July 11, 2016 – Signs
We live in a world full of signs. Enter, Exit, Stop, Yield, No Crossing, No Shirt No Shoes No Service, Men, Women, or Caution are just a few that you might see on a daily basis. Whether you are driving down a street, walking into a store or business, you see signs all over the place.
Jesus sends us signs too!! The clouds in the sky tell us it is going to rain or snow, the sun tells us it will be a warm or hot day, dead or dried plants tell us there might be a drought and a strong wind could indicate a damaging storm.
But he gives us personal signs too. Sometimes it might be a thought that pops into your mind, a feeling you get in your heart, a voice telling you to do or not do something, or the hair on the back of your neck standing up warning you of something or someone behind you.
He sends us signs of peace, like the cardinal that comes down on the deck each morning when I come out, or the four doves that don’t fly away when I am talking to them. A gentle breeze blowing through the trees or the scent of my flowers on my porch are all signs to me that he is near.
He gives us signs in our health as well. A sharp pain in the chest, a swollen ankle or foot, a severe headache, a rash, or a stomach ache indicate something in our health isn’t right and we usually go to the doctor if the signs persist.
Today I am thankful for all the signs in my life that tell me he is near.
July 12, 2016 – Resisting Temptation
We are all born with a sin nature thanks to our original parents, Adam and Eve. It develops more and more as we grow and are influenced by events and people around us. As children we may be tempted to lie to our parents. As Teens we may be tempted to drink or get involved in sex or drugs, as young adults we may be tempted to hurt the ones we are supposed to care about.
This world today is full of more temptations than ever in the past. It seems that almost all the sitcoms on television now, all the movies being made all have scenes involving sex, lies, alcohol, drugs and violence. Even the video games they create for us or our children are made around the idea of hurting or killing someone.
It gets worse every day. Some drugs are being legalized. Bathrooms are becoming transgender and drugs, alcohol, perverted sexual behavior, lying, killing, cheating and more are common in most of society every day and no one seems to even bat an eyelash.
Our children and grandchildren are growing up believing it is alright do drugs, drink, participate in sex outside of marriage, have sexual relations with a person of the same sex, wear clothes that reveal everything, take what they want even if it means taking something that doesn’t belong to them, and hurting or killing someone is just part of life.
Today I am thankful that he Lord has taught me to resist the temptations that are out there, I have no interest in any of them.
July 13, 2016 – Little Pleasures
Someone once said “it’s the little things that count”. In fact many businesses teach this to their sales people and customer services. Remembering and calling someone by their first name, complimenting someone, and reaching to shake their hand are just a few they recommend.
Being kind to strangers, giving someone your seat, helping someone with their bags, or helping someone across a busy street, saying hello, waving, smiling, shaking their hand, giving them a call, bringing a small gift, paying a visit, and just being nice can make someones day.
There are probably many “little things” that make your day better. Maybe your boss gives you a compliment, your child says they love you, you hear from a long lost friend, or you hear a song you’ve always liked.
Maybe it’s hearing your wind chimes tinkle on the porch, watching a butterfly around your flowers, seeing the birds surround your feeder or watching the squirrel burying his nuts in your back yard. It could be as simple as watching a beautiful sunset or sunrise, feeling a cool breeze on your face, or sitting in your rocker on a warm summer day.
Maybe it’s a smile, a wave, a honk or a hello from your neighbor. Maybe it’s the sound of a child’s laughter or the cooing of a little baby, or maybe it’s the just the peace and quiet of a beautiful evening. Maybe it’s seeing that first tomato turn red, that first pepper or cucumber on the plant, or that pumpkin seedling sprouting up out of the soil. You don’t have to spend money to enjoy the little pleasures in life, they are mostly free and worth so much more than any materialistic wealth.
Today I am thankful for the little pleasures in life.