So Close To Bethlehem

So Close To Bethlehem

I wonder how close you are to Bethlehem today? Right now! Right, where you are, in the middle of a million things, a million thoughts, and a million worries? In the middle of COVID, and its conundrum of threat, fear and anxiety that’s come and nestled quite rudely into our Christmas celebrations? I wonder, can you reach out and touch the town sign that says its name, “Bethlehem,” or are you feeling veered off, lost and off track? Has the perplexity and complexity of it all gotten in and taken your hope, your joy and your peace down the garden path?

See it there then today, with your soul eyes. “Bethlehem!” Ah yes, there it is…

I wonder if you remember or even know the Hope born there that night in that crude stable, is as close as your heartbeat? Does the awesome gift of Hope from God resonate and radiate within you and from you? Does it affect your everyday living? Your thinking? Can you feel the depth of its magnitude deep in your soul, or have you sunk deep into that horrible conundrum of busyness and COVID chaos?

What a sweet gift the baby “Jesus” presented to the world in that wretched manger of straw surrounded by everything ‘less than perfect!’ Grasp, if you will, that picture of Hope for a broken and imperfect world! Not a COVID world but a sin world! Then reach out to receive a fresh touch for you! The thing is, it’s so much more than Hope isn’t it? Hope brings a joy and a peace of mind and a really gentle hug from God to message us that it’s ok. Everything really is ok”, and in that “million and one things” to-do list, His gift of Hope is the stable banner at the top to get you through.

Hope in Jesus, our Saviour? Yeah, it’s our salvation for the soul of us in these crazy days and the help for our day ahead, no matter what’s on the plate.

Because He came, Hope is our gift to receive and recycle to keep on giving. So you see, it’s all well and good! The birthing event of our Savior in Bethlehem, even though so long ago, is really very close, because the Hope He gave to the world that night, is His promise to us and still ours to receive! It’s a sweet gift that keeps on giving to our soul time and time again. So So amazing too, is that as we can share it with others so they can be brought closer to the Hope of the babe born in Bethlehem in their journey of chaos, broken and hopeless. When Hope wells up within, don’t ever underestimate the power of it within your circles of influence to ignite the spark in others! It’s contagious! It’s lovely and it’s peaceful, oh so peaceful!
❤
#Advent#GiftofHope

Misplaced Perception

 

So, sometimes our perception isn’t so precise is it? Sometimes how we view it, is just wrong on so many levels? Often we don’t see clearly all the detail of all the stuff in our way and so we make a false judgement, wrong decisions, critical remarks and as a result we act and react on false pretenses just because our vision is dimmed.

The other morning I noticed a spider in the bathtub, and you have to understand, we don’t get along well. No, spiders and me ~ well, we just don’t see eye to eye. Oh, I love the elegant patterns etched into their silken webs and for photography, I find their amazing draping, spun creations fascinating as they glisten with dewdrops in the lazy, hazy, morning sun! However, the way the spider crawls about in mid-air and free-falls to spin its elegant design is frightful for one who’s standing below in close proximity. Maybe it stems from the baggage of a fear awakened in my childhood spirit when upon waking one morning, sleepy eyes met with adrenaline, and widened and focused rather quickly to see a spider dangling from its web about two inches from my face! Did I say, I panicked? How does an eight-year-old figure this one out? Screaming was never my thing, as it was much too loud and dramatic for my quiet side. Yeah, I was on my own for this one and so I was.

I didn’t have much time to think but felt slightly frozen in fear!  Moving too quickly, could prove to be a bad choice, so I gently blew him gently to the left as I crawled out gently on the right from underneath, hoping he didn’t drop further with the wind in his sails. Yeah, to this day, I don’t like them and I really dislike their spidery, eight-legged characteristics and their predictable creepy crawl way they crawl.

So, this day here we were together, him and I, and this spider found lodging in the tub just had to be reigned in! I grabbed a very thick wad of paper in order to make sure he didn’t make a getaway! Now, my eyesight isn’t what it used to be and without magnifying glasses, all fine detail is a blur and a lot of things look the same to me. I sized up the moment as best I could and with a vision quite less than 20/20 I took him out! Upon checking to make sure I had him, he moved and fell back into the tub. I panicked and dropped the whole wad of nonsense, only to recoup to find to my embarrassment, it was nothing but nonsense, as a clearer view revealed a fluffy fuzz of dog fur that floated off the wad, into the air drifting back into the tub. No damage done this time, just a wake-up call to not be so anxious about things that might not even be. But how many times do I need to be reminded?

Do you do the same? Do you find yourself worrying about things that aren’t? Feel panicked about things that aren’t concrete? Anxious about issues that aren’t set in stone? I didn’t see clearly enough to know the detail and so I had it all wrong. Ok, so here’s the thing friends, physical eyesight isn’t always accurate and sweet and beautiful soul, neither is our spiritual insight? We are called to be discerning but we have to take care to see clearly before acting or reacting. In John 7: 24, Jesus rebukes a critical crowd in the temple courts, when He says to them “Do not judge by appearances but judge with right judgement.”

Sometimes you and I and we and us, don’t we just get it all wrong and judge before we gather all the facts? We see we perceive, we size up and we assume all manner of things! Sometimes we listen to wrong words and our false perception leads us off track and nonsense possibly leads many others astray as our false belief gives way to gossip and spreads like uncontrolled flames through a dry forest! Unlike the “no big deal” of it wasn’t a spider after all, we can burn valuable bridges causing a lot of damage to ourselves and to others because of anxieties and false perceptions.

Yeah, beautiful soul, you and I and we and us, we need to take care to give the heart magnifying glasses in order to see things through the eyes of spiritual discernment opened up in the Light of Truth, before we jump headfirst into something that’s all wrong. Sometimes, we need to put our “holier than thou” caps on the hooks of challenge and seek to understand by joining the ranks of those living where the rubber meets the road so to speak. Walk in their shoes and carry their baggage! Not all things come together to make a nice, clean, tidy story of perfection but each one is writing God’s story for our lives as the divine and sovereign God heals, repairs and perfects that which concerns us. David knew His God well and reminds himself and us of His constant care in Psalm 138:8, “The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your love O Lord endures forever. Do not abandon the works of your hands.”

How’s our story? Not perfect eh? Rest assured God is working on you and He’s working on them! Who are we to judge then? In Proverbs 3: 13 we have a promise of blessing to the wise and to those who seek to understand.

“ Blessed is the one who finds wisdom, and the one who gets understanding…How then do we get wisdom? How then do we understand?”

James 1:5
“If any of you lacks wisdom, let him ask God, who gives generously to all without reproach, and it will be given him.”

In A Stew

So you’ve worried yourself into a stew and now what can you do? You’re exhausted and turned upside down, inside out and wrong side in. Has it helped? Face it, beautiful soul, nothing was accomplished by your fretting because nothing ever is. Jesus Himself, told us so in His own words in Matthew 6:27, when He asked His listeners a pointed question ~ “Can anyone of you by worrying add a single hour to your life?” So the words from our Savior and Lord ring in our ears and we still don’t get it because we just can’t turn that issue over and relinquish control. Somehow we so falsely believe that worry is power over our problem and so we keep the stew a bubblin’ and the energy levels drop dead at our feet as we drag our worries to every corner of the planet. Our enemy is out to bring us to defeat and wherever we go, we’ll find that crazy worry just beats us there to beat us up, to laugh in our faces and defy our trust in the God we say we believe in and the God who cares so deeply for us.

Oh, these moments are moments for your beautiful soul to take a stand against the enemy and inhale God’s grace and let the depth and the height of His sovereign power sink into your heart and mind. These are the moments to reach out to the Lord of our lives, our Salvation Giver, our Provider, and our sustainer through all things. These are the moments to just fall into a simple child-like trust and trust Him! Cast your burden on the God who has your back. Nothing will touch you that He hasn’t ordered and if He orders it and brings you to it, you can know, that you know, that you know, that He will bring you through it!

1 Peter 5: 6 7 “Therefore humble yourselves under the mighty hand of God, that He may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your anxiety on Him, because He cares for you. Be of sober spirit, be on the alert. Your adversary, the devil, prowls around like a roaring lion, seeking someone to devour.…

Don’t let him get to you through worry!

Read more in my book page 35
#LittleThoughtsForBigDays

Rollin’ The Stone

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So ~ Sometimes when tensions mount and it all seems wrong it’s not really all wrong at all, but simply God rolling the stone away from the grave that we would bury ourselves in, if everyone had their way!

“Early on the first day of the week, while it was still dark, Mary of Magdala went to the tomb and saw that the stone had been removed from the entrance. So she came running to Simon Peter, and the other disciple, the one Jesus loved, and said, “They have taken the Lord out of the tomb, and we don’t know where they have put Him.” John 20: 1,2

It’s ironic isn’t it, that it was still dark, when Mary arrived at the grave site and perhaps she didn’t see clearly enough to know what really went down. She was anxious and tension mounted in her heart of hearts, so she perceived the worst and spread a false rumour about the stolen body of her Lord. Anxiety, pride, and bitterness does that! It makes us act and over react in negative ways. In reality, her Lord had not been taken at all! He was still in control! He had just risen! Go figure! He was alive!
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So beautiful soul, when it’s a dark night for you,and you can’t see the forest for the trees, don’t assume that it’s all bad and all wrong. Perhaps God is just rolling the stone away to free you and let you live more abundantly, under His protection.

His will will prevail though the powers of darkness try to take you out.

#SoulFire