A time to get away with family, to play and talk, with no interruptions, no cell phones ringing, no deadlines, and no normal pressures of everyday life……….. those times are…
A time to get away with family, to play and talk, with no interruptions, no cell phones ringing, no deadlines, and no normal pressures of everyday life……….. those times are few and far between. As many families take time to get away over the spring and summer, I feel blessed to be able to spend time with mine. We are all anticipating a time of sunshine, sand, shopping, roller coasters, talking and eating at restaurants we’ve never been to, and just being content in being together.
We celebrate these times, because the memories that we create are priceless. They serve as the highlights of a child’s life. Good memories are much like God’s love during a severe storm in our lives. God gives us his word to help us when things go wrong in our lives. His word is still living and breathing, as time goes by. While knowing God’s word is important, he is never impressed by our intellect, but he is moved by our heart and our faith.
There have been several times in my life when his word has carried me through a storm- one that seems to never end is more bearable because of God’s promises. Jeremiah 29 says,
11 For I know the plans I have for you,” declares the Lord, “plans to prosper you and not to harm you, plans to give you hope and a future. 12 Then you will call on me and come and pray to me, and I will listen to you. 13 You will seek me and find me when you seek me with all your heart.
Whether you are going through a storm or are on vacation with your family, God’s story remains the same. Some say that being a Christian, is as easy as learning the ABC’s.
A Admit that you are a sinner
B Believe that Christ is the lord
C Confess him before men
D Deny yourself and follow him
E Enjoy being a child of God
F Forgive your enemies so your father will also forgive you
G Glorify your father who is in heaven
H Honor your father and mother
I Ignore Satan when he comes to deceive you
J Judge not
K Keep working for Jesus
L Leave your past behind you
M Marvel Not
N Never go to sleep with hatred toward your brother
O Obsess yourself with the word of God
P Provide food for the hungry
Q Quit serving the things of this world
R Respect God and the things of God
S Sell your soul to God
T Tell your friends about Jesus
U Unite yourself with other Christians
V Venture into strange lands spreading the word of God
W Witness to others
X X-ray your heart every day
Y Yearn to see God
Z Zone the devil out of your life
When we go through storms, we can choose to use that storm to help others. This week, I’m recommending a book titled, Reflections from the Pit , by Cindy Winters. Four years ago, our minister, Fred Winters was shot and killed during our Sunday morning service. The gunman also stabbed two others before being subdued. Since then, his wife, Cindy Winters and their two daughters have been on a roller-coaster of healing. Four years later, she holds no grudges against the man who killed her husband. She has since then shared how her youngest daughter told her that she hopes that the guy who did this to her daddy learns to love Jesus. What an amazing testimony of love, faith, and forgiveness!
While we can’t imagine something like this happening to our family, we can imagine some of the feelings that go along with difficult times- grudges, resentment, and bitterness. But forgiving really does free us up in our minds to move forward and to become the person we are supposed to be. It doesn’t mean that we forget what happened, feel less alone, at times, but it does mean that we will let go of the hard feelings and move on or start over.
If you are interested in purchasing Cindy Winters book, Reflections from the Pit , it is on her website, Grace and Hope Ministries.org or you can also purchase from Amazon.com here:http://tiny.cc/ReflectionsFromThePit