who stop by with encouragement and leave thoughtful comments. The people who stop by and just read, finding something that helps change their day in a positive way. The people who are genuinely helpful and who share a glowing thank you. The people who give a warm smile at church, on the street, at the gym, or wherever else we happen to meet.

Something inspirational for this week?

How about simply two words:

Thank. You.

I appreciate your continued support of my writing.

Or maybe in just one word…

Thankful.

Today I’m thankful. I’m thankful for #52. Let’s make #52 a keeper… filled with peace, joy, hope and love.

“Come, let us sing for joy to the Lord;
let us shout aloud to the Rock of our salvation.
Let us come before him with thanksgiving
and extol him with music and song.

For the Lord is the great God,
the great King above all gods.
In his hand are the depths of the earth,
and the mountain peaks belong to him.
The sea is his, for he made it,
and his hands formed the dry land.

Come, let us bow down in worship,
let us kneel before the Lord our Maker;
for he is our God
and we are the people of his pasture,
the flock under his care.” Psalm 95:1-7

What do you have to be thankful for today?