I blinked in the darkness, turned and glanced at the clock. 5:33 AM… my usual waking time even though it was a holiday! Argh!!! I didn’t move for fear of waking the doggies who were snoring in unison with their favorite person. Lying there quietly, contemplating whether to go back to sleep and after an unsuccessful attempt, I aborted that plan and gently scooted out of my memory foam cocoon and stumbled down the dark hallway to the coffee pot! I truly love the aroma of freshly brewed coffee! It makes me a happy person!
Once in the kitchen out of hearing distance of the constant whirr of the window a/c unit (our heat pump/ac unit isn’t working) I could hear the RAIN! Yes, the RAIN! Blessed Rain!
I realize for some it’s already caused terrible flooding and by the end of the day may cause flash flooding here…but for now, it’s just a steady rain. I actually went out back and stood in the acid sweet falling rain (don’t worry, the neighbors couldn’t see me and NO, I DID NOT Let Bud take a picture of me “singing in the rain”).
Can you feel the seasonal change in the air? I can!
I had BIG plans for today and they’ve all WASHED away! So, on to Plan B… Wait, did I make a Plan B? Let’s see…nope, don’t think I did!!
My new revised plan… catch up on my Summer Challenge Bible reading, laundry, wash my hair, and clean up the mess from Bud’s cooking (he fixed a delicious breakfast this morning) . He thinks he cleans up, but…his idea of clean is different than mine!?? No other explanation needed. I love him anyway.
We are Falling out of summer!
LABOR DAY is the
unofficial end of SUMMER!
Oops…I am behind in my Summer Challenge Bible reading! With my recent surgery and some other tasks that had to be done… I fell behind! But I am catching up quickly and enjoying THE WORD and missing it when I don’t get to have my quiet time in the early morning hours! I’m almost back to my normal routine!
While reading this past week, a particular phrase caught my attention in both Matthew and Mark…
Jesus told them, “Don’t let anyone mislead you, for many will come in my name, claiming ‘I am the Messiah.’ They will deceive many. And you will hear of wars and threats of wars, but don’t panic. Yes, these things must take place, but the end won’t follow immediately. Nation will go to war against nation, and kingdom against kingdom. There will be famines and earthquakes in many parts of the world. But all this is only the first of the birth pangs, with more to come.” Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers. (emphasis is mine)
The phrase: “But all this is only the first of the birth pangs, with more to come”, is the phrase that captivated my attention.
Then in Mark 13:8(b) I read it again!
The Amplified Bible reads: “This is but the beginning of the intolerable anguish and suffering [only the first of the birth pangs].”
This phrase tumbled over and over in my mind… “only the first birth pangs” … “more to come”. In my notes I wrote… the beginning of sorrows.
What we are hearing, reading, and seeing are mild as to what is to come:
Then you will be arrested, persecuted, and killed. You will be hated all over the world because you are my followers.
We are looking at history in the making…and we are part of it!
Mark 13:33 … be on guard! Stay Alert! (and pray) Mark 13:36…don’t be found sleeping…WATCH for HIM!
Matthew 14:37 (b)
“Keep watch and pray, so that you will not give in to temptation. For the spirit is willing, but the flesh is weak.”
I believe we are truly in the throes of the “last days” with more to come. I am not predicting a date for His return, but I am saying that we need to stay alert and be on guard. The temptations of this world are creeping into places that were once sacred territory and becoming “acceptable” by ALL generations. I’ve written on “change” in previous posts, but I’m not talking about generational change.
How easily we drift away. Are we losing our way? Have we reset our moral compass to different coordinates? Have we rewritten the map to please others? I’m not trying to be a “negative spirit”. However, I am trying to keep myself on the right road…the less traveled narrow road… not the broad smooth easily traveled road. My road has rivers to wade, rocky hills to climb, and valleys to trudge through. I’m traveling this road with the one who calls me friend!
And through all the above, there is a place of peace and quiet solitude that gives me strength to continue on the way. I have always believed that this life is only a journey in a foreign land and one day I will cross the border into my eternal home…Yes, there is more to come! This feeling deep within my heart becomes even more pronounced as the years pass by. It’s the feeling one gets when anticipating an exciting trip in the near future.
Please, don’t misunderstand me…I am not a negative person…I enjoy my life here as much as this world allows me…within the boundaries I have set for myself. Do you “set boundaries” for yourself?
I’m increasingly amazed at how easy it is to “let up” or “let go” and how acceptable certain things have become. What was once “sin” is no longer considered sinful. Have we redefined sin? I’m not referring to personal convictions and I won’t even go there. Although I do, as you, have my personal opinions of the changes I see occurring.
Even when Peter tried to blend into the crowd and warm his hands at the edge of the fire (Jesus’ Trial & Crucifixion)…he couldn’t hide. He was recognized as being “one of them”. We may pretend that we don’t know Him, but the world knows who we are! And once you’ve been associated with “Him”… you will never be accepted in the same way by the world again.
Believe me, if we are filled with the Spirit and living a Holy life…we will be recognized. We will not find peace in going back to the “old way” of life. It will always be there to remind us! We will carry that mark in our hearts forever! It will either be our resurrection or our doom!
My desire is to be “recognizable” as having been with Jesus! I want to be “one of them”… and be found with oil in my lamp along with extra oil in reserve…not just skimping by and hoping I have enough when the time comes. Are you recognizable?
Be On Guard,
Not Found Sleeping,
WATCH FOR HIM!
These are words of warning to us. We must heed these warnings!
In Him we have peace in whatever circumstance we find ourselves in. They can kill the body but not the soul.
I want to be found faithful to the end,