National Geographic 2012 Photo Contest Winner taken in Lake Mary, FL
The next day he saw Jesus coming toward him, and said, “Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!
30 This is he of whom I said, ‘After me comes a man who ranks before me, because he was before me.’ 31 I myself did not know him, but for this purpose I came baptizing with water, that he might be revealed to Israel.”
32 And John bore witness: “I saw the Spirit descend from heaven like a dove, and it remained on him. 33 I myself did not know him, but he who sent me to baptize with water said to me, ‘He on whom you see the Spirit descend and remain, this is he who baptizes with the Holy Spirit.’ 34 And I have seen and have borne witness that this is the Son of God.”
Combined with this Scripture passage:
O Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
You have set your glory above the heavens.
2 Out of the mouth of babies and infants,
you have established strength because of your foes,
to still the enemy and the avenger.
3 When I look at your heavens, the work of your fingers,
the moon and the stars, which you have set in place,
4 what is man that you are mindful of him,
and the son of man that you care for him?
5 Yet you have made him a little lower than the heavenly beings[than God and the angels]
and crowned him with glory and honor.
6 You have given him dominion over the works of your hands;
you have put all things under his feet,
7 all sheep and oxen,
and also the beasts of the field,
8 the birds of the heavens, and the fish of the sea,
whatever passes along the paths of the seas.
9 O Lord, our Lord,
how majestic is your name in all the earth!
This is the Son of God. Jesus sent His Holy Spirit to be upon the people who would ask in His name, with belief. So many, many times we are left with a photo image of a dove descending upon Him at His baptism. The important message - the Spirit remains.
Psalm 8 continues the message saying His name, Jesus, is majesty, glory and establishes strength.
Many times in life we feel diminished, and this passage reassures us we are so important to HIM, the Spirit remains. The work of our hands, our life, will be established in Him. The journey, the path - His - He established for us.
My mother has been in the Hospital for 16 days. We met people who had people in the Hospital for 42 Days. The Hospital makes you tired when the patient is going to have changes, questions, tests, doctors, needs and personality up and down and almost comatose.
We were fortunate, 7 people came right away. All with emotions. And the people who called back and worried and called and texted all have lives too. Changing lives. Including the two realtors my mom doesn't really know who showed up to ask too many questions and were left with the sleeping patient. There might be another sale, right?
Hospice was uninvited and showed up 3 times. Well ok, 4. Acute care was prevented. Nurses worked their legs off and one wept when she got better. They got a letter from us in Administration taking names and saying, "Thank You."
Questions were asked about health from people without health backgrounds. And answers were sought until answers were found.
One of the people consistently patient with us about asking and finding out - in in the massive Flood in Louisiana. He is our family who shows up for weddings and funerals and visits. Thanks Cousin. He is interesting. He likes Minister Jesse Duplantis and recommends him. I have found Jesse Duplantis very inspirational. Thanks, Cousin.
We have a far flung friend who has a husband in his 90s. A minister and a 14 year old dog - both in ill health. She has made countless wedding dresses. And is as shy as Napoleon Bonaparte. Her stove from the 1910s is beautiful and she rewired that stove herself. Their farm house had all the walls knocked out by fire before they purchased that and not replaced to see the creek in the back and the field in the front. The beams are interesting and acquired from the barn they tore down to place in the huge one room living area. Cooking, crafts, choirs, discussions on the Bible. And flower arranging.
My mom was a daily participant in the University of Fun. For decades. And she went back to work after the divorce and started mourning and became a friend to many and very busy.
One of the people providing food has remarked with my mom that the 6,000 people they went to Church with since 1956 have departed. And they see a whole new 6,000 person congregation. In fact the neighborhood looks 50 years younger suddenly. And she has said this is like living through the Black Plague. No one told her. She and my mom go to 3 funerals a week, in their 8th decade, and could go to more funerals. Both ladies say they go to say goodbye and see who is alive.
Edward and I listen to the radio and learn from the University of Pittsburgh that exercise changes the brain and the chemicals that say "I deserve and work and work to have good health" feed the mind in good health.
We have had a long time friend who is a doctor - who had an Amazing Job. And we are very fortunate to have had her advice. Even when she had her mouth drop open because this line of medical thinking is What? She is in her 80's and she is rounding people up and Shepherding them in her gracious goodness. Driving 3 hours to put eyes on my mom and then going home.
And one lady has just finished teaching school and is quite young at heart. In her Eighties. And my mother's dear boyfriend, our neighbor when I was a very young child, is very active and repairs his collector cars and revamps his belongings to stream line and redoes areas of his house and does his own yardwork. He is older than 85. And is a good judge of circumstances and is fun.
A very good friend has lost her husband a year and a half ago. She is out cleaning and making new things. And then napping and mourning. Surely a healthy combination.
Sibling support, sibling rivalry, sibling enjoyment, sibling gotcha. Dang. And for them $2,000 emergency airline tickets - 8 days of jaw dropping scary and what the - what the - what the. And after a blood sugar of 300 - Mom doesn't remember we were there. Sometimes 12 hours a day. My brother wept to find out she doesn't remember after her - sort of - coma.
My husband wept, and my brother and I worried we should have let Hospice take my mom. Maybe we were just creating a corn husk left of a Person. Enough to make you worry for weeks. But we face the decisions as God would want us to face them and had discussions with strangers of personal things that are frank and emotional. What is appropriate medicine - what is extreme - what is loving - what is the best. What to do. And you drive 3 hours home, sit in a chair and suddenly in young 50's feel fragile. And start exercising more. Praying A LOT.
America doesn't really like funerals, grief and recovery. But we surely were blessed with people from all over the USA bringing acts of kindness. Really blessed. Amazingly blessed. Next time you know someone in the hospital - go - not everyone gets visitors. A kind word - in the hospital - changes a life.
Next time you want your words to matter - try kindness in the Hospital. There kindness changes the entire course of a life.
What I have liked about the people who have visited with us with phone and
face visits - they put their lives in front of us as they are (minus the women looking for a sale).
Work in progress. Striving. Hoping. Believing. Praying.
A lot of these people are in CHANGING TIMES. And we saw support and going with God.
Writing this Post, is amazingly good for me. I have mourned times past. And in being to sit in the gratitude chair has made what is good apparent again. Blessed to write this Gratitude Down.
Thank God when HE has us make lists of Gratitude.
For the Lord your God has blessed you in all the work of your hands. He knows your going through this great wilderness. These forty years the Lord your God has been with you. You have lacked nothing.”’
The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.
For God's gifts and his call are irrevocable.
Asking us -
1 Peter 2:17
Show proper respect to everyone: Love the brotherhood of believers, fear God, honor the king.
These things I command you, so that you will love one another.
Walking with faith. We all have questions, not necessarily lack of faith, but questions. Jesus gives us an abiding Holy Spirit. John the Baptist knew he was serving God, he'd heard about his family, John had to have known about the Christmas story of Mary, Joseph and Jesus. John went along his faith journey and God showed him the path forward.
Jesus said to him, “Have you believed because you have seen me? Blessed are those who have not seen and yet have believed.”
And really, the people who gave us strength encouraged this:
“Behold, the Lamb of God, who takes away the sin of the world!"
We are group of people known to the people around us as Christians. Sure there was some pandering of mouthing faith near us. But really - what real faith brings - the ability to be who you are. Deal with it as it is. Face the facts. And Go Forth With Love, Joy, Faith and Hope. Even when you're going to sit in a chair and say, "Ommm" for a little while. And go and do more staying with Physical Rehabilitation Next.
Life is going to Change. Children grow up and have families. Husbands get terminal diagnosis. Mom's have Pneumonia and go to Rehab. People age. People mourn. People rebuild. Lives Change.
What do You tell us about the Wild Waves of Life?
Never stop praying. Be thankful in all circumstances, for this is God’s will for you who belong to Christ Jesus.
Pray in the Spirit at all times, with every kind of prayer and petition. To this end, stay alert with all perseverance in your prayers for all the saints.
Do not let your zeal subside; keep your spiritual fervor, serving the Lord. 12Be joyful in hope, patient in affliction, persistent in prayer. Share with the saints who are in need. Practice hospitality.
Have compassion. Abide in Hope of a better outcome and ending. Go Forth and do not shrink back.
Father God will not leave nor forsake us. Be strong and courageous. Obey the Word of God. Do not be afraid; do not be discouraged, for the Lord your God will be with you wherever you go.
When we trust God, we are open to the Holy Spirit.
Dwell in me and the Ones I love. Be with the Churches of Jesus Christ. Our communities. Our State. This Nation to please God our Father. Asking Him to bless voting for The Word of God Honored. Pray as we Vote. We know He will hear us as we Call upon Him. We place our cares and the people around the World Celebrating and Believing and Praying Jesus for our days. Today.
No matter the muddle or mess. Jesus is the Lamb of God, creating a Holy Path. We Trust Him.
Amen in Jesus the Lord. Amen.