Thank you, Lord, for fun and laughs. We're desperate for you and appreciate those moments when the world and its cares slip away as we immerse ourselves in the creativity of others. If only all of those who create realized the good and best ideas come from you. Thank you, God. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
Silly for sure but at least might generate a smile. Here's to Allstate for bringing humor into their advertisements with just the right actor to pull it off.
God, you must have a sense of humor watching us mess up in the silliest of ways. I'm sure you've rolled your eyes more than once on my goofy actions. Ah, well, life on planet earth. Thank you for each day. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
After John's messengers left, Jesus began to speak to the crowd about John. "What did you go into the desert to see? A reed swayed by the wind? If not, what did you go out to see? A man dressed in fine clothes? No, those who wear expensive clothes and indulge in luxury are in palaces. But what did you go out to see? A prophet? Yes, I tell you, and more than a prophet. This is the one about whom it is written:
'I will send my messenger ahead of you, who will prepare your way before you.' [Malachi 3:1]
I tell you, among those born of women there is no one greater than John; yet the one who is least in the kingdom of God is greater than he."
There are reasons for everything under heaven and in the universe. Terrible things happen and exquisite things happen. Sin is at the root of evil and God is the origin of all good.
Each of us must take inventory of ourselves now and then to establish who we are. Are we people of faith because if we are, we need to be doing our best to stay close to Jesus and allow the Holy Spirit to improve us at every level. We are often bombarded with illicit temptations which will inevitably cause bad conduct if we fail to resist them. We all seem to have our specific areas of weakness, and the enemy of our souls has gathered enough information on us to hit us with his best shots. Since he is supernatural in his evil, outside of the Lord's power we're dust to him and easily overpowered, steeping us in guilt and much deserved shame.
Like the man Adam who, paired with Eve, succumbed to the temptations offered by the evil one and started the decline of the human race, the devil's classic sin of pride - wanting to be like God - threw the heavens into a melee of disposing of the evil ones and tossing the two humans out of the formerly perfect Garden of Eden to preserve its integrity.
We see daily the effects of the sin on earth. Amplified in each generation, the world is hustling to its moral, physical, and spiritual conclusion. The remnant of God's faithful ones sustain it as they wait for God's next move. Many people wonder what's going to happen on planet earth, some arrogant enough to think they can control the results with their elitist plans to preserve the planet over the lives of its human residents they hold responsible for its "imminent" demise.
The real delay for earth's destruction is due to God's unlimited love for the vast people-types He's created. He's holding back His wrath to make a way for those lost souls who desperately need His Son Jesus Christ to save them from their nasty sins. To hear His call by the Holy Spirit reminding them that everyone of us is a sinner and must repent.
It's a foreign notion to many in the world. Some refuse to acknowledge sin at all. Others recognize it in others but not themselves. And still others just flat reject a single entrance to heaven through one Jesus Christ. That He gave His life to pay the price for their sins is of no consequence to them. Some insist it's all hooey and give far more value to climate change and green energy than to the real Savior of their souls. And their Creator loves them all, willing to wait until the last willing heart has turned from sin and had their "come to Jesus" moment. And then . . . His long held back wrath will be unleashed.
Some are wondering if there's any truth, any reality to all of it, but God has stated that men are without excuse because:
The wrath of God is being revealed from heaven against all the godlessness and wickedness of men who suppress the truth by their wickedness, since what may be known about God is plain to them, because God has made it plain to them. For since the creation of the world God's invisible qualities - his eternal power and divine nature - have been clearly seen, being understood from what has been made, so that men are without excuse. (Romans 1:18-20 NIV)
If you're wondering about this one true God, check Him out. He won't flinch. People will disappoint you, betray you, hurt you, but God will not. Christians make mistakes, do foolish things, and suffer the consequences of poor decisions. They're human. They sin. True Christians repent and do their best to improve their actions, to serve the Lord, to share His Truth with others. They come in all sizes, colors, and from all countries and ethnicities. He welcomes all who turn their hearts to His Son - the price of admission to eternal life in the real heaven.
Thank you, Lord, for giving your all, for suffering on my behalf. No words for how grateful I am. And still I'm desperate for you. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
The wide open space is nice. The actual "kitchen" is minimal. Not a pot rack fan especially industrial sized that I'd need a stool to retrieve them. I like the floor and straight back chairs at the island, and although I like the "picnic" table and bench, I need a back to sit against. Not fond of the checkered squares behind the stovetop , the green island and bookcase. Love the high ceiling and beams even though it seems a bit of wasted space.
Father, you know what each of us needs - and wants. You show us beauty and grace in this corrupted world. Thank you for those who design and build. May they honor you with the skills you've given them. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
John's disciples told him about all these things. Calling two of them, he sent them to the Lord to ask, "Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?"
When the men came to Jesus, they said, "John the Baptist sent us to you to ask, 'Are you the one who was to come, or should we expect someone else?'"
At that very time Jesus cured many who had diseases, sicknesses, and evil spirits, and gave sight to many who were blind. So he replied to the messengers, "Go back and report to John what you have seen and heard: The blind receive sight, the lame walk, those who have leprosy are cured, the deaf hear, the dead are raised, and the good news is preached to the poor. Blessed is the man who does not fall away on account of me."
Just for fun, here are the first fifth sentences in five of my novels:
Or think the same. (Destination)
Of course she could make anything look good. (Breath of Life)
So, by the time she was in high school, she went by C.M., and no one (other than her mother) had better call her anything else because she would respectfully but commandingly correct them. (Sweet Release)
Darkness triumphed. (The Fixer)
The eulogy was equal to the task of burying someone famous. (The Famous One)
Father, thank you for every word. Please help me to finish those stories you've given me. I'm desperate for you. Always. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
"The wind blows wherever it pleases. You hear its sound, but you cannot tell where it comes from or where it is going. So it is with everyone born of the Spirit."Jesus; John 8:3
"Suddenly a sound like the blowing of a violent wind came from heaven and filled the whole house where they were sitting. They saw what seemed to be tongues of fire that separated and came to rest on each of them. All of them were filled with the Holy Spirit and began to speak with other tongues as the Spirit enabled them." Acts 2:2-4
The answers lie in the Wind of the Spirit directing us to Jesus, the Savior of our souls. In these dark times where the earthly winds blow chaos, murder, and destruction, we need the Truth to tamp them down and reveal the plan of saving grace initiated before Creation and brought to pass when Jesus came to earth to salvage the human race. Not the white race, not the black race, nor the Asian, Hispanic, Russian, etc. races but rather the human race. Take heed. There will come an even worse time when this offer of Redemption will be no more and what's left of the human race will perish.
"I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through me."Jesus; John 14:6
Thank you for rescuing me, God, Lord of heaven and earth. Holy Spirit, convict hearts and romance the lost. Bring many to Jesus before it's all too late. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
Soon afterward, Jesus went to a town called Nain, and his disciples and a large crowd went along with him. As he approached the town gate, a dead person was being carried out - the only son of his mother, and she was a widow. And a large crowd from the town was with her. When the Lord saw her, his heart went out to her and he said, "Don't cry."
Then he went up and touched the coffin,, and those carrying it stood still. He said, "Young man, I say to you, get up!" The dead man sat up and began to talk, and Jesus gave him back to his mother.
They were all filled with awe and praised God. "A great prophet has appeared among us," they said. "God has come to help his people." This news about Jesus spread throughout Judea and the surrounding country.
I've waited to give my opinion. I've read and posted on Facebook many perspectives on the recent rash of cop killings both done and received by policeman on duty to serve and protect their assigned communities. White guilt, black lives matter, political, and prejudicial articles and agendas, interviews, and posts have all appeared on the general news media and social news media. Facts have been the least popular and published items in much of the coverage on recent shootings.
I'm Caucasian from the son of an Italian immigrant mom and dad, and Scotch Irish grandparents. Did I choose my "color"? No. Did I choose my parents? No. Thank God they were admirable, wonderful human beings who blessed me my entire life until they left this earth for heaven. God ordained my shade of white, my location, my heritage. Is it better than anyone else's? No. The privilege afforded me was the Lord's placing me in the United States of America, one nation under God. It's a privilege every child born here has been given.
There are policemen in every shade of skin and from most ethnic persuasions. The crimes many of them see would turn the stomachs of most of us. The threats they face would horrify us. One hundred percent of them are not perfect, and a few of them are not interested in holding to correct conduct. The majority of them are upstanding, honorable servants of the law and do their best to work for their communities striving to keep law and order, pursue credibility and helpful relationships with the citizens in those communities.
Some of the unfortunate people who've died at the hands of police were known criminals no matter how much the influence of their "color" influenced the various movements erected in their honor. Yes, they were somebody's son, brother, father, cousin. This makes it all the more tragic that they'd engaged in criminal activity prior to their deaths. The revelation of facts of their deaths revealed their criminal pasts and their refusals to comply with the police in these fatal incidents.
Cops need cooperation from the citizens in their communities. Simple, straightforward cooperation, no matter how annoying or inconvenient. They often must face the fears of explosive responses from those being stopped, pulled over, or asked for license and registration. There are tail lights out, there are traffic violations. There are suspicious circumstances and routine stops.
I've been pulled over by a black cop for rolling through a stop sign when nobody was in sight - except him. He was kind and gave me a warning. Did I think for one minute he pulled me over because he thought I acted with "white privilege"? Not a chance.
I know some black individuals complain because of white cops pulling them over because of the color of their skin. If that's a valid deduction, go peacefully to the station and explain your thoughts to whomever is in charge. Register your complaints and concerns. You have every right to inquire, discuss, and complain. Your life matters as much as anyone's.
But no one's life matters more than another's. No. One's. Not the cop's. Not yours. Not mine. We are equal in God's eyes who designed us, gives us our strengths, forgives our weaknesses, and will bolster all that is good in us if we will turn to Him for all of our needs and assistance. The color of our skins is beautiful to God, part of His magnificent creation. For those who refuse to see it that way, shame on them. If they're in public service with these feelings, they need to seek counseling to resolve their prejudicial issues.
Racism is real regardless of color or ethnic persuasion. It's a sin. It isn't just common to one race or another but to all. Prejudice is real and it's foolish and devilish and needs to be eradicated, but this is a sinful world. It's not going away with marches and protests, gunfire and killing of one kind or another, with ugly and evil rhetoric that perpetuates hatred for no valid reason. How can a man be fairly judged by the conduct of another? Only when a group of people act the same way will those judgments prevail.
These are my ramblings of sorrow . . .
God in heaven, forgive us all. We're desperate for you, your justice, your kindness, your mercy, and grace. Help us, Lord. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
God, you love us all in spite of us. You see our beauty and our ugliness, our rights and our wrongs. You offer a way out of our sinfulness if only we will turn to Jesus Christ. We're desperate for you, Lord. We of every color, of every ethnic persuasion. We need you. Father, forgive us all for our sinful, selfish ways, and help us to find you, repent, and seek your salvation. Apart from you, we can do nothing. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
I like the cabinets, but the table/island is too much of the same color. It makes this fabulous kitchen look bland and one dimensional. It's (the table/island) so big there's very little room to move around it with the stools. I understand keeping to a "theme" and color because we've seen some with too much contrast, but this? It blends so much there's no distinction except for the brick which I like, but even the beams and ceiling are all the same. Your thoughts?
Lord, there is beauty even in the simple or mundane. You've given differences to us all and I can only imagine the eclectic beauty of heaven. Thank you for it all. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
Brad Thor's latest Foreign Agent spills thrills and lots of blood. Not for the faint of heart, Foreign Agent is amazingly connected to what's happening in today's world of politics, terrorism, and espionage.
Scot Harvath is the man the president can count on to do whatever must be done. Scot's employed by a private intelligence company run by an old-school CIA guy. Harvath's position provides deniability for any who use his multiple former SEAL and espionage skills. A series of events with ISIS earmarks spanning the globe and winding up on the White House lawn send Harvath on a chase first to capture those suspected of organizing various attacks but pointing to a singular individual with a totally unexpected agenda. The problem is the agenda is killing too many Americans and diverting all efforts to discover whatever the end game is.
Thanks to the calm - and perhaps just slightly demented - interrogator with all kinds of strange toys designed to make prisoners talk in addition to the dwarf tech-wizard Nicholas, Harvath and his diverse band of assistants set out to accomplish the impossible. With the aid of a CIA drone, the constant threat of discovery and death in every improvised plan, Scot Harvath makes some heavy duty promises to a couple of locals who risk their lives right along with him and two warrior twin brothers with their makeshift crew of self-appointed soldiers. If Harvath can somehow make it out alive with these brave men, those promises will be kept.
Scot Harvath wastes no time with wicked men. He's become hardened to the games played by those who plan to kill in large numbers. His given window of opportunity to confess or explain the next plan of action is tight and narrow before the pain begins. If necessary, certain individuals end up in Malta - a particular location where no one would want to go. Others end up executed on the spot of their resistance.
In Foreign Agent Scot Harvath must travel to several locations using multiple contacts to capture various prisoners. Terror attacks, assassinations, suicide bombers, and double agents comprise the pages of this novel. It's an exciting but deadly journey at every event and nothing in this one is easy as the escalation of ISIS attacks lands in the front yard of the White House.
There's more cussing and a bit of sexual content in this one. Not unexpected or excessive - just more than in some of Brad Thor's other novels. Also considerable violence and blood spatter. Although Foreign Agent ends on a positive note, there seems to be a conundrum of choices ahead for Thor's protagonist. Although Harvath is a savvy agent with superfluous skills, the character seems to be in a catch-22 situation. He's in love, but he's a warrior patriot. He's hardened himself at one end of his personality but tenderized himself to the possible love of his life. The romance thread in Foreign Agent is thin, but it permeates the story well under the radar. As a reader, I can't help but wonder what this character will decide because in this story it doesn't seem like he will be able to have both.
Highly recommended for its amazing poignancy to today's events, the insights into terrorism and its players, and for continuing the well-established legacy of the Scot Harvath stories.
Father, you're all that matters in this writing biz. I pray Brad Thor would incorporate you into his work. I pray for continued inspiration for Brad and for protection from all harm for him and his family. In the Name of Jesus, Amen.
When Jesus had finished saying all this in the hearing of the people [Luke 6:17-49], he entered Capernaum. There a centurion's servant, whom his master valued highly, was sick and about to die. The centurion heard of Jesus and sent some elders of the Jews to him, asking him to come and heal his servant. When they came to Jesus, they pleaded earnestly with him, "This man deserves to have you do this, because he loves our nation and has built our synagogue." So Jesus went with them.
He was not far from the house when the centurion sent friends to say to him, "Lord, don't trouble yourself, for I do not deserve to have you come under my roof. That is why I did not even consider myself worthy to come to you. But say the word, and my servant will be healed. For I myself am a man under authority, with soldiers under me. I tell one, 'Go,' and he goes; and that one 'Come,' and he comes. I say to my servant, 'Do this,' and he does it."
When Jesus heard this, he was amazed at him, and turning to the crowd following him, he said, "I tell you, I have not found such great faith even in Israel." Then the men who had been sent returned to the house and found the servant well.