Browsing Category: Journal

Anniversary of My Birth

Today was the anniversary of the day of my birth, which is just a fancy way of saying that it was my birthday. I always look back on the past year on this day and my eyes filled with tears as I thought of this last year.
There have been blessings. So many blessings! I became an Aunt to 2 more children, and that is one of the greatest joys in my life; to be an Aunt. I thank God that I can play that role in the lives of 5 children, and hopefully more one day, if the Lord chooses to bless with more. I have been healthy, which is something I have taken for granted too often in life. I thank God for the health He has granted me in my life, and pray that He continues to do so, but it is my prayer that I will never cease to praise Him no matter what comes my way. I celebrated working at Redline for 6 years this year, and I am just so thankful that this job came my way when it did. God was in control!
I think it would true to say that I have grown more in my walk with Christ this last year than ever before. There is a very dangerous rut one can fall into when we live our walk with God in a mediocre way, and I was stuck in that rut for many years, which shames me to the core. I rejoice in the fact that God forgives us of our sins when we repent and turn from them! This past year I have claimed the victory over sins that I have fought with for many, many years. To God be the Glory, Honor, and Praise! I rejoice in the assurance that I have been delivered, and that through what Christ did for me on the cross I can claim the victory through faith! Oh how sweet it is to walk with my Savior.
This past year I said goodbye to my dear grandma. My last grandparent. It brings tears to my eyes just writing that. I miss her so much, but God has been so faithful during the grief and the hard days. I have lost all 3 of my grandparents in the last 4 years (one died before I ever had the honor of meeting him). When my grandma passed away in May I found myself asking God why I had to grieve and experience death so much, but He has been faithful. I thank Him for how He undertakes for us when it seems things are too hard to bear.
A reoccurring theme in this last year is that God never left me. He showed Himself true to me in the good times, and the tough times. It is my greatest desire, and prayer that I will learn to look at the hard times with joy, for it is in these times that we are reminded that we need not, and cannot do things on our own. It is then that God can fully show Himself to us. May I live in a way that I lean on Him always in both the good and difficult times.

For God to Be God

For God to be God, He must be infinite in all aspects.

This is something I read in my morning devotional a few weeks ago. It struck a cord in my heart. God has absolutely no restrictions.  He is perfect in knowledge, in power, and in goodness. If He was all good, but there was just one tiny little spot then He would not be our God. Those of us that acknowledge that God is God know that God has all the love, if He only had some love, or even if He had 99% of love He could not be God.

For God to be God He has to be infinite in all things, and all aspects and situations our human mind could possibly imagine. To think of something, or someone with no limits, no bounds, no stopping place, no place beyond where it/they can go, is pretty mind boggling. When we think about God or anything about Him, we have to think in terms of infinity.

I believe that we have put God into a little box. We have made Him cheap. We hear Him referred to as “the big guy upstairs”, someone we can pal around with. We’ve restricted Him to helping us win hockey games and stuff like that. We have belittled Him. That God, the God we have put into a box is not the God that created the heavens and the earth. That is some version of God we have created ourselves.

To think infinitely about God may be hard on your head, but as A.W. Towzer once wrote:

What is hard for the head is ointment for the heart.

 

 

Legacy

With the passing of my dear grandmother there has been a lot of talk about her legacy; the legacy she left behind for us. It has lead me to ponder the term itself, as well as the legacy she did leave us, and the one I want to leave when I pass from this earthly world.

leg·a·cy   noun ˈle-gə-sē

: something (such as property or money) that is received from someone who has died

: something that happened in the past or that comes from someone in the past

(Definition taken from here)

I prefer to think of the second definition when referring to my grandmothers legacy. Though the definition seems too bland when I think of what she went through, and what she left for us. She lived a life of faith, sorrow, perseverance, and victory.

Grandma was a young widow with 13 children to raise on her own. Life was not easy. She was given opportunity after opportunity to “throw the towel in”. What she choose to do instead is the legacy she left us. She choose her Savior, the one that saved her from her sins. She accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as her Savior long before she knew what her life would entail. She remained faithful till the end.

I too, have accepted the Lord Jesus Christ as my Savior, and I cannot help but wonder where I would be had my Grandmother not taught the importance of repentance and yielding to the Lord’s will the way she did. My Grandmother spoke of Salvation and the importance of being saved to her own children, who then told their children, and we are now responsible to do the same. All 13 of her children walk with the Lord, and as far as I know the vast majority of her 64 grandchildren do as well. We can already see the fruits of this teaching in a lot of the 108 great-grandchildren. What a legacy that is!!

As I think of my own legacy, I struggle to think that I am even capable of leaving one. Me? When I consider glory, and the one I call my Savior how can I ever do Salvation justice? For my grandma, the most important thing she left behind for us was the message of Salvation. She was not concerned with leaving a bank account full of money, property, or worldly possessions. Her greatest desire was for each and every one in the family know Jesus as their personal Savior. Her burden stretched further than family. She spent a lot of her years ministering to the community in her own way. She was such a wonderful women. I want to praise her continually for what she has done so unselfishly, but I know that she would want all the Glory given to God!

Oh that I would awaken to a sense of the importance of speaking of Jesus. I pray that I will daily acknowledge the pleasant responsibility it is. May I honor the the Lord as I take up this responsibility and may I find favor in His sight.

“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one![b] You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength.

“And these words which I command you today shall be in your heart. You shall teach them diligently to your children, and shall talk of them when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down, and when you rise up. You shall bind them as a sign on your hand, and they shall be as frontlets between your eyes. You shall write them on the doorposts of your house and on your gates.

(Deuteronomy 6:4-9)

Let me help carry they legacy my grandmother left us. May I never grow weary in my walk with The Lord, and may I stay faithful till my end.

 

 

My Grandma

Grandma. What can I say? Where do I start? You have passed from this world, and I cannot help but rejoice for you! I know there is no time in heaven, but you have been there for 5 earthly days now, and I wonder what you have been doing. I imagine you meeting your Lord and Savior, kneeling before Him on knees that no longer ache; glorifying Him in fullness of awe! I imagine your reunion with your beloved Jake. Oh how I wish I could see you reunited in heaven. I can see you dancing on the streets of gold, singing praises to your Savior, telling him about all of us.

I cannot begin to express the honor it was to be with you when you passed from this earthly world. Spending your last day with you was the most difficult thing I have ever done, but I will never regret it. You waited for all your children and gave them a chance to say goodbye. Grandma, there were 34 people in your small hospital room when you went to be with your Savior. I can’t imagine you wanting it any other way. If anyone knew how to pack a room, it was you grandma. You always found another place, so someone could come in. Seeing you gasp for breaths was so very heartbreaking. Watching mom and all your children, and grandchildren standing by your bedside was a testament to their love for you. You passed away so peacefully that we weren’t sure you were really gone. The room filled with such a sweet sorrow when you left us grandma. There was an instant feeling of emptiness in the room when you died. You have left a huge hole in our lives.

Your faith in your Lord and Savior was unwavering till the end. Oh how the devil tried to sway you. How relentless he was till your last days. We all rejoiced in the sweet victory when you won your race Grandma. Now we are here to continue running. How can we fill your shoes? May the Lord be gracious to us all as we try. If I could be half the women you were, oh if only I could. The time you spent in the Word of God, and the time you spent on your knees puts me to shame. May I learn to lean on God, and fully trust in Him for ALL things. The way He worked in your life, and the miraculous things he did for you is a testament to the relationship you had with Him.

I was trying to explain to some cousins that you were more than a grandma to us. They all knew what I meant. You were our grandma, our mentor, our friend. Your relationship with us was so personable. You made everyone feel like your number one person. You cared so deeply about us. Your laughter and jokes were such a joy to be around. The sleepovers at your house, playing telephone with you in the kitchen, and hanging out in your “coma” (food storage room); so many sweet memories.

The last time I spoke to you in your room at the Heimstaed I was at the door lingering and I made eye contact with you and gave you a little wave and a silly smile, and you locked your beautiful eyes on mine and said “you have such a beautiful smile Sara”, I actually laughed at you like we so often did, but you said it again “no, you really have such a beautiful smile Sara”. Oh how I treasure that moment now. You were so genuine, and I will never forget the look on your face when you told me that.

One Friday night me and few other grandchildren came to your place. I think it was 11 PM, but you were always a night owl. We started talking about heaven. I know it was nearing 2 AM, and you still didn’t want us to leave. We shared with each other what we were all looking forward to most in heaven. As always, you said “I want to see my Savior first of all, but then I want to see my beloved Jake whom I so long to see again.” To know that you are eternally rejoicing in heaven with your Savior and grandpa is such a wonderful feeling. You leaving has been so sad, because we will miss you so. Our weeks will feel so empty not being able to stop in at your place. We love you Grandma, and it is a privilege to be part of your legacy. May I never stray from what you stood for, and may the Lord be gracious to us as we grieve for you! I love you, and you meant more to me than you could ever know.

He that believeth on me, as the scripture hath said, out of his belly shall flow rivers of living water. John 7:38

Where Do You Place Your Hope?

Something that I have really been thinking about lately is all the things we “hope” for. How often do we hear “oh, I hope so!”, “I hope I can have that someday”, and so on, and so forth. I don’t think there is anything wrong with hoping for things, and I think anticipation for good things can be so exciting in both a child, and an adult. That said, I believe that this world has gone overboard with wanting things, and wishing for things. I believe there is a point where it goes too far and consumes our lives of always wanting, wishing, and, hoping for more. When is it ever going to be enough?

We need to focus more on Christ. We need to hope in God. Hope in His lovingkindness. Hope in His compassion. What a sweet assurance of a power greater than all things when we can hope in something that can do things beyond all that we ask or think. One with a power to forgive the vilest of sinners, and heal the most broken heart. What a blessing to have God to hope in.

To hope in Christ means to live righteously. If we hope in Christ we must take care to live righteously. We will be devout readers of His Word to determine how He instructs us to live. We will walk with Him every day, and not just when it is convenient for us. We will view God as the Sovereign Lord, our Master.

T0 hope in Christ means to live expectantly. Are you surprised when God answers your prayers, chalking it up to be a coincidence? Do you expect the Lord to return soon? Or do you think “people have been expecting return of the Lord forever, and it hasn’t happened yet”. Will the Son of Man find faith in us when He comes? People of hope live expectantly, people of hope wait on God to fulfill His promises.

There are so many avenues I could write about in this vast subject of hope in Christ, but I will leave it at this for today. If Christ is your salvation, you can have hope no matter what your circumstance may be.  If we trust in Jesus Christ as God’s salvation for us, we can have hope. He has won the victory over sin, death, and hell. God’s word tells us over and over again that those who hope in Him will not be disappointed.

This I recall to my mind,
Therefore I have hope.
Through the Lord’s mercies we are not consumed,
Because His compassions fail not.
They are new every morning;
Great is Your faithfulness.
“The Lord is my portion,” says my soul,
“Therefore I hope in Him!”
-Lamentations 3:21-24 (NKJV)