May you and your family have a Merry Christmas! Thank you for your love and support.
John 1:10-13 NLT
10 He came into the very world he created, but the world didn’t recognize him. 11 He came to his own people, and even they rejected him. 12 But to all who believed him and accepted him, he gave the right to become children of God.13 They are reborn—not with a physical birth resulting from human passion or plan, but a birth that comes from God.
We thank you for allowing us to see another holiday season. We are thankful for the gift of Jesus, not just at Christmas, but each day of our lives. The blessings we have because of your love for us are endless. Teach us to live each day with a spirit of humility and obedience to your will. Empower us to live each day in your joy, peace, strength and love. We also pray for those who are hurting this Christmas due to some type of loss or illness. May they experience your comfort and receive the care and resources they need. Thank you Father, for being the good Father that you are; and thank you that your goodness and mercy follows us each day of our lives.
Philippians 4:9 NLT, “Keep putting into practice all you learned and received from me—everything you heard from me and saw me doing. Then the God of peace will be with you.”
This verse stood out to me while reading chapter 4. Paul was telling the Philippians to follow his example and then God would be with them. Have you ever tried to tell someone in your life the same thing? Perhaps a family member or a friend. Sometimes people listen and sometimes they don’t. Or sometimes even if they don’t listen now, they will eventually listen in the future. However, we must keep being consistent in our faith (like Jesus), and trust that we are being a light to those around us. God is working in their lives, the same way He is working in our lives.
God’s has a unique plan for everyone. He knows the condition of a person’s heart, and He will do what is best for them. People have a choice and sometimes their choices are different from ours. But God has called us to keep praying for those He has placed on our hearts and to keep living a life that exemplifies the love and goodness of Jesus, like Paul did. It’s the power of God’s love and goodness that transforms the human heart. And He will give us opportunities to share our faith with people, as we keep showing love and doing good.
Over the last couple of days, I have been meditating on Psalm 136. The verses in this chapter, recount instances of God’s enduring love throughout scripture. One of my favorite parts, is when it mentions how God divided the Red Sea, in verses 13-15.
Psalms 136:13-15 (CSB)
13 He divided the Red Sea, His faithful love endures forever. 14 and led Israel through, His faithful love endures forever. 15 but hurled Pharaoh and his army into the Red Sea. His faithful love endures forever.
The original story is told in Exodus 14. However, verses 13-14 in Exodus, also stood out to me. It says, “13 But Moses told the people, “Don’t be afraid. Just stand still and watch the Lord rescue you today. The Egyptians you see today will never be seen again. 14 The Lord himself will fight for you. Just stay calm.”
Sometimes, we just need to stand still, stay calm and watch to see what God will do.
Reflecting on these miraculous events from the past, brings us strength for today. We can choose to cast our cares upon the Lord and trust Him to fight our battles. He never runs out of whatever it is we need. He will create a path for us to walk through, just like He did for Moses and the Israelites. Every verse in Psalms 136, ends with, “His faithful love endures forever.” These are words we can all take comfort in. No matter what we are facing, we can remember that, “His faithful love endures forever.”
“God puts rainbows in the clouds so that each of us – in the dreariest and most dreaded moments – can see a possibility of hope.” Maya Angelou
This month, marks three years since I left South Florida. However, during my four year stay there, I think I saw more rainbows, than I had seen in my entire life. They were a normal occurrence due to the frequent mix of rain and sunshine. According to livescience.com, “Rainbows are frequently seen in the wake of a rainstorm. They come when the sunlight breaks through rain clouds.”
It was a delight to experience the rainbow phenomenon so often. Rainbows remind me, that God’s light can break through any dark clouds we may face in this life. And dark clouds aren’t always a bad thing, since in them, we can better see God’s light.
The rainbow in the picture was one of my favorites. While coming out of work one evening in March of 2018, I saw it. Seeing a rainbow is always fascinating and they are a reminder of God’s promise in Genesis 9:13-17, to never destroy the Earth by a flood again.
God’s promises to us will always stand. As we are reminded in 2 Corinthians 1:20 NLT, “For all of God’s promises have been fulfilled in Christ with a resounding “Yes!” And through Christ, our “Amen” (which means “Yes”) ascends to God for his glory.”
The month of November (the 25th), is also when the country of Suriname 🇸🇷 gained its independence. So below is a picture of me and my Dutch speaking sister in Christ from Suriname. She is the only person I have ever met from that country. I was honored to meet her. We took this picture on my last Sunday attending church in Florida.
And lastly, if you ever get a chance to try a Sumo Citrus, you won’t be disappointed. It originated in Japan but I saw it and tried it for the first time in Florida. They are so sweet and delicious!
Psalm 95:1-3 NLT, “Come, let us sing to the LORD! Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come to him with thanksgiving. Let us sing psalms of praise to him. For the LORD is a great God, a great King above all gods.”
Wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving! I pray that joy and peace will fill your heart as you take time to reflect on God’s goodness, with a thankful heart. He is the Rock of our salvation and we can rest knowing that He is walking with us every moment of everyday.
As I reflect on God’s goodness, these are some things I am thankful for:
Proverbs 12:18 NIV, “The words of the reckless pierce like swords, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.”
This verse reminds us of the opportunity we have to glorify God by using our words to speak life to others. It is always wise to think before we speak, because although we live in a world that encourages people to speak their minds, without regard for the feelings of others, choosing our words wisely, will help bring healing to others. Words, when used recklessly, can do years of damage. We should pray regularly and ask God to help us to value the lives of others, through the words we speak.