Such beautiful words for a wonderful savior.
I need Thee, O I need Thee;
Every hour I need Thee;
O bless me now, my Savior,
I come to Thee.
Hymn: Every Hour I Need Thee
I think we can all agree that there is nothing sweeter than a baby.
Jesus birth is the most famous and beloved stories of all time. The joy that was evident at the arrival of the Son of God would be beyond anything we could imagine. God came down to save us in the form of a sweet baby boy. He would grow up to greatness.
But the passage that often sticks with me is when Jesus is brought to the temple to be blessed and Simeon tells His mother, Mary, that a sword will pierce her soul.
This might not be the most reassuring blessing to a young mother.
But Simeon saw the end at the beginning and He wanted to remind Mary that Jesus was God’s son sent to save the world. A Savior.
Mary knew that there would be good days and bad days. Most mothers already know this. Mary’s knowledge though was even more important since her son’s future would save His people by sacrificing His life. World without end. Amen.
Thank you Lord Jesus for blessing us this Christmas with the reminder of the love you showed to us in your life, your love, and your never-ending grace.
We are blessed beyond measure. We are blessed for eternity.
Now there was a man in Jerusalem called Simeon, who was righteous and devout. He was waiting for the consolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was on him. It had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not die before he had seen the Lord’s Messiah. Moved by the Spirit, he went into the temple courts. When the parents brought in the child Jesus to do for him what the custom of the Law required, Simeon took him in his arms and praised God, saying:
“Sovereign Lord, as you have promised,
you may now dismiss your servant in peace.
For my eyes have seen your salvation,
which you have prepared in the sight of all nations:
a light for revelation to the Gentiles,
and the glory of your people Israel.”
The child’s father and mother marveled at what was said about him. Then Simeon blessed them and said to Mary, his mother: “This child is destined to cause the falling and rising of many in Israel, and to be a sign that will be spoken against, so that the thoughts of many hearts will be revealed. And a sword will pierce your own soul too.”
“Peace I leave with you.” John 14:27
I am the kind of person that once immersed in a great book will often flip to the last few pages so I know the ending. Some may think this is cheating and not very considerate of the author’s buildup to the conclusion of the story. Others are probably just like me. We like to know the end at the beginning.
And so it goes with the season of Lent. I love this time of the year in the church calendar and I look forward to spending time in thought, word and deed as we recall the ultimate sacrifice and triumphant resurrection of our Lord and Savior, Jesus Christ. It is a hard journey for those who take it seriously.
However, I love Lent because I know the end at the beginning.
In John 14 we hear Jesus telling the disciples that soon He won’t be with them in this world. Jesus knows that He must leave His followers in order to fulfill prophecy and return to the Father. I’m certain this was a cause of great concern for the disciples. But Jesus constantly reassures them that He will send a helper, a comforter, and a counselor to them.
This remains an important part of the the lenten journey. We need to remember that God chooses us and we are not alone. We are adopted by Him and deeply loved.
Together, we are going to take the next few weeks to walk the weary path to Calvary. It is a tough reminder of a sacrificial life given for our sins. Jesus was blameless, we are not.
I’m ready to remember but I’m also ever confident in a God that constantly comforts us. Won’t you join me?
I like to make up stories with my 5-year old granddaughter. She is quite the storyteller.
But she always starts her stories with “Once upon a time…” which I find charming. As for me, I share stories of dogs, bears, cats and all sorts of heroic characters but without her opening.
But I will use it today.
Once upon a time…there was a baby born in Bethlehem who would change the world. This was not as expected by some but foretold by many. He was such a special baby that people would want to kill him throughout His life.
But this baby grew up to be the savior of the world and even when He died…He died for us and for a happy ending. That’s a story I want to hear every day and I want to share with others.
I’m grateful for Lily Lee’s fictional fables and for the many books I’m lucky to read. But I’m really grateful to tell her about Jesus, the true hero and savior for us all.
Therefore the Lord himself shall give you a sign; Behold, a virgin shall conceive, and bear a son, and shall call his name Immanuel. Isaiah 7:14
I’m finishing up my list of things “to do”. New outfit? Check. New shoes? Check. Fresh hair cut? Check. It’s almost Easter and I’m ready.
Growing up some of my best memories of Easter are the pageantry, the new clothes and shoes and the delicious celebration meal after Sunday services complete with bunny cake.
Dying eggs for the Easter hunt, putting up colorful ribbons and listening to the choral practice were all a small part of the Easter preparation. The anticipation was astounding. As a child, I knew it was a special season of worship and I was never disappointed.
I’m jumping ahead for this one day as I prepare for the difficult days of remembrance. Today, I want to remember the preparation for the celebration. After this, I HAVE to remember the time of reflection and grief. I am going to walk through the tough times to get to the good news.
As an adult, I still get excited at Easter. It now ranks as my favorite time of the year. This is as it should be. It is a never-ending reminder that I worship a risen Savior. The beautiful flowers, streamers and colors of Easter Sunday herald us all into a time of great joy. So, put on your bonnet, put on your new shoes and worship Jesus. Look your best for the King.
He is Risen…He is Risen indeed.
Things are not always as they seem and looks can be deceiving.
People expected the Messiah to come as a warrior King who would arrive slaying their enemies. Instead, Jesus came as a peace-filled baby, born in a barn.
They wanted a warrior; instead, they saw the King of Kings ride into Jerusalem on a donkey.
Nothing Jesus did was what they perceived as being the actions of a Savior who would set them free from the challenges of their times. Regardless of the miracles He performed, and the words of faith He spoke, people still harbored doubts. In fact, they were so fickle that they turned on Jesus at the first opportunity.
Some things never change.
Isn’t it sad that they didn’t see what the Pharisees saw? The Pharisees saw a threat to their authority, they saw danger and they saw that Jesus shook the status quo.
Don’t be deceived by the things of this world. Don’t be deceived by false prophets. Don’t be deceived by people who would use any means to discredit our Lord and Savior.
This week reminds us of that danger. Don’t look back – take that first step and believe with your whole heart. Pick up your cross and follow Him.
“He was in the world, and the world was made by him, and the world knew him not”. John1:10
I am Jesus’ little lamb,
Ever glad at heart I am;
For my Shepherd gently guides me,
Knows my need, and well provides me,
Loves me every day the same,
Even calls me by my name.
When my daughter JJ was in Kindergarten, her class performed this song at an Easter concert. It wasn’t just because she was my youngest daughter but the words of the song and the earnest way she was singing made me cry.
There are certain moments in life that just stick in your memory forever. We like to call them “Kodak” moments. It was not really a special day or a momentous occasion but there was something about that day that made me stop all thought and just reflect on how precious life is and I knew I would remember it forever. My little girl reminded me of a time of innocence, love and faith. It was heavenly.
Anyone who knows me or reads this blog can tell that I like sheep. We say each Sunday “Oh Lamb of God that takest away the sins of the world, have mercy upon us”. Like my sweet daughter, I say it in earnest because each week I need mercy. Each week I need forgiveness and each week I crave a reminder that God loves us more than we can imagine.
Ever glad at heart I am…