There is nothing in the world so much like prayer as music is. William P. Merrill
To me, music is not like prayer, it is prayer. I can sit in the church and listen to the music and be pulled out of myself. Attending a service where everyone sings out in praise can touch my soul. I can be moved to tears by a beautiful hymn. I thank God that he has gifted us with music.
Prayer: Thank you God for the beautiful music. May we continue to be touched by it and drawn closer to you. Amen
It is not easy to remember to give thanks in all things. Some days we can’t see anything to be thankful for. Stop and look around you. You are alive. Isn’t that enough?
Ephesians 2:7-10 —definition of grace
7 that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not your own doing, it is the gift of God— 9 not because of works, lest any man should boast. 10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.
We can’t earn our way with God. We have been granted grace through the sacrifice of Christ. None of us can say we are better than another. We are the same…god’s creation.
We were created to do good works. Not to win any awards or make ourselves noticed but to follow God’s plan for us.
Grace is a gift. Accept it.
On of my favorite songs during this season is Mary did you know?
Listen carefully to the words.
What are you doing to prepare for the Christ child? There are so many ways that we can focus on the meaning of Christmas. Take advantage of at least one if not more.
Put unused items in a box to be delivered to the needy
Read your Bible every day. A good place to start during Advent is with Isaiah or one of the Gospels about the birth of Christ.
Take time to pray for your needs and the needs of others
Thank God each day for all that he has given you
Befriend someone who is alone
There are many more things to do…but focusing in these last weeks will make Christmas more special
Psalm 16: 1-2
1 Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
2 I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
I have no good apart from you.”
I don’t understand people who have no relationship with God. Where do they turn when life is challenging? It is not the things that we accumulate that give us “the good.” It is our God who provides us with the things that bring us life. Life with God is good.
Amazing God, thank you for providing the good in our lives. AMEN
Psalm 8: 1-2
1 I will give thanks to the Lord with my whole heart;
I will tell of all your wonderful deeds.
2 I will be glad and exult in you;
I will sing praise to your name, O Most High.
We read these words but do we follow them? How often do we tell about the thing the Lord has done for us? I have mentioned before that a friend calls God’s intervention in our lives “the arangels at work.” I try to remember to share how that happens in my life but usually only with those who understand it. I need to share more with others. They may scoff and tell me it’s “coincidence” but that’s fine. Maybe they will see my belief as “something more.”
Tell about God’s marvelous works. He continues to work today. Sing his praises!
Amazing God, thank you for your work in our lives. Remind us to share it with others. AMEN
I may have shared this before but I absolutely love this from Romans. It gives me hope that no matter what God will be there for me and you.
Romans 8:37-39 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
37 No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. 38 For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor rulers, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39 nor height, nor depth, nor anything else in all creation, will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.
Amen and Amen
I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairing, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.—-Agatha Christie
I doubt that many of us have escaped the pains that can come in this life. Yet through it all just to get up each morning is a gift. Thank God each day for your life.
Giving God, you have granted us life. Help us to thank you for it. AMEN
Happiness is not a state to arrive at, but a manner of traveling. ——Margaret Lee Runbeck
Our thinking about happiness seems out of sync. We look for happiness to bowl us over but it’s not like that. Happiness can live with us on our journey if we let it. Will I choose to see the good in things today? Will I thank God for my blessings acknowledging them myself? To me, this is the crux of the matter. Most of the time happiness is our choice. Sure, we do have bad times but my perspective colors my journey. Choose to be happy!
God of love, you have given us the chance to choose happiness. Help us to see it in our lives. AMEN