Snow: Manna From Heaven?

photo 1

Abe takes a break from
eating to pose for a picture.

Everyone knows the South experienced a huge snowstorm shutting down just about everything.  So what do these people do with time on their hands and no place to go?  Dog owners take their pups out for a romp in the frosty ground covering and post it on Facebook.  Don’t believe me?  Just google dogs in snow.  I bet you’ll find a few.

All dogs seem to believe that the snow is God’s gift to them.  The first thing my dog, and any dog for that matter, did was treat the fluffy white stuff like his own personal smorgasbord.  He loved it and kept begging to go outside to gobble it up.  And of course, most dogs love to romp through it.  They treat the snow as a wonderful, joyous event to celebrate and revel in.  And their owners love watching them.

For just a moment, I want you to picture this:

That evening quail came and covered the camp, and in the morning there was a layer of dew around the camp. When the dew was gone, thin flakes like frost on the ground appeared on the desert floor. When the Israelites saw it, they said to each other, “What is it?” For they did not know what it was.  Moses said to them, “It is the bread the Lord has given you to eat.”           Exodus 16:13-15

When the dew was gone, thin flakes like frost covered the ground!  We know this story.  As children, we heard how God fed the Israelites as they wandered through the desert.  But often we read the stories, and we miss the reality of them.  Look at the snow and watch a dog’s appreciation of this ground covering.   This is what the Lord did for the Israelites.  Why?  They had been grumbling about their conditions, and rather than strike them down, he fed them.  Notice the joy you feel watching your dog or someone else’s celebrating the snow.  That’s how God feels when we celebrate His blessings.

What has God done for you?  Do you revel in it with joy as our dogs do with the snow?

If you want to see the kind of joy we should feel over God’s blessings, just check out this snow dog.

Advertisements

The World is a Better Place Because…

As I lay awake this morning contemplating whether I could manage a few more minutes of sleep or not, this line came to me:

The world is a better place because…

Dumbfounded, I tried to finish the statement, but it was a struggle.  If you think about the current state of our world or look back at some of my previous posts (Why Abuse Victims Stay, Healing from Trials and Hardships, Why? How?  A Grandmother’s Questions), you might be hard pressed to complete it, too.  It’s easy to say why it’s not a better place.  The evidence is around us.

I eventually finished this statement with my family, especially my grandchildren, and my God…not necessarily in that order.

Then, I thought about the people in this world who don’t have a faith to fall back on.  How do they get up each day?  How do they move forward with purpose in their lives when there is so much violence and hatred surrounding them?

In James 1:2, Christians receive this admonishment:

Consider it pure joy, my brothers and sisters, whenever you face trials of many kinds.

Easier said than done, but the clue to this is our faith.  Without our faith and the knowledge that God will carry us through, how can you survive?  God gives us the hope and promise of eternal salvation.  He warns us that this world is not our home.  We can carry forward because of this.  We know that whatever happens, God is in control.  We have the Holy Spirit to guide and comfort us.   We have the love of Christ to show us how valuable we are.  Everyone can have this, but not  everyone accepts it.

But I mourn for those who don’t know this hope.

How else do you finish this statement?

The world is a better place because…

 

PS  Apologies for such a long stretch without a blog post.  I became ill following my last post and it took three weeks to get well.  I’m fine and it was nothing serious, but it put me way behind on a LOT of things.

The world is a better place because…. please let me know your thoughts!

Finding True and Pure Belief

I’ll never forget the first time I took my daughters to a movie where they didn’t need to go to the bathroom in the middle of the action.  This incredible milestone, the movie that entranced my daughters beyond the call of their bladders, was Willow.  This fantastical movie, directed by Ron Howard, told the story of a race of dwarf-like people who find a baby of another race of people.  Their village, fearing reprise, send the character, Willow, played by, Warwick Davis, to return the baby to her people.  During Willow’s journey, he meets many make-believe characters including two brownies played by Kevin Pollak and Rick Overton.

A few weeks after we saw this movie, the actors who played the brownies appeared on a children’s television show.  To my amazement, I learned that my daughters believed these two men were actually brownies, tiny little people no taller than six or seven inches.  The girls argued vehemently with me, almost hysterical over the fact that their mother couldn’t believe.  I tried to explain that the movie studio used special types of photography to film the normal-sized men to appear so tiny.  They were having none of it.

I remembered this the other day during a sermon that touched on Mark 10:15:

I assure you: Whoever does not welcome the kingdom of God like a little child will never enter it.

Welcome the kingdom of God–believe in the kingdom of God wholeheartedly–that’s what Christ expects from us.  Nothing I said convinced my young daughters that they were wrong.  They believed and loved the idea of the brownies.  As I read through this passage, I marveled at the strength of my daughters’ belief in the brownies.  This is the kind of conviction, devotion, and love that Christ expects from us.

I don’t know about you, but for me that’s a pretty tall order.  I believe, and at times, I become animated and fully sold out for Christ.  I’m ashamed to admit, though, that the day-to-day happenings of my life often don’t reflect the childlike love and belief that Christ describes.  Convicted, all I can do is pray for spiritual guidance from Him to help me fill in the gaps.

Do you believe in the kingdom of God?  In Christ’s salvation?  Do you love the idea so much that you will argue, even with your mother, to prove your point?  Can others see the childlike nature of your faith?  Difficult questions, but ones we should explore as Christians.