Almost as soon as she could talk, my oldest granddaughter, who is now 4 years old, has been praying at mealtimes when given the opportunity. At first I couldn’t decipher all of her words. She always started out with “Jesus”, which I recognized, but then followed with a phrase that took me a year to finally figure out. “Jesus” was, and is to this day, followed by the phrase, “Help be good.” I find it interesting, that children, even at very young ages, can know that they are sinners, even though they might not yet know the word sin. ”For all have sinned, and come short of the glory of God;” (Ro 3:23).
As an adult, I truly understand sin and the impact it has in our lives. As a follower of Jesus Christ, I strive to be righteous. It is a challenge … immorality is rampant in this world we live in, and is presented to us on a platter by the media. We need to guard our hearts and minds from the corruption around us. I don’t know about you, but just like a child, I need help …”Jesus, help be good!”
Search me, O God, and know my heart: try me, and know my thoughts:
And see if there be any wicked way in me, and lead me in the way everlasting. (Psm 139: 23-24)
There hath no temptation taken you but such as is common to man: but God is faithful, who will not suffer you to be tempted above that ye are able; but will with the temptation also make a way to escape, that ye may be able to bear it. (1Co 10:13)
Wow! Even in the midst of cold shivers in a blizzard, we can marvel at the beauty and intricate design of what God has made. It escapes me how someone can look at snowflakes under magnification and not see this. The hexagonal shape and pattern is slightly different in each flake. The shape depends on many factors happening right at the boundary of the snowflake as it is forming. This includes the air temperature, humidity, wind, and interaction of other nearby snowflakes. Since each snowflake forms under slightly different conditions, each one is different—each one is uniquely beautiful.
Years ago, I heard of someone from a tropical environment who had visited the mountains and saw snow for the first time. Without even knowing of the intricate design and uniqueness of each snowflake, he was ecstatic. Why? For the first time the passage in Isaiah 1 became clear to him. “. . .though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow. …” He had never seen snow, so he never knew how bright white it is. Now he knew just how cleansed he was.
Though I might prefer fall (see earlier blog), winter does have its high points among the low points of temperature. Let us all be ecstatic over not only the intricacies and detail of what God has made in each snowflake, but of what Jesus has done for us his work on the cross!
The snowflake pictures are from Wikipedia commons.
A selection of photographs taken by Wilson Bentley (1865–1931)
This past Sunday, my youngest grandchild was dedicated to the Lord at her parent’s church. This dedication really had not so much to do with our granddaughter; rather it was a time of celebration … an opportunity and a privilege for the parents, family, and church family to commit to do something, not just for the children, but for the parents as well.
The parents (and grandparents!) were challenged to make a commitment:
- To lifting up their children/grandchildren in prayer every single day.
- To walk with God in such a way, that when they see us, they see the path they are supposed to take.
- To lift up our children/grandchildren, allowing them to grow into the man/woman God wants them to be, showing them the ways of God all along the way.
- To make an early commitment to follow through with raising children and being part of a process of leading them to a place where they will make a decision for Christ.
The church family was also challenged:
- To set a Christian example of what it means to walk and live for Christ.
- To pray for the parents.
- To help as needed.
- To walk with them as they set an example to their family.
Oh Lord, I pray that we might be shining examples and not stumbling blocks …not only to our families, but to all those we meet.
I would love to hold onto Fall for another 4 months and skip winter altogether, but with the weather turning very cold and snowstorms predicted, I guess that isn’t going to happen. Anyhow, amidst the shivers, I can console myself in the fact that spring, summer, and another beautiful fall will come again. I just have to be patient!
I know you snow fans and skiers are happy for the winter, but for me (while waiting for that warmth to reappear), I remind myself that God made both summer and winter, so we need both. He knows what His Creation needs most in whatever part of the world they live:
Ps 74:17: Thou hast set all the borders of the earth: thou hast made summer and winter.
I also warm my inner being in the fact that winter demonstrates the Truth of God’s Word as given to Noah shortly after the Flood:
Ge 8:22: While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.
That certainly has been a true promise. I am thankful that God promises to take care of what we need. That includes the seasons. Seasons for planting, season for harvesting, (and a season for eating—like during this Thanksgiving/ Christmas season).
How would you like to wake up one day that is in mid-summer heat and the next day find it is the coldest of colds. Or what if the morning rolls out and the sun is gone-there is no day? That doesn’t sound so good.
I thank Him for the order and predictability of what He has made. I thank God for the Truth of His Word. Therefore, I thank God for seasons – including winter!
You have all probably heard the statement “when pigs fly”, but have you heard “when snakes fly”? That’s right, snakes can fly, well, they actually glide. Scientists have discovered a strange species of snakes located in Southeast Asia, India, and southern China that can glide. You have heard children say, ‘Look mom, no hands’. Well these snakes have neither wings, nor wing like appendages, to help them glide. How do the snakes do this? The Department of Defense would like to know and so they are funding Virginia Tech to research this amazing feat.
The snakes will climb the biggest trees in the area (about 200 ft.), take a flying leap, and glide to a spot about 780 ft. away. While in the air, they undulate from side to side to create an aerodynamic system. Their whole body becomes one long wing. They can even turn in the air. Humans are trying to discover the technology to fly without wings or create a flying machine that is all wing. When we study snakes, they truly give God the glory.
“DOD tries to uncover secret of flying snakes” by Mark Kaufman – Washington Post Staff Writer
Monday, November 22, 2010; 11:37 PM