Sunday Blessing

I had planned to take Sunday breaks during the write 31-day challenge.  But today at church one of my favorite scripture passages from Isaiah was read and I found it comforting.  I thought maybe you would too.

In our deepest grief or trouble, we can go to God’s word to find strength and peace. My prayer is that whatever you are passing through today you will find comfort in the words of our Holy God.

But now, this is what the Lord says — he who created you, Jacob, He who formed you Israel: ‘Do not fear, for I have redeemed you; I have summoned you by name; You are mine. When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; and when you pass through the rivers they will not sweep over you. When you walk through the fire, you will not be burned; the flames will not set you ablaze. For I am the Lord your God, the holy one of Israel, your savior.       Isaiah 43:1-3 (NIV)

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Grace for the journey,

Teresa

Click here for the complete series, A 31 Day Journey through grief.

 

Standing In Grace

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Therefore, since we have been justified through faith, we have peace with God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have gained access through faith into this grace in which we now stand. And we boast in the hope of the glory of God. Not only so, but we also glory in our sufferings, because we know that suffering produces perseverance; perseverance character; and character, hope.  And hope does not put us to shame, because God’s love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us. Romans 5:1-5 NIV

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May we find God’s peace today for all our needs.  The world may be swirling around us in all directions, but he is still our hope and his grace is sufficient for all that we need. He stands ready to pour all his love into our hearts.

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Thank You, Heavenly Father, for Your Grace.  We rely on you today to meet our needs and to sustain us.  You are our hope of glory.

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Standing in Grace,

Teresa

Prompted By A Sunday Song

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Today’s post is Part of a 31 Day writing series where I choose moments from my life and let them be my writing prompt for the day. Today this song was threading through my mind.  I chose the third verse as it seems to speak to our weary spirits as we live in a world riddled with strife.  It is comforting to remember that ‘God is the ruler yet’ and ‘Jesus Christ will be satisfied.’

The window in the background of the image is from the church that my family began attending when I was a teenager.  My grandfather was the pastor for some of those years.  A few years ago when they did replacement windows they offered the old windows to the members of the congregation.  My parents brought this one to me. It is a treasure and brings back happy memories of a great time in my life. A time that was full of singing.

Singing in Grace,

Teresa

Churches of Granville

Continuing the series from our trip to Granville, Ohio….

Taking pictures of churches is a given for me.  I grew up with a father who decided it was his mission to take pictures of every church in our little town and surrounding county when I was a teenager.  The family would hop in the car on Sunday afternoons and drive around taking pictures.  He later updated his collection to add the newer churches, then compiled them into an album to donate to our local library.  For a small rural area, we have lots of churches.

It was only natural on our recent trip to Granville, Ohio for me to walk around town and take pictures of the churches. Downtown churches represented were:The United Church of Granville, St. Luke’s Episcopal, First Presbyterian, Pilgrim Lutheran, and Methodist.  There was also a beautiful church on the campus of Denison University.  There was a Baptist church on the outskirts of town, but I failed to take a picture of it.

Since we arrived late Sunday afternoon, we did not attend any of the local churches.  I hope you enjoy this little tour of the churches of Granville.  Amateur photos coming up!

I was glad when they said unto me, Let us go into the house of the Lord. Psalm 122:1

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Where do you worship?

Worshiping in Grace,

Teresa

Advent III – Joy

Today is the third Sunday of Advent.  Churches and Homes around the world will light the pink candle of Joy.  This is the season of anticipation of the arrival of the Christ child.  Of course this is symbolic as we know he came long ago.  For believers this also represents the anticipation of his second coming.

Joy takes us to No room at the Inn where we, like the Shepherds of long ago, find the Christ child in a stark stable where our joy is rooted.  Today, I share an advent devotional with you that I wrote for the Fern Creek Baptist Church Advent Devotional Booklet a few years ago.

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Joy Came Down at Christmas

 The joy of Christmas is set against the bitter cold of no room at the inn.  It is reflected in the brightness of the star that shone into the starkness of the stable only to become a mere reflection compared to the great love that was lying in the manger.

Joy catches the light of the Savior’s love and penetrates deep into our soul to fill us with unspeakable majesty.  We cannot fathom it, but even in our deepest despair it is there as the foundation on which all our hope is built, pointing the way to eternity.

An eternity made possible by the darkest hour in all of history, when the love born in the stable was hung on a cross and joy sliced through the sorrow of our sin and brought freedom to our souls.

Joy and sorrow have always resided on opposite sides of the same coin.  You cannot have one without the other.  Joy remembered makes sorrow bearable and sorrow reflected in the pool of joy rides on wings of hope and restores our faith.

Even when the world doesn’t see joy, there is comfort in knowing that it is all around us in the presence of the one who came so long ago for the very purpose of bringing us the gift of joy.  That is why we can shout from the depths of our souls: “Joy to the World”.

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Finding joy in grace,

Teresa