Christmas 2020 - Dare to Hope

Advent Musings Series: Let’s unpack HOPE, LOVE, JOY, and PEACE this 2020 Christmas! Come and ponder with me these unchanging truths in a chaotic world. If you have young children, I think you will enjoy the activity provided at the end of each advent musing—a way to celebrate with them God’s timeless promises. Advent defined: The arrival of a notable person, thing, or event; appearance, emergence, dawn, birth; the coming or second coming of Christ. As we remember His first coming with awe, let’s hold hands together figuratively as we yearn for that time when He comes again and makes all things right. With hope, love, joy, and peace, Sharon   HOPE And hope does not disappoint, because the love of God has been poured […] Read more »

Christmas Selah Day Challenge 2020

Christmas 2020 will be unique. We are still in the midst of a pandemic that has swept the globe. Some people, perhaps even some of our friends, think it's been overblown and others refuse to leave their homes because of the threat. Some are frightened, some are cautious, and all of us wish that life could be different. It's a hard time. So, of all the years to stop and take a Sweet Selah Day in December, this might be the most important year ever in which to do so. You and I need to turn off social media, ignore the news reports wherever we get our news, and Just Be Still for a little while. Are you up for this challenge to ... stop […] Read more »

Weird Things I’m Thankful for in 2020 - Overflowing Thankfulness

And now, just as you accepted Christ Jesus as your Lord, you must continue to follow him. Let your roots grow down into him, and let your lives be built on him. Then your faith will grow strong in the truth you were taught, and you will overflow with thankfulness. —Colossians 2:6-7 NLT (emphasis mine) I really loved my British grandmother. She was a tiny woman (5 foot even) with a great big generous heart. Her eyes twinkled, and she was full of mischief. Everything and everybody fascinated her. When you were fortunate enough to visit with her, you felt super important because she asked questions and she hung on your every word. However, Grandma had one habit that I did not love. When we […] Read more »

Seeking Jesus on our Last Day Together - Mark 16

Well, dear friend. What a wonderful way to spend the last month, studying with you the earliest written gospel about the Lord Jesus Christ, whom we serve! I've learned so much as I've read this book with an eye to see Jesus and know Him better. How about you? Here are some things that stood out to me about Jesus as I read this book: Jesus loved all sorts of people. He healed, admonished, taught, and touched them. Children, women, tax collectors, rich young rulers, disciples, lepers ... all received His attention and often His compassion. Jesus taught with authority. He was confident about Who He was, Son of Man, Son of God, the great I AM. From his earliest times in the synagogue, to […] Read more »

Seeking Jesus Day Thirty-One - Mark 15:21-47

Oh there is so much to talk about in this passage! Let me just share a few thoughts. I am sure you have many of your own. The Supernatural Darkness. The world turned dark in the middle of the day, from noon until 3pm. That must have been so eerie. This event is mentioned in other places outside of the Bible. Thallus, a historian who wrote in 52A.D. in his third book of histories, refers to it as an eclipse of the sun, but Julius Africanus in 221 A.D. dissents from Thallus, explaining it could not have been an eclipse. In addition, we find accounts from Tertullian and Phlegon, a Greek author, who wrote a chronology soon after 137 A.D. and spoke of "the greatest […] Read more »

Seeking Jesus Day Thirty - Mark 15:1-20

Oh the contrasts in this passage! We see a quiet and calm Jesus, in control and willing to do what God has asked of Him for the love of the people—some of whom are, at the moment, being cruel to Him. Contrast that with the mob, tumultuous and loud, whipped into a frenzy by the priests. They are shouting! They are angry! Some of them probably aren't even sure why! Mobs are scary. People stop thinking wisely, as individuals and just blindly go along with the emotion of the moment. (Father God, keep us from being stirred up by anyone but You!) We see Pilate as the reluctant accomplice here. He is not swept away by the mob, but he does choose pragmatism over justice. […] Read more »

Seeking Jesus Day Twenty-Nine - Mark 14:53-72

As this horrific night draws to an end, we watch Peter weep bitterly, fully aware of his own failure and folly in not gladly proclaiming that he was with Jesus. If scholars are right, and Peter told this tale to Mark who wrote it down for us, do you think Peter blinked back tears at the re-telling? How humble and transparent he was to admit freely that he had denied the Lord! May we be as vulnerable when we have sinned, showing that all strength and goodness comes from God and without Him, when left to ourselves, we are simply jars of clay. Jesus, unlike Peter, was a tower of strength and calm throughout the ordeal. He said little, but when asked directly, He proclaimed […] Read more »

Seeking Jesus Day Twenty-Eight - Mark 14:27-52

So let's just start by saying that this was not Peter's night. Peter starts out declaring his loyalty to Jesus during the last supper and Jesus replies that Peter will betray him three times. It does not get better. They leave the home where they heard Jesus talk about His broken body and poured out blood and enter the Garden of Gethsemane. Peter, James and John go deeper into the garden with Jesus and He asks them to watch and pray. They do not. They fall asleep. Jesus singles Peter out, calling him Simon in verse 37: "Then he returned and found the disciples asleep. He said to Peter, “Simon, are you asleep? Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour?" We read in John 18:10 […] Read more »