Friday, September 20, 2013

Jesus and women...

The thought occurred to me that I had never studied the encounters mentioned in the Bible of women and Jesus.  Considering my ministry to women, I thought the information I would glean from such a study would be most helpful...and insightful...and wonderful.

I started with the most famous woman in Jesus' life - His mother.  There were three things that stood out when considering her life in the grand scheme of things. 

First, the person that first knew the Messiah was indeed coming and would arrive in around 9 months was Mary.  Gabriel didn't appear to politicians, rulers or rabbis.  He came to Mary, a very young woman, and announced that the seed of God had been placed in her womb; that she was chosen to carry and give birth to the Promised One. 

For the rest of her life, she had a relationship with the Messiah, whom she knew as her firstborn son.

Second, proper wedding hospitality was important to her.  She and Jesus were at a wedding where the wine ran out.  She knew Jesus better than anyone.  Why did she insist He do something about the situation?  Had she seen Him perform miracles as He was growing up about which no one else knew?  I don't think she was surprised when He performed His first public miracle and made the best wine served at the party. 

The third thing that really stands out is what Jesus did for her as He was hanging on the agony...struggling to breathe.  It is recorded in the 19th chapter of the book of John that Jesus saw her at the foot of His cross.  He was suffering a slow tortuous death and yet, He made sure to pass on His responsibility, as her first-born son, of taking care of His widowed mother to John. 

This same Jesus loves you and me.  Wow!  Take some time to think about that concept...


Ah...the heat of summer is almost gone and my favorite time of year is slowly unfurling into all its gloriousness.  I put out all my fall decorations a couple days before Labor Day.  We left town to celebrate our youngest daughter's birthday with her and I wanted to come back to a fall-decorated home.  It would be September, after all! 

I am praying for a beautiful fall this year - one where we can enjoy lots of patio mornings and evenings with family and friends...and mums...and various colored pumpkins...and pilgrims...with a focus on being thankful for both trials (for how they transform our lives) and blessings (for which we do nothing to deserve).

 (artwork by my first-born daughter - this is the mantel in her living room) 

Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Come on Fall...

Even though the temperatures outside don't reflect that it will officially be Fall in eighteen days, I couldn't wait to put out the Fall decor today.  I love Fall!  Fall means cooler temperatures (eventually), pumpkins, beautiful colorful leaves, golden sunshine, soups, sweaters, jackets and boots, Fall lifegroup classes and fellowships, and the promise of the coming holiday season.  Fall also means focusing on harvest produced by hard work, giving thanks to God for what He provides, and giving to others through hospitality.

I'm going to have a busy Fall this year.  My honey and I are teaching a 5 Days to a New Marriage class.  I'm teaching Grown-up Girls on Tuesday mornings and have two speaking engagements in October.  I'm also taking a genealogy class at our local public library.  It's a free class and the people I've met are most interesting.  I've learned a lot from the last class I took and discovered I still have relatives in Scotland.  I also discovered the military service of my great great grandpa for the Union in the Civil War.  It is so interesting to learn more about these people from which I came!  My honey asked me why I was so curious about my ancestors and I told him that besides loving history, I am searching for my spiritual heritage.  Who was it who first loved the Lord so that it was passed down through the generations?  I'll let you know what I find!