Yesterday’s Christmas Eve’s sunset pic was sent with a subtle double entendre one brother noticed. The steeple on the little country church has no cross atop it, but in glowing sunset background you’ll see God provided one.
So often in the chaotic pace of today’s world the subtle traces of God’s majesty goes unnoticed, but He notices every subtle nuance of our lives.
“But the very hairs of your head are all numbered.” – Matthew 10:30
This afternoon’s Christmas Eve church service and sermon left us blessed. The radiant sunset brushed across the heavens behind the little country church steeple on the way home left us in awe . . . God’s spectacular silent sermon of Christmas splendor.
All the best to you and yours for all His best this Christmas – Merry Christmas!
From our Smoky Mountain home up on the mountain – down in the ‘holler – by the ‘crick’ . . . to wherever you and yours may be this Christmas . . . we wish you the Gift of the One who left Heaven for earth 2,000 years ago to bring “Peace on earth, good will to men” to everyone who chooses to accept the only eternal promise of hope and joy this world has.
Last week, some 5,000 miles north-by-northwest, found me gliding through freshly fallen snow. Shortly thereafter, some 35,000 ft. above terra-firma, found me zooming through the skies at 600 mph in high-speed-aluminum tubing. This afternoon, some 2,000 ft. up in the Great Smoky Mountains, found me shuffling through fall’s fallen leaves . . . fictional Star Trek travel fantasy a mere century ago.
Walking on the moon is old history. Today, there are people are living above the earth in a high-tech mini-condo, and some everyday citizens (admittedly wealthy ones 😊) are taking short jaunts into space for a quick, high-altitude adrenaline rush.
As mind-boggling as today’s travel would have been to Lewis and Clark trudging through the wilderness in the early 1800s, imagine the travel future our children will experience … living on the moon … up close and personal exploration of our solar system’s other planets … traveling the expanses the Milky Way … ???
Yet, each of us has already accomplished 2 of the 3 legs of the most mind-boggling travel journey of all … Heaven to Earth. The last leg of the journey remains to travel, and has but one of two final, forever destinations . . . the choice is ours alone to decide.
It was already accomplished some 2,000 years ago, and multitudes have since followed:
“In My Father’s house there are many mansions; if it were not so, I would have told you. I go to prepare a place for you. And if I go to prepare a place for you, I will come again and receive you to Myself; that where I, am you may be also.” – John 14:2-3
The third leg of our journey has been paid-in full for anyone who accepts the offer and trusts the One who has already made it. Mind-boggling? … For Sure! … Prove it! … Can’t! … that’s why it’s called Faith. Hope to see you there someday.
Keep Looking Up . . . His best is yet to come! . . . Mind-Boggling!
A ½” of virgin, unmarked snow . . . a cool, gentle breeze . . . a pinking hour sunset brushed across distant snowcaps – the wilderness wonder postcard God created for me to glide through before hanging up my skis and heading off to rejoin my life partner in the Great Smoky Mountains tomorrow.
I’ve missed her, and Lord willing, come Spring we’ll return together to the solitude of this awesome corner of creation with its vast wilderness reaches, rugged magnificence, and primal beauty John Muir once called “The Manuscripts of God”.
Happiness is zero degrees and a pair of skis . . . gliding over a wilderness lake, snow whispering beneath, winter’s sun above sinking behind distant mountain monarchs . . . Life is Good! . . . wish you could have joined me.
“He gives snow like wool; He scatter the frost like ashes.” – Psalm147:16
Before you pass the gravy . . . as you celebrate Thanksgiving tomorrow I’d ask you look around at those who have gathered with you, your children, and thankfully contemplate but for the undeserved grace of God . . . you – they – we . . . could each be among those outside our door today living in a world where:
Most people in live in poverty – 85% of the world live on less than $30 per day, two-thirds live on less than $10 per day, and every tenth person lives on less than $1.90 per day
These poorest in our world are hungry; lack clean water; medical care; access to education; freedom of worship
Perhaps the most tragic, nearly half of those living in poverty are children
As Americans, we are all truly blessed, and have much to be thankful for.
Before you pass the gravy . . . I’d ask you to contemplate the three things you are most thankful for. For me it’s:
I was born in America
My children and family
What I will never fully comprehend, deserve, and will endure for eternity . . . my Salvation.
Why God – after this ole prodigal had “… journeyed to a far country, and there wasted my possessions with prodigal living…” before I “…came tomyself…” and turned back towards Home.
That God – when this ole prodigal “…was still a great way off…” He “… saw meand had compassion and ran and fell on my neck and kissed me…” and said “…bring out the best robe and put it on him and put a ring on his hand and sandals on his feet. And bring the fatted calf here and kill it, and let us eat and be merry, for this my son was dead and alive again; he was lost and is found. (Luke 15:11-24)
I thank God for rescuing me from this Life’s Lost and Found, and literally loving me to death!
Now . . . please pass the gravy . . . and all my best for a thankful, blessed, Happy Thanksgiving together.
The Land of the Midnight Sun is rapidly entering its Midnight Moon season, as seen in this 4 PM/4-degree wilderness wander picture.
Watching the sun begin to silently slip below the distant Chugach Range conjured a somewhat ambivalent thought of peaceful melancholy . . . this scene is somewhat analogous to my life . . . my Midnight Sun season is slowly slipping below life’s horizon, yielding to the Midnight Moon. But there’s only peace . . . no remorse . . . as I stand alone in the frozen silence.
Life’s joys have been my sunshine, and the dark clouds of failure have taught me the past is a place of reference to grow from, not a place of residence to live in. I’ve been undeservedly blessed beyond measure, and know a Sonrise awaits that will never set.
“NeverthelessI am not ashamed, for I know whom I have believed and am persuaded that He is able to keep what I have committed to Him until that Day”. – II Timothy 1:12