Wisdom or Foolishness

Wisdom is defined as a combination of understanding and experience. I knew when I began to walk with God that I didn’t know or understand enough to do anything. So, the first thing I asked for was wisdom. Learning has never been a problem for me, but stepping out and experiencing the knowledge was new to me. God took me through most everything that I had problems with. It started with boldness. I have always been a shy, introverted person. Then my lessons moved on to faith. Trusting was always an issue for me. I walk out to the hairy edge and back. Sometimes it scared me until I shook with fear. And another lesson was overcoming fear. God says that fear will bind people like rope all of their lives. You wouldn’t believe what I had to do to overcome fear. But that one made me a warrior. God says that foolishness is bound up in the heart of a child. And that discipline will drive it far from them. One of the most important lessons I had to learn was discipline. Because of the fear in my life, I didn’t listen to many people. I did what I wanted and anyways got into trouble. I needed discipline in my life, badly. I have walked with God for a long time. And I have come to one real truth in my life, that I know and understand very little about God. It will take an eternity to learn everything about God. But where I began with God, was that He is alive and loves me unconditionally. And you what, He still loves me after knowing me.

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Good Fortune

I was looking at a recipe for black-eyed peas. It looked really good. Of course, it is traditional at New Year to have ham, black eyed peas, greens and cornbread. This meal has been served in Southern homes for New Year’s dinner for many years. I grew up eating this meal and I like it. It is considered lucky food for the new year. But there really is no such thing as luck. But there is such a thing as being blessed. If you can remember an old TV show called Hee-Haw, they use to sing a song about luck. Some of the lyrics go like this, if I didn’t have bad luck, I’d have no luck at all. Well there is another saying, fortune favors the prepared. It is unfortunate that people will hope on luck and gamble their money away. A new year is here and we are expecting it to be better. That is why so many people are making new year resolutions. But the life expectancy of those resolutions are about one month. Then what are you going to do? Is it back to the same old grind or will there be change in your life? There is a way to make a difference in your life and others. And that is being blessed of God. When God blesses, it will stay no matter what comes. And the only way I found of being blessed by God is by going to Him, through prayer or worship. Remember where you can go, when you hope your gambling will pay off.

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A Paradox

The heart of man is a paradox. A person, who has no strength or stamina, can, given the right circumstances, do feats of strength. There are stories of women lifting cars off of their husbands. There are stories of soldiers rescuing their comrades under fire, that would have killed lesser men. It is about what a person believes and is willing to do for another. It is all about their heart. Our physical frame can be conditioned to take on pain. Endurance is what athletes want to perform at their best. But to get to that point their heart has to be convinced that what they are doing will accomplish their goal. There are stories of physical and mental endurance that dwarfs normal life. And we aren’t made any different from each other. Our hearts function as one person. Each person is an individual, but our hearts are made from the same thing. That is where the paradox comes in. Everybody believes something and it affects our lives. But put people in the same circumstance they will act as one. My example is the floods in Louisiana in August. There were many stories of the Cajun navy. The same thing happened during the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. It is a paradox, that people’s heart reached out to others in need. So, it comes down to what you believe and what you are willing to risk. We can be vulnerable and strong at the same time.

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I can almost see the New Year

The food for the holidays was very good. I have started thinking about how long it will take to lose the pounds I gained. If it would only be as easy to lose weight as it was to gain it. Have you started rehearsing those new year resolutions yet? How many do you think you are going to keep? There was a cartoon today, where one person was asking the other when was the best time to join those hard to get into health gyms? The other guy said February 1st. All those new year resolutions don’t last very long. They are not worth much, because it takes convictions to really change. You must believe and trust that your decision is the right one. I have done Daniel’s fast three times in my life. And I will tell you a truth, it gets harder each time. If you don’t know Daniel’s fast is 21 days on, in my case, water. The first time I did it, I lost 55lbs. I kept it off for about 10 years. Then I slowly gain the weight back, but it took almost 20 years. There is nothing wrong with wanting to lose weight or learn a new skill. It is the follow through that really counts. I can almost see the new year. It is just around the corner. I am hopeful that this year will be better than, let say the last few years. And it will be if you commit yourself to the truth and follow after God. I don’t want to talk about the other path, because it is just hurtful. Turn around and look at the new year. It is here already.

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Christmas Day + 1

Christmas was a very nice day. We spent it at my brother’s house. The food was good and we had plenty of it. I told my wife that we shouldn’t cook so much because it was a small gathering. We even brought storage containers to bring food back. We exchanged gifts and they were very thoughtful ones. It is not the quantity of gifts that count. We watched basketball games. My son and wife like the San Antonio Spurs. I just like San Antonio. I am not into basketball, though my sons did play it in high school. I do love turkey and dressing. Of course, there was ham and pork. And I made the desert, a bourbon caramel pecan cheesecake. It took a while to eat desert. We had to let our food to settle. I have had Christmases where there was nothing but noise from morning to night. We sat on my brother’s patio. The weather was mild and a cool breeze blew. We were able to talk to each other and about everything. It was a real blessing to be at their house. I wish it could have lasted longer. It seems that my days go by in a whirlwind. It funny, because when I was young, time moved at a snail’s pace. When I left home for college, it began to move faster. As I got older, my life moves like a freight train speeding by. But I am grateful for the times I have with my family. I just wish more of my family could have been with us. Now that Christmas is over and the New Year approaches, I pray that your new year is blessed and filled with the Joy of the Lord. May the Lord bless and keep you.

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A Choice

The bible says that we are seated together with Jesus in heavenly places. I have always preferred to be in heavenly places than in earthly places. I have always wanted to be in the peace of God and to feel His presence around me. I have come to a place where I don’t fit on this earth. I am a stranger here. I am in this world but not of it. I look at the things of this world and wonder why even bother. God constructed this world for one reason. He wanted to have a place for us to prove Him. That God is worthy of our love and adoration. We have a free will to choose what we want. He wants us to choose His way for us to enter into His kingdom. Jesus came to earth and die for our sins that we could choose to go to heaven. What do you choose to do with your free will?

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For God so loved the World

Jeg vil ønske dig en glædelig jul og et Godt Nytår. Ik wil wensen u een Vrolijk Kerstfeest en een Gelukkig Nieuwjaar. Je veux vous souhaiter un Joyeux Noël et une Bonne et Heureuse Année. Ich wünsche Ihnen frohe Weihnachten und einen guten Rutsch ins neue Jahr. Θέλω να σας ευχηθώ Καλά Χριστούγεννα και Ευτυχισμένο το Νέο Έτος. Voglio augurare un Buon Natale e un Felice Anno Nuovo. 私はあなたにメリークリスマスと新年を願っています。너에게 즐거운 성탄절과 새해 복 많이 바란다. Jeg vil ønske dere en riktig God Jul og et Godt Nyttår. Chcę życzymy Wesołych Świąt i Szczęśliwego Nowego Roku. Desejo-lhe um Feliz Natal e um Feliz Ano Novo. Я хочу пожелать вам счастливого Рождества и счастливого Нового года. Quiero desearte una Feliz Navidad y un Feliz Año Nuevo. Jag vill önska er en God Jul och ett Gott Nytt År. Mutlu Noeller ve Mutlu Yıllar dilerim. Tôi muốn chúc bạn một Giáng sinh vui vẻ và một năm mới hạnh phúc. 我想祝你圣诞快乐,新年快乐。Gusto kong nais mo ang isang Maligayang Pasko at isang Manigong Bagong Taon. Ba mhaith liom gur mhaith leat ar na Nollag Merry agus Athbhliain Shona. Ez dixwazim ku tu dixwazî a Christmas Merry û a Sersal Happy. Ես ուզում եմ ձեզ մաղթում Merry Christmas եւ Happy New Year: I want wish you a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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Nostalgic

As Christmas draws near, I feel a tugging on my heart. It gets stronger as the days go by. Looking forward and backwards at my life, I see what I have missed and what lies before me. It’s not so much regrets, but I miss my grandparents, parents and all the family that has gone on before me. Christmas day will be with my family at my brother’s house. I am looking forward to that. I got so nostalgic that we are going to play games after dinner, like we did when we were little. The future is uncertain expect for Jesus. And I will walk into it just as I have before. I want peace on earth and good will toward men. This is my prayer for all peoples. I know that there will not be peace until Jesus returns, but I pray any way. Maybe it will hasten God’s return to earth. So many people are hurting this time of year and it is a need that only your heart can respond to. Many people count the years by January 1st. But I count the years by Christmases. How we spent our time with family and friends, who were here and have gone on. When Jesus came the first time, the world was in turmoil. But you know it really it isn’t in any better shape. So, as we celebrate the over 2000th Christmas, let us remember why He came to us. Jesus came to bring hope for the future and the peace of God so we can live until He returns again. I want to wish you a hopeful and peaceful Christmas and the blessings of the Lord.

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Forgetful Hearer

Christmas is in full swing. People are out and about the business of Christmas. Family and friends are coming by to visit or even share a meal. My wife has plans to cook on Saturday. I have been buying food to cook for Christmas. The presents are brought and wrapped. All preparations have been made so that Christmas day will be eventful. People are thinking about the birth of Christ. There are church services everywhere. If you can’t find one, it is your own fault. Hanukah begins Saturday. Did you know that Jesus celebrated Hanukah? Now with all the food and presents and friends, tell me what happens on January 1st? Does everyone turn back into a pumpkin? I have seen Christmas trees in the trash a couple of days after Christmas. Do you forget about the season and go on with your life? What is Christmas for? If it isn’t to remind us who we are and where we need to be with God. Our life isn’t all about monetary gains. There is more to it than that. We need to understand why God sent Jesus to us in the first place. Jesus came to show us that we can have a relationship with God, the creator of all things. You don’t want to become a forgetful hearer. That person is doomed to repeat the same mistakes over and over again. You want to keep the knowledge of God always in your heart and mind. I hope that you will enjoy the Christmas season and remember. I wish you a Merry Christmas and a blessed New Year.

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Joy of Christmas

I am sitting here putting my thoughts together to write my next blog, my son’s big dog is sleeping on my bed snoring. Life is a joy wherever you find it. I want to write about something serious and I am laughing at the dog. I think sometimes we take ourselves too seriously and miss the joy set before us. I wonder what was going through the minds of the shepherds when they saw and heard the angels sing. Then when Gabriel told the shepherds about the Christ being born in Bethlehem. I am sure they were shaking in their boots. But they went any way. They knew that God had revealed something very special to them. When Joseph and Mary brought Jesus to the temple to be dedicated to God, there were two people in the temple who recognized the Christ. An elderly man and woman, who had served God in the temple all of their lives. You see no matter what you do in life, God has already gone before you. He has plans for each of us and will place people in our path to affect our lives. God knows the beginning and the end. That is why we can have joy in this life, because God has already seen about the details. No one can out do God. The first three fruits of the Holy Spirit are love, peace and joy. This is what God wants to give us to be able to live a good life on this earth. It says in Matthew 2:10-14 “And the angel said unto them, Fear not: for, behold, I bring you good tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people. For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord. And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger. And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men.” (KJV).  I wish you and your family a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

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