Sunday, February 13, 2011

How Deep The Father's Love For Me

It will be Valentine's Day tomorrow and as I am making chocolate covered strawberries for the college/singles who will be over later... I am reminded of how much God loves me (us). He is the type of Father who would definitely be doing something "special" for us to show His love - wait - HE already did.
"How deep the Father's love for us,
How vast beyond all measure
That He should give His only Son
To make a wretch His treasure
How great the pain of searing loss,
The Father turns His face away
As wounds which mar the chosen One,
Bring many sons to glory
Behold the Man upon a cross,
My sin upon His shoulders
Ashamed I hear my mocking voice,
Call out among the scoffers
It was my sin that held Him there
Until it was accomplished
His dying breath has brought me life
I know that it is finished
I will not boast in anything
No gifts, no power, no wisdom
But I will boast in Jesus Christ
His death and resurrection
Why should I gain from His reward?
I cannot give an answer
But this I know with all my heart
His wounds have paid my ransom."
Remember, no matter, what your circumstances are this Valentine's Day in the year 2011, GOD LOVES YOU. And speaking of circumstances - one of my readings for this morning was as follows: "Cast all your anxiety on Me. Unless you deal with it properly, anxiety can be toxic - both to you and to others. Simply releasing it is not sufficient. You need to project it vigorously away from yourself, toward Me. Consider the following illustration: If you accidentally pulled the pin out of a hand grenade, you would not hold onto the grenade or drop it near your feet. Nor would you pitch it to another person. You would throw it as far away as possible from yourself and others. When you cast your anxiety on Me, I remove it so far away that it cannot harm anyone. In fact, I delight in doing this very thing, because I care for you so compassionately.
EVER since the Fall, human emotions have been out of kilter. People ofter "act out" painful feelings without even realizing what is bothering them. Or they may bottle up their emotions and pretend everything is all right. I urge you to be self-controlled and alert so you can identify hurtful feelings and confess them to Me. Ask the Holy Spirit to help you with this. As you yield to His work within you, your anxious feelings will subside. My Spirit can accomplish holy changes in you--producing Love, Joy, Peace...and self-control."
See I Peter 5:7-8; Isaiah 49:13; Romans 8:9; Galatians 5:22-23.
(taken from 'Jesus Lives' by Sarah Young)
Ray and I had the opportunity to ride around and enjoy the country yesterday - it was warm and beautiful. We stopped in at the Hoover home and I just sat and watched all the birds at her feeder. I am putting a couple of the pictures from her home (birds and horses) on the blog for you to enjoy also.
God bless each of you as you live the life you have been given with great JOY on this fun day. Hope

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

February - the month for love to bloom

View of our sidewalk with minimal snow this year.....

OK - Valentine's Day is what everyone thinks of when they see February on the calendar - right? But there are other important things in February.

5th - Hope's birthday..... ugh!

7th - Ed Peterson's birthday

9th - Luke will turn 13 - woohoo

23rd - Niece, Ariel will turn 17

28th - Caleb will turn 15

Looks like we are all getting older - now what would the alternative be?

I just looked back in January and did not show birthdays and important dates!

I mentioned that grandson COLE turned 11 on the 1st and sent pictures of his paintball party; friend Janice had a birthday on the 7th, nephew Aaron turned 11 on the 8th (only 1 week younger than Cole). Sister-in-law Darlene had a birthday on the 20th, Ray's brother Bob had a birthday on the 22nd, and my kidney-in-love Liz had a birthday on the 28th. (I will try to do a better job of mentioning special dates.)

On the 20th of January Ray and I rode to Cochrane, AB with Dick & Shirlee Hale. The Midwest Baptist Association was hosting pastors and their wives at a retreat. The roads were not easy to travel (10 hour drive) but the company was great. The planners had thought of everything - we enjoyed our time away. Then the long drive home. Did I tell you that living in the Peace Country means you spend a lot of time ON THE ROAD?

I am continuing to care for preschoolers on Wednesday mornings as the young moms continue their Bible study time. Carole and Patty are sure a blessing to help out during these times. Thanks to Mona for leading the ladies and for Ranea for assisting.

Ray has been asked by Pleasant Ridge Baptist Church in Carrollton, Georgia to preach a revival in April. We are so excited to visit a lot of our friends who for three years have traveled north to help us with our Vacation Bible School. Such faithful folks - can't wait to spend some time on their turf. Thank you pastor Danny for the invitation.

Since the church is only a couple hours from our family in Chattanooga, TN - we are planning on seeing brothers, sisters and aunts while we are there in the neighborhood.

I just talked to Laura in Arlington and emailed Matt in Corinth and it seems the entire Metroplex is iced in. Everyone be careful!

On February 14th when hearts indeed think of love - remember that the Lord Jesus loved us so much that He gave up His life on earth to make a way for us to experience freedom from sin...... oh what love the Father has lavished on us.

Praise Him!! Love you all, Hope