Monday, May 30, 2016

Some Gave All

We know love by this, that He laid down His life for us; and we ought to lay down our lives for the brethren.  1 John 3:16

This is my Uncle Lindsay at the young age of 18, United States Army, 87th Infantry Division, KIA Battle of the Bulge, December 16, 1944.  I never met Lindsay as I was not born until 1945.  I heard stories about him and saw the flag my grandmother had that had covered his coffin. 

Do you know when and where the first Memorial Day was.  I didn't either so I looked it up.  The first Memorial Day was May 30, 1868, 3 years after the Civil War ended, and at that time it was called Decoration Day.  The first large observance was held that year at Arlington National Cemetery, across the Potomac River from Washington, D.C.  After speeches, children from the Soldiers’ and Sailors’ Orphan Home and members of the GAR made their way through the cemetery, strewing flowers on both Union and Confederate graves, reciting prayers and singing hymns.

Gen. Logan’s order for his posts to decorate graves in 1868 “with the choicest flowers of springtime” urged: “We should guard their graves with sacred vigilance. ... Let pleasant paths invite the coming and going of reverent visitors and fond mourners. Let no neglect, no ravages of time, testify to the present or to the coming generations that we have forgotten as a people the cost of a free and undivided republic.”

It was not until after World War I, however, that the day was expanded to honor those who have died in all American wars. In 1971, Memorial Day was declared a national holiday by an act of Congress, though it is still often called Decoration Day. It was then also placed on the last Monday in May, as were some other federal holidays.

The National Moment of Remembrance, adopted December 2000, encourages all Americans to pause wherever they are at 3 p.m. local time on Memorial Day for a minute of silence to remember and honor those who have died in service to the nation. As Moment of Remembrance founder Carmella LaSpada states: “It’s a way we can all help put the memorial back in Memorial Day.”

As a young child I remember going to the cemetery and placing flowers on the graves but I never really knew why until years later.  Today small American flags are placed on each grave at cemeteries across our great nation as we remember the sacrifices made for us and the freedoms we enjoy.

So, today no matter where you are or what you are doing, at 3:00 pm pause for a minute and honor those that gave their last full measure.

Battle Hymn Of The Republic
by Julia Ward Howe, 1861

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord;
He is trampling out the vintage where the grapes of wrath are stored;
He hath loosed the fateful lightning of His terrible swift sword:
His truth is marching on.

I have seen Him in the watch-fires of a hundred circling camps,
They have builded Him an altar in the evening dews and damps;
I can read His righteous sentence by the dim and flaring lamps:
His day is marching on.

I have read a fiery gospel writ in burnished rows of steel:
"As ye deal with my contemners, so with you my grace shall deal";
Let the Hero, born of woman, crush the serpent with his heel,
Since God is marching on.

He has sounded forth the trumpet that shall never call retreat;
He is sifting out the hearts of men before His judgment-seat;
Oh, be swift, my soul, to answer Him! Be jubilant, my feet!
Our God is marching on.

In the beauty of the lilies Christ was born across the sea,
With a glory in His bosom that transfigures you and me.
As He died to make men holy, let us die to make men free
While God is marching on.

Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah!
While God is marching on.

Howe's original manuscript differed slightly from the published version. Most significantly, it included a final verse:

He is coming like the glory of the morning on the wave,
He is Wisdom to the mighty, He is Succour to the brave,
So the world shall be His footstool, and the soul of Time His slave,
Our God is marching on.
Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah!
Glory, glory, hallelujah.
Our God is marching on

Friday, May 27, 2016

Tis So Sweet...

But I will always trust in You and in Your mercy and shall rejoice in Your salvation.  I will sing to the Lord because He has blessed me so richly.  Psalm 13:5-6

Our God is so awesome!!!  Wednesday afternoon I decided it was time, as I had been putting it off since last October, to get my Prevnar 13 pneumonia shot.  I was feeling good and this little voice kept telling me since you are going to be there anyway have the pharmacist give you your shot.  Well I did and was still feeling great.  My arm was a little sore but nothing I couldn't handle until yesterday morning.  I had gotten very little sleep as I just couldn't get comfortable so I tossed and turned all night with body aches.  Yesterday morning it hit me like a ton of bricks and I had every side affect, I have never had a reaction to vaccine, they tell you to watch out for; headache, body aches, nausea, sleepy, no appetite, temperature and my left arm felt like a ton bricks had fallen on it.

My sweetie said, "okay it is time for me to be your nurse" and proceeded to take care of me.  He called the doctor and pharmacist to report my condition and they both said the same thing, stay in bed, lots of rest, alternating Tylenol and Ibuprofen to break the fever and for the body aches.  I pretty much slept yesterday away and my sweetie was a very good nurse.  Oh yeah the pharmacist was reporting my reaction to FDA.  Maybe I'll be famous.

Today I am feeling much better.  Oh I still ache a little and my arm is really sore but I can move today without feeling like every bone in my body is breaking. 

Which brings me to the scripture above.  I trusted what my doctor and pharmacist were telling me and what they were telling me to do.  Shouldn't we do the same with our Lord Jesus.  Oh the doctor and the pharmacist know me and care for me but they will never love me like our Lord Jesus does.  He tells us to trust Him, to ask Him for anything and He will grant it.  Well I know there were a lot of prayers going up for me yesterday, He did touch my body and for that I give Him all  glory, honor and praise.

I could have ignored the advice my doctor and pharmacist gave me but I chose not to.  I could ignore what Jesus asks of me but I choose not to.  I was on His mind when He was hanging on the cross as He died for my sins to give me a better life.  Please don't ignore what Jesus asks of you for He cares deeply for you and you were on His mind to.

Tis So Sweet To Trust In Jesus
by Louisa M. R. Stead, 1882

"Tis so sweet to trust in Jesus,
And to take Him at His Word;
Just to rest upon His promise,
And to know, "Thus says the Lord!"

Monday, May 23, 2016

In The Morning...

The gates shall be open continually; they shall not be shut day nor night.  Isaiah 60:11

My sweetie and I decided to take a drive one spring morning, saw this little river/creek, decided to snap a picture, that runs through Yokohl Valley near Exeter, CA.  During the winter/spring months you will find water running but in the summer months it starts to dry up as it source dries up.  This is exactly what happens to us when we do not stay in the Word.

Our souls need to be fed daily with God's Word. When we do not spend time with our Heavenly Father conversing in prayer , reading and studying His Word, listening to His still small voice, we become a dry bitter person.  We start to blame everything on God.  We wonder why He walked away from us when things started to fall apart.  Guess what?  He never moved and is still walking with us , reaching for us to bring us back into the fold.  We know deep down inside of us that our Heavenly Father is not to blame.  We are!!!  We are the one that moved!  We let Satan push our buttons with something someone said or something we wanted did not go our way and we end up blaming God.  Don't let Satan use you for you are a child of the King of Kings.  Stay in God's Word, studying and applying His message to your daily lives for one day we will be with our Heavenly Father.

There is an old song that I love, "I'll Meet You In The Morning."  I can almost hear my Momma singing the words to this song knowing, without a doubt, that yes she would one day meet all her loved ones as she made her journey to her heavenly home.   One morning I will meet you Momma and oh what a reunion that will be...

I'll Meet You In The Morning
by Albert E. Brumley, 1936

I will meet you in the morning by the bright riverside
When all sorrow has drifted away
I'll be standing at the portals when the gates open wide
At the close of life's long dreary day
I'' meet you in the morning, With a how do you do
And we';; sit down by the river
And with rapture our auld acquaintance renew
You'll know me in the morning, By the smiles that I wear
When I meet you in the morning
In the city that is build four square. 

Saturday, May 21, 2016

Give Your Best...

Whatever your task, put yourselves into it... since you know that from the Lord you will receive the inheritance as your reward; you serve the Lord Christ.  Colossians 3:23-24

Growing up my Momma always told us kids "it ain't no point in doing it at all unless you are doing it right."  When we don't do something right we might as well not do it at all because someone else has to come along behind us, clean up our mess  and then do the job/task we were assigned to do.

As I remember whenever we got together for family dinners I was always given the job of making the salad.  I hated making salads!!!  I don't know why I just did but I tackled the job and if I do say so myself I made a really good salad. 

Just because we don't like to do whatever job is given to us doesn't mean we slack off and do a poor job but we do the best we can.

What it boils down to is this, always do the best job you can with whatever job/task that is set before you for God will equip you with the knowledge and strength you need to get the job done.

Father God thank you for the strength you give me daily to accomplish the tasks set before me even when I don't like them.  Father God help me to always do the best I can and to not grow weary doing what I can to spread the good news of Your Son, Jesus Christ.  Amen

Give Of Your Best To The Master
by Howard B. Grose, 1902

Give of your best to the Master;
Give of the strength of your youth.
Throw your soul's fresh, glowing ardor
Into the battle for truth.
Jesus has set the example,
Dauntless was He, young and brave.
Give Him your loyal devotion;
Give Him the best that you have.

Give of your best to the Master;
Give of the strength of your youth.
Clad in salvation's full armor,
Join in the battle for truth.

Friday, May 20, 2016

All The Days...

Surely goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. 
Psalm 23:6

As I wander down the paths that are set before me each day have I ever really stopped and thought about what may be waiting at the end of those paths.  Will I have done what God asks me to do or will I have thought only of myself each step of the way.  Will I have shown kindness and mercy to all I meet or will I just brush off what happens along that particular path as of no consequence.  I pray I don't and that I will do what my Momma taught me to do.  She always said a stranger is just a friend you haven't met so treat others as you want to be treated and don't say anything about any body unless it is good.  My Momma was a sweet southern lady who never met a stranger and would give you the shirt off her back if you needed it more.  Momma I sure miss you but I thank you for the sacrifices you made as us kids were growing up.  You always put our needs ahead of your own and I pray I can be just like you.  Love you Momma...

Father God thank you for the goodness and love you have blessed my life with.  Thank you giving me a Godly Mother to instill in me your love and grace...  Amen

Surely Goodness and Mercy
by John W. Peterson and Alfred B. Smith

A pilgrim was I, and a wandering,
In the cold night of sin I did roam,
When Jesus the kind Shepherd found me,
And now I am on my way home.

Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me
All the days, all the days of my life.

Thursday, May 19, 2016

What You Want Me To Be

Let your light shine before men, that they may see your good deeds and praise your Father in heaven.  Matthew 5:16

So far May has been a very hectic month for the Richards household.  It started off with my sweetie having pneumonia, then surgery and us buying a house in the midst of all that. 

Praise God the pneumonia is gone, my sweetie is recovering from surgery, the paperwork, inspections, etc. have all been done and signed for on the house.  Now all we are waiting for is the VA Appraisal with an escrow closing date of June 9 or before.  We are not concerned as God has this and we placed it in His capable hands in the beginning so it will all come together in His time.

Father God thank you for your provisions.  Thank you for blessing us with a place we to live while we wait for everything to come together on the home you have blessed us with.  Thank you Father God for our children that opened their home last August for us to move in with them until we knew what we wanted to do.  Thank you Father God for your grace and mercy that are knew to us each day.  Father God we ask that the light of your Son, Jesus Christ, shine through us to all we come in contact with in with buying of this home and to all others as we wait on you.  Amen

I'll Go Where You Want Me To Go
by Mary Brown, 1892

It may not be on the mountain's height, or over the stormy sea;
It may not be at the battle's front my Lord will have need of me;
But if by a still, small voice He calls to path I do not know,
I'll answer, dear Lord, with my hand in Yours,
I'll go where You want me to go.

I'll go where You want me to go, dear Lord,
O'er mountain, or plain, or sea;
I'll say what You want me to say, dear Lord,
I'll be what You want me to be.

Saturday, May 14, 2016

Hiding Place

He will hide me in His shelter in the day of trouble; He will conceal me under the cover of His tent: He will set me high on a rock.  Psalm 27:5
Isn't it wonderful to know that no matter what comes our way God will shelter us from all trouble.  He covers us with His mighty Spirit so that no harm will come to us.
Thank you Father God for the protection you offer not only me but all my love ones.  Amen
He Hideth My Soul
by Fanny Crosby, 1890
With numberless blessings each moment He crowns,
And filled with His fullness divine,
I sing in my rapture, oh, glory to God
For such a Redeemer as mine!
A wonderful Savior is Jesus my Lord,
He taketh my burden away;
He holdeth me up, and I shall not be moved,
He giveth me strength as my day.

Friday, May 13, 2016

My Sister

Rejoice and be glad, because great is your reward in heaven, for in the same way they persecuted the prophets who were before you.  Matthew 5:12
Yesterday was my sister's birthday! I did call and wish her a Happy Birthday but wanted to post a birthday wish for her here but time got away from me.  Nellie I hope your day was filled with all the good stuff; love, joy, peace, laughter, and sunshine as you celebrated you.  I am so glad God chose to bless me with a loving, caring sister like you.  Love you Baby Sister and pray you celebrate many more birthdays here on this earth.
Love you,
Your Big Sister

Saturday, May 7, 2016

Busy Long Week...

In God, whose word I praise, in the Lord, whose word I praise, in God I trust.  Psalm 56:10-11

This has been a very long week but praise God for bringing us through it. 

It started with us signing the counteroffer papers for the home we are buying.  Then the bank messed up a transfer from our savings to our checking and posted it three days late which created its own mess since I was writing checks not only for bills but the earnest money for the house.  Then my sweetie had surgery Tuesday to repair a torn rotator cuff in his right shoulder.  The surgery went well and he should be back to his normal self in six to eight months.  Wednesday was the day I worked with the bank to get everything they had messed up straightened out.  Thursday was my day at the church office finishing up month, didn't get it all done so went in Friday to finish up.

Today I am resting and spending some down time with my sweetie.  He is doing really well, has already cut down on the pain medication they have him taking and doing his exercises, only three at this time.  Our sweet daughter fixed us a picnic lunch and we headed out for a drive with our Ozzie Bear for some time outside the four walls of our little apartment in our kids place.  Couldn't find just the right spot for a picnic, where Ozzie could run and play, so we ended back at the kids place and had our picnic lunch in the back yard. 

It has been a relaxing day with my sweetie...

Father God thank you for the many blessings you have sent my way.  Thank you for blessing us with our new home, for your guidance as we travel down the road of all the paper work.  Father God thank you for your healing touch on Gary as he continues to recover from surgery.  Father God be with all our family members, protect them, lead each of them as they travel the path you have set before them.  Amen

He's A Wonder Savior To Me
by Virgil P. Brock, 1918

He's a Friend so true, so patient and so kind,
He's a wonderful Savior to me;
Everything I need in Him I always find,
He's a wonderful Savior to me.

He is always near to comfort and to cheer,
He's a wonderful Savior to me;
He forgives my sins, He dries my every tear,
He's a wonderful Savior to me.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Buying A House...

 How great is Your goodness, which You have stored up for those who fear You, which You bestow in the sight of men on those who take refuge in You. Psalm 31:19

Buying a house can be stressful all by its self but add pneumonia and surgery and  it can become even more stressful if we let it.

This past week my sweetie has been recovering from pneumonia and is scheduled for shoulder surgery Tuesday.  We have also been looking our own little place where we can bloom and grow.  Well we found it,  our ranch style home, this past week, made an offer Thursday, received a counter offer Friday and finally got all the papers signed today.  So step one of buying a house is done now on to step 2, 3, 4, etc. as we move forward in the process.

My sweetie and I said at the get go that this was all in God's hands and His timing and we still feel that way.  If this is the little place that God has set aside for us we will breeze through each step.  If not He will close the door and we will continue to move forward with Him guiding our steps.

Father God thank you for you goodness to us.  Thank you for leading us to this little place for we feel that this is where you want us.  Father God I ask that you bless the seller as they begin a new phase of their lives, in a new location and guide them through this transition.  Father God thank you for the love you have bestowed upon us and for the many blessings.  Father God we will continue to walk down the path you have laid before us until you tell us different. Amen

It's Just Like His Great Love
by Edna R. Worrell, 1903

A friend I have called Jesus, whose love is strong and true,
And never fails howe'er 'tis tried, no matter what I do;
I've sinned against this love of His, but when I knelt to pray,
Confessing all my guilt to Him, the sin clouds rolled away.

It's just like Jesus to roll the clouds away,
it's just like Jesus to keep me day by day,
it's just like Jesus all along the way,
It's just like His great love.