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Sunday, February 16, 2014

White As Snow

Isaiah 1:18 "though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool"

We experienced the most snow here in eastern NC that we have seen in many years. As more and more and still more snow fell, everything else seemed to vanish. The grass, the bushes, trees, walkways, toys, & even some cars were hidden beneath the blanket of white. 

It gave the world a brighter, cleaner, purer appearance. You no longer saw the trash littering the sides of the road. You no longer saw the brown dying grass. You no longer saw mud puddles that you knew had been there just the other day.

It was truly beautiful to witness.

Now, just a few days later, that snow has started to melt. The roads are encased in grey slush. The walkways are more mud that dirt. The footsteps are growing bigger & bigger.

It's not quite so pretty anymore.

But, we know that the sloppy mess will dry out & give way to lush green grass, bright fragrant flowers, & warm sunny days. Then before long, the snows will come again, cleanse everything, & then we will have to dry out & start over yet again.

It made me realize that perhaps this is how Jesus sees us. He KNOWS there is a path underneath somewhere. He KNOWS that all of our dirt & trash is still there just right under the surface. He KNOWS that eventually our sins will become apparent once again.  BUT when He looks upon us, He doesn't see our past faults & failures. He doesn't see our sin. 

When Jesus looks at us, He sees a blanket of pure white. He sees us justified, purified, & clean.

He knows that we will sin again. But He also knows that the snow (His blood) is needed to cleanse us before we can start to grow & bloom into something beautiful again!


Tuesday, February 4, 2014

Who is Your Hero

I had the sad honor of attending a home going service yesterday. A friend of mine's father finally fought his last battle here on earth & crossed over into glory.

During the service, the preacher talked about being a hero.

The definition of a Hero:

a person who is admired for great or brave acts or fine qualities

a person who is greatly admired

the chief character in a story


We all have heroes in our lives. When we are little, we probably look up to actual cartoon super heroes, firemen, & policemen; maybe even mom & dad too. As teenagers, our heroes often change with whatever movie or band is popular, probably our friends or a few teachers. As young adults, our heroes might include the movers & shakers of the world, those that are wealthy, famous, & successful.

As we continue to grow, our heroes change. More than likely, we no longer idolize cartoon superheroes, actors, singers, or the Bill Gates of the world. We might still look up to a few teachers, friends, & family members. Many of us certainly see fireman, policemen, & servicemen as modern day heroes.

But who else?

My daddy has always been one of my heroes. He is such a loving, easy going man, that its easy to forget that he has burdens of his own. I don't think the man had ever met a stranger. You can't go anywhere with him without running in to several people that he knows.

My maternal grandmother was also one of my heroes while she was alive. She always looked beautiful & took hours to make sure every hair was in place, but wasn't afraid to get her hands dirty or work up a sweat. She slaved away day in & day out at a job that few people wanted to do. And she never hesitated to tell you just what she thought, whether you wanted to hear it or not.

My husband is one of my heroes. He provides for our family. He loves us unconditionally. He stands strong in his faith. He spends countless hours continuing his education in firefighting & medical responding. He sacrifices sleep, food, family time, & previous commitments just to save a home or rescue a life.

My children are my heroes. They love first & ask questions later. They forgive & forgive & forgive. They look for the extraordinary in the ordinary. They see me for who I try to be, not who I fail to be.

I also have several Christian heroes that I have grown up watching. They are unwavering in their faith. Even when life throws them more than they can possibly stand, still they stand. They are the ones that make this life look effortless. The ones who make God & everyone else smile. The ones who you want to model your Christian walk after.

When you start to think about it, you have more heroes that you realized, all of them for many different reasons.

I hope as I continue through this life, that a few people can look at me as one of their heroes.

Be someone's hero - make a difference!