Good morning, Dear Friends and Prayer Partners! This is the day that the Lord has made and we will rejoice and be glad in it! The sun is shining and the temp. is climbing, already up to 50 and supposed to be in the low seventies by this weekend and then turn cold again. Well, this is winter in Florida. I looked at the weather map on TV this morning, and all over the south, nothing but white showing, from Atlanta on up. Daryl said schools were closed again today because of icy roads. He was the only one who made it into his office in the dark.
He and Matthew leave tomorrow for here for Christmas, so I am praying them down...for no rain and a safe trip. They probably won't get here until sometime in the wee hours .
I did some more shopping yesterday, and stopped by the church to pick up the flowers I did not get Sunday. The bouquet was lovely with five red carnations and a white rose and lots of baby's breath. The vase was a tiny red heart-shaped one with LOVE written on it. A beautiful little remembrance of Louis.
My last trip was to the park, but I didn't take pictures of the red, maple trees, yet. Maybe today. I watched a squirrel give a flying leap over the weeds at the side of the road and then he was lost to sight in the tall grass. A flock of ibis was busy pecking along the grass and a lone egret had its neck all crooked while preening the feathers. A beautiful, cool day. God is good!
This is the Advent season with a New Year coming shortly. As I was going through some very old albums yesterday, I came across this church bulletin from 1987. This is a word from Pastor Don Logue; ( I didn't ask his permission to use it, so don't tell him).
"What's the Plan?"
This week we welcome the arrival of another new year. As the old year goes, we think of it as the removal of many things we are glad to see go. We think of the coming year as a clean slate with the promise of wonderful and fulfilling events. In fact, we often hope that the new year will be filled with pleasure, success, accomplishment. We want to miss any hardship, inconvenience, or failure.
But, remember, God is in charge of your life in the coming year, just as He was during the past year. Instead of planning for a year filled with success and void of all difficulty, give some thought to what God may have on His agenda. If He is going to build more of Christ's character in you, will he not require you to face situations that call for courage, risk, new levels of trust? Will he not offer opportunities to develop through hardship? suffering? disappointment? failure? Peter says a life that is genuine and brings honor to Christ is one that has been "refined by fire" (1 Peter 1:7.) Amy Carmichael, God's servant to the poor of south India captures what our commitment to the Lord should be in 2011.
From prayer that asks that I may be
Sheltered from winds that beat on Thee,
From fearing when I should aspire,
From faltering when I should climb higher,
From silken self, O Captain, free
Thy soldier who would follow Thee.
From subtle love of softening things,
From easy choices, weakenings,
Not thus are spirits fortified,
Not this way went the Crucified,
From all that dims Thy Calvary,
O Lamb of God, deliver me.
Give me the love that leads the way,
The faith that nothing can dismay,
The hope no disappointments tire.
Let me not sink to be a clod;
Make me Thy fuel, Flame of God.
(From "Toward Jerusalem," by Amy Carmichael)
I always give thanks for you, remembering you in my prayers with thanksgiving, joy and love!
Love and hugs,