Saturday, December 24, 2011

The Perfect Gift in an Imperfect World...

Joy to the World… Peace on Earth Goodwill to Men… Jesus is the Reason for the Season… and on and on the sayings go.  Maybe Christmas is not feeling that way to you this year.  You might have had a very hard, trying time in 2011.  Joy is the last thing you are experiencing and as a follower of Christ you have His peace living in you, but the world is far from peaceful. 

Okay, you did not come here to Coffee Cup Corner to be depressed… I do have some good news to share with you!  You are not forgotten!  Even when you feel that God doesn’t seem to be paying much attention to you… He is.  The Greatest Gift of all times is the gift of Jesus Christ.  And the reality is… if our Heavenly Father never did anything for us again except giving us His Son, our Savior… that is still way more than we ever deserve… that is enough of a reason to praise Him forever, through the good and the not so good circumstances.

“For unto us a Child is born, unto us a Son is given; and the government will be upon His shoulder. And His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace.”  Isaiah 9:6

Why Christmas… why do we celebrate it the way we do… why should we want to partake in the festivities?  In my opinion, the glorious Christmas story is a reminder that our faith is not misplaced.  It’s a reminder, that when God seems to be silent He not necessarily still… when God is still it is not that He is uninterested… and even when we have convinced ourselves that He is uninterested it has nothing to do with His plan for the world or for you.  It reminds us that God can do anything He chooses to do.  And it is a reminder that God pays attention, is moved by and blessed by those who remain faithful.  But most of all Christmas is a reminder that your faith and your hope is not in vain.

“Therefore, my beloved brethren, be steadfast, immovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, knowing that your labor is not in vain in the Lord.”  I Corinthians 15:58
The challenge is… will you walk away from the norm… will you be that unique person that no matter the situation, you will choose to walk blamelessly in the eyes of God.  You may be having marital problems… will you say I believe in my vows and I will not just give up?  Or you may be in a work situation where you don’t seem to be moving upward… will you make the decision to still do your job with integrity?  When all is said and done, will you say, I want to know that to the best of my ability I am blameless before God in the way I am choosing to live my life, whether I see God do anything on my behalf or not.

I pray you have a blessed and joyful Christmas!

Rejoicing in Truth!

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Love and Patience That Can Only Come From God...

I read this devotional this morning and I knew I needed to share it. It is from "Our Daily Bread" and it is written by David H. Roper.  The scripture to read is Colossians 3:12-17. Hope you get as much out of it as I did.
The Horse and Her Boy
"When I was about 5 years old, my father decided that I needed a horse of my own to care for. So he bought an old bay mare and brought her home to me. I named her Dixie.

Dixie was a formidable beast for me at my age and small stature. No saddle was small enough, no stirrups short enough for my legs, so I rode bareback most of the time.

Dixie was plump, which meant that my feet stuck straight out, making it difficult to stay astride. But whenever I fell off, Dixie would simply stop, look at me, and wait while I tried to climb on her back again. This leads me to Dixie’s most admirable trait: She was wonderfully patient.

I, on the other hand, was less than patient with Dixie. Yet she bore my childish tantrums with stoic patience, never once retaliating. I wish I could be more like Dixie, having patience that overlooks a multitude of offenses. I have to ask myself, “How do I react when others aggravate me?” Do I respond with humility, meekness, and patience? (Col. 3:12). Or with intolerance and indignation?

To overlook an offense. To forgive 70 times 7. To bear with human frailty and failure. To show mercy and kindness to those who exasperate us. To gain such control over our souls—this is the work of God.

God of grace and God of goodness,
Teach me to be ever kind,
Always gentle and forgiving
With the Savior first in mind. —Brandt

Love that is born at Calvary bears and forbears, gives and forgives."

Rejoicing in Truth!

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Can You Hear It?

Can you hear it?  Hear what? You might ask.  The sound of God speaking directly to you! 

With the Christmas season upon us I was thinking about the angel sharing the God-given message of the Messiah coming.  (Read Luke 1) Think about Mary getting a visit from the angel Gabriel with a message from God… he told her she was blessed and favored by God!  As that wasn’t enough… then he told her she was going to conceive a child, the Son of God! And what did Mary say to him?  She asked him how this could be since she was still a virgin.  Now comes the most awe inspiring point of this conversation, at least to me… Gabriel told Mary that the Holy Spirit would come on her and the power of the Highest would overshadow her! Conception by the Holy Spirit!!!  He also told her that her cousin, Elisabeth, was also pregnant… Elisabeth was past the age of conception, and at this point Gabriel shared that with God nothing is impossible.  After this whole amazing exchange between Gabriel and a young virgin girl… it almost goes without saying that nothing is impossible with God!

For with God nothing is impossible.  Luke 1:37

You may never have a physical visit from an angel, but you are still hearing from God just like Mary did.  Mary’s story is in our hands, God’s Word, for us to experience in written word, so for me it makes it so much more vivid.  But how would your life encounters with God read if it was written down???  I find when I read about the great experiences in the Bible, I am enthralled… but each one of us have God experiences everyday that we take a breath!  I am sure there are many reasons in your life that you would love to have a personal message from God.  You know what?  We all have that message… individually given to each one of us… His Word, right in our hands.  It is suited to each one of us, if we are just willing to open It and read It. 

God has sent you a message… a Message that will change your eternal life.  His Message of hope, renewal, and forgiveness through His Son.  Will you hear and receive His Message?

I pray your heart will receive His Message new every day, and that your eyes will be opened to His continued presence in this world.

Rejoicing in Truth!