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Faith family God good Hope Jesus joy Life retirement

The Joy of the Lord is Your STRENGTH – Tuesdays are for Thinking #3

My Sugar Boogas!!

Peach says:

Some thoughts. We lost my Dad on 1 January of this year. It hits me in sharp moments, out of the blue. Like a sneak attack. 💔

There’s been lots of joy this year as well. Batman’s first year of retirement! 🥰❤️🎉🎉👏🏻👏🏻 First full year of SEVEN grandchildren!! 😍🤗 And more good and more hard, and unexpected things besides.

You know, life is like that. It’s not all one thing, right? It’s not just one emotion. it’s processes and pain, and joy and excitement, hope and forgiveness.

I’ve seen in those I love, and experienced myself, grief like I never expected. I’ve seen and experienced wonderful moments of love, and joy, faith and hope right in the middle of it all. Thank God for the WONDER and the GOOD right in the middle of it all, even in the pain.

God is SO faithful, and I do not say that lightly. He really, truly is. The good thing about being in your 50s and having been walking with Jesus for almost 29 years is you learn a lot, hopefully! (though I had a L-O-N-G way to go, and STILL do have a long way to go! 😂😂). But, you do, you learn that nothing but Jesus is permanent. Everything else is learning and moving and loving and living and dying and beginning, and ending and enduring and outlasting, and forgiving and making new ways, it’s a LOT of moving pieces. And the Lord is with us through it all. Making us able. Helping us do the right thing. To have His heart. To believe in and hope for the best, once more again. To be flexible. To give, because it’s right. To surrender. To take that first step or maybe make that first move. To get up and go again. To savor the good today, and shake off the dust from the bad yesterday. And if today is bad, you can shake it off, too, and tomorrow, walk in the new. Jesus has already gone ahead of You, and He has provision for you there! And He’s right here with you in the now, to help you in the going.

We don’t wait to be happy, (and yes, I agree, happiness and joy are different, but that’s for another post!) we choose the happy on the way and in the process, or else we will never be happy. Sometimes we forget this, and that’s ok, as long as we stick with Jesus and have a few Godly, Jesus loving people around us, to just remind us by how they live, that we get to choose. Happy is possible. On the way.

And all of that is to say today I thought about Nehemiah 8:10 “…the Joy of the Lord is your Strength”, and Y’all it’s no joke. I wanted to boil it down for you, but of course I couldn’t quite get there. (It’s SO BIG, Y’all!! 🤗) Trust me, this IS the short version! 😂 But, the full verse 10 is this —> “Then he said unto them, Go your way, eat the fat, and drink the sweet, and send portions unto them for whom nothing is prepared: for this day is holy unto our Lord: NEITHER BE YE SORRY; for the JOY of the Lord IS YOUR STRENGTH.”

Really you need verses 9-11 to really appreciate it…but His joy, is our STRENGTH…joy is that everlasting, enduring quality we are able to have through our confidence in Him, His character, His presence, His love for us, in spite of temporary conditions, (and everything on this side of Heaven is temporary).

The love of a father and son is a joy to behold!

He makes us able to choose joy, and that will give us great strength, like a fortress for us, that makes us untouchable, where it really counts, in our spirit.

To ‘be not sorry’, was the priests urging the people not to grieve so much that they wore grooves into their face, they had grieved, and that was good and necessary, but don’t stay there. Choose to celebrate, to eat the best, drink the sweet, send good things to those who weren’t established and therefore didn’t have the same wherewithal, because ‘this day is holy to the Lord.’

And so the people did. Because they understood they were God’s people and He loved them, and He had a Good way for them to live. And now that they knew this, (they had just learned how badly they had broken God’s laws their entire lives) they would now be learning how to live a NEW way, (well, new to them), walking with Him. And that was something to celebrate! Not grieve for the wrong they had done, so much so that they couldn’t enjoy the newness of life WITH Him.

We sometimes have to grieve, then we let it go. Then we celebrate. The life that’s still here. That’s new every day. All the time. A gift. And share. Share with those that aren’t established in this good news. The JOY of the Lord is your STRENGTH.

I think I’d like us to talk about the difference between happiness and joy in a future exploration! Percolating!

We really appreciate y’all coming by to visit! We always hope to have something entertaining, thought provoking, or uplifting for you here!

Peace and love, Y’all! Peace and love!

Peach

Categories
choices evil exploited Faith focus Jesus life styles peace

See That Ye Be Not Troubled

I love the rain on the flowers!!

Peach here:

And ye shall hear of wars and rumours of wars: see that ye be not troubled: for all these things must come to pass, but the end is not yet. For nation shall rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom: and there shall be famines, and pestilences, and earthquakes, in divers places. All these are the beginning of sorrows.” — Matthew 24:6-8 KJV

I recently wrote that nowadays the world seems on fire and I just can’t watch it burn. I believe in being informed. But, it’s also important not to be misinformed and it’s also important not to fall in the trap of getting emotionally worked up and either angry, fixated or hopeless. I mean that’s what the donkey and the elephant want. It’s what the ‘news’ media and social media want. But, it’s not what I want. It’s not what Jesus wants for us either.

I was raised to pay close attention to society, religion and politics. For many good reasons. however, that was long before the 24/7 instant news-tainment was a thing, much less a hand held device to keep it coming constantly, right?! I have to turn my phone face down at night or the flashing ‘urgent’ notifications wake us up at night! Lol.

I started pulling back from the news November 2018. But, at the turn of this year I felt the Lord encourage me to keep my eyes on Him, so that I don’t get distracted from what’s most important. For me, too much news crowds out what, for me, is most important to my assignment. (I believe we all have assignments, more on this another day!)

I stay informed. But, I keep it short. And I move on. The verse He put on my heart, I come back to over and over, it’s a commonly quoted verse on social media, because it’s bulletproof! — “Thou wilt keep him in perfect peace, whose mind is stayed on thee: because he trusteth in thee.” — Isaiah 26:3. Says it all for me. And it’s so true!

I particularly like in the Matthew 24 verse above, that He tells us ‘See that ye be not troubled’. It means we have a choice in whether we get upset or not. By His grace we can relearn how to respond to the news. I have to try to not be shoved, mentally, into the quick reaction the media is hoping for, (and the political parties as well). I’m learning response is measured and I control it. Reaction is volatile and it controls me. That’s not going to work. It’s not what we are made for. Self control is my favorite fruit of the spirit. Now, I’ve come a long way in this regard, but of course, I still have far to go! It’s ok though! I’m learning and the Holy Spirit is a great teacher.

Here’s another fool proof verse for keeping our focus so that we are most effective at being salt and light wherever we are and whatever we do! — “ Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are true, whatsoever things are honest, whatsoever things are just, whatsoever things are pure, whatsoever things are lovely, whatsoever things are of good report; if there be any virtue, and if there be any praise, THINK on these things.” — Philippians 4:8

For me, my goal is to not dull my shine, not waste my salt. Train my mind to respond, mentally to what I learn, pray and move on, not react and get emotionally worked up, which leads to (in my case) unhelpful attitudes, and words. It’s tricky. Because I do believe there’s a lot of evil in this world. And evil can cause a reaction for obvious reasons. But, in the darkness light shines the brightest! We have His light if He lives in our hearts, so I’m going to respond. In faith. And move on.

I’m learning. Like Robert Frost said ‘And miles to go before I sleep, And miles to go before I sleep.’

This might be the start (or might not, we will see!) of a Tuesdays are for Thinking series!

I hope your day is filled with His peace and thoughts of virtuous, lovely and ‘good report’ things!

Love, Peach

Categories
fun Jesus joy Love memories Music

‘Let Your Soul Shine’

Peach here:

Batman and I decompress with music, I mean we just do!!

We decided ‘round here there will be Music Mondays!

As our introduction, we give you The Allman Brothers and ‘Soulshine’. 😍🥰😍

To me it speaks of letting the best in us, (which for me is Jesus! His LIGHT and His LOVE sparkling through us).

We have to fill our tanks up on the good days, right? Because we don’t always know when the darkness will hit, and we don’t want to be without the ability for our ‘soulshine’ to be able to help see the way to a brighter day!

Gonna share the lyrics here:

“Soulshine
When you cant find the light
That guides you through a cloudy day
When the stars aint shinin bright
And you feel like you’ve lost your way
When the candle lights of home
Burn so very far away
Well you got to let your soul shine
Just like my daddy used to say
He used to say soul shine
Its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshine
Damn sure better than rain
Hey now people don’t mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day
I grew up thinkin that I had it made
Gonna make it on my own
But life can take the strongest man
And make him feel so alone
Now and then I feel a cold wind
Blowin through my achin bones
I think back to what my daddy said
He said Boy, in the darkness before the dawn
Let your soul shine
Its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshne
Damn sure better than rain
Yeah now people don’t mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day
Sometimes a man can feel this emptiness
Like a woman has robbed him of his very soul
A woman too, God knows, she can feel like this
And when your world seems cold
You got to let your spirit take control
Let your soul shine
Its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshne
Damn sure better than rain
Lord, now people don’t mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day
Oh, its better than sunshine
Its better than moonshne
Damn sure better than rain
Yeah now people dont mind
We all get this way sometimes
Got to let your soul shine
Shine till the break of day”

Hope you enjoy this little bit of Music Monday!!

God bless!

Categories
beauty bible birthday Delight Faith Humility Jesus Life Purpose sail strength Surrender teaching

Let the Wind Fill Your Sails

No Way to Go

Peach here:

Hope this post finds you doing fine! Not exactly sure how this will turn out! Just some thoughts that have been brewing. We shall see how it goes!

4 Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.”Psalm 37:4, KJV

Recently-ish, as I was driving to work, the thought came to me that the word ‘SURRENDER’ has a bad rap. We misunderstand it in the context of the need for it in our relationship with the Lord.

It is thought of in a negative sense, from a worldly point of view. Like losing, giving up, missing out, not being seen or heard.

But, The Holy Spirit was in the middle of teaching me a lesson. That Surrender in the Kingdom of God, leads to all kinds of GOOD things.

To surrender to God, means to yield to Him. To make ourselves available for Him, a vessel fit for His for use. Like a large, old time sailing ship, with the sails unfurled and ready to be filled with the wind to propel the ship towards its destination.

Sails yielded to the sea breeze. Ready for a journey!

In April 2015 I was diagnosed was Diabetes. It was a tremendous shock. Early on, a verse that has been important to me as I navigate this was “And he said unto me, My grace is sufficient for thee: for my strength is made perfect in weakness. Most gladly therefore will I rather glory in my infirmities, that the power of Christ may rest upon me.” — 2 Corinthians 12:9.

It was never a verse I got excited about. Just being honest. But, over these years since, I have pondered and turned and thought about it in various applications, and am continuing to learn from it. One of the best parts is the fact that He is not looking for our strengths, or what we can do for Him, or what we can bring Him. In fact, our strengths, while a blessing and definitely a gift, can also be a place we tend to forget about Him. Because much like a child, ‘I do it my own self’ sort of mentality creeps in on us. We don’t even realize it.

But, when we know our weak spots, we are more likely to make room for Him, His Holy Spirit, His strength, His way of doing things!

Surrender isn’t giving up. It’s the humility of being yielded. Fully available for our Lord’s use. In other words, it’s a power move! It’s us making ourselves available for the strength and power of God to work in and through us, — “He giveth power to the faint; and to them that have no might he increaseth strength.” — Isaiah 40:29.

One of my (many) all time favorites, has blessed me over and over and over again, is listed above, Psalm 37:4, — “Delight thyself also in the Lord: and he shall give thee the desires of thine heart.”, and it’s a great illustration of this principle of surrender, of yieldedness — at work in our relationship with our Lord. To ‘delight’ in Him, as used there, means to be soft to Him, pliable to Him, and as we do this, we are then in a position to be entrusted with the most precious, and secret desires of our hearts, the too sensitive, too precious to even speak to another, because they are so unlikely in their exquisite goodness, those desires of our hearts! It’s because in that instance, our hearts have begun to beat with His. And we are in agreement for His Ephesians 3:20 goodness in our lives!!

Batman took this of our rain soaked Hawaiian Hibiscus

This Hawaiian Hibiscus pictured above is tender, fragile, and not strong at all. It is also brilliant! Gorgeous! And so pleasing to the eye!

If it was strong and sturdy and rigid…it would not be much of a flower! But, as it is, I can’t look at it without smiling and feeling joy! That is what it is here for! It is fulfilling its purpose!

If that sail boat above, wanted stronger, more sturdy and inflexible ‘sails’, it would not be effective at letting the wind fills its sails, and then going where the wind blows! It’s better to have yielded sails, able to be FILLED with the sea breeze!

Let the weak say “I am strong!”

Lord, here I am! Use me! I want to be yielded to You! Gladly will I boast in m weakness, as Paul said, for then You can be strong in me!

Peace and love, y’all! Peace and love!

Categories
beauty Easter gardening good Hope Life Resurrection seasons, summer, sugar boogars thankful

Blooming

My gardenia bush!! My Dad started it for me. I think about 12 years ago or so? It’s magnificent! It’s like a big ‘I Love You’ from Heaven, and I love it!

Peach here –

It’s good and Spring now! It took awhile but it’s really here now!

Yellow Hibiscus! I’m in love!

We picked up a couple of blueberry bushes and some more hibiscus (the yellow, some of them above).

Jerry got them planted this week and mulched. He is quite the gardener! Have I mentioned that I’m totally nuts about him? 😍

I just don’t think there’s anything prettier!

I don’t know if it’s the mood I’m in this year, or the age I’m getting to, but I LOVE flowers!! Flowers, flowers, flowers!

This lady is from our Fire and Ice Hibiscus and it is just stellar!! I highly recommend!

Spring is a season of transition, of hope, of promise of things to come, signs of life, renewal, newness of life, out with old, in with the new, cleaning up, clearing out.

It can be a lot. But, there’s also, a lot that it can be!

I love the holidays AND winter so much. It’s often hard for me to let go of winter and embrace the change and newness of Spring

But, I’m determined to not be that person stuck in the past. To value, appreciate and enjoy the past while fully rooted in the now, and reaching forward to the promise of the future!

Nature teaches us to embrace the cycle of life. It’s our example from the Lord for our good!

This! This is our Hawaiian Hibiscus!! When it opens it will be yellow with a pink center!!! I mean, 🤗?!

Like the flower above, the full goodness of what’s in store ahead does not yet appear, but we can trust our Good Father for the Ephesians 3:20 — “Now unto him that is able to do exceeding abundantly above all that we ask or think, according to the power that worketh in us,” of life! If it’s not good yet, hold on, trust Him and SEE what He does!

More blooming going on! 🥰
His first time in the water and he loves it!!! 😍
Water baby!
Da Sugar Boogars!! 🤗
The little Easter Bunny!!
These two are going to be so much fun in years to come!
Resurrection Sunday!! Much fun was had by all!

We had a grand ole time on Easter Sunday with all the kids! The Dads hid the eggs and the Moms stuffed the eggs! Then we let loose the hordes and the kids found the eggs!!

While the earth remaineth, seedtime and harvest, and cold and heat, and summer and winter, and day and night shall not cease.” — Genesis 8:22.

Thanks for stopping by!

Love, peace, and blooming flowers,

Peach

Categories
Easter Faith forgiveness God grace Hope Jesus Love

Day 3 He is Risen

Matthew 28: 1 – 6

1 In the end of the sabbath, as it began to dawn toward the first day of the week, came Mary Magdalene and the other Mary to see the sepulchre.

2 And behold, there was a great earthquake: for the angel of the Lord descended from heaven, and came and rolled back the stone from the door, and sat upon it.

3 His countenance was like lightning, and his raiment white as snow:

4 And for fear of him the keepers did shake, and became as dead men.

5 And the angel answered and said unto the women, Fear not ye: for I know that ye seek Jesus, which was crucified.

6 He is not here: for he is risen, as he said. Come, see the place where the Lord lay.

Categories
bible Easter faith jealousy Resurrection worship

Thoughts of Easter

“He is despised and rejected of men; a man of sorrows, and acquainted with grief: and we hid as it were our faces from him; he was despised, and we esteemed him not.” — Isaiah 53:3

Peach says:

He’s still despised today. We still hide from Him. We turn our backs. We try to approach life intellectually, so as to show we are more sophisticated than the theology of Christ needing to die for us, to be pierced and crucified, to be buried and rise again, that we may have fellowship with Him and The Father forever through the Holy Spirit.

Paul said “We preach Christ crucified, unto the Jews a stumbling block, and the Greeks foolishness.’ — 1 Corinthians 1:23

I always look for Easter to speak to me, I seek for different angles to think about it and meditate on it, let it saturate me and become more real to me. I don’t ever want it to be stale to me.

This year it’s been without question Isaiah 53, and Mathew’s account in the Gospels.

I’d like us to think a little more about Judas this Easter. Because it’s important in these days when no one escapes unscathed by betrayal, and we grow in danger of ‘the love of many’ growing cold because of offense. Jesus was not immune to this. Every disciple fled. Every. John did come back. But in the Garden, they fled. They slept when He needed them to pray. They ran when He was taken. Cut and run. And He still loved them. He totally forgave them.

And Judas. Smh. Selling Him out. Really? Kissing Him as the sign that He was the One they should take. So bitterly ugly. So painful. Jesus knew it was coming. And that it was coming through His friend, and that His friend had really chosen not to be His friend.

When I was reading Matthew 26 tonight, I realized Judas was disgusted and JEALOUS. How sad. Tragic really. He had a front row seat to the greatest show on earth, and Judas’ response is ‘Who does he think he is?’ And Judas makes the decision right then and there, ‘What will you give me if I give him to you?’. It seems to me to be completely ego and pride fueled jealousy. I always thought of Judas as a thief and motivated by greed, but tonight it hit me differently.

Because we all get hurt by jealousy. It’s sad really. No one is immune. And Jesus feels that pain with us.

I’m going to put the part that hit me here for you to pick up on it, see if it speaks to you like it did me.

“Now when Jesus was in Bethany, in the house of Simon the leper,

7 THERE CAME TO UNTO HIM A WOMAN HAVING AN ALABASTER BOX OF VERY PRECIOUS OINTMENT, AND POURED IT ON HIS HEAD, as he sat at meat.

8 BUT WHEN HIS DISCIPLES SAW IT, THEY HAD INDIGNATION, SAYING, TO WHAT PURPOSE IS THIS WASTE?

9 FOR THIS OINTMENT MIGHT HAVE BEEN SOLD FOR MUCH, AND GIVEN TO THE POOR.

10 When Jesus understood it, he said unto them, WHY TROUBLE YE THE WOMAN? FOR SHE HATH WROUGHT A GOOD WORK UPON ME.

11 FOR YE HAVE THE POOR ALWAYS WITH YOU; BUT ME YE HAVE NOT ALWAYS.

12 FOR in that she hath poured this ointment on my body, SHE DID IT FOR MY BURIAL.

13 Verily I say unto you, Wheresoever this gospel shall be preached in the whole world, there shall also this, that this woman hath done, be told for a memorial of her.

14 THEN ONE OF THE TWELVE, CALLED JUDAS ISCARIOT, WENT UNTO THE CHIEF PRIESTS,

15 AND SAID UNTO THEM, ‘WHAT WILL YE GIVE ME, AND I WILL DELIVER HIM UNTO YOU? And they covenanted with him for thirty pieces of silver.” — Matthew 26:7-15

See how through the bountiful, luxurious worship by that woman, of Jesus, her spirit responds to to the Holy Spirit’s prompting? Holy Spirit inspired worship bypasses our mind and what we know, and goes straight to our spirit, where we know something, and we might not can explain it, but WE KNOW IT. And when we act on it, it’s beautiful, and powerful and pleasing to the Lord, and along with that may appear senseless to others, but do it anyway!

There will likely be a Judas around to be jealous and hate it blindly, not even understanding what’s motivating them. Shake it off. Bring Him your alabaster box!

We have two examples in Matthew 26, we can worship the Lord, with abandon, without reserve, in a very insensible fashion, we can choose to PARTICIPATE in the worthy worship of The King of our heart!

Or we can be the observer, cynical, unfulfilled, empty, and because we are empty, we are jealous and disgusted and we refuse to participate. It will make us destructive. Destroying what other people build. Judas. It’s the difference between participating and observing.

In the Church today, in the Body of Christ, choose to be the Woman with the Alabaster Box!

Red is the Blood He shed for me ♥️

May His GIFT that sets us free be more real to you than ever before this Resurrection Weekend.

Love, Peach.

Categories
bible Faith forgiveness God grace Hope Uncategorized

Day 1 of 3

Matthew 27:62 – 66

62 Now the next day, that followed the day of the preparation, the chief priests and Pharisees came together unto Pilate,

63 Saying, Sir, we remember that that deceiver said, while he was yet alive, After three days I will rise again.

64 Command therefore that the sepulchre be made sure until the third day, lest his disciples come by night, and steal him away, and say unto the people, He is risen from the dead: so the last error shall be worse than the first.

65 Pilate said unto them, Ye have a watch: go your way, make it as sure as ye can.

66 So they went, and made the sepulchre sure, sealing the stone, and setting a watch.

Categories
bible choices Encouragement faith family forgiveness Gratitude Life Love memories parents Relationships remembrence thankful thought patterns thoughts

Choices

“…I PLEAD WITH YOU TO WALK holy, IN A WAY THAT IS SUITABLE TO YOUR HIGH RANK, given to you in your divine calling. WITH TENDER HUMILITY AND QUIET PATIENCE ALWAYS DEMONSTRATE GENTLENESS AND GENEROUS LOVE TOWARD ONE ANOTHER, especially toward those who may try your patience. BE FAITHFUL TO GUARD THE SWEET HARMONY OF THE HOLY SPIRIT AMONG YOU in the bonds of peace…” — Ephesians 4:1b-3

Peach says:

A wise woman who I miss very much, taught me when I was very young, that when we become elderly, and are at or near the finish line, we can at times, become sort of caricatures of ourselves, depending on the choices we make in our lives.

Sometimes, as the end is in sight, we may not have all the strength of our reasoning in its normal state. Our reasoning, or our governing of ourselves, I should say, may be a bit relaxed or off balance from in our younger days.

Whatever we have fed in our lives may end up holding the larger sway. All the more reason to each day, walk in the Spirit, because when we do, then we do not “fulfill the lusts of the flesh”, Galatians 5:16b, as each decision makes a path in our heart and in our mind. The Word tells us, to not to be “conformed to this world” but instead to be “transformed by the renewing” of our mind (Romans 12:2).

The wise woman I knew, she worked in healthcare, and had seen a lot of this latter stage of life for people, who were not feeling themselves. It was a cautionary tale for sure.

I guess I have had some cause to think about the culmination of the daily little choices we make, and what those choices do to us in the inside of us, the most real part of us. Those things we choose to think about, and either appreciate or fester over. I don’t want to be one who festers. I want to be one who appreciates. The sunshine, my husband, our good health, our children and grandchildren, our siblings, that we have had good parents, greatest of all our salvation and relationship with Jesus!

I don’t want to waste time on the real (hurts) or imagined (worries). I want to process them, somewhat like laundry, learn from them, forgive myself or others, give it to Jesus, move on. —“Casting the whole of your care [all your anxieties, all your worries, all your concerns, [once and for all] on Him, for He cares for you affectionately and cares about you watchfully.” — 1 Peter 5:7

I know some hurts are monumental, and it’s easy to say. “But, you don’t know how badly they have hurt me” and to that, I say you are right. But, I also know you deserve to live and love, and enjoy what is here right now. Don’t let them rob you, not one more day. Not one more minute.

“Brethren, I count not myself to have apprehended: but this ONE THING I do, FORGETTING THOSE THINGS WHICH ARE BEHIND, and REACHING FORTH unto THOSE THINGS WHICH ARE BEFORE, I PRESS TOWARD THE MARK for the prize of the high calling of God in Christ Jesus” — Philippians 3:13-14

Love either near (those in your now circle) or from afar (those in your past), pray for them all, every day, but that doesn’t mean they get to sit in prime real estate in your head carving their initials. Evict them from your heart, as well as the well rehearsed pain.

“Finally, brethren, whatsoever things are TRUE, whatsoever things are HONEST, whatsoever things are JUST, whatsoever things are PURE, whatsoever things are LOVELY, whatsoever things are of GOOD REPORT; if there be any VIRTUE, and if there be ANY PRAISE, THINK ON THESE THINGS.” — Philippians 4:8

Remember, our Father God sees our end from our beginning (Isaiah 46:10) He has good for us, if we will accompany Him to the future He has yet ahead for us!

This is what the Lord says: “You will be in Babylon for seventy years. BUT THEN I WILL COME TO YOU AND DO FOR YOU ALL THE GOOD THINGS I HAVE PROMISED, and I will bring you home again. For I KNOW THE PLANS I HAVE FOR YOU,” says the Lord. “They are PLANS FOR GOOD AND NOT FOR DISASTER, TO GIVE YOU A FUTURE AND A HOPE. In those days when you pray, I will listen. IF YOU LOOK FOR ME WHOLEHEARTEDLY, YOU WILL FIND ME. I WILL BE FOUND BY YOU,” says the Lord. “I WILL end your captivity and RESTORE YOUR FORTUNES.” — Jeremiah 29:10-14

What inspired this? The passing of time, the loss of relationships, the finality of the passing of a good and precious life and the vacuum that has made. The choices we who remain make now, to hopefully live leaving a trail of love, hope, joy, affirmation, faith, and much grace, for our loved ones to follow. May our trail be clear, filled with good things to help them along their way!! — “Be ye followers of me, even as I also am of Christ.” — 1 Corinthians 11:1

Thank you for stopping in!! It means so much to share these thoughts in hopes it might encourage you along your way!!

I leave you with the closing of a favorite poem of mine, by Robert Frost, who I so enjoy!

“Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—

I took the one less traveled by,

And that has made all the difference.”

Love, Peach

Categories
bible dads death Encouragement faith family Father memories Paradise Relationships The Word

Drinking Coffee

Reflections.

“Every time we think of you, we thank God for you. Day and night you’re in our prayers as we call to mind your work of faith, your labor of love, and your patience of hope in following our Master, Jesus Christ, before God our Father. It is clear to us, friends, that God not only loves you very much but also has put his hand on you for something special.” — 1 Thessalonians 1:2-5, The Message

Peach says:

We lost my Daddy on 1 January this year.

He and my Mom had a wonderful Thanksgiving with my youngest brother and his wife and their daughters, and I am pretty sure that my Baby Sis and her family made it there as well.

In our family we did not have a set routine to celebrate Thanksgiving. So, each year we all did our own things, sometimes some of us connecting in various ways at various times.

A few scant days after, he took ill. It happened horribly fast, no time to adjust at each step of decline, before another step overtook us.

We are all walking with a limp now, I guess you could say. Walking it out, figuring it out, praying it out, talking it out, loving it out, faithing it out, sometimes crying it out.

Questions. So many questions. Memories. Unaccomplished wishes. Things to hold onto that make you feel close to him. Like he can live on in your lives and be instilled in your family dna.

Beyond the thousand little cuts where you can’t hug him, can’t introduce him to great grandkids, can’t text him, can’t call him, or drive the backroads to visit him, beyond all this hangs the question, ‘What’s he experiencing? What’s Heaven like for him right now? What is he doing?’

I don’t doubt it’s beyond our ability to conceive. Far, far richer, far sweeter, far deeper. But, I want to know. And I feel the Lord encouraging the question. “It is the glory of God to conceal a thing: but the honour of kings is to search out a matter.Proverbs 25:2

Yesterday afternoon, all the way through last night, my thoughts and pondering peaked in this regard. Jesus taught during His time on earth, through the rabbinical style of asking questions, and still does today.

I found myself the last week or so wondering if my Father in law had met up with Daddy yet, for a cup of coffee and ‘catching up’, welcoming him to the place. We lost my Father in law in December 2014. I think of him every day. Miss him very much. See him in his son, my Batman, everyday.

Then I realized likely my Granddaddy would be at that table for coffee. We lost him in late March of 1983. I picture the men on the outside of a wooden building, under an overhang, as to a porch on an old style of a General Store.

I picture them smiling, talking, sipping, contemplating. The question came ‘Do you really think so?’ Yeah, I really kinda do. ‘Ok. Can you think of what you know from The Word that can help support that?’

I can. God is very relational. He created us for relationship with Him. He designed us not only in His image to have relationships, but also that we need one another, and each have different parts and pieces that only work best in collaboration with each other. The Church (Body of believers) is designed for us to work and be in relationship with each other. He designed us so that some friends are like family and some family are like friends. Yeah, I think that continues at a higher level in Heaven.

He let me steep in that picture for a little while and then took me around the table to what they might be saying:

My FIL, (sweet smile he had when he’s tickled): “I tell ya, I never imagined how much I would like it here. How welcome I would be. How much at home I would feel. I had no idea how good this would be!”

My Daddy, with eyes in wonder: “It’s more than everything I ever dreamed! I did not realize or expect to be so near to the Father and His Son, to be so near to Jesus, to see where all the prayers are kept! It’s absolutely overwhelming! It makes all the hell seem trivial in comparison to this!”

My GrandDaddy, looking at his coffee cup, kinda smiling: “You boys haven’t seen the half of it! Wait until you see what they’re working on!”

“Two others, both criminals, were taken along with him for execution.

When they got to the place called Skull Hill, they crucified him, along with the criminals, one on his right, the other on his left.

Jesus prayed, “Father, forgive them; they don’t know what they’re doing.”

Dividing up his clothes, they threw dice for them. The people stood there staring at Jesus, and the ringleaders made faces, taunting, “He saved others. Let’s see him save himself! The Messiah of God—ha! The Chosen—ha!”

The soldiers also came up and poked fun at him, making a game of it. They toasted him with sour wine: “So you’re King of the Jews! Save yourself!”

Printed over him was a sign: this is the king of the jews.

One of the criminals hanging alongside cursed him: “Some Messiah you are! Save yourself! Save us!”

But the other one made him shut up: “Have you no fear of God? You’re getting the same as him. We deserve this, but not him—he did nothing to deserve this.

Then he said, “Jesus, remember me when you enter your kingdom.”

43 He said, “Don’t worry, I will. TODAY you will join me in PARADISE.” — Luke 23:32-43, KJV

Thanks for coming along with me in my ponderings.

Love and faith, Y’all, Love and faith.